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Please take notes. Beowulf Is a long heroic poem considered the supreme achievement of Anglo-Saxon poetry because of its length (3,182 lines) and sustained high quality . Horner. Why is Beowulf important?

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  1. Please take notes Beowulf Is a long heroic poem considered the supreme achievement of Anglo-Saxon poetry because of its length (3,182 lines) and sustained high quality. Horner

  2. Why is Beowulf important? Beowulf is both the first English literary masterpiece and one of the earliest European epics written in the vernacular, or native language, instead of literary Latin. The story survives in one fragile manuscript copied by two scribes near the end of the 10th or the first quarter of the 11th century.

  3. No one knows who “wrote” Beowulf. Like all early oral poetry, it had as many authors as singers who performed it. It is from this poem that we derive many of the details for our reconstructions of Anglo- Saxon social life.

  4. Scops(pronounced "shops")were both composers and storytellers who traveled from court to court — the entertainers of Anglo-Saxon times. Scops were expected to know a broad repertoire of tales and no doubt be able to compose tales in tribute to the patrons who financed them.

  5. Epic vs. Narrative The first factor that distinguishes epics from other forms of narrative poetry is scale: -epic poems tend to be too long to be read or performed in a single sitting.

  6. Second distinguishing factor is style: Epic poems are written in what might be termed high style, avoiding popular metres and verse patterns. For example, an epic written in English would not use the ballad form.

  7. Third distinguishing factor Epic poems always deal with persons and events that are considered to be historically real by the poet and their audience, essentially, the tale of the tribe. (Based on the history you learned before what could you expect?)

  8. The fourth distinguishing factor the epic hero cycle. (coming soon to a SmartBoard near you) http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/launch_tl_ages_english.shtml

  9. An important aspect of Beowulf is the way in which it is told/written. • The scop uses kennings, alliteration, and foreshadowing in telling his story. • He also takes great care in describing Beowulf’s appearance as he readies for battle, as well as other parts of the story. • These create a strong (and difficult) voice.

  10. Kennings are a special form of compounding Words that are metaphoric in meaning. banhus (ban + hus), literally "bone-house," refers to the human body; hronrad (hron + rad), literally "whale's road," refers to the sea; Rodores candel, literally "sky's candle," refers to the sun

  11. Alliteration (a literary device) Definition- • A figure of speech in which consonants, especially at the beginning of words, or stressed syllables, are repeated… • In [Old English] poetry, alliteration was a continual and essential part of the metrical scheme . • "Five miles meandering with a mazy motion."

  12. Beowulf Translation Comparison There are many translations of the poem, you will be comparing three versions based on word choice, use of kennings and alliteration. On a separate piece of paper create a grid with 3 columns and 11 rows.

  13. Read pages 27 – 31 in full sentences • When was Beowulf written? • What is a hero? Explain your definition and give examples. • 3. What is courage? How would most people today define courage? • 4. What is an epic? • 5. Define and give an example of a kenning. Write an original kenning about someone you know. • 6. In today’s society we have our own monsters, who or what are they and what do they represent? • 7. List three modern fictional heroes and explain how their journeys fit the epic hero cycle.How are they separated? What is their initiation? How have they been changed?

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