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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Hsv 117VII

Tarrin Wills and Stefanie Gropper (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Hugsvinnsmál 117’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 430.

Anonymous PoemsHugsvinnsmál

text and translation

Afl ok eljan        ef þú eignaz vilt,
        nem þú hyggindi hugar;
beztr sá þykkir,        er bæði má
        vitr ok sterkr vera.

Ef þú vilt eignaz afl ok eljan, nem þú hyggindi hugar; sá þykkir beztr, er bæði má vera vitr ok sterkr.
‘If you want to acquire strength and energy, learn wisdom of mind; he appears best, who can be both intelligent and strong.

notes and context

Lat. parallel: (Dist. IV, 12) Cum tibi praevalidae fuerint in corpore vires, / fac sapias: sic tu poteris vir fortis haberi ‘If your strength in body is great for you, see to it that you are wise; thus you will be considered a strong man’.



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 [XIII], [C. E/5]. Hugsvinnsmál 116: AII, 191, BII, 205, Skald II, 107; Hallgrímur Scheving 1831, 28, Gering 1907, 32, Tuvestrand 1977, 136, Hermann Pálsson 1985, 110.


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