Talk:Beowa

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Untitled[edit]

The article as I found it completely misread its own references. No, no "connections have been proposed between the figure of Beowa and the hero Beowulf", and they do not "possess many of the same attributes". This has nothing to do with the hero Beowulf. The idea is that the original poem correctly mentioned Beow Scyldinga, and that when the eye of the scribe of the Nowell Codex encountered Beow, his hand wrote Beowulf. This is perfectly plausible to anyone who has ever copied a lengthy text by hand. The two names or characters have no connection whatsoever. Beow means "barley", and Beo-wulf is from beo "bee" and wulf "wolf".

I am pointing this out as an example how many of these articles on Germanic philology, especially the ones written by enthusiastic neopagans, while citing the right references still get it completely upside down. It isn't enough to pinpoint the proper reference, it is also necessary to read and then understand what is being said.

Also, Beow is not "a figure in Anglo-Saxon paganism associated with barley and agriculture". This is just a hypothesis. The fact is that Beow is just a name in the Scylding genealogy. It is only the connection of beow and sceaf which struck 19th-century scholars as very suggestive. Beow Sceafing would mean "barley, son of the sheaf". This just cries out "pagan agricultural myth" to any 19th-century scholar of mythology. But, Beow Sceafing isn't recorded anywhere. This is a conjecture. What is recorded is Beowulf Scylding, and you need to amend this twice to end up with "barley, son of the sheaf". This has been done in scholarship, and an author in 1909 was "certain" of the existence of "a god Beowa", and of course this must be mentioned here, just as long as we manage to present the material on its feet as opposed to upside down. --dab (𒁳) 13:06, 7 April 2012 (UTC)