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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Heiðv Lv 3VIII (Hrólf 4)

†Desmond Slay (ed.) 2017, ‘Hrólfs saga kraka 4 (Heiðr vǫlva, Lausavísur 3)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 543.

Heiðr vǫlvaLausavísur

Sé ek, hvar sitja         synir Hálfdanar
Hróarr ok Helgi         heilir báðir.
Þeir munu Fróða         fjörvi ræna.

Sé ek, hvar synir Hálfdanar sitja, Hróarr ok Helgi, báðir heilir. Þeir munu ræna Fróða fjörvi.

I see where the sons of Hálfdan sit, Hróarr and Helgi, both well. They will rob Fróði of life.

Mss: 285ˣ(4v), 9ˣ(4v), 11ˣ(5r), 109a IIˣ(216r), papp17ˣ(288v) (Hrólf)

Editions: Skj AII, 231, Skj BII, 250, Skald II, 130; Hrólf 1960, 11; Edd. Min. 61.

Context: Threatened with torture by the king if she does not tell the truth, the sibyl becomes more explicit.

Notes: [All]: The stanza may be incomplete as presented in Hrólf. In the prose text the sibyl continues straight after the stanza as part of her utterance: nema þeim sé flótt tilfarit (tilfarit 285ˣ, papp17ˣ, fyrirfarit , 11ˣ, 109aˣ) ‘unless they are quickly dealt with’, which might be a prose transformation of a line of verse. — [2-3]: Cf. the enumeration of Healfdene’s [= Hálfdan’s] three male children in the Old English Beowulf 61 Heorogār ond Hrōðgār | ond Hālga til ‘Heorogār and Hrōðgār and Hālga the good’ (Beowulf 2008, 5).


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. Beowulf 2008 = Fulk, Robert D., Robert E. Bjork and John D. Niles, eds. 2008. Klaeber’s Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburg. 4th rev. edn of Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburg, ed. Fr. Klaeber. Toronto, Buffalo and London: University of Toronto Press.
  4. Hrólf 1960 = Slay, Desmond, ed. 1960a. Hrólfs saga kráka. EA B 1. Copenhagen: Munksgaard.
  5. Internal references
  6. 2017, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Hrólfs saga kraka’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 539.
  7. Not published: do not cite ()

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