SYNOPSIS: Iceland (984-985). Ethelwulf and his followers land in Iceland and immediately become involved in a blood-feud arising from a horse-fight. Both sides need to collect supporters for judgement before the Althing. For the newcomers that may involving challenging a witch, digging up peat or spontaneous fights. Several characters are those appearing in the Sagas dating from the Middle Ages. In the end the Wanderer and his followers go into exile – with a witch’s curse upon them.
With extensive Factual End-Notes.
EXTRACT: '“My brother has been the victim of a nasty theft,” she began. “I say 'nasty’ because whoever was responsible not only stole valuable supplies but deliberately set out to commit as much pointless damage as possible.” She started to finger a bronze image of Odin astride Sleipnir hanging from her neck, and as it twisted in the rays of the sun continued. “I’m really here to find out what happened about the supplies…… You know my brother….. He ……. gets ……so worked about ……such things.”
Suddenly sunlight, reflected from the amulet, flashed across the eyes of Eyjolff and they began to glaze over. Thorkalata kept her eyes fixed on his and, with an uncanny accuracy based on practice, began to stroke each of the eight legs of Sleipnir in turn. As she entered the second pass she began to count slowly as she stroked each leg. “One ….. Two ….. Three ……Four ……Five ……Six ……Seven …..Eight.” Then she placed her fingertips firmly on the head. “By the One-Eyed Master, Lord of the Hanged Men, Unmasker of Secrets, you will tell me the truth!” She stepped closer to Eyjolff who remained transfixed, staring into the space where Thorkalata had been standing.
The witch started to whisper in Eyjolff’s ear. “By the power of Seið you have become mine and can withhold no secrets from me. Speak now of the salt and pork which once were Egil’s.”'
END-NOTE EXAMPLE: 63. Seið is a form of magic based on illusion. It was almost certainly based on hypnosis & an example can be seen in ‘Eyrbyggja Saga’ (chapter 20).
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