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skaldic

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
202122

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.

Mss: (141v), F(23rb-va), J1ˣ(82v), J2ˣ(77v), 325VIII 1(3rb) (Hkr); 61(11v), 53(9va), 54(5rb), Bb(15rb), 62(4ra), Flat(11vb) (ÓT); FskBˣ(20v), FskAˣ(81) (Fsk)

Readings: [1] vas: varð FskAˣ;    meir: so J1ˣ, 325VIII 1, Bb, FskBˣ, FskAˣ, meirr Kˣ, F, J2ˣ, 61, 53, 54, 62, Flat;    at: er 61, Bb, 62, FskBˣ, FskAˣ;    Mœra: meira 325VIII 1, mœta 61, FskAˣ, ‘mœ[..]’ 53    [2] morð‑: ‘mork‑’ F, morðs‑ 62;    ‑fíkinn: ‑ríkinn Flat;    lét: ‘lec’ J2ˣ, lett Bb    [3] fyrva: fyrða 53, fjǫrva 62, Flat, FskBˣ, fjǫrvi FskAˣ    [4] Sogns: sogn Bb, 62;    of: ok Bb    [5] Ýtti: so F, J1ˣ, J2ˣ, 61, 53, Bb, FskBˣ, ýti Kˣ, 325VIII 1, 54, veit ek at 62, Flat, ýtri FskAˣ    [6] branda: brandi F, 53, brandr 54, brǫndum 62, Flat    [7] Ullr stóð: stóð uggr 53, 54, Bb;    af: so J1ˣ, 61, 53, 54, Bb, 62, Flat, á Kˣ, F, J2ˣ, 325VIII 1, FskBˣ, FskAˣ    [8] ‑þjóð: ‑þjóðir 54, Bb

Editions: Skj AI, 127, Skj 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).

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.

Notes: [1, 3] folkverjandi Mœra ‘the people-defender of the Mœrir [NORWEGIAN RULER = Hákon jarl]’: Although the kenning could refer to any Norwegian ruler, in this case it is a direct reference to Hákon jarl, who has become the defender of the people of Møre since Ragnfrøðr has occupied the regions bordering it to the south. — [2, 3, 4] lét of gǫrva fǫr fyrva ‘had his men undertake a journey’: Lit. ‘had a journey of men undertaken’: Gǫrva here is f. acc. sg. of the adj. gǫrr ‘done’, agreeing with fǫr ‘journey’ and used as a p. p. ‘undertaken, made’ (see Konráð Gíslason 1895-7, I, 139; LP: gǫrr 2; NN §3213). — [3] fyrva ‘his men’: A less common derivative of fjǫr ‘life’ which, along with fjǫrvar and the more common forms fyrðar and firar, means ‘the living’ (AEW: firar, fyrvar). — [5, 6] ýtti af fjórum folklǫndum ‘set out from four folklǫnd’: Ýtti has been rendered in one of two ways. (a) ‘He set out (on a ship)’ (this edn, and Konráð Gíslason 1872, 30 and 1895-7, I, 141; Hkr 1893-1901, IV; Skj B; cf. Fritzner: ýta 2; LP: ýta). (b) ‘He called for, conscripted’ in conjunction with allri yrþjóð ‘the whole people’ (Vell 1865, 49-50; ÓT 1892, 374; ÍF 26; Hkr 1991; ÍF 29). However, ýta with a personal object in the dat. means ‘to assist in launching a boat’ (Fritzner: ýta 1), and allri yrþjóð is better construed with the intercalary clause. — [5-6] af fjórum folklǫndum ‘from four folklǫnd’: The uncommon word folkland (see LP, Fritzner: folkland) is often thought to be synonymous with fylki (for this term see Note to st. 13/1). Indrebø (1931, 36-9), however, rejects this notion, assuming that it designated a stamme-umraade ‘tribal area’. He refers to this stanza and points out that Hákon, anticipating a major battle, would not have summoned warriors from only four of the seven fylki that he ruled according to st. 13/1. From the prose context, which tells that the south of Norway had been occupied by Ragnfrøðr, he concludes that the four folklǫnd are Trøndelag, Møre, Romsdalen and Hålogaland which he thinks to have included Namdalen. Even if Indrebø’s interpretation of folklǫnd as ‘tribal area’ is contentious, it can be assumed that the term probably designated a larger area than fylki. — [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). — [8] yrþjóð ‘people’: The word yrþjóð, which occurs again in st. 28/8 and in Sturl Hákkv 30/7II, and is presumably identical with urþjóð in Egill Arkv 17/3V (LP: yrþjóð), is usually claimed to be related to *verþjóð ‘man-folk’ despite uncertainty about the phonological development (see Falk 1889a, 118‑20; AEW: yrþjóð).

