Notes for Beowulf

[Notes are in progress. Planned order of completion: a) addition of folio numbers and notes about exact place of change of folio; b) addition of textual notes; c) addition of explanatory notes.] This file last updated 6/11/13.

f. 129r: The poem begins at the top of this folio. The first eleven letters of the text, "Hwæt we garde", are written in capitals as the first line of the page.

Beow 4 sceaþena (Wanley): MS now reads only "sceaþen", recorded also as such in Thorkelin transcripts A and B (hereafter A, B); Humphrey Wanley, who transcribed the first few lines of the poem in his Antiquæ literaturæ septentrionalis liber alter (Oxford: Sheldonian, 1705), p. 218, has "sceaþena".

Beow 6 egsode eorlas (Kemble): "(he) intimidated men". MS reads "egsode eorl." This emendation makes a more regular metrical half-line and a more acceptable syntax than the various attempts to retain MS "eorl" by taking it as a collective noun or as the subject of the verb, and a more plausible because more general statement than Wrenn's proposed alternative emendation to "Eorle" (="Heruli," a hostile people).

Beow 9 ymbsittendra (Sievers Rhythmik): MS reads "þara ymbsittendra", producing a probably unmetrical verse and introducing a definiteness that seems unmotivated in this context.

Beow 15 aldorlease: "le" illegible in manuscript lighted with visible spectrum light but Kiernan reports that "all but top of l in le . . . fluoresces under ultraviolet".

Beow 18 Beowulf: West Saxon royal genealogies of the time of King Alfred gave the son of Sceldwea/Scealdwa (various spellings--a seventh generation descendent of Noah and an ancestor of Woden's) as Beaw or Beo, (see K4 291-292) and for that reason a few editors, most prominently those of K4, emend the name of this personage in our poem here and at line 53 (where it creates a metrical oddity--see note) to "Beow," as argued by C.G. Child (1906). Admittedly it is striking that this son of Scyld should have the same name as the hero of the poem, and given the West Saxon genealogies one may suspect some confusion, but that there is confusion, or that confusion if it exists can without doubt be attributed to a scribe and not the poet (or his tradition) is not at all certain.

Beow 20 geong guma (Grein Beovulf): All but "uma" illegible under natural lighting, which prompted divergent early reconstructions. Kiernan reports "ge . . . guma" under ultraviolet light.

f. 129v: fæder | [bea]rme

Beow 21 bearme (Bouterwek): Only "rme" can be read in MS (A "rme"; B "rine").

f. 130r: umborwe|sende

Beow 47 gyldenne (Kemble): Kiernan and Fulk both report seeing the tail of the 'y', not noted by earlier readers, but the 'l' is not visible.

Beow 53 Scylding (Fuhr): MS reads "Scyldinga", which creates an extremely unusual verse-type (D* in Bliss's terminology, which is very strongly associated with the a-verse and with double alliteration, would appear here in the b-verse where double alliteration is not normally allowed). Most editors leave the line untouched; an alternative emendation is "Beowulf" to "Beow" to match the name in the West Saxon royal genealogies (see note to line 18) and create a standard D-type verse. "Beowulf Scylding", proposed by Fuhr and Kaluza and adopted by Trautmann, makes a regular A-type verse but was opposed by Sievers (1904, pp. 309-311) on the general ground that such an unusual expression would need to be strongly motivated. That strong motivation is supplied, however, by the genealogical context: the line is parallel in construction to "(Oft) Scyld Scefing" (4) and leads directly to Healfdene and his offspring including Hrothgar (56-63); the sentence in which it occurs is strongly reminiscent of the genealogical verses of Genesis A. Accepting this emendation involves the presumption that the poet is responsible for the form of the name "Beowulf" here, which would then not be a scribal error of anticipation as (for example) the K4 editors argue.

Beow 62 þæt . . . Onelan cwen: MS reads "hyrde ic þæt elan cwen". There is no gap in or damage to the manuscript here, but words are clearly missing, either merely part of this one line or possibly several lines. Since Onela is a prominent Swede (Heaðoscilfing 63) in the poem, the emendation of "elan" to "Onelan" gen sing (Grundtvig) seems at least plausible; all other suggested emendations have been creative but purely fanciful. Presumably (if only one line is affected) the first half-line contained the name of a daughter of Healfdene's.

f. 130v: wolde | medoærn

Beow 70 þonne (Grein): MS reads "þone", which may well have been an acceptable spelling of "þonne" from the scribe's point of view.

Beow 84 ecghete (Grein): MS reads "secghete", a more or less intelligible compound, but cf. Beow 1738, Seafarer 70.

Beow 84 aþumsweran: MS reads "aþum swerian" ("to swear (with) oaths", which makes only local sense); Bugge (Tidskrift) first spotted in this the otherwise unattested dvandva compound in dative, "aþumsweorum" ("for/between father-in-law and son-in-law"), combining "aþum" (son-in-law) and "sweor" (father-in-law), referring to Hrothgar and Ingeld; the emendation adopted here assumes minimal alteration by the momentarily-confused scribe of a possible late spelling of that compound.

