OLAF THE TRANQUIL, MAGNUS BAREFOOT, AND SIGURD THE CRUSADER.
THE new King Olaf, his brother Magnus having soon died, bore rule in Norway for some five-andtwenty years. Rule soft and gentle, not like his father's, and inclining rather to improvement in the arts and elegancies than to anything severe or dangerously laborious. A slim-built, witty-talking, popular, and pretty man, with uncommonly bright eyes, and hair like floss silk: they called him Olaf Kyrre (the Tranquil or Easy-going).
The ceremonials of the palace were much improved by him. Palace still continued to be built of huge logs pyramidally sloping upwards, with fire-place in the middle of the floor, and no egress for smoke or ingress for light except right overhead, which in bad weather you could shut or all but shut, with a lid. Lid originally made of mere opaque board, but changed latterly into a light frame, covered (glazed, so to speak) with entrails of animals, clarified into something of pellucidity. All this Olaf, I hope, further perfected, as he did the placing of the court ladies, court officials, and