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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Anon Mdr 42VII

Katrina Attwood (ed.) 2007, ‘Anonymous Poems, Máríudrápa 42’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry on Christian Subjects. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 7. Turnhout: Brepols, pp. 513-14.

Anonymous PoemsMáríudrápa
414243

text and translation

Heil vertu, drottning dýrðar,
dags *önn valin mönnum,
líknar rót og læknir,
lýðs vegr, gift og prýði.
Heitir þú stígi og stræti
styrkr til ljóss frá myrkrum
grundvöllr gæzku allrar
gimsteinn konungs himna.

Heil vertu, drottning dýrðar, valin *önn dags mönnum, rót líknar og læknir, vegr lýðs, gift og prýði. Þú heitir stígi og styrkr stræti til ljóss frá myrkrum, grundvöllr allrar gæzku, gimsteinn {konungs himna}.
 
‘Hail to you, queen of glory, chosen as light’s vestibule for men, root of mercy and healer, mankind’s glory, gift and adornment. You are called a ladder and a strong road to light from darkness, the foundation of all mercy, jewel of the king of the heavens [= God (= Christ)].

notes and context

[1-2]: The ms. reading sönn ‘true’ (l. 2) can only be retained if the syntax of ll. 1-2 is construed differently from the preceding sts 37-41, where the first l. of each st. is an independent cl., followed by a number of epithets for the Virgin in apposition to drottning dýrðar. It would be possible to break this pattern by reading Heil vertu sönn drottning dýrðar dags valin mǫnnum ‘Hail to you, true queen of the glory of day, chosen for [or by] men’ (so, with minor differences, Skj B and Attwood 1996a), or by construing sönn with líknar rót ok læknir (l. 3), as Rydberg does. However, the emendation proposed by Kock (NN §1660) of sönn to önn, construing this with dags (l. 2) to form a Mary-epithet, ‘vestibule of day’ is attractive, not only because it keeps syntactic parity with sts 37-41 but because it also provides a recognisable type of Mary-epithet (cf. Schottmann 1973, 49, who draws attention to the possible parallel with Lat. aula lucis ‘vestibule of light’ in the breviary hymn O gratiosa virginum ‘O most gracious of virgins’). Önn is attested as an alternative spelling for önd ‘porch, vestibule’, as in Skí 31/8 (NK, 75; Fritzner: ǫnd), but only occurs with this sense in one other instance in the skaldic corpus, Bjhit Lv 3/7V. The majority of uses listed in LP: ǫnn of the phrase dags ǫnn have the sense of ‘day’s work’, but it is hard to see how this would fit the present context.

readings

sources

Text is based on reconstruction from the base text and variant apparatus and may contain alternative spellings and other normalisations not visible in the manuscript text. Transcriptions may not have been checked and should not be cited.

editions and texts

Skj: [Anonyme digte og vers XIV], [B. 1]. En drape om jomfru Maria (Máríudrápa) 42: AII, 472, BII, 504-5, Skald II, 276, NN §§1660, 2983; Rydberg 1907, 41, 58, Attwood 1996a, 114, 313.

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