Beow 86 ellorgæst (suggested by Grein): MS reads "ellengæst". Although there are a very few compounds (ellenwod, ellenhete) where the element "ellen" has a negative association, the Klaeber gloss to "ellengæst" ("powerful or bold demon") seems an unlikely rationalization of the word in context even if echoed by the DOE editors, and "ellengæst" should rather mean "courageous or valiant spirit", which seems inappropriate for Grendel in this context. Cf. lines 807, 1349, 1617 (with scribal correction from "ellengæst", first written), 1621.

f. 132r: reccan | cwæð; the content of f. 132 immediately follows that of f. 130 in the poem, f. 131 having been displaced in the current binding from where it originally stood after f. 146.

Beow 92 worhte (suggested by Conybeare): MS now reads only "wo", with the "o" scarcely visible; A has "worh . . .", B "orh . . ."

Beow 101 fremman (Conybeare): MS reads "freman". It is not certain that the two spellings had different phonological implication for the scribe.

Beow 106: scyppend: MS reads "scyppen" with "d" inserted above the line as a correction in the hand, probably, of the manuscript's second scribe. K4 retain "scyppen" as a "Northumbrian" form (cxliv), a tendentious response to the manuscript situation given the spellings of similar nouns (e.g. "wigend") in the poem.

Beow 107 Caines: In MS, original reading was "cames," probably representing a fairly standard medieval confusion of Cain and Cham, but this was corrected to "caines" by careful erasure. Bliss (40-41) notes that the line is of an unusual metrical type, but only if the scribal correction to "Caines" from "Cames" is accepted. In 1261b, however, where the name Cain appears as "camp", the metre requires not "Cam" but disyllabic "Cain".

f. 132v: gi|[ga]ntas

Beow 113 gigantas (Thorkelin): "gi" on f. 132r is all that now remains of this word in the MS because of damage to the top left corner of f. 132v; AB have "ntas" to begin their transcription of f. 132v, with "ga" added later to both (and probably representing a guess at what the word must be rather than anything read in the MS).

f. 133r: lengra | fyrst

Beow 139 sohte (Grein): not in MS, which has no gap.

Beow 148 Scyldinga (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "scyldenda".

Beow 149 gesyne (Andrew 1948): cf. 1255b; not in MS, which has no gap.

Beow 158 banan (Kemble): MS reads "banum".

f. 133v: folmum | [ac se]

Beow 160 ac se (Rieger 1871): not in MS (or AB) because of damage.

Beow 175 hærgtrafum (Kemble, spelling "heargtrafum"): MS reads "hrærgtrafum".

f. 134r: god | [ne hie] (in AB)

f. 134v: logon | þeah

Beow 204 higerofne (Rask): spaced as two words, of which only the lower part of "hige" and a descender of the first letter of the following portion are now visible. A has "hige pofne," B "hige forne".

f. 135r: wurdon | [þa] (in AB)

Beow 240 holmas? Her ic hwile wæs: MS reads "holmas le wæs" with no damage or gap. Other leading reconstructions are "Hwæt ic hwile wæs" (Sievers), adopted by Klaeber, and "Ic hwile wæs" (Kaluza), adopted by K4.

Beow 250 næfne (Kemble): MS reads "næfre".

f. 135v: fyr | heonan

Beow 255 minne (Kemble): MS reads "mine"; the two spellings may, however, have been equivalent to the scribe.

f. 136r: soþlice | secgan

Beow 280 edwendan: often emended to "edwenden", the corresponding noun, which then becomes one of the apposed subjects of "cuman", with "bisigu" taken as a genitive singular. K4 argues against the verbal interpretation on the basis that "edwendan" elsewhere (in Psalter glosses) means only "to return, turn back"; however, the very range of meaning of the noun in Beow would seem to argue for the possibility that the verb could also mean "reverse, change".

f. 136v: lagustrea|mas

Beow 302 sale (Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "sole".

Beow 304 hleorbergan (Holder): MS reads "hleor beran".

Beow 306 Fah . . . grimmon: "Decorated and fire-hard(ened), the battle-brave (boar) held life-watch for the face-masks." A famously difficult passage. The MS reads "grummon" rather than "grimman", and numerous emendations (and readings of the unaltered text) have been proposed (see K4 for a complete account). The current proposal, really just another guess, is that 305—306a are a restatement of 303b—304 and another description of the boar-images placed for sympathetic magical protection about the helmets of the Geatish warriors.

Beow 307 sæl timbred (Kemble): MS reads "æltimbred".

