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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 1. Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, 1. Ynglingatal, 14 [Vol. 1, 31]

[14] nið Skilfinga ‘of the descendant of the Skilfingar [= Swedish king]’: The Skilfingar are mentioned among the dynasties of heroes and kings in Hyndl 11/6 and 16/2 and in SnE 2005, 103. The sg. skilfingr is attested as a heiti for Óðinn (Þul Óðins 8/5III), for ‘prince’ (Þul Konunga 3/3III) and for ‘sword’ (Þul Sverða 7/3III). In Beowulf the Swedish ruler Ongenþēow is designated gomela Scylfing/Scilfing ‘the old Skilfing’ (Beowulf ll. 2487, 2968, Beowulf 2008, 85, 101), and Ongenþēow is generally agreed to correspond in the genealogy with Egill in Yt, though the difference in their names (and in their deaths) could suggest that Egill was the brother of Ongenþēow (ON Angantýr). The relationship between the Skilfingar and the Ynglingar (a name strikingly absent from Yt) is also highly problematic. Baetke (1964, 134-5) may be right to assume that the Uppsala kings bore the name Skilfingar, but only the Norwegian kings of Vestfold were called Ynglingar.


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