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, 145-6

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

6 — Anon Leið 6VII

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Cite as: Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Leiðarvísan 6’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 145-6.

Tekk til orðs, þars urðu
alfregnar jartegnir
— tôkn eru sýnd í slíku
sǫnn — Jórsalamǫnnum.
Sendi salvǫrðr grundar
snillifimr af himni
borgar lýð til bjargar
bréf gollstǫfum sollit.

Tekk til orðs, þars alfregnar jartegnir urðu Jórsalamǫnnum; sǫnn tôkn eru sýnd í slíku. {Snillifimr {grundar sal}vǫrðr} sendi bréf af himni, sollit gollstǫfum, til bjargar lýð borgar.

I begin to speak at the point when renowned miracles befell the people of Jerusalem; true tokens are shown in such [a thing]. {The prowess-nimble warden {of the hall of the earth}} [(lit. ‘earth’s hall-warden’) SKY/HEAVEN > = God] sent a letter from heaven, embellished [lit. swollen] with golden letters, as a help for the townspeople.

Mss: B(10v), 624(86), 399a-bˣ

Readings: [1] Tekk (‘tek ek’): so all others, ‘Tek [...]k’ B    [8] gollstǫfum sollit (‘gullsto᷎fum sullet’): ‘gullstǫfum sullath’ 624

Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII], G [2]. Leiðarvísan 6: AI, 619, BI, 623, Skald I, 303; Sveinbjörn Egilsson 1844, 58, Rydberg 1907, 5, Attwood 1996a, 61, 172.

Notes: [2] jartegnir ‘miracles’: On the spelling here, see Note to 26/4. — [5] sendi salvǫrðr grundar: Cf. Geisl 19/3: sýndi salvǫro᷎r grundar. — [6] snillifimr ‘prowess-nimble’: This cpd adj. is hap. leg., but a similar construction is found at Has 48/3, where King David is described as snilli vanðr ‘accustomed to eloquence’. — [8] sollit gollstǫfum ‘embellished [lit. swollen] with golden letters’: Normalisation of B’s ‘sullet’ is necessary to preserve the correct sequence of vowels in a Class III strong verb (cf. ANG §489). This in turn necessitates normalisation to goll- in order to preserve the rhyme. Although goll and gull coexisted for a while (ANG §61.1), goll was the more usual form in the early period. For the sake of consistency, gullstǫfum in 7/8 has also been normalised to gollstǫfum, though the rhyme is not affected there. — [8] gollstǫfum ‘with golden letters’: Sunday Letter texts of the first and second recensions conventionally describe the letter as having golden calligraphy (Attwood 2003, 72). Both Abbot Níkulás of Munkaþverá and the author of Kirialax saga mention this in their descriptions of the chapel of S. Simeon, part of the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, where the letter was reputed to have landed. For details, see the Introduction.

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