from "BEOWULF" - lines 1866-1919BEOWULF RETURNS HOME
trans. Louis J. Rodrigues (from Anglo-Saxon)
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Ða git him eorla hleo inne gesealde,
mago Healfdenes, maþmas twelfe,
het hine mid þæm lacum leode swæse
secean on gesyntum, snude eft cuman.
Gecyste þa cyning æþelum god,
þeoden Scyldinga, õegn betstan
ond be healse genam; hruron him tearas
blondenfeaxum. Him wæs bega wen
ealdum, in frodum, oþres swiõor,
þæt hie seoõõan no geseon moston,
modige on meþle. Wæs him se man to þon leof,
þæt hie þone breostwylm forberan ne mehte,
ac him on hreþre hygebendum fæst
æfter deorum men dyrne langaõ
bearn wiõ blode. Him Beowulf þanan,
guõrinc goldwlanc, græsmoldan træd
since hremig; sægenga bad
agendfrean, se þe on ancre rad.
Þa wæs on gange gifu Hroõgares
oft geæhted; þæt wæs an cyning
æghwæs orleahtre, oþ þæt hine yldo benam
mægenes wynnum, se þe oft manegum scod.
Cwom þa to flode felamodigra
hægstealdra heap; hringnet bæron,
locene leoõosyrcan. Landweard onfand
eftsiõ eorla, swa he ær dyde;
no he mid hearme of hliões nosan
gæstas grette, ac him togeanes rad,
cwæõ þæt wilcuman Wedera leodum
scaþan scirhame to scipe foron.
Þa wæs on sande sægeap naca
hladen herewædum, hringedstefna,
mearum ond maõmum; mæst hlifade
ofer Hroõgares hordgestreonum.
He þæm batwearde bunden golde
swurd gesealde, þæt he syõþan wæs
on meodubence maþme þy weorþra,
yrfelafe. Gewat him on naca
drefan deop wæter, Dena land ofgeaf.
Þa wæs be mæste merehrægla sum,
segl sale fæst, sundwudu þunede;
no þær wegflotan wind ofer yõum
siões getwæfde; sægenga for,
fleat famigheals forõ ofer yõe,
bundenstefna ofer brimstreamas,
þæt hie Geata clifu ongitan meahton,
cuþe næssas; ceol up geþrang
lyftgeswenced, on lande stod.
Hraþe wæs æt holme hyõweard gearu,
se þe ær lange tid leofra manna
fus æt faroõe feor wlatode:
sæIde to sande sidfæþme scip
oncerbendum fæst, þy Iæs hym yþa õrym
wudu wynsuman forwrecan meahte.

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Then Healfdene's son, protector of eorls,
gave him in the hall twelve precious things,
and bade him with these gifts in safety seek
his own dear people, quickly return.
Then the king, of noble lineage,
the Scyldings' prince, kissed the best of thanes,
and clasped him round the neck: tears fell
from the grey-haired one. He had two thoughts
of the future, the old wise man, one stronger
than the other - that they would not see each other again,
bold men at council. The man was so dear to him
that he could not restrain his surging sorrow:
but in his breast, fast in his heart's bonds,
a secret longing after the beloved man
burned in his blood. Then Beowulf,
warrior glorious with gold, trod the greensward,
proud of his treasure; the ship,
which rode at anchor, awaited its owner.
Then, as they went, Rrothgar's gift
was oft praised; that was a king
blameless in all things, until old age deprived him
of the joys of strength, which has often harmed many.
Thus to the water came the band
of brave-hearted warriors; they wore coats of mail,
locked limb-sarks. The land-guard perceived
the eorls return, as he had done before;
he did not greet the guests with taunts
from the headland brow but rode to meet them,
said the warriors in bright armour who went to their ship,
would be welcome on their return by the people of the Geats.
Then was the spacious sea-boat on the beach
laden with battle-gear, the ring-prowed ship
with horses and treasures; the mast towered
over Hrothgar's hoarded wealth.
Beowulf gave the boat-guard a sword
bound with gold, so that thereafter he was
held worthier on the mead-bench for that gift,
that heirloom. Then the ship moved out,
to furrow the deep water, left die Danish land.
Then to the mast, a mighty sea-cloth, a sail,
was fastened by a rope; the boat's beams creaked,
there wind did not keep the sea-floater from
its way across the waves. llie sea-goer moved;
foamy-necked, with twisted prow, she floated
forth over the swell, over the sea-streams,
until they could descry the Geatish cliffs,
the well-known headlands; the ship pressed on,
driven by the wind; stood upon the land.
Quickly the harbour-guard was ready on the shore,
he who had looked for a long time eagerly,
far out across the sea for the beloved men.
He moored the steep ship to the sand,
fast by its anchor-ropes, lest the waves' force
should drive the joyous wooden craft from them.

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Transl. copyright © Louis J. Rodrigues 1997 - publ. Llanerch Publishers


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