- Grendel's mother
Beowulf" manuscript.] Grendel's mother (Old English: Grendles modor) is one of three antagonists (along with Grendeland the dragon) in the work of Anglo Saxon literature of anonymous authorship, " Beowulf" (c. 700-1000 AD). She is never given a name in the text.
Grendel's mother's nature in the poem is the subject of ongoing controversy and debate among
medieval scholars. This is due to the ambiguity of a few words in Old English which appear in the original "Beowulf manuscript". These words, particularly "ides, aglæcwif" (ll.1258a-1259b), appear either in conjunction with Grendel's mother or with her place of dwelling (a lake). Some have a specific significance within the context of Germanic paganism.
In lines 106-114 and lines 1260-1267 of "Beowulf," Grendel's mother and
Grendelare described as descendants of Cain. After Grendel is killed, Grendel's mother attacks Heorotin revenge, and Beowulf ventures into her lake-based home. When Grendel's mother senses his presence, she immediately attacks Beowulf and drags him into her home. They then engage in fierce combat. Grendel's mother nearly defeats Beowulf until he sees a sword in the "mere." He uses the sword to kill Grendel's mother and to behead the corpse of Grendel. Beowulf then returns to the surface and to his men at the "ninth hour" (l. 1600, "nōn", about 3pm). [Jack, George. "Beowulf: A Student Edition," p. 123 ]
Function in and structure of the poem
Some scholars have argued that the female characters in "Beowulf" fulfill certain established roles such as "hostess" (
Wealhþeowand Hygd) and "peaceweaver" ( Freawaruand Hildeburh). Grendel's mother and Modthryth(before her marriage to Offa), who challenge these roles, represent "monster-women." [cite news | first= Dorothy | last=Porter| url=http://www.mun.ca/mst/heroicage/issues/5/porter1.html| title="The Social Centrality of Women in Beowulf: A New Context"| publisher=The Heroic Age: A Journal of Early Medieval Northwestern Europe, heroicage.org, Issue 5| date=Summer/Autumn 2001| accessdate=2006-08-09] In this context, Jane Chance Nitzsche (Professor of English, Rice University) argued for similarities between the juxtaposition of Wealtheow and Grendel's mother to that of the Virgin Maryand Eve (1980, 1986).
Chance Nitzsche also argued that there are two standard interpretations of the poem: one view which suggests a two-part structure (i.e., the poem is divided between Beowulf's battles with
Grendeland with the dragon) and the other, a three-part structure (this interpretation argues that Beowulf's battle with Grendel's mother is structurally separate from his battle with Grendel). cite book |last=Chance |first=Jane|title = The Structural Unity of Beowulf: The Problem of Grendel's Mother | publisher = Indiana University Press |location= Bloomington, Indiana |editor =Helen Damico and Alexandra Hennessey Olsen | year = 1990 |pages= 248] Chance stated that, "this view of the structure as two-part has generally prevailed since its inception in J. R. R. Tolkien's "" in "Proceedings of the British Academy 22" (1936)." In contrast, she argued that the three-part structure has become "increasingly popular."
Debate concerning the nature of Grendel's mother
There is a debate among
medieval scholarsconcerning the ambiguity of a few words in Old English related to Grendel's mother or her home (a lake) which appear in the original "Beowulf manuscript". Because these terms are ambiguous, scholars disagree over aspects of her nature and appearance. Indeed, because her exact appearance is never directly described in Old Englishby the original "Beowulf" poet, part of the debate revolves around what is known, namely her descent from the biblical Cain (who was the first murderer in Abrahamic religions). For some scholars, this descent links her and Grendel to the monsters and giants of " the Cain Tradition." [Williams, David. "Cain and Beowulf: A Study in Secular Allegory". Toronto:University of Toronto Press, 1982] Others argue that the lack of descriptives leaves Grendel's mother a marginal, rather than monstrous, figure. [cite news | first=Christine | last=Alfano| url=http://repositories.cdlib.org/cmrs/comitatus/vol23/iss1/art1/| title=The Issue of Feminine Monstrosity: A Reevaluation of Grendel's Mother. "Comitatus: A Journal of Medieval and Renaissance Studies", Vol 23| publisher=| date=1992| accessdate=2006-08-09]
This lack of consensus has led to the production of a few seminal texts by scholars over the past few decades. One important focus of these articles and books concerns the numerous, and at times opposing, translations of the
Cquote|1258b: ...Grendles modor 1259a: ides, aglæcwif...
