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Studies in English Philology

A Miscellany in Honor of Frederick Klaeber

Kemp Malone and Martin B. Ruud, editors

Studies in English Philology

Profesor Klaeber’s admirers have produced this miscellany to honour him ‘on his sixty-fifth birthday, which marks also the completion of thirty-five years of service in the University of Minnesota.’

The wide appeal made by Professor Klaeber’s work is reflected in the variety of these papers, which range from Old West Germanic and Old Norse (Ernest A. Kock) and Loss of a Nasal before Labial Consonants (Eilert Ekwall) to The Etymology of ‘Yankee’ ( H. Logeman); and from A Note on the Psychology of the Beowulf Poet ( J. R. Hulbert) to Shakespeare and Formal Logic (Hardin Craig). They include articles of such general interest as The Baroque Style of Prose (M. W. Croll); Progress in the Teaching of Early English ( A. G. Kennedy) which ends with a discussion of the relative merits of the terms ‘Old English’ and ‘Anglo-Saxon’ and decision that neither is wholly satisfactory, but the latter is preferable; and Alexander Hamilton and the Beginnings of Comparative Philology (R. W. Chambers and F. Norman) where, for the first time, the important work of Alexander Hamilton is recognised.

More then half of the thirty-eight pages in this book treat of the earlier periods of Germanic Language and Literature, and it is peculiarly appropriate that among these there should be some twelve dealing with Beowulfian studies. This distinguished body of papers gives to Professor Klaeber’s Festschrift a coherence which is in attractive contrast to that incoherence some times unavoidable in such volumes. Among these papers may be mentioned Noch einmal: ‘enge anpaoas, uncuo gelad (L. L. Schucking); ‘Beowulf’ und die Merowinger (Alois Brandl); and Terms and Phrases for the Sea in Old English Poetry (Helen Buckhurst); the valune of the last-mentioned paper would have been still greater if the terms had been arranged alphabetically and if more detailed references to their occurrence had been given. In Experiments in Translating ‘Beowulf’ ( H. C. Wyld), the first experimental blank verse (not that in the Tennysonian manner) is the most successful. Professor Wyld’s argument that the Hiawatha metre, which end itself to repetition and parallelisms, is an appropriate measure for translation from Anglo-Saxon, is undeniably sound; but he ignores the fact that this metre has also proved exquisitely adaptable to parody, so that it is doubtful whether an English poet can ever use it again for a serious purpose. A suggestive study of the Epithetic Compound Folk-Names in ‘Beowulf’ (W. F. Bryan) is followed by the important The Daughter of Healfdene (Kemp Malone; here the writer maintains that one of the missing names in Beowulf, I. 62, is Yrsa, the widow of Helgi, who remained at the Danish Court until she married her second husband, Onela of Sweden. In the tradition that was known to the author of Beowulf the identity of Yrsa, the daughter-in-law of Healfdene, had become vague and she is regarded as a daughter. ‘Beowulf’ and the ‘Sage of Samson the Fair’ (W. W. Lawrence) deals with one of the most important of late Beowulfian discoveries - a new Scandinavian parallel to the fight of Beowuld with Grendel’s dam. The extracts from the two versions of the Samson’s saga, which are printed here, are especially welcome, for neither the Reikjavik text nor that of Bjorner is easily obtainable.

A second distinctive feature of this volume is the publication of texts, or of portions of texts, which are difficult to access. Attention should be drawn to ‘Somer Sneday’ (Carleton Brown), Eine englische Urkunde aus dem Jahre 1470 (Lorenz Morsbach) and Die altenglischen Verzeichnisse von Glucks- und Ungluckstagen (Max Forster) with its record of an early experiment in vivisection.

The quotation from the Havamal that ends the Foreword “...orpstirr deyr aldrege hveims ser goban getr” is aptly pointed by the imposing Bibliography, which, except for a brief Vita, is the last item in the volume. Even those scholars who thought they had kept track of Professor Klaeber’s work must be amazed at the length of this Bibliography and the variety of scholarship it reveals. Here can be traced the way in which the early devotion to Chaucer and middle English writings yielded to the deeper interest of pre-Conquest studies wherein Beowulf becomes more and more important until the publication of ‘Beowulf’ and the ‘Flight at Finnsburg’; the second edition of this book is one of the last entries in the Bibliography.

To point out formal errors is ungracious work: in this case only one misprint need be noted; p 167, Hist. Eccl., Bk v, Chap II,’ should read ‘Hist. Eccl., Bk II, Chap. V.’

he Modern Language Review, Vol. 25, No. 4, (Oct., 1930) (JSTOR)

Studies in English Philology

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Studies in English Philology

Kemp Malone was born in 1889 in Mississippi. He became a professor at John Hopkins University in 1926 and taught there for thirty years. He wrote numerous books on English language and literature. He died in 1971.

