Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to Þjóð Yt 20I

[3] rausuðr reyks ‘the gusher of smoke [FIRE]’: The ms. readings ‘rꜹsuðr’ or ‘rausuðr’ allow of two interpretations: (a) Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901; Yng 1912; Skj B; LP: rǫsuðr), Kock (Skald) and ÍF 26 choose rǫsuðr, translated mostly as ‘that which / the one who / he who rolls forward with smoke’. However, the verb rasa, from which rǫsuðr derives, is intransitive, so reyks could not be its gen. object and would have to express an accompanying circumstance instead (Hkr 1893-1901, IV), and rasa ‘stumble, fall’ (Fritzner: rasa) is semantically a poor match for ‘fire’. (b) This difficulty leads Wadstein (1895a, 72-3), followed by others, to adduce the ModNorw. dialectal verb rausa ‘plunge, pour, tip’ to help explain the word. The verb is transitive and results in an interpretation such as ‘that which pours forth smoke’, hence rausuðr ‘gusher’ in the translation above.


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skj B = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912-15b. Den norsk-islandske skjaldedigtning. B: Rettet tekst. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Villadsen & Christensen. Rpt. 1973. Copenhagen: Rosenkilde & Bagger.
  3. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  4. LP = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1931. Lexicon poeticum antiquæ linguæ septentrionalis: Ordbog over det norsk-islandske skjaldesprog oprindelig forfattet af Sveinbjörn Egilsson. 2nd edn. Copenhagen: Møller.
  5. Fritzner = Fritzner, Johan. 1883-96. Ordbog over det gamle norske sprog. 3 vols. Kristiania (Oslo): Den norske forlagsforening. 4th edn. Rpt. 1973. Oslo etc.: Universitetsforlaget.
  6. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  7. Hkr 1893-1901 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1893-1901. Heimskringla: Nóregs konunga sǫgur af Snorri Sturluson. 4 vols. SUGNL 23. Copenhagen: Møller.
  8. Wadstein, Elis. 1895a. ‘Bidrag till tolkning och belysning av skalde- ock Edda-dikter. I. Till tolkningen av Ynglingatal’. ANF 11, 64-92.
  9. Yng 1912 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912. Ynglingasaga. Copenhagen: Gad.


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