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Stanzas about Magnús Óláfsson in Danaveldi — ÞjóðA MagnII

Þjóðólfr Arnórsson

Diana Whaley 2009, ‘(Introduction to) Þjóðólfr Arnórsson, Stanzas about Magnús Óláfsson in Danaveldi’ 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. 88-103.

 

Hrauð Ôleifs mǫgr áðan
— jǫfurr vá sigr — ins digra
(fregnat slíkt ór Sogni)
sjau skip (konur hnipnar).
 
‘The son of Óláfr inn digri (‘the Stout’) [= Magnús] had previously cleared seven ships; the ruler won victory; women from Sogn will not receive such news with sorrow.
Misst hafa Sveins at sýnu,
sverð-Gautr, fǫrunautar
(hǫrð es heldr of orðin)
heimkvômu (fǫr beima).
Hrœrir hausa þeira
hreggi œst ok leggi
— sær þýtr auðs of ôrum —
unnr á sanda grunni.
 
‘Sveinn’s comrades have clearly lost out on their home-coming, sword-Gautr <= Óðinn> [WARRIOR]; the men’s expedition has turned out rather harsh. The wave, stirred up by the storm, tosses their skulls and limbs on the floor of the sands; the sea roars over the envoys of wealth [GENEROUS MEN].
Gær sák grjóti stóru
— gein hauss fyrir — steini
— fóra fylking þeira
fast — harðliga kastat.
Ofan keyrðum vér — orðum
jǫrð muna Sveinn of varða —
(staðar hefr stafn í miðju)
strandhǫgg (numit landi).
 
‘Yesterday I saw massive stones, rock, hurled mightily; a skull gaped in their path; their troop did not advance strongly. We herded cattle for slaughter down to the shore; Sveinn will not defend the land with words [alone]; the prow has anchored midway along the coast.
Spurði einu orði
— ǫld blóðroðna skjǫldu,
satts, at svá mǫrg átti —
Selunds mær, hverr vé bæri.
Auðtróðu varð auðit
yfir of skóg at spróga;
títt bar týmargr flótti
til Hringstaða iljar.
 
‘The maiden in Sjælland (Selund, Zealand) learned in a single word who carried the standard; it is true that so many men had blood-reddened shields. For the wealth-pole [WOMAN] her lot was to dash through the forest; a great many fugitives took their soles [feet] speedily to Ringsted (Hringstaðir).
Saurstokkinn bar svíra
snarr Skônunga harri;
undrs, nema allvaldr Lundar
aldrprúðr fyrir haldi.
Gær flugu mold ok mýrar
(merki jarls ins sterkja
slóð drap framm at flóði)
flaugardǫrr (of hauga).
 
‘The valiant ruler of the Skánungar [= Magnús] went with a mud-spattered neck; it is a wonder unless the life-splendid overlord of Lund [= Magnús] holds out. Flighted spears flew yesterday over earth and bogs; the standard of the powerful jarl beat a track across the hills onwards to the sea.
Hrindr af hróka landi
hregg af eikiveggjum
— sunnr leikr eldr of unninn
óðr — í lopt upp glóðum.
Bœr logar hǫlfu hæra
hjónum nær á Fjóni;
ræfr þola nauð ok næfrar;
Norðmenn sali brenna.
 
‘A storm from the land of cormorants [SEA] flings embers from oak walls up into the air; to the south raging fire sports, once kindled. The settlement blazes twice as high hard by the households on Fyn; roof and shingles endure distress; Norwegians burn down halls.
Menn eigu þess minnask
manna Sveins at kanna,
víga Freyr, sízt vôru,
vef-Gefn, þríar stefnur.
Vôn es fagrs á Fjóni
fljóðs; dugir vôpn at rjóða;
verum með fylkðu folki
framm í vápna glammi.
 
