Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Ubi Sunt?

The Wanderer, lines 92-110 (tr. Michael Alexander):
Where is that horse now? Where are those men? Where is the hoard-sharer?
Where is the house of the feast? Where is the hall's uproar?
Alas, bright cup! Alas, burnished fighter!
Alas, proud prince! How that time has passed,        95
dark under night's helm, as though it never had been!
There stands in the stead of staunch thanes
a towering wall wrought with worm-shapes;
the earls are off-taken by the ash-spear's point,
— that thirsty weapon. Their Wierd is glorious.        100
Storms break on the stone hillside,
the ground bound by driving sleet,
winter's wrath. Then wanness cometh,
night's shade spreadeth, sendeth from north
the rough hail to harry mankind.        105
In the earth-realm all is crossed;
Wierd's will changeth the world.
Wealth is lent us, friends are lent us,
Man is lent, kin is lent;
All this earth's frame shall stand empty.        110

Hwær cwom mearg? Hwær cwom mago?    Hwær cwom maþþumgyfa?
Hwær cwom symbla gesetu?    Hwær sindon seledreamas?
Eala beorht bune!    Eala byrnwiga!
Eala þeodnes þrym!    Hu seo þrag gewat,        95
genap under nihthelm,    swa heo no wære.
Stondeð nu on laste    leofre duguþe
weal wundrum heah,    wyrmlicum fah.
Eorlas fornoman    asca þryþe,
wæpen wælgifru,    wyrd seo mære,        100
ond þas stanhleoþu    stormas cnyssað,
hrið hreosende    hrusan bindeð,
wintres woma,    þonne won cymeð,
nipeð nihtscua,    norþan onsendeð
hreo hæglfare    hæleþum on andan.        105
Eall is earfoðic    eorthan rice,
onwendeth wyrda gesceaft    weoruld under heofonum.
Her bið feoh læne,    her bið freond læne,
her bið mon læne,    her bið mæg læne,
eal þis eorþan gesteal    idel weorþeð!        110

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