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Resource to learn Old English

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semperamor
Newbie
United States
Joined 4117 days ago

1 posts - 1 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: Italian, Latin, French

 
 Message 1 of 10
19 November 2009 at 2:50am | IP Logged 
Bonjour,

I was wondering if anyone here can inform me of any good sources I can use to help teach
myself some Old English?


Merci beaucoup et salut.
1 person has voted this message useful



Deshwi
Triglot
Newbie
Canada
Joined 4232 days ago

31 posts - 38 votes
Speaks: English*, Spanish, French
Studies: Arabic (Written), Turkish, Hindi, Persian

 
 Message 2 of 10
19 November 2009 at 5:21am | IP Logged 
I was in a bookstore the other day, and noticed that there's actually a 'Teach Yourself Old English' course. I haven't had a look through it, but I imagine it has the same layout as the other courses...and it wasn't that expensive.
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Anekantavada
Newbie
United States
Joined 4366 days ago

11 posts - 18 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, Spanish, French

 
 Message 3 of 10
19 November 2009 at 8:58pm | IP Logged 
I just recently started self-studying Old English myself. There are a number of good resources available; I haven't used the Teach Yourself Old English, so I can't comment on it. The standard text is Bruce Mitchell and Fred C. Robinson, A Guide to Old English, available in numerous editions. The other two texts I have are Peter S. Baker, Introduction to Old English and Henry Sweet, Sweet's Anglo-Saxon Primer, ed. Norman Davis.

There are also a variety of Old English resources available on the Internet. The ones I have made the most use of are

Ælfric's homilies, ed. Stuart D. Lee, http://users.ox.ac.uk/~stuart/kings/main.htm. (You might also search for Dr Lee's podcasts that are available for download on the web. He also coauthored a very good book on Tolkien and medieval literature entitled The Keys of Middle-earth, if you are interested.)

Georgetown's Labyrinth Library, http://www8.georgetown.edu/departments/medieval/labyrinth/li brary/oe/oe.html

Michael Drout, King Alfred's Grammar, http://acunix.wheatonma.edu/mdrout/GrammarBook2007/title.htm l (This is also available for purchase as a book, if I'm not mistaken.)

Michael Drout, Anglo-Saxon Aloud, http://fred.wheatonma.edu/wordpressmu/mdrout/

Dr Argüelles also makes mention of several other texts at the end of his video on Old English.

Edited by Anekantavada on 19 November 2009 at 9:00pm

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NuclearGorilla
Diglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5418 days ago

166 posts - 195 votes 
Speaks: English*, German
Studies: Japanese, French

 
 Message 4 of 10
20 November 2009 at 10:13am | IP Logged 
There are a couple grammars (among other resources) on Google Books which are available in their entirety. (Just do a search for "Old English" limited to full view or public domain.)
1 person has voted this message useful



global_gizzy
Senior Member
United States
maxcollege.blogspot.
Joined 4335 days ago

275 posts - 310 votes 
Studies: Spanish

 
 Message 5 of 10
20 November 2009 at 2:17pm | IP Logged 
Old English?? Seriously, I never thought of Old English as being a language that one would study...Is it very different from modern English spoken in countries like the US, UK and Australia?

What is so different about Old English that it would warrant a study from a native English speaker? Just curious...
1 person has voted this message useful



Captain Haddock
Diglot
Senior Member
Japan
kanjicabinet.tumblr.
Joined 5400 days ago

2282 posts - 2814 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese
Studies: French, Korean, Ancient Greek

 
 Message 6 of 10
20 November 2009 at 3:11pm | IP Logged 
global_gizzy wrote:

What is so different about Old English that it would warrant a study from a native English speaker? Just
curious...


Are you serious?

Here are the first few lines of Beowulf, probably the most famous Old English literary work:

Hwæt! We Gardena in geardagum,
þeodcyninga, þrym gefrunon,
hu ða æþelingas ellen fremedon.
Oft Scyld Scefing sceaþena þreatum,
monegum mægþum, meodosetla ofteah,
egsode eorlas. Syððan ærest wearð
feasceaft funden, he þæs frofre gebad,
weox under wolcnum, weorðmyndum þah,
oðþæt him æghwylc þara ymbsittendra
ofer hronrade   hyran scolde,
gomban gyldan. þæt wæs god cyning!

Edited by Captain Haddock on 20 November 2009 at 3:12pm

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yong321
Groupie
United States
yong321.freeshe
Joined 4174 days ago

80 posts - 104 votes 
Studies: Spanish

 
 Message 7 of 10
20 November 2009 at 3:24pm | IP Logged 
> I never thought of Old English as being a language that one would study

It depends on how important Old English is to current life and culture. I bet the ratio of the people willing to learn Old English to all those knowing English is far less than the people willing to learn ancient Chinese to those knowing Chinese. If it's true, it's because the classical Chinese literature has a greater footprint in the modern Chinese language and greater influence in current daily life and culture.

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Captain Haddock
Diglot
Senior Member
Japan
kanjicabinet.tumblr.
Joined 5400 days ago

2282 posts - 2814 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese
Studies: French, Korean, Ancient Greek

 
 Message 8 of 10
21 November 2009 at 5:30am | IP Logged 
True. While Old English has a sizeable amount of literature and is very interesting in its own right, it lacks the
prestige and cultural influence of a classical language, a term which is usually reserved for Latin, Greek,
Chinese, Arabic, and Sanskrit. (In India, Tamil, Kannada, and Telugu are also considered classical languages.)


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