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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, 50

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

23 — Þjóð Yt 23I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal 23’ 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. 50.

En Eysteinn
fyr ási fór
til Býleists
bróður meyjar.
Ok nú liggr
und lagar beinum
rekks lǫðuðr
á raðar braddi,
þars élkaldr
hjá jǫfur gauzkum
Vǫðlu straumr
at vági kømr.

En Eysteinn fór fyr ási til {meyjar {bróður Býleists}}. Ok nú liggr {lǫðuðr rekks} und {beinum lagar} á braddi raðar, þars élkaldr straumr Vǫðlu kømr at vági hjá gauzkum jǫfur.

And Eysteinn went because of the sail-yard to {the maiden {of the brother of Býleistr <mythological being>}} [= Loki > = Hel]. And now {the inviter of the warrior} [RULER] lies under {the bones of the sea} [STONES] at the edge of the ridge where the blizzard-cold stream of the Vaðla empties into the bay near the Gautish prince.

Mss: (41v), papp18ˣ(10v), 521ˣ(52), F(7ra), J1ˣ(20r-v), J2ˣ(23v), R685ˣ(22r) (Hkr); 761aˣ(62r-v)

Readings: [2] fyr: om. J1ˣ    [3] Býleists: so F, ‘byleistiz’ Kˣ, papp18ˣ, 521ˣ, 761aˣ, ‘blylestz’ J1ˣ, R685ˣ, ‘bylestz’ J2ˣ    [4] meyjar: ‘meyir’ J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ    [5] Ok: en J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ;    nú: ný J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ    [6] beinum: beinum corrected from benjum J2ˣ    [7] rekks: so J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ, reiks Kˣ, papp18ˣ, 521ˣ, F, 761aˣ    [8] braddi: so J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ, broddi Kˣ, papp18ˣ, 521ˣ, 761aˣ, brandi F    [9] þars (‘þar er’): þá er F

Editions: Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski, 1. Ynglingatal 31: AI, 14, BI, 12-13, Skald I, 8; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 79, IV, 23-4, ÍF 26, 77-8, Hkr 1991, I, 45 (Yng ch. 46), F 1871, 31; Yng 1912, 51, 68, Yng 2000, 65-6; Yt 1914, 15, Yt 1925, 208, 247-9.

Context: Eysteinn, son of Haraldr hvítbeinn, is the ruler of Vestfold. On the return journey from a plundering expedition to Varna (in Østfold), he is killed when Skjǫldr, the ruler of the region he has just plundered, uses magic to stir up heavy seas. While seated at the helm, Eysteinn is struck by the sail-yard of another ship and knocked overboard. He is buried in a mound near the mouth of the Vaðla in Borró (Borre).

Notes: [All]: This death by vengeful magic, presumably a local legend, is recorded only in Yng; the other prose sources know nothing of it (Beyschlag 1950, 87-8). — [3] Býleists ‘of Býleistr <mythological being>’: Because the reading ‘byleistiz’ of the Kringla transcripts is metrically unacceptable, the reading of F, which corresponds to most other attested forms of the name, is chosen. Býleistr is recorded only within periphrases referring to Loki as his brother, as in Vsp 51/8, Hyndl 40/8 and Grett Ævkv I 2/5V, and in Gylf (SnE 2005, 26) and Skm (SnE 1998, I, 19). Neither the form of the name nor its origin has been clarified fully, since the ms. spellings in the Poetic Edda and SnE point to either Býleistr or Býleiptr; see Wadstein (1895a, 77-8) and Hkr 1893-1901, IV for discussion of which of the two forms is the original. Etymological derivations of the word are assembled in S-G I, 66. — [6] und beinum lagar ‘under the bones of the sea [STONES]’: The stone-kenning refers here to a burial mound. — [8] á braddi raðar ‘at the edge of the ridge’: Rǫð (gen. raðar) is the long glacial moraine running along the coast south-west of Borre towards Brunlanes, today called ra’et (Bugge 1894, 144; Storm 1899, 114-15; ÍF 26; on Borre, see Note to st. 24/10). Snorri locates Eysteinn’s burial mound in Borre, eptir á rǫðinni út við sjá við Vǫðlu ‘along the ridge out by the sea by the Vaðla’. But there is no river near Borre that could correspond to the Vaðla. Storm (1899, 116) suggests therefore that the mound lay at the southern end of the moraine because a river running between Farrisvannet and Larvik empties into the sea there, which could correspond to the stanza’s Vaðla (see Note to l. 11). — [8] á braddi ‘at the edge’: The mss offer two possibilities: broddi ‘point’ () and braddi (J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ). *Bradd n. ‘edge’ is a word not attested in OIcel., but it is still found in Swed. and Norw. dialects, and it has cognates in OE brerd, breord ‘brim, margin’ and OHG brart ‘bent-back edge’; see Bugge (1894, 143 n. 2) and Yt 1925. This reading, which can be designated the lectio difficilior, is chosen by Yt 1925, ÍF 26, Åkerlund (1939, 113) and by this edn. The variants ‘broddi’ in and ‘brandi’ in F should be regarded as attempts to improve the unknown word. — [10] hjá gauzkum jǫfur ‘near the Gautish prince’: Gauzkum has been combined either with jǫfur ‘prince’ or with at vági ‘into the bay’ (see overview in Åkerlund 1939, 113-14). (a) The combination with at vági is contra-indicated both by Yt’s characteristic style of maintaining maximally unitary lines and by the fact that any body of water which might have been called the ‘Gautish Sea’ would be unlikely to be located elsewhere than off Sweden’s west coast, perhaps near the mouth of the Götaälv. (b) Gauzkum must therefore qualify jǫfur, despite difficulties. The prep. hjá ‘near’ governs the dat. case (Fritzner: hjá), which would normally be jǫfri (attested several times in Þjóðólfr’s poetry). It has therefore been suggested (Åkerlund 1939, 114) that this is an alternative dat. form with no ending (see ANG §358.3). As Åkerlund notes, this also fits the metrical scheme better, since jǫfur makes for a flawless Type C2-line. It is unclear why the poet calls the king ‘Gautish’. — [11] Vǫðlu ‘of the Vaðla’: Several suggestions have been made about the identity of the Vaðla. Most likely it is the name of a river running from Farrisvannet to the coast at Larvik (Storm 1899, 116). It could alternatively be the name of the sea current in Oslofjorden between Borre and the island Bastøy (Brøgger 1924-6, 94), or a noun meaning ‘ford’ (cf. OIcel. vaðill) (Johnsen 1928, 132‑3).

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