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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Hókr Eirfl 7I

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2012, ‘Halldórr ókristni, Eiríksflokkr 7’ 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. 482.

Halldórr ókristniEiríksflokkr
678

Drógusk vítt at vígi
Vinða skeiðr, ok ginðu
Þriðja hauðrs á þjóðir
þunn gǫlkn éarnmunnum.
Gnýr varð á sæ sverða;
sleit ǫrn Gera beitu;
dýrr vá drengja stjóri;
drótt kom mǫrg á flótta.

Skeiðr Vinða drógusk vítt at vígi, ok {þunn gǫlkn {hauðrs Þriðja}} ginðu éarnmunnum á þjóðir. {Gnýr sverða} varð á sæ; ǫrn sleit {beitu Gera}; {dýrr stjóri drengja} vá; mǫrg drótt kom á flótta.

The warships of Wends came from afar to the fight, and {slender monsters {of the land of Þriði <= Óðinn>}} [SHIELD > AXES] yawned with iron-mouths at people. There was {a din of swords} [BATTLE] at sea; an eagle tore {the food of Geri <wolf>} [CORPSES]; {the worthy leader of warriors} [RULER = Eiríkr] fought; many a company took to flight.

Mss: (216r), F(36vb), J1ˣ(134r), J2ˣ(116v-117r) (Hkr); 61(69rb), 53(65vb), 54(67ra), 325VIII 2 g(1ra), Bb(102va), Flat(65vb) (ÓT)

Readings: [1] Drógusk: drógu 61;    vítt: vitr 325VIII 2 g, Bb;    vígi: so J1ˣ, J2ˣ, 61, 53, 54, 325VIII 2 g, Bb, Flat, vági Kˣ, F    [3] hauðrs: auðs Flat;    þjóðir: þjóði F    [4] þunn: ‘þun‑’ J1ˣ, J2ˣ, Flat;    ‑gǫlkn: gálkn ok F, ‘galkv’ 325VIII 2 g, ‘galk’ Bb;    éarn‑: ‘aiarn‑’ Kˣ, ok jarn‑ F, í jarn‑ J1ˣ, J2ˣ, vafit 61, varit 53, 54, 325VIII 2 g, Bb, varin Flat;    ‑munnum: ‑mǫnnum Bb, Flat    [5] varð: var 54, 325VIII 2 g, Bb    [6] Gera: geira 54, 325VIII 2 g, Bb;    beitu: ‘beitꜹ’ Bb    [7] stjóri: ‘stiorri’ Bb

Editions: Skj AI, 204, Skj BI, 194, Skald I, 102; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 454, IV, 101, ÍF 26, 367 (ÓTHkr ch. 112), F 1871, 166; ÓT 1958-2000, II, 289 (ch. 256), Flat 1860-8, I, 494.

Context: During the battle, the ships with Sigvaldi jarl and his Wendish troops wait at a distance and do not engage in the fighting. When Óláfr Tryggvason jumps overboard from Ormr inn langi, there is a shout of victory from the enemy army, and at that Sigvaldi and his men row towards the battle.

Notes: [All]: Ms. 61 attributes this stanza to Hallfreðr, and 54, 325VIII 2 g and Bb give Hallar-Steinn as the poet. — [1] vítt ‘from afar’: This adv. usually means ‘far and wide, widely’ (see LP: víðr), but the prose implies that Sigvaldi and his troops waited together for the battle to end. Vítt in the sense ‘from afar’ could have been used ironically here. — [1] at vígi ‘to the fight’: The , F variant at vági ‘to the bay’ is also possible, but it is the minority reading and could have been prompted by the fact that, according to some traditions, Svǫlðr was a bay and not an island (see Note to st. 3/7 above). — [2] ginðu ‘yawned’: This is the 3rd pers. pret. pl. indic. of a weak verb *gina ‘yawn’ (cf. OHG ginēn ‘yawn’; see ANG §482 Anm. 2). Cf. Arn Þorfdr 13/7II. — [3, 4] gǫlkn hauðrs Þriðja ‘monsters of the land of Þriði <= Óðinn> [SHIELD > AXES]’: Þriði is a name for Óðinn (see Note to Þul Óðins 5/3III). The kenning for ‘axe’ (‘monster of the shield’) is modelled on the pattern ‘troll-woman of the shield’, but it is untraditional (see Meissner 148). — [4] éarnmunnum ‘with iron-mouths’: This refers to axe-blades. The metre requires the older, disyllabic form of the word jarn ‘iron’ (see ANG §133b2; cf. also FGT 1972b, 20-1, Ótt Hfl 8/8 and Note). The cpd occurs in Hfr ErfÓl 6/6 as well. The scribes of the Hkr mss used the later form (jarn-) and added an extra syllable (á ‘on’ , ok ‘and’ F, í ‘in’ J1ˣ, J2ˣ) for metrical reasons, but the resulting phrases cannot be accommodated syntactically. That is also the case with the ÓT variants vafit/varit munnum ‘wrapped with mouths’ (61, 53, 54, 325VIII 2 g). — [5-8]: This helmingr is composed in the dróttkvætt variant áttmælt ‘eight-times spoken’ (SnSt Ht 10III), in which each line forms an independent clause. — [5] gnýr sverða ‘a din of swords [BATTLE]’: Given the emphasis on the sound of weapons in the poem, this phrase could also be taken literally here. — [6]: The identical line is found in ESk Frag 8/2III. Geri was one of Óðinn’s wolves (see Note to ÞKolb Eirdr 17/2, 3). The variant geira ‘of spears’ (54, 325VIII 2 g, Bb) is unmetrical since the metre requires a short first syllable. — [7]: This line recalls Hfr ErfÓl 23/3 dýrr hné dróttar stjóri. — [8]: Cf. Hfr ErfÓl 1/2 mǫrg kom drótt á flótta.