Wretch, or monster of a woman (Klaeber & Gillam)
Up until the late 1970s, all scholarship on Grendel's mother and translations of the phrase "aglæc-wif" were influenced by the noted "Beowulf" scholar
Frederick Klaeberand his translation "Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburg." This edition has been considered a standard in "Beowulf" scholarship since its first publication in 1922. [ [http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/modern_language_quarterly/v060/60.2bloomfield.pdf Bloomfield, Josephine. Benevolent Authoritarianism in Klaeber's Beowulf: An Editorial Translation of Kingship. "Modern Language Quarterly 60:2, June 1999] ] According to Klaeber's glossary, "aglæc-wif" translates as: "wretch, or monster of a woman." Klaeber's glossary also defines "aglæca/æglæca" as "monster, demon, fiend" when referring to Grendelor Grendel's mother. On the other hand, "aglæca/æglæca" is translated by Klaeber as "warrior, hero" when referring to the character, Beowulf. [Klaeber, Fr, and ed. "Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburg". Third ed. Boston: Heath, 1950.]
Klaeber has influenced many translations of "Beowulf." Notable interpretations of line 1259a which follow Klaeber include, "Monstrous hell bride" (Heaney), [Heaney, Seamus " [http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN0393320979&id=ynD9o-LfTDMC&pg=PP1&lpg=PP1&ots=4rtZ-a90PG&dq=Beowulf:+A+New+Verse+Translation&sig=TANJDD5siOW13PupnLi4qiw6SYk Beowulf: A New Verse Translation] ". New York: W.W. Norton, 2001.] "Monster-woman" (Chickering) [Chickering, Howell D. "Beowulf". Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor Books, 1989.] "Woman, monster – wife" (Donaldson), [Donaldson, E. Talbot, and Nicholas Howe. "Beowulf : A Prose Translation : Backgrounds and Contexts, Criticism". A Norton Critical Edition;. 2nd ed. New York: Norton, 2002.] "Ugly troll-lady" (Trask) [Trask, Richard M. "Beowulf and Judith : Two Heroes". Lanham, Md.: University Press of America, 1998.] and "Monstrous hag" (Kennedy). [Kennedy, Charles W., and tr. Beowulf, the Oldest English Epic. New York: London [etc.] Oxford University Press, 1940.]
Doreen M.E. Gillam's 1961 essay, "The Use of the Term 'Æglæca' in Beowulf at Lines 893 and 2592" explores Klaeber's dual use of the term "aglæca/æglæca" for both the heroes, Sigemund and Beowulf as well as for the Grendel and Grendel's mother. She argues that "aglæca/æglæca" is used in works besides "Beowulf" to reference both "devils and human beings. She further argues that this term is used to imply "supernatural," "unnatural" or even "inhuman" characteristics, as well as hostility towards other creatures. [Gillam, Doreen M. "The Use of the Term 'Aeglaeca' in Beowulf at Lines 893 and 2592." "Studia Germanica Gandensia" 3 (1961).] Gillam thus suggests: "Beowulf, the champion of men against monsters is almost inhuman himself. [Aglæca/æglæca] epitomises, in one word, the altogether exceptional nature of the dragon fight. Beowulf, the champion of good, the 'monster' amongst men, challenges the traditional incarnation of evil, the Dragon: æglæca meets æglæcan." [Gillam, Doreen M. "The Use of the Term 'Aeglaeca' in Beowulf at Lines 893 and 2592." "Studia Germanica Gandensia" 3 (1961):169.]
