I’ve mentioned before that I go to a group where we discuss Anglo-Saxon… we aren’t trying to learn it, we don’t have a teacher, and to be honest, I think it’s a bit beyond us! We do have most interesting meetings, though, and we always overrun our time together!
We met yesterday and talked about many things, and then our leader shared this short story; here is the first part, which I’m sure you are familiar with in modern English!
He cwæð: Soðlice sum monn hæfde twegen suna.
Þa cwæð se gingra to his fæder, “Fæder, sele me mine dæl minre æhte þe me to gebyreþ.” Þa dælde he him his æhta.
Ða æfter feawum dagum eall his þing gegaderode se gingra sunu ond ferde wræclice on feorlen rice ond forspilde þær his æhta, libbende on his gælsan.
Ða he hie hæfde ealle amierrede, þa wearð micel hungor on þam rice and he wearð wædla.
Þa ferde he and folgode anum burhsittendum men þæs rices; ða sende he hine to his tune þæt he heolde his swin.
Ða gewilnode he his wambe gefyllan of þam beancoddum þe ða swin æton, and him mon ne sealde.
Þa beþohte he hine ond cwæð, “Eala, hu fela hyrlinga on mines fæder huse hlaf genohne habbað, ond ic her on hunger forweorðe!”
…and here is a version you may be familiar with:
He said, “There was a man who had two sons.
The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.
“Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living.
After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need.
So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs.
He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death!
I can’t find a recording of this to share, but here is the Lord’s Prayer: