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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

3. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson (biog. vol. 1), Hákonardrápa, 4 [Vol. 3, 219]

[1, 4] lætr … glymja of sik ‘makes … ring around him’: This could refer to the mail-shirt jangling when it is put on (so Skj B; SnE 1998, II, 290-1), or when blows are struck against it in battle (so Ohlmarks 1958, 248; Davidson 1983). Alternatively, Marold (2005a, 110-18) suggests that this phrase refers to a specific episode in the battle of Hjǫrungavágr (Liavågen) also described in Tindr Hákdr 1I and 3I, when Hákon’s mail-shirt becomes so badly damaged in the course of the battle that he discards it. Especially given the other echoes of Tindr’s poem in Hfr Hákdr, this is an attractive interpretation, but as parallels can be found for all three motifs, the Translation aims to leave all possibilities open.


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