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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anonymous Poems (Anon)

VII. Lilja (Lil) - 100

not in Skj

Lilja (‘Lily’) — Anon LilVII

Martin Chase 2007, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Lilja’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 544-677.

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Skj: Eysteinn Ásgrímsson: Lilja (AII, 363-95, BII, 390-416)

SkP info: VII, 617-18

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47 — Anon Lil 47VII

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Cite as: Martin Chase (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Lilja 47’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 617-18.

Þetta sér hann fjandi, að fættiz
fólkið hans, og líz það vansi,
dæmin góð að vaxa víða;
verri brögð og lýtin þverra.
Púkinn kvaldr og þeygi þoldi
þenna leik, er hafðan kennir,
því flýtandi sínar sveitir
synda brjót að drepa sem skjótast.

Hann fjandi sér þetta, að fólkið hans fættiz, og líz það vansi, að góð dæmin vaxa víða; verri brögð og lýtin þverra. Kvaldr púkinn og þoldi þeygi þenna leik, er kennir hafðan, flýtandi því sveitir sínar að drepa {brjót synda} sem skjótast.

The enemy sees this, that his army grows smaller, and it seems to him a shame that good examples grow widely; worse tricks and sins diminish. The devil [is] tormented and by no means would accept this contest, which he recognises has been held, [and] therefore hastens [lit. hastening] his troops to kill {the breaker of sins} [= God (= Christ)] as quickly as possible.

Mss: Bb(115ra), 99a(10r), 622(31), 713(10), Vb(251), 41 8°ˣ(120), 705ˣ(12v), 4892(32r-v)

Readings: [1] fættiz: fækkar 99a, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892, fætkar 622, 713    [2] það: að 41 8°ˣ    [3] dæmin: en dæmin 99a, 705ˣ, að dæmin 41 8°ˣ;    að: þau 99a, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 4892    [4] verri: enn verri Vb;    og: so all others, en Bb;    lýtin: lýti 622    [5] Púkinn: ‘Þyngdizt’ 622;    kvaldr: slægr 41 8°ˣ, kvaliðr 4892;    og: om. Vb, 4892    [6] þenna: þennan 99a, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892;    er: að 713;    hafðan: hafði 99a, höfðu 622, tók að Vb, 41 8°ˣ, harðan 705ˣ, tak að 4892;    kennir: kenndan 99a, slíkir 622, kenna Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 4892    [7] sínar: sínum 99a, 622, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892;    sveitir: sveitum 99a, 622, Vb, 705ˣ, 4892    [8] skjótast: fljótast Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ

Editions: Skj: Eysteinn Ásgrímsson, Lilja 47: AII, 378-9, BII, 402-3, Skald II, 220, NN 1524.

Notes: [1] fættiz ‘grows smaller’: This form of the verb is necessary for the rhyme with þetta ‘this’. Fætta, fækta, and fækka are alternative forms of the same word (cf. smætta, smætka, smækka ‘to make small’). Christ’s healing miracles involve the driving out of demons, hence the diminution of Lucifer’s legions. — [5] kvaldr og ‘[is] tormented and’: Skj B deletes the pleonastic og and compensates by adding a svarabhakti vowel to ‘kvaldur’. JH comments that the Bb reading is to be preferred. — [6] þenna leik, er kennir hafðan ‘this contest, which he recognises has been held’: Wisén (1886-9, II, 110) defends the reading of Bb and translates hunc lusus, quem peractum sentit ‘this game, which he senses has been completed’. The contest or game has been held or had, and the devil is unhappy with the results. Cf. Heggstad, Hødnebø and Simensen 1997: hafa 9, which cites the analogous idiom hafa þing ‘to hold a meeting’. Finnur Jónsson (Skj B) conflates several mss to arrive at the reading þenna leik, er harðan kennir ‘this game, the hardness of which he experiences’. Skald repeats this conflation. — [7] flýtandi ‘[and] hastens [lit. hastening]’: JH comments that this part. is best understood as a finite verb. Flýta normally takes a dat. object (cf. the variant reading sveitum).

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