The English language is notoriously difficult to learn and to spell. In this episode of The Medieval Podcast, Danièle talks about the medieval roots of English and how it got to be so weird.
This theme is preserved and developed in several medieval English texts, both in prose and verse, dating from the tenth to the fifteenth century.
The characters of Grendel’s mother, Judith, and Juliana serve as primary examples for this analysis. This dissertation identifies these three figures as exhibiting a heroic ethos, explores how they fit into and deviate from the defined Old English heroic ideal
In the wide and growing world of Anglo-Saxon scholarship, wergild has an at once ubiquitous and spectral presence.
This article aims to present a preliminary study of the various uses of mann as attested in Old English prose, particularly in its surprisingly consistent use by an individual author, namely that of the ninth-century Old English Martyrology.
The Old English poem The Phoenix, found in the Exeter Book (fols. 55b–65b), describes the mythical bird, the Edenic landscape it inhabits and the cycle of death and rebirth that it enacts in an extended Christian allegory.
This article discusses Exeter Book Riddle 48 in light of its proposed solutions.
This thesis examines the lexical field of baptism in Old English. The lexical development of the field and the semantic development of the individual lexemes were evaluated: the verbs fulwian, cristnian, depan, dyppan, and the vocabulary for baptismal water in Old English. At every stage of the project, the linguistic data was correlated to theological, liturgical and cultural backgrounds.
Besides being chillingly beautiful, this is one of those fantastic moments for literature scholars in which, by describing what life might have been like in a former time, the poet reveals something of his own age: what people of his time thought glory days should be like.
Grendel’s Mother tells the story of Brimhild, a child found abandoned in a boat on the shores of Denmark. Taken in by a…
How did the Anglo-Saxons think about history?
Hostages in Old English Literature examines the various roles that hostages have played in Anglo-Saxon texts, specifically focusing on the characterization of Æscferth in The Battle of Maldon.
It may seem a little incredible that anyone would need a textbook to learn an older version of his or her mother tongue, but learning Old English (Anglo-Saxon) takes some time and effort – and a good textbook.
Latin riddles depended on knowledge of a specific subject in order to be deciphered, while English riddles were often about common things like the weather.
Bede’s Historia Ecclesiastica Gentis Anglorum (HE), written c. 731, enjoyed a great popularity among the Anglo-Saxons and Carolingians and was one of the most popular texts in medieval Europe.
The literature of war in English claims its origin from the Homeric epics, and the medieval accounts of chivalry and the crusades.
I consider the runic poem in its most basic form, as a runic alphabet, and compare its runes and rune-names with the other Anglo-Saxon runic material collected in the Thesaurus.
Beowulf is one of many examples of a story that employs the rhetoric of the hero. The plight of the main character Beowulf is the focus of the tale, and the tasks that he must overcome throughout the course of the poem provide insight into the development of the character of the hero.
Judith makes two spectacular appearances in the Old English corpus: she is the brave heroine of a poem which is included in one of the most famous manuscripts of the late Anglo-Saxon period, the Nowell Codex, which also contains the heroic epic, Beowulf.
We’ve come up with our ten favourite girls’ names – if you are considering a different type of baby name, perhaps you will pick one of these!
Among the most eligible saints for such treatment, Mary of Egypt deserves particular consideration: her popularity is evidenced by over a hundred extant Greek manuscripts of her Life and her uniquely prominent position in the Lenten liturgical cycle in the Eastern Church.
Can you tell which English words come from Anglo-Saxon or Old Norse?
In this essay, I focus on a variety of texts printed using Anglo-Saxon type between 1566 and 1623 in an effort to explore the use of Anglo-Saxon typeface in the early modern period as the use of the Old English language progressed from polemical truncheon to historiographical instrument.
This essay reviews opening scenes in some recent film Beowulfs, which, although they have nothing at all to say about Scyld Scefing, suggest a sacrificial reading of the prologue and perhaps even the whole poem.