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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Pét 21VII

David McDougall (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Pétrsdrápa 21’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 813-14.

Anonymous PoemsPétrsdrápa

Rennr að græðis grunni
greiddur vaðr, sem beiddi,
út yfir borð af báti,
bragningr salar vagna.
Fann í fisksins munni
fie lærisveinn skærast;
geldr í skatt án skyldu
skjótt fyr sig og dróttin.

Greiddur vaðr rennr út yfir borð af báti að græðis, grunni sem {bragningr {salar vagna}} beiddi. Lærisveinn fann skærast fie í munni fisksins; án skyldu geldr skjótt í skatt fyr sig og dróttin.

The paid-out fishing-line runs out over the side of the boat to the ocean’s bottom as {the king {of the hall of the wagons}} [SKY/HEAVEN > = God (= Christ)] bade. The disciple found the very bright money in the mouth of the fish; without obligation he pays [it] at once in tax for himself and the Lord.

Mss: 621(58v)

Editions: Skj AII, 503, Skj BII, 550, Skald II, 301, NN §1712A; Kahle 1898, 82-3.

Notes: [All]: Cf. Matt. XVII.23-6; Pétr 8/6-23. — [2] greiddur vaðr ‘paid-out fishing-line’: See Fritzner: greiða 1 greiða ... vað. Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) prints p.p. with desyllabified -ur, to gain the required extra syllable (see Note to st. 4/2). Kock (NN §1712A; Skald) instead retains ms. greiddr and inserts enn (‘again’?) before vaðr. — [4] bragningr salar vagna ‘the king of the hall of the wagons’: Cf. Meissner, 378 and Note to st. 14/8. — [5-8]: Cf. Pétr 8/20-3: Petrus for ok dro fiskinn ok fann ... silfr ... i hans munni, ok lauk þat skattheimtandum fyrir varn herr ok sik. ‘Peter went and pulled in the fish and found ... silver ... in its mouth, and paid that to the tax-gatherers for our Lord and himself.’ — [8] dróttin ‘the Lord’: The root vowel must be long here to provide aðalhending with skjótt; cf. sts 43/2 and 45/7. Elsewhere the expected late form drottinn is used (sts 11/8, 26/5, 28/1, 34/1, 37/6 and especially 13/8 brott ... drotni. See further Note to Anon Alpost 8/8).


  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. 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.
  8. Internal references
  9. Ian McDougall (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Allra postula minnisvísur 8’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 863-4.

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