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skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Hallv Knútdr 3III

Matthew Townend (ed.) 2017, ‘Hallvarðr háreksblesi, Knútsdrápa 3’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 233.

Hallvarðr háreksblesiKnútsdrápa
234

Fljóta ‘Fljót’

1. fljótr (noun m.): [Fljót]

notes

[1] Fljóta ‘Fljót’: For discussion of this place-name, which is pl. in form, see Townend (1998, 77-9), where it is suggested that it may be an Old Norse name for the River Humber. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle (ASC, s. a. 1016, recte 1015) records that when Knútr launched his attack on England in 1015 his fleet touched land at Sandwich in Kent, before heading west along the south coast. However, when Knútr’s father Sveinn Haraldsson launched his earlier attack in 1013 (in the company of his son), the Chronicle (ASC, s. a. 1013) records that Sveinn and Knútr took their ship-based army into the mouth of the Humber, and then up the River Trent to Gainsborough, at which point command of the fleet was placed in Knútr’s hands. If one takes Fljót to refer to the Humber (or indeed if it is simply a common pl. noun ‘rivers’, referring to the Humber and Trent), then these opening stanzas of Hallvarðr’s poem may just as well refer to the attack of 1013 as to that of 1015.

Close

frægr ‘the famous’

frægr (adj.; °-jan/-an; compar. -ri, superl. -jastr/-astr/-str): famous, renowned

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR
Close

vǫrðr ‘guardian’

vǫrðr (noun m.; °varðar, dat. verði/vǫrð; verðir, acc. vǫrðu): guardian, defender

[2] vǫrðr: norðr 41ˣ

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR
Close

heiptsnarr ‘battle-bold’

heiftsnarr (adj.): [battle-bold]

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR

notes

[3] heiptsnarr ‘battle-bold’: As Kock (NN §782) observes, it seems preferable to take heiptsnarr as belonging with the intercalary clause of ll. 2-3, rather than with the main clause of ll. 1 and 4 (as Skj B does).

Close

hildar ‘of battle’

1. hildr (noun f.): battle

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR
Close

hildar ‘of battle’

1. hildr (noun f.): battle

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR
Close

leiptra ‘of the lightnings’

2. leiptr (noun f.): lightning

[3] leiptra: leiptrar 873ˣ

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR
Close

leiptra ‘of the lightnings’

2. leiptr (noun f.): lightning

[3] leiptra: leiptrar 873ˣ

kennings

frægr, heiptsnarr vǫrðr leiptra hildar
‘the famous, battle-bold guardian of the lightnings of battle ’
   = WARRIOR

the lightnings of battle → SWORDS
the famous, battle-bold guardian of SWORDS → WARRIOR
Close

harðbrynjuð ‘your hard-armoured’

harðbrynjaðr (adj.): hard-armoured

notes

[4] harðbrynjuð skip ‘hard-armoured ships’: The cpd harðbrynjaðr occurs only here and in Ótt Knútdr 1/6I, where it also describes Knútr’s ships. On account of the likely dates of composition for their Knútsdrápur, it is more likely that Hallvarðr is borrowing from Óttarr than vice versa. See further Jesch (2001a, 157-9), who suggests that the armour concerned is shields along the sides of the ship.

Close

skip ‘ships’

skip (noun n.; °-s; -): ship

notes

[4] harðbrynjuð skip ‘hard-armoured ships’: The cpd harðbrynjaðr occurs only here and in Ótt Knútdr 1/6I, where it also describes Knútr’s ships. On account of the likely dates of composition for their Knútsdrápur, it is more likely that Hallvarðr is borrowing from Óttarr than vice versa. See further Jesch (2001a, 157-9), who suggests that the armour concerned is shields along the sides of the ship.

Close

Ullar ‘of Ullr’s’

Ullr (noun m.): Ullr

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

Ullar ‘of Ullr’s’

Ullr (noun m.): Ullr

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

Ellu ‘of Ælla’

Ella (noun m.): Ella, Ælla, Ælle

[5] Ellu: ‘elle’ 41ˣ

kennings

ættleifð Ellu
‘the patrimony of Ælla, ’
   = England

the patrimony of Ælla, → England

notes

[5] Ellu ‘of Ælla’: The allusion is probably to King Ælla of Northumbria, killed by Ívarr inn beinlausi ‘the Boneless’ during the conquest of York in 867. In skaldic verse Ælla seems to become a representative of the Anglo-Saxon monarchy (see further Townend 1997 and Kries 2003).

