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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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FriðÞ Lv 22VIII (Frið 28) l. 5

at — to


5. at (nota): to (with infinitive)



[5] þar varð Baldr at brenna ‘there Baldr <god> had to burn’: According to the prose texts, Friðþjófr was struggling with Helgi’s wife, in order to get hold of his ring, which was on her arm, while she was heating the icon of Baldr in the fire. As Friðþjófr dragged her over to the door, the Baldr image, presumably made of wood, slipped from her grasp into the fire and was burnt. According to the B version prose text (Frið 1901, 36), such icons were anointed with some kind of grease or oil. This detail may be part of an antiquarian reconstruction. However, there is now archaeological evidence to support the presence of phosphates and lipids, which indicate the presence of fat, blood or meat, at ritual sites. Such lipids could derive from sacrificial animals or from practices such as smearing grease on icons. A well documented example is the Viking-Age ritual site of Götavi in the province of Närke, west of Stockholm (Lagerstedt 2008, 75-86 and 197-210).



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