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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Poem about Magnús lagabœtir — Anon MlagII

Anonymous Poems

Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘ Anonymous, Poem about Magnús lagabœtir’ 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. 809-11. <> (accessed 26 September 2021)


Yfirmilding kveðk engla veldis
— óðr magnaz nú — fyrst at ljóðum;
mætr þengill, stýr minni tungu
málkunnigri, frægrar sunnu.
Skyldr emk þess, er æztr var aldar,
jöfra stýris mærð at skýra
(dróttinn styrki mín orð máttigr)
mestri sæmd (um dýrðar festi).
‘I first summon the supreme lord of the angels’ realm [SKY/HEAVEN > = God] to the recitation; now the poem becomes powerful; glorious prince of the famous sun [= God], guide my eloquent tongue. I am obliged to proclaim the praise of that controller of princes [KING], who was the foremost of men, with the greatest honour; may the powerful Lord strengthen my words about the securer of glory [KING].
Skýrum ætlak Magnús mæra
mildi sterkan frægðarverka;
yppa skal nú öðlings höppum
einkar skjótt at vilja dróttins.
Eigi er oss um allvald frægan
(andagiptir) lítill vandi
(allar þyrftak engla stillis)
óðar þáttu framm at bjóða.
‘I intend to praise Magnús, strong in generosity, with a clear poem of fame; I shall now uplift the king’s lucky deeds very quickly according to the will of the Lord. It is no small difficulty for us [me] to proffer strands of praise about the renowned mighty ruler; I would need all the spiritual gifts of the leader of angels [= God].
Hlýða skalt til afreksóðar,
Eiríkr konungr; giptu meiri
öllum bíð þú, ágætr stillir,
jarðráðöndum fremðardáða.
Stóra mærð átt, vísi, at virða
völdugs grams; at heyrnar skjöldum
rjóðöndum flytk rausnarkvæði
rimmu skóðs með hætti góðum.
‘King Eiríkr, you must listen to the poem of splendour; renowned ruler, may you receive more good luck in outstanding deeds than all [other] land-rulers. Lord, you shall appraise the great praise of the powerful prince; I recite a poem of glory with a fine verse-form toward the shields of hearing [EARS] of the reddeners of battle’s dangerous tool [WEAPON > WARRIORS].

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