(3 syl.). Margrave of Bechelaren, a wealthy Hun, liegeman of King Etzel. In the Nibelungen-Lied he is represented as a most noble character. He was sent to Burgundy by King Etzel, to conduct Kriemhild to Hungary if she would consent to marry the Hunnish king. When Gunther and his suite went to pay a visit to Kriemhild, he entertained them all most hospitably, and gave his daughter in marriage to Kriemhild's youngest brother, Giselher: and when the broil broke out in the dining-hall of King Etzel, and Rudiger was compelled to take part against the Burgundians, he fought with Kriemhild's second brother, Gernot. Rudiger struck Gernot “through his helmet,” and the prince struck the margrave “through shield and morion,” and “down dead dropped both together, each by the other slain.” —Nibelungen-Lied.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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