11. On all Burgs 2
11a. Denmarks Lost, ca. 590 BCE
[079/11] This is written on all our burgs — How we lost our Denmarks, sixteen hundred and two years after Aldland perished:
As a result of Wodin’s foolishness and indiscretion, the magus had become master over eastern Skeanland, though he dared not cross the mountains or the sea. The mother did not want it back. She spoke, declaring: “I see no threat in his weapons, but indeed in taking the Skeanlanders back, as they have become mixed and corrupted.” The assembly agreed, and so the land was left to the magus.
More than a hundred years earlier, the Danes had begun trading with them. They gave them iron weapons and tools in exchange for golden ornaments as well as copper and iron ore. The mother sent messengers and advised them to cease this trade. Their morals, she said, were in peril,  and if they should lose their morals, they would also lose their freedom. But the Danes did not heed this advice. They refused to understand that their morality could be diminished, so they simply ignored her message. At long last, they sold even their own weapons and food stores. And that evil wrought its own penalty: Their bodies were bedecked with garishness and gloss, but their warehouses and barns were emptied.
Barely a hundred years after the day that the first ship with provisions had set out, poverty and privation entered in through the windows. Hunger spread its wings and came down upon the land. Discord marched loudly through the streets and into the houses. Love became homeless and unity deserted them. The children wanted food from their mothers, and the mothers had jewelry but no food. The wives begged their husbands, who in turn begged the aldermen. But the aldermen themselves had nothing, or kept what they did have hidden away.
Now the ornaments had to be sold, but while the steersmen were underway with them, frost came and laid a sheet over sea and strait. When this bridge of ice was full built, vigilance crossed it  to forsake the land, and treason took its throne. Instead of guarding the shores, the people hitched their horses to their sleighs and drove to Skeanland. The Skeanlanders, who longed for their ancestral land, came to the Denmarks. On a bright night, they arived. They laid claim to the land of their ancestors and, during the fighting which arose thereof, Finns sneaked into the empty villages and kidnapped the children.
Because of this and the lack of good weapons, they lost the battle and, with it, their freedom — as the magus became their master. This was the consequence of not reading Frya’s Tex and neglecting her advice. Some believe they were betrayed by the aldermen and that the maidens had known of this long before. But any who opened their mouth to speak the truth had it shut with a lock of gold. It is not for us to judge upon this, but we will tell you this loud and clear:
Do not depend too much on the wisdom and virtue of your nobles or your maidens, for every man must keep watch over his own passions and safeguard the common good if it is to endure.
[p.111] This is inscribed in all our Citadels.
How our Denmark was lost to us 1602 years after the submersion of Atland. Through the mad wantonness of Wodin, Magy had become master of the east part of Scandinavia. They dare not come over the hills and over the sea. The mother would not prevent it. She said, I see no danger in their weapons, but much in taking the Scandinavians back again, because they are so degenerate and spoilt. The general assembly were of the same opinion. Therefore it was left to him. A good hundred years ago Denmark began to trade; they gave their iron weapons in exchange for gold ornaments, as well as for copper and iron-ore. The mother sent messengers to advise them to have nothing to do with this trade. There was danger to their morals in it, and if they lost their morals they would soon lose their liberty. But the Den-markers paid no attention to her. They did not believe that they could lose their morals, therefore they would not listen to her. At last they were at a loss themselves for weapons and necessaries, and this difficulty was their punishment. Their bodies were brilliantly adorned, but their cupboards and their sheds were empty. Just one hundred years after the first ship with provisions sailed from the coast, poverty and want made their appearance, hunger spread her wings all over the country, dissension marched proudly about the streets and into the houses, charity found no place, and unity departed. The child asked its mother for food; she had no food to give, only jewels. The women applied to their husbands, the husbands appealed to the counts; the counts had nothing to give, or if they had, they hid it away. Now the jewels must be sold, but while the sailors [p.113] were away for that purpose, the frost came and laid a plank upon the sea and the strait (the Sound). When the frost had made the bridge, vigilance ceased in the land, and treachery took its place. Instead of watching on the shores, they put their horses in their sledges and drove off to Scandinavia. Then the Scandinavians, who hungered after the land of their forefathers, came to Denmark. One bright night they all came. Now, they said, we have a right to the land of our fathers; and while they were fighting about it, the Finns came to the defenceless villages and ran away with the children. As they had no good weapons, they lost the battle, and with it their freedom, and Magy became master. All this was the consequence of their not reading Frya's Tex, and neglecting her counsels. There are some who think that they were betrayed by the counts, and that the maidens had long suspected it; but if any one attempted to speak about it, his mouth was shut by golden chains.
We can express no opinion about it, we can only say to you, Do not trust too much to the wisdom of your princes or of your maidens; but if you wish to keep things straight, everybody must watch over his own passions, as well as the general welfare.
- ‘lock of gold’ (GOLDEN KÉDNE) — lit.: ‘golden chains’; seems to imply that reports of corruption were repressed through bribery.
In alternative order: