This last was written immediately before his death, and the last stanza added on the fatal morning.
The poem, which extends to loot lines written in the irregular alliterative rhymed stanza, is a bird-allegory, of the type familiar in the Parlement of Foules.
Each poem contains twenty-two stanzas, corresponding to the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet; and each stanza begins with its proper letter.
Each of the three couplets in a stanza begins with the same letter, so that the alphabet is repeated thrice: cf.
It was the voice of a young girl, his cousin, who sang a stanza, saying, "Happy the father, happy the mother, happy the wife of such a son and husband."
It is agreed on all sides that the last stanza, attributing the authorship to Halbsuter of Lucerne, "as he came back from the battle," is a very late addition.
The art of poetry stood to the Icelanders in lieu of music; scarcely any prominent man but knew how to turn a mocking or laudatory stanza, and down to the fall of the commonwealth the accomplishment was in high request.
Redactional links have been added, apparently by D, to whom is possibly due the stanza quoted from the book of Jashar (v.