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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Vol. I. Poetry for Scandinavian Rulers 1: From Mythological Times to c. 1035 8. Volume Introduction 4. Biographies 4.1. Ruler biographies 4.1.a. Kings and jarls of Norway 12. Sveinn Alfífuson (r. 1030-1035)

12. Sveinn Alfífuson (r. 1030-1035)

Sveinn Álfífuson or Knútsson, illegitimate son of Knútr inn ríki Sveinsson (Cnut the Great) and the English Álfífa (Ælfgifu of Northampton), ruled Norway for about five years after the fall of Óláfr Haraldsson at Stiklastaðir (Stiklestad) in 1030. In some sources the reign is dated from 1029, when Sveinn was installed in Norway by Knútr. Sveinn defeated the pretender Tryggvi Óláfsson at Bókn (Bokn) c. 1032. His unpopular rule, in which his mother was strongly involved, ended with his prompt departure from Norway on the return of Magnús Óláfsson from exile (see SkP II, lxxxvii). See Anon Nkt 32II (c. 1190); Theodoricus (MHN 34, 39, 44-5; McDougall and McDougall 1998, 25); HN (MHN 123; Kunin and Phelpstead 2001, 25); Ágr (ÍF 29, 31-2; Ágr 2008, 44-7); Fsk (ÍF 29, 201-2, 206-7; Finlay 2004, 161-2, 165-7); ÓHHkr (ÍF 27, 398-404, 406, 410-14); MgóðHkr (ÍF 28, 8, 10-12, 16; Hollander 1964a, 524-8, 534-6, 541-3, 545-6). Þórarinn loftunga (Þloft) is the only poet named in connection with Sveinn in Skáldatal (SnE 1848-87, III, 258, 267, 283).

Events documented in poetry: The Danes travel to Norway (Þloft Glækv 1); Sveinn takes the throne in Þrándheimr (Trøndelag, Þloft Glækv 2); advice to Sveinn (Þloft Glækv 9); Sveinn’s defeat of Tryggvi Óláfsson c. 1032 at Bókn (Bokn, Sigv Tryggfl; Anon Sveinfl); infertility of Norway in the time of Álfífa (Sigv Lv 26).

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. SnE 1848-87 = Snorri Sturluson. 1848-87. Edda Snorra Sturlusonar: Edda Snorronis Sturlaei. Ed. Jón Sigurðsson et al. 3 vols. Copenhagen: Legatum Arnamagnaeanum. Rpt. Osnabrück: Zeller, 1966.
  3. Ágr = [Anonymous] Ágrip af Nóregs konunga sögum.
  4. MHN = Storm, Gustav, ed. 1880. Monumenta historica Norvegiæ: Latinske kildeskrifter til Norges historie i middelalderen. Kristiania (Oslo): Brøgger. Rpt. 1973. Oslo: Aas & Wahl.
  5. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  6. Finlay, Alison, trans. 2004. Fagrskinna: A Catalogue of the Kings of Norway. Leiden: Brill.
  7. HN = Historia Norwegiæ. In MHN 69-124.
  8. ÍF 29 = Ágrip af Nóregskonunga sǫgum; Fagrskinna—Nóregs konungatal. Ed. Bjarni Einarsson. 1985.
  9. McDougall, David and Ian McDougall, trans. 1998. Theodoricus monachus. Historia de antiquitate regum norwagiensium: An Account of the Ancient History of the Norwegian Kings. Viking Society for Northern Research Text Series 11. University College, London: Viking Society for Northern Research.
  10. Theodoricus = Theodrici monachi historia de antiquitate regum Norwagiensium. In MHN 1-68.
  11. Ágr 2008 = Driscoll, Matthew J., ed. and trans. 2008. Ágrip af Nóregskonungasǫgum: A Twelfth-Century Synoptic History of the Kings of Norway. 2nd edn. Viking Society for Northern Research Text Series 10. University College London: Viking Society for Northern Research.
  12. SkP II = Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Ed. Kari Ellen Gade. 2009.
  13. Kunin, Devra, trans., and Carl Phelpstead, ed., introd. and notes. 2001. A History of Norway and the Passion and Miracles of the Blessed Óláfr. Viking Society for Northern Research Text Series 13. London: Viking Society for Northern Research.
  14. Hollander, Lee M., trans. 1964a. Heimskringla: History of the Kings of Norway by Snorri Sturluson. Austin: The American-Scandinavian Foundation. Rpt. 1991 (rpt. cited in SkP II).
  15. Internal references
  16. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘Fagrskinna (Fsk)’ 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, pp. clix-clxi.
  17. Not published: do not cite (ÓHHkrI)
  18. Matthew Townend 2012, ‘(Biography of) Þórarinn loftunga’ 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. 848.
  19. Kari Ellen Gade (ed.) 2009, ‘Anonymous Poems, Nóregs konungatal 32’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 781-2.
  20. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Anonymous, Flokkr about Sveinn Álfífuson’ 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. 1029.
  21. Judith Jesch 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Sigvatr Þórðarson, Tryggvaflokkr’ 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. 643.
  22. R. D. Fulk (ed.) 2012, ‘Sigvatr Þórðarson, Lausavísur 26’ 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. 732.
  23. Matthew Townend (ed.) 2012, ‘Þórarinn loftunga, Glælognskviða 1’ 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. 865.
  24. Matthew Townend (ed.) 2012, ‘Þórarinn loftunga, Glælognskviða 2’ 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. 866.
  25. Matthew Townend (ed.) 2012, ‘Þórarinn loftunga, Glælognskviða 9’ 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. 875.
  26. Not published: do not cite ()
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