Nordic to English

© 2020 Jeffrey Love, Inger Larsson, Ulrika Djärv, Christine Peel, and Erik Simensen, CC BY 4.0 https://doi.org/10.11647/OBP.0188.02

abbadís (ON) noun

abbess OIce Llb 18, ONorw FrL LlbA 15

abbet (ODan) ábóti (ON) noun

abbot ODan JyL 2, OIce Llb 18, Js Kdb 4, ONorw FrL LlbA 15

abeþas (OSw) beþas (OSw) verb

make demands OSw UL Jb

aboi (OSw) noun

Synonymous with landboe.

tenant OSw VmL Jb

aboliiorþ (OSw) noun

land of the farm OSw YVgL Äb

abyrghia (OSw) ábyrgja (ON) verb

leave in custody OSw YVgL Gb, Tb

be responsible OIce Grg Þsþ 54 Ómb 143 Feþ 164 Lbþ 214, 218, Mah 13 Kge 17, 25 Lbb 2 Llb 2, 9 Þjb 2 Fml 3, Js Mah 31 Lbb 1, 3 Kab 11, 17 Þjb 2, KRA 26, ONorw FrL KrbA 2, 12 KrbB 10 Mhb 36

take care of ONorw EidsL 35.1

be valid ONorw FrL KrbB 22

See also: valda

abyrþ (OSw) abyr (OSw) noun

hidden goods OSw YVgL Tb

removal of found corpse OSw YVgL Add

secret hiding of a corpse OSw YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md, Tb

smuggled stolen goods OSw UL Mb

something brought in secret OSw SdmL Tjdb

stolen goods (secretly carried into someone’s house) OSw HL Mb

advent (OSw) advent (ODan) noun

Advent ODan JyL 2, OSw YVgL Kkb

aðalból (ON) noun

A main or primary estate as distinguished from outlying farms (ON útjarðir) (see utjorth) or tenant farms (ON leiguból) (q.v.). It was probably connected to a family, and some have suggested that an aðalból signifies the residence of a landowner. Some degree of legal protection was afforded to an aðalból, as in Grg Lbþ 172, which states that debt claims must be paid from other sources before selling the aðalból. Some have argued that the concept dates back to the settlement period in Iceland, but the earliest known written evidence for the aðalból comes in church registers dating to the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Often thought to be the precursor of the manor house (ON höfuðból) (q.v.) in Iceland mentioned in Jó.

main estate OIce Grg Lbþ 172 Fjl 223

See also: höfuðból, landboe, leiguból, æt

Refs: Agnes Arnórsdóttir 2010, 418; Árni Júlíusson 2010; Beck 2011, 217−19; CV s.v. aðalból; GAO s.v. Odal; Hastrup 1985,190−92; KLNM s.v.v. jordejendom, odelsrett; LexMA s.v. Odal; ONP s.v. aðalból; Sverrir Jakobsson 2013

aðaltóft (ON) noun

odal plot ONorw EidsL 11.4, 11.5

aðilð (ON) noun

The right of being a principal (prosecutor or defendant) in a case. See aðili.

right of being principal OIce Grg Vís 94

aðili (ON) noun

The principal plaintiff or defender in a legal case. A principal had the right (and obligation) to prepare and present a case or else transfer those responsibilities to someone else. In most cases it was understood that the offended party and the one accused of the offence were to be principals, and Grg Vís 94 provides guidelines for determining who was principal in cases where one of these is lacking or incapable. In killing cases, a freeborn son of legal age (over sixteen) could be principal. Unmarried women and widows could also be principals for certain types of cases.

principal OIce Grg Klþ 5 Vís 87 Bat 113 Hrs 234 Tíg 256

See also: soknari, væriandi

Refs: CV; Fritzner; GrgTr I:255; KLNM s.v. rettergang; Miller 1984; ONP

afald (OSw) noun

killing caused by something falling down OSw DL Mb, SdmL Mb

afallsdrap (OSw) noun

death by accident OSw HL Mb

See also: drap

afarkostalauss (ON) adj.

on fair terms OIce Kab 15

afarkostr (ON) noun

harsh terms OIce Js Mah 34

afastr (OGu) adj.

neighbouring OGu GL A 25

afbrigð (ON) noun

deviation OIce Grg Hrs 235

transgression OIce KRA 18

afbrot (ON) noun

offence OIce KRA 6, 11

affarefæ (ODan) noun

lost property ODan ESjL 3

See also: fynd

afgildi (OSw) noun

rent OSw SdmL Jb

See also: gildi, gælda (1)

afgipt (OSw) noun

tenancy payment OSw SdmL Jb

See also: gift

afgiva (OSw) afgæva (OSw) verb

write off OSw VmL Rb

afglapa (ON) verb

balk OIce Grg Þsþ 58 Vís 94 Lrþ 117 Misc 244

afguþ (OSw) noun

pagan god OSw HL Kkb

See also: guþ

afgærþ (OSw) noun

crime OSw YVgL Rlb, ÄVgL Rlb

afhug (OSw) afhog (ODan) af hagg (OGu) afhögg (ON) afhogg (OSw) noun

Many laws regulate the penalty for cutting off, gouging and striking out various body parts such as hands and feet, digits, ears, eyes, nose, teeth and male genitals. ODan laws in particular give detailed lists, but reveal less about the circumstances, whereas OSw laws sometimes state that the victim is lead to a chopping-block, clearly indicating premeditation and rendering it eþsöre (q.v.). In OGu GL it appears in connection with þingfriþr (see þingsfriþer) and haim friþr (see hemfriþer). In ONorw, it can lead to outlawry (FrL Mhb). The penalty, which could depend on the visibility or permanence of the wound, was based on manbot (q.v.), sarbot (see sarabot) and lytesbot (see lytisbot) in ODan laws, on sarabot (q.v.) and lytisbot (q.v.) in OSw laws, and on mannsgjöld (see mangæld) and sárbǿtr (see sarabot) in ONorw laws. Loss of body parts was also used as a punishment, albeit not called afhug, most commonly in OSw laws and mainly for theft and adultery, but in ONorw laws only for unfree or freed women stealing and for men committing bestiality, and in ODan JyL for counterfeit. The concept, but not the term, also appears in OIce Grg concerning a slave killing his master. It seems generally assumed that corporal punishments were carried out by the victims, plaintiffs or their relatives.

chopping off ODan ESjL 2

chopping off hand or foot OSw HL Mb

cut OSw HL Kgb, ÖgL Vm

cutting off limbs ODan SkL 111

dismemberment ODan ESjL 3, JyL 2, 3, VSjL 34, 35, 37, 38, 86, OSw SdmL Mb

maiming OGu GL A 11, 12, OSw UL Mb, Add. 9, VmL Mb, ÖgL Db

mutilation ODan ESjL 1, ONorw FrL Mhb 42, GuL Mhb, OSw DL Mb

See also: hugga

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. kroppsstraff, legemskrænkelse

afhænda (OSw) afhænde (ODan) afhenda (ON) verb

alienate ODan ESjL 3, JyL 1, SkL 45, 46, 50, OSw ÄVgL Jb

dispense with ODan VSjL 80

dispose away ODan VSjL 5

dispose of ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 1−3, VSjL 13, 17, ONorw GuL Mhb

go from someone’s hand ODan ESjL 3

hand off ODan ESjL 3

part with OSw VmL Äb

sell ODan JyL 1, SkL 76

take away ODan VSjL 4

See also: firihægþa, hand

afi (ON) noun

man preceding or following across generations ONorw GuL Olb

afkome (ODan) afkomende (ODan) noun

offspring ODan ESjL 1, JyL 1, VSjL 1, 20

afkænnuþing (OSw) affkiænnoþing (OSw) noun

A þing ‘assembly’ held at the home of one who refused to appear at the regular þing, or one from whom due fines, etc., were to be exacted.

extraordinary thing assembly OSw UL Jb, Rb, VmL Rb

See also: laghþing, urþinga, þing, þingariþ, þingfastar (pl.), þinglami

Refs: Schlyter s.v. afkænnu þing

afl (ON) noun

majority OIce Grg Lrþ 117 Misc 244

strength of numbers OIce Grg Þsþ 35

aflag (ON) noun

unlawfully OIce Þfb 6 Kge 26, Js Þfb 5, ONorw FrL Intr 14

aflagha (OSw) adj.

Appears in the phrase aflagha eþer, an oath given on a day when swearing was not allowed, or given by a thrall, minor or outlaw.

illegal OSw YVgL Kkb, Add

See also: lagha

Refs: Schlyter s.v. aflagha

afli (ON) noun

income ONorw FrL Intr 12

interest OIce Kge 18

provision OIce KRA 10

aflima (ON) verb

dismember OIce Js Mah 18

afling (OSw) aflung (OSw) noun

Property, particularly land, acquired in other ways than inheritance, such as purchase, gift or clearing, and which could be sold without restrictions in contrast to heritable lands labelled ærfþaiorþ (OSw) or oþal (OSw).

acquired property OSw HL Kkb

foetus OSw HL Äb

Refs: Brink forthcoming; Schlyter s.v.v. afling, aflinga iorþ

aflingaiorþ (OSw) æflingaiorþ (OSw) noun

acquired land OSw SdmL Kkb, Jb, UL Kkb, Jb, Add. 1, VmL Kkb, Jb

See also: afling, aldaoþal, jorþ, ærfþaiorþ

aflæggia (OSw) verb

abandon OSw UL StfBM

make amends OSw VmL Mb

settle OSw UL StfBM

afneyzla (ON) noun

expense OIce Fml 22

afnæma (OSw) verb

exclude OSw DL Bb

See also: afnæmning

afnæmning (OSw) af næfning (OSw) affnæmpning (OSw) noun

exception OSw SdmL Jb

exception to a purchase OSw DL Bb

exclusion OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

afradskarl (OSw) noun

tenant OSw DL Bb

See also: afraþ, landboe

afrapalas (OSw) noun

Obligatory transportation of paupers between householders for support.

pauper-burden OSw HL Kmb

See also: almosa

Refs: Brink forthcoming; KLNM s.v. fattigvård; Schlyter s.v. afrapa las

afraþ (OSw) afráð (ON) affræþ (OSw) avræþ (OSw) noun

In ON, dues paid in kind. In OSw, annual rent, paid in coin or in kind, for tenanted land.

annual rent OSw DL Bb, Rb, HL Jb, UL Kkb, Jb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Rb

dues ONorw FrL Reb 1

rent OSw HL Jb, SdmL Jb

See also: landskyld

Refs: ONP s.v. afráð; Schlyter s.v. afraþ

afraþalaus (OGu) adj.

saleable without being subject to a kinsman’s portion OGu GL A 28

See also: byrþ

afraþr (OGu) noun

kinsman’s portion OGu GL A 28

afraþsdagher (OSw) noun

day for the annual rent to be paid OSw HL Jb

See also: afraþ

afreþa (OSw) verb

free OSw DL Rb

See also: friþer

afréttardómr (ON) noun

A court held to settle disputes concerning communal pastures; similar to an engidómr (q.v.). These courts were held at the location under contest. It is supposed that matters unresolved at an afréttardómr could be taken up at the relevant quarter court (ON fjórðungsdómr) at the General Assembly.

communal pasture court OIce Grg Lbþ 202

See also: domber, engidómr

Refs: CV; Finsen III:607; Fritzner; KLNM s.v. dómr; ONP; Strauch 2011, 231

afréttarfé (ON) noun

animals in communal pasture OIce Llb 53

afréttarmaðr (ON) noun

communal pasture owner OIce Grg Lbþ 206

afréttr (ON) afrétt (ON) noun

Communal pasture owned by two or more men, sometimes by a whole commune.

communal pasture OIce Grg Klþ 2, 12 Lbþ 174, 201 Fjl 225, Lbb 6 Llb 46, 51, Js Lbb 2, 21

See also: almænninger, hagamark, haghi, haglendi, mark (3)

Refs: Lýður Björnsson 1972−79, I:44−45, CV s.v. afréttr

afrækt (OSw) noun

damage OSw HL Blb

afrǿkja (ON) verb

neglect OIce Sg 3, Mah 21, Llb 12, ONorw EidsL 36.2

afsifja (ON) verb

To transfer property away from one’s family.

give OIce Kge 22

Refs: CV s.v. afsifja; Fritzner s.v. afsifja; ONP s.v. afsifja

afsighia (OSw) aff sighia (OSw) afsæghia (OSw) verb

evict OSw UL Jb

terminate an agreement OSw UL Jb

withdraw OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

afskyld (OSw) noun

profit OSw UL Jb

afsætia (OSw) verb

set aside OSw UL Kkb

aftaka (ON) noun

execution ONorw FrL Intr 1

killing ONorw FrL Intr 8

slaying OIce Js Mah 7

aftakin (OGu) adj.

abolished OGu GL A 24, 24a, 65

prohibited OGu GL A 61

aftersaghn (ODan) noun

defence ODan ESjL 3

aftrfǿrsla (ON) noun

restitution OIce Llb 15, ONorw FrL LlbA 17

aftrlausnarjörð (ON) noun

redemption land ONorw BorgL 8.12

aftækt (OSw) afftekte (OSw) noun

confiscated item(s) OSw SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb

confiscation OSw SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb

damage OSw HL Blb

See also: agriper

aftæktavitne (OSw) noun

witness concerning confiscated items OSw SdmL Bb

See also: aftækt, vitni

aftökisfæ (OSw) noun

Possibly an illegal deal over what to exclude when selling or trading something. This exclusion was presumed to remain unclaimed if revealed, and would then pass to the king.

exclusion OSw SdmL Bb

See also:

Refs: Schlyter s.v. aftökisfæ

afvita (OSw) atvita (OSw) avita (OSw) adj.

defective OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

lost one’s senses OSw DL Mb, SdmL Mb

See also: galin, vitvillinger, ǿrr

afvöxtr (ON) noun

A decrease in value or loss. The opposite of ON ávöxtr.

loss ONorw FrL ArbB 22

See also: avaxter

Refs: ONP

afærþ (OSw) noun

damage OSw HL Blb, SdmL Bb

illegal activity OSw UL Blb

See also: aværkan

aganga (OSw) noun

dispute OSw HL Blb

hostile act OSw ÖgL Db

trespass OSw HL Blb

See also: bothegang, garthgang, hemsokn, hærværk, landnám

agnabaker (OSw) aghnbak (ODan) noun

Etymologically disputed, but presumably ‘husk back’, used as a derogatory term for a grain thief.

corn theft OSw HL Mb

corn thief OSw YVgL Tb

grain thief ODan VSjL 87, OSw SdmL Mb, UL Mb

{agnabaker} OSw HL Mb

Refs: Lund s.v. agnbak; Ney 1998, 113; Schlyter s.v. agnabaker; Wennström 1936, 37−40

agnesmessa (ON) noun

St Agnes’s Day OIce Grg Klþ 13

agr (OGu) noun

fen sedge OGu GL A 25

agriper (OSw) agripr (OGu) af griper (OSw) agreper (OSw) agræper (OSw) noun

confiscated item(s) OSw DL Kkb, Bb, Tjdb, SdmL Gb, Tjdb, VmL Mb

confiscation OSw VmL Mb

stolen goods OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

stolen property OSw DL Tjdb

See also: þiufnaþer

agripslaus (OGu) adj.

in the absence of material evidence OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

agærþ (OSw) noun

difference OSw YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb

ahænda (OSw) verb

retrieve from OSw UL Mb

ainloypr (OGu) einhleypr (ON) adj.

single OIce Kab 9, Js Kab 7, ONorw FrL KrbA 33, GuL Kpb

unmarried OGu GL A 20a, OIce KRA 18

See also: drengmaðr

ainsyri (OGu) noun

self-witness OGu GL A 19

See also: eneþer

aka (OSw) verb

cart OSw HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, Jb

aka (OSw) noun

carting OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb (E: text)

carting-job OSw HL Kkb

transport OSw VmL Kkb

akallan (OSw) noun

suit OSw YVgL Add

aker (OSw) aker (ODan) akr (OGu) akr (ON) akær (OSw) noun

This term refers to cultivated land, as opposed to meadow (OSw æng) and wood (OSw skogher). In Denmark, akær also refers to a strip field, corresponding to OSw tegher and ON teigr. The distribution of certain types of place names indicates that Denmark had largely been settled by the Viking Age (ca. 800−1050). During this period, settling was extended, partly through extension of earlier settlements (esp. names in -torp), partly through clearance of wood by the so-called slash-and-burn method. The gradual extension of arable land is reflected in many place names, e.g. -ager, -bod, -rød and -torp (Denmark); -hult, -mala, -ryd, -säter, and -torp (Sweden); -brandr, -rud, and -váll (Norway). In Denmark and Scania, a major improvement in agriculture was achieved by the introduction (probably in the Viking Age) of the heavy wheeled iron plough, which led to a more intense exploitation of the soil. This new equipment made it possible to plough deeper furrows and turn the sod in long strips. These strips gradually became long, gentle ridges, with channels for drainage of surplus water between them. The land was exploited in a wide variety of patterns of crop rotation also known elsewhere in Europe, but the efficient three-field-system was probably not introduced until about 1300. Crops consisted primarily of rye, with barley (important in beer brewing) and oats ranking second, and wheat very rare. The parcelling out of arable land, buying and selling, and the coordination of work (ploughing, sowing, and reaping) led to regulation, measuring, and the use of boundary marks. Measuring was performed with ropes in Denmark or a mælistang ‘measuring pole’ in SdmL and ÖgL.

arable field OSw DL Tjdb, HL Blb, UL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Bb

arable land OIce Grg Klþ 2 Þsþ 48, 62 Vís 109a (add. 131) Feþ 166 Lbþ 198 Fjl 222 Hrs 234, Mah 2 Llb 2, 4 Kab 20 Fml 27, Js Mah 11 Lbb 11, KRA 11, ONorw FrL Leb 26, OSw HL Mb, Blb

cornfield ONorw FrL LlbA 2 Bvb 5

crop-fields OIce Grg Lbþ 180

cropland OIce Lbb 3

field ODan JyL 3, SkKL 3, SkL 174, OGu GL A 3, 10, 47, ONorw BorgL 14.5, EidsL 11.5, GuL Krb, Llb, Olb, Leb, OSw DL Kkb, Bb, Gb, Tjdb, HL Mb, Jb, Blb, SdmL Kkb, Jb, Bb, SmL, UL Rb (E-text only), YVgL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Kvab, Föb, Utgb, ÄVgL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Kva, Fös, Föb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Vm

land OFar Seyð 2

strip ODan ESjL 2, JyL 3, SkL 76, 86, 168, 169, 175, 179, 181, 183, 186, 187, 189, 206, VSjL 79, 80


enka aker (OSw)

Land in a village other than the one in which the householder using the land lives.

separate field OSw YVgL Kkb, Äb

See also: akerskifte, attunger, bol, famn, fiarþunger, hiorþvalder, mælistang, rep, skogher, tegher, træþi, vreter, æng

Refs: DMA s.v. Denmark, land and people; Helle 2001, 109−10; KLNM s.v.v. ager, bol, bymark, fornåkrar, græsmarksbrug, jordbruk, odlingssystem, svedjebruk, sædeland, tovangsbrug, trevangsbrug; LexMA s.v. Dänemark. F. Wirtschafts-, Verfassungs- und Sozialgeschichte

akerdeld (OSw) akra deld (OSw) noun

A strip field in a gærþi (OSw) (q.v.) or in arable land generally.

field allotment OSw SdmL Bb

See also: aker, akrlandadeild, deld, gærþi

Refs: Schlyter s.v. aker deld

akerfrith (ODan) noun

Protection of growing crops. Any theft, however small, of crops from fields was punished, except when committed by itinerants who were allowed restricted grazing in the fields (JyL).

harvest peace ODan SkL 184

peace in the field ODan JyL 3

See also: aker, friþer

akergjald (ODan) noun

payment for damage to a field ODan SkL 168

See also: aker, korngjald

akergærþi (OSw) akergærthe (ODan) akragerði (ON) akrgerði (ON) akra gærþi (OSw) noun

enclosed field ONorw GuL Kpb

fence between tofts ODan SkL 187

fencing of strips ODan JyL 3

field ONorw FrL LlbA 20, OSw YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb

See also: aker, gærþi

akerhirthe (ODan) noun

shepherd ODan JyL 3

See also: aker

akerland (ODan) akrland (ON) noun

In Icelandic laws it refers to arable land or cropland in general. In Danish laws to strip fields.

arable land OIce Grg Lbþ 197

cropland OIce Lbb 4

field ODan JyL 1

strip ODan JyL 1

See also: aker

Refs: CV s.v. akrland; Hoff 1997, 142–49; ONP s.v. akrland

akerlas (OSw) noun

load from a field OSw YVgL Kkb

akermal (OSw) noun

arable field plot OSw UL Blb

akern (ODan) noun

acorn ODan SkL 207

See also: aldin, bok (2), ek, gisningaskogher

akernam (OSw) noun

cattle taken in custody OSw YVgL Föb, Add, ÄVgL Fös

taking another man’s animals to his field OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: aker, nam

akerran (ODan) noun

Secret taking of crops from a field.

field rapine ODan JyL 2

See also: aker, ran

akerskifte (ODan) noun

Common strip field.

common strip ODan JyL 1

See also: aker, skipti, vang

Refs: Hoff 1997, 142–149

akerspjal (ODan) noun

damage to a field ODan SkL 168, 169

See also: aker

akkeri (ON) noun

anchor ONorw GuL Leb

akkerissát (ON) akkerissǽti (ON) noun

anchorage OIce Grg Feþ 166 Misc 248, Fml 16

aklæþi (OSw) noun

bedspread OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

akoma (OSw) ákoma (ON) ákváma (ON) noun

bodily injury OIce Js Mah 34, OSw DL Mb, UL Mb, Rb, VmL Mb, Rb, ÖgL Vm

harm OSw DL Eb, Mb

injury OSw DL Mb, SdmL Kgb, Gb, Bb, Mb, YVgL Add, ÖgL Kkb, Eb

mark OSw YVgL Rlb

physical injury OIce Mah 16

wound OSw HL Mb

akralaghi (OSw) noun

fellow field owners OSw DL Bb

See also: aker

akrlandadeild (ON) noun

division of arable land OIce Grg Lbþ 197

See also: akerdeld

akrlandaskifti (ON) noun

division of arable land OIce Grg Lbþ 197

akrtíund (ON) noun

field-tithe ONorw EidsL 48.9

akta (ON) verb

weigh a decision OIce Kge 29

ala (ON) verb

give board OIce Grg Klþ 1, 2 Ómb 129

house ONorw FrL Mhb 41

sustain ONorw FrL Mhb 41

See also: vist

alaðsfestr (ON) noun

According to Grg Þsþ 51 a pledge given by someone convicted of lesser outlawry (fjörbaugsgarðr) at a confiscation court (féránsdómr) to avoid a sentence of full outlawry (skóggangr). The pledge was to be one eyrir of the ‘life ring’ (fjörbaugr). It has been suggested that the root term comes from an obsolete word alaðr meaning ‘alimentum’, which may be present in a runic inscription on a gold bracteate from Trollhättan (Axboe & Källström 2013, 166), but it has also been thought to be a manuscript variant of the more common aðal- (‘main’).

sustenance pledge OIce Grg Þsþ 51, 67

See also: féránsdómr, fjörbaugr

Refs: Axboe & Källström 2013; CV; Konráð Gíslason 1882; ONP

alagh (OSw) alag (OGu) álag (ON) alagha (OSw) noun

An additional payment or fine issued as a penalty. Additional fines could be assessed for several reasons, including charging excessive interest (Grg Fjl 221), failure to take charge of a dependent at the appointed time (Grg Ómb 130) or withholding tithes (Grg Tíg 259, KRA 15). There appears to have been some overlap in usage between this term and OSw alagha (ON álaga).

duty OSw SdmL Till

fine OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

penalty payment OIce Grg Ómb 130 Fjl 221, 222 Tíg 259, KRA 15

See also: handsalsslit, harðafang

Refs: CV s.v. álag; Fritzner s.v. álag; GrgTr II:39 n. 72; Hertzberg s.v. álag, álaga; ONP s.v. álag, álaga; Schlyter s.v. alagh, alagha

alda (OSw) noun

acorn bearer OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

aldaoþal (OSw) allda oþal (OSw) aldaeðli (ON) noun

Literally, ‘family land from ancient times’. The word occurs only in UL, DL and VmL referring to land considered to belong within a family as of right from time immemorial. Schlyter relates the first element not to the pronoun alder, ‘all’, but to the noun ald, ‘age’ and the translation in SL UL reflects this. It is linked there with the expression fasta fæþerni and the two together seem to form a synonymic parallelism, stressing that newly acquired land is specifically omitted from the provision. The meaning is the same as other combinations with oþal (q.v.) and the expression gambli byrþ used elsewhere (e.g. OSw HL). This latter phrase emphasises the birthright nature of the land. The sale of such land could only be made under certain conditions and to certain people. In specified circumstances, purchased land could be converted to family land as of right, if it were exchanged for a parcel of family land of equal value, for example.

ancestral land from time immemorial OSw UL Jb, Blb, VmL Bb


at aldaeðli (ON)

permanently OIce Grg Ómb 133, 134

See also: arver, byrþ, forn, fæþerni, gamal, oþal

Refs: KLNM s.v. odelsrett; ONP s.v. aldaeðli; Schlyter 1877, s.v. alda oþal; SL UL, 178

alder (OSw) noun

Appears in several expressions for age of maturity, such as kome til alders ‘come of age’ (ODan ESjL 2, 3; JyL 1), kome til alders oc witz ‘come of age and to wits’ (ODan ESjL 1), lagha alder ‘legal age’ (OSw DL Tjdb). The expressions for this varied, as did the age.


um aldr ok ævi (ON)

forever and ever OIce Mah 4

See also: maghandi

aldin (OSw) noun

Food for pigs was an important economic resource, which is reflected in some OSw laws regulating the pasture in woodland and the felling of trees. Aldin may refer to several species, such as acorns, beechnuts, hazelnuts and apples.

acorn OSw SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb, ÄVgL Fös

oak wood where pannage is permitted OSw VmL Bb

tree fruit OSw UL Mb

See also: akern, ek, gisningaskogher

Refs: KLNM s.v. løvtræer

aldinbær (OSw) adj.

with acorns OSw YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Föb

See also: ek

aldinkarl (OSw) noun

owner of the oak wood where pannage is permitted OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

aldinlegha (OSw) noun

acorn lease OSw SdmL Bb

See also: gisningaskogher

aldinviþer (OSw) noun

acorn tree OSw YVgL Jb

tree with acorn OSw YVgL Föb, Add, ÄVgL Fös

See also: aldin, ek, undirviþer

aldra hælghuna dagher (OSw) noun

All Saints’ Day OSw VmL Kkb

See also: hælghunamæssudagher

aleiga (ON) noun

everything one owns OIce Þjb 10

aleigumál (ON) noun

A case involving all property owned by an individual. Also refers to the goods confiscated in such a case.

case involving all property ONorw FrL Intr 8

confiscation of all property OIce Þjb 22

Refs: CV s.v. aleiga; ONP

algildi (ON) noun

full compensation OIce Llb 35, 40

algildisvitni (ON) noun

valid testimony ONorw FrL ArbB 10

alheilagr (ON) adj.

altogether holy ONorw FrL KrbA 31

alin (OSw) alen (ODan) elin (OGu) eln (OGu) alin (ON) öln (ON) aln (OSw) noun

ell ODan JyL 1, OFar Seyð 5, OGu GL A 19, 20, 26, OIce Grg passim, Kab 5, KRA 14, 26, ONorw BorgL 12.3, FrL KrbA 8 LlbA 21, GuL Løb, Kvr, Mhb, Leb, OSw HL Kkb, Mb, Blb, Rb, SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb, YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb, ÖgL Db

{alin} OSw DL Kkb, Bb, Rb

allhelagher (OSw) adj.

completely holy OSw YVgL Add

fully holy OSw YVgL Add

Refs: Schlyter s.v. allhelagher

allherjarlög (pl.) (ON) noun

The laws of the nation. Allsherjarlög is a rare term appearing only once in the Icelandic laws (Grg ch. 392 in Staðarhólsbók). Both there and in Njáls saga it is employed in the formula at alþingismáli ok allsherjarlögum (‘in accordance with the formalities laid down by the General Assembly and the laws of the nation’).

Refs: CV; GrgTr II:294

allraheilagramessa (ON) noun

All Saints’ Day OIce Grg Klþ 13, ONorw GuL Krb

See also: hælghunamæssudagher

allramannafasta (ON) noun

All Men’s Fast ONorw BorgL 6.2

almannaleþ (OSw) noun

public waterway OSw HL Mb, Blb, SdmL Bb

almenniligr (ON) adj.

common OIce Kab 6

almenningsfar (ON) noun

public ferry OIce Llb 45

almenningsgata (ON) noun

common highway OIce Llb 44

almenningshvalr (ON) noun

whale in waters where common rights exist OIce Llb 70

almoghe (OSw) almúgi (ON) noun

inhabitants OFar Seyð 0

peasantry OSw HL För

people OFar Seyð 0, OSw SdmL Till

almosa (OSw) almuse (ODan) ölmusa (ON) noun

In OIce, the size, number and dates of alms were regulated, and mainly consisted of food for the poor. ODan JyL mentions alms for orphans, and OSw YVgL that alms, intended for the poor, must not be taken by the priest.

alms ODan ESjL 3, OFar Seyð 3, OIce KRA 13, 30, OSw YVgL Kkb

charity OIce Mah 29, Js Mah 27

See also: afrapalas

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. eleemosyne, fattigvård

almosomaþer (OSw) noun

In OSw YVgL, a poor man entitled to alms was shown lenience if stealing food. Similar provisions, albeit not with this word, exist in OIce (e.g. Js).

man of alms OSw YVgL Tb

See also: almosa

Refs: KLNM s.v. fattigvård

almænni (OSw) noun

public OSw SdmL För, Rb

almænnigsbonde (OSw) noun

common householder OSw YVgL Föb

See also: almænninger, bonde

almænnigslandboe (OSw) noun

tenant farmer on common land OSw YVgL Kkb

almænninger (OSw) almænning (ODan) almenning (ON) almenningr (ON) almænningia (OSw) noun

Refers to uncultivated land (wood, heath etc.) open to common use for all men, esp. for grazing cattle during the summer months. As the first element of compounds (almænnings-) it indicated that the word referred to facilities (bridges, roads etc.), areas or arrangements open to the general public and economic assets such as grazing, forests and fishing open to landowners of a particular area (i.e. village, district). In a more abstract sense (‘common to all men’) ON almenningr also had the meaning ‘mobilization’ (for the levy). OSw almænningsgæld meant general duty.

area where common rights exist OIce Grg Misc 239, 240, Llb 59, 66

common ODan SkL 211, ONorw GuL Tfb, Kvr

common area OIce Llb 59

common land ODan SkL 71, OIce Grg Klþ 2, Llb 49, 59 Þjb 14, Js Rkb 2, ONorw FrL LlbA 13 LlbB 7, OSw HL Mb, Blb, UL Mb, Blb, VmL Mb, Bb, YVgL Jb, Kvab, Föb, Utgb, ÄVgL Jb, Kva, Föb

common pasture ONorw FrL Intr 19

common wood ODan JyL 1

general levy OIce Grg Misc 248

mobilization ONorw GuL Leb

waters where common rights exist OIce Llb 70


hæræþs almænninger (OSw)

common land of the district OSw YVgL Föb

lands almænninger (OSw)

common land of the province OSw YVgL Föb

See also: hæraþ, mark (3), skogher, svinavalder

Refs: Helle 2001, 111–14; Hertzberg s.v. almenningr; Hoff 1997, 255–62; Holmbäck 1920; KLNM s.v.v. alminding, beite, bergsregale, envangsbrug, hvalfangst, häradsallmänning, jordejendom, landnåm II, regale; Porsmose 1988, 298–301; Rosén 1949, 36 f.; Schlyter s.v. almænninger

almænningsbro (OSw) noun

common bridge OSw YVgL Föb

See also: almænninger

almænningsbrun (ODan) noun

common well ODan SkL 100

See also: almænninger

almænningsgæld (OSw) noun

general duty OSw YVgL Urb

See also: almænninger

almænningsiorþ (OSw) noun

common land OSw YVgL Kkb, Äb, Add

See also: almænninger

almænningsköp (OSw) noun

general/common purchase OSw YVgL Add

See also: almænninger

almænningsskogh (ODan) noun

common wood ODan SkL 201, 208

See also: almænninger

almænningsthing (ODan) noun

Appears as a venue for public announcements of land conveyance.

ordinary assembly ODan ESjL 2

See also: almænninger, þing

Refs: Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 301

almænningstorgh (OSw) noun

public square OSw DL Mb

See also: almænninger

almænningsvatn (OSw) almænningsvatn (ODan) noun

common water ODan SkL 211, 213, OSw YVgL Kvab, ÄVgL Kva

See also: almænninger

almænningsvægher (OSw) almanna vægher (OSw) noun

common road OSw YVgL Föb

public road OSw DL Bb, HL Blb, SdmL Bb, Kmb

See also: almænninger

almænningsöre (OSw) noun

A tax of a half or one öre paid annually in coin by all men, i.e. all landowning householders.

{almænningsöre} OSw YVgL Föb

See also: almænninger

Refs: KLNM s.v. skatter; Lindkvist 2011, 270; Schlyter s.v. almænningsöre

alnarborð (ON) noun

plank one ell long ONorw GuL Leb

alstýfingr (ON) noun

crop-eared sheep OIce Grg Fjl 225

alsýkn (ON) adj.

