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Runic Dictionary

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Þjóðólfr ór Hvini (Þjóð)

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

1. Ynglingatal (Yt) - 37

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.

Ynglingatal — Þjóð YtI

Edith Marold with the assistance of Vivian Busch, Jana Krüger, Ann-Dörte Kyas and Katharina Seidel, translated from German by John Foulks 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal’ 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. 3.

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 

for reference only:  8x   11x   13x   14x   15x   16x   17x   20x   25x   26x 

Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski: 1. Ynglingatal (AI, 7-15, BI, 7-14); stanzas (if different): 9 | 10 | 11 | 12-13 | 13 | 14 | 15-16 | 16 | 17-18 | 18 | 19-20 | 20 | 21-22 | 22 | 23-24 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27-28 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33-34 | 34 | 35-36 | 36 | 37 | 38(?)

SkP info: I, 10

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

2 — Þjóð Yt 2I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal 2’ 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. 10.

En dagskjarr
Dúrnis niðja
Sveigði vélti,
þás í stein
hinn stórgeði
Dusla konr
ept dvergi hljóp.
Ok salr bjartr
þeira Sǫkmímis
við jǫfri gein.

En {dagskjarr {{Dúrnis niðja} sal}vǫrðuðr} vélti Sveigði, þás {hinn stórgeði konr Dusla} hljóp í stein ept dvergi. Ok {bjartr jǫtunbyggðr salr þeira Sǫkmímis} gein við jǫfri.

And {the daylight-shy guard {of the hall {of the descendants of Dúrnir <dwarf>}}} [(lit. ‘hall-guard of the descendants of Dúrnir’) DWARFS > ROCK > DWARF] tricked Sveigðir when {the great-minded offspring of Dusli} [= Sveigðir] ran into the rock after the dwarf. And {the bright giant-inhabited hall of Sǫkmímir <giant> and his followers} [ROCK] gaped at the prince.

Mss: (16r-v), papp18ˣ(4v), 521ˣ(13-14), F(3ra), J2ˣ(8r), R685ˣ(10r) (Hkr); 761aˣ(55r-v)

Readings: [2] Dúrnis: Durins papp18ˣ    [4] Sveigði: so F, J2ˣ, Svegði Kˣ, papp18ˣ, 521ˣ, R685ˣ, 761aˣ    [7] Dusla: so J2ˣ, R685ˣ, ‘dulsa’ Kˣ, papp18ˣ, 521ˣ, 761aˣ, ‘dysla’ F;    konr: korn R685ˣ    [9] salr: sal all    [11] ‑byggðr: ‑byðr F, ‑byggðir J2ˣ, ‘‑bygdor’ R685ˣ    [12] jǫfri: ‘jofro’ J2ˣ, R685ˣ

Editions: Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski, 1. Ynglingatal 2: AI, 7, BI, 7, Skald I, 4, NN §§1782, 1783A; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 27, IV, 4-5, ÍF 26, 28, Hkr 1991, I, 15-16 (Yng ch. 12), F 1871, 10; Yng 1912, 20, 57, Yng 2000, 16; Yt 1914, 1, Yt 1925, 198, 216‑17.


King Sveigðir succeeds his father Fjǫlnir. He makes a vow to search for Óðinn and Goðheim(a)r, a name for Svíþjóð in mikla ‘Great Sweden’ according to Yng (ÍF 26, 9-10, 22). The evening after a feast at Steinn in eastern Sweden, the king sees a dwarf by a large rock. The dwarf invites the king to enter if he wants to see Óðinn. The king follows the dwarf, enters the rock and never comes out again.

Notes: [All]: Sveigðir’s death has been associated with a motif familiar from traditional folktales and known as (ModSwed.) bergtagning ‘abduction into a mountain by supernatural beings’ (see de Boor 1924, 552; Lindow 1995, 8; ‘Bergentrückt’ [‘mountain-lured’], HDA, 1, 1056-71; Boberg 1966, 109 (F 451.5.2.4 Dwarfs kidnap mortals)). — [1] dagskjarr ‘daylight-shy’: Dagskjarr is best interpreted as an epithet qualifying salvǫrðuðr ‘guard of the hall’ (Noreen 1921, 41) rather than as a proper name (Lindqvist 1936, 282). The cpd may suggest the notion that sunlight will turn a dwarf to stone; for this motif see Boberg (1966, 109 (F 451.3.2.1 Dwarfs turn to stone at sunrise)); Reichborn-Kjennerud (1934a, 280-3). — [2] Dúrnis ‘of Dúrnir’: See Note to Þul Dverga 3/8III, Dúrnir. — [4] Sveigði ‘Sveigðir’: Like Fjǫlnir, Sveigðir is also attested as an Óðinn-heiti, e.g. in the kenning salr Sveigðis ‘hall of Sveigðir [SHIELD]’ in Gsind Hákdr 5/7. Sveigðir as a pers. n. is not attested, which suggests that this king’s name stems from legendary or mythical traditions. — [7] konr Dusla ‘offspring of Dusli [= Sveigðir]’: It is uncertain whether this kenning refers to a king of the Ynglingar in general or to Sveigðir himself. The word dusli is difficult because its transmission is not uniform in the mss and its reference is unclear. (a) It is most likely that dusli is a proper name. It may be a nominalized form of the adj. dusill ‘shabby, ragged’ and hence a nickname ‘the Shabby’ (cf. Lindquist 1929, 59), although ‘shabby’ seems an inappropriate notion in reference to an ancestor of the Yngling kings. (b) Noreen (1917, 2-5) reads dusla as m. dat. sg. of the weak form of the adj. dusill, qualifying dvergi ‘dwarf’ in the following line. This, however, involves a problematic partition of l. 7 (cf. NN §1782; Åkerlund 1939, 81). — [9-11] bjartr jǫtunbyggðr salr þeira Sǫkmímis ‘the bright giant-inhabited hall of Sǫkmímir <giant> and his followers [ROCK]’: Giants count, like dwarfs, as rock-dwellers, for which reason references to giants’ dwellings can denote a rocky cave. Although all mss read salbjartr, emendation to nom. sg. salr is required since it is the subject of gein ‘gaped’. — [10] þeira Sǫkmímis ‘of Sǫkmímir <giant> and his followers’: The line is hypermetrical, with not four but five syllables. This led Bugge (1894, 120 n. 2) to suggest the pronunciation þěra. Noreen (1892, 202) suggested ‑míms instead of ‑mímis. Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901, IV) made a valid case against both ideas, and nothing can be added to his judgement that this is an insoluble problem. — [10] Sǫkmímis ‘of Sǫkmímir <giant>’: (a) The form Sǫk- is assumed here on the basis of all three ms. spellings (‘sꜹc-’ , ‘so᷎c’ J2ˣ, ‘sꜹk’ F), though Sǫkkmímir occurs in Grí 50/2 (NK 67) and Þul Jǫtna I 6/5III (and see Note there). (b) Kock’s suggestion of Søkkmímir ‘Wealth-Mímir’ (cf. NN §1783A) is attractive, given the parallel with Hoddmímir ‘Treasure-Mímir’ in Vafþr 45/3 (NK 53). However, the ms. spellings do not favour normalised ‑kk and the existence of a word søkk ‘treasure’ in ON is uncertain (see Eyv Lv 4/5, Eyv Hál 1/10, Anon Pl 20/6VII (emendation) and Notes to these). (c) Interpretations of the name on the basis of søkkva ‘to sink’, i.e. as ‘giant who lives in the deep’ or similar (Bugge 1894, 120 n. 2; Yt 1925), are also problematic in the light of the ms. spellings.

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