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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Pét 36VII

David McDougall (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Pétrsdrápa 36’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 827-8.

Anonymous PoemsPétrsdrápa

Nú frumtígna fagnað
fest hefi eg einum lestri
þeira tólf með tíri,
að tjáðag, Pétri, áðan.
Opinn og syndum sópaðr
salr vizkunnar kunnigr
standi að stuðli greindum;
stefjabálk vil eg hefja.

Nú hefi eg fest einum lestri fagnað þeira tólf frumtígna Pétri með tíri, að tjáðag áðan. Standi {kunnigr salr vizkunnar} opinn og sópaðr syndum að greindum stuðli; eg vil hefja stefjabálk.

Now I have established in a single reading the joy of those twelve highest dignities of Peter with glory which I recounted earlier. May {the knowing hall of the intellect} [BREAST] stand open and swept of sins, the ‘prop’ having been established; I wish to begin a refrain section.

Mss: 621(59r)

Editions: Skj AII, 505, Skj BII, 553, Skald II, 303, NN §§ 1739, 2878, 3375; Kahle 1898, 86.

Notes: [3] þeira tólf ‘of those twelve’: Cf. sts 27-8. — [4] að tjáðag ‘which I recounted’: Ms. is omitted in Skj B and Skald. At NN §1739 Kock proposes taking the form as a rel. particle, as here (cf. sts 10/8, 11/6, 35/8). At NN §2878 he argues instead that is a scribal addition, and translates: Nu jag i en enda läsning fastställt stora företrädens fröjd: tolv sådana hos Petrus har jag hittils talt med pris ‘Now in a single reading I have established the joy of great merits: twelve such in Peter I have hitherto recounted with praise’. — [4] Pétri ‘of Peter’: probably Lat. gen. sg. (of Petrus), rather than dat. sg. (of Pétr). Cf. sts 4/8, 8/4, and Note to 22/8. — [7] að greindum stuðli ‘the “prop” having been established’: The construction + p.p. is similar to Lat. ablative absolute (cf. CVC: at with dat. B.IV.2); the sense is that, as the poem and its metre have been established, the poet is now ready to move into the stefjabálkr. Kock proposes (NN §3375) that stuðill refers here to the first alliterating ‘support’ of the hǫfuðstafr in the stef (st. 37). At Skj B Finnur Jónsson renders the phrase for en god digtning ‘for a good poem’, but in LP: stuðill he modifies this to ved hjælp af den fornuftige (?) støtte (også allusion til bistave)? ‘with the help of the sensible (?) support (also an allusion to the alliterating “props”)?’.


  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. LP = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1931. Lexicon poeticum antiquæ linguæ septentrionalis: Ordbog over det norsk-islandske skjaldesprog oprindelig forfattet af Sveinbjörn Egilsson. 2nd edn. Copenhagen: Møller.
  6. CVC = Cleasby, Richard, Gudbrand Vigfusson [Guðbrandur Vigfússon] and W. A. Craigie. 1957. An Icelandic-English Dictionary. 2nd edn. Oxford: Clarendon.
  7. Kahle, Bernhard, ed. 1898. Isländische geistliche Dichtungen des ausgehenden Mittelalters. Heidelberg: Winter.

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