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Runic Dictionary

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Kálfr Hallsson (Kálf)

14th century; volume 7; ed. Kirsten Wolf;

Kátrínardrápa (Kátr) - 51

The name of the poet of Kátrínardrápa can be deduced from sts 1, 49 and 51 as Kálfr Hallsson (Kálfr would have been Kálfur in C14th). In st. 1/8 he describes himself as ‘the son of Hallur’ (arfi Halls) and at the end of the poem gives his name in both Icelandic (Kálfr [= ‘calf’] 49/1) and Lat. (Vitulus [= Kálfur] 51/3) and says he is now a monk (frater, st. 51/4). The implication of sts 45-51 is that Kálfr had previously led a sinful secular life, but this may be stereotypical self-deprecation. The Lat. phrase Vítulus vátes ‘the poet Kálfr’ by which the poet refers to himself in st. 51/3-4 also appears in Völsungs rímur hins óborna and this has led some scholars to propose that Kálfr Hallsson was the author of both poems (see Note to st. 51). Nothing is known of Kálfr’s monastic affiliation nor his precise dates, though the mid-C14th seems a likely floruit (Vésteinn Ólason 1993, 316).

Kátrínardrápa (‘Drápa about S. Catherine’) — Kálf KátrVII

Kirsten Wolf 2007, ‘(Introduction to) Kálfr Hallsson, Kátrínardrápa’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 931-64.

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   36   37   38   39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51 

Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV]: [B. 11]. Katrínar drápa (AII, 516-26, BII, 569-82)

SkP info: VII, 933

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

2 — Kálf Kátr 2VII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: Kirsten Wolf (ed.) 2007, ‘Kálfr Hallsson, Kátrínardrápa 2’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 933.

Orð temi mier, sá er skjöldung skírði
skýja tjalls, og spámenn allir,
prófetar Krists og postular mæstir
pínuð drótt með eldi og sóttum.
Frægar, bið eg, að mier ljái meyjar
mælsku gnótt, þá er efldi dróttinn;
öll sveit styrki eingla stillis
* óðsemjanda drápu að fremja.

Temi mier orð, sá er skírði {skjöldung {tjalls skýja}}, og allir spámenn, prófetar Krists og postular mæstir, drótt pínuð með eldi og sóttum. Bið eg, að frægar meyjar ljái mier gnótt mælsku, þá er dróttinn efldi; styrki öll sveit eingla stillis * óðsemjanda að fremja drápu.

Guide my words, he who baptised {the king {of the tent of the clouds}} [SKY/HEAVEN > = God (= Christ)] and all soothsayers, Christ’s prophets and greatest Apostles, people tormented by fire and illness. I ask that famous maidens lend me an abundance of eloquence, which the Lord strengthened; may the entire host of the ruler’s angels assist the composer of poetry in completing a drápa.

Mss: 713(129), 399a-bˣ(2), 920ˣ(213r), 444ˣ

Readings: [1] Orð temi: ‘Or[...]’ 713, ‘(Orð ge)fi’ 399a‑bˣ, ‘[...] m’ 920ˣ, ‘Orðin?’ written superscript 444ˣ    [3] mæstir: ‘m[...]’ 713, ‘m(estir)’ 399a‑bˣ, ‘m [...]’ 920ˣ, ‘[...] ⸜veitti⸝’ 444ˣ    [6] gnótt þá: ‘[...]a’ 713, ‘(þrótt)’(?) 399a‑bˣ, ‘[...]’ 920ˣ, ‘[...] ⸜gnott?⸝’ 444ˣ    [8] * óðsemjanda drápu: í ótemjandi drápu 713, 444ˣ, í ótem[jandi d]rápu 399a‑bˣ, ‘í ótemjandi [...] drápu drápu’ 920ˣ

Editions: Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV], [B. 11]. Katrínar drápa 2: AII, 517, BII, 569, Skald II, 312-13; NN §§1775, 3382A, B, Kahle 1898, 67, 105, Sperber 1911, 43, 78.

Notes: [1] temi ‘guide’: Skj B has tem; it seems more appropriate to have a subj. form to parallel styrki (cf. NN §3382A). — [1-2] sá er skírði skjöldung tjalls skýja ‘he who baptised the king of the tent of the clouds [SKY/HEAVEN > = God (= Christ)]’: John the Baptist, appropriately included among the prophets and Apostles in a story urging conversion and baptism; cf. st. 9/4. — [8] óðsemjanda (acc. sg.) ‘the composer of poetry’: So Skj B. Kock (Skald) has jótemjanda ‘tamer of horses’, but his interpretation seems rather farfetched (see NN §§1775, 3382B).

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