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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Heiðr Lv 2VIII (Ǫrv 2)

Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.) 2017, ‘Ǫrvar-Odds saga 2 (Heiðr, Lausavísur 2)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 811.


Ferr þú eigi svá         fjörðu breiða
né líðr yfir         langa vága,
þótt sær um þik         sægjum gangi;
þó skaltu brenna         á Berurjóðri.

Þú ferr eigi svá breiða fjörðu né líðr yfir langa vága, þótt sær gangi sægjum um þik; þó skaltu brenna á Berurjóðri.

You will never travel thus over broad firths nor sail across long bays, though the sea may surge in billows around you; yet you will burn at Berurjóðr.

Mss: 344a(2v), 7(44v) (ll. 1-4, 7-8), 343a(60v), 471(62r), 173ˣ(19r) (Ǫrv)

Readings: [1] þú eigi: eigi þú 7, 471    [3] né: eða 343a, 471, 173ˣ    [4] langa: láða 7, laga 343a, 173ˣ    [5] um: yfir 343a, 471, 173ˣ    [6] sægjum: skrikkjum 173ˣ;    gangi: drífi 343a    [7] þó: hér 343a    [8] ‑rjóðri: so all others, ‘‑rodri’ 344a

Editions: Skj AII, 289, Skj BII, 310, Skald II, 164, NN §§119, 1481; Ǫrv 1888, 15, Ǫrv 1892, 9, FSGJ 2, 207; Edd. Min. 92.

Context: See Introduction above.

Notes: [All]: Lines 5-6 are absent from the version of 7. — [All]: A version of this stanza may be the inspiration for OStór 1 and ch. 5 of the prose text of OStór, in which there is a similar exchange between a scornful protagonist and a woman who prophesies that the hero will meet his fate on a Norwegian estate in Nordmøre. Cf. OStór 1, Notes to [All] and l. 2 for a discussion of possible verbal echoes. — [5] um ‘around’: Most eds assume that earlier versions of the stanza read of in the sense ‘over’ and emend; cf. the reading yfir ‘over’ of the younger mss. However, no extant ms. reads of. — [6] sægjum ‘in billows’: The meaning of this noun is not certain. Sœgr, later sægr, occurs as a simplex meaning ‘sea’ in several kennings (LP: sœgr), but here a sense like ‘waves, billows’ seems to be required (see NN §119 for probable cognates in other Germanic languages). However, as LP: sœgr suggests, it may here be identical in meaning with ModIcel. sægur ‘swarm, crowd’ (of people), in which case the meaning would refer to the multitude of waves rather than their size. — [7-8] þó skaltu brenna á Berurjóðri ‘yet you will burn at Berurjóðr’: Berurjóðr is the name of Oddr’s foster-father Ingjaldr’s farm in Jæren, south-west Norway, where the action of this episode takes place. In the prose text following sts 1-3 the prophetess tells Oddr that he will die at Berurjóðr and that the skull of the horse Faxi will cause his death. The reference to burning looks forward to the end of the saga when the dying Oddr orders his men to prepare a stone coffin for him and to burn him and all his belongings on a funeral pyre.


  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  4. 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.
  5. FSGJ = Guðni Jónsson, ed. 1954. Fornaldar sögur norðurlanda. 4 vols. [Reykjavík]: Íslendingasagnaútgáfan.
  6. Edd. Min. = Heusler, Andreas and Wilhelm Ranisch, eds. 1903. Eddica Minora: Dichtungen eddischer Art aus den Fornaldarsögur und anderen Prosawerken. Dortmund: Ruhfus. Rpt. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft.
  7. Ǫrv 1888 = Boer, R. C., ed. 1888. Ǫrvar-Odds saga. Leiden: Brill.
  8. Ǫrv 1892 = Boer, R. C., ed. 1892a. Ǫrvar-Odds saga. Altnordische Saga-Bibliothek 2. Halle: Niemayer.
  9. Internal references
  10. 2017, ‘ Anonymous, Orms þáttr Stórólfssonar’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 602. <> (accessed 26 September 2021)
  11. Peter Jorgensen (ed.) 2017, ‘Orms þáttr Stórólfssonar 1 (Anonymous Lausavísur, Lausavísa from Orms þáttr Stórólfssonar 1)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 604.

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