Excerpt from Beowulf: A Heroic Poem of the Eighth Century; With a Translation, Notes, and Appendix
For many years after the ms. Had come into the possession of Sir Robert Cotton it remained unnoticed. It is not men tioned in an imperfect Catalogue of the Cottonian Library prepared for Dr. Bickes in 1689. About the beginning of the last century, Bickes employed the antiquary Humphrey Wanley to make a catalogue of all the anglmsaxon mss. To be found in the libraries of the kingdom, whether public or private. The result was the well-known Catalogue Historico-criticus, ' which was published as the second volume of Bickes' Them WW septeawi/iwm, in 1705. Here we find such a notice of our poem as could not fail to attract the attention of students. Wanley designates it Tractatus nobilissimus, poetics scriptus prints (in the form of prose) the first nineteen lines, and also the passage 11. 58-73 and adds, by way of giving an account of the con tents, In hoc libro qui poeseos anglo-saxonicm egregium est exemplum, descripta videntur bella qum Beowulfus quidam Danus, ex regio Scyldingorum ortus, gessit contra Sueciae regulos.'
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