From Iceland — Just Sayings: "Enginn er sá leppalúði að ekki vilja fá sér brúði".

Just Sayings: “Enginn er sá leppalúði að ekki vilja fá sér brúði”.

Just Sayings: “Enginn er sá leppalúði að ekki vilja fá sér brúði”.

Published October 20, 2020

Valur Grettisson
Photo by
Þrándur Þórarinsson

To be honest, we only picked this idiom because of the word “leppalúði.” In a very loose English translation, the Icelandic saying “Enginn er sá leppalúði að ekki vilja fá sér brúði” means “No one is such a loser that he doesn’t want a bride!”

The “loser” in the sentence is the word “leppalúði,” which can also mean a person dressed in rags, a bogeyman, and is—as is most important here—the name of the father of the Icelandic Yule Lads. Truly a dynamic title.

In the aforementioned Christmas tale, Leppalúði was a troll who married the horrific baby-eating cannibal Grýla. You know, the grim troll-lady that steals children who have been naughty, put them in a huge pot, and then boils and eat them? Incidentally, Grýla’s also a great mother so her thirteen sons—which are all thieves, perverts or just plain weirdos—also give children gifts thirteen nights before Christmas. (Read about their flesh-eating cat here.)

The saying is, of course, kind of a joke, but it means, or rather infers, that every man wants a woman will find her—even Leppalúði, who is married to the cave of horrors. Leppalúði is deeply oppressed by Grýla according to the myth—hence the meaning, loser.

That said, he found his bride. Good for him.

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