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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Mv III 21VII

Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Máríuvísur III 21’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 731-2.

Anonymous PoemsMáríuvísur III

text and translation

‘Munni hans,’ kvað mekt sönn,
mart lúkiz upp bjart;
tungan endi sinn saung,
og sjái fyst, hvað það má.’
Skýja laus skör ló;
skilja má, að kantil
Áve Máría upphaf
á var þar skráð þá.

‘Munni hans,’ kvað sönn mekt, ‘lúkiz mart upp bjart; tungan endi saung sinn, og sjái fyst, hvað það má.’ {Laus skör skýja} ló; má skilja, að kantil, Áve Máría upphaf, var þá skráð þar á.
‘‘Through his mouth,’ said the True Power, ‘much may be revealed brightly; the tongue ended its song, and let us first see, what that can do.’ The deceitful crowd of clouds [DEVILS] lied; one can discern that a song, Hail Mary, the beginning, was then written on it.

notes and context

721 contains a number of illegible places. The corresponding passage in Mar (1871, 607) reads as follows: Þvi (at) profazt enn um sinn, at þier kunnit at liuga, þa er þier saugdut, at i ydari þionustu hefdi þessi madr endat sina lifdaga, þa se lokinn upp munnr hans, ok siait, huat hans tunga starfadi næst sinum daudaSem klerkins munnr er upplokinn, finzt skrifat ꜳ hans tungu, þat sama privilegium sællar heilsanar iungfru sancte Marie, sem hann hafdi sungit fyrir tima sinnar framferdar ‘Because it can be proven yet again that you know how to lie, when you said that this man had ended his life-days in your service, so let his mouth be opened up, and see, what his tongue was doing just before its death … As the cleric’s mouth is opened up, that same privilegium of the blessed greeting of the Virgin Mary as he had sung before the time of his death, is found written on his tongue’.



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 XIV], [B. 6]. Et digt om et tredje Maria-jærtegn 21: AII, 499, BII, 543, Skald II, 297-8, NN §1704; Kahle 1898, 47, 102, Sperber 1911, 20, 68, Wrightson 2001, 77.


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