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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

2. Þórarinn stuttfeldr, 1. Stuttfeldardrápa, 6 [Vol. 2, 477-8]

[4] geti ... kviksettra ‘obtain ... of the holy ones’: The H variant (skulut kviksattar ‘shall not [be] buried alive’) lacks both alliteration and internal rhyme, and the Hr reading (glaðr kviksættar ‘cheerful “quiksættar”’) lacks internal rhyme. The stem vowel in -settra (m. gen. pl.) is an -e-: kviksettr ‘holy one’ from setja ‘place’ (see ANG §513.2 and Note to l. 4 below). Because the metre of Stuttdr is in general very regular (with some internal rhymes and double alliterations lacking in the odd ll.), the first word in l. 4 must be a monosyllabic or a short-stemmed disyllabic word beginning with g- and containing the stem -et- or -ett-. Skj B suggests (at) grǫf golli lofs | glaðr kviksettra ‘[you gave] gold (to) the grave of holy ones, cheerful of glory’ (ll. 3-4), which still leaves l. 4 without internal rhyme. Kock (NN §965; Skald) emends ll. 3-4 to (at) grǫf golli lofs | glætt kviksæti ‘(at) the grave [you covered] the shining relics with gold of praise’. That reading presupposes a suppressed verb and an unattested word, kviksæti ‘relics’. In the present edn, at ‘that’ (l. 2) is taken as a conj. rather than as a prep., and skulut (3rd pers. pl. pres. indic.) ‘shall not’ (so H; glaðr m. nom. sg. ‘cheerful’; Hr) has been emended to geti (3rd pers. sg. pres. subj.) ‘obtain’.

references

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