Friday, 17 June 2016
Better And Better
"Denmark waxed in might and wealth. The kingly brothers worked well together. Hroar steered the realm and strove to better it, with a wisdom that grew as he himself did. Showing enough manly skills to keep the respect of warriors, he became much loved...
"He must travel a lot, building up the land as he wished." (Hrolf Kraki's Saga, pp. 61-62)
makes an annual round of the Things;
listens to men alone and at length;
sees for himself how matters stand;
travels abroad under the white shield of peace;
guests foreign visitors and listens to them;
occasionally fights to discourage the greedy and ruthless but leaves most of this to Helgi.
Hroar is good. Helgi is a mixture of good and bad. He leads plundering cruises but also hunts robbers, despoils viking lairs and overawes outland chiefs who trouble the peace. One of Hroar's greatest skills is to continue working with his wayward brother.