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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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ÞKolb Eirdr 5I

Jayne Carroll (ed.) 2012, ‘Þórðr Kolbeinsson, Eiríksdrápa 5’ 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. 496.

Þórðr KolbeinssonEiríksdrápa
456

varð ‘overcame’

1. verða (verb): become, be

notes

[1, 4] varð œðri ‘overcame’: Lit. ‘became superior’. For this usage, see Fritzner: œðri 2; LP: œðri 3.

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en ‘and’

2. en (conj.): but, and

notes

[1] en ‘and’: The sense of the helmingr suggests that this unstressed word is the conj. ‘but, and’ rather than the adv. enn ‘still, further’. The mss have enn (and so Skald), but spellings of en and enn are often interchangeable; en is also printed in Skj B and ÍF 29.

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allhvasst ‘most rapidly’

allhvass (adj.): [most rapidly]

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falla ‘to fall’

falla (verb): fall

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blóð ‘of blood’

blóð (noun n.; °-s): blood < blóðhelsingi (noun m.)blóð (noun n.; °-s): blood

kennings

Bræðir blóðhelsingja
‘The feeder of blood-geese ’
   = WARRIOR

blood-geese → RAVENS/EAGLES
The feeder of RAVENS/EAGLES → WARRIOR

notes

[3] blóðhelsingja ‘of blood-geese [RAVENS/EAGLES]’: Cf. Þórðr’s synonymous kenning blóðgǫgl ‘blood-geese’ (ÞKolb Lv 11/6V (BjH 38)). Helsingr ‘(long-)neck’ is a sword-heiti (see Þul Sverða 8/7III and Note) and a bird-heiti (Þul Fugla 1/4III), seemingly referring to the barnacle goose. If helsingja is gen. sg. it would imply a nom. sg. *helsingi, and this is assumed in Meissner 120 and LP: blóðhelsingi, but there appears to be no ON attestation of this form, and gen. pl. is probable here.

Close

blóð ‘of blood’

blóð (noun n.; °-s): blood < blóðhelsingi (noun m.)blóð (noun n.; °-s): blood

kennings

Bræðir blóðhelsingja
‘The feeder of blood-geese ’
   = WARRIOR

blood-geese → RAVENS/EAGLES
The feeder of RAVENS/EAGLES → WARRIOR

notes

[3] blóðhelsingja ‘of blood-geese [RAVENS/EAGLES]’: Cf. Þórðr’s synonymous kenning blóðgǫgl ‘blood-geese’ (ÞKolb Lv 11/6V (BjH 38)). Helsingr ‘(long-)neck’ is a sword-heiti (see Þul Sverða 8/7III and Note) and a bird-heiti (Þul Fugla 1/4III), seemingly referring to the barnacle goose. If helsingja is gen. sg. it would imply a nom. sg. *helsingi, and this is assumed in Meissner 120 and LP: blóðhelsingi, but there appears to be no ON attestation of this form, and gen. pl. is probable here.

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hesingja ‘’

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helsingja ‘geese’

helsingi (noun m.; °; -jar, dat. -um): [geese] < blóðhelsingi (noun m.)

[3] ‑helsingja: ‘hesingia’ FskAˣ

kennings

Bræðir blóðhelsingja
‘The feeder of blood-geese ’
   = WARRIOR

blood-geese → RAVENS/EAGLES
The feeder of RAVENS/EAGLES → WARRIOR

notes

[3] blóðhelsingja ‘of blood-geese [RAVENS/EAGLES]’: Cf. Þórðr’s synonymous kenning blóðgǫgl ‘blood-geese’ (ÞKolb Lv 11/6V (BjH 38)). Helsingr ‘(long-)neck’ is a sword-heiti (see Þul Sverða 8/7III and Note) and a bird-heiti (Þul Fugla 1/4III), seemingly referring to the barnacle goose. If helsingja is gen. sg. it would imply a nom. sg. *helsingi, and this is assumed in Meissner 120 and LP: blóðhelsingi, but there appears to be no ON attestation of this form, and gen. pl. is probable here.

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helsingja ‘geese’

helsingi (noun m.; °; -jar, dat. -um): [geese] < blóðhelsingi (noun m.)

