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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 17 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, 918-19

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

44 — Anon Mey 44VII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kirsten Wolf (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Heilagra meyja drápa 44’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 918-19.

Júliána fekk hrein og heilög
hatr og mein af greifa einum;
læstu þeir meyju mæstri
myrkvarann í fjötrum styrkum.
Sendiz þangað hinn svikli fjandi
svíkjandi með eingils líki;
kúgaðr var hann af fljóði fögru
fagnaðarlauss til margra sagna.


The pure and holy Juliana incurred the hatred and torture of a count; they locked the most precious maiden in strong fetters in a dungeon. The deceitful devil was sent there, deceiving [her] in the shape of an angel; joyless he was forced by the fair woman to tell much [lit. forced to many stories].

notes: S. Juliana appears not to have been popular in Iceland, even though she was well known in other parts of medieval Western Europe. According to legend she was the daughter of Affricanus of Nicomedia, who betrothed her at the age of nine to one Eleusis, a senator. When she reached eighteen, Eleusis became keen to marry her but by then she had converted to Christianity, and refused to marry a pagan. To break her will, Eleusis had Juliana tortured and thrown into prison, where the devil appeared to her in the shape of an angel. They engaged in debate, and Juliana forced him to confess many of his crimes. After many tortures, Juliana was eventually beheaded.

editions: Skj [Anonyme digte og vers XIV]: [B. 12]. Af heilogum meyjum 44 (AI, 535; BII, 593); Skald II, 328, NN §2971A.


AM 721 4° (721) 9v - 9v (Mey)  transcr.  image  image  
AM 713 4° (713) 26, 28 - 26, 30  image  image  
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