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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Steinn Nizv 5II

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Steinn Herdísarson, Nizarvísur 5’ 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, pp. 363-4.

Steinn HerdísarsonNizarvísur
456

Undrs ‘It is a marvel’

2. undr (noun n.; °-s; -): wonder, marvel

[1] Undrs ef (‘Vndr er ef’): Undr var er Flat

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ef ‘if’

3. ef (conj.): if

[1] Undrs ef (‘Vndr er ef’): Undr var er Flat

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eigi ‘did not’

3. eigi (adv.): not

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reyndu ‘experience’

reyna (verb): test, try, experience

[1] reyndu: fundu Mork, Flat, kenndu H, Hr

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ǫr ‘of the arrow’

ǫr (noun f.; °dat. -/-u; ǫrvar/ǫrar): arrow < ǫrmót (noun n.)

kennings

viðir ǫrmóts
‘the trees of the arrow-meeting ’
   = WARRIORS

the arrow-meeting → BATTLE
the trees of the BATTLE → WARRIORS
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ǫr ‘of the arrow’

ǫr (noun f.; °dat. -/-u; ǫrvar/ǫrar): arrow < ǫrmót (noun n.)

kennings

viðir ǫrmóts
‘the trees of the arrow-meeting ’
   = WARRIORS

the arrow-meeting → BATTLE
the trees of the BATTLE → WARRIORS
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móts ‘meeting’

1. mót (noun n.; °; -): meeting < ǫrmót (noun n.)

[2] ‑móts: ‑njóts Hr

kennings

viðir ǫrmóts
‘the trees of the arrow-meeting ’
   = WARRIORS

the arrow-meeting → BATTLE
the trees of the BATTLE → WARRIORS
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móts ‘meeting’

1. mót (noun n.; °; -): meeting < ǫrmót (noun n.)

[2] ‑móts: ‑njóts Hr

kennings

viðir ǫrmóts
‘the trees of the arrow-meeting ’
   = WARRIORS

the arrow-meeting → BATTLE
the trees of the BATTLE → WARRIORS
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viðir ‘the trees’

1. viðr (noun m.; °-ar, dat. -i/-; -ir, acc. -u/-i): wood, tree

[2] viðir: vinir Hr

kennings

viðir ǫrmóts
‘the trees of the arrow-meeting ’
   = WARRIORS

the arrow-meeting → BATTLE
the trees of the BATTLE → WARRIORS
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gǫrva ‘fully’

gǫrva (adv.): fully

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bǫrðumk ‘fought’

2. berja (verb; °barði; barðr/bariðr/barinn): fight

[3] bǫrðumk: bǫrðusk Flat

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ok ‘and’

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

[3] ok vǫrðum: so FskAˣ, ok vǫrðumk FskBˣ, þeir er vǫrðu Mork, H, þá er vǫrðum Flat, þeir vǫrðu Hr

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vǫrðum ‘defended’

2. varða (verb): defend

[3] ok vǫrðum: so FskAˣ, ok vǫrðumk FskBˣ, þeir er vǫrðu Mork, H, þá er vǫrðum Flat, þeir vǫrðu Hr

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víða ‘the wide’

víðr (adj.): far

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síðir ‘finally’

1. síð (noun f.; °; -ir): um síðir: in the end

[4] síðir: ‘siði’ H

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hvárt ‘whether’

hvárt (adv.): whether

[5] hvárt: hvar Mork, Flat, þá er H, Hr

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hugfylldir ‘the courage-filled’

hugfylla (verb): [courage-filled]

[5] hugfylldir halda: herskildi seldu Mork, herskildi heldu Flat, H, Hr

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halda ‘to protect’

halda (verb): hold, keep

[5] hugfylldir halda: herskildi seldu Mork, herskildi heldu Flat, H, Hr

notes

[5] halda ‘protect’: For this meaning of halda (with the acc.), see Fritzner: halda 19. For a discussion of the st., see Fidjestøl 1982, 59-60.

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hrafn ‘the raven’

hrafn (noun m.; °hrafns; dat. hrafni; hrafnar): raven

[6] hrafn: hrafns Mork

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gnótt ‘plenty’

gnótt (noun f.): abundance

[6] gnótt: ‘nog’ Flat

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Nizar ‘of the Nissan’

Niz (noun f.): [Nissan]

[7] Nizar: Niðar Flat

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Norðmenn ‘Norwegians’

norðmaðr (noun m.): Norwegian

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þorðu ‘dared’

þora (verb): dare

[8] þorðu: forðum Mork, Flat, H, fóru Hr

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

The Norwegians stood densely around Haraldr and fought bravely.

Kock (NN §1145) argues that the Mork version is secondary, because hvar herskildi heldu lit. ‘where with the war-shield protected’ (l. 5) echoes st. 7/7 below (þeirs herskildi heldu ‘those who held the war-shield’). However, because that st. is only transmitted in Knýtl, it is difficult to see how it could have found its way into Mork (see Fidjestøl 1982, 59-60). — Mork, Flat, H and Hr offer a different version of the st., which can be rendered as follows (with Mork as the main ms.):

Undrs, ef eigi fundu
ǫrmóts viðir gǫrva,
— bǫrðumk vér — þeirs vǫrðu
víða grund, of síðir,
hvar herskildi heldu
— hrafn fekk gnótt í óttu
nás fyr Nizar ósi —
Norðmenn Haraldr forðum.

Prose order: Undrs, ef viðir ǫrmóts, þeirs vǫrðu víða grund, fundu eigi gǫrva of síðir—vér bǫrðumk—, hvar Norðmenn heldu Harald herskildi forðum; hrafn fekk gnótt nás í óttu fyr Nizar ósi. Translation: It is a marvel if the trees of the arrow-meeting [WARRIORS], who defended the wide land, finally did not learn fully—we fought—, where the Norwegians protected Haraldr with the war-shield in olden times; the raven got plenty of carrion at dawn before the mouth of the Nissan.

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