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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Steinn Nizv 6II

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Steinn Herdísarson, Nizarvísur 6’ 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. 364-5.

Steinn HerdísarsonNizarvísur

text and translation

Oss dugir hrafns ins hvassa
hungrdeyfi svá leyfa,
linns at lastim annan
látrs sveigjanda eigi.
Aldri kvǫddusk oddum
— annat hverjum manni
táls of tyggja at mæla —
tveir fullhugar meiri.

Oss dugir leyfa {{hungrdeyfi} ins hvassa hrafns} svá, at lastim eigi {annan sveigjanda {látrs linns}}. Aldri kvǫddusk tveir meiri fullhugar oddum; táls hverjum manni at mæla annat of tyggja.
‘It is fitting for us [me] to praise the hunger-appeaser [FEEDER] of the fierce raven [WARRIOR = Haraldr] in such a way that we [I] do not belittle the other bender of the snake’s lair [GOLD > GENEROUS MAN = Sveinn]. Never did two more valiant ones greet each other with spear-points; it is treachery for any man to say something else about the lords.

notes and context

Sts 6-7 are incorporated into Knýtl after the death of Sveinn Úlfsson of Denmark to illustrate his personal qualities.

Skj dates Nizv to 1062, i.e. right after the battle of the Nissan. However, because of the favourable sentiments towards Sveinn Úlfsson that are expressed in this and the next st., it seems more likely that Steinn composed the poem in 1064 after the peace-treaty had been concluded between Haraldr and Sveinn (see also Halli XI Fl). — [8]: The last l. in 20dˣ is in the hand of ÁM.



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: Steinn Herdísarson, 1. Nizarvísur 6: AI, 408-9, BI, 378, Skald I, 188; 1741, 44-7, ÍF 35, 138 (ch. 25).


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