Havelok the Dane: A Legend of Old Grimsby and Lincoln cover

Havelok the Dane: A Legend of Old Grimsby and Lincoln

Charles Watts Whistler (1856-1913)

1. PREFACE
2. CHAPTER I - GRIM THE FISHER AND HIS SONS
3. CHAPTER II - KING HODULF'S SECRET
4. CHAPTER III - HAVELOK, SON OF GUNNAR
5. CHAPTER IV - ACROSS THE SWAN'S PATH
6. CHAPTER V - STORM AND SHIPWRECK
7. CHAPTER VI - THE BEGINNING OF GRIMSBY TOWN
8. CHAPTER VII - BROTHERHOOD
9. CHAPTER VIII - BERTHUN THE COOK
10. CHAPTER IX - CURAN THE PORTER
11. CHAPTER X - KING ALSI OF LINDSEY
12. CHAPTER XI - THE COMING OF THE PRINCESS
13. CHAPTER XII - IN LINCOLN MARKETPLACE
14. CHAPTER XIII - THE WITAN'S FEASTING
15. CHAPTER XIV - THE CRAFT OF ALSI THE KING
16. CHAPTER XV - THE FORTUNE OF CURAN THE PORTER
17. CHAPTER XVI - A STRANGEST WEDDING
18. CHAPTER XVII - HOW THE BRIDE WENT HOME
19. CHAPTER XVIII - JARL SIGURD OF DENMARK
20. CHAPTER XIX - THE LAST OF GRIFFIN OF WALES
21. CHAPTER XX - THE OWNING OF THE HEIR
22. CHAPTER XXI - THE TOKEN OF SACK AND ANCHOR
23. CHAPTER XXII - KING ALSI'S WELCOME
24. CHAPTER XXIII - BY TETFORD STREAM
25. CHAPTER XXIV - PEACE, AND FAREWELL

(*) Your listen progress will be continuously saved. Just bookmark and come back to this page and continue where you left off.

Summary

Troy, Athens, Rome... each has its founding legend. So too does the Lincolnshire town of Grimsby, once the largest fishing port in the world. Havelok the Dane probably derives from a folk-tale, orally passed down before assuming written form - first in Anglo-Norman French, later in Middle English verse (c. 1280-1300). It tells of the rescue of the Danish prince from a wicked regent, who has tried to procure Havelok's murder. Grim the fisher, the appointed hit-man, thwarts the plan by spiriting the lad to England, where Grim settles with his family on the coast, adopting Havelok as his foster-son and naming the new community after himself. C.W. Whistler's clever adaptation of the tale (published in 1899) draws on the various medieval sources. The English poem is particularly suited to 'novelisation'. It abounds in homely detail, and the hero's progress from half-dead waif to the triumphant fulfilment of his strength and kingly destiny makes a satisfying arc for the development of plot and character. At the same time, the legend's origins in oral performance are suggested through the choice of a first-person narrator, namely Grim's sober-sided son Radbard, whose plain-spoken account conveys something of the older saga tradition. Our reader, the gifted Tony Foster, has worked and travelled in Scandinavia. His subtly-inflected narration brings a truly Nordic flavour to this re-creation of life in sixth-century Britain. Since Charles Whistler published his novel, both Grimsby and its local heroes have been celebrated from time to time - by Elton John in his album Caribou (1974) and recently in a folk rock musical by local band Merlin's Keep (2014). (Introductory