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Sir Orfeo
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Sir Orfeo


When noble ruler and skilled musician Sir Orfeo is deprived of his wife by supernatural forces, he relinquishes leadership of his realm and withdraws to the forest as a hermit in grief. While living in the wilderness and playing his music for wild beasts, however, he learns what befell his wife and ventures into the otherworld in an attempt to rescue her.

“Sir Orfeo” is an anonymous Middle English narrative dating from the late 13th or early 14th century that retells the classic ancient story of Orpheus as a king who rescues his wife from the Fairy King. It draws on the original Greek myth and combines it with Celtic mythology and folklore associated with fairies. 

This version of the story was adapted by noted Columbia University professor George Philip Krapp and was originally published in 1921 and our 100th anniversary edition of it includes both the original illustrations by artist E.B. Bensell and specially selected ones by three other artists. 

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Silver seller
File Size:
16.99 MB
Original electronic
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File Last Updated:
May 25, 2021
This title was added to our catalog on May 25, 2021.