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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to Arn Magndr 12II

[7] rýgjar ‘of the troll-woman’: (a) The reading is here taken, as by Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson, as rýgjar, gen. sg. of the f. noun meaning ‘mighty woman, ogress’ (ÍF 28, 56-7 n., following Nj 1875-8, II, 518); it forms part of an axe-kenning (cf. Meissner 148) which in turn is determinant to a battle-kenning. (b) An alternative also proposed by Bjarni is that rýgr, again like other words for ‘troll-woman’ or ‘giantess’ (e.g. gnepja and vígglǫð), might be an axe-heiti in itself. Róg rýgjar ‘strife of the axe’ would then be ‘battle’, rógský rýgjar ‘clouds of battle’ would be ‘shields’ and the regn of shields once more ‘battle’. (c) Skj B reads the minority variant ‘rygia’ as acc. pl. of Rygjar (men of Rogaland), hence bað Rygja leggja saman randir ‘asked the Rygjar to set their shields together’. (d) Kock (NN §822) reads Rygja and construes rógskýja ... Rygja regni ‘the Rogalanders’ battle’.

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. Skj B = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1912-15b. Den norsk-islandske skjaldedigtning. B: Rettet tekst. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Villadsen & Christensen. Rpt. 1973. Copenhagen: Rosenkilde & Bagger.
  3. Nj 1875-89 = Konráð Gíslason and Eiríkur Jónsson. 1875-89. Njála: Udgivet efter gamle håndskrifter. Íslendingasögur udgivne efter gamle haandskrifter af Det Kongelige Nordiske Oldskrift-selskab 4. Copenhagen: Thiele.
  4. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. Meissner = Meissner, Rudolf. 1921. Die Kenningar der Skalden: Ein Beitrag zur skaldischen Poetik. Rheinische Beiträge und Hülfsbücher zur germanischen Philologie und Volkskunde 1. Bonn and Leipzig: Schroeder. Rpt. 1984. Hildesheim etc.: Olms.
  6. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.

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