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Literature & Fiction - Ancient & Medieval Literature & Fiction - British & Irish

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Eþandun: Epic Poem

ISBN: 9781643439594
Binding: Hardcover
Author: William G. Carpenter
Illustrator: Miko Simmons
Pages: 264
Trim: 6” x 9” inches
Published: 11/16/2020

The Feast of the Epiphany, 878 AD. Gormr the Dane mounts a night attack on young Alfred's hunting lodge at Chippenham in Wiltshire, where he celebrates with West Saxon leaders. Three times Alfred has "bought peace" from the Danes. Now Gormr's corps of the Great Heathen Army drives Alfred into the wilderness. The struggle for supremacy between Christian Saxons and pagan Danes tests each people's endurance, loyalty, cunning, and faith in divine sanction for its survival. History unfolds, as it does, in calamity and miracle.

A war epic in the tradition of Homer and Virgil told in swaggering blank verse, the meter of Shakespeare's histories, Eþandun paints Western Christendom in its darkest hour. Unlike the peevish schemer of Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Tales, this Alfred is a true Christian warrior.

Includes a dozen dramatic full-color illustrations, maps, an extensive glossary, and a complete bibliography.


William G. Carpenter studied literature at Stanford and Princeton and taught for five years in California and the People's Republic of China. His translation of The Dream of the Rood was published in the Sewanee Theological Review. Carpenter lives and works near Lake Hiawatha in Minneapolis, where the English and Scandinavian contact continues.

Miko Simmons is an international-award-winning theatrical designer who traces his origins to the historic Rondo neighborhood in St. Paul, Minnesota. He studied art and physics at Hamline University. With his professional background in electronic information display, he is now creating cinematic sets for operas and musicals while continuing to pursue his first passions, drawing and painting.


"Eþandun is a work of genius, of true poetry, and also a staggering piece of historical scholarship. It is utterly original in concept and execution." - Frederick Turner

"Carpenter's Alfred is a wannabe medievalist's delight. We don't know much about the king who united Britain, but through Carpenter's eyes, we imagine him." - Timothy Murphy