Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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ESk Geisl 32VII

Martin Chase (ed.) 2007, ‘Einarr Skúlason, Geisli 32’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 33.

Einarr SkúlasonGeisli

Víst hafði lið lestir
linns þrimr hlutum minna
heiptar mildr at hjaldri
— harðr fundr vas sá — grundar.
Þó réð hann at hvôru
(hǫnum tjóði vel móður)
(hôr feksk af því) (hlýri)
(hagnaðr) ór styr gagni.

Víst hafði {heiptar mildr lestir {linns grundar}} þrimr hlutum minna lið at hjaldri; sá fundr vas harðr. Þó at hvôru réð hann gagni ór styr; af því feksk hôr hagnaðr; {hlýri móður} tjóði hǫnum vel.

Clearly {the strife-generous damager {of the snake’s land}} [GOLD > GENEROUS MAN = Gutthormr] had three times fewer men at the battle; that meeting was hard. Yet notwithstanding he won victory in the battle; great advantage was gained from that; {the brother of [his] mother} [= Óláfr] helped him well.

Mss: Bb(117vb)

Readings: [6] móður: móðir Bb    [7] feksk: fekst Bb

Editions: Skj AI, 465, Skj BI, 435, Skald I, 214, NN §1794; Cederschiöld 1873, 5, Chase 2005, 82, 148.

Notes: [2] þó réð hann at hvôru: The rhyme of the l. depends on hearing þór- as a rhyme with hvr. — [6] móður ‘mother’: Ms. móðir is nom. in C12th Icel., but this form is frequently used as dat. sg. in late medieval/early modern Icel. Cf. Anon Pét 5/6, 37/2 and 49/2. See, e.g., Bandle 1956, 263-7 and references.


  1. Bibliography
  2. Cederschiöld, Gustaf J. Chr., ed. 1873b. ‘Bandamanna saga’. Acta Universitatis Lundensis 10.
  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. Bandle, Oskar. 1956. Die Sprache der Guðbrandsbiblía. BA 17. Copenhagen: Munksgaard.
  6. Cederschiöld, Gustaf J. Chr., ed. 1873a. Geisli eða Óláfs Drápa ens Helga er Einarr orti Skúlason: efter ‘Bergsboken’ utgifven. Acta Universitatis Lundensis 10. Lund: Berling.
  7. Chase, Martin, ed. 2005. Einarr Skúlason’s Geisli. A Critical Edition. Toronto Old Norse and Icelandic Studies 1. Toronto, Buffalo and London: Toronto University Press.
  8. Internal references
  9. David McDougall (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Pétrsdrápa 5’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 800-1.

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