skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv Nesv 6I/3 — hirð ‘retinue’

Fekk meira lið miklu
mildr an gløggr til hildar,
hirð þás hugði forðask
heið þjóðkonungs reiði.
En vinlausum vísa
varð, þeim es fé sparði,
— háðisk víg fyr víðum
vangi — þunnt of stangir.

Mildr fekk miklu meira lið til hildar an gløggr, þás heið hirð hugði forðask reiði þjóðkonungs. En vinlausum vísa, þeim es sparði fé, varð þunnt of stangir; víg háðisk fyr víðum vangi.

The generous one [Óláfr] gained a much greater force for the battle than the mean one [Sveinn], when the illustrious retinue thought to escape the wrath of the mighty king. But for the friendless leader [Sveinn], he who scrimped on payment, it became sparse around the standards; war was waged off the broad plain.

notes

[3] hirð ‘retinue’: This is the earliest attestation of this word, which derives from OE hīred ‘household, band of retainers’. Óláfr may have brought both the term and the institution it denotes to Norway at the end of his English campaigns (cf. Hofmann 1955, 83).

grammar

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