Beow 312 hof (Kemble): MS reads "of".

f. 137r: wið | wrað

Beow 332 æþelum (Grein): MS reads "hæleþum".

f. 137v: hige|þrymmum

Beow 357 anhar (Trautmann Berichtigungen): MS reads "un har".

f. 138r: maðelode | to

Beow 375 eafora (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "eaforan".

f. 138v: XXX|tiges

Beow 386 hat in gan: Only a metrical half-line if the spelling of "gan" represents a fuller bisyllabic form with hiatus between a stem ("ga" with long vowel) and an inflexional ending "an". The similar treatment of "gaeð" in 2034 and 2054, also half-lines of only three syllables unless there is hiatus, argues for this treatment rather than emendation.

Beow 389-90 Deniga leodum." Word inne abead: So MS. Either there is a single line where alliteration fails here or material (at least two half-lines) is missing from the poem. Various speculative emendations have been attempted but none are very convincing. I incline to the former theory (that alliteration fails), but lineate as two lines to preserve the traditional numbering.

Beow 397 onbidan: MS reads "onbidman", with incomplete erasure of the "m".

f. 139r: se | hearda

Beow 402 þa: this conjunction could be removed to make a more regular verse type without anacrusis, as K4 editors propose (they underdot for deletion but treat as part of the poem in the glossary), but seems to me to improve the sense and to be more than "semantically unobjectionable" (K4, p.333).

Beow 403: A half-line appears to be missing at this point, though the sense is not deficient if the "secg" of 402b is Beowulf as would seem likely. Editors have proposed various half-lines of their own to fill the gap: see K4 for those.

Beow 404a heard: only in B.

Beow 404b heorðe (Thorpe): MS reads "heoðe".

Beow 414 heofenes hador: MS reads "under heofenes hador". Adjective "hador" (bright) is a very usual collocation with "heofon" in poetry, and for that reason I am more persuaded by the suggestion of Kock that we have here a nominal equivalent, meaning "brightness", than by the alternative suggestion of Grein, followed by K4 editors, that the 'd' should be crossed to make a (also otherwise unexampled) noun "haðor" (confinement). However, that the evening light should be hidden "under" the brightness of the heaven seems unlikely and the line would also be metrically unsatisfactory (the 'a' of "hador" being long).

f. 139v: wræc | wedera

Beow 431 ond: Here transposed (following Kemble et al.) from the beginning of line 432—the MS reads in full "þæt ic mote ana minra eorla gedryht ond þes hearda heap." Such a memorial scribal error, though uncommon, is not unknown. The suggestion of Bammesberger (1995) that the words from "minra" to "heap" are a vocative aside to the assembled Geats and Danes is rhetorically very unlikely. The K4 editors follow the general conception of Niles (1980) in taking the MS reading as it stands as indicating that Beowulf diplomatically includes the Danish warriors ("þes hearda heap") in the boon he is here asking of Hrothgar.

f. 140r: swa he | oft dyde

Beow 445 mægen Hreðmanna (Kemble): MS reads "mægen hreð manna" and some editors divide "mægenhreð manna", K4 editors largely on fairly tenuous metrical grounds that are more fully stated in Fulk, "Six Cruces" 355-58.

Beow 447 dreore (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "deore".

Beow 457 For gewyrhtum (Trautmann): MS reads "fere fyhtum", which neither alliterates with 457b nor (even if "fere" is emended to "fore") makes compelling sense, and this has occasioned a veritable hail-storm of emendation. Trautmann's emendation makes better sense in context than the many others that have been proposed (for which see K4), especially if understood as "on account of your merit(s)," but has the disadvantage of being less easily explicable on paleographical grounds than many of them.

Beow 461 Wedera (Grundtvig): MS reads "gara".

f. 140v: ar|scyldinga

Beow 465 Deniga (Thorpe): MS reads "deninga".

Beow 466 ginne rice (Ettmüler, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "gim merice". Cf. GenA 230a.

f. 141r: eal | benc þelu

Beow 489b–490a onsæl meoto/ sigehreð secgum: so MS ("on sæl meoto sige hreð secgu[m]"). Like Klaeber and K4, I here and in the glossary follow Dietrich's general explanation of the MS reading ("Rettungen", Zeitschrift für deutsches Altertum 11 [1859], 411), and retain it against a host of proposed emendations, for many of which see K4.

Beow 499 Unferð (Rieger 1871): MS reads "Hunferð". The scribe (and one would therefore suspect, his exemplar, especially given the large marginal initial the name begins with in this instance) is convinced that this name should be spelled Hunferð, as it is the four times it occurs (here and at 530, 1165, and 1488), but it does alliterate only with vowels, so there is a reasonably strong argument for thinking that the initial consonant was added at some earlier stage of textual transmission. Editors up to Sedgefield generally retain the manuscript spelling (as does Crépin). The conclusion of Scragg ("Initial H in Old English", Anglia 88 [1970]: 165-196) that alternation between forms with and without initial H is a spelling phenomenon rather than a phonological one might be an argument for retention of the spelling "Hunferð" in this case.

f. 141v: æfre | mærða

Beow 516 wylme (Thorpe): MS reads "wylm".

