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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

7. Anonymous Poems, Leiðarvísan, 44 [Vol. 7, 177-8]

[3] brands ‘of the sword-blade’: Sveinbjörn Egilsson (1844, 70) considered this to be the pers. n. Brandr, and construed (with emendation) Brandr hefr ǫrr kveðit drápa til enda ‘Brandr has spoken the poem to the end’. He argued that the poet is giving his own name here, as he has named his mentor in 43/8. In the introduction to his 1844 edn (vi) and in 444(3)ˣ, Sveinbjörn identified this Brandr as Brandr Jónsson, Abbot of Þykkvabœr 1247-62 and Bishop of Skálholt 1263-4. Brandr is credited with authorship of several religious texts, most notably Gyðinga saga (Wolf 1995). If, however, Leið can be dated to the mid to late C12th, as is argued in the Introduction, this attribution becomes chronologically implausible. Finnur Jónsson (LH II, 118) pointed out that Sveinbjörn’s emendation is unnecessary, since rr brands ‘the messenger of the sword-blade’ makes a perfectly acceptable man-kenning (LP: 2. brandr).


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