Tom Jones III (Mock-heroic)

Das ist der letzte von drei Einträgen zu Tom Jones. Gehen wir’s an.

Ich weiß ja auch nicht wirklich viel darüber, also ist es mit Vorsicht zu betrachten, wenn ich einfach mal behaupte, mock heroic heißt soviel wie in einem Tonfall, der die antike Epik parodiert. Dazu sollte man ein wenig über das antike Epos wissen. Hier ist der Anfang der Illias in einer englischen Prosaübersetzung (deutsche Übersetzung weiter unten):

Sing, O goddess, the anger of Achilles son of Peleus, that brought countless ills upon the Achaeans. Many a brave soul did it send hurrying down to Hades, and many a hero did it yield a prey to dogs and vultures, for so were the counsels of Jove fulfilled from the day on which the son of Atreus, king of men, and great Achilles, first fell out with one another.
And which of the gods was it that set them on to quarrel? It was the son of Jove and Leto; for he was angry with the king and sent a pestilence upon the host to plague the people, because the son of Atreus had dishonoured Chryses his priest. Now Chryses had come to the ships of the Achaeans to free his daughter, and had brought with him a great ransom: moreover he bore in his hand the sceptre of Apollo wreathed with a suppliant’s wreath and he besought the Achaeans, but most of all the two sons of Atreus, who were their chiefs.
Illiad, Samuel Butler translation, book I

Die erste Aufgabe heißt: Arbeiten Sie aus diesem und dem folgenden Text typische Merkmale des Epos heraus. benutzen Sie dazu auch Nachschlagewerke. (So oder so ähnlich lautete diese Aufgabe auch in der ersten Literaturübung an der Uni, die ich damals besucht habe.)

  • erhabenes Thema
  • hoher Stil
  • gebundene Sprache (Versform – in dieser Prosafassung natürlich nicht)
  • heroische Dichtung (Götter, Helden)
  • Typen
  • aristokratische Lebensform/Ideale
  • historisch-mythischer Hintergrund

First Antilochus slew an armed warrior of the Trojans, Echepolus, son of Thalysius, fighting in the foremost ranks. He struck at the projecting part of his helmet and drove the spear into his brow; the point of bronze pierced the bone, and darkness veiled his eyes; headlong as a tower he fell amid the press of the fight, and as he dropped King Elephenor, son of Chalcodon and captain of the proud Abantes began dragging him out of reach of the darts that were falling around him, in haste to strip him of his armour. But his purpose was not for long; Agenor saw him haling the body away, and smote him in the side with his bronze-shod spear – for as he stooped his side was left unprotected by his shield – and thus he perished. Then the fight between Trojans and Achaeans grew furious over his body, and they flew upon each other like wolves, man and man crushing one upon the other.
Forthwith Ajax, son of Telamon, slew the fair youth Simoeisius, son of Anthemion, whom his mother bore by the banks of the Simois, as she was coming down from Mt. Ida, where she had been with her parents to see their flocks. Therefore he was named Simoeisius, but he did not live to pay his parents for his rearing, for he was cut off untimely by the spear of mighty Ajax, who struck him in the breast by the right nipple as he was coming on among the foremost fighters; the spear went right through his shoulder, and he fell as a poplar that has grown straight and tall in a meadow by some mere, and its top is thick with branches. Then the wheelwright lays his axe to its roots that he may fashion a fello[w] for the wheel of some goodly chariot, and it lies seasoning by the waterside. In such wise did Ajax fell to earth Simoeisius, son of Anthemion. Thereon Antiphus of the gleaming corslet, son of Priam, hurled a spear at Ajax from amid the crowd and missed him, but he hit Leucus, the brave comrade of Ulysses, in the groin, as he was dragging the body of Simoeisius over to the other side; so he fell upon the body and loosed his hold upon it.
Illiad, Samuel Butler translation, book IV

Das habe ich so ähnlich auch tatsächlich im Englisch-LK gemacht, allerdings habe ich da die deutsche Fassung von Voß (siehe unten) genommen. Es ging mir vor allem um den Vergleich mit Tom Jones. Denn in einem Kapitel trägt Molly – who is no better than she ought to be – ein abgelegtes feines Kleid in die Kirche und erweckt damit den Neid und den Zorn ihrer Dorfgemeinschaft. Es kommt zu einer wilden Schlägerei vor der Kirche, die in Homerischer Sprache geschildert wird

A battle sung by the muse in the Homerican style, and which none but the classical reader can taste.

