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Tolkien's translation is very good (he also wrote a very interesting fairy-tale version, which is included in the same book). That said, the titles like king (cyning) and the Christian references are there in the original poem. Some of the characters and events have direct counterparts in Norse literature, but Beowulf himself doesn't.
Andrix said:
Well, I think Tolkien wrote a version of Beowulf, however I have not had the chance to read it.

I actually got it, right here. It's pretty decent, I suppose. Tolkien was an expert when it came to anglo-saxon and norse literature, after all.

However, I think that asking for a translation without the Christian elements is asking too much. Beowulf, if I'm not wrong (I might be, I'm no expert), was written between the 8th and the early 11th century. England/Britain was thoroughly Christianised at this point, and we should assume that the guy who wrote the poem was Christian. So, when writing Beowulf, the poet probably removed all obviously pagan elements of the tale, if said elements existed in the first place. Asking for Beowulf without Christianity is not asking a translation, but a rewriting.

Just my two cents, of course.

In short, no, I don't know anything of such a "translation".
The references to Christianity is arguably due to the religion of the scribe(s).

hrotha said:
Some of the characters and events have direct counterparts in Norse literature, but Beowulf himself doesn't.

Quite a few of the characters have been (more or less convincingly) identified in Norse literature. Some have proposed that Böðvarr Bjarki is the Norse counterpart of Beowulf.

I can recommend this online version of the Beowulf poem.
Yeah, but there's no consensus about Beowulf himself. There isn't an obvious counterpart.

As for the whole Christianity thing, I think it is too ingrained in the poem to make it the work of some random scribe; he'd have had to rewrite too many verses with good poetry. I'm more inclined to believe the original author was a Christian.
I was aware of the original poem being written by christmen and it having christian elements, should problaby have mentioned that :oops:
Hmm, Tolkien's version does seem interesting. Even though this review sorta put me off a little

Thanks Thorkell! I'll check it out.
I think that review is way too harsh, but I'm quite biased. :razz:

I disagree with this though:
He decried the use of the poem as a source of archaeological and historical information
Tolkien decried the use of the poem primarily as a source of archaeological and historical information and argued for its intrinsic value as a work of literature, since that value wasn't always recognized at the time.
Haraldr, I recommend this translation:

It has the original text and the translation on facing pages. It's not a verse translation, so the alliteration is lost, but it does preserve the cadence and many of the poetic compounds.

Edit: I should add that it has an excellent introduction and commentary, shedding great light on the cultural and historical background and the literary qualities.
Thanks Eadric! It might be exactly what I'm looking for.
Lucky me. I found the Beowulf translation in the Norwegian webstore I buy my books from!
I also had to buy myself a new copy of Cornwell's second book from the Saxon series. I somehow managed to loose it when taking the buss months ago  :lol:
Oh God, soon you'll be endlessly bored by his constant "herp derp, back when I was young and strong and fierce!". That said, I still intend to keep reading them. I kind of lost interest for a while, so now I'm one book behind schedule as one might say.
Same here. I don't like how he stays intractable and I see the same behaviour and similar (yet successful) solo attempts in each volume.
Nevertheless, I am still intrigued to read the whole series (one book behind like you, Torkel). Also because he has simply accompanied me for so many years and the story got quite an epic touch by that.
I despise that bragging arsehole Uthred, the anglo-viking superhero who single-handedly does anything all others fail to do right. For me, his larger than life POV makes the books nearly unbearable at points.
There's definitely one more book coming - when I met Bernard at the Royal Pavilion in Brighton at the signing of Waterloo he gave me the opening sentence of the next book*.**

When he was signing my copy of Waterloo, he said that he hoped I would enjoy reading it and I confessed I'd already finished both Waterloo & The Empty Throne - the Uhtred book had been released the previous week & Waterloo a couple of weeks beforehand. He was rather surprised with an exclamation of "You haven't?!". He then asked if I wanted to know the opening line for the next book and... yeah.
"I died just after 11 o'clock that night."
Oh damn. That's certainly a way to start a book.
E: Right now I am bloody pissed that translations from English to Finnish take ages and I really can't get my hands on the English versions. I just noticed that I am two books behind, the Saxon Stories is one of my favourite book series.
On the subject of Cornwell, I've been wondering if I should try and get my hands on the one Sharpe book that has been translated to Finnish, Sharpe's Company. Is it any good?
Sharpe's Company is quite a good one, revolving around the sieges of Ciudad Rodrigo & Badajoz. It contains one of my favourite "Go Sharpe, go!" parts of the series and overall it's one of my favourites.
Great, I'll take your word for it  :razz:
Now I just need to get my hands on it, unfortunately my local library doesn't have a copy.
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