Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to Anon Mv III 21VII

[5]: The last words in the l. (‘skv[…]lo’) are difficult to reconstruct. The last syllable must have a long vowel and rhyme with ský- ‘cloud-’. Skald suggests skuggsjá ‘mirror’ and construes it with skýjalaus ‘cloudless’ (skýjalaus skuggsjá ‘a spotless mirror’). The present reconstruction represents a modification of the reading proposed by Wrightson (see Note to ll. 5-6). Skýja ‘of the clouds’ is otherwise attested as a determinant in kennings for ‘God’ (see LP: ský), but ský can also be taken figuratively to mean ‘that which prevents one from seeing something’ (see Fritzner: ský 2), which would be an apt term for ‘devils’ (skör skýja ‘crowd of deceptions’).


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  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. 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.


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