The Death of Sigurd Eysteinsson General Nonsense 27 AUG 2009

Okay, here’s a fairly bizarre way to bite the dust then.

Sigurd Eysteinsson, or rather Sigurd the Mighty, was the second Viking Earl of Orkney who ruled over the lands of Orkney and the Shetland islands circa 875-92. Of course, not satisfied with what he had, Sigurd went on to make a name for himself by expanding his domain to include much of the Scottish Mainland, including Caithness and Sutherland.

Towards the end of his reign, Sigurd challenged a native ruler, Mael Brigte the Bucktoothed, to a 40-man-a-side battle. Treacherously though, Sigurd turned up with 80 men to do battle and naturally won the fight, beheading Mael and taking his head as a trophy in the process. Sigurd then strapped the severed head to his horse’s saddle and returned to his people in order to celebrate his conquest.

However, as he rode towards home, Mael Brigte’s buck-tooth scratched his leg, the wound of which quickly became infected, inflaming Sigurd’s leg and eventually causing him to die.

See, not often one can claim to have been killed by the severed head of his enemy now is it?

Sigurd The Mighty Eysteinsson

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About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.