Completely reprieved; acquitted. Grg Vís 110 stipulates that certain types of outlaw could have his sentence ameliorated by dispatching other outlaws or by having someone do so on his behalf. The outlaw’s punishment was reduced for each outlaw killed up to three, at which point he became alsykn. A nominal form of the term (ON alsykna) appears once in the Staðarhólsbók version of Grg in the section on betrothals (cf. Grg tr. II:282–83). In one later usage from 1466 (DN X nr. 235) alsykn is employed as a synonym of ON sykn in the sense of ‘free, ordinary’ as opposed to a holiday.

completely reprieved OIce Grg Vís 110

Refs: CV s.v. alsýkn; Fritzner s.v. alsykn; Hertzberg s.v. alsykn

alsætti (ON) alsætt (ON) noun

complete satisfaction ONorw FrL Intr 3

full agreement ONorw FrL Var 2−6

reconciliation OIce Js Mah 3, 20

altarabyrþ (OSw) noun

altar gift OSw SdmL Kkb

See also: altaralæghi, altaraværning

altaraklæþi (OSw) noun

altar cloth OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

altaralæghi (OSw) noun

altar donations OSw ÖgL Kkb

altar gift OSw SmL

gift on the altar OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: altarabyrþ, altaraværning

altaraværning (OSw) noun

altar donations OSw ÖgL Kkb

See also: altarabyrþ, altaralæghi

alyrkr (ON) adj.

working ONorw FrL KrbB 19

alþingi (ON) noun

The Icelandic General Assembly held annually at Þingvellir in the Southwestern part of the island. According to Íslendingabók it was instituted by Ulfljótr in 930, taking over the regional assembly at Kjalarnes. Afterwards the courts of the General Assembly, the Quarter Courts (ON fjórðungsdómar) and the Fifth Court (ON fimmtardómr), functioned as the highest courts in Iceland. All chieftains (ON goðar) were required to attend the General Assembly, and each could demand the presence of one ninth of all householders in his assembly group as well. Until 1271 the General Assembly was also the legislative seat of government in the form of the Law Council (ON lögrétta). Afterwards the assembly was administered by royal officials. The alþingi was abolished in (1798? – LexMA; the nineteenth century? – CV; the first decades of the eighteenth century? – KLNM) but subsequently reformed as the modern Icelandic parliament in Reykjavík. The Faroese General Assembly is also called alþingi in Seyð and presumably refers to the precursor to the Faroese Løgting.

general assembly OFar Seyð 1, OIce Grg Klþ 6, 8 Þsþ 25, Þfb 1 Llb 37, Js Þfb 1, 2, Lbb 5, Rkb 1

See also: goði, Lögberg, lögrétta, lögsögumaðr, vapntak, varþing, þing, þingbrekka

Refs: CV; Fritzner; GAO s.v. Ding; KLNM s.v. alþingi; LexMA s.v. Allthing; MSE s.v. alþingi

alþingisdómr (ON) noun

General Assembly court OIce Grg Þsþ 50, 58

alþingisför (ON) noun

journey to the General Assembly OIce Js Þfb 4

alþingislof (ON) noun

leave of the General Assembly OIce Grg Vís 98 Bat 113

alþingismaðr (ON) noun

member of the General Assembly OIce Þfb 1

alþingismál (ON) noun

formalities of the General Assembly OIce Grg Þsþ 57

General Assembly regulation OIce Grg Misc 246

alþingisnefna (ON) noun

nomination at the General Assembly OIce Grg Lrþ 117

alþingisreið (ON) noun

attendance at the General Assembly OIce Grg Vís 99

alþingissáttarhald (ON) noun

keeping a General Assembly settlement OIce Grg Arþ 126

alþýða (ON) noun

common people OIce Js Kdb 7

general public OIce Grg Lrþ 117

ambat (OSw) ambut (ODan) ambatn (OGu) ambátt (ON) ambot (OSw) ambut (OSw) noun

A female slave, a bondwoman, usually serving as a housekeeper or a housemaid. This was the common Nordic word for a female slave, the equivalent of þræl(l) for a male slave. There were, however, other words in use, particularly collectively: hemakona, huskona. The ON þý appears in GL in the words þybarn, þydotir, and þysun (q.v.) in reference to the children of slave women, usually those fathered by the householder. The ambat did the indoor work on a farm and despite their low status they appear to have been given time off after childbirth (ÄVgL Gb 6 §3). In GL (chapter 6) it states that if a slave (male or female) worked on a Holy day, the master of the slave was fined and the slave had their period of slavery extended by three years, which seems excessively harsh. It does indicate, however, that lifetime slavery was disappearing and that slavery was perhaps viewed more as a punishment for crime, a means of supporting oneself by voluntary subjugation, or a way of discharging a debt, rather than a ‘state’, although domestic slavery does not seem to have disappeared from Sweden until the beginning of the fourteenth century (Karras, 138–40). The deghia (q.v.) was the most senior female slave in the household with special duties and rights, the female equivalent of the bryti (q.v.).

bondmaid OIce Grg Rsþ 229

bondwoman OIce Grg Vís 111, ONorw FrL Mhb 5 Rgb 47 Kvb 20 Bvb 8, GuL Krb, Løb, Mhb, Tjb

female slave OGu GL A 2, 6, ONorw EidsL 7, OSw UL Mb, Kmb, VmL Mb

female thrall OSw YVgL Äb

slave ONorw FrL KrbA 1

slave-woman OIce Grg Feþ 144, 156, ONorw EidsL 50.5, OSw SdmL Mb, ÄVgL Äb

thrall woman OSw YVgL Gb, Rlb, Tb, Add, ÄVgL Gb, Rlb

unfree servant ODan VSjL 86

{ambat} OSw ÄVgL Tb

See also: bryti, deghia, fostra, friþlös, frælsgiva, hemakona, hion, huskona, ofræls, sætesambut, þræl, þybarn

Refs: Hertzberg, s.v. ambátt; Karras 1988; KLNM, s.v.v. kvinnearbeid, træl; Nevéus 1974, 26; Peel 2015, 120 note 16/23−26; Schlyter 1877, s.v. ambat; SL GL, 260−61 note 11 to chapter 16; SL UL, 125 note 93; SL VmL, 98−99 note 128; Stuard 1995, 4, 15, 16

ambáttarbarn (ON) noun

child of a bondswoman ONorw FrL KrbA 6

ambrósiusmessa (ON) noun

St Ambrose’s Day OIce Grg Klþ 13

amerki (OGu) noun

over-branding OGu GL A 46, B 64 (correcting A 46)

See also: mærki

amia (OSw) noun

A French loan word used as a milder insult than skökia ‘whore’.

mistress (2) OSw HL Mb

See also: arinelja, frilla, meinkona, sløkefrithe

Refs: SL HL, 346, note 73

anbol (OGu) noun

building material OGu GL A 25

andmarki (OSw) andmarki (ON) annmarki (ON) anmarki (OSw) noun

damage OSw ÄVgL Kva

defect OIce Grg Feþ 144 Fjl 224

andreasmessa (ON) noun

St Andrew’s Day OIce Grg Klþ 13

St Andrew’s Mass (30 November) ONorw GuL Krb

andverþa (OGu) verb

answer for OGu GL A 26

be answerable for OGu GL A 26

andvirði (ON) noun

expense ONorw FrL ArbB 23

money OIce Kab 11

payment OIce Js Kab 9

andvirki (ON) noun

crops ONorw FrL LlbA 13, GuL Llb

hay OIce Llb 34

haystores OIce Grg Lbþ 200

stores OIce Grg Klþ 8

andvitni (ON) noun

Norwegian law allowed contradictory testimony in a number of cases, such as, e.g., matters related to inheritance (GuL ch. 127). On the other hand, it was forbidden in such cases as home summons witness, witness to summons to the assembly, witness to a demand for surrender of odal land, and witnesses to quarrels at drinking-parties (GuL chs 59, 60, 268). The purpose of counter-witnesses was to show that the allegation of the opposite party was not true and therefore to make his (or her) witnesses appear as false witnesses. Iceland law (Grg) was more restrictive. A panel verdict at odds with testimony offered by witnesses, or testimony at odds with a verdict (testimony had to precede panel verdict in the procedure) was inadmissible contrary testimony and subject to penalty.

contradictory evidence OIce Þfb 4

contrary testimony OIce Grg Þsþ 37, Js Kab 2

counter-witness ONorw GuL Løb, Mhb

counter-witnessing OIce Kab 2

See also: vitni, vætti

Refs: KLNM s.v. vitne; Laws of Early Iceland I, 243

anfriþer (OSw) noun

The harvest peace lasted from the end of June (HL) or July (SdmL, UL, VmL) until the end of September, during which time lawsuits were prohibited and certain rules applied concerning taking and taking back draft animals (HL).

harvest immunity OSw UL Rb, VmL Rb

harvest peace OSw DL Rb, SdmL Rb

harvest sanctity OSw HL Rb

See also: friþer, høsthælgh, önn (pl. annir), varfriþer

Refs: Schlyter s.v. anfriþer

angerløs (ODan) adj.

blameless ODan JyL 1−3

ankostir (pl.) (OSw) noun

farm equipment OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

anlaþi (OSw) noun

barn with barley or hay OSw DL Bb

annarrabrǿðra (pl.) (ON) annarrabrǿðri (ON) noun

third cousins OIce Grg Bat 113 Ómb 143

annkostr (ON) noun


fyrir önnkostr (ON)

on purpose OIce Grg Þsþ 64

annöþogher (OSw) anøthigh (ODan) ánauðigr (ON) adj.

Used of unfree people. It is not stated what constituted this particular lack of freedom in terms of e.g. conditions or status.

enslaved OIce Grg Rsþ 229, ONorw FrL KrbA 28

hired ODan SkL 152

servant ODan VSjL 43

slave ODan ESjL 3

slavery OSw ÄVgL Äb

thrall OSw YVgL Drb, Rlb, ÄVgL Md, ÖgL Db

unfree ODan ESjL 3, SkL 62, 105, 122, 126, 128, 135, VSjL 56, 69, 86, ONorw BorgL 5.2 14.4, OSw YVgL Gb, ÄVgL Gb, ÖgL Vm

unfree servant ODan VSjL 86

See also: ambat, deghia, fostra, fostre, frælsgiva, frælsgivi, hion, huskona, man, sætesambut, þræl

Refs: Brink 2012, 125–26; Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 313

annöþogherdomber (OSw) anøthighdom (ODan) noun

servitude ODan SkL 130, 132

slavery ODan ESjL 3

thralldom OSw YVgL Äb

unfree servant ODan SkL 129

anværkdagher (OSw) andrum dæghi (OSw) noun

working day OSw ÄVgL Fös

See also: önn (pl. annir)

apeldgarth (ODan) noun

apple garden ODan JyL 3

orchard ODan JyL 3

aplöghia (OSw) noun

ploughing in another man’s land OSw YVgL Kkb, Add

apostlamæssudagher (OSw) noun

Day of the Apostles OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: petersmessa

ar (1) (OSw) ár (ON) noun

Literally ‘oar’. Ar is supposed to have been the lowest administrative taxation district in the naval defence system in UL. Its existence and role has been much debated and even questioned, as there are few traces of it. On the other hand Andersson (2014, 15) regards ar as synonymous with hamna (q.v.) and har (see har (2)).

oar ONorw GuL Kvr, Mhb, Leb

oarsman OSw UL Kgb

See also: hamna, har (2), hasæti, skiplagh, manngerð

Refs: Andersson 2014, 15; Hafström 1949a, Lundberg 1972, 11, 16, 178–79; Schlyter s.v.v. ar, har, hamna; SL UL, 61 note 52

ar (2) (ODan) noun


ar ok dagh (ODan)

a year and a day ODan JyL 1

arath (ODan) noun

ambush ODan JyL 3

attack ODan ESjL 2, 3, VSjL 35−37, 46, 47, 60, 86

fight ODan ESjL 3

arf (OSw) ör (ON) noun

This term (etymologically a cognate of English arrow) occurred in two senses in ON: 1) a weapon (used with a hand-bow), 2) a message baton. The latter sense does not occur in OSw laws. The arrow usually had a point of metal and a shaft of wood. A message baton in the form of an arrow was used to summon people to the thing assembly in the case of murder, or to give warning against an approaching enemy. These functions are attested in several chapters of the GuL, esp. in the Mannhelgarbölkr (151, 160, 181), but also elsewhere (32, 314). On the fairway along the coast, the arrow had to be of iron when war was expected, otherwise wood. It was required by law to pass the message baton on. If this was neglected the culprit might in some cases be fined. Exempted from this duty were tenants who were about to move their household (GuL ch. 73). A message baton might be stopped temporarily where it came to a night quarter, or if it could not be passed on for reasons of emergency (GuL ch. 131). If anyone was not at home to receive the message baton the bearer had to cut three notches into the doorpost or the casing and set the baton in the lintel above the door (ibid.).

arrow ONorw GuL Kvr, Leb, OSw HL Blb, Rb, SdmL Mb

message baton ONorw GuL Krb, Mhb, Leb


skera ör (ON)

cut an arrow OIce Mah 10 Js Mah 10, 17 ONorw FrL Mhb 6, 23

Refs: Hertzberg s.v. ör; KLNM s.v.v. budstikke, landvärn, lendmann, pil II, ǫrvarþing

arfa (ON) noun

heiress ONorw GuL Olb

See also: arvi

arfgænger (OSw) arfgengr (ON) adj.

born a lawful heir OIce Grg Vís 94 Arþ 118 Ómb 137 Feþ 144 Misc 253

eligible to inherit ONorw EidsL 22.3

entitled to inherit OIce Kge 21, ONorw GuL Kvb, Arb

with a right to inherit ONorw FrL ArbB 1

with the right to inherit OSw DL Gb

arfkaup (ON) noun

price paid for an inheritance OIce Grg Arþ 123

arfsal (ON) arfsala (ON) noun

A transfer of inheritance rights; an agreement by which one person, with the consent of his heirs, gave up his property in exchange for lifelong maintenance. According to Grg Arþ 127 an arfsal had to be witnessed by five neighbours and result in an official (written?) agreement (máldagi). Saga evidence suggests that these types of transfers allowed the rights seller to retain his estates until he dies, at which time they would pass on to the protector (cf. Miller 1990). Arfsal has been viewed as a type of care for the elderly (cf. Hoff 2011), but in the sagas it was also a tool to ensure protection against aggressors (cf. Miller 1990, 348, 362). In the former case arfsal bears similarity to the Norwegian branderfð (q.v.), Danish flatføring (q.v.) and other forms of lifelong maintenance, such as retiring to a monastery. In several medieval diplomas arfsal is referred to as próventa.

inheritance sale OIce Kge 30

inheritance trade OIce Grg Arþ 127 Ómb 128, Kge 23


seljask arfsali [e-m] (ON)

to trade inheritance OIce Kge

See also: arfskot, branderfð, flatføring, omaghi

Refs: CV; Fritzner; GAO s.v. Armenrecht; GrgTr II:26; Hoff 2011, 220; KLNM s.v. alderdom, branderfð, próventa; Miller 1984; Miller 1990, 249, 348, 362; ONP

arfskifti (ON) arfskipti (ON) arfsskifti (ON) noun

division of inheritance ONorw GuL Arb

inheritance division OIce Kge 20, Js Ert 2, ONorw FrL KrbB 11

See also: arver

arfskot (ON) noun

Inheritance fraud; the selling of property with the intent of defrauding someone’s heirs. Grg Arþ 127 specifies lesser outlawry or loss of property as the penalty for someone committing arfskot by giving or receiving ‘friendship gifts’ (vingjöf) deemed fraudulent by the heir. Heirs of someone trading away their inheritance for maintenance (arfsal) could also claim arfskot.

dispossession of heirs OIce Grg Arþ 127

See also: arfsal, arfsvik

Refs: CV; F; KLNM s.v. förskingring; Miller 1990; ONP

arfsókn (ON) arfssókn (ON) noun

inheritance claim ONorw FrL ArbB 29

suit for inheritance OIce Kge 19, ONorw FrL ArbA 17, GuL Arb

arfsvik (ON) noun

fraud in matters of inheritance OIce Kge 12, 22, ONorw GuL Løb

inheritance fraud ONorw FrL KrbB 13 Jkb 4

arftak (ON) noun

inheritance ONorw FrL ArbB 6

taking on by inheritance trade OIce Grg Ómb 128, 135, Kge 13

arftaka (ON) noun

inheritance taking OIce Grg Rsþ 229 Misc 249

arftaki (OSw) arvtake (ODan) arftaki (ON) noun

heir ODan ESjL 1, 3, SkL 166, OIce Kge 23, ONorw GuL Mhb, OSw ÖgL Kkb

heritor ODan ESjL 1, OSw YVgL Add

inheritor ODan ESjL 1

one who shall take the inheritance ODan ESjL 3

See also: arvi, arvingi, erfðarmaðr

arftakin (OSw) adj.

inherited OSw YVgL Rlb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Jb

arftaksómagi (ON) noun

inheritance-trade dependent OIce Grg Ómb 135

arftökumaðr (ON) noun

heir OIce Grg Klþ 2 Þsþ 39, 68 Vís 95, 96 Ómb 129, 130 Misc 248

See also: arvi, arvingi

arfván (ON) noun

inheritance prospect OIce Grg Arþ 122, Kge 30, ONorw FrL ArbB 11

argafas (ON) noun

cowardly assault OIce Js Mah 22, ONorw FrL Mhb 18

cowardly attack OIce Mah 14, 22

ari (OSw) noun

Only appearing in OSw HL, where it was obsolete already when the law was written down, and possibly influenced by ONorw ármaðr (q.v.). A representative of the king, and possibly archbishop, for all of Hälsingland, where he managed royal estates, collected taxes and the king’s fines, convened assemblies and was responsible for overseeing the accounts of sheriffs.

emissary OSw HL Kgb

Refs: Brink 2010b, 129–30; Brink 2013a, 441; Tegengren 2015, 142–43

arinelja (ON) noun

concubine ONorw GuL Krb

See also: amia, frilla, meinkona, sløkefrithe

arsfæsta (OSw) noun

entry fee for one year OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

arvabot (OSw) noun

compensation to the heirs OSw YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

fine to an heir OSw SdmL Äb, Mb

See also: arvi, bot

arvbet (ODan) adj.

If two spouses received an inheritance each, both inheritances, irrespective of their worth, were passed on to the household. In ESjL and VSjL all inheritances received by one spouse were passed on to the household if the other spouse received at least one inheritance. Similar concepts, albeit not the word, appear in OSw laws.

inheritance chase ODan SkL 29

inheritance chased on both sides ODan SkL 7

inheritance on both sides ODan SkL 29

See also: arvbit, arver

Refs: Lund s.v.v. arfbetær, betæ, bitæ; Schlyter s.v.v. arfbeter, beta, bita; Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 306

arvbit (ODan) noun

biting inheritance ODan ESjL 1

See also: arvbet, arver

arvebitning (ODan) noun

inheritence that bites inheritance ODan VSjL 2

arvedele (ODan) noun

disagreement over inheritance ODan ESjL 3

division of inheritance ODan ESjL 1

arvemal (ODan) noun

inheritance case ODan VSjL 12

See also: arver

arver (OSw) arv (ODan) arf (OGu) arfr (ON) arf (OSw) ærf (OSw) noun

In the Swedish laws, this word carried several meanings: land (as a possession); possessions left by a deceased person; inheritance (as a concept); birthright (esp. in land). Inheritance was based on a division of the deceased person’s property and not on primogeniture. In general, male descendants received twice that of their female counterpart, but this was not universal. Illegitimate descendants could inherit, in some instances, but this was subject to certain conditions. Slaves had the right to inherit from each other when brought up in the same household. This type of inheritance was called lesser inheritance (litla erfð, see GuL chs 65 and 114). In GL, the laws of inheritance were extremely complex and interpreting them is not aided by the use of the words lindagyrt (q.v.) and gyrþlugyrt (q.v.), which are open to conflicting translations.

birthright OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

heritage OSw DL Gb

inheritance ODan ESjL 1, 3, JyL 1, 2, SkL 2, 3, 7, 29−34, 36, 38, 59−61, VSjL passim, OGu GL A 20, OIce Grg Þsþ 50 Arþ 118 Ómb 128 Misc 247, MagBref Mah 2, 4 Kge 2, 7 Llb 47, Js Mah 8 Kvg 3 Ert 13, ONorw FrL KrbB 10, 11 ArbA 1, GuL Krb, Kpb, Kvb, Løb, Arb, Mhb, OSw DL Gb, HL Kgb, Äb, Mb, SdmL Äb, Mb, SmL, UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Add. 7, VmL För, Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, YVgL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Äb, Jb, Lek, ÖgL Eb, Db


alinn til arfs (ON)

born a lawful heir OIce Grg Vís 95

arf ok orf (OSw)

inheritance OSw HL Äb

bite arv (ODan)

bite inheritance ODan ESjL 1 VSjL 1, 2, 7, 8

leiða til arfs (ON)

adopt OIce Kge 7-2

See also: arvbet, arvbit, byrþ, ærfþ

Refs: Hertzberg s.v. arfr; Holmbäck 1919; KLNM s.v.v. adoption, alderdom, arveret, festermål, foster, gangarv, gæld, husbonde, husfru, lejermål, medgift, morgongåva, mundr, odelsrett, oäkta barn, spolierett, straff, syn, testament, ætt, ættleiing; ONP s.v. arfr

arvfælagh (ODan) noun

inheritance had together ODan ESjL 1

arvi (OSw) arve (ODan) arfi (OGu) arfi (ON) arve (OSw) noun

A son inherited twice as much as a daughter. See GuL ch. 103.

heir ODan ESjL 1, 3, JyL 1, SkKL 5, SkL passim, VSjL 9, 19, 21, 22, OGu GL A 19, OIce Grg Ómb 118, Sg 1 Mah 8 Kge 1, 2 Fml 23, Js Mah 8, 20 Kvg 1, 2 Kab 8, ONorw FrL KrbA 1 Mhb 6, 10 Var 2−6 ArbA 1, GuL Kpb, Løb, Arb, Mhb, OSw DL Bb, Gb, Rb, HL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Jb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Jb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, SmL, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Frb, Drb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Tb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Md, Slb, Äb, Jb, Tb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db

relative OSw HL Mb

See also: arftaki, arftökumaðr, arver, arvingi, erfðarmaðr

Refs: KLNM, s.v.v. arveret, medgift, odelsrett, oäkta barn, ættleiing

arvibol (OSw) noun

hereditary farm OSw HL Äb

arvingi (OSw) arving (ODan) ærving (ODan) erfingi (OGu) erfingi (ON) ærffwingi (OSw) ærvingi (OSw) noun

heir ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 1−3, VSjL 3, 5, 21, OGu GL A 14, OIce Grg Klþ 2, 5 Þsþ 50, 54 Bat 114 Ómb 135 Feþ 153, 170 Fjl 221 Misc 247 Tíg 268, Þfb 9 Mah 1, 4 Kge 3, 6 Lbb 1 Llb 28 Kab 8, 16 Þjb 16 Fml 23, Js Mah 3, 12 Kvg 2 Kab 3, 6, KRA 9, 11, ONorw BorgL 8.12 9.14, FrL Intr 4 KrbB 14, 17 Mhb 7, GuL Krb, Kpb, Kvb, Løb, Llb, Arb, Mhb, Olb, OSw DL Kkb, Mb, Gb, HL Kkb, Äb, SdmL Kkb, Jb, Mb, UL Äb, Mb, Jb, Rb, YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

inheritor ONorw EidsL 50.9

relative OSw HL Mb

See also: arftaki, arftökumaðr, arver, arvi, erfðarmaðr

arvstathe (ODan) adj.

according to how much a person is to inherit ODan ESjL 1

arvuþi (OSw) ærvethe (ODan) arviþi (OSw) ærvoþi (OSw) ærwþi (OSw) noun

effort ODan SkL 41, OSw UL Kkb, Blb, VmL Bb

labour ODan SkL 56

trouble ODan JyL 3

work ODan JyL 1, 2, SkKL 3, OSw YVgL Äb

arþer (OSw) arðr (ON) noun

A more archaic agricultural implement for preparing the soil than a plough; an arþer not turning the turf over. Both were used in medieval Scandinavia, but only arþer occurs in the laws.

plough ONorw GuL Olb

plough share OSw DL Bb

See also: krok

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. ager, plov; Myrdal 2011, 82

asaka (OSw) verb

Related to the noun sak ‘(legal) case’ and the verbs sækia (q.v.) and sækta (q.v.) from which the usage is indistinguishable.

prosecute OSw DL Mb

asighling (OSw) ásigling (ON) noun

ramming OSw SdmL Kgb

sailing upon someone ONorw GuL Mhb

asker (OSw) noun

spear OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

askilia (OGu) verb

disagree OGu GL A 32

dispute OGu GL A 28

askuoþensdagher (OSw) noun

Ash Wednesday OSw SdmL Rb

aslata (OSw) noun

harvesting of hay or corn in another man’s land OSw YVgL Kkb, Add

asokn (OSw) noun

case having been brought to trial OSw DL Tjdb

prosecuting the case OSw VmL Mb

prosecution OSw DL Tjdb

See also: sokn

asyn (OSw) asjun (ODan) asyn (OGu) noun

bruise OSw HL Kgb

enquiry OSw YVgL Jb

estimate ODan SkL 95, 122

examination OSw YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb

eyewitness OGu GL A 25

inspection ODan SkL 44, 105, VSjL 24, OGu GL A 25, OSw HL Blb

mark OSw DL Eb, UL Kgb, VmL Kgb, Mb

observation OSw DL Mb

opinion ODan VSjL 12

survey OSw YVgL Kvab, ÄVgL Kva

visible mark OSw DL Mb, Bb, SdmL Kgb, Gb

visible score OSw DL Bb


hæraþs asyn (OSw)

examination of the district OSw YVgL Jb

survey of the district OSw YVgL Kvab

lands asyn (OSw)

examination at the province level OSw YVgL Jb

asyun aldræ mannæ (ODan)

opinion of older men ODan VSjL 12

gothæ mæns asyun (ODan)

good men’s inspection ODan VSjL 24

See also: handaværk, hæraþ

asöreseþer (OSw) asvareeth (ODan) asøreseth (ODan) assvarueþ (OSw) noun

An oath about the guilt of an accused sworn by the victim of a crime. ODan SkL 149 dictates the wording of such an oath.

oath ODan SkL 147

oath of guilt ODan SkL 156, 180

oath of substantiation OSw VmL Kkb

oath of/to a person’s guilt ODan SkL 121, 147, 149, 161, 177, 226, 230, OSw SdmL Kkb

See also: brista, eþer, fælla, sværia

atakin (OSw) adj.

caught in the act OSw DL Bb

See also: taka

atala (OSw) atalan (OSw) verb

Literally ‘to speak to/against’, specifically of starting legal proceedings. Also appearing as tala a.

bring a case (against) OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

bring an action against OSw SdmL Kkb, Jb

prosecute OSw DL Mb, YVgL Add

See also: tiltala

atala (OSw) noun

prosecution OSw YVgL Add

suing OSw YVgL Drb, Add

aterbryta (OSw) atterbryta (OSw) attærbryta (OSw) verb

judge invalid OSw UL Kkb, Rb, VmL Rb

See also: aterganga, atergangs, ogilder

aterdöma (OSw) verb

disallow OSw ÖgL Kkb

aterfang (OSw) atær fang (OSw) noun

recovered property OSw UL Mb

value of the property OSw UL Mb

See also: agriper, fyli, þiufnaþer, þiuft

aterfylla (OSw) verb

make good OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb, Äb

pay back OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb, Jb

aterganga (OSw) atterganga (OSw) attærganga (OSw) verb

deem invalid OSw UL Rb, VmL Kkb, Rb

be dismissed OSw SdmL Kkb, Rb

be judged as invalid OSw YVgL Add

return OSw UL Jb, Kmb, VmL Äb

revert OGu GL A 7, OSw UL Kkb, Jb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Jb, Bb

See also: aterbryta, atergangs, ganga, ogilder

atergangs (OSw) attergangs (OSw) attirgans (OSw) attærgangs (OSw) adj.

invalid OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

See also: aterbryta, aterganga, ogilder

atergangseþer (OSw) noun

Literally an oath that goes back, i.e. is invalid for various reasons, such as oaths by minors, false oaths or several oaths sworn by one person on the same day.

dismissed oath OSw HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, Rb, Till

atergildi (OSw) atergæld (OSw) noun

compensation OSw UL Blb, VmL Mb, Bb

recompense OSw YVgL Rlb

replacement OSw UL Blb

return OSw UL Mb

atergælda (OSw) atergialda (OSw) attærgælda (OSw) ættargælda (OSw) verb

make restitution OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Blb, VmL Äb, Bb

pay back OSw UL Jb, Kmb, Rb, VmL Bb

pay compensation OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

See also: aterfylla, gælda (1), varþa

aterköpsfastaeþer (OSw) noun

oath of transactions witnesses for repurchases OSw SdmL Jb

aterköpsfastar (pl.) (OSw) noun

repayment {fastar} OSw HL Jb

transaction witnesses for a repurchase OSw SdmL Jb

{fastar} at repayment OSw HL Jb

aterlæggia (OSw) atterlæggia (OSw) attærlæggia (OSw) verb

allow to lie fallow OSw UL Blb, VmL Jb

leave blocked OSw UL Blb

See also: aterlægha, fyrna, lata, liggia, træþi

aterlægha (OSw) atterlægha (OSw) attærlægha (OSw) noun

abandoned field OSw SdmL Bb

fallow land OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

uncultivated land OSw VmL Bb

See also: aterlæggia, lata, liggia, træþi

aterlösa (OSw) ater loysa (OGu) atrloysa (OGu) atterlösa (OSw) verb

make repayment OSw VmL Kkb

ransom OGu GL A 28

redeem OGu GL A 30, 44, 45, Add. 8 (B 55), OSw DL Rb, HL Jb, SdmL Kkb, Jb, Bb, SmL, UL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Kkb

release OSw YVgL Utgb

return OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

atersighia (OSw) verb

relinquish OSw UL Jb

aterstaþa (OSw) attærstaþa (OSw) noun

shortfall OSw VmL Kgb

atertæppa (OSw) verb

obstruct OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

See also: svintæppa, tæppa

atfarardómr (ON) atfaradómr (ON) noun

judgement of distraint ONorw FrL KrbB 20

atferð (ON) noun

The implementation of a judgment; the carrying out of a sentence. Used especially with reference to the seizure of goods.

execution OIce Mah 21

See also: atferli, atför

Refs: CV s.v. atferð; Fritzner s.v. atferð; ONP s.v. atferð

atferli (ON) noun

procedure OIce Grg Feþ 167 Lbþ 174, KRA 1

atför (ON) noun

distraint OIce Js Mah 14, ONorw FrL Mhb 7

seizure OIce Mah 10 Llb 15, 34, ONorw FrL Mhb 50 Rgb 24 LlbA 11

athelbarn (ODan) noun

legitimate child ODan ESjL 1

See also: aþal

athelbit (ODan) noun

owner’s lot ODan JyL 2

See also: aþal

athelbonde (ODan) noun

One who owned inherited land and remained in an old village, as opposed to one moving to a new village located by the fields. Mostly appearing as otholbondæ (cf. oþal) and often in the phrase mæþ tyltær eþ oþolbondæ ‘with an oath of twelve land-owning men’ (SkL).

landowner ODan JyL 2

landowning man ODan SkL passim

real householder ODan JyL 2

See also: aþal

Refs: Andersen 2014, 23; Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 307

athelbondebarn (ODan) noun

child of a husband ODan JyL 1

See also: aþal, aþalkonubarn

athelby (ODan) noun

main village ODan JyL 1

See also: aþal

athelkonedotter (ODan) noun

wife’s daughter ODan ESjL 1

See also: aþal

athelvægh (ODan) noun

main road ODan JyL 1, 2, SkL 68, 70, VSjL 74

See also: aþal, vægher

atkvæði (ON) noun

decree OIce KRA 18

statement OIce Grg Rsþ 227

atlöp (OSw) athlaup (ON) noun

assault OIce KRA 8, OSw ÖgL Vm

attack ONorw FrL KrbA 10

threatening behaviour ONorw GuL Mhb

atmeli (OGu) noun

year OGu GL A 13, 20, 26, 28, Add. 7 (B 49)

See also: jamlangi

attundidagher (OSw) noun

Eighth Day of Christmas OSw YVgL Kkb

attunger (OSw) atting (ODan) áttungr (ON) noun

Literally ‘eighth’ of something. In SkL VSjL, and ÖgL the attunger was primarily a land assessment unit and an administrative district in the organization of the military levy system, leþunger. ‘Most probably the original purpose of the taxation was to create an adequate base for the military levy system [i.e. in ÖgL, eastern Småland and Närke]. Several indications show that the attunger originally corresponded to one family’s normal holding of land. The usefulness of the attunger for other purposes was soon realized. Besides taxes it also became the base for tenant’s land rent, tithes to a particular hospital (domus Sancti Spiritus), compensation for plowing of fallow fields but also for the subdivision of common fields on a pro rata basis. The right to an easement could also be connected to the attunger. At the same time a subdivision of the attunger unit in several fractions was created which facilitated the trading of landed property.’ (Ericsson 2007, Abstract). In the Västgöta laws and Svea laws (SdmL, UL) attunger was an administrative district on a low level. In the Svea laws area the land assessment unit was the markland (q.v.) around the late thirteenth century. The attunger in DL denotes an eighth of a legally divided village. In Norwegian laws it was used about an eighth of a fylki (q.v.), but in some laws it was an important unit in the organization of the leiðangr (see leþunger).

descendant within the third degree OSw UL Kmb, VmL Äb

eighth ODan SkL 73, 75, 76, VSjL 78−80, ONorw FrL Mhb 8, OSw DL Bb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Bb, YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb

eighth of a village OSw DL Bb

eighth of a {fylki} ONorw GuL Krb, Leb

eighth of a {hundari} OSw UL Kgb, Blb, Rb, Add. 4

eighth of the inhabitants of an area ONorw GuL Krb

{attunger} OSw YVgL Kkb, Jb, Föb, ÄVgL Jb


halver attunger (OSw)

descendant within the fourth degree OSw VmL Äb

See also: fiarþunger, hundari, hæraþ, markland, þriþiobyrþ

Refs: Dovring 1947b; Ericsson 2007, Abstract and passim; Ericsson 2012, 181−82, 329−41 and passim; KLNM s.v.v. attung, bol, byamål, hundare, jordmått, jordskatter, leidang, markland, sogn, öresland, örtugland; Lindkvist 1995, 20−21; Lundberg 1972, 92−93; Schlyter, s.v. attunger

attungsbro (OSw) noun

bridge of an eighth OSw SdmL Bb

See also: attunger

atvik (ON) noun

circumstance OIce Mah 13, 20 Kge 29 Llb 30 Kab 7 Þjb 16

atvinna (ON) noun

means of livelihood OFar Seyð 7

subsistence OIce Js Ert 22

atvist (OSw) noun

Case concerning presence at, but not active participation in, a crime.

case of {atvist} accomplice OSw ÄVgL Md

Refs: Schlyter s.v.v. atvist, atvistarmaþer

atvistarmaþer (OSw) noun

A man in company with perpetrators of violent crimes, who was punished whether actively participating or not.

accomplice OSw ÄVgL Md

man present at the deed OSw YVgL Drb

See also: fylghi, haldbani, laghsman, umstaþumæn (pl.)

atvígi (ON) noun

attack OIce Mah 20, Js Mah 16, ONorw FrL Mhb 22

wound ONorw GuL Mhb

auðhǿfi (ON) auðæfi (ON) auðǿfi (ON) noun

goods ONorw GuL Løb

resources OIce Grg Ómb 136 Lbþ 174

wealth OIce Grg Klþ 3

auðn (ON) noun

destitution OIce Grg Þsþ 39

penury OIce Grg Ómb 130, 143

uncultivated land ONorw GuL Llb

uninhabited farm OIce Kge 29

uninhabited land ONorw FrL Intr 17, 18

wasteland OIce Js Lbb 21, ONorw FrL Intr 17

See also: eyðijörð

auðr (ON) adj.


auð jörð (ON)

uncultivated land ONorw GuL Llb

auga (OGu) auga (ON) noun

eye OGu GL A 19, 22, ONorw GuL Mhb

augnaskot (ON) noun

measuring with the eye ONorw GuL Llb

See also: álburðr

auralag (ON) noun

This referred to money value and rate of exchange. The relation between pure silver and silver in coin was often determined by relating them to some standard article of trade, such as ells of wadmal. An eyrir worth six ells was usual, and the ONorw laws also mention an eyrir worth ten ells (GuL), twelve ells, and nine ells (EidsL). The money value had to be considered especially in some cases of fines and business transactions. See GuL ch. 170 and FrL Jkb.

money value ONorw FrL Jkb 1, GuL Mhb

Refs: KLNM s.v. auralag

aurastefna (ON) noun

meeting for payment ONorw FrL Jkb 4

aurataka (ON) noun

receipt of money ONorw GuL Olb

austker (ON) noun

scoop ONorw GuL Kvr, Mhb

austmaðr (ON) noun

man from overseas OIce Grg Misc 249

austr (ON) noun

bailing water out of a boat ONorw GuL Leb

austr (ON) adv.

overseas OIce Grg Þsþ 54

auvirði (ON) noun

detriment OIce Grg Fjl 224

auvislabót (ON) uslabót (ON) noun

compensation for damages OIce Grg Feþ 165 Lbþ 181 Fjl 225 Misc 241, ONorw FrL LlbA 21

See also: bot

auvislagjald (ON) auslagjöld (ON) noun

compensation for damages OIce Llb 21, 33

See also: aværkan

auvisli (ON) ausli (ON) usli (ON) noun

compensation for damages OIce Llb 32, 33

damages OIce Grg Lbþ 183 Rsþ 230, Llb 31, ONorw FrL LlbA 21

avaxter (OSw) ávöxtr (ON) afvæxter (OSw) avæxter (OSw) noun

harvest ONorw GuL Krb

income OIce Kge 14

increase OIce Kge 8 Kab 15

interest OIce Kge 26 Fml 22, 23, KRA 9, 35

yield OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

avisning (OSw) noun

referral OSw UL Jb, Blb, VmL Jb, Bb

aviti (OSw) aviti (OGu) noun

fines OGu GL A 6, OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

avugher (OSw) avigh (ODan) öfugr (ON) adj.

