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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Bjǫrn krepphendi (Bkrepp)

12th century; volume 2; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;

Magnússdrápa (Magndr) - 11

Skj info: Bjǫrn krepphendi, Islandsk skjald, omkr. 1100. (AI, 434-7, BI, 404-6).

Skj poems:

Bjǫrn (Bkrepp) is entirely unknown, and his ethnicity cannot be confirmed (Skj gives it as Icel.). Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 254, 262, 276) lists Bjǫrn among the poets of Magnús berfœttr ‘Barelegs’ Óláfsson (d. 1103). His nickname krepphendi appears to mean ‘the Crooked-handed’. See also SnE 1848-87, III, 622-3 and LH 1894-1901, II, 55.

Magnússdrápa (‘Drápa about Magnús’) — Bkrepp MagndrII

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘ Bjǫrn krepphendi, Magnússdrápa’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 395-405. <> (accessed 25 September 2021)

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Skj: Bjǫrn krepphendi: Magnúsdrápa, o. 1100 (AI, 434-7, BI, 404-6); stanzas (if different): 3 | 4 | 5/5-8 | 7/1-4, 6/5-8 | 7/5-8 | 8 | 9

SkP info: II, 403-4

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

10 — Bkrepp Magndr 10II

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Bjǫrn krepphendi, Magnússdrápa 10’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 403-4.

Hætt vas hvert, þats átti,
hvarf, Guðrøðar arfi;
lǫnd vann lofðungr Þrœnda
Lǫgmanni þar bannat.
Nýtr fekk nesjum útarr
naðrbings tǫpuð finginn
Egða gramr, þars umðu,
ungr, véttrima tungur.

Hvert hvarf, þats {arfi Guðrøðar} átti, vas hætt; {lofðungr Þrœnda} vann bannat Lǫgmanni lǫnd þar. {Nýtr ungr gramr Egða} fekk finginn {tǫpuð {naðrbings}} útarr nesjum, þars {tungur véttrima} umðu.

Every hiding place that {Guðrøðr’s heir} [= Lǫgmaðr] had was hazardous; {the ruler of the Þrœndir} [NORWEGIAN KING = Magnús] refused Lǫgmaðr lands there. {The bountiful young lord of the Egðir} [NORWEGIAN KING = Magnús] captured {the destroyer {of the snake-lair}} [GOLD > GENEROUS MAN] off the headlands, where {tongues of hilts} [SWORDS] were wailing.

Mss: (598r), 39(34va), E(33v), J2ˣ(310v), 42ˣ(11r) (Hkr); Mork(23r) (Mork); F(58va); H(89r), Hr(61va) (H-Hr)

Readings: [1] vas (‘var’): so all others, vann Kˣ;    þats (‘þat er’): þá er 42ˣ    [2] ‑røðar: ‑røðr E    [4] þar: þat E, far F    [5] Nýtr: nýtt H, Hr;    fekk: lét Mork, F, H, Hr;    útarr: útan F    [6] naðrbings: naðrs bing E, J2ˣ, 42ˣ, Mork, F, H, Hr;    tǫpuð: so 39, E, J2ˣ, 42ˣ, Mork, H, Hr, tapað Kˣ, tǫpuðr F;    finginn: fanginn 39, fengit E, J2ˣ, 42ˣ, fenginn Mork, H, Hr    [7] þars (‘þar er’): þá er 39, 42ˣ, er F, þar Hr;    umðu: undu 39, 42ˣ, ‘eirdu’ Hr

Editions: Skj: Bjǫrn krepphendi, Magnúsdrápa 8: AI, 436, BI, 406, Skald I, 200; ÍF 28, 221-2 (Mberf ch. 9), E 1916, 119; Mork 1867, 144, Mork 1928-32, 318, Andersson and Gade 2000, 299-300, 485 (Mberf); F 1871, 270 (Mberf); Fms 7, 43 (Mberf ch. 21).

Context: Magnús captured Lǫgmaðr Guðrøðarson, king of the Hebrides, the Isle of Man and parts of Ireland (1098).

Notes: [2] arfi Guðrøðar ‘Guðrøðr’s heir [= Lǫgmaðr]’: Guðrøðr crovan ‘Little-hand’ was the son of Haraldr svarti ‘the Black’ of Islay. He fought at the battle of Stamford Bridge in 1066 alongside Haraldr harðráði Sigurðarson of Norway, escaped to the Isle of Man and later became king of the Hebrides, Man and parts of Ireland. He died of illness in 1095 (see Munch 1860, 50-9). — [5, 6] fekk finginn ‘captured’: Lit. ‘got captured’. Lét ‘let’ (so Mork, F, H and Hr) is equally possible in the construction lét finginn ‘let [be] captured’, and H-Hr again reverts to the Mork redaction for the poetic text. — [8] véttrima ‘of hilts’: Véttrim must have been a part of the sword, and Falk (1914, 28-9) suggests that it could have been a metal plate on the sword-hilt. Vétt (n.) is an oval lid on a chest, and rim a pole, post, or the upper plank on a ship’s railing. LP: véttrim takes the first part of the cpd as vétt ‘weight’ (f.) and supplies the translation tynd stang, rim, til at løfte med ‘thin pole, rim, to lift [sth.] with’. According to that interpretation, véttrim was a part of the sword-blade close to the sword point, which makes little sense in the present kenning. See also ESk Geisl 47/4VII, in which naðr véttrima, translated as ‘the snake of sword-rings’, is a kenning for ‘sword’, which also refutes the LP interpretation.

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