‘Men have to remember, Freyr <god> of battles [WARRIOR], to get to know the weaving-Gefn <= Freyja> [WOMAN] of Sveinn’s men, since there were three encounters. There’s prospect of a lovely woman on Fyn; it’s good to redden weapons; let’s take our place with the ranked troop, forward in the tumult of weapons [BATTLE].
Skjǫld bark heim frá hjaldri
— hlauzk mér til þess — gauzkan
— ramr vas suðr á sumri
sverðdynr — ok þó brynju.
Vôpn gatk fríð, en fljóði
fyrr sagðak þat kyrru;
þar fekk’k hjalm, es hilmir
harðfengr Dani barði.
 
‘I carried a Gautish shield home from the battle, and even a byrnie; this was my lot; a mighty sword-tumult [BATTLE] took place in the south in the summer. I got handsome weapons, and I had said that before to the tranquil lady; I gained a helmet there, where the valiant ruler thrashed the Danes.
Bauð Ôleifs sonr áðan
upp á land at standa;
gekk með manndýrð mikla
Magnús reiðr af skeiðum.
Snarr bað hilmir herja
— hérs skark — í Danmǫrku;
fleygir hvasst of hauga
hestr of Skáney vestan.
 
‘Óláfr’s son [= Magnús] previously gave the order to advance onto the land; Magnús strode, angry, with great splendour from the ships. The bold ruler bade [them] go ravaging in Denmark; there is tumult here; the horse charges swiftly across the hills, from the west across Skåne.
Nú taka Norðmenn knýja
— nær gǫngum vér stǫngum —
(berkak) Magnúss merki
(minn skjǫld á hlið sjaldan).
Skýtra skeifum fœti
Skáney yfir sláni
— fár vegr es mér fegri
fundinn — suðr til Lundar.
 
‘Now the Norwegians start to press forward Magnús’s banners; we march close to the standard-poles; it’s not seldom that I carry my shield [lit. I don’t carry seldom my shield] at my side. The lanky fellow [I, the skald] does not dash with foot aslant across Skåne south to Lund; few routes have seemed lovelier to me.
Bôrum jôrn at œrnu
ískǫld á lið vísa;
skjótt ríða nú skreyttar
Skônunga lokvánir.
Rauðr leikr of bœ breiðum
bráðr at óru ráði
eldr, en ernir valda
atblásendr því vási.
 
‘We carried ice-cold irons [weapons] in good measure against the prince’s troop; the Skánungar’s fancy hopes for the outcome are now dispersing [lit. riding] swiftly. Red fire sports, hasty, over the broad settlement at our behest, and brisk inflamers bring about that trouble.
Svíðr of seggja búðir
— siklingr í her miklum
eyðir byggð sem bráðast —
bjartr eldr Danaveldi.
Móðr berr halr of heiði
halds Danmarkar skjǫldu;
vér hlutum sigr, en sárir
Sveins menn fyrir renna.
 
‘Bright fire flames across the dwellings of men in the realm of the Danes; the prince, in a great army, destroys the settlement with all haste. A warrior, weary of defending Denmark, carries shields across the heath; we won victory, but Sveinn’s men run wounded away.
Fjǫrð lét fylkir verða
forntraddan mó spornat
(leynumk lítt) á Fjóni
(liðs skjǫldunga á miðli).
Muna fyr Magnús synja
menn Sveins, þeirs nú renna,
— upp fara mǫrg í morgin
merki — stórra verka.
 
‘Last year the ruler had [men] tramp the anciently-trodden moor [lit. had the moor ancient-tramped] on Fyn; we [I] hardly hide in the midst of the princes’ troop. Sveinn’s men, who are now fleeing, will not deny great deeds on Magnús’s part; many banners mount aloft this morning.
Ek hef ekki at drekka
annars nema sjá þenna,
— sýgk ór sǫltum ægi
sylg — es jǫfri fylgik.
Liggr fyr oss, en uggum
alllítt Svía, kǫllum,
— drýgt hǫfum vás fyr vísa —
víð Skáneyrar síða.
 
‘I have nothing other to drink than this sea, as I follow the king; I suck a slurp from the salt ocean. The broad coast of Skanör lies before us, but we fear the Swedes very little, I [lit. we] declare; we have gone through hardship for the prince’s sake.
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