Beowulf eBook

Gareth Hinds
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 112 pages of information about Beowulf.

ERST.—­Formerly.

ERST-WORTHY.—­Worthy for a long time past.

FAIN.—­Glad.

FERRY.—­Bear, carry.

FEY.—­Fated, doomed.

FLOAT.—­Vessel, ship.

FOIN.—­To lunge (Shaks.).

GLORY OF KINGS.—­God.

GREWSOME.—­Cruel, fierce.

HEFT.—­Handle, hilt; used by synecdoche for ‘sword.’

HELM.—­Helmet, protector.

HENCHMAN.—­Retainer, vassal.

HIGHT.—­Am (was) named.

HOLM.—­Ocean, curved surface of the sea.

HIMSEEMED.—­(It) seemed to him.

LIEF.—­Dear, valued.

MERE.—­Sea; in compounds, ‘mere-ways,’ ‘mere-currents,’ etc.

MICKLE.—­Much.

NATHLESS.—­Nevertheless.

NAZE.—­Edge (nose).

NESS.—­Edge.

NICKER.—­Sea-beast.

QUIT, QUITE.—­Requite.

RATHE.—­Quickly.

REAVE.—­Bereave, deprive.

SAIL-ROAD.—­Sea.

SETTLE.—­Seat, bench.

SKINKER.—­One who pours.

SOOTHLY.—­Truly.

SWINGE.—­Stroke, blow.

TARGE, TARGET.—­Shield.

THROUGHLY.—­Thoroughly.

TOLD.—­Counted.

UNCANNY.—­Ill-featured, grizzly.

UNNETHE.—­Difficult.

WAR-SPEED.—­Success in war.

WEB.—­Tapestry (that which is ’woven’).

WEEDED.—­Clad (cf. widow’s weeds).

WEEN.—­Suppose, imagine.

WEIRD.—­Fate, Providence.

WHILOM.—­At times, formerly, often.

WIELDER.—­Ruler.  Often used of God; also in compounds, as ’Wielder of
Glory,’ ‘Wielder of Worship.’

WIGHT.—­Creature.

WOLD.—­Plane, extended surface.

WOT.—­Knows.

YOUNKER.—­Youth.

[1]

BEOWULF.

I.

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF SCYLD.

{The famous race of Spear-Danes.}

          Lo! the Spear-Danes’ glory through splendid achievements
          The folk-kings’ former fame we have heard of,
          How princes displayed then their prowess-in-battle.

{Scyld, their mighty king, in honor of whom they are often called Scyldings.  He is the great-grandfather of Hrothgar, so prominent in the poem.}

          Oft Scyld the Scefing from scathers in numbers
        5 From many a people their mead-benches tore. 
          Since first he found him friendless and wretched,
          The earl had had terror:  comfort he got for it,
          Waxed ’neath the welkin, world-honor gained,
          Till all his neighbors o’er sea were compelled to
       10 Bow to his bidding and bring him their tribute: 
          An excellent atheling!  After was borne him

{A son is born to him, who receives the name of Beowulf—­a name afterwards made so famous by the hero of the poem.}

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Beowulf from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.