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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv Austv 20I/1 — Spakr ‘Wise’

Spakr lét Ulfr meðal ykkar,
Ôleifr, tekit môlum
— þétt fengum svǫr — sátta
— sakar leggið it — beggja.
Þér lét, þjófa rýrir,
þær, sem engar væri
riptar reknar heiptir,
Rǫgnvaldr gefit, aldar.

Spakr Ulfr lét tekit sátta môlum meðal ykkar beggja, Ôleifr; fengum þétt svǫr; it leggið sakar. Rǫgnvaldr lét þær gefit þér, rýrir aldar þjófa, sem engar heiptir riptar væri reknar.

Wise Úlfr caused to be adopted the peace proposals between you both, Óláfr; we [I] received watertight replies; you two are putting aside conflict. Rǫgnvaldr caused those [conflicts] to be conceded to you, destroyer of the race of thieves [JUST RULER = Óláfr], as if no enmity on account of treaty-breaking had been perpetrated.


[1] Spakr: spakt 972ˣ, ‘Spackr’ 61


[1] spakr Ulfr lét ‘wise Úlfr caused’: This Úlfr cannot be identified with certainty, and some scholars have emended. (a) The most obvious identification, in the light of bróður Ulfs ‘Úlfr’s brother’ in st. 19/8, is with Rǫgnvaldr’s son, though Finnur Jónsson (1932, 19; 1934a, 38) objects that he would have been too young, sixteen at most, at this time, and therefore hardly likely to be called spakr. (b) A further possibility is Rǫgnvaldr’s father (though see Toll 1930-3, 541-2). (c) Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) reads sunr ... Ulfs ‘the son of Úlfr’, in reference to Rǫgnvaldr, but Ulfs is the reading only of 75a and 73a, while sunr does not appear in any ms. (d) Gering (1912, 135-6) suggests jarl for Ulfr, a reading also entertained by Finnur Jónsson (see Skj BI, 682), though cf. Kock (NN §3032).



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