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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Lil 20VII

Martin Chase (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Lilja 20’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 586-7.

Anonymous PoemsLilja

text and translation

Remman brast af rót í kvistu;
rann þá glæpr af hverjum til annars;
leið svá heimr um langan tíma
lífs andvani en fullr af grandi.
Liettir hvörki ugg nie ótta,
eftir mest en þó er að lesti;
opið helvíti búið með bölvi
bauð sig fram við hvers manns dauða.

Remman brast af rót í kvistu; þá rann glæpr af hverjum til annars; leið heimr svá um langan tíma, lífs andvani, en fullr af grandi. Liettir hvörki ugg nie ótta, en þó er eftir mest að lesti; opið helvíti, búið með bölvi, bauð sig fram við dauða hvers manns.
‘The bitterness sprang forth from root to twigs; then sin ran from one to the next; the world proceeded thus for a long time, devoid of life and full of injury. Neither dread nor fear lets up, yet the worst is what comes at the last; gaping hell, provided with misfortune, presented itself at each man’s death.

notes and context

[8]: Note the past tense of the statement: before salvation was made possible by Christ, all were ultimately doomed to hell.



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: Eysteinn Ásgrímsson, Lilja 20: AII, 369-70, BII, 395, Skald II, 215, NN §2629 C.


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