The Mabinogion

The Mabinogion

Paperback Oxford World's Classics (Paperback)

Translated by Sioned Davies

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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 336 pages
  • Dimensions: 146mm x 216mm x 28mm | 240g
  • Publication date: 11 May 2008
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 0199218781
  • ISBN 13: 9780199218783
  • Illustrations note: one map
  • Sales rank: 59,127

Product description

'I cannot be killed indoors,' he said, 'nor out of doors; I cannot be killed on horseback, nor on foot.' 'Well,' she said, 'how can you be killed?' Celtic mythology, Arthurian romance, and an intriguing interpretation of British history - these are just some of the themes embraced by the anonymous authors of the eleven tales that make up the Welsh medieval masterpiece known as the Mabinogion. They tell of Gwydion the shape-shifter, who can create a woman out of flowers; of Math the magician whose feet must lie in the lap of a virgin; of hanging a pregnant mouse and hunting a magical boar. Dragons, witches, and giants live alongside kings and heroes, and quests of honour, revenge, and love are set against the backdrop of a country struggling to retain its independence. This new translation, the first for thirty years, recreates the storytelling world of medieval Wales and re-invests the tales with the power of performance. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.

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Author information

Sioned Davies is Chair of Welsh at Cardiff University. Her special interest is the interplay between orality and literacy, together with the performance aspects of medieval Welsh narrative. Her publications include Crefft y Cyfarwydd (Cardiff, 1995), which is a study of narrative techniques in the Mabinogion, The Four Branches of the Mabinogi (Llandysul, 1993), and a co-edited volume, The Horse in Celtic Culture: Medieval Welsh Perspectives (Cardiff, 1997).

Review quote

'It is plain that Professor Davies's translation...is not only properly attentive to the Welsh texts but makes for more comfortable reading than the earlier versions...Sioned Davies has done [the Mabinogion] and her modern readers proud.' Kevin Crossley-Holland, The Times, 24/02/2007 'Enchantment glows on every page' Independent on Sunday, 04.03.2007 'This fresh, energetic translation is a revelation and, for the first time, shows off The Mabinogion tales as what they were originally: splendid entertainment.' Gwyneth Lewis, Guardian, 26/05/2007

Table of contents

Introduction ; Translator's Note ; Guide to Pronunciation ; Select Bibliography ; map of Wales at the time of theMabinogion ; The First Branch of the Mabinogion ; The Second Branch of the Mabinogion ; The Third Branch of the Mabinogion ; The First Branch of the Mabinogion ; Peredur son of Efrog ; The Dream of the Emperor Maxen ; Lludd and Llefelys ; The Lady of the Well ; Geraint son of Erbin ; How Culhwch won Olwen ; Rhonabwy's Dream ; Explanatory Notes ; Glossary of Personal Names ; Glossary of Place-Names