Beow 520 eðel: represented in the MS by the runic symbol called "eðel".

f. 142r: beagas | beot

Beow 524 soðe: Thorkelin A has "sode"; B "soðe", but Zupitza reports that the cross-stroke is in another ink. Only "so" and the bottom of a 'd' or 'ð' are visible in the MS.

Beow 530 Unferð: MS reads "hun ferð"; see note on line 499.

Beow 534 earfeþo: so MS. K4 editors emend on grounds of metre and sense to "eafeþo" (strength, pl.) following Bugge 1887 (for the extended argument see Fulk 1992, 213-214), but this flattens the rather attractive presumed meaning of the MS reading: Beowulf both had greater sea-strength and survived greater hardships than any other man, as he goes on to relate. See lines 544-555a for the latter.

f. 142v: æt|somne

Beow 548 ondhwearf: "ond" is represented by the 7-shaped Tironian nota.

f. 143r: mecum | wunde

Beow 567 sweordum (Kemble): MS retains only "swe" with perhaps the beginning of 'o'; A reads "speodum"; B "swe . . " (altered from "sve . . ").

Beow 581 wadu (Grundtvig Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "wudu".

Beow 586 fela (Grein): not in MS.

f. 143v: þuin | helle

Beow 591 Grendel (Thorkelin): MS reads "gre del".

Beow 600 snedeþ (Imelmann, Englische Studien 66 [1931-32]: 324 ff.): MS reads "sendeþ".

f. 144v: wiga | æt

Beow 648 seon ne meahton: MS reads "geseon meahton", which does not suit the context well: Hrothgar leaves the hall because it is time for Grendel's usual visit, not because of his awareness of Grendel's day-long planning or constant threat; there is also no need to assume that "oþðe" (649) has either of the meanings "until" or "and". This sentence should be translated along the lines "He knew battle towards the hall was determined for the fierce fighter (Grendel) when they could not see the light of the sun, or (when) darkening night came gliding over all"—these are two different times, sunset and complete night, as anyone knows who has watched the sun set. The insertion of "ne" was first proposed by Ettmüller in his Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras.

Beow 652 Gegrette (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "grette"; see line 2516a.

f. 145r: winærnes | geweald

f. 145v: beowulf | geata

Beow 684 he (Kemble): MS reads "het".

f. 146r: gewiofu. | wedera

Beow 702 wideferhð (Grundtwig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS shows only part of a descender (of f, r, s, þ or w); AB have "ride".

Beow 707 scynscaþa (Grein): MS reads "synscaþa", a sensible epithet that is used of Grendel at 801b, but that does not appear to alliterate properly here.

Beow 714 wolcnum: MS retains only a descender (of f, r, s, þ, or w) and then (starting the next line) "num". A has "wole", B "wolc" in different ink.

f. 146v: ær | ne

Beow 722 hran: there is space to the left of this word sufficient for perhaps two more letters, and Kiernan reports seeing the head of an 'e' followed by a 't' under UV light, which would support Rask's emendation to "æthran" (adopted by Klaeber and K4); however, the appearance of a correction to the 'n' of 'an', the only letters fully visible without UV (Zupitza comments "altered from am, it would seem") raises the possibility in my mind that here UV reveals letters that were erased, and I have reluctantly decided to print only 'hran'.

Beow 723 he gebolgen (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): the first four letters are illegible, but Kiernan reports 'hege' before 'bolgen' under UV light, confirming the reading most editors have adopted. Cf. Beow 1539, 2220, 2550, GenAB 54.

f. 131r: ge|feng The content of f. 131r follows that of f. 146v; the leaf is displaced in the current binding.

Beow 747 ræhte ongean: This is preceded by an erasure in the MS. K4 editors emend to "he hi(m) ræhte ongean" for Fulk's metrical reasons (HOEM 186; the half-line is also considered unmetrical by Pope and Russom, but not by Bliss) and based on a highly speculative possible account of what was erased (Kiernan saw 'he' under UV and suspected dittography of 'he on' from the next line; Fulk says "hi afterward [i.e. after Kiernan's 'he'] looks quite possible [emphasis added], followed by something illegible") and a dazzlingly complex account of how it might have been erased in error (the scribe before writing 'ræhte' thought momentarily the words after 'ræste' were wrong when he confused 'ræste' and 'ræhte' and saw 'ongean' after the latter in his exemplar, erased the words 'he him' without properly reorienting himself to his text, realized his mistake when he resumed copying but began by writing 'ræhte' and neglected to correct his erroneous erasure of 'he him' by rewriting those words, though he left the space to come back to later) in Fulk, "Some Contested Readings", 194.

f. 131v: mæra | [þ]ær

Beow 762: þær (Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads only "r" due to damage, A has " . . . ær" and B "hwær" ('hw' in another ink and crossed out in pencil), which is retained by a minority of editors including K4, but the emendation (if it is one) makes better sense. Cf. 797b.

