Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Líkn 20VII/1 — hægri ‘the right’

Enn und hægri hendi
hyggjublíðr á síðu
hlaut af hvössu spjóti
höfugt sár konungr jöfra.
Árveitis rann ýta
eirsanns ór ben þeiri
— hugum skyldu þat höldar
heyra — vatn ok dreyri.

Enn á síðu und hægri hendi hlaut hyggjublíðr konungr jöfra höfugt sár af hvössu spjóti. Vatn ok dreyri rann ór þeiri ben eirsanns árveitis ýta; höldar skyldu heyra þat hugum.

Yet on his side under the right arm the thought-tender king of princes [RULER = Christ] received a heavy wound from a sharp spear. Water and blood flowed out of that wound of the mercy-true abundance-giver of men [= God (= Christ)]; men should hear that in their thoughts.


[1, 2] á síðu und hægri hendi ‘on his side under the right arm’: This specific iconographic detail locating the wound from the lance on the right side accords with the more common medieval tradition. Mꜽle 1958, 190-5 indicates that the wound on the right side represents the founding of the church (Ecclesia), but the tradition is not fixed. See Gurewich 1957, 358-62, who suggests that when on the left, the wound points to Christ’s ‘bleeding heart’. Late medieval Icel. Passion poems vary the position of the wound, either leaving it unspecified but penetrating the heart (Rósa 106), locating it on the right side (Blómarós 55), or on the right but still reaching to the heart (Gimsteinn 55) (ÍM I.2, 29; I.2, 93; I.2, 316).



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