Widsith

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Widsith
Widsith is an Old English poem of 144 lines that appears to date from the 9th century, drawing on earlier oral traditions of Anglo-Saxon tale singing. The only text of the fragment is copied in the Exeter Book, a manuscript of Old English poetry compiled in the late 10th century. The poem is for the most part a survey of the peoples, kings, and heroes of Europe in the Heroic Age of Northern Europe.Excerpted from Widsith on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Widsið maðolade, wordhoard onleac,
se þe monna mæst mægþa ofer eorþan,
folca geondferde; oft he on flette geþah
mynelicne maþþum. Him from Myrgingum
æþele onwocon. He mid Ealhhilde,  5
fælre freoþuwebban, forman siþe
Hreðcyninges ham gesohte
eastan of Ongle, Eormanrices,
wraþes wærlogan. Ongon þa worn sprecan:
"Fela ic monna gefrægn mægþum wealdan!  10
Sceal þeodna gehwylc þeawum lifgan,
eorl æfter oþrum eðle rædan,
se þe his þeodenstol geþeon wile.
þara wæs Hwala hwile selast,
ond Alexandreas ealra ricost  15
monna cynnes, ond he mæst geþah
þara þe ic ofer foldan gefrægen hæbbe.
ætla weold Hunum, Eormanric Gotum,
Becca Baningum, Burgendum Gifica.
Casere weold Creacum ond Cælic Finnum,  20
Hagena Holmrygum ond Heoden Glommum.
Witta weold Swæfum, Wada Hælsingum,
Meaca Myrgingum, Mearchealf Hundingum.
þeodric weold Froncum, þyle Rondingum,
Breoca Brondingum, Billing Wernum.  25
Oswine weold Eowum ond Ytum Gefwulf,
Fin Folcwalding Fresna cynne.
Sigehere lengest Sædenum weold,
Hnæf Hocingum, Helm Wulfingum,
Wald Woingum, Wod þyringum,  30
Sæferð Sycgum, Sweom Ongendþeow,
Sceafthere Ymbrum, Sceafa Longbeardum,
Hun Hætwerum ond Holen Wrosnum.
Hringweald wæs haten Herefarena cyning.
Offa weold Ongle, Alewih Denum;  35
se wæs þara manna modgast ealra,
no hwæþre he ofer Offan eorlscype fremede,
ac Offa geslog ærest monna,
cnihtwesende, cynerica mæst.
Nænig efeneald him eorlscipe maran  40
on orette. Ane sweorde
merce gemærde wið Myrgingum
bi Fifeldore; heoldon forð siþþan
Engle ond Swæfe, swa hit Offa geslog.
Hroþwulf ond Hroðgar heoldon lengest  45
sibbe ætsomne suhtorfædran,
siþþan hy forwræcon wicinga cynn
ond Ingeldes ord forbigdan,
forheowan æt Heorote Heaðobeardna þrym.
Swa ic geondferde fela fremdra londa  50
geond ginne grund. Godes ond yfles
þær ic cunnade cnosle bidæled,
freomægum feor folgade wide.
Forþon ic mæg singan ond secgan spell,
mænan fore mengo in meoduhealle  55
hu me cynegode cystum dohten.
Ic wæs mid Hunum ond mid Hreðgotum,
mid Sweom ond mid Geatum ond mid Suþdenum.
Mid Wenlum ic wæs ond mid Wærnum ond mid wicingum.
Mid Gefþum ic wæs ond mid Winedum ond mid Gefflegum.  60
Mid Englum ic wæs ond mid Swæfum ond mid ænenum.
Mid Seaxum ic wæs ond Sycgum ond mid Sweordwerum.
Mid Hronum ic wæs ond mid Deanum ond mid Heaþoreamum.
Mid þyringum ic wæs ond mid þrowendum,
ond mid Burgendum, þær ic beag geþah;  65
me þær Guðhere forgeaf glædlicne maþþum
songes to leane. Næs þæt sæne cyning!
Mid Froncum ic wæs ond mid Frysum ond mid Frumtingum.