Close

ættleifð ‘the patrimony’

ættleifð (noun f.): patrimony

kennings

ættleifð Ellu
‘the patrimony of Ælla, ’
   = England

the patrimony of Ælla, → England
Close

‘the gull’

már (noun m.): gull

kennings

mô sverðmans.
‘the gull of the sword-girl.’
   = RAVEN/EAGLE

the sword-girl. → VALKYRIE
the gull of the VALKYRIE → RAVEN/EAGLE
Close

reifðir ‘you gladdened’

1. reifa (verb): endow, enrich

Close

sverð ‘of the sword’

sverð (noun n.; °-s; -): sword < sverðman (noun n.)

kennings

mô sverðmans.
‘the gull of the sword-girl.’
   = RAVEN/EAGLE

the sword-girl. → VALKYRIE
the gull of the VALKYRIE → RAVEN/EAGLE

notes

[7] sverðmans ‘of the sword-girl [VALKYRIE]’: In eds where emendation is made to Ullr sundviggs, and hence the ms. reading snyrti-Gerðar is preserved (see Note to ll. 5-8 above), the reading sverðmanns ‘of the sword-man’ must be preferred, giving the kenning mô snyrti-Gerðar sverðmanns ‘the gull of the splendid Gerðr of the sword-man [WARRIOR > VALKYRIE > RAVEN]’. However, it is debatable whether sverðmaðr is an acceptable warrior-kenning and, at any rate, the emendation Ullar > Ullr results in an unmetrical line (see Note to ll. 5-8 above).

Close

sverð ‘of the sword’

sverð (noun n.; °-s; -): sword < sverðman (noun n.)

kennings

mô sverðmans.
‘the gull of the sword-girl.’
   = RAVEN/EAGLE

the sword-girl. → VALKYRIE
the gull of the VALKYRIE → RAVEN/EAGLE

notes

[7] sverðmans ‘of the sword-girl [VALKYRIE]’: In eds where emendation is made to Ullr sundviggs, and hence the ms. reading snyrti-Gerðar is preserved (see Note to ll. 5-8 above), the reading sverðmanns ‘of the sword-man’ must be preferred, giving the kenning mô snyrti-Gerðar sverðmanns ‘the gull of the splendid Gerðr of the sword-man [WARRIOR > VALKYRIE > RAVEN]’. However, it is debatable whether sverðmaðr is an acceptable warrior-kenning and, at any rate, the emendation Ullar > Ullr results in an unmetrical line (see Note to ll. 5-8 above).

Close

mans ‘girl’

man (noun n.): girl < sverðman (noun n.)

[7] ‑mans: so 41ˣ, ‘‑mannz’ all others

kennings

mô sverðmans.
‘the gull of the sword-girl.’
   = RAVEN/EAGLE

the sword-girl. → VALKYRIE
the gull of the VALKYRIE → RAVEN/EAGLE

notes

[7] sverðmans ‘of the sword-girl [VALKYRIE]’: In eds where emendation is made to Ullr sundviggs, and hence the ms. reading snyrti-Gerðar is preserved (see Note to ll. 5-8 above), the reading sverðmanns ‘of the sword-man’ must be preferred, giving the kenning mô snyrti-Gerðar sverðmanns ‘the gull of the splendid Gerðr of the sword-man [WARRIOR > VALKYRIE > RAVEN]’. However, it is debatable whether sverðmaðr is an acceptable warrior-kenning and, at any rate, the emendation Ullar > Ullr results in an unmetrical line (see Note to ll. 5-8 above).

Close

mans ‘girl’

man (noun n.): girl < sverðman (noun n.)

