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Norton Critical Edition Sir Gawain And The Green Knight [Paperback]

Anonymous Marie Borroff Laura Howes Marie Boroff

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393930254
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393930252
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 0.2 x 2.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #172,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  20 reviews
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For verse-lovers Jan. 27 2011
By Minor Fifth - Published on Amazon.com
I'll be honest: I haven't read any other verse translation all the way through. Why? I can't get over this one.

"And then the season of summer with the soft winds,
When Zephyr sighs low over seeds and shoots;
Glad is the green plant growing abroad,
When the dew at dawn drops from the leaves,
To get a gracious glance from the golden sun.
But harvest with harsher winds follows hard after,
Warns him to ripen well ere winter comes;
Drives forth the dust in the droughty season,
From the face of the fields to fly high in air.
Wroth winds in the welkin wrestle with the sun,
The leaves launch from the linden and light on the ground,
And the grass turns to gray, that once grew green.
Then all ripens and rots that rose up at first,
And so the year moves on in yesterdays many,
And winter once more, by the world's law,
draws nigh.
At Michaelmas the moon
Hangs wintry pale in sky;
Sir Gawain girds him soon
For travails yet to try."

Just, come on. That's awesome.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, A Gem of Romantic Literature Feb. 8 2001
By "netchild" - Published on Amazon.com
Gaiwan would be worth the purchase if only for the story line alone. However Marie Borroff's amazing translation adds that beauty and eloquence which only a master translator can produce. Borroff uses an alliterative meter which will get you tongue tied if you try and read it out loud. For example the first line is "Since the siege and the assault was ceased at Troy." She also gives us beautiful rhymes at the end of each stanza, like in lines 1236-1240: "My body is here at hand,/ Your each wish to fulfill;/ Your servant to command/ I am, and shall be still/." The story is full of symbolism, and confronts us with a tough philosophical question. You have to read the book to find out what that is however. The book also deals with the problems inherent in the institution of chivalry, and especially courtly love. Overall I thought the story was wonderful, the translation impeccable, and the underlying message profound.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent story, outstanding translation Sept. 30 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I love Sir Gawain and The Green Knight; it is interesting not only because of its expansive picture of what chivalry is (and what people pretend it is), but also for the fact that it can be read from many perspectives (try giving it a feminist reading, for instance, and see what you come up with!). I want to commend Borroff's translation in particular; she reproduces the alliterative meter and verse structure superbly, adding much to the reading. This work is captivating and entrancing; I highly recommend it.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Edition March 27 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Certainly the best edition of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight available in this price range. The translation is by Marie Boroff, and is highly regarded. The translation provides excellent glosses for both the amateur and seasoned scholar. A quality book for anyone who wants to begin an in depth study of Sir Gawain.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mystery, Magic and Morals in the 14th Century Sept. 5 2000
By A. Matsen - Published on Amazon.com
A king, a green giant, a temptress, a witch, and a knight. Seduction, drinking, hunting, and gore. Boring, scholarly, "classic"; I think not. The opening scene is h i l a r i o u s (Imagine congress in that situation!! Would Bill be up to the challenge?:-). If you hated the "literary classics" assigned to you in school, forget that this is one. My favorite parts were the ones with the lord's wife. Her hidden, and NOT so hidden, intentions make for great soap opera material. It's a fun read, and this translation is very well put together.

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