Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sturl Hryn 13II/7 — blakks ‘horse’

Errinn sendi ungan svarra
út í lönd á geima þrútinn;
aldri fréttuð jöfra dróttins
æðri ferð af heimangerðum.
Allir tóku yppiþollar
unnartams fyrir lægi sunnan
ára blakks, sem allvaldr væri
innan lands, við dóttur þinni.

Errinn sendi ungan svarra út í lönd á þrútinn geima; aldri fréttuð æðri ferð af heimangerðum dróttins jöfra. Allir yppiþollar unnartams blakks ára fyrir sunnan lægi tóku við dóttur þinni, sem allvaldr væri innan lands.

The bold one sent the young, proud lady abroad onto the swollen ocean; never did you hear about a more outstanding retinue sent from home by a lord of princes [KING]. All the extolling fir-trees of the wave-tame horse of the oars [SHIP > SEAFARERS] south of the sea received your daughter as if she were a mighty ruler within the land.


[7] blakks: ‘blags’ 8, ‘blac[…]’ 325X


[5-6, 7] yppiþollar unnartams blakks ára ‘extolling fir-trees of the wave-tame horse of the oars [SHIP > SEAFARERS]’: This is the most complex kenning that Sturla uses in the poem and it may be ironic, since the southern seafarers whom he describes in this way were not known for their skills at sea. Sturla construes the elaborate kenning to mock them by using irony in the way his brother Óláfr hvítaskáld (Ólhv) gave an example of in his Málskrúðsfræði (TGT 1884, 113): því at lof er fyrir háð sett ‘for praise is put instead of mockery’. See also Eldj Lv 2.



case: gen.


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