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Myths and Legends of All Nations Famous Stories from the Greek, German, English, Spanish, Scandinavian, Danish, French, Russian, Bohemian, Italian and other sources

Page: 110

Kriemhild promised to obey his instructions, and Hagen departed, well pleased, to carry the news to Gunther.

At last the day came for Siegfried to leave his queen. He talked to her and comforted her and kissed her rosy lips.

"Dear heart," he said, "why all these tears? I shall not be gone long."

But she was thinking of what she had told Hagen, and wept and wept and would not be comforted.

When Siegfried joined Gunther's party he was surprised to learn that the rebellion had been quelled and that he was invited to join in a hunt instead of a fray.

So he joined the hunting party. Now Siegfried was as great a hunter as he was a warrior, and while the noonday meal was being prepared he scoured the forest, slew several wild boars, caught a bear alive and in a spirit of mischief turned him loose among the guests. Then, tired and thirsty, he sat down, calling for a drink.

Not a bit of wine was at hand; it had all been carried to another part of the forest. Hagen pointed out a spring near by and Siegfried proposed a race, offering to run in full armor while the others ran without armor or weapons. In spite of the handicap, Siegfried reached the spring first.

Always polite, Siegfried bade his host, Gunther, drink first, while he himself disarmed. Siegfried then stooped over the spring to drink, and as he stooped, Hagen, gliding behind


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