Beowulf and the Illusion of History
Most Beowulf scholars have held either that the poems' minor episodes are more or less based on incidents in Scandinavian history or at least that they entail nothing of the fabulous or monstrous. Beowulf and the Illusion of History contends that, like the poem's Grendelkin episodes, certain minor episodes involve monsters and contain motifs of the "Bear's Son" folktale. In the Finn Episode the monsters are to be taken as physically present in the story as we have it, while in the mention of the hero's fight with Daeghrefn and perhaps in the accounts of the fight with Ongenbeow, the principal foes, though originally monsters, appear now more like ordinary humans. The inference permits the elucidation of passages hitherto obscure and indicates that the capability of the Beowulf poet as a "maker" is greater than has been thought. John F. Vickrey, is Professor of English, Emeritus, at Lehigh University.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
The Question of Folktale Elements in Minor Episodes
The Finn Episode The Prima Facie Evidence
The Distribution of Eoten and FresFrys Forms
The Fictive Compatibility of Eotens Giants and Frisians
The Blind Motif Hildeleoman 1143
The Displaced Motif Grimne Gripe 1148
Lines 113137 as Metaphor
The Finn Episode and Its Contexts
Elegy and Myth
Dæghrefn and the Hugas
7onne allusion Anganty´r Anglo-Saxon attack Audience of Beowulf Bear’s Beowulf Beowulf poet C. L. Wrenn chapter clause context Da¨mons Dæghrefn Danes difﬁcult dragon draugr earlier elegiac entails Eofor eotens giants eotenum evidence Fight at Finnsburg ﬁght with Grendel’s ﬁghting ﬁgure ﬁnd Finn and Hengest Finn Episode Finn’s Finnes eaferum Finnsburg Fragment ﬁrst ﬁght folktale Frisians Geats Grendel Grendel’s mother Grendelkin grimne gripe hall hamingja Heorot Heremod hero hero’s heroic Hildeburh historical Hnæf Hro1gar Hugas human hunlaﬁng Hygelac Hygelac’s raid identiﬁed imply incgelaf inference Irving J. R. R. Tolkien Jutes Klaeber lines manlike monster meant metaphor minor episodes Mitchell and Robinson motif Nægling narrative noted Old English Poetry Ongen3eow Panzer passage phrase poem poem’s poet’s raid into Frisia reference reﬂect saga says scop’s second ﬁght signiﬁcance Smithers sode speciﬁc story Studien suggests surmise sword taking tion trolls truce Unfer1 unhlitme wæfre Waldhaus warrior weapon wrestling wulf