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Sigvatr Þórðarson (Sigv)

11th century; volume 1; ed. Judith Jesch;

10. Knútsdrápa (Knútdr) - 11

Sigvatr or Sighvatr Þórðarson (Sigv) is said (ÍF 27, 54) to have been the son of Þórðr Sigvaldaskáld ‘Poet of Sigvaldi’, an Icelander who served, in succession, Sigvaldi jarl Strút-Haraldsson, leader of the Jómsvíkingar, his brother Þorkell inn hávi ‘the Tall’, who campaigned in England, and Óláfr Haraldsson, later king of Norway (r. c. 1015-30) and saint. Þórðr is listed as one of Sigvaldi’s skalds in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 259, 268), but none of his poetry survives. The family tradition of poetry can also be traced in Óttarr svarti ‘the Black’, said to have been Sigvatr’s sister’s son (ÍF 27, 144; ÓH 1941, I, 203). Sigvatr was brought up by a certain Þorkell, at Apavatn in south-west Iceland. When nearly fully grown he sailed to what is now Trondheim, where he met up with his father and joined King Óláfr’s retinue. According to Snorri (ÍF 27, 54-6; ÓH 1941, I, 81-3), Sigvatr recited Lv 2-3 at this time, and he interceded with the king on behalf of Icelandic merchants forced to pay a heavy tax in Norway (cf. Sigv Lv 4). It is also likely that this is when Þórðr provided Sigvatr with the material for Víkv (see Introduction to Sigv Víkv), which may be the poem referred to in the prose introduction to Sigv Lv 2 (Fidjestøl 1982, 118). There is no evidence that Sigvatr ever returned to Iceland, and according to the anecdote in which Sigv Lv 11 is preserved, he died on the island of Selja in north-western Norway and was buried at Kristskirkja (Kristkirken) in Trondheim. His poetry records his various journeys to Sweden, England and the Continent, as well as incidents in Norway. We know nothing of Sigvatr’s private life, except that he had a daughter called Tófa, who had King Óláfr himself as her godfather (Sigv Lv 19).

Sigvatr’s surviving poetic oeuvre is both large and remarkably diverse, encompassing different kinds of encomia not only on King Óláfr (Sigv Víkv, Sigv Nesv, Sigv Óldr, Sigv ErfÓl), but also on King Knútr of Denmark (Sigv Knútdr) and the Norwegian nobleman Erlingr Skjálgsson (Sigv Erl, Sigv Erlfl). Sigvatr was godfather to King Magnús inn góði ‘the Good’ Óláfsson and composed some avuncular words of advice to the boy-king (Sigv BervII). All of these patrons are recognised in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 252-4, 258, 260-2, 269), where Sigvatr is also credited with having composed for the Swedish king Ǫnundr Óláfsson (although no such poetry survives, cf. Sigv Knútdr 4/6) and the Norwegian chieftain Ívarr inn hvíti ‘the White’ (cf. Context to Sigv Lv 8). Sigvatr also composed a poem on the Norwegian pretender Tryggvi Óláfsson (Sigv Tryggfl) and is unique in having composed in dróttkvætt in praise of a woman, Óláfr Haraldsson’s widow Ástríðr Óláfsdóttir (Sigv Ást). Several of Sigvatr’s poems are more or less loosely connected sequences of stanzas rather than more formal compositions, and encompass both travelogue (Sigv Austv) and political commentary (Sigv Vestv, Sigv BervII). The latter genre is also well represented in his lausavísur, which also include some remarkably personal stanzas expressing his grief at the death of King Óláfr (Sigv Lv 22-4). Sigvatr’s status as a hǫfuðskáld ‘chief skald’ was recognised in the twelfth century (cf. Esk Geisl 12/8VII). His versatility as a poet has clearly inspired a number of anecdotes focusing on the composition of poetry, mostly of doubtful authenticity (cf. Contexts to Sigv Lv 1, 8, 11, 27; also Introduction to Ótt Hfl). Apart from two fragments preserved in SnE (Sigv Frag 1-2III), Sigvatr’s poetry is transmitted in a wide range of texts within the tradition of the kings’ sagas and is therefore edited in this volume or (in the case of the late Sigv Berv) in SkP II. For general studies of Sigvatr’s life and works, see Paasche (1917), Hollander (1940) and Petersen (1946).

Knútsdrápa (‘Drápa about Knútr’’) — Sigv KnútdrI

Matthew Townend 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Sigvatr Þórðarson, Knútsdrápa’ 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. 649.

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11 

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa, o. 1038 (AI, 248-51, BI, 232-4)

in texts: Flat, Fsk, Hb, Hkr, Knýtl, ÓH, ÓHHkr, ÓHLeg, RagnSon

SkP info: I, 649

notes: ms. refs separated from first cards

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance references search files

 

1 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 1 [Vol. 1, 651] — Sigv Knútdr 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).

Ok Ellu bak,
at, lét, hinn's sat,
Ívarr, ara,
Jórvík, skorit.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 1 (AI, 248; BI, 232); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 147, Hb; texts: Hb 1, RagnSon 0
 
2 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 2 [Vol. 1, 652] — Sigv Knútdr 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).

