Icelandic Primer with Grammar, Notes and Glossary
184 Pages
English
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Icelandic Primer with Grammar, Notes and Glossary

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184 Pages
English

Description

An Icelandic Primer
With Grammar, Notes, and Glossary
By Henry Sweet, M.A.
This book has been modified slightly from the original to make the paradigm references clear. The original was the second edition, published by Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1895. The original page images1 were scanned in by Sean Crist2 . They were then OCRed and reformatted for Project Gutenberg into text, HTML, and TEX by Ben Crowder3 . Other versions of the text may be found at the current homepage for the primer4 or through Project Gutenberg5 . Special thanks to Jonas Oster6 for providing the Omega ΩTP code to fix nondisplaying characters.
http://www.ling.upenn.edu/ kurisuto/germanic/oi sweet about.html kurisuto@unagi.cis.upenn.edu 3 crowderb@blankslate.net 4 http://www.blankslate.net/lang/etexts.php 5 http://www.gutenberg.net/ 6 d97ost@dtek.chalmers.se
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Preface
The want of a short and easy introduction to the study of Icelandic has been felt for a long time—in fact, from the very beginning of that study in England. The Icelandic Reader, edited by Messrs. Vigfusson and Powell, in the Clarendon Press Series, is a most valuable book, which ought to be in the hands of every student; but it still leaves room for an elementary primer. As the engagements of the editors of the Reader would have made it impossible for them to undertake such a work for some years to come, they raised no objections to my proposal to undertake it myself. Meanwhile, I found the task was a more ...

