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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Gizurr Grýtingaliði (GizGrý)

volume 8; ed. Margaret Clunies Ross;

VIII. Lausavísur (Lv) - 7

not in Skj

Lausavísur — GizGrý LvVIII (Heiðr)

Hannah Burrows (forthcoming), ‘ Gizurr Grýtingaliði, Lausavísur’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. . <https://skaldic.org/m.php?p=text&i=3138> (accessed 17 September 2021)

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SkP info: VIII, 471

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

1 — GizGrý Lv 1VIII (Heiðr 99)

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: Hannah Burrows (ed.) 2017, ‘Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks 99 (Gizurr Grýtingaliði, Lausavísur 1)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 471.

Þetta er þiggjanda         þýjar barni,
barni þýjar,         þótt sé borinn konungi.
Þá hornungr         á haugi sat,
er öðlingr         arfi skipti.

Þetta er þiggjanda þýjar barni, barni þýjar, þótt sé borinn konungi. Þá sat hornungr á haugi, er öðlingr skipti arfi.

This is acceptable for a servant-woman’s child, child of a servant-woman, though he may be born to a king. The bastard sat on the mound, when the prince was dividing the inheritance.

Mss: 203ˣ(110v), R715ˣ(32r) (Heiðr)

Readings: [1] þiggjanda: þiggjandi R715ˣ    [2] barni: barmi R715ˣ    [3] barni: barmi R715ˣ;    þýjar: þýja 203ˣ, R715ˣ    [4] konungi: konungr 203ˣ, ‘k:’ R715ˣ    [5] hornungr: hornung R715ˣ    [6] haugi: ‘haag’ R715ˣ    [7] öðlingr: ‘odligar’ R715ˣ

Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], E. 5. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Hervararsaga V 15: AII, 253, BII, 273, Skald II, 142; Heiðr 1672, 166, FSN 1, 495, Heiðr 1873, 273, Heiðr 1924, 145-6, FSGJ 2, 58, Heiðr 1960, 51 (Heiðr); Edd. Min. 5-6, NK 305-6, ÍF Edd. II, 423.

Context: According to the saga prose, Heiðrekr’s elderly foster-father Gizurr Grýtingaliði ‘Retainer of the Grýtingar’ thinks the offer is too generous, and speaks the stanza (but see Note to l. 1 below).

Notes: [1] þiggjanda ‘acceptable’: The meaning of the stanza seems to contradict what is stated in the prose, that Gizurr thinks Angantýr ofmikit bjóða ‘offers too much’.  — [2-3]: Tolkien (Heiðr 1960, 51 n. 2) highlights the ‘emphatic repetition’ and draws comparison to Sigsk 17/6-7; Jón Helgason (1967, 230) notes also the example of Ásm 5/2-3. Gizurr’s claim is insulting, and alludes to the fact that Hlǫðr’s mother, Sifka, the daughter of the Hunnish king Humli, was captured in a raid by Heiðrekr and returned pregnant to her father. — [4] konungi ‘to a king’: The emendation to dat. case was first made by Suhm and Stefán Björnsson (Heiðr 1785, 194; konge is what is actually printed) and has been followed in Heiðr 1873 and Heiðr 1960. The mss’ reading, ok þótt sé borinn konungr ‘and though he may be born a king’ is possible grammatically, but gives less good sense because though Hlǫðr’s parents are both of royal status, he was conceived illegitimately. The reading of the mss is retained by FSN, FSGJ, Edd. Min., NK and ÍF Edd., and by Skj B although Finnur Jónsson gives the translation selv om han er født som konge(sön) ‘though he may be born a king(’s son)’. — [5-6]: As shepherds are associated with the practice of sitting on mounds (e.g. Vsp 42/1-4, Skí 11/1-2), some have interpreted Gizurr’s remark as insulting to Hlǫðr (e.g. Jón Helgason 1967, 231; ÍF Edd.; cf. Heiðr 1960, 51 n. 3). However, the concept most likely relates to inheritance or succession; by implication, the mound would be that of Hlǫðr’s (and Angantýr’s) father, Heiðrekr. In the Flat redaction of ÓH, for example, a certain Bjǫrn, son of a deceased king Óláfr, sits on his father’s mound when he reaches the age of twelve before claiming the kingdom from his uncle, acting as regent (Flat 1860-8, II, 70). The practice of sitting on royal burial mounds may also have been a more abstract symbol of kingship: in HHárf in Hkr (ch. 8, ÍF 26, 99-100), King Hrollaugr of Namdalen goes upp á haug þann, er konungar váru vanir at sitja á ‘up onto that mound which kings were accustomed to sit on’, and rolls down from the kings’ seat to the jarls’, as a sign of his subjection to Haraldr hárfagri. Ellis (1943, 105-11) provides examples and discussion of these and other incidents, including further connections to kingship and inheritance of other kinds. The implication seems to be that Hlǫðr’s actions were an attempt at symbolic validation of his claim. — [5] hornungr ‘bastard’: Lit. ‘the one in the corner’, i.e. someone relegated to a marginal status, an outcast. In the Old Norwegian Gulaþingslǫg (§104; NGL I, 48-9) the hornungr is the son of a free woman who has not had the bride-price paid for her but the relationship has not been secret. He is entitled to the ‘seventh inheritance’, which includes moveable wealth and odal land. In the Frostuþingslǫg, the hornungr is defined as the son of a man who has lain with a free woman in the house (as opposed to outside it: NGL I, 228 (X, §47)), and also takes the ‘seventh inheritance’ (NGL I, 206 (VIII, §8)). In Old Icelandic law the hornungr is the child of a woman and the slave she has freed in order to marry; the hornungr is not a lawful heir (Grg Ia, 224 (§118)). On other uses and cognates see Frimannslund (1968, 71-4) and Magnús Már Lárusson (1968, 74-5). Here the sense seems to be generally pejorative rather than legally specific.

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