Cite as: Hannah Burrows (ed.) 2017, ‘Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks 70 (Gestumblindi, Heiðreks gátur 23)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 436.
|Hverjar eru þær ekkjur, er ganga allar saman
at forvitni föður?
Sjaldan blíðar eru þær
| við seggja lið, |
ok eigu í vindi vaka.
Heiðrekr konungr, hyggðu at gátu.
Hverjar eru þær ekkjur, er ganga allar saman at forvitni föður? Þær eru sjaldan blíðar við lið seggja, ok eigu vaka í vindi. Heiðrekr konungr, hyggðu at gátu.
Who are those women, who go all together to the curiosity of their father? They are seldom gentle with the host of men, and have to stay awake in the wind. King Heiðrekr, think about the riddle.
Mss: 2845(72r), R715ˣ(27r) (ll. 1-6) (Heiðr)
Readings:  allar: margar R715ˣ  föður: so R715ˣ, ‘f’ 2845  Sjaldan: ‘skialldann’ R715ˣ; blíðar eru þær: ‘bliþir eru þær’ 2845, eru þær blíðar R715ˣ  eigu: eigu þær 2845, skulu R715ˣ; í: við R715ˣ; vindi: vind R715ˣ; vaka: taka R715ˣ [7-8] abbrev. as ‘h k’ 2845
Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], D. 5. Heiðreks gátur 21: AII, 225, BII, 244, Skald II, 126-7, NN §115; Heiðr 1672, 144-5, FSN 1, 479, Heiðr 1873, 252, 341, Heiðr 1924, 76, 132, FSGJ 2, 46, Heiðr 1960, 41; Edd. Min. 115.
Notes: [All]: Heiðrekr’s response reads (Heiðr 1960, 41): Þat eru Ægis ekkjur, svá heita ǫldur ‘They are Ægir’s women, as the waves are called’. The U redaction (Heiðr 1924, 132) has þad eru Ægis dætur; þær ganga iij saman, er vindur vekur þær ‘That is Ægir’s daughters; they go three together, when the wind wakes them’. Elsewhere Ægir is said to have had nine daughters (see Heiðr 68, Note to [All]), but three is also a significant number in Old Norse mythology and trios of supernatural women are found in e.g. Vafþr 48-9, Vsp 8, 20. The text might imply the women go in threes rather than that there are only three of them. Cf. Note to Heiðr 67/1-2. — [All]: Edd. Min. prints this as a separate stanza, but numbers it 22a, following the previous one, numbered 22. —  ekkjur ‘women’: In prose ekkja usually means ‘widow’, having originally been used for any unmarried woman (CVC: ekkja), but in poetry it can also be synonymous with ‘woman’ in general (LP, Fritzner, CVC: ekkja). — [4-5]: Very similar in meaning to Heiðr 69/4-5. — : Ms.
2845’s word order is preferable, but its ‘bliþir’ with the standard ‑ir abbreviation is not possible as a f.
adj. — : See Heiðr 68, Note to l. 6.