Literally, ‘backwards’. The principal use of this word is in speaking of enemies of the king, those who were hostile to him. It alludes to the fact that shields facing the king, or ‘backwards’, were those of an enemy. Several other expressions, however, include this word. In the expression ganga avugh or ætt sinni, referring to a free woman marrying a slave, it implies that she is ‘backing out’ of her inheritance. The word also appears in the expression elda afgum brandum (literally ‘start a fire with backward firebrands’), referring to an inheritance that takes a step, or throws a glance, backwards (i.e. makes a reversion to ascendant inheritance) in the case in which there are no direct or co-lateral heirs. The ascendant inheritance would go right back as far as to a maternal aunt. The closest single relative took the full inheritance. If there were no living relatives of that order, the inheritance was divided equally between the paternal and maternal kin — the nearest on each side taking an equal share. The rules about the precise division of the inheritance are complex and not entirely consistent. In some cases, the division was according to the distance from the deceased, but in others, this did not apply.

backwards OSw UL Äb, VgL Äb

of the butt side of a weapon ONorw GuL Mhb

deformed ONorw EidsL 5

hostile OSw UL Mb


avugher skiolder (OSw) avighskjold (ODan)

averse shield OSw SdmL Mb

hostile shield OSw HL Mb UL Mb

shield-brandishing ODan ESjL 2

elda afgum brandum (OSw)

take a step backwards OSw VmL Äb

ganga avugh or ætt sinni (OSw)

relinquish her birthright OSw UL Äb VmL Äb

See also: arver, bakarf, brander, fiærþungsmaþer, skiolder, æt

Refs: KLNM s.v. arveret; Schlyter 1877, s.v.v. avugher, brander, skiolder; SL DL, 87 note 33; SL VmL, 61−62 notes 67−71; Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 313

avund (OSw) avend (ODan) öfund (ON) avond (OSw) noun

In ODan, appearing in the context of preventing biased witnesses or others acting at, for example, the thing ‘assembly’ or a ransak ‘house search’. Also used of premeditated, violent deeds; in OSw often contrasted to deeds done in sudden rage (vreþe), and appearing in the context of eþsöre ‘the king’s (sworn) peace’. In ON, referring to physical damage to persons or objects, including illegal use of other people's property, offences which had to be compensated.

enmity ODan JyL 2, OSw DL Eb, HL Kgb, SdmL Kgb, UL Kgb, VmL Kgb, YVgL Add, ÖgL Eb

evil intent ONorw GuL Tfb, Mhb

hatred ODan SkL 121, 149

malice OIce Llb 36, Js Mah 34

premeditated harm ONorw GuL Mhb


avund ok ilder vili (OSw) avend ok ilvilje (ODan)

hate or ill will ODan SkL 149

malignancy and wrath OSw YVgL Rlb

fæ, vild æller avend (ODan)

gain, favour or hatred ODan SkL 121

See also: fegþ

aværkan (OSw) áverk (ON) áverki (ON) aværk (OSw) noun

compensation for an assault ONorw FrL Var 9

compensation for damages OIce Mah 2 Llb 18, 20

damage ONorw FrL LlbA 11, OSw HL Blb, UL Jb, VmL Jb

illegal products ONorw GuL Llb

illegal work ONorw FrL LlbA 26

illicit use OSw UL Kkb, Jb, Blb, VmL Bb

injury OIce Grg Vís 86, 87 Feþ 159, 167 Misc 238, 242, ONorw FrL Var 7

misuse OSw UL Jb, Blb

produce of the land OIce Llb 31, ONorw FrL LlbA 1

reparation mulct OIce Grg Feþ 165 Lbþ 199, 204

tools or fruits of unauthorized labour ONorw GuL Llb

unlawful usage of arable land OSw SdmL Kkb, Jb

unlawful use OIce Llb 26

wounding OIce Llb 39

See also: afærþ, auvislagjald

ax (OSw) noun

ears of grain OSw UL Mb, Blb, VmL Mb, Bb

ayrkia (OSw) noun

work in another man’s land OSw YVgL Add

aþal (OSw) aþal (OGu) adj.

Literally, ‘true, genuine’. A closely related word, originally meaning ‘ancestry’, came in later medieval Swedish to signify ‘the nobility’ (cp. frælse), but aþal in the medieval Nordic laws carried the connotations: ‘true-born’, ‘legitimate’, ‘proper’ and, of land, ‘cultivated’ (as opposed to woodland, marsh, etc.). An aþalkona/-man was thus a wedded wife or husband, as opposed to a concubine or lover; an aþal dotir (OGu GL) was a legitimate daughter, as opposed to one born out of wedlock; a man who was aþal gutnisker was a native-born Gotlander, as opposed to a foreigner. In GL, cultivated land was aþal jorþ and the proximity of this class of land in someone’s ownership was considered to be more valid in determining the ownership of disputed land than woodland or marsh owned by another. More obscurely, aþalköps fastar (OSw UL) were fastar (q.v.) present at an unconditional land purchase (the aþal fæst, ‘confirmation of unconditional purchase’, in ÖgL), as opposed to væþiafastar (q.v.), who were present for the mortgaging or pledging of land. Aþal værknaþer (OSw UL, VmL) was (heavy) work that was done on a working day (as opposed to that permitted on a Sunday). In DL the otherwise unrecorded aþalbogher (q.v.) is interpreted as the percentage (99%) of an inheritance that, in the case of ascendant inheritance, passed to the father or mother who alone survived the deceased, the remaining 1% passing to the maternal or paternal kin respectively. It was the ‘major branch’ of the inheritance. The prefix aþal-/adel- occurs as an alternative to oþal-/oþol- in words related to ancestral land and it also takes the meaning ‘main, principal’ in relation to settlements and roads.

cultivated OGu GL A 25

legitimate OGu GL A 20

proper OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

trueborn OGu GL A 20, 20a


aþal dotir (OGu)

legitimate daughter OGu GL A 20

aþal gutnisker (OGu)

trueborn Gotlander OGu GL A 20, 20a

aþal iorþ (OGu)

cultivated land OGu GL A 25

aþal værknaþer (OSw)

proper labour OSw UL Kkb VmL Kkb

See also: arver, fræls, oþal, væþiafastar (pl.)

Refs: Peel 2015, 139 note 20/93; Schlyter 1877, s.v. aþal-

aþalbogher (OSw) noun

part of an inheritance OSw DL Gb

See also: aþal

aþalkona (OSw) athelkone (ODan) noun

lawful wife ODan JyL 1, SkL 13, 215

wife ODan ESjL 1, VSjL 1, 2, 51, 52, OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

See also: aþal, frilla, husfrugha, kona, sløkefrithe

aþalkonubarn (OSw) athelkonebarn (ODan) aþall kono barn (OSw) noun

child (born) of a legitimate wife ODan ESjL 1

child by/with a lawful wife ODan SkL 59, 60, 63, 64, OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

child of a lawfully wedded wife/woman OSw YVgL Gb, Add, ÄVgL Gb

child of a married woman OSw SdmL Äb

lawful-married woman’s child OSw HL Äb

lawfully wedded woman’s child OSw YVgL Äb

legally married wife’s child OSw DL Gb

legitimate child ODan ESjL 1, JyL 1, SkL 60, 63, VSjL 68−70, OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

legitimate offspring OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

See also: aþal, aþalkona, barn, frillubarn, horbarn

aþalkonusun (OSw) athelkonesun (ODan) noun

legitimate son ODan JyL 3

son of a lawfully married woman OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb, ÖgL Db

son of a legitimate wife ODan ESjL 2

son of a wife ODan ESjL 1

See also: aþal, slokifrilluson

aþalköp (OSw) noun

unconditional sale or purchase OSw UL Jb

See also: aþal

aþalman (OSw) noun

husband OSw HL Äb

lawful spouse OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

See also: aþal, bonde, husbonde

á (ON) noun

stream ONorw GuL Løb, Llb, Mhb


mið á (ON)

middle of the stream ONorw GuL Llb

See also: vatn

áauki (ON) noun

profit OIce KRA 35

áberi (ON) noun

plaintiff OIce Llb 27

See also: sakaráberi

ábúð (ON) noun

actual possession ONorw GuL Olb

householding period OIce Grg Tíg 266

tenancy OIce Llb 14, ONorw FrL LlbA 1

tenancy agreement OIce Llb 28

ábyrgð (ON) noun

responsibility OIce Grg Þsþ 76, passim, Js Mah 8 Kab 5 Þjb 2, KRA 11, ONorw BorgL 3, EidsL 11.5 36.4, FrL KrbA 12 KrbB 24 Mhb 12, 32, GuL Kpb, Løb, Arb

áfall (ON) noun

sentence OIce Grg Þsþ 41

áfang (ON) noun

A fine for the illegal use of another’s property. Often incurred for misusing a means of transport (horse, ship) belonging to someone else.

fine OIce Þjb 17 Fml 28

illegal use of another man’s property ONorw FrL Rgb 43 LlbA 10

seizure mulct OIce Grg Feþ 164, 165

Refs: Fritzner; Lúðvík Ingvarsson 1970, 272−73; ONP

áhöfn (ON) noun

cargo OIce Fml 1

ákvæðisverk (ON) noun

piecework OIce Kab 25, Js Kab 19

álburðr (ON) noun

Measuring of land, if requested, could not be denied. Such measuring might often (but not exclusively) be made with a rope (ál, usually of leather).

measuring of land with a rope ONorw GuL Llb

See also: augnaskot

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. rebning, reip

áljótseyrir (ON) noun

fine for serious bodily injury ONorw FrL Mhb 45

áljótsráð (ON) noun

Conspiring to commit a serious bodily injury (áljótr). The term seems to appear exclusively in Grg, which devotes an entire chapter to the subject (Vís 108). Plots to disfigure included ambushes and traps, and they carried a penalty of lesser outlawry even when unsuccessful.

plot to disfigure OIce Grg Vís 108

See also: lyti, raþ

Refs: ONP

álykð (ON) noun

A final judgment made at an assembly. These decisions were reported at subsequent assemblies.

decision OIce Js Þfb 5

Refs: CV s.v. álykt; Fritzner s.v. álykt; ONP s.v. álykð

ámálga (ON) verb

make a claim OIce Llb 20

ánauð (ON) noun

slavery OIce Grg Rsþ 229

ánauðga (ON) verb

enslave OIce HT 2

árborinn (ON) adj.

freeborn OIce Mah 2, ONorw FrL Mhb 45 ArbB 10 LlbA 15 LlbB 10

ármaðr (ON) noun

The ármaðr (pl. ármenn) originally designated a king’s steward or bailiff who managed royal estates in Norway and those of jarls in the Orkneys. Ármenn were expected to house the king and bishop during their journies and were in charge of almost the entire local administration. Over time he assumed functions as the king’s local representative, endowed with the power to act on behalf of the king in administrative and judicial affairs. In these latter functions he was also called erendreki (see ørendreki) in GuL, though this may refer to a separate official in FrL (LlbB 7). There may also have been some overlap in the duties of an ármaðr and those of the umboðsmaðr (see umbuþsman) or lénsmaðr (see lænsmaþer). Bishops and provosts later had ármenn to operate on their behalf. In FrostL (11.2) one of the tasks of a bishop’s ármaðr was the recovery of fines owed to the bishop. Ármenn of the king may have collected taxes and other revenues on his behalf as well. Another responsibility assigned to the ármaðr was the construction of buildings for the king, a duty which may previously have been performed by local farmers. There may have been one ármaðr for each fylki (q.v.) in Norway. According to FrL (Þfb 2), one of the duties of an ármaðr from each fylki was to enclose the Law Council (lögrétta) (q.v.) with boundary ropes (vébönd) (q.v.) during assemblies. According to GuL (ch. 311), the ármaðr, along with men given land by the king (lendir menn) (see lænder) was responsible for sending around a summons to assemble for war. According to GuL (ch. 37), ármenn were not permitted to attend judgments at an assembly, though they could be represented by delegates (nefndarmenn) (see næmdarmaþer). An ármaðr was generally someone of lower birth and was brought into the service of the king, similar to the bryti (q.v.) or lænsmaþer (q.v.) in the Old Swedish laws. It has been suggested that ármenn were slaves, though this is a matter of some debate, as there is little evidence available. Regardless they, along with the lendir menn, were often in conflict with local nobility whose interests rivaled those of the king or bishop. During the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries ármenn were gradually replaced by the more esteemed and higher-ranked sheriffs (sýslumenn) (see syslyman) and by deans (provaster) (q.v.) for church business. The position had vanished entirely by the sixteenth century.

king’s official ONorw FrL KrbA 29 Mhb 10, 22

king’s representative ONorw FrL Intr 12, 19 Mhb 22 Var 13 Rgb 3 LlbB 7 Bvb 5 Reb 1

official ONorw FrL KrbA 46

representative ONorw EidsL 30.5 32.6, FrL KrbA 1, 2, GuL Krb, Kpb, Løb, Llb, Tfb, Mhb, Olb, Leb

steward OIce KRA 36, 39, ONorw FrL KrbB 3 Leb 2

See also: ari, bryti, lænsmaþer, næmdarmaþer, provaster, sysluman, umbuþsman, ørendreki

Refs: Bagge 1991; Bagge 2010; Bolton 2009; Brink 2008a; Brink 2010b; CV; F; Helle 2001; KLNM, s.v.v. bryde, embedsindtægter, lendmann, lensmann, official, sysselmann, tomte, årmann; Krag 2008; LexMA s.v.v. Bauer, Bauerntum; NGL V s.v. ármaðr; ONP; Orning 2008; Strauch 2012 s. v. Ármaðr

ármannsréttr (ON) noun

right of the king’s representative ONorw GuL Mhb

ármenning (ON) noun

office ONorw FrL Mhb 57

árofi (ON) noun

redemption witness ONorw GuL Olb

áta (ON) noun

shoal of herring ONorw GuL Kvr

átan (ON) noun

eatables ONorw GuL Krb

See also: óátun

átt (ON) noun

family OIce Grg Ómb 128

kindred OIce Grg Vís 102

áttandi dagr jóla (ON) átti dagr jóla (ON) noun

Eighth Day of Christmas ONorw GuL Krb

áttarmót (ON) noun

family link OIce Grg Feþ 147

áttungskirkja (ON) noun

eighth church ONorw GuL Krb

átuþýfi (ON) noun

theft of food OIce Grg Rsþ 228

átölulauss (ON) adj.

without dispute OIce Llb 26

ávaxtalauss (ON) adj.

without interest OIce Grg Arþ 118 Ómb 129, Kge 27

ávaxtartíund (ON) noun

crop tithe ONorw BorgL 11.1

áverkabót (ON) noun

compensation for damage OIce Llb 18

See also: bot

áverkadrep (ON) noun

blow classed among injuries OIce Grg Vís 86

áþyngð (ON) noun

burden OIce Js Kdb 2

bainheil (OGu) adj.

whole in bone OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

See also: brustheil

bait (OGu) noun

pasture OGu GL A 35

See also: haghi

bakarf (OSw) bak arver (OSw) noun

ascendant inheritance OSw UL Äb

inheritance from descendants OSw DL Gb

reversionary inheritance OSw HL Äb, YVgL Äb

bakhærbærghi (OSw) noun

bake-house OSw YVgL Kkb

bakkastokkar (pl.) (ON) noun

building berth ONorw GuL Mhb, Leb

bakmæli (ON) noun

Back-speech, backbiting, slander. Described in Grg Misc 237 as a situation where two men slander each other with no witnesses and subsequently one of them boasts of this. The penalty for backbiting was lesser outlawry.

backbiting OIce Grg Misc 237

See also: fjölmæli, níð, rǿgja

Refs: CV; ONP

bakvaþi (OSw) noun

accidental killing through a backwards blow OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

bal (OSw) noun

pyre OSw HL Blb

stake OSw SdmL Mb

balker (OSw) noun

Most significantly used of a part of a law relating to a specific subject, often subdivided into chapters (cf. flokker). Mostly, and in ON only, appearing in compounds (cf. ON -bölkr, OSw -balker).

book OSw HL För

section OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

section of a fence OSw YVgL Kkb, Utgb, ÄVgL Kkb

{balker} OSw HL Blb

ban (OSw) ban (ODan) bann (OGu) bann (ON) bann (OSw) noun

ban ODan SkL 121

excommunication ODan SkKL 6, 7, 11, OGu GL A 7–9, OIce KRA 6, 31, ONorw GuL Krb, OSw DL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, UL Kkb, VmL Kkb, YVgL Add, ÖgL Kkb

prohibition ONorw FrL Leb 1, GuL Leb

See also: bansatter, forbuþ

banaman (OSw) noun

slayer OSw SdmL Mb, Tjdb

See also: bani, haldbani, raþsbani

banaorþ (OSw) banorþ (OSw) noun

case of killing OSw YVgL Drb

crime OSw YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

homicide OSw ÄVgL Md

killing OSw YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

murderer OSw DL Mb

See also: bani

banaráð (ON) noun

advice leading to death OIce Mah 11

banasak (OSw) banesak (ODan) noun

accusation of homicide OSw ÄVgL Slb

accusation of killing OSw YVgL Frb

case of killing ODan SkL 118, 119, 121

homicide case ODan JyL 2

See also: bani

banavapn (OSw) noun

killing-weapon OSw SdmL Mb

See also: bani, vapn

band (OSw) band (ODan) band (OGu) noun

Appears in legally significant phrases such as ODan band ok stok ‘ropes and iron’ and bast ok band ‘ropes and bonds’ of lawful or unlawful detention, and OSw YVgL Add binda fullum bandum ‘bind someone with full ropes’ of violent abduction in breach of the king’s peace.

binding ODan JyL 2

binding relationship OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

bond OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

bonds ODan ESjL 3

captive OSw HL Mb

leash OGu GL A 19

pair OGu GL A 65

rope ODan SkL 136, 163

strap ODan VSjL 87


band hail (OGu)

having unbroken ties OGu GL A 26

band ok stok (ODan)

ropes and iron ODan SkL 138

bast ok band (ODan)

bonds and ropes ODan JyL 2 SkL 144

tied and bound ODan SkL 112

binda fullum bandum (OSw)

bind someone with full ropes OSw YVgL Add

See also: basta, binda, valdföra

banda (OGu) noun

The literal meaning seems to be one of an enclosure (see vebönd). In GL, however, it was a defined area of protection (griþ, q.v.): the ‘circle of peace’ or ‘security circle’ that a killer could draw to shield himself from revenge. The killer had to go and stay in the rectory or churchyard of one of the three asylum churches (at Fardhem, Tingstäde or Atlingbo) for forty days, together with his closest male relatives (father, son and brother). These would presumably have also been under suspicion. They would have been protected from attack by the imposition of a wergild (vereldi) (see værgæld) of forty marks in coin (ten marks of silver), just under half a full wergild. The killer was then to draw up a circle in which he was immune from revenge attacks, encompassing three farms, with the permission of the owners, and a church. This temporary circle (vatubanda, q.v.) was converted to a permanent one during the general period of peace and security next after Easter. During the following year, others were to negotiate compensation with the wronged family, making the offer annually over three years. If not accepted, the offer was placed with the assembly and the accused was free to go, with full wergild now payable for his life. If no offer was made, or the killer left his circle (other than to go on pilgrimage), he was outlawed, unless he paid full wergild (twenty-four marks in silver) and an extra twelve marks in silver. A Gotlander killed in his circle was compensated with half a wergild (twelve marks in silver). The exact provisions in GL seem to be unique in Scandinavian laws, but the later town law of Visby shows similarities in respect of asylum, which may be the result either of direct influence or of a common concept and there are similar provisions in Grg, in particular for outlaws attempting to leave the country. Despite being outlaws, they had asylum at certain homesteads, roads and docks. On roads it is prescribed that, when passing other parties, they are to move off the road ‘to such a distance that they could not be hit by the point of a spear’. A parallel, although not necessarily a precursor, is to be found in the Mosaic laws as exhibited in the Pentateuch (Exodus 21 v. 13; Num. 35 vv. 6−8, 11−15; Deut. 4 vv. 41−43, 19 vv. 2−4) and it was thus a very old concept, which seems to have been retained as a relic in GL. For example, the Oklunda inscription in Östergötland, dated to the ninth or tenth century, indicates that a particular killer sought refuge in a holy place (vi, q.v.) prior to making a settlement over the killing. In ÖgL there is a reference to a killer being protected from attack by the killer’s relatives in a churchyard and as early as ÄVgL killing in a church is recorded as a despicable crime, so the protection offered by holy places seems to have been a continuum.

The bandavereldi (q.v.) was the particular man price payable for killing someone within their circle of peace.

peace circle OGu GL A 9, 13, 14

See also: fjörbaugsgarðr, griþ, vatubanda, vébönd (pl.), værgæld

Refs: Hasselberg 1953, 277; KLNM s.v. drab; Olsen 1966, 64−65; Peel 2015, 111−13 notes to 13/7−13/23−24; Ruthström 1988, 64−75; Schlyter 1877, s.v. banda; SL GL, 254−58; Wennström 1946, 188

bandavereldi (OGu) banduvereldi (OGu) noun

wergild within the peace circle OGu GL A 16

See also: banda, værgæld

bandhail (OGu) adj.

fully tied OGu GL A 26

bandi (OGu) noun

band (of withy) OGu GL A 26

banesar (ODan) banasár (ON) noun

death wound OIce Grg Vís 107

mortal wound OIce Llb 58, KRA 26

wound ODan SkL 119

See also: bani, sar

bani (OSw) bane (ODan) bani (OGu) bani (ON) noun

assassin OSw HL Mb

cause of death ODan JyL 2, ONorw EidsL 26.1

death OGu GL A 14, 17, 18, ONorw GuL Krb, Llb, Mhb, OSw DL Mb, HL Mb, UL Mb, VmL Mb, YVgL Urb

execution ONorw GuL Mhb

executioner ONorw GuL Mhb, Tjb

homicide OSw YVgL Add

being killed ODan JyL 2, OSw YVgL Kkb, Rlb, Add, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, Rlb

killer ODan JyL 2, SkL 121, OGu GL A 16, OIce Mah 9, Js Mah 19, ONorw FrL Mhb 5, 7, GuL Mhb, OSw DL Mb, Bb, HL Mb, SdmL Mb, UL Mb, VmL Mb, YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md, Slb, ÖgL Db

killing OGu GL A 14, OSw UL Mb

lethal wound OSw YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

slayer OSw YVgL Frb


fa bana af (OSw)

be killed OSw YVgL Kkb, Drb, Rlb, Add

See also: drap, drapari, mansbani

banliusa (OSw) verb

excommunicate OSw DL Kkb, SdmL Kkb

See also: ban, lysa

banna (ON) verb

ban OIce Grg Þsþ 52 Feþ 151, Js Mah 19 Lbb 4

deny ONorw GuL Llb

forbid OIce Llb 56

bannfǿra (ON) verb

excommunicate OIce KRA 18

bannsetning (ON) noun

excommunication OIce KRA 9, ONorw FrL KrbB 21

bansatter (OSw) bansat (ODan) bansætter (OSw) adj.

excommunicated ODan SkKL 11, OSw SmL, UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

See also: ban, bansætia, banzmal

banslætter (OSw) noun

absolution OSw SmL

See also: ban

bansætia (OSw) bannsetja (ON) verb

excommunicate OIce KRA 5, 11, ONorw FrL KrbB 21, OSw HL Kkb, SmL

sentence to greater excommunication OSw HL Kkb

See also: ban

banzmal (OSw) banzmall (OGu) noun

This word is used in the provincial laws of Sweden and Gotland to refer to a crime subject to full excommunication (ban) (q.v.) from the Christian community, sometimes for a specific period, until sufficient penance had been done, or the prescribed fine paid. It also refers to the procedure of pronouncing the excommunication, for which the rural dean or bishop was paid an amount by the excommunicate varying between the laws. While the person was under this ban, their very presence in the church during Mass could force the immediate abandonment of the proceedings. Simply being in the company of an excommunicate could also render one liable for punishment. The crimes that resulted in such exclusion were those that were aggravated by being committed on a holy day or on church premises, particularly killings or actions against a cleric. Such crimes were considered to have harmed the Church body itself. In DL the punishment is served in particular on men who committed bestiality and women who practised witchcraft. In GL excommunication was the punishment for Sabbath breaking. The word banzmal occurs in VmL, but in a passage that differs between the various manuscripts and is the subject of a number of later emendations in the main manuscript. It seems in this instance to be an error for a word meaning ‘spiritual case’, one relating to moral laxity, where the punishment was usually a fine rather than excommunication.

case of ban OSw YVgL Urb

case of excommunication OSw YVgL Kkb, ÖgL Kkb

excommunication OSw DL Kkb

excommunication case OSw DL Kkb, HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, UL Kkb

pronouncing excommunication OGu GL A 8, OSw UL Kkb

See also: ban, banliusa, banna, bannfǿra, bannsetning, bansatter, banslætter, bansætia, forbuþ, páfabann

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. excommunicatio og interdict, kommunion, kyrkobalkar, kyrkostraff, sacrilegium; Lexikon des Mittelalters s.v. bannum; Peel 2015, 104 note 8/17−19; Schlyter 1877, s.v. banzmal; SL DL, 20 notes 76 and 77; SL GL, 252 notes 8 and 9 to chapter 8; SL UL, 39 note 54, 40 notes 67 and 68, 41 note 83; SL VmL, 29 notes 76 and 77; SL ÖgL, 30 note 65

bardaghaböter (OSw) noun

compensation of blows OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

See also: bardaghi, bot

bardaghi (OSw) bardaghe (ODan) bardagi (ON) noun

assault ODan ESjL 3

beat OSw YVgL Add

beating ODan ESjL 2, VSjL 43, OIce Grg Vís 111

blow ODan ESjL 2, OSw DL Mb, ÄVgL Slb

bruise ODan ESjL 2

fight ODan VSjL 47, ONorw GuL Mhb, OSw DL Mb, Gb, SdmL Gb

fighting OSw SdmL Kmb, Mb, ÄVgL Slb, ÖgL Kkb

injury ODan SkL 96, 111, 114, 122, VSjL 48

staff-blow ODan JyL 3, SkKL 7, VSjL 41, 42, 63, 86

violence ONorw BorgL 18


slagh ok bardaghi (OSw)

blows and battle OSw UL Kmb

See also: barsmíð, bæria, lysta (1)

barð (ON) noun

stem (1) ONorw GuL Llb, Tfb

barka (OSw) verb

strip bark from trees OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb


barka ok blika (OSw)

carve marks in the barks of trees OSw UL Blb

barlike (ODan) adv.

openly ODan ESjL 2

See also: openbarlika

barliþ (OSw) noun

open passage OSw SdmL Bb

unprotected opening OSw UL Kkb, Blb

See also: liþ (1)

barn (OSw) barn (ODan) barn (ON) noun

child ONorw GuL Krb, Kvb, Løb, Arb, Tfb, Mhb, Olb, Leb

childbirth ODan JyL 2, OSw HL Kkb, ÄVgL Gb

barnagoþs (OSw) noun

children’s property OSw HL Äb, UL Äb, Jb, VmL Äb, Jb

children’s inheritance OSw HL Äb

barnamorþ (OSw) noun

infanticide OSw UL Rb, VmL Rb

barnbærr (ON) adj.

capable of bearing children ONorw GuL Mhb

barnfar (OGu) noun

labour OGu GL A 2

See also: barnsot

barnfóstr (ON) noun

fostering a child OIce Grg Ómb 141, Mah 30

barnfóstri (ON) noun

foster-father ONorw FrL Rgb 14

barnfóstrlaun (ON) barnfóstrslaun (ON) noun

payment or reward for fostering children ONorw GuL Arb, Olb

barnfulga (ON) noun

payment for maintenance of a child ONorw GuL Løb

barnlauss (ON) adj.

childless ONorw GuL Kvb, Sab

barnmynd (ODan) noun

The right of a husband to dispose over, though not sell, his wife’s ancestral lands and movables brought to the household; and to inherit a lot in her property at her death, if they had mutual, legitimate children.

entitlement by the birth of a child ODan ESjL 3, SkL 7, 8, 29, VSjL 1

lot in property through the birth of a child ODan ESjL 1

Refs: Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 303

barnskírn (ON) noun

baptism of a child OIce Grg Tíg 261, KRA 1

barnsot (OSw) noun

childbirth OSw UL Äb, Mb, VmL Äb, Mb

barsmíð (ON) noun

beating OIce Grg Hrs 235

fight ONorw GuL Mhb

See also: bardaghi, dela, vingretta

bartholomeusmessa (ON) noun

St Bartholomew’s Day (24 August) OIce Grg Klþ 13

St Bartholomew’s Mass (24 August) ONorw GuL Krb

barún (ON) noun

baron OIce Llb 18

bas (OSw) noun

box trap OSw HL Blb

byre OSw VmL Mb

bast (ON) noun

bast ONorw GuL Kvr


bast ok band (ODan)

bonds and ropes ODan SkL 144

rope and bonds ODan JyL 2

tied and bound ODan SkL 112

See also: band, basta, binda

basta (OSw) verb


basta ok binda, basta ok i band föra, basta æller binda, binda ok basta (OSw)

accuse OSw HL Mb

bind OSw YVgL Tb

bind (and put) in bonds OSw UL Kkb, Mb, Blb VmL Mb, Bb

fetter and imprison OSw HL Kgb

fetter or bind OSw HL Kgb

put in fetters and bonds OSw HL Mb

tether or tie up OSw DL Eb; UL Kgb VmL Kgb

tie and violate OSw HL Blb

tie up and bind OSw SdmL Kgb, Mb, Tjdb

See also: band, bast, binda

bataleþ (OSw) batæ leþ (OSw) noun

shipping lane OSw SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb

bater (OSw) batr (OGu) noun

boat OGu GL A 36, OSw SdmL Bb, UL Äb, Blb, VmL Äb, Mb, ÄVgL Fös

See also: byrthing, farkoster, floti, kaupskip, myndrikkia, skip

batsfarmber (OSw) baz farm (OSw) noun

boatload OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

baugamaðr (ON) baugamenn (ON) noun

man who shares the ring payment ONorw GuL Mhb

ring-man ONorw FrL Sab 2

baugatal (ON) noun

The ‘ring list’ of wergild payments found in Grg Baugatal gives detailed instructions concerning the proportion of homicide payments each group of family members should pay or receive.

wergild ring list OIce Grg Þsþ 80 Bat 113

See also: bauggildi, bogher, manbot, nefgildi, vígslóði

Refs: Clover 1986; CV s.v. baugr; Fritzner; KLNM s.v. straff; ONP

baugband (OGu) noun

A strap or rope fastened around the wrist (baugliþer) (see baugliþr) of a captured felon, in particular a slave accused of theft. It could have been simply a type of restraining handcuff, or else a form of minor torture. This latter theory is supported partly by the fact that torture is specifically mentioned just previously in the text, and partly by the fact that the accuser who applied the baugband had to pay compensation if there was no material evidence to implicate the slave upon whom they were inflicted, whether he was found to be innocent or confessed. The word occurs only in the B-text of GL, the synonym ærmaband (q.v.) being used elsewhere in the mainland Swedish laws.

wristband OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

See also: basta, binda, ærmaband

Refs: Peel 2015, 198–99 note to Addition 8/18; Schlyter 1877, s.v. baugband; SL GL, 284 note 10

baugbót (ON) noun

ring-atonement OIce Grg Bat 113

See also: bot

baugbǿtandi (ON) noun

payer of the ring OIce Grg Bat 113

bauggildi (ON) noun

compensation to be paid or received by kinsfolk on the father’s side ONorw GuL Olb

father’s side ONorw FrL ArbB 8, GuL Olb

ring payment OIce Grg Bat 113, ONorw FrL Sab 11 ArbA 8

See also: nefgildi

bauggildismaðr (ON) noun

Means ‘agnate’, a near kinsman on the father’s side and in the male line. The agnatic kinsman received and paid the larger payments in the manbot (q.v.). The circle of agnatic kinsmen included relatives up to and including first cousins.

agnate OIce Js Mah 13, 34 Kab 2

agnate kinsman ONorw FrL Mhb 7, 9 ArbB 20

agnate who has to pay or receive {bauggildi} ONorw GuL Kpb, Løb, Tfb, Mhb, Olb

kinsman on the father’s side ONorw FrL Var 9 ArbB 1 Kvb 9 Jkb 4

See also: bogher, höfuðbarmr, höfuðbarmsmaðr, karlsvift, lindagyrt, nefgildismaðr

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. böter, mansbot, straff, værge I; RGA2 s.v. ringgeld; Robberstad 1981, 343

baugliþr (OGu) noun

wrist OGu GL A 23

See also: baugband

baugrýgr (ON) baugrygr (ON) noun

A ‘ring-woman’. An only daughter or sister, unmarried, who accepted and paid compensation in the absence of male relatives. According to GuL a baugrýgr was also entitled to inherit allodial land.

ring-lady OIce Grg Bat 113, ONorw FrL Sab 4

sole heiress ONorw GuL Olb

Refs: CV s.v. baugrygr; F; KLNM s.v. odelsrett

baugshelgi (ON) noun

A ring (bauger) (see bogher) was a fine to the king if a slave was insulted when accompanying his master to public places.

protection of a ring ONorw GuL Mhb

Refs: Hertzberg, s.v. baugshelgi

baugsskapbǿtandi (ON) noun

proper ring payer OIce Grg Bat 113

baugþak (ON) noun

supplement OIce Grg Bat 113

baugþiggjandi (ON) noun

receiver of the ring OIce Grg Bat 113

baþstova (OSw) bastugha (OSw) bastuva (OSw) bazstuwa (OSw) noun

bath house OSw HL Mb, SdmL Mb, UL Mb

beiðask (ON) verb

claim ONorw GuL Tfb, Sab

See also: biþia

beingjald (ON) noun

bone payment ONorw FrL Mhb 49

beini (ON) noun

help OIce Grg Klþ 1

hospitality OIce KRA 1

See also: liþ (2)

beita (ON) verb

graze ONorw GuL Llb

beitarmaðr (ON) noun

man who owns grazing OIce Llb 23

beititeigr (ON) noun

grazing plot OIce Grg Lbþ 194, Llb 22

See also: tegher

ben (1) (ODan) bein (ON) noun

bone ODan SkL 117, ONorw GuL Kvr, Mhb


bain heil (OGu)

whole in bone OGu GL Add 8 (B 55)

See also: brustheil

benbæria (OSw) verb

crush someone’s legs OSw YVgL Urb

benedictusmessa (ON) noun

St Benedict’s Day (21 March) OIce Grg Klþ 13

benhog (ODan) noun

kick with a leg ODan SkL 98

kicking with a leg ODan JyL 3

strike with bone ODan ESjL 2

benjaváttr (ON) noun

mortal-wound witness OIce Grg Vís 87

benlösning (OSw) noun

bone extraction OSw UL Mb

taking of bones (out of a wound) OSw DL Mb

berendi (ON) noun

female animal ONorw GuL Mhb

berg (ON) noun

cliff ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Mhb

betrfeðrungr (ON) betrfeðringr (ON) noun

man better than his father ONorw FrL Rgb 47

beþroyta (OGu) bedroyta (OGu) noun

bed-wetting OGu GL Add. 7 (B 49)

bi (OSw) bi (ODan) noun

Bees appear as an important, and seemingly often disputed, resource, sometimes natural and sometimes privately owned. Regulations include determining who had the right to bees found in woodland or in other places, how properly to announce such finds, what to do with swarming and potentially aggressive bees, and how to protect bees and domestic animals from each other. Particularly detailed regulations are found in ODan SkL.

bee ODan ESjL 3, JyL 3, SkL 196−201, OSw SdmL Bb, YVgL Utgb

Refs: Miller and Vogt, 2015, 55−56

bigarth (ODan) noun

bee garden ODan JyL 3

biltugher (OSw) biltogher (OSw) byltugher (OSw) adj.

