Beowulf: By J. Lesslie Hall - Illustrated

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9781537384757: Beowulf: By J. Lesslie Hall - Illustrated

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    About Beowulf

     

    Beowulf is an Old English epic poem consisting of 3182 alliterative lines. It is the oldest surviving long poem in Old English and is commonly cited as one of the most important works of Old English literature. It was written in England some time between the 8th and the early 11th century. The author was an anonymous Anglo-Saxon poet, referred to by scholars as the "Beowulf poet". The poem is set in Scandinavia. Beowulf, a hero of the Geats, comes to the aid of Hrothgar, the king of the Danes, whose mead hall in Heorot has been under attack by a monster known as Grendel. After Beowulf slays him, Grendel's mother attacks the hall and is then also defeated. Victorious, Beowulf goes home to Geatland (Götaland in modern Sweden) and later becomes king of the Geats. After a period of fifty years has passed, Beowulf defeats a dragon, but is fatally wounded in the battle. After his death, his attendants cremate his body and erect a tower on a headland in his memory. The full poem survives in the manuscript known as the Nowell Codex, located in the British Library. It has no title in the original manuscript, but has become known by the name of the story's protagonist. In 1731, the manuscript was badly damaged by a fire that swept through Ashburnham House in London that had a collection of medieval manuscripts assembled by Sir Robert Bruce Cotton

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About the Author:

SEAMUS HEANEY is an Irish poet, writer and lecturer from County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1995.

SEAMUS HEANEY is an Irish poet, writer and lecturer from County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1995.

From AudioFile:

Beowulf is the early Teutonic epic poem many of us read in literature class and wondered why we were supposed to read it. The answer might have been clearer had we heard it instead. Nobel Prize-winning poet Seamus Heaney has translated the poem from Old English and does the reading in this version. He handles the German and Scandinavian names with ease. But his versification is truly marvelous. The language has a flow and color that make listening a pleasure. The poem chronicles the exploits of Beowulf, at first a young prince who slays the monster Grendel and the monster's mother, and later an aging monarch who dies slaying a fire-breathing dragon. A subtext focuses on the rivalries and suspicions among Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. The themes in Beowulf echo throughout English literature. Many of the episodes, for instance, are clearly paralleled in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. R.C.G. © AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine

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J. Lesslie Hall
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ISBN 10: 1537384759 ISBN 13: 9781537384757
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