Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Synopsis II

In Poul Anderson's The Golden Horn (New York, 1980), Chapter XV, How Harald Came Home, Harald Hardrada, now thirty years of age, for the second time synopsises his life to date, this time more briefly:

"He had seen Olaf fall, he had housed in a forest hovel, he had fled out of the land, he had served foreign kings with homesickness black in his heart, he had left the only woman he loved because he was powerless to take her with him." (p. 260)

Now, to make up for all this, he must become king! And he will. This novel, the first volume of a trilogy, ends:

"Naught on earth would ever again take from him what he held dear, now that he was a king." (p. 284)

The only extension of the synopsis is the reference to the woman he loved and it was to her that he had summarised his life on the first occasion back on page 135. Housing in a forest hovel was that first time described as "...refuge in the wilderness..." In fact, it was only a few weeks of recuperation from battle wounds. Both synopses make it sound like a longer or more significant period of his life.

Harald has completed a full career, mainly as a Captain of the Varangian Guard, by the age of thirty and now has twenty one years and two volumes left for his second career as King of Norway.

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