Featuring numerous updates and additional anthology selections, the 3rd edition of Introduction to Old English confirms its reputation as a leading text designed to help students engage with Old English literature for the first time. A new edition of one of the most popular introductions to Old English Assumes no expertise in other languages or in traditional grammar Includes basic grammar reviews at the beginning of each major chapter and a “minitext” feature to aid students in practicing reading Old English Features updates and several new anthology readings, including King Alfred’s Preface to Gregory’s Pastoral Care
Preface xii Preface to the Second Edition xiii Preface to the Third Edition xiv How to use this book xv 1 The Anglo-Saxons and Their Language 1 1.1 Who were they? 1 1.2 Where did their language come from? 3 1.3 What was Old English like? 4 1.4 Old English dialects 10 2 Pronunciation 11 2.1 Quick start 11 2.2 More about vowels 16 2.3 More about c and g 18 2.4 Syllable length 20 2.5 Accentuation 20 2.6 On-line pronunciation practice 21 2.7 Summary 21 3 Basic Grammar: A Review 22 3.1 Parts of speech 22 3.2 Phrases 28 3.3 Clauses 29 3.4 Elements of the sentence or clause 30 4 Case 34 4.1 What is case? 34 4.2 Uses of the cases 35 5 Pronouns 41 5.1 Quick start 41 5.2 More about personal and demonstrative pronouns 44 5.3 Interrogative pronouns 45 5.4 Indefinite pronouns 46 5.5 Relative pronouns 47 5.6 Reflexive pronouns 48 5.7 Reciprocal pronouns 48 6 Nouns 50 6.1 Quick start 50 6.2 More about strong nouns 57 6.3 Minor declensions 60 7 Verbs 64 7.1 Quick start 64 7.2 More about endings 68 7.3 More about weak verbs 69 7.4 More about strong verbs 73 7.5 Verbs with weak presents and strong pasts 79 7.6 More about preterite-present verbs 80 7.8 Negation 82 7.9 The verbals 83 7.10 The subjunctive 85 8 Adjectives 89 8.1 Quick start 89 8.2 Strong adjectives 91 8.3 Weak adjectives 92 8.4 Comparison of adjectives 93 8.5 The adjective in the noun phrase 94 9 Numerals 96 9.1 Quick start 96 9.2 Cardinal numbers 97 9.3 Ordinal numbers 98 10 Adverbs, Conjunctions and Prepositions 99 10.1 Quick start 99 10.2 Adverbs 99 10.3 Conjunctions 101 10.4 Correlation 102 10.5 Prepositions 104 11 Concord 106 11.1 Quick start 106 11.2 Subject and verb 107 11.3 Pronoun and antecedent 110 11.4 Noun and modifiers 111 11.5 Bad grammar? 112 12 Word-order 115 12.1 Quick start 115 12.2 Subject–Verb 115 12.3 Verb–Subject 117 12.4 Subject . . . Verb 118 12.5 Correlation 119 12.6 Anticipation 121 12.7 Periphrastic verbs 121 13 Metre 123 13.1 Alliteration 124 13.2 Rhythm 126 14 Poetic Style 133 14.1 Vocabulary 134 14.2 Variation 137 14.3 Formulas 140 15 The Grammar of Poetry 146 15.1 Inflections 146 15.2 Syntax 147 16 Old English in its Material Context 156 16.1 Manuscripts 156 16.2 Runes 163 16.3 Other inscriptions 167 Appendix A Common Spelling Variants 169 A.1 Vowels of accented syllables 169 A.2 Unaccented syllables 170 A.3 Consonants 171 Appendix B Phonetic Symbols and Terms 172 B.1 International Phonetic Alphabet symbols 172 B.2 Phonetic terms 174 Appendix C Further Reading 175 C.1 General works 175 C.2 Grammars 175 C.3 Dictionaries and concordances 176 C.4 Bibliographies 176 C.5 Old English texts and translations 177 C.6 Literary criticism; sources and analogues; metre 178 C.7 History and culture 178 C.8 Manuscripts, art and archaeology 178 C.9 On-line aids 179 C.10 On-line amusements 180 Anthology 181 1 The Fall of Adam and Eve 181 2 The Life of St Æthelthryth 183 3 Cynewulf and Cyneheard 186 4 The Martyrdom of Ælfheah 188 5 Sermo Lupi ad Anglos 191 6 King Alfred’s Preface to Gregory’s Pastoral Care 197 7 Ohthere and Wulfstan 202 8 The Story of Cædmon 210 9 Boethius on Fame 215 10 A Selection of Riddles 223 11 The Battle of Maldon 227 12 The Wanderer 240 13 The Dream of the Rood 245 14 The Battle of Finnesburh 251 15 Waldere 253 16 Wulf and Eadwacer 257 17 The Wife’s Lament 259 18 The Husband’s Message 262 19 Judith 264 Textual Notes 275 Glossary 283 References 387 Index 394
