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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Lil 71VII

Martin Chase (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Lilja 71’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 642-3.

Anonymous PoemsLilja

Upprísöndum allra landa
íbyggjurum við dóminn hryggva
Jésú munu þá sárin sýnaz
súthrærandi og píslarfæri.
Orð og hugsan, allar gjörðir,
eru kannaðar hvers sem annars;
bjóðaz hvörki blót nie eiðar;
byrgjaz úti gjafir og mútur.

Við dóminn hryggva, þá sýnaz súthrærandi sárin og píslarfæri Jésú munu upprísöndum íbyggjurum allra landa. Allar gjörðir, orð og hugsan hvers sem annars eru kannaðar; hvörki blót nie eiðar bjóðaz; gjafir og mútur byrgjaz úti.

At the sorrowful Judgement, then the grievous wounds and torture-tools of Jesus will be shown to the rising inhabitants of all lands. All deeds, words and thoughts of each man as well as the next will be probed; neither sacrifices nor oaths will be offered; gifts and bribes will be excluded.

Mss: Bb(115vb), 99a(14r-v), 622(36), 713(12), Vb(253), 41 8°ˣ(128), 705ˣ(17v), 4892(36r)

Readings: [1] Upprísöndum (‘Upp risaundum’): Upprísundum 99a, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892, Upprísendum 622    [2] íbyggjurum: so 99a, 622, 713, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892, ‘ibygguer’ Bb, ‘íbyggerum’ Vb;    við: um 622    [3] Jésú: so 713, Jésús Bb, 99a, 622, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892;    munu: mun 99a, 622, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892;    þá: sín Vb, 41 8°ˣ;    sýnaz: sýna 99a, 622, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892    [4] súthrærandi: og sín hrærandi 622, 4892, sín hrærandi 713, og súthrærandi Vb, 41 8°ˣ, sitt hrærandi 705ˣ;    og: om. 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 4892    [5] og: om. Vb, 4892;    hugsan: hugsan og 622, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 4892, huskan 705ˣ    [6] kannaðar: so 622, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892, ‘kannadadar’ Bb, kannaðar þá 99a;    sem: og 4892    [8] byrgjaz: enn byrgjaz 99a;    gjafir: gæfr Vb, gafur 41 8°ˣ

Editions: Skj AII, 386, Skj BII, 408-9, Skald II, 224.

Notes: [1-4]: Skj B and Skald follow a different interpretation, in which Jésús (l. 3) is the subject of the cl., the main verb is sg. and the dependent inf. active in voice (mun sýna ‘will show’). — [4] súthrærandi ‘grievous’: Lit. ‘exciting grief’. The epithet can be applied either to sárin og píslafæri ‘wounds and instruments of torture’ or to Jésú. The alternative reading for sút, sín, yields the sentence Jésús hrærandi sín píslarfæri ‘Jesus, raising up his torture-tools, i.e. showing the instruments with which he was tortured’ (JH). The image is an allusion to Rev. I.7: ecce venit cum nubibus et videbit eum omnis oculus et qui eum pupugerunt et plangent se super eum omnes tribus terrae ‘behold, he cometh with the clouds, and every eye shall see him: and they also that pierced him. And all the tribes of the earth shall bewail themselves because of him’. In medieval literature and art, this image is often expanded to include the showing of the instruments used to torture Jesus. Cf. similar treatments in Has 33/5-8 and Líkn 27. — [5-6]: An allusion to Rev. II.23: et scient omnes ecclesiae quia ego sum scrutans renes et corda et dabo unicuique vestrum secundum opera ‘and all the churches shall know that I am he that searcheth the reins and hearts. And I will give to every one of you according to your works’. The formula ‘I have sinned in thought, word, and deed’ was (and is) a standard liturgical formula, used both in the mass and the divine office (cf. Brev. Nidr., h.iiir: peccaui nimis in vita mea / cogitatione / locutione / opere / et omissione ‘I have sinned exceedingly in my life, in thought, in speech, in deed, and by omission’).


  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. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  4. Brev. Nidr. = [Anonymous] Breviarium Nidrosiense. 1519. Paris: Jean Kerbriant and Jean Bienayse. Rpt. facsimile edn 1964. Oslo: Børsum.
  5. Internal references
  6. George S. Tate (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Líknarbraut 27’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 257-8.
  7. Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Gamli kanóki, Harmsól 33’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 101-2.

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