Cite as: Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.) 2017, ‘Ǫrvar-Odds saga 20 (Hjálmarr inn hugumstóri, Lausavísur 10)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 834.
|Hrafn flýgr austan af hám meiði;
flýgr honum eptir örn í sinni.
|Þeim gef ek erni efstum bráðir; |
sá mun á blóði bergja mínu.
Hrafn flýgr austan af hám meiði; örn flýgr eptir honum í sinni. Ek gef þeim efstum erni bráðir; sá mun bergja á blóði mínu.
A raven flies from the east from a tall tree; an eagle flies after him in company. I will provide meat for the last eagle; that one will taste my blood.
Mss: 2845(64r), R715ˣ(10v-11r) (Heiðr); 343a(68v), 471(75v), 173ˣ(38r) (Ǫrv)
Readings:  Hrafn: so all others, ‘hramn’ with length mark over r 2845; austan: sunnan 343a, 471, 173ˣ  af hám meiði: ‘aff hamarz heidi’ corrected from ‘aff ham meidi’ in another hand R715ˣ, ‘af ha neidi’ or ‘af ha heidi’ 343a, af hám heiði 471, 173ˣ  flýgr honum eptir: ok er eptir þar 343a, 471, 173ˣ  örn: ‘or’ 173ˣ  á: af R715ˣ, 173ˣ  bergja: so 471, ‘berigia’ 2845, sjúga corrected from seiga in another hand R715ˣ, ‘berg[…]’ 343a, bjargaz 173ˣ
Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], E. 10. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Ǫrvar-Oddssaga IV 8: AII, 294, BII, 314, Skald II, 167; Ǫrv 1888, 106, Ǫrv 1892, 59, FSGJ 2, 262-3; Heiðr 1924, 14, 101, Heiðr 1960, 9; Edd. Min. 51, 53.
Context: In the Heiðr ms. 2845 this stanza follows directly from Ǫrv 19, while in R715ˣ it follows from Ǫrv 18, in both cases without intervening prose. Hjálmarr dies, according to the prose text, immediately after declaiming this stanza. The stanza is lacking in 344a, but present in all the other Ǫrv mss, where it follows Hjálm Lv 6 (Ǫrv 16) as the second of two stanzas that immediately precede Hjálmarr’s death.
Notes: [All]: In all mss, even the younger mss of Ǫrv, this stanza occupies final position in Hjálmarr’s death-song, except in 344a, which lacks the stanza altogether and concludes the death-song with Hjálm Lv 6 (Ǫrv 16). The symbolism of the stanza is thus appropriate to its position. — [All]: Another instance from a fornaldarsaga in which the appearance of a carrion bird presages a warrior’s death is Ket 34-5, immediately before the single combat between Ketill hœngr and the viking Framarr, when an eagle flies out of the forest and tears off all Framarr’s clothes. This is a signal that he is doomed.