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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 3. Þorbjǫrn hornklofi, 1. Glymdrápa, 6 [Vol. 1, 85]

[5, 6] holmreyðar hjalmtamiðr ‘used to the helmet of the island-salmon [SNAKE]’: The snake helmet here should probably be understood as an œgishjalmr ‘helmet of terror’ (on this see Eskál Vell 25/5, 6). The word hjalmtamiðr ‘used to the helmet ...’ suggests that the reference is not to a helmet being worn in the battle at hand, but is more in the nature of a symbol of dignity or rank, perhaps even a royal insignia (Marold 1998, 13), mentioned here to indicate the development of the ruler’s power.


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