Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Hjǫrtr (Hjǫrtr)

11th century; volume 2; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;

Lausavísur (Lv) - 3

Skj info: Hjǫrtr, Islænder, 11. årh. (AI, 403, BI, 372-3).

Skj poems:
Lausavísur

Very little is known about Hjǫrtr (which, if translated, would mean ‘Deer’). According to Hemings þáttr Áslákssonar (Hem in Hr and Hb), he was an Icelander who was sent by Haraldr harðráði Sigurðarson as an envoy to Russia in 1065-6 to retrieve a bag of goatskin filled with gold which Haraldr had left with his wife, Ellisif (Elizabeth) (see Hb 1892-6, 331-3; Fellows Jensen 1962, 37-9). He is also mentioned in the first part of the þáttr in Flat, where his patronymic is given as Óláfsson (Flat 196-8, III, 401). Because that information is lacking in the other versions (see Fellows Jensen 1962, 1), it is likely a Flat innovation.

Lausavísur — Hjǫrtr LvII

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘(Introduction to) Hjǫrtr, Lausavísur’ 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. 344-7.

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Skj: Hjǫrtr: Lausavísur, 1066 (AI, 403, BI, 372-3)

in texts: Hb, Hem

SkP info: II, 344-7

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance references search files

 

1 Þrøngvir gulli
gramr fast saman;
veitir Sýrar
sonr fáskonar.
Land skyldi lítit
laf-Hamðir hafa;
þá myndi hauldum
Haraldr svara.
The ruler gathers gold forcefully; Sýr’s son [= Haraldr] gives away little. Laf-Hamðir (‘Slouch-Hamðir’) should get little land; then Haraldr might answer the men.
2 Hafr es úti
hvítr í túni;
skúmir augum,
hefr skegg mikit,
brestir klaufum,
vill bǫrn taka;
sás geitarson
gerr við erru.
A billy-goat is outside, white, in the yard; he grows dark in the eyes, has a huge beard, bangs his hoofs, wants to take children; he is a goat’s son, ready for a quarrel.
3 Munat í vári
vestr langskipum
hugragr of haf
Haraldr fara.
Því mun lengi
lafhræddr konungr
alls andvani
Englands ok vegs.
Cowardly-minded Haraldr will not travel on long-ships west across the sea this spring. Therefore the terror-stricken king will long be bereft of all England and of honour.
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