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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Sól 70VII

Carolyne Larrington and Peter Robinson (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Sólarljóð 70’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 345-6.

Anonymous PoemsSólarljóð

text and translation

Menn sá ek þá,        er af miklum hug
        veittu fátækum frama;
lásu englar        helgar bækr
        ok himna skript yfir höfði þeim.

Ek sá menn þá, er af miklum hug veittu fátækum frama; englar lásu helgar bækr ok himna skript yfir höfði þeim.
‘I saw men then who from a generous spirit offered support to the poor; angels read holy books and heavenly writing [lit. writing of the heavens] over their heads.

notes and context

In a vision recounted in the Annals of S. Bertin, attributed to a ‘religious English man’, boys, who represent the blessed, read books with red and black script in alternating lines; the red ink recounts the deeds of the wicked, the black tells of good deeds (Grat et al. 1964, 29-30). Larrington (2002, 184) notes the preponderance of loan-words and references to church accoutrements in the description of the pleasures of heaven.



Text is based on reconstruction from the base text and variant apparatus and may contain alternative spellings and other normalisations not visible in the manuscript text. Transcriptions may not have been checked and should not be cited.

editions and texts

Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XII], G [6]. Sólarljóð 70: AI, 638, BI, 646-7, Skald I, 315; Bugge 1867, 368, Falk 1914, 45, Björn M. Ólsen 1915, 20-1, Fidjestøl 1979, 69, Njörður Njarðvík 1991, 96-7, Njörður Njarðvík 1993, 76, 143.


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