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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Lil 31VII

Martin Chase (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Lilja 31’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 598-9.

Anonymous PoemsLilja
303132

Loftin öll af ljósi fyllaz;
legir á grundu stóðu og undraz;
kúguð sjálf af nærri nógu
náttúran sier ekki mátti.
Giftiz öndin guðdóms krafti
góð og huldiz Máríu blóði;
glaðrar dvelz í jungfrú iðrum
ein persóna þrennrar greinar.

Öll loftin fyllaz af ljósi; legir á grundu stóðu og undraz; sjálf náttúran, nærri kúguð af nógu, mátti sier ekki. Góð öndin giftiz krafti guðdóms og huldiz blóði Máríu; ein persóna þrennrar greinar dvelz í iðrum glaðrar jungfrú.

All the heavens are filled with light, the waters on the earth stood and were amazed; nature itself, all but sufficiently compelled, was unable to help itself. The good soul was wed to the power of the Godhead and hid itself in the blood of Mary; one person of the threefold branch takes up dwelling in the womb of the joyful virgin.

Mss: Bb(114va), 720a VIII(2v), 99a(7r), 622(28), 713(8), Vb(249), 41 8°ˣ(114-115), 705ˣ(9r), 4892(29v)

Readings: [2] legir: leiðir 720a VIII, leir 41 8°ˣ, 4892;    á: og 720a VIII, 99a, 622, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892;    grundu: grundar 720a VIII, grund þau 99a, 622, 713, 705ˣ, grund það Vb, 41 8°ˣ, grund þá 4892;    stóðu: stóð Vb, 4892    [3] kúguð: kúgan 99a;    af: svá 99a, 713, Vb, 4892, enn 622, 705ˣ    [4] mátti: málti 4892    [6] góð: góðu 720a VIII, 99a, 622, 705ˣ, góðrar Vb, 41 8°ˣ;    og: om. 720a VIII, 99a, Vb, 705ˣ    [7] glaðrar: glaður 622, glaður corrected from ‘glaðrar’ 705ˣ;    jungfrú: jungfrúr 622, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ    [8] persóna: persónan 99a, 713, persóna í 622;    þrennrar: þrennra 99a, 713, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, þrennum 622;    greinar: greina 99a, Vb, 41 8°ˣ, 705ˣ, 4892, greinum 622

Editions: Skj AII, 373, Skj BII, 398, Skald II, 217, NN §1521.

Notes: [2] legir á grundu stóðu ‘the waters on the earth stood’: So Bb. Other mss read legir og grund þau stóðu ‘the waters and the earth, they stood’ and this reading is adopted by Skj B and Skald. — [5] góð öndin giftiz krafti guðdóms ‘the good soul was wed to the power of the Godhead’: This refers to the human soul of Christ and reflects traditional christological doctrine, first formally defined by the Council of Ephesus in 431. The doctrine was reaffirmed by the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215: Et tandem unigenitus Dei Filius Iesus Christus, a tota Trinitate commuiter incarnatus, ex Maria semper Virgine Spiritus Sancti cooperatione conceptus, verus homo factus, ex anima rationali et humana carne compositus, una in duabus naturis persona, viam vitae manifestius demonstravit ‘Finally, the only-begotten Son of God, Jesus Christ, whose Incarnation is the common work of the whole Trinity, conceived of the ever-virgin Mary through the work of the Holy Spirit, made true man, composed of a rational soul and human flesh, one person in two natures, showed more manifestly the way of life’ (Denzinger and Schönmetzer 1965, §801). — [6] góð (f. nom. sg.) ‘good’: Agrees with öndin ‘the good soul’; the majority of mss have góðu (n. dat. sg.) ‘good’, which must be construed with blóði Máríu ‘the blood of Mary’; so Skj B and Skald but cf. Schottmann 1973, 231. — [6] huldiz ‘hid itself’: Cf. Has 18/5-6. — [6] blóði Máríu ‘in the blood of Mary’: A metonymy for her human body. Cf. the same image in 67/8 and 83/6. The Oratio ad Deum Filium ‘Prayer to God the Son’ of Peter Damian (Petrus Damianus, col. 921) expresses the theological idea behind this: Te materiam Sapientia coelestis habuit, unde templum sui corporis fabricavit ‘Wisdom from on high took you [Mary] as the matter from which he made the temple of his body’. — [8] ein persóna þrennrar greinar ‘one person of the threefold branch’: One of the three persons (the theological term for God the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit) who make up the three ‘branches’ of the Trinity. The epithet is tautological: it is the equivalent of ‘one person of the three persons’ or ‘one branch of the three branches’. Cf. HómÍsl 1993, 29v: …guþ fꜵþor almátkan. oc ſun oc anda helgan. Þriár greiner oc eitt veʟde ‘God the Father almighty, and Son and Holy Spirit: three branches and one authority’.

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. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  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. Denzinger, Heinrich and Adolf Schönmetzer, S. J., eds. 1965. Enchiridion Symbolorum: Definitionum et Declarationum de rebus fidei et morum. 36th edn. Freiburg in Breisgau: Herder.
  6. Schottmann, Hans. 1973. Die isländische Mariendichtung. Untersuchungen zur volkssprachigen Mariendichtung des Mittelalters. Münchner germanistische Beiträge 9. Munich: Fink.
  7. Fritzner = Fritzner, Johan. 1883-96. Ordbog over det gamle norske sprog. 3 vols. Kristiania (Oslo): Den norske forlagsforening. 4th edn. Rpt. 1973. Oslo etc.: Universitetsforlaget.
  8. HómÍsl 1993 = de Leeuw van Weenen, Andrea, ed. 1993. The Icelandic Homily Book: Perg. 15 4° in the Royal Library, Stockholm. Íslensk handrit/Icelandic Manuscripts Series in quarto 3. Reykjavík: Stofnun Árna Magnússonar á Íslandi.
  9. Internal references
  10. Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Gamli kanóki, Harmsól 18’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 89.
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