Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv ErfÓl 5I/1 — Fœddi ‘fed’

Fœddi mest, sás meiddi,
margdýrr konungr varga,
hvinna ætt ok hlenna;
hann stýfði svá þýfðir.
Þýðr lét þermlask bæði
þjóf hvern konungr ernan
(friðr bœttisk svá) fóta
(fylkis lands) ok handa.

Margdýrr konungr, sás meiddi ætt hvinna ok hlenna, fœddi mest varga; hann stýfði svá þýfðir. Þýðr konungr lét hvern ernan þjóf þermlask bæði fóta ok handa; svá bœttisk friðr lands fylkis.

The very glorious king, who maimed the race of pilferers and thieves, fed wolves the most; he cut down thefts in this way. The kind king caused each swift thief to lack both feet and hands; in this way the peace of the prince’s land was improved.


[1] Fœddi: leiddi 61, Flat, Tóm, ‘Heddi’ Bb


[1] fœddi; meiddi ‘fed; maimed’: (a) In these lines the main topic of the stanza, Óláfr’s punishment of malefactors, is expressed in the rel. clause sás meiddi ‘who maimed’, while the subsidiary topic, his feeding of wolves (by slaying the enemy) is in the main clause. (b) This situation is reversed by Kock (NN §659), who argues that the line originally read Meiddi … fœddi (and duly emends in Skald), but as his only evidence for this is the reading Leiddi (for initial Meiddi) in three inferior mss, it seems unlikely. (c) Jón Skaptason (1983) does not emend, but adopts Kock’s suggestion that the rel. clause is sás fœddi varga ‘who fed wolves’. However, this reading assumes very convoluted syntax, in which the rel. sás is separated from its verb fœddi.



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