Martin B. Ruud was a professor of English at the University of Minnesota.

Studies in English Philology

Profesor Klaeber’s admirers have produced this miscellany to honour him ‘on his sixty-fifth birthday, which marks also the completion of thirty-five years of service in the University of Minnesota.’

The wide appeal made by Professor Klaeber’s work is reflected in the variety of these papers, which range from Old West Germanic and Old Norse (Ernest A. Kock) and Loss of a Nasal before Labial Consonants (Eilert Ekwall) to The Etymology of ‘Yankee’ ( H. Logeman); and from A Note on the Psychology of the Beowulf Poet ( J. R. Hulbert) to Shakespeare and Formal Logic (Hardin Craig). They include articles of such general interest as The Baroque Style of Prose (M. W. Croll); Progress in the Teaching of Early English ( A. G. Kennedy) which ends with a discussion of the relative merits of the terms ‘Old English’ and ‘Anglo-Saxon’ and decision that neither is wholly satisfactory, but the latter is preferable; and Alexander Hamilton and the Beginnings of Comparative Philology (R. W. Chambers and F. Norman) where, for the first time, the important work of Alexander Hamilton is recognised.

More then half of the thirty-eight pages in this book treat of the earlier periods of Germanic Language and Literature, and it is peculiarly appropriate that among these there should be some twelve dealing with Beowulfian studies. This distinguished body of papers gives to Professor Klaeber’s Festschrift a coherence which is in attractive contrast to that incoherence some times unavoidable in such volumes. Among these papers may be mentioned Noch einmal: ‘enge anpaoas, uncuo gelad (L. L. Schucking); ‘Beowulf’ und die Merowinger (Alois Brandl); and Terms and Phrases for the Sea in Old English Poetry (Helen Buckhurst); the valune of the last-mentioned paper would have been still greater if the terms had been arranged alphabetically and if more detailed references to their occurrence had been given. In Experiments in Translating ‘Beowulf’ ( H. C. Wyld), the first experimental blank verse (not that in the Tennysonian manner) is the most successful. Professor Wyld’s argument that the Hiawatha metre, which end itself to repetition and parallelisms, is an appropriate measure for translation from Anglo-Saxon, is undeniably sound; but he ignores the fact that this metre has also proved exquisitely adaptable to parody, so that it is doubtful whether an English poet can ever use it again for a serious purpose. A suggestive study of the Epithetic Compound Folk-Names in ‘Beowulf’ (W. F. Bryan) is followed by the important The Daughter of Healfdene (Kemp Malone; here the writer maintains that one of the missing names in Beowulf, I. 62, is Yrsa, the widow of Helgi, who remained at the Danish Court until she married her second husband, Onela of Sweden. In the tradition that was known to the author of Beowulf the identity of Yrsa, the daughter-in-law of Healfdene, had become vague and she is regarded as a daughter. ‘Beowulf’ and the ‘Sage of Samson the Fair’ (W. W. Lawrence) deals with one of the most important of late Beowulfian discoveries - a new Scandinavian parallel to the fight of Beowuld with Grendel’s dam. The extracts from the two versions of the Samson’s saga, which are printed here, are especially welcome, for neither the Reikjavik text nor that of Bjorner is easily obtainable.

A second distinctive feature of this volume is the publication of texts, or of portions of texts, which are difficult to access. Attention should be drawn to ‘Somer Sneday’ (Carleton Brown), Eine englische Urkunde aus dem Jahre 1470 (Lorenz Morsbach) and Die altenglischen Verzeichnisse von Glucks- und Ungluckstagen (Max Forster) with its record of an early experiment in vivisection.

The quotation from the Havamal that ends the Foreword “...orpstirr deyr aldrege hveims ser goban getr” is aptly pointed by the imposing Bibliography, which, except for a brief Vita, is the last item in the volume. Even those scholars who thought they had kept track of Professor Klaeber’s work must be amazed at the length of this Bibliography and the variety of scholarship it reveals. Here can be traced the way in which the early devotion to Chaucer and middle English writings yielded to the deeper interest of pre-Conquest studies wherein Beowulf becomes more and more important until the publication of ‘Beowulf’ and the ‘Flight at Finnsburg’; the second edition of this book is one of the last entries in the Bibliography.

