Caedmon's Hymn (From Old English)

This is arguably the oldest extant sample of English poetry. The Old Northumbrian version of it is preserved in a manuscript datable to precisely 737. It is attributed by Bede to the poet Caedmon. Fun fact (at least for me): this translation was used by BBC Radio 4 as its first broadcast in celebration of National Poetry day in the UK on Oct 7.  2015. 

Attributed to Cædmon
Translated by A.Z. Foreman

Hail now the holder   of the Heavenrealm,
That architect's might  his mind's many ways,
Lord forever and father of glory,
Ultimate crafter  of all wonders,
Holy Maker  who hoisted the heavens
To roof the heads  of the human race,
And fashioned land  for the legs of man,
Liege of the worldborn Lord Almighty.

The Original:

(West Saxon)

Nū sculon heriġean  heofonrīċes weard,
Meotodes meahte  ond his mōdġeþanc,
weorc wuldorfæder  swā hē wundra ġehwæs,
ēċe Drihten  ōr onstealde.
Hē ǣrest sceōp  eorðan bearnum
heofon tō hrōfe  hāliġ Scyppend;
þā middanġeard   monncynnes weard,
ēċe Drihten æfter tēode
fīrum foldan  Frēa ælmihtiġ.


Nū scylun hergan hefænrīcæs ward
Metudæs mæhti  end his mōdgiðanc,
weork wuldurfadur swǣ hē wundra gihwæs,
ēci Dryhtin, or āstelidæ.
Hē ǣrist scōp ælda barnum
heben til hrōfe hāleg scēpen
þā middungeard  moncynnæs ward
ēci Dryhtin,  æfter tīadæ
fīrum foldu,  frēa allmehtig

Manuscript page containing the Hymn