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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to ÞKolb Eirdr 14I

[6] of þingamǫnnum ‘over the þingamenn’: (a) This phrase is taken here with skulfu ‘shook’ (so Skj B; ÍF 27; ÍF 35). Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson (ÍF 27) notes that this most likely refers to Knútr’s men, and medieval Icelandic prose writers use this term for the band of Scandinavian retainers established by Knútr in England c. 1018 (see Note to Úlfr Lv 1/8II; ÍF 35, 100 n. 1). Such a sense is not certain here or in other C11th sources (Jesch 2001a, 192): Þórðr could be referring to the Scandinavian or English warriors, or both. (b) Poole (1987, 269-71), understanding þingamenn to refer to Knútr’s ‘elite corps’, construes the phrase with regn Þorins rekka rann, producing the reading, ‘the rain of Þorinn’s men ran over the þingamenn’, i.e. poetry was recited to them. Poole takes this as evidence of the poem’s delivery in England (see also Frank 1994b, 108). (c) Further possibilities are offered by af þingamǫnnum ‘from the þingamenn’, the reading of the Knýtl mss and several of the ÓH and ÓT mss. This phrase could be construed with Ulfkell fekk ýglig hǫgg, giving ‘Ulfkell received terrible blows from the þingamenn’ (so Skald). (d) Af þingamǫnnum could alternatively be construed with regn Þorins rekka rann, giving ‘the rain of Þorinn’s men ran from the þingamenn’, i.e. the þingamenn themselves recited poetry, for which see Anon Liðs.

References

  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. Jesch, Judith. 2001a. Ships and Men in the Late Viking Age: The Vocabulary of Runic Inscriptions and Skaldic Verse. Woodbridge: Boydell.
  5. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  6. ÍF 35 = Danakonunga sǫgur. Ed. Bjarni Guðnason. 1982.
  7. Poole, Russell. 1987. ‘Skaldic Verse and Anglo-Saxon History: Some Aspects of the Period 1009-1016’. Speculum 62, 265-98.
  8. Frank, Roberta. 1994b. ‘King Cnut in the Verse of his Skalds’. In Rumble 1994, 106-24.
  9. Internal references
  10. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘The Separate Saga of S. Óláfr / Óláfs saga helga in sérstaka (ÓH)’ 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, pp. clxxvi-clxxix.
  11. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘The Greatest Saga of Óláfr Tryggvason / Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar in mesta (ÓT)’ 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, pp. clxiii-clxvi.
  12. Russell Poole 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Liðsmannaflokkr’ 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. 1014.
  13. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Úlfr stallari Óspaksson, Lausavísa 1’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 348-9.

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