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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Sigv Austv 6I/4 — tíri ‘praiseworthiness’

Nú hafa hnekkt, þeirs hnakka
(heinflets) við mér settu,
(þeygi bella þollar)
þrír samnafnar (tíri).
Þó séumk hitt, at hlœðir
hafskíðs myni síðan
út, hverrs Ǫlvir heitir,
alls mest, reka gesti.

Nú hafa þrír samnafnar hnekkt, þeirs settu hnakka við mér; þeygi bella þollar heinflets tíri. Þó séumk hitt alls mest, at hverr hlœðir hafskíðs, [e]s heitir Ǫlvir, myni síðan reka gesti út.

Now three namesakes have driven [me] away, they who turned their backs on me; not at all do the firs of the whetstone-platform [SWORD > MEN] display praiseworthiness. However, I fear this above all, that every loader of the ocean-ski [SHIP > SEAFARER] who is named Ǫlvir will henceforth chase strangers away.


[4] tíri: fleiri 75a, eiri 68, tíði Flat


[3, 4] þeygi bella … tíri ‘not at all do … display praiseworthiness’: This is the sense normally assumed, i.e. that the three Ǫlvirs have acted badly. Konráð Gíslason (1892, 178) cites parallel instances of tírr in this concrete sense. Kock (NN §2218B) compiles poetic instances of bella in an attempt to show that with an instr. object (including the present context) it means ‘go about, perform, be intent upon’, while with a dat. one it means ‘hit, get at’, i.e. ‘reach one’s mark’ (though of course dat. and instr. objects are formally indistinguishable).



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