This adjective is used to describe someone who was outlawed on what was effectively a temporary basis, with the prospect of returning under the rule of law if fines or compensation were paid in time, and the king had granted him his peace. The fine payable to the king was usually 40 marker in addition to the compensation payable to the victim and the confiscation of property. The crimes for which this punishment was prescribed were those that fell under the category of eþsöris brut ‘crimes against the King's Peace’ such as attacks in the home, and it was in connection with this law that the term first came into use in its legal sense. According to the relevant laws of Svealand and Götaland, the person concerned had to leave the realm until he had discharged his outlawry. It is possible that this was not initially a requirement, although by the time of the national laws, this was clearly the case. The fact that exile was not always essential is exhibited in the fact that an outlaw was seemingly permitted to attend church services (as opposed to excommunicates, whose presence would force the priest to abort the Mass) and could not be dragged out of the church (VmL, UL). There were penalties for sheltering such a person beyond a month after he has been declared outlawed. In this particular statute in VmL and UL it seems that the outlawed person was expected to leave the kingdom, although the text is ambiguous and it might simply mean that he was to leave the province, which perhaps reflects two different forms of outlawry. This latter interpretation is supported by statutes relating to inheritance in which it refers to a child born to an outlawed man who has fled the province (land (q.v.) rather than riki (q.v.)) with his wife, whether that child was conceived before or after he had fled. Only if his child were born in the province could it inherit, and then only if it were conceived either before he was outlawed, or outside the province during his outlawry. An outlawed man could not claim an inheritance himself, even after discharging his outlawry. If he killed someone while outlawed, he was to pay the appropriate compensation after his outlawry had been discharged. According to Schlyter, the punishment was not initially for a fixed term, although this has at times been assumed. It is worth noting that both UL and VmL state that no woman or minor might be outlawed (literally ‘forced to flee from the King’s Peace’), although the word biltugher is not used in this instance. Schlyter considers a derivation from a presumed OSw verb bila, ‘to lack’ (found independently in ON in the meanings ‘fail, break, give way’) with the ending -ugher, but cannot himself find a link. It seems, however, that the person concerned is ‘wanting the King’s Peace’, or the rule of law, so such a derivation is not unreasonable. It could also be related to a noun bil, ‘a short time’, also found in ON. SAOB, however, considers all attempts at an etymology unsatisfactory.

outlaw OSw YVgL Drb

outlawed OSw DL Eb, HL Kgb, Äb, SdmL Kgb, Äb, Mb, SmL, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Add. 3, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, YVgL Add, ÖgL Eb

See also: eþsöre, flya, friþlös

Refs: Ekholst 2009; KLNM s.v. fredlöshed; Lexikon des Mittelalters s.v. bannum; SAOB s.v. biltog; Schlyter 1877, s.v. biltugher

binda (OSw) binde (ODan) binda (ON) verb

Literally ‘to bind, to tie’. In legal contexts most significantly bringing certain criminals — particularly thieves — to justice, physically restrained during the transportation to, or while waiting for, the þing ‘assembly’. On the other hand, illegally apprehending or physically restraining an innocent free person was severely punished. Most often appears as baste ok binde (ODan), basta ok binda (OSw), but also binda a bak (OSw), (see below), which might be interpreted as tying the hands, or possibly the stolen goods, to the back of the thief. Occasionally, there is a more abstract legal interpretation of tying something to someone, often in the phrase binda a (OSw), literally ‘tie to’, which might be translated as ‘to claim’, ‘to refer’, ‘to substantiate’ or ‘to attribute’ for instance a crime to a person.

bind ODan ESjL 3, JyL 2, SkL 136, 151, 159, 184, VSjL 59, 60, ONorw GuL Llb,Tjb, Olb

confirm OSw HL Jb

contract OSw VmL Kkb

fetter OSw HL Mb

link OSw HL Mb

prove OGu GL A 18

tie up ODan VSjL 59, 86, 87, OSw SdmL Bb


basta ok binda, basta ok i band föra, basta æller binda, binda ok basta (OSw)

accuse OSw HL Mb

bind OSw YVgL Tb

bind (and put) in bonds OSw UL Kkb, Mb, Blb VmL Mb, Bb

fetter and imprison OSw HL Kgb

fetter or bind OSw HL Kgb

put in fetters and bonds OSw HL Mb

tether or tie up OSw DL Eb UL Kgb VmL Kgb

tie and violate OSw HL Blb

tie up and bind OSw SdmL Kgb, Mb, Tjdb

binda a (OSw)

claim OSw UL Jb VmL Jb

refer to OSw UL Jb VmL Jb

OSw UL Jb, Kmb, Blb VmL Jb, Kmb, Bb

support OSw UL Jb VmL Jb

binda a bak (OSw) binde a bak (ODan)

bind to the back ODan JyL 2

pinion OSw YVgL Drb, Tb ÄVgL Md, Tb

binda fullum bandum (OSw)

bind someone with full ropes OSw YVgL Add

binda æller basta æller i fiætur sætia (OSw)

accuse OSw HL Mb

See also: band, bast, basta, baugband, vinna

Refs: Kjus 2011; KLNM s.v.v. frihedsberøvelse, fängelse

biorn (OSw) bjorn (ODan) björn (ON) noun

Bears appear in the laws as a threat to people and domestic animals, and in some laws the hunting of bears was either an obligation or done with impunity (ONorw GuL, OSw HL, UL, VmL). In OSw ÄVgL and YVgL, bears are seen as ofæfli (‘superior force’) if they kill domestic animals in one’s care, in contrast to attacks by wolves, which were occasionally seen as neglect. In ODan, predators — bears, wolves and hawks — only appear as domestic animals, for which the owner was responsible if they attacked somebody.

bear ODan SkL 104, ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Løb, Llb, OSw HL Blb, YVgL Rlb, Utgb, ÄVgL Rlb, Föb

See also: ofæfli

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. björnejakt, jakt, vilda djur

biskopsnævning (ODan) noun

Two men from each parish or quarter appointed for one year to deal with certain violations of the Church.

men nominated by the bishop ODan JyL 2

Refs: KLNM s.v. nämnd

biskuper (OSw) biskop (ODan) biskup (ON) byskup (ON) biskoper (OSw) noun

archbishop ODan SkKL Prol

bishop ODan ESjL 1, 2, JyL Fort, 1, 2, SkKL 1−3, 6, 9, 11−13, VSjL 5, 73, OFar Seyð 0, OIce Grg Bat 114 Lrþ 117 Arþ 118 Feþ 149 Hrs 235 Tíg 260, 261, MagBref HT 2 Llb 18, Js Mah 26, KRA 1, 2 passim, ONorw BorgL 5.7 passim, EidsL 2.2 3.3 passim, FrL KrbA 1, 2 KrbB 1, 2 LlbA 15, GuL Krb, Mhb, Leb, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Rb, HL Kkb, Äb, Mb, SdmL Conf, Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Kmb, Mb, Rb, Till, SmL, YVgL Kkb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Kkb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Jb, ÖgL Kkb, Db, Vm

bishop’s representative ONorw GuL Krb


biskups ørendreki (ON)

bishop’s representative ONorw GuL Krb

biskups lænsmaþer, biskups lænsman, biskops lænsman (OSw)

bishop’s administrator OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb VmL Kkb

bishop’s bailiff OSw DL Kkb, Rb

bishop’s official OSw HL Kkb

biskups umbuþsman (OSw)

representative of the bishop OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: prester, ærchibiskuper, ørendreki

biskupsdöme (OSw) noun

bishopric OSw YVgL Kkb

diocese OSw SdmL Till

biskupsfærþ (OSw) noun

journey that is incumbent on the bishop OSw HL Kkb

biskupsgarþer (OSw) biskopsgarth (ODan) noun

bishop’s farm OSw SdmL Jb

bishop’s manor ODan ESjL 3

See also: biskuper, kirkiubol, konongsgarþer, præstastuva

biskupsmaþer (OSw) biskopsman (ODan) noun

bishop’s man ODan JyL 2, OSw DL Mb, HL Mb

biskupsnæmd (OSw) noun

A næmd ‘panel’ dealing with adultery, offences in church or on holy days (SmL and ÖgL), sins and breaches of church penance (SmL), perjury and manslaughter not repented (ÖgL). OSw ÖgL (Kkb 16) prescribed a functional division between hæraþsnæmd (q.v.) (formal aspects) and biskupsnæmd (q.v.) (facts).

bishop’s jury OSw ÖgL Kkb

bishop’s panel OSw SmL

See also: biskuper, næmd

biskupsrætter (OSw) biskopsræt (ODan) noun

bishop’s due ODan ESjL 1−3, VSjL 23, 73

bishop’s fine OSw HL Mb, ÖgL Kkb

bishop’s right OSw SmL, ÖgL Kkb

right of a bishop OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: biskuper, konungsrætter

biskupssak (OSw) noun

bishop’s case OSw ÖgL Kkb

bishop’s cause OSw SmL

case with compensation to the bishop OSw YVgL Kkb

fine to the bishop OSw HL Kkb

See also: biskuper, sak

bismari (OSw) noun

steelyard OSw YVgL Föb

bistokker (OSw) noun

bee-hive OSw SdmL Bb

bisvarm (ODan) noun

swarm of bees ODan JyL 3, SkL 196

bita (OGu) bíta (ON) verb

bite OGu GL A 17, 34, ONorw GuL Krb, Llb, Tfb

condemn OGu GL A 37


bita a (OSw)

be valid OSw UL Rb

bestow OSw VmL Jb

eat into OSw UL Rb

seize upon OSw UL Jb VmL Jb

support OSw VmL Jb

biti (ON) noun

girder ONorw GuL Llb

biuþa (OSw) biauþa (OGu) bjóða (ON) byþa (OSw) verb

adjure OSw UL StfBM

announce OSw DL Kkb

ask ONorw GuL Kpb, Llb

authorize ONorw GuL Kpb

bid for OSw ÄVgL Gb

call out OSw UL Kgb, Mb, Rb, VmL Kgb, Mb, Rb

declare OGu GL A 6

demand OSw UL Blb

enforce OSw UL Kkb, Kmb, VmL Kkb, Kmb

give ONorw GuL Llb

instigate OSw UL Kgb, VmL Kgb

invite OGu GL A 24, OSw UL Kmb, Rb, VmL Kmb

offer OGu GL A 13, 14, 16, 44, Add. 1 (B 4), ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Løb, Llb, Mhb, Tjb, Olb, Leb, OSw DL Gb, SdmL Jb, UL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Frb, ÄVgL Kkb, Jb

offer one’s land OSw DL Gb

prescribe OSw YVgL Kkb

summon OGu GS Ch. 4, OSw UL Kgb, Rb, VmL Kgb, Rb

See also: dul, lagh, raþa

biþia (OSw) biðja (ON) beþas (OSw) verb

ask OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb

ask for OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, VmL Kkb, Äb, Mb

demand OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb, Mb, Rb

plead OSw DL Eb, HL Kgb, SdmL Kgb, ÖgL Eb

summon ONorw GuL Mhb, Olb

See also: beiðask

bjalki (ON) noun

beam ONorw GuL Llb

bjargkviðr (ON) noun

clearing verdict OIce Grg Klþ 9 Þsþ 25, 27 Víg 89, 90 Ómb 130, 137 Feþ 144

bjargleysi (ON) noun

lack of care OIce Kge 26

bjargráð (ON) noun

Advice given to assist someone in getting out of a situation. In Grg Vís 110 this refers specifically to a prohibition against assisting outlaws.

saving advice OIce Grg Vís 110

Refs: CV s.v. bjargráð; Fritzner s.v. bjargráð; ONP s.v. bjargráð

bjarkeyjarréttr (ON) noun

A general name for town or municipal laws during the Middle Ages in the North, particularly in Norway and Sweden. It has been speculated that the name likely derived from a lost set of laws from a particular Bjarkey (‘birch island’), one candidate being Birka in Lake Mälaren. Two of the most cited bjarkeyjarréttir are the so-called ‘Elder Bjarkey Law’ for Trondheim/Niðarós and the ‘Younger Bjarkey Law’ for Bergen and subsequently other Norwegian towns.

Bjarkey law OIce Grg Misc 248, ONorw FrL Rgb 32

See also: rætter

Refs: CV s.v. bjarkey-; Fritzner; GAO s.v. Bjarkörecht; Hagland & Sandnes 1997:XII; Hertzberg; KLNM s.v. bjärköarätt; LexMA s.v. Björkö, Ding; ONP

bjarneggjun (ON) bjarneggjan (ON) noun

Incitation to a fight might be compared to baiting a bear. The instigator of a fight, if injured, had no right to compensation. See GuL ch. 216.

incitation to a fight ONorw GuL Mhb

Refs: KLNM s.v. björnejakt

bjarnveiðr (ON) noun

hunting of bears ONorw GuL Llb

bjóðandi (ON) noun

bidder OIce Grg Lbþ 193

björg (ON) noun

assistance OIce Grg Vís 87 Feþ 161, Mah 6, Js Mah 13

means to support OIce Grg Arþ 122 Ómb 134

provision OIce Kge 23

bladragning (OGu) noun

wall coverings of black or blue cloth OGu GL A 24a, 65

See also: skarlaþ

blak (ON) noun

slap OIce Mah 22

blami (OSw) noun

bruise OSw YVgL Add

bruising OSw VmL Kkb, Mb

blandask (ON) verb

have sexual intercourse with ONorw GuL Krb

blasa (OSw) verb


blasande munne, blasændæ munni (OSw)

blowing on the flames OSw UL Blb VmL Bb

bláfeldr (ON) noun

Cloak of fur (of black sheep) was accepted as a legal means of payment.

cloak of fur ONorw GuL Mhb

Refs: Falk 1919, 174−75; Hertzberg 1889, 231−32

blea (OSw) noun


bulster ok blea (OSw)

bolster and sheet OSw HL Mb

Bloody beddings appear as proof in cases of killings in conjunction with adultery.

blekoblandaþer (OSw) adj.

fraudulently adulterated OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb

blokhogg (OSw) noun

severe blow with a blunt object OSw SdmL Mb

blot (OGu) blót (ON) noun

heathen practice ONorw BorgL 16.9

sacrifice OGu GL A 4, ONorw EidsL 24.1, FrL KrbB 15, GuL Krb

See also: blot, blotan, guþ, lunder, sten

blota (OSw) blóta (ON) blota (OGu) verb

To worship and sacrifice to heathen gods was strictly forbidden; see e.g., GL ch. 4. Human sacrifice was not unknown: ‘They sacrificed their sons and daughters’ (GS ch. 1).

hallow OIce Grg Bat 115

sacrifice OGu GS Ch. 1, ONorw FrL KrbB 15, OSw HL Kkb, UL Kkb

worship OIce Grg Klþ 7, ONorw GuL Krb

See also: blotan

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. alv, blot, diser, hov og horg, kult, magi, offer, stalli, þorri, år och fred

blotan (OGu) noun

sacrifice OGu GL A 4, GS Ch. 1, 3

See also: blot, blota

bloþ (OSw) bloþ (OGu) bloþer (OSw) noun

blood OGu GL A 24e, OSw UL Mb, VmL Kkb, Mb

blood relative OGu GL A 20

bloodshed OSw DL Kkb

descendant OGu GL A 20

kin OGu GL A 20

bloþlæti (OSw) noun

bloodshed OSw HL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, SdmL Mb

drawing of blood OSw UL Mb

injury that draws blood OSw UL Mb

See also: bloþsar, bloþviti

bloþsar (OSw) bloþsæri (OSw) noun

bleeding wound OSw SdmL Mb

blood wound OSw HL Md

injury that draws blood OSw UL Mb

See also: bloþlæti, bloþviti

bloþugher (OSw) adj.


blar æller bloþugher, blat ok bloþugt (OSw)

blue or bloody OSw SdmL Kgb YVgL Frb, Rlb, Add ÄVgL Slb

bruised or bloody OSw DL Mb SdmL Mb

bruises and bloodshed OSw HL Kkb

bloþviti (OSw) blothvite (ODan) noun

blood fine ODan JyL 1, 2

blood injury OSw DL Eb

blood payment ODan ESjL 3

bloodletting OSw DL Eb

bloodshed ODan JyL 2, OSw HL Kgb, Mb, SdmL Kgb, YVgL Add, ÖgL Eb, Vm

drawing of blood OSw HL Kgb, Mb, UL Kgb, VmL Kgb

injury that draws blood OSw UL Kgb, VmL Kgb

blótskapr (ON) blótsskapr (ON) noun

heathen practice ONorw BorgL 16.9

bo (OSw) bo (ODan) bo (OGu) (ON) (OSw) noun

Literally ‘dwelling’ with many separate meanings in the laws: 1) a farm, group of farms, or a village; 2) the houses themselves and the function of the dwelling as an economic unit, sometimes including the people living and working there; 3) the belongings representing a substantial part of its value including livestock; and 4) an administrative unit of an unknown function in ÄVgL (not in the translated laws).

assets OSw SdmL Jb

capital in a household OIce Grg Þsþ 81

cattle OSw YVgL Rlb, Add, ÄVgL Urb

common property OSw YVgL Frb

court (2) ONorw GuL Mhb

estate ODan ESjL 3, SkL 7, 141, 146, 152, ONorw GuL Llb, OSw DL Eb, UL Kgb, Äb, VmL Kgb, Äb

farm OGu GL A 6, OIce Grg Vís 89, Llb 10, KRA 14, 15, ONorw BorgL 5.13, FrL KrbA 33, GuL Krb, Mhb, Olb, OSw ÄVgL Äb

farmstead OIce Kab 15

goods OSw YVgL Rlb

home ODan ESjL 2, OSw DL Tjdb, HL Äb, SdmL Kgb, Mb, Tjdb, YVgL Urb, Äb, Gb, Tb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Slb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Jb, ÖgL Kkb, Db

house ODan ESjL 1, JyL 3, SkL 5, OGu GL A 10

household ODan ESjL 1, 3, JyL 2, 3, VSjL 1, 12, OIce Grg Þsþ 27, 81 Vís 97 Fjl 225, Sg 1 Kge 14, 21, KRA 26, ONorw BorgL 8.5, EidsL 41.3, GuL Arb, Leb, OSw SdmL Gb, UL Äb, Rb, VmL Äb, Rb

household stock OIce Grg Þsþ 81, Js Mah 7, Kab 1

land ONorw FrL KrbB 20

manor ODan SkL 228

movables OSw SdmL Kmb

property ODan ESjL 1, VSjL 3, OSw DL Eb, HL Kkb, Kgb, UL Kgb, Mb, Jb, Add. 5, VmL Kgb, Mb, Jb, YVgL Äb, Rlb, Tb, ÄVgL Äb, ÖgL Eb, Db

residence ODan ESjL 2

stock animals ONorw EidsL 19.1


bregða búi (ON)

give up householding OIce Grg Þsþ 80

eiga í búi (ON)

own a share in a household OIce Grg Feþ 152

gera bú (ON)

start householding OIce Grg Tíg 259

See also: bol, bolagh, bonde, bryti, byr, egn, , garþer, goþs, husaby, hæraþ, inviþi, jarl, konongsgarþer, oþal, öþer

Refs: Árni Júlíússon 2010, 8; CV s.v. ; KLNM s.v. bo, kronogods; Miller 1990, 115; ONP s.v. ; Schlyter s.v. bo; Wiktorsson 2011:II, 160−65

boandi (OSw) adj.

settled OSw ÄVgL Jb, ÖgL Eb, Db

See also: bofaster

bodræt (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘dragging from the house’. It describes (incitement to commit) a crime of the type that would now be called ‘an inside job’, especially when the instigator was himself outside the household. The related bospænd (q.v.) occurs only in VmL and seems to describe specifically the act of theft by household members instigated by others, as it is followed by an expression meaning incitement to something. Schlyter and Wennström differ over whether two different crimes are being described. The latter believes that there is a difference, especially as VmL includes two separate statutes, one relating to bodræt and one to bospænd. He considers the latter to refer to the crime of incitement to theft and the former to the theft by household members whether resulting from incitement by outsiders or on their own initiative. These crimes are not mentioned in the laws of Götaland, GL or DL and Wennström argues that the relatively freer nature of household members in Svealand meant that they could be subject to fines and other punishments that were not relevant in Götaland.

house theft OSw HL Mb, SdmL Tjdb

theft by incitement within the household OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

See also: bospænd, ransaka

Refs: Schlyter 1877, s.v. bodræt, bospænd; SL SdmL, 215 note 68; SL UL, 129 note 166; SL VmL, 102 note 179; Wennström 1936, 90−91

bodsæti (OSw) noun

A category of dependent people, who lived in somebody else’s household, and who may have paid rent. They are mentioned in the laws concerning their reduced obligation to pay the priest an annual sum.

croft household OSw DL Kkb

boðburðr (ON) noun

forwarding summons OIce Kge 29 Llb 7

forwarding the message baton ONorw GuL Llb

message baton ONorw FrL Intr 17

route for forwarding messages OIce Kge 31

token duty ONorw EidsL 11.4

boðfall (ON) noun

dropping the summons OIce Kge 32

boðgreizla (ON) noun

duty of forwarding the summons OIce Kge 33

boðleið (ON) noun

The path a message or token (cf. buþ, buþkafli) should take in order to reach all members of a community. Also called boðferð in some sources. The route ran from a farm to the nearest neighboring farm. According to Jó Kge 29 the same route was used for housing and transporting impoverished members of the community.

proclamation route ONorw BorgL 13.2, 13.3, EidsL 10.1

summons route OIce Kge 29

token-path ONorw EidsL 11.4

token-route ONorw EidsL 11.5

See also: boðburðr, boðfall, buþ, skæra (2)

Refs: CV s.v. boðleið; Fritzner s.v. boðleið; Hertzberg; KLNM s.v. budstikke; ONP s.v. boðleið

boðorð (ON) noun

commandment OIce KRA 12

edict OIce KRA 30

boðskurðr (ON) noun

summoning baton ONorw FrL KrbB 19

boðslöttr (ON) noun

uninvited guest OIce Mah 28

boðsváttr (ON) noun

witness to a bid ONorw FrL Jkb 4

bofaster (OSw) bofast (ODan) adj.

resident OSw SdmL Mb, YVgL Rlb, Tb, ÄVgL Tb

settled ODan ESjL 3

See also: boandi, bolfaster

bofæ (ODan) búfé (ON) noun

animals OIce Kab 16, ONorw FrL Intr 11 KrbA 27

cattle OIce Kab 17

household movables ODan ESjL 1

livestock OIce Grg Klþ 4, 6 Lbþ 174 Fjl 221, 224, Kge 4 Llb 7, Js Kvg 3 Lbb 18 Kab 12, KRA 15, 26, ONorw FrL KrbB 18, GuL Krb, Kpb, Llb, Tfb, Mhb, Olb, Leb

movable goods ODan ESjL 1

movables ODan JyL 1, 2, VSjL 68

boghaböter (OSw) noun

{bogha} fines OSw HL Mb

See also: bogher

bogher (OSw) baugr (ON) noun

The term baugr, ‘ring’ (of gold and silver), appears in numerous medieval Germanic languages, and it was a multipurpose item used in various, often legal, contexts. People swore oaths on rings or ring-swords, and rings were visible signs of political networking and honourable gifts.

The medieval Nordic laws show that rings, or bits of rings, were used as payment, esp. of compensation for manslaughter and fines, primarily to the king. In this case, a baugr in Norway equalled 12 aurar (1 1/2 mörk). OSw bogher only appears in HL, where it also equalled 12 örar (revealing a close connection with ONorw law). In Iceland the baugar were calculated in ounces of silver.

The plural form (ON) baugar usually referred to wergild, the sum of compensation a killer had to pay to the kin of the killed person. In ONorw laws three classes of baugar were distinguished: höfuðbaugr (q.v.), bróðurbaugr (q.v.), and brǿðrungsbaugr (q.v.), reflecting the distance in degree of kinship to the killed person. The people belonging to one such class were called baugamenn (see baugamaðr). The group of people entitled to (paying or receiving) compensation for manslaughter was called bauggildi (q.v.).

The term ránbaugr (q.v.) referred to unlawful seizure or holding of property; slanbaugr (q.v.) was what a person had to pay when he or she was watching an assault without interfering.

A famous example of this system of compensation is found in the OIce Baugatal (‘The Wergild Ring List’) in Grágás, which contains rules for compensation for manslaughter as far as to fourth cousins, which one kindred paid to another (see Laws of Early Iceland: Grágás I, 175). Various components made up the compensation, the silver baugr and smaller units were referred to as baugþak (q.v.) and þveiti (q.v.). Similar complex and extensive tariffs appear in the FrL and GuL (Norway) and in the HL (Sweden).

The reliability of the Baugatal as a historical source has been disputed, but recent scholarship (Christoph Kilger, Peter Foote) views it as credible, at least in its fundamental features.

The latter element of the baugþak is derived from the verb þekja, which means ‘to increase a sum by adding to it’ or ‘to contribute to a price or fine’. Baugþak may therefore refer to the smaller pendant rings that are found linked around larger rings. Þveiti means ‘piece’ or ‘fragment’, and possibly also ‘fragmented silver’, and it is also mentioned in the earliest ONorw laws (see Hertzberg, 750).

At the assembly (ON þing) the compensation rings of silver were checked for weight and tested, and Baugatal stipulated that the rings should be ‘… standing up to the test of a nick, and of one quality inside and out’. The baugr denoted a fine to the king, not only for manslaughter, but also for infringements of other kinds, such as letting one’s cattle go grazing on other people’s pasture (GuL ch. 81).

The importance of the concept bauger is also revealed by the number of compounds. In addition to those mentioned above, we find baugrygr (q.v.) (a woman entitled to a main part of the wergild), baugshelgi (q.v.) (degree of personal protection amounting to a fine of a bauger to the king in case of injury or insult), bauggildr (protected by a fine of a bauger), bauggildismaðr (q.v.) (a male relative on the father’s side), baugaskipti (the distribution of fines and compensation among the persons involved), and fjörbaugsgarðr (the lesser outlawry). The last concept is known from the Grágás. The only OSw compound þiufbogher (q.v.) (compensation/fine for theft) appears in HL.

ring OIce Js Lbb 19, ONorw FrL Mhb 52 Sab 2, GuL Kpb, Løb, Llb, Mhb, Sab

wergild OIce Grg Bat 113, ONorw FrL Mhb 13, 18

wergild ring OIce Grg Bat 113, ONorw FrL Var 7 Rgb 24 Jkb 4

{bogher} OSw HL Mb

See also: bauggildismaðr, bot, gæld, mangæld, nefgildismaðr

Refs: Brink 2010b, 127−28; Engeler 1991, 86; Hedeager 2011, 12−13; Hertzberg s.v.v. baugamaðr, baugaskipti, bauggildi, bauggildismaðr, bauggildr, baugrygr, baugshelgi, baugr, bróðurbaugr, brǿðrungsbaugr, höfuðbaugr, ránbaugr, slanbaugr; Kilger 2008, 282; KLNM s.v.v. böter, edsformular, hov og horg, hälsingelagen, mansbot, odelsrett, straff; Riisøy 2016; Schlyter s.v.v. bauger, bogher 2 b; Vogt 2010, 120−21, 146

boghi (OSw) bogi (ON) bughi (OSw) noun

A weapon included among folkvapn (q.v.), hamnuvapn (q.v.) and morþvapn (q.v.). In OSw HL, also a man with a bow, used as a unit of taxation.

bow ONorw GuL Mhb, Leb, OSw HL Kgb, Äb, Rb, SdmL Mb

Refs: Förvaltningshistorisk ordbok s.v. båge; Hansen 2011, 314−15; KLNM s.v. båge

bok (1) (OSw) bok (ODan) bók (ON) noun

Referring to law-books (OSw HL Kkb, Rb; SdmL Conf, För; ODan JyL Fort; OIce Js Kdb 3) and parts of such books (passim, cf. balker) as well as to liturgical books (OSw ÖgL Kkb; YVgL and ÄVgL Kkb; SdmL Kkb). Books also appear in certain oath procedures; commonly (including the prepositional phrase við bók, see below) in OIce concerning, for instance, defamation and the location of an accused (Js), as well as in ONorw concerning bestiality, drunken quarrels and liberation of slaves (GuL). Only rarely in OSw, concerning theft (DL), paternity (HL) and shepherd duties (ÄVgL), as well as in a new king’s oath of allegiance which should be sworn holding both a book and holy relic (SdmL). It seems generally assumed that the book on which an oath was sworn was the bible or a liturgical book, which might be supported by statements of a ‘holy book’ in OIce Js, for instance concerning the appointment of men for the alþingi ‘General Assembly’ and an ODan occurrence concerning the oaths of a nævning (see næmpning) (JyL 2:42). ODan SkL 113 explicitly states that a levelling oath (ODan javnetheeth, see jamnaþareþer) should be sworn on a book, not on holy relics (ODan helaghdom, see hælghidomber), while SkL 147 and 226 state that swearing should be done by joining hands, and not on a book (see handtak).

bible/lawbook/book OSw DL Tjdb

book ODan JyL Fort, 1, 2, SkL 113, 147, 226, ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Løb, Tfb, Mhb, OSw HL Äb, SdmL Conf, För, Till, YVgL Kkb, Äb, ÄVgL Kkb, Rlb, ÖgL Kkb

law-book OSw HL Kkb, Rb

National Law OFar Seyð 7, 8


landzens bok (OSw)

law-book of the land OSw HL Rb

við bók (ON)

by oath on a book OIce Grg Þsþ 63, Vís 109b (add. 132), Arþ 122, Ómb 128, Feþ 164, Lbþ 172, 178, Tíg 266 Js Lbb 6

See also: hælghidomber

Refs: KLNM s.v. edsformular

bok (2) (ODan) noun

beech nut ODan SkL 207

See also: akern

bokarl (OSw) noun

resident OSw ÄVgL Kkb

boklærder (OSw) adj.

book-learned OSw ÄVgL Kkb

bokumbel (OSw) noun

livestock brand OSw UL Blb (table of contents only)

bol (OSw) bol (ODan) bol (OGu) ból (ON) noun

Literally ‘dwelling’ and by extension referring to a farm including its farmland. In Danish laws bol refers to a certain part of the village land and the rights and obligations that followed, but may also be used as a land assessment unit. A specifically judicial use of bol in Norwegian laws was as a farming unit of a certain size, which was originally the basis for calculating the lease and later the taxation, and usually specified as to the unit measure, i.e. marker (see mark(2)) or mánaðarmatr (q.v.). There are several, sometimes conflicting, ideas of the nature of the bol in the Swedish laws. In Scandinavian texts in Latin bol is rendered by mansus, but the possible links between the uses of bol in Scandinavia and of the mansus in post-Roman Europe have not been explored.

cultivated land ONorw GuL Arb, OSw DL Bb

dwelling house OSw HL Rb

farm OGu GL A 3, 13, 28, OIce Grg Lbþ 206 Fjl 225, OSw DL Bb, UL Kkb, Jb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Jb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Jb, ÄVgL Kkb, Jb

farmland OGu GL A 47

farmstead ODan SkL 238, OIce Llb 14, OSw YVgL Äb, Jb, Föb, Add, ÄVgL Äb

homestead OSw SdmL Kkb

land OSw ÄVgL Jb

village unit ODan ESjL 2, JyL 1, 3, SkL 73, 74, VSjL 78


sa bool aff sæthom (OSw)

Used of householders who own farms in several villages.

sowing land that is separated from the cultivator’s residence OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: attunger, bo, bolstaþer, byamal, bygning, fiarþunger, garþer, kirkiubol, mánaðarmatr, ornume, oþoliorþ, rep, urfiælder

Refs: Andersson 2014, 24; Christensen 1983; Ericsson 2012, 22, 24, 28, 270; Hoff 1997, 197; KLNM s.v. bol; ONP s.v. ból; Porsmose 1988, 234−36; Rahmqvist 1996, 29; Schlyter 1877, s.v. bol; Tamm & Vogt 2016, 25; Venge 2002, 8, 173, 283; Åström 1897, 193−98

bolagh (OSw) noun

This word is used in several different ways, all closely related. At the simplest level, it means a partnership, but it can also simply mean a common household, or by transference to the property shared in the partnership or household. The bolaghsmaþer (q.v.) was someone who owned a part of the farm as a partner, often for a stipulated period, as opposed to a bryti (q.v.) who was a paid member of staff. The word carries the same meanings as the ODan word fælagh (q.v.), which also appears in YVgL, and the ON félag. It is worth noting that in VmL the church and parishioners are involved in the setting up of a partnership, whereas in UL, of which in many respects VmL is a close copy, no mention is made of the church and the semi-official term fastar (q.v.) is used of the witnesses to the formation of a partnership.

There is an ON equivalent (búlag), occurring in legal texts not excerpted for the current work, defined as ‘household partnership (on a farm), joint householding’ or ‘agreed tariff for agricultural produce and services’. An apparently synonymous (and even less common) term is búalag. There is also a relatively obscure late medieval legal text called búalög.

aggregated property OSw HL Äb

common household OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

partnership OSw DL Bb, HL Jb, SdmL Jb, UL Äb, Jb, VmL Äb, Jb

See also: bo, fastar (pl.), félagi, , fælagh, maþer, stæmna

Refs: KLNM, s.v. félag; Schlyter 1877, s.v.v. bolagh, fælagh

bolaghsfastar (pl.) (OSw) noun

partnership fastar OSw UL Äb, Jb, VmL Äb

transaction witnesses of a partnership OSw SdmL Jb

bolaghsfæ (OSw) bolax fæ (OSw) noun

goods in common OSw DL Rb

property in common OSw UL Rb, VmL Rb

property owned in partnership OSw HL Jb

See also: bolagh,

bolaghsmaþer (OSw) bolaghsman (OSw) noun

partner OSw UL Rb

partnership man OSw ÖgL Db

See also: bryti

bolaghsstæmpna (OSw) bolagsstæmna (OSw) bolax stæmpna (OSw) noun

period of lease OSw VmL Jb

period of partnership OSw UL Jb

time limit of a partnership OSw SdmL Jb

See also: giftastæmna, stæmna

bolamb (OGu) noun

tame sheep OGu GL A 42

See also: lamb

boland (OGu) búland (ON) noun

Inhabited land, agricultural land on a farm incl. grazing area.

farm land OIce Grg Lbþ 202, Llb 51

inhabited land OGu GS Ch. 1

Refs: CV s.v. búland; ONP s.v. búland; Schlyter s.v. bo land; Zoega s.v. búland

bolatækkia (OSw) noun

tenancy period OSw SdmL Jb

bolbyr (OSw) bolby (OSw) noun

parcelled land OSw SdmL Äb, UL Äb, VmL Äb

boldiur (OSw) noun

poor creature OSw SmL

See also: bol, diur

bolfaster (OSw) bolfast (ODan) bolfastr (OGu) adj.

