Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Transmission of "Beowulf"Language, Culture, and Scribal Behavior$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Leonard Neidorf

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501705113

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501705113.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM Cornell University Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.cornell.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Cornell University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in Cornell for personal use. date: 12 June 2021



(p.133) 5 Conclusion
The Transmission of "Beowulf"

Leonard Neidorf

Cornell University Press

This chapter surveys linguistic regularities in Beowulf in order to gauge the extent to which the poem’s text might have been altered during its transmission. For the literary critics and cultural historians who constitute the majority of scholars interested in Beowulf, no question pertaining to textual transmission is more consequential than that of the poem’s unity. The same metrical features that establish Beowulf as an archaic composition also provide firm indications that the poem is a unitary composition transmitted with minimal scribal interference. In addition, direct examination of the linguistic evidence is the most reliable method for determining the relative probability of competing hypotheses concerning the unity of Beowulf.

Keywords:   linguistic regularities, textual transmission, metrical features, unitary composition, scribal interference, linguistic evidence, textual criticism, manuscript context

Cornell Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.