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The Metrical Characteristics of Maeshowe Runic Inscription No. 20
Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel.
Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel.
2016 (English)In: Futhark: International Journal of Runic Studies, ISSN 1892-0950, E-ISSN 1892-0950, Vol. 7, 111-125 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Maeshowe runic inscription no. 20 in Barnes’s edition (1994) is one of the most dis­cussed among the runic inscriptions which were carved into the walls of the prehistoric cairn by Norsemen around the middle of the twelfth century. The inscription states that it was carved by the man who was most skilled in runes west of the ocean with the axe of Gaukr Trandilssonr (known from Njáls saga and Land­námabók). Various opinions have been aired with regard to the metrical character of the inscription. Whereas Olsen (1903, 18–21) con­sidered it to be poetic, Finnur Jónsson (1904–05, 33) firmly rejected this notion. In this paper a thorough investigation of the metrical character of Maeshowe no. 20 is carried out, starting from the premise that a runic inscription can only be declared metrical if it shows both rhythm and alliteration. This leads to a refinement of the principles for evaluating the metricality of any given inscription.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oslo, Uppsala: Uppsala universitet, 2016. Vol. 7, 111-125 p.
Keyword [en]
Maeshowe, younger futhark, runic poetry, metrics, Sievers’s verse types, fornyrðislag, ljóðaháttr
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URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-309273OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-309273DiVA: diva2:1087620
Available from: 2017-04-08 Created: 2017-04-08 Last updated: 2017-04-11Bibliographically approved

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Futhark: International Journal of Runic Studies
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