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Beowulf (poem)

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'''Beowulf''' is an Anglo-Saxon epic translated, among others, by [[J.R.R. Tolkien]] himself.
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[[Image:Beowulf (first page).jpg|thumb|First page of ''Beowulf'']]
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'''''Beowulf''''' is the conventional title of an [[Old English|Anglo-Saxon]] epic poem.  
  
Tolkien looked highly upon Beowulf, and derived many ideas and translations from the myth. In [[The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien]] #25 the Professor states, "Beowulf is among my most valued sources ..."
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[[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 Tolkien also left two substantial unpublished manuscripts concerning ''Beowulf''.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 D.C. Drout]] and published as ''[[Beowulf and the Critics]]''.<ref>Michael D.C. 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 D.C. 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> The unpublished manuscript is kept at the [[Bodleian Library]] in [[Oxford]].<ref>[[Rhona Beare]], "A Mythology for England", in ''[[The Silmarillion: Thirty Years On]]'' (ed. Allan Turner)</ref>
  
==External Links==
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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]]'s horde, for example, is a conscious homage to a similar theft in ''Beowulf''.<ref>{{L|25}}.</ref>
* [http://triode.net.au/~dragon/tilkal/issue1/beowulf.html Tolkien and Beowulf] - Michael Kennedy details some of the similarities between the two.
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[[Category:Books]]
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==See also==
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*''[[Finn and Hengest]]''
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*''[[Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (poem)|Sir Gawain and the Green Knight]]''
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==External Links==
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*{{WP|Beowulf}}
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* [http://tolharndor.org/tilkal/issue1/beowulf.html Tolkien and Beowulf] - Michael Kennedy details some of the similarities between the two.
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{{references}}
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[[Category:Mythology]]
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[[Category:Poems]]
 
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Revision as of 16:47, 21 August 2011

First page of Beowulf

Beowulf is the conventional title of an Anglo-Saxon epic poem.

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 D.C. 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] The unpublished manuscript is kept at the Bodleian Library in Oxford.[5]

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.[6]

See also

External Links

References

  1. Heaney, Seamus (2000). Beowulf, "Introduction". New York: W.W. Norton. pp. ix–xxx.
  2. Michael D.C. Drout, Beowulf and the Critics.
  3. Beowulf: Translations by J. R. R. Tolkien. Updated 2003-01-05. Retrieved 2010-08-14.
  4. Michael D.C. Drout, Wormtalk and Slugspeak: Beowulf Basics. Updated 2007-10-10. Retrieved 2010-08-13.
  5. Rhona Beare, "A Mythology for England", in The Silmarillion: Thirty Years On (ed. Allan Turner)
  6. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 25, (dated February 1938).