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The Anglo-Saxon World: An Anthology Paperback – Mar 12 2009

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About the Author

Kevin Crossley-Holland is the winner of the Carnegie Medal.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
At times magnificent, at times moving, the heroic poems link our Anglo-Saxon ancestors to their origins in continental Europe. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 8 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
A Nice Introduction To The "Flavor" Of Anglo-Saxon June 5 2013
By David N. - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a good collection of different types of Anglo-Saxon literature. It really helps to give you the "flavor" of Anglo-Saxon life and times. The english translations are not my favorite, but they are pretty good, and this book has the excellent advantage of being very affordable (saving you from having to spend more money to buy each of the different Anglo-Saxon writings in many separate volumes).

If you have more than a passing interest in Anglo-Saxon literature, though, I would strongly recommend that you take a few weeks to learn Old English. (here is a marvelous tool that includes an audio CD so you can hear Anglo Saxon spoken slowly and clearly as you learn: Complete Old English (Anglo-Saxon) with Two Audio CDs: A Teach Yourself Guide (Teach Yourself Language) ).

Once you have learned some Old English, you can start reading Beowulf right away with this excellent student edition that has a running dictionary, so you don't have to keep looking up words: Beowulf: A Student Edition.

Even if you take the time to learn some Old English, I would still recommend getting this book just to have it. You will probably return to it again and again.
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Great overview, but poetry translation could be better April 1 2012
By Joel E. Mitchell - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This collection gives a nice broad overview of the Anglo-Saxon culture by providing examples of various kinds of Anglo-Saxon literature. It includes various forms of poetry (including a complete translation of "Beowulf"), excerpts from several historical records, various letters, and some legal documents.

I was not especially impressed with the poetry translation; the alliteration is sporadic in the extreme and the division of each line into two half lines of two beats was occasionally lacking. Seamus Heaney has a much better (stylistically speaking) translation of Beowulf and Lee Hollander is much more consistent in his translation of the very similar Norse poetry.

Overall: a nice broad introduction to the Anglo-Saxon culture, but the poetry translation is stylistically lacking.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Anglo-Saxon's literature at your fingertips! Nov. 11 2013
By Michael - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
All of the great Anglo-Saxon literature in one place, you get a feel for who they truly were. Well done.
A great translation of an interesting period Sept. 20 2014
By Randee Baty - Published on
Format: Paperback
I say I "finished" this but actually I just finished the parts assigned as part of my Brit Lit class. That was mainly Beowulf but also a few of the other Anglo-Saxon poems. I went into this assuming Beowulf would just be something I had to get through but I learned to love it! I missed Beowulf when we moved on to a later time period.

Anything from the Anglo-Saxon time period would have been written in Old English which is unreadable except to scholars today so you have to read in translation. This is a great one. It has the feel, the emotion and the drama that I assume the original poet would have wanted to convey. Beowulf is a very dramatic poem. It's the heroic code in a nutshell. It's also where Tolkien got many of his ideas for The Hobbit. I am so glad to have been forced to read and discuss this when I really wasn't excited about it.

The other reason for enjoying it so much is that I have a great and inspiring literature professor. These older and sometimes difficult texts come alive with someone who loves them. The Anglo-Saxpms became living, breathing people. I love having my mind stretched and this book did it.
Great Works of Old May 17 2014
By Jim Winborn - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is one of the few books I have found that actually has some of the early Anglo-Saxon literature, rather than some ones commentaries about the literature. It was wonderful reading and a joy to be reminded of the fact that such great writing was authored centuries ago.