Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Mv III 17VII

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Máríuvísur III 17’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 728-9.

Anonymous PoemsMáríuvísur III

Koma fyrir Krist dóm
kvalarar, sem gieta skal;
akta þeir uppkveikt
ógurliga nýtt róg.
Árar kváðu almbör
jafnan styggja guðs nafn;
sárar geingu sakir nær;
sögðu þeir hans brögð.

Kvalarar koma fyrir dóm Krist, sem skal gieta; þeir akta uppkveikt, nýtt róg ógurliga. Árar kváðu {almbör} jafnan styggja nafn guðs; sárar sakir geingu nær; þeir sögðu brögð hans.

The tormentors come before the judgement of Christ, as will be told; they present an inflamed, new accusation frighteningly. The messengers said that {the elm-bow tree} [WARRIOR] always offended against the name of God; the bitter charges cut deeply [lit. went near]; they told of his actions.

Mss: 721(16r)

Editions: Skj AII, 498, Skj BII, 542, Skald II, 297; Kahle 1898, 46, 101, Sperber 1911, 19, 66, Wrightson 2001, 75.

Notes: [All]: The corresponding passage in Mar (1871, 606) reads as follows: Nu sem þau framm koma fyrir hinn eilifa domara, taka þegar dioflarnir ath asaka klerkinn ok bera framm marghattadar hans illgiordir ‘Now as they arrive before the eternal judge, the devils at once begin to accuse the cleric and present a great variety of his evil deeds’. — [1] Krist (m. gen. sg.) ‘of Christ’: For this gen. form, see NN §§302, 358, Anm. 3. Most earlier eds emend to Krists. — [5] árar ‘messengers’: In religious literature, this pl. form (sg. árr) can refer to angels as well as to devils, but it usually occurs in combination with a determinant (árar fjandins ‘messengers of the devil’). See Fritzner: árr 1-2. — [8] brögð ‘actions’: This could also be taken in the meaning ‘tricks’.


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  4. Sperber, Hans, ed. 1911. Sechs isländische Gedichte legendarischen Inhalts. Uppsala Universitets årsskrift, filosofi, språkvetenskap och historiska vetenskaper 2. Uppsala: Akademische Buchdruckerei Edv. Berling.
  5. 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.
  6. Fritzner = Fritzner, Johan. 1883-96. Ordbog over det gamle norske sprog. 3 vols. Kristiania (Oslo): Den norske forlagsforening. 4th edn. Rpt. 1973. Oslo etc.: Universitetsforlaget.
  7. Kahle, Bernhard, ed. 1898. Isländische geistliche Dichtungen des ausgehenden Mittelalters. Heidelberg: Winter.

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