« ForrigeFortsett »
the ballads of Denmark and Scan- class, called the Tournament, brings dinavia.
together most of the personages The first class, to which the title who figure in the series, and deformerly given to the earliest pub- scribes the bearings on their shields, lication of Danish ballads, namely, an important matter in former times, Kiæmpe-Viser (ballads of giants and to which reference is often afterwards warriors), ought properly to be con- made. The following extract from fined, comprehends ballads relating the commencement of this ballad, to the ancient mythical times. Of which is of great length, may serve this class, the Danes have several, to give some idea of its nature: the Swedes have only one, the ballad of Grimborg. The subjects of them There were seven and seven times twenty, are the combats and adventures of And when they came to Brattingsborg
Who from the hall outwent, giants or heroes of extraordinary
There pitched they their tent. strength and courage. Most of these It thunders 'neath their horses as the Da. heroes either belonged to the court
nish warriors ride. of the celebrated Dideric or Theo
King Nilus stands on his castle wall, doric, King of the Ostrogoths, or
Whence he sees both far and wide were in some manner connected with
“ Why hold these warriors their lives so it. His residence is called Bern,
cheap, (supposed Verona). The splendour
That they long my strength to bide ?” of this court, in the representations It thunders neath their horses &c. of the northern bards, hardly yields Hear thou Sivard Snarenswend to that of Charlemain and his twelve
Thou hast roved far and wide, peers, or of King Arthur and his Thou shalt see these warriors' bearings, round table. This class has all the
To the tent go quickly ride. marks of a very remote age. The It was Sivard Snarenswend style is not merely simple, it may To the tent he hied amain ; be called rude. There is a great You are welcome here, my noble Sirs, confusion throughout with respect to Ye King of Danes’s men. places and times; and a number of
I famous heroes, who lived in very
pray you take it not amiss,
Nor angry be with me different ages, are often brought to- But if with you the combat we try, gether without much ceremony. Your bearings I first must see. All traces of the traditions re
Upon the first shield doth appear specting these characters are nearly A lion large and stronglost in England. One of the most With a crown also of yellow gold, important of them, however, is said To King Diderick it doth belong. in the new novel of Kenilworth, Upon the second shield appears on the authority of Gough, still to
A hammer large and tongs, live in the traditions of Berkshire, It is borne by Vidrick Verlandson, namely Weyland, the smith, to whom Who quarter giveth none. the great novelist has assigned so Upon the third shield doth appear prominent a part. The same Weyland
A vulture red as gold occurs in “ Horn Child, and Maiden It is borne by the Hero Hogen Rimenild,” in Ritson's Ancient Ro Who is a warrior bold. mances, iii. 293.
Upon the fourth shield doth appear
An eagle, and it is red,
It is borne by Olger, the Dane,
Who leaves aye his foemen dead.
Amidst all the rudeness of this
class of ballads, they often display
much energy and greatness of conIn the minstrelsy of the Scotch ception. Take as an instance a pasborder, and Mr. Ellis's specimens of sage in the Danish ballad of Berner early English Romances, may also be the giant, and Orm Ungerswend, found some account of him; and the where a youth goes to his father's latter has a curious Latin quotation grave, to wake him from the dead, on the subject, from Geoffrey's Vita in order to obtain his sword from him Merlini.
to combat the giant; who, in the The first Danish ballad of this outset, is thus described :
It was Berner the great giant,
“ Thou silver and gold did'st give to me, He rose over walls the most high;
I esteem it of no worth, He was so mad and furious
But I will have Birting, No man durst come him nigh.
It is so good a sword.” But the wood it standeth all in flower.
« Thou shalt not get from me Birting, He was so mad and furious
To win so fair a maid, No man durst to him go,
Till thou hast been in Ireland Had he been long in Denmark
To revenge thy father's death.” He would have worked much woe.
“ Come, quickly give me Birting up, But the wood &c.