Lady, female warrior (Kuhn, Stanley, Alfano, & Heaney)
In 1979, "Beowulf" scholars Kuhn and Stanley argued against Klaeber's reading of Grendel's mother. Sherman Kuhn (Emeritus Professor of English and former editor of the "
Middle English Dictionary," University of Michigan[ [http://www.jstor.org/view/00267937/ap060192/06a00190/0 Middle English Dictionary Review] ] ) questioned Klaeber's translations of both "aglæc-wif" and of "aglæca/æglæca" when referring to Grendel and Grendel's mother, stating that there are,
He continued the argument by stating that, "I suggest, therefore, that we define aglæca as 'a fighter, valiant warrior, dangerous opponent, one who struggles fiercely.'"). Kuhn, S., Old English Aglæca-Middle Irish Olach." Linguistic Method: "Essays in Honor of Herbert Penzl", pages 218. Mouton Publishers, 1979] In a footnote to this sentence, Kuhn added, "if there were one clear instance of áglæca referring to an unwarlike monster, a peaceful demon, or the like, this definition would fall apart." [Kuhn, S., Old English Aglæca-Middle Irish Olach." Linguistic Method: "Essays in Honor of Herbert Penzl", page 227. Mouton Publishers, 1979] Kuhn further suggested that, "Grendel's mother was an 'aglæc-wif', 'a female warrior' [...] There is no more reason to introduce the idea of monstrosity or of misery here than there is in line 1519 where she is called "merewif", defined simply as 'water-woman', 'woman of the mere.'"
E.G. Stanley (Emeritus Professor of Anglo-Saxon,
Oxford University[ [http://www.routledge.com/shopping_cart/products/product_detail.asp?sku=&isbn=9780415138482&parent_id=&pc=/shopping_cart/products/product_detail.asp?sku%3D%26isbn%3D9780415243179%26pc%3D E.G. Stanley] ] ) added to the debate by critiquing both Klaeber and Gillam:
These arguments were supported by Christine Alfano (Lecturer in English,
Stanford University), who questioned standard translations related to Grendel's mother in her 1992 article, "The Issue of Feminine Monstrosity: A Reevaluation of Grendel's Mother." She argues that: "I find a noticeable disparity between the Grendel's mother originally created by the "Beowulf" poet and the one that occupies contemporary "Beowulf" translations. Instead of being what Sherman Kuhn calls a 'female warrior,' the modern Grendel's mother is a monster. This assumption informs almost all areas of "Beowulf" scholarship, although there is little evidence for this characterization in the original Anglo - Saxon work." [cite news | first=Christine | last=Alfano| url=http://repositories.cdlib.org/cmrs/comitatus/vol23/iss1/art1/| title=The Issue of Feminine Monstrosity: A Reevaluation of Grendel's Mother. "Comitatus: A Journal of Medieval and Renaissance Studies", Vol 23, pages 1 & 12| publisher=| date=1992| accessdate=2006-08-09] Seamus Heaney, in his translation of "Beowulf," compared Grendel's mother to an "amazon warrior" in l.1283 (swá bið mægþa cræft). [Heaney, Seamus " [http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN0393320979&id=ynD9o-LfTDMC&pg=PP1&lpg=PP1&ots=4rtZ-a90PG&dq=Beowulf:+A+New+Verse+Translation&sig=TANJDD5siOW13PupnLi4qiw6SYk Beowulf: A New Verse Translation] ". New York: W.W. Norton, 2001.]
