Unediting Beowulf

Unediting Beowulf

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The following pages present a virtual exhibit showcasing the unique manuscript of Beowulf and the fine-press edition of the poem printed by the Kelmscott Press in 1895. The physical book copies represented in these photographs are held by the British Library in London (Beowulf manuscript) and the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, a rare book and manuscript library owned by UCLA and located off-campus in the West Adams neighborhood of Los Angeles. To begin navigating through the exhibit, click on the “Start with Old English Verse” link below. You may also navigate the exhibit through the table of contents located in the top left-hand corner or your screen.

Underneath each image you will find a series of clickable buttons. “Description” simply gives you the name of the image, while “Annotations” will reveal any explanatory annotations (mapped onto specific “zones” of the image) you will need to understand what you are looking at. “Source” will take you to a zoomable/downloadable version of the image. You can safely ignore “Details” and “Citations.”
Finally, since digitized page images are very different from the experience of handling a physical book, you will find a video of one of these books—the Kelmscott edition of Beowulf—being handled/its pages turned by a staff member at the Clark Library; this video is accessible via the link below. If you would like to see this book in person please contact Philip Palmer at the Clark Library

Proceed to “Old English Verse” (1/3)

Kelmscott Beowulf​ video

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