This is a backup server for Any changes made here will be lost.

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

login: password: stay logged in: help

Note to stanza

7. Anonymous Poems, Líknarbraut, 4 [Vol. 7, 233-4]

[7] lsku túni ‘(hedged) enclosure, field of eloquence [BREAST]’: In a note on the lacuna in B, 399a-bˣ (Jón Sigurðsson) conjectures ‘me᷎lzku’ (revised from ‘me᷎rðar’), which all eds have adopted. Guðrún Nordal 2001, 258 observes that mælska does not fit the typical pattern of determinants in chest-kennings and that it is ‘probably closer to the point to interpret [mælsku tún] as mouth’. (Cf. Meissner, 136 who, while construing it as ‘breast’, acknowledges that it could by itself be a kenning for ‘mouth’.) This suggestion seems however less probable with reference to the context. While myrkrum misverka ‘darkness of misdeeds’ (l. 5) could refer back to sins of the tongue in st. 2, it seems less likely that the poet is here praying to have his mouth cleansed than to have his heart purified. This is especially true because of the counterbalancing of two kennings – one in each helmingr – for the same locus. Surely it is the darkness now residing in his mælsku tún ‘enclosure of eloquence [BREAST]’ which he prays to have cleared away as light infuses his sal hjarta ‘hall of the heart [BREAST]’ (l. 4). The second element of the prayer, that the light clear away the blindi móðs munar ‘blindness of despondent mind’ (ll. 6, 8, 6), simply restates the entreaty of the first – that the darkness be driven from the poet’s breast (the seat of the mind). (See Note on lyndis láð ‘mind’s land [BREAST]’ at 5/3-4.)


© Skaldic Project Academic Body, unless otherwise noted. Database structure and interface developed by Tarrin Wills. All users of material on this database are reminded that its content may be either subject to copyright restrictions or is the property of the custodians of linked databases that have given permission for members of the skaldic project to use their material for research purposes. Those users who have been given access to as yet unpublished material are further reminded that they may not use, publish or otherwise manipulate such material except with the express permission of the individual editor of the material in question and the General Editor of the volume in which the material is to be published. Applications for permission to use such material should be made in the first instance to the General Editor of the volume in question. All information that appears in the published volumes has been thoroughly reviewed. If you believe some information here is incorrect please contact Tarrin Wills with full details.

This is a backup server for Any changes made here will be lost.