150 emnes - The usual adverb is emne, and the form in the text is found as a noun elsewhere.

read and reaðe - The latter of these words is for reðe, as it is written in 165. The same collocation in the Bi Manna Wyrdum of the Exeter MS., line 46; read reðe gled.

ræsct - written ræscet (165), from ræscetan.

The more usual form of efesteð is efsteð.

154 brynæ - i.e. bryne
156 afeormad and aclænsad for the more usual forms in od.
158 folca unrim - cf. Germ. unzahl Leute.
160 The adjective forht most frequently signifies timid, terrified; but in the Hymns in Grein's Bibliothek, x. 56, on þa forhtan tid = at that terrible time, and so the adverb in the text may be rendered terribly or fiercely. The other sense, in their terror, would be intelligible, but scarcely seems so apt. The Latin gives no word.
166 bærnð for beornð - For an example of this tendency compare also the English learn from leornian.

heora heortan...syn scyldigra - For the construction compare Goodwin's Life of St. Guthlac, 22: wæs sum his scipes-man þæs foresprecenan Aðelbaldes. There was one his boatman (viz.) the afore-mentioned Athelbald's.

horxlice for horsclice - An early example of the tendency which at the present day vulgarizes ask int ax, though curiously enough the original acsian had previously suffered metathesis to come into modern ask.


æniman - would be better written divisim, æni man. The g of ænig disappeared, but it did not on that account form a compound with the following noun, though here written so.

arnum - The adjective aren = honourable, meritorious, does not occur elsewhere, but it is regularly formed from ar, as fyren from fyr. The syncopation of the dative plural is like fyrnum teagum. Grein, Cr. 733, and Panth. 60, and gefæstnode fyrnum clommum, Andreas, 1380. Thus, be arnum gewyrhtum = meritis of the latin text.


MS. weran

gehende - (prep.) is constructed with a dative case. The earlier expression was at handum.


MS. sone

yrnð - by syncope for yrneð.

The constructionn is þurh ealle breost-gehyda. Breost-gehyda being the genitive plural governed by ealle, which is in the accusative after þurh. Gehyda for gehygda.


stænt, written stent in line 124, another instance of the fondness of the scribe of for the vowel æ. Cf. supra, line 154

astifad - cf. supra, line 156

177 Thou servest thyself, i.e. thine own pleasure.

glæd - adjective used adverbially.

leofian - is not nearly so common as libban.

galnes or galnys - an unusual word.


Perhaps þær is an error for þæm, in which case the sense would be, "thou urgest thyself to that luxury".

gælsa - is almost as unusual a word as galnes. But it occurs below, line 237.


Forthas for forhtast - But it has been allowed to stand, because in the later language the second personal pronoun coming after its verb was attached to it, and the last letter of the verb elided, so forhtasþu may be intentional. Cf. Chaucer's frequent seystow and artow. But it may only be a clerical error, and no indication of the later usage.

fyrene for fyrenne - masculine accusative singular


Here we either have a corrupt passage or the construction is most puzzling. ondræd is the imperative, and the sentence is =ondræd þu þe sylfum, i.e. dread thou for thyself. The writer seems to have considered the preceding interrogation equal to an imperative sentence, "Wilt thou not fear," equivalent to "Be thou afraid," and then to have followed it up by a direct imperative. For such an indicative (though not interrogative) sentence used for an imperative, cf. Ps. cxviii. 31: ne wylt þu me gescyndan = do not confound me.

