Cite as: Hannah Burrows (ed.) 2017, ‘Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks 77 (Gestumblindi, Heiðreks gátur 30)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 444.
|Hverr er sá inn eini, er sefr í ösgrúa,
ok af grjóti einu görr?
Föður né móður
| áat sá inn fagrgjarni; |
þar mun hann sinn aldr ala.
Heiðrekr konungr, hyggðu at gátu.
Hverr er sá inn eini, er sefr í ösgrúa, ok görr af grjóti einu? Sá inn fagrgjarni áat föður né móður; þar mun hann ala aldr sinn. Heiðrekr konungr, hyggðu at gátu.
Who is that, the lone one, who sleeps in the ash-grate, and is struck from stone alone? That bright-eager one has neither father nor mother; there he must spend his life. King Heiðrekr, think about the riddle.
Mss: 2845(71v), 281ˣ(100v), 597bˣ(51r), R715ˣ(28r-v) (ll. 1-6) (Heiðr)
Readings:  ösgrúa: ösku grúa 281ˣ, 597bˣ  ok: ok er 281ˣ, 597bˣ, R715ˣ; einu: eru 281ˣ, einu er corrected from einu in the margin in another hand 597bˣ, ok jarni R715ˣ; görr: görðr R715ˣ  né: ok 281ˣ, 597bˣ, R715ˣ  áat: á 2845, R715ˣ, ‘ugad’ 281ˣ, eigat 597bˣ; fagr‑: fjár‑ 281ˣ, 597bˣ, fár‑ R715ˣ  þar: ‘so’ R715ˣ [7-8] abbrev. as ‘h k̄ h’ 2845, abbrev. as ‘heid: k.’ 281ˣ, abbrev. as ‘h: K.’ 597bˣ
Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], D. 5. Heiðreks gátur 14: AII, 224, BII, 242-3, Skald II, 126, NN §3176; Heiðr 1672, 147, FSN 1, 474, Heiðr 1873, 257-8, 338, Heiðr 1924, 69, 77, 135, FSGJ 2, 43, Heiðr 1960, 38; Edd. Min. 117-18.
Notes: [All]: Heiðrekr’s response is (Heiðr 1960, 38): Þat er eldr fólginn á arni, ok tekr ór tinnu ‘That is fire hidden in the hearth, and it starts from flint’. — [All]: Cf. Heiðr 81, about embers in the hearth. — : See Note to Heiðr 51/1. —  ösgrúa ‘the ash-grate’: A hap. leg. The H-redaction reading ösku grúa ‘ash grate’ probably represents a later attempt to make
sense of an unfamiliar word, but is unmetrical. The other mss are in
agreement on the reading chosen here. —  af grjóti einu ‘from stone alone’: The U redaction appears to be unhappy with the accuracy of this claim, reading af grjóti ok jarni ‘of stone and iron’. Flint needs to be struck with iron or steel to produce sparks to kindle fire, though there is no reason why the riddle should necessarily refer to both; cf. Heiðr 63, Note to [All], about obsidian, a flint-stone. —  áat ‘has not’: Mss 2845 and R715ˣ have the positive á ‘has’, but the poetic negative suffix is needed for sense and to complement the negating conjunction né ‘nor’ in l. 4 (cf. Heiðr 1873, 258; Edd. Min.; Skj B). Mss 281ˣ and 597bˣ have the 3rd pers. pl. with negative suffix eigat, though the subject is sg. —  fagrgjarni ‘bright-eager one’: Unrecorded as an Old Norse word, but appropriate to fire waiting to be kindled. Ms. R715ˣ’s variant, fárgjarni ‘damage-eager’, is also an acceptable reading and is adopted by several eds. The H-redaction mss have fjárgjarni ‘money-eager’, which gives poor sense in the context. — : An almost identical line is found in Heiðr 69/6, where it describes waves.