In addition, Alfano discusses the fact that the "Beowulf" poet never explicitly described what Grendel's mother looks like and explores a number of different translations relating to her ambiguous appearance. Concerning the hands of Grendel's mother Alfano argues that, "Where a literal reading of Grendel's mother's "atolan clommum" (line 1502) suggests a "terrible grip/grasp," the phrase instead becomes alternatively "horrible claws," "terrible hooks," and "terrible claws" [...] similarly, "lapan fingrum" (line 1505) literally "hostile/hateful fingers," becomes "claws" and "piercing talons" and "grimman grapum" (line 1542), "fierce grasp," is transformed into "grim claws" and "sharp claws." Alfano also argues against the choice of some translators to translate "modor" as "dam" rather than "mother": "The simple substitution of the word 'dam,' a term used generally to describe animals, for 'mother' in the translation of modor (line 1538) further diminishes her claim on humanity." [cite news | first=Christine | last=Alfano| url=http://repositories.cdlib.org/cmrs/comitatus/vol23/iss1/art1/| title=The Issue of Feminine Monstrosity: A Reevaluation of Grendel's Mother. "Comitatus: A Journal of Medieval and Renaissance Studies", Vol 23, page 3| publisher=| date=1992| accessdate=2006-08-09]
Lady or hero (Temple, Taylor, & Kiernan)
Scholars have continued Stanley's discussion of "Ides" as "lady" when discussing Grendel's mother, most notably Temple ("Grendel's Lady-Mother," 1986) and Taylor (who argues in his 1994 essay that the term "Ides" indicates that "Grendel's mother is a woman of inherently noble status" [Taylor, Keith. "Beowulf 1259a: The Inherent Nobility of Grendel's Mother." "English Language Notes" 31.3 (March 1994): 18] ). In addition, Kevin Kiernan (Emeritus Professor of English,
University of Kentucky) followed Klaeber's interpretation of monstrosity in his 1984 article "Grendel's Heroic Mother." At the same time, he argues, a scholar could "find plenty of evidence for defending Grendel's mother as a heroic figure." [Kiernan, Kevin S. "Grendel's Heroic Mother." In "Geardagum: Essays on Old English Language and Literature" 6 (1984):31. ] He further argues that, "Grendel's mother accepted and adhered to the heroic ethic of the blood-feud, the main difference between Grendel's feckless feud with the noise at Heorot and his mother's purposeful one exacting retribution for the death of her son. In heroic terms, her vengeance for the death of her kinsman Grendel." [Kiernan, Kevin S. "Grendel's Heroic Mother." In "Geardagum: Essays on Old English Language and Literature" 6 (1984):24-5. ]
Ides/Dis (Germanic paganism)
The Anglo-Saxon "ides",
Old High German"itis" and Old Norse " dís" are cognates that all mean "lady",The article " [http://runeberg.org/nfbf/0272.html Dis] " in " Nordisk familjebok" (1907).] and "idisi" appears as the name of the valkyries in the only surviving pagan source in Old High German, the " Merseburg Incantations". [Calvin, Thomas. 'An Anthology of German Literature', D. C. Heath & co. ASIN: B0008BTK3E,B00089RS3K. P5.] More generally, in Norse mythology, the " Dísir" ("ladies") are fate goddesses who can be both benevolent and antagonistic towards mortal people.
Consequently, many have pointed out that "dís" is probably the original term for the
valkyries (lit. "choosers of the slain"), which in turn would be a kenningfor "dís". [Including: Ström, Folke (1954) "Diser, nornor, valkyrjor: Fruktberhetskult och sakralt kungadöme i Norden"; Näsström, Britt-Mari (1995) "Freyja: The Great Goddess of the North"; and Hall, Alaric (2004) " [http://www.alarichall.org.uk/ahphdprol.pdf The Meanings of "Elf", and Elves, in Medieval England] ".]
A few scholars have suggested that Grendel's mother may be associated with the Norse figures of the
Valkyries and of the goddess Gefion who may be an extension of Frigg and Freyja. Freyja, the daughter of the sea god Njörðr, was both a Fertility goddessand a goddess of war, battle, death, Seid, prophecyand was also sometimes associated with the Valkyries and disir.
