adapted from a design by George Bain based on the Book of Kells home Programme Bookings Shop The Wuffings .
Wuffing Education

The Gold in the Ground


with Professor Michael Alexander

at Tranmer House, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday 18th April 2009

A day with poet, scholar, and translator Professor Michael Alexander exploring the early English heroic, elegiac, and wisdom poetry which expresses both the heroic values of the world of Sutton Hoo, and of that world as it looked to educated Christians. Weather permitting, the day will include a poetic tour of the royal barrows, so come prepared for walking.

Provisional Programme
  10.00 Coffee on arrival  
  10.15 An Introduction to Beowulf and Old English Heroic Poetry  
  11.15 Coffee  
  11.45 The Old English Elegies  
  12.45 Lunch break  
  14:00 The Old English Riddles and The Dream of the Rood  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 Verse Texts and Tumuli  
  16:15 Close  

About Professor Michael Alexander

Michael AlexanderMichael Alexander is Honorary Professor of English Literature at the University of St Andrews. He is a poet with wide scholarly interests in medieval and modern English verse, in literary history and translation, and in the medieval revival. His verse translation of Beowulf (1973, rev. 2001) was said by Magnus Magnusson to be “an admirable version that has caught, better than any other I know, the poetic power and eloquence of the original”. The THES review of his History of English Literature (2007) began: ”If I had my way, every student of English would be supplied with a copy of this book.’ Other verse translations appear in his Earliest English Poems (1966) and Old English Riddles from the Exeter Book (2007), and in anthologies by W.H.Auden and Seamus Heaney. His most recent publications are Medievalism: The Middle Ages in Modern England (2007) and The First Poems in English (2008), a thoroughly revised edition of his Earliest English Poems (1966). His current project is called Reading Shakespeare.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

* asterisks mark the editions to which reference will be made during the day.
Alexander, M., The Earliest English Poems (Penguin Classics 1966, 1977, 1991; facing-text edition, Univ. of California 1970)
Alexander, M., Beowulf: A Verse Translation with introduction and notes. (Penguin Classics 1973; rev. edition 2001*)
Alexander, M., Twelve Poems (Agenda Editions, London 1978)
Alexander, M., The Poetic Achievement of Ezra Pound (Faber 1979; rev. paperback edition, Edinburgh 1998)
Alexander, M., Old English Riddles from the Exeter Book. Verse translations. (Anvil Press, London 1980, 1982, 1984, 2007*)
Alexander, M., A History of Old English Literature (Macmillan, London 1983, 1986; 3rd, rev. edition, Broadview, Canada, 2001)
Alexander, M., & A.N. Jeffares (eds), The Macmillan Anthologies of English Literature, 5 volumes (Macmillan, Basingstoke 1989).
Alexander, M., Beowulf: A Glossed Text (Penguin English Poets, 1995; rev. edition 2000)
Alexander, M., The Canterbury Tales: The First Fragment. A glossed text. (Penguin 1996)
Alexander, M., A History of English Literature (Palgrave Macmillan 2000; 2nd edition. 2007)
Alexander, M., Medievalism: The Middle Ages in Modern England (Yale University Press 2007)
Alexander, M., The First Poems in English (Penguin Classics 2008*)


Please phone or email to check the availability of places and then send the application form and a cheque for £38, payable to Wuffing Education to:

Wuffing Education,
4 Hilly Fields,
Woodbridge, Suffolk IP12 4DX
(tel : 01394 386498)

Email cliff AT
(replace 'AT' by '@' in order to send email - we used 'AT' to avoid spam robots automatically sending us emails)

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