Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

2. Rǫgnvaldr jarl Kali Kolsson, Lausavísur, 32 [Vol. 2, 608-9]

[2] þat es goðfjón ljóna ‘that shows men’s contempt for God’: Previous eds adopt the variant ljónum from R702ˣ, but the collocation fjón ... ljóna is also found in Þmáhl Máv 15/6V. The point is not that God shows antipathy to such actions (cf. Bibire 1988 ‘hateful to God is it for men’), but rather that such actions show contempt for God. LP: goðfjón gives two meanings, guders had (mod en) ‘the hatred of the gods (towards one)’ and had til gud, ringeagt for gud ‘hatred of God, contempt for God’. For the latter construction, compare Fritzner: guðhræzla ‘fear of God’. Admittedly, it is not clear, either in the st. or in the saga prose, why Rǫgnvaldr might think these actions show contempt for God, though Sigv Lv 13-14I envisage punishment in hell for treachery. See also Notes to Þflekk Lv l. 12 and ESk Eystdr 2/3.

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