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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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RvHbreiðm Hl 71III

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2017, ‘Rǫgnvaldr jarl and Hallr Þórarinsson, Háttalykill 71’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1080.

Rǫgnvaldr jarl and Hallr ÞórarinssonHáttalykill

text and translation

Óláfr rauð í éli
Yggjar slíðra bryggjur;
veitk, at vísi átti
víða brynju hríðir.
Hirð réð gramr í Gǫrðum
gleðja þursa kveðju
fœddr, en fylki studdu
fróðan sygnskar þjóðir.

Óláfr rauð {bryggjur slíðra} í {éli Yggjar}; veitk, at vísi átti {hríðir brynju} víða. Gramr, fœddr í Gǫrðum, réð gleðja hirð {kveðju þursa}, en sygnskar þjóðir studdu fróðan fylki.
‘Óláfr reddened bridges of scabbards [SWORDS] in the hailstorm of Yggr <= Óðinn> [BATTLE]; I know that the lord had storm-winds of the byrnie [BATTLES] far and wide. The ruler, raised in Russia, gladdened the retinue with the greeting of giants [GOLD], and the people of Sogn supported the sagacious leader.

notes and context

There is no heading, but the metre corresponds to SnSt Ht 30 (draugsháttr ‘ghost’s verse-form’ or ‘trunk’s verse-form’). This is a dróttkvætt-variant in which the even lines are trochaic (Type A) with hendingar in metrical positions 1 and 5.

Even lines of Type A are quite common in dróttkvætt poetry. It is not clear why lines with a regular, trochaic beat or rhythm would be labelled ‘ghost’s verse-form’ or ‘trunk’s verse-form’. — The king commemorated is Óláfr Tryggvason, king of Norway (r. 995-1000; see ÓT, ÓTOdd, ÍF 26, 225-372, ÍF 29, 141-62, Anon Nkt 19-22II and his Biography in SkP I).



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 36a: AI, 526, BI, 505, Skald I, 248; Hl 1941, 32, 90.


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