[7] ‑mans: so 41ˣ, ‘‑mannz’ all others

kennings

mô sverðmans.
‘the gull of the sword-girl.’
   = RAVEN/EAGLE

the sword-girl. → VALKYRIE
the gull of the VALKYRIE → RAVEN/EAGLE

notes

[7] sverðmans ‘of the sword-girl [VALKYRIE]’: In eds where emendation is made to Ullr sundviggs, and hence the ms. reading snyrti-Gerðar is preserved (see Note to ll. 5-8 above), the reading sverðmanns ‘of the sword-man’ must be preferred, giving the kenning mô snyrti-Gerðar sverðmanns ‘the gull of the splendid Gerðr of the sword-man [WARRIOR > VALKYRIE > RAVEN]’. However, it is debatable whether sverðmaðr is an acceptable warrior-kenning and, at any rate, the emendation Ullar > Ullr results in an unmetrical line (see Note to ll. 5-8 above).

Close

snyrti ‘Splendid’

snyrti- ((prefix)): [fine, Splendid] < snyrtiherðir (noun m.)

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies. — [7] snyrti- ‘splendid’: An honorific adj., appearing as the first element in a number of compounds, including those with personal names (see LP: snyrti-).

Close

snyrti ‘Splendid’

snyrti- ((prefix)): [fine, Splendid] < snyrtiherðir (noun m.)

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies. — [7] snyrti- ‘splendid’: An honorific adj., appearing as the first element in a number of compounds, including those with personal names (see LP: snyrti-).

Close

herðir ‘strengthener’

herðir (noun m.): sword < snyrtiherðir (noun m.)

[7] ‑herðir: gerðar all

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

sund ‘sea’

sund (noun n.; °-s; -): sound, strait; swimming < sundvigg (noun n.): [sea-horse]

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

sund ‘sea’

sund (noun n.; °-s; -): sound, strait; swimming < sundvigg (noun n.): [sea-horse]

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

sund ‘sea’

sund (noun n.; °-s; -): sound, strait; swimming < sundvigg (noun n.): [sea-horse]

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

viggs ‘horse’

vigg (noun n.): steed < sundvigg (noun n.): [sea-horse]

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

viggs ‘horse’

vigg (noun n.): steed < sundvigg (noun n.): [sea-horse]

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

viggs ‘horse’

vigg (noun n.): steed < sundvigg (noun n.): [sea-horse]

kennings

Snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs,
‘Splendid strengthener of Ullr’s sea-horse, ’
   = WARRIOR

sea-horse, → SHIP
Ullr’s of the SHIP → SHIELD
Splendid strengthener of the SHIELD → WARRIOR

notes

[5, 7-8] snyrtiherðir Ullar sundviggs ‘splendid strengthener of Ullr’s <god’s> sea-horse [SHIP > SHIELD > WARRIOR]’: According to Skm (SnE 1998, I, 67, 167-8, 194), ‘Ullr’s ship’ is a kenning for ‘shield’, but this kenning remains obscure (see Note to Hfr Hákdr 1/1). Sundviggs ‘of the sea-horse’ functions as the base-word of the shield-kenning, although it is placed here in the prose word order and translation in the position that a determinant normally occupies.

Close

flota ‘your fleet’

floti (noun m.): fleet

Close

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

The stanza is quoted in Knýtl in the context of Knútr’s attack on England.

[5-8]: Some emendation is needed in the second helmingr, as the ms. forms do not supply a nom. noun or adj. to be the subject or addressee of the helmingr. The preferred option, adopted by Skj B, Knýtl 1919-25, Skald, and Frank (1994b), and followed here, is to emend snyrti-Gerðar in l. 7 to snyrti-herðir, so producing snyrti-herðir sundviggs Ullar ‘splendid strengthener of the sea-horse [SHIP] of Ullr <god> [SHIELD > WARRIOR]’. The second option, proposed in Fms 12, 247 and adopted by ÍF 35 and Jesch 2000, is to emend Ullar to Ullr in l. 5, so producing Ullr sundviggs ‘the Ullr <god> of the sound-horse [SHIP > SEAFARER]’. While this is paralleled by a comparable phrase, Ullr unnviggs ‘Ullr  <god> of the wave-horse [SHIP > SEAFARER]’, in ÞKolb Gunndr ll. 7, 8V (Gunnl 21), the emendation is problematic as it results in an unmetrical, hypometrical line, or, with the addition of a cliticised ‑u (léztu), it results in an illicit Type E/D4-line with a proclitic prep. in metrical position 4 (see Gade 1995a, 82-5).

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