Exeter Riddles 68 and 69


Date: Mon 16 Oct 2017
Matching Commentaries: Commentary for Exeter Riddles 68 and 69

A quick note about this post: You may be wondering why I’m doing two riddles at once, and I’ll certainly explain more in my commentary. But for now, be aware that the division of this particular riddle or pair of riddles is very controversial! Krapp and Dobbie’s edition of the Exeter Book numbered the first two lines as Riddle 68 and the final as Riddle 69, but many editions now squash them together as one. More to follow! For now, enjoy:

Original text:

Ic þa wiht geseah      on weg feran;
heo wæs wrætlice      wundrum gegierwed.
[Riddle 69] Wundor wearð on wege;      wæter wearð to bane.


I saw a creature travel on the way;
it was miraculously adorned with wonders.
[Riddle 69] There was a wonder on the wave; water turned to bone.

Click to show riddle solution?
Ice, Iceberg, Icicle, Frozen Pond


This riddle appears on folio 125v of The Exeter Book.

The above Old English text is based on this edition: Elliott van Kirk Dobbie and George Philip Krapp, eds, The Exeter Book, Anglo-Saxon Poetic Records 3 (New York: Columbia University Press, 1936), page 231.

Note that this edition numbers the text Riddle 66: Craig Williamson, ed., The Old English Riddles of the Exeter Book (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1977), page 106.

Tags: anglo saxon  exeter book  riddles  old english  solutions  riddle 68  riddle 69 

Related Posts:
A Brief Introduction to Riddles
Commentary for Exeter Riddles 68 and 69
Exeter Riddle 83