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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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ESk Frag 8III

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Einarr Skúlason, Fragments 8’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 159.

Einarr SkúlasonFragments


The helmingr (ESk Frag 8) is found in SnE (mss R (main ms.), , U, A, B (and 744ˣ), C). The metre is dunhent (see Frag 6 above, Note to [All]), and the poet’s name is given as Einarr (no patronymic) in all mss. The battle imagery suggests that the stanza belonged to an encomium.

text and translation

Sámleitum rauð sveita
— sleit ǫrn Gera beitu —
— fekksk arnar matr jǫrnum —
Jarnsǫxu grǫn faxa.

Rauð grǫn {sámleitum faxa Jarnsǫxu} sveita; ǫrn sleit {beitu Gera}; {matr arnar} fekksk jǫrnum.
‘He reddened the whiskers of Jarnsaxa’s <troll-woman’s> swarthy steed [WOLF] with blood; an eagle tore Geri’s <wolf’s> bait [CORPSES]; food of the eagle [CORPSES] was provided by weapons.

notes and context

The helmingr is given as an example of a heiti for ‘eagle’ (ǫrn ‘eagle’; arnar ‘of the eagle’).

For the metre, see Note to Frag 6 above. — [2]: This line is also found in Hókr Eirfl 7/6I.



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: Einarr Skúlason, 12. Ubestemmelige vers, tilhørende forskellige fyrstedigte eller lausavísur 8: AI, 481, BI, 452-3, Skald I, 223; SnE 1848-87, I, 490-1, II, 354, 457, 544, 597, III, 101, SnE 1931, 173, SnE 1998, I, 92.


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