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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

2. Þjóðólfr Arnórsson, 4. Sexstefja, 23 [Vol. 2, 137-8]

[1, 4] fœrði starf til króks ‘brought the task to completion’: Starf could mean either ‘work, task’ in general, or more specifically ‘fighting’, as attested in Sigv Víkv 7/8I, Þorm Þorgdr 1/1V and elsewhere. Fœra til króks contextually seems to mean ‘complete, finish’, and there is a general consensus about this, but the exact sense is obscure. Krókr ‘hook, bend’ has multiple applications, including everyday objects and landscape features, but the present usage does not match any recorded idiom, and Þjóðolfr’s semi-figurative usage in his Run 1, ók í ǫngvan krók ‘drove into a tight spot’, does not seem to help. Sveinbjörn Egilsson suggested a reference to anchoring a ship, i.e. completing a journey; Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901, IV, 235) cited this but himself suggested reference to hanging something that is completed on a hook. ÍF 28, ÍF 29, Hkr 1991 and Andersson and Gade take the emphasis to be especially on ceasing warfare (the starf), and Finlay (2004, 217) translates ‘hung up hostility’.


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