70 Matching Annotations
  1. Sep 2022
  2. pressbooks.pub pressbooks.pub
    1. Afterward Heremod’s hero-strength failed him, Heremod, an unfortunate Danish king, is 65 His vigor and valor.

      King Heremod: bad hombre

    2. Then the mighty war-spirit endured for a season, Bore it bitterly, he who bided in darkness, The monster Grendal is madly 35 That light-hearted laughter loud in the building envious of the Danemen’s joy. Greeted him daily; there was dulcet harp-music, Clear song of the singer.

      First mention of Grendel

    3. scathers

      noun from the verb "scathe" as in "one who injures or harms"?

    4. Hence many a war-spear Cold from the morning shall be clutched in the fingers, Heaved in the hand, no harp-music’s sound shall 80 Waken the warriors, but the wan-coated raven Fain over fey ones freely shall gabble, Shall say to the eagle how he sped in the eating, When, the wolf his companion, he plundered the slain.

      compare with Judith

    5. The men of the Swedelands 30 For truce or for truth trust I but little

      The messenger reminds the people of the battles with the Swedes in which Hygelac was killed and Beowulf fought. Perhaps this long digression on the theme of Beowulf's death is an extended warning: these things will now come to pass again.

    6. The folk now expecteth Our lord’s death will lead to attacks 20 A season of strife when the death of the folk-king from our old foes. To Frankmen and Frisians in far-lands is published.

      The Messenger warns that former enemies will take advantage of Beowulf's death.

    7. The bold-mooded troop-lord took from his neck then The hero’s last gift The ring that was golden, gave to his liegeman, The youthful war-hero, his gold-flashing helmet, His collar and war-mail, bade him well to enjoy them

      Beowulf gives Wiglaf his golden armor.

    8. Thanks do I utter for all to the Ruler, Wielder of Worship, with words of devotion, The Lord everlasting, that He let me such treasures 45 Gain for my people ere death overtook me

      Beowulf thanks God that he was able to leave his people such treasure.

    9. Beowulf spake then, Boast-words uttered—the latest occasion:

      More foretelling of Beowulf's impending doom

    10. Then the battle-brave atheling sat on the naze-edge, While the gold-friend of Geatmen gracious saluted His fireside-companions: woe was his spirit, 30 Death-boding, wav’ring; Weird very near him, Who must seize the old hero, his soul-treasure look for, Dragging aloof his life from his body: Not flesh-hidden long was the folk-leader’s spirit.

      Deep sense of foreboding: Beowulf is doomed to die.

    11. Where Hygd to him tendered treasure and kingdom, Rings and dominion: her son she not trusted, Heardred’s lack of capacity to rule. To be able to keep the kingdom devised him 60 ’Gainst alien races, on the death of King Higelac. Yet the sad ones succeeded not in persuading the atheling Beowulf’s tact and delicacy recalled. In any way ever, to act as a suzerain To Heardred, or promise to govern the kingdom; Yet with friendly counsel in the folk he sustained him, 65 Gracious, with honor, till he grew to be older, Wielded the Weders

      Despite Hygd's distrust of Heardred to effectively rule the kingdom, Beowulf refuses to usurp his power.

    12. Then the ancient dusk-scather 50 Found the great treasure standing all open, He who flaming and fiery flies to the barrows, Naked war-dragon, nightly escapeth Encompassed with fire; men under heaven Widely beheld him.

      The dragon finds the treasure

    13. Of gold that was beaten, briefly he spake then

      a warrior? laments the loss of his companions

    14. a 65 Dragon, to govern, who guarded a treasure, The fire-drake. A high-rising stone-cliff, on heath that was grayish

      Enter the dragon

    15. It afterward happened 55 In days that followed, befell the battle-thanes, After Higelac’s death, and when Heardred was murdered After Heardred’s death, Beowulf becomes With weapons of warfare ’neath well-covered targets, king. When valiant battlemen in victor-band sought him, War-Scylfing heroes harassed the nephew 60 Of Hereric in battle. To Beowulf’s keeping Turned there in time extensive dominions: He fittingly ruled them a fifty of winters

      After Heardred dies, Beowulf becomes king and rules for 50 years.

    16. So Ecgtheow’s bairn brave did prove him, War-famous man, by deeds that were valiant, Beowulf is famous. He lived in honor, belovèd companions 35 Slew not carousing; his mood was not cruel, But by hand-strength hugest of heroes then living The brave one retained the bountiful gift that The Lord had allowed him. Long was he wretched, So that sons of the Geatmen accounted him worthless, 40 And the lord of the liegemen loth was to do him Mickle of honor, when mead-cups were passing; They fully believed him idle and sluggish, An indolent atheling: to the honor-blest man there He is requited for the slights suffered Came requital for the cuts he had suffered.

