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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Arn Hardr 7II

Diana Whaley (ed.) 2009, ‘Arnórr jarlaskáld Þórðarson, Haraldsdrápa 7’ 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. 268.

Arnórr jarlaskáld ÞórðarsonHaraldsdrápa
678

Þung rauð jôrn á Englum
eirlaust, né kømr meira,
vísi vel nær Úsu,
valfall of her snjallan.

Vísi rauð þung jôrn eirlaust á Englum vel nær Úsu, né kømr meira valfall of snjallan her.

The leader reddened weighty iron blades ruthlessly on the English hard by the Ouse, and never will greater slaughter come upon a bold host.

Mss: Mork(18v) (Mork); Flat(203va) (Flat); H(74r), Hr(52vb) (H-Hr)

Editions: Skj AI, 351, Skj BI, 323, Skald I, 163, NN §806; Mork 1928-32, 269, Andersson and Gade 2000, 266, 481 (MH); Flat 1860-8, III, 391 (MH); Fms 6, 407 (HSig ch. 115), Fms 12, 164; Whaley 1998, 279-81. 

Context: In Mork and Flat, sts 7, 8 and 9 are cited as supplementary authorities after the saga account of the battle by the Ouse. In H-Hr, the slaughter of the English is still in progress. Once Earl Waltheof (Valþjófr) has fled, Haraldr and his men encircle Morcere’s (Mǫrukári’s) division from the rear and the English fall in their hundreds.

Notes: [All]: The st. is attributed to ‘Steinn’ (Herdísarson) in Hr. — [All]: On the battle by the Ouse (at Fulford, near York), see Steinn Óldr 1-3 and Anon Harst, Schofield 1966, especially p. 692, and Jones 2007. — [3] vel nær Úsu ‘hard by the Ouse’: (a) The words, consecutive in the text, are here construed together. Although the idiom vel nær e-u does not appear to be paralleled, there are comparanda such as allnær Úsu ‘very close to the River Ouse’, in Steinn Óldr 2/1-2, describing the same battle (cf. pairs such as vel mikill and allmikill ‘very great’), as well as the OE wel neah ‘very close’ (Bosworth and Toller 1898: wel I, 4). The saga compilers may have understood vel nær Úsu as ‘hard by the Ouse’ since they depict Haraldr and his men ranged on the river-bank itself (e.g. Mork 1928-32, 268). (b) Vel could alternatively modify rauð ‘reddened’ (Kock, NN §806), or meira valfall ‘greater slaughter’ (Finnur Jónsson, Skj B and 1934, 45-6); but in both cases the w. o. would be disjointed.

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. Fms = Sveinbjörn Egilsson et al., eds. 1825-37. Fornmanna sögur eptir gömlum handritum útgefnar að tilhlutun hins norræna fornfræða fèlags. 12 vols. Copenhagen: Popp.
  4. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  6. Andersson, Theodore M. and Kari Ellen Gade, trans. 2000. Morkinskinna: The Earliest Icelandic Chronicle of the Norwegian Kings (1030-1157). Islandica 51. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press.
  7. Bosworth, Joseph and T. Northcote Toller. 1898. An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Supplement, ed. T. Northcote Toller. 1921. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Enlarged Addenda and Corrigenda, ed. A. Campbell. 1972. Oxford: Clarendon.
  8. Whaley, Diana, ed. and trans. 1998. The Poetry of Arnórr jarlaskáld: An Edition and Study. Westfield Publications in Medieval Studies 8. Turnhout: Brepols.
  9. Flat 1860-8 = Gudbrand Vigfusson [Guðbrandur Vigfússon] and C. R. Unger, eds. 1860-8. Flateyjarbók. En samling af norske konge-sagaer med indskudte mindre fortællinger om begivenheder i og udenfor Norge samt annaler. 3 vols. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  10. Mork 1928-32 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1928-32. Morkinskinna. SUGNL 53. Copenhagen: Jørgensen.
  11. Schofield, Guy. 1966. ‘The Third Battle of 1066’. History Today 16, 688-93.
  12. Jones, Charles. 2007. The Forgotten Battle of 1066: Fulford. 2nd edn. Stroud: Tempus.
  13. Internal references
  14. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘Flateyjarbók (Flat)’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. clxi-clxii.
  15. Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘Hulda and Hrokkinskinna (H-Hr)’ 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 [check printed volume for citation].
  16. Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘Morkinskinna (Mork)’ 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 [check printed volume for citation].
  17. Not published: do not cite (HSigII)
  18. Not published: do not cite (MHII)
  19. Matthew Townend 2009, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Haraldsstikki’ 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. 807-8.
  20. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Steinn Herdísarson, Óláfsdrápa 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. 369-70.
  21. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Steinn Herdísarson, Óláfsdrápa 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. 368-9.
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