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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Eyv Hál 4I

Russell Poole (ed.) 2012, ‘Eyvindr skáldaspillir Finnsson, Háleygjatal 4’ 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. 202.

Eyvindr skáldaspillir FinnssonHáleygjatal
3x45

En Goðlaugr
grimman tamði
við ofrkapp
austrkonunga
Sigars jó,
es synir Yngva
menglǫtuð
við meið riðu.

En Goðlaugr tamði {grimman jó Sigars} við ofrkapp austrkonunga, es synir Yngva riðu {menglǫtuð} við meið.

But Guðlaugr tamed {the savage horse of Sigarr <legendary king>} [GALLOWS], because of the belligerence of the eastern kings, when the sons of Yngvi fastened {the ring-destroyer} [GENEROUS MAN] to the tree.

Mss: (24r), F(4rb), J2ˣ(13r) (Hkr)

Readings: [3] við: viðr J2ˣ    [5] Sigars: sigrs F;    jó: hjó J2ˣ    [6] es (‘er’): enn F, J2ˣ    [8] riðu: so F, J2ˣ, ‘reiðo’ Kˣ

Editions: Skj AI, 69, Skj BI, 61, Skald I, 37-8; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 42, IV, 12-13, ÍF 26, 44, Hkr 1991, I, 25 (Yng ch. 23), F 1871, 16; Krause 1990, 160-3.

Context: Stanzas 4 and 5 are cited without a break. Jǫrundr and Eiríkr, sons of Yngvi, meet Guðlaugr, king of Hálogaland, in Denmark, defeat him in a sea-battle and hang him at Straumeyjarnes, where his men build a burial mound. 

Notes: [All]: The death of Guðlaugr at the hands of Jǫrundr is alluded to in Þjóð Yt 12/7. — [3] ofrkapp ‘the belligerence’: Lit. ‘excessive competitiveness, aggression’.  — [4] austrkonunga ‘of the eastern kings’: The kings of Sweden. — [5] jó Sigars ‘the horse of Sigarr <legendary king> [GALLOWS]’: The kenning alludes to the hanging of Hagbarðr by Sigarr, whose daughter Hagbarðr is courting. The story is known best from Saxo Grammaticus (Saxo 2005, I, 7, 7, 1-17, pp. 464-77) but for its currency in skaldic poetry see KormǪ Lv 4V (Korm 4). The kenning has counterparts in Þjóð Yt 9/11-12 and Sigv ErfÓl 1/8. For the image of ‘riding the gallows’, see Þjóð Yt 9/10, 11-12. — [6] synir Yngva ‘the sons of Yngvi’: See Context. — [7] menglǫtuð ‘the ring-destroyer [GENEROUS MAN]’: Also used in Þjóð Yt 3/11. — [8] riðu ‘fastened’: In this edn the reading of J2ˣ and F is adopted and construed as 3rd pers. pl. pret. ind. from the verb ríða (< *vríða) ‘twist, knit, braid, tie’ (cf. CVC: ríða; LP: 2. ríða; AEW: ríða 2). Earlier eds (Hkr 1893-1901; Skj B; ÍF 26; Hkr 1991) based themselves on ’s ‘reiðo’, emending to reiddu ‘caused to ride’. This would link to an extended image formed by the words tamði ‘tamed’ and ‘horse’. However, the reading in the other mss makes sense without emendation, while that of may result from the comparative obscurity of ríða in the sense of ‘tie, twist’ etc. (there being only two other attestations in Old Norse poetry, LP: 2. ríða), and perhaps also from the influence of adjacent meið ‘tree’ (l. 8) and náreiðr ‘corpse-bearing’ (st. 5/1). Association by way of paronomasia with the more prevalent sense of ríða ‘ride’ would be very likely in such a context.

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. AEW = Vries, Jan de. 1962. Altnordisches etymologisches Wörterbuch. 2nd rev. edn. Rpt. 1977. Leiden: Brill.
  5. LP = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1931. Lexicon poeticum antiquæ linguæ septentrionalis: Ordbog over det norsk-islandske skjaldesprog oprindelig forfattet af Sveinbjörn Egilsson. 2nd edn. Copenhagen: Møller.
  6. CVC = Cleasby, Richard, Gudbrand Vigfusson [Guðbrandur Vigfússon] and W. A. Craigie. 1957. An Icelandic-English Dictionary. 2nd edn. Oxford: Clarendon.
  7. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  8. Hkr 1893-1901 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1893-1901. Heimskringla: Nóregs konunga sǫgur af Snorri Sturluson. 4 vols. SUGNL 23. Copenhagen: Møller.
  9. Hkr 1991 = Bergljót S. Kristjánsdóttir et al., eds. 1991. Heimskringla. 3 vols. Reykjavík: Mál og menning.
  10. F 1871 = Unger, C. R., ed. 1871. Fríssbók: Codex Frisianus. En samling af norske konge-sagaer. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  11. Saxo 2005 = Friis-Jensen, Karsten, ed. 2005. Saxo Grammaticus: Gesta Danorum / Danmarkshistorien. Trans. Peter Zeeberg. 2 vols. Copenhagen: Det danske sprog- og litteraturselskab & Gads forlag.
  12. Krause, Arnulf, ed. 1990. Die Dichtung des Eyvindr skáldaspillir: Edition-Kommentar-Untersuchungen. Altnordische Bibliothek 10. Leverkusen: Literaturverlag Norden Mark Reinhardt.
  13. Internal references
  14. Not published: do not cite (YngII)
  15. Not published: do not cite (KormǪ Lv 4V (Korm 4))
  16. Judith Jesch (ed.) 2012, ‘Sigvatr Þórðarson, Erfidrápa Óláfs helga 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. 665.
  17. Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal 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. 22.
  18. Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal 12’ 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. 28.
  19. Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Ynglingatal 3’ 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. 12.
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