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  • Studi anglo-norreni in onore di John S. McKinnell: 'He hafað sundorgecynd' ed. by Maria Elena Ruggerini with Veronka Szóke
  • Daniel Anlezark
Ruggerini, Maria Elena, with Veronka Szóke, eds, Studi anglo-norreni in onore di John S. McKinnell: 'He hafað sundorgecynd', Cagliari, CUEC, 2009; paperback; pp. 488; R.R.P. €24.00; ISBN 9788884675279.

This collection celebrates the scholarly contribution of John McKinnell on his retirement from Durham University. McKinnell's many research interests are represented in the essays. These are in English and Italian, testimony to John's close connections with Italy, and his influence on Old Norse studies there. The collection falls into two sections: the first covers a range of topics; the second is dedicated to Old Norse literature and culture. The first four essays are on Old English: Gabriele Cocco offers a reinterpretation of the archer depicted on the Frank's Casket; Eric Stanley examines the half-lines of Old English verse; Veronka Szóke looks at a judgement theme in the Old English Exodus; Maria Elena Ruggerini places the Old English Seven Sleepers in its continental Latin tradition. Two essays focus on Middle English literature. Corinne Saunders's discussion of women's laments in Chaucer places them in their wider tradition, and explores their emotion and rhetoric. Roberto Arduini reviews Tolkien's scholarship on Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and [End Page 335] its influence on his creative work. The following essays are on early modern drama: Roberta Mullini looks at the student play Thersites in its literary context; Maria Grazia Dongu reviews a modern staging of Brome's A Jovial Crew. Laura Sanna's essay on the rhetoric of three of Lancelot Andrewes's sermons ends the first section.

Lorenzo Lozzi Gallo re-interprets the runic 'Ribe Stick' in the context of early Scandinavian Christianity. Anatoly Lieberman discusses the very idea of the 'rune', exploring the word's etymology. Diego Poli looks at medieval Christian historians' treatments of the foundation of Iceland, and their ideological interests. Marco Battaglia traces the motif of dragon's treasure across myth and folktale. Two essays focus on Eddic poetry: Judy Quinn traces the triangular relationships in The Lament of Oddrún; Rudolf Simek reads the fantastic elements of Eddic poetry in twelfth-century context. The 'fantastic' is also the theme of Fulvio Ferrari's study of Norse monsters. Giovanna Salvucci studies the literary legitimization of kingship in the royal sagas; Simonetta Battista touches on bad kingship in her reading of the names of John in Jóns Saga Baptista. Ásdís Egilsdóttir uncovers medieval Icelandic compositional techniques; Dora Faraci traces the artistic and literary history of the Cyclops in the Icelandic Physiologus. Teresa Pároli explores the construction of the Finns in Olaf Magnus's geographical history. The final essay, by Sigurður Pétursson, discusses the assimilation of two Icelandic scholars into nineteenth-century Danish learned society.

Daniel Anlezark
Department of English
The University of Sydney


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pp. 335-336
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