Monday, August 2, 2010

Day 93: In Honour of the City of London

I chose this poem by William Dunbar (who I had heard of but never officially read yet) because it has been my wish, ever since I was twelve years old, to go to London and Scotland and immerse myself in the history and literature there. This poem, I must warn you, is in Middle English--which means that spelling was not standardized and French was still partially a part of our language. Luckily for me I had taken a History of the English Language class at BYU and went backwards. We studied Modern/Shakespearean English first, then Middle English, then Old English (Try translating Beowulf from Old English to Modern English some time in your life--it's a trip!). Anyway, Middle English is about the time frame where Chaucer, Dunbar and others were first making the attempts to have English be more than the peasant language. When you read this poem, if you're a little confused please ask me...I would love to help you. The poem itself is about the greatness of London--it's knightly, chivalrous gentlemen and it's lovely, delicate ladies; the kings and queens who can not compare anywhere else in the world and the lively, prosperous merchants about the city. Though it is probably not so much this way now because of our modern technologies and society, the poem made me want to go and see it all the more!

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