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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Mgr 20VII

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Drápa af Máríugrát 20’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 774.

Anonymous PoemsDrápa af Máríugrát

Ítarligr er öllum betri
eingla grundar blessaðr þeingill;
lýðr er allur leiftra stillis
lofi dýrligstu skyldr að ofra.
Öllum hlutum er æðri og sælli
eilífligastr skepnu deilir;
honum sie dýrð á himni og jörðu;
hann er hæri en gjörvalt annað.

{Ítarligr, blessaðr þeingill {grundar eingla}} er betri öllum; allur lýðr er skyldr að ofra dýrligstu lofi {stillis leiftra}. {Eilífligastr deilir skepnu} er æðri og sælli öllum hlutum; dýrð sie honum á himni og jörðu; hann er hæri en gjörvalt annað.

{The glorious, blessed lord {of the land of angels}} [SKY/HEAVEN > = God] is better than everyone; all people are obliged to lift up the most precious praise {of the prince of lightnings} [= God]. {The most eternal ordainer of creation} [= God] is more distinguished and blessed than all things; glory be to him in heaven and on earth; he is higher than everything else.

Mss: 713(125)

Readings: [5-8] ‘’ abbrev. as ‘Avllum hlutum er ædri ok.’ 713

Editions: Skj AII, 476, Skj BII, 511, Skald II, 279, NN §1669; Kahle 1898, 60, Sperber 1911, 34-5, Wrightson 2001, 10.

Notes: [2] grundar ‘of the land’: Skj B construes this word as a determinant in stillis leiftra ‘of the prince of lightnings’ where grundar leiftra ‘of the land of lightnings’ is taken as a kenning for ‘heaven’. This creates a convoluted w.o. (see NN §1669), but kennings of a similar type to those proposed in Skj B are by no means unprecedented; cf. Meissner, 380-4. — [5-8]: For this refrain, see 16/5-8.


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skj B = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912-15b. Den norsk-islandske skjaldedigtning. B: Rettet tekst. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Villadsen & Christensen. Rpt. 1973. Copenhagen: Rosenkilde & Bagger.
  3. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  4. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. Meissner = Meissner, Rudolf. 1921. Die Kenningar der Skalden: Ein Beitrag zur skaldischen Poetik. Rheinische Beiträge und Hülfsbücher zur germanischen Philologie und Volkskunde 1. Bonn and Leipzig: Schroeder. Rpt. 1984. Hildesheim etc.: Olms.
  6. Sperber, Hans, ed. 1911. Sechs isländische Gedichte legendarischen Inhalts. Uppsala Universitets årsskrift, filosofi, språkvetenskap och historiska vetenskaper 2. Uppsala: Akademische Buchdruckerei Edv. Berling.
  7. Wrightson, Kellinde, ed. 2001. Fourteenth-Century Icelandic Verse on the Virgin Mary: Drápa af Maríugrát, Vitnisvísur af Maríu, Maríuvísur I-III. Viking Society for Northern Research Text Series 14. University College London: Viking Society for Northern Research.
  8. Kahle, Bernhard, ed. 1898. Isländische geistliche Dichtungen des ausgehenden Mittelalters. Heidelberg: Winter.

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