Armament: High class swords
Armor: Mail shirts
Unit size: Small
Moral: Very High
When the king Olaf Haraldsson summoned 3 prospective heirs, young
nephews, and asked them what their ambitions were as king. The first
said he wanted great estates, and the second wanted thousands upon
thousands of cattle, but the third said he wanted warriors, enough to
ravage the great estates, and slaughter all the cattle of his brothers.
The king noted with approval that the third heir, a young Harald
Hardrada would one day be king.
Such is the gamble of kings to be ruthless, or to cast to the winds.
While in theory a king should come from royal blood, the truth is that
a king is only one who has the fortitude, cunning, charisma, and
strength of sword arm to seize what power he can get. Thus a capable
Jarl will have a following of loyal and skillful brothers in arms, who
fight as Hírðmenn. They are equipped with the best weapons money can
buy, or be ripped from the arms of foes.
Hírðmenn are completely reliable, perfectly suited to peril and
adventure, but ultimately it is the person whom they serve who will
decide their fate, behind the mast or on the field of slaughter. A wise
king should never forget where he came from.
"So. The Spear-Danes in days gone by
and the kings who ruled them had courage and greatness.
We have heard of those princes' heroic campaigns.
There was Scyld Scefing, scourge of many tribes
a wrecker of mead-benches, rampaging among foes
This terror of the hall-troops had come far.
A foundling to start with, he would flourish later on
as his powers waxed and his worth was proved.
In the end each clan on the outlying coasts
beyond the whale-road had to yield to him
and begin to pay tribute. That was one good king" - Beowulf