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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anonymous Poems (Anon)

VII. Heilagra meyja drápa (Mey) - 60

not in Skj

Heilagra meyja drápa (‘Drápa about Holy Maidens’) — Anon MeyVII

Kirsten Wolf 2007, ‘ Anonymous, Heilagra meyja drápa’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 891-930. <> (accessed 18 January 2022)

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Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV]: [B. 12]. Af heilogum meyjum, Heilagra meyja drápa. (AII, 526-39, BII, 582-97)

SkP info: VII, 901-2

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

15 — Anon Mey 15VII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kirsten Wolf (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Heilagra meyja drápa 15’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 901-2.

Krossaz vildi kvinna þessi;
kom hun með sorg til Jórsalaborgar;
yfirmusterið Jésú Kristi
enn var byrgð fyr syndum hennar,
áðr himna kóngs mjúka móður
Máría bað, sú er flaut í tárum,
líknar brunnrinn lofaði henni,
langa stund, í kirkju ganga.

Þessi kvinna vildi krossaz; hun kom með sorg til Jórsalaborgar; yfirmusterið Jésú Kristi var enn byrgð fyr hennar syndum, áðr Máría, sú er flaut í tárum, bað {mjúka móður {kóngs himna}} langa stund; brunnrinn líknar lofaði henni í kirkju ganga.

This woman wanted to take the Cross; she came with sorrow to Jerusalem; the chief temple of Jesus Christ was still closed because of her sins, until Mary, who was bathed in tears, prayed {to the merciful mother {of the king of the heavens}} [= God (= Christ) > = Mary] for a long time; the fountain of mercy permitted her to enter the church.

Mss: 721(11v), 713(24)

Readings: [2] Jórsala‑: so 713, ‘josala’ 721    [8] kirkju: kirkju að 713

Editions: Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV], [B. 12]. Af heilogum meyjum 15: AII, 529-30, BII, 586, Skald II, 323.

Notes: [1] krossaz ‘to take the Cross’: LP assumes the verb means ‘to convert to Christianity’; Skj B has the more conservative vilde besøge korset ‘wanted to visit the Cross’, and in fact the legend does not ascribe a wish to convert to Mary at this point in her life. Rather, she joined a group of people travelling by boat to Jerusalem for the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, at krossmessu (Unger 1877, I, 487; Wolf 2003, 31), without herself sharing their Christian motivation. — [2] yfirmusterið Jésú Kristi ‘the chief temple of Jesus Christ’: That is, the Holy Sepulchre, which sinners were prohibited from entering. — [7] brunnrinn líknar ‘the fountain of mercy’: = The Virgin Mary, modelled on Lat. fons misericordiae ‘fountain of mercy’, sedes misericordiae ‘seat of mercy’; cf. Anon Mdr 35/4 brunnr miskunnar ‘fountain of mercy’; Schottmann 1973, 52. It was a miraculous icon of the Virgin, which she saw in a courtyard of the church, that aided Mary and was instrumental in her conversion.

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