Beowulf eBook

Gareth Hinds
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 238 pages of information about Beowulf.



{Grendel attacks the sleeping heroes}

          When the sun was sunken, he set out to visit
          The lofty hall-building, how the Ring-Danes had used it
          For beds and benches when the banquet was over. 
          Then he found there reposing many a noble
        5 Asleep after supper; sorrow the heroes,[1]
          Misery knew not.  The monster of evil
          Greedy and cruel tarried but little,

{He drags off thirty of them, and devours them}

          Fell and frantic, and forced from their slumbers
          Thirty of thanemen; thence he departed
       10 Leaping and laughing, his lair to return to,
          With surfeit of slaughter sallying homeward. 
          In the dusk of the dawning, as the day was just breaking,
          Was Grendel’s prowess revealed to the warriors: 

{A cry of agony goes up, when Grendel’s horrible deed is fully realized.}

          Then, his meal-taking finished, a moan was uplifted,
       15 Morning-cry mighty.  The man-ruler famous,
          The long-worthy atheling, sat very woful,
          Suffered great sorrow, sighed for his liegemen,
[6] When they had seen the track of the hateful pursuer,
          The spirit accursed:  too crushing that sorrow,

{The monster returns the next night.}

       20 Too loathsome and lasting.  Not longer he tarried,
          But one night after continued his slaughter
          Shameless and shocking, shrinking but little
          From malice and murder; they mastered him fully. 
          He was easy to find then who otherwhere looked for
       25 A pleasanter place of repose in the lodges,
          A bed in the bowers.  Then was brought to his notice
          Told him truly by token apparent
          The hall-thane’s hatred:  he held himself after
          Further and faster who the foeman did baffle.
       30 [2]So ruled he and strongly strove against justice
          Lone against all men, till empty uptowered

{King Hrothgar’s agony and suspense last twelve years.}

          The choicest of houses.  Long was the season: 
          Twelve-winters’ time torture suffered
          The friend of the Scyldings, every affliction,
       35 Endless agony; hence it after[3] became
          Certainly known to the children of men
          Sadly in measures, that long against Hrothgar
          Grendel struggled:—­his grudges he cherished,
          Murderous malice, many a winter,
       40 Strife unremitting, and peacefully wished he
          [4]Life-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
[7] On handsome amends at the hands of the murderer;

Project Gutenberg
Beowulf from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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