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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

8. Ǫrvar-Odds saga 127 (Ǫrvar-Oddr, Ævidrápa, 57) — Oddr [Vol. 8, 934]

[All]: For the saga context, see Ǫrv 126, Note to [All]. All mss make a point of mentioning how the special protective powers of Oddr’s magical shirt, which was made for him by Ǫlvǫr in Ireland (see Ǫlvǫr Lv 1 (Ǫrv 4) and ǪrvOdd Ævdr 41 (Ǫrv 111)), were not damaged by his bathe in the Jordan (Ǫrv 1888, 118-19). The thinking behind this observation might be that, as the Jordan was the paradigmatic baptismal locus for Christians, being the place where John the Baptist baptised Christ, its waters that had bathed Oddr’s body might have been able to counteract the presumably non-Christian magic of his shirt.

references

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