Wonder, beauty, ability and the natural world: The experience of wonder as a positive aesthetic emotion in Old English verse


Old English
Old English poetry
aesthetic emotions
history of emotions

How to Cite

Minaya Gómez, F. J. . (2022). Wonder, beauty, ability and the natural world: The experience of wonder as a positive aesthetic emotion in Old English verse. SELIM. Journal of the Spanish Society for Medieval English Language and Literature., 27(1), 1–27. https://doi.org/10.17811/selim.27.2022.1-27


Drawing on the recent studies on aesthetic emotions and on their recent application to the field of the Old English aesthetic emotions, this paper explores one emotion from the emotion family of AMAZEMENT in the Old English poetic corpus, attending to the type of wonder that is typically triggered by objects of beauty, excellent manufacture and by the natural world. The purpose of this paper is to understand better the poetic usage of the Old English terms for wonder as well as evidence their role in literary and everyday contexts. Through a fine-grained analysis of the above domains, this paper has shown that the wonder implicit in these texts can be triggered by perceptual or cognitive appraisals, but also by a combination of both, highlighting the complexities and particularities of the early medieval English emotion of WONDER, as well as its similarity to other emotions like the EXPERIENCE OF BEAUTY or AWE.



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