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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Arn Hryn 18II/2 — Meita ‘of Meiti’

Mǫnnum lízk, es mildingr rennir
Meita hlíðir sævar skíði,
unnir jafnt sem ósamt renni
engla fylki himna þengils.

Mǫnnum lízk, es mildingr rennir skíði sævar hlíðir Meita, jafnt sem fylki engla þengils himna renni unnir ósamt.

It seems to men, as the ruler makes the ski of the ocean [SHIP] skim the slopes of Meiti <sea-king> [SEA], just as though the host of angels of the skies’ prince [= God] were skimming the waves with him.


[2] Meita: ‘meída’ Flat


[1-2] rennir skíði sævar hlíðir Meita ‘makes the ski of the ocean [SHIP] skim the slopes of Meiti <sea-king> [SEA]’: Rennir, from the weak verb renna ‘make run’, is here taken as governing skíði as its direct object in the dat. sg. It could alternatively, without any great difference of meaning, be taken as absolute, hence ‘(the ruler) skims the slopes of Meiti with the ski of the ocean’. The harmonisation of imagery, with the base-words of the kennings producing a subsidiary picture of a prince skiing over snow-slopes, constitutes nygørving, lit. ‘new creation, innovation’ (see SnSt Ht 6III, SnE 1999, 6-7).




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