Beowulf eBook

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

{Wiglaf sits by our dead lord.}

       15 With bite of his sword-edge.  Wiglaf is sitting,
          Offspring of Wihstan, up over Beowulf,
          Earl o’er another whose end-day hath reached him,
          Head-watch holdeth o’er heroes unliving,[1]

{Our lord’s death will lead to attacks from our old foes.}

          For friend and for foeman.  The folk now expecteth
       20 A season of strife when the death of the folk-king
          To Frankmen and Frisians in far-lands is published. 
          The war-hatred waxed warm ’gainst the Hugmen,

{Higelac’s death recalled.}

          When Higelac came with an army of vessels
          Faring to Friesland, where the Frankmen in battle
       25 Humbled him and bravely with overmight ’complished
          That the mail-clad warrior must sink in the battle,
          Fell ’mid his folk-troop:  no fret-gems presented
          The atheling to earlmen; aye was denied us
          Merewing’s mercy.  The men of the Swedelands
       30 For truce or for truth trust I but little;
          But widely ’twas known that near Ravenswood Ongentheow

{Haethcyn’s fall referred to.}

          Sundered Haethcyn the Hrethling from life-joys,
          When for pride overweening the War-Scylfings first did
          Seek the Geatmen with savage intentions.
       35 Early did Ohthere’s age-laden father,
          Old and terrible, give blow in requital,
          Killing the sea-king, the queen-mother rescued,
          The old one his consort deprived of her gold,
          Onela’s mother and Ohthere’s also,
[99] 40 And then followed the feud-nursing foemen till hardly,
          Reaved of their ruler, they Ravenswood entered. 
          Then with vast-numbered forces he assaulted the remnant,
          Weary with wounds, woe often promised
          The livelong night to the sad-hearted war-troop: 
       45 Said he at morning would kill them with edges of weapons,
          Some on the gallows for glee to the fowls. 
          Aid came after to the anxious-in-spirit
          At dawn of the day, after Higelac’s bugle
          And trumpet-sound heard they, when the good one proceeded
       50 And faring followed the flower of the troopers.

[1] ‘Hige-meethum’ (2910) is glossed by H. as dat. plu. (= for the dead).  S. proposes ‘hige-meethe,’ nom. sing. limiting Wiglaf; i.e. W., mood-weary, holds head-watch o’er friend and foe.—­B. suggests taking the word as dat. inst. plu. of an abstract noun in -’u.’  The translation would be substantially the same as S.’s.



{The messenger continues, and refers to the feuds of Swedes and Geats.}

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Beowulf from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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