Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.) 2017, ‘Ǫrvar-Odds saga 112 (Ǫrvar-Oddr, Ævidrápa 42)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 920.
Fórum vestan fengjar vitja,
svá at bragnar mér bleyði kendu,
unz á Skíðu skatnar fundu
bræðr bölharða ok at bana urðu.
Fórum vestan vitja fengjar, svá at bragnar kendu mér bleyði, unz skatnar fundu bölharða bræðr á Skíðu ok urðu at bana.
‘We travelled from the west in search of booty, so that the warriors charged me with cowardice, until the men came upon evil-hardened brothers on Skien and killed them. ’
In the continuous Ævdr according to the younger mss the sequence of events referred to in this stanza is hard to understand. It is necessary to realise that in the saga text Ævdr 38 (Ǫrv 108) is placed immediately before the prose passage that explains why his shipmates accuse Oddr of cowardice. They had been waiting for him at their ships while he had been off in the woods, where Ásmundr had been killed. Ævdr 38 is Oddr’s response to Hjálmarr’s question as to whether he has avenged Ásmundr’s death. Oddr indicates in the stanza that he is overwhelmed by his foster-brother’s death but that he wants to sail away from Ireland immediately, not telling them about his pact with Ǫlvǫr. Because he failed to take vengeance, his shipmates call him a coward, but then seem to be mollified by his acts of further aggression (Ǫrv 1888, 76-9). — [5-8]: This helmingr does not correspond very well to the prose text, which at this point has Oddr and his men travel from the west to the island of Læsø (ON Hlésey) in the Kattegat, as is also mentioned in Ǫrv 45/1-4 (see Notes to [All] and l. 4 there). According to the prose, Oddr’s opponents on Læsø include a jarl called Hergautr (his name is given only in 7), who had thirty ships. After this, according to 7, Oddr’s party sails to Sjælland, where they encounter two brothers, Hólmgeirr and Harðvígr, who are jarls of this region and have a grudge against Oddr, who had previously killed other brothers of theirs, who were berserks (so Ǫrv 1888, 79). Presumably these are the ‘evil-hardened brothers’ of ll. 7-8.
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.
F orum uestan fengiar uitia · so at bragnar mier bleydi kendu · unz a skijdu skatnar brædr | baul harda ok at bana urdu ·
svá at bragnar mér
unz á Skíði
ok at bana urðu.
svá at bragnar mér
undr á Skíði
at bana urðu.
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