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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 1. Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, 1. Ynglingatal, 5 [Vol. 1, 16]

[All]: According to HN (2003, 74), Dómaldi was sacrificed to the goddess Ceres, possibly meaning Freyja: Cuius filium Domald Sweones suspendentes pro fertilitate frugum Cereri hostiam obtulerunt ‘In hanging his [Vísbúrr’s] son Dómaldr, the Swedes made an offering to Ceres for the fruitfulness of the harvest’. The supposition in ÍF 26 (and similarly Hkr 1991), that Dómaldi was first hanged and then marked by a spear in sacrifice to Óðinn, is improbable, since an offering to Óðinn is unlikely to belong within the context of fertility rites. On the contrary, this stanza of Yt clearly connects the sacrifice to a desire for good harvests. The sacrificial killing of Dómaldi has been the subject of much debate, involving contradictory conceptions of sacral kingship, royal sacrifice etc., cf. Baetke (1964, 51-68), Turville-Petre (1964, 191), and overview in Sundqvist (2002, 241-53).

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