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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv ErfÓl 2I/4 — beita ‘of the swingers’

Upplǫnd fekk til enda
ôss gneista ok þar reisti
kristnihald, þats heldu
hverr veitir sverðs beita.
Áðr stýrðu þeim eyðar
ellifu fyrr hella
mildings máls, en guldu
menn vísliga gísla.

Ôss gneista fekk Upplǫnd til enda, ok reisti þar kristnihald, þats hverr veitir beita sverðs heldu. Ellifu eyðar máls mildings hella stýrðu þeim áðr fyrr, en menn guldu gísla vísliga.

The god of the sword [WARRIOR = Óláfr Haraldsson] got the whole of Opplandene, and established Christianity there, which each benefactor of the swingers of the sword [WARRIORS > GENEROUS MAN] maintained. Eleven destroyers of the speech of the lord of the cave [GIANT > GOLD > GENEROUS MEN] ruled it [Opplandene] previously, but men wisely gave hostages.


[3, 4] hverr veitir ... heldu ‘each benefactor ... maintained’: The pairing of the sg. subject hverr veitir ‘every benefactor’ with pl. verb heldu ‘maintained’ follows the logic of sense, rather than strict grammatical concord (cf. NS §66b Anm. 1, 2). As in st. 1/2, metrical considerations may also be in play.



case: gen.
number: pl.


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