“Enhanced with new anthology readings, common spelling variants, phonetic symbols and terms, a glossary, references, and a comprehensive index, "Introduction To Old English" is an ideal student textbook and highly recommended addition to academic library instructional reference collections.” (Midwest Book Review, 1 May 2012) "Excellent introduction designed to provide reading knowledge ... He [Baker] constructs the book to encourage beginning students to start translating almost immediately" (The Medieval Review, June 2008) "The fruit of years of sensitive, thoughtful and student-responsive teaching. [...] this work is a huge step forward in imaginative course design. It is accessible in manner and genuinely tries to address the needs of the modern student and teacher, taking them through a course step by step. [...] by far the best attempt yet to introduce Old English, and I enthusiastically recommend it to members." (TOEBI Newsletter) "Peter Baker's excellent new book, a combined grammar and reader, deserves to find a central place in the university teaching of Old English. It is unabashedly designed to be accessible to absolute beginners, but students who progress attentively through the whole book will in fact find themselves in command of a great deal of what makes Old English language and literature tick. [...] These chapters [on 'Metre', 'Poetic Style', 'The Grammar of Poetry', and 'Reading Old English Manuscripts'] constitute the real novelty of the book in their lucid summation of some essential truths that have rarely if ever been to clearly set out for beginners; the sections on poetry in particular deserve to be read by all students beginning the translation of Old English for the first time." (Notes and Queries) "The new edition is a solid tool that both an independent student and a classroom full of students will find useful. The book's approach is balanced. It includes just the right amount of explanatory text ... while also offering ... grammar tools and exercises. The selection of readings is varied and exemplary. Much thought was put into the choice, quantity, and order of the other texts in the anthology. I would certainly recommend this book for an introductory course in Old English.... Baker's new edition is a pleasure to read and would be a pleasure to use in the classroom." (Comitatus)
Peter S. Baker is Professor of English, specializing in medieval literature and the history of the English language, at the University of Virginia. His previous books include editions of Byrhthferth’s Enchiridion (with Michael Lapidge, 1995) and The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle: A Collaborative Edition.
Introduction to Old English is a leading text designed to help students engage with Old English literature for the first time. The new third edition builds on the success of previous editions and includes numerous chapter updates, as well as expanded coverage of Old English manuscripts, runes, and other inscriptions. The book's rich pedagogy includes basic grammar reviews at the beginning of each major chapter, covering the basics of Old English. Other features include "minitexts" for practice in reading the language, and a detailed introduction to meter and poetic style to ease the transition from prose to poetry. Additions to the anthology for this new edition include King Alfred's Preface to Pope Gregory the First's sixth-century Pastoral Care, selections from the Old English Riddles, and the epic fragments The Battle of Finnesburh and Waldere. The third edition of Introduction to Old English confirms its reputation as an essential text for all students encountering the language for the first time.
"In its references to web-sites and computer-links, An Introduction to Old English is very much a book of the twenty-first century; and many of its novel features - for example the chapter on the grammar of poetry, or the appendix on common spelling variants - will be extraordinarily helpful to teachers and students alike." —Michael Lapidge, University of Notre Dame "Baker's Introduction is the kind of book that students of Old English - and their teachers - have been waiting for for a long time." —Hugh Magennis, Queen's University Belfast "This is a truly outstanding textbook for today's student of Old English. Written in lucid and friendly prose, Baker brings the language to life in a manner that will inspire students." —Elaine Treharne, University of Leicester "Peter Baker's Introduction to Old English offers an innovative combination of the traditional and the cutting edge. Beginning with the basics of the language, the chapters proceed through intelligently paced levels so that by the end the user is reading the most sophisticated literature in Old English." —Daniel G. Donoghue, Harvard University
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