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. Skj B = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912-15b. Den norsk-islandske skjaldedigtning. B: Rettet tekst. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Villadsen & Christensen. Rpt. 1973. Copenhagen: Rosenkilde & Bagger.
  3. Fms = Sveinbjörn Egilsson et al., eds. 1825-37. Fornmanna sögur eptir gömlum handritum útgefnar að tilhlutun hins norræna fornfræða fèlags. 12 vols. Copenhagen: Popp.
  4. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  6. AEW = Vries, Jan de. 1962. Altnordisches etymologisches Wörterbuch. 2nd rev. edn. Rpt. 1977. Leiden: Brill.
  7. LP = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1931. Lexicon poeticum antiquæ linguæ septentrionalis: Ordbog over det norsk-islandske skjaldesprog oprindelig forfattet af Sveinbjörn Egilsson. 2nd edn. Copenhagen: Møller.
  8. Flat 1860-8 = Gudbrand Vigfusson [Guðbrandur Vigfússon] and C. R. Unger, eds. 1860-8. Flateyjarbók. En samling af norske konge-sagaer med indskudte mindre fortællinger om begivenheder i og udenfor Norge samt annaler. 3 vols. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  9. Fritzner = Fritzner, Johan. 1883-96. Ordbog over det gamle norske sprog. 3 vols. Kristiania (Oslo): Den norske forlagsforening. 4th edn. Rpt. 1973. Oslo etc.: Universitetsforlaget.
  10. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  11. Hkr 1893-1901 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1893-1901. Heimskringla: Nóregs konunga sǫgur af Snorri Sturluson. 4 vols. SUGNL 23. Copenhagen: Møller.
  12. Hkr 1991 = Bergljót S. Kristjánsdóttir et al., eds. 1991. Heimskringla. 3 vols. Reykjavík: Mál og menning.
  13. F 1871 = Unger, C. R., ed. 1871. Fríssbók: Codex Frisianus. En samling af norske konge-sagaer. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  14. Fsk 1902-3 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1902-3. Fagrskinna: Nóregs kononga tal. SUGNL 30. Copenhagen: Møller.
  15. ÍF 29 = Ágrip af Nóregskonunga sǫgum; Fagrskinna—Nóregs konungatal. Ed. Bjarni Einarsson. 1985.
  16. Konráð Gíslason. 1895-7. Efterladte skrifter. 2 vols. I: Forelæsninger over oldnordiske skjaldekvad. II: Forelæsninger og videnskablige afhandlinger. Copenhagen: Gyldendal.
  17. ÓT 1958-2000 = Ólafur Halldórsson, ed. 1958-2000. Saga Óláfs Tryggvasonar en mesta. 3 vols. EA A 1-3. Copenhagen: Munksgaard (Reitzel).
  18. Falk, Hjalmar. 1889a. ‘Oldnorske ordforklaringer’. ANF 5, 111-24.
  19. ÓT 1892 = Eggert Ó. Brím, ed. 1892. Saga Óláfs Tryggvasonar. Reykjavík: Ísafoldarprentsmiðja.
  20. Vell 1865 = Freudenthal, Axel Olof. 1865. Einar Skålaglams Vellekla / öfversatt och förklarad af Axel Olof Freudenthal. Helsingfors: Frenckell.
  21. Indrebø, Gustav. 1931. Fylke og fylkesnamn. Bergens Museums Årbok 1931, Hist.-ant. rekke nr. 1. Bergen: Grieg.
  22. Konráð Gíslason. 1872. Nogle bemærkninger om skjaldedigtens beskaffenhed i formel henseende. Det Kongelige Danske Videnskabernes Selskabs Skrifter, ser. 5, Historisk og philosophisk Afdeling 4/7. Copenhagen: Luno.
  23. Internal references
  24. Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘Heimskringla (Hkr)’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols [check printed volume for citation].
  25. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘Flateyjarbók (Flat)’ 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, pp. clxi-clxii.
  26. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘Fagrskinna (Fsk)’ 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, pp. clix-clxi.
  27. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘The Greatest Saga of Óláfr Tryggvason / Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar in mesta (ÓT)’ 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, pp. clxiii-clxvi.
  28. Not published: do not cite (Egill Arkv 17V (Eg 113))
  29. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Sturla Þórðarson, Hákonarkviða 30’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 721-2.
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