Many wonderful resources exist for Beowulf and Anglo-Saxon culture. To use Grendel’s Mother in the classroom, alongside Beowulf and John Gardner’s Grendel, check out the free, downloadable Curriculum Guides with common core appropriate ideas and suggestions. They are available on this page.

Here is the Electronic Beowulf.

These sites are excellent for learning.

Learning with the online Thesaurus of Old English (TOE)


Murray McGillivray’s wonderful site for learning with his great book, A Gentle Introduction to Old English. Old English Grammar

A constant production of scholarly work is published on Beowulf and Beowulf-related topics.  Check this site for updates.

Another good source is Resources – Dēor-hord: a medieval and modern bestiary

I used the following sources in writing Grendel’s Mother.


Bede the Venerable. Ecclesiastical History of the English People. Leo Sherley-Price, Trans. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1955.

Boswell, John. The Kindness of Strangers. New York: Vintage Books, 1988.

Bradley, S.A.J., ed. Anglo-Saxon Poetry. London: J. M. Dent & Sons Ltd, 1982.

Byock, Jesse L., trans. The Saga of the Volsungs: The Norse Epic of Sigurd the Dragon Slayer. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1990.

Cockayne, Thomas Oswald, ed. and trans. Leechdoms, wortcunning, and starcraft of Early England. London: Holland Press, 1961. Volumes 1-3. [Bald’s Leechbook]

Chickering, Howell D., Jr. Beowulf: A Dual-Language Edition. New York: Anchorbooks, 1977.

Cohat, Yves. The Vikings: Lords of the Sea. Ruth Daniel, trans. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., Pub., 1992.

Crossley-Holland, Kevin. The Poetry of Legend: Classics of the Medieval World: Beowulf. Pheobe Phillips Editions, 1987.

Davidson, H. R. Ellis. Gods and Myths of Northern Europe. Baltimore: Penguin, 1964.

Delanty, Greg, Michael Matto, eds. Foreward by Seamus Heaney. The Word Exchange: Anglo-Saxon Poems in Translation. New York: W. W. Norton & Co., 2001.

Donaldson, E. Talbot. Beowulf: A New Translation. New York: Norton, 1966.

Fulk, R. D., Bobert E. Bjork, and John D. Niles, eds. Klaeber’s Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburg. 4th Edition. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008.

Garmondsway, G. N. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. London: J. J. Dent & Sons, 1972.

Godden, Malcolm and Michael Lapidge, eds. The Cambridge Companion to Old English Literature. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991.

Heaney, Seamus. Beowulf: A New Verse Translation. New York: W. W. Norton & Co., 2000.

Hollander, Lee M., trans. The Poetic Edda. 2nd Ed. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1990.

Klaeber, Fr. Beowulf and the fight at Finnsburg. Boston: D.C. Heath & Co. 1922.

Krapp, George Philip and Elliott Van Kirk Dobbie, eds. The Anglo-Saxon Poetic Records: A Collective Edition. 6 vols. New York: Columbia University Press, 1931-1953.

Niles, John D. Beowulf and Lejre. John D. Niles and Marijane Osborn, eds. Tempe, AZ: ACMRS, 2007.

Singer, Charles. From Magic to Science. New York: Dover Pub., Inc., 1958.

Sturluson, Snorri. The Prose Edda: Tales from Norse Mythology. Jean I. Young, trans. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1954.

Swanton, Michael, ed. and trans., Anglo-Saxon Prose. Everyman’s Classic Library, 1993.

Tacitus. The Agricola and the Germania. H. Mattingly and S. A. Handford, trans. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1987.

Weston, L. M. C. “Women’s Medicine, Women’s Magic: The Old English Metrical Childbirth Charms.” Modern Philology 92 (1995): 279-293.

Further Reading

Allen, Michael J. B. and Daniel G. Calder, trans. Sources and Analogues of Old English Poetry: The Major Latin Texts in Translation. Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1976.

Barney, Stephen A. Word-hoard: An Introduction to Old English Vocabulary. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1977.

Battaglia, Frank. “The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf?” The Mankind Quarterly 31 (1997): 415-446.

Belanoff, Pat. “The Fall (?) of the Old English Female Poetic Image,” PMLA 104 (1989): 822-831.

Bessinger, Jess B., ed. A concordance to Beowulf. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1969.

Biggs, Frederick M. “The Politics of Succession in Beowulf and Anglo-Saxon Succession.” Speculum 80.3 (2005): 709-41.

Birch, J. H. S. Denmark in History. London: John Murray, 1938; rpt. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1975.

Bjork, Robert E. The Old English verse saints’ lives: A study in direct discourse and the iconography of style. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1985.

Bright, James W. Bright’s Anglo-Saxon Reader. New York: H. Holt and Company, 1917.

Bruce-Mitford, R. L. S. The Sutton Hoo Ship-Burial: A Handbook. London: The Trustees of the British Museum, 1968.

Calder, Daniel G. et al. Sources and Analogues of Old English Poetry II: The major Germanic and Celtic Texts in Translation. Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1983.

Cameron, Angus. Old English Word Studies: A Preliminary Author and Word Index. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1983.

Cameron, M. L. Anglo-Saxon Medicine. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993.

Campbell, James, ed.. The Anglo-Saxons. Ithaca, NY: Cornell UP, 1982.

