Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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HSt Rst 2I/6 — *

Vegmildr víðrar foldar
vǫrðr þá fóstr í Gǫrðum;
vellbjóðr vísar dáðir
vann, sás hæst gekk manna.
Blikrunnr brigða miklum
brátt réð * þeim, es átti,
allprútt éla Þróttar
Óláfr skipa stóli.

Vegmildr vǫrðr víðrar foldar þá fóstr í Gǫrðum; vellbjóðr, sás gekk hæst manna, vann vísar dáðir. Þróttar éla blikrunnr, Óláfr, réð * brátt, allprútt, þeim brigða miklum stóli skipa, es átti.

The honour-generous guardian of vast territory [RULER = Óláfr] was fostered in Russia; the gold-offerer [GENEROUS MAN], who was the greatest of men, performed renowned deeds. The tree of the gleam of the storms of Þróttr <= Óðinn> [(lit. ‘gleam-tree of the storms of Þróttr’) BATTLES > SWORD > WARRIOR], Óláfr, soon commanded most excellently the extremely large fleet of ships which he owned.


[6] * þeim es átti: ‘hann þeíms þęt atti’ Bb(111va), hann þeims átti 61, 53, hann þeim sem hann átti 54, hann því sem hann átti Bb(16ra), hann þeims átta 62, fjǫgur ok átta Flat


[6] * þeim ..., es átti ‘the ... which he owned’: The range of variants reflects scribal uncertainty, and the role of ms. hann ‘he/him’ (deleted in the Text above) is unclear. Hann is assumed here to be a scribal addition to the verb réð ‘commanded’. Additional, extrametrical pronouns are frequent in the mss and often removed as a routine part of normalisation. For the remainder of the line various possibilities emerge. (a) Þeim, es átti ‘the (fleet) which he owned’ is adopted here (cf. Fms 12, 35, which retains hann), giving a statement that Óláfr commanded the ships he owned. (b) Kock (NN §1169) instead reads þeim es átti ‘for the one who owned [it]’, where the understood ‘it’ refers to brigða miklum ... stóli skipa ‘extremely large fleet of ships’ (ll. 5, 8), and the owner is Valdamarr (Vladimir; see Note to l. 2 above). Although this gives good sense, it produces an unmetrical line, since if þeim belonged to the rel. clause, forming þeim es átti ‘for the one who owned [it]’, es would cliticize onto the fully stressed demonstrative þeim which precedes it, giving þeims, and the line would have only five rather than the necessary six metrical positions. (c) See Note to l. 8, interpretation (b), for a different approach.



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