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A ken for kenning: Identifying and creating imaginative language

from By: Debra Josephson Abrams

From Oct. 13: For those who read the poetic epic "Beowulf" in excerpts or in its entirety, you'll remember the many kennings in the text. According to the British Library, a third of "Beowulf" is kennings. Kennings are types of figurative and metaphorical compound terms created using mixed imagery, with etymology in Old English, Old Norse and German. Bone-house (body) and whale-road (ocean) are two of the most famous kennings, both from "Beowulf." more


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