By Margaret Clunies Ross
A heritage of outdated Norse Poetry and Poetics is the 1st ebook in English to accommodate the dual matters of previous Norse poetry and many of the vernacular treatises on local poetry that have been any such conspicuous characteristic of medieval highbrow existence in Iceland and the Orkneys from the mid-twelfth to the fourteenth centuries. Its objective is to offer a transparent description of the wealthy poetic culture of early Scandinavia, fairly in Iceland, the place it reached its zenith, and to illustrate the social contexts that favoured poetic composition, from the oral societies of the early Viking Age in Norway and its colonies to the religious compositions of literate Christian clerics in fourteenth-century Iceland. the 2 dominant poetic modes, eddic and skaldic, are analysed, and their a variety of kinds and topics are illustrated with newly selected examples. The ebook units out the prose contexts within which most aged Norse poetry has been preserved and discusses difficulties of interpretation that come up end result of the poetry's mode of transmission. during the booklet, the writer hyperlinks indigenous concept with perform, starting with the pre-Christian ideology of poets as favoured through the god ? hotel and concluding with the Christian concept undeniable variety most sensible conveys the poet's message.
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Extra info for A History of Old Norse Poetry and Poetics
1100); this poem does not survive and may never have existed. 8 The etymology of tøg- (and its stem vowel) is uncertain; Faulkes speculates (1999: 150) with tog (n. ‘rope’), tøgr (m. ‘ten’, poem of ten stanzas) and German Zug (‘journey’). 32 technical terms the next poem in this form, is also a journey poem and also about King Knútr. A third possible contender for identification as a generic title is Hrafnsmál, ‘Speech of the Raven’, a name applied to a poem by the Icelander Ãormóñr Trefilsson, recorded in manuscripts of Eyrbyggja saga, about some local killings in the west of Iceland during the tenth century.
Another catalogue form, of special interest to poets, was the ãula or versified list of poetic synonyms (heiti) for the major subjects of skaldic verse, such as gods, men and women, ships, weapons and gold. Though ãulur were of most use to skaldic poets, the extant examples use eddic verse forms. The evolution of the ãula is speculative, but in all probability is attributable to the need oral poets felt to have access to versified aide-mémoires which functioned somewhat like rhyming dictionaries (see Clunies Ross 1987: 80–91).
1022, after having offended the king by composing a poem about his wife Ástríñr which was too explicit (no doubt sexually); for the text of the poem, see Skj BI: 268–72. Only the stef or refrain of Ãórarinn’s poem for King Knútr inn ríki (‘the powerful’) Sveinsson remains (Skj BI: 298); his offence seems to have been to insult the king by composing a poem about him that was too short and not elaborate enough (described as a flokkr, ‘poem without a refrain’, and a dræpling, ‘a little drápa, one that is too short’).
A History of Old Norse Poetry and Poetics by Margaret Clunies Ross