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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Heiðv Lv 4VIII (Hrólf 5)

†Desmond Slay (ed.) 2017, ‘Hrólfs saga kraka 5 (Heiðr vǫlva, Lausavísur 4)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 544.

Heiðr vǫlvaLausavísur

text and translation

Ötul eru augu         Hams ok Hrana;
eru öðlingar         undra djarfir.

Augu Hams ok Hrana eru ötul; öðlingar eru undra djarfir.
‘The eyes of Hamr and Hrani are fierce; the princes are wondrously bold.

notes and context

The sibyl completes her disclosure of the boys by revealing their pseudonyms.

[1-2]: As in Hrólf 9/3-4, l. 2 has double alliteration, and there is no alliteration between ll. 1 and 2. Finnur Jónsson (Skj B), has Hvǫss? ‘Keen’ in square brackets as a suggestion for Ötul, following an emendation proposed in a note in Edd. Min. 62. Kock (Skald; NN §3179), emends the unique name Hams to Áms for the sake of the alliteration, but says nothing about the discrepancy this creates between the verse and the prose, and he reads Hrána (with a long vowel) for the sake of the metre.


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. 1. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Hrólfs saga kraka 5: AII, 231, BII, 250, Skald II, 130, NN §3179; Hrólf 1960, 11; Edd. Min. 62.


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