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Wayland

by Micha F. Lindemans
Wayland

The Anglo-Saxon god of blacksmithing. He and his two brothers married swan-princesses and they lived in peace for a time. Then his wife left him and the king, Nidud, captured the smith and took him to his island kingdom. To prevent Wayland from escaping, Nidud ordered his man to cut the sinews of Wayland's leg. The king had Wayland fashion wonderful items for his and his family.

Wayland took vengeance on the king by killing Nidud's sons when they came to visit the smithy. From their skulls he fashioned exquisite goblets, which he gave to the king, and from their eyes he made beautiful jewels, which were presented to the queen. Wayland fell in love with the king's daughter and fathered a child on her, and escaped from the island. Nidud's daughter had already extracted a promise from her father that he would never hurt her son, and so the king could do nothing about Wayland's child.

There is another legend connected to Wayland. According to this legend, a traveler whose horse has lost a shoe can leave the animal and the smallest silver coin (a groat (4 pennies) or a sixpence) on the capstone at Wayland's Smithy. When he returns next morning he will find that his horse has been re-shod.


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