Svaknir was a Nord bard in the First Era who became famous (or infamous) for challenging the legitimacy of the capture of the dragon Numinex by Olaf One-Eye. In large part due to his acclaim for capturing Numinex, Olaf had gone on to become High King of Skyrim in 1E 420, ending the War of Succession amongst the Nords. Hence, Svaknir's accusations were highly volatile and controversial.
Svaknir wrote and performed pieces decrying Olaf as a fraud and a tyrant. Olaf responded by imprisoning the bard and destroying every copy of the verse which could be found. Ancient bard texts, perhaps written or inspired by Svaknir, claimed that Olaf and his men came upon a weakened Numinex and captured the dragon without significant effort, and then fabricated the orthodox tale to ensure Olaf's place as Jarl and likely to aid in his bid to become High King. In 4E 201, in an effort to recover King Olaf's Verse, Svaknir's lost portion of the Poetic Edda (a living history of Skyrim maintained by bards), agents from the Bards College reportedly plundered Olaf's tomb and, along with a vengeful shade of Svaknir, fought the draugr that once was the High King of Skyrim. In the end, Olaf considered Svaknir a fool, but respected him as an honest enemy.
- For game-specific information, see the Skyrim article.