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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

7. Anonymous Poems, Leiðarvísan, 34 [Vol. 7, 170-1]

[1] af aumu ‘from a state of wretchedness’: The adj. aumr means ‘poor, wretched, miserable’ (ONP: aumr, adj., auma, f. the latter only in the expression sjá aumu ‘to feel pity for’), but in this context expresses the poet’s feeling of inadequacy to his task. Sveinbjörn Egilsson (1844, 67 n. 21) suggested that the phrase may refer to the poet’s miserable subject-matter, given that he is to discuss the fates of men at the Last Judgement in st. 35, but this seems unlikely in context.


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