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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Ólhv Lv 1II

Lauren Goetting (ed.) 2009, ‘Óláfr hvítaskáld Þórðarson, Lausavísur 1’ 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. 670-1.

Óláfr hvítaskáld ÞórðarsonLausavísur


The st. (Ólhv Lv 1) appears in Hák and is transmitted in F.

text and translation

Nús, þats flaust ór festum
flýtr hertoga ins nýta;
né fákr á ver víka
veðrsollit kom betri.

Nús, þats flaust ins nýta hertoga flýtr ór festum; né kom betri {fákr víka} á veðrsollit ver.
‘Now the ship of the capable duke dashes from its moorings; a better horse of bays [SHIP] has not ventured on the storm-swollen sea.

notes and context

In 1239 King Hákon Hákonarson sent word to Skúli Bárðarson to meet him in Bergen without his liegemen. Against the king’s orders, Skúli set out from Trøndelag to Bergen in the summer with twenty ships and a large force of armed men.

[4]: The l. lacks internal rhyme. The emendation vetrsollit ‘winter-swollen’ from veðrsollit ‘storm-swollen’ (so F) would restore the internal rhyme (vetrsollit : betri) but makes no sense in the present context (the ship set sail in the summertime, and, moreover, it is difficult to reconcile the ship’s swift movement with the icy condition of the sea that ‘winter-swollen’ might imply). Veðrsollit ‘storm-swollen’ is preferable with regard to context, and the poet uses a similar image of winds causing the sea to swell in Ólhv Hryn 9/5.



Text is based on reconstruction from the base text and variant apparatus and may contain alternative spellings and other normalisations not visible in the manuscript text. Transcriptions may not have been checked and should not be cited.

editions and texts

Skj: Óláfr Þórðarson hvítaskáld, 5. Lausavísur 1: AII, 98, BII, 109, Skald II, 58; F 1871, 492.


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