Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 17, 1906.djvu/419

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Custom and Belief in Icelandic Sagas. 403

20. {Eyrbyggja, 993.) Arnkell was laid in a howe by

the sea, as big as a stackyard.

21. {FljStsdcela, 998.) Kari was carried on a shield to

HofSi ; and a howe thrown up after him.

22. (/(^.) A howe was made, and there Helgi and

Thorkell were howed. On the other hand, others

who fell were simply jar'6a5ir {earthed or buried)

where they fell.

Women were also howed sometimes. Aud the Wealthy,

about the year 900, was laid in the howe in a ship, as

befitted so notable a traveller, and much money with her,

after a three days' feast {Laxdcela) ; according to Landnania,

her howe was on the shore below high water mark,

that she might not be in unhallowed ground, as she was

Christian. Droplaug's mother ArneiS {Fljotsdcsla) was

" howed outside the garS " ; and Thorstein laid his mother

Ingibjorg in the howe beside her husband {Svarfdcela).

The belief that a dead man would still want the things he had wanted in life is fully illustrated in these passages. It is combined no doubt with the idea of a journey to Valhalla, in the practice of ship-burial ; and it further appears in two undoubted survivals from former slave- sacrifice, both in Landnama.

1. When Asmund died during the settlement-years in

Iceland, he was buried in a ship in a howe, with a thrall " who slew himself because he would not live after Asmund." The chief, however, appeared in a dream to his kindred and complained that the thrall was annoying him, so the howe was opened and he was removed.

2. When Ingimund died during the same period, he was

laid in a boat and buried as honourably as was the custom with men of rank. One friend killed himself, sending a message to another to do like- wise, because " there is no life for the friends of Ingimund."