'T will be full well with me, Orm Ungerswend, stimulated by Or else in a thousand pieces I break
The hill which is over thee." the promise of the daughter of the King of Denmark, challenged this “ Then reach thou down thy right hand monster,
Take Birting from my side ; Berner, the high giant,
But break'st thou the hill which is over me, Who looked over his shoulder to see :
Grief and sorrow shall thee betide." " Whence cometh then this little mouse, Who dare speak such words to me?” It was common in the north, that
the things which in life were held by Orm Ungerswend proceeds with a man in the highest estimation, out delay to the hill, in which he should accompany hiin to the tomb. says “ his father dwells with all.” The sort of visit which Orm Unger
swend bere pays is a frequent ocIt was late in the evening,
currence in the sagas ; and every The sun it goeth low,
reader must remember the similar Then longeth Orm Ungerswend To his father to go.
dialogue between Hervor and An
gantyr, derived by Mr. Gray from It was late in the evening tide,
the Norse poetry. When swains to water horses take,
The recommendation of the folThen longeth Orm Ungerswend
lowing ballad, called “ The Death His father froin sleep to wake.
of Sivard Snarenswend,” is its breIt was Orm Ungerswend,
vity, which allows us, without, we He struck so hard on the hill,
hope, drawing too much on the patiIt was, indeed, great wonder
ence of our readers, to give it entire: That falling it did not him kill.
Sivard, he slew his step-father
All for his mother's sake,
So cunningly runs Greyman under Sivard. Which were in its lowest part.
It was Sivard Snarenswend,
Whether he should ride from her,
So cunningly, &c. 66 Who waketh me so early
“ Thou shalt not go on foot from me, And makes me so to moan,
If the horse only bear thee can, Why can I not remain in peace
I shall to thee give the good horse, All under the hard stone ?
The courtiers call Greyman.”
So cunningly runs, &c. “ Who dareth thus my hill to break, Who dares to face mine eye ?
They led Greyman from the stable out,
All gilt his bridle shone;
His eyes they gleam'd like sparkling stars,
And the fire flew from his mane. “ I am Orm Ungerswend,
Sivard then his gloves threw off, Thy youngest son, father dear!
His hands they were so white,
Himself he girded his good horse,
She was clad in Kirtle red ;
“ Sivard ! it is my strongest fear As much as thou would'st have."
That the horse will be thy dede.”
And she followed him long as out he went, The ballads of this class are someFor high her fear now rose :
times varied in a whimsical enough “ And Ở take care of Greyman, thy horse manner, by the propounding and anSo many tricks he knows.” i
swering of riddles, an exercise of “ Now hear ye then, my mother dear, ingenuity in which our forefathers Ye need not be so afraid,
took great delight, and which has In me you have a nimble son
also found its way into their songs. Who well his horse can ride."
In a large volume of ballads, in Greyman, he started from the gate,
black letter, of the latter part of And sprung o'er bridge and flood, Charles the Second's reign, preserved And however firm in the saddle he sat, in the Bodleian Library at Oxford,
His boots were filled with blood. there is one called “ the Noble RidThe horse he ran through the wide Downs, dle wisely expounded, or the Maid's Where the people were met in Ting, *
Answer to the Knights their QuesThe people in Ting astounded stood,
tions,” beginning, To see a horse so spring.
There was a lady of the north country, For fifteen days and fifteen nights,
Lay the bent to the bonny broom ; Over hill and dale he ran,
And she had lovely daughters three, Till he came before a lofty house,
Fa la la la, fa la la la, ra re. The doors were lock'd each one.
One of the daughters, after some King Dan he stood on the highest tower, endearments had passed between her Where he sees both far and wide,
and a young knight, asks him to “ Here see I a drunken courtier,
marry her Who well his horse can ride.
