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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Sól 16VII

Carolyne Larrington and Peter Robinson (eds) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Sólarljóð 16’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 306.

Anonymous PoemsSólarljóð

text and translation

Rík þau urðu        Ráðný ok Véboði
        ok hugðuz gótt eitt gera;
nú þau sitja        ok sárum snúa
        ýmsum elda til.

Þau Ráðný ok Véboði urðu rík ok hugðuz gótt eitt gera; nú sitja þau ok snúa ýmsum sárum til elda.
‘Ráðný and Véboði became powerful and thought to do only good; now they sit and turn now one, now another wound towards the fires.

notes and context

The st. is rather cryptic, but the sense seems to be that those who trust in their own power (rather than in God’s, cf. st. 17) come to grief, even though they intend to do good. The implication of hugðuz gótt eitt gera (l. 3) could be, as given here, ‘thought to do, i.e. intended to do only good’, or ‘thought they were doing only good’.



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 [XII], G [6]. Sólarljóð 16: AI, 630, BI, 638, Skald I, 310, NN §§2147A, 2148; Bugge 1867, 359, Falk 1914, 7, Björn M. Ólsen 1915, 9, Fidjestøl 1979, 62, Njörður Njarðvík 1991, 54-5, Njörður Njarðvík 1993, 22, 101.


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