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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

7. Anonymous Poems, Heilagra manna drápa, 20 [Vol. 7, 886-7]

[5] Eyvind ‘Eyvind’: On this nom. form, see NN §§2680B and 2892. Skj B emends to Eyvindr. Eyvindr bifra is mentioned a number of times in Knýtlinga saga and is there represented, as here, as Knútr’s killer. According to that saga he greeted the king and then drew a sword from under his cloak, running it through his body (ÍF 35, 195). The meaning of the nickname bifra is not certain; it is a f. noun, yet applied only to men, therefore likely to be insulting; it is most likely cognate with the verb bifa(sk), ‘to shake, tremble’, so ‘the shaker, trembler’; see ÍF 35, 140 n. 4; Lind 1920-1: bifra; AEW: bifra; ONP: bifra.


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