This word, frequently used in the expression bolfaster man, means literally ‘land-tied (man)’. In the translation ‘resident’, it occurs both as an adjective and as a noun. The implication is that the man concerned is a resident of the area with a fixed abode, as opposed to a löskamaþer (see löska), an itinerant. The translation ‘resident’ employed in UL and VmL is intended to include both those who own land and those who do not own land, but who are permanent residents. Such people were permitted to give evidence as witnesses of character or fact and to take part in the watch. Their status seems to overlap with that of bonde in the meaning ‘householder’. In GL the translation ‘landowning man’ perhaps limits the cohort too much, but is intended to indicate the status of the person referred to, especially as the concept of an itinerant does not appear in GL and the word might be considered to distinguish landowning from tenant farmers (laigulenninger, the OGu word for OSw landboe). Since tenants could move from one parish to another when their tenancy ended, they might not have been regarded as ‘residents’ in the full sense of the word for legal purposes. This distinction equates to the translation in SkL. There seems to be no discernible difference between the meaning of this word and that of bofaster (q.v.).

landowning OGu GL A 14, 18, 19

resident OGu GL A 20a, OSw HL Kgb, Mb, SdmL Kgb, Kmb, UL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Tb, Add

resident farmer OSw HL Äb

with a fixed abode ODan SkL 118

See also: bofaster, bol, bolstaþsmaþer, bonde, jorþeghandi, karl, löska, værnalaghi

Refs: Schlyter 1877, s.v.v. bofaster, bolfaster

bolfæ (ODan) noun

movables ODan SkL passim

See also: bol,

bolgarþer (OSw) noun

fence around a village plot OSw YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Föb

See also: bol, garþer

bolköp (OSw) noun

Presumably synonymous with siængaköp (q.v.).

purchase into the household OSw UL Äb

purchase to the home OSw HL Äb

See also: siængaköp

Refs: Schlyter s.v. bolköp; SL HL, 315−16, note 57

bolsbrygþi (OSw) noun

fence OSw YVgL Utgb

bolsmærki (OSw) noun

brand OSw HL Blb

farm brand OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

owner’s mark OSw SdmL Bb

bolstaþabro (OSw) noun

farmland bridge OSw SdmL Bb

See also: byabro

bolstaþaskæl (OSw) noun

farmland boundary OSw SdmL Bb

bolstaþer (OSw) bólstaðr (ON) noun

Village or farmstead in a village or the area around the dwelling on a farm. Also used of farming land delineated by boundary markers as being part of a specific village.

farm OIce Grg Klþ 2, 4 Feþ 144, 152 Lbþ 172, 179 Tíg 258, Llb 41, OSw HL Blb

farmland OSw SdmL Kkb, Jb, Bb, Mb, UL Jb, Blb, VmL Mb, Bb

farmstead OIce Grg Lbþ 175, 177 Rsþ 230, KRA 11, OSw DL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Kkb, Bb

farmstead or village OSw DL Kkb

land OSw DL Bb

village OSw DL Mb, Tjdb, UL Blb, VmL Mb, Bb

village property OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

villager OSw DL Bb


by ok bolstaþer (OSw)

Alliterative expression for a village and the related farmland, which might be translated alternatively as ‘village and environs’.

village and farmland OSw UL Jb VmL Bb

See also: bygning, byr, garþer, skæl

Refs: CV s.v. bólstaðr; Gammeltoft 2001, 15; KLNM s.v. bolstadh; ONP s.v. bólstaðr; Schlyter s.v. bolstaþer; Zoega s.v. bólstaðr

bolstaþsmaþer (OSw) bolstaz man (OSw) bolstaþsman (OSw) noun

landowner OSw DL Kkb, Mb, Bb, SdmL Bb, Mb, Rb, VmL Mb

See also: bolfaster, bonde, jorþeghandi, karl, værnalaghi

bolæggia (OSw) verb

make a partnership OSw DL Bb

make an agreement on partnership OSw DL Bb

See also: bolagh

bolöþsla (OSw) noun

neglect of farm(stead) OSw YVgL Föb, Add

bonaþer (OSw) noun

repair OSw UL Kkb

bondaby (OSw) noun

householder’s village OSw SdmL Jb

bondakona (OSw) bondekone (ODan) bóndakona (ON) noun

householder’s wife ODan JyL 2, OSw YVgL Kkb, ÄVgL Kkb

wife of a householder OIce Kab 24

See also: bonde, kona

bondalagh (OSw) noun

Literally ‘householder’s’ or ‘farmer’s law’. In the context in which the term is used, it seems that this is by comparison with Canon (church) law, the equivalent of lekmannalagh (see lekman). The context in UL and VmL is that of land put in surety to the church, presumably against a monetary consideration. If it could not be redeemed before the agreed date, the matter was to be pursued according to bondelagh as recorded in the Land Book of those laws. The translation ‘civil law’ has been used as conveying the distinction intended. The translation ‘community of householders’ in a different context, comparable to værnalagh (q.v.) elsewhere, reflects the ambiguity/vagueness of the literal meaning of lagh (q.v.).

civil law OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

community of the householders OSw YVgL Kkb

farmers’ law OSw HL Blb

law of householders OSw ÄVgL Md

See also: bolagh, bonde, fælagh, gislingalagh, jorþalagh, köplagh, lagh, værnalagh

Refs: Schlyter 1877, s.v. bonda lagh; SL UL, 40 note 64; SL VmL, 29 note 74

bondasun (OSw) bondesun (ODan) bóndasonr (ON) noun

farmer’s son OSw SmL

householder’s son ODan JyL 1, 2, SkL 5, OIce Mah 2, Js Mah 11, OSw YVgL Kkb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Tb, Föb, ÄVgL Kkb, Gb, Rlb, Fös

husband’s son ODan JyL 3

See also: bonde

bondatal (OSw) noun

Number of householders as the basis for taxation and other obligations, viz. building a church.

taxation OSw HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb

See also: bonde

Refs: Brink forthcoming

bonde (OSw) bonde (ODan) bondi (OGu) bóndi (ON) búandi (ON) noun

As indicated by the last form the noun bonde (pl. bönder) is derived from the present participle of the verb (OSw) boa/(ON) búa in the sense ‘live, dwell’. The term bóndi/búandi was used to denote a man fixed to a location (as opposed to göngumaðr, q.v.) and usually married (cf. Beck 1975, 64). Düwel (1975, 190−92 (citing Hjärne)) defines bonde as a free, weapon-bearing man who has a fixed abode where he can be lawfully summoned.

In general, the bonde was a farmer and landowner, and head of a household. However, not all farmers were landowners; many were tenants (OSw landboar, ODan garthsæter, landboer, ON landbúar, leiglendingar, leiguliðar) (see landboe, garthsæte, laigulenningr, leiguliði). In WNorway (the province of the Gulathing law) there were thus two kinds of free bönder. In Mid and Northern Norway (the province of the Frostathing law) three kinds of bönder were distinguished: hauldr (see hölðr), árborinn maðr, and reksþegn (q.v.) (see below). There were also two classes of landowners: (1) farmers who had purchased their land (ON kauplendingar (see kauplendingr)), and (2) farmers who owned their land by hereditary (odal) right. The latter category, in ONorw called a hauldr or óðalborinn maðr, was considered the normal man with respect to legal and social status. He was to be preferred as witness, and he set the standard for the system of compensation and fines (bǿtr (see bot)) and sektir (see sækt) (see Helle 2001, 117). This system was graded according to the rank of the person(s) insulted, whether they had a higher or a lower status than a bonde. Only landed men (lendir men, see below), the king's marshal (stallari), the earl (jarl), the bishops and the king had a higher rank, tenants and freedmen (frjálsgjafar, leysingjar) had a lower standing. Slaves had no personal rights whatsoever. The social stratification of the Norwegian society was also reflected in the gravesites: the higher the rank of the deceased, the closer to the church this person was buried.

Peculiar to the FrL was the reksþegn, a bonde whose legal rights were half of those of the hauldr. He was ranked between the freeborn man (the árborinn maðr), and the freedman and each of their descendants. The former had at least four generations of free men as ancestors, but he could not match the hauldr because he lacked odal rights. He either was a tenant or owned purchased land.

It should be noted that the tenant, although inferior to the hauldr in social status, enjoyed the same personal rights (réttr) as the bonde with respect to fines and compensations.

In the OSw provincial laws and in the law of Gotland, the peasantry was less hierarchically structured, the main distinction being that of the free versus the unfree man. The latter group consisted of the slaver (þrælar). An exception to this pattern occurs in the VgL, where the landed man (the lænder maþer) enjoyed a higher social status than the bonde. On the other hand, the bonde was ranked above the landed man, the bishop, and the king with respect to the vitsorþ (q.v.), which probably refers to the right of possessing land. A parallel may be found in the ÖgL, which supports the bonde against the king in disputes about the vitsorþ. In Norway, the landed men have been considered a special higher class of bönder who owned extensive lands themselves or possessed lands as grants from the king. It is doubtful whether this is the case in the VgL, despite Norwegian influence (see Lindkvist 2009a, 63 with further references).

An example of a hierarchically inferior bonde may be seen in the HL, where the messenger of the king (the kunungs ari) enjoyed a special protection when travelling in Hälsingland. If insulted he was entitled to a compensation double that of a bonde.

In the GL the landowners (bönder) and the tenants (laigulenningar, landboar) were equal before the law, except in their function as witnesses. In this and in several other respects there was a distinction between Gotlanders, non-Gotlanders, and slaves, with falling degrees of status. See, e.g., GL A 15, 17, 20, 20a, 24.

In Sweden, as well as in Denmark, the bonde belonged to a commune. He was part of the village (byr) and the parish (sokn). As such, he was responsible for the building and upkeep of churches, roads, and bridges. The priest was legally on a par with the bonde. He was a member of the village, sharing the same obligations as the bönder. The importance of a bonde as a free man, implying a designation of respect, is evident in the laws of Västergötland. Here it is stated that a bishop and a judge (laghmaþer) have to be sons of bönder.

The ODan provincial laws indicate that most farmers were freeholders, but the number of tenants was increasing, esp. in Zealand. There were small differences between the two classes and mainly of a legal nature: Only freeholders were allowed as nævninger (nominated men, members of judicial panels, see næmpning) in Jutland and compurgators in Scania in disputes about property. Within the group of tenants, there was a distinction between the landbo and the garthsæte. The latter was a smallholder, more dependent on his landlord. He was allowed to till a small piece of land for himself in return for compulsory labour for the landlord. The class of garthsæter was greatly increased by the liberation of slaves.

OIce law distinguished between freeholders, tenants, and smallholders (búðsetumenn). Only the freeholders visited the assembly (the þing). This implied that they had to be wealthy, because they were obliged to pay a fee for travelling to the assembly, the so-called þingfararkaup (q.v.). After the union with Norway had been established they were called skattbǿndr. In contrast, the bonde who lived on land belonging to the church was called kirkjubóndi. These two terms were peculiar to Iceland.

adult man OSw SmL

farmer OFar Seyð 8, 9, OGu GL A 5, 7, 10, 17, 28, 48, 56, 56a, Add. 1 (B 4), ONorw BorgL 4.2 5.2 passim, EidsL 8.3 10.5 passim, FrL Intr 12 Tfb 1 KrbA 22, OSw DL Tjdb, HL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, SmL

freeholder ONorw FrL Intr 1, 15

head of the household ONorw GuL Kjb, Tjb, Leb

householder ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 1−3, SkKL 1−3, 7, 9, 12, 13, SkL passim, VSjL 1, 24, 32, 52, 57−59, 64−66, 84, 85, 87, OIce Grg Klþ passim Þsþ 23, 27, 35, 59 Vís 97 Lsþ 116 Arþ 120 Fjl 225 Rsþ 230 Hrs 234 Misc 251 Tíg 255, Sg 1 Mah 2, 3 Kge 17, 24 Llb 18 Kab 25 Þjb 2, 6 Fml 2, 12, Js Mah 11, 14 Kab 1, KRA 1, 4 passim, ONorw FrL Intr 12, 19, 20 KrbA 2, 18 KrbB 19 passim Mhb 4, 7 Var 1, GuL Krb, Kpb, Kvb, Løb, Llb, Arb, Tfb, Mhb, Tjb, Olb, Leb, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Bb, Gb, Tjdb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Äb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, SmL, UL passim, VmL passim, YVgL passim, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, Smb, Vs, Slb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Jb, Tb, Fös, Föb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db, Vm

husband ODan JyL 1, 3, SkL 8, 10, 23, VSjL 1, 61, OGu GL A 20, OIce Grg Þsþ 81 Vís 89, 95 Arþ 118 Ómb 143 Misc 248, Mah 2, 30 Kge 5 Kab 24, Js Mah 9 Kvg 2, KRA 17, ONorw BorgL 3.5, 17.3, EidsL 23.1, FrL KrbA 3 KrbB 7 Mhb 35 Kvb 5, GuL Krb, Kvb, Løb, Arb, Mhb, OSw DL Kkb, Mb, Gb, HL Kkb, Äb, SdmL Kkb, Gb, Äb, Mb, SmL, UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Rb, YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb, Gb, ÖgL Db

man ODan SkL 22, 57, 161, 162, OSw DL Kkb, Mb

master ODan SkL 131, OFar Seyð 7, OSw HL Mb

neighbour OIce Grg Fjl 223

parishioner OSw SmL

peasant OSw ÄVgL Kkb

See also: aþalman, bolfaster, bolstaþsmaþer, husbonde, jorþeghandi, karl, kona, maþer, værnalaghi

Refs: Beck 1975, 64; Düwel 1975, 190−92; Helle 2001, 117; KLNM s.v.v. bonde, böter, gärd, hauld, husbonde, husmand, leiglending, rekstegn, stænder, þegn; Lindkvist 2009a

bondeman (ODan) noun

landowning man ODan ESjL 2

bopænningar (pl.) (OSw) noun

common money OSw YVgL Äb

borafóli (ON) noun

Stolen goods put into another man’s house in order to create suspicion.

hidden stolen goods ONorw FrL Bvb 8

stolen goods ONorw GuL Tjb

See also: stungafóli

Refs: Hertzberg s.v. borafoli; KLNM s.v.v. nyckelbärare, rannsakning, tyveri; ONP s.v. borafóli

borð (ON) noun

board ONorw GuL Krb, Arb, Mhb, Leb

plank ONorw GuL Leb

See also: tré

borgh (OSw) noun

stronghold OSw SdmL Till

borgha (OSw) borghe (ODan) verb

guarantee OSw DL Bb, SdmL Kmb

make a guarantee OSw ÖgL Eb

make a security OSw YVgL Add

pay bail OSw HL Kmb

stand surety OSw DL Bb

vouch ODan JyL 2

borghan (OSw) borghen (ODan) burgan (OGu) burghan (OSw) noun

This noun and the associated verb, borgha, is used in a number of associated ways as is shown by the translations and instances listed below. It can refer simply to a guarantee of someone appearing at a certain time (to answer a charge, for instance), an early form of recognisance or bail, but can also involve other sorts of guarantee or surety, even in some instances the submission of a hostage. It can also mean the obtaining of credit (cf. ModEng cognate, ‘borrow’). This was specifically forbidden in GL in certain circumstances, although permitted in UL, VmL and ÖgL.

bail OSw DL Bb, HL Kmb

credit OGu GL A 65, Add. 9 (B 81), OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb

guarantee OSw DL Rb, SdmL Kmb, Mb, UL Mb, VmL Mb

security OSw YVgL Tb, ÄVgL Tb

surety ODan JyL 2

See also: fæsta, hemuld, nam, panter, tak, varzla, varþnaþer, væþ

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. borgen, gidsler, kreditväsen; Peel 2015, 191 note 65/17−19; Schlyter 1877, s.v. borghan

borghanaman (OSw) borgaz man (OSw) borghaman (OSw) borghandæman (OSw) borghansman (OSw) borghaþaman (OSw) noun

guarantor OSw SdmL Kmb, VmL Rb

See also: fangaman, fastar (pl.), hemulsman, skuli, taki

borghare (OSw) noun

guarantor OSw ÖgL Eb

surety OSw YVgL Add

bosbrigþ (OSw) bosbrigh (OSw) noun

livestock taking OSw VmL Mb

See also: bosran

boskaper (OSw) boskap (ODan) noun

cattle and household goods OSw HL Kkb

chattels OSw ÖgL Db

farm OSw SdmL Kmb

household OSw VmL Jb

household effects OSw VmL Mb

movable goods ODan JyL 1

movables ODan JyL 1

See also: bo, inviþi

boskipti (OSw) boskipt (OSw) noun

division OSw ÄVgL Jb

division of home OSw YVgL Frb, Add, ÄVgL Slb

partition of home OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

partition of property OSw ÖgL Eb

portion of a property OSw VmL Jb

property division OSw UL Kgb, Äb, VmL Kgb, ÖgL Db

See also: bo, skipti

bosloter (OSw) boslot (ODan) noun

Synonymous with hovoþloter (q.v.).

capital lot ODan JyL 2

lot in a household ODan JyL 2

part OSw ÄVgL Gb

part of the home OSw YVgL Gb

See also: bo, hovoþloter, luter

bospænd (OSw) noun

household theft OSw VmL Mb

See also: bodræt

bosran (OSw) boran (ODan) búrán (ON) noun

burglary ONorw FrL Var 14

house rapine ODan JyL 2

livestock rustling OSw VmL Mb

property rapine ODan JyL 2

robbery OSw ÄVgL Gb

robbery at home OSw YVgL Gb

theft ONorw FrL Var 13

theft of livestock OIce Llb 34

See also: bo, bosbrigþ, ran

bot (OSw) bot (ODan) bøter (ODan) bot (OGu) bót (ON) böter (OSw) noun

Both bot and the derived verb böta refer to payment of two different kinds: (1) compensation to private persons for injury, insult or damage; and (2) fines to the king or the church for crimes or violations of ecclesiastical regulations. In this latter case the fine was called sekt (see sækt). Several OSw laws (ÄVgL, YVgL, ÖgL, HL, DL) conceive böter as a means of reconciliation between families (ættir, see átt and æt). This was also the purpose of ODan laws (e.g. SkL) concerning böter. For this reason, böter were paid not only to the aggrieved person(s), but also to the family (the æt). Böter to public authorities were paid partly to the king, partly to society (land (q.v.), hæraþ (q.v.) etc.) or to the church.

Both compensation and fines were often stipulated in terms of baugar (‘rings’, or parts of rings), the values of which were expressed in monetary units (mark, öre etc.), and frequently paid in domestic animals or goods like clothes and weapons; the amount varying with the scope and seriousness of the offence in question. Some fines also implied fasting (see fasta v.).

For very serious offences or crimes, such as murder, værgæld 'wergild' had to be paid by the killer and his kin to the killed person’s kin, as well as a fine to the king. Some crimes, the so-called óbótamál/orbodemål, were considered too grave to be atoned for by compensation. The punishment for such crimes was usually outlawry.

There was no uniform system of fines and compensation in the Nordic countries. However, fines and compensation were graded in two respects: on the one hand according to the nature, scope, and harmful effects of the offence, on the other hand according to the social standing and personal rights (ON réttr) of the aggrieved person. All free persons were entitled to compensation when insulted, and OSw provincial laws considered all free men equal in this respect. The only social gradation known in OSw law was the so-called þokkabot (q.v.). In ONorw laws social gradation was the rule (except for cases of insult in church, at the assembly, or in parties, see FrL Mhb, ch. 58). In Western and Mid-Norway the freeholder (the hauldr) set the standard of comparison. Payments were stipulated in fixed relations to him. He was entitled to 3 merkr, an ordinary farmer (one without odal rights) the half of this (12 aurar), a freedman 6 aurar. Higher up on the scale were the landed men and the stallari (6 merkr each), earls and bishops (12 merkr). The highest fine to the king might amount to 40 merkr. Otherwise, the standard fine to the Norwegian king was 12 aurar (1 1/2 mörk). For minor offences, publicly known, the standard fine was 3 aurar. For bodily harm the Norw laws have very detailed and explicit provisions. For violations of church law fines were paid to the bishop.

As indicated above the culprit had in some cases, e.g. when værgæld was involved, to make payments both to the king and to private persons. A division of the fine is also found in ONorw law, when both the king and society (the householders) received fines for breach of justice (see Helle 2001, 94). Not only active offences were fined, but also disregard of decisions or judgements from a court (dómrof).

There were two calculation systems in use: (1) the duodecimal system, based on 3 merkr or multiples of 3 (6, 9, and 12), and (2) the 40 merkr-system (‘den store bod’), 40 merkr or multiples of 40. It is disputed which system is the older, the 3 merkr-series or the 40 merkr-series. In Sweden and Denmark the 3 merkr-series is considered to be the older one; in Norway the 3 merkr-system seems to have prevailed.

atonement OIce Grg Vís 94

compensation ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 1−3, SkL passim, VSjL 23, 48, 49, 52, 53, 55, 65, 69, 86, OGu GL A 13–19, Add. 1 (B 4), OIce Grg Þsþ 60 Feþ 156 Misc 249, Mah 1, 8 Kge 26 Fml 17, Js Mah 4, 28, ONorw FrL Intr 4 Var 9 Sab 1, GuL Sab, OSw DL Mb, HL Kgb, Mb, UL Äb, Mb, Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Äb, Mb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Frb, Drb, Äb, Gb, Tb, Föb, Add, ÄVgL Md, Smb, Slb, Tb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db, Vm

fine ODan ESjL 1, SkL 226, VSjL 40, 49, 86, OGu GL A 7, 11, 12, 14, 16, 19, 23, Add. 2 (B 17), ONorw BorgL 5.2, FrL Intr 5 KrbB 8, GuL Løb, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Bb, Gb, Rb, HL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Blb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Äb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb

means to pay fines OSw DL Kkb

payment ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 2, SkL 43, 97, 118, VSjL 41, 50

recompense OGu GL A 37

remedy OSw UL StfBM

repair OSw SdmL Kkb


fulder bot, fulder bruta, full bot, fullar böter (OSw)

full compensation OSw UL Mb, Rb VmL Mb, Rb

full fines OSw VmL Mb

See also: auvislagjald, aværkan, bogher, bóndaréttr, böta, fulder, fullrétti, fæbot, gæld, lögréttr, manhælghi, rætter, skaðabót, vaþabot, vígsbót

Refs: Helle 2001, 94; Hertzberg s.v.v. bót, réttr; KLNM s.v.v. byfred, böter, dómrof, hämnd, kroppsstraff, kyrkostraff, legemskrænkelse, leidang, lejermål; Schlyter s.v. bot

botebuth (ODan) noun

compensation ODan VSjL 50

offer of payment ODan ESjL 3

See also: bot

botefæ (ODan) bótafé (ON) noun

compensation ODan ESjL 3, ONorw FrL Var 10

See also: bot,

botefæstning (ODan) noun

agreement of compensation ODan ESjL 2

agreement of payment ODan ESjL 2

agreement to pay a compensation ODan VSjL 41

promise of compensation ODan ESjL 3, VSjL 50, 53

See also: bot, fæsta

botemal (ODan) noun

compensation case ODan ESjL 2, JyL 3

See also: bot, mal (1)

botestævne (ODan) noun

payment for a summons ODan SkKL 11

See also: bot, stæmna

botevirthning (ODan) noun

value of a compensation ODan VSjL 86

See also: bot

bothegang (ODan) noun

trespassing ODan ESjL 2

See also: aganga, garthgang, hemsokn, hærværk, landnám

botmark (OSw) noun

fine-mark OSw HL Kkb, Kgb

See also: bot, mark (2)

botulfsmæssa (OSw) bótolfsmessa (ON) noun

Saint Botulf’s Mass (17 June) ONorw GuL Krb, OSw DL Bb, HL Blb, Rb

See also: varfriþer

boþ (OSw) both (ODan) búð (ON) noun

booth ODan ESjL 2, OIce Grg Klþ 10 Þsþ 23, 25 Vís 100 Arþ 120 Ómb 130 Hrs 234

hut OIce Grg Þsþ 53 Misc 240

shed ODan JyL 2

shelter OIce Grg Þsþ 53

storehouse OSw YVgL Tb, ÄVgL Tb

See also: torgh

boþakarl (OSw) noun

companion in the fishing colony OSw UL Äb

bóka (ON) verb

Literally ‘to book’; used figuratively of swearing on a book, usually thought to be a gospel or some other type of holy book. Testimony sworn on a book could be referred to as bókarvitni (q.v.), and several fourteenth- and fifteenth-century diplomas attest to oaths on books (ON bókareið).

swear on a book OIce Mah 9, Js Mah 11, ONorw FrL Rgb 25

See also: bókarvitni, eþer, halsbók

Refs: CV; Fritzner; ONP; Páll Vídalín s.v. bókarvitni

bókarvitni (ON) noun

testimony with an oath sworn on the holy book OIce Llb 40

See also: vitni

bólfesta (ON) noun

rented land OIce Llb 14

bóndafé (ON) noun

Funds gathered by a community of householders used to make joint payments, such as provisions for a bishop at a church consecration (EidsL 34.3).

wealth of farmers ONorw EidsL 34.3

Refs: CV s.v. bóndafé; Fritzner s.v. bóndafé; ONP s.v. bóndafé

bóndalega (ON) noun

burial-place for farmers ONorw BorgL 9.3

bóndaréttr (ON) noun

The bóndaréttr — as opposed to the konungs réttr and the kristinn réttr — was the personal right of the bóndi (see bonde) (in the broader sense of the term) to compensation in case of insult, graded in accordance with his legal and social status. This réttr ‘right’ had three levels. The lowest level was that of the bóndi or bóndi árborinn (freeborn bóndi) who had purchased his land or tilled it as a tenant. In the GuL (chs 91 and 200) his réttr was stipulated to half of what was fixed for the hauldr (see hölðr), in the FrL (Rgb ch. 34) one third. On the intermediate level stood the freeholder/householder (the hauldr or hauldr óðalborinn). When entitled to fullrétti (full compensation) he received three merkr (FrL Rgb ch. 34, GuL Mhb ch. 200). The top level consisted of chieftains, esp. lendir menn (see lænder), ármenn (see ármaðr) and stallarar (see stallari). This tripartite division is found in the FrL and GuL. The BorgL and EidsL seem to recognize only two levels, the hauldsmaðr and the bóndi, although this cannot be stated with certainty because only the Church Laws have been preserved.

According to the FrL (KrbB ch. 2) the bóndaréttr set the standard of fines for a number of offences, such as (e.g.) fornication, the eating of flesh before taking part in the Holy Communion, paying inadequate tithes, violation of the church peace, neglect of providing saddle horses for the bishop, and failure to send forth a message concerning this duty. A later addition states that these fines had to be paid in burnt silver (FrL Rgb ch. 35).

farmers’ law ONorw FrL KrbB 2

householder’s right ONorw GuL Mhb

See also: bonde, leysingi

Refs: Hertzberg s.v. bóndaréttr; KLNM s.v. böter; RGA2 s.v. hǫlðr

bónhús (ON) noun

oratory OIce Grg Tíg 263

bótalauss (ON) adj.

requiring no compensation OIce Mah 13

bótamaðr (ON) noun

compenser OIce Js Mah 29

man with a legal right to atone by paying compensation OIce Mah 1

brander (OSw) noun

fire OSw HL Blb


brander mæþ wiliæ wærkiæ (OSw)

arson OSw HL Blb

branderfð (ON) noun

The branderfð, ‘foster inheritance’, was the foster father’s right to inherit from a foster son. The right was not reciprocal.

foster inheritance ONorw GuL Arb, Olb

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. branderfð, bålferd, kår; Robberstad 1981, 359–60

brandstuþ (OSw) brænnestuth (ODan) noun

Collective compensation to victims of accidental fire paid in coin or kind by local householders in the hæraþ (q.v.) or hundari (q.v.) or part thereof depending on the damages caused. Similar responsibilities, albeit not the word, appear in OIce Grg.

compensation for fire OSw DL Bb

fire compensation ODan SkL 225, 226

Refs: KLNM s.v. brandstod

brandvaþa (OSw) noun

accidental fire OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

See also: vaþabrænna, vaþaelder

brauthöfn (ON) noun

An abduction; illicit transport from the country. Used of abducting women and the removal of property.

carrying off OIce Grg Arþ 126 Feþ 151 Misc 250

Refs: CV s.v. brotthöfn; Fritzner s.v. brotthöfn; ONP s.v. brauthǫfn

bráð (ON) noun

carcass ONorw GuL Tjb

bref (OSw) brev (ODan) bref (OGu) bréf (ON) noun

Written documents appear from the bishop (biskups bref OSw YVgL), king (konungs bref ODan, OSw, konungs opit bref OSw), lykt bref miþ kunungs insigli (GS ch. 4) and dean (provastar bref OSw), and both to and from the pope (pava bref OSw). Occasionally referring to their purpose, such as interdictions (forbuþa bref OSw) and ordination to the priesthood (vigsla bref OSw).

charter OSw DL Kkb

document OFar Seyð 0, OIce Kab 12, OSw DL Gb

letter ODan ESjL 3, JyL 2, OGu GS Ch. 4, OSw HL Rb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Kmb, Rb, SmL, YVgL Kkb, Äb, Gb, ÄVgL Gb

writ OIce Mah 2

Refs: Larsson 2001, 229–42

bregþa (OGu) bregða (ON) verb

abuse OGu GL A 39

See also: brigþa

brek (ON) noun

deceit OIce Grg Lbþ 192

brekboð (ON) noun

deceitful bid OIce Grg Lbþ 192

breklauss (ON) adj.

without deceit OIce Grg Þsþ 73 Fjl 221

breksekð (ON) noun

A legal stratagem whereby someone is prosecuted for outlawry by two separate plaintiffs, one of whom only brings the case to ruin that of the other prosecutor. The benefits of this are not explicitly stated in Grg, but it seems likely that the one committing breksekð is somehow allied with the outlaw, thus preventing his goods from being confiscated by another party.

deceptive outlawry OIce Grg Þsþ 60

See also: sækt

Refs: CV s.v. breksekð; Fritzner s.v. breksekt

brennustaðr (ON) noun

The location of a burnt building; an arson site.

burnt place OIce Grg Vís 109

Refs: CV s.v. brennustaðr; ONP s.v. brennustaðr

brennuvargr (ON) noun

There is no mention of a fatal outcome for the crime committed by a brennuvargr. According to GuL the punishment could be outlawry and loss of all property.

arson-wolf ONorw EidsL 50.13

arsonist OIce Llb 30

fire-wolf ONorw GuL Llb

Refs: KLNM s.v. mordbrand; ONP s.v. brennuvargr

brethøks (ODan) breiðøx (ON) noun

broad-axe ODan ESjL 3, ONorw GuL Leb

brettifumessa (ON) noun

Feast of St Brictiva (11 January) ONorw GuL Krb

brevafæ (OSw) noun

letter fee OSw UL Kkb

bréfagerð (ON) noun

letter-writing OIce Kab 12

brigðandi (ON) noun

man asserting a claim OIce Grg Lbþ 176

person who reclaims ONorw FrL Jkb 8

See also: brigþa

brigðarmaðr (ON) brigðamaðr (ON) noun

allodial owner ONorw FrL Jkb 8

See also: brigþa

brigíðarmessa (ON) noun

St Brigid’s Day OIce Grg Klþ 13

brigsl (OGu) brigzli (ON) noun

dispute OGu GL A 25, Add. 7 (B 49)

ownership claim OGu GL Add. 7 (B49)

taunt OIce Grg Misc 237

brigþ (OSw) brigð (ON) noun

Related to the verb brigþa ‘to dispute; to claim; to reproach’. Used of disputed land as well as the right to claim the disputed land and the legal procedure for the claim.

challenge to landholding OSw VmL Jb

disputed property OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb

redemption of land ONorw FrL Jkb 7

redemption process ONorw GuL Olb

right to claim OIce Lbb 1

right to reclaim OIce Js Lbb 1

See also: qvælia

Refs: ONP s.v. brigð

brigþa (OGu) brigþas (OGu) brigða (ON) verb

annul OIce Js Þfb 5

assert a claim OIce Grg Arþ 126, Lbb 1, 11, Js Lbb 1, 8, ONorw FrL Jkb 6

claim OGu GL Add. 7 (B 49), ONorw GuL Arb

declare oneself free of something ONorw GuL Løb

dispute OGu GL A 25

dispute about OGu GL A 25

disregard OIce Þfb 6

redeem ONorw GuL Kpb, Olb

See also: bregþa, brigðandi, brigðarmaðr, dela

brista (OSw) briste (ODan) verb

break OSw SmL, UL Kkb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Bb

be convicted ODan ESjL 3

crack OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

fail ODan ESjL 3, JyL 1, 2, SkL 78, 86, 140, 144, 147, 170, 230, OSw SmL, ÖgL Eb

be wanting OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Blb, Add. 14, VmL Äb, Bb


brista at eþi (OSw)

fail in an oath OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Blb VmL Kkb, Mb, Bb

See also: eþer, eþsöre, fælla

brík (ON) noun

bench boards ONorw GuL Llb

bro (OSw) bro (ODan) brú (ON) noun

bridge ODan JyL 1, ONorw GuL Llb, OSw DL Bb, HL Blb, SdmL Kkb, Jb, UL Kgb, Blb, Add. 14, VmL Kgb, Bb, YVgL Kkb, Jb, Utgb, Add, ÄVgL Jb, Föb

bridge or causeway OSw UL Kkb, Blb, VmL Kkb

See also: gata, vægher

broa (OSw) broa (OGu) verb

make roads good OGu GL A 52, OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

broabot (OSw) noun

A fine paid by the community (attunger (q.v.), fiarþunger (q.v.), hundari (q.v.)) to the king for neglecting to build or maintain bridges.

bridge fine OSw SdmL Bb

See also: bot

broafall (OSw) noun

neglect of bridges OSw SdmL Bb

broafiol (OSw) brofjal (ODan) bro fiæl (OSw) brofial (OSw) brofiol (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘bridge plank’. In DL and VmL, an administrative unit referring to a quarter of a hundari (q.v.) (VmL) or of a þriþiunger (q.v.) (DL). The exact meaning is obscure. In ODan, it refers to a part of the home.

bridge-plank ODan ESjL 3

quarter of a Thing assembly area OSw DL Rb

threshold ODan ESjL 3, SkL 142

{broafiol} OSw VmL Rb

See also: hundari, þriþiunger

Refs: Schlyter, s.v. broafiol (2); Schück 1949, 17; SL DL, 112 note 42; SL VmL, 175 note 5

broaflokker (OSw) noun

chapter on bridges OSw SdmL Bb

broasyn (OSw) broar syn (OSw) noun

bridge inspection OSw DL Bb

brok (OGu) noun

trousers OGu GL A 19

broþursluter (OSw) noun

brother’s lot OSw SdmL Jb

bróðurbaugr (ON) noun

brother’s ring ONorw GuL Mhb

See also: brǿðrungsbaugr

bróðurkván (ON) noun

brother’s wife ONorw FrL Mhb 39

brudsæta (OSw) bruþsæta (OSw) noun

bride’s dresser OSw DL Gb

matron of honour OSw VmL Äb

See also: bruþframma, bruþmaþer, bruþtugha

brullöp (OSw) bryllaup (OGu) brúðhlaup (ON) brúðlaup (ON) brudlop (OSw) brudlöpi (OSw) bruþlöp (OSw) bruþlöpi (OSw) brydlöp (OSw) bryllöp (OSw) noun

wedding OGu GL A 24, OIce Grg Þsþ 81 Arþ 118 Feþ 144, 148, Mah 19 Kge 1, Js Kvg 1, KRA 16, 17, ONorw FrL KrbB 1, GuL Krb, OSw DL Gb, SdmL Gb, UL Äb, VmL Äb, YVgL Kkb, Drb, Gb, ÄVgL Md

wedding feast OGu GL A 24, OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

See also: brúðkona, bruþmaþer, gifta, giftarmal, giftaröl, kvánfang, kvennagifting, vighning, vigsl

bruni (ON) noun

arson ONorw GuL Tfb

See also: brænna

brustheil (OGu) adj.

whole in breathing OGu GL Add. 8 (B 55)

