grefleysingr (ON) noun

Literally a ‘hoe-freedman’. A former slave who had been granted freedom but whose freedom had not yet been announced at an assembly and therefore possessed a liminal legal status. The term appears only once in Grg Vís 112. The name grefleysingr has been variously interpreted as referring to someone permitted only to be armed with a hoe as a weapon (as opposed to the folkvápn (see folkvapn) born by free men) or as someone relieved from the more onerous tasks performed by slaves, such as digging.

spade-freedman OIce Grg Vís 112 Refs:

CV; F; GAO s.v. Freigelassene; Grg I:174 n. 171; KLNM s.v. leysingi

  • ‘grefleysingr’. A Lexicon of Medieval Nordic Law.