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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

7. Anonymous Poems, Máríuvísur II, 22 [Vol. 7, 716]

[7-8] vier, syndug, segjumz sveitir þínar, háleit ‘we, the sinful, call ourselves your followers, exalted one’: This interpretation follows NN §1697. Skj B and Wrightson take sveitir þínar ‘your followers’ in apposition to vier ‘we’ and syndug ‘sinful’ with segjumz ‘call ourselves’ (vi, dine skarer, erkender vor synd ‘we, your hosts, acknowledge our sin’, so Skj B; ‘we, your followers, declare ourselves sinful’, so Wrightson). That interpretation is less satisfactory from the point of view of grammar: syndug (n. nom. or acc. pl.) ‘sinful’ can modify vier ‘we’ if the pron. refers to ‘mixed company’ (i.e. men and women), but sveitir ‘followers’ is f., so we should have expected a f. ending on the adj. (syndugar f. acc. pl.). Skj B also takes háleit ‘exalted’ as an adj. modifying vár frú ‘our Lady’ (l. 6), which complicates the w.o. unnecessarily.


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