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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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HSt Rst 34I

Rolf Stavnem (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallar-Steinn, Rekstefja 34’ 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. 937.


text and translation

Hermart hví kveðum ortu
hugdyggs of son Tryggva
handbáls hnykkilunda
hreins ok flokka eina?
Hallfreðr Hǫrða stilli
hríðǫflgum vann smíðat
hjǫrgráps hugða drôpu
hróðrargjarn ok Bjarni.

Hví kveðum {hnykkilunda {hreins handbáls}} ortu hermart of {son hugdyggs Tryggva} ok eina flokka? Hróðrargjarn Hallfreðr vann smíðat hríðǫflgum {hjǫrgráps} {stilli Hǫrða} hugða drôpu, ok Bjarni.
‘Why do we say that moving trees of the pure hand-fire [GOLD > MEN] composed a great deal about the son of the mind-brave Tryggvi [= Óláfr] and only flokkar? Praise-eager Hallfreðr forged an agreeable drápa for the ruler of the Hǫrðar [NORWEGIAN KING = Óláfr], powerful in the onslaught of the sword-hail [BATTLE], and [so did] Bjarni.

notes and context

[5-8]: We are informed here and in st. 35/2 that Rst is the third drápa about Óláfr Tryggvason, and the skald claims his predecessors to be Hallfreðr and Bjarni. The former is Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld ‘Troublesome-poet’ Óttarsson (Hfr), Óláfr’s own skald, who is believed to have produced two drápur about Óláfr (Hfr Óldr and Hfr ErfÓl; see Introductions to these). Bjarni’s identity is unknown, though a ‘Bjarni skáld’ is listed as a poet of Óláfr Tryggvason in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 253, 261; the U text specifies ‘biarni gvllbra S’, i.e. Bjarni gullbrárskáld Hallbjarnarson (BjHall), presumably in error).



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: Hallar-Steinn, 1. Rekstefja 34: AI, 552, BI, 533-4, Skald I, 259; SHI 3, 266-7, CPB II, 300, Wisén 1886-9, I, 50, Finnur Jónsson 1893b, 164, Konráð Gíslason 1895-7, I, 285-7.


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