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Anonymous Poems (Anon)

VII. Pétrsdrápa (Pét) - 54

Pétrsdrápa (‘Drápa about the Apostle Peter’) — Anon PétVII

David McDougall 2007, ‘ Anonymous, Pétrsdrápa’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 796-844. <> (accessed 28 September 2021)

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Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV]: [B. 7]. En drape om apostlen Peder, Pétrsdrápa (AII, 500-8, BII, 545-58)

SkP info: VII, 829-30

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

39 — Anon Pét 39VII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: David McDougall (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Pétrsdrápa 39’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 829-30.

Beið, þó að styrjöld stæði,
stálharðr, en guð varði;
snúða liet happa hlæðir
herferð og brá sverði.
Sneið af eyra íðinn
ástverka þræl sterkum,
áðr en andlags gæðir
umgerðar batt sverði.

Stálharðr beið, þó að styrjöld stæði, en varði guð; {hlæðir happa} liet snúða herferð, og brá sverði. Íðinn ástverka sneið af eyra sterkum þræl, áðr en {gæðir andlags} batt umgerðar sverði.

Steel-hard he stood firm, though conflict took place, and defended God; {the accumulator of blessings} [HOLY MAN = Peter] made battle hasten, and drew his sword. Zealous for acts of devotion he cut off the ear of a strong slave, before {the strengthener of the counterthrust} [WARRIOR = Peter] fastened the bindings on the sword [i.e. returned his sword to its scabbard].

Mss: 621(59r)

Readings: [3] snúða: ‘suid’ 621

Editions: Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV], [B. 7]. En drape om apostlen Peder 39: AII, 506, BII, 554, Skald II, 304, NN §§1740, 2880; Kahle 1898, 86-7, 111.

Notes: [2] en varði guð ‘and defended God’: Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) takes the cl. with the sentence which follows and translates: men gud forbød ham det ‘but God forbade him that’ (i.e. forbade him to use his sword). As Kock points out (NN §2880), the order of clauses argues strongly against such an awkward reading. Taking guð as the object of varði gives better sense. — [3-4] liet snúða herferð ‘made battle hasten’: Ms. has ‘suid’, which Kahle (1898, 111) says means Raum, Platz ‘space, room’ (= Blöndal: 1 svið), without explaining how this fits the context. Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) emends to snúit and translates: foretog sig krigerfærd ‘engaged in battle’ (cf. LP: snúa 4). Kock (NN §2880) notes that this leaves the l. without skothending, and proposes instead emendation to snúða ‘to hasten, do quickly’ (cf. Þham Magndr 2/1,4II: lét ... fǫru snúðat ‘quickly undertook a journey’). — [5-6] sneið af eyra sterkum þræl ‘he cut off the ear of a strong slave’: Cf. Pétr 13/21-4: Petrus ... hio þegar hit hægra eyra af þeim þræli kennimanna hofðingia, er Malchus het, með brugðnu sverði ‘Peter ... immediately with a drawn sword cut the right ear off that slave of the chief of the priests who was called Malchus’; John XVIII.10: Simon ergo Petrus habens gladium eduxit eum et percussit pontificis servum et abscidit eius auriculam dextram. ‘Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it, and struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.’ — [7-8] áðr en gæðir andlags batt umgerðar sverði ‘before the strengthener of the counterthrust fastened the bindings on the sword’: Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) emends ms. ‘andlags’ to andlangs, takes sverði ‘with the sword’ with ll. 5-6, rather than ll. 7-8, and translates för end himlens styrer forbandt såret ‘before the ruler of heaven bandaged the wound’, admitting parenthetically: denne sætning er usikker ‘this clause is doubtful’ (cf. LP: andlangr). As Kock notes (NN §1740), Christ’s miraculous healing of Malchus’s ear does not involve bandages (cf. Pétr 13/31-2; Luke XXII.51), and gæðir andlags can without difficulty be taken as a warrior kennning (cf. LP: gæðir 2; Meissner, 287-8, 294-5). On umgerðar see Falk 1914, 33-5 (cf. Falk 1914, 28; Fritzner: friðbönd). Cf. John XVIII.11: dixit ergo Iesus Petro mitte gladium in vaginam ‘Jesus therefore said to Peter: put up thy sword into the scabbard’; Pétr 13/25: Petre, sliðra þu sverð þitt ‘Peter, sheathe your sword’; also Pétr2 161/29-30 and PP 285/35: i umgerð ‘into the scabbard’.

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