Gísl Illugason (Gísl)
12th century; volume 2; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;
1. Erfikvæði about Magnús berfœttr (Magnkv) - 20
2. Lausavísa (Lv) - 1
Gísl belonged to the Icel. family of the Gilsbekkingar, who were said to be descendants of the C9th poet Bragi inn gamli ‘the Old’ Boddason (BragiIII). Gísl was the great-grandson of the skald Tindr Hallkelsson (TindrI), the uncle of poet Gunnlaugr ormstunga ‘Serpent-tongue’ Illugason (GunnlIV). See ÍF 3, 331, Genealogies II a-b in ÍF 3 and SnE 1848-97, III, 625-6. Details about Gísl’s life are given in Gísls þáttr Illugasonar (GíslIll) in H-Hr (Fms 7, 29-40; ÍF 3, 329-42) and in Jóns saga helga (JBp; JBp 2003, 10, 63-72). Gísl was born in 1079, and when he was six years old, his father was killed by a certain Gjafvaldr, a slaying Gísl later avenged. King Magnús berfœttr ‘Barelegs’ Óláfsson sentenced Gísl to death for the killing of Gjafvaldr, who was one of his retainers, but Gísl escaped execution (see Gísl Lv below). He then travelled with Magnús to Ireland in charge of hostages and became Magnús’s court poet (Skáldatal, SnE 1848-87, III, 254, 262, 276). He also seems to have participated in Magnús’s expedition to the west in 1098 and in his campaign in Sweden (c. 1100-2; see Magnkv 11 and 19). Gísl later lived in Iceland until old age and had one son, Einarr (JBp 2003, 72). In addition to the memorial poem below composed about Magnús berfœttr, Gísl is said to have composed another encomium to Magnús on the occasion described in the lv. below, but no sts from that poem survive (see SnE 1848-87, III, 626-7; ÍF 3, 340-1).
Erfikvæði about Magnús berfœttr —
Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘ Gísl Illugason, Erfikvæði about Magnús berfœttr’ 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. 416-30. <https://skaldic.org/m.php?p=text&i=1201> (accessed 18 January 2022)
Skj: Gísl Illugason: 1. Erfikvæði um Magnús berfœtt, o. 1104 (AI, 440-4, BI, 409-13)
SkP info: II, 418-19
3 — Gísl Magnkv 3II
Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Gísl Illugason, Erfikvæði about Magnús berfœttr 3’ 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. 418-19.
|Séa knátti þá siklings flota
vel vígligan ok vanan sigri,
|es fyr Yrjar í aga miklum|
óþrotligt lið árar kníði.
Þá knátti séa flota siklings, vel vígligan ok vanan sigri, es óþrotligt lið kníði árar fyr Yrjar í miklum aga.
Then one could see the sovereign’s fleet, well war-equipped and accustomed to victory, when the indefatigable crew smote the oars off Ørland in heavy seas.
Mss: Mork(21v) (Mork); H(82r), Hr(57va) (H-Hr); F(57ra)
Readings:  knátti: ‘hnattu’ Hr  ok: om. H  Yrjar: eyjar F  kníði: knúði H, ‘hnudi’ Hr
Editions: Skj: Gísl Illugason, 1. Erfikvæði um Magnús berfœtt 3: AI, 440, BI, 410, Skald I, 202; Mork 1867, 132, Mork 1928-32, 300, Andersson and Gade 2000, 287, 484 (Mberf); Fms 7, 7 (Mberf ch. 5); F 1871, 263 (Mberf).
Context: As sts 1-2 above.
Notes:  fyr Yrjar ‘off Ørland’: Parish in Sør-Trøndelag, located on the peninsula north-west of the estuary of Trondheimsfjorden. —  í miklum aga ‘in heavy seas’: Agi can mean ‘strife, turmoil’, ‘fright’ or ‘discipline’ (see Fritzner: agi), but in this particular case it denotes the turmoil of the sea (see LP: agi 2).