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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv Knútdr 10I

Matthew Townend (ed.) 2012, ‘Sigvatr Þórðarson, Knútsdrápa 10’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 661.

Sigvatr ÞórðarsonKnútsdrápa

text and translation

Kom á fylki
farlyst, þeims bar
hervíg í hug,
hafanda staf.
Rauf ræsir af
Rúms veg suman
kærr keisara
klúss Pétrúsi.

Farlyst kom á fylki hafanda staf, þeims bar hervíg í hug. Ræsir, kærr keisara, klúss Pétrúsi, rauf af suman veg Rúms.
‘Desire for a journey came upon the ruler bearing a staff, who bore warfare in his heart. The leader, dear to the emperor, close to Peter, enjoyed some of the glory of Rome.

notes and context

This stanza is preserved only in Fsk, where, in illustration of an account of Knútr’s pilgrimage to Rome, it is quoted together with st. 11.

This stanza and the next commemorate Knútr’s pilgrimage to Rome. This took place in early 1027, and while in Rome Knútr attended the coronation of Conrad II as Holy Roman Emperor on 26 March 1027. The date of this pilgrimage is thus secure, though it is possible that Knútr made a second one later in his reign (see Lawson 1993, 102-4). Knútr’s visit to Rome is also recorded in his 1027 Letter to his subjects, originally written in Old English but now preserved only in Latin translation in John of Worcester and William of Malmesbury (Darlington and McGurk 1995-, II, 512-19; Mynors, Thomson and Winterbottom 1998-9, I, 324-9).



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: Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa 10: AI, 251, BI, 234, Skald I, 121, NN §§651, 652, 2516C; Fsk 1902-3, 189 (ch. 33), ÍF 29, 205 (ch. 40).


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