Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Pét 5VII

David McDougall (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Pétrsdrápa 5’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 800-1.

Anonymous PoemsPétrsdrápa

Nú bið eg dapr af dauða
dáligum mier sálar
miskunnar og mönnum
milding himins gildan.
Guði næst trúast treystir
tárfeld þjóð hans móðir;
hjálp er og heimsins stólpi
hlíf styrk konungr vífa.

Nú, dapr af dauða, bið eg {gildan milding himins} sálar miskunnar dáligum mier og mönnum. Næst guði treystir tárfeld þjóð trúast hans móðir; {konungr vífa} er hjálp, styrk hlíf og stólpi heimsins.

Now, downcast on account of death, I ask {the excellent king of heaven} [= God] for soul’s mercy for wretched me and for men. Next after God the tearful race trusts most faithfully in his mother; the king of women is the help, strong defence and pillar of the world.

Mss: 621(57v), 621(23r marg) (Pétr)

Editions: Skj AII, 501, Skj BII, 546, Skald II, 299, NN §1713; Konráð Gíslason 1860, 557, Kahle 1898, 79, 109.

Notes: [All]: This st. is copied separately in an C18th(?) hand in the lower margin of fol. 23r. — [1-2]: The prose order and translation here follow NN §1713. Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) takes af dauða dáligum mier together: for mig, syg formedelst døden ‘for me, sick on account of death’. — [6] tárfeld ‘tearful’: All previous eds read ms. form as ‘tarfelld’. However, Konráð Gíslason (1860, 557 n. 14) indicates that he believes the form has been altered from ‘turfelld’, which, he suggests, may be a metathesized form of *trufelld (‘given to faith’, ‘faithful’?). No such adj. is attested elsewhere. — [6] móðir ‘mother’: Both Finnur Jónsson and Kock emend to móður, since the word is dat. object of treysti, but móðir is frequently used as a dat. sg. form in late medieval/early modern Icel. See, e.g., Bandle 1956, 263-7 and refs. Cf. sts 37/2 and 49/2. — [7] stólpi heimsins ‘pillar of the world’: Cf. Anon Mdr 41/5 hjálpar staðr og stólpi ‘place of help and pillar’; Schottmann 1973, 53-4. — [8] konungr vífa ‘the king of women’: The Virgin Mary, on this kenning-like phrase, see Mdr 5/2 and Note; Meissner, 424; Schottmann 1973, 95.


  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. 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.
  6. Bandle, Oskar. 1956. Die Sprache der Guðbrandsbiblía. BA 17. Copenhagen: Munksgaard.
  7. Schottmann, Hans. 1973. Die isländische Mariendichtung. Untersuchungen zur volkssprachigen Mariendichtung des Mittelalters. Münchner germanistische Beiträge 9. Munich: Fink.
  8. Kahle, Bernhard, ed. 1898. Isländische geistliche Dichtungen des ausgehenden Mittelalters. Heidelberg: Winter.
  9. Internal references
  10. Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Máríudrápa 41’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 512.
  11. Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Máríudrápa 5’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 482-3.

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