Wednesday 20 November 2013

Havamal Snippets 103: Be cheerful with guests

It's best to hospitable to guests.  To neet their needs, the host needs to know a little about them: their likes and dislikes: be it the kind of food or drink, the music or entertainment, the conversation or whatever.  Hosting means having a well rounded set of knowledge, not specialised, but well rounded.

Heima glaðr gumi
ok við gesti reifr
sviðr skal um sik vera
minnigr ok málugr
ef hann vill margfróðr vera
opt skal góðs geta
fimbulfambi heitir
sá er fátt kann segja
þat er ósnotrs aðal              

At home a man [3] must be [1] glad
and cheerful with guests,
knowing about himself,
mindful and fluent,
if he wants to be well-informed;
he should often speak of good things.
He is called a monstrous fool,
the one who knows how to say almost nothing:
it is the character of the unwise.


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