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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Hsv 22VII

Tarrin Wills and Stefanie Gropper (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Hugsvinnsmál 22’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 374.

Anonymous PoemsHugsvinnsmál

text and translation

Ef þú eyri átt,        þann er þér ekki stóðar,
        eða þú hlýtr ógagn af,
gef þú hann burt,        þótt þér góðr þykki;
        mart er fríðara en fé.

Ef þú átt eyri, þann er þér stóðar ekki, eða þú hlýtr ógagn af, gef þú hann burt, þótt þér góðr þykki; mart er fríðara en fé.
‘If you own money which is not of any use to you or which leads to harm for you, give it away, even though it may seem good to you; much is better than money.

notes and context

Lat. parallel: (Dist. I, 6) Quae nocitura tenes, quamvis sint cara, relinque: / utilitas opibus praeponi tempore debet ‘Things you have which are harmful, though they are dear, let go; in time, usefulness should be put before wealth’.



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: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], [C. E/5]. Hugsvinnsmál 22: AII, 172, BII, 189, Skald II, 98; Hallgrímur Scheving 1831, 10, Gering 1907, 7, Tuvestrand 1977, 83, Hermann Pálsson 1985, 39.


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