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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

7. Anonymous Poems, Sólarljóð, 45 [Vol. 7, 326-7]

[4] vötn fjalla ‘the waters of the mountains’: Falk (1914a, 26-7) relates these to the straumar gylfar of 42/4; water and mountain are part of the landscape of the entrance to the Other World. Paasche (1914a, 146) and Björn M. Ólsen (1915, 44) construe vötn fjalla as ‘lakes of the mountains’; for Paasche these close together, lukðusk saman, as the soul flies above the earth. Björn M. Ólsen objects to the presence of mountain-lakes in the seascape he imagines, and emends fjalla to fjarla ‘distant’. Njörður Njarðvík (1991, 76) compares the eschatological prophecy of Isa. XXX.25: et erunt super omnem montem excelsum et super omnem collem elevatum rivi currentium aquarum in die interfectionis multorum cum ceciderint turres ‘and there shall be upon every high mountain, and upon every elevated hill rivers of running waters on the day of the slaughter of many, when the towers shall fall’.


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