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Bjarni gullbrárskáld Hallbjarnarson (BjHall)

11th century; volume 1; ed. Alison Finlay;

Kálfsflokkr (Kálffl) - 8

Bjarni gullbrárskáld Hallbjarnarson (BjHall) is mentioned only in the passages in the kings’ sagas in which stanzas from Kálfsflokkr, his sole surviving poem, are cited. He is generally identified, however, with the Icelander Bjarni Hallbjarnarson named in Þorgríms þáttr Hallasonar, which is preserved in Hulda-Hrokkinskinna (H-Hr; Fms 6, 32; ÍF 9, 298-303). He is there said to be the son of Hallbjǫrn skefill ‘Scraper’ of Laxárdalur in Skagafjörður, northern Iceland, and to have a brother called Þórðr, neither of whom is known elsewhere. The þáttr represents Bjarni, early in the reign of King Magnús Óláfsson (1035-47), presenting a poem to Kálfr Árnason, which includes praise of his deeds at the battle of Stiklastaðir (Stiklestad, 1030), and being killed immediately by Þorgrímr Hallason, a follower of King Óláfr; see further Biography of Kolgrímr litli ‘the Small’ (KolgrII), and Kolg ÓlII. This cannot be true according to the evidence of the stanzas printed below, however, since those representing Kálfr’s loss of the friendship of King Magnús and his campaigning in Orkney must have been composed as late as the mid 1040s. It seems most likely that the author of the þáttr knew of a poem by Bjarni in honour of Kálfr, but was not familiar with its content.

In the U redaction of Skáldatal ‘biarni gvllbraskalld’ is listed as a poet of Kálfr Árnason, and also included among the poets of Óláfr Tryggvason (r. c. 995-c. 1000), which must be a mistake: in the 761aˣ redaction this poet is simply named Bjarni skáld (SnE 1848-87, III, 253, 261, 269).

Bjarni’s nickname (recorded both with and without inflectional ‑(a)r-; see Lind 1920-1, 123) suggests that Bjarni was identified as the poet of someone, presumably a woman, nicknamed gullbrá ‘Gold-eyelash’. The same nickname gullbrá or gullbráskáld is also associated with the elusive Gizurr svarti (Gizsv; see his Biography in this volume).

notes
my abbr.

Kálfsflokkr (‘Flokkr about Kálfr’) — BjHall KálfflI

Alison Finlay 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Bjarni gullbrárskáld Hallbjarnarson, Kálfsflokkr’ 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. 877.

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8 

Skj: Bjarni Hallbjarnarson gullbrárskáld: Kalfsflokkr, o. 1050 (AI, 393-6, BI, 363-5)

in texts: Flat, Fsk, Hkr, MGóð, Orkn, ÓH, ÓHHkr

SkP info: I, 877

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance references search files

 

Note: The following transcriptions have been entered to aid the editing process. These may not have been fully reviewed and checked and may therefore not be reliable. You may wish to consult the manuscript images. Any corrections can be notified to the database editor.

1. Holm2 - 58r/32-58r/34
Vastv þar er vigs bad costa vapndiarfr harallz arfi kyɴiz kap þit mǫɴvm kalfr | vid bocn ꜹstr sialfa. gatvd griþar sota golig fꜹng til iola kendr vartv fyrstr at | fvndi fletv griots oc spiota.
2. Holm2 - 58r/34-58r/36
Avlld fecc illt or deilldvm erlingr var þar fiɴgiɴ oþv | blꜹcc ibloþi borð fyrir vtstein norþan. lios er rꜹn at ręsir raþiɴ varþ fra laþi lꜹ | gþvz lꜹnd vnd egþa lid þeira fra ec meira.
3. Holm2 - 60r/37-60r/39
Ꜹstr red allvalldr rista otala hafstali varþ at vitia garþa | vigmoðr harallz broþir. Eɴ of iðnir manna emca ec tamr at sanna screyci at scilnað | yckarn sciot lez tv knvt of sotan.
4. Holm2 - 60v/7-60v/8
Attu engla drotni ognraccr giafar þacca iarlsnidr cotv yþrv otala vel mali | þer let folld adr førir frest vrþv þes vestan lif þit era litit lvndvna gramr fra þer |
5. Holm2 - 68r/32-68r/34
Jorð retv vigi at varþa vigreifr fyrir oleifi brꜹztv við bragning nýztan | bag þat kveð ec mic fragv. fyr gecctv astað sticlar stór verc en oð merki. sat er | socn of veitir sniallr vnz gramr var falliɴ.
6. Holm2 - 73v/14-73v/16
Hafa leztu unga iofra erfð sem til reð hverfa sat er at | sitia cnati sveiɴ at danmǫrc eiɴi. keɴdud calfr til landa cap | fusum magnusi ollut er at stillir iorð oc fecc ór gǫrðum.
7. Holm2 - 74r/15-74r/17
þer fra ec þorbergs lyri þeꜱ giorþuz ier verþir hellt þvi unz | hann of spillti harallz broþor son goþan. vǫcþu ꜹfund menn ykcrir iþula rog amidli oþꜹrf liz | mer arfa olafs i þeim malum .|
8. Holm2 - 76r/17-76r/19
Fragum finnz hve magi fylgðvt kalfr um dylgior oc leztv asia sneckior snaʀla lagt | at iarli. areði vattv eyða oðfuss sonar brusa hleði hugr en teðut heiptminni | gr þorfinni.
Runic data from Samnordisk runtextdatabas, Uppsala universitet, unless otherwise stated