Beow 765 Þæt wæs (Grein): MS reads "he wæs", before which A has "þæt", B "ræt", so the original MS reading must have been the nonsensical "þæt he wæs".

f. 147r: sweg | up

f. 147v: sigewæpnum | forsworen

f. 148r: wið | niðe

Beow 836 hrof (Rask): MS now reads only 'h'; B has "hr".

f. 148v: heolfre | heorodreore

f. 149r: snyttrum | styrian

Beow 875 Sigemundes (Grein): MS reads "sige munde".

f. 149v: dome | sæbat

Beow 902 eafoð (Grimm): MS reads "earfoð".

Beow 905 lemedon (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "lemede".

Beow 913 eðel: represented in the MS by the runic symbol called "eðel".

f. 150r: scynded | eode

Beow 936 gehwylcum (Kemble): MS reads "gehwylcne".

Beow 947 betesta (Pope, 320): MS reads "betsta", which gives a trisyllabic half-line. Cf. 3007.

Beow 949 nænigra (Grein): MS reads "ænigre". Fulk mounted a sustained attack against the genitive plural ending of this traditional emendation in HOEM (215) on largely metrical grounds (part of his argument about the "rule of the coda"), and K4 editors following suit emend to "nænigre" for the alliteration but then underdot the last two letters to indicate their belief that they are scribal additions, the word modifying "gad". Grein's proposal, with or without the presumption that the late scribe could have been comfortable with an -e ending on a genitive plural (Klaeber following von Schaubert emends to "nænigre" but glosses as gen pl) makes for an easier-to-imagine paleographic event.

Beow 954 dom (Kemble): not in MS. Cf. Andreas 541, Elene 450.

Beow 962 hine (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "him".

f. 151r: hrædlice | heardan

Beow 965 mundgripe (Kemble): MS reads "handgripe".

Beow 976 in niðgripe (Thorpe): MS reads "inmid gripe". As Fulk (2007, 162-164) points out, Thorpe's sensible suggestion, accepted by early editors including Grein, is not really inherently more difficult paleographically than the more-frequently accepted emendation to "in nidgripe" (in an unvoidable grasp).

Beow 985 stiðra (Ettmüller): MS reads "steda", which K4 editors defend, interpreting "steda nægla gehwylc" as each of the fingertips; however, an expression referring to the talons rather than the fingertips would seem to be required by the sense here.

f. 151v: hilde|hilderinces [i.e., hilde appears at the end of f. 151r and is repeated at the beginning of f. 151v.]

Beow 987 eglu (Trautmann): MS reads "egl".

Beow 1004 gesecan (Kemble [as "gesecean"]): MS reads "gesacan".

f. 152r: healle | gang

Beow 1022 hildecumbor (Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "hilte cumbor".

Beow 1026 scotendum: MS reads "scotenum".

Beow 1031 walu (Sievers, "Rhythmik"): MS reads "walan".

f. 152v: fela | laf

Beow 1032 meahte (Kemble): MS reads "meahton".

Beow 1051 brimlade (Kemble): MS reads "brim leade".

f. 153r: yr|fe lafe

Beow 1068 eaferan (Trautmann 1899): MS reads "eaferum", a dative that is syntatically odd and of uncertain reference. Probably the sons of Finn are meant, and this should be an accusative plural. K4 editors innovatively think "healgamen" must be the name of Hrothgar's scop; I rather take it as appositive to "eaferan": "when Hrothgar's scop would mention (a subject for poetry and therefore) hall-fun, that is, Finn's sons when the sudden danger got them."

Beow 1073 lindplegan (Kemble): MS reads "hild plegan".

f. 153v: gare | wunde

Beow 1079 heo (Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "he".

Beow 1097 unflitne: MS reads "unflitme", which is either a hapax or an error and has been emended in several different ways, but was retained by Klaeber and K4 editors as a possible adjective "undisputed", with formation similar to "unhlitme" 1129.

f. 154r: aðum | benemde

Beow 1106 syððan scolde: so MS, with several competing emendations proposed, usually turning "syððan" into an infinitive. Material may simply be missing from the poem at this point, however.

Beow 1107 Ad (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "að"

Beow 1117 eame (Holthausen, "Zur Textkritik Altenglischer Dichtungen," Beiträge zur Geschichte der deutschen Sprache und Literatur 16 [1892], 549 ff.): MS reads "earme".

