Anonymous, Haraldskvæði

Ármann Jakobsson (University of Iceland)
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Haraldskvæði

or

Hrafnsmál

is a skaldic poem considered to have been composed in the ninth century. It goes by two names, has been attributed to three poets, and is preserved in four prose texts, most of them likely dating from the thirteenth century, which are themselves found in various manuscripts. Although the poem is considered pre-Christian, the oldest preserved compilation of some of the verses is in a manuscript dated to the seventeenth century.

The titles Haraldskvæði and Hrafnsmál appear nowhere in medieval texts; they are descriptive titles that scholars of the later ages have chosen for the poem. There are repeated references to a king named Haraldr, and most of the beginning of the poem (and perhaps all of it) is narrated by a raven. Yet there are verses that refer to

1581 words

Citation: Jakobsson, Ármann. "Haraldskvæði". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 09 May 2023 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=40999, accessed 15 July 2024.]

40999 Haraldskvæði 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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