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The Owl and the Nightingale, Cleanness, and St. Erkenwald

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3.64  ·  Rating details ·  47 Ratings  ·  2 Reviews
The Middle English poems in this book exemplify three major genres in medieval religious writing: saint's legend, Bible epic and religious debate. "St Erkenwald" tells how a bishop of London raised a pagan judge from the dead and sent his soul to heaven. In "Cleanness" (often known as "Purity") such events as the flood, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and Belshazzar' ...more
Paperback, 264 pages
Published May 3rd 1988 by Penguin Classics (first published 1350)
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Sam Hickey
This penguin book contains some very nice, naturally flowing translations of the original Middle English poems. The included annotations and introductions are also very informative, and greatly increased my enjoyment of the texts (the essays are a little dated due to this volume having been published in 1971, but they have stood up very well). The Owl and the Nightingale is definitely the standout poem of this collection, and this version has rather masterfully rendered it into couplets without ...more
Gary Power
Dec 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Brillant little book.
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