leþunger (OSw) lething (ODan) laiþingr (OGu) leiðangr (ON) leþonger (OSw) noun

The leþunger was the military service connected to the system of naval defence, and the dues and taxes that the subjects owed to this service. When mobilised, the soldiers were obliged to stand at the king’s disposal in order to protect the country, esp. the coastal areas, against attacks from enemies. There is evidence of its existence in all Danish laws, in ÖgL, and all Svea laws except DL, and in the Norwegian FrL and GuL as well as in the appendix to GL (Guta saga, GS). By the time that the Swedish laws were written down in the form we know them today, these obligations had been transformed into yearly taxes in times of peace.

{leþunger} OSw HL Kgb
expedition to sea OSw KrL DbI

levy OGu GS Ch. 4
OSw HL Kgb
OSw SdmL Kgb, Mb, Rb, Till
OSw UL Kgb, Mb, Rb
OSw VmL Kgb, Mb

levy duty ONorw FrL Leb 9
military due ODan ESjL 3
ODan JyL 2
ODan SkL 75

military duty ODan ESjL 2, 3
ODan JyL 2, 3

military tax ODan JyL 3
naval levy ONorw GuL Kpb, Leb
tax ONorw FrL Intr 17
warfare ODan VSjL 79 Refs:

Bagge 2010, 72–80 and passim; Hafström 1949a; Helle 2001, 32–34, 158–75; Hertzberg s.v. leiðangr; Hjärne I, 1980, 263; KLNM s.v.v. folkvapen, frälse, hamna, håndverkslovgivning, landvärn, ledungslama, leidang, lide, nefgildi, proviantering, skatter, stadens skepp, styresmann, årmann; Lindkvist 1995, 56−64; Lund 1967; Lönnroth 1940, 62−72; Robberstad 1981, 389–93; Tamm and Vogt 2016, 37−38

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

  • http://www.dhi.ac.uk/lmnl/nordicheadword/displayPage/3211