Beow 1118 Guðrinc: So MS. A famously difficult half-line. The opinion of earlier editors including Klaeber that the word refers to (the body of) one or other of the dead men mentioned earlier being placed on the pyre is difficult to support since it requires an unusual sense of the verb "astah"; that it refers to the spirit of one of them ascending as Hoffman argues (JEGP [1965]: 660-07, citing an 1849 lecture by Grimm giving the same reading) does not seem impossible; nor does the suggestion of Cooke that this is instead a torch-bearer climbing the pyre to ignite it (Medium Ævum 72 [2003]: 197); finally the emendation of Grundtvig to "guðrec" (adopted by K4 editors) would seem plausible. But the meaning is mysterious enough that emendation is perhaps too bold a step.

f. 154v: wand | [to w]olcnum ("to w" in AB)

Beow 1128-29 Finne/ eal Klaeber: MS reads "finnel".

Beow 1130 he ne (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS does not have "ne".

f. 155r: swiðor | þohte

f. 155v: læddon | [to] leodum ("to" in AB)

Beow 1165 Unferþ (Rieger 1871): MS reads "hun ferþ"—see note to line 499.

Beow 1174 þe (Sedgefield): not in MS.

f. 156r: þæt | þu

Beow 1176 hererinc (Kemble): MS reads "here ric".

f. 156v: hring|[gas] (AB)

Beow 1198 hordmadum: MS reads "hord mad mum", a reading that probably results from the misinterpretation of 'um' as a dative ending and resultant insertion of the apparently missing stem consonant.

Beow 1199 þære (Ettmüller Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "here".

Beow 1200 fealh: so MS. Most editors emend to "fleah", but the meaning "get away, escape" for feolan is noted in DOE and appears in verse in Riddle 20.

f. 157r: hæle | ond

Beow 1218 þeodgestreona (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "þeo ge streona".

Beow 1229 hold (Thorkelin): MS reads "hol".

Beow 1234 grimme (Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "grimne".

f. 157v: ge|[beag] ("beag" in AB)

Beow 1261 Cain (Grundtvig, Bjowulfs Drape): MS reads "camp" (i.e. battle, warfare).

f. 158r: gemearcod | [m]an[d]ream ("m" and "d" in AB)

Beow 1278 deoð (suggested by Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras, 113, with spelling "deað"): MS reads "þeod".

Beow 1285 geþruen (suggested by Grein): MS reads "geþuren".

f. 158v: ecgum | [dyhtig] ("dyhttig" in A; "dyttig" in B)

f. 159r: hreon | [mo]de ("mo" in AB, "de" only partly present in MS, assured by AB)

Beow 1314 hwæþer (Sievers, Zeitschrift für deutsche Philologie 21 (1889): 357): MS reads "hwæþre".

Beow 1314 alwalda (Thorkelin, spelling "alwealda"): MS reads "alf walda".

Beow 1317 hnægde: so MS. Virtually all editors emend to "nægde", but it is not clear the scribe would view the two spellings as having different pronunciations.

Beow 1320 neodlaðum (Ettmüller, Carmen de Beovulfi): MS reads "neod laðu".

f. 159v: cnysedan | [swylc] ("swy" in AB, "lc" apparently already gone when AB made)

Beow 1328 Swylc (Thorkelin): MS damaged; A reads "swy"; B "svy".

Beow 1329 æþeling (Grundtvig, Beowulfes Beorh, spelling "ædeling"): not in MS, no gap or damage.

Beow 1331 hwæder (Grein, Beovulf): MS reads "hwæþer".

Beow 1333 gefægnod (Kemble): MS reads "gefrægnod". The arguments of K4 editors against this standard emendation (and those of Bammesberger 1986 on which they are partly based) are excessively influenced by a theory of the date and dialect of the poem and repose on tenuous and doctrinaire exclusions. Their emendation to "gefrecnod", following DOE, reposes on an interpretation of Daniel 184b I find unconvincing. Other suggestions have been to retain the MS reading and interpret it as meaning "made famous" (Heyne); or to emend to "gefrefrod" meaning "comforted" (Thorpe).

f. 160r: wræclastas | træd

Beow 1354 nemdon (Kemble): MS retains only "nem" because of damage; AB have "nemdod".

Beow 1362 standeð (Thorkelin): MS reads "stanðeð".

Beow 1372 hydan (Kemble): MS is missing a word here with no gap or damage, presumably an infinitive ending in -an that has been omitted by homeoteleuton. Besides "hydan" (cf. line 446a), editors have proposed "beorgan" (Holthausen, cf. line 1293a; followed by Klaeber and K4), which seems to me to defeat the meaning of the sentence, namely that the stag would rather face hunters and dogs than the mere and a more fearful death; and "helan" with short first vowel (Johan Gerittsen, "Emending Beowulf 2253: Some Matters of Principle" [Neophilologus 73 (1989): 452]), whose only advantage here is the unnecessary assumption that homeoteleuton is more likely the more letters there are of the confused words that match.

