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Author Topic: The King Alfred Prize  (Read 5260 times)


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The King Alfred Prize
« on: December 28, 2018, 03:13:28 PM »

Now that the Yuletide hubbub is over and before I forget again, I should like to register a special thanks to David Jones and everybody else who contributed to this winter’s edition of Wiþowinde/ Bindweed.

No, not just because Jenny Ashby’s on several pages, because Ian Holt’s article on Ðunor was such a useful and tidy round-up, or even because I was glad to see that Giovanni Iovino is still with us.

Better still, the entries for the Alfred Prize were especially interesting to me.  I had considered rendering King George VI’s declaration of war into the Old Mother Tongue myself.   The film The King’s Speech is recommendable both as an enjoyable costume drama and an eye-opener if, as I had, you’ve come across vague little ‘mentions’ of George VI having to overcome a stammer, but had no idea of the scale and depth of the problem.  Had a stammer got between, say, Gandhi or Martin Luther King and the expectations of their publics, a fairly good biopic could have been made about their battle to overcome it; but what a gift to filmmakers it was that it happened to a Duke of York who, dropped in the hot seat by his lovesick fool of a brother, found himself having to broadcast our declaration of war all over the world, as King-Emperor! 

Also I was pleasantly surprised to read Carl Sagan’s ‘Pale Blue Dot’ homily in Old English.  Parts of this feature in both of the DVD documentaries I happen to own about the Voyager mission, one of which is especially recommendable.  It’s an Irish-led project written and directed by Emer Reynolds titled The Farthest.  It won armfuls of awards because it is so beautifully produced, ġesīþas who know and care nothing for astrophysics, astronomy or what was on that Golden Record can enjoy it anyhow, just for the polish and taste put into the imagery, into the choice of music and the justice it does to what may well be the only human artefact to survive humanity.     

Presuming the first entrant translated the whole speech, and since there is more of Carl Sagan’s ‘Pale Blue Dot’, is there any chance that David Jones and Tim Hawke can arrange to upload both in full here, on their behalves so as not to betray their identities?

Needless to say, both entries are a great improvement on that elvish seduction scene from Bored of the Rings.  In Old English of all things.  Huh!

Can’t imagine who’d do a thing like that.


The moral right of the author to identify Mark Chapman as mad, because a sane man would have shot Yoko Ono, has been asserted.


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Re: The King Alfred Prize
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2019, 02:31:28 PM »
Certainly an eclectic mix!

There are some fine speeches out there still waiting to be translated, I think so looking forward to future entries :)

I did think about some song lyrics but it turned out trickier than I thought, so I am even more impressed with David's carols now. And I was already mightily impressed :)