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Svartr á Hofstöðum (Svart)

volume 8; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;

VIII. Skaufhala bálkr (Skauf) - 42

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, ‘ 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. <> (accessed 18 September 2021)

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42 

SkP info: VIII, 967

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

18 — Svart Skauf 18VIII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Svartr á Hofstöðum, Skaufhala bálkr 18’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 967.

Nú skal segja         nökkuð fleira
frá ferðum hans         fyst að sinni.
Heim kom síðla         sauðbítr gamall
svangr og sofinn         svó til grenja.

Nú skal fyst að sinni segja nökkuð fleira frá ferðum hans. {Gamall sauðbítr} kom heim síðla, svangr og sofinn, svó til grenja.

Now I’ll for the first time say something more about his travels. {The old sheep-biter} [FOX] came home late, hungry and sleepy, thus to the lairs.

Mss: 603(82), Rask87ˣ(113v)

Readings: [7] sofinn: ‘sopinn’ Rask87ˣ    [8] til grenja: skal greina Rask87ˣ

Editions: Kölbing 1876, 243, Jón Þorkelsson 1888, 231, CPB II, 383, Jón Þorkelsson 1922-7, 156, Páll Eggert Ólason 1947, 62.

Notes: [6] sauðbítr ‘sheep-biter [FOX]’: For similar kennings, see týnir sauða ‘destroyer of sheep [FOX]’ and færtǫpuðr ‘the sheep-destroyer [FOX]’ (GunnLeif Merl II 28/8, 39/3). — [7] sofinn ‘sleepy’: According to Jón Þorkelsson (1888, n. to l. 18/7), the spelling of this word in Rask87ˣ, ‘sopinn’, proves that the scribe copied an older exemplar and that he misread insular <f> for <p>. That is possible, but unlikely in view of the many late forms in this ms. — [8]: The Rask87ˣ variant of this line, svó skal greina ‘thus I’ll tell’, is also possible, but looks like a later corruption because it duplicates the sense of ll. 1 and 4.

Runic data from Samnordisk runtextdatabas, Uppsala universitet, unless otherwise stated