Cookies on our website

We use cookies on this website, mainly to provide a secure browsing experience but also to collect statistics on how the website is used. You can find out more about the cookies we set, the information we store and how we use it on the cookies page.



Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

Menu Search

Þhorn Gldr 5I

Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þorbjǫrn hornklofi, Glymdrápa 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. 84.

Þorbjǫrn hornklofiGlymdrápa

text and translation

Háði gramr, þars gnúðu,
geira hregg við seggi,
— rauð fnýsti ben blóði —
bryngǫgl í dyn Skǫglar,
þás á rausn fyr ræsi
(réð egglituðr) seggir
— æfr gall hjǫrr við hlífar —
hnigu fjǫrvanir (sigri).

Gramr háði {hregg geira} við seggi, þars {bryngǫgl} gnúðu í {dyn Skǫglar}; rauð ben fnýsti blóði, þás seggir hnigu fjǫrvanir fyr ræsi á rausn; æfr hjǫrr gall við hlífar; {egglituðr} réð sigri.
‘The king fought a storm of spears [BATTLE] against men where mail-shirt-goslings [ARROWS] roared in the din of Skǫgul <valkyrie> [BATTLE]; the red wound spurted blood as men sank down lifeless before the ruler on the forecastle; the furious sword resounded against shields; the blade-stainer [WARRIOR = Haraldr] gained victory.

notes and context

Fsk cites this stanza in connection with the battle of Hafrsfjǫrðr (Hafrsfjorden; see Context to st. 3). In Hkr, it follows a narrative about a further sea-battle near Sólskel (Solskjel), against a force led by the kinsmen Arnviðr and Sǫlvi and their ally King Auðbjǫrn. Arnviðr and Auðbjǫrn fall, and Sǫlvi flees. In SnE, the first helmingr is among citations illustrating terms for ‘battle’.

Several commentators note this stanza’s artfully convoluted sentence structure. It is composed of a main clause in the first helmingr and a subordinate clause in the second, each of which contains an intercalary clause located in the third line of the helmingr (ll. 3 and 7 respectively). Further, each helmingr contains an additional syntactic unit: another subordinate clause in ll. 1 and 4, and a separate main clause in ll. 6 and 8 (Engster 1983, 189-90; Kuhn 1969b, 68). Reichardt (1928, 226) sees in this the poet’s attempt to convey the turmoil of battle, and Holtsmark (1927, 34-5) perceives a representation of the battle in the rhythm of the short sentences. These trace the battle’s development from engagement to victory, with sigri ‘victory’ as the last word of the 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


Log in

This service is only available to members of the relevant projects, and to purchasers of the skaldic volumes published by Brepols.
This service uses cookies. By logging in you agree to the use of cookies on your browser.


Stanza/chapter/text segment

Use the buttons at the top of the page to navigate between stanzas in a poem.

Information tab

Interactive tab

The text and translation are given here, with buttons to toggle whether the text is shown in the verse order or prose word order. Clicking on indiviudal words gives dictionary links, variant readings, kennings and notes, where relevant.

Full text tab

This is the text of the edition in a similar format to how the edition appears in the printed volumes.

Chapter/text segment

This view is also used for chapters and other text segments. Not all the headings shown are relevant to such sections.