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Sir Gawain and the Green Knight: A New Verse Translationby Simon Armitage
Synopses & Reviews
"Promises to drive the green force of the old poem through the Armitage fuse and set it a-buddin' and a-bloomin' for the new millennium."'"Seamus Heaney, Nobel Laureate, best-selling translator of BeowulfCom posed in the late fourteenth century by an anonymous author in the English provinces, this remarkable epic has enchanted readers for generations. The work itself is an unparalleled masterpiece of alliteration and rhyme, beginning at Christmastime in Camelot, when the festivities of the Round Table are interrupted by the sudden appearance of a fearful stranger, green from head to foot. A young knight, Gawain, rises to the challenge. What follows is a test of nerve and heart as Gawain travels north to meet his destiny at the Green Chapel in a year's time. Following in the tradition of Seamus Heaney, Simon Armitage, one of England's leading poets, has produced a virtuoso new translation that resounds with both clarity and verve.
Following in the tradition of Seamus Heaney's reworking of "Beowulf," Armitage, one of England's leading poets, has produced a virtuoso new translation of the 600-year-old Arthurian story with both clarity and verve.
"Compulsively readable. ... Simon Armitage has given us an energetic, free-flowing, high-spirited version."--Edward Hirsch, New York Times Book Review, front-page review
One of the earliest great stories of English literature after ?, ? is the strange tale of a green knight on a green horse, who rudely interrupts King Arthur's Round Table festivities one Yuletide, challenging the knights to a wager. Simon Armitrage, one of Britain's leading poets, has produced an inventive and groundbreaking translation that "[helps] liberate ?from academia" (?).
Already a classic of modern translation, this fresh, vibrant work by dynamic British poet Simon Armitage updates the late fourteenth-century poem for a new generation. The story of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, in its depiction of Arthurian landscapes, dreamlike castles, and violent winter journeys, demands a peerless storyteller, and, "like the Gawain poet [himself], Armitage is some storyteller" (The Guardian). The work is an unparalleled masterpiece of alliteration and rhyme, and "[Armitage's] version inventively recreates the original's gnarled, hypnotic music ... but also has a free-flowing, colloquial twang that allows the poem to partake of the energies of contemporary speech" (Financial Times).
About the Author
Simon Armitage, whose The Shoutwas a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, has published ten volumes of poetry and has received numerous honors for his work. He lives in England.
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Fiction and Poetry » Classics » British Medieval and Renaissance