      Beowulf was an unimpressive youth.

    17. So a kinsman should bear him, No web of treachery weave for another, Nor by cunning craftiness cause the destruction Of trusty companion.

      Are you talking about something else, Mr. Speaker?

    18. “So the belovèd land-prince lived in decorum; I had missed no rewards, no meeds of my prowess, But he gave me jewels, regarding my wishes, Healfdene his bairn; I’ll bring them to thee, then, 5 Atheling of earlmen, offer them gladly. All my gifts I lay at thy feet. And still unto thee is all my affection: But few of my folk-kin find I surviving But thee, dear Higelac!”

      Beowulf freely gives all his treasure to Hygelac

    19. A glove was suspended Spacious and wondrous, in art-fetters fastened, Which was fashioned entirely by touch of the craftman 55 From the dragon’s skin by the devil’s devices: He down in its depths would do me unsadly One among many, deed-doer raging, Though sinless he saw me; not so could it happen When I in my anger upright did stand

      Grendel has a pouch made from dragon's skin in Beowulf' retelling.

    20. Beowulf answered

      Beowulf proceeds to retell the first part of the poem.

    21. Thrytho nursed anger

      Norton: "Queen Modthryth: "The story of Queen Modthryth's vices is abruptly introduced as a foil to Queen Hygd's virtues."

    22. weaver-of-peace

      oh, whoa, peace-weaver, I believe we can make it thru the ni-ight!

    23. Hrethel’s son Higelac at home there remaineth

      Enter Hygelac

    24. Lo! offsetting change, now, 30 Came to my manor, grief after joyance, Sorrow after joy. When Grendel became my constant visitor, Inveterate hater: I from that malice Continually travailed with trouble no little.

      Hrothgar once thought he was safe, but Grendel showed up.

    25. Oh, Beowulf dear, 15 Best of the heroes, from bale-strife defend thee, And choose thee the better, counsels eternal; Beware of arrogance, world-famous champion!
    26. the worse he knoweth not, 90 Till arrant arrogance inward pervading, Waxeth and springeth, when the warder is sleeping, The guard of the soul: with sorrows encompassed, Too sound is his slumber, the slayer is near him, Who with bow and arrow aimeth in malice.

      This is really interesting. Hrothgar is waxing poetic about the wisdom of God to grant material wealth and pleasure to such an extent that one can become arrogant and ignorant. Does he consider Grendel's terror on Heorot a form of justified divine retribution?

    27. Heremod became not Heremod’s career is again contrasted with Beowulf’s. 60 Such to the Scyldings, successors of Ecgwela; He grew not to please them, but grievous destruction, And diresome death-woes to Danemen attracted; He slew in anger his table-companions, Trustworthy counsellors, till he turned off lonely 65 From world-joys away, wide-famous ruler: Though high-ruling heaven in hero-strength raised him, In might exalted him, o’er men of all nations Made him supreme, yet a murderous spirit Grew in his bosom: he gave then no ring-gems 70 To the Danes after custom; endured he unjoyful A wretched failure of a king, to give no jewels to Standing the straits from strife that was raging, his retainers. Longsome folk-sorrow. Learn then from this, Lay hold of virtue! Though laden with winters, I have sung thee these measures.

      Return to King Heremod

    28. Then the battle-sword burned, the brand that was lifted, As the blood-current sprang, hottest of war-sweats; Seizing the hilt, from my foes I offbore it; I avenged as I ought to their acts of malignity, 20 The murder of Danemen

      return to the sword melting

    29. welkin

      the vault of the sky : FIRMAMENT

    30. the carnage of haters

      fantastic phrasing

    31. The sword-blade began then, The giant-sword melts. The blood having touched it, contracting and shriveling With battle-icicles; ’twas a wonderful marvel 50 That it melted entirely, likest to ice when The Father unbindeth the bond of the frost and Unwindeth the wave-bands, He who wieldeth dominion Of times and of tides: a truth-firm Creator

      This ... is an epic simile.

    32. Early this noticed The clever carles who as comrades of Hrothgar 35 Gazed on the sea-deeps, that the surging wave-currents The waters are gory. Were mightily mingled, the mere-flood was gory

      Meanwhile, up on the shore ...

    33. hotly he smote her


    34. Then a day’s-length elapsed ere He is a whole day reaching the bottom of the sea. He was able to see the sea at its bottom

      Beowulf has to swim like the whole damn day to get to the bottom.