To point out formal errors is ungracious work: in this case only one misprint need be noted; p 167, Hist. Eccl., Bk v, Chap II,’ should read ‘Hist. Eccl., Bk II, Chap. V.’

he Modern Language Review, Vol. 25, No. 4, (Oct., 1930) (JSTOR)

This set of studies is dedicated “to Fredirick Klaeber on his sixty-fifth birthday, which marks also the completion of thirty-five years of service in the University of Minnesota.” All told, there are thirty-nine articles, including the highly serviceable bibliography of Professor Klaeber’s writings prepared by Stefan Einarsson. Of the remaining papers, 26 have to do with Old English or the early field; 4 with Middle English or the later medieval period; and 8 with Modern English. Of the 26 Old English papers, 10 are devoted to Beowulf. With the usual unavoidable cross-lapping, these 26 may be further classified as follows: literary criticism, 11; lexical studies, 3; style, 2; manuscript and handwriting, 2; morphology, 2; phonology, 1; and versification, 1. So much for cataloguing.

It was well for the Editors to begin with so colorful a scholar as William Ellery Leonard. His artical, “Four Footnotes to Papers on Germanic Metrics,” is in revolt against the widely accepted views of Sievers. He cites cases where, in his opinion, the scop could not have sung the verse as ordinarily scanned unless he hand “first consulted the diagrams.” Leonard’s plea is for the use of the rest and the rest-beat of later Germanic poetry, as well as the regular speech-beat, in the scansion of Old English poetry, by which he feels it can be demonstrated that the metrics of Old English verse did not differ essentially from that of the later periods. Many who do not go the full distance with Leonard will probably agree with him that the whole matter of Old English metrics needs to be reconsidered.

The whole group of lexical studies is praiseworthy. Teachers of language-history will stand deeply in debt to Samuel Kroesch for his “Semantic Borrowing in Old English.” Kroesch is concerned mainly with a more subtle matter that were earlier students of the Old English vocabulary, like McGillivray; namely, the transfer of semantic coloring from Latin to Old English. He divides his cases into two classes: “words formed principally through the process of translation” ; and those of “a purer type of synonymic analogy, in which the analogical process affects the meaning only.” E. A. Kock’s clear and lucid interpretations of Old Germanic texts are always helpful, and he has not disappointed us in the set of sixteen short studies in comparative semantics entitled “Old West in Germanic and Old Norse.” in “Epithetic Compound Folk-Names in Beowulf,” W. F. Bryan holds that characterizing folk-names compounds were selected by the poet because of the implicit fitness of each in its context. His careful analysis of the epithets (except in the case of a few, where he throws up his hands) makes a good case for his thesis. Closely allied to this group is R. E. Zachrisson’s study in phonology: “The Early English Loan-Words in Welsh and the Chronology of the English Sound-Shift.” The author makes a good use of Welsh loan-words from English to show sound shiftings that would otherwise be obscured by the ambiguity of English orthography.

In syntactical matters, the origin of the gerund in Old English is masterfully handled by Morgan Callaway, Jr. While giving due credit to van Langenhove’s studies in the phonological history of the gerund, Callaway feels that the question resolves itself into one of syntax rather than of phonology. Leonard Bloomfield in “Notes on the Pre-verb ‘ge’ in Alfredian English” refines the syntactical variations considerable and succeeds in establishing well-defined categories. Francis A. Wood contributes five morphological notes, among them two on the application of Verner’s Law to Old English. Eilert Ekwall shows the “Loss of a Nasal Before Labial Consonants,” in place-names like Stowford (<Stanford).

By way of his “Recurring First Elements in Beowulf and in the Elder Edda,” a careful and well-documented study, F. P. Magoun, Jr., discovers much less repetition, proportionately, in the Edda than in Beowulf, and concludes that the Eddic poetry is stylistically superior. Helen Buckhurst’s “Terms and Phrases for the Sea in Old English Poetry” does very ably what the title suggests, and is besides delightfully well written.

Under manuscript and handwriting come G. T. Folm’s article (happily illustrated by cuts!) entitled “Anglo-Norman Script and the Script of Twelfth Century MSS in Northwestern Norway” and E. Prokosch’s “Two Types of Scribal Errors in the Beowulf.” By way of interpretation and translation, Samuel Moore reconsiders four passages from Beowulf, and H. C. Wyld gives us a daring but very successful rendering of several Beowulf portions into various modern meters.

