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Ringler, Dick / Beowulf: A New Translation for Oral Delivery (May 2005)

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XIII

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3b*1b In the morning, they say,
2a1a(ii) many warriors
1a*1a(i) gathered together
2c1b at the great meadhall.
1a*1a(i) Folk-chiefs had traveled
2b1a from far and near
+1a1b(i) to stare at a marvel:
1680 2c1a the strange being
+1a1a(i) had left behind him
2c1- large, bloody
2e1b footprints in the ground.
+1d1 His fate gratified
1a1a(i) men who followed
3b1a that monstrous spoor
+1a1b(i) and saw how he stumbled,
1a1a(i) sad and stricken,
1a*1a(i) dying, defeated,
1690 2a1a(ii) dragging agonized
2a1a(i) lagging footsteps
++1a1a(i) to the lair of sea-beasts,
2b1b where the waves were all
2b1a awash in blood,
2c1a their red surges
1a*1a(i) reeking and steaming
+1d*1(i) and heaving, hideous
3f1a with hot gore.
+1d1 He died joylessly,
1700 1a1b(i) doomed and despairing,
3e1 forfeited life
d1b in his fen-refuge,
2c1a and hell swallowed
3b1a his heathen soul.
1a*1a(i) Mounting their horses,
2c1- men headed
1a1b(i) home from the water
2c1a in high spirits,
+1a*1a(i) elated and laughing,
1710 2a1a(iii) light-hearted youngsters
2b1b riding side by side
3b1a with seasoned thanes;
+1a1b(i) they talked of the hero's
+3e*1 spectacular success,
1a*1a(i) saying that neither
2b2b to the south nor the north
+3e1 nor anywhere else
d1a on earth, beneath
3b1a the wheeling sky,
1720 3b2b did a warrior live
1a*2a(ii) wiser or worthier
2c1b of a wide kingdom,
2b1b though they meant with this
d1b no diminishment
2c1a of great Hrothgar,
3b1a their gracious king.
2e1a Sometimes they raced
2c1a their swift horses,
2a1a(ii) hardy warriors
1730 2c1a in high spirits,
3b1b where the woodland ways
2b2a were wide and the tracks
1a1a(i) safe and easy;
2e1a sometimes a thane
2b2b of the king's would perform,
+2a1a(iii) a consummate poet
2b2a who knew and could sing
3e1 numberless tales,
3b*1b could relate them in linked
1740 2e1a language, in words
+1d1 arrayed properly,
3b*1d and who was already at work
1d*1(ii) blazoning Beowulf's
1a*1a(i) brilliant achievement,
+1a*1a(i) composing a poem
+1d1 of praise, skillfully
2e1a weaving its web.
+1a*1a(i) This word-smith repeated
2b1- all the tales
1750 3b1b he had ever heard
d1b about Sigemund
2b1a the son of Wæls,
2a1a(i) striking stories
3b*1a of struggle and feud,
3e1 wickedness, wide
2a1a(iii) wanderings, stories
3b1a that no one knew
3b*1b but his nephew, the young
3e*1 Fitela, who heard
1760 2e1a frequent accounts
3b1b of his uncle's old
2e1a exploits and feats
2c1b when the two kinsmen
1a*1a(i) traveled together,
2a1a(ii) slaying numerous
2a1a(i) savage giants
3f1b with their swift swords.
2a1a(iii) Sigemund later,
e1c after his death,
1770 3b1c possessed undying fame:
3f1b beneath grey cliffs
+1d1 the great champion
+1a1a(i) had fought a dragon
3b*1b who defended a hoard.
+1a1a(i) He slew the creature
2b1b by himself, performed
+1a1a(i) the feat entirely
3b2b without Fitela's help,
2e1a swinging his sword
1780 3b1b with such savage force
3b*1b that it skewered the great
2a1a(i) scaly horror
3b1b and its deadly point
2b2a sank deep in the rock.
1a*1b Swiftly, in the sequel,
2b1a the son of Wæls
1a*1a(i) plundered the dragon's
2a1a(i) priceless treasure
2b1b to his heart's content,
1790 2e1a heaping his ship
d1a with beautiful
1d1 bright ornaments;
1a*1a(i) meanwhile the monster
2e1a melted away
d1b into sludge-puddles.
2a1a(iii) Sigemund's courage
d1b was so absolute
3b1b that in after years
3b*1c he was remembered by men
1800 ++1a1a(i) as the most exalted
+2a1a(i) of princely exiles
d1c after the pitiful
1a1b(i) death of the Danish
2a1a(ii) despot Heremod,
2b2a betrayed by his own
2b2- tribe to the Jutes
3b*1a and murdered at once.
2a1a(i) Mental anguish
+2a1a(ii) had crippled Heremod:
1810 2b2b he became, in the end,
+2a1a(i) an evil burden
2c1b to his own people,
+++1a1b(i) who were enraged by his wrathful
3b1b and erratic deeds,
3b1a his lawless ways.
2b1a He lost the hearts
+2a1a(ii) of loyal followers
+3e*1 who looked to him for help,
2b2a who thought that their prince
1820 +1a1a(i) would thrive in virtue,
3b*1a inherit the great
1a*1b high-seat of his father
2c1a and lead Denmark.
2b1b But he lost their hearts
+1a1a(i) when sin and sorrow
2b1a usurped his mind;
d1b whereas Beowulf
3b1c won the unbounded love
2b2a of each of the Danes
1830 2c1a and all mankind.
1a*1a(i) Sometimes the horsemen
3b1b measured sandy paths
3b1b on their dark-hued steeds.
2b1a The day wore on
2c1b and by mid morning
+1a1a(i) a mob of chieftains
+1a*1a(i) had gathered at Heorot
+1a1b(i) to gaze at the tokens
3b*1a of Grendel's defeat.
1840 2c1- Great Hrothgar
+1a1a(i) himself, the gracious
1a1a(i) soul of Denmark,
1a1a(i) came to join them
2b1b with a crowd of thanes,
3b*1a and Wealhtheow his queen
2b2- walked by his side
3b1b down the meadhall path
3b1b with her maiden train.

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