Sayings of the Vikings

from The Havamal or Book of Viking Wisdom

Always rise
to an early meal,
but eat your fill before a feast.
If you're hungry
you have no time
to talk at the table.

- The Havamal
Never walk
away from home
ahead of your axe and sword.
You can't feel a battle
in your bones
or foresee a fight.

- The Havamal
Moderately wise
a man should be
not too crafty or clever.
A learned man's heart
whose learning is deep
seldom sings with joy.

- The Havamal
The unwise man
is awake all night
worries over and again.
When morning rises
he is restless still,
his burden as before.

- The Havamal
It is fortunate
to be favored
with praise and popularity.
It is dire luck
to be dependent
on the feelings of your fellow man.

- The Havamal
Wake early
if you want
another man's life or land.
No lamb
for the lazy wolf.
No battle's won in bed.

- The Havamal
Go you must.
No guest shall stay
in one place for ever.
Love will be lost
if you sit too long
at a friend's fire.

- The Havamal
Be your friend's
true friend.
Return gift for gift.
Repay laughter
with laughter again
but betrayal with treachery.

- The Havamal
Cattle die
kinsmen die
all men are mortal.
Words of praise
will never perish
nor a noble name.

- The Havamal