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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Eskál Vell 14I

Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Einarr skálaglamm Helgason, Vellekla 14’ 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. 301.

Einarr skálaglamm HelgasonVellekla
131415

Ǫll lét senn inn svinni
sǫnn Einriða mǫnnum
herjum kunn of herjuð
hofs lǫnd ok vé banda,
áðr veg jǫtna vitni
valfalls of sæ allan
— þeim stýra goð — geira
garðs Hlórriði farði.

Inn svinni lét senn ǫll of herjuð lǫnd hofs Einriða ok vé banda, kunn herjum, sǫnn mǫnnum, áðr {Hlórriði {garðs geira}} farði {veg jǫtna} vitni valfalls of allan sæ; goð stýra þeim.

The wise one soon made all the harried lands of the temple of Einriði <= Þórr> and the sanctuaries of the gods, famous among the peoples, lawful for men, before {the Hlórriði <= Þórr> {of the fence of spears}} [SHIELD > WARRIOR = Hákon jarl] ferried evidence of slaughter {to the path of the giants} [MOUNTAINS = Norway?] across all the sea; the gods guide him.

Mss: (139v-140r), 39(5va), F(23ra), J1ˣ(81r-v), J2ˣ(76r) (Hkr); 61(11ra), 53(9rb), 54(5ra), Bb(14vb) (ÓT); FskBˣ(22v), FskAˣ(87) (Fsk, ll. 1-4)

Readings: [1] senn: so 39, F, J1ˣ, 61, 53, 54, Bb, FskBˣ, FskAˣ, sǫnn Kˣ, J2ˣ;    inn: en 61    [2] sǫnn: ‘sunn’ 39;    Einriða: corrected from einráða Bb    [3] herjum: ‘herion’ 39, F, hverjum 53, 54, Bb;    kunn: so 39, F, J1ˣ, 61, 53, 54, Bb, FskBˣ, FskAˣ, kunnr Kˣ, J2ˣ;    herjuð: ‘heruð’ FskAˣ    [4] lǫnd: abbrev. as ‘ld’ 61, 53, Bb, land 54    [5] áðr: so 39, F, J1ˣ, 61, 53, 54, Bb, at Kˣ;    veg: út 39, F, vé J1ˣ, 61, 53, 54, ‘ví’ Bb;    jǫtna: ‘eidma’ Bb;    vitni: ‘v(it)ni’(?) 39    [8] Hlórriði: ‘loriþi’ 39, ‘hloðriðe’ J1ˣ, ‘floriði’ 53, 54, Bb;    farði: varði 61, sparði 53, 54, Bb

Editions: Skj AI, 125-6, Skj BI, 119, Skald I, 67, NN §§401, 402; Hkr 1893-1901, I, 280-1, IV, 73, ÍF 26, 241-2, Hkr 1991, I, 161 (ÓTHkr ch. 16), F 1871, 105; Fms 1, 91, Fms 12, 34, ÓT 1958-2000, I, 98 (ch. 55); Fsk 1902-3, 78 (ch. 15), ÍF 29, 120 (ch. 17).

Context: In Hkr and ÓT, Hákon jarl, after driving the Eiríkssynir (Gunnhildarsynir) from Norway, orders his subjects to maintain the temples and sacrifices. Hkr cites sts 14-16 in unbroken sequence, whereas ÓT cites only sts 14 and 16. Fsk cites only the first helmingr, also to illustrate Hákon’s restoration of sacrifices, but much later in the narrative, after Hákon’s return from Denmark.

