Vethild, Ovaegi, Avaldamon, and Valdida in “Eirik the Red’s Saga”

Chapter 12

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They had southerly winds and reached Markland, where they met five natives. One was bearded, two were women and two of them children. Karlsefni and his men caught the boys but the others escaped and disappeared into the earth. They took the boys with them and taught them their language and had them baptized. They called their mother Vethild and their father Ovaegi. They said that kings ruled the land of the natives; one of them was called Avaldamon and the other Valdidida. No houses were there, they said, but people slept in caves or holes. They spoke of another land, across from their own. There people dressed in white clothing, shouted loudly and bore poles and waved banners [often translated as ‘banners’ but the literal meaning is ‘strip’ of an undefined material which could be skin or cloth or anything pliable]. This people assumed to be the land of the white men

Source: Keneva Kunz, trans., "[Vethild, Ovaegi, Avaldamon, and Valdida in] Eirik the Red’s Saga" in The Sagas of Icelanders: A Selection, preface by Jane Smiley, introduction by Robert Kellogg, (New York, London, Victoria (Australia), Toronto, Auckland: The Penguin Group, 2000), 653-674. Notes: Translations first published in "The Complete Sagas of Icelanders," volumes I-V (forty-nine tales), Leifur Eiriksson Publishing, Ltd., Iceland, 1997.

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