So great envy had this sack [das Kleid] occasioned, that when Mr Allworthy and the other gentry were gone from church, the rage, which had hitherto been confined, burst into an uproar; and, having vented itself at first in opprobrious words, laughs, hisses, and gestures, betook itself at last to certain missile weapons; which, though from their plastic nature they threatened neither the loss of life or of limb, were however sufficiently dreadful to a well-dressed lady. Molly had too much spirit to bear this treatment tamely. Having therefore–but hold, as we are diffident of our own abilities, let us here invite a superior power to our assistance.

Der Musenanruf:

Ye Muses, then, whoever ye are, who love to sing battles, and principally thou who whilom didst recount the slaughter in those fields where Hudibras and Trulla fought, if thou wert not starved with thy friend Butler, assist me on this great occasion. All things are not in the power of all.
As a vast herd of cows in a rich farmer’s yard, if, while they are milked, they hear their calves at a distance, lamenting the robbery which is then committing, roar and bellow; so roared forth the Somersetshire mob an hallaloo, made up of almost as many squalls, screams, and other different sounds as there were persons, or indeed passions among them: some were inspired by rage, others alarmed by fear, and others had nothing in their heads but the love of fun; but chiefly Envy, the sister of Satan, and his constant companion, rushed among the crowd, and blew up the fury of the women; who no sooner came up to Molly than they pelted her with dirt and rubbish.

Amazonenhaft greift sich Molly erst einen Schädel, dann einen Knochen als Waffe und stürzt sich in die Schlacht.

Molly, having endeavoured in vain to make a handsome retreat, faced about; and laying hold of ragged Bess, who advanced in the front of the enemy, she at one blow felled her to the ground. The whole army of the enemy (though near a hundred in number), seeing the fate of their general, gave back many paces, and retired behind a new-dug grave; for the churchyard was the field of battle, where there was to be a funeral that very evening. Molly pursued her victory, and catching up a skull which lay on the side of the grave, discharged it with such fury, that having hit a tailor on the head, the two skulls sent equally forth a hollow sound at their meeting, and the tailor took presently measure of his length on the ground, where the skulls lay side by side, and it was doubtful which was the more valuable of the two. Molly then taking a thigh-bone in her hand, fell in among the flying ranks, and dealing her blows with great liberality on either side, overthrew the carcass of many a mighty hero and heroine.

Die Aufzählung der Namen, mit Details zur Hintergrundgeschichte der Personen – nur dass bei Homer Simoeisius, aufgewachsen am Flusse Simoeis, zu Boden geht und es hier den Musikus Jemmy Tweedle vom Flüsschen Stour erwischt. Auch hier werden den Gefallenen ihre Wertgegenstände abgenommen, aber nicht Schild und Helm, sondern die Tabaksdose.

Recount, O Muse, the names of those who fell on this fatal day. First, Jemmy Tweedle felt on his hinder head the direful bone. Him the pleasant banks of sweetly-winding Stour had nourished, where he first learnt the vocal art, with which, wandering up and down at wakes and fairs, he cheered the rural nymphs and swains, when upon the green they interweaved the sprightly dance; while he himself stood fiddling and jumping to his own music. How little now avails his fiddle! He thumps the verdant floor with his carcass. Next, old Echepole, the sowgelder, received a blow in his forehead from our Amazonian heroine, and immediately fell to the ground. He was a swinging fat fellow, and fell with almost as much noise as a house. His tobacco-box dropped at the same time from his pocket, which Molly took up as lawful spoils. Then Kate of the Mill tumbled unfortunately over a tombstone, which catching hold of her ungartered stocking inverted the order of nature, and gave her heels the superiority to her head. Betty Pippin, with young Roger her lover, fell both to the ground; where, oh perverse fate! she salutes the earth, and he the sky. Tom Freckle, the smith’s son, was the next victim to her rage. He was an ingenious workman, and made excellent pattens [Holzschuhe]; nay, the very patten with which he was knocked down was his own workmanship. Had he been at that time singing psalms in the church, he would have avoided a broken head. Miss Crow, the daughter of a farmer; John Giddish, himself a farmer; Nan Slouch, Esther Codling, Will Spray, Tom Bennet; the three Misses Potter, whose father keeps the sign of the Red Lion; Betty Chambermaid, Jack Ostler, and many others of inferior note, lay rolling among the graves.
Not that the strenuous arm of Molly reached all these; for many of them in their flight overthrew each other.

