|Title:||Finn and Hengest; edited by Alan Bliss|
|Published:||1982 by George Allen & Unwin|
Professor J.R.R.Tolkien is most widely known as the author of ''The Lord of the Rings, but he was also a distinguished scholar in the field of Mediaeval English language and literature. In Anglo-Saxon studies, his celebrated lecture "Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics" is widely recognized as a turning point in the criticism of the poem.
The story of Finn and Hengest, two fifth-century heroes in northern Europe, is told both in Beowulf and in a fragmentary Anglo-Saxon poem known as The Fight at Finnsburg, but so obscurely and allusively that its interpretation had been a matter of controversy for over 100 years. Bringing his unique combination of philological erudition and poetic imagination to the cask, however, Tolkien revealed a classic tragedy of divided loyalties, of vengeance, blood and death. The story has the added attraction that it describes the events immediately preceding the first Germanic invasion of Britain which was led by Hengest himself.
This book will appeal not only to students of Old English and all those interested in the history of northern Europe and Anglo-Saxon England, but also admirers of The Lord of the Rings who will be fascinated to see how Tolkien handled a story which he did not invent.
description from the back-cover of the book