skaldic

Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Þjóð Yt 12I/11 — hǫðnu ‘of the kid’

Varð Jǫrundr,
hinns endr of dó,
lífs of lattr
í Limafirði,
þás hábrjóstr
hǫrva Sleipnir
bana Goðlaugs
of bera skyldi.
Ok Hagbarðs
hersa valdi
hǫðnu leif
at halsi gekk.

Jǫrundr, hinns endr of dó, varð of lattr lífs í Limafirði, þás hábrjóstr Sleipnir hǫrva skyldi of bera bana Goðlaugs. Ok leif hǫðnu Hagbarðs gekk at halsi valdi hersa.

Jǫrundr, the one who died long ago, was deprived of his life in Limfjorden when the high-breasted Sleipnir <horse> of flax cords [GALLOWS] had to carry the slayer of Guðlaugr [= Jǫrundr]. And the remnant of the kid [LEATHER STRAP] of Hagbarðr <Danish legendary hero> [NOOSE] went around the neck of the lord of hersar [KING].

readings

[11] hǫðnu: hǫðnum 521ˣ, auðnu F

notes

[9, 11] leif hǫðnu Hagbarðs ‘the remnant of the kid [LEATHER STRAP] of Hagbarðr <Danish legendary hero> [NOOSE]’: This is one of the few cases where the base-word of a kenning is itself replaced with a kenning (see ‘The diction of skaldic poetry’ in General Introduction). Haðna is the female kid or young goat, whose ‘remnant’ is the leather out of which the strap is produced. Hagbarðr figures in Danish heroic legend as a victim of hanging; cf. Note to st. 9/10, 11-12. Finnur Jónsson (Hkr 1893-1901, IV) seeks to trace this kenning to a forgotten detail of the Hagbarðr legend.

kennings

grammar

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