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Runes: A Handbook


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Table of Contents

Introduction The origin of the runes The older futhark Inscriptions in the older futhark The development of runes in Anglo-Saxon England and Frisia The English and Frisian inscriptions The development of runes in Scandinavia Scandinavian inscriptions of the Viking Age The late Viking-Age and medieval runes Scandinavian inscriptions of the Middle Ages Runic writing in the post-Reformation era Cryptic inscriptions and cryptic runes Runica manuscripta and rune names The making of runic inscriptions The reading and interpretation of runic inscriptions Runes and the imagination: literature and politics A brief history of runology Where to find runic inscriptions Glossary Phonetic and phonemic symbols The articulation of speech sounds Transliteration conventions The spelling of edited texts Index of inscriptions


A clear and authoritative textbook as well as an attractive, amply illustrated, and well-made artifact. It is written in an accessible style that nevertheless does not oversimplify. Michael Barnes has set a new standard, providing us with a clear and dedicated textbook for teaching the study of runes. STUDIES IN MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE TEACHING Barnes has succeeded in systematizing for students an elusive body of knowledge, and models...a careful, logical approach. MEDIEVAL REVIEW Extremely welcome [and] likely to attract an international readership. The book covers essential aspects of runology and it provides us with a succinct research overview. NOWELE An accessible and useful introduction to the topic. YEARS WORK IN ENGLISH STUDIES Provides students with an introduction to the topic which is both accessible and erudite. It brings the reader up to date on current issues in the discipline and demonstrates the concern with methodological rigour for which its author is well known. HISTORY A user-friendly scholarly reference and resource. [...] Highly recommended. MIDWEST BOOK REVIEW Not only a handbook but a textbook for the study of runes. CHOICE, A prudently structured, lucidly written, and judiciously reasoned overview of a subject that has engendered much divisiveness among experts. [...] A first-rate contribution. ANGLIA [An] immaculately produced book. [...] This book is both a pioneering textbook of runic studies and a reference resource on runes, thus serving the needs of students of language studies, medieval history and cultural matters, and the just plain curious. REFERENCE REVIEWS Overall, the book is abundant in interesting material, well-written, a rare reliable source on this often overdramatized aspect of our field. COMITATUS An immaculately scholarly and notably rational introduction to runology. [It] tells the reader everything he or she needs to know about runes and how to study them. It will be invaluable to students. TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT

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