He bid them to tell the tidings of battle
over the cliff, to the armsmen there
sitting sadly that slow morning’s day,
the spearbearers expecting both 2895
their king was killed or would come again,
the dearest man.
The despatch rider
left out little that lapsed on the headlands,
but told them all the honest truth.
“Now the one who held the Weders’ hopes, 2900
“the lord of the Geats, lies on his death-bed,
“in slaughter’s sleep from the serpent’s deed.
“He lies beside his lethal foe,
“weakened by saxe-blows. No sword was able
“to make a mark on that monstrous being, 2905
“whatever he tried. Wiglaf was sitting
“beside Beowulf, Weohstan’s son,
“a living lord at the lost ones' side,
“weary in mind, watching the dead,
“the loved and the loathed. Our land now must suffer 2910
“a time of war when the truth has spread
“to Franks and Frisians, unfriendly ears,
“the king was killed. The conflict started...