Gamli gnævaðarskáld (Ggnæv)
10th century; volume 3; ed. Margaret Clunies Ross;
1. Poem about Þórr (Þórr) - 1
2. Fragment (Frag) - 1
Only two helmingar composed by Gamli gnævaðarskáld (Ggnæv) are known, both recorded in mss of SnE (SnE 1998, I, 16, 103). Nothing is known of Gamli’s origin or dates, though the pagan subject-matter of Ggnæv Þórr has suggested a date in the tenth century (Skj; SnE 1998, I, 222). Previous editors have assumed he was an Icelander, though there is no proof of this. The nickname gnævaðarskáld is recorded in SnE (SnE 1998, I, 103), though its meaning is uncertain. It may derive from the verb gnæfa ‘to tower high’. Faulkes (SnE 1998, II, 460) speculates that the name may indicate that Gamli composed about someone with the nickname Gnævaðr ‘raised high, towering’; Lind (1920-1, cols. 113-14). It is assumed, though without certainty, that the Gamli credited with the Poem about Þórr (Ggnæv Þórr) is the same as the Gamli gnævaðarskáld credited with the Fragment, though only in the latter case is the nickname mentioned in the mss.
Poem about Þórr —
Margaret Clunies Ross 2017, ‘(Introduction to) Gamli gnævaðarskáld, Poem about Þórr’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 189.
Skj: Gamli gnævaðarskáld: 1. Af et digt om Tor (AI, 140, BI, 132); stanzas (if different): [v]
SkP info: III, 189
1 — Ggnæv Þórr 1III
Cite as: Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.) 2017, ‘Gamli gnævaðarskáld, Poem about Þórr 1’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 189.
context: The citation comes among a number of others
exemplifying kennings for the god Þórr. It is introduced with the words: Svá
kvað Gamli ‘So said Gamli’.
notes: The helmingr seems to be the second part of a stanza, introduced in R, Tˣ and W by the conj. meðan ‘while’. Ms. U has the introductory þás (þá er) ‘when’, which has been preferred by Skj B and Skald. Gamli describes Þórr’s smashing the World Serpent, Miðgarðsormr, with his hammer, Mjǫllnir, when they fought in the ocean.
texts: ‹Skm 49›,
editions: Skj Gamli gnævaðarskáld: 1. Af et digt om Tor (AI, 140; BI, 132); Skald I, 73, NN §1893; SnE 1848-87, I, 256-7, II, 309, III 16-17, SnE 1931, 95-6, SnE 1998, I, 16.