This interface will soon cease to be publicly available. Use the new interface instead. Click here to switch over now.

Cookies on our website

We use cookies on this website, mainly to provide a secure browsing experience but also to collect statistics on how the website is used. You can find out more about the cookies we set, the information we store and how we use it on the cookies page.

Data from Samnordisk runtextdatabas

login: password: stay logged in: help

Anonymous Poems (Anon)

VII. Heilagra meyja drápa (Mey) - 60

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 May 2022)

stanzas:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51   52   53   54   55   56   57   58   59   60 

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

SkP info: VII, 925

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

54 — Anon Mey 54VII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kirsten Wolf (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Heilagra meyja drápa 54’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 925.

Tíu þúsundir tígnar meyja
tel eg greinandi riett og eina;
Ussula var fyr öllum þessum
Einglands blóm, er fór til Róma.
Vænar meyjar hjuggu Húnir;
hrottar skýfðu brúðir drottins;
dýrkuð er nú Kolnis kirkja
kraftarík af þeira líkum.

Greinandi riett, tel eg tíu þúsundir og eina tígnar meyja; Ussula, blóm Einglands, er fór til Róma, var fyr þessum öllum. Húnir hjuggu vænar meyjar; hrottar skýfðu {brúðir drottins}; kirkja Kolnis, kraftarík, er nú dýrkuð af líkum þeira.

Recording correctly, I count 11,000 [lit. ten thousand and one] maidens of distinction; Ursula, the flower of England, who went to Rome, was the leader of them all. The Huns slew the beautiful maidens; the swords slashed {the brides of the Lord} [HOLY WOMEN]; the church of Cologne, rich in miracles, is now worshipped because of their bodies.

Mss: 721(10r), 713(27)

Readings: [1] meyja: meyjar 713    [3] Ussula: ‘ursula’ 721, 713    [4] blóm: blómi 713;    er: superscript 713    [5] Húnir: ‘Hynir’ 713    [6] hrottar: so 713, ‘h[...]ottar’ 721

Editions: Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV], [B. 12]. Af heilogum meyjum 54: AII, 537, BII, 595, Skald II, 330, NN §§2764, 2970B.

Notes: [All]: The story of S. Ursula and her 11,000 virgin martyr companions has some similarities to that of Sunniva. It was known in Iceland from Breta sögur (first half of C13th), a translation of Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britaniae (c. 1136). There is also a brief epitome of the legend in a C14th ms. (Widding, Bekker-Nielsen and Shook 1963, 335). On the cult in Iceland, see Cormack 1994, 29, 34-5, 158. In its elaborated form, the legend of Ursula grew out of a veneration of a small number of unnamed virgins at Cologne in C4th, but, by the C12th, Ursula had become the daughter of a king of Britain. She, together with 11,000 virgins, went on a pilgrimage to Rome and, on their return journey they were murdered by the Huns at Cologne on account of their Christian faith. — [3] Ussula ‘Ursula’: The rhyme with þessum shows that there has been assimilation of rs to ss, even though the mss do not show it orthographically.

Runic data from Samnordisk runtextdatabas, Uppsala universitet, unless otherwise stated