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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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HSt Rst 20I

Rolf Stavnem (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallar-Steinn, Rekstefja 20’ 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. 920.

Hallar-SteinnRekstefja
192021

text and translation

Myrkt hregg mækis eggja
meinilla gekk Sveini;
drótt hné dreyra þrútin;
Danir skunduðu undan.
Tandr beit — tiggi renndi
tveim dǫglingum — Skǫglar;
hans vǫrn hœfðisk firnum.
Hollr ok fremstr at ǫllu.

{Myrkt hregg eggja mækis} gekk meinilla Sveini; drótt hné þrútin dreyra; Danir skunduðu undan. {Tandr Skǫglar} beit; tiggi renndi tveim dǫglingum; vǫrn hans hœfðisk firnum. Hollr ok fremstr at ǫllu …
 
‘The dark storm of blades of swords [BATTLE] went very badly for Sveinn; the troop fell, swollen with blood; the Danes hurried away. The flame of Skǫgul <valkyrie> [SWORD] bit; the ruler [Óláfr] made two princes flee; his defence was exceptionally fitting. Faithful and foremost in all things …

notes and context

As the Norwegians clear Danish ships, Sveinn and the surviving Danes retreat onto other vessels, proving a previous claim by King Óláfr that the Danes could never defeat the Norwegians. The first helmingr is then quoted. The second follows a summary statement that Óláfr made the Danes and Swedes flee. 

[3] drótt hné þrútin dreya ‘the troop fell, swollen with blood’: The alternative line in ÓT, sôr frák drengjum dreyra ‘I have heard [there were] wounds with blood on the men’ is somewhat strained, and diverges from the normal metrical pattern in Rst as the first alliteration does not fall in position 1 or 2. — [8]: For this line of the refrain, see Note to st. 9/8. Hollr ‘faithful’ is an emendation here, but it is the reading of Bb(111vb) in st. 11/8.

readings

sources

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: Hallar-Steinn, 1. Rekstefja 20: AI, 548, BI, 530, Skald I, 258, NN §1181; ÓT 1958-2000, II, 268, 271 (ch. 250), Flat 1860-8, I, 483, 485; SHI 3, 256-9, CPB II, 298, Wisén 1886-9, I, 48, Finnur Jónsson 1893b, 164, Konráð Gíslason 1895-7, I, 253-6.

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