Notes: [All]: The overall understanding of the stanza in this edn matches that of the medieval sources and most eds, and appears to be the best solution available, but given the difficulties, especially of ll. 5-8, it can only be tentative. — [1, 2] lét ... sǫnn mǫnnum ‘made ... lawful for men’: Sannr means ‘true, correct, rightful’ (cf. Fritzner: sannr 3, though the examples are of abstract situations). Sǫnn here denotes the opposite of ‘forbidden’ (cf. Olsen 1962a, 38-9). — [2] Einriða ‘of Einriði <= Þórr>’: a name of Þórr. On its etymology, see Note to Þul Þórs 1/4III. The gen. Einriða is taken here with lǫnd hofs ‘land of the temples’. Konráð Gíslason (1895-7, I, 121), Freudenthal (Vell 1865, 35, 38), Kock (NN §401) and Turville-Petre (1976, 61) associate it with the following mǫnnum ‘for men’ and interpret this as ‘the followers of Þórr’. However, it is unclear why the sanctuaries of the bǫnd ‘gods’ should have to be authorised for these followers of Þórr. Moreover menn ‘men, humans’, while it is used to denote the followers of a ruler (LP: maðr 3), is never used for the devotees of a god. — [3] kunn herjum ‘famous among the peoples’: The main ms. has herjum kunnr, an epithet praising Hákon jarl. The correct reading remains uncertain, and eds have been divided in their preferences. — [3] of herjuð ‘harried’: During his reign, Haraldr gráfeldr had the heathen temples burned down, perhaps less out of Christian zeal than in order to break the political opposition, cf. Eskál Hákdr 1/3, 4. — [4] lǫnd hofs ‘the lands of the temple’: Whether hof denoted a structure solely devoted to religion, or a large hall serving both religious purposes and other uses, cannot be clearly discerned (Sundqvist 2005b, 331-4). It may be that the land surrounding the temple was somehow part of the sanctuary (Vikstrand 2001, 265). — [4] vé banda ‘the sanctuaries of the gods’: On the function of the bǫnd, see Note to st. 8/2. In skaldic poetry they appear especially often in conjunction with Þórr (Þjóð Haustl 17/2III, ÚlfrU Húsdr 3/2III, Steinunn Lv 1-2V, Anon (ÓTHkr) 1; see Marold 1992, 705-6). — [5-8]: All eds regard Hlórriði garðs geira ‘Hlórriði <= Þórr> of the fence of spears [SHIELD > WARRIOR = Hákon jarl]’ as the subject of farði of allan sæ ‘ferried all across the sea (lit. across all the sea)’. The remainder of this difficult helmingr is subject to several interpretations. (a) The construal shown above follows Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901, IV; Skj B) in taking together veg jǫtna ‘path of the giants [MOUNTAINS]’, which could refer to Norway, and taking valfall ‘slaughter’ to refer to the death of Haraldr gráfeldr in the battle in Limafjǫrðr (Limfjorden, c. 970). Hence the helmingr appears to mean that Hákon, returning to Norway with this news, at the same time has a claim to authority there. In this edn, veg jǫtna is further taken as part of a construction ferja e-m e-t ‘to ferry/bring sby sth.’, parallel to similar constructions using færa ‘bring’ or senda ‘send’. Finnur Jónsson reads at ‘to’ rather than áðr ‘before’ in l. 5, and this forms a satisfactory prepositional phrase with veg jǫtna, but is problematic in other ways (see Note to l. 5). (b) Kock (NN §402, followed by ÍF 26 and Hkr 1991) interprets vitnir valfalls ‘wolf of death in battle’ as a kenning referring to a sword that Hákon jarl brought across the sea to the mountains (to Norway), but this is unsatisfactory because it would indicate an attack on Norway by Hákon. (c) Kuhn (1971b, 5), on the basis of (l. 5) in some mss, interprets vitni valfalls véjǫtna to mean ‘evidence of the death of the sanctuary-giants [DESECRATORS OF THE TEMPLE]’. Only one instance of jǫtunn in the sense of ‘harmful being’ is attested, however, in Egill Lv 25/4V (Eg 32) jǫtunn vandar ‘giant of the mast [WIND]’. — [5] áðr ‘before’: (a) The word order in ll. 5-8, with the finite verb farði ‘ferried’ in final position, favours the conj. áðr ‘before’ in l. 5, which is also the reading of all mss except (see Kuhn 1971b, 5-6). This means that Hákon is said to re-authorise the heathen cult before bringing news of the fall of Haraldr gráfeldr to Norway, although the reverse sequence of events would be expected. There is no evident solution to this difficulty. (b) This problem is presumably the reason why at ‘to’ is adopted in most eds, but both the ms. evidence and the word order tell against at. — [7] goð stýra þeim ‘the gods guide him’: On this, cf. st. 31. — [7-8] Hlórriði garðs geira ‘the Hlórriði <= Þórr> of the fence of spears [SHIELD > WARRIOR = Hákon jarl]’: Hlórriði is a name for Þórr; for an explanation see Note to Þul Þórs 1/5III. Normally Þórr does not serve as a base-word for kennings of this type (see Meissner 1913, 28, 49-50). This unique instance may be explained by the special significance of Þórr for the rulers of Hlaðir (Lade), which is apparent from the analogies drawn between the deity and the ruler in KormǪ SigdrIII and Eil ÞdrIII (see Marold 1990a, 113‑129).

