페이지 이미지

important epochs in the history of England, of France, and of Germany. The foremost biographers of the century are Southey, Lockhart (1794–1854), and John Forster (1812-76).

The great pulpit orators of this period were Robert Hall (1764–1831) and Thomas Chalmers (1780-1847). In philosophy, the leading names are Jeremy Bentham (1748–1832), the founder of the science of Jurisprudence, Dugald Stewart (1753-1828), Coleridge, James Mill (1773–1836), and his son John Stuart Mill (1806–73), Sir William Hamilton (1788–1856), Alexander Bain, and Herbert Spencer. Sir Arthur Helps has written thoughtful essays. The immense advances in all branches of science have naturally found fitting expression by the pens of many able writers; such as Sir Charles Lyell, Charles Darwin, Thomas Henry Huxley, and John Tyndall.

The miscellaneous literature of this century has very largely been committed in the first instance to the pages of periodical publications. The reading public, seventy or eighty years ago, had become a term almost synonymous with the nation, and provision had to be made for the wide thirst for knowledge or at least for novelty. Newspapers had begun to assume a distinct position in the world of letters, increasing very rapidly in number, size, and quality. Allied to the newspapers were the larger magazines and reviews, furnishing at stated intervals articles of interest and power, often from the pens of the most eminent authors; and the publication of the Edinburgh Review (1802) had special significance as marking the establishment of a literary centre apart from London. Through the medium of magazines, Macaulay, Sydney Smith (1771-1845), Jeffrey (1773–1850), Charles Lamb (1775–1834), De Quincey (1785–1859), Carlyle, and countless others, have addressed the people on the most varied matters and in the most varied style.

Walter Savage Landor (1775–1864) is distinguished by independence and vigour. More recently Matthew Arnold has displayed infinite grace and humour. John Ruskin (born 1819) and A. C. Swinburne have written some of the most striking prose in the language : the first, with remarkable simplicity of diction; the second, with cumulation of phraseology, almost Miltonic; both with the full voluptuous swell of Jeremy Taylor or of De Quincey.




BEOWULF, the oldest of Teutonic heroic poems, contains more than six thousand lines, and is an invaluable monument of manners as well as of language, It was probably composed on the mainland, somewhere in the south of Sweden, and brought to England during the Danish rule. Its present form would seem to be due to a Christian Englishman, who re-wrote it, and endeavoured to impress a Christian character upon it. The editor's Northumbrian version, however, is no longer extant; what we have is a much later copy in the West Saxon dialect.

The story is that Hrothgar, a king in Jutland, has built a splendid residence called Heorot, which presently is visited by a fiendish monster named Grendel, who nightly destroys some of the king's thanes, or carries them off to devour them. On hearing of this, Beowulf, a nephew of the king of West Gothland, determines to slay the monster, and accordingly repairs to Hrothgar's court. Here he encounters Grendel, and wounds him fatally; and Grendel's mother, who comes to takes vengeance for her son, shares her son's fate. Beowulf now returns home, and becomes king. After ruling fifty years, he encounters and kills an enormous dragon or fire-drake, fifty feet long, which has been infesting his land; but he dies presently thereafter, poisoned by the venom of the monster. The poem ends with the cremation of Beowulf, amid the lamentations of his people.

The earliest English VERSE is nearly all alliterative. The short lines are taken in couples. Usually, two chief words in the first line and one chief word in the second line begin with the same consonant (Beowulf, 2720-1, 2722-3, &c.); and if any of the chief words have an unemphatic prefix, the prefix is not counted, and the root shews the repeated consonant (Beowulf, 2724-5, 2744-5, &c.) On the other hand, when the chief words begin with vowels, these are all different. The first accented syllable in the second line determines the others. This is the general rule.

Very often the two lines coupled in alliteration belong to different sentences (Beowulf, 2718-9, 2726-7, 2736-7, &c.), and even to different paragraphs (Beowulf, 2718-9, 2756-7; Cadmon's Paraphrase, Book I., Canto xxi., 81-2, 89-90, &c.) Modern parallels might be cited. Compare, for instance, the paragraphs in Keats's Endymion throughout: Book I., lines 33-4, 121-2, 231-2, &c. ; Book II., 64-5, 215-6, 219-20, and so on.

We base on Thorpe and Grein.



