skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Þhorn Gldr 4I/2 — orða ‘word’

Ok allsnœfrir jǫfrar
orðalaust at morði
— endisk rauðra randa
rǫdd — dynskotum kvǫddusk.

Ok allsnœfrir jǫfrar kvǫddusk orðalaust dynskotum at morði; rǫdd rauðra randa endisk.

And the very vigorous rulers greeted each other wordlessly with din-shots at the battle; the voice of the red shields [BATTLE] sufficed.

notes

[2, 4] kvǫddusk orðalaust dynskotum ‘greeted each other wordlessly with din-shots’: The opponents’ shooting at one another is metaphorically compared to a greeting (kvǫddusk). This metaphorical use is made more explicit by the blend of the figurative (kvǫddusk ‘greeted each other’) and the concrete (dynskotum ‘with din-shots’). Orðalaust ‘wordlessly’, a n. adj. used adverbially, focuses additional attention on the metaphorical use of kvǫddusk by directly contradicting it. The metaphor is then reiterated by the kenning rǫdd rauðra randa ‘the voice of the red shields [BATTLE]’ (cf. Fidjestøl 1982, 219).

grammar

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