Viking Poems on War and Peace: A Study in Skaldic Narrative by Russell Poole

By Russell Poole

The outdated Norse and Icelandic poets have left us bright bills of clash and peace-making within the Viking Age. Russell G. Poole's editorial and demanding research finds a lot in regards to the texts themselves, the occasions that they describe, and the tradition from which they arrive. Poole makes an attempt to place correct many misunderstandings in regards to the integrity of the texts and their narrative recommendations. From a ancient point of view, he weighs the poems' authenticity as modern records which supply proof bearing upon the reconstruction of Viking Age battles, peace negotiations, and different occasions. He strains the social roles performed through violence in medieval Scandinavian society, and explores the numerous capabilities of the poet inside that society. Arguing that those texts convey a mind-style so enormously various from our personal current 'individualism,' Poole means that the way of thinking of the medieval Scandinavian can be termed 'non-individualist.' The poems mentioned are the 'Darradarlj?d,' the place the audio system are Valkyries; 'Lidsmannaflokkr,' a rank-and-file warrior's description of Canute the Great's siege of London in 1016; 'Torf-Einarr's Revenge'; 'Egil's Duel with Lj?tr,' 5 verses from the vintage Egils saga Skallagrimssonar; 'A conflict at the Health,' marking the fruits of a recognized feud defined in a really early Icelandic saga, the Heidarviga saga; and extracts from the poem Sexstefia, one describing Haraldr of Norway's nice fleet and victory over Sveinn of Denmark, and the opposite the peace payment among those varieties. The texts are offered in organization with translations and commentaries as a source now not simply for medieval Scandinavian stories but additionally for the more and more interwoven specialisms of literary conception and anthropology.

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Viking Poems on War and Peace: A Study in Skaldic Narrative

The previous Norse and Icelandic poets have left us shiny debts of clash and peace-making within the Viking Age. Russell G. Poole's editorial and important research finds a lot in regards to the texts themselves, the occasions that they describe, and the tradition from which they arrive. Poole makes an attempt to place correct many misunderstandings in regards to the integrity of the texts and their narrative strategies.

Additional info for Viking Poems on War and Peace: A Study in Skaldic Narrative

Sample text

Lausavisur and Other Verses 23 Knowledge of this custom might have preconditioned prose authors into supposing that verses of other types that came their way were also lausavisur. There also existed an apparently long-established literary form that combined prose and verse in a prosimetrum (Kuhn 1952:2767). Verses that had begun life as self-contained poems, independent of any prose contribution, might at a later stage have been incorporated within a prose narrative on the model of genuine prosimetm.

Probably, then, he inherited the present historic idiom from skaldic and other vernacular poetry, while his knowledge of Latin served, if anything, to reinforce it. Gunnlaugr, as we have seen, does not make uniform use of the present historic. Sometimes it is interspersed with the preterite, sometimes it is used alone. In the three stanzas where all the verbs are present-tense (vv 6, 16 and 18), the illusion develops that the speaker is commenting on events as they occur. ' A modern example is the sports commentary, where the commentator's description of the football match or horse race or other event keeps pace with the action as it proceeds.

Finnur Jonsson agreed with these views, noting that in the historical sagas verses are occasionally introduced as if they were lausavisur although clearly they belong to (extended) poems (n 1923:149-51). He suggested that the xvikvida had originally been composed for recitation after a telling of the prose saga. The manuscripts that group all the stanzas in one poem near the end of the saga would therefore be close to the author's original intentions, and very similar is the use of 'KrakumaT in the versions of Ragnars saga.

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