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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 9. Poem about Queen Ástríðr, 1 [Vol. 1, 646]

[4] sigrhvatastr ‘most victorious’: Although LP lists compounds in both sig- n. ‘battle’ and sigr- m. ‘victory’, it is not clear that there was a real distinction between these two elements, especially in compounds (cf. Finnur Jónsson’s translation of sigrgjarn as kamp-begærlig ‘battle-eager’ in LP and sejrbegærlig ‘victory-eager’ in Skj BI, 533). Both Finnur Jónsson and Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson in ÍF 28 select the variant reading sighvatastr, presumably to improve the pun on the poet’s own name, of which Sighvatr is a standard form (cf. Paasche 1917, 80; Fidjestøl 1982, 160). However, sigrhvatastr is preferable both stemmatically and metrically. According to Kuhn (1983, 77), when r follows another consonant, especially b, d, or g, both consonants participate in the internal rhyme, thus digri would presuppose a rhyme on sigr-. Moreover, Sigvatr made use of the rhyme between the simplex sigr and his favourite epithet for King Óláfr, digri ‘stout’, on several occasions (Sigv ErfÓl 6/8, 8/2, Sigv Lv 12/6; see also Jǫk Lv 1/8, ÞjóðA Magn 1/2II, Arn Hryn 13/7II).


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