(redirected from Skaldic Poetry)
Also found in: Dictionary.



a Norwegian or Icelandic poet of the ninth through 13th centuries. The poetry of the skalds has survived as fragments in the 13th-century Icelandic literary classics the Prose Edda and the sagas. Before being written down, Skaldic poetry existed in oral tradition. The poetry of about 250 skalds is known. The earliest skalds were Norwegians. The most famous skald was the Icelander Egill Skallagrímsson (tenth century).

The skalds composed eulogistic, derogatory, and occasional verse. Their poetry generally set down contemporary facts and hence is regarded as a reliable historical source. For mannered intricacy of form, skaldic poetry is without parallel in world literature. The meter is strict and complex and the language abounds in complicated periphrases (kennings) and poetic synonyms (heitis); phrases are intertwined with one another. Skaldic poetry is difficult to interpret.


Den norsk-islandske skjaldedigtning, 1A-2A (manuscript text); 1B-2B (corrected text with Danish translation). Edited by F. Jónsson. Copenhagen, 1908-15.


Steblin-Kamenskii, M. I. “Proiskhozhdenie poezii skal’dov.” In Skandinavskii sbornik, fasc. 3. Tallinn, 1958.
De Vries, J. Altnordische Literaturgeschichte, 2nd ed., vols. 1-2. Berlin, 1964-67.


References in periodicals archive ?
of one of Odinn's ravens) (5) can be used as a kenning for "raven" and in the skaldic poetry corpus "Hrafns nafni" ("namesake of the raven," i.
This provides an interesting scope for comparison, since the extent to which the medieval chivalrous romance could be traced to an influence from sagas and Skaldic poetry was widely discussed at the time.
For a discussion of the historical and structural links between riddles and kennings in ways that will bear directly on my later arguments, see John Lindow, "Riddles, Kennings, and the Complexity of Skaldic Poetry," Scandinavian Studies 47 (1975): 311-27.
This edition is an achievement which only someone with Clunies Ross's extensive knowledge of skaldic poetry, Norse tradition, and the eighteenth-century intellectual background could have brought off, and such eclectic individuals are rare indeed.
Skaldic poetry was contemporary with Eddic poetry but differed from it in meter, diction, and style.
The first three essays examine how events or persons are memorialized through various genres, such as skaldic poetry (Judith Jesch), memorial discourse (Joseph Harris), and Rune stones (Kristel Zilmer), emphasizing how all three genres have made use of features from both traditions.
This two-volume corpus presents most of Icelandic skaldic poetry of Christian devotional content that was composed in the 12th-15th centuries--28 poems in all.
Heslop's article on 'Grettisfaersla and Grettis saga' offers something like light relief from the intricacies of skaldic poetry, focusing instead upon the 'alarmingly obscene' and 'roughly versified rigmarole' that is Grettisfaersla.
Among specific topics are reading Eyrbyggia Saga in light of contemporary conflicts, skaldic poetry and performance, the notion of effeminate language, and an Albanian hero in Icelandic clothing.
This volume offers an immensely useful and intricate analysis of Skaldic poetry, accompanied by elaborate commentary, explanatory notes, and translations.
The survey essays and bibliographies cover mythology and mythography, eddic and skaldic poetry, kings' and family sagas, and Norse romance.
Leidangr and skaldic poetry', originally published 1985 and probably the central article here, is based on Malmros's argument that though usually overlooked by historians, skaldic poetry is a generally trustworthy source of evidence for certain important aspects of Scandinavian social and military organization in the Viking age, a standpoint that she believes to be supported by a correlation between descriptions of ships in the poems and the evidence of archaeology.