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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Innsteinn Innkv 13VIII (Hálf 33)

Hubert Seelow (ed.) 2017, ‘Hálfs saga ok Hálfsrekka 33 (Innsteinn Gunnlaðarson, Innsteinskviða 13)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 330.

Innsteinn GunnlaðarsonInnsteinskviða

text and translation

Snúiz snarliga         snyrtidrengir
út ór eldi         með auðbrota.
Enginn er ýta,         sá er æ lifir;
mun ekki baugbroti         við bana kvíða.

Snyrtidrengir snúiz snarliga út ór eldi með {auðbrota}. Er enginn ýta, sá er lifir æ; {baugbroti} mun ekki kvíða við bana.
‘May the gallant warriors turn quickly out of the fire with the treasure-breaker [GENEROUS RULER = Hálfr]. There is no man who lives forever; the ring-breaker [GENEROUS RULER = Hálfr] will not be apprehensive of death.

notes and context

The kennings auðbroti ‘the treasure-breaker’ (l. 4) and baugbroti ‘the ring-breaker’ (l. 7) are of a common type denoting a generous ruler; see Meissner 326-7. Both the compounds auðbroti and snyrtidrengir ‘the gallant warriors’ (l. 2) occur in the late C12th or early C13th Bjbp Jóms 10/5I and 39/2I  respectively, describing the gallant behaviour of the Jómsvíkingar. The cpd snyrtidrengr also occurs at GunnLeif Merl II 36/4 and Ǫrv 99/7.


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. 6. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Hálfssaga VII 5: AII, 262, BII, 282-3, Skald II, 148; Hálf 1864, 24, Hálf 1909, 109, FSGJ 2, 116, Hálf 1981, 124, 184; Edd. Min. 37.


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