See also: bainheil

brut (OSw) brut (ODan) brot (ON) brot (OSw) brott (OSw) noun

act ODan SkKL 8

breaking (a bone) OSw VmL Mb

broken ends of bone OSw VmL Mb

crime ODan JyL 2, SkL 126, OSw DL Mb, HL För, Kkb, Mb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Jb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, UL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Add

damage OIce Grg Vís 100 Rsþ 230, Þjb 6

distribution OSw SdmL Jb, Bb

fine OSw HL Mb

misdemeanour OSw UL Kgb, Blb, VmL Bb

offence ODan ESjL 1, JyL 2, SkKL 2, 3, OSw HL Äb, Mb, UL Kkb, Mb

punishment OSw UL Mb, Kmb, Rb, VmL Kmb, Rb

violation OSw HL Äb

wrongdoing OSw YVgL Äb


brut ok byamal, brut ok byæ mal (OSw)

village measurement and distribution OSw UL Blb

brut ok tomtamal (OSw)

part of the village measurement OSw VmL Jb

See also: afbrot, brauthöfn, brutliker, bunkebrut, byabrut, byamal, dombrut, eþsörisbrut, föstuafbrot, friþbrut, gislingabrut, husbrut, hælghebrut, hælghebrutsak, hælghudaghabrut, kirkjufriðbrot, kristinsdómsbrot, kynsæmesbrut, lögbrot, oþulbrut, sakörisbrut, skipbrotsmaðr, skipbrut, skriptabrut, solskipt, tegher, tiældrubrut, tomtamal, ubrutliker, vitherlæghisbrut

brutliker (OSw) brotlikær (OSw) adj.

criminal OSw HL Kgb, SdmL Kgb

felonious OSw DL Eb, UL Kgb, VmL Kgb

guilty OSw DL Rb, UL Rb, VmL Rb

bruþ (OSw) brúðr (ON) noun

bride OIce Grg Klþ 10, OSw DL Gb, HL Äb, SdmL Gb

bruþasæti (OSw) noun

bridal seat OSw SdmL Gb

bruþbænker (OSw) noun

bridal bench OSw HL Äb

bruþframma (OSw) noun

bridesmaid OSw HL Äb

matron of honour OSw UL Äb

See also: brudsæta, bruþtugha

bruþfærd (OSw) brúðför (ON) brudfærd (OSw) noun

bridal journey OSw ÄVgL Gb

bride’s journey OSw DL Gb

wedding journey OIce Grg Feþ 164, Llb 36

bruþgome (OSw) brúðgumi (ON) noun

bridegroom OIce Grg Klþ 10, OSw DL Gb, HL Äb, SdmL Gb

bruþkalla (OSw) noun

bride’s swains OSw DL Gb

See also: bruþmaþer

bruþlöpsgærþ (OSw) brúðhlaupsgerð (ON) brölöpis gærþ (OSw) brullöps gærþ (OSw) brydlöps gærþ (OSw) bryllöps gærþ (OSw) noun

holding a wedding OIce KRA 16, 19

wedding ONorw FrL KrbB 9, OSw HL Äb

wedding celebration OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

wedding provisions OSw SdmL Gb

See also: brullöp, gærþ

bruþlöpstimi (OSw) brúðhlaupstími (ON) noun

time of marriage OSw HL Äb

wedding-time ONorw BorgL 7, OSw SdmL Gb

bruþmaþer (OSw) brúðmaðr (ON) bruþmæn (pl.) (OSw) noun

bridal men OSw SdmL Gb, YVgL Gb, ÄVgL Gb

bridal pages OSw HL Äb

bridesman ONorw GuL Kvb, Arb

supporter (of the bride) OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

See also: brudsæta, brullöp

bruþmessa (OGu) noun

nuptial mass OGu GL A 24

bruþtugha (OSw) bryttuga (OGu) noun

chief bridal attendant OGu GL A 24

matron of honour OSw VmL Äb

See also: brudsæta, bruþframma

bruþvaþir (pl.) (OSw) noun

bridal cloths OSw YVgL Gb, ÄVgL Gb

brúarhald (ON) noun

maintenance of bridges OIce Llb 45

brúðkaup (ON) noun

wedding celebration OIce Grg Arþ 118

brúðkaupsvitni (ON) noun

witness to a wedding OIce Kge 4

See also: vitni

brúðkona (ON) noun

bridesmaid ONorw GuL Kvb, Arb

See also: brullöp

brúðstóll (ON) noun

bridal chair ONorw FrL Sab 4

bryllöpsdagher (OSw) bröþlöpes dagher (OSw) noun

legal marriage day OSw YVgL Gb

See also: brullöp

brynia (OSw) noun

coat of mail OSw HL Rb

brystarf (OSw) noun

direct inheritance OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

inheritance by direct heirs OSw HL Äb, SdmL Äb

bryta (OSw) bryte (ODan) briauta (OGu) verb

breach OSw HL Kgb, Rb, ÖgL Eb, Db, Vm

break OGu GL A 8, 24, 26, Add. 8 (B 55), OSw UL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Jb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, ÄVgL Rlb

break out OGu GL A 33

commit a crime/offence ODan ESjL 1, OSw UL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Rb, YVgL Kkb

cultivate OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

damage OSw VmL Mb

desecrate OGu GL A 8

distribute OSw SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb

divide OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

fail (to observe or fulfil something) OSw UL Kkb, Kgb, VmL Kkb

forfeit ODan JyL 2

infringe against OGu GL A 28, 31, 59, 65

injure OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

offend ODan JyL 2, VSjL 86, OSw DL Eb, HL Kkb, Äb, ÖgL Eb

violate ODan SkKL 3, OSw HL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, SdmL Kkb, VmL Kkb


bryta hus (OSw) bryte hus (ODan)

break into a house OSw HL Kgb SdmL Kgb ODan JyL 2

bryte hælgh (ODan)

commit sacrilege ODan JyL 2

bryte skip (ODan)

to be shipwrecked ODan JyL 3 SkL 165

See also: bröta, ryva

brytefælagh (ODan) noun

partnership with a bailiff ODan ESjL 1

See also: fælaghsbryte

bryti (OSw) bryte (ODan) bryti (ON) brytia (OSw) noun

This word is derived from the verb (ON) brytja in the senses ‘chop, divide, apportion, distribute’ (namely food and labour). The word is used in ODan, Old West Norse and OSw laws and can be traced back to pre-Christian times, at least to the Viking Age. In Norway and parts of Sweden (Östergötland) the bryti (‘overseer’, Lat. villicus) was the foreman among the slaves and distributed work between them. In his function as an overseer, he was also (in the FrL) called a verkhúsbryti. If insulted he was entitled to a higher compensation than the other servants were.

In Denmark, the situation was different. The bryte was not a slave (see Ulsig 1981, 142). Although originally landless (see Vogt 2010), he was later (in Christian times) usually a free man. Socially he ranked above the tenant in so far as he was in the service of the landowner, but he was not leasing the latter’s land (as the tenant did).

The ODan provincial laws distinguished between two types of bryter, on the one hand the so-called fælaghsbryte (q.v.), who enjoyed some kind of partnership with the landowner, on the other hand the ordinary bryte, who was just a manager or steward. See Ulsig 1981, 142−45; 2011, 125, 129. Although the tenant was more independent, the bryte often managed far larger farms than the tenant did (see Ulsig 1981, 145; 2011, 129−30). As a steward or manager of royal estate — sometimes the word bryte is used synonymous with ármaðr (q.v.) — he might assume higher administrative functions as well, e.g. the collecting of taxes and fines. In the ESjL the word bryte is also used synonymously with ombudsman (umbuthsman, see umbuþsman). He might even have responsibilities of command in military expeditions.

During the twelfth century the relationship between these two social classes changed, because the tenants were taken into the service of the estate owners (see Ulsig 1981, 146). Later (in the thirteenth century) the great lords (herremæn, see hærraman) were allowed (by the JyL II 76) to keep for themselves the three marks’ fines incurred by the bryte, fines that would otherwise have accrued to the king. E. Ulsig has argued (1981, 155−56; 2011, 97) that the great lords took advantage of this to redefine many of their tenants as bryter. This seems to have expanded the nobility’s grip on the resources of their dependents (see Ulsig 2011, 141).

In the late Middle Ages the bryte seems to disappear as a particular social group, probably an effect of the abandoning of large-scale demesne farming during the late medieval agrarian crisis after 1350. The examples of the word bryte in sixteenth-century sources (see Kalkar s.v. bryd(j)e) suggest that the word was then used synonymously for ‘tenant’ (Danish fæster).

In Västergötland the bryti often became a lænsmaþer (q.v.).

bailiff ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 1, 2, SkL 59, 163, 171−73, 226−31, VSjL 68, 87

farm administrator ODan ESjL 2

official ODan ESjL 3

overseer ONorw FrL Mhb 10 Kvb 21, GuL Løb, Mhb, Tjb, OSw UL Mb, Rb, VmL Mb

steward OIce Kge 32, OSw SdmL Mb, Tjdb, Rb, YVgL Drb, Äb, Rlb, Tb, Föb, Utgb, ÄVgL Äb, Tb, ÖgL Kkb, Db

{bryti} OSw ÄVgL Tb

See also: bolaghsmaþer, deghia, halzmaþer

Refs: Brink 2008c, 3−6; 2012, 45, 139−45, 258; 2014b; Hertzberg s.v.v. bryti, verkhúsbryti; Iversen 1997, 119, 120, 124, 153; Kalkar s.v. bryd(j)e; KLNM s.v.v. befalingsmand, bryde, embedsindtægter, kyrkogods, landgilde, tyende, årmann; Lund [1877] 1967 s.v. bryti; Nevéus 1974, 26, 28, 141, 162; RGA2 s.v. bryte; Schlyter s.v. bryti; Tamm & Vogt, eds, 2016, 5, 21−22; Ulsig 1981, 141, 142−46, 155−56; 2011, 97, 125, 129−30, 141; Vogt 2010, 54

brytjun (ON) brytjan (ON) noun

catering OIce Grg Þsþ 78

brytstokker (OSw) brusthogh (OSw) brutstok (OSw) noun

Possibly a hollowed out piece of timber used as a moneybox, and as such referring to the household economy.

household OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

Refs: Schlyter s.v. brytstokker

brænna (OSw) brænne (ODan) brenna (ON) brinna (ON) brinna (OSw) brenna (ON) verb

Trans and intrans. Legally significant uses include arson and accidental fires, clearing of woodland for agriculture, and being burned by irons as an ordeal.

burn ODan SkL 225, ONorw GuL Leb, Llb, OSw DL Bb, HL Kgb, Mb, Blb, UL Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Äb, Mb. Kmb, Bb, YVgL Föb, Utgb, Add

burn down ODan JyL 3, OSw UL Kkb

be burned ODan SkL 161

set on fire ONorw GuL Leb, Llb, Mhb


brenna inni (ON)

burn (someone) inside a house OIce Grg Vís 102 Mah 2

See also: bruni

brænna (OSw) noun

arson OIce Llb 30, ONorw GuL Llb

burning OIce Grg Vís 109

fire OSw DL Bb, YVgL Add

bræþavitni (OSw) breþa vitni (OSw) noun

Probably a witness — a person or a testimony — of a crime done in public with eyewitnesses, that was to be called upon immediately in connection with the deed. In YVgL, the scene of the crime was the assembly itself, but in UL these witnesses could be used whenever a killer, attacker or thief was caught in the act.

quick witness OSw YVgL Urb

witness of a sudden act OSw UL Rb

See also: vitni

Refs: Schlyter s.v. bræþa vitni

bræþe (OSw) noun

anger OSw VmL Mb

See also: hand, vreþe

bröta (OSw) verb

cultivate OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

See also: bryta

brötartak (OSw) brautartak (ON) noun

home surety ONorw FrL Rgb 31

security ONorw GuL Llb

security of stolen goods given on the road OSw YVgL Tb, ÄVgL Tb

See also: tak

bröþrungi (OSw) bræðrungr (ON) brǿðrungar (pl.) (ON) brǿðrungr (ON) bröllungi (OSw) bryllungi (OSw) noun

A brǿðrungr is specified as ‘first male cousin’ in Grg (Bat 113), but it is defined variously in dictionaries as a son of a paternal uncle or any child of a paternal uncle (male/female cousin) or agnate cousin, as well as a female second cousin (the paternal grandfathers being brothers). The term is also used more generally to designate a male agnate cousin, i.e. male children of siblings on the paternal side. F also notes that brǿðrungr is sometimes used to mean a paternal uncle’s daughters instead of bræðrung or bræðrunga. This and other kinship notations in the Nordic laws are often misleading to modern interpreters, as they do not necessarily refer to ego.

brothers’ daughters OSw YVgL Urb, ÄVgL Gb

brothers’ sons OSw YVgL Urb, Gb, ÄVgL Gb

daughter of father’s brother OSw YVgL Urb

first cousin OIce Grg Bat 113, ONorw FrL KrbB 1, 8

male first cousin ONorw GuL Mhb, Sab

nephew OSw DL Mb, Gb

paternal cousin OSw SdmL Äb, UL Äb, Jb

son of a paternal uncle OIce Grg Feþ 162

sons of father’s brothers OSw YVgL Add


bræðrungar eða systrungar (ON)

daughters of brothers or sisters OIce Grg Feþ 162

first cousin (on father's & mother's side) OIce KRA 20, 37

See also: systrunger

Refs: CV s.v. bræðrungr; F s.v. bræðrungr; Vestergaard 1988; Z s.v. bræðrungr

brǿðrabarn (pl.) (ON) bræðrabarn (ON) noun

Defined alternately in CV as agnate cousins and in ONP as brothers’ children (cousins) and children of paternal uncle(s). F expands this to children of siblings on the paternal side.

male first cousins OIce Kge 7-10, ONorw GuL Sab

Refs: CV s.v. bróðir; F s.v. brœðrabörn; ONP; Vestergaard 1988

brǿðradǿtr (pl.) (ON) bróðurdóttir (ON) noun

brothers’ daughters OIce Js Ert 5, 8, ONorw FrL ArbA 9

daughters of a father’s brothers OIce Kge 7-6, 7-11

brǿðrasynir (pl.) (ON) bróðursonr (ON) noun

brothers’ sons OIce Js Ert 5, 8, ONorw FrL ArbA 9, 15 Sab 2, 10

male first cousins ONorw GuL Arb, Mhb, Sab

son of a father’s brother OIce Kge 7-6

brǿðrungsbarn (ON) noun

second cousin ONorw GuL Mhb, Sab

brǿðrungsbaugr (ON) noun

first cousin’s ring ONorw GuL Mhb

See also: bróðurbaugr

bukker (OSw) bukkr (OGu) noun

billy-goat OGu GL A 45, OSw UL Blb, VmL Mb, Bb

bulki (ON) noun

cargo OIce Grg Arþ 125

bunkabrytari (OSw) bunkabitær (OSw) noun

pirate OSw YVgL Urb, Add, ÄVgL Urb

bunkebrut (ODan) noun

Piracy was considered a hærværk, a ‘gang crime’.

boarding a ship ODan VSjL 64

breaking into a ship ODan VSjL 64

crime on a ship ODan ESjL 2

See also: bunkabrytari, hærværk

Refs: Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 303

bursven (ODan) noun

A male servant.

head of the household ODan SkKL 1

burtomt (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘house plot’. This referred specifically to the parcel of land designated for the owner’s dwelling house and other buildings. It was subject to certain protections against encroachment and is what we would now call the curtilage. It could be excluded from a property sale, for example. This word occurs only in DL and VmL and this meaning is conveyed elsewhere in the word tom(p)t alone. It is clear from the context, however, in DL, VmL and UL that certain instances of tompt refer to this building land of the owner and not to the agricultural land, which is referenced later in the same chapter. The division of the agricultural land in the village was based on the amount and siting of curtilage that the householder owned.

building plot OSw DL Bb

curtilage OSw VmL Jb

See also: brut, byamal, tompt

Refs: KLNM, s.v. tomt; Schlyter 1877, s.v. burtomt; SL UL, 189 note 21; SL VmL, 152 note 23

buthhelagh (ODan) adj.

prescribed holy ODan SkKL 9


buthhelagh dagh (ODan)

prescribed holy day ODan SkKL 9

buþ (OSw) buth (ODan) buþ (OGu) boð (ON) boþ (OSw) bud (OSw) noun

behest OSw YVgL Föb

call OSw YVgL Kkb, ÄVgL Slb

command ODan ESjL 2, JyL 3, VSjL 43, OFar Seyð 0, ONorw FrL Tfb 3 Leb 1, OSw HL Rb, YVgL Add

commandment ONorw FrL KrbB 17, OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

edict OSw HL Rb

message ONorw EidsL 15.2, OSw HL Rb, UL Kkb, Kgb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Tb, Föb, Add, ÄVgL Kkb, Tb, Föb

message baton ONorw GuL Tfb, Mhb, Llb

messenger ODan JyL 1

mission OSw UL StfBM

notice OSw HL Kkb, Kgb, ÄVgL Smb

notification ODan ESjL 3

offer OGu GL A 16, Add. 1 (B 4), OSw UL Mb, Kmb, Blb

order ODan JyL 3, OSw SdmL Conf, Kkb, Kgb, Kmb, Mb, Rb, Till, UL Kgb, VmL Kgb

representative OSw UL Kgb, Mb

request ODan VSjL 86, OSw YVgL Kkb

right to command ONorw GuL Leb

right to redeem land ONorw GuL Olb

summons OGu GS Ch. 4, OIce Kge 31, ONorw FrL Intr 21, OSw UL Kkb, Kmb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kmb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, ÖgL Kkb, Db

summons baton ONorw BorgL 17.5

tokens OIce Llb 59 Fml 3, ONorw EidsL 11.2 15.1

word OGu GL A 20a, OSw SmL


skera (upp) boð (ON)

carve a summons baton ONorw BorgL 17.5

send forth tokens OIce Llb 59, Fml 3

See also: arf, buþkafli, kross, stæmna, umbuþ

buþa (OSw) verb

summon OSw YVgL Utgb

buþkafli (OSw) buþkafli (OGu) boþkafli (OSw) noun

The buþkafli, derived from OSw kafli ‘long piece of wood’, is variously translated as ‘message baton’, ‘message scroll’, ‘summoning baton’, and ‘summons baton’. It was the usual instrument for sending out official information, calls, or orders in civil, ecclesiastical, or military matters. It was cut in such a way that it indicated the content and nature of the message. Shaped as a cross (see GuL ch. 19) it announced church services, shaped as an arrow it ordered the apprehension of a criminal, summons to an assembly, or warning against enemies and mobilization for the defence of the country. In this last case, the message baton had to be made of iron (see arf). The FrL shows that people could be summoned to road work by a message baton sent out by the bishop’s representative. According to the GuL (chs 308, 309, 311) the king’s representative or a landed man (ON lendr maðr, see lænder) had to send out a message baton to prepare people for service in the military defence. The duty to send out a message baton depended on the purpose of the message. In Sweden, matters concerning the assemblies required the district principal (OSw hæraþshöfþingi or fiarþungshöfþingi) or the lawman to be responsible. In cases of murder or serious mistreatment, the aggrieved party was entitled to send out the message baton. It was usually carried from one farm to the next and seems to have followed regular routes; it was not to be stopped except in case of emergency (see arf). There was also a fixed procedure to be followed when a person was not at home to receive the message baton (ibid.)

message scroll OSw ÖgL Db

summoning baton OGu GS Ch. 4, OSw DL Rb, SdmL Mb, Rb, UL Kgb, Rb, VmL Mb, Rb, YVgL Rlb

summons baton OSw HL Rb

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. budstikke, bystævne, landvärn, lendmann, naboforhold, vägvisare, ǫrvarþing; Schlyter s.v. buþkafli

buþsiorþ (OSw) noun

Land that, when sold, had to be offered to the kin first, and which could be reclaimed by them, unless it was donated to the church.

land that has been offered OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: laghbiuþa

Refs: Lindkvist forthcoming; Schlyter s.v. buþsiorþ

buþskaper (OSw) noun

order OSw SdmL Rb

summons OSw DL Rb

búa (ON) verb

be a householder OIce Grg Feþ 153, 164 Fjl 225 Rsþ 231, Js Ert 17

live OIce Grg passim, Lbb 1, ONorw FrL Rgb 4

búakviðr (ON) noun

panel of neighbours OIce Grg Þsþ 27, 58 Vís 87 Ómb 137 Lbþ 172, 176

búakvöð (ON) noun

neighbour-calling OIce Grg Þsþ 27 Vís 89

búandakirkjugarðr (ON) noun

householder’s churchyard OIce Grg Vís 110 Lsþ 116 Ómb 130 Feþ 147 Lbþ 215 Fjl 222

búðakviðr (ON) noun

booth-panel OIce Grg Vís 101

búðargagnaleiga (ON) noun

hut-utensil hire OIce Grg Feþ 166

búðarrúm (ON) noun

booth-space OIce Grg Misc 251

búðarstaðr (ON) noun

dwelling-place ONorw BorgL 5.15

búðfastr (ON) adj.

booth-resident OIce Grg Þsþ 25

búðunautr (ON) noun

booth-mate OIce Grg Klþ 2 Þsþ 26, 27

hut-mate OIce Grg Klþ 1, 2

búferill (ON) noun

household OIce Grg Misc 248

búfjárgangr (ON) noun

range grazed by livestock OIce Grg Feþ 164, Lbb 6 Llb 59

búfjárleiga (ON) noun

rent of livestock ONorw GuL Kpb

búhögg (ON) noun

cattle slaughter ONorw FrL Leb 23

búi (ON) noun

neighbour OIce Grg Klþ 1 Þsþ 22, 27 Arþ 118, KRA 1

See also: heimilisbúi

búlauss (ON) adj.

without a fixed household OIce Sg 1

búmissa (ON) noun

payment for loss of stock OIce Llb 34

búnaðarbölkr (ON) noun

agricultural law OFar Seyð 0

búnuðr (ON) búnaðr (ON) noun

household OIce Sg 1 Llb 15, ONorw BorgL 17.1

búr (ON) noun

storehouse ONorw GuL Mhb (Intr)

búrekstr (ON) noun

managing a farm OIce Llb 3

búrshurð (ON) noun

door to storehouse ONorw GuL Llb

búsafleif (ON) noun

left-over household stores OIce Grg Ómb 143

búsbúhlutr (ON) noun

equipment OIce Sg 1

household implements OIce Grg Vís 89 Lbþ 220, Llb 6

búslitsmaðr (ON) noun

A person who has left a farm and has no fixed household residence.

homeless person ONorw FrL LlbA 1

Refs: CV s.v. búslitsmaðr; Fritzner s.v. búslitsmaðr; KLNM s.v. jordleige; ONP s.v. búslitsmaðr

búsútlausn (ON) noun

redemption of livestock OIce Llb 34

búþegn (ON) noun

householder ONorw FrL Intr 1

byabolstaþer (OSw) noun

farmland of a village OSw SdmL Bb

See also: byaland

byabro (OSw) noun

village bridge OSw SdmL Bb

See also: bolstaþabro

byabrut (OSw) noun

village distribution OSw SdmL Jb, Bb, Till

village measurement OSw UL Blb

See also: brut, byamal

byaland (OSw) noun

village land OSw SdmL Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb

See also: byabolstaþer

byamal (OSw) bymal (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘village measurement’. It refers both to the individual’s allocation of land in a village and the whole village area, including unallocated land. The system of measurement varied between the different provinces of Sweden. It was the basis of the levy commitment and also governed inheritance law.

village measurement OSw SdmL Jb, Bb, UL Blb, VmL Bb


brut ok byamal, brut ok byæ mal (OSw)

village measurement and distribution OSw UL Blb

See also: brut, burtomt, byabrut, byr, solskipt, tompt, tomtamal

Refs: KLNM, s.v.v. byamål, bymark; Schlyter 1877, s.v. byamal; SL UL, 188 note 11; SL VmL, 151 note 13

byaman (OSw) byamaþr (OGu) býjarmaðr (ON) byman (OSw) bymaþer (OSw) noun

man of a village OSw SdmL Jb, Bb, Rb

resident OSw SdmL Kmb

town dweller OGu GL A 65, Add. 9 (B 81), OSw VmL Kmb, Rb

townsman OIce Grg Misc 248

villager OSw DL Mb, Bb, Tjdb, HL Blb, UL Kgb, Mb, Jb, Blb, VmL Jb, Bb

See also: bygdamæn (pl.), granni, nagranni

byamark (OSw) bymark (ODan) noun

field of a village ODan JyL 3

land of a village OSw YVgL Rlb, Jb, ÄVgL Rlb, Jb

village field ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 1, 3, SkL 178, 184

See also: byr, mark (3)

byarfriþer (OSw) noun

The village peace appears in the context of potential conflicts between neighbours concerning fences, roads, bridges etc, which should be handled by nominated men (OSw næmd).

peace of a village OSw YVgL Utgb

See also: byr, friþer, torghfrith

Refs: Schlyter s.v. byarfriþer

byarskogher (OSw) noun

village woodland OSw SdmL Bb

byaskæl (OSw) noun

village boundary OSw SdmL Till

byavarþer (OSw) noun

village guard OSw SdmL Kgb

byfaster (OSw) adj.

resident OSw SdmL Kmb

bygd (OSw) bygth (ODan) byggð (ON) bygð (ON) byghþ (OSw) noun

Inhabited area or district sometimes including the inhabitants and the cultivated land.

area ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 1−3, SkKL 11, SkL 72, OIce Þfb 7

community ONorw FrL Intr 12, OSw SdmL Jb, Bb

district OIce Llb 12

farm ONorw FrL Intr 12, GuL Tfb

habitation ONorw BorgL 5.14

home district ONorw FrL KrbA 43

inhabited area ONorw BorgL 14.12

inhabited place OIce Grg Lbþ 210

place ODan ESjL 3

settlement (2) ODan ESjL 3, SkL 69, VSjL 72, 75, OIce Js Þfb 6, ONorw EidsL 15.2 29.3

village ODan JyL 2, SkL 240

village surroundings ODan ESjL 3

Refs: CV s.v. bygð; Hertzberg s.v. bygð; KLNM s.v. –bygd; ONP s.v. byggð; Schlyter 1877 s.v. bygd; Zoega s.v. bygð

bygdamæn (pl.) (OSw) bygthemæn (pl.) (ODan) bygþamæn (pl.) (OSw) noun

men of the area ODan JyL 2

men of the community OSw SdmL Mb, UL Blb, VmL Bb

See also: byaman, granni, nagranni

bygdfaster (OSw) adj.

resident OSw SdmL Äb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Tjdb, Rb

See also: bolfaster

byggðfleyttr (ON) adj.

settlement-sent ONorw EidsL 41.1

byggia (OSw) byggja (ON) verb

grant tenancy OIce Grg Hrs 234

lease OIce Llb 28 Þjb 16 Fml 13, OSw VmL Jb

let out ONorw FrL KrbA 19 LlbB 8

occupy OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

rent out OIce Llb 1 Kab 15, ONorw FrL Jkb 2

See also: leghia, sitia

bygning (OSw) noun

building OSw UL Kkb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Bb

cultivated land OSw DL Bb

farmhouse OSw DL Bb

farmland OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

settlement (2) OSw UL För, VmL För, Bb

tenancy OSw UL Jb, Blb

See also: bolstaþer

bygningabalker (OSw) noun

book concerning building and community OSw DL Bb

village community section OSw SdmL För, Bb

See also: balker

bygningarætter (OSw) noun

village community regulation OSw SdmL Bb

bygningavitni (OSw) noun

tenancy witness OSw UL Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Bb

See also: bygþaskæl, vitni

bygþaskæl (OSw) noun

Probably refers to proof of tenancy.

legal form for building OSw SdmL Rb

See also: bygningavitni

Refs: Schlyter s.v. bygþa skæl

bylia (OSw) verb

culvert OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

plank over OSw UL Mb


bylia ok umhylia, bylia æller umhylia, ombylia ok hylia, ombylia ok omhylia, ombylia ællær omhylia (OSw)

plank over and protect OSw UL Mb VmL Mb

byr (OSw) by (ODan) byr (OGu) by (ON) býr (ON) bær (ON) bǿr (ON) noun

This word has several different but associated meanings. At the lowest level, it can be a synonym for OSw bolstaþer (‘farmstead’), then it can mean ‘village’ (comprising a number of farmsteads forming a community) or habitation in general and finally it can mean a ‘town’ (as opposed to the countryside). The first two meanings are the most common. Used in the expression by ok bolstaþer or the compound byabolstaþer to mean ‘village and the related farmland’.

farm OIce Grg Tíg 258, Kge 32 Lbb 1, 3 Þjb 12, ONorw EidsL 10.6 11.4, FrL KrbA 23 Mhb 4 Rgb 4, GuL Llb, Tfb, OSw HL Blb, SdmL Bb, YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Föb

farmstead OIce Mah 10 Lbb 5 Llb 15, 42, Js Mah 14 Lbb 1, 18, KRA 4, 11, ONorw GuL Krb, Llb, OSw UL Äb, Mb, Jb, Blb, VmL Äb, Mb, Jb, Bb

habitation OGu GL A 22

hamlet OSw HL Kgb, Jb, Kmb, Blb

homestead OSw DL Tjdb

house OIce Grg Þsþ 77, Js Mah 5

town OSw VmL Rb

village ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 1−3, SkKL 11, SkL passim, VSjL 60, 71, 72, 75−78, 80, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Bb, Tjdb, Rb, HL Mb, Blb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL passim, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, Äb, Gb, Rlb, Jb, Kva, Tb, ÖgL Db


by ok bolstaþer (OSw)

village and farmland OSw UL Jb VmL Bb

See also: bolstaþer, byabro, byabrut, byaland, byamal, byaman, byamark, byarfriþer, byarskogher, byaskæl, byavarþer, byfaster, heimili

Refs: CV s.v. bær; KLNM, s.v.v. landsby, stad; Miller 1990, 115; Schlyter s.v. byr

byria (OGu) verb


byria halda (OGu)

commence OGu GL A 31

byrthing (ODan) byrþingr (OGu) noun

cargo vessel (of the smaller type) OGu GL A 36

merchant vessel ODan ESjL 3

See also: bater, farkoster, floti, kaupskip, myndrikkia, skip

byrþ (OSw) byrth (ODan) byrþ (OGu) byrd (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘burden’. In several instances, it is used in the sense, ‘birth, family’ or in a wider sense, ‘kinship’, particularly degree of kinship in cases of incest. Frequently, however, it means ‘birthright’, ‘birthright land’ or ‘ancestral land’. These latter distinguished such inherited land from that which had been bought in the lifetime of the owner and which could more freely be disposed of by sale or bequest, described as afraþalaus in GL.

The birthright redemption was a payment offered by the previous owner of birthright land in order to reclaim it from the purchaser. Subject to certain time constraints, this offer could be made but if it were not made within these constraints, the purchaser kept the land.

ancestral land OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

birth OGu GL Add. 1 (B 4)

birthright OSw SdmL Kkb, Äb, UL Äb, Jb, VmL Äb, Jb

birthright inheritance OSw DL Bb

birthright land OSw DL Bb, SdmL Jb, UL Kkb, Jb, Add. 10, VmL Kkb, Jb

degree (of kinship) ODan JyL 1, OSw DL Kkb

generation OSw DL Gb

inheritance OSw DL Bb

inherited land OSw HL Jb

kin ODan JyL 1, VSjL 6, OSw SdmL Äb, Jb

kinship ODan SkL 92, OSw VmL Kkb, Äb

kinsman ODan SkL 219

lineage OSw HL Jb

nativity OSw UL StfBM

patrimony OSw HL Kkb

related ODan JyL 3, SkL 36, VSjL 1, 20

testimony OSw HL Rb


biuþa till byrþ (OSw)

offer birthright redemption OSw VmL Jb

offer to the kin OSw SdmL Äb

See also: afraþalaus, aldaoþal, arver, bolbyr, forn, gamal, æt

Refs: KLNM, s.v. bördsrätt; Schlyter 1877, s.v. byrþ (3–7); SL UL, 145 preamble and note 2; SL VmL, 31−32 note 108

byrþa (OSw) verb

claim a birthright portion OSw UL Blb


byrþa sik (OSw)

claim one’s birthright portion OSw UL Blb

confirm one’s birthright OSw UL Äb, Jb

byrþaluter (OSw) noun

kin’s lot OSw SdmL Jb

byrþaman (OSw) byrtheman (ODan) byrþamaþer (OSw) byrþarman (OSw) noun

descendant OSw DL Bb

direct descendant OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

kinsman ODan SkL 34, OSw DL Bb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Jb

relative OSw HL Jb

See also: siængaralder, sængaslæt

byrþaþer (OSw) adj.

entitled by birth OSw SdmL Gb

byrþi (OSw) byrde (OGu) byrþ (OGu) byrðr (ON) burþi (OSw) byrþe (OSw) noun

burden OGu GL A 6, ONorw GuL Llb, OSw UL Äb, Blb, VmL Äb, Mb

byskupan (ON) noun

confirmation OIce KRA 3

See also: ferming

byskupsfundr (ON) noun

meeting with a bishop OIce Grg Feþ 150

byskupsríki (ON) biskupsríki (ON) noun

bishopric OIce Js Kdb 4

diocese ONorw GuL Krb

byskupssekð (ON) noun

episcopal fine ONorw BorgL 16

byskupssonr (ON) noun

bishop’s son ONorw GuL Mhb

byskupsstóll (ON) biskupsstóll (ON) byskupstóll (ON) noun

bishop’s seat ONorw EidsL 31

cathedral establishment OIce Kge 30

diocese OIce KRA 15

byskupstíund (ON) noun

bishop’s tithe OIce Grg Tíg 257, KRA 15

byvirthning (ODan) noun

village assessment ODan JyL 1

bælgmord (OSw) bælgmorþ (OSw) noun

abortion OSw DL Kkb, VmL Kkb

bælskin (OSw) noun

Tax paid in animal skin, and contrasted to other skin-taxes, leþungsskin (q.v.) and vighramannaskin (q.v.).