(From Beowulf, Canto xx.) Hie dygel lond

They a lone land warigeath, wulf-hleộthu, 2720 dwell in, wolf lurking-places, windige næssas,

windy nesses, frecne fen-gelâd,

fearful fen-paths, thær fyrgen-stream

where the fell2-stream under næssa genipu

neath the nesses' mists nither gewîteth,

down descendeth, flød under foldan.

flood under feld.3 Nis that feor heonon,

Not is it far hence, mil gemearces,

by mile-measure, thæt se mere standeth.

that the mere4 standeth. Ofer them hongiath 2730 Over it hang hrinde-bearwas ;

rindy groves ; wudu wyrtum fæst

a wood fast of roots 5 water oferhelmath.

the water overcanopies. Thær mæg nihta gehwäm There may (one) every night nith-wundor seôn, 2735 a dread wonder see, fyr on fløde.

fire in the flood. Nô thes frod leofath

None so sage liveth gumena bearna

of men's bairns thæt thone grund wite.

that (he) the bottom wots.6 Theâh the hæth-stapa, 2740 Though the heath-stalker, hundum geswenced,

by the hounds swinked,? heorot hornum trum,

the hart strong of horns, holt-wudu sêce,

the holt 8-wood seek, feorran geflymed,

from afar driven in flight, ær he feorh seleth, 2745 (ere) first he life yieldeth, aldor on ofre,

his breath on the bank, ær he thær in wille

ere he there in will hafelan [hydan).

his head [to hide]. Nis that heoru stổw.

Not is that a gentle' place. Thonon yth-geblond 2750 Thence the billow-blending up-astigeth

upward boundeth won to wolcnum,

wan to the welkin, 1 Headlands, promontories. 2 Bare hill, mountain. 3 Field, earth. 4 Lake. 6 Firmly rooted. Knows. Wearied. 8 Trees closely planted. ° Scot. canny.

thonne wind styreth

when the wind stirreth lath-gewidu,

loathed tempests oththæt lyft drysmath, 2755 until the lift 10 lours, 11 roderas reộtath.

the heavens rain tears. 10 Sky. 11 Grows gloomy.

NOTES. 2719. Lond, another form of 'land.' | 2732. Wyrtum, with worts or roots.

Cf. hongiath (2730), won (2752), Cf. Ger. wurz(et). Now only in common, man; long, lang; hond, hand; pounds : colewort, liverwort, &c. In &c.

the twelfth century, 'ortgeard' (ort2722. Gelâd, collective noun, for ‘lada' yard) was softened into 'orchard.' (pl. of 'ladu'). Cf. genipu (2724), 2733. Oferhelmath, crowns, covers, engewidru (2754); and Ger. gebüsch, circles, as a helm(et) does the head. geflügel, gefolge.

Helm'is from 'helan,' to conceal, 2727. Nis = ne is. Cf. nan (none) = 1 cover, protect; cf. Dunbar, The ne an (one); ne .... æfre (Fight Golden Targe, 93: 'I lay oure of Brunanburh, 129, 131) = næfre | helit with levis ronk. (Eng. Chron., 1087 A.D.); nafde 2734. Mæg, máy ; g gets softened. Cf. (Eng. Chron., 1087 A.D.) = ne dæg, day; windig (2721), windy; hæfde, the h falling out; nyllan = fæge (Cadm. Par., I. xxi. 111), ne willan, the w falling out—as in Scotch fey; fugol, Ger. vogel, fowl ; Shakspeare's 'Will you, nill you, folgian, follow ; bricg, bridge ; gear I will marry you'(Taming of the (Eng. Chron., 1087 A.D.), year ; Shrew, ii. I).

geoguth (Cadm. Par., I. xxi. 2730-1 and 2732-3. The same.fact is | 87). In 'fæger, fair,' &c., it dis

given twice, in different words. | appears. Similar examples are common in our | 2738. Gumena, gen. pl. of 'guma' early poetry.

(man). Bridegroom' is the old 2731. Brinde has dropped h. Cf. hrathe 'bryd-guma' corrupted. (quickly, soon) whose compar. is 2748. Hafelan. 'Hafela' is poetic for our 'rather;' hrincg (Cadm. Par., “heafod' (head). Cf. Ger. haupt. 1. xxi. 133) ; hlaford, lord ; hrof, | 2752. Wolcnum, dat. pl. (contracted) roof; hrycg, ridge, Ger. rücken. I of wolcen' (cloud).

CADMON.–ABOUT 670 A.D. Cadmon in his later years became a brother in the monastery at Whitby, then presided over by the famous Abbess Hilda, who had founded it in 658 A.D. He was well advanced in life before he found his gift of poetry.

As the Beowulf is a great secular poem, setting forth the active life of our forefathers, so Cadmon's Paraphrase of Scripture is a great religious poem, bringing us in contact with their contemplative or spiritual life. Cadmon, as the Venerable Bede tells us, " sang the creation of the world, the origin of man, and all the history of Genesis; the departure of the children of Israel out of Egypt, and their entering into the land of promise, with many other histories from holy writ; the incarnation, passion, and resurrection of our Lord, and his ascension into heaven; the coming of the Holy Ghost, and the preaching of

« 이전계속 »