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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Mv II 22VII/8 — þínar ‘your’

Máría, ertu mey skær
móðir og líkn góð
öllum, þeim er ákall
jafnan veita á þitt nafn.
Þjóðin öll þig biðr;
þú heitir vár frú,
en vier segjumz syndug
sveitir þínar, háleit.

Máría, ertu skær mey, móðir og góð líkn öllum, þeim er jafnan veita ákall á nafn þitt. Öll þjóðin biðr þig; þú heitir vár frú, en vier, syndug, segjumz sveitir þínar, háleit.

Mary, you are the pure Virgin, mother and good mercy to all those who always call upon your name. All the people worship you; you are called our Lady, and we, the sinful, call ourselves your followers, exalted one.

notes

[7-8] vier, syndug, segjumz sveitir þínar, háleit ‘we, the sinful, call ourselves your followers, exalted one’: This interpretation follows NN §1697. Skj B and Wrightson take sveitir þínar ‘your followers’ in apposition to vier ‘we’ and syndug ‘sinful’ with segjumz ‘call ourselves’ (vi, dine skarer, erkender vor synd ‘we, your hosts, acknowledge our sin’, so Skj B; ‘we, your followers, declare ourselves sinful’, so Wrightson). That interpretation is less satisfactory from the point of view of grammar: syndug (n. nom. or acc. pl.) ‘sinful’ can modify vier ‘we’ if the pron. refers to ‘mixed company’ (i.e. men and women), but sveitir ‘followers’ is f., so we should have expected a f. ending on the adj. (syndugar f. acc. pl.). Skj B also takes háleit ‘exalted’ as an adj. modifying vár frú ‘our Lady’ (l. 6), which complicates the w.o. unnecessarily.

grammar

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