{bälg}-tax OSw DL Rb

Refs: KLNM s.v. skinnskatt; Schlyter (bihang) s.v. bælskin

bæn (OSw) ben (2) (ON) bæn (ON) noun

mortal wound OIce Grg Vís 86, 87, Js Mah 34, ONorw FrL Var 45

wound ONorw EidsL 37.1, GuL Krb, Mhb

lethal wound OSw YVgL Drb

See also: sar

bændil (OSw) bændel (OSw) noun

cord OSw VmL Mb

bæra (OSw) bera (ON) bera (OSw) biæra (OSw) verb

substantiate OSw VmL Mb


bera kvið (ON)

give a (panel) verdict OIce Grg Þsþ 35

bera út (ON)

expose a child ONorw GuL Krb

bærgvarþer (OSw) noun

hill-guard OSw HL Kgb

bæria (OSw) barther (ODan) bærje (ODan) beria (OGu) berias (OGu) berja (ON) berjask (ON) barþer (OSw) verb

beat ODan ESjL 1, 2, JyL 2, 3, SkL 122, 124, 219, VSjL 40−43, 48, 49, 56, 63, 86, OIce Grg Vís 88, Mah 3, 30 Llb 39, ONorw FrL Intr 24, OSw HL Blb, SdmL Mb, YVgL Frb, Utgb, Add, ÄVgL Slb, Lek, ÖgL Eb

fight ODan JyL 2, OGu GL A 19, ONorw GuL Krb, Arb, Mhb, Leb, OSw DL Kkb, HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, UL Kkb, VmL Kkb, YVgL Frb, ÖgL Kkb

strike ODan JyL 3, OGu GL A 9, 12, 18, ONorw GuL Krb, Tfb, Kvb, OSw DL Mb, VmL Kkb, Mb

thresh OGu GL A 3, OSw VmL Kkb

wound OGu GL A 19

See also: bardaghi, lysta (1)

bæsingr (ON) noun

A ‘cribling’; an illegitimate child born to a mother under penalty of full outlawry (a child born to an outlawed father was known as a vargdropi).

cribling OIce Grg Arþ 118

See also: hornungr, hrísungr, laungetinn, vargdropi

Refs: CV; Fritzner; GrgTr II:7; ONP; KLNM s.v. oäkta barn

bætring (ODan) noun

compensation ODan ESjL 2

bölvun (ON) noun

heathen cursing ONorw BorgL 16.9

bön (OSw) noun

prayer OSw YVgL Add

right to plead OSw DL Eb

böta (OSw) bøte (ODan) byta (OGu) bæta (ON) bǿta (ON) verb

atone OFar Seyð 1, OGu GL A 13, OIce Grg Klþ 2 Vís 112 Bat 113 Feþ 154, ONorw FrL KrbB 3, 9

compensate ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 2, SkL 56, 214, VSjL 13, 69, OGu GL A 15, OIce Grg passim, Mah 8 Llb 1 Kab 16 Þjb 16 Fml 2, Js Mah 4, 7 Kab 1, 11 Þjb 7, KRA 2, 6 passim, ONorw FrL Mhb 17 LlbA 1, OSw DL Mb, Bb, Gb, HL Mb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Bb, Mb, Tjdb, YVgL passim, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, Smb, Vs, Slb, Gb, Rlb, Jb, Tb, Fös, Föb

be compensated OSw DL Kkb

extract OSw UL Kkb, Äb,, VmL Äb

fine OSw DL Rb, ÄVgL Smb

be fined OGu GL A 2, 4– 9, 11, 12, 14, 18, 19, 22, 26, 46, 50, 59, Add. 1–5 (B 4, 17, 19, 19, 20), OSw DL Kkb, Bb, HL Kgb, Äb, Blb, UL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Kmb

give ODan SkL 77

improve OIce Grg Tíg 266, Kge 9, Js Kdb 5, ONorw GuL Tfb, Løb

have a liability OGu GL A 62

be liable to (pay) a fine OGu GL A 26, 60, 61, 63, 65, Add. 8 (B 55)

make good OFar Seyð 2, OIce Grg Tíg 266

make up the difference OIce Lbb 1

mend OIce Llb 6, 9, ONorw BorgL 18.4, OSw UL Kkb

pay ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 1−3, SkKL 2−4, 7−9, 11, 12, SkL passim, VSjL passim, OGu GL A 2, 6, 16–19, 21, 23, 24, 26, 31, 35, 51, 59, Add. 6, 8 (B 33, 55), ONorw BorgL 3.3 5.14, EidsL 41.2, FrL Intr 3, 5 KrbA 2, 10, OSw HL Kkb, Mb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, UL Äb, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db, Vm

pay a fine ODan ESjL 2, OGu GL A 4, 7, 8, 16, 19, 20a, 28, 31, 36–39, 52, 57, Add. 2, 8 (B 17, 55), ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Mhb, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Bb, Tjdb, Rb, HL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Äb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, SmL, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb

pay compensation ODan ESjL 2, SkL 61, 62, 66, 187, 188, 193, 195, 202, 224, 225, OGu GL A 15–19, Add. 1 (B 4), ONorw GuL Kpb, Kvb, Løb, Tjb, Llb, Mhb, Sab, Trm, OSw DL Bb, Gb, Tjdb, UL Mb, Blb, VmL Mb, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, Slb, Äb, Gb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db

pay damages OIce Mah 11, 15 Llb 16

do penance OIce Kge 29, ONorw FrL KrbA 5, 38, GuL Krb, Løb, OSw YVgL Urb

redress OIce Grg Bat 115

repair OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb

restore OIce Llb 9


bøte ut (ODan)

return ODan SkL 110

litla böta (OSw)

pay a small fine OSw HL Kgb

See also: bot, fulder, gælda (1), liggia, vaþabot

bötavarþer (OSw) noun

beacon guard OSw SdmL Kgb

bølesak (ODan) noun

harrassment ODan JyL 2

børnevirthning (ODan) noun

Children within a fælagh (q.v.) were to be treated equally financially.

making even between children ODan ESjL 1

Refs: Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 312

bǿnahald (ON) noun

recitation of prayers OIce HT 1, Js Kdb 1, KRA 11

ceciliomessa (ON) noun

St Cecilia’s Day OIce Grg Klþ 13

chirographum (ON) noun

A chirograph, a document on which the same text is written twice (or more) and subsequently divided and given to multiple parties as proof of a transaction. Chirographs are well attested in medieval Europe, in particular in England, whence this type of document likely spread to the Nordic countries. The oldest attested chirograph from Norway dates to 1225 (DN I nr. 8), and several others survive from Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland, mostly from the later Middle Ages.

chirograph OIce Kab 12

Refs: Beal 2008 s.v. chirograph; KLNM s.v. chirographum; LexMA s.v. chirograph

crucismisse (ODan) noun

Cross Mass ODan ESjL 3

Exaltation of the Cross OIce Grg Klþ 13

Invention of the Cross OIce Grg Klþ 13

See also: crucisuke, krossmessa um haustit, krossmessa um várit

crucisuke (ODan) noun

Cross week ODan SkKL 9

See also: crucismisse, krossmessa um várit

dagakaup (ON) noun

day wages OIce Grg Þsþ 78, 80

dagher (OSw) noun


miðr dagr, miðdagr (ON)

midday (twelve o’clock) ONorw GuL Krb

taka af daghum (OSw)

kill OSw YVgL Drb

put to death OSw ÄVgL Md

take from the day OSw ÖgL Db

See also: hælghidagher

daghsværksspjal (ODan) noun

labour lost ODan SkL 122, VSjL 86

lost labour ODan SkL 105

See also: dagsværki

dagleið (ON) noun

full day’s journey OIce Grg Ómb 133

dagríki (ON) noun

holiness of the day ONorw BorgL 6.4 13.4

dagsværki (OSw) daghværke (OSw) daxuærki (OSw) noun

Mainly referring to the householders’ obligation to participate in the building of the church. In SdmL Bb also the obligations of hired workers towards their employer.

day’s work OSw HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, Bb, SmL

See also: fearnyt

dailumal (OGu) noun

matter of conflict OGu GS Ch. 3

See also: dela

danaarver (OSw) dana arf (OSw) dana arff (OSw) noun

An unclaimed inheritance, usually after a foreigner, that was passed on to the king or the bishop.

unclaimed inheritance OSw SdmL Kgb, Mb, Till

{danaarver} OSw DL Gb, HL Mb, UL Kgb, Mb (table of contents only), VmL Mb, ÄVgL Äb

Refs: Brink forthcoming; KLNM s.v. danefæ; SAOB s.v. danaarf; Schlyter s.v. dana arver; Söderwall s.v. dana arver

danefæ (ODan) dánarfé (ON) noun

dead man’s property OIce Grg Arþ 125, 126

treasure trove ODan ESjL 3

dansker (OSw) dænsker (OSw) adj.

Appears in connection with varying punishments for killing men of different nationality. Also in the phrase dönsk tunga lit. ‘dansih tongue’ (OIce Grg Þsþ) of the common language of the North or of Danish specifically.

Danish OSw YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

daufiorþ (OGu) noun

infertile land OGu GL A 25

deghia (OSw) deghje (ODan) deigja (ON) noun

Literally, ‘dough maker’. This derivation is reflected in similar words in other Germanic languages (Hellquist) and the English word ‘lady’ has a similar derivation.

Her function in the household seems to be the female equivalent of a bryti (q.v.) or overseer. It was a person who was herself a slave or serf, but who had the responsibility for the other slaves or serfs in the household and who had the confidence of the householder and might even be in partnership with them. In GuL she was the highest-ranked of the female slaves. With the abolition of slavery, the role of the bryti became that of a steward of a household or estate. In Norway, deigja seems, in certain circumstances, to have been the designation used for the housekeeper (perhaps the best description of this female role) and possibly, for the concubine of a priest.

female steward OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

housekeeper ODan ESjL 3, ONorw FrL Kvb 21, GuL Mhb, OSw SdmL Tjdb, UL Mb, VmL Mb

See also: ambat, annöþogher, bryti, fostra, frælsgiva, hion, lavarþer, seta, sætesambut

Refs: Brink 2005; Hellquist [1948] 1964, s.v. deja; KLNM s.v.v. bryde, kvinnearbeid, slegfred, tyende; ODEE 1986, s.v. lady; Schlyter 1877, s.v. deghia; SL UL, 129 note 163; SL VmL, 103 note 209a

dela (OSw) dele (ODan) daila (OGu) deila (ON) delæ (OSw) dele (ODan) daila (OGu) deila (ON) verb

Literally ‘to divide’. To express differing opinions in legal matters (translated as ‘to disagree’, ‘to dispute’, ‘to contest’, ‘to argue’, ‘to quarrel’, ‘to fight’). Also to bring this disagreement to court, that is to start legal proceedings (translated as ‘take action’, ‘raise a claim/complaint’, ‘(lawfully) sue’, ‘press charges’).

appeal OSw YVgL Föb

argue OSw HL Kkb, Äb, Jb

claim ODan JyL 1

deal with ODan ESjL 2

decide ODan JyL 2, SkKL 6

disagree OGu GL A 32, OSw DL Bb, Rb, UL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Kvab, ÄVgL Kva, ÖgL Kkb

discuss ONorw GuL Llb

dispute ODan ESjL 3, JyL 1, 3, OSw DL Mb, Bb, Gb, Tjdb, Rb, HL Äb, Mb, Jb, Blb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Rb, UL Kgb, Äb, Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Jb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Äb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Jb

divide OSw HL Blb

lawfully sue ODan JyL 2

press charges OSw HL Mb

quarrel ONorw GuL Mhb, OSw HL Kkb, Äb, Blb

raise a claim ODan ESjL 3, JyL 2, 3

raise a complaint ODan JyL 2

sue ODan JyL 1−3

take action ODan JyL 2, 3

See also: skilia, barsmíð, dailumal, deld, vingretta

Refs: Fritzner s.v. deila; Gammeldansk ordbog s.v. dele; Hertzberg s.v. deila; ONP s.v. deila; SAOB s.v. dela; Schlyter s.v. dela

dela (OSw) noun

case ODan JyL 1−3

claim ODan JyL 2

contest ODan ESjL 3

disagreement ODan ESjL 2, 3, OGu GL A 32

dispute ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 2, SkL 26, VSjL 1, OGu GL A 32, GS Ch. 3, OSw HL Jb, UL Kkb, Jb, VmL Jb, Rb

quarrel ONorw GuL Løb, Mhb, ODan ESjL 1

deld (OSw) deld (ODan) noun

In the Danish laws and Svea laws (except HL), deld refers to a part of the village land, sometimes a strip field in a gærþi (q.v.) (OSw) or vang (q.v.) (ODan).

allotment OSw SdmL Bb

cultivated field ODan JyL 1

field plot OSw DL Bb, Tjdb

fight ONorw GuL Mhb

meadow plot OSw VmL Bb

part of the village land ODan JyL 1

plot (1) OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

quarrel OIce Kab 2, ONorw GuL Løb, Mhb

See also: akerdeld, dela, gærþi, tegher, tompt, vang

Refs: Hoff 1997, 204; Schlyter s.v. deld

delejorth (ODan) noun

disputed land ODan JyL 2

deleman (ODan) noun

counterpart ODan JyL 2

opponent ODan JyL 1

delobroþir (OSw) noun

antagonist OSw UL Kkb

deyddr (ON) deyðr (ON) adj.

deserving of death OIce Js Mah 7

deyðandi (ON) adj.

deserving of death OIce Mah 2, 14

dirfas (OGu) verb

presume OGu GL A 25

disaþing (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘assembly of the Disir’. This was a festival and market held in February in pre-Christian Svealand, presumably in honour of the Disir, a group of pagan female divine beings. The event had legal significance and actually incorporated a number of separate assemblies. An attempt was made after the conversion to re-name it Kyndilþing (Candlemas Assembly), but this did not succeed. Candlemas (2 February) was the day upon which the levy was summoned. There was also a period of immunity from prosecution at that time, which lasted through two market days, probably eight days in all. Candlemas was one of the festivals of obligation in the church, in that the priest had to celebrate them. These were also the days upon which parishioners were obliged to make offerings to the church.

disthing OSw UL Rb

See also: kyndilmæssa, þing

Refs: KLNM s.v. disting; Schlyter 1877, s.v. disaþing; SL UL, 211 note 91

disker (OSw) noun


disker ok duker (OSw)

board and lodging OSw UL Kkb VmL Kkb

diunga (OSw) verb

beat OSw YVgL Urb, ÄVgL Slb

See also: bardaghi, lysta (1)

diur (OSw) djur (ODan) dýr (ON) noun

animal ODan SkL 104, 205, ONorw GuL Llb, OSw HL Blb

game OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

non-domestic animal OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

wild animal ODan SkL 205, OSw SdmL Bb, YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Föb

See also: , fælaþi, griper, ortasoyþr, söþer

djakn (ODan) diakn (ON) djákn (ON) noun

deacon ODan JyL 1, OIce KRA 17, ONorw EidsL 47.5, FrL Leb 17, GuL Leb

dobblare (OSw) doblare (OSw) noun

gambler OSw SmL

domalöst (OSw) domælöst (OSw) adv.

without judgement OSw UL Jb, Rb, VmL Rb

See also: skælalöst

domarapænningar (pl.) (OSw) noun

It is not stated who should pay this, presumably annual, fee to the judge.

payment to a judge OSw SdmL Till

Refs: Schlyter s.v. domara pænningar

domari (OSw) domeri (OGu) dómari (ON) noun

A general designation for a judge; someone with the authority to pass judgment. In the Norwegian and Icelandic laws the terms dómandi (q.v.) and dæmandi are also used, both seemingly synonymous with ON dómari. Multiple judges served on a panel (ON kvið), and their collective decision constituted a judgment (ON dómr) on a case. In some instances (e.g. Js Mah 34 and Jó Mah 16) a dómari is appointed to punish an offender.

In the Svea laws a judge (OSw domari) had the additional responsibility of organizing legal proceedings in conjunction with the king’s representative (OSw lænsmaþer). In medieval Gotland each assembly district (OGu þing) was administered by a domari.

judge OGu GL A 19, 61, OIce Mah 16 Kab 12 Þjb 24, Js Mah 34, KRA 33, OSw DL Eb, Rb, SdmL Jb, Bb, Kmb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, UL StfBM, Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Blb, Rb, Add. 17, 18, VmL Kgb, Mb, Jb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Add, ÖgL Kkb


högsti domari (OSw)

supreme judge OSw YVgL Föb

kalla sik vndir högre domara (OSw)

submit one’s case to a higher judge OSw YVgL Kkb

See also: dómandi, domber, hæraþshöfþingi, laghmaþer, landsdomari, rættari

Refs: CV; Fritzner; GAO s.v. domare; Hertzberg; KLNM s.v. domare, rettergang; ONP; von See 1964, 44

domber (OSw) dom (ODan) dombr (OGu) dómr (ON) dom (OSw) dombær (OSw) noun

A court; a judgment issued by a court. Medieval Nordic dómar have been described as instruments of arbitration (Sunde 2014, 143), as they typically serve to resolve disputes between two private parties. Such courts usually did not have a judge but rather a panel or jury who issued a judgment for a case based on evidence provided by a prosecutor and defendant. In Iceland dómar always dealt only with the facts of a case. Points of law were taken up in the Law Council (ON lögrétta).

In compounds –dómr often denotes a state or condition, e.g. ON heiðindómr (‘heathendom’). A rare usage of the term denotes an object in the phrase heilagr dómr (‘relic’).

conviction OSw DL Rb

court (1) OIce Grg Þsþ 20, Þfb 8, Js Þfb 6 Ert 25 Kab 1, ONorw FrL Intr 16 Var 46 Sab 1, GuL Krb, Kpb, Løb, Llb, Arb, Mhb, Olb

court meeting ONorw FrL KrbA 1

court-sitting OIce Grg Hrs 234

decision ODan ESjL 2, JyL Fort, 2, VSjL 58, 87, OSw ÄVgL Md

judge OSw SdmL Rb, VmL Kkb

judgement ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 1−3, SkL 188, 241, VSjL 52, 58, OFar Seyð 2, 5, OGu GL A 31, OIce Grg passim, Kab 1 Fml 25, Js passim, KRA 18, 34, ONorw FrL Var 7, 46, GuL Krb, Kpb, Mhb, Olb, OSw DL Rb, HL Kkb, Rb, SdmL Conf, Kkb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, UL StfBM, Kkb, Mb, Jb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Jb, Bb, Rb, YVgL Drb, Tb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Jb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Vm

judicial power OSw HL Rb

permission ODan ESjL 3, SkL 162, 233

right to judge OSw HL Kkb

sentence ODan SkL 163, 233, ONorw GuL Mhb, OSw DL Tjdb

verdict OIce Þfb 3, ONorw FrL ArbB 7, OSw DL Bb, Gb, Rb, HL Kkb, Mb, Rb, YVgL Add


dómar eru úti (ON)

courts are sitting OIce Grg Vís 105

domber ok skæl, mæþ domom och full skælom (OSw)

excuse OSw VmL Mb

legal grounds OSw HL Rb

legal procedures OSw UL Blb VmL Mb, Bb

heiðinn dómr (ON)

heathendom ONorw GuL Krb

heilagr dómr (ON)

relic OIce Js Kdb 5

rísa ór dómi (ON)

to withdraw (to recuse onself?) OIce Grg Þsþ 25

See also: döma, forfall, skæl

Refs: CV s.v. dómr; F s.v. dómr; GAO s.v. Urteil; Gunnar Karlsson 2005; KLNM s.v. dómr; LexMA s.v. Domen; NGL V s.v. dómr; Sunde 2014; Z s.v. dómr

dombrut (OSw) noun

breach of a judgement OSw SdmL Rb

disregard of the judgement OSw UL Rb

domvilla (OSw) domwilla (OSw) noun

miscarriage of justice OSw UL Kkb

unjust verdict OSw HL Kkb

dómandi (ON) dǿmandi (ON) noun

See domari.

judge OIce Grg Þsþ 28, 29 Lrþ 117 Lbþ 176 Fjl 221, 223 Hrs 234, Lbb 1, Js Lbb 1, KRA 7, ONorw FrL Jkb 8, GuL Llb, Olb, Trm

member of a court ONorw FrL Rgb 14

dómaútfǿrsla (ON) dómaútfærsla (ON) noun

moving out courts OIce Grg Þsþ 24, 58

dómfesta (ON) noun

appeal to a court ONorw FrL Rgb 17

dómflogi (ON) noun

A dómflogi (‘defaulter’) was literally ‘one who flees from the court’. A man might default either by failing to attend the hearing of his case or by violating the accepted rules of court procedure.

defaulter ONorw GuL Kpb, Olb

runaway from court ONorw FrL Rgb 12

Refs: Helle 2001, 154; Hertzberg s.v. dómflogi; Robberstad 1981, 344

dómhringr (ON) noun

A circle of judges or judgment circle. In Grg Þsþ 47 this refers to an area where judges dismissed from the Fifth Court are to sit during the proceedings of a case. It has been suggested that the dómhringr was the area surrounded by a vébönd (q.v.) as portrayed in the description of Gulaþing in Egils saga. Saga evidence further depicts the dómhringr as the location where the person on trial stood (Eyrbyggja saga) or where human sacrifices took place (Landnámabók), though most now consider the latter unlikely. Some confusion has arisen between the term dómhringr and the Early Modern Swedish appellation domarring, which has been used to denote a variety of stone circles identified through archaeological investigations. These circles have been attributed a variety of purposes, including burial, ritual and legal usage.

circle of judges OIce Grg Þsþ 47

See also: vébönd (pl.)

Refs: CV s.v. dómhringr; Fritzner s.v. dómhringr; GAO s.v. Domarring, Menschenopfer; KLNM s.v. dómhringr; Olsen 1966, 194−97; ONP s.v. dómhringr

dómnefna (ON) noun

court nomination OIce Grg Þsþ 45

nomination of judges OIce Grg Lbþ 202

dómrof (ON) noun

disregard of judgement OIce Þfb 5, 8 Mah 21, ONorw FrL Rgb 13

judgement breaking OIce Grg Klþ 6 Þsþ 51, 75

dómruðning (ON) noun

challenging a court OIce Grg Þsþ 25

dómsetning (ON) noun

opening of a court meeting ONorw FrL Rgb 14

dómsmaðr (ON) noun

judge OIce Kab 13

dómstaðarbúi (ON) noun

neighbour of the court-place OIce Grg Feþ 167

dómstaðr (ON) dómsstaðr (ON) noun

court-place OIce Grg Lbþ 176, 202 Fjl 223 Hrs 234, ONorw FrL Rgb 11 Jkb 8

dómstaurr (ON) noun

A ‘court pole’ or ‘judgment stake’. Refers to witnesses who testified from outside of the official court circle (ON vébönd).

court bar ONorw FrL Rgb 15 Jkb 8

Refs: CV s.v. dómstaurr; Fritzner s.v. dómstaurr; KLNM s.v. dombrev; ONP s.v. dómstaurr

dómstefna (ON) noun

court-meeting OIce Grg Lbþ 202 Hrs 234

request for judicial decision ONorw GuL Olb

See also: stæmna

dómsuppsöguváttr (ON) noun

witness of the anouncement of judgement OIce Grg Þsþ 48 Lsþ 116

dómsuppsöguvætti (ON) noun

testimony of the announcement of judgement OIce Grg Þsþ 49 Feþ 158

dómsætr (ON) adj.

eligible to sit in court ONorw GuL Olb

having a seat in court OIce Grg Þsþ 40

dómvarzla (ON) noun

court guarding OIce Grg Þsþ 41

dómvörzlumaðr (ON) noun

court-guard OIce Grg Þsþ 41

drap (OSw) drap (ODan) drap (OGu) dráp (ON) dræp (OSw) noun

A killing that was publicly announced and admitted, and as such contrasted to morþ ‘murder’. Both could, however, be punished by death or outlawry, as well as fines/compensation.

case of killing OSw HL Mb

execution OIce Þjb 2, Js Þjb 2

homicide ODan ESjL 3, VSjL 53, 86

killing ODan ESjL 2, JyL 3, OSw DL Eb, Mb, Rb, HL Kgb, Äb, Mb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, UL För, Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Rb, VmL För, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Rb, YVgL Drb, Add, ÄVgL Md, Urb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db, Vm

manslaughter OGu GL A 5, OSw DL Gb, HL Mb, Rb, YVgL Add, ÖgL Eb

See also: bani, döþsdrap, dræpa, dulghadrap, morþ

Refs: Ekholst 2009, 155−58; KLNM s.v.drab; Maček 2009; SAOB s.v. dråp

drapabalker (OSw) noun

book of killings OSw ÖgL Db

See also: balker, drap

drapamal (OSw) noun

book of manslaughter OSw YVgL Add

case of manslaughter OSw ÖgL Eb

See also: drap, mal (1)

drapari (OSw) dræpari (OSw) noun

assassin OSw HL Mb

killer OSw SdmL Mb, UL Mb, Add. 8, 9, VmL Mb, YVgL Drb, Add, ÖgL Eb, Db

murderer OSw DL Mb

slayer OSw YVgL Add

See also: bani, drap, dræpa

draparibalker (OSw) noun

book about killing OSw YVgL Drb

See also: balker, drapari

drekkulaun (ON) noun

This concept refers to land granted as a reward from the king. Such land was considered equal to odal land. See GuL ch. 270.

gift in reward for hospitality ONorw GuL Olb

Refs: Hertzberg s.v. drekkulaun; KLNM s.v. kongegåve

drengmaðr (ON) noun

soldier ONorw FrL Leb 13

unmarried man ONorw GuL Kpb, Leb

See also: ainloypr

drep (ON) noun

beating ONorw GuL Mhb

blow OIce Grg Vís 88

drepráð (ON) noun

plot to strike OIce Grg Vís 108

drinkare (OSw) noun

drinker OSw SmL

drivari (OSw) noun

vagrant OSw DL Tjdb

drotin (OGu) dróttinn (ON) noun

Derived from drótt (ON) ‘household’ especially ‘the king’s bodyguard’. Used of any lord or master.

lord OIce HT 1, ONorw BorgL 14.5, FrL KrbA 31 Mhb 57

master OGu GL A 2, 6, 16, 22, Add. 8 (B 55), OIce Grg Vís 102, 110, ONorw FrL KrbA 2, 6 Mhb 61 Rgb 40 LlbB 10, GuL Krb, Løb, Llb, Mhb, Tjb

See also: skapdróttinn

Refs: Cleasby and Vigfusson s.v. drótt

drozsieti (OGu) noun

wedding host OGu GL A 24

See also: gerþamaþr, reþuman

dróttinssvik (ON) noun

high treason OIce Mah 4

dróttinssvikari (ON) dróttinssviki (ON) noun

lord-cheater ONorw EidsL 50.13

traitor OIce KRA 11

traitor to the king ONorw GuL Krb

dróttning (ON) noun

The lady or mistress of a house, estate, etc.

mistress (1) OIce Grg Vís 102, 110

dryghe (ODan) verb

prove ODan ESjL 2

drænger (OSw) noun

farm hand OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

farm-hand OSw SdmL Bb

worker OSw YVgL Utgb

young man OSw SmL

See also: maþer

dræpa (OSw) dræpe (ODan) dræpin (ODan) drepa (OGu) drepa (ON) dræpin (OSw) verb

beat ONorw FrL Mhb 7

kill ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL Fort, 1−3, SkL passim, VSjL 23, 50, 51, 53−55, 63, 69, 86, OGu GL A 8, 9, 11–16, 28, OIce Grg Vís 110 Bat 113 Rsþ 230, Mah 2 Llb 39 Kab 16 Þjb 2 Fml 9, Js Mah 6, 9 Þjb 2, KRA 6, ONorw BorgL 8.5, FrL Intr 1, 5 Mhb 4, 10 LlbB 12, GuL Krb, Mhb, Tjb, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Bb, Gb, Rb, HL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Blb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Äb, Bb, Tjdb, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Bb, YVgL Kkb, Frb, Urb, Drb, Äb, Rlb, Tb, Add, ÄVgL Kkb, Md, Slb, Urb, Äb, Gb, Rlb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db, Vm

slaughter OSw UL Mb

slay ODan JyL 2, OSw DL Eb, HL Äb, YVgL Kkb, Drb, Add

strike OIce Grg Vís 86, 101, Mah 22, KRA 8, OSw SdmL Kgb, Gb


döþan ok dræpnan (OSw)

person done to death OSw VmL Mb

See also: drap, myrþa, sla, vigh

dræpr (ON) adj.

‘Killable’, describing someone who has no legal immunity and whose heirs would have no right to compensation. The commission of certain serious offenses, such as refusing to leave the country when convicted of outlawry (Grg Þsþ 53), running off with another man’s wife (Js Mah 7) or theft (Js Þjb 1), resulted in becoming dræpr.

to be killed OIce Þjb 1, ONorw FrL Mhb 10

who may be killed with impunity OIce Grg Þsþ 53, Mah 2, 14, Js Mah 7, 31 Þjb 1, ONorw GuL Tjb


dræpr ok deyddr (ON)

should be put to death OIce Mah 2

may be killed or put to death ONorw FrL Intr 9

See also: deyddr, friþlös, sækt, útlagi

Refs: CV; F; NGL V; ONP

dufl (OGu) dubl (ON) dufl (ON) noun

gambling OGu GL A 61, OIce Þjb 18

See also: fordoble

dul (OSw) dyl (OSw) noun

acquittal OSw YVgL Utgb

denial OSw DL Rb, HL Mb, SdmL Tjdb, UL Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, VmL Mb, Bb

denial by oath OSw SmL

hiding OSw ÄVgL Föb

legal defence OSw UL Jb, Kmb, Blb, VmL Kkb, Jb, Mb, Rb

right to defend with an oath OSw HL Rb


dul biuþa (OSw)

deny by/on oath OSw UL Mb

See also: biuþa, dylia, ne, neka

duleiðr (ON) dulaeiðr (ON) dulareiðr (ON) noun

An umbrella term for oaths given by a defendant and his associates, the latter being witnesses rather than simply compurgators as in a jafnaðareiðr (cf. Js Mah 37) (see jamnaþareþer). In Iceland these oaths usually included one, three, six or twelve men depending on the severity of the charge. At least one scholar has equated the duleiðr to the process of acquittal (ON undanfærsla, see undanfǿrsla).

oath of denial OIce Js Mah 37

See also: eneþer, eþer, jamnaþareþer, undanfǿrsla

Refs: CV s.v. duleiðr; Fritzner s.v. duleiðr; KLNM s.v.v. edgärdsman, värjemål ; Imsen 2009; ONP s.v.v. dulaeiðr, duleiðr

dulghadrap (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘hidden killing’. This word is used of the situation in which someone is killed outside a locked house and the killer is not discovered. If the body was found in a locked house, the owner of the property was liable for the compensation. As the custom was normally to declare a killing, the non-disclosure made the crime more serious. Compensation at about a third of that normal for a killing went to the relatives of the dead person (provided they identified themselves within a year and a day) or to the king in the case of DL. This was provided by the landowners of the land where the body was discovered (DL and VmL) or by the whole hundari (q.v.) (if the body was discovered on common land and in every case in UL). The members of the community, or the hundari as appropriate, also had the responsibility for seeking the real culprit. If the relatives did not come forward, within a year and a day, the compensation went to the king. The difference between dulghadrap and morþ (q.v.) is far from clear but to equate morþ with dulghadrap is not justified by the sources available.

hidden homicide OSw HL Mb

hidden killing OSw SdmL Kgb, Mb, Till

hidden-homicide fine OSw HL Mb

undeclared killing OSw UL Kgb, Mb, VmL Mb

undetected murder OSw DL Mb

See also: bot, drap, dræpa, dylia, flugumaðr, gæld, mandrap, morþ

Refs: KLNM, s.v.v. drab, dulgadråp, mord; Schlyter 1877, s.v. dulghadrap; SL DL, 42 note 29; SL UL, 53 note 13; 118 note 26, 121−22 not 53

dulsak (OSw) noun

cause where one shall defend oneself by oath OSw SmL

See also: dul, sak

dylia (OSw) dylje (ODan) dula (OGu) dula (ON) dylja (ON) verb

attest OSw HL Kkb

confirm OSw YVgL Rlb, Föb, Add

confirm not guilty OSw YVgL Add

defend OSw HL Blb, Rb

defend one’s position OSw HL Äb

deny ODan ESjL 1−3, JyL 2, 3, SkKL 3−7, 9, 11, SkL passim, VSjL passim, OGu GL A 2, 18, 37, 39, OIce Fml 25, Js Ert 20, OSw DL Gb, Rb, HL Äb, Mb, Blb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Gb, Äb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Äb, Mb, Kmb, Bb, YVgL Kkb, Add, ÄVgL Kkb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db, Vm

deny by/on oath OSw SmL

deny responsibility OSw HL Mb

dissemble OIce Grg Þsþ 35

not recognize ODan ESjL 2

prove OSw HL Kgb, Äb, Mb, Kmb, Blb

prove one’s innocence OSw HL Kgb, Mb, Kmb, Blb, Rb

refuse OSw HL Äb, Blb

refute OSw UL Mb, VmL Mb

strengthen OSw HL Blb

strengthen one’s case OSw HL Blb

substantiate a denial OSw DL Eb, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Kmb, Bb, Rb

substantiate one’s denial OSw DL Eb

See also: dul, ne, neka, vita

dylkas (OSw) verb

be contumacious OSw DL Rb

dylsbot (OSw) noun

fine for hiding OSw DL Mb

fine for hiding a crime OSw DL Mb

See also: bot, dylia

dymbilvika (OSw) noun

Holy week OSw ÖgL Kkb

dynter (OSw) noun

blow OSw YVgL Föb

dyrr (ON) noun

door ONorw GuL Kpb, Olb

dýrgarðr (ON) noun

animal fence ONorw FrL LlbB 9

dýrveiðr (ON) noun

deer hunting ONorw GuL Llb

döfviþer (OSw) döfwiþær (OSw) döviþer (OSw) döþwiþer (OSw) noun

firewood OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

non-fruit bearing tree OSw UL Blb, VmL Bb

döma (OSw) døme (ODan) dyma (OGu) dæma (ON) dǿma (ON) dömba (OSw) verb

adjudge ODan ESjL 2, VSjL 50, 84, OIce Grg Tíg 255, Lbb 1, Js Ert 25, KRA 7, ONorw FrL Sab 2, OSw SdmL Jb, YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb, ÖgL Eb

adjudicate ODan ESjL 3, ONorw GuL Løb, Arb

award OIce Sg 3, Js Lbb 1, ONorw GuL Kpb, Olb, Arb, Leb, OSw DL Bb, UL Jb, Blb, VmL Mb, Jb

call OSw SdmL Jb

commit OGu GL A 38

condemn OSw UL Kkb, Mb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Jb, YVgL Tb

convict OIce KRA 11, ONorw EidsL 50.13

decide ODan ESjL 2, JyL 2, SkL 136, 138, 139, 145, 156, 170, 184, OFar Seyð 12, OIce Þfb 4, ONorw BorgL 14.5, OSw YVgL Drb, Äb, Jb, ÄVgL Slb, Jb

declare OSw HL Kkb, YVgL Tb

deem OGu GL A 2, 13, ONorw GuL Tjb, OSw DL Rb, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, VmL Kkb, Jb, YVgL Rlb, ÄVgL Md, Smb, Slb, Tb, ÖgL Eb

deem appropriate OIce Mah 14

denounce ODan VSjL 87

deprive by court judgement ONorw GuL Arb

doom OSw ÄVgL Rlb

give a verdict OIce Mah 13

give an opinion OIce Kab 13

give judgement ODan JyL Fort, OSw HL Rb

grant ODan JyL 2, SkL 83

have a decision ODan JyL 2

impose ONorw GuL Sab, OSw HL Rb

judge ODan ESjL 2, 3, VSjL 41, 50, 87, OGu GL A 31, OIce Grg passim, Þfb 5 Sg 3, Js Mah 7, KRA 29, 33, ONorw EidsL 25, FrL Tfb 2, OSw DL Bb, SdmL Kkb, Gb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, UL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Mb, Rb, YVgL Kkb, Frb, Drb, Rlb, Tb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Md, Slb, Jb, Tb

make a judgement ODan ESjL 2

order ODan JyL 2, VSjL 87

pass judgement ONorw GuL Mhb, Trm, OSw DL Rb, ÖgL Eb

permit ODan SkL 233

pronounce OSw HL Kkb, SdmL Kgb, Add

sentence ODan SkL 151, 163, 184, 226, OIce Llb 39, OSw DL Kkb, Mb, Rb, HL Kkb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Bb, Mb, YVgL Drb, ÄVgL Md

settle OSw ÄVgL Md, Smb

submit OSw UL Kkb, VmL Kkb


fram döma (OSw)

accept a statement OSw UL Jb

See also: domber, fælla, laghbinda, laghvinna, læggia, vinna, viþerbinda

döpa (OSw) døpe (ODan) deyfa (ON) deypa (ON) verb

baptize ODan JyL 1, ONorw BorgL 2.2, OSw DL Kkb, HL Kkb, Äb, SdmL Kkb, SmL, YVgL Kkb, Add, ÄVgL Kkb

See also: kristna

döpilse (OSw) noun

baptism OSw DL Kkb, SmL, YVgL Add

döþsdrap (OSw) döz drap (OSw) dozdrap (OSw) noun

killing OSw HL Kgb, SdmL Mb, UL Mb, VmL Mb

manslaughter OSw HL Mb

See also: drap

døthelot (ODan) noun

dead man’s lot ODan SkL 21

edgilder (OSw) adj.

