Siegfried, Sigurd Or Sigurdr, Hero Of The Legend Of Nibelungen
of reading - words
Siegfried is one of the greatest dragon hunters like St. George. This is his story.
Son of the twins Siegmund and Sieglinde, Siegfried (Sigurd or Sigurdr) is raised by Mime the dwarf blacksmith, brother of Alberich or Andvari. In order to recover the Ring of the Nibelungen giving love, money and joy to its bearer, he first went to find a horse to reach the lair of the dragon Fafnir, guardian of a fabulous treasure, including the ring.
He was advised to go to see the king who would give him one and on his way, crossing a forest, he met an old man who offered to accompany him. When he arrived in front of the herd, the old man who was Odin in disguise explained to Siegfried how to choose the best mount: the one that would manage to cross a deep river would be that one. Only one horse passed the test and Siegfried chose him, naming him Grani.
He then went to equip himself with a sword and tested the one that had been forged by Reginn, but it broke. Finally, he returned to his mother to collect the pieces of Gram, his father's sword, and had it forged again, naming it Balmung or Notung.
Being ready, all he had to do was go and face Fafnir. To trap the dragon, he hid in an underground pit and when Fafnir passed over him, he pierced his heart. At the end of the fight, Siegfried, covered in the dragon's blood, noticed that the dragon made his skin as hard as stone. He then rolled inside to cover his body completely.
Siegfried and Fafnir
After this adventure, Siegfried came back as a hero. Mime, eager for power, tried to recover the ring by poisoning his former student. But Siegfried discovered the trap and killed his master. Soon after he met the Brunehilde Valley, also known as Brynhild or Brünhild. Immersed in a deep sleep, in the heart of her flames, by Odin for having challenged her, only the one who could cross these flames would get her out of her sleep. Thanks to her invulnerable body, Siegfried crossed the flames and released her.
Queen Grimhildr's love potion
He then had a relationship with Brunehilde and in some versions of the story, they had a daughter, Aslaug. However, Siegfried went to another kingdom and Queen Grímhildr made him drink a love potion, pushing him into the arms of the king's daughter, Gutrune. In the meantime, a forced marriage was organized between Gunnar or Gunther, Gutrune's brother, and Brunehilde. Taking on Gunnar's appearance, Siegfried kidnapped Brunehilde and led her to the real Gunnar.
Feeling betrayed and mad with sadness, the Valkyrie accepted the request of Hagen, Alberich's son, to kill Siegfried for her. During a hunting trip, Hagen plunged his spear between Siegfried's shoulder blades, touching him at the only point where he was not invulnerable; for when he had covered himself with the dragon's blood, a leaf had previously stuck to that place.
Having killed Siegfried, Hagen claimed a property from his opponent as tradition had it; he claimed the ring of Nibelungen. Brunehilde realized then that all the misfortunes around Siegfried were due to the ring, cursed by its creator, Alberich. Brunehilde killed Hagen and during Siegfried's cremation she threw herself into the fire with the ring, to join her loved one and destroy the cursed object.
- Literature: Brot af Sigurdarkvidu and Sigrdarkvida hin skamma (Edda), The Curse of the Ring (E. Brassey)
- Comics: Twilight of the gods (Istin, Lemercier), Siegfried (A. Alice)
- Poetry: Siegfried Lied (Galland, time, wolves)
- Music: the Ring of the Nibelung (Wagner)