The Kings of Oppland
© Peter Tunstall, 2008
1. Of Olaf Tree-Cutter
Olaf, son of King Ingjald the Bad, cleared Värmland of trees. He was called Olaf Tree-Cutter. He was fostered in
West Gautland by a man called Bofi. Bofi had a son called Saxi who was nicknamed the Plunderer. Olaf’s mother was Gunnhild, the daughter of King Algauti who was the son of King Gautrek the Generous, son of Gaut after whom Gautland is named. Alof was the mother of Gauthild, daughter of King Olaf the Keen-Eyed, king of Närke.
But when Ivar Wide-Grip had conquered all of
Denmark and Sweden, Olaf fled with a great host of men who’d been outlawed by King Ivar. They went north over Lake Vänern and cleared the forests there and settled a wide district, and they called it Värmland, and that’s why the Swedes called him Olaf Tree-Cutter, and he was king there into his old age. His wife was called Solva. She was the sister of Solvi the Old who first cleared Solør.
Olaf and Solva had two sons, one named Ingjald, the other Halfdan. Ingjald succeeded his father as king of Värmland. Halfdan meanwhile was brought up in Solør by Solvi, his mother’s brother. He was nicknamed Halfdan White-Leg. He succeeded Solvi as king of Solør. He married Asa, daughter of King Eystein the Bad of Heid. This Eystein conquered Eynafylki in
Trondheim and gave them his dog Sor as their king. Sor’s Mound is named after him. Halfdan and Asa had two sons, Eystein and Gudrod. Halfdan White-Leg took control of Romerike and much of Hedmark. He died peacefully in Toten and was transported to Hedmark and buried there.
2. The Kinsmen of Halfdan White-Leg
Halfdan’s son Gudrod was king in Hedmark after his father’s death. His son was Helgi, the father of Ingjald, father of Olaf the White who married Aud the Deep Minded, daughter of Ketil Flatnose. Their son was Thorstein the Red who became a jarl in
Scotland and fell in battle there.
Halfdan White-Leg’s son Eystein was king in Romerike. He married the daughter of Eirik Agnarsson who was king of Vestfold. Eirik had no sons. Eirik’s father Agnar was the son of King Sigtrygg of Vendsyssel. King Eystein fell overboard, and the sailyard knocked him into a narrow strand.
His son was called Halfdan. Halfdan succeeded to the kingdom after him and became a powerful man and a great warrior. He paid his retainers in as much gold as other leaders paid silver, but he didn’t like to share his food. For that reason, he was called Halfdan the Generous and Food-Stingy. He married Lifa, the daughter of King Dag of West Møre. He died peacefully in Vestfold, and is buried there.
Their son was called Gudrod who succeeded to the kingdom after his father. He was called Gudrod the Noble. He married Asa, the daughter of King Harald Red-Tache who was king in Agder. They had two sons. One was called Halfdan, the other Olaf. Gudrod the Noble was killed at Geirstadir in Vestfold by a halberd thrust when he disembarked from his ship in Stiflusund late one evening. His wife Asa had incited a man to kill him because, prior to that, he’d arranged the death of King Harald, her father, and his son Gyrd. Before, King Gudrod had married the daughter of Alfarin of Alfheimar and received as her dowry half of Vingulmark. Their son was called Olaf. He was full grown at the time when his father was slain, and he succeeded to the kingdom after his father. He was the biggest and strongest of men, and the most handsome. He was called Olaf the Elf of Geirstadir.
Asa the Ambitious went north to Agder with her son Halfdan—he was then one year old—and he ruled there the realm that her father had had. Halfdan grew up with his mother Asa, and he was soon big and strong and had black hair; and for that reason, he was called Halfdan the Black.
After the fall of King Gudrod, King Alfgeir took control of Vingulmark and appointed his son Gandalf to rule it. The two of them also acquired the greater part of Romerike. Meanwhile, King Eystein, the son of Hogni, son of Eystein the Mighty, also called the Bad, took control of all Hedmark and Solør, while Olaf the Elf of Geirstadir had Grenland and Vestfold. Olaf died of a foot infection at Geirstadir and is buried there. His son was Rognvald, who was called Higher-than-Heaths. He was king of Grenland after his father. It was about him that Thjodolf of Hvinir composed the poem Ynglingatal wherein is told of the kings who were descended from Yngvi-Frey in
Sweden, and the Yngling dynasty takes its name from him.
The Saga of Illugi Grid’s Foster Son
archived 21 Mar 2014 08:09:46 UTC