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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Hsv 105VII

Tarrin Wills and Stefanie Gropper (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Hugsvinnsmál 105’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 422-3.

Anonymous PoemsHugsvinnsmál

Reiðrar konu        skaltu eigi rógi trúa
        né at því gaum gefa;
kaldráð kona,        hygg ek, klökkvandi
        biði opt óþarfra hluta.

Skaltu eigi trúa rógi reiðrar konu né gefa gaum at því; ek hygg, kaldráð, klökkvandi kona biði opt óþarfra hluta.

You must not believe the slander of an angry woman nor pay attention to it; I think a calculating, crying woman may often ask for unnecessary things.

Mss: 1199ˣ(74v) (ll. 4-6), 624(145-146)

Readings: [3] gaum: geymd 624;    gefa: so 624, gæfir 1199ˣ    [4, 5] kaldráð kona hygg ek klökkvandi : om. 624    [6] biði: vandi 624

Editions: Skj AII, 188, Skj BII, 203, Skald II, 106; Hallgrímur Scheving 1831, 25, 34, Gering 1907, 28, Tuvestrand 1977, 129, Hermann Pálsson 1985, 101.

Notes: [All]: Lat. parallel: (Dist. III, 20) Coniugis iratae noli tu verba timere, / nam lacrimis struit insidias, cum femina plorat ‘Do not fear the words of an angry wife; for when a woman weeps, she heaps up the tears with treachery’. — [1-2]: In 1199ˣ these ll. are the same as st. 24/1-2 and consequently its readings are included with that st. in the apparatus. 624 is used here as the base ms. for these two ll. — [4-5]: In 624 these ll. are omitted, but the redactor has attempted to make sense of the remaining ll. — [4] kaldráð ‘calculating’: Lit. ‘cold-advised’; cf. the Icel. proverb köld eru kvenna ráð ‘the counsels of women are cold’ (cf., e.g., Gísla saga ch. 19; ÍF 6, 61).


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. Tuvestrand, Birgitta, ed. 1977. Hugsvinnsmál: Handskrifter och kritisk text. Lundastudier i nordisk språkvetenskap A:29. Lund: Blom.
  4. Hermann Pálsson, ed. 1985a. Áhrif Hugsvinnsmála á aðrar fornbókmenntir. Studia Islandica/Íslensk Fræði 43. Reykjavík: Menningarsjóður.
  5. Gering, Hugo, ed. 1907. Hugsvinnsmál. Eine altisländische Übersetzung der Disticha Catonis. Kiel: Lipsius & Tischer.
  6. Hallgrímur Scheving, ed. 1831. Hugsvinnsmál, ásamt þeirra látinska frumriti. Skóla hátið. Viðeyar Klaustri: prentuð af Helga Helgasyni, á kostnað Bessastaða Skóla.
  7. ÍF 6 = Vestfirðinga sǫgur. Ed. Björn K. Þórólfsson and Guðni Jónsson. 1943.

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