Valkyries (Chadwick & Damico)
Following the connection between "ides" and "dis" first
Nora Kershaw Chadwick(1959) and later Helen Damico (Professor of English, University of New Mexico) in two works (1980)/(1984) argue that Grendel's mother may have been derived from the myth of the Valkyries. In her 1980 essay, "The Valkyrie Reflex in Old English Literature," Damico argues that:
Damico later argues in "Beowulf's Wealhtheow and the Valkyrie Tradition" that Wealtheow and Grendel's mother represent different aspects of the valkyrie.
In his 1991 article, "The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf", Frank Battaglia (Professor of English, CUNY) argued for the presence of the Early Germanic
goddessGefion in the poem whom he states was also a form of Nerthusand Freyja. [Battaglia, Frank. "The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf" in "Mankind Quarterly", page 415-17. Summer 1991] He does not speak of the Valkyries in this context, but specifies his argument by pairing "ides" (Old English) with "dis" (Old Norse) and noting that the "dis" were "female guardian spirit [s] " with the "power over the dead and choosing who would die. In this capacity [they] might be feared." [Battaglia, Frank. "The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf" in "Mankind Quarterly", page 433. Summer 1991] He further notes that "in scaldic poetry the word "dis" means goddess [...] Freyia herself is called "Vanadis," that is, "dis" of the Vanir, the Scandinavian chthonic, fertility deities." [Battaglia, Frank. "The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf" in "Mankind Quarterly", page 436. Summer 1991]
Battaglia argues that Grendel's mother might have been the goddess Gefion, because of five appearances of the word in the poem: l.49 ("géafon on gársecg" - "Gefion on the waves"), l.362 ("ofer geofenes begang" - "over Gefion's realm"), l.515 ("geofon ýþum"- "Gefion welled up in waves"), l.1394 ("né on gyfenes grund" - "Ground of Gefion"), and l.1690 ("gifen géotende" - "Gefion gushing"). In addition, he states, "in Old English poetry, geofon is a word for ocean which has been seen since
Jakob Grimm(1968, 198) as related to the name Gefion of the Danish Earth Goddess...power to divide land and sea is shown by representations of Gefion in Norse literature." [Battaglia, Frank. "The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf" in "The Mankind Quarterly", page 416. Summer 1991]
Dictionary of Old English (Jack, Mitchell, & Menzer)
Dictionary of Old English", University of Toronto, made the following updates in 1994:
* "āglāc-wíf" (noun) is translated as "female warrior, fearsome woman".
* "āglæca" (adj.) is translated as "formidable, awe-inspiring"
* "āglæca" (noun) is translated as "awesome opponent, ferocious fighter"
The 1994 DOE translations were supported by George Jack (Former Lecturer in English,
University of St. Andrews[ [http://calvin.st-andrews.ac.uk/external_relations/news_article.cfm?reference=441 George Jack Memorial Lecture] ] ) in his 1997 glossary of "Beowulf." They were also supported by Bruce Mitchell(Emeritus Fellow at St Edmund Hall, University of Oxford) in his 1998 glossary of "Beowulf."
Melinda Menzer (Associate Professor of English,
Furman University) critiqued both the new DOE translations, as well as those influenced by Klaeber, in a 1996 article which argued that the actual meaning of "aglæca" is problematic. Thus, Menzer states, "from the semanticnorms governing compounds with -wif [...] the word does not merely refer to the female equivalent of a male or genderless "aglæca" ('female warrior,' 'female monster'); "aglæcwif" denotes a woman, a human female, who is also "aglæca" [...] Indeed "wif" alone always refers to a woman, rather than a female being." [Menzer, Melinda J. "Aglaecwif (Beowulf 1259a): Implications for -Wif Compounds, Grendel's Mother, and Other Aglaecan." English language notes 34.1 (September 1996):2]
Grendel's mother in film, literature, and popular culture
Grendel's mother has been adapted in a number of different mediums (film, literature, and graphic/illustrated novels or comic books).
