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Gudrd the Hunter

Gudrd the Hunter

Gudrd the Hunter (Old Norse: Gurr veiikonungr, Norwegian: Gudrd Veidekonge), also known as the Magnificent (Old Norse: enn gfuglti, Norwegian: den gjeve), is a legendary character portrayed in the Norse sagas as a Norwegian petty king in the early 9th century. According to the sagas, he was the father of Halfdan the Black, and thus the grandfather of Harald Fairhair, the first king of unified Norway. He is considered by modern historians to be of a more mythical nature than other ancestors of Harald and Halfdan, and he can not be identified historically. Historians have in turn made a number of proposals seeking to identify him with various would-be contemporary historical figures.

Gudrd was a member of the House of Yngling. He was the son of Halfdan the Mild, king of Romerike and Vestfold, and Liv, daughter of King Dag of Vestmar. Gudrd is mentioned in the skaldic poem Ynglingatal, and Snorri Sturluson elaborates on Gudrd's story in Heimskringla. According to Snorri, Gudrd was called both "the Magnificent" and "the Hunter", while Ynglingatal only refers to him as "the Magnificent".

While Gudrd is portrayed as a king in Oppland in some older texts, Snorri writes that he was a king in Vestfold. Gudrd first married Alfhild, a daughter of Alfarin, king of Alfheim (now Bohusln). Gudrd inherited half the province of Vingulmark.[citation needed] They had a son, Olaf Geirstad-Alf. When Alfhild died, Gudrd sent his men to the king of Agder, Harald Granraude, to propose a marriage with his daughter sa. When Harald declined, Gudrd decided to take sa by force. They arrived at night. When Harald realised that he was being attacked, he assembled his men and fought well, but died together with his son Gyrd.[citation needed] Gudrd thereafter captured sa and married her. They had the son Halfdan the Black.

Map of contemporary south-eastern Norway (Viken), showing locations mentioned in the article.

In the fall, when Halfdan was a year old, Gudrd was having at a feast in an otherwise unknown location called "Stivlesund". He was very drunk and in the evening, as he was walking on the gangway to leave the ship, an assassin thrust a spear through Gudrd, killing him. Gudrd's men instantly killed the assassin, who turned out to be sa's page-boy. sa admitted that the page-boy had acted on her behalf. After Gudrd was killed, sa took the 1 year-old Halfdan and returned to Agder, where Halfdan was raised.

Gudrd the Hunter

References Other sources

Krag, C. Ynglingatal og Ynglingesaga: en studie i historiske kilder (Oslo 1991) Salvesen, A., transl. Norges historie; Historia Norvegiae (Oslo 1978)
Precededby Head of the House of Yngling Succeededby Halfdan the Mild Olaf Geirstad-Alf

Article Sources and Contributors

Article Sources and Contributors

Gudrd the Hunter Source: Contributors: Aciram, Againme, Agricolae, Aymeric78, Barend, Berig, Brighterorange, Clarityfiend, DNewhall, Devanatha, Dobromila, Egil, ErikTheBikeMan, Giorgio Leone, Glenn, Hauganm, Haukurth, Kyorosuke, Loggie, Mceder, Nilzern, Pedant, Singularity, Thhist, Walgamanus, Wiglaf, Woudhanaz, 5 anonymous edits

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File:Kart over Viken.png Source: License: Public Domain Contributors: Kre-Olav

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