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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Busla Busl 2VIII (Bós 2)

Wilhelm Heizmann (ed.) 2017, ‘Bósa saga 2 (Busla, Buslubæn 2)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 29.


text and translation

Heyr þú bæn Buslu;         brátt mun hon sungin,
svá at heyraz skal         um heim allan
ok óþörf öllum,         þeim sem á heyra,
en þeim þó fjandligust,         sem ek vil fortala.

Heyr þú bæn Buslu; hon mun sungin brátt, svá at skal heyraz um allan heim ok öllum óþörf, þeim sem á heyra, en þó fjandligust þeim, sem ek vil fortala.
‘Hear Busla’s plea; it will soon be sung, so that it will be heard over the whole world, and harmful for all those who hear [it], but yet most ruinous for that one whom I wish to curse.

notes and context

The second opening stanza stresses the danger of the curses, whose harmful effect generally applies to all who hear them. However, in this case they mainly affect the king, against whom the curses are directed. — The word choices óþörf ‘harmful, ill’ (l. 5), fjandligust ‘very baleful, most ruinous’ (l. 7) and fortala ‘curse’ (l. 8) point emphatically toward the vilifying nature of the stanzas to come.



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: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], E. 14. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Bósasaga 2: AII, 330, BII, 350-1, Skald II, 189; Bós 1666, 18, FSN 3, 203, Bós 1893, 16, FSGJ 3, 291-2, Bós 1996, 12-13; Edd. Min. 123.


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