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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Ólhelg Lv 6I

Russell Poole (ed.) 2012, ‘Óláfr inn helgi Haraldsson, Lausavísur 6’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 524.

Óláfr inn helgi HaraldssonLausavísur
567

text and translation

Lítt mun herr enn hætta
— hrafn sleit af ná beitu —
— vér unnum gný Gunnar —
glaðr í nótt á Jaðri.
Umstilli hefr illa
(ættgóðr) of rof sætta
(Erlingr beið til árla
andrán) getit hônum.

Lítt mun herr enn hætta, glaðr í nótt á Jaðri; hrafn sleit beitu af ná; vér unnum {gný Gunnar}. Umstilli of rof sætta hefr getit hônum illa; ættgóðr Erlingr beið andrán til árla.
 
‘Little will the army again take respite, glad tonight in Jæren; the raven tore its meal from the corpse; we made the clamour of Gunnr <valkyrie> [BATTLE]. The machinations over the breach of settlements have brought him a bad outcome; Erlingr, of good kindred, was robbed of life too soon.

notes and context

Erlingr Skjálgsson has acted as an agent of Knútr inn ríki (Cnut the Great) in bribing Norwegian magnates to oppose Óláfr. This precipitates a naval battle in which Erlingr is killed by a too-zealous follower of Óláfr. The sons of Erlingr raise a large army to retaliate against Óláfr, who is ultimately forced to leave Norway. The stanza is spoken by Óláfr as he realises the strength of the opposition.

[2]: A common ‘beast of battle’ image. Exact counterparts to this line are found in Þmáhl Máv 8/6V (Eb 10) and Hást Lv 4/6IV (Fidjestøl 1982, 68).

readings

sources

Text is based on reconstruction from the base text and variant apparatus and may contain alternative spellings and other normalisations not visible in the manuscript text. Transcriptions may not have been checked and should not be cited.

editions and texts

Skj: Óláfr Haraldsson enn helgi, Lausavísur 9: AI, 222, BI, 212, Skald I, 110-11; Fms 5, 16, Fms 12, 95, ÓH 1941, I, 487 (ch. 173), Flat 1860-8, II, 311.

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