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Þorleifr jarlsskáld

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Title: Þorleifr jarlsskáld  
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Language: English
Subject: Index of Iceland-related articles
Collection: 10Th-Century Icelandic People, 10Th-Century Poets, Icelandic Poets, Skalds, Viking Age Poets
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Þorleifr jarlsskáld

Þorleifr Rauðfeldarson or Þorleifr jarlsskáld (Poet of the Earl) was an Icelandic skald. The third son of Ásgeir Rauðfeldarson of Brekka in Svarfadardalur, he was one of the court poets of Hákon Sigurðarson, though only a couple of his verses on the ruler have come down to us. The following is quoted in Heimskringla.

Hǫ́kon, vitum hvergi
(hafizk hefr runnr af gunni)
fremra jarl und ferli
(folk-Ránar) þér mána ;
þú hefr ǫðlinga Óðni
(etr hrafn af ná getnum),
vesa mátt af því vísi
víðlendr, níu senda. Hákonardrápa 1, FJ's edition
Hákon, heard we under
heaven no doughtier earl than
thou—but greater grew thy
glory fram wars—to govern.
Athelings nine to Óthin—
feeds the raven on flesh of
fallen men—spread far thy
fame aye—thou didst send forth. (Hollander's translation)
In Norway's land was never known
A braver earl than the brave Hakon.
At sea, beneath the clear moon's light,
No braver man e'er sought to fight.
Nine kings to Odin's wide domain
Were sent, by Hakon's right hand slain!
So well the raven-flocks were fed --
So well the wolves were filled with dead! (Laing's translation)

Þorleifr is the protagonist of Þorleifs þáttr, a largely fictional work. He also has a role in Svarfdœla saga where some lausavísur are attributed to him.


  • Lee M. Hollander's translation of the Heimskringla. ISBN 0-292-73061-6
  • Þórleifr jarlsskáld All extant poetry
  • Heimskringla Samuel Laing's 1844 translation
  • Svarfdæla saga
  • Þorleifs þáttur jarlaskálds
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