    35. Declivitous

      moderately steep; down sloping

    36. Grieve not, O wise one! for each it is better, His friend to avenge than with vehemence wail him

      Interesting sentiment in the context of Grendel's mother's motivation

    37. They guard the wolf-coverts, Lands inaccessible, wind-beaten nesses, They inhabit the most desolate and horrible places. Fearfullest fen-deeps, where a flood from the mountains ’Neath mists of the nesses netherward rattles, 40 The stream under earth: not far is it henceward Measured by mile-lengths that the mere-water standeth, Which forests hang over, with frost-whiting covered, A firm-rooted forest, the floods overshadow. There ever at night one an ill-meaning portent 45 A fire-flood may see; ’mong children of men None liveth so wise that wot of the bottom

      Grendel and his mother live in horrid places

    38. they know not their father

      Grendel's mother is a hard working single mother

    39. Dwellers in halls, they had seen very often monsters who lived in the moors. A pair of such mighty march-striding creatures, Far-dwelling spirits, holding the moorlands

      How convenient - why had he never brought this up before?

    40. Dead is Æschere, Yrmenlaf’s brother, older than he, 5 My true-hearted counsellor, trusty adviser, Shoulder-companion, when fighting in battle Our heads we protected, when troopers were clashing, And heroes were dashing; such an earl should be ever, He was my ideal hero. An erst-worthy atheling, as Æschere proved him.

      Hrothgar mourns the loss of Aeschere

    41. The hand that was famous She grasped in its gore

      She takes Grendel's hand with her

    42. Soon she had grappled one of the athelings She seizes a favorite liegemen of Hrothgar’s. Fast and firmly, when fenward she hied her; That one to Hrothgar was liefest of heroes In rank of retainer where waters encircle, A mighty shield-warrior, whom she murdered at slumber, 50 A broadly-famed battle-knight.

      She takes Hrothgar's fav boi

    43. the mother of Grendel Entered the folk-hall
    44. His mother moreover Grendel’s mother comes to avenge her son. Eager and gloomy was anxious to go on Her mournful mission, mindful of vengeance For the death of her son.
    45. Cain had become a [Grendel’s progenitor, Cain, is again referred to.] Slayer-with-edges to his one only brother, The son of his sire; he set out then banished, Marked as a murderer, man-joys avoiding, 15 Lived in the desert

      More reference to Cain

    46. With sorrow one paid for His evening repose, as often betid them While Grendel was holding the gold-bedecked palace
    47. Doomed unto death, down to his slumber A doomed thane is there with them. 50 Bowed then a beer-thane.
    48. Weird they knew not, destiny cruel,
    49. Geatish Higelac, Grandson of Swerting, last had this jewel When tramping ’neath banner the treasure he guarded, The field-spoil defended; Fate offcarried him When for deeds of daring he endured tribulation, 15 Hate from the Frisians; the ornaments bare he O’er the cup of the currents, costly gem-treasures, Mighty folk-leader, he fell ’neath his target; The corpse of the king then came into charge of The race of the Frankmen, the mail-shirt and collar: 20 Warmen less noble plundered the fallen, When the fight was finished; the folk of the Geatmen The field of the dead held in possession.

      Hygelac is Beowulf's king, who dies in a raid against the Frisians. This is possibly a real world event recorded by Geoffrey of Tours in his History of the Franks.

    50. Report hath informed me Thou’lt have for a bairn the battle-brave hero. Now is Heorot cleansèd, ring-palace gleaming; Give while thou mayest many rewards, Have as much joy as possible in thy hall, once 55 And bequeath to thy kinsmen kingdom and people, more purified. On wending thy way to the Wielder’s splendor. I know good Hrothulf, that the noble young troopers He’ll care for and honor, lord of the Scyldings, I know that Hrothulf will prove faithful if he survive If earth-joys thou endest earlier than he doth; thee. 60 I reckon that recompense he’ll render with kindness Our offspring and issue, if that all he remember, What favors of yore, when he yet was an infant, We awarded to him for his worship and pleasure.

      Wealtheow warns hrothgar about giving away his kingdom to Beowulf

    51. The lay was concluded

      end of the Finnsburg Episode

    52. when the singer of Hrothgar of his lord’s father. On mead-bench should mention the merry hall-joyance Of the kinsmen of Finn, when onset surprised them

      Beginning of the Finnsburgh Fragment

    53. Heorot then inside Hrothgar’s nephew, Hrothulf, is present. Was filled with friendly ones; falsehood and treachery The Folk-Scyldings now nowise did practise

      Foreshadowing Heorot's demise

    54. To Sigmund accrued then No little of glory

      Beginning of the Sigemund digression

    55. oft a thane of the folk-lord, A man of celebrity, mindful of rhythms, The gleeman sings of the deeds of heroes. Who ancient traditions treasured in memory, New word-groups found properly bound: 35 The bard after ’gan then Beowulf’s venture Wisely to tell of, and words that were clever To utter skilfully, earnestly speaking

      A poet weave's Beowulf's exploits in with those of Sigmund.

