Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to Anon Óldr 12I

[7] vengis ‘of the field’: Finnur Jónsson in Skj B made the emendation to vengis, gen. sg. of vengi n.; the ms. appears to have the dat. pl. of the same word. There are three possible interpretations of vengi n.: (a) ‘land, plain, field’ (LP: 2. vengi; AEW: vengi 2), only otherwise attested in kennings; (b) ‘pillow’, in Guðr I 13/3 and in a Lat. gloss (Fritzner IV: vengi; LP: 1. vengi; AEW: vengi 1; all but one of the citations of vengi ‘field’ in LP could equally well be examples of this sense); and (c) ‘poop-deck, cabin(-roof)’ (LP: 3. vengi). This occurs as determinant of a ship-kenning in Hharð Gamv 2/4II (see Note there for further discussion of this sense). The present helmingr could conceivably be construed without emendation by taking vengi/vængi in sense (c) as a curious pars pro toto for ‘ship’: [Óláfr] lét síðan komit vengjum ramri trúu á Grœnland ‘[Óláfr] then had the powerful faith brought to Greenland on ships’; see Note above on the Christianization of Greenland.


  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. AEW = Vries, Jan de. 1962. Altnordisches etymologisches Wörterbuch. 2nd rev. edn. Rpt. 1977. Leiden: Brill.
  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 IV = Hødnebø, Finn. 1972. Ordbog over det gamle norske sprog af Dr. Johan Fritzner: Rettelser og tillegg. Oslo, Bergen, Tromsø: Universitetsforlaget.
  6. Internal references
  7. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Haraldr harðráði Sigurðarson, Gamanvísur 2’ 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. 36-7.


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