Chance, Jane. Woman as Hero in Old English Literature. Syracuse: Syracuse University, 1986.

Damico, Helen. Beowulf’s Wealhtheow and the Valkyrie Tradition. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1984.

— and Alexandra Hennessey Olson, eds.. New Readings on Women in Old English Literature. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1990.

— and John Leyerle. Heroic Poetry in the Anglo-Saxon Period: Studies in honor of Jess B. Bessinger, Jr. Kalamazoo: Medieval Institute Publications, 1993.

Deegan, Marilyn and D. G. Scragg. Medicine in Early Medieval England. Manchester: Centre for Anglo-Saxon Studies, 1989.

Earl, James. “The Forbidden Beowulf: Haunted by Incest.” PMLA 125.2 (2010): 289-305.

Exemplaria X/1 (Spring 1998) with articles by Mary Dockray-Miller and James Hala.

Fell, Christine with Cecily Clark and Elizabeth Williams. Women in Anglo-Saxon England and the impact of 1066. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1984.

Frantzen, Allen J.   Desire for Origins: New Language, Old English, and Teaching the Tradition. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1990.

—. King Alfred. Boston: Twayne, 1986.

—, ed. Speaking Two Languages: Traditional Disciplines and Contemporary Theory in Medieval Studies. Albany: SUNY Press, 1991.

Fulk, R. D.. Interpretations of Beowulf: A Critical Anthology. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1991.

Glob, P. V. Denmark: An Archaeological History from the Stone Age to the Vikings. Trans. Joan Bulman. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1971

Greenfield, Stanley B. The Interpretation of Old English Poems. London: Routledge and K. Paul, 1972.

Grohskopf, Bernice. The Treasure of Sutton Hoo: Ship-Burial for an Anglo-Saxon King. New York: Atheneum, 1970.

Hall, John. A Concise Anglo-Saxon Dictionary. 3rd edition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1931.

Hamer, Richard, ed. and trans. A Choice of Anglo-Saxon Verse. London, 1970. 98-99 for Cuckoo riddle.

Harwood, Britton J. and Gillian Overing, eds. Class and Gender in Early English Literature: Intersections. Bloomington: Indidana University Press, 1994.

Hermann, John P. Allegories of War: Language and Violence in Old English Poetry. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1989.

Huppé, Bernard. The Web of Words. Albany: SUNY Press, 1970.

Jember, Gregory K. The Old English Riddles: A New Translation. Denver: Society of New Language Study, 1976.

Joy, Eileen A., and Mary K. Ramsay, eds. The Postmodern Beowulf: A Critical Casebook. Morgantown: West Virginia University Press, 2006.

Kanner, Barbara, ed.. The Women of England: From Anglo-Saxon Times to the Present. London: Mansell, 1980.

Klindt-Jensen, Ole. Denmark Before the Vikings. Trans. Eva and David Wilson. London: Jarrold and Sons Ltd, 1957.

Lapidge, Michael and Helmut Gneuss, eds. Learning and Literature in Anglo-Saxon England. Cambridge: CUP, 1985.

Lerer, Seth. “Grendel’s Glove.“ English Literary History 61 (1994): 721-751.

—. Literacy and Power in Anglo-Saxon Literature. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1991.

— “’On fagne flor’: the postcolonial Beowulf.” in Postcolonial Approaches to the European Middle Ages: Translating Cultures, edited by Ananya Jahanara Kabir and Deanne Williams, 77-102. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005.

Lord, Albert Bates. The Singer of Tales. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1981.

Mitchell, Bruce, and Fred C. Robinson, eds. Beowulf: An Edition. Oxford: Blackwell, 1998.

Mitchell, Bruce and Fred C. Robinson. A Guide to Old English. New York: Oxford: B. Blackwell, 1986. 4th edition.

Oakley, Stewart. A Short History of Denmark. New York: Praeger Publishers, 1972.

O’Brien O’Keefe, Katherine. “Beowulf, Lines 702b-836: Transformations and the Limits of the Human.” Texas Studies in Literature and Language 23, No. 4 (1981): 484-494.

—. Visible Song: Transitional Literacy in Old English Verse. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990.

Oswald, Dana M. “’Wigge under Wætere’: Beowulf’s Revision of the Fight with Grendel’s Mother.” Exemplaria XXI (2009): 63-82.

Overing, Gillian and Marijane Osborn. Landscape of Desire: Parital Stories of the Medieval Scandinavian World. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1994.

Overing, Gillian. Language, Sign, and Gender in Beowulf. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1990.

Parry, Milman (Adam). The Making of Homeric Verse. New York: Arno Press, 1980.

Sandner, David. “Tracking Grendel: The Uncanny in Beowulf.” Extrapolation 40 (1999): 162-76.

Scragg, D. G.. Superstition and Popular Medicine in Anglo-Saxon England. Manchester: Centre for Anglo-Saxon Studies, 1989.

Szarmach, Paul E., ed. Holy Men and Holy Women: Old English Prose Saints’ Lives and Their Contexts. SUNY Series in Medieval Studies. Albany: SUNY Press, 1996.

Tolkien, J. R. R. Beowulf; the monsters and the Critics. London: British Academy, 1936/37.

Williamson, Craig. A Feast of Creatures: Anglo-Saxon Riddle-Songs. Philadelphia: The University of Pennsylvania Press, 1982.

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