Skjold Odinsson,King of Denmark

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About Skjold Odinsson,King of Denmark

Skjöldr (Latinized as Skioldus, sometimes Anglicized as Skjold or Skiold) was among the first legendary Danish kings. He is mentioned in the Prose Edda, in Ynglinga saga, in Chronicon Lethrense, in Sven Aggesen's history, in Arngrímur Jónsson's Latin abstract of the lost Skjöldunga saga and in Saxo Grammaticus' Gesta Danorum. Under the name Scyld he also appears in the Old English poem Beowulf. The various accounts have little in common.

In the Skjöldunga and the Ynglinga sagas, Odin came from Asia and conquered Northern Europe. He gave Sweden to his son Yngvi and Denmark to his son Skjöldr. Since then the kings of Sweden were called Ynglings and those of Denmark Skjöldungs (Scyldings).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skj%C3%B6ldr

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1.

Sagnkonge Skjold

Sagnkonge Skjold, i beretningerne om sagnkongen blander sagaer, myter og legender fra den nordiske mytologi sig med mere kendte, tidlige elementer af den danske historie

Ifølge sagaen om skjoldungerne var Skjold søn af Odin og Rind

. Som konge af Sjælland og forfader til Dan 2. den Storslåedes dronning er han forfader til den danske kongerække.

Skjold var imidlertid kun konge af Sjælland og regerede sit rige fra kongsborgen i Lejre, der formentlig lå i nærheden af det landsbyområde, der i dag betegnes Gammel Lejre.

Lejre var kongesæde for de fleste af de forhistoriske konger, der efterfulgte Skjold.

Rolf Krake er den 12., og i henhold til visse kilder den 14. konge af det samlede rige efter Skjold. Han har således formentlig ikke bygget Lejre op fra grunden, som krøniken fortæller, men kun forskønnet, udvidet eller muligvis genopbygget stedet.

2.

Kong Skjold

Efter Svend Aggesens opfattelse, udfra de Islandske Sagaer, er kong Skjold den første konge i Danmark. Kong Skjold skulle være sendt af selveste Odin, helt alene med et skib til Danmark for at redde landet der var uden konge fra den store tragedie.

En gammel fortælling:

I gamle dage, før kongemagten var indført i vort fædreland, havde danskerne ingen love at rette sig efter. Det gjaldt kun om at have kræfter den gang, for den stærkeste har altid ret. Det var den regel de mægtige levede efter, og de svage måtte bøje sig for den, hvor nødig de end ville.

Det var ikke alene mellem danskerne indbyrdes der var stridigheder, man kan tænke sig, at når landsmænd overfaldt hinanden, så kom der også fjender fra andre lande, og Danmark har altid haft en urolig nabo mod syd, som den gang plyndrede på vore kyster.

Derfor var der nød i Danmark. Tyve og røvere, både indfødte og udlændinge, dræbte og brændte, så det var en gru, og folket som det gik ud over bad til Odin om hjælp, at det dog måtte blive anderledes, og skønt ingen vidste hvorledes det skulle ske, håbede de dog hver morgen at hjælpen ville komme inden aften. Men dagen gik og om aftenen hørte de intet andet end rygter om nye overfald, og så kunne de glæde sig over at det ikke var dem selv der var blevet hjemsøgt.

Værst var det i Hedeby. Denne stad lå så nær ved grænsen at den til stadighed var udsat for fjendens plyndringer, og desuden havde mange slette mennesker givet sig hen til drukkenskab og andre laster, og de gjorde de fromme al den skade de kunne finde på.

Da skete det en dag, som nogle folk gik ved stranden og så ud over havet, at de fik øje på et underligt skib der kom sejlende langt ude.

Det var højt med dragehoved udskåret på forstavnen, og det skar gennem vandet for en gunstig vind, nærmere og nærmere, så de kunne se det kostelige silkesejl og den spraglede vimpel på den høje mast.

Men folkene på stranden stirrede og stirrede efter søfolk om bord, uden at se en eneste. Hverken ved ror eller sejl stod nogen styrmand, og dog gik skibet ind mod landet, ind i den smalle fjord, og skønt denne bugter sig, stødte det dog ikke på grund, for vinden drejede og blæste den vej skibet skulle gå, indtil det nærmede sig det inderste af fjorden. Da tog vinden af, lidt efter lidt, og lagde sig helt til sidst, så skibet flød roligt og lagde stille til land.

