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Runic Dictionary

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Hundk Lv 5VIII (HjǪ 36) l. 7

Sófnis — of Sófnir


sófnir (noun m.): Sófnir, snake



[7] bingi Sófnis ‘beds of Sófnir <snake> [GOLD]’: Sófnir is likely to be a snake-heiti here. LP equates Sófnir with Sváfnir, the latter a name for Óðinn; cf. Þhorn Harkv 11/3I and Note, Þul Óðins 4/3III and Note. However, both Sváfnir and Sófnir are snake-heiti in later poetry and in rímur; cf. the kenning látr Sváfnis ‘lair of Sváfnir <snake> [GOLD]’ (Grett Lv 31/7V (Gr 63)) and láð Sófnis ‘lands of Sófnir <snake> [GOLD]’(Grettisrímur III, 25, Finnur Jónsson 1905-22, I, 58); cf. also the kenning naðrbingr ‘adder-bed [GOLD]’ (Þjsk Jarl 1/4I) and Meissner 237. The noun bingr ‘bed’ is uncommon in skaldic poetry and in Old Norse prose but is frequent in rímur (cf. Finnur Jónsson 1926-8, 25-6).



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