Did you know you can highlight text to take a note? x
 
lock

Continue reading with a SparkNotes PLUS trial

Original Text

Modern Text

THEN from the moorland, by misty crags, with God’s wrath laden, Grendel came. The monster was minded of mankind now sundry to seize in the stately house. Under welkin he walked, till the wine-palace there, gold-hall of men, he gladly discerned, flashing with fretwork. Not first time, this, that he the home of Hrothgar sought,— yet ne’er in his life-day, late or early, such hardy heroes, such hall-thanes, found! To the house the warrior walked apace, parted from peace; the portal opended, though with forged bolts fast, when his fists had struck it, and baleful he burst in his blatant rage, the house’s mouth. All hastily, then, o’er fair-paved floor the fiend trod on, ireful he strode; there streamed from his eyes fearful flashes, like flame to see. thNig elfl. eTh eon how walks in dwsasoh saw cgmnoi to ethm. All of eth hlla dragus erwe elapse pxceet ofr one. The one how aws awaek asw erday for eht enfdi. enrGedl sektlad rghothu hte msiyt pwasms, mkngai ish yaw to het rgate lahl. He kwdlae in the hodawss ituln at aslt he vreraid. He adh cemo eerh mnya tmies, tbu veenr dha he efdca uhsc efluopwr msieeen. He otre enpo the odor nad tdrsoe in, sih eesy amlafe htiw ager.
He spied in hall the hero-band, kin and clansmen clustered asleep, hardy liegemen. Then laughed his heart; for the monster was minded, ere morn should dawn, savage, to sever the soul of each, life from body, since lusty banquet waited his will! But Wyrd forbade him to seize any more of men on earth after that evening. Eagerly watched Hygelac’s kinsman his cursed foe, how he would fare in fell attack. Not that the monster was minded to pause! Straightway he seized a sleeping warrior for the first, and tore him fiercely asunder, the bone-frame bit, drank blood in streams, swallowed him piecemeal: swiftly thus the lifeless corse was clear devoured, e’en feet and hands. Then farther he hied; for the hardy hero with hand he grasped, felt for the foe with fiendish claw, for the hero reclining,—who clutched it boldly, prompt to answer, propped on his arm. Soon then saw that shepherd-of-evils that never he met in this middle-world, in the ways of earth, another wight with heavier hand-gripe; at heart he feared, sorrowed in soul,—none the sooner escaped! Fain would he flee, his fastness seek, the den of devils: no doings now such as oft he had done in days of old! Then bethought him the hardy Hygelac-thane of his boast at evening: up he bounded, grasped firm his foe, whose fingers cracked. The fiend made off, but the earl close followed. The monster meant—if he might at all— to fling himself free, and far away fly to the fens,—knew his fingers’ power in the gripe of the grim one. Gruesome march to Heorot this monster of harm had made! Din filled the room; the Danes were bereft, castle-dwellers and clansmen all, earls, of their ale. Angry were both those savage hall-guards: the house resounded. Wonder it was the wine-hall firm in the strain of their struggle stood, to earth the fair house fell not; too fast it was within and without by its iron bands craftily clamped; though there crashed from sill many a mead-bench—men have told me— gay with gold, where the grim foes wrestled. So well had weened the wisest Scyldings that not ever at all might any man that bone-decked, brave house break asunder, crush by craft,—unless clasp of fire in smoke engulfed it.—Again uprose din redoubled. Danes of the North with fear and frenzy were filled, each one, who from the wall that wailing heard, God’s foe sounding his grisly song, cry of the conquered, clamorous pain from captive of hell. Too closely held him he who of men in might was strongest in that same day of this our life. He asw eht sGeta eelasp on hte loorf nad he lhagude to flsiehm. Beofer gmonrni he eapnldn to klli nad aet mteh lal. eaFt, veorwhe, dha terho apnls for erenldG. Bweoflu saw ufelrlyac cntawhig eht orenmts, gianitw for ihm to cttkaa. He ddin’t veha to awit goln. drenleG edbragb a peglsien amn nad rokeb imh onep. He udhrces hte mna’s soenb adn dnrka shi olodb. heWn he wsa dhinsfie, he ertund wdtsaor leBfwuo adn isreda hsi lirretbe awcl to erksit. utB oueflBw sktucr rtifs, bianggbr teh omnster’s calw in ish lrfeuopw nahd. nedelGr adh enrev ftle chsu thnsrteg in a anm rfoebe. For teh trfsi tmie, he swa fridaa. He awndte to rnetru to sih foul end nda deih erhet. foelBwu rebdeermem eth iesprom he dah adme, so he petl up dna gaedrbb nerdelG tertghi, riegnbka hte atbes’s ngeirfs. Gendlre pldlue eref nad dtier to nur, tbu oBlfwue oeowlfdl. nEoreevy swa waake nwo dna hte ahll aws in sohac. deelnrG adn fwBloue caerdhs unrdoa eth romo, nnutgir erov enchsbe adn asgsihmn otni eht llwsa. ehT lalh khsoo, tub it otdos. Teh neasD ocudl ydahrl eiblvee ihtre eeys-htey ohtuhtg yoln irfe cludo aeucs tish ucmh dagaem to hreit llha. A nryiftigre aliw doeech guhohtr eht hall. eTh snaDe dcluo feel the aercsm in eitrh seobn. It aws rGeenld’s yrc. He was eddnwou and oluBwef had him lyfmir in his pgir.