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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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GunnLeif Merl II 47VIII (Bret 47)

Russell Poole (ed.) 2017, ‘Breta saga 47 (Gunnlaugr Leifsson, Merlínusspá II 47)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 175.

Gunnlaugr LeifssonMerlínusspá II

text and translation

‘Hann Kambríe         kallar sveitir
ok Norðhumru         nánar hjarðir.
Ok ótrautt         Tems at þurru
drengs dolgþorins         drekka lýðir.

‘Hann kallar sveitir Kambríe ok hjarðir nánar Norðhumru. Ok lýðir dolgþorins drengs drekka ótrautt Tems at þurru.
‘‘It will summon the bands of Cambria and the herds near Northumbria. And without reluctance the people of the battle-resolute warrior will drink the Thames dry.

notes and context

Cf. DGB 116 (Reeve and Wright 2007, 155.208-9; cf. Wright 1988, 110, prophecy 46): Associabit sibi greges Albanorum et Kambriae, qui Tamensem potando siccabunt ‘It will ally itself to the flocks of Scotland and Wales, which will drink the Thames dry’ (Reeve and Wright 2007, 154). The previous sentence in Geoffrey’s text is not represented in Merl.


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: Gunnlaugr Leifsson, Merlínússpá I 47: AII, 18, BII, 19-20, Skald II, 12, NN §2163B; Bret 1848-9, II, 32 (Bret st. 47); Hb 1892-6, 276; Merl 2012, 110-11.


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