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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Krm 16VIII/8 — stan ‘stan’

Anon Krm 16VIII

Hjuggu vér með hjörvi.
Hverr lá þverr um annan;
glaðr varð geira hríðar
gaukr at sverða leiki.
Lét ei örn né ylgi,
sá er Írlandi stýrði,
— mót varð málms ok rítar —
Marstan konungr fasta.
Varð í Veðrarfirði
valtafn gefit hrafni.

Hjuggu vér með hjörvi. Hverr lá þverr um annan; gaukr hríðar geira varð glaðr at leiki sverða. Marstan konungr, sá er stýrði Írlandi, lét ei ǫrn né ylgi fasta; varð mót málms ok rítar. Valtafn varð gefit hrafni í Veðrarfirði.

We hewed with the sword. Each man lay athwart another; the cuckoo of the storm of spears [BATTLE > RAVEN/EAGLE] became happy in the game of swords [BATTLE]. King Marstan, who ruled over Ireland, did not allow eagle or she-wolf to fast; a meeting of metal and shield came about. Corpse-prey was given to the raven in Waterford.


[8] ‑stan: ‑steinn


[6, 8] Marstan konungr ‘King Marstan’: It has not proved possible to identify this king, stated here to have ruled over Ireland, and described in LP: Marstan as sagnkonge ‘a legendary king’. A search for his name or one approximating to it in the lists and genealogies of Irish kings and high-kings in Byrne (1973, 275-301), and Jaski (2000, 301-16, 342-8), has proved unavailing. The present ed. follows Finnur Jónsson (1905, 175 n. 2), in treating with scepticism Storm’s (1878, 112 n. 1) view that the name Marstan here reflects the Irish name Muirchertach (now Murdoch, ON Myrkjartan), a common enough name for Irish kings, according to Byrne (1973, 90, 146, 243) at least.



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