Elena Gurevich (ed.) 2017, ‘Anonymous Þulur, Orma heiti 2’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 929.
Grafvitnir, fánn, Góinn, holtskriði,
grafningr, grettir, Grábakr, trani,
grímr ok grafþvengr, gargan, eitrungr,
hringr, holdvarinn, haugvarðr, dreki.
Grafvitnir, fánn, Góinn, holtskriði, grafningr, grettir, Grábakr, trani, grímr ok grafþvengr, gargan, eitrungr, hringr, holdvarinn, haugvarðr, dreki.
Grafvitnir, gleaming one, Góinn, grove-slider, digger, grimacer, Grábakr, crane, masked one and digging-belt, shrieking one, poisonous one, ring, flesh-wary one, mound-watcher, dragon.
Mss: A(20v), B(9v), 744ˣ(85v) (SnE)
Readings:  hold‑: ‘ho[…]‑’ B, ‘holld‑’ 744ˣ
Notes: [All]: Many of the poetic names for ‘serpent’ listed below are hap. leg. or unique compounds (fánn m. ‘gleaming one’ l. 1, holtskriði m. ‘grove-slider’ l. 2, gargan f. ‘shrieking one’ and eitrungr m. ‘poisonous one’ l. 6, holdvarinn m. ‘flesh-wary one’ l. 7 and haugvarðr m. ‘mound-watcher’ l. 8), or they do not otherwise appear with this sense (trani m. ‘crane’ l. 4, hringr m. ‘ring’ l. 7). —  Grafvitnir: Lit. ‘digging-wolf’ (cf. graf- in the strong verb grafa ‘dig’ and grǫf f. ‘grave’ plus vitnir, a heiti for ‘wolf’). One of the mythical serpents that gnaw on the roots of the ash Yggdrasill (Grí 34/5; Gylf, SnE 2005, 19; Skm, SnE 1998, I, 90). See also the wolf-heiti vitnir (Þul Vargs 1/2 and Note there). In poetry, the name is used as a heiti for ‘serpent’ in general. —  Góinn: A mythical serpent and son of Grafvitnir (see the preceding heiti, Grí 34/4 and Gylf, SnE 2005, 19). The meaning of this name is not clear, perhaps ‘one living deep in the earth’ (cf. Gk χθών ‘earth’, Goth. gawi ‘land’), which could find support in the name of another mythical serpent, Móinn, derived from mór ‘heath’ (see Móinn in st. 4/7 below; Bugge 1888a, 49; Lid 1928, 250-7). Alternatively, the name could mean ‘yawning’ (cf. gómr ‘palate’; see AEW: góinn and Holthausen 1948, 92; the latter also considers the possibility that Góinn could be related to OHG gāhi ‘swift’). Góinn is mentioned in the list of orma heiti in Skm (SnE 1998, I, 90) and the word is used in skaldic poetry. It is also a heiti for ‘sword’ (Þul Sverða 9/7). —  grafningr (m.) ‘digger’: The heiti is derived from the strong verb grafa ‘dig’. It occurs only once in skaldic poetry, in a C14th poem by Einarr Gilsson (EGils Guðkv 4/3IV), and it may be of learned origin here, possibly taken from the þulur. Grafningr seems to be coined in analogy with names for mythical serpents and other heiti with the element graf- (e.g. Grafvitnir in l. 1 above, grafþvengr ‘digging-belt’ in l. 5 below and Grafvǫlluðr in Grí 34/6). In the rímur, the heiti is used in kennings for ‘gold’ (Finnur Jónsson 1926-8: grafningr). —  grettir (m.) ‘grimacer’: An agent noun derived from the weak verb gretta ‘grimace, grin, frown’. The heiti is attested only once in skaldic poetry (HǫrðG Lv 7/8V (Harð 14)) and is otherwise best known as the name of the famous saga hero and skald, Grettir Ásmundarson (Grett). In the rímur, the heiti is used rather frequently in kennings for ‘gold’ (Finnur Jónsson 1926-8: grettir), and it is implied four times in the self-referential snake-kennings in Gr