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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. 37. Sigvatr Þórðarson, 10. Knútsdrápa, 10 [Vol. 1, 661]

[7-8]: As Frank (1994b, 118) points out, all three of the alliterating words in this couplet are loanwords. Kærr ‘dear’ is from French (Fischer 1909, 80), keisari ‘emperor’ from Lat. via OE or Ger. (Fischer 1909, 59), and klúss ‘close’ probably also from Lat. via OE or Ger. (though Fischer 1909, 79 suggests French), while the fourth word, Pétrús(i), is a Biblical name in Latinate form. As Frank (loc. cit.) states, ‘The four words, linked by rhyme and consonance, re-enact, recapitulate, Cnut’s successful “networking” with the two great political powers of Western Europe’. For all four words, this is their first recorded occurrence in skaldic verse.


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