Need help? How to videos Why join? What is a kenning? Your child's KS2 poetry classes might include analysis of kennings, two-word phrases characteristic of Anglo-Saxon poetry. We explain what this literary device is and how your child might read and write kennings in the primary-school classroom. Login or Register to add to your saved resources.
What is a kenning?
What is a kenning? | TheSchoolRun
Image by Amy Taylor. This is just a small clutch of examples from a vast hoard of phrases Viking and Anglo-Saxon poets used to refer to the sea. They are known as kennings and are often based on metaphor. When we think about the nature of poetry, part of its purpose is to explore new ways of describing and understanding the world around us. This is exactly what kennings do: they force us to look at things differently, to question the habitual way we think. Kennings are a means of referring to people or objects without naming them directly. They are little riddles in a very compact form — the audience may often have to work hard to find the solution, particularly if they are unfamiliar with the conventions of kennings.
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Write five kennings using words from the below one kenning for each different word. For each kenning you must list the word you chose, the kenning hypenated , and then below this, use the kenning in a complete sentence providing context clues as to the meaning of the sentence. This will be a graded assignment writing category. Finally, write one kenning that represents who or what you are about. For example, because I love the English language my kenning might be something like: word-lover, story-reader, etc.