which refer to Grettir’s name by ofljóst (see Grett Lv 13/8V, 19/2-3V (Gr 26, 34), Grett Ævkv II 4/5-6V (Gr 42) and HallmGr Lv 1/5-6V (Gr 43)). —  Grábakr: Lit. ‘grey-back’, from the adj. grár ‘grey’ and bakr m. ‘back’. Another mythical serpent (Grí 34/6; Gylf, SnE 2005, 19). See also Note to Grafvitnir in l. 1 above. —  trani (m.) ‘crane’: The word does not occur in other sources as a heiti for ‘serpent’. Trani ‘crane’ could have been included among the orma heiti because it was the name of one of King Óláfr Tryggvason’s warships and it might have been associated with another famous ship that belonged to that king, Ormr inn langi ‘The Long Serpent’. This is supported by the fact that the previous heiti in the present list, Grábakr, denotes Ormr inn langi in Anon Óldr 21/4I. Trani is also recorded in Þul Sverða 6/4. —  grímr (m.) ‘masked one’: Grímr is probably derived from gríma f. ‘mask’ or it may be a pers. n. Grímr was a name for Óðinn when he travelled in disguise (see Þul Óðins 3/1), and it could well be that his name was turned into a heiti for ‘serpent’ owing to myths about his shape-changing (e.g. the myth of the mead of poetry, where Óðinn appears in the shape of a snake). As a serpent-heiti, grímr is not attested in skaldic poetry before C14th (see Árni Gd 58/6IV), however, and it is therefore possible that Árni took the heiti either directly from this þula or from the list of orma heiti in Skm (SnE 1998, I, 90; see Gurevich 1992c, 37). Grímr is also the name of a dwarf and a heiti for ‘goat’ (Þul Dverga 2/1, Þul Hafrs 1/6). —  grafþvengr (m.) ‘digging-belt’: From graf- (see Note to grafningr, l. 3 above) and þvengr m. ‘belt’. Like the previous word, this heiti occurs only in gold-kennings in C14th poetry (Anon Gyð 4/4VII, EGils Guðkv 37/7IV and Guðv 13/3IV) and it could have been invented for the þulur. —  gargan (f.) ‘shrieking one’: Or possibly gargann m. (so LP: gargann). The LaufE mss have gargan. This word is most likely related to the ModIcel. garg n. ‘shrieking, howling’ and the weak verb garga ‘shriek with a coarse voice’ (cf. ModIcel. gargan ‘something bad’). See AEW: gargan. For other interpretations, see Bugge (1875, 227), Alexander Jóhannesson (1927, 18) and ÍO: gargan, gargann 1. The word is also attested as a nickname in Sturlunga saga (Finnur Jónsson 1907, 313). In the rímur, the word is used as a heiti for ‘serpent’ (Finnur Jónsson 1926-8: gargán). —  hringr (m.) ‘ring’: This heiti is attested as a base-word in kennings for ‘serpent’ (cf. Þorf Lv 1/6I hringr lyngva ‘ring of heathers’), but since hringr alone does not occur in poetry as a term for ‘serpent’, it is probably not a half-kenning. Hringr is also listed in Þul Skipa 3/1. —  holdvarinn (m.) ‘flesh-wary one’: From hold n. ‘flesh’ and the weak form of the adj. varr ‘wary, careful’ and not attested elsewhere as a cpd. See also holdvari in st. 3/2 below. —  haugvarðr (m.) ‘mound-watcher’: See Note to [All] above. From haugr m. ‘mound, hill’ and ‑varðr ‘watcher, guardian’. In the LaufE mss this word is given as (normalised) hǫggvǫrðr ‘strike-guardian’. This heiti refers to numerous legends of dragons guarding treasure-hoards buried in mounds.
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