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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Hallar-Steinn (HSt)

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

1. Rekstefja (Rst) - 35

Skj info: Hallar-Steinn, Islandsk skjald, 12. årh. (AI, 543-53, BI, 525-35).

Skj poems:
1. Rekstefja
2. a. Af et digt om en kvinde
2. b. Af et digt om Skáldhelgi(?)

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, ‘ 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. <> (accessed 8 December 2021)

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

SkP info: I, 921

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

21 — HSt Rst 21I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Rolf Stavnem (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallar-Steinn, Rekstefja 21’ 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. 921.

Ítr jarl einkar snarla
endr fimm skipum renndi
þrekmanns þriðja sinni
þremja storms at Ormi.
Ben lét — bǫrðusk ýtar —
brynskíðs viðum svíða
Hyrningr heiptargjǫrnum.
Hann vas ríkstr konungmanna.

Ítr jarl renndi endr einkar snarla fimm skipum þriðja sinni at Ormi þrekmanns {storms þremja}. Hyrningr lét ben svíða {heiptargjǫrnum viðum {brynskíðs}}; ýtar bǫrðusk. Hann vas ríkstr konungmanna …

The splendid jarl [Eiríkr] long ago extremely swiftly made five ships glide for the third time against the Ormr (‘Serpent’) belonging to the strong man {of the storm of swords} [BATTLE]. Hyrningr made wounds burn {on the vengeful trees {of the mail-shirt-ski}} [SWORD > WARRIORS]; men fought. He was the mightiest of royal men …

texts: Flat 343, Flat 349, ÓT 175, ÓT 182

editions: Skj Hallar-Steinn: 1. Rekstefja 21 (AI, 548-9; BI, 530); Skald I, 258, NN §§1182, 2448A; ÓT 1958-2000, II, 272 (ch. 251), 278 (ch. 252), Flat 1860-8, I, 485, 488; SHI 3, 258-9, CPB II, 298, Wisén 1886-9, I, 48, Finnur Jónsson 1893b, 164, Konráð Gíslason 1895-7, I, 256-9.


Holm perg 1 fol (Bb*) 112ra, 27 - 112ra, 30  transcr.  image  image  
AM 61 fol (61) 68ra, 33 - 68ra, 34 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  image  
AM 53 fol (53) 64va, 30 - 64va, 31 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
AM 54 fol (54) 64va, 36 - 64va, 38 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
AM 54 fol (54) 65rb, 34 - 65rb, 36 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
Holm perg 1 fol (Bb*) 100rb, 14 - 100rb, 16 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
Holm perg 1 fol (Bb*) 101ra, 11 - 101ra, 13 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  
GKS 1005 fol (Flat) 64vb, 15 - 64vb, 16 [1-4] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  image  image  
GKS 1005 fol (Flat) 65ra, 40 - 65ra, 41 [5-8] (ÓT)  transcr.  image  image  image  
unknown ms (xx) 65rb, 34 - 65ra, 36  
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