Thursday, October 05, 2006

Kinslaying, Tolkien, and the Bible

Apparently, my mention of "kinslaying" in my Beowulf & Grendel review has sparked a thread over at The One Ring. I'm glad that N.E. Brigand still reads the Wordhoard, as he's the only One Ringer I've ever met (so far as I know), and a really charming guy.


  1. I check the Wordhoard daily. I'm a big fan of yours, and also a regular on The One Ring discussion boards. Thanks for keeping up with us!

  2. Thank you -- that's very kind. I regularly read Wordhoard posts (and also Michael Drout's blog), but actually was reluctant to cite your kinslaying reference for two reasons. First, when we met, I'd promised to post an actual reply to the Wordhoard, rather than just linking from the Reading Room, but hadn't yet figured out Blogger's registration system. (I didn't want to create my own blog, but was required to; I don't intend to use it anytime soon.) Second, you'd mentioned in an early June post how important a thorough acquaintance with the Bible is for understanding literature, and this required exposing my ignorance. So a question: my local bookstore carries several dozen versions of the Bible. Which edition should a Biblical neophyte, interested in the text for its literary influence, purchase?

  3. For literary stuff, no contest ... the King James Version (NOT the New King James Version).

    If that's too Early Modern English in language for you (a lot of "verily" and "spake" and whatnot), then I would recommend either the New International Version or the New American Standard Bible.

    Or, if you want to shop around a bit, go to and they've got several of the most common translations available for you to look at.

    No need to worry about exposing your ignorance. I do it every day here and in the classroom.