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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. Anonymous Poems, 4. Poem about Óláfr Tryggvason, 1 [Vol. 1, 1063]

[1] hjörviður ‘sword-tree [WARRIOR]’: The ms. reading is ‘hiorviðr’, but normalisation to the younger, trisyllabic form of this word (ending -ur rather than -r) is needed to make up a regular six-syllable line. Desyllabification is first noted c. 1300 and becomes universal by the mid C15th (Stefán Karlsson 2004, 15), so this strongly indicates that the poem was composed in the C14th, although in positions where the original form is metrically guaranteed, a mixture of older (e.g. monosyllabic djarfr in l. 2) and later forms (e.g. sts 2/1, 7/2: see Notes) is apparent.


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