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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 26 October 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, 370-1

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

4 — Steinn Óldr 4II

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Steinn Herdísarson, Óláfsdrápa 4’ 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. 370-1.

Fylkir lét in fljótu
flaust, es leið at hausti;
skaut í haf, þars heitir
Hrafnseyrr, konungr stafni.
Trôðu borðveg breiðan;
brimsgangr skipa langra
óðr fell sær of súðir.
Sik beztan gram miklu.

Fylkir lét in fljótu flaust, es leið at hausti; konungr skaut stafni í haf, þars heitir Hrafnseyrr. Trôðu {breiðan borðveg}; brimsgangr, óðr sær, fell of súðir langra skipa. …Sik beztan gram miklu….

The lord set the swift ships in motion when it drew close to autumn; the king pushed the prow out to sea at the place called Ravenseer. [The ships] trod on {the broad gunwale-road} [SEA]; the rough sea, the raging ocean, poured over the sides of the long ships. …Himself [to be] the very best ruler….

Mss: Mork(19v) (Mork); Flat(204rb) (Flat); H(77v), Hr(55ra) (H-Hr)

Readings: [3] þars (‘þar er’): þar Hr    [5] Trôðu: ‘tiadu’ Flat;    borð‑: ‘nord’ Flat    [6] brimsgangr: ‘Bíns gangr’ Flat, brimgang Hr

Editions: Skj: Steinn Herdísarson, 3. Óláfsdrápa 5: AI, 410, BI, 379-80, Skald I, 189, NN §806, 888; Mork 1867, 121, Mork 1928-32, 282, Andersson and Gade 2000, 275, 482 (MH); Flat 1860-8, III, 398 (MH); Fms 6, 427 (HSig ch. 123).

Context: Sts 4-5 describe Óláfr Haraldsson’s journey (1066-7) from England to Norway via Orkney after the battle of Stamford Bridge.

Notes: [All]: After the defeat and massacre at Stamford Bridge, Harold Godwineson gave Óláfr permission to leave England in the company of Páll, jarl of Orkney. They left on twenty-four ships with the remainder of the Norw. army (see ASC D s. a. 1066). — [1] lét ‘set in motion’: For láta (lét 3rd pers. sg. pret. indic.) in the meaning ‘set (a ship) in motion’, see Fritzner: ‘láta 5. Skj B connects lét with í haf ‘out to sea’ (l. 3) ‘set out to sea’, but the resulting w. o. (a tripartite l.) is not attested otherwise (see NN §806, 880). To avoid treating láta as a full verb, Kock (NN §888; Skald) emends in fljótu (n. acc. pl.) ‘the swift’ to enn fljóta (adv. + inf.) ‘again float’ and reads fylkir lét enn flaust fljóta ‘the lord again let the ships float’. Aside from the emendations, it is unlikely that the adv. enn ‘yet’, which falls in a dip, would be stressed less strongly than the auxiliary lét ‘let’ in the preceding lift. — [4] Hrafnseyrr ‘Ravenseer’: Formerly Ravenseer or Ravenspurn, now Spurn Head, the promontory at the mouth of the River Humber. — [5] borðveg ‘gunwale-road’: Skj B and Skald emend to borðvigg ‘gunwale-steeds’ and read borðvigg trðu breiðan brimsgang (so Hr) ‘the gunwale-steeds (i. e. ships) trod on the broad breaker-road (i.e. sea)’ (ll. 5, 6). However, gangr ‘motion, speed’ in the meaning ‘road’ is otherwise unattested (see Fritzner: gangr; LP: brimsgangr; gangr), and the acc. in Hr (brimgang) is secondary. — [7] súðir ‘the sides’: See Note to Hharð Gamv 2/2. — [8]: For this part of the split refrain (klofastef), see Note to st. 1/8.

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