"There is a man in there called Volker who fights like a wild boar, and he is a minstrel, too. I bless my good fortune that I eluded the fiend! His lays grate on the ear, his fiddle-bow draws red, and his tunes fell warriors past counting. I do not know what this Minstrel has against us, for I have never had so dreadful a guest!"
They had now let out those whom they wished to let out of the hall, and at once a great clamour arose within, for the visitors were avenging the wrongs they had endured. As to the helmets bold Volker smashed, they are past all telling.
"Hagen, can you hear the tunes which Volker is playing to the Huns that venture the door?" asked noble King Gunther, turning in the direction of the din. "It is red rosin that he uses for his bow."
...His fiddle-bow slices its way through tough steel and he shatters the gleaming crests on the helmets. I never saw a fiddler cut such a splendid figure as Sir Volker has done today. His lays go ringing through the shields and helmets: he has every right to ride good horses and wear magnificent clothes."
The Nibelungenlied, trans. by A.T. Hatto, Penguin Classics, Great Britain, 1965, p. 247-248.
PLACE: At the court of Etzel, King of the Huns.
TIME: Middle Ages (11th century?)
CIRCUMSTANCE: The fight between the Huns and the Burgundians. - Volker's roles as warrior and minstrel are indistinct here. This gives him a particularly evil appearance.