skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Lil 27VII/4 — in ‘the’

Leið sigrandi páfugls prýði
pentað innan firmamentum
Gabriél sem geisli sólar
gleðiligur í loft in neðri.
Sendiboði kom sjaufalds anda
— svá er greinanda — að húsi einu;
sannr meydómrinn sat þar inni
sjálft hreinlífið gimsteinn vífa.

Gabriél, sigrandi páfugls prýði, leið sem gleðiligur geisli sólar innan pentað firmamentum í in neðri loft. Sendiboði sjaufalds anda kom að einu húsi; þar inni sat sannr meydómrinn, hreinlífið sjálft, gimsteinn vífa; svá er greinanda.

Gabriel, excelling the peacock’s beauty, moved like a joyful ray of the sun through the ornamented firmament into the lower air. The messenger of the sevenfold Spirit [ANGEL = Gabriel] came to a house; therein sat the true maidenhood, purity itself, the jewel of women; so it is to be told.

readings

[4] loft in: loptum Vb, 41 8°ˣ

notes

[4] en neðri loft ‘the lower air’: Cf. lofti næsta ‘the nearest air’ 11/3 and Note, as well as 40/2. The poet imagines a traditional three-tiered cosmology, of which the sphere of air surrounding the earth is the lowest or nearest. The image of Gabriel transcending the atmospheric layers is literary rather than biblical or homiletic.

grammar

Pronouns and determiners: Definite article

The definite article is normally suffixed to nouns, except in some cases where it is used with an adjective. If the noun form ends in a vowel, the 'i' in the article is dropped. If the noun form ends in 'um', the 'm' and 'i' are both dropped. E.g. hesta (acc. pl.) > hestana (acc. pl. definite); hestum (dat. pl.) > hestunum (dat. pl. definite)

masc.fem.neut.
sing. N
A
G
D
inn
inn
ins
inum
in
ina
innar
inni
it
it
ins
inu
pl. N
A
G
D
inir
ina
inna
inum
inar
inar
inna
inum
in
in
inna
inum
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