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. Fms = Sveinbjörn Egilsson et al., eds. 1825-37. Fornmanna sögur eptir gömlum handritum útgefnar að tilhlutun hins norræna fornfræða fèlags. 12 vols. Copenhagen: Popp.
  4. Skald = Kock, Ernst Albin, ed. 1946-50. Den norsk-isländska skaldediktningen. 2 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  5. NN = Kock, Ernst Albin. 1923-44. Notationes Norrœnæ: Anteckningar till Edda och skaldediktning. Lunds Universitets årsskrift new ser. 1. 28 vols. Lund: Gleerup.
  6. 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.
  7. Turville-Petre, Gabriel. 1976. Scaldic Poetry. Oxford: Clarendon.
  8. 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.
  9. ÍF 26-8 = Heimskringla. Ed. Bjarni Aðalbjarnarson. 1941-51.
  10. Hkr 1893-1901 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1893-1901. Heimskringla: Nóregs konunga sǫgur af Snorri Sturluson. 4 vols. SUGNL 23. Copenhagen: Møller.
  11. Hkr 1991 = Bergljót S. Kristjánsdóttir et al., eds. 1991. Heimskringla. 3 vols. Reykjavík: Mál og menning.
  12. F 1871 = Unger, C. R., ed. 1871. Fríssbók: Codex Frisianus. En samling af norske konge-sagaer. Christiania (Oslo): Malling.
  13. Fsk 1902-3 = Finnur Jónsson, ed. 1902-3. Fagrskinna: Nóregs kononga tal. SUGNL 30. Copenhagen: Møller.
  14. ÍF 29 = Ágrip af Nóregskonunga sǫgum; Fagrskinna—Nóregs konungatal. Ed. Bjarni Einarsson. 1985.
  15. Konráð Gíslason. 1895-7. Efterladte skrifter. 2 vols. I: Forelæsninger over oldnordiske skjaldekvad. II: Forelæsninger og videnskablige afhandlinger. Copenhagen: Gyldendal.
  16. ÓT 1958-2000 = Ólafur Halldórsson, ed. 1958-2000. Saga Óláfs Tryggvasonar en mesta. 3 vols. EA A 1-3. Copenhagen: Munksgaard (Reitzel).
  17. Olsen, Magnus. 1962a. Edda- og Skaldekvad. Forarbeider til kommentar. VI. Eyvindr Skáldaspillir, Glúmr Geirason, Einarr Skálaglamm. Avhandlingar utgitt av Det Norske Videnskaps-Akademi i Oslo II. Hist.-filos. kl. new ser. 4. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.
  18. Marold, Edith. 1992. ‘Die Skaldendichtung als Quelle der Religionsgeschichte’. In Beck et al. 1992, 685-719.
  19. Vell 1865 = Freudenthal, Axel Olof. 1865. Einar Skålaglams Vellekla / öfversatt och förklarad af Axel Olof Freudenthal. Helsingfors: Frenckell.
  20. Kuhn, Hans (1899). 1971b. ‘Rund um die Vǫluspá’. In Hennig et al. 1971, 1-14.
  21. Marold, Edith. 1990a. ‘Skaldendichtung und Mythologie’. In Pàroli 1990, 107-30.
  22. Meissner, Rudolf. 1913. ‘Über eine Gruppe von Kenningar für “Mann” und “Frau”’. ZDA 54, 25-60.
  23. Vikstrand, Per. 2001. Gudarnas platser. Förkristna sakrala ortnamn i Mälarlandskapen. Acta Academiae Regiae Gustavi Adolphi 77. Studier till en svensk ortnamnsatlas 17. Uppsala: Kungl. Gustav Adolfs Akademien för Svensk Folkkultur.
  24. Sundqvist, Olof. 2005b. ‘Tempel’. In RGA, 30, 327-38.
  25. Internal references
  26. Kari Ellen Gade 2009, ‘Heimskringla (Hkr)’ in Kari Ellen Gade (ed.), Poetry from the Kings’ Sagas 2: From c. 1035 to c. 1300. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 2. Turnhout: Brepols [check printed volume for citation].
  27. 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.
  28. Diana Whaley 2012, ‘The Greatest Saga of Óláfr Tryggvason / Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar in mesta (ÓT)’ 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. clxiii-clxvi.
  29. Elena Gurevich (ed.) 2017, ‘Anonymous Þulur, Þórs heiti 1’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 758.
  30. Edith Marold with the assistance of Vivian Busch, Jana Krüger, Ann-Dörte Kyas and Katharina Seidel, translated from German by John Foulks 2017, ‘(Introduction to) Eilífr Goðrúnarson, Þórsdrápa’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 68.
  31. Diana Whaley (ed.) 2012, ‘Anonymous Lausavísur, Lausavísa from Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar in Heimskringla 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. 1073.
  32. Edith Marold with the assistance of Vivian Busch, Jana Krüger, Ann-Dörte Kyas and Katharina Seidel, translated from German by John Foulks 2017, ‘(Introduction to) Kormákr Ǫgmundarson, Sigurðardrápa’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 272.
  33. Not published: do not cite (Egill Lv 25V (Eg 32))
  34. Edith Marold (ed.) 2012, ‘Einarr skálaglamm Helgason, Hákonardrápa 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. 279.
  35. Not published: do not cite (Steinunn Lv 1V (Nj 41))
  36. Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.) 2017, ‘Þjóðólfr ór Hvini, Haustlǫng 17’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 457.
  37. Edith Marold (ed.) 2017, ‘Úlfr Uggason, Húsdrápa 3’ in Kari Ellen Gade and Edith Marold (eds), Poetry from Treatises on Poetics. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 3. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 412.
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