Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 28. Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, 1. Óláfsdrápa, 6 [Vol. 1, 398]

[5] œgir ýdrógar ‘the terrifier of the bow-string [WARRIOR]’: Either of the readings -drógar or -drauga(r) could form a warrior-kenning with ýr ‘yew’, hence ‘bow’, and œgir ‘terrifier’; cf. Gsind Hákdr 7/1 œgir almdrógar ‘terrifier of the bow-string [WARRIOR]’, where the majority of mss have -draug. (a) Dróg f. is recorded in prose with the sense ‘stripe’ but with the sense ‘string’ only in poetry; drógar is the reading of the main ms. and is adopted by most eds in this stanza. (b) Draugr elsewhere, probably in the sense ‘log’, combines with determinants referring to weapons, treasure or battle to form warrior-kennings (Meissner 264-5, and cf. Note to ÞHjalt Lv 1/5). This reading in the present stanza would yield ýdrauga œgir ‘terrifier of bow-logs [WARRIORS > RULER/WARRIOR]’.


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