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, 146

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7 — Anon Leið 7VII

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Cite as: Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Leiðarvísan 7’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 146.

Varð bréf, þats guð gerði
geðsnjallr ok lét falla
— vôns á gipt — á grœna
grund, sunnudag fundit.
Bók* réðu þá blíðir
byrskíðs viðir síðan
— verðr, sás vensk á dýrðir,
vítr — gollstǫfum ritna.

Bréf, þats geðsnjallr guð gerði ok lét falla á grœna grund, varð fundit sunnudag; vôns á gipt. {Blíðir viðir {byrskíðs}} réðu síðan þá bók*, ritna gollstǫfum; verðr vítr, sás vensk á dýrðir.

The letter, which valiant-minded God made and let fall onto the green ground, was discovered on a Sunday; there is an expectation of grace. {Gentle trees {of the wind-ski}} [SHIP > SEAFARERS] later interpreted that book, written with gold letters; he will become wise who accustoms himself to glories.

Mss: B(10v), 624(86)

Readings: [5] Bók*: ‘becks’ B, 624

Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII], G [2]. Leiðarvísan 7: AI, 619, BI, 624, Skald I, 303, NN §3248; Sveinbjörn Egilsson 1844, 59, Rydberg 1907, 5, Attwood 1996a, 61, 172.

Notes: [5] bók* ‘book’: It is not possible to use B’s and 624’s reading ‘becks’. Although bekkr ‘bench’ may be compounded with expressions for the sea in ship-kennings (as, for example, in SnSt Ht 75/2III: hafbekkr ‘sea-bench’), the man-kenning viðir bekks byrskíðs ‘trees of the bench of the wind-ski’, which seems to be the only possible arrangement, would be tautologous: byrskíð ‘wind-ski’ is already an acceptable ship-kenning. Kock (NN §3248) suggests that þá (l. 5), interpreted as an adv., should be construed with síðan (l. 6), but even this arrangement does not solve the problem of ‘becks’, since it would leave réðu (l. 5) without an object. With Rydberg and Finnur Jónsson this edn adopts Sveinbjörn Egilsson’s emendation to bók*, understood as a reference to the Sunday Letter, and qualified by the adj. ritna ‘written’ (l. 8).

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