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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Ív Sig 43II

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Ívarr Ingimundarson, Sigurðarbálkr 43’ 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, p. 526.

Ívarr IngimundarsonSigurðarbálkr

Þat telk illa,        es jǫfurr skyldi
kynstórr koma        í kvalar slíkar.
Tekr Sigurði        síðan engi
maðr rǫskvari        of meðalkafla.

Þat telk illa, es kynstórr jǫfurr skyldi koma í slíkar kvalar. Engi maðr rǫskvari Sigurði tekr síðan of meðalkafla.

I declare it a disaster that a highborn prince should undergo such torments. No man bolder than Sigurðr will ever grasp a sword-hilt.

Mss: 761bˣ(207v); Mork(35r) (Mork)

Readings: [3] kynstórr: so 761bˣ, kynstór Mork

Editions: Skj AI, 502, Skj BI, 475, Skald I, 233; Mork 1867, 221, Mork 1928-32, 436-7, Andersson and Gade 2000, 386, 494 (Sslemb).

Context: After Sigurðr had been captured, his enemies tortured him and tried to flay him alive by whipping him. They also broke his arms and legs with axe-heads. Meanwhile Sigurðr sang the psalter and prayed for his enemies.

Notes: [5] Sigurði ‘Sigurðr’: See Note to st. 6/1. — [8] meðalkafla ‘a sword-hilt’: Lit. ‘middle-piece’, between the hilt-plates (see Falk 1914, 10, 22).


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. Andersson, Theodore M. and Kari Ellen Gade, trans. 2000. Morkinskinna: The Earliest Icelandic Chronicle of the Norwegian Kings (1030-1157). Islandica 51. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press.
  4. Falk, Hjalmar, ed. 1914a. Sólarljóð. Videnskapsselskapets skrifter II. Hist.-filos. kl. 7. 2 vols. Kristiania (Oslo): Dybwad.
  5. Mork 1928-32 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1928-32. Morkinskinna. SUGNL 53. Copenhagen: Jørgensen.
  6. Mork 1867 = Unger, C. R., ed. 1867. Morkinskinna: Pergamentsbog fra første halvdel af det trettende aarhundrede. Indeholdende en af de ældste optegnelser af norske kongesagaer. Oslo: Bentzen.

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