  3. earlybritishlit.pressbooks.com earlybritishlit.pressbooks.com
    1. Nesses

      OE næs "point of land running into the sea"; obsolete except in place names

    2. Higelac’s liegeman

      enter Beowulf; compare: "News went global. In Geatland, Hygelac's right-hand man / heard about Grendel. Bro, here was a warrior like no other: massive, mighty, born of noble / blood. He called for a ship to be readied / for his band, and boasted he'd try his teeth on this tale, / sail in as a savior over the swan-road, seek that king / and lend a hand as defender." (Headley lns. 193-199)

    3. The folk-leader noble


    4. the war-king


  4. Aug 2022
  5. earlybritishlit.pressbooks.com earlybritishlit.pressbooks.com
    1. Healfdene’s kinsman


    2. Grendel

      Alternative translation: "Grendel was the name of this woe-walker, / Unlucky, fucked by Fate. he'd been / living rough for years, ruling the wild: / the mere, the fen, and the fastness, / his kingdom. his creation was cursed / under the line of Cain, the kin-killer. / The Lord, long ago, had taken Abel's side. / Though none of that was Grendel's doing, / he'd descended from bloodstains. / From Cain had come a cruel kind, / seen by some as shadow-stalked: monsters, / elves, giants who'd ground against God, / and for that, been banished." (Headley lns. 101-113)

    3. his grudges he cherished, Murderous malice, many a winter, 40 Strife unremitting, and peacefully wished he 4Life-woe to lift from no liegeman at all of The men of the Dane-folk, for money to settle, No counsellor needed count for a moment On handsome amends at the hands of the murderer

      Grendel refuses to make peace or provide "money to settle." Heaney translates: "he would never / parley or make peace with any Dane / nor stop his death dealing not pay the man price" (lns. 154-156).

    4. Not seldom in private Sat the king in his council; conference held they The king and his council deliberate What the braves should determine ’gainst terrors unlooked for.

      As opposed to Grendel's solitude, Hrothgar seeks the council of his companions.

    5. moor-fens

      OE mor "morass, swamp" (i.e. a marsh, a tract of soft wet land) and fenn "mud, mire, dirt; fen, marsh, moor,"

    6. the mighty war-spirit

      OE ellengaést (literally: ellen strong/powerful/vigorous and gaést enemy/stranger

      Heaney trans.: "powerful demon"

    7. Clear song of the singer

      OE scopes "poet, minstrel, professional reciter of poetry"

    8. In due time it happened Early ’mong men, that ’twas finished entirely, 25 The greatest of hall-buildings; Heorot he named it Who wide-reaching word-sway wielded ’mong earlmen. The hall is completed, called Heorot. His promise he brake not, rings he lavished, Treasure at banquet. Towered the hall up High and horn-crested, huge between antlers: 30 It battle-waves bided, the blasting fire-demon; Ere long then from hottest hatred must sword-wrath Arise for a woman’s husband and father.

      from Heaney (1999): "And soon it stood there / finished and ready, in full view, / the hall of halls. Heorot was the name / he had settled on it, whose utterance was law. / Nor did he renege, but doled out rings / and torques at the table. / The hall towered, / its gables wide and high and awaiting / a barbarous burning. That doom abided, / but in time it would come: the killer instinct / unleashed among in-laws, the blood lust rampant" (lns 76-85).

      from Headley (2020): "So it rose: a greater hall than any other! / Hrothgar filled it, blood-brother by blood-brother, / and named it Heorot. his words were heard and heralded, / and yes, yes, bro! The man was more than just talk: / he gave good gifts. His war-wedded wore kings' rings, / and drank their leader's mead. Nightly, he / feted his fight-family with fortunes. The hall loomed, golden towers antler-tipped; it was asking for burning, but that hadn't happened yet. / You know how it is: every castle wants invading, and every family / has enemies born within it. Old grudges / recrudesce." (lns 75-84)

    9. bairn

      from OE "child, son, descendant"

    10. Beowulf

      A different Beowulf. Hall notes in the "Glossary of Proper Names": "Son of Scyld, the founder of the dynasty of Scyldings. Father of Healfdene, and grandfather of Hrothgar."

    11. from scathers in numbers

      OE: sceaþena þrēatum

      Heaney translation; "scourge of many tribes"

      Unsure what "scathers" means; cannot find a definition