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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anonymous Poems (Anon)

VII. Plácitusdrápa (Pl) - 59

not in Skj

Plácitusdrápa (‘Drápa about S. Eustace’) — Anon PlVII

Jonna Louis-Jensen and Tarrin Wills 2007, ‘ Anonymous, Plácitusdrápa’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 179-220. <> (accessed 17 January 2022)

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Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII]: G [1]. Plácítúsdrápa, Digt fra det 12. årh. (AI, 607-18, BI, 606-22)

SkP info: VII, 215-16

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

54 — Anon Pl 54VII

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance


Cite as: Jonna Louis-Jensen and Tarrin Wills (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Plácitusdrápa 54’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 215-16.

Kenndusk, ôrr þás endi
unnfress sǫgu þessa,
mildir brœðr en móðir
meinstygg sonu dyggva.
Spanði ítr til ynðis
†eir goð…† þeira,
þvíat hrygg saga huggun
hoddskerðǫndum gerði.

Mildir brœðr kenndusk, þás {ôrr {unnfress}} endi sǫgu þessa, en meinstygg móðir dyggva sonu. Ítr †eir goð…† spanði … þeira til ynðis, þvíat hrygg saga gerði huggun {hoddskerðǫndum}.

The pious brothers recognised each other, when {the messenger {of the wave-bear}} [SHIP > SEAFARER] finished this story, and the sin-shy mother her excellent sons. The glorious … won their … over to happiness, because the sad story brought comfort to {the hoard-diminishers} [GENEROUS MEN].

Mss: 673b(5v)

Readings: [1, 2] endi unnfress: ‘end[...](u)ɴfress’(?) 673b, ‘end[...]ir[...]fress’ 673bÞH, ‘end[...]fress’ 673bHE, ‘end[...] vɴ fress’ 673bFJ    [4] meinstygg: ‘mei[...]st(y)gg’(?) 673b, ‘me[...]’ 673bÞH, ‘meinstygg’ 673bFJ    [6] †eir goð…†: ‘eir guþ[...]’ 673b, 673bFJ, ‘eyr guþ[...]a’ 673bÞH;    þeira: ‘þerra’ 673b    [8] ‑skerðǫndum gerði: ‘scerþo[...]rþi’ 673b, ‘scerþe[...]þe’ 673bÞH, ‘scerþeþa gørþe’ 673bFJ

Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII], G [1]. Plácítúsdrápa 54: AI, 617, BI, 620, Skald I, 302, NN §2139; Sveinbjörn Egilsson 1833, 33, 62, Finnur Jónsson 1887, 243, Louis-Jensen 1998, 120.

Notes: [2] unnfress ‘wave-bear’: Sveinbjörn Egilsson suggested undfress ‘wound-bear’, a wolf-kenning, but it does not fit well with rr to form a man-kenning. Finnur Jónsson (1887), however, claimed to read ‘uɴ’ in the ms. and provides the reading given here. — [6] †eir goð…†: Kock (NN §2139) dismissed Finnur Jónsson’s conjecture, Eir goð mjaðar (Skj B), on the grounds that it creates ‘fyrtaktighet’ (a term not explained in NN, but which seems to mean ‘four beats to a line’). His own suggestion, Eir guðvefjar ‘the Eir <goddess> of velvet [WOMAN]’, however, has the defect of leaving spanði without an object. Unless the couplet is irreparably corrupt, the illegible passage must have contained the sentence object, in which case ‘fyrtaktighet’ can hardly be avoided. Louis-Jensen suggests the following, but with strong reservations on account of the metrics: either Eir goðvefs hug ‘the Eir <goddess> of velvet [won their] minds’, or, since the mother is not designated as chief comforter in the prose texts: eir goðlig hug ‘the divine grace of God [won their] minds’ (cf. 28.4, where eir = ‘the grace of God’), and the close parallel in Gamlkan Has 36: spǫnð lætr ǫll til ynðis ... sín bǫrn ‘guides all his children to bliss’, where the sentence subject is God. Kari Ellen Gade, in reviewing the present edn, suggested eir guðs hugi ‘the grace of God [won their] minds [over to happiness]’, which, while metrically correct, still involves a great deal of conjecture.

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