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sweordes ecgum,.
thaes the us secgath béc,
ealde uthwitan,
sith-than eastan hider,
Engle and Seaxe,
tip becomon,
ofer brade brimu o
Brytene sohton,
wlance wig-smithas,
Wealas * of r-comon,

translation these words are susceptible of. The ornithologist will perceive in it a description of the Haliaetus albicilla, or white-tailed sea-eagle. The phrase is not without a parallel in Beowulf, where the bard is describing the ashen lances with their steel-clad points:

Garás stodon,

saemanna searo,

samod act gardere,

aescholt usan graeg.

The spears stood,
weapons of the seamen,
collected together,
ash-wood gray above, p. 27.

There is so close a resemblance between the present text and a passage in the fragment of Judith, that it will not be too much to assume that they have been drawn from some common source, or that the one has had its influence in producing the other:

Tha’s se hlanca gefeah,
wulf in walde,
and se wanna hrefn,
wa'l-gifre fugel,
westan begen,
that him tha theod-guman,
thohton tilian,
fylle on fegum.
Achim fleah on laste,
earn aetes georn,
urig fethera,
salowig pada,
sang hilde leoth,
hyrned nebba.

Of this rejoiced the lank, wolf in the wold;

by (the) sword's edges,
of that that say to us (in) books,
old historians,
since eastward hither,
Angles and Saxons,

up came,

over (the) broad seas,
Britain sought,
splendid war-smiths,
overcame (the) Welsh,

and the wan raven,
slaughter-desiring fowl,
westward both,
that to them the people,
thought to prepare,
a falling among the fated.
But on their footsteps flew,
eagle of food desirous,
dewy (?) of feathers,
sallowy >
sang the war song,
horned nibbed one.

* Mr. Ingram reads “brimumbrade,” which is a false concord. All the Cotton MSS. agree in the reading of the present text. * As this name is foreign to the Celtic dialects, it probably was conferred upon the inhabitants by their Teutonic neighbours. In old German poetry every thing translated from a foreign language was said to be taken from the Wälsche (Welsh), and the Pays de Vaud is still called the Walliser-land. The following singular passage is taken from Hartmann von Awe's romance of Iwain (and Gawain,) where Welsch indisputably means English. Er was Hartman genant, and was ain Awere, der bracht dise mere, zii Tisch als ich han vernommen, do erusz Engellandt was commen, da er vil zit was gewessen, hat ers an den Welschen buchen gelesen.

He was named Hartman,
and was an Auwer,
who brought this tale,

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* The earls excelling in honour, T. most valiant earls, I. In Anglo-Saxon “hwate” and “cene” are synonymous, meaning both keen and bold. It is usual to consider “arhwate” and many other similar expressions as compounded of “are,” honour; an error which has arisen from not sufficiently attending to the distinction between the substantive and the preposition “ar.” In such combinations as “ar-wurthe,” “ar-fast,” “ar-hwate,” “aer-god,” the preposition is prefixed in the sense of excess, as in the comparative degree of adjectives it is subjoined. “Ar-wurthe,” venerable, is from “ar-wurthian,” to esteem greatly: and the following passage from Beowulf exhibits one of the combinations above cited, in a sense which cannot be mistaken.

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The most simple and perhaps origi

nal idea attached to this preposition (of such extensive use in all the dialects of the North) was priority, from whence by an easy transition it came to mean priority in point of magnitude, and thence in point of excellence (honour.) The analogous expressions prime good, prime strong, prime ripe, &c., may be heard in every province. The compounds “arfull,” propitious, “ar-leas,” impious, are formed from the substantive “àr,” a word of very extensive signification, and which may be rendered goodness, kindness, benefit, care, favour, &c.

Thá spraec guth-cyning,

Sodoma aldor,

secgum gefylled,

earls exceeding bold [keen], obtained (the) earth.

to Abrahame;

him was ara thearf.

Then spoke the war-king, prince of Sodom, whose warriors were felled, to Abraham ; to him was need of kindnesses. Caedmon 46, 2.

It is impossible to translate “secgum afylled ” literally, without causing obscurity.

AEla frea bedrhte, folces scyppend, gemilse thin mod, me to gode, sile thyme are, thyne earminge. O bright Lord creator of (the) folk soften thy mind, me to good, grant thy favour, thy commiseration. Cotton Prayers, Jul. A. 2. Faegre acende— beornum to frofre, eallum to are, ylda bearnum.

Fair brought forth– for bairns consolation for the benefit of all

sons of men. Jul. A. 2.

Here too the dative cases plural cannot be translated. This term is of frequent occurrence in old English poetry, where the context having supplied the meaning, the glossographers had only to contend about the etymon.

Lybeaus thurstede sore And sayde Maugys thyn ore. Lyb. Dis. v. 1837. The maister fel adoun on kne, and criede mercy and ore. R. of Gloucester p. 9.

