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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Þjóðólfr ór Hvini (Þjóð)

9th century; volume 1; ed. Edith Marold;

1. Ynglingatal (Yt) - 37

Skj info: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski, Norsk skjald, 9 årh. (AI, 7-21, BI, 7-19).

Skj poems:
1. Ynglingatal
2. Haustlǫng
3. Et digt om Harald hårfagre, næppe ægte
4. Lausavísur

Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, or inn hvinverski, ‘from Hvinir’ (Þjóð) was a Norwegian skald of the late ninth or early tenth century. As his nickname indicates, he was from Hvinir (Kvinesdal, Vest-Agder). His biography is largely unknown. Skáldatal names him as poet to several rulers and powerful men: Haraldr hárfagri ‘Fair-hair’ and Rǫgnvaldr heiðumhár or heiðumhæri ‘High with Honours’ (SnE 1848-87, III, 253, 261, 273), Hákon jarl Grjótgarðsson (ibid., 256, 265, 280), Þorleifr inn spaki ‘the Wise’ (ibid., 259, 268, 285), Strút-Haraldr jarl (ibid., 259, 284) and an unknown Sveinn jarl (ibid., 268). However, the associations with Hákon, Strút-Haraldr and Þorleifr are uncertain since they may have lived later in the tenth century; see Bugge (1894, 145, 175); Åkerlund (1939, 7). In Hkr, both within the Prologue (ÍF 26, 4) and in HHárf (ÍF 26, 127-8, 139), Þjóðólfr is represented as skald and friend to Haraldr hárfagri and as a dedicated foster-father to Haraldr’s son Guðrøðr ljómi ‘Beam of Light’. It is in this context that he speaks the two lausavísur associated with him (Þjóð Lv 1-2). Þjóðólfr ór Hvini is the composer of the poems Ynglingatal (Þjóð Yt) and Haustlǫng (Þjóð HaustlIII, edited in SkP III). Five stanzas of a poem dedicated to Haraldr hárfagri (Þjóð Har) are also attributed to him. Several stanzas of Haraldskvæði (Þhorn Harkv) are falsely attributed to Þjóðólfr; see Introduction to Harkv. Finally, a fragment (Þjóðólfr FragIII) edited in SkP III is likely to be the work of a different Þjóðólfr, though it is tentatively associated with Þjóð Yt in Skj; see Introduction to Yt.

Ynglingatal — Þjóð YtI

Edith Marold with the assistance of Vivian Busch, Jana Krüger, Ann-Dörte Kyas and Katharina Seidel, translated from German by John Foulks 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 3.

 1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27 

for reference only:  8x   11x   13x   14x   15x   16x   17x   20x   25x   26x 

Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski: 1. Ynglingatal (AI, 7-15, BI, 7-14); stanzas (if different): 9 | 10 | 11 | 12-13 | 13 | 14 | 15-16 | 16 | 17-18 | 18 | 19-20 | 20 | 21-22 | 22 | 23-24 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27-28 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33-34 | 34 | 35-36 | 36 | 37 | 38(?)

SkP info: I, 38

old edition introduction edition manuscripts transcriptions concordance search files

17 — Þjóð Yt 17I

edition interactive full text transcriptions old edition references concordance

 

Cite as: Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal 17’ in Diana Whaley (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 1: From Mythical Times to c. 1035. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 1. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 38.

Veitk Eysteins
enda folginn
lokins lífs
á Lófundi.
Ok sikling
með Svíum kvôðu
józka menn
inni brenna.
Ok bitsótt
í brandnói
hlíðar þangs
á hilmi rann,
þás timbrfastr
toptar nǫkkvi
flotna fullr
of fylki brann.

Veitk enda lokins lífs Eysteins folginn á Lófundi. Ok kvôðu með Svíum józka menn brenna inni sikling. Ok {bitsótt {þangs hlíðar}} rann á hilmi í {brandnói}, þás {timbrfastr nǫkkvi toptar}, fullr flotna, brann of fylki.

I know the end of the concluded life of Eysteinn to be hidden in Lófund. And among the Swedes [people] said that men from Jutland burned the ruler inside [a house]. And {the biting sickness {of the sea-weed of the hill-slope}} [FOREST > FIRE] attacked the ruler in {the fire-ship} [HOUSE] when {the timber-fast boat of the building plot} [HOUSE], full of seafarers, burned over the ruler.

Mss: (32r), papp18ˣ(8v), 521ˣ(37-38), F(5va), J1ˣ(14r), J2ˣ(17v), R685ˣ(17r-v) (Hkr); 761aˣ(60r-v)

Readings: [2] folginn: folgin F, ‘fal ginn’ R685ˣ    [3] lokins: lokinn J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ    [4] Lófundi: lofðungi 521ˣ, F, Lófundr J1ˣ, R685ˣ    [5] Ok: at F    [10] brandnói: ‘brandvni’ F;    brand‑: ‘brayd‑’ R685ˣ    [14] nǫkkvi: so 521ˣ, F, J2ˣ, 761aˣ, corrected from ‘neq’ Kˣ, ‘nockiu’ J1ˣ, ‘notkin’ R685ˣ    [15] fullr: so F, J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ, 761aˣ, ‘fullþ’ Kˣ, papp18ˣ, 521ˣ    [16] fylki: corrected from fiski J2ˣ

Editions: Skj: Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, enn hvinverski, 1. Ynglingatal 23-24: AI, 12, BI, 11, Skald I, 7; NN §§1013, 2003, 3201; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 58-9, IV, 18, ÍF 26, 60-1, Hkr 1991, I, 34 (Yng ch. 31), F 1871, 22-3; Yng 1912, 38-9, 65-6, Yng 2000, 47-8; Yt 1914, 11-12, Yt 1925, 204, 239-40.

