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Comment and Translation on "Cynewulf and Cyneheard" by Katharina Moczko
1) The Manuscripts of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle:
The text 'Cynewulf and Cyneheard' is an excerpt from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, whose manuscripts are currently owned by the British Library in London and the Bodleian Library in Oxford. According to the Website of The University of Calgary the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle is one of the most important sources for the history of the British pre-conquest period. It starts with the reign of king ¨¡lfred the Great (a.D. 871 - 899) and shows the annual record of the history of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms.1
2) Preliminary remarks on Cynewulf and Cyneheard
The text of Cynewulf and Cyneheard differs from the other texts of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle by it's length and details. The usual texts contain a mere listing of the personal changes in thrones and bishoprics during the years but 'Cynewulf and Cyneheard' displays more complexity, even a narrative-like structure.
These differences in style and form have been speculated to result from a different origin of the text excerpt. It is assumed that it might have been an orally transmitted saga of the traditional storytellers, inserted by the authors of The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle at its rightful place.
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