Cite as: Hubert Seelow (ed.) 2017, ‘Hálfs saga ok Hálfsrekka 13 (Anonymous Lausavísur, Lausavísur from Hálfs saga ok Hálfsrekka 3)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 316.
The following stanza, spoken by some unknown voice, is a prophecy warning of imminent danger, but it is not clear to whom it is addressed. It comes near the end of a chapter of prose (Hálf 1981, 176) in which hostilities between Kings Hjǫrleifr and Hreiðarr are described. First Hreiðarr makes a night raid into Hjǫrleifr’s territory, during which Hreiðarr’s son Heri is killed, and escapes with a great deal of booty, apparently including Hjǫrleifr’s two wives, Æsa and Hildr. Hjǫrleifr retaliates with a night raid on Hreiðarr’s dwelling, where he is himself captured, though saved by Hildr. He then kills Hreiðarr and escapes, taking back his two wives.
|Minntiz Hreiðarr, hvar Hera fellduð;
vá vakðiz þar fyrir vestrdyrum.
|Enn man hon sinna til sala þinna, |
byrsæl kona; bíð þú enn, konungr.
Hreiðarr minntiz, hvar fellduð Hera; vá vakðiz þar fyrir vestrdyrum. Enn man hon, byrsæl kona, sinna til sala þinna; bíð þú enn, konungr.
Hreiðarr remembered, where you slew Heri; woe was roused there before the western gate. Still she, the woman who is lucky in getting a fair wind, will travel to your hall; just you wait, king.
Mss: 2845(34v) (Hálf)
Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], E. 6. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Hálfssaga V: AII, 258, BII, 278, Skald II, 145-6; Hálf 1864, 13, Hálf 1909, 89, FSGJ 2, 105, Hálf 1981, 116-17, 176; Edd. Min. 92.
stanza is preceded by the words: Þann en
sama aptan, er Hjörleifr kóngr kom, heyrði Hreiðarr kóngr kveðit … ‘On the
very evening, when King Hjǫrleifr came, King Hreiðarr heard a voice say …’.
Notes: [All]: It is unclear to whom this stanza is addressed. While l. 1 speaks of Hreiðarr in the 3rd pers. and l. 2 addresses Hreiðarr’s enemies, who killed his son Heri, in the 2nd pers. pl., ll. 3-8 seem to be directed to Hreiðarr himself. These apparent inconsistencies explain the emendations from minntiz ‘[he] remembered’ (l. 1) and fellduð ‘you (pl.) slew’ (l. 2) by some eds in ll. 1-2 (cf. Hálf 1981, 116-17 for further detail). — [5, 7] hon, byrsæl kona ‘she, the woman who is lucky in getting a fair wind’: Lit.
the fair wind-fortunate woman’. The identity of this woman is also unclear,
though ll. 5-8 may reiterate the personification of warfare in the person of a
valkyrie that occurs in several of the merman’s stanzas. It is possible that
the two helmingar of this stanza were