Context: Eysteinn, son and successor of Aðils, is enjoying hospitality in Lófund when Sǫlvi, a raider king based in Jutland, sets fire to the building by night, killing Eysteinn and his company. After an eleven-day battle, Sǫlvi gains power in Sweden.

Notes: [1-4]: Various syntactic interpretations are possible here, since the alternative readings, m. nom./acc. sg. lokinn (J1ˣ, J2ˣ, R685ˣ) or m./n. gen. sg. lokins (K transcripts, F) ‘concluded’ allow for the following combinations: lokinn with enda ‘end’, lokins with enda, lífs ‘life’ or Eysteins. (a) The interpretation adopted in this edn, as in many previous eds, chooses the reading lokins and construes lokins as a p. p. with lífs, hence ‘of the concluded life’. This results in a construal which connects l. 1 with l. 3 and l. 2 with l. 4, which is characteristic of Þjóðolfr’s composition. (b) Thinking lokins lífs cannot mean ‘of the concluded life’ because lúka governs the dat., Olson (1915, 222) translates lokins lífs as ‘shut in alive’ and thinks it a reference to the king’s burning alive in the brenna. Noreen (Yt 1925) and Lindquist (1929, 67) concur, though Noreen employs the reading lokinn. Kock (NN §2003) rightly objects to Olson’s premise, noting that the case governed by a verb (here the dat.) is irrelevant to the form of the participle. — [2-3] enda lokins lífs ... folginn ‘the end of the concluded life ... to be hidden’: The notion of a life’s ‘end’ being ‘hidden’ somewhere can be linked to the idea of a person’s life following a thread or string and ending where this thread is hidden, cf. HHund I 3/1-2, 4/1-4 (NK 130); cf. also KormǪ Lv 33/7-8V (Korm 52). — [4] á Lófundi ‘in Lófund’: Noreen (1912a, 8-9; Yt 1925) associates the second element -und with the district name formant -hund, very common in Uppland, and he identifies Lófund with Lohärad in Lyhundra near Norrtälje. — [6] með Svíum ‘among the Swedes’: The prepositional phrase can be construed in three possible ways: (a) It can be taken as modifying kvôðu ‘people said’, meaning that the burning was talked about among the Swedes (so Storm 1900, 32; Noreen 1912b, 131; Åkerlund 1939, 104; NN §3201). (b) It can be taken with brenna inni ‘to burn inside [a house]’, meaning that the burning takes place ‘among the Swedes’, i.e. in Sweden (ÍF 26; Hkr 1991). (c) It can be taken with sikling ‘the ruler’, meaning that Eysteinn is burned along with his Swedish companions (so Hkr 1893-1901, IV; Skj B; Lindquist 1929, 67). Solution (a) is most likely, because it preserves the unity of l. 6, and because numerous examples, collected by Kock (NN §3201), show that Yt repeatedly refers to word-of-mouth reports among the Swedes. — [7] józka menn ‘men from Jutland’: HN (2003, 78-9) seems to contradict this, for it identifies the adversary as Gautones ‘Gautar, men from Gautland (Götaland)’. Storm (1873, 109) takes this to be scribal error in HN, and Finnur Jónsson (1934b, 191) thinks it denotes Jótar. Koht (1921a, 30 n.) assumes the Gautar were indeed the original adversary, which could seem likely for geographical and perhaps for historical reasons (cf. also Beyschlag 1950, 75 n. 122; Yng 1952, 69-70). Accordingly Yt would either have mistaken the Gautar for Jutes or transmitted an older error, which may have arisen because of the Norwegian perspective (Krag 1991, 126). — [10] brandnói ‘the fire-ship [HOUSE]’: Cf. st. 4/10 arinkjóll ‘hearth-ship [HOUSE]’. The alternative suggestion (Hkr 1893-1901, IV) that the determinant is brandar ‘beams (decorating a house)’ is unlikely since brandar are also part of a ship (Jesch 2001a, 147-8). According to the interpretation proposed by Lindqvist (1936, 306), the stanza describes a funeral pyre aboard a ship (likewise Norr 1996, 26-7), but the second kenning in l. 14, nǫkkvi toptar ‘boat of the building plot [HOUSE]’ tells against this interpretation. — [11] þangs hlíðar ‘of the sea-weed of the hill-slope [FOREST]’: The kenning can be interpreted as ‘grass’ or as ‘forest’. ‘Forest’ is selected here because hlíðþang is presented as an expression for ‘forest’ in Alv 28/3; cf. also Meissner 89, 101. Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901, IV) favours ‘grass’. — [15] flotna ‘of seafarers’: Þjóðólfr here characteristically extends the metaphor present in the base-word of the kenning into another part of the sentence. The base-words of the two house-kennings, brandnói ‘fire-ship’ and nǫkkvi toptar ‘boat of the building plot’ both mean ‘ship’, hence the people in the building are called flotnar ‘seafarers’.

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