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An Icelandic Primer
With Grammar,Notes,and Glossary
By Henry Sweet,M.A.
This book has been modified slightly from the original to make the paradigm ref-erences clear.The original was the second edition,published by Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1895.
1 2 The original page images were scanned in by Sean Crist.They were then OCRed and reformatted for Project Gutenberg into text,HTML,and T X by Ben Crow-E 3 der.Other versions of the text may be found at the current homepage for the ɻ 4 5 6 primer or through Project Gutenberg.Special thanks to Jonas Oster for provid-ing the OmegaΩTP code to fix nondisplaying characters.
1 http://www.ling.upenn.edu/kurisuto/germanic/oi sweet about.html 2 kurisuto@unagi.cis.upenn.edu 3 crowderb@blankslate.net 4 http://www.blankslate.net/lang/etexts.php 5 http://www.gutenberg.net/ 6 d97ost@dtek.chalmers.se
Preface
The want of a short and easy introduction to the study of Icelandic has been felt for a long timein fact,from the very beginning of that study in England.The Icelandic Reader,edited by Messrs.Vigfusson and Powell,in the Clarendon Press Series,is a most valuable book,which ought to be in the hands of every student; but it still leaves room for an elementary primer.As the engagements of the editors of the Reader would have made it impossible for them to undertake such a work for some years to come,they raised no objections to my proposal to undertake it myself.Meanwhile,I found the task was a more formidable one than I had antici-pated,and accordingly,before definitely committing myself to it,I made one final attempt to induce Messrs.Vigfusson and Powell to take it off my hands;but they very kindly encouraged me to proceed with it;and as I myself thought that an Ice-landic primer,on the lines of my Anglo-Saxon one,might perhaps be the means of inducing some students of Old English to take up Icelandic as well,I determined to go on. In the spelling I have not thought it necessary to adhere strictly to that adopted in the Reader,for the editors have themselves deviated from it in theirCorpus Po-eticum Boreale,in the way of separatingʛofromɻo,etc.My own principle has been to deviate as little as possible from the traditional spelling followed in normal-ized texts.There is,indeed,no practical gain for the beginner in writingɷmefor ɷmi,discardingð,etc.,although these changes certainly bring us nearer the oldest MSS.,and cannot be dispensed with in scientific works.The essential thing for the beginner is to haveregularforms presented to him,to the exclusion,as far as possible,of isolated archaisms,and to have the defective distinctions of the MSS. supplemented by diacritics.I have not hesitated to substitute(ɷ)for(´)as the mark of length;the latter ought in my opinion to be used exclusivelyin Icelandic as well as in Old English and Old Irishto represent the actual accents of the MSS. In the grammar I have to acknowledge my great obligations to NoreensAl-tislaɻndische Grammatik,which is by far the best Icelandic grammar that has yet
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An Icelandic Primer
appearedat least from that narrow point of view which ignores syntax,and con-centrates itself on phonology and inflections. The texts are intended to be as easy,interesting,and representative as possible. With such a language,and such a master of it as Snorri to choose from,this com-bination is not difficult to realise.The beginner is indeed to be envied who makes his first acquaintance with the splendid mythological tales of the North,told in an absolutely perfect style.As the death of Olaf Tryggvason is given in the Reader only from the longer recension of the Heimskringla,I have been able to give the shorter text,which is admirably suited for the purposes of this book.The story of Auðun is not only a beautiful one in itself,but,together with the preceding piece, gives a vivid idea of the Norse ideal of the kingly character,which was the founda-tion of their whole political system.As the Reader does not include poetry(except incidentally),I have added one of the finest of the Eddaic poems,which is at the same time freest from obscurity and corruptionthe song of Thors quest of his hammer. In the glossary I have ventured to deviate from the very inconvenient Scandi-navian arrangement,which putsþ,æ,œ,right at the end of the alphabet. I have to acknowledge the great help I have had in preparing the texts and the glossary from WimmersOldnordisk Læsebog,which I consider to be,on the whole, the best reading-book that exists in any language.So excellent is Wimmers selec-tion of texts,that it was impossible for me to do otherwise than follow him in nearly every case. In conclusion,it is almost superfluous to say that this book makes no preten-sion to originality of any kind.If it contributes towards restoring to Englishmen that precious heritagethe old language and literature of Icelandwhich our mis-erably narrow scheme of education has hitherto defrauded them of,it will have fulfilled its purpose.
London, February, 1886
HENRY SWEET.
Contents
I
1
2
3
Grammar
Pronunciation 1.1Vowels. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . 1.2Consonants. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.3Stress. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .
Phonology 2.1Vowels. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.1.1Mutation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.1.2Fracture. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.1.3Gradation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . 2.1.4Other changes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.2Consonants. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .
Inflections 3.1Nouns. . . . . . . . . . . 3.1.1Strong Masculines 3.1.2Strong Neuters. . 3.1.3Strong Feminines. 3.1.4Weak Masculines. 3.1.5Weak Neuters. . . 3.1.6Weak Feminines. 3.2Adjectives. . . . . . . . . 3.2.1Strong Adjectives. 3.2.2Weak Adjectives. 3.3Comparison. . . . . . . . 3.4Numerals. . . . . . . . . 3.5Pronouns. . . . . . . . .
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II
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3.6
3.5.1 3.5.2 3.5.3 3.5.4 3.5.5 3.5.6 3.5.7 Verbs 3.6.1 3.6.2 3.6.3 3.6.4 3.6.5 3.6.6
Personal. . . . . . Possessive. . . . . Demonstrative. . Definite. . . . . . Relative. . . . . . Interrogative. . . Indefinite. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Active. . . . . . . Middle. . . . . . Strong Verbs. . . Weak Verbs. . . . Strong-Weak Verbs Anomalous Verbs.
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An Icelandic Primer
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Composition 4.1Derivation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.1.1Prefixes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.1.2Endings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Syntax 5.1Concord. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.2Cases. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3Adjectives. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3.1Pronouns. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . 5.3.2Verbs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ..
Texts
Thor
ɷ Thor and Ugarðaloki
Balder
The Death of Balder
10Heɷðinn and Hoʛgni
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47 47 47 47
49 49 49 50 50 50
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CONTENTS
11The Death of Olaf Tryggvason
12Auðun
13Þrymskviða
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III
IV
Notes 14.1Thor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ɷ 14.2Thor and Utgarðaloki. . . . . . . 14.3Balder. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14.4The Death of Balder. . . . . . . . 14.5Hɷeðinn and Hʛogni. . . . . . . . . 14.6The Death of Olaf Tryggvason. . 14.7Auðun. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14.8Þrymskviða. . . . . . . . . . . .
Glossary
Proper Names
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Part I
Grammar
1
Chapter1
Pronunciation
1.This book deals with Old Icelandic in its classical period,between1200and 1350. 2.The Icelandic alphabet was founded on the Latin,with the addition ofþand ð,and of the modified letterseʛ,oʛ,ø,which last is in this book writtenɻo,oʛɻ.
1.1
Vowels
3.The vowel-letters had nearly the same values as in Old English.Long vow-els were often marked by(´).In this book long vowels are regularly marked by 1 (ɷ) .See Table1.1for the elementary vowels and diphthongs,with examples,and key-words from English,French(F.),and German(G.). 4.The unaccentediinsystir,etc. (which is generally writtenein the MSS.) probably had the sound ofyinpity,which is really betweeniande.The unacc.u infɷoru(they went),etc. (which is generally writtenoin the MSS.)probably had the sound ofooingood. Note that several of the vowels go in pairs ofcloseandopen,as shown in Ta-ble1.2.
1.2
Consonants
5.Double consonants followed by a vowel must be pronounced really double, as in Italian.Thus thekkindrekka(to drink)must be pronounced like thekcin 1 Note that the longs ofeʛ,ɻoare writtenæ,œ,respectively.
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