Langs med fjorden havde folk set den underlige sejlads, og de fulgte skibet ad stranden. Flere og flere kom til, og da skibet stod stille, var der samlet en stor mængde mennesker, som betragtede det underlige fartøj, og da så de, at der dog var et menneske om bord, for i bagstavnen lå mellem guld og våben en lille dreng, der sov på et skjold med et kornneg som hovedpude, og nu slog han øjnene op, just som skibet standsede, og folket var forsamlet.

Odin har hørt vor bøn, for det er sikkert hans søn han har sendt os, og han skal være vor konge. De bar ham i land på skjoldet, og satte ham i toppen af neget og hyldede ham alle. Og de gav ham navnet Skjold, fordi han skulle værne landet og dets beboere.

Det var en ung hersker danskerne havde fået, og endnu kunne han ikke værne om noget, tværtimod trængte han selv til værn i sin barndom, men det var dog som om man kunne mærke, at Odins søn var kommet til landet, for der var frugtbarhed og fred over hele riget.

Imidlertid gik årene, og Skjold voksede til. Han blev stor og stærk, og mod manglede han heller ikke. Folkene som var sat til at vogte og opfostre ham, gav ham da også en god opdragelse og lærte ham alt hvad der var godt og ret. Han var ikke gammel, Før han fik undervisning i våbenbrug, og han var ikke stort ældre, da han for første gang fik god anvendelse for sin færdighed og sine kræfter.

Det hændte sig nemlig engang at Skjold var på jagt med sine mænd i de store skove, som på den tid bredte sig over hele landet. Skjold var imidlertid så ivrig i at forfølge dyrene at han kom bort fra sine ledsagere, som også hver for sig jog efter vildt.

Som Skjold nu trængte frem gennem skovens tykning, kom han til at stå lige for en vældig bjørn, der just belavede sig på at angribe ham. Skjold måtte hurtigt tage sin beslutning, og da han næsten var værgeløs over for et så stort dyr, tog han sin bælte af og brødes nu så længe med bjørnen, at han fik den under sig og bandt den med bæltet. Således holdt han den, idet han ventede på sine ledsagere. De havde jo opdaget at Skjold var borte, og de fik travlt med at søge efter ham, for de tænkte sig den fare han kunne være i, men mindst, at han havde overvundet den på en sådan måde. Derfor strejfede de rundt i skoven, og råbte på ham, og til sidst fik de svar. Det var et uventet syn de så, og i begyndelsen blev de forskrækket over den fare, drengen havde været i, men de glædede sig ved hans mod og beundrede hans styrke.

Ligesom Skjold overvandt de vilde dyr, undertvang han også fremmede kæmper, men sit rige styrede med så meget klogskab og mildhed, at han blev almindelig afholdt, for han gav gode love og gjorde godt mod alle. Han indførte den lov at trællene skulle have deres frihed, så de kunne flytte fra en herre til en anden. De fattiges gæld betalte han, og sine stridsmænd gav han hvad de vandt på krigstogt, for Skjolds regel var, at byttet var kæmpernes, men æren Kongens.

Dog kunne han også straffe. En træl, Skjold selv havde givet fri, ville lønne denne velgerning ved at slå ham ihjel. Men denne plan blev opdaget i tide, og da måtte trællen selv bøde med livet, både fordi han havde fortjent denne straf, og fordi Skjold ville, at andre ildesindede mennesker kunne se hvad der var i vente ved sådanne forsøg.

Også udenfor Danmark indlagde Skjold sig berømmelse. I Tyskland boede nemlig en jomfru, hvis rygte gik vidt omkring, for hun var både smuk og klog. Hun hed Alvilda, og Skjold hørte så meget godt om hende, at han rejste derned for at bejle til hende. Men der var en tysk konge ved navn Skate kommet ham i forkøbet, og Skjold måtte enten vinde sin brud med sværdet, ved at dræbe Skate eller drage hjem med uforrettet sag. Det sidste ville han ikke og var derfor nød til at udæske tyskeren til tvekamp, skønt partiet var ulige, eftersom Skate var en stor kæmpe, og Skjold var både ung og meget mindre. Imidlertid begyndte striden, og danskerne og tyskerne stod på hver sin side af kamppladsen for at se, hvem der vandt. Det blev Skjold, der fik overhånd, og derved vandt han ikke alene sin brud, men han undertvang også Tyskland, så tyskerne måtte betale skat til Danmark.

