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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Þfagr Sveinn 1II

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Þorleikr fagri, Flokkr about Sveinn Úlfsson 1’ 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, p. 313.

Þorleikr fagriFlokkr about Sveinn Úlfsson

text and translation

Fúrsendir vann fjǫndum
fjǫrspell í gný hjǫrva
(brôð fekk hrafn fyr Heiða-)
haukstorða (-bœ norðan).
Rôkusk Vinðr, en vákar
vals ginu þar und halsa,
— dauðr lá herr á heiði
hundmargr — fáir undan.

{{{Haukstorða} fúr}sendir}} vann fjǫndum fjǫrspell í {gný hjǫrva}; hrafn fekk brôð fyr norðan Heiðabœ. Fáir Vinðr rôkusk undan, en {vákar vals} ginu þar und halsa; hundmargr herr lá dauðr á heiði.
‘The distributor of the fire of hawk-lands [(lit. ‘the fire-distributor of hawk-lands’) ARMS > GOLD > GENEROUS MAN] inflicted death on enemies in the din of swords [BATTLE]; the raven got meat north of Hedeby. Few Wends got away, and the buzzard-hawks of the slain [RAVENS/EAGLES] gaped beneath necks there; a tremendously large host lay dead on the heath.

notes and context

According to the Knýtl prose, the st. documents the fact that that Sveinn Úlfsson fought alongside Magnús Óláfsson against the Wends in the battle of Lyrskovshede (28 September 1043).

No other source mentions that Sveinn participated in the battle of Lyrskovshede. Knýtl (ÍF 34, 130) states: Þat er sǫgn sumra manna, at Sveinn Úlfsson hafi verit í þeiri orrostu með Magnúsi konungi ok sætt þeira heldisk þá enn ‘Some people say that Sveinn Úlfsson was in that battle with King Magnús and that their agreement was still in effect then’. Lyrskovshede is present-day Lürschau, some kilometres north of Schleswig (then part of Denmark).



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: Þórleikr fagri, En flokk om Sven Ulfssön 1: AI, 396, BI, 365, Skald I, 182; 1741, 38-9, ÍF 35, 130 (ch. 22).


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