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Strange Likeness
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Strange Likeness: The Use of Old English in Twentieth-Century Poetry

Chris Jones


This book provides the first full account of how major 20th-century poets studied, appropriated, and redeployed Old English (or Anglo-Saxon) poetry in their own work. The book concentrates on the stylistic debts that Ezra Pound, W. H. Auden, Edwin Morgan, and Seamus Heaney owe to the language and prosody of Old English poetry — and to the prevailing scholarly attitudes towards Old English, which they encountered at university. Both Edwin Morgan, Scotland's First Makar, and Nobel-laureate Seamus Heaney continue to write under the influence of Old English forms, as their latest books bear witnes ... More

Keywords: Ezra Pound, W. H. Auden, Edwin Morgan, Seamus Heaney, poetry, 20th-century, Old English, Anglo-Saxon, Beowulf, influence

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2006 Print ISBN-13: 9780199278329
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199278329.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Chris Jones, author
Lecturer in Poetry, University of St Andrews
Author Webpage