skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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HSt Rst 15I/1 — skeiðum ‘warships’

Ǫrbjóðr átta skeiðum
efsta sinn ok þrinnum
(byrr varð) beita þorði
(brýnn) ór Þrándheims mynni.
Ormr skreið (árar knúði)
ǫlna vang inn langi
(hirð prúð); hilmir stýrði.
Hann vas ríkstr konungmanna.

Ǫrbjóðr þorði beita efsta sinn átta ok þrinnum skeiðum ór mynni Þrándheims; byrr varð brýnn. Ormr inn langi skreið vang ǫlna; prúð hirð knúði árar; hilmir stýrði. Hann vas ríkstr konungmanna …

The arrow-offerer [WARRIOR] dared a final time to sail eight and three warships to windward out from the mouth of Trondheimsfjorden; the wind became sharp. Ormr inn langi (‘the Long Serpent’) slithered over the field of fish [SEA]; the valiant retinue thrust on the oars; the ruler steered. He was the mightiest of royal men …

notes

[1, 2] átta ok þrinnum skeiðum ‘eight and three warships’: The numbers of enemy ships are also detailed in the poem: fifteen (st. 16/5), sixty (st. 18/4) and a further five (st. 21/2); see also McDougall and McDougall (1998, 74) on the size of fleets in the battle.

grammar

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