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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Lausavísur from Haralds saga Sigurðarsonar — Anon (HSig)II

Anonymous Lausavísur

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Lausavísur from Haralds saga Sigurðarsonar’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 815-23.

 

Skôru jast ór osti
eybaugs Dana meyjar
— þat of angraði þengil
þing — akkerishringa.
Nú sér mǫrg í morgun
mær — hlær at því færi —
ernan krók ór jarni
allvalds skipum halda.
 
‘The girls of the Danes of the island-ring [SEA] carved anchor-rings from yeast-cheese; that object angered the lord. Now this morning many a maiden sees a powerful hook of iron holding the mighty ruler’s ships; fewer laugh at that.
Brenndr vas upp með endum
allr — en þat má kalla
hraustligt bragð, es hugðak —
Heiðabœr af reiði.
Vôns, at vinnim Sveini
(vask í nótt fyr óttu)
— gaus hár logi ór húsum —
harm (á borgar armi).
 
‘All Hedeby was burned from end to end out of anger, and that one can call a valiant deed, I believe. There is hope that we will do harm to Sveinn; I was on the rampart of the stronghold last night before dawn; high flame burst from the houses.
Ferk í vánda verju;
verr nauð of mér snauðum;
kǫsungr fær víst í vási
vǫmm; en þat vas skǫmmu.
Endr vas hitt, at hrunði
hringkofl of mik inga;
gǫgl bôru sik sára
svǫng; en þat vas lǫngu.
 
‘I dress in a coarse cloak; it defends miserable me against distress; the shirt certainly suffers damage in the toil; and that was recently. It was earlier, that the ring-cowl of the king fell around me; goslings of wounds [RAVENS/EAGLES] moved hungrily; but that was long ago.
Brenndum brúk á sandi;
bauðk hyr þara rauðum;
reyksvæla tók rjúka
rǫmm; en þat vas skǫmmu.
Enn fyr England sunnan
óð hestr und mér festa;
ristin skalf í rǫstu
rǫng; en þat vas lǫngu.
 
‘We [I] burned the heap of seaweed on the beach; I offered kelp to the red fire; the acrid thick smoke began to reek; and that was recently. And, south of England, the horse of moorings [SHIP] advanced beneath me; the carved frame shook in the current; but that was long ago.
Skrapp ór hǫndum
Haraldr Dǫnum.
 
‘Haraldr slipped out of the hands of the Danes.
Vísts, at allvaldr austan
eggjask vestr at leggja
mót við marga knútu
— minn snúðr es þat — prúða.
Kná valþiðurr velja
— veit œrna sér beitu —
steik af stillis haukum
stafns; fylgik því jafnan.
 
‘It is certain that the mighty ruler is being urged from the east to arrange a meeting with many splendid knuckles in the west; that is my good fortune. The carnage-grouse [RAVEN/EAGLE] can choose steak from the hawks of the leader’s prow; it knows it has ample food; I always support that.
Stór taka fjǫll at f*alla;
ferr sótt of kyn dróttar;
eyðisk friðr, en fœðisk
fjandhugr meðal landa.
Vesa munk yðr, sem ǫðrum,
angrljóðasǫm, þjóðum
— ylgr nemr suðr at svelgja
sveita — Urðr of heitin;
sveita Urðr of heitin.
 
‘Large mountains begin to fall; pestilence spreads throughout mankind; peace is destroyed, and enmity is born between nations. To you, as to other people, I shall be known as the Urðr <norn> filled with sorrowful songs; the she-wolf begins to swallow blood in the south; be known as the Urðr <norn> of blood.
Skóð lætr skína rauðan
skjǫld, es dregr at hjaldri;
brúðr sér Aurnis jóða
ófǫr konungs gǫrva.
Sviptir sveiflankjapta
svanni holdi manna;
ulfs munn litar innan
óðlôt kona blóði;
ok óðlôt kona bloði.
 
‘The troll-woman lets the red shield shine when it draws close to battle; the bride of Aurnir’s <giant’s> brood [GIANTS > GIANTESS] sees the king’s destined defeat at hand. The woman tosses men’s flesh to the grinding jaw; the raving female reddens the wolf’s mouth within with blood; and the raving female with blood.
Gramr vá frægr til fremðar
flestan sigr inn digri;
hlautk, þvít heima sôtum,
heilagt fall til vallar.
Uggik øfst ráð, tyggi;
yðr mun feigð of byrjuð;
— trolls gefið fôkum fyllar
fíks — veldra goð slíku.
 
‘The famous stout prince won most victories for his advancement; I got a holy death on the battlefield, because we [I] stayed at home. I fear the final undertaking, lord; death will be in store for you; you will provide fill for the steeds of the greedy troll [WOLVES]; God will not be the cause of that.
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