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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Brúðv 2VII

Valgerður Erna Þorvaldsdóttir (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Brúðkaupsvísur 2’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 530.

Anonymous PoemsBrúðkaupsvísur

Meira veiti oss ör*
ágæt*, en eg beðið fá,
fyrða, sú er fremst er,
fullting dróttning,
því að ljóða lofsmíð
ljóssi — það er skylt oss —
vanda skal eg vita grund
vazta, sem eg kann bazt.

{Ágæt*, ör*, dróttning fyrða}, sú er fremst er, veiti oss meira fullting, en eg fá beðið, því að eg skal vanda lofsmíð ljóða {ljóssi grund {vita vazta}}, sem bazt eg kann; það er oss skylt.

May the {splendid, generous queen of men} [= Mary], who is the most outstanding, grant us [me] more help than I can ask for, because I will carefully make the praise-work of poetry {for the bright land {of the beacon of the fishing-grounds}} [GOLD > WOMAN] as best I can; that is our [my] duty.

Mss: 721(14r), 1032ˣ(97v), 399a-bˣ(1), 2166ˣ(1-2)

Readings: [1] ör*: örr 721    [2] ágæt*: ágætr 721    [6] ljóssi: ljósti 721    [7] vanda: so 2166ˣ, ‘u⸜i⸝dla’ 721, virðla 1032ˣ, 399a‑bˣ    [8] vazta: so 399a‑bˣ, 2166ˣ, ‘vakta’ 721, 1032ˣ;    bazt: so 399a‑bˣ, 2166ˣ, ‘best’ 721, 1032ˣ

Editions: ÍM II, 129.

Notes: [All]: The poet now invokes the help of the Virgin Mary, stating that he intends to compose a praise-poem in her honour. — [1] ör* ‘generous’: All mss have örr m. The adj. qualifies dróttning f. ‘queen’ and should therefore not have the m. ending –r (ÍM II, 129). — [2] ágæt* ‘splendid’: All mss have ágætr m. As in the previous l., the adj. qualifies dróttning f. and has been emended to the f. form. — [3] fyrða (m. gen. pl.) ‘men’: Jón Helgason (ÍM) emended to fira (m. gen. pl.) ‘men’, echoing st. 7/7. — [6] ljóssi ‘bright’: Emendation suggested by Jón Helgason. The reading ljósti ‘strike’ in the mss does not make sense in this context. — [8] vazta (f. nom. vöst) ‘of the fishing-grounds’: This reading of 399a-bˣ and 2166ˣ provides the determinant in the gold-kenning viti vazta ‘the beacon of the fishing grounds’. The reading of 721 and 1032ˣ, ‘vakta’, seems to be corrupted and does not make sense here. — [8] bazt ‘best’: Jón Helgason (ÍM) chose the reading of 399a-bˣ and 2166ˣ, bazt (adj. sup. of vel), to get the full rhyme (aðalhending) with vazta, rather then the reading best in 721 and 1032ˣ.


  1. Bibliography
  2. ÍM = Jón Helgason, ed. 1936-8. Íslenzk miðaldarkvæði: Islandske digte fra senmiddelalderen. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Munksgaard.

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