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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Þjóðólfr ór Hvini (Þjóð)

9th century; volume 1; ed. Edith Marold;

2. Poem about Haraldr hárfagri (Har) - 5

Skj info: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski, Norsk skjald, 9 årh. (AI, 7-21, BI, 7-19).

Skj poems:
1. Ynglingatal
2. Haustlǫng
3. Et digt om Harald hårfagre, næppe ægte
4. Lausavísur

Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, or inn hvinverski, ‘from Hvinir’ (Þjóð) was a Norwegian skald of the late ninth or early tenth century. As his nickname indicates, he was from Hvinir (Kvinesdal, Vest-Agder). His biography is largely unknown. Skáldatal names him as poet to several rulers and powerful men: Haraldr hárfagri ‘Fair-hair’ and Rǫgnvaldr heiðumhár or heiðumhæri ‘High with Honours’ (SnE 1848-87, III, 253, 261, 273), Hákon jarl Grjótgarðsson (ibid., 256, 265, 280), Þorleifr inn spaki ‘the Wise’ (ibid., 259, 268, 285), Strút-Haraldr jarl (ibid., 259, 284) and an unknown Sveinn jarl (ibid., 268). However, the associations with Hákon, Strút-Haraldr and Þorleifr are uncertain since they may have lived later in the tenth century; see Bugge (1894, 145, 175); Åkerlund (1939, 7). In Hkr, both within the Prologue (ÍF 26, 4) and in HHárf (ÍF 26, 127-8, 139), Þjóðólfr is represented as skald and friend to Haraldr hárfagri and as a dedicated foster-father to Haraldr’s son Guðrøðr ljómi ‘Beam of Light’. It is in this context that he speaks the two lausavísur associated with him (Þjóð Lv 1-2). Þjóðólfr ór Hvini is the composer of the poems Ynglingatal (Þjóð Yt) and Haustlǫng (Þjóð HaustlIII, edited in SkP III). Five stanzas of a poem dedicated to Haraldr hárfagri (Þjóð Har) are also attributed to him. Several stanzas of Haraldskvæði (Þhorn Harkv) are falsely attributed to Þjóðólfr; see Introduction to Harkv. Finally, a fragment (Þjóðólfr FragIII) edited in SkP III is likely to be the work of a different Þjóðólfr, though it is tentatively associated with Þjóð Yt in Skj; see Introduction to Yt.

Poem about Haraldr hárfagri — Þjóð HarI

R. D. Fulk 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Poem about Haraldr hárfagri’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 60.

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Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski: 3. Et digt om Harald hårfagre, næppe ægte (AI, 20-1, BI, 18-19)

SkP info: I, 61

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

1 — Þjóð Har 1I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: R. D. Fulk (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Poem about Haraldr hárfagri 1’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 61.

Margir gerðu         milding snaran
hraustir menn         heim at sœkja;
eigi síðr         ǫðling fylgðu
gamlir menn         ok gerðusk kærir.

Margir hraustir menn gerðu at sœkja heim snaran milding; gamlir menn fylgðu ǫðling eigi síðr ok gerðusk kærir.

Many valiant men proceeded to visit the gallant generous one; old men followed the prince no less and made themselves intimate.

Mss: Flat(76ra) (Flat)

Editions: Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski, 3. Et digt om Harald hårfagre, næppe ægte 1: AI, 20, BI, 18, Skald I, 12; Fms 10, 178, Fms 12, 224, Flat 1860-8, I, 567 (HarHárf).

Context: In the course of an account of the many fine qualities of King Haraldr hárfagri and of the beginning of his reign, the saga writer explains that many valiant men desired to be with him on account of his generosity and the splendour of his court.

Notes: [All]: For Haraldr’s war-band and life at his court, see also sts 2-3, Þjóð Lv 1, Hhárf Lv and Þhorn Harkv 5-6, 13, 15-23. — [4] at sœkja heim ‘to visit’: Lit. ‘to seek the home (of)’. This takes an acc. object, here milding ‘generous one’; the cpd verb heimsœkja ‘visit’ is rare in ON. The implication, as pointed out by Finnur Jónsson (Skj B), is that the men attached themselves to the king. — [7] gamlir menn ‘old men’: The affirmation of the valour of the old stalwarts here contrasts with the complaint about old men in Hhárf Lv.

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