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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

7. Einarr Skúlason (biog. vol. 2), Geisli, 11 [Vol. 7, 16-17]

[5-8]: Most eds (Skj B, Skald and NN §931, and Wisén 1886-9, I, 55) follow Bb’s þessu (l. 6) and omission of í (l. 8), which in Flat’s version is both hypermetrical and unmetrical. Flat’s version also requires a noun to be understood with þessum (l. 6). Eljunhress (adj.) ‘energetic’ may be either f. nom. sg. agreeing with dýrð or m. gen. sg., used substantivally, referring to Óláfr. Alternatively, it can qualify konungs, although this involves reading konungs and ríki in l. 8 separately rather than as comprising a single phrase. Skj B construes ll. 5-8 as: dýrð eljunhress þjóðkonungs es orðin ágæt; né fœðisk þvílíkr þengill í þessu ríki ‘the fame of the energetic people-king has become renowned; there will not be born [again] such a prince in this realm’. This has the advantage of avoiding the rather awkward treatment of þjóð (l. 7), necessitated by Kock’s solution below; instead þjóðkonungs is taken as a cpd with tmesis, as in a similar context in 14/3-4. Kock (NN §931) has dýrð eljunhress es orðin ágæt í þessu konungsríki; þjóð né þvílíkr ðengill fœðisk ‘the fame of the hero has become renowned in this kingdom; neither people nor such a prince will be born [elsewhere]’. Kock’s version, however, is the simplest, as far as word order is concerned, and metrically straightforward, and a variant of it is adopted here.


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