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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

8. Breta saga 64 (Gunnlaugr Leifsson, Merlínusspá II, 64) [Vol. 8, 186]

[1] sjám við ‘let us eschew’: Sjám is emended in Skald (cf. NN §2163C), followed by Merl 2012, from ms. sjá (not refreshed). The abbreviation for <m> could have been obscured by fading of the ink. Bret 1848-9 has Sjá við synd translated as Agte sig for Synd ... ‘Guard oneself from sin ...’, where sjá appears to be construed as an imp. Emended in Skj B to , apparently construed as if it were 3rd pers. pl. indic., continuing the usage of verbs in the previous stanza. Skj B translates as De undgå synd ... ‘They shun (or ‘will shun’) sin ...’. The construals of the verb in both Bret 1848-9 and Skj B raise difficulties, for the 1st pers. pl.  is called for in view of the other verbs in the stanza. The phrasal verb sjá við ‘eschew’ is a standard formulation in homiletic admonitions (cf. HómNo 87).


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