Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Þorkell Gíslason (ÞGísl)

12th century; volume 1; ed. Emily Lethbridge;

Búadrápa (Búdr) - 12

Skj info: Þórkell Gíslason, Islandsk skjald, 12. årh. (AI, 553-5, BI, 536-8).

Skj poems:
Búadrápa

Þorkell (ÞGísl) is named as the poet of Búadrápa in ÓT (1958-2000, 180), but beyond that nothing is known about him and his name does not appear in Skáldatal.

Búadrápa — ÞGísl BúdrI

Emily Lethbridge and Diana Whaley 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Þorkell Gíslason, Búadrápa’ 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. 941.

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Skj: Þórkell Gíslason: Búadrápa (AI, 553-5, BI, 536-8)

in texts: ÓT

SkP info: I, 941

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance references search files

 

1 Bôru á vali víka
— vel frák þeim líka
seggjum snarræði —
sverð ok herklæði.
They carried swords and war-garments [ARMOUR] aboard the stallions of bays [SHIPS]; I have heard that bold action pleased those men well.
2 Knúði hvasst harða
(hljópu marir barða)
hregg (á hefils vǫllum)
á humra fjǫllum.
Blô þó hrǫnn hlýrum;
hraut af brimdýrum
— kili skaut œst alda —
unnr in sviðkalda.
The storm pelted very sharply on the mountains of lobsters [SEA]; stallions of the stems [SHIPS] bounded across the plains of the clew-line [SEA]. The dark breaker washed prows; the singeing-cold billow dashed off the surf-animals [SHIPS]; the raging wave impelled the keel.
3 Bôru raukn rasta
rekka geðfasta
— þrǫng at rym randa —
til ræsis landa.
Við nam víðr mǫrgum
— vôpn eru grimm tǫrgum —
— nýtt gafsk nest hrǫfnum —
Nóregr skipstǫfnum.
The draught animals of currents [SHIPS] carried the mind-firm warriors to the lands of the ruler [Hákon]; the clatter of shields [BATTLE] closed in. Far-reaching Norway halted many ship-prows; weapons are harsh towards targes; fresh provisions were given to ravens.
4 Herr bar hôtt merki;
á Hamðis serki
grimmt kom él eggja;
at gekk lið seggja.
Meiddu fjǫr flotna
— flest varð hlíf brotna —
— glumðu gráir oddar —
grjót ok skotbroddar.
The army carried the standard high; the terrible storm of edges [BATTLE] hit the shirts of Hamðir <legendary hero> [MAIL-SHIRTS]; the troop of men attacked. Stones and missile-points injured the lives of seamen; most shields were shattered; grey points crashed.
5 Hrutu fyr borð bæði
— brustu herklæði —
hǫfuð ok hendr manna;
hræ nam vargr kanna.
Both heads and hands of men flew overboard; war-garments [ARMOUR] burst; the wolf started to search corpses.
6 Neytti herr handa;
hríð vas snǫrp branda;
fúst vas fár randa
til fjǫrnis landa.
Fellu fleinbǫrvar;
flugu af streng ǫrvar;
sungu hôtt hjǫrvar
við hlífar gǫrvar.
The troop used its hands; the storm of blades [BATTLE] was fierce; the harm of shields [SWORD] was eager for the lands of the helmet [HEADS]. Spear-trees [WARRIORS] fell; arrows flew from the bowstring; swords sang loudly against readied shields.
7 Gullu hræs haukar;
hvassir benlaukar
skýfðu liðs leggi;
lamði grjót seggi.
Gnustu gráir malmar
— gengu í sundr hjalmar —
— hauks vasat friðr fjǫllum —
í fjǫrnis stǫllum.
The hawks of the corpse [RAVENS/EAGLES] screamed; sharp wound-leeks [SWORDS] slashed the limbs of the troop; stones beat men. Grey metal weapons crashed on the supports of the helmet [HEADS]; helmets burst apart; there was no peace for the mountains of the hawk [ARMS].
8 Búa frák greitt ganga
— gladdi svanr Hanga —
— vǫkt vas gǫll geira —
gegnum lið þeira.
I have heard that Búi went straight through their troop; the swan of Hangi <= Óðinn> [RAVEN] was gladdened; the shriek of spears [BATTLE] was roused.
9 Hagl vá hvert eyri;
hraut á lǫg dreyri
— blóð þó bens ôrum —
ór bragna sôrum.
Þar fell valr víða;
vé sá gylld ríða;
barðisk sveit snarla
á snekkjum jarla.
Each hailstone weighed an ounce; gore spurted onto the sea from the wounds of men; blood washed the oars of the wound [SWORDS]. The slain fell there widely; [one] saw gilded standards sway; the company fought boldly on the warships of the jarls.
10 Ǫrum réð sér snǫrpum
— slíkt es raun gǫrpum —
flagð it forljóta
af fingrum skjóta.
Gerðisk grimmt fíkjum
at gumnum ríkjum
— gnýr vas hôr hlífa —
hregg ok loptdrífa.
The very ugly troll-woman shot sharp arrows from her fingers; such is a trial for brave men. An extremely savage storm and sky-blizzard arose against the mighty men; the clash of shields [BATTLE] was loud.
11 Sté fyrir húf hesti
hrófs inn þrekmesti
gœðir gunnskára;
gladdisk naðr sára.
Niðr kom bens bára;
Búi nam sér hvára
— ferð hykk friðar misstu —
frœkn í hǫnd kistu.
The most powerful endower of battle-gulls [RAVENS/EAGLES > WARRIOR] leapt from the hull of the horse of the boat-shed [SHIP]; the snake of wounds [SWORD] was gladdened. The wave of the wound [BLOOD] poured down; the valiant Búi took a chest in each of his hands; I think men missed out on peace.
12 Felldi Vagn virða;
valði of nái stirða
hrafn inn hvassleiti;
hrundi á borð sveiti.
Þess réð þó dála
— þrymr vas hôr stála —
eyðis undglóða
Eirekr skip hrjóða.
Vagn felled warriors; the sharp-eyed raven chose between stiff corpses; blood flowed onto the gunwale. Eiríkr managed nevertheless to clear completely the ship of that destroyer of wound-embers [SWORDS > WARRIOR = Vagn]; the din of steel weapons [BATTLE] was loud.
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