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AN OD E.
(From the NORSE-Tongue,)
ORCADES of THORMODUS, TORTÆUS; HAFNIE, 1797, Folio: and alfo in BARTHOLINUS.
Fitt er orpit fycir valfalli, &c,
The Author once had thoughts (in concert with a friend) of giving the Hiftory of English Poetry. In the Introduction to it he meant to have produced fome specimens of the ftyle that reigned in ancient times among the neighbouring nations, or those who had fubdued the greater part of this Iland, and were our progenitors; the following three imitations made a part of them. He has long fince dropped his defign; efpecially, after he had heard, that it was already in the hands of a perfon well qualified to do it juftice, both by his taste and his researches into antiquity.
In the eleventh century, Sigurd, Earl of the Orkney Islands, went with a fleet of fhips, and a confiderable body of troops, into Ireland, to the affiftance of Siatryg with the filken beard, who was then making war on his father-in-law Brian King of Dublin: the Earl and all his forces were cut to pieces, and Sictryg was in danger of a total defeat; but the enemy had a greater lofs by the death of Brian their King, who fell in the action. On Christmas-day, the day of the battle, a native of Caithness in Scotland, saw, at a distance, a number of persons on horseback, riding full speed towards a hill, and feeming to enter into it. Curiofity led him to follow them, till looking through an opening in the rocks, he
faw twelve gigantic figures refembling women; they were all employed about a loom; and, as they wove, they fung the following dreadful Song; which, when they had finished, they tore the web into twelve pieces, and (each taking her portion) galloped fix to the North, and as many to the South.
AN OD E.
OW the ftorm begins to lowr,
Note.---The Valkyriur were female divinities, fervants of Odin (or Woden) in the Gothic mythology. Their name fignifies Chufers of the slain. They were mounted on fwift borfes, with drawn fwords in their hands, and in the throng of battle felected fuch as were deftined to flaughter, and conducted them to Valkalla, the hall of Odin, or paradife of the Brave; where they attended the banquet, and ferved the departed heroes with horns of mead and ale.