LO! we of the Spear-Danes', in days of yore,
Warrior-kings' glory have heard,
How the princes heroic deeds wrought.
Oft Scyld, son of Scef, from hosts of foes,
5From many tribes, their mead-seats took;
The earl caused terror since first he was
Found thus forlorn: gained he comfort for that,
Grew under the clouds, in honors throve,
Until each one of those dwelling around
10Over the whale-road, him should obey,
Should tribute pay: that was a good king!
To him was a son afterwards born,
Young in his palace, one whom God sent
To the people for comfort: their distress He perceived
15That they ere suffered life-eating care
So long a while. Him therefor life's Lord,
King of glory, world-honor gave:
Beowulf was noted (wide spread his fame),
The son of Scyld in Scedelands.
20So shall a young man with presents cause,
With rich money-gifts in his father's house.
That him in old age may after attend
Willing comrades; when war shall come,
May stand by their chief; by deeds of praise shall
25In every tribe a hero thrive!
Then Scyld departed at the hour of fate,
The warlike to go into his Lord's keeping:
They him then bore to the ocean's wave,
His trusty comrades, as he himself bade,
30Whilst with words ruled the friend of the Scyldings,
Beloved land-prince; long wielded he power.
There stood at haven with curved prow,
Shining and ready, the prince's ship:
The people laid their dear war-lord,
35Giver of rings, on the deck of the ship,
The mighty by th' mast. Many treasures were there,
From distant lands, ornaments brought;
Ne'er heard I of keel more comelily filled
With warlike weapons and weeds of battle,
40With bills and burnies ! On his bosom lay
A heap of jewels, which with him should
Into the flood's keeping afar depart:
Not at all with less gifts did they him provide,
With princely treasures, than those had done,
45Who him at his birth had erst sent forth
Alone o'er the sea when but a child.
Then placed they yet a golden standard
High over his head, let the waves bear
Their gift to the sea; sad was their soul,
50Mourning their mood. Men indeed cannot
Say now in sooth, hall-possessors,
Heroes 'neath heavens, who that heap took.

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