Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Bersi Skáld-Torfuson (Bersi)

11th century; volume 1; ed. Diana Whaley;

1. Flokkr about Óláfr helgi (Ólfl) - 3

Skj info: Bersi Skáldtorfuson, Islandsk skjald, d. 1030. (AI, 275-7, BI, 255-6).

Skj poems:
1. En flok om kong Olaf
2. Lausavísa

Bersi Skáld-Torfuson (or simply Torfuson; Bersi) is named from his mother, an otherwise unknown female skald Torfa, from Miðfjörður, Húnavatnsþing, northern Iceland. He is introduced as skáld gótt ‘a fine poet’ in Grettis saga (ÍF 7, 42); his birth would be placed c. 985-90 (LH I, 564). Bersi travelled abroad with Grettir Ásmundarson, gained the favour of Sveinn jarl Hákonarson (ÍF 7, 86) and seemingly fought with Sveinn at the battle of Nesjar (1016; see ‘Ruler biographies’ in Introduction to this volume for rulers and battles of the period). He is listed in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 257, 258, 281, 282) as a skald to Sveinn and to Knútr inn ríki (Cnut the Great), but no court poetry for them by him survives (though see Bersi Ólfl 2). Some time after Nesjar he was taken captive by Óláfr Haraldsson, composed his flokkr (below) and found favour with the king. He is then named in the excerpts (articuli) from Styrmir Kárason’s Lífssaga among Óláfr’s Icelandic hirðmenn ‘retainers’ (see his Lv below). He went on a pilgrimage to Rome with Sigvatr Þórðarson (Sigv) and, learning of the king’s death (1030) as he left Rome, returned to S. Peter’s church in extreme anguish, died and was buried there (ÓH 1941, II, 830, in an interpolation).

Flokkr about Óláfr helgi — Bersi ÓlflI

Diana Whaley 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Bersi Skáld-Torfuson, Flokkr about Óláfr helgi’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 790.

 1   2   3 

Skj: Bersi Skáldtorfuson: 1. En flok om kong Olaf, o. 1020 (AI, 275-6, BI, 255)

in texts: Flat, Hkr, ÓH, ÓHHkr

SkP info: I, 790

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance references search files

 

1 Vol. 1. 39. Bersi Skáld-Torfuson, 1. Flokkr about Óláfr helgi, 1 [Vol. 1, 791] — Bersi Ólfl 1I

The following text is from a superseded edition and is not the work of the editor(s) named on this page. It is included for reference only. Do not refer to this site when using this text but rather consult the original edition (Skj where relevant).

Hróðrs batt heilan líða
hagkennanda þenna,
en snarrœki slíku
svarat unnum vér gunnar;
orð seldum þau elda
úthauðrs boða, trauðir,
knarrar, hapts, sem keyptak,
kynstórs, at við brynju.

Skj: Bersi Skáldtorfuson: 1. En flok om kong Olaf 1 (AI, 275-6; BI, 255); dróttkvætt; ed. DW; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325VI, 325VII, 61, 68, 73ax, 75a, 78ax, 972x, Bb, Flat, Holm2, Holm4, J1x, J2x, Kx, R686x, Tóm; texts: Flat 459, ÓH 51(49), ÓHHkr 46
 
2 Vol. 1. 39. Bersi Skáld-Torfuson, 1. Flokkr about Óláfr helgi, 2 [Vol. 1, 792] — Bersi Ólfl 2I

The following text is from a superseded edition and is not the work of the editor(s) named on this page. It is included for reference only. Do not refer to this site when using this text but rather consult the original edition (Skj where relevant).

Sveins raunir hefk sénar
(snart rekninga bjartar)
þars (svaltungur sungu)
saman fórum vér, stórar;
elds, munk eigi fylgja
út, hríðboði, síðan,
hests, at hverjum kosti,
hranna, dýrra manni.

Skj: Bersi Skáldtorfuson: 1. En flok om kong Olaf 2 (AI, 276; BI, 255); dróttkvætt; ed. DW; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325VI, 325VII, 61, 68, 75a, 972x, Bb, Flat, Holm2, Holm4, J1x, J2x, Kx, R686x, Tóm; texts: Flat 460, ÓH 52(50), ÓHHkr 47
 
3 Vol. 1. 39. Bersi Skáld-Torfuson, 1. Flokkr about Óláfr helgi, 3 [Vol. 1, 794] — Bersi Ólfl 3I

The following text is from a superseded edition and is not the work of the editor(s) named on this page. It is included for reference only. Do not refer to this site when using this text but rather consult the original edition (Skj where relevant).

Krýpk eigi svá, sveigir
sára linns - í ári
búum ólítinn Áta
ǫndur þér til handa -,
at herstefnir hafnak
heiðmildr eða þá leiðumk,
ungr kunnak, þar, þrøngvi
þínn, hollvini mína.

Skj: Bersi Skáldtorfuson: 1. En flok om kong Olaf 3 (AI, 276; BI, 255); dróttkvætt; ed. DW; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325VI, 325VII, 61, 68, 75a, 972x, Bb, Flat, Holm2, Holm4, J1x, J2x, Kx, R686x, Tóm; texts: Flat 461, ÓH 53(51), ÓHHkr 48
 
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