Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

login: password: stay logged in: help

Anon Heildr 2VII l. 4

lífsins — of life

lemma:

líf (noun n.; °-s; -): life

readings:

notes:

[4] brunni lífsins ‘spring of life’: This is one of a cluster of metaphors characterising the Holy Spirit as a spring or river. Compare brunnr miskunnar ‘spring of mercy’ in 8/4, eilífr ok heilagr brunnr ‘eternal and holy spring’ in 12/6, and brunnr vits ‘spring of wisdom’ in 16/2. Such epithets are widespread in medieval devotional literature and hymnody, and their ultimate source is undoubtedly biblical. Brunnr lífsins appears to be a calque on Jer. II.13, where God describes himself as fons aquae vitae ‘the fountain of the water of life’. The image of God as the source of life-restoring water is one of the most common biblical metaphors, perhaps the most common occurrences of which are Ezekiel’s vision of the river of life (Ezek. XLVII.1-12), S. John’s parallel vision of the crystal-clear river in Rev. XXII.1-2, and Christ’s claim to be the source of life-giving water in John IV.14.

kennings:

grammar:

© Skaldic Project Academic Body, unless otherwise noted. Database structure and interface developed by Tarrin Wills. All users of material on this database are reminded that its content may be either subject to copyright restrictions or is the property of the custodians of linked databases that have given permission for members of the skaldic project to use their material for research purposes. Those users who have been given access to as yet unpublished material are further reminded that they may not use, publish or otherwise manipulate such material except with the express permission of the individual editor of the material in question and the General Editor of the volume in which the material is to be published. Applications for permission to use such material should be made in the first instance to the General Editor of the volume in question. All information that appears in the published volumes has been thoroughly reviewed. If you believe some information here is incorrect please contact Tarrin Wills with full details.