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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to Þjóð Yt 27I

[6] stjóri reiðar ‘the steerer of the carriage [RULER]’: (a) This interpretation (also adopted in Bugge 1894, 138; Yng 1912, 70; Noreen 1912b, 135; Brøgger 1916, 39) preserves the normal meaning of reið f. (LP: 1. reið). The use of carriages is proven by the Oseberg ship burial, which is dated to approximately the same period and contained a richly ornamented carriage as well as a tapestry depicting figures riding on carriages (Graham-Campbell 1994, 42-3). That Rǫgnvaldr is associated with a carriage is perhaps indicative of his involvement in cultic or royal processions akin to the Swedish custom of Eriksgata (cf. ARG I, 473-4). The base-word stjóri is primarily used to refer to a ruler and appears with designations for people, entourage etc. (Meissner 328; for a few exceptions see LP: stjóri). Here, however, stjóri may have a meaning comparable to that of the verb stýra ‘to steer’, which can be used for ships and carriages but also for countries and people (cf. LP: stýra). (b) Others (Wadstein 1895a, 82; Storm 1899, 139; Brøgger 1925, 185; Hkr 1991) have interpreted reið as ‘ship’, citing a ship heiti in Þul Skipa 3/8III. However, reið ‘carriage’ is normally used not as a ship-heiti but as the base-word in ship-kennings, with determinants such as hlunna ‘of launching-rollers’ or the name of a sea-king (see LP: 1. reið 1). (c) Noreen (Yt 1925; cf. Lindquist 1929, 73) suggests that reið meant a troop of riders, but the word is not attested in this meaning, and mounted warriors were not common in the Viking Age.

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. Meissner = Meissner, Rudolf. 1921. Die Kenningar der Skalden: Ein Beitrag zur skaldischen Poetik. Rheinische Beiträge und Hülfsbücher zur germanischen Philologie und Volkskunde 1. Bonn and Leipzig: Schroeder. Rpt. 1984. Hildesheim etc.: Olms.
  3. 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.
  4. Hkr 1991 = Bergljót S. Kristjánsdóttir et al., eds. 1991. Heimskringla. 3 vols. Reykjavík: Mál og menning.
  5. Lindquist, Ivar. 1929. Norröna lovkväden från 800 och 900 talen. I: Förslag till restituerad täxt jämte översättning. Lund: Gleerup.
  6. Wadstein, Elis. 1895a. ‘Bidrag till tolkning och belysning av skalde- ock Edda-dikter. I. Till tolkningen av Ynglingatal’. ANF 11, 64-92.
  7. ARG = Vries, Jan de. 1956-7. Altgermanische Religionsgeschichte. 2 vols. 2nd edn. Berlin: de Gruyter.
  8. Yng 1912 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912. Ynglingasaga. Copenhagen: Gad.
  9. Yt 1925 = Noreen, Adolf, ed. 1925. Ynglingatal: Text, översättning och kommentar. Stockholm: Lagerström.
  10. Brøgger, Anton Wilhelm. 1916. Borrefundet og Vestfoldkongernes graver. Videnskaps-selskapets Skrifter. II. Hist.-filos. kl. 1916/1. Kristiania (Oslo): Dybwad.
  11. Bugge, Sophus. 1894. Bidrag til den ældste skaldedigtnings historie. Christiania (Oslo): Aschehoug.
  12. Graham-Campbell, James, ed. 1994. Cultural Atlas of the Viking World. New York: Facts on File.
  13. Noreen, Adolf. 1912b. ‘Forsök till en rekonstruktion af Ynglingatal jämte øfversättning’. In Studier tillägnade Karl Warburg på hans sextioårsdag af vänner och lärjungar. Stockholm: Norstedt, 125-35.
  14. Storm, Gustav. 1899. ‘Ynglingatal, dets forfatter og forfattelsestid’. ANF 15, 107-41.
  15. Internal references
  16. Not published: do not cite (RunVI)
  17. Elena Gurevich (ed.) 2017, ‘Anonymous Þulur, Skipa heiti 3’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 865.

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