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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv Lv 20I

R. D. Fulk (ed.) 2012, ‘Sigvatr Þórðarson, Lausavísur 20’ 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. 725.

Sigvatr ÞórðarsonLausavísur

text and translation

Fúss læzk maðr, ef missir
meyjar faðms, at deyja;
-keypt es ôst, ef eptir,
of-, látinn skal gráta.
En fullhugi fellir
flóttstyggr, sás varð dróttin,
várt torrek lízk verra,
vígtôr, konungs ôrum.

Maðr læzk fúss at deyja, ef missir faðms meyjar; ôst es ofkeypt, ef skal gráta eptir látinn. En flóttstyggr fullhugi, sás varð dróttin, fellir vígtôr; torrek várt lízk verra ôrum konungs.
‘A man claims he is ready to die if he misses the embrace of a maiden; love is too dearly bought if one must weep for the departed. But the flight-shunning man full of courage who has lost his lord sheds slaying-tears; our grievous loss seems worse to the servants of the king.

notes and context

In ÓH and Hkr, one day Sigvatr, while walking through a village, hears a man wailing about having lost his wife. The man beats his breast, tears his clothing, and weeps a great deal, saying he wishes to die. Then Sigvatr speaks this stanza. In Flat it is said that Sigvatr wept when he lost his king, and those who saw this said he was unmanly to react so to such news, and he must have little courage. He responds with this stanza.



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, 13. Lausavísur 22: AI, 272, BI, 251, Skald I, 130, NN §§679, 1120; Fms 5, 122-3, Fms 12, 107, ÓH 1853, 236, ÓH 1941, I, 618 (ch. 253), Flat 1860-8, II, 372; Hkr 1777-1826, III, 10-11, VI, 125, Hkr 1868, 521 (MGóð ch. 9), Hkr 1893-1901, III, 16-17, IV, 182-3, ÍF 28, 15, Hkr 1991, I, 565 (MGóð ch. 7), F 1871, 172, E 1916, 12; Konráð Gíslason 1892, 41, 187-8, Jón Skaptason 1983, 204, 325.


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