skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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ÞGísl Búdr 6I/8 — gǫrvar ‘readied’

Neytti herr handa;
hríð vas snǫrp branda;
fúst vas fár randa
til fjǫrnis landa.
Fellu fleinbǫrvar;
flugu af streng ǫrvar;
sungu hôtt hjǫrvar
við hlífar gǫrvar.

Herr neytti handa; hríð branda vas snǫrp; fár randa vas fúst til landa fjǫrnis. Fleinbǫrvar fellu; ǫrvar flugu af streng; hjǫrvar sungu hôtt við gǫrvar hlífar.

The troop used its hands; the storm of blades [BATTLE] was fierce; the harm of shields [SWORD] was eager for the lands of the helmet [HEADS]. Spear-trees [WARRIORS] fell; arrows flew from the bowstring; swords sang loudly against readied shields.

notes

[8] gǫrvar ‘readied’: The exact sense of the adj. (etymologically ‘made’ from gørva ‘make’, hence often ‘complete’) is uncertain. Finnur Jónsson in Skj B translates udmærkede ‘excellent, distinguished’, and in LP fuldstærke ‘very strong’ (LP: gǫrr 1). The present translation assumes the common sense ‘ready (for)’. Although most skaldic examples of this are completed by a gen. phrase, til ‘for’ + noun, or at ‘to’ + inf., there are absolute examples (LP: gǫrr 4).

grammar

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