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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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BjHall Kálffl 5I

Alison Finlay (ed.) 2012, ‘Bjarni gullbrárskáld Hallbjarnarson, Kálfsflokkr 5’ 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, p. 885.

Bjarni gullbrárskáld HallbjarnarsonKálfsflokkr
456

Jǫrð ‘the land’

jǫrð (noun f.; °jarðar, dat. -u; jarðir/jarðar(DN I (1367) 304Š)): ground, earth

[1] Jǫrð: ‘ad’ 321ˣ, ‘Jardr’ 73aˣ, ‘Jorðr’ or ‘Jarðr’ 325V

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rétt ‘you set about’

ráða (verb): advise, rule, interpret, decide

[1] rétt: rétti 73aˣ

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varða ‘defending’

2. varða (verb): defend

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Ôleifi ‘Óláfr’

Óláfr (noun m.): Óláfr

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brauzt ‘you raised’

brjóta (verb; °brýtr; braut, brutu; brotinn): to break, destroy

[3] brauzt (‘brauztu’): bauztu Kˣ

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nýztan ‘most excellent’

nýtr (adj.; °compar. -ri, superl. nýztr/nýtastr): useful, able

[3] nýztan: nýzta J2ˣ, nýztum 325VII

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bág ‘hostility’

1. bágr (noun m.; °; -ar): strife

[4] bág: dag Bb

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kveðk ‘I declare’

2. kveðja (verb): say, greet

[4] kveðk (‘kveð ec’): kveð 325VII

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frôgu ‘heard’

1. fregna (verb): hear of

notes

[4] frôgu ‘heard’: This is the past inf. of fregna ‘to hear, learn by enquiry’ forming an inf. with acc. construction with (kveðk) mik ‘me’, hence ‘(I declare that) I heard’.

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Fyrr ‘Before,’

fyrr (adv.): before, sooner

[5] Fyrr: fram Flat

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gekkt ‘you achieved’

2. ganga (verb; geng, gekk, gengu, genginn): walk, go

[5] gekkt (‘gecctv’): gekksk þú 61, Bb

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á ‘at’

3. á (prep.): on, at

[5] á stað Stiklar: í styr strǫngum 61, Flat, Tóm, styrs unz stilli Bb

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stað ‘stad’

1. staðr (noun m.; °-ar/-s; -ir): place

[5] á stað Stiklar: í styr strǫngum 61, Flat, Tóm, styrs unz stilli Bb

notes

[5] Stiklarstað ‘Stiklestad’: The p. n. elements are reversed in the text in a mild form of tmesis, as often with place names in skaldic lines; Sigv ErfÓl 10/7 is a direct parallel (see Note). On the p. n. Stikla(r)staðir, here sg. rather than the normal pl., see Note to Þorm Lv 23/3-4, and on the battle see ‘Óláfr inn helgi Haraldsson’ in ‘Ruler biographies’ in Introduction to this volume.

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Stiklar ‘Stikle’

stikill (noun m.; °dat. stikli; stiklar): (Stikle-)

[5] á stað Stiklar: í styr strǫngum 61, Flat, Tóm, styrs unz stilli Bb;    Stiklar: Stikla 73aˣ, Holm4, 325V, 325VII, Kˣ

notes

[5] Stiklarstað ‘Stiklestad’: The p. n. elements are reversed in the text in a mild form of tmesis, as often with place names in skaldic lines; Sigv ErfÓl 10/7 is a direct parallel (see Note). On the p. n. Stikla(r)staðir, here sg. rather than the normal pl., see Note to Þorm Lv 23/3-4, and on the battle see ‘Óláfr inn helgi Haraldsson’ in ‘Ruler biographies’ in Introduction to this volume.

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stór ‘great’

stórr (adj.): large, great < stórverk (noun n.)

[6] stór‑: stóð 61, Bb, Flat, Tóm

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óð ‘surged’

vaða (verb): advance, wade

[6] óð: orð J2ˣ, at 73aˣ

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satt ‘it’

2. sannr (adj.; °-an; compar. -ari, superl. -astr): true < 2. sannr (adj.): true

[7] satts at (‘satt er at’): so 73aˣ, Holm4, 61, 325V, 325VII, Flat, Kˣ, satt er Holm2, satt var at J2ˣ, satt var Tóm

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s ‘is true’

2. vera (verb): be, is, was, were, are, am < 2. sannr (adj.): true

[7] satts at (‘satt er at’): so 73aˣ, Holm4, 61, 325V, 325VII, Flat, Kˣ, satt er Holm2, satt var at J2ˣ, satt var Tóm

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at ‘that’

4. at (conj.): that

[7] satts at (‘satt er at’): so 73aˣ, Holm4, 61, 325V, 325VII, Flat, Kˣ, satt er Holm2, satt var at J2ˣ, satt var Tóm

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veittir ‘you kept up’

2. veita (verb): grant, give

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snjallr ‘brave’

snjallr (adj.): quick, resourceful, bold

notes

[8] snjallr ‘brave’: This is taken as applying to Kálfr, the addressee of the 2nd pers. verb veittir ‘you kept up’ (l. 7), just as vígreifr ‘war-cheerful’ (l. 2) qualifies the 2nd pers. rétt ‘you set about’ (l. 2). Snjallr could alternatively qualify gramr ‘the king’ in l. 8 (so Hkr 1991).

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unz ‘until’

2. unz (conj.): until

[8] unz: ‘vyz’ 73aˣ

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gramr ‘the king’

1. gramr (noun m.): ruler

[8] gramr: framr J2ˣ

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fallinn ‘fallen’

falla (verb): fall

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Interactive view: tap on words in the text for notes and glosses

The stanza is cited at the point where King Óláfr Haraldsson is killed in the battle of Stiklastaðir (Stiklestad). ÓH-Hkr record uncertainty as to whether one of the three decisive blows was struck by Kálfr Árnason or his kinsman Kálfr Arnfinnsson (and see ÍF 27, 385 n. 2).

[5-8]: (a) The construal here follows Skj B. It requires treating gekkt, normally ‘you went’, as a transitive verb meaning ‘achieved’, which is unusual but possible (Fritzner: ganga 10). (b) ÍF 27 reads Gekktu á Stiklastað fyrr an merki óð; satt stórverk es, at of veittir ... ‘You advanced at Stiklestad before the standard surged; it is a truly [lit. true] great deed, that you kept up ... ’, but this assumes a contorted syntax. (c) Konráð Gíslason (1895-7, II, 249; followed in Hkr 1893-1901, II) hazarded an emended form stórverkr, which he took as either a substantive (stordådsmand ‘man of great deeds’) or an adj. (‘doing great deeds’) qualifying the understood subject þú ‘you’. But the element ‑verkr in compounds is more usually nominal, with the sense ‘pain’.

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