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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Steinn Herdísarson (Steinn)

11th century; volume 2; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;

3. Óláfsdrápa (Óldr) - 16

Skj info: Steinn Herdísarson, Islandsk skjald, 11. årh. (AI, 407-13, BI, 376-83).

Skj poems:
1. Nizarvísur
2. Ulfsflokkr
3. Óláfsdrápa

Steinn was the great-grandson of the Icel. poet Einarr skálaglamm ‘Tinkle-scales’ Helgason (EskálI) and a kinsman of Stúfr inn blindi ‘the Blind’ Þórðarson (Stúfr; see the genealogy in SnE 1848-87, III, 607 and Genealogy IV in ÍF 5). At the battle of the river Nissan in 1062 he was on board the ship of his kinsman, Úlfr stallari ‘the Marshal’ Óspaksson (Úlfr). Steinn was a court poet of Haraldr harðráði ‘Hardrule’ Sigurðarson and his son Óláfr kyrri ‘the Quiet’ Haraldsson (SnE 1848-87, III, 254, 262, 275). Two poems, NizarvísurVísur about the Nissan’ (Steinn Nizv), and ÓláfsdrápaDrápa about Óláfr’ (Steinn Óldr) survive of his poetic oeuvre, and another st., ÚlfsflokkrFlokkr about Úlfr’ (Steinn Úlffl), is usually assigned to a poem about Úlfr Óspaksson.

Óláfsdrápa (‘Drápa about Óláfr’) — Steinn ÓldrII

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘ Steinn Herdísarson, Óláfsdrápa’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 367-81. <> (accessed 8 December 2021)

 1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16 

Skj: Steinn Herdísarson: 3. Óláfsdrápa, o. 1070 (AI, 409-13, BI, 379-83); stanzas (if different): 1 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17

SkP info: II, 380-1

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

16 — Steinn Óldr 16II

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Steinn Herdísarson, Óláfsdrápa 16’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 380-1.

Óláfr gefr, svát jǫfra
alls engi má snjallra,
hǫggvit gull til hylli
hildinga konr mildi.
Grams es heiðum himni
— hanns fremstr konungmanna —
— spyr, hverr glíkt mun gerva —
gjǫflund borin* undir.

Óláfr, {mildi konr hildinga}, gefr hǫggvit gull til hylli, svát alls engi snjallra jǫfra má. Gjǫflund grams es borin* undir heiðum himni; hanns fremstr konungmanna; spyr, hverr mun gerva glíkt.

Óláfr, {the generous kinsman of lords} [KING], gives cut gold in exchange for loyalty, as absolutely none of [the other] undaunted princes can. The ruler’s munificent disposition is carried beneath the clear sky; he is the foremost of kings; [just] ask, who else might act in such a way.

Mss: Mork(21r) (Mork); H(80v), Hr(56vb) (H-Hr)

Readings: [2] alls: so H, Hr, ‘gallz’ Mork;    engi: ‘eíngín’ Hr    [5] Grams: gramr all    [7] glíkt: slíkt Hr    [8] borin*: borinn all;    undir: undan H

Editions: Skj: Steinn Herdísarson, 3. Óláfsdrápa 17: AI, 413, BI, 383, Skald I, 190, NN §§894-5, 1853D, 2041 anm. 2, 2983; Mork 1867, 130, Mork 1928-32, 296, Andersson and Gade 2000, 285, 483-4 (Ólkyrr); Fms 6, 448 (Ólkyrr ch. 7).

Context: As sts 13-15 above.

Notes: [4] mildi konr hildinga (m. nom. sg.) ‘the generous kinsman of lords [KING]’: For the present version, see NN §§894, 1853D. Skj B emends to kon hildinga (m. acc. sg.) and construes the following: svát alls engi snjallra jǫfra má mildi hildinga kon ‘so that absolutely none [of the other] undaunted princes can measure up to the kinsman of lords in terms of generosity’. That reading presupposes an unattested use of the verb mega (má mildi e-m ‘can measure up to sby in terms of generosity’; see LP: mildi 1). — [5-8]: In the present edn, gramr (m. nom. sg.) ‘ruler’ (l. 5) has been emended to grams (gen. sg.) as a determinant for gjǫflund (f. nom. sg.) ‘munificent disposition’ (l. 8), and borinn (m. nom. sg) ‘carried’ (l. 8) has been emended to borin (f. nom. sg.) to agree with gjǫflund (f. nom. sg.) (see NN §895). Skj B’s rendering of this helmingr is extremely convoluted syntactically and requires the emendation of hanns ‘he is’ to hann ‘he’ (l. 6): spyr þú hverr gramr mun gerva glíkt; hann es borinn fremstr konungmanna gjǫflund undir heiðum himni ‘ask, what ruler may act in such a way; he is born the foremost of kings beneath the clear sky with regard to munificent disposition’.

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