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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Eskál Vell 21I

Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Einarr skálaglamm Helgason, Vellekla 21’ 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. 308.

Einarr skálaglamm HelgasonVellekla

text and translation

Hitt vas meir, at Mœra
morðfíkinn lét norðan
folkverjandi fyrva
fǫr til Sogns of gǫrva.
Ýtti Freyr af fjórum
folklǫndum — sá branda
Ullr stóð af því allri
yrþjóð — Heðins byrjar.

Hitt vas meir, at {morðfíkinn folkverjandi Mœra} lét of gǫrva fǫr fyrva norðan til Sogns. {Freyr {byrjar Heðins}} ýtti af fjórum folklǫndum; {sá Ullr branda} stóð af því allri yrþjóð.
‘It also happened that the battle-eager people-defender of the Mœrir [NORWEGIAN RULER = Hákon jarl] had his men undertake a journey from the north to Sogn. The Freyr <god> of the wind of Heðinn <legendary hero> [BATTLE > WARRIOR] set out from four folklǫnd; that Ullr <god> of swords [WARRIOR] thereby helped the whole people.

notes and context

In Hkr and ÓT, Ragnfrøðr Eiríksson occupies the entire region south of Staðr (Stadlandet) including Sogn, Firðafylki (Sogn og Fjordane), Hǫrðaland (Hordaland) and Rogaland. The following spring Hákon jarl musters warriors from Hálogaland (Hålogaland), Naumudalr (Namdalen), from the region between Byrða (Børøya) and Staðr (probably Nordmøre) and from Þrœndalǫg (Trøndelag), as well as Raumsdalr (Romsdalen). In Hkr and ÓT, sts 21 and 22 are cited as evidence of this mustering and mobilisation for battle. Fsk cites st. 21 and st. 22/1-4 after a similar account, whereas Flat cites only st. 21.

[6-8]: The intercalary clause has been construed in two different ways (with variants which include or exclude allri yrþjóð ‘the whole people’). (a) The construal in this edn follows NN §2243, ÍF 26 and ÍF 29 in taking stóð as a verb. This is favoured by Kuhn’s thesis (1983, 149) that odd E-lines always contain the finite verb of an independent clause. On the translation of stóð as ‘helped’ see Fritzner: standa 22. (b) The word could be the noun stoð ‘support’: Ullr branda sá stoð af því allri yrþjóð ‘The Ullr of swords [WARRIOR] saw in this the support of the whole people’ (so Hkr 1893-1901, IV; Konráð Gíslason 1895-7, I, 141; Skj B).



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 Helgason skálaglamm, 3. Vellekla 22: AI, 127, BI, 120, Skald I, 68, NN §§2243, 3213; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 285, IV, 75, ÍF 26, 245, Hkr 1991, I, 163 (ÓTHkr ch. 18), F 1871, 107; Fms 1, 94, Fms 12, 34, ÓT 1958-2000, I, 101-2 (ÓT ch. 56), Flat 1860-8, I, 87; Fsk 1902-3, 72 (ch. 14), ÍF 29, 114 (ch. 16).


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