The brave young Knight to her replied, &c. “ It is either a drunken courtier
“ Thy suit, fair maid, shall not be denied, Who well can ride I ween;
&c. Or it is Sivard, my sister's son,
If thou can'st answer me questions three, And in combat he has been."
This very day will I marry thee.” Greyman, he took the bits in his teeth,
“ Kind Sir, in love, O then quoth she, il O'er the outer wall he flew ;
Tell me what your questions be?”, The ladies and maidens were sore dismayed “O what is longer than the way?
Who happened this leap to view. Or what is deeper than the sea ? The ladies and beautiful maideris look’a Or what is louder than the horn ? pale,
Or what is sharper than a thorn ? All under their scarlet so fine :
Or what is greener than the grass ? King Dan he goes so gladly
Or what is worse than a woman was?” To welcome his sister's son in.
“ O love is longer than the way, And it was the King of the Danes,
And hell is deeper than the sea ;
And thunder is louder than the horn, And straightway then he said, “ Go tell from me the archers good
And hunger is sharper than a thorn ;, The gate to open wide.'!:
And poison is greener than the grass,
And the devil is worse than woman was." It was Sivard Snarenswend,
When she these questions answered had, He rode in with all his might ; And thirteen of the waiting maids,
The Knight became exceeding glad. They fainted at the sight.
The following passage from the The King, he said unto his men,
Danish ballad of Child Bonved, is " Treat Sivard I pray with care,
quite in the style of the above, For I must frankly tell to you
though less polished : No jesting will he bear." };"
Child Bonved binds his sword by his side, It was Sivard Snarenswend,
Still longing farther on to ride, He allowed his horse to spring
And he rode till he came to a mountain Full fifteen ells o'er the highest wall,
high, And so he came to his end.
Where a shepherd with his sheep came by. Sivard was cut by the saddle bow, 66 Now hear thee shepherd, tell to me, And Greyman's back in twain ;
Whose are the sheep thou hast with thee ? And all in the palace, who saw him, cried, What is than a wheel more round ? And none were glad or fain,
And where is the best yool-drink to be So sorrowfully ran Greyman under Sivard. found ?
* Ting, a court or assembly, as Stor-Ting (great court), the name of the parliament of Norway.
Where does the fish stand in the flood ? And on over hill and dale rode he,
But never a man could he hear or see.
Till at last he came to a third flock, good ?”
“ Hear thou good man with thy sheep, I pray, The shepherd hesat, and all calmly did take, And give certain answers to what I say. He could not the slightest answer make;
What is rounder than a wheel? The Child he gave him so heavy a blow
And where is there drunk the noblest yool ? That liver and lungs they out did go.
Where does the sun go to take a seat ? To another flock he straightway came, And where remain the dead man's feet? And a shepherd also was with the same ;
What is 't that fills up every dale ? “ Hear thou, good shepherd, and tell to me Whose are the sheep thou hast with thee?” What calls out louder than a crane ?
What dresses best in the royal hall ? “This way there lies both Burg and Fort, And what is whiter than a swan ? Where warriors always do resort ;
Who on their backs their beards do wear? There dwells a man, called Tycho Nold,
Wha 'neath his chin his nose does bear ? And twelve sons he has stout and bold."
What is blacker than a sloe ? “ Hear thou, my dearest shepherd good, And what is fleeter than a roe ? Tell Tycho-Nold to hasten out; "
Which is the bridge with the broadest span? From his pocket he drew a gold-ring forth And he gave the shepherd this ring of worth. Where does the road that is highest run ?
Which is the ugliest thing like a man? And as Child Bonved nearer came,
And whence does the drink that is coldest They parted his plunder among them,
come?" Some would have his sword so keen, ic
The sun is rounder than a wheel ; And some his horse and harness so fine.