Die Schlacht wendet sich:

But now Fortune, fearing she had acted out of character, and had inclined too long to the same side, especially as it was the right side, hastily turned about: for now Goody Brown–whom Zekiel Brown caressed in his arms; nor he alone, but half the parish besides; so famous was she in the fields of Venus, nor indeed less in those of Mars. The trophies of both these her husband always bore about on his head and face; for if ever human head did by its horns display the amorous glories of a wife, Zekiel’s did; nor did his well-scratched face less denote her talents (or rather talons) of a different kind.

No longer bore this Amazon the shameful flight of her party. She stopt short, and, calling aloud to all who fled, spoke as follows: “Ye Somersetshire men, or rather ye Somersetshire women, are ye not ashamed thus to fly from a single woman? But if no other will oppose her, I myself and Joan Top here will have the honour of the victory.” Having thus said, she flew at Molly Seagrim, and easily wrenched the thigh-bone from her hand, at the same time clawing off her cap from her head. Then laying hold of the hair of Molly with her left hand, she attacked her so furiously in the face with the right, that the blood soon began to trickle from her nose. Molly was not idle this while. She soon removed the clout from the head of Goody Brown, and then fastening on her hair with one hand, with the other she caused another bloody stream to issue forth from the nostrils of the enemy.

Damen-Schlammschlacht, mit einigen kurzen Auslassungen zu den Unterschieden beim Faustkampf zwischen Männern und Frauen:

When each of the combatants had borne off sufficient spoils of hair from the head of her antagonist, the next rage was against the garments. In this attack they exerted so much violence, that in a very few minutes they were both naked to the middle.

It is lucky for the women that the seat of fisticuff war is not the same with them as among men; but though they may seem a little to deviate from their sex, when they go forth to battle, yet I have observed, they never so far forget, as to assail the bosoms of each other; where a few blows would be fatal to most of them. This, I know, some derive from their being of a more bloody inclination than the males. On which account they apply to the nose, as to the part whence blood may most easily be drawn; but this seems a far-fetched as well as ill-natured supposition.

Goody Brown had great advantage of Molly in this particular; for the former had indeed no breasts, her bosom (if it may be so called), as well in colour as in many other properties, exactly resembling an ancient piece of parchment, upon which any one might have drummed a considerable while without doing her any great damage.

Molly […] was differently formed in those parts, and might, perhaps, have tempted the envy of Brown to give her a fatal blow, had not the lucky arrival of Tom Jones at this instant put an immediate end to the bloody scene.

Alles aus: Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, chapter VIII.

Eigentlich wollte ich noch mehr zu diesen Stellen schreiben, und vielleicht trage ich das auch noch nach. Aber jetzt reicht’s mir mit Tom Jones. Ich musste nämlich vor allem erst mal alles über dieses Buch aufschreiben, bevor ich über das nächste bloggen kann, und leider bin ich jetzt schon wieder an so einem Buch, bei dem ich mir dauernd Notizen mache, deshalb musste der Fielding vom Tisch.

