Here’s an extract from the English translation of Rune 33 from which this plate draws its reference:
From a tree the raven answered:
“O thou little silver buckle,
Only son of old Kalervo,
Why art thou in evil humor,
Wherefore sad in thy demeanor?
Take a young shoot from the thicket,
Take a birch-rod from the valley,
Drive thy herd across the lowlands,
Through the quicksands of the marshes;
To the wolves let one half wander,
To the bear-dens, lead the other;
Sing the forest wolves together,
Sing the bears down from the mountains,
Call the wolves thy little children,
And the bears thy standard-bearers;
Drive them like a cow-herd homeward,
Drive them home like spotted cattle,
Drive them to thy master’s milk-yards;
Thus thou wilt repay the hostess
For her malice and derision.”
You don’t have to be born in 1979… they were made from the mid 1970s to the late 1990s. That gives a good span of potentially significant years – birthdays, anniversaries etc.
And don’t mind if there isn’t a special date to be marked… the artwork is so fabulous, they’re covetable for the patterns alone.
Having said that, there’s sure to be a few completists out there who are just going to have to have the full set – and we wouldn’t blame you!!
If you’re interested in starting your own collection, they’re often available in vintage stores. They also come up for sale on eBay quite regularly. Have a look at seller simoncurtis. He’s had quite a few of these tiles for sale recently – and has kindly allowed us to use some of his photos in this blog post.