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Bjarni byskup Kolbeinsson (Bjbp)

13th century; volume 1; ed. Jonna Louis-Jensen;

Jómsvíkingadrápa (Jóms) - 45

Bjarni Kolbeinsson (Bjbp) was born into a powerful family in the Orkney Islands, possibly c. 1150-60 (af Petersens, Jvs 1879, 122). His father was the Norwegian-Orcadian chieftain Kolbeinn hrúga ‘Heap’ and his mother was Herborg, a great-granddaughter of Páll jarl Þorfinnsson on the maternal side (see Ættaskrár [Genealogies] II in ÍF 35). Bjarni was also very well connected: he was a close friend of Haraldr jarl Maddaðarson (ÍF 35, 289), sent precious gifts to Hrafn Sveinbjarnarson in Iceland on three occasions (Guðrún P. Helgadóttir 1987, 2-3), and had connections with the Oddaverjar (see further Einar Ól. Sveinsson 1937, 17-18, 34-9).

Bjarni was Bishop of Orkney from 1188 (ÍF 35, 289) until his death on 15 September 1223. Among his achievements as bishop were the exhumation and canonisation of Rǫgnvaldr jarl Kali Kolsson (ÍF 35, 282; SkP II, 575) and the extension of St Magnús’s Cathedral in Kirkwall. Bjarni was also a diplomat and is known to have travelled to Norway for political reasons in 1194-5, 1208-9, 1210, 1218 and 1223 (see Bugge 1875, 244; Holtsmark 1937a, 2-3); he probably died in Norway (Jón Stefánsson 1907-8, 46).

Bjarni is introduced as Bjarni skáld ‘Poet’ in Orkn (ÍF 35, 193), but Jómsvíkingadrápa (Jóms) is the only literary work attributed to him in medieval sources. Suggestions that he compiled Orkn (Jón Stefánsson 1907-8) and the þulur in SnE (Bugge 1875) have not been generally accepted; see Introduction to Jóms below on the attribution of Anon Mhkv to Bjarni.

notes
my abbr.

Jómsvíkingadrápa (‘Drápa about the Jómsvíkingar’) — Bjbp JómsI

Emily Lethbridge 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Bjarni byskup Kolbeinsson, Jómsvíkingadrápa’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 954.

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   43   44   45 

Skj: Bjarni Kolbeinsson: Jómsvíkingadrápa (AII, 1-10, BII, 1-10); stanzas (if different): 2 | 3 | 4

SkP info: I, 981

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

25 — Bjbp Jóms 25I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: Emily Lethbridge (ed.) 2012, ‘Bjarni byskup Kolbeinsson, Jómsvíkingadrápa 25’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 981.

Þar gekk framm í fólki
fránlyndr Búi sína
— þess kveða virða vissu
vánir — hart með sveina.
Ok geirviðir gerðu
grimma hǫggum rammir
— gengu þeir at gunni
geystir — vápna brestu.

Fránlyndr Búi gekk framm hart þar í fólki með sveina sína; kveða virða vissu vánir þess. Ok {geirviðir}, rammir hǫggum, gerðu grimma brestu vápna; þeir gengu geystir at gunni.

Keen-tempered Búi pressed forward strongly there in the battle with his followers; [people] say that men had expectations of this. And {the spear-trees} [WARRIORS], powerful with their blows, made fierce crashings of weapons; they went enraged into battle.

Mss: R(54r)

Readings: [2] sína: sínu R    [8] geystir: geysta R

Editions: Skj: Bjarni Kolbeinsson, Jómsvíkingadrápa 25: AII, 6, BII, 6, Skald II, 4, NN §3245; Fms 11, 170, Fms 12, 244, Jvs 1879, 112-13.

Notes: [2] fránlyndr ‘keen-tempered’: Unique to Jóms, but cf. compounds such as fráneggr ‘with sharp edges’ or fráneygr ‘with keen, flashing eyes’ (see LP: fráneggr, fráneygr). — [2] sína (m. acc. pl.) ‘his’: (a) The poss. pron. is emended here, as in most eds, from ms. sínu so it agrees with the object of the clause, sveina ‘followers, youths’. (b) Sínu (n. dat. sg.) could alternatively be retained and taken with fólki ‘battle’ (which would then have its alternative sense ‘troop’), but this leaves sveina underspecified. (c) Kock (Skald and NN §3245) reads sýnu, n. dat. sg. of sýnn ‘visible, clear’, which he takes here and elsewhere as an adverbial ‘clearly, certainly’. — [3-4] vissu vánir ‘had expectations’: Vissu is a past inf. forming an acc. with inf. construction with m. acc. pl. virða ‘men’, hence kveða virða vissu vánir, lit. ‘(people) say men to have known expectations’. — [8] geystir (m. nom. pl.) ‘enraged’: Emendation from ms. geysta is necessary so that the adj. qualifies þeir ‘they’ in l. 7 (so CPB II, 305, followed in Skj B). Fms 11 retains geysta but glosses it with the m. nom. pl. óðir ‘raging, enraged’. Geystr is p. p. of geysa ‘rush, gush, make rush’, hence ‘forcefully impelled (physically or mentally), in forceful motion, powerful, enraged’ (see LP: 2. geysa).

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