Als Anhang hier noch die Homer-Stellen in deutscher Übersetzung:

Singe den Zorn, o Göttin, des Peleiaden Achilleus,
Ihn, der entbrannt den Achaiern unnennbaren Jammer erregte,
Und viel tapfere Seelen der Heldensöhne zum Aïs
Sendete, aber sie selbst zum Raub darstellte den Hunden,
Und dem Gevögel umher. So ward Zeus Wille vollendet:
Seit dem Tag, als erst durch bitteren Zank sich entzweiten
Atreus Sohn, der Herrscher des Volks, und der edle Achilleus.
Wer hat jene der Götter empört zu feindlichem Hader?
Letos Sohn und des Zeus. Denn der, dem Könige zürnend,
Sandte verderbliche Seuche durchs Heer; und es sanken die Völker:
Drum weil ihm den Chryses beleidigst, seinen Priester,
Atreus Sohn. Denn er kam zu den rüstigen Schiffen Achaias,
Frei zu kaufen die Tochter, und bracht’ unendliche Lösung,
Tragend den Lorbeerschmuck des treffenden Phöbos Apollon
Und den goldenen Stab; und er flehete laut den Achaiern,
Doch den Atreiden vor allen, den zween Feldherren der Völker.
Ilias, Übersetzung von ohann Heinrich Voß, Buch I

Erst nun erschlug den Troern Antilochos einen der Kämpfer,
Mutig im Vordergewühl, des Thalysios Sohn Echepolos.
Diesem traf er zuerst den umflatterten Kegel des Helmes,
Daß er die Stirne durchbohrt’; hineindrang tief in den Schädel
Jenem die eherne Spitz’, und Nacht umhüllt ihm die Augen,
Und er sank, wie ein Turm, im Ungestüme der Feldschlacht.
Schnell des Gefallenen Fuß ergriff Elephenor der Herrscher,
Chalkodons Sohn, Heerfürst der hochgesinnten Abanter;
Dieser entzog den Geschossen begierig ihn, daß er ihm eilig
Raubte das Waffengeschmeid’; allein kurz währt’ ihm die Arbeit.
Denn wie den Toten er schleifte, da sah der beherzte Agenor,
Daß dem Gebückten die Seit’ entblößt vom Schilde hervorschien,
Zuckte den erzgerüsteten Schaft, und löst’ ihm die Glieder.
Also verließ ihn der Geist; doch über ihm tobte der Streit nun
Schrecklich umher der Troer und Danaer: ähnlich den Wölfen,
Sprangen sie wild aneinander, und Mann für Mann sich erwürgend.
Ajas der Telamonid’ erschlug Anthenions Sohn itzt,
Jugendlich, blühend an Kraft, Simoeisios: welchen die Mutter
Einst vom Ida kommend, an Simois Ufer geboren,
Als sie, die Herde zu schaun, dorthin den Eltern gefolgt war:
Darum nannten sie ihn Simoeisios. Aber den Eltern
Lohnet er nicht die Pflege: denn kurz nur blühte das Leben
Ihm, da vor Ajas Speer, des mutigen Helden, er hinsank.
Denn wie er vorwärts ging, traf jener die Brust an der Warze
Rechts, daß gerad’ hindurch ihm der eherne Speer aus der Schulter
Drang, und er selbst in den Staub hintaumelte: gleich der Pappel,
Die in gewässerter Aue des großen Sumpfes emporwuchs,
Glattes Stamms, nur oben entwuchsen ihr grünende Zweige;
Und die der Wagener jetzt abhaut mit blinkendem Eisen,
Daß er zum Kranz des Rades sie beug’ am zierlichen Wagen;
Jetzo liegt sie welkend am Bord des rinnenden Baches:
So Anthemions Sohn Semoeisios, als ihm die Rüstung
Ajas raubte der Held. Doch Antiphos, rasch in dem Panzer,
Sandt’ ihm, Priamos Sohn, die spitzige Lanz’ im Gewühl her;
Fehlend zwar; doch dem Leukos, Odysseus edlem Genossen,
Flog das Geschoß in die Scham, da zurück den Toten er schleifte:
Auf ihn taumelt’ er hin, und der Leichnam sank aus der Hand ihm.
Ilias, Übersetzung von Johann Heinrich Voß, Buch IV

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