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ENTER THE DRAGON. LEGENDARY SAGA COURAGE AND THE BIRTH OF THE HERO

ÁRMANN JAKOBSSON

The uses of monsters

‘Þat sagðir þú, Reginn, at dreki sjá væri eigi meiri en einn lyngormr, en mérsýnask vegar hans æfar miklir’ “You claimed, Reginn, that this dragon wasno bigger than a regular worm, but he seems to me to leave a mighty track”(Volsunga saga, 41). Before killing Fáfnir, Sigurðr Fáfnisbani is far from enthusiastic. Presumably he is not supposed to realise at this point that he will be famous ever after for slaying this dragon, as his nickname attests. According to Volsunga saga, he mainly desires revenge for the death of his father; it is his foster-father Reginn who keeps urging him to kill the dragon and he continues to postpone it until he has avenged his kinsmen.

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