Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 17, 1906.djvu/440

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424 Custom and Belief in Icelandic Sagas.

3. Thordis the prophetess made Thorvard wound-proof before his combat with Kormak. The latter was sent by his mother to obtain help for the same combat. Thordis told him he came too late, but if he stayed the night she would make him wound- proof too. In the night he felt a touch on his head, and followed to the door ; she had gone to the place where they were to fight, and had a goose. She said: "Why could you not be quiet .-* " He lay down again and the same thing happened three times. The third time, she had killed two geese and let the blood run into a bowl ; then she had taken the third goose and was going to kill it. He said " What good will that do, fostermother .-• " and she said there was no helping him : " I thought to take off the ill-luck which Thorveig laid on you and Steingerd, and you might have been happy if I had killed the third goose unknown to anyone." They went to the combat : Thorvard gave the prophetess more money and received the sacrifice (obscure). She told Kormak she could cause Thorvard not to know him ; but Kormak spoke ill to her, and said she would do nothing but harm, and tried to drag her out of doors and see her eyes in the sunshine, but his brother prevented him. In the combat the swords did not bite.

Thordis, as prophetess {spdkona), is not repre- sented as intentionally mischievous, like Thorveig and Katla. She is a wise-woman, not a witch.

V. Weather Spells.

1. {Thorskfir'^inga Saga, 930.) Kerling had a cap of

darkness over the ship.

2. ( Waterdale Saga, 936.) Lj6t walked backwards with

her head between her legs. She said she had meant to turn the land upside down, and they