From THE BOOK OF WERE-WOLVES
by SABINE BARING-GOULD
Smith, Elder & Co., London
I will give a few instances of each of the three methods of changing bodies mentioned above. Freyja and Frigg had their falcon dresses in which they visited different regions of the earth, and Loki is said to have borrowed these, and to have then appeared so precisely like a falcon, that he would have escaped detection, but for the malicious twinkle of his eyes. In the Vælundar kviða is the following passage:–
Meyjar flugu sunnan From the south flew the maidens
Myrkvið igögnum Athwart the gloom,
Alvitr unga Alvit the young,
Orlög drýgja; To fix destinies;
þær á savarströnd They on the sea-strand
Settusk at hvilask, Sat them to rest,
Dró sir suðrœnar These damsels of the south
Dýrt lín spunnu. Fair linen spun.
Ein nam þeirra One of them took
Egil at verja Egil to press,
Fögr mær fíra Fair maid, in her
Faðmi ljósum; Dazzling arms.
Önnur var Svanhvít, Another was Svanhwit,
Svanfjaðrar dró; Who wore swan feathers;
En in þriðja And the third,
þeirra systir Their sister,
Var i hvítan Pressed the white
Háls Völundar. Neck of Vœlund.
The introduction of Sœmund tells us that these charming young ladies were caught when they had laid their swan-skins beside them on the shore, and were consequently not in a condition to fly.