Beowulf eBook

Gareth Hinds
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 112 pages of information about Beowulf.
          Declivitous cliffs, the close-covered passes,
          Narrow passages, paths unfrequented,
          Nesses abrupt, nicker-haunts many;
          One of a few of wise-mooded heroes,
       30 He onward advanced to view the surroundings,
          Till he found unawares woods of the mountain
          O’er hoar-stones hanging, holt-wood unjoyful;
          The water stood under, welling and gory. 
          ’Twas irksome in spirit to all of the Danemen,
       35 Friends of the Scyldings, to many a liegeman

{The sight of AEschere’s head causes them great sorrow.}

          Sad to be suffered, a sorrow unlittle
          To each of the earlmen, when to AEschere’s head they
          Came on the cliff.  The current was seething
          With blood and with gore (the troopers gazed on it).
       40 The horn anon sang the battle-song ready. 
          The troop were all seated; they saw ’long the water then

{The water is filled with serpents and sea-dragons.}

          Many a serpent, mere-dragons wondrous
          Trying the waters, nickers a-lying
          On the cliffs of the nesses, which at noonday full often
       45 Go on the sea-deeps their sorrowful journey,
          Wild-beasts and wormkind; away then they hastened

{One of them is killed by Beowulf.}

          Hot-mooded, hateful, they heard the great clamor,
          The war-trumpet winding.  One did the Geat-prince
[50] Sunder from earth-joys, with arrow from bowstring,
       50 From his sea-struggle tore him, that the trusty war-missile

{The dead beast is a poor swimmer}

          Pierced to his vitals; he proved in the currents
          Less doughty at swimming whom death had offcarried. 
          Soon in the waters the wonderful swimmer
          Was straitened most sorely with sword-pointed boar-spears,
       55 Pressed in the battle and pulled to the cliff-edge;
          The liegemen then looked on the loath-fashioned stranger.

{Beowulf prepares for a struggle with the monster.}

          Beowulf donned then his battle-equipments,
          Cared little for life; inlaid and most ample,
          The hand-woven corslet which could cover his body,
       60 Must the wave-deeps explore, that war might be powerless
          To harm the great hero, and the hating one’s grasp might
          Not peril his safety; his head was protected
          By the light-flashing helmet that should mix with the bottoms,
          Trying the eddies, treasure-emblazoned,
       65 Encircled with jewels, as in seasons long past
          The weapon-smith worked it, wondrously made it,
          With swine-bodies fashioned it, that thenceforward no longer
          Brand might bite it, and battle-sword hurt it. 
          And that was not least of helpers in prowess

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Project Gutenberg
Beowulf from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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