The Poetic Edda

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The collection of Norse-Icelandic mythological and heroic poetry known as the Poetic Edda contains the great narratives of the creation of the world and the coming of Ragnarok, the Doom of the Gods. The mythological poems explore the wisdom of the gods and giants, narrating Thor's adventures against the hostile giants and the gods' rivalries amongst themselves. The heroic poems trace the exploits of the hero Helgi and his valkyrie bride, the tragic tale of Sigurd and Brynhild's doomed love, and the terrible drama...
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The Poetic Edda

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Overview

The collection of Norse-Icelandic mythological and heroic poetry known as the Poetic Edda contains the great narratives of the creation of the world and the coming of Ragnarok, the Doom of the Gods. The mythological poems explore the wisdom of the gods and giants, narrating Thor's adventures against the hostile giants and the gods' rivalries amongst themselves. The heroic poems trace the exploits of the hero Helgi and his valkyrie bride, the tragic tale of Sigurd and Brynhild's doomed love, and the terrible drama of Sigurd's widow Gudrun and her children.

Since the rediscovery of the Poetic Edda in the seventeenth century, its poetry has fascinated artists as diverse as Thomas Gray, Richard Wagner, and Jorge Luis Borges.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780192839466
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 6/28/1999
  • Series: Oxford World's Classics Series
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 7.70 (w) x 5.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Carolyne Larrington has published widely on Old Norse myth, legends, and literature, inlcuding co-editing two volumes of essays on eddic poetry wiht Paul Acker. Her books include King Arthur's Enchantresses: Morgan and Her Sisters in Arthurian Tradition (IB Tauris, 2006) and Magical Tales: Myth, Legend and Enchantment in Children's Books (with Diane Purkiss, Bodleian Library, 2013).

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Introduction
Note on the Translation
Select Bibliography
Main Genealogies of Giants, Gods, and Heroes
The Seeress's Prophecy 3
Sayings of the High One 14
Vafthrudnir's Sayings 39
Grimnir's Sayings 50
Skirnir's Journey 61
Harbard's Song 69
Hymir's Poem 78
Loki's Quarrel 84
Thrym's Poem 97
The Lay of Volund 102
All-Wise's Sayings 109
The First Poem of Helgi Hundingsbani 114
The Poem of Helgi Hiorvardsson 123
A Second Poem of Helgi Hundingsbani 132
The Death of Sinfiotli 142
Gripir's Prophecy 143
The Lay of Regin 151
The Lay of Fafnir 157
The Lay of Sigrdrifa 166
Fragment of a Poem About Sigurd 174
The First Lay of Gudrun 177
A Short Poem About Sigurd 182
Brynhild's Ride to Hell 192
The Death of the Niflungs 195
The Second Lay of Gudrun 196
The Third Lay of Gudrun 203
Oddrun's Lament 205
The Lay of Atli 210
The Greenlandic Poem of Atli 217
The Whetting of Gudrun 234
The Lay of Hamdir 238
Baldr's Dreams 243
The List of Rig 246
The Song of Hyndla 253
The Song of Grotti 260
Explanatory Notes 264
Annotated Index of Names 298
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2002

    A Good Introduction

    Many English translations of the Poetic Edda can be found, but I had heard Larrington¿s being touted by the Ásatrú folks I know as being the most approachable and readable to one unfamiliar with the stories. It¿s in plain English, very well foot-noted, and easy to read. It was also a bit on the boring side, because it is sometimes *too* plain. Not having read other translations that strive to keep the poetics in place, I can¿t say if this is because of the age in which this was put to paper, or if this was a result of Larrinton¿s translating. The edition had family trees of the gods and other creatures, as well as to the heroic families, which I found helpful. One thing I didn¿t like was Larrington¿s choice of rendering of some of the names, especially her choice with ¿j¿ becoming ¿i¿ in accordance with modern Icelandic pronouncation. Changing characters we don¿t possess in our alphabet (ð to d, þ to th, etc.) in one thing, but we have j. Maybe it¿s nitpicking of me, but seeing Freyja as Freyia, Njord as Niord, etc., distracted me a bit from the poems. I'm not a big fan of translating names. All in all, I thought this to be a good translation and a wonderful starting point. I enjoyed the mythic poems over the heroic ones, but even so, I am eager to move on to the Prose Edda and various sagas.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2002

    Great for beginners!

    Although I prefer dual language books of this nature, this one was a good read. I was unhappy that many of the names were the translated names instead of the original (see the names of the dwarves in the Voluspa, for instance). To really get into this literature, Ursula Dronke did it best, but I don't think she finished with all the poems. --Brady Boyd

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2000

    Northern Mythology never read better!

    This particular translation of the Poetic Edda is a joy to read. Especially for those researching their roots through the Ancestral Religion of Asatru (Northern, Western European pre-Christian Ancestral Religion). Ms Larrington does an excellent job of clarifying some of the more difficult passages, and is not afraid to step on some intellectual toes in the process. A must for anyone who is serious about ancient Norse Mythology and their European roots.

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    Posted January 3, 2009

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    Posted February 16, 2009

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