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skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Rv Lv 9II

Judith Jesch (ed.) 2009, ‘Rǫgnvaldr jarl Kali Kolsson, Lausavísur 9’ 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. 586-7.

Rǫgnvaldr jarl Kali KolssonLausavísur
8910

Skekk ‘I shake out’

2. skaka (verb): shake

[1] Skekk (‘Skekk ek’): ‘Sekki ek’ R702ˣ

notes

[1] skekk ‘I shake out’: This represents the 1st pers. sg. pres. indic. of skaka, with suffixed pron., i.e. skek ek.

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hér ‘here’

hér (adv.): here

[1] hér: om. R702ˣ

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skinn ‘leather’

skinn (noun n.; °-s; -): skin, fur, leather < skinnfeldr (noun m.)

notes

[1] skinnfeld ‘leather garment’: The various witnesses to the prose of Orkn differ as to what exactly is being offered to Rǫgnvaldr. Flat has skinnfeldarskikkju ‘cloak made of leather’, R702ˣ (which sometimes includes the prose of the saga, but not always exactly) has skinnfeld ... fyrir skikkju ‘piece of leather ... as a cloak’ (also Worm 1650, 117), and Holm papp 39 folˣ (an early modern translation of the saga into Dan.) has en skindfeld oc en kiortel ‘a piece of leather and a tunic’ (Orkn 1913-16, 218 n.). But see above, in which it is suggested that the st. does not describe the gift of a wrinkled garment.

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feld ‘garment’

feldr (noun m.; °-ar, dat. -i; -ir): cloak < skinnfeldr (noun m.)

notes

[1] skinnfeld ‘leather garment’: The various witnesses to the prose of Orkn differ as to what exactly is being offered to Rǫgnvaldr. Flat has skinnfeldarskikkju ‘cloak made of leather’, R702ˣ (which sometimes includes the prose of the saga, but not always exactly) has skinnfeld ... fyrir skikkju ‘piece of leather ... as a cloak’ (also Worm 1650, 117), and Holm papp 39 folˣ (an early modern translation of the saga into Dan.) has en skindfeld oc en kiortel ‘a piece of leather and a tunic’ (Orkn 1913-16, 218 n.). But see above, in which it is suggested that the st. does not describe the gift of a wrinkled garment.

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hrokkinn ‘a wrinkled’

1. hrøkkva (verb): coil

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afar ‘with very’

afar (adv.): exceedingly

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stendr ‘surrounds’

standa (verb): stand

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órum ‘our’

várr (pron.; °f. ór/vár; pl. órir/várir): our

[3] órum: so R702ˣ, ‘aurum’ Flat

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stafn ‘prow’

stafn (noun m.; °dat. -i/-; -ar): prow < stafnvǫllr (noun m.)

kennings

stafnvǫllr,
‘prow-field ’
   = SEA

prow-field → SEA
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vǫllr ‘field’

vǫllr (noun m.; °vallar, dat. velli; vellir acc. vǫllu/velli): plain, field < stafnvǫllr (noun m.)

kennings

stafnvǫllr,
‘prow-field ’
   = SEA

prow-field → SEA
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Nærgi ‘Some day’

nærgi (adv.): [Some day]

[5] Nærgis (‘no᷎rgi er’): so R702ˣ, ‘feingr er’ Flat

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s ‘’

2. vera (verb): be, is, was, were, are, am

[5] Nærgis (‘no᷎rgi er’): so R702ˣ, ‘feingr er’ Flat

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úrgum ‘a spray-swept’

1. úrigr (adj.): wet

[5] úrgum: so R702ˣ, ungum Flat

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ál ‘of the eel’

1. áll (noun m.; °dat. ál; álar): eel

[6] álvangs: so R702ˣ, ‘alfangs’ Flat

kennings

mari álvangs;
‘horse of the eel plain; ’
   = SHIP

the eel plain; → SEA
horse of the SEA → SHIP
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ál ‘of the eel’

1. áll (noun m.; °dat. ál; álar): eel

[6] álvangs: so R702ˣ, ‘alfangs’ Flat

kennings

mari álvangs;
‘horse of the eel plain; ’
   = SHIP

the eel plain; → SEA
horse of the SEA → SHIP
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vangs ‘plain’

1. vangr (noun m.): field, plain

[6] álvangs: so R702ˣ, ‘alfangs’ Flat

kennings

mari álvangs;
‘horse of the eel plain; ’
   = SHIP

the eel plain; → SEA
horse of the SEA → SHIP
Close

vangs ‘plain’

1. vangr (noun m.): field, plain

[6] álvangs: so R702ˣ, ‘alfangs’ Flat

kennings

mari álvangs;
‘horse of the eel plain; ’
   = SHIP

the eel plain; → SEA
horse of the SEA → SHIP
Close

mari ‘horse’

2. marr (noun m.): horse

kennings

mari álvangs;
‘horse of the eel plain; ’
   = SHIP

the eel plain; → SEA
horse of the SEA → SHIP
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brim ‘surf’

brim (noun n.): surf

[7] brim: heim R702ˣ

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hest ‘the stallion’

hestr (noun m.; °-s, dat. -i; -ar): horse, stallion

kennings

hest húns
‘the stallion of the mast-head ’
   = SHIP

the stallion of the mast-head → SHIP
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húns ‘of the mast-head’

1. húnn (noun m.; °; húnar): knob

kennings

hest húns
‘the stallion of the mast-head ’
   = SHIP

the stallion of the mast-head → SHIP
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skrautligar ‘finely’

skrautligr (adj.): fine, splendid

[8] skrautligar: so R702ˣ, skrautligir Flat

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

As for st. 8.

After uttering st. 8, Rǫgnvaldr is offered a leather garment by the mistress of the farm where he is staying; the saga says hann ... tók hlæjandi við ok kvað ‘he ... accepted it with a laugh and spoke’ before citing st. 9. Finnbogi Guðmundsson’s interpretation of this st. (ÍF 34; similarly Bibire 1988, though his translation is not especially clear) links l. 2 with the main statement in the second helmingr, making Rǫgnvaldr say something to the effect that the leather garment just given to him will provide little finery whenever he steps better-dressed off a ship. While it is conceivable that Rǫgnvaldr is disparaging the garment by saying that he will never wear it in future, it makes more sense to see contrast rather than continuity between the two halves of the st. In ll. 1-2, Rǫgnvaldr is disparaging of a garment. In ll. 5-6, 8 he expresses the hope that in the future he will step well-dressed from his ship, in contrast to his present gear, which has been truly sodden (ll. 3-4). The st. makes no reference to a woman giving him a leather garment, and it is more natural to read l. 1 as referring to Rǫgnvaldr’s own sodden clothing which he is shaking out once on dry land. This interpretation is based on the argument made by Kock (NN §2735) that nærgis (l. 5) means not just ‘when, whenever’ (the usual meaning recorded in dictionaries), but has an additional implication of det blir kanske bättre en annan gång ‘things may be better another time’; he cites Egill Lv 19V, Þorm Lv 1V, Klauf Lv 2V and KormǪ Lv 40V which all show the poet with a positive attitude to a future event. — [2]: The l. has skothending rather than aðalhending.

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