Carl Edlund Anderson
Tolkien's "Ring Verse" in Old English

This is Carl's adaptation of Tolkien's "Ring Verse" into alliterative Old English verse using a dialect similar to that of the Vespasian Psalter. It is accompanied by a fairly literal Modern English translation (intended to assist a reader owning little familiarity with Old English). Old English verbs in the subjunctive are marked in the translation by "(may)".

Old English Modern English

Hringas þríe       þéodnum Ælfa,
allra ældestum,     under eormenrodore.
Hringas seofun     innan sele stænnum
Dwergdryhtnum.     Derc heara hús.
Hringas nigon     néote Moncynn,
hláfordas méra     mégas déaðfæge.
Heolstres Hearra     hring ánne weardað
in dryhtsele dimmum     on dercan þrymmsetle
þér licgað scedwa     in londe Mordores.
Hring án gewalde,     hring án gefinde,
hring án gebringe,     hring án gebinde
þéoda swá þéowas     in þéostrum tógedere
þér licgað scedwa     in londe Mordores.

Rings three     for the rulers of Elves,
eldest of all,     under the mighty-sky.
Rings seven,     in halls of stone,
for the Dwarf-leaders.     Dark their houses.
Rings nine     (may) Mankind use/enjoy,
masters of horses,     kinsmen fated-to-die.
Dark's Lord    wards one ring
in dim/gloomy leader-hall     on dark majesty-seat.
where lie shadows     in Mordor's land.
Ring one (may) rule,     Ring one (may) find,
Ring one (may) bring,     Ring one (may) bind
nations as slaves     in darkness together
where lie shadows     in Mordor's land.

Carl Anderson
Nationalities US
Residence Chía, Colombia
Education Harvard College, BA, 1993
Cambridge University, PhD, 2000
British Council, CELTA, 2008
Professional University Professor
Technical Writer/Editor
English-language Tutor