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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Hfr ErfÓl 23I

Kate Heslop (ed.) 2012, ‘Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, Erfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar 23’ 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. 433.

Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld ÓttarssonErfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar
222324

Norðmanna hykk nenninn
— nús þengill framgenginn —
— dýrr hné dróttar stjóri —
dróttin* und lok sóttan.
Grams dauði brá gœði
góðs ófárar þjóðar;
allr glepsk friðr af falli
flugstyggs sonar Tryggva.

Hykk {nenninn dróttin* Norðmanna} sóttan und lok; nús þengill framgenginn; {dýrr stjóri dróttar} hné. Dauði góðs grams brá gœði ófárar þjóðar; allr friðr glepsk af falli {flugstyggs sonar Tryggva}.

I think {the energetic lord of Norwegians} [= Óláfr] has gone to his end; now the prince has passed on; {the worthy steerer of the retinue} [RULER] fell. The death of the good ruler snatched away the well-being of not a few peoples; all peace is confounded by the fall {of the flight-shunning son of Tryggvi} [= Óláfr].

Mss: FskAˣ(145-146), 52ˣ(55r-v), 301ˣ(53v) (Fsk)

Readings: [3] dýrr: dýr all    [4] dróttin*: dróttinn all    [7] glepsk: ‘glæps’ all;    friðr: ‘fiðr’ all;    falli: fjalli 52ˣ    [8] ‑styggs: ‘‑tygs’ FskAˣ, 301ˣ, ‑tyggs 52ˣ

Editions: Skj AI, 165, Skj BI, 156, Skald I, 84; Fsk 1902-3, 133-4 (ch. 22), ÍF 29, 162-3 (ch. 24).

Context: This follows st. 22 (Fsk only), finishing the sequence of quotations from Hfr ErfÓl in the chapter.

Notes: [2] framgenginn ‘passed on’: Previous eds have framm genginn, although it is clearly written as one word in both mss. In its literal sense of ‘go, move forward’ ganga framm is common in skaldic poetry, e.g. in battle-descriptions, but the extended sense ‘go on [into death]’, and this cpd, seem otherwise to be found only in poetry in eddic metres (Vsp 39/8, Skí 12/2, Herv Lv 2/3VIII (Heiðr 15)). — [3] dýrr ‘worthy’: The mss have ‘dyr’, i.e. dýr, but that form (f. nom. sg. or n. nom./acc. pl.) cannot fit here. — [4] dróttin* ‘lord’: The mss have ‘drottinn’ (the second n abbreviated), but acc. sg. dróttin is required as object to hykk ‘I think’. — [4] sóttan und lok ‘gone to his end’: Kiil (1953) suggests that the phrase sœkja und lok (or fara und lok, cf. Kveld Lv 1/4V (Eg 1)) has roots in Germanic and Saami burial customs, since lok can mean ‘cover, lid’. However, the fact that lok (sg. or pl.) can mean ‘end, conclusion’ (Fritzner: lok 6) seems sufficient to explain its use in circumlocutions for death. — [5] dauði ... grams ‘the death of the ... ruler’: Cf. gram dauðan ‘the dead ruler’, st. 28/2. — [5] gœði ‘the well-being’: The only other secure instance of gœði in the skaldic corpus is Anon Líkn 49/5VII, where it signifies wealth in the Christian spiritual sense of ‘good things, blessings’; it also appears as a variant in the eddic Grí 51/4 (NK 67 and n.), where it seems to mean ‘goodwill’ (LT 96). The related agent-nouns gœðir and gœðingr ‘bestower, benefactor’ are, however, common in skaldic verse of all periods, the latter appearing in st. 27/6. — [7-8]: These lines, though quite corrupt in the surviving Fsk tradition, form the stef ‘refrain’ of the drápa (cf. st. 28/3-4). Line 8 participates in a pattern of rhymes on Óláfr’s patronym which extends through much of the poem (see Note to st. 13/2), and is echoed in Sigv ErfÓl 3/2.

References

  1. Bibliography
  2. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  3. 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.
  4. NK = Neckel, Gustav and Hans Kuhn (1899), eds. 1983. Edda: Die Lieder des Codex Regius nebst verwandten Denkmälern. 2 vols. I: Text. 5th edn. Heidelberg: Winter.
  5. LT = La Farge, Beatrice and John Tucker. 1992. Glossary to the Poetic Edda, based on Hans Kuhn’s Kurzes Wörterbuch. Skandinavistische Arbeiten 15. Heidelberg: Winter.
  6. Fsk 1902-3 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1902-3. Fagrskinna: Nóregs kononga tal. SUGNL 30. Copenhagen: Møller.
  7. ÍF 29 = Ágrip af Nóregskonunga sǫgum; Fagrskinna—Nóregs konungatal. Ed. Bjarni Einarsson. 1985.
  8. Kiil, Vilhelm. 1953. ‘“Fara und lok”’. MM, 103-7.
  9. Internal references
  10. 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.
  11. Hannah Burrows (ed.) 2017, ‘Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks 62 (Gestumblindi, Heiðreks gátur 15)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 425.
  12. George S. Tate (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Líknarbraut 49’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 283-4.
  13. Kate Heslop 2012, ‘(Introduction to) Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld Óttarsson, Erfidrápa Óláfs Tryggvasonar’ 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. 400.
  14. Not published: do not cite (Anon (Eg) 1V (Eg 13))
  15. Not published: do not cite ()
  16. Not published: do not cite ()
  17. Not published: do not cite ()
  18. Not published: do not cite (Kveld Lv 1V (Eg 1))
  19. Judith Jesch (ed.) 2012, ‘Sigvatr Þórðarson, Erfidrápa Óláfs helga 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. 668.
  20. Hannah Burrows (ed.) 2017, ‘Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks 15 (Hervǫr, Lausavísur 2)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 374.
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