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skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Óldr 1I

Kate Heslop (ed.) 2012, ‘Anonymous Poems, Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar 1’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 1033.

Anonymous PoemsÓláfs drápa Tryggvasonar
12

Yfirhilding biðk aldar
einn hróðtǫlu beina*
mér, þanns mestum stýrir
mætti, hverrar ættar,
þvít veglyndum vanda
vin þínum skalk, Rínar,
brag, þeims bjartleyg fǫgrum
bauð ótta, goð dróttinn.

Biðk {einn yfirhilding hverrar ættar aldar}, þanns stýrir mestum mætti, beina* mér hróðtǫlu, þvít skalk vanda brag, goð dróttinn, veglyndum vin þínum, þeims bauð ótta {fǫgrum bjartleyg Rínar}.

I ask {the sole overlord of every family of men} [= God], he who wields most power, to set praiseful speech in motion for me, because I shall fashion poetry, Lord God, about your high-minded friend, he who struck fear {into the beautiful bright flame of the Rhine} [GOLD].

Mss: Bb(112va)

Readings: [2] beina*: beinar Bb

Editions: Skj AI, 573-4, Skj BI, 567, Skald I, 275, NN §§2710C; Munch and Unger 1847, 120-1, 140, Gullberg 1875, 11, 21-2.

Notes: [2] beina* ‘set in motion’: Of all the possible explanations of ms. beinar, including f. nom. pl. of adj. beinn ‘straight’ or nom. pl. of beini m. ‘help, hospitality’, none fits the helmingr’s sense or syntax. Sveinbjörn Egilsson’s emendation (1832, 7) to the verb beina ‘set in motion, steer, direct’ is accepted by all subsequent eds. Biðk ... beina ‘I ask ... to direct’ also occurs in Anon Hafg 2/1-2IV. — [2] einn ‘sole’: Or alternatively ‘alone, only’. — [4] hverrar ættar aldar ‘of every family of men’: (a) Although slightly overloaded, this phrase is comparable with other collocations of ætt with a gen. meaning ‘men’, including Hfr Lv 7/1, 3V (Hallfr 10) ǫll ætt aldar ‘the whole family of men’ (and see LP: ætt 2). Coupled with yfirhildingr ‘overlord’, it forms a God-kenning which resembles others designating God as ruler of mankind (Meissner 370, also 372). However, as a determinant which is not itself a kenning, hverrar ættar aldar is unusual, and the whole expression could be regarded as a looser genitival construction rather than a kenning. (b) Gullberg (1875) takes hverrar ættar as gen. object of mætti (dat. of môttr m. ‘power’), so ‘power over every family’, but this is a less compelling expression of divine omnipotence. — [6, 7, 8] þeims bauð ótta fǫgrum bjartleyg Rínar ‘he who struck fear into the beautiful bright flame of the Rhine [GOLD]’: That is, he who was a generous man. The subordinate clause expresses an idea more often expressed in man-kennings (Meissner 289-90).

References

  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. 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.
  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. Munch, P. A. and C. R. Unger, eds. 1847. Oldnorsk læsebog med tilhörende glossarium. Christiania (Oslo): Dahl.
  7. Gullberg, H., ed. 1875. Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar: fragment ur “Bergsboken”. Lund: Berling.
  8. Internal references
  9. Not published: do not cite (Anon Hafg 2IV)
  10. Not published: do not cite (Hfr Lv 7V (Hallfr 10))
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