Mid Rugum ic wæs ond mid Glommum ond mid Rumwalum.
Swylce ic wæs on Eatule mid ælfwine,  70
se hæfde moncynnes, mine gefræge,
leohteste hond lofes to wyrcenne,
heortan unhneaweste hringa gedales,
beorhtra beaga, bearn Eadwines.
Mid Sercingum ic wæs ond mid Seringum;  75
mid Creacum ic wæs ond mid Finnum ond mid Casere,
se þe winburga geweald ahte,
wiolena ond wilna, ond Wala rices.
Mid Scottum ic wæs ond mid Peohtum ond mid Scridefinnum;
mid Lidwicingum ic wæs ond mid Leonum ond mid Longbeardum,  80
mid hæðnum ond mid hæleþum ond mid Hundingum.
Mid Israhelum ic wæs ond mid Exsyringum,
mid Ebreum ond mid Indeum ond mid Egyptum.
Mid Moidum ic wæs ond mid Persum ond mid Myrgingum,
ond Mofdingum ond ongend Myrgingum,  85
ond mid Amothingum. Mid East þyringum ic wæs
ond mid Eolum ond mid Istum ond Idumingum.
Ond ic wæs mid Eormanrice ealle þrage,
þær me Gotena cyning gode dohte;
se me beag forgeaf, burgwarena fruma,  90
on þam siex hund wæs smætes goldes,
gescyred sceatta scillingrime;
þone ic Eadgilse on æht sealde,
minum hleodryhtne, þa ic to ham bicwom,
leofum to leane, þæs þe he me lond forgeaf,  95
mines fæder eþel, frea Myrginga.
Ond me þa Ealhhild oþerne forgeaf,
dryhtcwen duguþe, dohtor Eadwines.
Hyre lof lengde geond londa fela,
þonne ic be songe secgan sceolde  100
hwær ic under swegle selast wisse
goldhrodene cwen giefe bryttian.
ðonne wit Scilling sciran reorde
for uncrum sigedryhtne song ahofan,
hlude bi hearpan hleoþor swinsade,  105
þonne monige men, modum wlonce,
wordum sprecan, þa þe wel cuþan,
þæt hi næfre song sellan ne hyrdon.
ðonan ic ealne geondhwearf eþel Gotena,
sohte ic a gesiþa þa selestan;  110
þæt wæs innweorud Earmanrices.
Heðcan sohte ic ond Beadecan ond Herelingas,
Emercan sohte ic ond Fridlan ond Eastgotan,
frodne ond godne fæder Unwenes.
Seccan sohte ic ond Beccan, Seafolan ond þeodric,  115
Heaþoric ond Sifecan, Hliþe ond Incgenþeow.
Eadwine sohte ic ond Elsan, ægelmund ond Hungar,
ond þa wloncan gedryht Wiþmyrginga.
Wulfhere sohte ic ond Wyrmhere; ful oft þær wig ne alæg,
þonne Hræda here heardum sweordum  120
ymb Wistlawudu wergan sceoldon
ealdne eþelstol ætlan leodum.
Rædhere sohte ic ond Rondhere, Rumstan ond Gislhere,
Wiþergield ond Freoþeric, Wudgan ond Haman;
ne wæran þæt gesiþa þa sæmestan,  125
þeah þe ic hy anihst nemnan sceolde.
Ful oft of þam heape hwinende fleag
giellende gar on grome þeode;
wræccan þær weoldan wundnan golde
werum ond wifum, Wudga ond Hama  130.
Swa ic þæt symle onfond on þære feringe,
þæt se biþ leofast londbuendum
se þe him god syleð gumena rice
to gehealdenne, þenden he her leofað."
Swa scriþende gesceapum hweorfað  135
gleomen gumena geond grunda fela,
þearfe secgað, þoncword sprecaþ,
simle suð oþþe norð sumne gemetað
gydda gleawne, geofum unhneawne,
se þe fore duguþe wile dom aræran,  140
eorlscipe æfnan, oþþæt eal scæceð,
leoht ond lif somod; lof se gewyrceð,
hafað under heofonum heahfæstne dom.

This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.