A critical companion to Beowulf by Andy Orchard

By Andy Orchard

Беовульф – наиболее известное и наиболее изученное литературное произведение, дошедшее от времен англосаксонской Англии, и современному читателю приходится сталкиваться с большим числом и разнообразием интерпретаций таких основных вопросов, как датировка, источник и значение поэмы. В этой книге автор разбирает все эти проблемы, учитывая и предыдущие исследования, а также предлагая новые перспективы. После начального введения в проблему, внимание уделено, в основном, таким вопросам как контекст рукописи и подход к датировке поэмы, затем следует развернутое обсуждение специфического стиля и структуры этого, одного из наиболее выдающихся произведений эпоса германских народов.. Фон поэмы рассматривается не только относительно исторического и легендарного материала, но также и в мифологическом контексте. В заключительной главе описывается диапазон критических подходов, применявшихся к поэме в прошлом, а также намечаются отправные точки для будущего изучения.Образцы сканов:

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Extra resources for A critical companion to Beowulf

Example text

When we looked into the village we saw dwelling in it a few half-naked people. But as soon as they themselves saw us they hid themselves furtively in their houses. I wanted to catch sight of these men, to find out about clean fresh water. After we had waited a long time and none of them would emerge, I ordered a few arrows to be shot into the village, so that if they would not come out to us voluntarily, they should of necessity, through fear of battle. Then they were still more greatly afraid, and hid themselves more securely.

One notes in passing the consistent spelling in -wund[u]r- of the B-scribe (after line 1939b), by contrast with the A-scribe. Likewise in the space of a single line the poet describes how the creature from the monster-mere killed by Beowulf before his descent to fight Grendel’s mother is a ‘wondrous wave-crosser’ (wundorlic wægbora, line 1440a), and notes that ‘men gazed upon [it]’ (weras sceawedon, line 1440b). Similarly one might note that in two consecutive lines Wiglaf invites the Geatish warriors to ‘gaze upon’ the ‘wonder’ of the dragon’s hoard (lines 3103–4).

In ðone grund þære ea & betweoh ða yða þæs wæteres þa men besencte & mid heora muðe hie sliton & blodgodon & hie ealle swa fornamon, þæt ure nænig wiste hwær hiora æni cwom). It is worth noting that in describing the cruel fate of the hapless guides forced into the river the Anglo-Saxon author again makes explicit the fact that the water-monsters ‘dragged them away just as they had the others’ (gearwe tobrudon hie swa hie þa oðre ær dydon), while the Latin simply notes that the hippopotami ‘dealt out to them their just deserts’ (dignos iusta poena affecere).

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