background preloader

Anglo-Saxon literature: Prose

Anglo-Saxon literature: Prose
Old English literary prose dates from the latter part of the Anglo-Saxon period. Prose was written in Latin before the reign of King Alfred (reigned 871–99), who worked to revitalize English culture after the devastating Danish invasions ended. As hardly anyone could read Latin, Alfred translated or had translated the most important Latin texts. A great deal of Latin prose and poetry was written during the Anglo-Saxon period. The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. See more Encyclopedia articles on: English Literature to 1499

Anglo-Saxon Poetry | Rutgers University Edurete.org The most important formal aspects of Anglo-Saxons poetry were stress and allitteration. Each line was divided into two halves by a break or caesura and had four stresses; allitteration, which is a repetition of the same initial consonant sound, was used to link the two halves of a line. Anglo-Saxon poetry was extremely musical and the scop sang it accompanying himself on the harp. However, stress and allitteration were used to help the bard and the audience to memorize the poem. Other two important features of this kind of poetry are stock sentences or formulas and kennings. A stock sentence was a conventional expression, a commonplace, which was easy to remember because of its frequency; a kenning was a sort of riddle, such as : beaga brytta = the ring giver, that is “the king” sinces brytta = the treasure giver, that is “the king” An other typical feature of Anglo-Saxon literature was the riddle, a linguistic guessing game, whose intention was to mystify or mislead. Anglo-Saxon Prose

ANGLO-SAXON PROSE In all language ,poetry made its appearance before prose ,and that was also true about Anglo-Saxon prose.Anglo-Saxon prose ,however ,fared much better than its counterpart -Anglo-Saxon poetry .In fact English literary prose came actually as late as nineteenth century under king Alfred's patronization.Anglo-Saxon poetry was archaic and a bit complicated ,but Anglo -Saxon prose was rather comparatively modern and simple. About Anglo-Saxon prose ,two specific features must be noted at the very beginning .In the very first place it has an essentially has national appearance .In the second place ,it is much closer to modern English than Anglo-Saxon poetry. Aeifric and Wulfstan are the most prominent prose writer of Anglo-Saxon age .Catholic Homilies is famous book of Aeifric.There are a few prose works Blickling Homilies ,a group of nineteenth sermon ,contained in a manuscript ,And some other homilies and fragmentary prose works.

An Examination of Anglo-Saxon lyric poetry by Colleen Klees The Old English, or Anglo-Saxon, era of England lasted from about 450-1066 A.D. The tribes from Germany that conquered Britain in the fifth century carried with them both the Old English language and a detailed poetic tradition. The tradition included alliteration, stressed and unstressed syllables, but more importantly, the poetry was usually mournful, reflecting on suffering and loss.1These sorrowful poems from the Anglo Saxon time period are mimetic to the Anglo-Saxons themselves; they reflect the often burdened and miserable lives and times of the people who created them. The Anglo-Saxon poems, “The Wanderer,” “The Seafarer,” and “The Wife’s Lament,” are three examples how literature is mimetic, for they capture the culture’s heroic beliefs of Fame and Fate, the culture’s societal structure, and religious struggle of the Old English time period: making the transition from paganism to Christianity. Anglo-Saxons set up Germanic kingdoms, each one ruled by a lord. 2 St. 3 St. 20 St.

ANGLO-SAXON POETRY Art imitates life so the mimetic theory stipulates. By examining the literature a culture produces, we may infer how they lived and what they valued. By examining these three short poems, we may infer that at least the following ideas / persons / beliefs meant a great deal to the Anglo-Saxons... the archetype of the journey on land and sea exile alienation love the cyn the mead hall pagan values Christian values nature the elegy ubi sunt fate oral traditions time bliss / pain the power of narration marital bonds fear security the afterlife Although the Anglo-Saxon might indeed be hard pressed to articulate philosophy, Nussbaum is correct when noting in Cultivating Humanity that, "Philosophical questioning arises wherever people are." Notice that these do not appear in a particular order. From the Greeks, we may turn to Heraclitus (540-475 BCE) for clues. Primary source: Click here for the Fragments of Heraclitus Click here for a site on the presocratic philosophers Abrams, M. Alexander, Michael. Zesmer.

Model Essay with Guidelines for English 203: Western Literary Masterworks by Nicelle Moorefield From Michael Alexander's The Earliest English Poems 'The Wife's Complaint', 'The Husband's Message' and 'Wulf and Eadwacer' February 20, 1997 English 251.001 Question # 18 The First Three Parts, or Introductory Framing and Context The anonymous 'The Wife's Complaint', 'The Husband's Message' and 'Wulf and Eadawacer' are found in the Exeter manuscript which was written down about 940 A.D. 'The Wife's Complaint' and 'The Husband's Message' appear only a few pages or leaves from each other in the manuscript. 'The Wife's Complaint', 'The Husband's Message', 'Wulf and Eadawacer' all deal with marriage. For the purposes of this essay, I will take the view that 'The Wife's Complaint' and 'The Husband's Message' are connected poems which speak about a single couple. The Literary Analysis: #18: What attitudes are expressed by the author or film maker or characters in the poems towards love and marriage? The loss of him is felt as a wound. Hwaet! . . . ' . . . . . . .

Anglo-Saxon literature: Poetry There are two types of Old English poetry: the heroic, the sources of which are pre-Christian Germanic myth, history, and custom; and the Christian. Although nearly all Old English poetry is preserved in only four manuscripts—indicating that what has survived is not necessarily the best or most representative—much of it is of high literary quality. Moreover, Old English heroic poetry is the earliest extant in all of Germanic literature. Beowulf, a complete epic, is the oldest surviving Germanic epic as well as the longest and most important poem in Old English. The elegiac theme, a strong undercurrent in Beowulf, is central to Deor, The Wanderer, The Seafarer, and other poems. Much of the Old English Christian poetry is marked by the simple belief of a relatively unsophisticated Christianity; the names of two authors are known. Cynewulf, a later poet, signed the poems Elene, Juliana, and The Fates of the Apostles ; no more is known of him. The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Anglo-Saxon literature - English and Related Literature, The University of York Overview The poetry and prose of the Anglo-Saxons stands at the beginnings of English literature. Between the arrival of the Anglo-Saxons in Britain and the Norman Conquest, Anglo-Saxon literature played a key role in the emergence of an English nation and identity and in transforming the world of writing from a Latin one to a vernacular one. Its literature is simultaneously conservative and radically innovative. It preserved form, content and values from an ancient and oral poetic tradition predating the coming of Christianity: Beowulf and other heroic poetry have their origins in a legendary Germanic past. But because of the conversion of the Anglo-Saxons to Christianity, the literature also affords the opportunity to study the transformation of the Germanic world through contact with Rome and its Latin literature. Students will be required to purchase Peter Baker, An Introduction to Old English, 2nd edn, 2007. Aims and Objectives

Related: