Beowulf (translated by JNO: Lesslie Hall)

Beowulf By

 

Beowulf is an epic poem written by an unknown author.  This particular version, the Gutenberg version (pre-loaded on my Kobo), is translated by JNO: Lesslie Hall.  The translator tried to keep the structure of the original poem as close to the original Anglo-Saxon structure as possible.  For each verse the translator also gives a short (one sentence) prose summary of what the verse is about.

 

Well I’m not very good with poetry because, in truth, I’m just not smart enough to understand poetry.  Had I not watched the Beowulf movie and had the translators own notes, I most likely would have been more lost than I was.  Those little translator notes in particular were great.  At the end of each chapter there are also little footnotes about certain translations and why the translator chose a certain word over another, which I ignored.

Since Beowulf is a poem, there isn’t the character development or in depth descriptions of the setting that you’d typically see in a story.  That’s neither good nor bad; it’s just a characterstic of poems.  I’m sure there are translations out there where the entire poem is translated into prose.  I probably would have understood the story more, but it just wouldn’t have the same feel to it I suppose.

There were some formatting issues that I didn’t like, but that has to do with the e-book and how it displays on the Kobo so I won’t comment on that here.

Despite some difficult to read passages, it was still a nice and quick read.  It’s not considered a classic for no reason.  I’ve also read somewhere that Beowulf is an extremely influential person in Tolkien’s works.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
This entry was posted in Beowulf and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply