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Sturla Þórðarson (Sturl)

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

4. Hákonarflokkr (Hákfl) - 11

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.

Hákonarflokkr — Sturl HákflII

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘ Sturla Þórðarson, Hákonarflokkr’ 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. 745-55. <> (accessed 22 October 2021)

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11 

Skj: Sturla Þórðarson: 6. Hákonarflokkr, 1263-64 (AII, 124-7, BII, 132-4)

SkP info: II, 753-4

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

9 — Sturl Hákfl 9II

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Sturla Þórðarson, Hákonarflokkr 9’ 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. 753-4.

Veitti virða dróttinn
víkelds gjafir ríkjum
— gullsviptir hlaut giptu —
göfugr Skánunga jöfri.
Heim kom hilmir Rauma
— hvatir fundu þat skatnar —
ár með öflgum tíri
ólestr ok veg mestum.

{Göfugr dróttinn virða} veitti {ríkjum jöfri Skánunga} gjafir {víkelds}; {gullsviptir} hlaut giptu. {Hilmir Rauma} kom ár heim ólestr með öflgum tíri ok mestum veg; hvatir skatnar fundu þat.

{The glorious lord of men} [KING = Hákon] gave {the mighty prince of the Skánungar} [DANISH KING = Kristófór] gifts {of the inlet-pyre} [GOLD]; {the gold-flinger} [GENEROUS MAN] got good fortune. {The ruler of the Raumar} [NORWEGIAN KING = Hákon] soon returned home unharmed with high honour and the greatest glory; bold men noticed that.

Mss: E(192r), F(119ra), G(1ra-b), 81a(120ra), 8(71r), Flat(183va) (Hák)

Readings: [1] Veitti: so all others, Vænti E    [2] víkelds: ‘vikellr’ G, ‘uikalldr’ 8;    ríkjum: ríkum G, 8, Flat    [3] gull‑: ‘[…]ull’ G, gulls Flat    [4] Skánunga: skánungar 81a, konunga 8    [5] Rauma: nauma G, hranna 8    [7] ár: ok 81a, at 8    [8] ólestr: so F, G, Flat, ólestir E, 81a, flestr 8;    ok veg mestum: ‘m[…]’ G;    ok: so F, Flat, með E, 81a, 8

Editions: Skj: Sturla Þórðarson, 6. Hákonarflokkr 9: AII, 127, BII, 134, Skald II, 72, NN §§1367, 3142; E 1916, 655, F 1871, 556, Hák 1910-86, 668, Hák 1977-82, 178, Flat 1860-8, III, 201.

Context: In the summer of 1257, Hákon sailed with a large fleet to Denmark and met with King Kristófór Valdimarsson in Copenhagen. The two kings signed an agreement and parted on excellent terms after exchanging gifts. Hákon then returned to Norway.

Notes: [All]: For Hákon’s journey to Denmark, see also Giz Hákdr and Sturl Hryn 16-18. — [2] ríkjum (m. dat. sg.) ‘mighty’: Here qualifying jöfri Skánunga ‘the prince of the Skánungar’ (l. 4) (so Skj B). Kock (NN §3142) takes it as an otherwise unattested adv. ‘mightily’. — [4] göfugr ‘glorious’: Skj B and Skald take this adj. with gullsviptir ‘the gold-flinger’ (l. 3), which is also possible but less likely because it would lend glory to the Dan. king and detract from the status of Hákon. — [7] ár ‘soon’: Skj B construes this adv. with the last cl. of the helmingr, which is possible but creates a more awkward w. o. (see NN §1367). — [8] ok ‘and’: So F, Flat. Með ‘with’ (so E, 81a, 8) duplicates með ‘with’ in the previous l.

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