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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 18. Einarr skálaglamm Helgason, 2. Vellekla, 8 [Vol. 1, 292]

[1]: (a) Almost all interpreters, including the present ed., have accepted the division of the line Mart varð él, áðr, Ála ‘many a storm came about, before, of Áli’; cf. Reichardt (1928, 154-5). (b) Kock (NN §396, followed by Ohlmarks 1958, 366) suggests a simpler solution in which él ‘storm’ is translated as ‘battle’ and Ála collocates with austrlǫnd ‘the eastern lands’ in the following line as a kenning for Norway. But Ála must be the determinant of the battle-kenning, because él alone is not known to signify ‘battle’; see LP: él. The kenning austrlǫnd Ála is also unlikely (see Reichardt 1928, 154-5; Reichardt 1930, 241). (c) Kuhn (1929b, 201), also seeking to avoid a tripartite line, attaches Ála to lauks randar ‘leek of the shield’, the determinant of rœkilundr ‘tending tree’, but that similarly creates an overdetermined kenning while leaving él ‘battle’ without a determinant.


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