Angelina Jolieportrayed Grendel's mother in the 2007 Robert Zemeckisfilm, "Beowulf". Some teachers and scholars have stated that her portrayal in this cinematic adaptation deviates from the original poem including being portrayed as a shapeshifting "seductress" who seduces Hrothgar (making him the father of Grendel) and Beowulf (making him the father of the dragon) as well as the the elimination of the battle sequence between Grendel's mother and Beowulf which (in the poem) ends with her death. cite news | author = Walter Quinn | title = Beowulf' movie takes poetic license -- and then some -- from the original text | publisher = Pittsburgh Tribune-Review| date = 2007-11-23| url = http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/living/movies/s_539150.html| accessdate=2007-11-27] cite news | author = Duane Dudek| title = The Real Beowulf| publisher = Milwaukee Journal Sentinel| date = 2007-11-16| url = http://blogs.jsonline.com/dudek/archive/2007/11/16/the-real-beowulf.aspx| accessdate=2007-11-27] cite news | author = John V. Fleming| title = Good Grief, Grendel| publisher = The New Republic| date = 2007-11-29| url = http://www.tnr.com/politics/story.html?id=6abc1dba-db62-4239-9b31-63243d264783| accessdate=2007-11-29]
According to a
Southern Methodist Universitypress release, SMU's Director of Medieval Studies Bonnie Wheeler is, "convinced that the new Robert Zemeckis movie treatment sacrifices the power of the original for a plot line that propels Beowulf into seduction by Angelina Jolie -- the mother of the monster he has just slain.' What man doesn’t get involved with Angelina Jolie?' Wheeler asks. 'It’s a great cop-out on a great poem.' [...] 'For me, the sad thing is the movie returns to…a view of the horror of woman, the monstrous female who will kill off the male,' Wheeler says. 'It seems to me you could do so much better now. And the story of "Beowulf" is so much more powerful.'" [cite news | author = | title = Beowulf movie cops out with revised theme:It’s that evil woman’s fault| publisher = SMU | date = 2007-11-16| url=http://www.smu.edu/newsinfo/pitches/beowulf-16nov2007.asp|accessdate=2007-11-27]
* Cameron, Angus, et al. "Aglac-Wif to Aglaeca." "
Dictionary of Old English". Toronto: Published for the Dictionary of Old English Project Centre for Medieval Studies University of Toronto by the Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies, 1986/1994.
English translations and dual text:
* Jack, George. "Beowulf : A Student Edition". Oxford University Press: New York, 1997.
* Heaney, Seamus " [http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN0393320979&id=ynD9o-LfTDMC&pg=PP1&lpg=PP1&ots=4rtZ-a90PG&dq=Beowulf:+A+New+Verse+Translation&sig=TANJDD5siOW13PupnLi4qiw6SYk Beowulf: A New Verse Translation] ". New York: W.W. Norton, 2001.
* Klaeber, Frederick. "Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburg". Third ed. Boston: Heath, 1950.
* Mitchell, Bruce, et al. " [http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN0631172262&id=uujn741w2Y4C&pg=PP1&lpg=PP1&ots=ISVpNVEsd3&dq=%22Bruce+Mitchell%22&sig=GkiLYhQrHVT1bXVfUwLB7zzcwCE Beowulf: An Edition with Relevant Shorter Texts] ." Oxford, UK: Malden Ma., 1998.
* Alfano, Christine. " [http://repositories.cdlib.org/cmrs/comitatus/vol23/iss1/art1/ The Issue of Feminine Monstrosity: A Re-evaluation of Grendel's Mother] ." "Comitatus" 23 (1992): 1-16.
