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18.12.2019

Beyla

Beyla is one of Freyr's servants along with her husband, Byggvir, in Norse mythology. Beyla is mentioned in stanzas 55, 66, and the prose introduction to the Poetic Edda poem Lokasenna. Since this is the only mention of Beyla, scholars have turned to the etymology of Beyla's name for additional information about her. However, the meaning of her name is unclear and her name has been proposed as related to "cow," "bean," or "bee."

Lokasenna

In the prose introduction to Lokasenna, Beyla and Byggvir are cited as attending In stanza 55 of Lokasenna, after his verses with Sif, Loki accuses Beyla of being filthy but the reason for this is unclear.

Stanza 55:

Beyla qvaþ:

«Fioll a/ll scialfa,

hygg ec a for vera

heiman Hlorriþa;

hann reþr ró

þeim er rogir her

goð a/ll oc gvma.»

Beyla spake:

"The mountains shake,

and surely I think

From his home comes Hlorrithi now;

He will silence the man

who is slandering here

Together both gods and men."

Stanza 56:

Loci qvaþ:

«Þegi þv, Beyla!

þv ert Byggviss qven

oc meini blandin mioc;

okynian meira

coma meþ asa sonom,

a/ll ertv, deigia! dritin.»

Loki spake:

"Be silent, Beyla!

thou art Byggvir's wife,

And deep art thou steeped in sin;

A greater shame

to the gods came ne'er,

Befouled thou art with thy filth."

In relation to Loki's comments in Lokasenna, proposals have been made that Beyla and her husband are personifications of agriculture associated with Freyr: Beyla as the manure that softens the earth and develops the seed, Byggvir as the refuse of the mill, chaff.

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