fifteen winters

I have gambled my glorious life,
girl of fair complexion,
fought the fish of the land (serpent),
though fifteen winters old.
I have conquered, cleaving
the coiled heath-salmon (serpent) to the heart-
unless its bale should bite,
bringing me sudden death.
— 

Ragnarr Loðbrók.



Ragnarr, the son of King Sigurd Hring of Denmark, spoke the verse above to Thora, the daughter of Jarl Herrud of Gautland (Gotland) upon killing a serpent for him at the age of fifteen. Remember, though, that his historical attestation is questionable, so take caution and do not consider these words historical fact, nor words actually spoken by Ragnarr.


Source: Ben Waggoner trans., The Sagas of Ragnar Lodbrok. (New Haven, CT: Troth Publications, 2009), 6.