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READINGS IN ENGLISH
THE OLD ENGLISH EPIC
Wealhtheow's Address to Beowulf. — The Warriors Retire
(From Beowulf 1)
Went then to her place. — That was proudest of feasts;
1 From the translation by Professor F. B. Gummere. Used by special permission of the translator and of the publishers. Copyright, 1904, The Macmillan Company.
royal, to rest. The room was guarded
The Fight with Grendel's Mother
(From Beowulf) After these words the Weder-Geat lord boldly hastened, biding never answer at all : and ocean floods closed o'er the hero. Long while of the day fled ere he felt the floor of the sea. Soon found the fiend who the flood-domain sword-hungry held these hundred winters, greedy and grim, that some guest from above, some man, was raiding her monster-realm. She grasped out for him with grisly claws, and the warrior seized; yet scathed she not his body hale; the breastplate hindered, as she strove to shatter the sark of war, the linked harness, with loathsome hand. On the hall-guest she hurled herself, hent her short sword, broad and brown-edged, the bairn to avenge, the sole-born son. On his shoulder lay braided breast-mail, barring death, withstanding entrance of edge or blade.
Life would have ended for Ecgtheow's son,
save only 'twas more than other men