At 7:05:36 AM on Friday, August 13, 2010, AThompson wrote:

> Brian

> Thanks for your assistance on last section. However, can
> you explain further why their was “no creeping involved”
> in the ordeal. Has Zoega’s citation of “ganga undir
> jarðarmen” as to creep under a sod partially detached from
> the earth been superseded by more recent scholarship? My
> impression is that walking under a sod would be a piece of
> cake, whereas having to crawl through a narrow opening
> would give the heathen gods (or the archangels :-)) a
> little more time to decide the man´s fate.

I've been thinking about that ever since I wrote it, and on
further consideration I've decided that 'crawling', and
maybe even 'creeping', probably is right, though not for the
reason that you suggest: I just don't think that it would
possible to lift the sod into a self-supporting arch as tall
as I was envisioning, no matter how shaky.

> Þorkell devised a plan with two men that they should cause
> themselves to disagree (?) about some thing and (but) be
> situated (placed) near there when the ordeal (test) was
> performed…

> (I don't see any reason to interpret this 'and' as 'but'.)

> Also, I translated it as ‘but’ to emphasise that the key
> to the plan´s success was that not only did they have to
> pretend to argue but that they also had to be located near
> the arch – a la Pete and Dud.

Oddly enough, that's exactly why I prefer 'and'! Are you
perhaps thinking of it as 'they should not only pretend ...
but also [be] situated' instead of simply 'they should
pretend ... and [be] situated'?