Tolkien Gateway

Beowulf (poem)

(Difference between revisions)
m
(Expanded with references - Tolkien's work on Beowulf.)
Line 1: Line 1:
'''Beowulf''' is an [[Old English|Anglo-Saxon]] epic translated, among others, by [[J.R.R. Tolkien]] himself.
+
'''Beowulf''' is an important [[Old English|Anglo-Saxon]] epic.  
  
Tolkien looked highly upon Beowulf, and derived many ideas and translations from the myth. In ''[[The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien]]'', the Professor states, "Beowulf is among my most valued sources ..." ([[Letter 25|#25]]).
+
[[J.R.R. Tolkien]] was a prominent Beowulf scholar; his ''[[Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics]]'' was a turning point in the modern study of the poem, moving the focus from its historical to its literary significance.<ref>Heaney, Seamus (2000). ''Beowulf'', "Introduction". New York: W.W. Norton. pp. ix&ndash;xxx.</ref> Tolkien also left two substantial unpublished manuscripts concerning Beowulf. The first, a more substantial version of the previously mentioned critical essay, was edited by [[Michael Drout]] and published as ''[[Beowulf and the Critics]]''.<ref>Michael Drout. [http://acunix.wheatonma.edu/mdrout/BandC/BandC.html Beowulf and the Critics].</ref> The second is a partial poetic and full prose translation of the epic, including commentary.<ref>[http://www.beowulftranslations.net/tolk.shtml Beowulf: Translations by J. R. R. Tolkien]. Updated 2003-01-05. Retrieved 2010-08-14.</ref> The latter was a minor media sensation on its 'discovery' in 2003 and was also to be prepared for publication by Drout, but as of 2010 this was not forthcoming.<ref>Michael Drout. [http://wormtalk.blogspot.com/2007/10/beowulf-basics-ive-been-fielding-lot-of.html Wormtalk and Slugspeak: Beowulf Basics]. Updated 2007-10-10. Retrieved 2010-08-13.</ref>
 +
 
 +
Tolkien looked highly upon Beowulf, and it both indirectly and directly influenced his own [[Legendarium|imaginative work]]. The episode in ''[[The Hobbit]]'' where Bilbo steals a cup from [[Smaug|Smaug's]] horde, for example, is a conscious homage to a similar theft in Beowulf.<ref>{{L|25}}.</ref>
  
 
==See also==
 
==See also==
Line 7: Line 9:
 
*''[[Finn and Hengest]]''
 
*''[[Finn and Hengest]]''
  
 +
{{references}}
 
==External Links==
 
==External Links==
 
*{{WP|Beowulf}}
 
*{{WP|Beowulf}}

Revision as of 15:06, 14 August 2010

Beowulf is an important Anglo-Saxon epic.

J.R.R. Tolkien was a prominent Beowulf scholar; his Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics was a turning point in the modern study of the poem, moving the focus from its historical to its literary significance.[1] Tolkien also left two substantial unpublished manuscripts concerning Beowulf. The first, a more substantial version of the previously mentioned critical essay, was edited by Michael Drout and published as Beowulf and the Critics.[2] The second is a partial poetic and full prose translation of the epic, including commentary.[3] The latter was a minor media sensation on its 'discovery' in 2003 and was also to be prepared for publication by Drout, but as of 2010 this was not forthcoming.[4]

Tolkien looked highly upon Beowulf, and it both indirectly and directly influenced his own imaginative work. The episode in The Hobbit where Bilbo steals a cup from Smaug's horde, for example, is a conscious homage to a similar theft in Beowulf.[5]

See also

References

  1. Heaney, Seamus (2000). Beowulf, "Introduction". New York: W.W. Norton. pp. ix–xxx.
  2. Michael Drout. Beowulf and the Critics.
  3. Beowulf: Translations by J. R. R. Tolkien. Updated 2003-01-05. Retrieved 2010-08-14.
  4. Michael Drout. Wormtalk and Slugspeak: Beowulf Basics. Updated 2007-10-10. Retrieved 2010-08-13.
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 25, (dated February 1938).

External Links