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Note to stanza
[All]: The first helmingr of st. 20 completes the syntactical, grammatical and general sense of the mythic narrative, held over from st. 19/5-8. According to the prose account in Skm (SnE 1998, I, 22), the whetstone remained lodged in Þórr’s head after he had returned home to Þrúðvangar ‘Mighty plains’. A visiting sorceress (vǫlva) named Gróa, the ǫl-Gefjun of st. 20/2, undertook to loosen the whetstone by chanting her spells over it: hon gól galdra sína yfir Þór til þess er heinin losnaði ‘she chanted her spells over Þórr until the whetstone became loose’. Þórr was so encouraged at the prospect of being rid of the stone that he told Gróa that he had rescued her husband, Aurvandill, from the land of the giants and had brought him part-way back in a basket. Gróa was so pleased to think she would soon be reunited with her husband that she forgot her spells and the whetstone remained stuck in Þórr’s skull, where it lodges still according to Skm.
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