Pride & Prodigies by Andy Orchard

Pride & Prodigies

Andy Orchard
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Details

  • ISBN
    9780802085832 / 0802085830
  • Title Pride & Prodigies
  • Author Andy Orchard
  • Category Literary Studies: Classical, Early & Medieval
  • Format
    Paperback
  • Year 2003
  • Pages 360
  • Publisher
    University of Toronto Press
  • Imprint University of Toronto Press
  • Edition
    0002nd
  • Language English
  • Dimensions 162mm x 26mm x 224mm

Annotation

'Then there came from the moor, under the misty slopes, Grendel approaching: he bore the wrath of God.' Monsters and the monstrous, whether from the remote pagan past or the new world of Christian Latin learning, haunted the Anglo-Saxon imagination in a variety of ways. In this series of detailed studies, Andy Orchard demonstrates the changing range of Anglo-Saxon attitudes towards the monstrous by reconsidering the monsters of Beowulf against the background of early medieval and patristic teratology and with reference to specific Anglo-Saxon texts. The immediate manuscript context of the monsters in Beowulf is analysed, shedding light on the poet's treatment of the theme of the monstrous and its integration into his work, and a series of parallel discussions consider a range of medieval treatments of the same theme in a variety of analogous texts (all provided with translation), in Latin, Old English, Middle Irish, and Old Icelandic. The twin themes of pride and prodigies are suggested by tracing changing attitudes towards the concept of pride and establishing a close link between the proud pagan warriors depicted in Christian tradition and the monsters they fight, and with whom they become increasingly identified. An appendix contains new editions and translations (some for the first time in English) of the Liber Monstrorum, The Letter of Alexander to Aristotle, and The Wonders of the East.

Publisher Description

Monsters and the monstrous, whether from the remote pagan past or the new world of Christian Latin learning, haunted the Anglo-Saxon imagination in a variety of ways. In this series of detailed studies, Andy Orchard demonstrates the changing range of Anglo-Saxon attitudes towards the monstrous by reconsidering the monsters of “Beowulf” against the background of early medieval and patristic teratology and with reference to specific Anglo-Saxon texts. The immediate manuscript context of the monsters in “Beowulf” is analysed, shedding light on the poet's treatment of the theme of the monstrous and its integration into his work, and a series of parallel discussions consider a range of medieval treatments of the same theme in a variety of analogous texts (all provided with translation) in Latin, Old English, Middle Irish and Old Icelandic. The twin themes of pride and prodigies are suggested by tracing changing attitudes towards the concept of pride and establishing a close link between the proud pagan warriors depicted in Christian tradition and the monsters they fight and with whom they become increasingly identified.
An appendix contains new editions and translations of the “Liber Monstrorum”, “The Letter of Alexander to Aristotle” and “The Wonders of the East”.

Author Biography

Andy Orchard is the Provost of Trinity College at the University of Toronto.

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Pride & Prodigies

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