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Mygdållaðr/Figurative Language

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There are many figures of speech used in Mygdållaðr, owing to the rich oral and written traditions. Styles of composition are usually headed by the esåledr, the court poets.

Folk PoetryEdit

Folk poetry, or vaksåled are often simplistic and deal with the realities of life, like hard work and death. Common forms include acrostic poems and rhyming couplets.

VitvaksåledEdit

This acrostic poem teachees interrogatives and the inevitability of death, and is often used as a nursery rhyme. vit topr munnengubød yhåb

For what man does the bell ring?

RESPONSE: ili dannegmi farólonror

Death is harvesting.

vattig suknun bymérþå

Who do you all run away from?

RESPONSE

valur hallohunir anån

What does light walk avoiding?

RESPONSE

lavon hapšigwodir ymad

With which of the pair does he play chess?

RESPONSE

vaŋ mahållegrbo senben ysån

Which of many houses does the shadow pass through?

RESPONSE

(The next lines of the poem are usually not included in the song)

vollip tag ydannegmi

Where does the death dwell?

hellab tag dannegmi

Death dwells everywhere.

voron tolo hinnermi

Whence does a corpse exist?

hofiŋ tolo dannegmi

Every source death exists.

vesuŋ suk vollóŋmi

Whither do dreams run?

tugon suk dannegmi

Every goal death runs.

valurvyŋ vo yvyŋmi

When does the time end?

fonnodvyŋ y dannegmi

Every time is death.

vob kapte vasiŋmi

How does a serf work?

hobot kapte dannegmi

Every way death works.

vored suguni mérmi

Why do you struggle?

fonnodbed suguni danneg

Every reason death toils.

IdiomsEdit

Many idioms are taken from lines of poetry or fromed by allusion to myth.

Myg Mygvuŋ Junnær GevidmygjudEdit

Myg son of Myg, of the clan Junnær, Silvertonguelike, was an important esåled, popularizing many popular speech styles like the use of the kenning and the epic metre.

HæronsåðEdit

The follwing is an excerpt of part of a stanza from Hæronsåð, a famous saga about quarreling brothers based on historical figures during Myg's time. It is written in the epic metre, with a couplet and three quatrains making up a stanza. Stress alliteration is used in the quatrains, with A standing for stressed and B for unstressed. The initial couplet is rhymed and stress alliterated, often with heavy use of kennings.

asærlugr jonpallynanirjykke ykodmaŋlonaran

BABB BABBBAB BABBBB

The pair of fate-bound (siblings) intensely eyed (stared) over (their) sword-cliffs (shields)

ægugr jonpallynanirseggir ymygkiðlonaran

BABB BABBBAB BABBBB

The pair of mind-daggered (eyes) intensely eyed (stared) into (their) head-goblets (helmets)


jonsevóg hæron to hiðmanaran matønven asær

BAB AB B ABBB ABB BA

Hæron and Hiðman drew their sword(s)

jonbotó gøddodmir þorentora vyŋmir yalin

BAB ABB ABBB AB BBA

Twin lightnings of Gøddod caught the gaze of time

oturig hæronnóþe vodanæo topkådror afur

BAB ABB ABBB ABB BA

Hæron would pay a weregild to Vodan

alegæn døthug usannonr to kaþiþag ee

BAB AB BABB B ABB A

If the kin and domains of Alegæn were to be destroyed

BygritsåledEdit

The following is a short verse composed in the royal metre, with an alternating stress pattern of BABBABABB and BABABBABB.

vånkogód owenr bussagr

If a passerby were to observe a sight

akane midr egonnenr

He pays tribute to a standing stone

etågen ufygr koǧaðr

A name is apparent on stone

y nadr røgmir awagéŋnor

Jasper is worked stone's canyon

kanvedni asuŋr hurålon

A drawing must hearken to inspiration (like)

odeŋað kygr oþinnadr

A horse carries a jockey

bygau aledmir vattigr

What of old emerges?

vušårod mérr ybygritnor

You all behold the Bygrit!

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