"Let not thy counsellors stir thy wrath Against the man who speaks the truth; Thy honour lies in thy good sword, But still more in thy royal word; And, if the people do not lie, The new laws turn out not nigh So Just and mild, as the laws given At Ulfasund in face of heaven.
"Dread king! who urges thee to break Thy pledged word, and back to take Thy promise given? Thou warrior bold; With thy own people word to hold, Thy promise fully to maintain, Is to thyself the greatest gain: The battle-storm raiser he Must by his own men trusted be.
"Who urges thee, who seek'st renown, The bondes' cattle to cut down? No king before e'er took in hand Such viking-work in his own land. Such rapine men will not long bear, And the king's counsellors will but share In their ill-will: when once inflamed, The king himself for all is blamed.
"Do cautious, with this news of treason Flying about -- give them no reason. We hange the thief, but then we use Consideration of the excuse. I think, great king (who wilt rejoice Eagle and wolf with battle voice), It would be wise not to oppose Thy bondes, and make them thy foes.
"A dangerous sign it is, I fear, That old grey-bearded men appear In corners whispering at the Thing, As if they had bad news to bring. The young sit still, -- no laugh, or shout, -- More looks than words passing shout; And groups of whispering heads are seen, On buttoned breasts, with lowering mien.
"Among the udalmen, they say The king, if he could have his way, Would seize the bondes' udal land, And free-born men must this withstand. In truth the man whose udal field, By any doom that law can yield From him adjudged the king would take, Could the king's throne and power shake."
"A holy bond between us still Makes me wish speedy end to ill: The sluggard waits till afternoon, -- At once great Magnus! grant our boon. Then we will serve with heart and hand, With thee we'll fight by sea or land: With Olaf's sword take Olaf's mind, And to thy bondes be more kind."
In this song the king was exhorted to observe the laws which his father had established. This exhortation had a good effect on the king, for many others held the same language to him. So at last the king consulted the most prudent men, who ordered all affairs according to law. Thereafter King Magnus had the law- book composed in writing which is still in use in Throndhjem district, and is called "The Grey Goose" (1). King Magnus afterwards became very popular, and was beloved by all the country people, and therefore he was called Magnus the Good.