Thursday, 2 April 2020

Major theme of old english literature notes






 MAJOR THEME OF OLD ENGLISH LITERATURE


Major theme of old english literature notes
MAJOR THEME OF OLD ENGLISH LITERATURE


 THEME OF OLD ENGLISH LITERATURE

  • HEROIC THEME

  • RELIGIOUS THEME 

  • ELEGY THEME

  • WAR THEME

The Earliest English literature is unwritten. It consists of songs and legends, heroic and stirring character sung to the harp by the Minstrel and Gleeman and handed down from one generation to another by the words of mouth .

It is not until much later that these old stories were down , and the blend of Christian and pagan sentiment is due to the fact that may were first written down after the introduction of Christianity , when the monks who took them in hand wish to infuse religious sentiments into the rough heathen saga. The circling seasons , the alternate reign of day and night, fade their imagination and found expression in many natural myths that served as their Early religious. Then, on to these myths became crafted stories of the great man who had done mighty deeds.

1. HEROIC THEME


Beowulf, the epic poem written by an unknown author in the old English has a heroic theme, the theme centers around the heroic story about the adventure of a brave man. It shows the fierce fights and brave actions. The speeches of the leaders and the suffering of their men are told in the poem. The poem describes their hard life.  


2. RELIGIOUS THEME 


Many Old English Poems existed with religious themes. The Christian poems Genesis-A and Genesios-B are among them . There are concerned with the Genesis or origin of the world as given in the Bible. Another poem taken from Bible is Exodus, which describe, “How the Israelites left Egypt”. Daniel and Christian Satan are other poems which are based on the Bible stories .

Caedmon and Cynewulf were two poets of Old English Caedmon’s poems don’t exist anymore. Four poems of Cynewulf still exist. They include Juliana , the fates of the Apostles , Crist , Elene , These poems are all religious in the second half of eighth century.

3. ELEGY THEME

There are many old English lyrics, mostly with an Elegy theme. They were originally meant to be sung and the expressed the poets thoughts and feelings. Old English lyrics poems include Deor’s Lament , the husband’s message, The wanderer and the Wife’s Complain. Some of these poems have an elegiac theme, lamenting the loss of a loved one whether it be a husband as in the wife’s complain. 

4. WAR THEME

There are some old English poems with the themes of war, such as the Battle of Maldon etc. The well known war poems of the period and this war was fought against the Danes. It is an inspiring poem particularly noteworthy for the world of courage. Which the English uses. Translated from the old English. It stills evokes a Grand Vision of Human courage .

“ The mind must be firmer, the heart must be braver ,
The courage must be greater, as over strength growless”.

The old English literature comprises prose as well prose came later than the old English verse(Poetry) the oldest prose was called the Laws, they were written at the beginning of 7th century. Some of them are very interesting if a man splits someone’s ear , he had to pay a fine , but these(Law’s) were not really literature, for they had to pay a fine , but these (Laws) were not really literature, for they had little structure or style.

The most interesting prose work is the Anglo-Saxon chronicle ,its theme is a historical work. It comprise several historian belonging to different English terms. There works too had little literary quality.

One of the most important prose writer of old English period was King Alfred. He had a great influence on the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. It was first Alfred who brought the different chronicles into historical order. He also translated many Latin into old English .Read Here Contribution of Alfred , Aelfric to Anglo-Saxon prose

Another important Prose writer of the Age was Aelfric, His works were Saints lives, Grammer Diselane , His elegance etc. His works were mostly religious in theme and subject matter and his style is perhabs based on the old English literature .


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