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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to Anon Líkn 3VII

[2] miskunnar ‘of mercy’: Apo koinu; the gen. can go either with vægðir ‘mercies’ (so Skj B) or heyrn ‘hearing’, or even guð ‘God’. Analogues to the first, a tautology, are found in the OIcel. Nativity homily lícn miscuɴar ‘grace of mercy’ (HómÍsl 1993, 23v; HómÍsl 1872, 48) and in liturgical Lat. (clementia misericordiae ‘mercy of compassion’, Manz 1941, 112, no. 165). The second (heyrn), favoured by Rydberg 1907, 47, is also echoed in the liturgy (aures clementiae, aures misericordiae ‘ears of mercy, compassion’, Manz 1941, 80-1, nos 91-2) and in the late medieval Icel. Rósa 1/3-4 (probably influenced by Líkn): hneig þu þitt enn helgi drottenn | heyrenda myskunnar eyra ‘Holy Lord, incline your listening ear of mercy’ (ÍM I.2, 6).


  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. Rydberg, Hugo, ed. 1907. ‘Die geistlichen Drápur und Dróttkvættfragmente des Cod. AM 757 4to.’. Ph.D. thesis. University of Lund. Copenhagen: Møller.
  4. HómÍsl 1872 = Wisén, Theodor, ed. 1872. Homiliu-bók: Isländska homilier efter en handskrift från tolfte århundredet. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. HómÍsl 1993 = de Leeuw van Weenen, Andrea, ed. 1993. The Icelandic Homily Book: Perg. 15 4° in the Royal Library, Stockholm. Íslensk handrit/Icelandic Manuscripts Series in quarto 3. Reykjavík: Stofnun Árna Magnússonar á Íslandi.
  6. ÍM = Jón Helgason, ed. 1936-8. Íslenzk miðaldarkvæði: Islandske digte fra senmiddelalderen. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Munksgaard.
  7. Manz, Georg. 1941. Ausdrucksformen der lateinischen Liturgiesprache bis ins elfte Jahrhundert. Texte und Arbeiten herausgegeben durch die Erzabtei Beuron. Abteilung I, Beiheft I. Beiträge zur Ergründung des älteren lateinischen christlichen Schrifttums und Gottesdienstes 1. Beuron in Hohenzollern: Beuroner Kunstverlag.
  8. Internal references
  9. George S. Tate 2007, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Líknarbraut’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 228-86.


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