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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 49. Þormóðr Kolbrúnarskáld (biog. vol. 5), Lausavísur, 19 [Vol. 1, 831]

[1, 2] ǫrstiklandi þryngr ‘the arrow-shooter [WARRIOR = Óláfr] presses’: The ms. variants of þryngr are mostly mere alternate spellings (see CVC: þröngva). There are two main interpretations of the construction, and an alternative using the variant -stiklanda: (a) On the analysis offered here, ǫrstiklandi is the subject of þryngr, cf. Arn Þorfdr 18/2II mildingr þrǫng at hildi ‘the bountiful one stormed into battle’. (b) The verb is well attested in impersonal usage with at, meaning ‘draws nigh, approaches’ (see Vígf Lv 1/3; LP: þryngva), and this is how eds (beginning with Bartholin 1689, 174) have understood it: ‘the battle draws nigh’. Accordingly, the cpd has generally been interpreted as a vocative (as in Skj B, ÍF 6 and ÍF 27). (c) Finnur Jónsson (1932-3) argues for reading ǫrstiklanda as a dat., ‘for the arrow-shooter’, on the ground that direct address to the king is uncommon in other skalds’ verses; but cf. the next stanza, and ǫrstiklanda is for the most part the reading of the less reliable mss.


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