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Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary (Paperback)

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Beowulf is one of the great epics of the Western tradition, and one of the main inspirations for JRR Tolkien's collection of stories set in Middle Earth. Following Beowulf from his dramatic arrival through his heroic trials to the end of his life, this version also includes direct translations from Old English and commentary from Tolkien himself.

— Ian

Description


New York Times bestseller

"A thrill . . . Beowulf was Tolkien's lodestar. Everything he did led up to or away from it." --New Yorker

J.R.R. Tolkien completed his translation of Beowulf in 1926: he returned to it later to make hasty corrections, but seems never to have considered its publication. This edition includes an illuminating written commentary on the poem by the translator himself, drawn from a series of lectures he gave at Oxford in the 1930s.

His creative attention to detail in these lectures gives rise to a sense of the immediacy and clarity of his vision. It is as if Tolkien entered into the imagined past: standing beside Beowulf and his men shaking out their mail-shirts as they beach their ship on the coast of Denmark, listening to Beowulf's rising anger at Unferth's taunting, or looking up in amazement at Grendel's terrible hand set under the roof of Heorot.

"Essential for students of the Old English poem--and the ideal gift for devotees of the One Ring." --Kirkus
Product Details
ISBN: 9780544570306
ISBN-10: 0544570308
Publisher: Mariner Books
Publication Date: August 4th, 2015
Pages: 448
Language: English

 

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