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Runic Dictionary

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Hallar-Steinn (HSt)

12th century; volume 1; ed. Rolf Stavnem;

1. Rekstefja (Rst) - 35

Nothing is known about this skald (HSt) except what can be deduced from his nickname, which has been identified with the farm-name Höll, in Þverárhlíð, Mýrasýsla, western Iceland (Finnur Jónsson 1907, 185), and from the poetry attributed to him. His main extant work is the drápa Rekstefja (HSt Rst), whose ambitious praise of Óláfr Tryggvason might well point to Iceland at the end of the twelfth century or somewhat later (see Skj, and Introduction to the poem below). Hallar-Steinn has been identified (e.g. by Wisén 1886-9, I, 143) with the eleventh-century poet Steinn Herdísarson (SteinnII), but this is implausible. HSt Frag 1, of uncertain origin but probably attributable to this poet, may also commemorate Óláfr Tryggvason, while HSt Frag 2-5III represent a love-lorn poet. These fragments are preserved only in treatises on poetics and grammar, and are therefore edited in SkP III, as are two further fragments, HSt Frag 6-7III.

Rekstefja (‘Split-refrain’) — HSt RstI

Rolf Stavnem 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Hallar-Steinn, Rekstefja’ 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. 893.

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35 

Skj: Hallar-Steinn: 1. Rekstefja (AI, 543-52, BI, 525-34); stanzas (if different): 3 | 4 | 5

SkP info: I, 920

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

20 — HSt Rst 20I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: Rolf Stavnem (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallar-Steinn, Rekstefja 20’ 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. 920.

Myrkt hregg mækis eggja
meinilla gekk Sveini;
drótt hné dreyra þrútin;
Danir skunduðu undan.
Tandr beit — tiggi renndi
tveim dǫglingum — Skǫglar;
hans vǫrn hœfðisk firnum.
Hollr ok fremstr at ǫllu.

 

{The dark storm of blades of swords} [BATTLE] went very badly for Sveinn; the troop fell, swollen with blood; the Danes hurried away. {The flame of Skǫgul <valkyrie>} [SWORD] bit; the ruler [Óláfr] made two princes flee; his defence was exceptionally fitting. Faithful and foremost in all things

context: As the Norwegians clear Danish ships, Sveinn and the surviving Danes retreat onto other vessels, proving a previous claim by King Óláfr that the Danes could never defeat the Norwegians. The first helmingr is then quoted. The second follows a summary statement that Óláfr made the Danes and Swedes flee. 

notes: [3] drótt hné þrútin dreya ‘the troop fell, swollen with blood’: The alternative line in ÓT, sôr frák drengjum dreyra ‘I have heard [there were] wounds with blood on the men’ is somewhat strained, and diverges from the normal metrical pattern in Rst as the first alliteration does not fall in position 1 or 2. — [8]: For this line of the refrain, see Note to st. 9/8. Hollr ‘faithful’ is an emendation here, but it is the reading of Bb(111vb) in st. 11/8.

texts: Flat 335, Flat 341, ÓT 166, ÓT 173

editions: Skj Hallar-Steinn: 1. Rekstefja 20 (AI, 548; BI, 530); Skald I, 258, NN §1181; ÓT 1958-2000, II, 268, 271 (ch. 250), Flat 1860-8, I, 483, 485; SHI 3, 256-9, CPB II, 298, Wisén 1886-9, I, 48, Finnur Jónsson 1893b, 164, Konráð Gíslason 1895-7, I, 253-6.

sources

Holm perg 1 fol (Bb*) 112ra, 23 - 112ra, 26  transcr.  image  image  
AM 53 fol (53) 64rb, 25 - 64rb, 27 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
AM 53 fol (53) 64va, 15 - 64va, 17 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
AM 54 fol (54) 64rb, 5 - 64rb, 7 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
AM 54 fol (54) 64va, 10 - 64va, 12 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
Holm perg 1 fol (Bb*) 99vb, 21 - 99vb, 23 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
Holm perg 1 fol (Bb*) 100ra, 26 - 100ra, 28 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
GKS 1005 fol (Flat) 64va, 25 - 64va, 26 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  image  image  
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