183 weana - It may be that this is to be taken as of the evils done by the tormented, than of the evils done to them. Then the rendering would be, "wages for evil doings."
189 susle - rather torture, torment, than with Bosworth's brimstone. The line is designed as a description of the depth mentioned in the line preceding, which depth existed in hell from of old amid fierce torments.
190 synt - The forms of this plural of the present indicative of the substantive verb are (1) syndon, (2) synd, (3) synt. The second occdurs below (217, 285 ), and in Lar, 19
191 þrece - This nominative form does not occur.The genitive plural gicela cannot be literally translated.
193 ungemetum - This dative plural used adverbially is of frequent occurrence in the Psalms in Grein's Bibliothek.
195 gryrrað - This verb is not found elsewhere, but there can be no doubt of its meaning from its connexion with gryre.
196 þis atule gewrixl - This case pendent (either accusative or nominative) is taken up by the adverb þærinne.
199 MS. þromes
200 stearc-heard - probably intended as a compound adjective, cf. widbrad.
201 na-wiht - one word; written naht, 206
203 For similar omissions of the relative, which are not common, cf. Sax. Chr. 963: an munac, Brihtnoð wæs gehaten, a monk (who) was called Brihtnoth. Also Gen. xxix. 29: sealde ane þowene Bala hatte, i.e. (who) was called Bala.

MS. unstence

unstenc - is not found elsewhere, but as the original signifation of stenc, and of its derivative verb, was fragrance, pleasant odour, unstenc is a natural compound to signify the contrary thereof.

208 welras - This word, which is only used in the plural, is elsewhere spelt weleras.

Forhwi - is a literal representation of the cur in the Latin text, but the translator does not seem to have known that cur might be rendered because, otherwise he would have written here for þy.

fyrgende - evidently intended to translate the present participle luxurians, must be from a verb fyrgan, of a kindred signification with the verbs firenian and fyrenan, but such verb does not occur elsewhere.

218 sperca - the orthography elsewhere is spearca.
225 For þæt we should have expected a repetition of þær
226 MS. grisgbigtung
229 sauwle - =sawle for sawla, the usual form of the plural nominative. But sawle is found, Christ and Satan, 296
232 mid ealle - = Germ. ganz und gar. For instances see Alf. Metr. 17,22; 18,3; 19,3
234 hleapað - i.e. will leap away in flight.

MS. scyndam

scyndan - This, which is the slightest possible alteration of the MS., makes the verb an infinitive, and governed by gewiteð (236). But it might be altered and a simpler construction obtained by reading scyndað, the plural verb being justified by the expression ælc gælsa. A like construction with the infinitive slincan occurs in the next two lines.


MS. leofes

lað - may either be an adjective, as translated, or a noun = an object of loathing or offence.

247 MS. wihtna
251 geþeon - an unusual form of this word. For þeowan is very rare. The usual word is þeowian.

þeostra - i.q. þteostru.

genipð - This verb does not occur elsewhere, but its meaning is sufficiently evident from its noun.

259 gebrasl - is not found, nor brasl; but it is for brastl, which is the same as the more usual brastlung.
264 MS. swa se
265 This line is without alliteration, though containing a rhyme.
267 ricxað - an intensified form, ricsað or rixað being usual.
270 MS. geh þwærnes
275 lifað - = lyfð. Third singular present indicative from leofan. The more usual verb is lufian.

MS. hean gerinnað

heah gehrineð - This emendation seems to most nearly approach the Latin text, collocat Altithrono. heofon-setle must be dative, and hean could not be taken with it.

278 sylð - the usual forms are seleð and syleð, from the latter of which, by a syncopation of which the writer seems very fond, the form in text is easily reached.
281 MS. þreapum
287 This verse is incomplete, some phrase having fallen out which represented splendentia castra triumphis.

læt - for the more usual lædeð. The same part of the verb is spelt let in line 294.

Of the last word in this line, drut, I can offer no explanation, and have therefore written brut, which may have been written as a form of bryd. This is however very uncertain. Could drut be a contraction for deorut?

291 frowe - evidently the German frau, though it is not found elsewhere in Saxon.
298 MS. weardas
299 her - = in the world of bliss.
300 For a similar omission of the relative, cf. 203. þæm must here be singluar, as is shown by the verb. þam in the next line is plural first, and then singular.
302 unbleoh - a word not found elsewhere, seems to be intended as the equivalent of the incolumem of the Latin. The sense may perhaps be arrived at in this way: bleoh may, as the name of the colour blue, have been applied, as the English word is now, to that which is livid from approaching decay; and thus unbleoh would bear the sense of uncorrupted. But with a word which only occurs here much must be uncertain.