The Two Voices Of The Seafarer Essay

, Research PaperThe Two Voices of The SeafarerThere is much statement in the literary field as to whether there is more than one talker in the Old English poem The Seafarer.

In this brief essay we will look at some of the old unfavorable judgments of the last two centuries, and through them try to turn out that the talker of the verse form is the same one throughout.The writer of The Seafarer is unknown. Its manuscript is ignoble and alone, and is thought to hold been inscribed around 975 AD. It survives on four pages of the Exeter Anthology which was given to the Exeter Cathedral in England, by the Archbishop Leofric, who died in 1072 AD.The Seafarer is a verse form about an Anglo-saxon adult male who, holding seemingly been banished from his place, has taken to the sea. John Pope, one of the first critics of the verse form, postulated, and it is now by and large accepted, that it is composed of three parts.

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Part A1, covering lines 1 through 33a, is believed to be the narrative of an inexperient immature crewman who tells of his adversities at sea. Part A2, lines 33b to 64a or 66a, and portion B, 64b or 66b through 124, is told by an eager immature crewman who loves the sea. An epilogue is normally believed to be contained in lines 103 through 124 ( Pope, 177 ) . Jove Pope & # 8217 ; s greatest critical antagonist, Stanley Greenfield, believed that A1 is inside informations a ocean trip the talker was forced to undergo, and that the intent of A2 is to stress the talkers pick to set about a current journey ( Greenfield, 107 ) .The verse form begins by stating us of how the immature mariner has & # 8220 ; frequently suffered times of adversity / and have experienced / bitter anxiety. & # 8221 ; He is traveling into a universe of solitariness and a destiny off from his comitatus, his meadhall, and his Godhead.

At times he despises his life at sea: & # 8220 ; Oppressed by cold my pess were bound by hoar / In icy bonds, while concerns simmered hot / About my bosom, and hungriness from within / Tore the sea-weary spirit & # 8230 ; & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, Line 8 ) . At others, he celebrates it: & # 8220 ; & # 8230 ; Even now my bosom / Journeys beyond its confines, and my ideas / Over the sea, across the giant & # 8217 ; s sphere, / Travel afar the parts of the Earth, / And so come back to me with greed and yearning. / The fathead calls, incites the eager chest / On to the giant & # 8217 ; s roads overwhelmingly, / Over the broad sweeps of the sea, & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, Line 58 ) .In Anglo-Saxon society a warrior believed in lof: he received glorification by his heroism in conflict ; his achievements in life. If his workss were sufficiently noteworthy his name would populate on long after he died, allowing him immortality. The Seafarer believes that & # 8220 ; Sickness, old age, the blade, each one of these/ May stop the lives of lost and transeunt work forces.

/ Therefore for every warrior the best / Memorial is the congratulations of populating work forces & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, Line 68 ) .Halfway through the verse form we see a drastic bend. Separate A has mentioned about nil religious, merely speech production of the difficult life of a adult male who lives at sea. In the beginning of portion B, in line 64b, nevertheless, he changes his therefore far Anglo-Saxon tone to that of a pious Christian: & # 8220 ; Because the joys of God mean more to me / Than this dead ephemeral life on land. & # 8221 ;The transition of Anglo-Saxon England was comparatively speedy. It went from a civilization which had a comitatus scruples to one that was dominated by an person, Christian scruples.

Even during his contemplations on God, the talker still laments & # 8220 ; The singing gull alternatively of Mead in hall & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, 23 ) , the loss of & # 8220 ; beloved friends, & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, 15 ) , and the Godhead he one time had. At times it seems like the poet is trying to accommodate the tensenesss between the two different civilizations.In one of the first know unfavorable judgments of the verse form, Max Rieger in 1869 postulated that the verse form is of one author and speaks of a duologue between two persons ; an eager immature crewman and an older more cautious one ( Rieger, 313 ) . He believed that the verse form is an illustration of the hit of Christianity with the Anglo-Saxon folktale tradition. Friedrich Kluge subsequently speculated that the verse form is really two addresss, and that the entireness of portion B, holding seemingly no correlativity to the first, was the ulterior add-on of a & # 8220 ; mediocre homilist & # 8221 ; ( Kluge, 322 ) . C. C.