Om det nu er denne Dronning Alvilde, der også hed Gefion, er ikke godt at vide, ellers må hun være død før Skjold, og han har da giftet sig igen med Gefion.

Det fortælles at Gefion engang besøgte Kong Gylfe i Sverige, og han syntes så godt om hende, at han gav hende så meget land, som hun i et døgn kunne pløje op med fire stude. Hun omskabte da hendes fire sønner til stude og spændte dem for ploven. Men så dybt gik ploven, at landet blev revet løs, og så hurtigt gik det, at hun fik ompløjet et stykke land, som blev til en stor ø, for studene trak den ud i sundet mellem Fyn og Sverige, og hun gav det navnet Sjælland, som det hedder endnu. Men der hvor hun tog det fra, blev en sø, som er til den dag i dag, og kaldes Vänern.

Denne ø som Gefion således dannede, gav hun Skjold, og han byggede sig et kongesæde i Lejre, hvor han boede med Gefion, som han tog til ægte.

Kong Skjolds henfart blev som hans ankomst, for da han døde, blev hans lig, som han selv havde ønsket det, lagt ud på det skib han var kommet med, og omkring ham blev lagt våben og kostbarheder, og hans banner vajede over hans hoved. Der var forsamlet en stor mængde mennesker for at se den elskede konges sidste fart, men ingen søfolk var om bord, og derfor ved ingen hvorhen det sejlede, lige så lidt som nogen vidste, hvor det var kommet fra.

Men det var folkets tro, at Skjold var Odins søn, og at hans lig drog til Odin igen, og derfor var det kongernes hædersnavn, når de kaldtes Skjoldunger efter ham.

"This Scyld is the same person whom the Beowulf poet alludes to at the beginning of that poem." 

"Some of the oldest pre-English writings tell of a strange event at the beginning of time. They say that a ship once came drifting from the great sea and landed on the Danish coast. The only living creature on board was a little boy, sleeping on a golden shield. Otherwise the ship was loaded with tools and weapons. The Danes called the boy Skjold and made him King of Denmark. During his reign Denmark flourished. When King Skjold eventually died of old age, the Danes placed him on board the same ship as he had arrived on and sent him back to the gods."

"He told them about their forefathers. Their great-grandfather King Skjold (Shield), who was a son of Odin. It is told that Odin put his newborn male child in a longship, because he wanted to give the Danes a king who could unite the country."

-------------------- In the Skjöldunga and the Ynglinga sagas, Odin came from Asia and conquered Northern Europe. He gave Sweden to his son Yngvi and Denmark to his son Skjöldr. Since then the kings of Sweden were called Ynglings and those of Denmark Skjöldungs (Scyldings).

A long time ago, it happened that the Danes had been, for many years, without a king. For lack of a lord, the land suffered: strife and disorder grew, and order and justice were trodden underfoot. The good people wept and the evil people laughed.

When things were darkest, a ship was seen, approaching the shore. Though it was grand to look at, both in size and in the richness of its appointments, no crew was to be seen. Only one person was aboard: a small child, sleeping by the mainmast, with a golden sheaf of wheat for a pillow, surrounded by weapons and golden treasure. A golden banner waved above the child, and the Danes understood that he had been sent to them by the gods.

Taking him to the thing-place, they hailed him as their king, calling him Skjold ("Shield"), saying that he was to defend his people like a shield.

King Skjold showed his heroic prowess at an early age. Once, in his boyhood, he was hunting and became separated from the rest of the party. A huge bear attacked him in the woods, but he wrestled with it, binding it with his belt, until the other hunters arrived to slay it.

When he was only fifteen, Skjold fought against the Saxon jarl Skat. Skat and Skjold were rival suitors to the princess Alfhild. Their rivalry was resolved by a duel in sight of both their armies. Skjold slew the Saxon, thereby not only winning a bride, but also making the Saxons his tributaries.