[3] ‑helsingja: ‘hesingia’ FskAˣ

kennings

Bræðir blóðhelsingja
‘The feeder of blood-geese ’
   = WARRIOR

blood-geese → RAVENS/EAGLES
The feeder of RAVENS/EAGLES → WARRIOR

notes

[3] blóðhelsingja ‘of blood-geese [RAVENS/EAGLES]’: Cf. Þórðr’s synonymous kenning blóðgǫgl ‘blood-geese’ (ÞKolb Lv 11/6V (BjH 38)). Helsingr ‘(long-)neck’ is a sword-heiti (see Þul Sverða 8/7III and Note) and a bird-heiti (Þul Fugla 1/4III), seemingly referring to the barnacle goose. If helsingja is gen. sg. it would imply a nom. sg. *helsingi, and this is assumed in Meissner 120 and LP: blóðhelsingi, but there appears to be no ON attestation of this form, and gen. pl. is probable here.

Close

bræðir ‘The feeder’

bræðir (noun m.): feeder

[3] bræðir: bráðir FskBˣ, FskAˣ

kennings

Bræðir blóðhelsingja
‘The feeder of blood-geese ’
   = WARRIOR

blood-geese → RAVENS/EAGLES
The feeder of RAVENS/EAGLES → WARRIOR

notes

[3] bræðir ‘the feeder’: A sg. base-word meaning ‘feeder, gladdener’ is clearly required here (for parallels, see Meissner 291). Therefore although the pl. adj. bráðir ‘sudden, hasty’ in the mss could qualify Danir ‘Danes’, a minor emendation is necessary. The warrior-kenning of which bræðir is the base-word presumably refers to Eiríkr jarl, subject of the poem and referent of the second kenning in the helmingr. Hákon jarl is also possible, however, and this would not be incompatible with the Context.

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brœðr ‘before the brother’

bróðir (noun m.; °bróður/brǿðr/bróðurs, dat. bróður/brǿðr/breðr, acc. bróður/brǿðr; brǿðr/bróðr/breðr (brǿðrirnir Jvs291 75¹⁴), gen. brǿ---): brother

[4] brœðr: ‘broðr’ FskAˣ

kennings

brœðr Sigvarðar.
‘before the brother of Sigurðr. ’
   = Eiríkr

before the brother of Sigurðr. → Eiríkr

notes

[4] brœðr (dat. sg.) ‘before the brother’: The form brœðr usually denotes nom. or acc. pl., but is commonly found as dat. sg. in skaldic poetry (Finnur Jónsson 1901, 65; LP: bróðir). The nom. pl. brœðr (Sigvarðar) ‘brothers (of Sigurðr)’ could function grammatically in apposition with Danir ‘the Danes’, but not with good sense. On the use of the dat. with falla to mean ‘fall before’, see NN §§1113C, 2463E. 

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Sigvarðar ‘of Sigurðr’

Sigurðr (noun m.): Sigurðr

kennings

brœðr Sigvarðar.
‘before the brother of Sigurðr. ’
   = Eiríkr

before the brother of Sigurðr. → Eiríkr

notes

[4] Sigvarðar ‘of Sigurðr’: Sigurðr Hákonarson, one of Eiríkr’s three half-brothers, who is said to have accompanied him and his father into battle at Hjǫrungavágr (and see Context to Eyv Hál 9).

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œðri ‘’

œðri (adj. comp.): nobler, higher

notes

[1, 4] varð œðri ‘overcame’: Lit. ‘became superior’. For this usage, see Fritzner: œðri 2; LP: œðri 3.

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

After Hákon jarl’s success against the Jómsvíkingar, his harsh rule and immoral conduct provoke an uprising. Staying at a farmstead in Gaulardalr (Gauldalen), Hákon is killed by his servant Skopti karkr. Eiríkr, who has been at odds with his father, flees from Norway to the court of the Swedish king, Óláfr.

This helmingr’s sole source, Fsk, presents it as a stanza with st. 6/1-4. However, it is likely to refer to the battle of Hjǫrungavágr (Liavågen), which is the subject of sts 1-4, but not of sts 6-7; see Introduction.

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