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skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Líkn 40VII/6 — öllum ‘all’

Veit mér líkn, er læknar
ljóna kind frá blindi
hyggju túns ok hreinsar,
heims prýði, kyn lýða.
Ert fyr hvers manns hjarta
hreins við öllum meinum
hæstr ok harðri freistni
hlífiskjöldr í lífi.

Heims prýði, veit mér líkn, er læknar ljóna kind frá blindi hyggju túns ok hreinsar kyn lýða. Ert hæstr hlífiskjöldr fyr hjarta hvers hreins manns við öllum meinum ok harðri freistni í lífi.

World’s adornment [CROSS], grant me mercy, you who heal men’s offspring from blindness of thought’s enclosure [BREAST] and purify the race of men. You are the highest protective-shield before the heart of each pure man against all injuries and hard temptation in life.

notes

[8, 6, 7] hlífiskjöldr við öllum meinum ok harðri freistni ‘a protective-shield against all injuries and hard temptation’: This follows the homily (above) closely: heilagr cros er hlífskioldr viþ méinom ... en ęfling viþ allre freístne ‘a protective shield against injuries ... and strength against all temptation’; cf. the late medieval Gimsteinn 117/8, in which the Cross is hlíf ok skiolldur mot fiandans golldrum ‘a protection and shield against the devil’s spells’. The Cross as protection (praesidium) is also a motif in hymns, e.g. Christi crux et passio / Nobis est praesidio, / Si credamus ‘Christ’s Cross and Passion are [lit. is] to us for a protection if we believe’ (AH 54, 223); it is described as a shield in a ME lyric: Crux est ... / a targe to weren fro detly woundes ‘The Cross is a shield to protect from deadly wounds’ (Brown and Robbins 1943, no. 23).

grammar

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