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Lexicon Poeticum

Lexicon Poeticum

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Gsind Hákdr 8I/8 — óls ‘of the affliction’

Hræddr fór hjǫrva raddar
herr fyr malma þverri;
rógeisu gekk ræsir
ráðsterkr framar merkjum.
Gerra gramr í snerru
geirvífa sér hlífa,
hinns yfrinn gat, jǫfra,
óls kvánar byr mána.

Herr fór hræddr raddar hjǫrva fyr þverri malma; ræsir rógeisu gekk ráðsterkr framar merkjum. Gramr jǫfra gerra hlífa sér í snerru geirvífa, hinns gat yfrinn byr kvánar óls mána.

The army went in dread of the voice of swords [BATTLE] before the diminisher of metal weapons [WARRIOR = Hákon]; the impeller of the strife-fire [SWORD > WARRIOR = Hákon] advanced, strong in counsel, ahead of the standards. The king of princes [= Hákon] does not protect himself in the onslaught of spear-women [VALKYRIES > BATTLE], he who attained an outstanding fair wind of the wife of the affliction of the moon [GIANT > GIANTESS > MIND].


[8] óls kvánar: so J1ˣ, J2ˣ, oskvánar , ‘os kvanar’ 39, ósk kvánar F, óðs kvánar 61, 53, 325IX 1 a, Bb, óskvænan Flat


[8] byr kvánar óls mána ‘fair wind of the wife of the affliction of the moon [GIANT > GIANTESS > MIND]’: This kenning is clearly of the well-known type ‘wind of the giantess [MIND/THOUGHT]’, but it has caused difficulty because of the significant variance in ms. readings. (a) The explanation adopted in this edn is due to Björn Magnússon Ólsen (1886, 195-203, followed by ÍF 26). The reading óls (found only in J1ˣ, J2ˣ) is adopted. This is gen. sg. of the rare ól n., whose etymological sense is ‘pestilence, affliction’ (see AEW: ól 2 and Note to ÞSkall Valfl 1/8II, where it appears to have the meaning ‘troll-woman’). The kenning apparently alludes to the Mánagarmr ‘hound of the moon’, a giant in the likeness of a wolf who will swallow the sun (and/or moon) according to Gylf (SnE 2005, 14; cf. ÍF 26), although the evidence for this figure prior to SnE is equivocal (SnE 2005, 172). (b) Finnur Jónsson (1884, 93; Hkr 1893-1901, IV; LP: óskkvôn, máni; Skj B, followed by Skald; Hkr 1991) instead selects ósk ‘wish’, the reading of F, and reads byr óskkvánar mána ‘fair wind of the desired/desiring woman of Máni/the moon [GIANTESS > MIND]’, but corruption of this easily interpreted reading to óls or óðs would be unlikely, and there is no direct evidence that Máni ‘moon’ had giant status (SnE 2005, 13; Björn Magnússon Ólsen 1886, 196-200; ÍF 26). See Egill St 13/2V (Eg 84) for a similar, also problematic, context containing the words byr and mána .



case: gen.


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