Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anonymous Poems (Anon)

VII. Leiðarvísan (Leið) - 45

not in Skj

Leiðarvísan (‘Way-Guidance’) — Anon LeiðVII

Katrina Attwood 2007, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Leiðarvísan’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 137-78.

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Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII]: G [2]. Leiðarvísan, et digt fra det 12. årh. (AI, 618-26, BI, 622-33)

SkP info: VII, 168

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31 — Anon Leið 31VII

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Cite as: Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Leiðarvísan 31’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 168.

Dag reis sinn með sigri
snjallastr faðir allra
— sonr huggaði seggi
sólar hauðrs — af dauða.
Áðr batt flærðarfróðan
fjanda heilagr andi
fast ok fyrða leysti
fremðarstyrkr ór myrkrum.

{Snjallastr faðir allra} reis af dauða með sigri dag sinn; {sonr {hauðrs sólar}} huggaði seggi. Áðr batt fremðarstyrkr heilagr andi fast flærðarfróðan fjanda ok leysti fyrða ór myrkrum.

{The most valiant father of all} [= God (= Christ)] rose from death with victory on his day; {the son {of the land of the sun}} [SKY/HEAVEN > = God (= Christ)] comforted men. Previously the honour-strong Holy Spirit bound fast the deceit-learned fiend and released men from darkness.

Mss: B(11r), 624(90), 399a-bˣ

Readings: [1] reis: réð B, 624    [3] seggi: so 624, 399a‑bˣ, ‘s[...]ggi’ B    [4] hauðrs: so 624, ‘hau[...]’ B, hauð(r)s(?) 399a‑bˣ    [8] fremðar‑: so 624, 399a‑bˣ, ‘[...]emdar’ B

Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII], G [2]. Leiðarvísan 31: AI, 624, BI, 630, Skald I, 306, NN §§1268, 2143; Sveinbjörn Egilsson 1844, 66, Rydberg 1907, 9, Attwood 1996a, 68, 178.

Notes: [1-4]: Christ’s Resurrection from the dead on Easter Sunday is described in Matt. XXVIII.1-8, Mark XVI.1-8, and Luke XXIV.1-10. — [1] reis ‘[he] rose’: Line 1 echoes 30/1. The similarity of the ll. accounts for B’s scribal error, repeating ‘reð’ here. Sveinbjörn Egilsson makes the obvious correction to reis ‘rose’ in a marginal note to Jón Sigurðsson’s 444ˣ transcription. — [3] sonr ‘son’: The Christ-kenning sonr hauðrs sólar ‘son of the land of the sun’, based on a hypothetical kenning-type ‘son of heaven’ is without parallel in the skaldic corpus. Presumably for this reason Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) emends sonr to sjóli ‘prince’. This destroys the subtle theological structure of the st., however. Christ is referred to successively as all three persons of the Trinity: it is as faðir allra ‘father of all’ that he rises from the dead (l. 2), as sonr hauðrs sólar ‘son of the land of the sun’ that he comforts mankind (ll. 3-4) and as heilagr andi ‘holy spirit’ that he harrows hell (ll. 5-8). — [4] hauðrs sólar ‘of the land of the sun’: This phrase appears as the second element in Christ kennings in Líkn 23/4 (also an account of the Resurrection), and in the Crucifixion account in Mgr 23/2-3. On the same model are hildingr hauðrs hvels mána ‘prince of the land of the wheel of the moon’ in Líkn 7/1-3 and skjǫldungr hauðrs skýja ‘prince of the land of the clouds’ in Mgr 25/3-4.

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