Of a person who is allowed to swear an oath.

with the right to swear an oath OSw DL Rb

See also: eþer, gilder

Refs: Schlyter s.v. eþganger

eftirbrǿðrasynir (pl.) (ON) eftirbræðrasonr (ON) noun

second cousins in the agnatic line ONorw FrL Sab 2

eftirför (ON) eptirför (ON) noun

pursuit ONorw GuL Tjb

eftirkomandi (ON) noun

successor OFar Seyð 0, 11

eftirsýnarmaðr (ON) noun

‘One who looks after’. The person responsible for collecting compensation and pledges following an outlawry case.

prosecutor ONorw FrL Mhb 41

Refs: CV s.v. eftirsýnarmaðr; ONP s.v. eftirsýnarmaðr

eftirætlandi (ON) noun

one who intends to prosecute ONorw FrL Mhb 23

egðir (pl.) (ON) noun

people from Agder ONorw GuL Leb

eggver (ON) noun

nesting grounds OIce Llb 32, 57

right to gather eggs OIce Llb 6, Js Lbb 13

eghere (ODan) noun

landowner ODan JyL 1, 2

owner ODan JyL 3

eghereman (ODan) noun

owner ODan JyL 3

egn (OSw) eghn (ODan) aign (OGu) eign (ON) eghn (OSw) eign (OSw) æghn (OSw) æighn (OSw) noun

belongings ODan SkL 58, 76, 221, 222

common property OSw YVgL Jb

estate ODan SkL 1, 41

land OGu GL A 20, 24f (64), 25, 26, 27, 28, 48, OIce Mah 1 Llb 52, ONorw FrL Intr 2 KrbA 35, OSw DL Bb, UL Jb, VmL Jb, YVgL Äb, Kvab, Föb, Utgb, ÄVgL Föb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db

landed property OIce Js Mah 4, OSw SdmL Gb, Äb, Jb

ownership OGu GL A 31, OSw VmL Jb

ownership of land OSw DL Bb

piece of land OSw SmL

private property OSw YVgL Jb

property ODan ESjL 1, 3, JyL 1−3, SkKL 5, SkL 112, 121, 226, VSjL 3, 4, 13, 15, 20, 21, 65, 67, OGu GL A 7, 13, 25, 28, 53, B 44 (correcting A 28), OIce Llb 17, 27 Fml 25, Js Mah 2 Kab 16, KRA 4, 11, ONorw FrL Intr 2, 4 LlbB 2, GuL Kpb, Olb, OSw VmL Kkb, YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Jb, Kva, ÖgL Kkb, Db

property in the form of land OSw UL Äb, VmL Äb

right to ownership OIce Lbb 3

title OIce Llb 26

See also: bo, , goþs, jorþ, kununger, tompt, ægha

egningarkviðr (ON) noun

A panel or verdict resulting from goads or incitements. Appears only once in Grg Þsþ 35 where it is defined as a panel verdict irrelevant to the case at hand. The party which calls for a verdict on irrelevant matters loses their case. The name egningarkviðr suggests that these types of panel verdicts are incited by third parties.

baiting verdict OIce Grg Þsþ 35

See also: glafseþer, skroksak

Refs: CV; Fritzner; GrgTr I:75; Maurer 1910, 561; ONP

eiðalið (ON) noun

oath helpers ONorw FrL KrbA 45 Mhb 23

eiðasekð (ON) noun

fine for the wrong oath ONorw FrL ArbB 10

eiðastefna (ON) noun

deadline for oaths ONorw GuL Krb

See also: eþer

eiðavandr (ON) adj.

painstaking in oath-taking ONorw EidsL 3.2

eiðbróðir (ON) noun

A man allied with another in a relationship of mutual rights and obligations. The relationship did not require kinship, and was probably established through some ritual. In GuL an eiðbróðir could receive compensation if the other was killed.

sworn brother ONorw GuL Mhb

Refs: KLNM s.v. fostbrorskap

eiðfall (ON) noun

failing in one’s oath ONorw GuL Krb, Løb, Tfb, Mhb

oath-lapse OIce Grg Tíg 255, KRA 36, ONorw FrL KrbB 3 Mhb 8

eiðfǿra (ON) eiðfæra (ON) verb

deliver by oath OIce Grg Ómb 129, 143

eiðfǿrsla (ON) eiðfærsla (ON) noun

delivering by oath OIce Grg Ómb 129

eiðlauss (ON) adj.

without oaths OIce Grg Klþ 6 Tíg 255, KRA 14

eiðrof (ON) eiðarof (ON) noun

oath-breaking OIce KRA 22, ONorw FrL KrbB 16

eiðrofi (ON) eiðrofa (ON) adj.

oath-breaking OIce KRA 22

Eiðsifaþing (ON) noun

Eiðsiva assembly ONorw EidsL 10.2

See also: þing

eiðspjall (ON) noun

oath-taking OIce Grg Þsþ 30, 31, 38, 46

eiðstafr (ON) eiðsstafr (ON) noun

There are only a few occurrences in the laws of a term for oath formulas. ON eiðstafr occurs e.g. concerning land sales (ONorw FrL) and swearing in nominated men for the alþingi ‘General Assembly’ and lögrétta ‘Law Council’ (OIce Js). Various oath formulas in the laws typically invoke the Christian God or, in OSw ÄVgL, pagan gods collectively.

oath-formula OIce Þfb 1, 3, Js Þfb 1, 3 Mah 37, ONorw FrL KrbA 29

words to swear an oath ONorw FrL Jkb 1

Refs: ONP s.v. eið(s)stafr

eiðstefnudagr (ON) noun

oath-summons day ONorw FrL Mhb 8

eiðunning (ON) noun

oath-swearing OIce Grg Þsþ 35

eiginkona (ON) eiginkvinna (ON) eignarkona (ON) noun

lawful wife OIce KRA 16, 17

wedded wife ONorw FrL Kvb 12

wife OIce Mah 2 Kge 5, Js Mah 7, ONorw BorgL 17.2, FrL Intr 10 KrbB 6, GuL Krb

eiginmaðr (ON) noun

lawful husband OIce KRA 18

eiginorð (ON) noun

marriage OIce Grg Þsþ 81 Arþ 118 Feþ 144, 160

ownership OIce Grg Lbþ 176, 215 Fjl 225, Llb 67

See also: hjúskapr, kvánfang

eigna (ON) verb

belong to ONorw GuL Llb, Kvr

eignarmaðr (ON) noun

owner OIce Kab 23

eignarskifti (ON) eignaskifti (ON) noun

right to ownership OIce Lbb 5 Llb 19, 20 Kab 20

eignarvitni (ON) noun

witness to the right of ownership OIce Lbb 1

See also: vitni

eindaga (ON) verb

appoint ONorw GuL Kpb, Llb, Tjb

set a date OIce Grg Klþ 2 Þsþ 56 Ómb 133 Fjl 221 Misc 250, Kge 1 Llb 1 Kab 4, Js Kvg 1 Lbb 10 Kab 5

See also: endaghi

einfyndr (ON) adj.

as a finder entitled to the whole ONorw GuL Kvr

owning alone ONorw FrL LlbB 10

einganga (ON) noun

walking alone (in a pasture) OFar Seyð 5

einhleypr (ON) adj.

unmarried and without a fixed household OIce Sg 1 Kab 9, Js Kab 7, ONorw FrL Leb 11 Rgb 26

See also: göngumaðr, húsgangsmaðr

einkaleyfi (ON) noun

special leave OIce Grg Feþ 161

einkalof (ON) noun

special leave OIce Grg Lrþ 117

einkamál (ON) noun

provision OIce Js Mah 7, 29

special right ONorw FrL Var 44

einkunn (ON) noun

ownership OFar Seyð 5

ownership mark OIce Grg Fjl 225

einkynna (ON) verb

To place a mark of ownership on something, usually livestock.

mark OIce Grg Lbþ 208 Fjl 225, Llb 47

See also: marka

Refs: CV s.v. einkenna, einkynna; Fritzner s.v. einkynna; ONP s.v. einkenna, einkynna

einlát (ON) noun

desertion OIce Grg Arþ 118

einmánaðarsamkváma (ON) noun

commune meeting in the last month of winter OIce Llb 54

einmánuðr (ON) einmánaðr (ON) noun

‘Single-month’; the sixth and final month of winter beginning on a Tuesday between 10 and 16 March. According to Páll Vídalín it might once have been called Óðinsmánuðr.

single month OIce Grg Þsþ 84 Lbþ 193

See also: tvímánuðr

Refs: Árni Björnsson 1995, 108−09; CV s.v. einmánuðr; GAO s.v.v. Misseristal, Monate; GrgTr I:137; Hastrup 1985, 40; Janson 2011; ONP s.v. einmánuðr; Páll Vídalín 1854 s.v. tvímánuður

einræði (ON) noun

own decision ONorw FrL Var 43

einvirki (ON) einyrki (ON) noun

An einvirki was a man who ran his farm alone without the help of hired labour.

farmer who has no help OIce Kge 29, 34

lone farmer ONorw BorgL 12.2

single worker ONorw GuL Tfb, Leb

single-handed farmer OIce Grg Þsþ 35, 77 Vís 89 Feþ 166, ONorw FrL Leb 7

See also: ainloypr, drengmaðr

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. bonde, enörkne män, våpensyn; RGA2 s.v. bonde

ek (OSw) noun

Oaks appear in some OSw laws (SdmL, UL, VmL, YVgL, ÄVgL) regulating their felling due to their economic importance providing food for pigs and material for construction.

oak OSw YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Fös, Föb

See also: akern, aldin, gisningaskogher

ekia (OSw) eke (ODan) eikja (ON) noun

A small boat made of oak.

river boat ONorw FrL LlbA 10

skiff OSw SdmL Bb, ÄVgL Fös

small boat ODan ESjL 3

ekrugerði (ON) noun

fence around fields ONorw FrL Rgb 2

elder (ON) noun

arson ONorw FrL Mhb 4

fire ONorw GuL Llb, Mhb, Tjb, Leb

See also: bruni, brænna

eldhus (ODan) eldhus (OGu) noun

dwelling house ODan JyL 3

kitchen OGu GL A 50

eldhúshurð (ON) noun

It was forbidden for a tenant to remove or damage a kitchen door. See GuL ch. 75.

kitchen door ONorw GuL Llb

Refs: KLNM s.v.v. eldhus, skåle, stuehus

elði (ON) noun

Generally ‘lodging, boarding’. Possibly also in a more strict usage, obligation for those in the hreppr ‘district’ paying þingfararkaup (a fee related to attendance at the þing ‘assembly’) to, relative to their resources, support paupers, including those labelled úmagi (see omaghi).

boarding OIce Grg Hrs 234

maintenance for the poor OIce Kge 34

sustenance OIce Grg Vís 98

Refs: Cleasby and Vigfusson s.v. eldi; Gerhold 2002, 188−203; KLNM, s.v. tiggar; ONP s.v. elði

enböte (OSw) enböti (OSw) noun

single compensation OSw DL Eb, UL Mb, VmL Mb

single fine OSw DL Rb, SdmL Gb, Mb, Tjdb

See also: bot, böta

endaghi (OSw) eindagi (ON) ændaghi (OSw) noun

The expiration of a time limit concerning judicial matters, often payment. Also the legal meeting summoned in such matters.

appointed day ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Llb, Tjb

day for a hearing OIce Þjb 4

day specified for payment OIce Þfb 8 Llb 1 Kab 4

one-day OSw YVgL Drb, Äb, Gb, Jb, Add, ÄVgL Md, Smb, Slb, Gb, Rlb, Jb

settling day OIce Grg Þsþ 51 Vís 110 Lsþ 116 Fjl 221 Tíg 257, Kab 16, Js Lbb 22 Kab 5, 17 Þjb 3, KRA 15, ONorw FrL Var 46

term OSw YVgL Föb

See also: eindaga, fæmt, siunættinger, þrenættinger

Refs: Brink 2011b, 150−51; ONP s.v. endaghi

endimark (ON) noun

border OIce Grg Bat 114

rule OIce HT 2

See also: mærki

eneþer (OSw) enethe (ODan) eineiði (ON) einseiði (ON) noun

oath of one ODan ESjL 3, OIce Þfb 6 Mah 7, 8 Kge 2 Llb 11 Kab 7 Þjb 21 Fml 15, Js Mah 8 Kvg 1, 4 Þjb 11, KRA 1, ONorw FrL KrbA 32 KrbB 12 Rgb 48 Kvb 14 LlbB 1

one oath alone ODan ESjL 3

one single oath ODan ESjL 3

one’s own oath ONorw FrL KrbA 15

only one’s own oath OSw YVgL Föb, ÄVgL Fös

personal oath ONorw BorgL 11.4

See also: ainsyri, eþer

enfæ (OSw) noun

business OSw VmL Bb

exclusive property OSw SdmL Gb

own business OSw DL Bb, Gb

See also: ensak

engidómr (ON) noun

A meadowland court where disputes concerning property and grazing rights were resolved. A rare term, but it is the subject of the entire paragraph in Grg Lbþ 176. The court was held at the location of the disputed meadowland and was similar to a communal pasture court (ON afréttardómr).

meadowland court OIce Grg Lbþ 176

See also: afréttardómr

Refs: CV s.v. engidómr; Fritzner s.v. engidómr; KLNM s.v. dómhringr

engimark (ON) engjamark (ON) noun

meadow boundaries OIce Llb 22, 37

meadow bounds OIce Grg Lbþ 188

See also: æng

Refs: CV s.v. engimark; Hertzberg s.v. engimark

engiskiftisbúi (ON) noun

meadowland division OIce Grg Lbþ 198

engiteigr (ON) noun

meadowland OIce Lbb 4

engiverk (ON) noun

outfield haymaking OIce Grg Klþ 17 Þsþ 78

engivöxtr (ON) noun

what grows on meadowland OIce Llb 24

engjabrigð (ON) noun

meadowland claim OIce Grg Lbþ 176

engjamerki (ON) noun

meadowland boundary mark OIce Grg Lbþ 175

See also: mærki

Refs: CV s.v. engjamerki

engjaskifti (ON) noun

division of meadowlands OIce Llb 15

Refs: CV s.v. engjaskipti; Hertzberg s.v. engjaskipti

eniorþ (OSw) noun

land of a man OSw YVgL Rlb

enkøp (ODan) noun

Land that was bought and privately owned, and was excluded from land division.

single buy ODan JyL 1

See also: særkøp

enlöpkona (OSw) enløp kone (ODan) noun

single woman ODan SkL 219

unmarried woman OSw YVgL Gb, ÄVgL Gb

See also: kona

enløpman (ODan) einhleypismaðr (ON) noun

single man ONorw FrL KrbA 18, 32 KrbB 20 Leb 7

unmarried man ODan ESjL 3

ennætþing (OSw) noun

Etymologically disputed, but referring to a þing ‘assembly’ dealing with serious cases, such as killings, that could forego the usual requirement of several summonses.

one-night assembly OSw ÖgL Db

single assembly OSw SdmL Till

See also: þing

Refs: Schlyter s.v. ennæt þing; SL SdmL, 258, note 91; SL ÖgL, 67−68, note 14

ensak (OSw) ensokn (OSw) ænsak (OSw) noun

This refers to a procedure, fines or responsibility that fall to a single person (or sometimes a number of specified people) to follow, receive or take in charge. In a number of the laws, it refers to fines or cases that are to be referred to the king, but in other instances it simply indicates who is to take up the matter.

affair OSw HL Mb

case OSw HL Rb

exclusive right OSw SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, Till

fine belonging to one party OSw DL Kkb

for himself OSw HL Kkb

matter OSw DL Mb

own business OSw DL Tjdb, Rb

own case OSw ÖgL Eb, Db

own matter OSw UL Kkb, Kgb, Mb, Jb, VmL Mb, Jb, Bb

particular to OSw YVgL Add


biskups ensak (OSw)

bishop’s own matter OSw UL Kkb

bondans ensak (OSw)

householder’s (i.e. landowner’s) own matter OSw UL Jb VmL Mb, Jb

byamanna ensak (OSw)

villagers’ own matter OSw UL Kgb VmL Bb

konungs ensak

king’s affair OSw HL Mb

king’s cases OSw HL Rb

king’s own matter OSw UL Kgb

matter for the king OSw DL Mb

til ensak (OSw)

on his own account in the matter OSw UL Mb

See also: bot, enfæ, sak

Refs: Schlyter 1877, s.v. ensak

envaldugher (OSw) adj.

omnipotent OSw SdmL För

erfðafé (ON) noun

inherited property OIce Grg Arþ 127 Feþ 150

erfðamark (ON) noun

inherited ownership mark OIce Grg Fjl 225, Llb 47, 48

erfðarmaðr (ON) noun

heir OIce Js Mah 18, ONorw GuL Mhb

See also: arftaki, arvi, arvingi

erfðarómagi (ON) erfðaómagi (ON) noun

A dependent being maintained by a man who stood to inherit from him. The term appears only in Grg and is specifically used to distinguish him from a more closely related heir who did not have the means to maintain the dependent. Previously thought to refer to an inherited dependent in Grg Þsþ 68, but see glossary note and corrigenda in GrgTr II.

dependent from whom one stands to inherit OIce Grg Þsþ 68 Ómb 129

See also: omaghi

Refs: CV s.v. erfð; Fritzner s.v. erfðarúmagi; GrgTr II:373

erfðaskipun (ON) erfðaskipan (ON) noun

order of inheritance ONorw GuL Arb

erfðatal (ON) noun

being entitled to inheritance ONorw GuL Arb

inheritance chapter OIce MagBref

inheritance list OIce Js Ert 24

inheritance section OIce Kge 7

erfðaölðr (ON) erfðaöldr (ON) noun

inheritance ale ONorw GuL Krb

erfi (ON) noun

wake ONorw EidsL 49.1

erfilytia (OGu) noun

heiress OGu GL A 20

erfingjasátt (ON) noun

agreement of heirs OIce Grg Tíg 268, ONorw FrL ArbB 17

erfisgierþ (OGu) noun

funeral feast OGu GL A 24a

eriksgata (OSw) noun

Possibly derived from the name Erik or a corresponding appellative meaning ‘omnipotent ruler’ or the noun eþer ‘oath’; the second element is gata ‘travel; road, street’. A newly chosen king of Sweden should ride with an entourage starting and ending in the province of Uppland, passing through and exchanging hostages in the central provinces, where, at specified places, the king and the laghmaþer ‘lawman’ of the province swore mutual oaths. The origin of the procedure is disputed, but there are parallels in Norway and elsewhere in Europe. In the laws, a completed eriksgata was required for the king to be legally accepted. Eriksgata is not to be confounded with travels connected with an itinerant kingship.

Erik’s street OSw ÖgL Db

king’s route OSw SdmL Kgb, Till

royal progress OSw UL Kgb

Refs: Blomkvist 2011, 180−84; Hellquist s.v. eriksgata; Holmblad 1993; Imsen 2014, 46; KLNM s.v. eriksgata; Schlyter s.v. eriksgata; Scovazzi 1971

etarmannaskra (OGu) noun

genealogical table OGu GL A 20

See also: skra

etarmen (pl.) (OGu) noun

family members OGu GL A 28

See also: skyldarman

ethe (ODan) verb

give an oath ODan JyL 2

swear ODan JyL 2

take an oath ODan JyL 2

ethelagh (ODan) noun

oath ODan ESjL 3

etja (ON) verb

graze off ONorw GuL Llb

eyðijarðarboðburðr (ON) noun

summons to a deserted farm OIce Kge 33

eyðijörð (ON) noun

deserted farm OIce Llb 41

See also: aterlægha, auðn, ödmark, ökn, öþebol

eykjafóðr (ON) noun

Horse fodder was stipulated to be one cartload of hay and two of straw, which was the amount of fodder that a tenant might take away with him when leaving rented land. See GuL ch. 74.

horse fodder ONorw GuL Llb

eyrisbót (ON) noun

atonement of one ounce-unit OIce Grg Þsþ 80 Bat 113

See also: bot

eyrr (ON) noun

sandbank ONorw GuL Llb

eyzlueyrir (ON) noun

disposable funds OIce Kge 16

eþabuþ (OSw) noun

offering of oaths OSw SdmL Kmb

eþafylli (OSw) noun

oath-taker OSw DL Rb

eþamæn (pl.) (OSw) noun

oath-takers OSw DL Rb

oathsmen OSw HL Rb

eþarvitni (OSw) noun

witness to an oath OSw DL Rb

See also: eþer, vitni

eþataki (OSw) eþar taki (OSw) noun

guarantor for an oath OSw DL Rb

oath trustee OSw SdmL Rb

oath-receiver OSw HL Rb

oath-taker OSw ÖgL Kkb

oath-taking OSw HL Rb

pledge man for an oath OSw HL Rb

eþer (OSw) eth (ODan) aiþr (OGu) eiðr (ON) (OSw) noun

An oath was sworn to confirm loyalty and obedience; and it was a frequent way of proving one’s innocence when faced with an accusation of crime. In this latter case it was often taken with some form of compurgation, with two others (a three-man oath, ON lýrittareiðr), five others (a six-man oath, ON séttareiðr), or eleven others (a twelve-man oath, ON tylftareiðr, see tylftareþer); OSw laws also allow for other numbers of compurgators. In general, the person taking an oath was to swear by God or Christ, in heathen times by the gods (ÄVgL Kkb 12 and passim). After the introduction of Christianity, he laid his hand on the Bible or another holy book (bókareiðr).

According to VmL, a local administrator could challenge a householder saying that he had been robbed. The householder had to agree that this was the case and was then granted leave to pursue the thief. Once he had denied that he had been robbed, however, he could not later retract, and he was orþlös ok eþlös (‘without grounds and without an oath’) and could not pursue the case.

oath ODan ESjL 2, 3, JyL 1, 3, SkKL 12, SkL passim, VSjL 40, 66, 81, OGu GL A 2, 3, 4, 13, 14, 16, 18, 19, 20a, 22, 25, 26, 31, 32, 39, OIce Grg Þsþ 31 Vís 87 passim, passim, Js passim, KRA 2, 14, ONorw BorgL 5.7, EidsL 3.2 7 passim, FrL Intr 13, 16 KrbA 1, 18 KrbB 3 Mhb 5 Bvb 1 passim, GuL Krb, Kpb, Løb, Llb, Tfb, Mhb, Tjb, Leb, OSw DL Kkb, Eb, Mb, Bb, Gb, Tjdb, Rb, HL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, SdmL Kkb, Kgb, Gb, Äb, Jb, Bb, Kmb, Mb, Tjdb, Rb, Till, SmL, UL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb, VmL Kkb, Kgb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Bb, Rb, YVgL passim, ÄVgL Kkb, Rlb, Jb, Tb, ÖgL Kkb, Eb, Db

promise OIce Kge 32, ONorw FrL Mhb 8

testimony OSw DL Bb


brista at eþi (OSw)

fail in an oath OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Blb VmL Kkb, Mb, Bb

falla at eþi (OSw)

convict in respect of an [invalid] oath OSw VmL Kkb

fail in an oath OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Jb, Kmb, Blb, Rb VmL Kkb, Äb, Mb, Kmb, Bb, Rb

fela undir eið (ON)

hang (something) upon an oath OIce Grg Lrþ 117

ganga eþ (OSw)

swear an oath OSw UL Mb VmL Kkb, Bb

orð ok eiðr (ON)

pledge and promise ONorw GuL Krb, Kpb, Tfb

orþlös ok eþlös (OSw)

without grounds and without an oath OSw VmL Mb

rangr eiðr (ON)

false oath OIce Js Þjb 9 ONorw FrL KrbB 46

perjury OIce Þjb 22

siattæ manz eþ (ODan)

oath of six men ODan SkL 77

þriþiæ manz eþ (ODan)

oath of three men ODan SkL 77

tolf manna eþer (OSw)

oath of twelve men OSw YVgL Gb, Rlb

tylftær eþer (OSw) tylftær eþe (ODan)

oath of twelve men ODan SkL OSw YVgL, ÄVgL, ÖgL

See also: asöreseþer, brista, eiðastefna, eneþer, eþsöre, fimmtareiðr, fælla, lagh, lýrittareiðr, munhaf, orþ, séttareiðr, sexmannaeiðr, tveggjamannaeiðr, tylft, tylftareþer, væria, þriggjamannaeiðr

Refs: Bagge 2010, 189, 212–14; Helle 2001, 103–04; KLNM s.v.v. edgärdsman, edsformular, gæld, rettergang, vitne, värjemål; Robberstad 1981, 331, 363; Schlyter s.v. eþer

eþlös (OSw) adj.


orþlös ok eþlös (OSw)

without grounds and without an oath OSw VmL Mb

eþsorþ (OSw) noun

content of an oath OSw HL Rb

oath OSw DL Rb

eþsöre (OSw) ezöre (OSw) noun

Literally, ‘oath swearing’ (a compound of eþer ‘oath’ and form of sværia ‘swear’). This can refer prosaically to the swearing of any oath. More frequently it refers to the oath sworn by the king of Sweden and his highest nobility to uphold the law of the land (the ‘rule of law’), to keep civil order in the kingdom and to protect the rights of the common people to peace and protection, particularly in respect of certain grave crimes, which they had agreed upon. The crown, in return, took a portion of any fine payable in respect of such crimes. This oath first came into force in the time of Birger (often given the soubriquet jarl) (d. 1266) and his son, King Magnus Birgersson (Ladulås) (1240−90), and is interpreted as the King’s Oath [of Peace], or simply the King’s Peace, sworn at the king’s coronation. It was the king’s promise to uphold peace in the realm and anyone who went against that consequently became the enemy of the king personally. This is laid out in the foreword to UL.

The word eþsöre is also used as an abbreviation for eþsörisbrut, ‘crime against the King’s Peace’, or for the penalty for such crimes, eþsörisböter. In addition to a fine, frequently consisting of his entire movables, the perpetrator was usually exiled from the kingdom, rather than just the province. If the plaintiff or the family of the injured party pleaded on behalf of the exiled person, then, according to, for example, UL Kgb 9, VmL Kgb 6 and ÖgL Eb 10, they could be ‘returned under the King’s Peace’ against a sum of 40 marker being paid to the crown.

Originally, breach of the King’s peace was such a crime as was considered to be against the realm as a whole, which effectively made the king your personal enemy, and with fines payable to the king rather than the local community or the injured party. The intention or consequence was that personal vendetta was discouraged and the power of the crown increased, leading eventually to the establishment of kingdom-wide rather than provincial law. It was limited to very serious offences (murder, rape, illegal revenge, etc.), as exhibited in the Nordic laws. Such crimes were elsewhere designated niþingsværk (q.v.) or urbotamal (q.v.). These terms appear only occasionally in the law texts that have statutes covering eþsöre. It is clear from some of the statutes that women were not treated in the same way as men if they committed the equivalent crimes — banishment was in several laws specifically excluded as a punishment applicable to women.

It is worth noting that eþsöre is not mentioned in ÄVgL nor in GL. In the latter, the king is not referred to at all, even though he is mentioned in GS in the context of the levy and trade. In ÄVgL, the concept of urbotamal might be considered a parallel covering the same group of crimes, but there is no equivalent concept in GL.

breach of the king’s sworn peace OSw SdmL Kgb

King’s Oath OSw UL Kgb, VmL För, Kgb

King’s Peace OSw HL Kgb, UL För, Kkb, Kgb, Rb, VmL Kgb

king’s sworn peace OSw SdmL Kgb

sworn peace OSw ÖgL Kkb, Db

sworn peace day OSw ÖgL Kkb

{eþsöre} OSw HL Kgb, YVgL Frb, Urb, Add


kunungs eþsöre (OSw)

book concerning the king’s oath OSw DL Eb

breach of the king’s peace OSw HL Kgb

crime against the king’s peace OSw DL Eb

crimes against the king’s oath of peace OSw DL Eb

edsöre of the king OSw YVgL Urb, Add

king’s peace OSw DL Eb UL Rb

king’s sworn peace OSw ÖgL Eb, Db

violations of the king’s peace OSw HL Kgb

See also: asöreseþer, brista, eþer, friþer, friþlös, fælla, griþ, konungsþing, kununger, kunungsræfst, niþingsværk, sværia, urbotamal

Refs: Ekholst 2009, 59−66; KLNM, s.v. konungs edsöre; Schlyter 1877, s.v. eþsöre; von See 1964, 56−57; SL DL, 25−26; SL UL, 54 note 15

eþsörisbrut (OSw) noun

breach of the king’s sworn peace OSw SdmL Kgb

intentional crime OSw DL Mb

See also: eþer, eþsöre, sværia

eþsörisböter (OSw) noun

fines for breaching the king’s peace OSw HL Kgb

fines for breaking the king’s sworn peace OSw SdmL Kgb

See also: bot, eþer, eþsöre, sværia

eþsörismal (OSw) noun

case concering the king’s sworn oath OSw SdmL Bb


kunungs eþsörismal (OSw)

case of the king’s peace OSw HL Kgb

eþsörisrætter (OSw) noun

law of the king’s peace OSw HL Kgb

eþsört (OSw) eþfört (OSw) adj.

Of a day when swearing an oath was allowed.

allowed to swear an oath OSw YVgL Kkb, Add

lawful for swearing oaths OSw DL Rb

legal to provide an oath OSw DL Mb

permitted to take an oath OSw HL Äb

sworn peace day OSw ÖgL Kkb

Refs: Schlyter s.v. eþsört

eþviti (OSw) eþwiti (OSw) noun

oath-takers OSw UL Kkb, Rb

oath-witness OSw SdmL Jb

oathsman OSw HL Kkb

See also: eþer

falbyr (OSw) falz byr (OSw) noun

Appears in the context of buying infected cattle and bringing the disease to one’s neighbours.

village where the plague is present OSw YVgL Utgb, ÄVgL Föb

See also: byr

fald (ODan) noun

fold ODan JyL 2, 3

falda (OGu) falling (OGu) noun

bedcover OGu GL A 20

See also: aklæþi

fall (OSw) fald (OSw) noun

case OSw UL Rb, VmL Rb, YVgL Kkb

conviction OSw ÖgL Kkb

decay OSw UL Jb, VmL Jb

nature OSw UL Mb

neglect OSw DL Bb, SdmL Jb, Till

situation OSw UL StfBM

See also: mal (1), sak

falr (ON) noun

socket (of a spear) ONorw GuL Llb

falr (ON) adj.

for sale OIce Js Lbb 5

fals (OSw) fals (ODan) fals (ON) noun

counterfeit OSw HL Kmb, SdmL Kmb

falsehood OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb

faulty goods OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb

forgery ODan JyL 3

fraud OIce Kab 11 Fml 2, Js Lbb 9 Kab 9

something faulty OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb

See also: flærþ

falsa (ON) verb

forge OIce Mah 2

falsere (ODan) noun

forger ODan JyL 3

falsvitni (OSw) noun

false witness OSw SdmL Rb

See also: ljúgvitni

falzeþer (OSw) noun

invalid oath OSw YVgL Add

See also: glafseþer, meneþer

famn (OSw) faghn (ODan) faðmr (ON) fampn (OSw) noun

cord OSw YVgL Jb, ÄVgL Jb

fathom ODan JyL 1, OIce Grg Lbþ 181, Llb 2, 23, OSw HL Blb, SdmL Bb, UL Mb, VmL Bb

fang (OSw) fang (ODan) fang (ON) noun

Lawful ways to acquire property, particularly land, often appearing in the phrase lagha fang (OSw) ‘legal acquisition’. These were purchase, exchange, gift and pledge, and sometimes including, other times contrasted to inheritance. Also used of anything acquired in general, in particular from the forest, such as building material and firewood. In one instance, used as a synonym to fangaman (q.v.) (UL Mb). Moreover, a unit of measure.

acquired land ODan ESjL 1

acquisition ODan VSjL 13, OSw YVgL Gb, Jb

assignor OSw UL Mb

bundle OSw UL Kgb, VmL Kgb

fuel and timber OSw ÄVgL Md

land ODan ESjL 2

legal acquisition OSw UL Äb, Mb, Jb, VmL Jb

means OIce KRA 30

movables ONorw FrL Intr 23

timber OSw YVgL Drb, Kvab, ÄVgL Kva, Fös

wood (2) OSw YVgL Jb, Föb, Utgb, ÄVgL Jb, Fös, Föb

See also: fangaman

Refs: G. B. Larsson 2010; Schlyter s.v. fang

fanga (OSw) verb

capture OSw UL Kmb, VmL Kmb


fangin meþ/viþ, fingin (OSw)

captured OSw SdmL Bb, Mb YVgL Gb ÄVgL Gb

caught in the (very) act OSw YVgL Tb

taken OSw YVgL Add

See also: taka

fangaman (OSw) noun

One from whom an object was acquired (bought, given, traded). Appears in the context of accusations of theft.

assignor OSw DL Bb, UL Jb, Kmb, VmL Mb, Jb, Kmb

guarantor OSw HL Mb

legal acquirement OSw HL Jb

one who says he has acquired something OSw HL Jb

trader OSw SdmL Bb, Tjdb

See also: borghanaman, fang, fastar (pl.), hemulsman, skuli, taki

fangaváttr (ON) noun

oath helper OIce Þjb 19, 21

witness selected at random OIce Js Þjb 9, ONorw FrL Rgb 32

freely selected witness ONorw GuL Tfb

fangejorth (ODan) noun

acquired land ODan ESjL 1, VSjL 1

fanginfæst (OSw) adj.

captured OSw YVgL Gb, Add

fangtíð (ON) noun

taking-time ONorw BorgL 7.5

far (ON) noun

passage ONorw GuL Tfb

See also: fartekja

fara (ON) fara (OSw) fare (ODan) verb

be itinerant


fare æfter (ODan)

pursue a case ODan SkL 136, 158, 201, 223

farareyrir (ON) noun

travel expenses OIce Þfb 2

See also: þingfararkaup

farargreiðabót (ON) noun

conveyance repair OIce Llb 20, ONorw FrL LlbA 10

See also: bot

fararkaup (ON) noun

wages for sailors ONorw GuL Leb

farartalmi (ON) noun

travel delay OIce Llb 45

fardagher (OSw) fardagh (ODan) fardagr (ON) noun

The fardaghar, ‘moving days’, was the usual term for coming into possession of a farm, for payment in trade or leasing, assessment of land, payment of fines, etc. These were also the days when the tenant’s right to remain on the land expired. According to the ÄVgL there were four fardaghar, all in the latter half of winter: the twelfth day of Christmas, Candlemas (2 February), Sunday before Lent, and Mid-lent. The ÖgL mentions only one: Mid-lent. The DL has no provisions about fardaghar, but two terms are mentioned for lease agreement: the winter nights (around 14 October) and Easter. In the SdmL and VmL the corresponding terms are Martinmas (11 November) and Whitsun. The VmL mentions three afraþsdaghar (‘days for the annual rent to be paid’) which coincide with the three last fardaghar of the VgL, It is therefore possible that these afraþsdaghar were also fardaghar.

Most ODan provincial laws do not mention fardagh. The only exception (no date is given) is that the SkL ch. 238. Ch. 239 indicates one such day: the first Mass of the Virgin Mary (15 August).

The FrL knows only one fardagr, the first weekday (not holy day) after the thirteenth day of Christmas (6 January). The tenant was nevertheless allowed to keep half of the houses and, in addition, one fourth of the hay until the first day of summer (14 April), if he was homeless. In the GuL the fardagar was a period of nine days after ‘summer day’ (23 April). If the tenant could not move all his property within that period, he might keep half of the houses for another nine days.

In OIce law the fardagar began on Thursday in the seventh week of summer, i.e. in the week beginning 21−27 May, and expired in the night before the following Monday.

moving day ODan SkL 238, ONorw GuL Llb, Olb, OSw YVgL Äb, ÄVgL Äb

moving days OIce Grg Klþ 6, 8 Þsþ 22, 78 Vís 89, 104 Ómb 128 Lbþ 172, 220 Fjl 224 Hrs 234 Misc 246, Þfb 9 Sg 1 Kge 14 Lbb 1, 7 Llb 1, 7 Kab 4 Þjb 23, Js Lbb 3, 10 Kab 11, KRA 14, 26, ONorw FrL LlbA 1

Refs: Helle 2001, 120–22; Hertzberg s.v. fardagr; KLNM s.v.v. fardag, skiftedag; Schlyter s.v. fardagher

fargalter (OSw) noun

travelling boar OSw UL Blb

See also: galter

farhirðir (ON) noun

ferryman OIce Llb 45

farkoster (OSw) farkost (ODan) farkostr (ON) noun

boat tackle OSw VmL Mb