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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Mark Eirdr 2II

Jayne Carroll (ed.) 2009, ‘Markús Skeggjason, Eiríksdrápa 2’ 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. 434-5.

Markús SkeggjasonEiríksdrápa
123

Eireks lof verðr ǫld at heyra;
engi maðr veit fremra þengil
— yngvi helt við orðstír langan
jǫfra sess — í verǫld þessi.

Ǫld verðr at heyra lof Eireks; engi maðr veit fremra þengil í þessi verǫld; yngvi helt sess jǫfra við langan orðstír.

People must hear Eiríkr’s praise; no man knows a better ruler in this world; the king held the seat of princes with long-lasting glory.

Mss: R(40r), Tˣ(41v-42r), U(38v), A(15v), B(6v), 744ˣ(43v), C(9v) (SnE)

Readings: [2] maðr veit: veit ek A, B;    fremra: fremða Tˣ, ‘f[…]’ B, ‘framra’ 744ˣ    [3] orðstír: ‘erztyr’ Tˣ    [4] jǫfra: ‘ofra’ C;    sess: sessi U

Editions: Skj AI, 444, Skj BI, 414, Skald I, 204; SnE 1848-87, I, 528-9, II, 345, 463, 542, 609, SnE 1931, 185, SnE 1998, I, 105.

Context: See st. 1. Yngvi is another of the sons of Hálfdan and Alvig. The helmingr is preceded by the prose statement, Yngvi; þat er konungs heiti, sem Markús kvað ‘Yngvi; that is a king-heiti, as Markús said’.

Notes: [All]: Fidjestøl (1982, 152-3) suggests that this helmingr could have been part of a refrain (stef). — [3] yngvi ‘the king’: Yngvi was the name of the ancestor of the Swed./Norw. Ynglingr dynasty and of various legendary kings and heroes (see LP: Yngvi). Markús is fond of this heiti for ‘king’, and he also uses it in sts 5/1, 14/1 and 21/5. — [4] í þessi verǫld ‘in this world’: It is possible to construe this phrase with the second cl.: yngvi helt sess jǫfra við langan orðstír í þessi verǫld ‘the king held the seat of princes with long-lasting glory in this world’ (ll. 3-4; so Skj B and Skald). The reading offered above is preferable, however, because it places a limit upon Eiríkr’s power, obliquely contrasting it with God’s omnipotence, which Eiríkr cannot rival.

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. Skj B = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912-15b. Den norsk-islandske skjaldedigtning. B: Rettet tekst. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Villadsen & Christensen. Rpt. 1973. Copenhagen: Rosenkilde & Bagger.
  3. SnE 1848-87 = Snorri Sturluson. 1848-87. Edda Snorra Sturlusonar: Edda Snorronis Sturlaei. Ed. Jón Sigurðsson et al. 3 vols. Copenhagen: Legatum Arnamagnaeanum. Rpt. Osnabrück: Zeller, 1966.
  4. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. 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.
  6. Fidjestøl, Bjarne. 1982. Det norrøne fyrstediktet. Universitet i Bergen Nordisk institutts skriftserie 11. Øvre Ervik: Alvheim & Eide.
  7. SnE 1931 = Snorri Sturluson. 1931. Edda Snorra Sturlusonar. Ed. Finnur Jónsson. Copenhagen: Gyldendal.
  8. SnE 1998 = Snorri Sturluson. 1998. Edda: Skáldskaparmál. Ed. Anthony Faulkes. 2 vols. University College London: Viking Society for Northern Research.
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