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skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Eyv Lv 3I

Russell Poole (ed.) 2012, ‘Eyvindr skáldaspillir Finnsson, Lausavísur 3’ 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. 218.

Eyvindr skáldaspillir FinnssonLausavísur
234

Lýtr ‘sinks’

1. lúta (verb): (strong)

notes

[1, 3] lýtr; kveðr ‘sinks; greets’: If the present lausavísa indeed contains a jest, it might lie in the ironic use of the verbs lúta ‘sink’ (which occasionally means ‘bow, submit’ as in fealty, e.g. GunnlI Aðdr 1/3V (Gunnl 3)) and kveða ‘greet’, evoking courtly ceremony (which some Norwegian rulers and their entourage might have participated in while on embassies to Carolingian and English political centres).

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bifafk ‘’

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bifask ‘tremble’

2. bifa (verb; °-að-): shudder, tremble

[2] bifask: so FskAˣ, ‘bifafk’ FskBˣ

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kveðr ‘greets’

2. kveðja (verb): say, greet

notes

[1, 3] lýtr; kveðr ‘sinks; greets’: If the present lausavísa indeed contains a jest, it might lie in the ironic use of the verbs lúta ‘sink’ (which occasionally means ‘bow, submit’ as in fealty, e.g. GunnlI Aðdr 1/3V (Gunnl 3)) and kveða ‘greet’, evoking courtly ceremony (which some Norwegian rulers and their entourage might have participated in while on embassies to Carolingian and English political centres).

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oddviti ‘the leader [Hákon]’

oddviti (noun m.): leader

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Eyvindar ‘of Eyvindr’

Eyvindr (noun m.): [Eyvindr, Eyvind]

[4] Eyvindar: Eyvindr FskAˣ

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skreyju ‘skreyja (‘Wretch’)’

skreyja (noun f.): wretch

notes

[4] skreyju ‘skreyja (“Wretch”)’: The meaning of the nickname is not beyond doubt, but for the sense ‘wretch’ see Finnur Jónsson (1907, 349); Lind (1920-1, 333). In Lv 4 Eyvindr is seemingly the target of both a direct taunt and an indirect one alluding to a defeat attested in Egill Lv 10V (Eg 15; see Note to Lv 4/7-8 below). Both Eyvindr skreyja and his comrade Álfr askmaðr (see Note to Lv 5/2, 3) are somewhat obscure personages. They are said in Hkr to be maternal uncles of the Eiríkssynir (Gunnhildarsynir), hence brothers of Queen Gunnhildr, though this linkage is generally regarded as suspect (ÍF 26; Egils saga, ÍF 2, 123-4 and n.).

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Interactive view: tap on words in the text for notes and glosses

Fsk, having cited Eyv Lv 2, describes the Norwegians preparing for action at Fitjar and cites Eyv Hák 1-3. In the tumult, Eyvindr speaks this, a gamankviðling ‘jesting little verse’, to King Hákon before the close fighting begins, and Hákon responds with a matching stanza (Hákg Lv).

The report of jesting in Fsk may derive from lék við ljóðmǫgu ‘he [Hákon] joked with the men’, l. 5 of Eyv Hák 4, which is quoted later in the episode (ÍF 29, 88). For the suggestion that Hákon’s reply originated as part of a flokkr by Eyvindr and was ascribed to Hákon secondarily, see Poole (1988, 175).

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