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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Svartr á Hofstöðum (Svart)

volume 8; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;

VIII. Skaufhala bálkr (Skauf) - 42

not in Skj

Svartr (desyllabified Svartur) á Hofstöðum (Svart) is named in a first-person epilogue to Skaufhala bálkrBálkr about Tassel-tail’ (Svart Skauf 42/4) but his identity is uncertain. The internal evidence of the language and metre of Skauf, together with circumstantial evidence and an evaluation of the sources, point to Svartr Þorleifsson (d. 1392) from Hofstaðir, Reykhólar, Þorskafjörður, north-western Iceland, as the most likely candidate, though two other members of his family were also named Svartr and associated with Hofstaðir and there are two further traditions about authorship (see Introduction to Skauf). Very little is known about Svartr’s life. He appears to have been severely wounded during a fight at the alþingi in 1361, and the year before he died (1391) he went to Norway (see Storm 1888, 367, 407, 420). He apparently had two sons, Páll and Gísli (Jón Þorkelsson 1888, 222).

Skaufhala bálkr — Svart SkaufVIII

Kari Ellen Gade 2017, ‘(Introduction to) Svartr á Hofstöðum, Skaufhala bálkr’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 948.

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SkP info: VIII, 964

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

13 — Svart Skauf 13VIII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Svartr á Hofstöðum, Skaufhala bálkr 13’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 964.

‘Vissa eg eigi         víst,’ segir tófa,
‘að þú huglaust         hjarta bærir.
Þú vilt bölvaður         til bana svelta
afkvæmi þitt         og okkr bæði.’

‘Vissa eg eigi víst,’ segir tófa, ‘að þú bærir huglaust hjarta. Bölvaður vilt þú svelta afkvæmi þitt og okkr bæði til bana.’

‘Didn’t I know indeed,’ says the vixen, ‘that you had a cowardly heart. Cursed, you wish to starve your offspring and both of us to death.’

Mss: 603(81), Rask87ˣ(113r)

Readings: [2] tófa: tóa Rask87ˣ    [4] hjarta: hjartað Rask87ˣ    [8] okkr bæði: okkar beggja Rask87ˣ

Editions: Kölbing 1876, 243, Jón Þorkelsson 1888, 231, CPB II, 383, Jón Þorkelsson 1922-7, 155, Páll Eggert Ólason 1947, 61.

Notes: [2] tófa ‘the vixen’: Tóa ‘vixen’ (so Rask87ˣ, followed by Jón Þorkelsson 1888), a short form of tófa, is less preferable from a metrical point of view (suspended resolution on the second lift). — [5] bölvaður ‘cursed’: Note the excrescent [u] here. For similar instances of desyllabification, see sts 16/3 19/3, 23/6, 26/3, 35/3, 36/5 and 37/3. — [8] okkr bæði (n. acc. pl.) ‘both of us’: The Rask87ˣ variant, okkar beggja (gen. pl.) ‘of us both’, qualifies afkvæmi ‘offspring’ (l. 7), which is less likely since that noun is already qualified by þitt ‘your’ (l. 7).

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