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Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (Hfr)

10th century; volume 1; ed. Diana Whaley;

III. Hákonardrápa (Hákdr) - 9

Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld ‘Troublesome-poet’ Óttarsson (Hfr) was brought up in Vatnsdalur, northern Iceland, probably in the 960s. He is the subject of Hallfreðar saga (Hallfr), which survives both as a continuous text (ÍF 8, 133-200) and interpolated into ÓT. The main strands of the saga are Hallfreðr’s unhappy relationship with Kolfinna Ávaldadóttir, his travels as trader, fighter and poet, his conversion to Christianity and his devotion to Óláfr Tryggvason, and all these aspects of his life occasioned poetry which partially survives.

Fragments of an early drápa for Hákon jarl Sigurðarson (r. c. 970-c. 995) are extant (Hfr HákdrIII; ÍF 8, 151), but the greater part of Hallfreðr’s court poetry, and the poetry edited in this volume, concerns King Óláfr Tryggvason (c. 995-c. 1000): Óláfsdrápa (Hfr Óldr) and Erfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar (Hfr ErfÓl). Like other Icelanders, Hallfreðr accepted Christian baptism under the influence of Óláfr. The difficulty, for a poet and pagan, of this switch of religious allegiance is the theme of Hfr Lv 6-10V, and is, according to the sagas, alluded to in his nickname vandræðaskáld, lit. ‘Poet of difficulties’. The sagas agree that the name was bestowed by the king, though they differ about the precise reason (ÓTOdd 1932, 125-6; Hkr, ÍF 26, 331-2; Hallfr, ÍF 8, 155; ÓT 1958-2000, I, 387). Hallfreðr is attributed with a lost Uppreistardrápa ‘Restoration drápa’ (?), supposedly composed to atone for his journey into pagan Gautland (Västergötland, ÍF 8, 178). He is also credited in Hallfr (ÍF 8, 194-5) with an encounter with Eiríkr jarl Hákonarson (r. c. 1000-c. 1014) and in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 257, 266, 280) with poetry for him; this is vestigially preserved in Eiríksdrápa (Hfr EirdrV). The saga also shows Hallfreðr presenting a flokkr to the Danish jarl Sigvaldi (ÍF 8, 168) and a poem to the Swedish king Óláfr Eiríksson (ÍF 8, 177-8), but no traces of these survive.

The marriage of Kolfinna, the love of Hallfreðr’s youth, to Gríss Sæmingsson provoked Hallfreðr both early and later in life to compose strikingly inventive stanzas which intertwine themes of yearning love and rivalry (Hfr Lv 1-3, 15-24V), and his níð against Gríss led to legal proceedings and indirectly to the killing of Hallfreðr’s brother Galti (Ldn, ÍF 1, 224; ÍF 8, 189-90). In the course of an adventure in Västergötland (Hfr Lv 12-14V), Hallfreðr met and married Ingibjǫrg Þórisdóttir, who died young, but not before bearing two sons, Auðgísl and Hallfreðr. According to Hallfr (ÍF 8, 196-9), Hallfreðr himself died at the age of nearly forty, from a combination of illness and injury as he sailed through the Hebrides; he was buried on Iona (cf. Hfr Lv 26-7V).

Hákonardrápa (‘Drápa about Hákon’) — Hfr HákdrIII

Kate Heslop 2017, ‘(Introduction to) Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, Hákonardrápa’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 212.

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8 

for reference only:  2x 

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa, omkr. 990 (AI, 155-6, BI, 147-8); stanzas (if different): 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9

in texts: LaufE, Skm, SnE

SkP info: III, 212

notes: refs from EM transcr.

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance references search files

 

1 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 1 [Vol. 3, 215] — Hfr Hákdr 1III

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).

Askþollum stendr Ullar
austr at miklu trausti
rœkilundr hinn ríki
randfárs brumaðr hári.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 1 (AI, 155; BI, 147); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: A, C, R, Tx, U, W; texts: LaufE 108(373), Skm 214
 
2 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 2 [Vol. 3, 216] — Hfr Hákdr 2III

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).

Ólítit brestr úti
unndýrs frǫmum runnum
hart á Hamðis skyrtum
hryngráp Egils vápna.
Þaðan verða fǫt fyrða
(fregnk gǫrla þat) Sǫrla
rjóðask bjǫrt í blóði.
Benfúr méilskúrum.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 8 (AI, 156; BI, 148); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: A, C, R, Tx, U, W; texts: Skm 231
 
3 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 3 [Vol. 3, 218] — Hfr Hákdr 3III

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).

Ok geir-Rótu gǫtvar
gagls við strengjar hagli
hungreyðǫndum hanga
hléðut, járni séðar.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 2 (AI, 155; BI, 147); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: A, R, Tx, W; texts: Skm 250
 
4 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 4 [Vol. 3, 219] — Hfr Hákdr 4III

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).

Grams rúni lætr glymja
gunnríkr, hinns hvǫt líkar,
Hǫgna hamri slegnar
heiptbráðr of sik váðir.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 7 (AI, 156; BI, 148); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: R, Tx, U, W; texts: LaufE 75(363), Skm 290
 
5 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 5 [Vol. 3, 219] — Hfr Hákdr 5III

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).

Sannyrðum spenr sverða
snarr þiggjandi viggja
barrhaddaða byrjar
biðkvôn und sik Þriðja.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 3 (AI, 155; BI, 147); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: B, R, Tx, U, W; texts: LaufE 7(331), Skm 10
 
6 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 6 [Vol. 3, 221] — Hfr Hákdr 6III

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).

Því hykk fleygjanda frakna
(ferr jǫrð und menþverri)
ítra eina at láta
Auðs systur mjǫk trauðan.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 4 (AI, 155; BI, 147); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: 744x, B, R, Tx, U, W; texts: Skm 122
 
7 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 7 [Vol. 3, 223] — Hfr Hákdr 7III

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).

Rôð lukusk, at sá, síðan,
snjallráðr konungs spjalli
átti einga dóttur
Ónars, viði gróna.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 5 (AI, 155-6; BI, 148); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: 744x, B, R, Tx, U, W; texts: LaufE 78(363), Skm 119, Skm 293
 
8 Vol. 3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 8 [Vol. 3, 224] — Hfr Hákdr 8III

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).

Breiðleita gat brúði
Báleygs at sér teygða
stefnir stǫðvar hrafna
stála ríkismôlum.

Skj: Hallfrøðr Óttarsson vandræðaskáld: 1. Hákonardrápa 6 (AI, 156; BI, 148); dróttkvætt; ed. KSH; group: B; mss: B, R, Tx, W; texts: Skm 120
 
Runic data from Samnordisk runtextdatabas, Uppsala universitet, unless otherwise stated