The Lay of Hyldebrand
The Lay of Hyldebrand was an Old Harrowish heroic lay, originally Hildebrandslied. This is its translation into modern Harrowish
Iherde ic tell,
that two bichosen dryghtmen, Hyldebrand and Hadubrand,
mette one another, betwixt two ferdis.
Father and son, undersok the lordis theyr geare,
theyr shieldand areddyed, and theyr bleydis y-buckel'd
over theyr chayn mayll, before owt unto batayle rydand.
Spake first Hyldebrand, the alder and more afar'd man,
ask'd he, with fewe wordis whome his father was
and from whych kin he is y-come.
"Tell'st thoue me the one, yonge man, and I'll knowe the other,
for ic all grete folke knowe in this kingdome."
Eftgayn'd Hadubrand, the son of Hyldebrand:
"Old and wyse folke who liv'd longe agan
told me that my fathers nayme was Hyldebrand.
My nayme is Hadubrand.
He longe ago rayde off intil the East with Dietrick,
and his manye dryghtemen, fleyen Otackers wrath.
He rayde off intil the East, levand at hame his wyfman
with a smal bayrn, beleth'd of his birthryghte.
Dietrick, a man with but fewe felowis,
became relyen upon my father.
His feud with Otacker more hardspun y-grewe.
and my father became his beste-lov'd dryghteman.
He was at the fronte of everye batayle, wylland to be in everye duell.
Brayve men knewen him welle.
"With Almyghty God in Heaven for a witnesse,
may'stow never wende unto batayle agaynste thy nexte of ken."
And he toke from his arm a band of ryngis,
brayd'd from the emperours geld,
whych the King of the Hunis hadde ayaven unto him.
"This thee ic yeve in felowshype."
Hadubrand, the son of Hyldebrand, eftgayn'd:
"A gifte sholde be thiged with a yar,
poynte agaynste poynte.
Thoue cunnand olde Hun,
lede'st me into a trap with thy wordis,
only throwen thoue at me thyn yar.
Thoue is y-growne old by onyeldand suche falsedome.
Saylouris fayrand westwarde acrosse the Wendlesea
told me that he felle in batayle.
Hyldebrand, the son of Heribrand, is dedde."
Hyldebrand, the son of Heribrand, eftgayn'd:
"Ic from thy batayle geare see
that hast thoue at hame a gode master,
and that thoue hast never bene banysh'd by thy prynce.
Alas, Lord God, fayte hath y-strucke.
Sixty whilis have ic sene summer worth unto wynter
and wynter unto summer in a welsh lond.
Ic was alwayis put on the front lynis;
Ic was never y-kyll'd whyle stormand a kepe,
and now sholde stryke me myn owne bayrn with his sword
and hitte he me with his axe, if ic don't kylle him first.
But if hast thoue the boldnesse, thoue myghte easiliche
wynne the shyeldand from an olde man lyke me,
and take thoue away the afterlene, if hast thoue any ryghte unto them.
Not even the worste of the men from the East
wolde turne downe the hap to fyghte wyth thee,
with thy duelen yearnand. Worth what it maye,
let us see who wylle boaste of this geare
and who wylle lay clayme unto these two outfitis of chayn mayll."
Then they let sayll theyr ashen yars,
Sharpe showeris, stycken in theyr shyeldis.
They came closer on fote, spletand eache others bryghte bordis,
stryken fyerceliche untyll theyr weaponis shater'd theyr shyeldis.