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AA. LL. M. AND PH. D. OF THE UNIVERSITY OF GIESSEN ; AUTHOR OF
A GRAMMAR OF THE ANGLO-SAXON LANGUAGE,' ETC.
GEORGE P. PUTNAM, 155 BROADWAY.
LONDON :-PUTNAM'S AMERICAN AGENCY,
Removed from Paternoster Row to
M DCCC XLIX.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1849,
BY GEORGE P. PUTNAM,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the Southern
District of New York.
" It may truly be asserted,” says Mr. Wright, “ that the literature of no other country can boast of the preservation of such a long and uninterrupted series of memorials as that of England. Even through the early ages of Saxon rule, though at times the chain is slender, yet it is not broken. We want neither the heroic song in which the scóp ir poet told the venerable traditions of the fore-world to the chieftains assembled on the mead-bench,' nor the equally noble poems in which his successor sang the truths as well as the legends of Christianity. We have history and biography as they came from the pen of the Saxon writers, science, such as was then known, set down by those who professed it, and these written sometimes in the language of their fathers; whilst at other times they are clothed in that tongue which the missionaries had introduced, and in which the learning of Bede and Alcuin was revered, when the Saxon language was no longer understood. We have the doctrine of the church, both as it was discussed among its profoundest teachers, and as it was presented in simpler form to the ears of the multitude. Lastly, amongst the numerous manuscripts which the hand of time has spared to us, the lighter literature of our Saxon forefathers presents itself continually under many vary
It is from the productions of the "scop” and his “successor" that this volume has been made up.
In the punctuation of the text we have been guided in every instance by what we conceived to be the true meaning. We are aware that in our division of many passages we have differed from high authorities, but it is a liberty which every editor of a language, no longer spoken, possesses to the fullest extent. Of his success in arriving at the sense of any author, it belongs to others to judge.
Rhythmical translations have been ventured upon in some cases; but being made line for line, they are necessarily restricted in expres
| Biographia Britannica Literaria~ Anglo-Saxon Periodpp. 1, 2. London, 1842.