Skjold was a good king, harsh to his enemies, gentle with the weak and needy, righteous in his justice, generous to the loyal. To his housecarles, he not only distributed their just wages, but also shared out all the booty that he took from his enemies. "Wealth," he said, "is for warriors; honour is the proper reward for a king." Only towards the treacherous was he vengeful. From him, the later line of Danish kings descends who, after him, are named the Skjoldunge dynasty.

When Skjold felt his life ebbing, and death approaching, he instructed his men that, after his death, his body was to be placed on his ship, so that he might lie as he did, when first he came to the Danish shores as a small babe.

After his death, his men bore him to the beach, where the ship waited, adorned with gold and shining like ice. On the deck, near the mainmast, they laid their dear king down. Gold and precious items they placed beside him, and sword and mail. Never was a ship more grandly bedecked with treasure. On his broad breast, jewelry in great number was laid, and indeed, he was no less richly bejewelled in his death than when he came as a swaddling babe over the waves.

They raised once more his golden banner above his head, and committed the ship to the sea, letting the waves carry it off. No man under heaven can with certainty say whither the ship was taken by the wind, but many have guessed that the gods, who gave him to the Danes, took him once more to them.

SKIOLD, his son, inherited his natural bent, but not his behaviour; avoiding his inborn perversity by great discretion in his tender years, and thus escaping all traces of his father's taint. So he appropriated what was alike the more excellent and the earlier share of the family character; for he wisely departed from his father's sins, and became a happy counterpart of his grandsire's virtues. This man was famous in his youth among the huntsmen of his father for his conquest of a monstrous beast: a marvellous incident, which augured his future prowess. For he chanced to obtain leave from his guardians, who were rearing him very carefully, to go and see the hunting. A bear of extraordinary size met him; he had no spear, but with the girdle that he commonly wore he contrived to bind it, and gave it to his escort to kill. More than this, many champions of tried prowess were at the same time of his life vanquished by him singly; of these Attal and Skat were renowned and famous. While but fifteen years of age he was of unusual bodily size and displayed mortal strength in its perfection, and so mighty were the proofs of his powers that the rest of the kings of the Danes were called after him by a common title, the SKIOLDUNGS. Those who were wont to live an abandoned and flaccid life, and to sap their selfcontrol by wantonness, this man vigilantly spurred to the practice of virtue in an active career. Thus the ripeness of Skiold's spirit outstripped the fulness of his strength, and he fought battles at which one of his tender years could scarce look on.


Skjöldr ties up the bear, illustration by Louis MoeSkiold was eminent for patriotism as well as arms. For he annulled unrighteous laws, and most heedfully executed whatsoever made for the amendment of his country's condition. Further, he regained by his virtue the realm that his father's wickedness had lost. He was the first to proclaim the law abolishing manumissions. A slave, to whom he had chanced to grant his freedom, had attempted his life by stealthy treachery, and he exacted a bitter penalty; as though it were just that the guilt of one freedman should be visited upon all. He paid off all men's debts from his own treasury, and contended, so to say, with all other monarchs in courage, bounty, and generous dealing. The sick he used to foster, and charitably gave medicines to those sore stricken; bearing witness that he had taken on him the care of his country and not of himself. He used to enrich his nobles not only with home taxes, but also with plunder taken in war; being wont to aver that the prize-money should flow to the soldiers, and the glory to the general.

And as he thus waxed in years and valour he beheld the perfect beauty of Alfhild, daughter of the King of the Saxons, sued for her hand, and, for her sake, in the sight of the armies of the Teutons and the Danes, challenged and fought with Skat, governor of Allemannia, and a suitor for the same maiden; whom he slew, afterwards crushing the whole nation of the Allemannians, and forcing them to pay tribute, they being subjugated by the death of their captain.

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Skjold Odinsson,King of Denmark's Timeline

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215
Lejre, Lejre, Region Zealand, Denmark
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237
v/Asov, Ukraine
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258
Age 21
Of, Hleithra, , Denmark
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259
Age 22
259
Age 22
Hleithra, Denmark
280
280
Age 43
Lejre, Sjælland, Denmark
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Age 43
1953
October 11, 1953
Age 43
November 10, 1953
Age 43
November 10, 1953
Age 43