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Myths of the Norsemen From the Eddas and Sagas

Page: 104

These sad preliminaries ended, the gods now prepared to launch the ship, but found that the heavy load of fuel and treasures resisted their combined efforts and they could not make the vessel stir an inch. The mountain giants, witnessing the scene from afar, and [207]noticing their quandary, now drew near and said that they knew of a giantess called Hyrrokin, who dwelt in Jötun-heim, and was strong enough to launch the vessel without any other aid. The gods therefore bade one of the storm giants hasten off to summon Hyrrokin, and she soon appeared, mounted upon a gigantic wolf, which she guided by a bridle made of writhing snakes. Riding down to the shore, the giantess dismounted and haughtily signified her readiness to give the required aid, if in the meantime the gods would take charge of her steed. Odin immediately despatched four of his maddest Berserkers to hold the wolf; but, in spite of their phenomenal strength, they could not restrain the monstrous creature until the giantess had thrown it down and bound it fast.

Hyrrokin, seeing that now they would be able to manage her refractory steed, strode along the strand to where, high up from the water’s edge, lay Balder’s mighty ship Ringhorn.


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