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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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RvHbreiðm Hl 28III

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Rǫgnvaldr jarl and Hallr Þórarinsson, Háttalykill 28’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1036.

Rǫgnvaldr jarl and Hallr ÞórarinssonHáttalykill

text and translation

Frægr stillir
fekk þengill sér gengi drengi;
… †nner† gunni kunni
grið lestusk þá …
Auðveitir drap ýta nýta;
almr sparn … malma hjalma;
at stǫddusk þá oddar broddar;
ítrar sprungu rítar hvítar.

Frægr stillir … þengill fekk sér gengi, drengi; … †nner† kunni gunni; þá lestusk grið … Auðveitir drap nýta ýta; almr sparn malma … hjalma; þá stǫddusk oddar, broddar at; ítrar hvítar rítar sprungu.
‘The famous ruler … the lord got himself support, men; … … knew battle; then truces were broken … The wealth-giver killed capable people; the elm-bow kicked arrows … of helmets; then spear-points, arrow-heads were placed against each other; precious white shields burst.

notes and context

As st. 27 above.

[1, 2]: Jón Helgason (Hl 1941) offers the following reading of l. 1: frægr stillir lét falla snjalla ‘the famous ruler let brave fall’ (with drengi (m. acc. pl.) ‘men’ from l. 2 as the object of falla ‘fall’). — [3-4]: The lines cannot be reconstructed. (a) Following Jón Sigurðsson, Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) supplies the reading [grendi hi]nn er gunni kunni | grið létusk þá [viðnis niðja], i.e. hinn, er kunni gunni, grendi niðja viðnis; grið létusk þá ‘that one, who knew battle, fed the wolf’s relatives, truces were broken then’. (b) As Kock (NN §2072) points out, viðnis niðja ‘the wolf’s relatives’ violates the rule that the last two words in a couplet should have identical endings, and he tentatively suggests Iðja niðja ‘Iði’s (giant’s) relatives’ without making further speculations about the interpretation of the lines. (c) Jón Helgason (Hl 1941) reconstructs the lines as follows: [galdra ke]nnir kunni gunni | grið lestusk þá [Iðja niðja], i.e. kennir galdra niðja Iðja kunni gunni; grið lestusk þá ‘the tester of the incantation of Iði’s <giant’s> relatives [GIANTS > GOLD > GENEROUS MAN] knew battle; truces were broken then’.



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: Rǫgnvaldr jarl og Hallr Þórarinsson, Háttalykill 14b: AI, 517, BI, 493-4, Skald I, 242, NN §2072; Hl 1941, 35, 63-4.


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