a conventional poetic phrase used for or in addition to the usual name of a person or thing, especially in Icelandic and Anglo-Saxon verse, as “a wave traveler” for “a boat.”
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How to use kenning in a sentence
He was the first to recognize the significance of kenning, metaphor, and compound.The Translations of Beowulf | Chauncey Brewster Tinker
Thorkelin knew nothing of the peculiar style of Old English poetry; he could recognize neither kenning, metaphor, nor compound.The Translations of Beowulf | Chauncey Brewster Tinker
The mariners of Dartmouth accompt this to be about a kenning from Plimmouth.Chronicles (1 of 6): The Description of Britaine | Raphaell Holinshed
To think of me telling ye about the leddy, and you kenning a the time wha the bairn was.Merkland | Mrs. Oliphant
There's things it's best to put off kenning as long as we can.
British Dictionary definitions for kenning
a conventional metaphoric name for something, esp in Old Norse and Old English poetry, such as Old English bānhūs (bone house) for "body"
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012