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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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HSt Rst 33I

Rolf Stavnem (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallar-Steinn, Rekstefja 33’ 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. 935.

Hallar-SteinnRekstefja
323334

Þengill ‘the prince’

þengill (noun m.): prince, ruler

kennings

þengill byrtjalds,
‘the prince of the wind-tent, ’
   = God

the wind-tent, → SKY/HEAVEN
the prince of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

þróttar ‘in valour’

þróttr (noun m.): strength, might, valour < þróttarstrangr (adj.)

notes

[1] þróttarstrǫngum ‘strong in valour’: (a) The two elements are treated here as a cpd. This seems likely in light of other compounds in which a reference to warlike deeds in the gen. qualifies strangr: Sigv Berv 13/2II heiptarstrangr ‘vengeful’ and Sturl Hryn 7/4II sóknarstrangr ‘war-fierce’; there are also several further compounds in -strangr (LP: strangr). (b) The two elements could alternatively be regarded as a phrase with the adj. strangr governing the gen. (cf. NS §§136-8, though the examples do not include strangr).

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strǫngum ‘strong’

strangr (adj.): strong < þróttarstrangr (adj.)

notes

[1] þróttarstrǫngum ‘strong in valour’: (a) The two elements are treated here as a cpd. This seems likely in light of other compounds in which a reference to warlike deeds in the gen. qualifies strangr: Sigv Berv 13/2II heiptarstrangr ‘vengeful’ and Sturl Hryn 7/4II sóknarstrangr ‘war-fierce’; there are also several further compounds in -strangr (LP: strangr). (b) The two elements could alternatively be regarded as a phrase with the adj. strangr governing the gen. (cf. NS §§136-8, though the examples do not include strangr).

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af ‘out of’

af (prep.): from

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byr ‘of the wind’

byrr (noun m.; °-jar/-s; -ir, acc. -i/-u(SigrVal 188¹³)): favourable wind < byrtjald (noun n.)

kennings

þengill byrtjalds,
‘the prince of the wind-tent, ’
   = God

the wind-tent, → SKY/HEAVEN
the prince of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

byr ‘of the wind’

byrr (noun m.; °-jar/-s; -ir, acc. -i/-u(SigrVal 188¹³)): favourable wind < byrtjald (noun n.)

kennings

þengill byrtjalds,
‘the prince of the wind-tent, ’
   = God

the wind-tent, → SKY/HEAVEN
the prince of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

tjalds ‘tent’

tjald (noun n.; °-s; *-): tent, awning < byrtjald (noun n.)

kennings

þengill byrtjalds,
‘the prince of the wind-tent, ’
   = God

the wind-tent, → SKY/HEAVEN
the prince of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

tjalds ‘tent’

tjald (noun n.; °-s; *-): tent, awning < byrtjald (noun n.)

kennings

þengill byrtjalds,
‘the prince of the wind-tent, ’
   = God

the wind-tent, → SKY/HEAVEN
the prince of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

beztu ‘with the highest’

betri (adj. comp.; °superl. beztr/baztr; pos. „ góðr adj.): better, best

notes

[3] beztu heilli ‘with the highest grace’: Lit. ‘with the best grace or fortune’: A specifically Christian sense ‘grace’ is appropriate here as, e.g., in Gamlkan Has 1/1VII.

Close

heilli ‘grace’

2. heill (noun n.; °; -): fortune

notes

[3] beztu heilli ‘with the highest grace’: Lit. ‘with the best grace or fortune’: A specifically Christian sense ‘grace’ is appropriate here as, e.g., in Gamlkan Has 1/1VII.

Close

fagni ‘receive’

fagna (verb; °-að-): welcome, rejoice

notes

[4] fagni ‘may … receive’: There are also connotations of welcoming, cf. Skj B’s gud måtte glæde kongen ‘may God cheer the king’.

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alla ‘all’

allr (adj.): all

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Óláfr ‘Óláfr’

Óláfr (noun m.): Óláfr

[7] Óláfr: Óláfi Bb

notes

[7] Óláfr: The minor emendation of ms. Óláfi is necessary both in order to provide a nom. sg. subject for þiggi ‘receive’ and because Óláfi is hypermetrical. The emendation is adopted in previous eds.

Close

ítr ‘of the splendid’

ítr (adj.): glorious < ítrból (noun n.): [splendid lair]

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

ítr ‘of the splendid’

ítr (adj.): glorious < ítrból (noun n.): [splendid lair]

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

bóls ‘abode’

ból (noun n.; °-s; -): dwelling < ítrból (noun n.): [splendid lair]

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

bóls ‘abode’

ból (noun n.; °-s; -): dwelling < ítrból (noun n.): [splendid lair]

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

gram ‘the lord’

1. gramr (noun m.): ruler

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

sólar ‘of the sun’

sól (noun f.; °-ar, dat. -u/-; -ir): sun

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

sólar ‘of the sun’

sól (noun f.; °-ar, dat. -u/-; -ir): sun

kennings

gram ítrbóls sólar.
‘the lord of the splendid abode of the sun. ’
   = God

the splendid abode of the sun. → SKY/HEAVEN
the lord of the SKY/HEAVEN → God
Close

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

[1-4]: The general sense of the helmingr is clearly that Óláfr was summoned by God from this world into heaven; but there are alternative analyses of the kenning elements, and alternative solutions to the fact that there is only one dat. noun, bragningi ‘prince’, but two finite verbs, bauð ‘invited’ and fagni ‘receive, welcome’, requiring a dat. object. (a) In the text above, nom. sg. þengill forms a natural kenning for God with byrtjalds ‘wind-tent [SKY/HEAVEN]’, which is set in apposition to the nom. sg. Kristr ‘Christ’ (so also Skj B). Þróttarstrǫngum ‘strong in valour’ is taken as an attributive adj. with bragningi ‘prince’, and þeim is taken with heimi, hence ‘the world’. Fagni lacks an explicit object, but this is easily understood to be the same bragningi ‘prince’ as in the first clause. (b) In Skj B (following Konráð Gíslason 1895-7) strǫngum ‘strong’ is taken as substantival, hence þeim þróttar strǫngum ‘the one strong in valour/power’. This has the advantage of leaving bragningi available as the explicit object of fagni. (c) Kock (NN §1187) objects to the positioning of Kristr relative to the kenning. He emends þengill to dat. sg. þengil, object of bauð ‘invited’, and takes þeim as a pron. ‘him’ in apposition to it. He takes together af heimi byrtjalds ‘from the world of the wind-tent [HEAVEN]’, qualifying bauð, so that God calls to Óláfr out of heaven. However, the addition of heimi ‘world’ to the heaven-kenning makes it overloaded, and it is more natural to understand af heimi as referring to Óláfr leaving the earth. — [3] -tjalds : heilli: On this rhyme, see Note to st. 32/3.

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