Beow 1375 ðrysmaþ (Sedgefield, 3rd ed.): MS reads "drysmaþ".

f. 160v: æt | [þe] (in AB)

Beow 1379 felasynnigne: So MS, with separation between "fela" and "synnigne". Most editors emend by cancelling "fela," the acceptance of which as part of a compound indeed makes this a peculiar and metrically unlikely half-line, but a motive for its addition by scribal error is difficult to discover so I retain it in desperation.

Beow 1382 wundnum (Ettmüller, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "wundini" or "wundmi", depending on interpretation of minims, probably from earlier "wundnu", i.e. the restored form but missing a macron to indicate the final 'm'.

f. 161r: ge|[spræc] (AB)

Beow 1404 heo gegnum for: MS reads simply "gegnum for", which having only three syllables does not constitute a half-line. Various emendations have been adopted by editors to flesh out the line.

Beow 1424 fyrdleoð (K. Bouterwek, "Zur Kritik des Beowulfliedes," Zeitschrift für deutsches Altertum 11 [1859]: 92): MS is damaged and only "leoð" is visible; B reads "f . . .".

f. 162r: helm | [h]afelan ("h" in AB)

f. 162v: ellen|[mæ]r[ð]um (AB have "mærdam", but "um" is visible and Zupitza reports "rð" or "rd" under edge of paper binding)

Beow 1488 Unferð: MS reads "hunferð"; see note to line 499.

f. 163r: gewyrce | oþðe

Beow 1506 brimwylf (Kemble): MS reads "brimwyl".

Beow 1508 swa he ne mihte no  (he þæm modig wæs)/ [wæpna gewealdan]: "In such a way that he could not at all ([though] he was brave enough for that) wield weapons." Many editors have been convinced by the argument of Kock (Anglia 46 [1922]: 82-5) comparing this line and others in Old English and Old Norse to Beowulf 968b "no ic him þæs georne ætfealh" and deriving an idiom meaning "no matter how [hard I held him etc.]", and have here emended to "þæs" and placed "no" in the b-verse. MS reading here "þæm", together with the fact that "no" could equally well belong to the a-verse, dissuades me from following the crowd behind Kock in this case since a sensible reading can be derived without emendation.

Beow 1510 swencte (Kemble): MS reads "swecte".

Beow 1513 in (Thorpe): Not in MS, although it is (barely) possible that the three minims could fit into a destroyed area at the end of the line after the previous word.

f. 163v: flodes | [fyr leoh]t ("fyr leoh" AB)

Beow 1520 hondsweng (Bouterwek, "Zur Kritik des Beowulfliedes," Zeitschrift für deutsches Altertum 11 [1859]: 92): MS reads "hord swenge"; cf. 2489b.

Beow 1531 wundenmæl (Kemble): MS reads "wundel mæl" (corrected from "mæg").

Beow 1541 handlean: So MS. Many editors, including Klaeber and K4, emend to "andlean".

f. 164r: grim|man

Beow 1544 feþecempan (suggested by Ettmüler, Engla and Seaxna Scopas and Boceras): MS reads "feþecempa". The common contention that "oferwearp" is intransitive here seems to me less likely than that a scribe has become confused by the unexpected action: Grendel's mother throws Beowulf. The sentence in the manuscript would seem to mean, "The strongest of warriors, the foot-fighter, threw down the evil-minded one," i.e. Beowulf threw Grendel's mother. If such a misunderstanding has produced the received text, there is some resulting confusion about the cases. Both "wigena strengest" and "feþecempa" seem more likely epithets of Beowulf than of Grendel's mother; "werigmod" more likely of the mother, and meaning "evil-minded" not "weary-minded" as editors who assume it applies to Beowulf take it (i.e. from "wearg" [evil] rather than "werig" [weary]). "Wigena strengest" and "werigmod" could both certainly be in either nominative or accusative case (cf. lines 452 - 454 for the former) which would facilitate the confusion.

Beow 1546 ond (Grundtvig): Not in MS.

Beow 1559 wæs (Kemble): Not in MS.

f. 164v: yrringa | [s]loh ("s" AB)

Beow 1599 abreoten: So MS. Most editors emend to "abroten".

f. 165r: snottre | ceorlas

Beow 1602 setan (Grein, Beovulf): MS reads "secan".

f. 165v: blod | [to] ("to" AB)

Beow 1625 þære (Bugge, 369): MS reads "þara". K4 editors retain the MS reading here and emend "sælace" in 1624 to "sælaca" to match, but I find that syntactically improbable.

f. 166r: oþðæt | semninga

f. 166v: wlitig | [ha]ngian ("ha" AB)

f. 167r: be | sæm

Beow 1702 eþelweard: The "eþel" portion of the compound is represented in the manuscript by the rune named "eþel".

Beow 1707 freode: MS reading is either "freode" with an extra tick off the ascender of 'd' or "freoðe" but with an incomplete or faded cross-stroke.

f. 167v: þinum | [hæle]ðum ("hæle" AB)

Beow 1737 sefan (Grundtvig): MS reads "sefað".

