The Northern Way

The Complete Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Poetry

The Order of the World
Verse Indeterminate Saxon

Wilt þu, fus hæle, fremdne monnan,
wisne woðboran wordum gretan,
fricgan felageongne ymb forðgesceaft,
biddan þe gesecge sidra gesceafta
5
cræftas cyndelice cwichrerende,
þa þe dogra gehwam þurh dom godes
bringe wundra fela wera cneorissum!
Is þara anra gehwam orgeate tacen,
þam þurh wisdom woruld ealle con
10
behabban on hreþre, hycgende mon,
þæt geara iu, gliwes cræfte,
mid gieddingum guman oft wrecan,
rincas rædfæste; cuþon ryht sprecan,
þæt a fricgende fira cynnes
15
ond secgende searoruna gespon
a gemyndge mæst monna wiston.
Forþon scyle ascian, se þe on elne leofað,
deophydig mon, dygelra gesceafta,
bewritan in gewitte wordhordes cræft,
20
fæstnian ferðsefan, þencan forð teala;
ne sceal þæs aþreotan þegn modigne,
þæt he wislice woruld fulgonge.
Leorna þas lare. Ic þe lungre sceal
meotudes mægensped maran gesecgan,
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þonne þu hygecræftig in hreþre mæge
mode gegripan. Is sin meaht forswiþ.
Nis þæt monnes gemet moldhrerendra,
þæt he mæge in hreþre his heah geweorc
furþor aspyrgan þonne him frea sylle
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to ongietanne godes agen bibod;
ac we sculon þoncian þeodne mærum
awa to ealdre, þæs þe us se eca cyning
on gæste wlite forgiefan wille
þæt we eaðe magon upcund rice
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forð gestigan, gif us on ferðe geneah
ond we willað healdan heofoncyninges bibod.
Gehyr nu þis herespel ond þinne hyge gefæstna.
Hwæt, on frymþe gescop fæder ælmihtig,
heah hordes weard, heofon ond eorðan,
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sæs sidne grund, sweotule gesceafte,
þa nu in þam þream þurh þeodnes hond
heaþ ond hebbaþ þone halgan blæd.
Forþon eal swa teofanade, se þe teala cuþe,
æghwylc wiþ oþrum; sceoldon eal beran
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stiþe stefnbyrd, swa him se steora bibead
missenlice gemetu þurh þa miclan gecynd.
Swa hi to worulde wlite forþ berað
dryhtnes duguþe ond his dæda þrym,
lixende lof in þa longan tid,
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fremmaþ fæstlice frean ece word
in þam frumstole þe him frea sette,
hluttor heofones weard, healdað georne
mere gemære; meaht forð tihð
heofoncondelle ond holmas mid,
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laþað ond lædeþ lifes agend
in his anes fæþm ealle gesceafta.
Swa him wideferh wuldor stondeþ,
ealra demena þam gedefestan,
þe us þis lif gescop, ond þis leohte beorht
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cymeð morgna gehwam ofer misthleoþu
wadan ofer wægas wundrum gegierwed,
ond mid ærdæge eastan snoweð
wlitig ond wynsum wera cneorissum;
lifgendra gehwam leoht forð biereð
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bronda beorhtost, ond his brucan mot
æghwylc on eorþan, þe him eagna gesihð
sigora soðcyning syllan wolde.
Gewiteð þonne mid þy wuldre on westrodor
forðmære tungol faran on heape,
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oþþæt on æfenne ut garsecges
grundas pæþeð, glom oþer cigð;
niht æfter cymeð, healdeð nydbibod
halgan dryhtnes. Heofontorht swegl
scir gescyndeð in gesceaft godes
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under foldan fæþm, farende tungol.
Forþon nænig fira þæs frod leofað
þæt his mæge æspringe þurh his ægne sped witan,
hu geond grund færeð goldtorht sunne
in þæt wonne genip under wætra geþring,
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oþþe hwa þes leohtes londbuende
brucan mote, siþþan heo ofer brim hweorfeð.
Forþon swa teofenede, se þe teala cuþe,
dæg wiþ nihte, deop wið hean,
lyft wið lagustream, lond wiþ wæge,
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flod wið flode, fisc wið yþum.
Ne waciað þas geweorc, ac he hi wel healdeð;
stondað stiðlice bestryþed fæste
miclum meahtlocum in þam mægenþrymme
mid þam sy ahefed heofon ond eorþe.
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Beoð þonne eadge þa þær in wuniað,
hyhtlic is þæt heorðwerud. þæt is herga mæst,
eadigra unrim, engla þreatas.
Hy geseoð symle hyra sylfra cyning,
eagum on wlitað, habbað æghwæs genoh.
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Nis him wihte won, þam þe wuldres cyning
geseoþ in swegle; him is symbel ond dream
ece unhwylen eadgum to frofre.
Forþon scyle mon gehycgan þæt he meotude hyre;
æghwylc ælda bearna forlæte idle lustas,
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læne lifes wynne, fundige him to lissa blisse,
forlæte heteniþa gehwone sigan
mid synna fyrnum, fere him to þam sellan rice.

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