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- DescriptionThe best-kwn literary achievement of Anglo-Saxon England, Beowulf is a poem concerned with monsters and heroes, treasure and transience, feuds and fidelity. Composed sometime between 500 and 1000 C.E. and surviving in a single manuscript, it is at once immediately accessible and forever mysterious. And in Craig Williamson's splendid new version, this often translated work may well have found its most compelling modern English interpreter. Williamson's Beowulf appears alongside his translations of many of the major works written by Anglo-Saxon poets, including the elegies The Wanderer and The Seafarer, the heroic Battle of Maldon, the visionary Dream of the Rood, the mysterious and heart-breaking Wulf and Eadwacer, and a generous sampling of the Exeter Book riddles. Accompanied by a foreword by ted medievalist Tom Shippey on Anglo-Saxon history, culture, and archaeology, and Williamson's introductions to the individual poems as well as his essay on translating Old English, the texts transport us back to the medieval scriptorium or ancient mead hall to share an exile's lament or herdsman's recounting of the story of the world's creation. From the riddling song of a bawdy onion that moves between kitchen and bedroom, to the thrilling account of Beowulf's battle with a treasure-hoarding dragon, the world becomes a place of rare wonder in Williamson's lines. Were his idiom t so modern, we might almost think the Anglo-Saxon poets had taken up the lyre again and begun to sing after a silence of a thousand years.
- Author BiographyCraig Williamson is the Alfred H. and Peggi Bloom Professor of English Literature at Swarthmore College. He is editor and translator of A Feast of Creatures, also available from the University of Pennsylvania Press. Tom Shippey is Professor Emeritus of English at St. Louis University.
- PublisherUniversity of Pennsylvania Press
- Date of Publication14/06/2013
- SubjectLiterary Criticism
- Series TitleThe Middle Ages Series
- Place of PublicationPennsylvania
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintUniversity of Pennsylvania Press
- Content Note2 illus.
- Weight431 g
- Width152 mm
- Height229 mm
- Spine23 mm
- Foreword byTom Shippey
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