Yaske mercy for Goddys ore.
Erl of Tholous. v. 583.

The meaning of “ore” when contrast


ed with the preceding extracts, will be too obvious to require any comment. The substitution of o for 4 was evidently the work of the Normans. The AngloSaxon à was pronounced like the Danish an, the Swedish á, or our modern o in more, fore, &c. The strong intonation given to the words in which it occurred, would strike a Norman ear as indicating the same orthography that marked the long syllables of his native tongue, and he would accordingly write them with an e final. It is from this cause that we find hār, sár, hät, bát, wä, än, bán, stān &c. written hore (hoar,) sore,

hote (hot,) bote (boat,) woe, one, bone, stone, some of which have been retained. The same principle of elongation was extended to all the Anglo-Saxon vowels that were accentuated; such as réc, reke (reek,) lif, life, göd, gode (good), scúr, shure (shower); and hence the majority of those e's mute upon which Mr. Tyrwhitt has expended so much unfounded speculation.—This subject will be resumed in a supplementary volume, in an examination of that ingenious critic's “Essay upon the Language and Versification of Chaucer.”

tor. In the former part of this Nors. p. xc, in the translation of the extract from Beowulf, line 21 of note, col. 1st, for

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And in the passage from the Edda, p. xciv, line 22 of note, col. 2d, for storinar-blatha, read starmar-blatha.

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THE irruption of the northern nations into the western empire, about the beginning of the fourth century, forms one of the most interesting and important periods of modern history. Europe, on this great event, suffered the most memorable revolutions in its government and manners; and, from the most flourishing state of peace and civility, became on a sudden, and for the space of two centuries, the theatre of the most deplorable devastation and disorder. But among the disasters introduced by these irresistible barbarians, the most calamitous seems to have been the destruction of those arts which the Romans still continued so successfully to cultivate in their capital, and which they had universally communicated to their conquered provinces. Towards the close of the fifth century, very few traces of the Roman policy, jurisprudence, sciences, and literature, remained. Some faint sparks of knowledge were kept alive in the monasteries; and letters and the liberal arts were happily preserved from a total extinction during the confusions of the Gothic invaders, by that slender degree of culture and protection which they received from the prelates of the church, and the religious communities. But notwithstanding the famous academy of Rome" with

* Theodosius the younger, in the year nople, which he furnished with able pro425, founded an academy at Constanti- fessors of every science, intending it as

other literary seminaries had been destroyed by Alaric in the fourth century; yet Theodoric the second, king of the Ostrogoths, a pious and humane prince, restored in some degree the study of letters in that city, and encouraged the pursuits of those scholars who survived this great and general desolation of learning". He adopted into his service Boethius, the most learned and almost only Latin philosopher of that period. Cassiodorus, another eminent Roman scholar, was Theodoric's grand secretary: who retiring into a monastery in Calabria, passed his old age in collecting books, and practising mechanical experiments". He was the author of many valuable pieces which still remain". He wrote with little elegance, but he was the first that ever digested a series of royal charts or instruments; a monument of singular utility to the historian, and which has served to throw the most authentic illustration on the public transactions and legal constitutions of those times. Theodoric's patronage of learning is applauded by Claudian, and Sidonius Apollinaris. Many other Gothic kings were equally attached to the works of peace; and are not less conspicuous for their justice, prudence, and temperance, than for their sortitude and magnanimity. Some of them were diligent in collecting the scattered remains of the Roman institutes, and constructing a regular code of jurisprudence". It is highly probable, that those Goths who became masters of Rome,

a rival institution to that at Rome. Gianon. Hist. Napl. ii. ch. vi. sect. 1. A noble library had been established at Constantinople by Constantius and Walens before the year 380, the custody of which was committed to four Greek and three Latin antiquaries or curators. It contained sixty thousand volumes. Zonaras relates, that among other treasures in this library, there was a roll one hundred feet long, made of a dragon's gut or intestine, on which Homer's Iliad and Odyssey were written, in golden letters. See Bibl. Histor. Literar. Select. &c. Ienae, 1754. p. 164. seq. Literature flourished in the eastern empire, while the western was depopulated by the

Goths; and for many centuries afterwards. The Turks destroyed one hundred and twenty thousand volumes, I suppose in the imperial library, when they sacked Constantinople in the year 1454. Hod. De GRA:c. Illustr. ii. 1. p. 192.

* He died A.D. 526. See Cassiodor. Epist. lib. i. 89. See also Func. de inerti et decrep. Latin. Lingua Senectut: i. ii. p. 81.

unc. ut supr. xiii. p. 471. xi.

595. p P. p

* Cave, Secul. Eutych. Hist. Lit. p. 391.

* Gianon. Hist. Nap. iii. c. 1.

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