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Individual words can dramatically affect the possible interpretations of a text

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Individual words can dramatically affect the possible interpretations of a text and so it is important to consider how a word might shift in meaning depending on its context or its relation to other words. Even a focus on a single word can be important in understanding the meaning behind the passage or the text. By looking it up in the Oxford English Dictionary —- through the website
( one can discover the history and the layers of meaning hidden in each word. In two pages, discuss how the specified word affects the meaning of the text as a whole.
Question : In the opening of Beowulf the author describes Scyld Scefing – and his time as a ruler. The opening paragraph ends with the evocative “þæt wæs gód cyning!” – “That was a good king!” Using the OED – look up the word “cyning” and, in a short essay, try to examine what meanings of the word does the author wish to evoke in the text. What sort of example does Scyld provide? Try to look both to the text and to the discussion in class on the authorship and history of the Beowulf Epic.
Instruction on how to use the Oxford English Dictionary
Click on the link( ) and search the word in the question and read through the whole information provided over the word.
Look for where the word came from? How did it change overtime? What was its original meaning?
Look through all the definitions
Go through etymology, and history of the word and think about which definition of those is like the one the author is using in the text.
Write a short 2 page essay answering the question above.

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