Björketorp Stone

‘HæiðR rúno runo felh’k heðra, ginnarúnaR. Argiu hermalausR, ýtjaR weladauþe, séR þat brýtR. Úþarba spá.’
‘A sequence of heavenly runes I conceal hither, mighty runes. Protectionless(?) because of cowardice, sent to death by treachery, may you be [who] breaks this [monument]. I foresee harm.’

The Björketorp Runestone (DR 360) is the last of the related Blekinge stones. It contains a nearly identical inscription to that found on the Stentoften stone, found some 30mi (50km) away. Standing at roughly 13ft (4m) tall, the Björketorp stone is one of the tallest runestones ever found. The Björketorp stone stands in a circle with two other similarly tall un-inscribed stones.

Despite the nearly identical formula, the language of the Björketorp inscription is noticeably less archaic than that found on the Stentoften stone. Compare: Stentoften ‘bariutiþ’ to Björketorp ‘barutR,’ showing loss of ‘j’ before ‘y.’

The last two words (perhaps intended as the first two words?) are found on the back of the runestone, although there is some ambiguity as to the meaning. ‘Spá’ could be either a noun or verb, meaning ‘úþarba’ could either modify the noun, creating ‘prophesy of harm,’ or be the object of the verb ‘I foresee harm.’

(On the reading of ‘hermalausR’ see my post on the Stentoften Runestone.)

Photos: Björketorpsstenen tre and Björketorpsstenen runor by Henrik Sendelbach, CC BY-SA 3.0 / Link, Link

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