Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

2. Þjóðólfr Arnórsson, 1. Magnússflokkr, 15 [Vol. 2, 82-3]

[1] náði at eyða ‘succeeded in clearing’: (a) Náði, the reading of all mss, has been retained. If this is a claim of success on the part of Sveinn (the sacking of an enemy stronghold) it is problematic in an encomium on Magnús, and at odds both with the prose contexts and with ll. 3-4, unless the defence described there is taken as the response to the provocation in ll. 1-2. However, if the sense of eyða is rather ‘empty’ or ‘leave, abandon a place’ (Fritzner: eyða 1, 2), the meaning could be instead that Sveinn cleared his own royal residence in Sjælland by fleeing with all his men. In this case náði ‘succeeded’ would have an ironic ring. (b) Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901, III, IV and Skj B) and Kock (Skald) emended by adding negative -(a)t), hence náðit ‘did not succeed’.


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