Eyvindr skáldaspillir Finnsson (Eyv)
10th century; volume 1; ed. Russell Poole;
1. Hákonarmál (Hák) - 21
2. Háleygjatal (Hál) - 16
3. Lausavísur (Lv) - 14
Eyvindr (Eyv, c. 915-990) has been called the last important Norwegian skald (Genzmer 1920, 159; also Boyer 1990a, 201). He is listed in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 253, 256, 261, 265-6) among the poets of Hákon góði ‘the Good’ Haraldsson and Hákon jarl Sigurðarson. His maternal grandmother was a daughter of Haraldr hárfagri ‘Fair-hair’, and he seems to have been close to Haraldr’s son Hákon góði from early on, serving at his court as one of a group of brilliant skalds. After Hákon’s death he resided at the court of Haraldr gráfeldr ‘Grey-cloak’, but relations with Haraldr seem to have soured quickly, as evidenced by his lausavísur. Eyvindr spent the last part of his life with the powerful Hákon jarl Sigurðarson of Hlaðir (Lade), whose family had supported Hákon góði against the sons of Eiríkr blóðøx ‘Blood-axe’. According to Hkr (ÍF 26, 221), in addition to Háleygjatal (Hál), Hákonarmál (Hák) and the lausavísur, Eyvindr composed a poem Íslendingadrápa, but this has not come down to us. The epithet skáldaspillir is usually interpreted to mean ‘Plagiarist’, literally ‘Destroyer (or Despoiler?) of Poets’ in reference to his habit of drawing inspiration from and alluding to earlier compositions, specifically Ynglingatal (Þjóð Yt) for Hál and Eiríksmál (Anon Eirm), along with several eddic poems, for Hák (see Introductions to Hál and Hák). The alternative interpretation ‘Poem-reciter’ proposed by Wadstein (1895a, 88) is unconvincing; see further Olsen (1962a, 28), and Beck (1994a). For further biographical information, see LH I, 447-9, Holm-Olsen (1953) and Marold (1993a).
Hákonarmál (‘Words about Hákon’)
R. D. Fulk 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Eyvindr skáldaspillir Finnsson, Hákonarmál’ 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. 171.
Skj: Eyvindr Finnsson skáldaspillir: 1. Hákonarmál, 961 (AI, 64-8, BI, 57-60)
SkP info: I, 186
11 — Eyv Hák 11I
Cite as: R. D. Fulk (ed.) 2012, ‘Eyvindr skáldaspillir Finnsson, Hákonarmál 11’ 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. 186.
|Vísi þat heyrði, hvat valkyrjur mæltu
mærar af mars baki;
| ok hjalmaðar stóðu |
ok hǫfðusk hlífar fyrir.
Vísi heyrði þat, hvat mærar valkyrjur mæltu af baki mars; létu hyggiliga ok stóðu hjalmaðar ok hǫfðusk hlífar fyrir.
The leader heard what the renowned valkyries said from [on] horseback; they behaved prudently and remained, helmeted, and held shields in front of them.
Mss: Kˣ(106r), F(18va), J1ˣ(63v-64r), J2ˣ(60v) (Hkr); 761bˣ(99v)
Readings:  ‑kyrjur: ‘kyior’ F  af: á J1ˣ, J2ˣ  stóðu: stu J1ˣ, J2ˣ
Editions: Skj: Eyvindr Finnsson skáldaspillir, 1. Hákonarmál 11: AI, 66, BI, 58, Skald I, 36; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 220, IV, 60, ÍF 26, 195, Hkr 1991, I, 127 (HákGóð ch. 31/2), F 1871, 84; Möbius 1860, 233, Jón Helgason 1968, 27, Krause 1990, 92-4.
Context: As for st. 1.
Notes:  valkyrjur ‘valkyries’: Gǫndul and Skǫgul; see Note to st. 1/1 on these and valkyries in general. —  stóðu ‘remained’: The reading stu ‘sat’ of J1ˣ, J2ˣ is preferred by nearly all the poem’s eds, and it is suitable to valkyries on horseback, but it is surely an alteration. Stóðu, rather than having its usual sense ‘stood’, may here mean ‘remained, stayed’ (Fritzner: standa 7).