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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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RvHbreiðm Hl 49III

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Rǫgnvaldr jarl and Hallr Þórarinsson, Háttalykill 49’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1057.

Rǫgnvaldr jarl and Hallr ÞórarinssonHáttalykill

text and translation

Heyja réð hjǫrþey
Hjalmarr vígsnarr;
auðar vôru óleið
ǫrbrjót geirmót.
Vekja frák vítt mjǫk*
vápnþing dǫgling;
fella spurðak fǫrsnjǫll
fira kyn víghlyn.

Vígsnarr Hjalmarr réð heyja {hjǫrþey}; {geirmót} vôru óleið {ǫrbrjót auðar}. Frák dǫgling vekja {vápnþing} mjǫk* vítt; spurðak {víghlyn} fella fǫrsnjǫll kyn fira.
‘Battle-swift Hjálmarr waged a sword-wind [BATTLE]; spear-meetings [BATTLES] were not unpleasant to the generous breaker of wealth [GENEROUS MAN]. I heard that the hero stirred up weapon-assemblies [BATTLES] very far and wide; I learned that the battle-maple [WARRIOR] killed attack-clever kin of men.

notes and context

The heading is ‘Half ɴefst’ (‘Halfnesst’ 683ˣ), i.e. hálfhnept ‘half-curtailed’ (SnSt Ht 77). However, only the odd lines are similar in Hl and in Ht: in Ht the even lines, too, could contain 5-7 syllables and have the second internal rhyme on the last syllable. The tetrasyllabic even lines in Hl correspond to the even lines in Ht 78 (alhnept ‘completely curtailed’).

Hjálmarr is Hjálmarr inn hugumstóri ‘the Great-minded’, a Swedish legendary hero. He was killed in the battle of Sámsey against Angantýr Arngrímsson and his brothers (see Hjálm Lv 1-19VIII (Ǫrv 5-6, 9, 14-29), Heiðr ch. 3, FSGJ 2, 4-10; Ǫrv chs 14-15, FSGJ 2, 250-64).



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: Rǫgnvaldr jarl og Hallr Þórarinsson, Háttalykill 25a: AI, 521, BI, 499, Skald I, 245; Hl 1941, 27, 74.


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