"or translate an Anglo-Saxon riddle"

Anglo-Saxon riddles are verses from Anglo-Saxon literature which invite the listener or reader to guess what is being described. Many examples are to be found in the 10th century anthology of poetry known as the Exeter Book.

Riddle no. 23 from the Exeter Book, which appears in modern English translation below, may be interpreted as the description of either an onion or a penis.

                                              I am wonderful help to women.

                                              The hope of something to come. I harm

                                              No citizen except my slayer.

                                              Rooted I stand on a high bed.

                                              I am shaggy below. Sometimes the beautiful

                                              Peasant's daughter, an eager-armed

                                              Proud woman grabs my body,

                                              Rushes my red skin, holds me hard,

                                              Claims my head. The curly-haired

                                              Woman who catches me fast will feel

                                              Our meeting. Her eyes will be wet.