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A Handbook of the English Language by Latham

The Hildubrand and Hathubrant have been edited by Grimm


[17]

The following is a specimen of the Frisian of Gysbert Japicx, in metre. It is part of a rustic song, supposed to be sung by a peasant on his return from a wedding feast. Date about A.D. 1650.

"Sw['i]et, ja sw['i]et, is't oer 'e m['i]ete, 'T bo['a]skiere f['o]ar ['e] jonge lie, Kreftich sw['i]et is't, sizz ik jiette, As it giet mei alders r['i]e. Mai ['o]ars tiget 'et to 'n pl['e]ach, As ik ['o]an myn geafeunt seach."

Translation of the same from Bosworth's _Anglo-Saxon Dictionary_, p. lxxiii.

"Sweet, yes, sweet is over (_beyond_) measure, The marrying for the young lede (_people_); Most sweet is it, I say yet (_once more_), When (_as_) it goes with the rede (_counsel_) of the elders. But otherwise it tends to a plague, As I saw on (_by the example of_) my village fellow."

[18] Of the early constitution of states of East Friesland, we have a remarkable illustration in the old Frisian Laws. These are in the native Frisian tongue, and, except that they represent republican rather than monarchical institutions, are similar in form, in spirit, to the Saxon.

[19] The great blow against the sovereignty of Rome, and the one which probably prevented Germany from becoming a Roman province, was struck by the Cheruscan Arminius against Quintilius Varus, in the reign of Augustus. The date of the organized

insurrection of Arminius was A.D. 9; the place, the neighbourhood of Herford, or Engern, in Westphalia. Drawn into an inpracticable part of the country, the troops of Varus were suddenly attacked and cut to pieces--consisting of more than three legions. "Never was victory more decisive, never was the liberation of an oppressed people more instantaneous and complete. Throughout Germany the Roman garrisons were assailed and cut off; and, within a few weeks after Varus had fallen, the German soil was freed from the foot of an invader.

"Had Arminius been supine or unsuccessful, our Germanic ancestors would have been enslaved or exterminated in their original seats along the Eyder and the Elbe. This island would never have borne the name of England, and we, this great English nation, whose race and language are now overrunning the earth, from one end of it to the other, would have been utterly cut off from existence."[68]

[20] _Heliand_ is the gerund from _helian_ = _heal_, and means _the Healer_ or _Saviour_. It is the name of an old Saxon poem, in alliterative metre, of the tenth or eleventh century, in the dialect supposed to have belonged to the parts about Essen, Cleves, and Munster in Westphalia. It is a sort of Gospel Harmony, or Life of Christ, taken from the Gospels. It has been edited by Schmeller.

[21] Hildubrand and Hathubrant, father and son, are two legendary heroes belonging to that cycle of German fiction of which Theodoric of Verona is the centre. A fragment containing an account of their hostile meeting, being mutually unknown, in alliterative metre, represents the _fictional_ poetry of the old Saxons in the same way (though not to the same extent) that the Heliand represents their sacred poetry. The "Hildubrand and Hathubrant" have been edited by Grimm.


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