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. Meissner = Meissner, Rudolf. 1921. Die Kenningar der Skalden: Ein Beitrag zur skaldischen Poetik. Rheinische Beiträge und Hülfsbücher zur germanischen Philologie und Volkskunde 1. Bonn and Leipzig: Schroeder. Rpt. 1984. Hildesheim etc.: Olms.
  4. LP = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1931. Lexicon poeticum antiquæ linguæ septentrionalis: Ordbog over det norsk-islandske skjaldesprog oprindelig forfattet af Sveinbjörn Egilsson. 2nd edn. Copenhagen: Møller.
  5. ANG = Noreen, Adolf. 1923. Altnordische Grammatik I: Altisländische und altnorwegische Grammatik (Laut- und Flexionslehre) unter Berücksichtigung des Urnordischen. 4th edn. Halle: Niemeyer. 1st edn. 1884. 5th unrev. edn. 1970. Tübingen: Niemeyer.
  6. Flat 1860-8 = Gudbrand Vigfusson [Guðbrandur Vigfússon] and C. R. Unger, eds. 1860-8. Flateyjarbók. En samling af norske konge-sagaer med indskudte mindre fortællinger om begivenheder i og udenfor Norge samt annaler. 3 vols. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  7. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  8. Hkr 1893-1901 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1893-1901. Heimskringla: Nóregs konunga sǫgur af Snorri Sturluson. 4 vols. SUGNL 23. Copenhagen: Møller.
  9. F 1871 = Unger, C. R., ed. 1871. Fríssbók: Codex Frisianus. En samling af norske konge-sagaer. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  10. ÓT 1958-2000 = Ólafur Halldórsson, ed. 1958-2000. Saga Óláfs Tryggvasonar en mesta. 3 vols. EA A 1-3. Copenhagen: Munksgaard (Reitzel).
  11. FGT 1972b = Haugen, Einar, ed. 1972. The First Grammatical Treatise: The Earliest Germanic Phonology. 2nd edn. London: Longman.
  12. Internal references
  13. Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘Heimskringla (Hkr)’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols [check printed volume for citation].
  14. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘The Greatest Saga of Óláfr Tryggvason / Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar in mesta (ÓT)’ 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, pp. clxiii-clxvi.
  15. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘(Biography of) Óláfr Tryggvason’ 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. 383.
  16. Elena Gurevich (ed.) 2017, ‘Anonymous Þulur, Óðins nǫfn 5’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 743.
  17. Diana Whaley (ed.) 2009, ‘Arnórr jarlaskáld Þórðarson, Þorfinnsdrápa 13’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 243-4.
  18. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Einarr Skúlason, Fragments 8’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 159.
  19. Kate Heslop (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, Erfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar 23’ 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. 433.
  20. Kate Heslop (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, Erfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar 1’ 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. 403.
  21. Kate Heslop (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, Erfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar 6’ 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. 409.
  22. Matthew Townend (ed.) 2012, ‘Óttarr svarti, Hǫfuðlausn 8’ 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. 750.
  23. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Snorri Sturluson, Háttatal 10’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1115.
  24. Jayne Carroll (ed.) 2012, ‘Þórðr Kolbeinsson, Eiríksdrápa 17’ 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. 513.
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