Beow 1741 weaxeð (Kemble): MS reads "weaxed".

Beow 1750 fædde: So MS. Thorpe's emendation to "fætte" is almost universally adopted, and indeed makes for an expected Beowulfian collocation, but I am at a loss to motivate the MS reading paleographically and so prefer to see this as a different word meaning perhaps "ornamented". See OED s.v. gefæd, fadian, etc.

f. 168v: wuldres | walde[nd] ("walde" AB)

Beow 1759 betesta (Pope, 320): MS reads "betsta", which gives a trisyllabic half-line. Cf. 3007.

Beow 1774 edwenden (Grein): MS reads "ed wendan", although this spelling might equally be used for the noun, which this clearly is, in a late manuscript.

Beow 1783 wigge weorþad: So MS. Some editors emend to "wig(g)e geweorþad" or space as one word ("wiggeweorþad"). Cf. Elene 1195, 150.

Beow 1796 beweotede (Grundtvig): MS reads "be weotene".

f. 169v: bodode | [ða com] ("ða com" B; A blank)

Beow 1802-03 Ða com beorht . . ./ . . . scacan: So MS, no gap or damage, with the loss of at least a few words but possibly quite a bit more, which editors, assuming the loss of less than a line of verse, have repaired by inserting various words of their own—see K4 for a selection of their attempts.

Beow 1805 farenne (Kemble): MS reads "farene ne".

f. 170r: ge|fricge

f. 170v: þe | [sæ]geatas ("sæ" AB)

f. 171r: in|frodum

f. 172r: æt | holme

f. 172v: wæl bende | [weo]tode ("weo" AB)

f. 173r: offa | wæs

f. 173v: mæge | [sy]ððan ("sy" A)

f. 174v: secge | . . . ær (A blank, B ellipses)

f. 175r: beah | gesyhð

f. 175v: losað | [lifigend]e ("figende" A, ".eigende" B)

f. 176v: gome[la] ("la" AB) | [scilding] ("scilding" AB)

f. 177r: mannan | [h]io ("h" AB)

f. 177v: heme | [maðmas] (AB have only "is")

f. 178r: sceal | mæg

f. 178v: wyrðne | [drihten] ("drihten" altered from "nten" B, A blank)

f. 179r: syððan | beowulfe

f. 179v: recto and verso readings at change of leaf are both indistinct in MS, but probably yldan |æt] ("þæt" A, "þæt" B)

f. 180r: seledream (followed by an erasure of two letters) | nah

f. 180v: foldbuen[d] ("d" AB) | [swiðe ondræ]da[ð] (conjectural, see textual note: AB blank)

f. 181r: hreoh mod | hlæwum

f. 181v: læfan | [wolde] ("wolde" AB)

f. 182r: wrætlic | wisse

f. 182v: earm[e] ("e" AB) | XXX (preceded by a blank A; preceded by ellipses B; first X almost entirely covered MS)

f. 183r: mærne | [þeode]n ("þeode" AB)

f. 183v: bearme | [cwom] ("cwom" AB)

f. 184r: gemon | ic wæs

f. 184v: gehwylce | eafor[an] ("eafor" AB)

f. 185r: þa | [wæs] ("wæs" AB)

f. 185v: þurfe | [wyrs]an ("wyrs" A; B ellipses)

f. 186r: wyrme | gif

f. 186v: wealle | [seðe] ("seðe" A, "sede" B)

f. 187r: bealo hycgendra | [bro]ga ("bro" AB)

f. 187v: swa | [sceal] ("sceal" AB)

f. 188r: laf. | [su]na ("su" AB)

f. 188v: ðæt | [mæl] ("mæl" A; B ellipses)

f. 197r: gefyllan | [f]eorh ("f" AB). This leaf is numbered 197 in ink but has been restored in the current binding to its original and correct place between f. 188 and f. 189.

f. 197v: biowulfes | [g]omol ("g" AB)

f. 189v: yrfe|weard

f. 190r: mago þegn | modig

f. 190v: middel nihtum | oð þæt

f. 191r: ofer | floda

f. 191v: nalles | æfter

f. 192r: dom | [go]des ("go" AB)

f. 192v: sio | [þ]rag ("þ" AB)

f. 193r: hige mæðum | [heafo]d wearde ("heafo" AB)

f. 193v: werge | [wean] ("wean" AB)

f. 194r: eafores | anne

f. 194v: leana (after which AB leave gaps) | leodum

f. 195r: þeccean | nalles

f. 195v: gryr (followed by damage; "gry" followed by space AB) | gledum

f. 196r: bio wulfe | þa

f. 196v: hider | ut

f. 198r: corðre | cyniges

f. 198v: giomor gyd | [Ge]at[isc] ("at" freshened in later hand; "Geatisc" is conjectural; AB record nothing before "unden heorde" B ["unden hiorde" A])