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Sturla Þórðarson (Sturl)

13th century; volume 2; ed. Kari Ellen Gade;

2. Hákonarkviða (Hákkv) - 42

The life of Sturla Þórðarson (Sturl) is chronicled in Sturlunga saga (Stu). He was born on 29 July 1214 as the second son of Þórðr Sturluson and his concubine Þóra, and he was the younger brother of Óláfr hvítaskáld Þórðarson (Ólhv). In his early years he spent much time with his uncle, the poet, historian and lawspeaker Snorri Sturluson (SnSt, d. 1241), and later he took an active part in the events that played out before and after the collapse of the Icel. Commonwealth. Sturla was lawspeaker in Iceland 1251-2 and lawman, appointed by the Norw. king, 1272-82. In 1263 he went to Norway where he met King Magnús lagabœtir ‘Law-mender’ Hákonarson (d. 1280). After an initially very cool reception, the king commissioned him to write the saga of Magnús’s father Hákon Hákonarson (d. 1264) and also that of Magnús himself. Sturla later became the retainer (hirðmaðr, skutilsveinn) of Magnús and brought the law code Járnsíða ‘Ironside’ from Norway to Iceland in 1271. The story of Sturla’s journey to Norway in 1263 and his dealings with Magnús is recounted in Sturlu þáttr (StÞ), preserved in a version of Stu. In addition to the sagas of Hákon Hákonarson (Hák) and the no longer extant saga of his son Magnús lagabœtir (only two leaves are preserved in AM 325 X 4°), Sturla is the author of Íslendinga saga (Ísls) and of a redaction of Landnámabók (Ldn, in AM 107 folˣ = Stˣ). Some scholars believe that he may have been responsible for the extant redaction of Kristni saga (Kristni) (see LH 1894-1901, II, 98-105, 717-43), and he is also mentioned as an informant by the author of Grettis saga Ásmundarsonar (Gr; see ÍF 7, 157, 226, 289). Like his uncle, Snorri, and his brother, Óláfr, Sturla was a prolific poet. According to Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 256, 260, 272, 279, 384-96), he composed poems in honour of the Norw. kings Hákon Hákonarson and Magnús lagabœtir Hákonarson, and also about the Swed. jarl Birgir Magnússon (d. 1266). Nothing is preserved of Sturla’s panegyrics to the latter, but two sts from his poetry to Magnús are recorded in Hák (see Magnússdrápa (Sturl Magndr) below). The bulk of Sturla’s poetic oeuvre about Hákon Hákonarson is interspersed with the prose in Hák: Hrynhenda (Sturl Hryn), Hákonarkviða (Sturl Hákkv), Hrafnsmál (Sturl Hrafn) and Hákonarflokkr (Sturl Hákfl). In addition to these encomia, Sturla composed poetry about events and dignitaries in Iceland: namely Þverárvísur (Sturl ÞvervIV) and Þorgilsdrápa (Sturl ÞorgdrIV), both of which have been edited in SkP IV. That is also the case with his lvv. (Sturl Lv 1-4IV). One fragment which earlier eds assigned to Hryn (earlier st. 22) has been edited in SkP III as Sturl FragIII. Sturla died on 30 July 1284 and was buried in the Church of S. Peter at Staðarhóll.

Hákonarkviða — Sturl HákkvII

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘(Introduction to) Sturla Þórðarson, Hákonarkviða’ 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. 699-727.

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38 

for reference only:  5x   9x   10x   25x 

Skj: Sturla Þórðarson: 4. Hákonarkviða, 1263-64 (AII, 108-19, BII, 118-26); stanzas (if different): 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10-11 | 11 | 12-13 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28-9 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42

SkP info: II, 707

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

10 — Sturl Hákkv 10II

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Sturla Þórðarson, Hákonarkviða 10’ 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, p. 707.

Stóð ófriðr
af afarmenni
öllu fólki,
þá er ynglingr
austr á Láku
sverða seið
of samit hafði,
ok vígálfr
vaxanda lét
úlfa ár
ok ara ferðar.
Valði vetr
til vápnþrimu
of vígskátt
vísa ríki.

Ófriðr stóð af afarmenni öllu fólki innanlands, þá er ynglingr hafði of samit {seið sverða} austr á Láku, ok {vígálfr} lét ár úlfa ok ferðar ara vaxanda. Valði vetr til {vápnþrimu} of vígskátt ríki vísa.

Unrest came from the proud man to all people within the country, when the chieftain had caused {a chant of swords} [BATTLE] east at Låke, and {the battle-elf} [WARRIOR = Skúli] made the prosperity of the wolves and of the company of eagles increase. He chose the winter for {weapon-clash} [BATTLE] throughout the war-worn realm of the ruler.

Mss: E(173v), F(109rb), 42ˣ(157r), 81a(105vb) (ll. 1, 5-16), 8(53r), Flat(177va) (Hák)

Readings: [1] ófriðr: om. 81a    [2] afar‑: so all others, ‘amar’ E    [5] þá er: om. 81a    [7] seið: leið 42ˣ    [9] víg‑: so 42ˣ, Flat, ‘vigi‑’ E, ‘viggi‑’ F, ‘viga’ 81a, ‘ragi‑’ 8    [10] vaxanda: vaxandi 81a    [13] Valði (‘valdi hann’): so Flat, valðan E, F, 42ˣ, 81a, 8    [14] ‑þrimu: ‑þrumu 42ˣ    [15] of: ok 42ˣ, Flat;    ‑skátt: ‑skart 42ˣ, ‑skár Flat

Editions: Skj: Sturla Þórðarson, 4. Hákonarkviða 12-13: AII, 111-12, BII, 120-1, Skald II, 64-5; E 1916, 593, F 1871, 507, Hák 1910-86, 537, Hák 1977-82, 116-17, Flat 1860-8, III, 140.

Context: The battle of Låke between the forces of Skúli Bárðarson and the Birkibeinar under the leadership of Jarl Knútr, the son of Jarl Hákon galinn ‘the Crazy’, fought on 9 March 1240. Knútr lost the battle and retreated with his men to Tønsberg.

Notes: [All]: For this event, see also Ólhv Hryn 8 and Lv 2. — [6] austr á Láku ‘east at Låke’: Farmstead in Nannestad, Romerike, Norway. — [11] ár ‘the prosperity’: Ár can mean ‘prosperity, good crops, abundance, riches’. ‘The prosperity of the wolves and of the company of eagles’ refers to the carnage left behind after the battle, a deft juxtaposition to the prosperity of the country brought about by Hákon’s rule (cf. sts 4-5 above). — [13] valði (3rd pers. sg. pret. indic.) ‘he chose’: So Flat. The reading of the other mss, valðan (p. p. m. acc. sg.) ‘chosen’ could be taken as another object to lét vaxanda ‘made increase’ (l. 10) (‘made the chosen winter increase’). That makes little sense in the present context but must have entered the ms. transmission at an early point. — [15-16] of vígskátt ríki vísa ‘throughout the war-worn realm of the ruler’: Cf. Anon Nkt 5/3-4.

Runic data from Samnordisk runtextdatabas, Uppsala universitet, unless otherwise stated