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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Hsv 41VII

Tarrin Wills and Stefanie Gropper (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Hugsvinnsmál 41’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 385-6.

Anonymous PoemsHugsvinnsmál

text and translation

Sinni optar        heittu eigi seggjum gjöf,
        þeirri er þú veita vilt;
símálugs orð        þykkja snotrum hal
        vindi lík vera.

Heittu eigi sinni optar seggjum gjöf, þeirri er þú vilt veita; snotrum hal þykkja símálugs orð vera lík vindi.
‘Do not promise people more than once the gift that you intend to give; to a wise man the words of a long-winded man seem like the wind.

notes and context

Lat. parallel: (Dist. I, 25) Quod praestare potes, ne bis promiseris ulli, / ne sis ventosus, dum vis bonus esse videris ‘That which you are able to lend do not promise twice to anyone, do not be a windbag if you want to seem to be a good man’. This st. is parallelled in Hsv 29. — [1-3]: The first version (i.e. 624) only consists of these ll., but has a similar text to ll. 4-6 in its version of st. 29/4-6. The ll. here also read somewhat differently from the other mss: Sinni optar | skaltu eigi heita gjöf | þeirri er þú at öðrum átt ‘You must not promise more than once a gift which you have due from others’.



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 41: AII, 177, BII, 192, Skald II, 100; Hallgrímur Scheving 1831, 14, Gering 1907, 12, Tuvestrand 1977, 93, Hermann Pálsson 1985, 54.


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