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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 13. Eyvindr skáldaspillir Finnsson, 2. Háleygjatal, 7 [Vol. 1, 205]

[7] ôttungr Freys ‘the kinsman of Freyr <god> [= Hákon]’: Hákon jarl Grjótgarðsson (see Context above). The identical phrase appears in Þjóð Yt 16/7. A close analogue is ôttung(r) Týs ‘kinsman of Týr’ in st. 10/7, with its counterpart in Þjóð Yt 14/3. Such kennings occur only in these two poems and in Eskál Vell. Similarly restricted in distribution is the theme of the divine ancestry of kings and jarls (Marold 1992, 699; cf. Bagge 2000, 33-6 on ). Presumably the kennings do not imply direct descent from Freyr or Týr (since Óðinn appears as progenitor in st. 1), but they do form part of a programme of implicit comparison with the Yngling kings (see Introduction). It is conceivable that the specific reference to Freyr hints at movement towards the Yngling territory of south-eastern Norway, where toponymic evidence suggests that the cult of Freyr was particularly strong (Brink 2007a, 109).


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