Ok senn sonu
sló, hvern ok þó,
Aðalráðs, eða
út flæmði, Knútr.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 2 (AI, 248; BI, 232); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 20dx, 20i 23x, 325V, 41x, 61, 68, 73ax, 75c, 761bx, 78ax, 873x, 972x, Bb, Flat, Holm2, J1x, J2x, , Kx, R686x, Tóm; texts: Flat 443, Knýtl 21, ÓH 32(30), ÓHHkr 29
 
3 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 3 [Vol. 1, 653] — Sigv Knútdr 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).

Knútr vas und himnum.
Hykk ætt at frétt
Haralds í her
hug vel duga;
lét lýs gǫtu
lið suðr ór Nið
Áleifr, jǫfurr
ársæll, fara.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 3 (AI, 249; BI, 232-3); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325VII, 51x, 61, 68, 73ax, 761bx, 972x, Bb, DG8, Flat, FskBx, Holm2, Holm4, J2x, Kx, Tóm; texts: Flat 534, Fsk 0, ÓH 96(93), ÓHHkr 90, ÓHLeg 32
 
4 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 4 [Vol. 1, 655] — Sigv Knútdr 4I

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).

Þurðu norðan
(namsk þat) með gram
til slétts svalir
silunds kilir,
en með annan
Ǫnundr Dǫnum
á hendr at há
her sœnskan ferr.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 4 (AI, 249; BI, 233); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325VII, 51x, 61, 68, 73ax, 761bx, 972x, Bb, DG8, Flat, FskBx, Holm2, Holm4, J2x, Kx, Tóm; texts: Flat 535, Fsk 0, ÓH 97(94), ÓHHkr 91, ÓHLeg 33
 
5 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 5 [Vol. 1, 656] — Sigv Knútdr 5I

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).

Lét lǫnd lokit
liðs gramr saman
marbeðjum með
mǫrg nefbjǫrgum,
þars garðr fyr gnóð
grô hjǫlmunlô,
þreifsk brims þruma
Þundar umb ǫndur.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 5 (AI, 249; BI, 233); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 51x, 972x, DG8, FskBx; texts: Fsk 0, ÓH 0, ÓHLeg 34
 
6 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 6 [Vol. 1, 657] — Sigv Knútdr 6I

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).

Gôtut drótnar
Danmǫrk spanit
und sik sǫkum
snarir herfarar;
þá lét skarpla
Skáney Dana
hlǫðr herjaða.
hǫfuðfremstr jǫfurr.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 6 (AI, 249-50; BI, 233); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325XI 1, 51x, 61, 68, 73ax, 75c, 761bx, 972x, Bb, DG8, Flat, FskBx, Holm2, Holm4, J2x, Kx, Tóm; texts: Flat 542, Fsk 0, ÓH 104(101), ÓHHkr 98, ÓHLeg 35
 
7 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 7 [Vol. 1, 658] — Sigv Knútdr 7I

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).

Knútr vas und himnum.
Her austan frá
fríðr fylkis niðr
fráneygr Dana;
skreið vestan -viðr
varr- glæstr, sás bar
út andskota
Aðalráðs þaðan.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 7 (AI, 250; BI, 233); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325XI 1, 51x, 61, 68, 73ax, 761bx, 972x, Bb, DG8, Flat, FskBx, Holm2, Holm4, J2x, Kx, Tóm; texts: Flat 540, Fsk 0, ÓH 102(99), ÓHHkr 96, ÓHLeg 30
 
8 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 8 [Vol. 1, 659] — Sigv Knútdr 8I

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 bôru í byr
blô segl við rô
(dýr vas dǫglings fǫr)
drekar landreka;
en, þeirs kómu,
kilir, vestan, til
of -leið liðu
Limafjarðar brim-.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 8 (AI, 250; BI, 233-4); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325XI 1, 51x, 61, 68, 73ax, 761bx, 972x, Bb, DG8, Flat, FskBx, Holm2, Holm4, J2x, Kx, Tóm; texts: Flat 541, Fsk 0, ÓH 103(100), ÓHHkr 97, ÓHLeg 31
 
9 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 9 [Vol. 1, 660] — Sigv Knútdr 9I

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).

Létat af jǫfurr
(ætt manna fansk)
Jótlands etask
ílendr (at því);
vildi foldar
fæst rôn Dana
hlífskjǫldr hafa.
hǫfuðfremstr jǫfurr.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 9 (AI, 250-1; BI, 234); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 321x, 325V, 325XI 1, 51x, 61, 68, 73ax, 75c, 761bx, 972x, Bb, DG8, Flat, FskBx, Holm2, Holm4, J2x, Kx, Tóm; texts: Flat 543, Fsk 0, ÓH 105(102), ÓHHkr 99, ÓHLeg 36
 
10 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 10 [Vol. 1, 661] — Sigv Knútdr 10I

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).

Kómu fylki
farlystir, 's bar
hervíg í hug,
hafanda staf;
rauf ræsir af
Rúms veg suman
kærr keisara,
klúss Pétrúsi.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 10 (AI, 251; BI, 234); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 301x, FskAx; texts: Fsk 165
 
11 Vol. 1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 11 [Vol. 1, 663] — Sigv Knútdr 11I

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).

Svá mun fár feril
fetum suðr metinn
hringdrífr hafa.
hǫfuðfremstr jǫfurr.

Skj: Sigvatr Þórðarson: 10. Knútsdrápa 11 (AI, 251; BI, 234); tøglag or variants; ed. MT; group: A1; mss: 20dx, 301x, 41x, 873x, FskAx, ; texts: Fsk 166, Knýtl 22
 
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