The largest group is that of literary criticism, headed by Kemp Malone’s “The Daughter of Healfdene,” a restoration and interpretation of the defective line 62 of Beowulf. by a minute comparison of the Old English classic with its Icelandic analogues, the author shows that Yrse, wife of Halga and later of Onela, is the woman the poet had in mind and that he was not aware that she was the daughter-in-law, not the daughter of Healfdene. Most of the statements in this article appear incontrovertible, and where the ground is less firm, the reader is fairly carried away by an ingenuity and resourcefulness that make for plausibility. A. G. Van Hamel in “Hengist and his Namesake” throws doubt on the view of Chadwick and others that Hengist of the English Conquest and Hengist of Finnsburg are one and the same person; W. W. Lawrence discovers in the saga of “Samson the Fair” an episode having clear resemblances to that of the fight between Beowulf and Grendel’s dam and likewise to the analogues of that incident appearing elsewhere; and R. J. Menner explains the “Vasa Mortis” passage of Salomon and Saturn. “Caedmon’s Dream Song” by Louise Pound ranges from Pharaoh to Freud, and is an argument for the historicity of the dream story told of our first English poet. Aloise Brandle, tacking to Beowulf 2920, traces the connection of the Merovingians with the various English kingdoms, and from his findings derives support for the view that the Old English epic originated in Mercia; C. S. Northup compares the apotheosizing of Arthur to that of Jesus and other legendary figures; J. R. Hulbert, in “ A Note on the Psychology of the Beowulf Poet,” attributes the vagueness of Beowulfian visual description to the poet’s “individual mental make-up” ; and Max Foster discusses Old English lucky and unlucky days. L. L. Schucking opposes Professor Klaeber (who follows the lead of Hohlweg in the matter) on the priority of Beowulf to Exodus; and a posthumous article by the late A. A. Cook is a work and phrase test of the introduction to one of the Malmesbury charters, to shed light on Aldhelm’s supposed authorship of the document.

On the middle period, Auge Brusendorff, explaining Chaucer;s “He knew nat Catoun for his wit was rude,” shows the popularity of the Dicta Catonis in early educational circles and discusses the various versions known to the Middle English period; Carleton Brown re-edits the poem Somer Soneday found in the Laud MS next to King Horn; and Lorenz Morsbach edits a bill of indenture dated 1470. Of this group perhaps the most outstanding piece is Alexander H. Krappe’s “Le Rire du Prophete,” and exhaustive search for the sources and analogues of Merlin’s derisive laugh as related in Vita Merlini.

In the modern field, Hardin Craig, in “Shakespeare and Formal Logic,” proves by well-chosen quotations that Shakespeare was conversant with the formal logic of his day, at times using its terminology soberly, less often burlesquing it. H. M. Ayres presents “A Specimen of Vulgar English of the Mid-Sixteenth Century,” a broadside of the year 1552; Henning Larsen finds the eisel (eysil) of Hamlet in an Old Icelandic medical manuscript going back to the thirteenth century; H. Logeman wrestles with the invincible etymology of Yankee; S, B. Liljegren, in “Harrington and Leibnitz,” lays stress on the probable influence of Harrington on the great German philosopher; and Morris W. Croll analyzes for us the baroque, or anti-Ciceronian, prose of Wotton, Burton, Browne, and others.

Less easy to classify are the two remaining papers. In a joint article R. W. Chambers and R. Norman recommend Alexander Hamilton, F. R. S. (1762-1824) - not, as carefully explained by the authors, the greatest secretary of the United States Treasury before Andrew Mellon - for a place in the linguistic hall of fame as a forerunner of Rask, Bopp, and Grimm. Arthur G. Kennedy’s paper, “Progress in the Teaching of Early English,” contains toward the end an appeal for the use of the term Anglo-Saxon in preference to Old English, the author having swung back, as he says, to his original practice. On this point he is not at all convincing, and, if the present reviewer has any notion of logic, defeats his own purpose by the figures he cites! If the frequency of the term Anglo-Saxon fell from 35 to 26 in the period 1800-1922, will that of Old English rose from 0 to 45 in the same period, it would appear that Kennedy fails to apply his own case the very thing he urges upon his readers: “a frank recognition of things as they are.” But one can overlook this lapse in the light of the rest of the article, an appeal to teachers of early English to make the first year course in Old English one in which the student shall be equipped with a fluent reading knowledge of literature in the original, rather than be made to flounder in the depths of Germanic and Indo-European philology.

The Editors are deserving of the highest praise. When one considers the limitations of space and subject in such a volume, the wise are over which scholars are scattered, with the resulting difficulty of editorial suggestion and criticism, and the general inertia of scholarly writers in the face of teaching duties, the editing of Festschrift must be indeed a troublous matter. Professors Malone and Ruud have done excellently. They have selected wisely, and have given us a set of papers entertainingly written and solid in quality. In addition, the printing and the typographical arrangement of the book approach artistry. Altogether, it is a fitting tribute to the great scholar whose anniversary it celebrates.

Modern Language Notes, Vol. 45, No. 4, (Apr., 1930) (JSTOR)