Ferrell, in understanding with Kluge, believed that the verse form was basically heathen in sentiment, but since Christian monastics were normally the translators of these early verse form, he believed that the Christian Scribe who copied it down made add-ons. The most noteworthy of which is the homiletic stoping ( Ferrell, 402 ) .The first to assail the theory of multiple voices was William Lawrence in 1902.

Lawrence believed that the verse form is wholly of one talker. In his really influential article he examines the soliloquy theory which would predominate to the present twenty-four hours. Lawrence considers the verse form & # 8220 ; the lyric vocalization of one adult male & # 8221 ; ( Lawrence, 462 ) . Earlier critics, Lawrence claims, had divided the verse form because of the reading of the word for? on ( The Seafarer, 33b ) which connects the talker & # 8217 ; s description of his agony at sea and his desire to return to his navigation. The word for? on had antecedently been translated as & # 8220 ; because, & # 8221 ; which suggests that the mariner wishes to return to the sea because of his agony at that place. From this evident contradiction, the earlier critics had concluded that these weretwo different verse forms.

Lawrence argues that for? on does non needfully necessitate to be interpreted as “because, ” and suggests that the seafarer’s past agony does non needfully belie his present yearning.Another interesting theory comes from Gustav Ehrismann in 1909. Ehrissmann postulates, in understanding with Lawrence, that there is merely one talker, but that lines 1 through 64a are meant to be read as an fable. He believed that the mariner & # 8217 ; s journey is symbolic of adult male & # 8217 ; s province of & # 8220 ; exile & # 8221 ; due to Original Sin ( Ehrissman, 213 ) . O. S.

Anderson subsequently agreed with Ehrissmann`s theory on the allegorical nature of lines 1 through 64a, but that the remainder of the verse form had been a ulterior add-on ( Anderson, 17 ) .In 1950 Dorothy Whitelock greatly affected the literary unfavorable judgment motion of The Seafarer. Whitelock volunteered the & # 8220 ; Peregrinus Theory. & # 8221 ; This theory utilizes the fact that & # 8220 ; rolling abstainers & # 8221 ; were common in Anglo-Saxon England at the clip of the verse form. Using this logical thinking, she explains that The Seafarer is really a incorporate soliloquy of one adult male ( Whitelock, 261 ) . She believes that the adult male in the verse form has voluntarily abandoned society for the love of God, and is prophesying the love of God over the love of society.

I. L. Gordon subsequently denounced Whitelock? s theory on the footing that the tone of the verse form is & # 8220 ; cold and despairing & # 8221 ; compared with the & # 8220 ; warmth & # 8221 ; of other plants that deal with the asceticism of the clip ( Gordon, 1 ) .We believe that the talker is meant to stand for one talker partly because of its elusive motion from portion A to portion B. There is a gradual transmutation on the portion of the talker from a godless, embittered immature mariner, to a more experient mariner with a strong religion in God. The major trouble in turn outing that there is merely one talker occurs between the descriptive first 64 lines, and the homiletic decision ( Campbell, 235 ) . A. P.

Campbell attributed this to the theory of Anglo-Saxon & # 8220 ; wanderlust. & # 8221 ; He claims that the first 33 lines describe the mariner & # 8217 ; s enduring at the sea, as contrasted with the comfy life of the townsman. There is a sense of enigma about his pick to roll the seas. He says the word & # 8220 ; cunnian & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, 35b ) contains a sense of & # 8220 ; researching & # 8221 ; or & # 8220 ; seeking out, & # 8221 ; which does non co-occur with a penitentiary journey, but reflects the talker & # 8217 ; s exhilaration for travel.

