Page:Bright's Anglo-Saxon Reader.djvu/305

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

NOTES. 221 middle of the eighth century, the greater part_of Anglo~Saxon poetry was produced. However, these Anglian productions (except in the case of a few fragments, like the Hymn of Cwdmon, see p. 201) are pre- served only in copies made in the south during the tenth and eleventh centuries. By repeated transcription these poems were brought into more or less exact conformity with the lat/er language of the south, and therefore now represent no dialect in its purity, but a com- bination of chiefly Early and Late WestfSaxon with a residuum of Anglian forms. The case resembles that of the Homeric poems, which are in the Ionic dialect with an admixture of Aeolic forms sur- viving, as is conjectured, from the dialect in which the poems were originally composed, An almost complete collection of Anglo-Saxon poetry is contained in Grein’s Bibliothek der anyelsrichsischen Poesie, Giittingen and Cassel, 1857 f., re-edited by Wiilker, Cassel, 1881 f. Although the poems preserved in MS. Junius, XI.,.Bodl. Lib. corre- spond in character to Bede’s description (see p. ll) of Caedmon's com- positions and were therefore once all attributed to Caadmon, criticism has shown that these biblical poems are the \vork of diiierent authors. The “Genesis " alone (after eliminating a long interpolation, ll. 235- 851) is still claimed for Caedmon (see ten Brink, Appendix A). The Episode of the Offering of Isaac has the additional interest of being one of the most pathetic and hcstfhandled themes in the Mystery Plays of the early drama. 142, 10.- hrlncg Ines héuu landes, ‘the (elevated) border of the highland’ ; Bouterwek’s emendation hrycg ‘ ridge ’ is not required. 142, ll.-gegaerw:-in, more strictly gegxierwan, Anglian, 143, l.-Waldend (\V§ldend). Anglian; S. 158, 2. 143, 17.-hen dime, Rhythmically the contracted form héa is here dissyllabic. 143, 18.-Aldor (Alam-). Anglian. 144, 3. -gedzide. Anglian ; S. 429, n. l. 144, 8. - héan is rhythmically dissyllabic; cf. 143, 17. 144, 16 f. -Ure scencan etc; The MS. has sencan, which the editors have attempted to justify ; however, the substitution of scencan, ‘to pour out liquor for drinking# releases the passage of

ll dilliculties. The literal translation is: ‘to give drink to the fire

with (by means of) kin’s blood] 145, 7. -br65'or Ax-Bnes. The name of Abrahaufs brother Ha.- WB (Gen. xi. 26 f.) is here strangely obscured.