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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anonymous Poems (Anon)

I. 3. Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar (Óldr) - 28

not in Skj

2.1: Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar (‘Drápa about Óláfr Tryggvason’) — Anon ÓldrI

Kate Heslop 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1031.

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Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XII]: [1]. Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar, ‘er Halfredr orti vandræda skalld’, et digt fra det 12. årh. (AI, 573-8, BI, 567-74)

SkP info: I, 1049

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

18 — Anon Óldr 18I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Kate Heslop (ed.) 2012, ‘Anonymous Poems, Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar 18’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1049.

Firrði hjǫrr við herðar
haus; sagði frið lausan
dylgju reyr it dýra;
drósk almr fyr grams hjalmi.
Norn kom flærð at fjǫrnis
(folktjald rufu) skjaldar;
sôr frák snǫrpum dreyra
seggjum (langbarðs eggjar).

Hjǫrr firrði haus við herðar; {it dýra reyr dylgju} sagði frið lausan; almr drósk fyr hjalmi grams. {Norn skjaldar} kom at {flærð fjǫrnis}; eggjar langbarðs rufu {folktjald}; frák sôr dreyra snǫrpum seggjum.

Sword removed skull from shoulders; {the precious reed of enmity} [SPEAR] pronounced peace over; the bow was drawn before the lord’s helmet. {The norn of the shield} [AXE] came to {deceit of the helmet} [BATTLE]; the edges of the sword ripped {the battle-tent} [SHIELD]; I have heard that wounds bled on keen warriors.

Mss: Bb(113ra)

Readings: [6] skjaldar: ‘skialldir’ Bb

Editions: Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XII], [1]. Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar 18: AI, 576-7, BI, 572, Skald I, 277, NN §21; Munch and Unger 1847, 122, 141, Gullberg 1875, 16-17, 34-5.

Notes: [3] reyr dylgju ‘the reed of enmity [SPEAR]’: Reyr ‘reed’ can also appear in sword-kennings (Meissner 152), but Meissner 145 argues for ‘spear’ since the helmingr also refers to a sword (and bow). — [4] fyr hjalmi grams ‘before the lord’s helmet’: The image is rather odd. Skj B (followed in Skald) reads sagði lausan frið hjalmi ‘declared peace was over for the helmet’, which has a possible parallel in HSt Rst 16/2 friðr vasa rít at líta ‘peace was not to be seen for the shield’. However, this entails emending to fyr gram ‘before the lord’. — [5, 6] norn skjaldar ‘the norn of the shield [AXE]’: This is the sole example of norn ‘fate, weird sister’ as a base-word to an axe-kenning. Usually these kennings are based on words for, or names of, giantesses or troll-women (see Meissner 148). Hfr Lv 10/4V (Hallfr 13) suggests that to a Christian convert, at least, the norns were also baleful, and so could have been a suitable equivalent for these malevolent supernatural females. — [5] flærð fjǫrnis ‘deceit of the helmet [BATTLE]’: The base-word of this battle-kenning is unusual, but cf. Kári Lv 4/6V (Nj 49) malmróg ‘metal-slander’. Finnur Jónsson (Skj B), followed by Kock (Skald), reads norn skjaldar kom flærð at fjǫrni ‘the norn of the shield brought ruin to the helmet’, but this requires emendation of fjǫrnis to fjǫrni and an apparently unparalleled sense of flærð f., which is normally ‘deceit, falsehood, sin’. — [6] skjaldar ‘of the shield’: The ms. reading appears to be a corruption of an inflected form of skjǫldr m. ‘shield’, and the context and need for aðalhending suggest gen. sg. skjaldar rather than nom. pl. skildir. — [8] langbarðs ‘of the sword’: The sword-heiti langbarðr ‘long-beard’ may be a reference to swords made in Lombardy. See further Note to Eyv Hák 7/3.

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