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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv Berv 15II

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Sigvatr Þórðarson, Bersǫglisvísur 15’ 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, p. 27.

Sigvatr ÞórðarsonBersǫglisvísur
141516

Syni ‘son’

sonr (noun m.; °-ar, dat. syni; synir, acc. sonu, syni): son

[1] Syni: so all others, ‘Seyni’ F

kennings

syni Ôláfs;
‘of Óláfr’s son; ’
   = Magnús

Óláfr’s son; → Magnús
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Ôláfs ‘of Óláfr’s’

Óláfr (noun m.): Óláfr

kennings

syni Ôláfs;
‘of Óláfr’s son; ’
   = Magnús

Óláfr’s son; → Magnús
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snúðar ‘for a quick change’

snúðr (noun m.; °-ar; -ar): fortune, favour

[1] snúðar: segja 325XI 3, Flat

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kveða ‘they say’

kveða (verb): say, recite

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óframs ‘the cautious man’s’

óframr (adj.): cautious man, Óframr

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meðal ‘between’

meðal (prep.): between

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okkar ‘us two’

2. vit (pron.): we two

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allts ‘all is’

allr (adj.): all

[4] allts (‘allt er’): allt 325XI 3, Flat

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mála ‘in the affairs’

1. mál (noun n.; °-s; -): speech, matter

[4] mála: máli 325XI 3, Flat

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vægnir ‘well disposed’

væginn (adj.): lenient, balanced

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vildak ‘I would wish’

vilja (verb): want, intend

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þér ‘you’

þú (pron.; °gen. þín, dat. þér, acc. þik): you

[6] þér: om. 325XI 3, Flat

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Haralds ‘Haraldr’s’

Haraldr (noun m.): Haraldr

[7] Haralds: ‘Har’ 310

kennings

haukey Haralds
‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle ’
   = Norway

Haraldr’s hawk-isle → Norway

notes

[7, 8] haukey Haralds ‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle [= Norway]’: The meaning of this phrase is not immediately transparent, although there can be no doubt that it denotes the country of Norway. Munch (1853, 101), following the prose in ÓTOdd, suggested that it referred to the annual taxes due to the Dan. king Haraldr blátǫnn ‘Blue-tooth’ from the Norw. Hákon jarl Sigurðarson (20 hawks; see Theodoricus, MHN 11; McDougall and McDougall 1998, 62 n. 45). Finnur Jónsson (LP: haukey) connects the first part of the cpd haukey with an adj. haukr ‘splendid’ (LP: 2. haukr adj.), and gives the translation ‘splendid island’ (i.e. ‘Norway’), tacitly equating Haraldr with the Norw. king Haraldr hárfagri rather than with Haraldr blátǫnn. Kock (NN §655) accepts that identification, but he rejects the translation ‘splendid island’ and suggests that ‘hawk-isle’ referred to the lofty mountainous regions of Norway (‘where hawks perch’; see also Steinn Óldr 6/1). That interpretation seems preferable, because the reference to Haraldr blátǫnn makes no sense in the present context, and the existence of an adj. haukr ‘splendid’ is tenuous at best. It is interesting, however, that Sigvatr refers to Norway as an ‘island’.

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varðar ‘protect’

2. varða (verb): defend

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hjǫrvi ‘with the sword’

hjǫrr (noun m.): sword

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hauk ‘hawk’

1. haukr (noun m.; °-s, dat. -i/-; -ar): hawk < haukey (noun f.)

[8] haukey lifa ok: ‘heyk ey lifa ok’ 325XI 3, ‘heyk eilífa ath’ Flat

kennings

haukey Haralds
‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle ’
   = Norway

Haraldr’s hawk-isle → Norway

notes

[7, 8] haukey Haralds ‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle [= Norway]’: The meaning of this phrase is not immediately transparent, although there can be no doubt that it denotes the country of Norway. Munch (1853, 101), following the prose in ÓTOdd, suggested that it referred to the annual taxes due to the Dan. king Haraldr blátǫnn ‘Blue-tooth’ from the Norw. Hákon jarl Sigurðarson (20 hawks; see Theodoricus, MHN 11; McDougall and McDougall 1998, 62 n. 45). Finnur Jónsson (LP: haukey) connects the first part of the cpd haukey with an adj. haukr ‘splendid’ (LP: 2. haukr adj.), and gives the translation ‘splendid island’ (i.e. ‘Norway’), tacitly equating Haraldr with the Norw. king Haraldr hárfagri rather than with Haraldr blátǫnn. Kock (NN §655) accepts that identification, but he rejects the translation ‘splendid island’ and suggests that ‘hawk-isle’ referred to the lofty mountainous regions of Norway (‘where hawks perch’; see also Steinn Óldr 6/1). That interpretation seems preferable, because the reference to Haraldr blátǫnn makes no sense in the present context, and the existence of an adj. haukr ‘splendid’ is tenuous at best. It is interesting, however, that Sigvatr refers to Norway as an ‘island’.

Close

ey ‘isle’

1. ey (noun f.; °-jar, dat. -ju/-; -jar): island < haukey (noun f.)

[8] haukey lifa ok: ‘heyk ey lifa ok’ 325XI 3, ‘heyk eilífa ath’ Flat

kennings

haukey Haralds
‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle ’
   = Norway

Haraldr’s hawk-isle → Norway

notes

[7, 8] haukey Haralds ‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle [= Norway]’: The meaning of this phrase is not immediately transparent, although there can be no doubt that it denotes the country of Norway. Munch (1853, 101), following the prose in ÓTOdd, suggested that it referred to the annual taxes due to the Dan. king Haraldr blátǫnn ‘Blue-tooth’ from the Norw. Hákon jarl Sigurðarson (20 hawks; see Theodoricus, MHN 11; McDougall and McDougall 1998, 62 n. 45). Finnur Jónsson (LP: haukey) connects the first part of the cpd haukey with an adj. haukr ‘splendid’ (LP: 2. haukr adj.), and gives the translation ‘splendid island’ (i.e. ‘Norway’), tacitly equating Haraldr with the Norw. king Haraldr hárfagri rather than with Haraldr blátǫnn. Kock (NN §655) accepts that identification, but he rejects the translation ‘splendid island’ and suggests that ‘hawk-isle’ referred to the lofty mountainous regions of Norway (‘where hawks perch’; see also Steinn Óldr 6/1). That interpretation seems preferable, because the reference to Haraldr blátǫnn makes no sense in the present context, and the existence of an adj. haukr ‘splendid’ is tenuous at best. It is interesting, however, that Sigvatr refers to Norway as an ‘island’.

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lifa ‘to live’

lifa (verb): live

[8] haukey lifa ok: ‘heyk ey lifa ok’ 325XI 3, ‘heyk eilífa ath’ Flat

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ok ‘and’

3. ok (conj.): and, but; also

[8] haukey lifa ok: ‘heyk ey lifa ok’ 325XI 3, ‘heyk eilífa ath’ Flat

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

In ÓTOdd, the last two ll. are mistakenly attributed to Jarl Sigvaldi Strút-Haraldsson. The kenning ‘Haraldr’s hawk-isle’ is taken as a term for Norway as the tributary of the Dan. king Haraldr blátǫnn ‘Blue-tooth’ Gormsson.

F only cites this st. of Berv, and it is said to conclude the poem: er þessi síðazt ‘this one is the last’. — [1]: The l. lacks internal rhyme.

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