It exemplifies the Anglo-Saxon captivation with unusual lands. Lines 39 through 49, that many old critics had argued were pessimistic, he says, can be attributed to the adversity that everyone at the clip would hold had to endure while at sea. Campbell argues that the mention to the fathead, a migratory bird, and its & # 8220 ; mournful name & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, 53a ) , along with the coming of spring, emphasizes the talker & # 8217 ; s turning itchy feet.

Using this line of idea, the controversial lines 55 through 64 can be thought to simply picture the talker & # 8217 ; s inventive journey of the lands he will one twenty-four hours travel to. His wanderlust causes the talker obvious uncomfortableness, which leads him to the decision that he would instead hold the & # 8220 ; joys of God mean more to me / than this dead transitory life & # 8221 ; ( The Seafarer, 64 ) . At this point the talker realizes that the footing of his itchy feet is the desire to happen his place in Eden.

The Seafarer is one of the most written about verse forms in the English linguistic communication. As we have seen there are many statements for the instance of one talker, and many against it. This point will about surely ne’er be agreed upon, but we believe that the talker is the same one throughout.Anderson ( Arngart ) , O. S. The Seafarer: an Interpretation. Lund: K. Humanistiska Vetenskapssamfundets i Lund? rsber? ttelse 1: Gleerups, 1937.

Boer, R. C. & # 8220 ; Wanderer und Seefahrer. & # 8221 ; Zeitschrift f? R deutsche Philologie 35 ( 1903 ) , 1-28.Campbell, A. P. & # 8220 ; The Mariner: Wanderlust and our Heavenly Home.

& # 8221 ; Revue de L & # 8217 ; Universit? D & # 8217 ; Ottawa 43 ( 1973 ) : 235-47.Ehrismann, Gustav. & # 8220 ; Religionsgeschichtliche Beitr? Ge zum germanischen Fr? hchristentum. II. Das Gedicht vom Seefahrer. & # 8221 ; Beitr? Ge zur Geschichte der deutschen Sprache und Literatur.

35 ( 1909 ) : 213-218.Ferrell, C. C. & # 8220 ; Old Germanic Life in the Anglo-Saxon Wanderer and Seafarer.

& # 8221 ; Modern Language Notes. 9:7 ( 1894 ) : 402-7.Kluge, Friedrich.

& # 8220 ; Zu altenglischen Dichtungen. 1. Der Seefahrer. & # 8221 ; Englische Studien 6 ( 1883 ) : 322-7.Gordon, I. L.

& # 8220 ; Traditional Themes in The Wanderer and The Seafarer. RES n. s. 5 ( 1954 ) : 1-13.Greenfield, Stanley B. & # 8220 ; Min, Sylf, and & # 8216 ; Dramatic Voices in The Seafarer.

& # 8221 ; Journal of English and Germanic Philology 68 ( 1969 ) : 212-20.Lawrence, William W. & # 8220 ; The Wanderer and The Seafarer. & # 8221 ; JEGP 4 ( 1902 ) : 460-80.Pope, John C. & # 8220 ; Dramatic Voices in The Wanderer and The Seafarer. & # 8221 ; Franciplegius: Medieval and Linguistic Surveies in Honour of F.

P. Magoun, Jr. Ed. J. B Bessinger and R. P. Creed. New York: NYUP, 1965.

164-93.Rieger, Max. & # 8220 ; Der Seefahrer. Als Dialog Hergestellt.

& # 8221 ; Zeitschrift f? R Deutsche Philologie 1 ( 1869 ) : 334-37.Whitelock, Dorothy. & # 8220 ; The Interpretation of The Seafarer. & # 8221 ; Early Cultures of Northwest Europe. H. M.

Chadwick Memorial Studies. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1950. 261-72.BibliographyA three page paper on the Old English verse form & # 8220 ; The Seafarer & # 8221 ;

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