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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

8. Breta saga 51 (Gunnlaugr Leifsson, Merlínusspá II, 51) [Vol. 8, 178]

[6, 8] hjǫrtu … kǫld ‘hearts … cold’: The  interpretation here follows that implicit in Skj B, with the verb verða ‘will grow’ understood from verðr in l. 1, the adj. kǫld construed as nom. pl. from kaldr ‘cold’ qualifying the n. nom. pl. hjǫrtu ‘hearts’ and the noun hrími ‘with frost’ construed as an instr. dat. from hrím ‘frost’. Bret 1848-9 (also Merl 2012, presumably independently) appears to construe kǫld as an otherwise unattested noun ‘cold’, in parallel with vargǫld, etc., but that leads to deficient syntax, with hjǫrtu seemingly understood as a virtual dat. i Hjerter ‘in hearts’. Similarly Merl 2012 im Herzen ‘in hearts’, but there hrími is construed as the nom. of the weak m. noun corresponding to n. hrím.


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