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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Eyv Hál 2I l. 1

skjald — The shield

lemma:

skjǫldr (noun m.; °skjaldar/skildar, dat. skildi; skildir, acc. skjǫldu): shield < skjaldblœtr (noun m.)

readings:

[1] skjald‑: skald‑ F

notes:

[1] skjaldblœtr ‘shield-worshipped’: The element -blœtr appears to be etymologically related to blót, blóta ‘sacrifice, worship’; on its morphology, see Hkr 1893-1901, IV. The description ‘shield-worshipped’ may allude to a practice of incantation by warriors from under their shields as a prelude to battle (Hávm 156; possibly also Egill Lv 30V (Eg 59)); Tacitus reports a similar practice among Germanic warriors as a form of divination before battle (Björn Magnússon Ólsen 1902, 196-8; Anderson 1938, 1, 3, 1; Mattingly 1970, 103; Marold 2001b, 96 and n. 38). Another explanation of skjaldblœtr might be that shields were sacrificed to Óðinn, although clear archaeological or literary evidence for such a practice in the Viking Age is lacking. The reading of F, skaldblœtr ‘worshipped by skalds’, is preferred by Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901; Skj B) but is probably a lectio facilior (Björn Magnússon Ólsen 1902, 196).

kennings:

grammar:

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