In Heaven there is held the noblest yool; Child Bonved he welcom'd himself alone, To the west the sun goes to his seat ; He wish'd to give his good horse to none; To the east remain the dead man's feet; His steed and sword he wished not to lose,
The snow it filleth every dale, He would sooner with them in battle close. And man is fairest drest in the hall; “ Though thou had'st twelve sons to thy Thunder calls louder than a crane z twelve,
Angels are whiter than a swan. And stood between them all thyself,
Women their beard on their neck do wear, Thou should'st sooner from steel pure And warlocks 'neath their chin their noses
water wring, Than take from me the smallest thing."
Sin is blacker than a sloe, Child Bonved he clapt the spur to his horse, And thought is fleeter than a roe. And sprung o'er gates and walls with force; Ice is the bridge with the broadest span, And so he conquer'd Sir Tycho-Nold,
And the toad the ugliest thing like a And also his twelve sons so bold.
man; And so he turned his horse about,
The highest road to Paradise runs, Child Bonved the warrior 80 brave and And the coldest drink is beneath the stout;
For the former part of this Essay, see page 41 of the present Volume.
He passes forth into the charmed air,
With Talisman to call up Spirits rare
To the core, and every secret essence there
Reveals the elements of good and fair,
The Poet's sympathies are not confined
To kindred, country, climate, class, or kind,
Then, as of old, might inspiration shed
C. Ulan Uinkbooms, his Doginas for Dilettanti.
I like the green plush which your meadows weare,
He who possessing an active mind speares, overlaid with black, staid is yet deficient in variety and origi- wisdom's hue: crumbled to tinder nality of ideas to feed it with, cannot are those pictorial bed-curtains, visubsist long without books. This sible lectures on ornithology and bowe felt so sensibly in our late ex- tany—" all, all are gone, the old cursion, that we were forced to re- familiar faces,” and with them is linquish, for a time, our resolution of flown half the enjoyment I took in visiting
(which would of enacting the Tartar. I am certainly course have suggested very pastoral an amiable creature ; every action of and marine articles), and to return my life emanates from a wish to to London, and our indispensable au- please. I left the valley of thors and painters. “In height of last spring to please the painters with spring-tide, when heaven's lights are my eulogies, I left the sea-weedlong, we may contrive to drag tangled beach of
***, “bidding through the day bookless not amiss. the thickening waves go foam for Before breakfast, for instance, one other eyes,” to please myself. And may take a view—if one can; at this morning, I left my most acranoon, a sail —if near the sea; and in sian bed to please the Editor, by the evening, a stroll amid the fresh penning No. II. of my delightful fragrant breath of the furze and Dogmas. heath-if not tired; repeating Col But in the first place, I must see lins's lovely ode--if ever learnt, and what there is in this roll. Ah! Mr, still retained. By this time it draws Richard Cook, are you here at my towards ten o'clock, and a truss of call ?- The Death of Acis, folio size. fine blanched lettuce, a good dig of This very striking spirited design Stilton, or a slice of ham, and a hand- proves that the painter of Polyphesome glass of bottled-porter,—all mus groping for the Ithacans at the well-earned by exercise, -carry you Mouth of his Cave (engraved for comfortably to your white-curtained Sharp's elegant edition of the poets), bed. But as the days begin to draw and Douglas grimly louring on the in, and when the mystical R. ren- glittering train of James IV., has not ders oysters eatable, and candles ne- fallen off either in animation or res cessary, solitude at an inn becomes finement. The action of Galatea's intolerable; especially since the dis- hands has great truth and simplicity; use of coloured prints, samplers, but the lower limhs want more screens, maps, &c. They have no little energy, or more helplessness; the china pastoralities on the mantle- latter, indeed, would'accord better shelves now,- no piping shepherds, in with the convulsive shrink of the claret-coloured coats and cocked arms; a frightened Amor, it is true, hats,-no fallow-deer couching their appears to urge forward the “ faire white breasts among pure lilies, and marine,” indicating very plainly her ideally green herbage,-no Falstaffs, reluctance or incapacity needing such acquered red and yellow,-nor Shaks incitement; but the white knees them