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Old English Literature. Anglo-Saxon Conquest Angles, Saxons, Jutes Angles, Saxons, Jutes The formation of a united kingdom — England The formation of.

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Presentation on theme: "Old English Literature. Anglo-Saxon Conquest Angles, Saxons, Jutes Angles, Saxons, Jutes The formation of a united kingdom — England The formation of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Old English Literature

2 Anglo-Saxon Conquest Angles, Saxons, Jutes Angles, Saxons, Jutes The formation of a united kingdom — England The formation of a united kingdom — England The formation of the Old English The formation of the Old English The coming of Christinity The coming of Christinity

3 Anglo-Saxon poetry 1. Pagan poetry (secular poetry) Emphasize the harshness of the circumstances and the helplessness of humans before the power of fate Emphasize the harshness of the circumstances and the helplessness of humans before the power of fate The Seafarer, the Wanderer The Seafarer, the Wanderer Beowulf Beowulf 1) the first great English literary work, the national epic of the Anglo-Saxons the national epic of the Anglo-Saxons 2) the heroic ideal of kings and kinship: courage, strength and wisdom

4 3) The story: Beowulf Hrothgar, Grendel, Grendel ’ s mother, fire-dragon Hrothgar, Grendel, Grendel ’ s mother, fire-dragon

5 Beowulf vs. Grendel

6 4) Features: ---an all-round picture of the tribal society and pagan civilization ---the use of alliteration ---the use of metaphors and understatement 5) Beowulf: a grand hero, a wise ruler, a savior of the people a grand hero, a wise ruler, a savior of the people

7 2. Religious poetry (Christian poetry) mainly on biblical stories and the stories of the saints mainly on biblical stories and the stories of the saints Caedmon ( ) Caedmon ( ) 1) the father of English song 2) a poetic paraphrase of the Bible Cynewulf (early 9 th century) Cynewulf (early 9 th century) 1) greatest next to the author of Beowulf 2) A deep love for Christ and reverence for Virgin Mary in his works

8 Anglo-Saxon prose appeared in the 8 th century 1. Venerable Bede ( ) 1) the first scholar in English literature 2) The Ecclesiastical History of the English People (in Latin) 2. Alfred the great ( ) 1) King of Wessex kingdom 2) The Anglo-Saxon Chronicles---the monument of Old English prose


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