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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Heil 3VII

Kirsten Wolf (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Heilagra manna drápa 3’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 875.

Anonymous PoemsHeilagra manna drápa
234

Hræra ‘twist’

2. hrœra (verb): move

[1] Hræra: ‘[...]æra’ 720a VI, ‘h(ans f)æra’ 399a‑bˣ

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hodda ‘of treasures’

1. hodd (noun f.): gold, treasure

kennings

vers hodda
‘of the man of treasures ’
   = TREASURE GUARDIAN

the man of treasures → TREASURE GUARDIAN

notes

[2] vers hodda ‘of the man of treasures’: According to LP: verr, this kenning occurs only in this poem. Kock (NN §1541) thinks that it means ‘guardian of the treasury’, arguing that Thomas was the one to whom the care of Canterbury cathedral’s golden treasures were entrusted.

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vers ‘of the man’

1. verr (noun m.; °[-s; -ar/ir]): man

kennings

vers hodda
‘of the man of treasures ’
   = TREASURE GUARDIAN

the man of treasures → TREASURE GUARDIAN

notes

[2] vers hodda ‘of the man of treasures’: According to LP: verr, this kenning occurs only in this poem. Kock (NN §1541) thinks that it means ‘guardian of the treasury’, arguing that Thomas was the one to whom the care of Canterbury cathedral’s golden treasures were entrusted.

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megandi ‘being able’

mega (verb): may, might

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sjá ‘to see’

2. sjá (verb): see

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hvar ‘where’

hvar (adv.): where

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laugaz ‘be bathed’

lauga (verb): wash

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móðir ‘mother’

móðir (noun f.): mother

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blóði ‘the blood’

blóð (noun n.; °-s): blood

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tíguligr ‘the magnificent’

tíguligr (adj.): [magnificent]

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með ‘with’

með (prep.): with

notes

[7] með tvieföldum sigri ‘with a two-fold victory’: Perhaps a reference to his exemplary life and exemplary death.

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tvieföldum ‘a two-fold’

tvífaldr (adj.): [a two-fold]

notes

[7] með tvieföldum sigri ‘with a two-fold victory’: Perhaps a reference to his exemplary life and exemplary death.

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sigri ‘victory’

sigr (noun m.; °sigrs/sigrar, dat. sigri; sigrar): victory

notes

[7] með tvieföldum sigri ‘with a two-fold victory’: Perhaps a reference to his exemplary life and exemplary death.

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skínn ‘shines’

skína (verb): shine

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Interactive view: tap on words in the text for notes and glosses

The detail that Thomas’s brains were spilled on the cathedral floor is found in a number of the prose lives (Unger 1869, 262, 442; Eiríkur Magnússon 1875-83, I, 546). The rather macabre interest of this st. in Thomas’s wound finds a parallel in Þorgils saga skarða, where Þorgils, who asked to have Thómas saga read to him on the evening before he died (1258), is said to have suffered the same fatal wound as S. Thomas did (Stu 1906-11, II, 295, 298). — [5-6]: Presumably these ll. allude to the fear and sorrow of the cathedral monks (watching the killing from a safe distance), concerned that the altar, dedicated to the Virgin, where Becket prayed immediately before the attack, could be stained with his blood, as in fact happened (cf. Unger 1869, 260, 441; Eiríkur Magnússon 1875-83, I, 542). Megandi sjá hvar ‘being able to see where’ presumably assumes the cathedral monks as the unstated subject of the pres. part. megandi.

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