When an evil monster terrorizes the land, only one man can stop him. A new horror stalks the ancient kingdom of the Danes. Grendel, a hideous beast, has crawled from hell to lay waste to the country and devour its people. His reign of slaughter seems unstoppable. The mighty warrior Beowulf comes forward to fight this demonic enemy. But Grendel has a powerful and deadly ally. Can Beowulf survive the rage of a fiendish mother who will destroy anyone who harms her child?
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Michael Alexander is Berry Professor of English Literature at the University of St Andrews. For Penguin he has translated, 'The Earliest English Poems', 'The Canterbury Tales: The First Fragment', as well as a prose translation of Beowulf.From the Inside Flap:
Beowulf is the most important Old English poem and perhaps the most significant single survival from the Anglo-Saxon period.
Though its composition was completed in England in the eighth century, the poem is set in the heroic societies of a fifth-century Scandinavia. Against this background of feuding and feasting, the hero Beowulf kills Grendel and Grendel's mother, but in killing the Dragon is himself killed.
We have here something more than merely a heroic poem of historical interest: Beowulf has a truly epic quality and scope, and this verse translation successfully communicates the poem's artistry and eloquence.
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