*cite news | first= Carolyn | last=Anderson| url=http://www.heroicage.org/issues/5/Anderson1.html| title=Gæst, gender, and kin in Beowulf: Consumption of the Boundaries| publisher="The Heroic Age: A Journal of Early Medieval Northwestern Europe," heroicage.org, Issue 5| date=Summer/Autumn 2001| accessdate=
* Battaglia, Frank. "The Germanic Earth Goddess in Beowulf." "Mankind Quarterly" 31.4 (Summer 1991): 415-46.
* Chadwick, Nora K. "The Monsters and Beowulf." "The Anglo-Saxons: Studies in Some Aspects of Their History". Ed. Peter ed Clemoes. London: Bowes & Bowes, 1959. 171-203.
* Damico, Helen. "Beowulf's Wealhtheow and the Valkyrie Tradition." Madison, Wis.: University of Wisconsin Press, 1984.
* ---. "The Valkyrie Reflex in Old English Literature." "New Readings on Women in Old English Literature". Eds. Helen Damico and Alexandra Hennessey Olsen. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1990. 176-89.
* Gillam, Doreen M. "The Use of the Term 'Aeglaeca' in Beowulf at Lines 893 and 2592." "Studia Germanica Gandensia" 3 (1961): 145-69.
* Grigsby, John. "". Watkins Publishing. London, 2005. (2006 reprint edition distributed by Sterling Publishing).
* Horner, Shari. " [http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN0791450090&id=juDWXI_1TDsC&pg=PP1&lpg=PP1&ots=8jFTf1eb3J&dq=The+Discourse+of+Enclosure:+Representing+Women+in+Old+English+Literature&sig=xPnVGCw8pYF305EI47i55IeZ-ww The Discourse of Enclosure: Representing Women in Old English Literature] ". New York: SUNY Press, 2001.
* Kiernan, Kevin S. "Grendel's Heroic Mother." In "Geardagum: Essays on Old English Language and Literature" 6 (1984): 13-33.
* Kuhn, Sherman M. "Old English Aglaeca-Middle Irish Olach." "Linguistic Method: Essays in Honor of Herbert Penzl". Eds. Irmengard Rauch and Gerald F. Carr. The Hague, New York: Mouton Publishers, 1979. 213-30.
* Menzer, Melinda J. "Aglaecwif (Beowulf 1259a): Implications for -Wif Compounds, Grendel's Mother, and Other Aglaecan." "English language notes" 34.1 (September 1996): 1-6.
* Nitzsche, Jane Chance. "The Structural Unity of Beowulf: The Problem of Grendel's Mother." Texas Studies in Literature and language 22 (fall 1980): 287-303. Repr. in"New Readings on Women in Old English Literature." Eds. Helen Damico and Alexandra Hennessey Olsen. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1990. 248-61.
* ---. "Woman as Hero in Old English Literature." Syracuse, N.Y.: Syracuse University Press, 1986.
*cite news | first= Dorothy | last=Porter| url=http://www.mun.ca/mst/heroicage/issues/5/porter1.html| title="The Social Centrality of Women in Beowulf: A New Context"| publisher=The Heroic Age: A Journal of Early Medieval Northwestern Europe, heroicage.org, Issue 5| date=Summer/Autumn 2001| accessdate=2006-08-09
* Stanley, E.G. " [http://nq.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/reprint/23/8/339 Did Beowulf Commit 'Feaxfeng' against Grendel's Mother.] " "Notes and Queries" 23 (1976): 339-40.
* ---. "Two Old English Poetic Phrases Insufficiently Understood for Literary Criticism : Þing Gehegan and Senoþ Gehegan." "Old English Poetry: Essays on Style". Ed. Daniel G. Calder. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979. 67-90.
* Taylor, Keith. "Beowulf 1259a: The Inherent Nobility of Grendel's Mother." "English Language Notes" 31.3 (March 1994): 13-25.
* Temple, Mary Kay. "Beowulf 1258-1266: Grendel's Lady Mother." "English Language Notes" 23.3 (March 1986): 10-15.
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