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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anonymous Lausavísur (Anon)

III. 4. Stanzas from the Third Grammatical Treatise (TGT) - 38

not in Skj

2.2: Stanzas from the Third Grammatical Treatise — Anon (TGT)III

Tarrin Wills 2017, ‘ Anonymous, Stanzas from the Third Grammatical Treatise’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 536. <> (accessed 28 September 2021)

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cross-references:  21 = Anon (TGT) 17III 

SkP info: III, 538

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

2 — Anon (TGT) 2III

also: Anonymous Poems, Verses about a battle (?Stiklarstaðir) 1

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Tarrin Wills (ed.) 2017, ‘Anonymous Lausavísur, Stanzas from the Third Grammatical Treatise 2’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 538.

Svanr þyrr beint til benja
blóðs vindára róðri.

{Svanr blóðs} þyrr {róðri {vindára}} beint til benja.

{The swan of blood} [RAVEN/EAGLE] rushes with {the rowing {of wind-oars}} [WINGS > FLIGHT] straight to the wounds.

Mss: A(3v), A(5v) (l. 2), B(2v), W(101), W(105) (l. 2) (TGT)

Readings: [2] blóðs: corrected from ‘blioðs’ A(3v)

Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII], C. Vers om ubestemmelige personer og begivenheder 11: AI, 598, BI, 598, Skald I, 291; SnE 1818, 311, 321, SnE 1848, 183, 189, SnE 1848-87, II, 102-3, 136-7, 406, 416, 509, III, 139, TGT 1884, 14, 22, 66, 88, 173, TGT 1927, 44, 63, 92.

Context: Cited as an example of barbarismus in the form of a shortened vowel (stundar afdráttr ‘reduction of [vowel] length’) for metrical and aesthetic purposes. The second line is cited again for its shortened vowel in the section on metaplasmus, illustrating the same phenomenon under the classical term systole (‘sistola’; TGT 1927, 63): Sistola gerir langa samstǫfu skamma sem fyrr er ritatSystole makes a long syllable short as was written earlier’.

Notes: [All]: The rhetorical figure exemplified here is realised in the second syllable of vindára, which is pronounced with a short vowel (TGT 1927, 44): Hér er vindara sett fyrir vindára róðri þat er flugr. Þessi samstafa er skǫmm gǫr fyrir fegrðar sakir, þvíat þá hljóðar betr ‘Here vindara is used instead of vindára róðri, that is, flight. This syllable is made short for the sake of beauty, because it sounds better’. It is not immediately clear why an even line of Type D2 (with a short syllable in metrical position 3) should be more pleasing to the ear than a Type D1-line (with a long syllable in metrical position 3), because both types are attested in dróttkvætt poetry. It could be that the long syllable with secondary stress was perceived to be too heavy (see Sievers 1893, 104 Anm. 4; Kuhn 1983, 147, 165). — [2] vindára ‘of wind-oars [WINGS]’: The context here suggests the referent ‘wings’ for this kenning, but it may more properly refer to feathers: a similar kenning occurs in an inscription from Lund (Bone piece 4: Run DRTil5VI; cf. Moltke 1985, 460), which contains the sentence arar ara æru fiaþrar ‘the eagle’s oars are feathers’.

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