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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Mlag 1II

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Anonymous Poems, Poem about Magnús lagabœtir 1’ 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, p. 810.

Anonymous PoemsPoem about Magnús lagabœtir
12

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).

Kveðk fyrst {yfirmilding {veldis engla}} at ljóðum; nú magnaz óðr; {mætr þengill frægrar sunnu}, stýr málkunnigri tungu minni. Emk skyldr at skýra mærð {þess stýris jöfra}, er var æztr aldar, mestri sæmd; máttigr dróttinn styrki orð mín um {festi dýrðar}.

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].

Mss: 76ˣ(8v)

Readings: [3] stýr: stýrðu 76ˣ

Editions: Skj AII, 136, Skj BII, 146, Skald II, 78, NN §1374; Småstykker 1-16, 289-90.

Notes: [1] kveðk ‘I summon’: For kveðja e-n at e-u ‘summon sby to sth.’, see Note to Mark Eirdr 1/1. — [5-6]: Skj B (so also Jón Þorkelsson) construes emk skyldr at skýra mærð þess aldar stýris, er var æztr jöfra which translates as jeg har den pligt at forklare den fyrstes lov, som var den ypperste af fyrster ‘I am obliged to explain the praise of that prince, who was the foremost of princes’. That reading creates an unnecessarily complex w. o. (see NN §1374). The reasoning of Finnur and Jón was most likely that the sup. adj. œztr ‘foremost’ is usually constructed with a noun in gen. pl. However, ǫld (gen. sg. aldar) is frequently used in skaldic poetry with a pl. meaning (‘people, men’, see LP: ǫld 3).

References

  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. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  4. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. 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.
  6. Internal references
  7. Jayne Carroll (ed.) 2009, ‘Markús Skeggjason, Eiríksdrápa 1’ 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. 433-4.
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