Whoever enjoys my fruit will immediately be well, for I was given the power to bring health to the unhealthy. The poem itself is divided up into three separate sections: the first part ll. London, University of Toronto Press, 2005, p. At each side of the vine-tracery are carved. However, he comes to see that amidst the beautiful stones it is stained with blood. Those war-men left me to stand, dripping with blood—I was entirely wounded with arrows. These ideas are no longer accepted by scholars.
He is aware of how wretched he is compared to how glorious the tree is. After that, he saw men brought Jesus on to the cross. Death he tasted there, yet the Lord arose amid his mighty power, as a help to men. Then someone felled us both, entirely to the earth. Just as the lords of ancient times presented thanes with treasures for their service, the poet regards this vision of the gold-enameled cross as a gift from God and is thus bound by the Anglo-Saxon code of conduct to serve Christ. The tree learns that it is not to be the bearer of a criminal, but instead Christ crucified. Then, just as with Christ, the Cross is resurrected, and adorned with gold and silver.
Anglo-Saxon influence can be identified by the use of a complex, echoing structure, allusions, repetition, verbal parallels, the ambiguity and wordplay of the , and the language of heroic poetry and. The poet incorporates a unique heroic treatment of the crucifixion of Christ, giving us the image He is a warrior king. I quaked when the warrior embraced me— yet I dared not bow to the ground, collapse to earthly regions, but I had to stand there firm. Hope was given to those who had lost it and felt were doomed to burn In the fires of hell; to those who felt unworthy to be in the site of God, not having the courage to ask for forgiveness of their sins. Preserved in the 10th-century , the poem may be as old as the 8th-century , and is considered one of the oldest works of. Eighteen verses of The Dream of the Rood were carved into the cross in runic lettering.
The poem was originally known only in fragmentary form from some 8th-century runic inscriptions on the , now standing in the parish church of Ruthwell, now Dumfries District, Region, Scot. Gemstones prominent and proud at the corners of the earth— five more as well blazoned across the span of its shoulders. The approximate eighth-century date of the Ruthwell Cross indicates the earliest likely date and Northern circulation of some version of The Dream of the Rood. I might have felled all the enemies; even so, I stood fast. He rested there with a meager host.
A similar representation of the Cross is also present in Riddle 9 by the eighth-century Anglo-Saxon writer. The narrator regards the willing sacrifice of Christ's life as a triumph and embodies Christ with the courage, honor, and might of a traditional Anglo-Saxon king. This becomes a contradicting predicament. Rebecca Hinton identifies the resemblance of the poem to early medieval Irish sacramental , with the parallels between the concept of sin, the object of confession, and the role of the confessor. Nineteenth-century scholars tried to attribute the poem to the few named Old English poets. This may have been a deliberate strategy to convert pagans to Christianity.
Mary Dockray-Miller further argued that this sexual imagery functions to 'feminize' the Cross in order for it to mirror the heightened masculinity of the warrior Christ in the poem. However, the overly detailed description somewhat replaces the real purpose of the crucifixion. Likewise, contended that the language and structure of The Dream of the Rood indicated a seventh-century date. Patten divide the poem into three parts, based on who is speaking: Introductory Section lines 1—26 , Speech of the Cross lines 28—121 , and Closing Section lines 122—156. The poet develops these notions by the use of heroic diction, symbolism, and irony.
Now the time has come that men across the earth, broad and wide, and all this famous creation worthy me, praying to this beacon. Argued as one of the oldest pieces of Old English Literature, The Dream of the Rood effectively embodies the blended culture, moral code, and religious values of its unknown author. They carved it from the brightest stone, setting therein the Wielder of Victories. A Guide to Old English. The act of the nails piercing Christ and literally fastening him to the rood serves as a subtle symbolic reference to the unbreakable loyalty of a thane to his lord.
It is honoured above all trees just as Jesus is honoured above all men. He stripped himself then, young hero - that was God almighty - 40 strong and resolute; he ascended on the high gallows, brave in the sight of many, when he wanted to ransom mankind. The Vercelli Book, which can be dated to the 10th century, includes twenty-three homilies interspersed with six poems: The Dream of the Rood, Andreas, The Fates of the Apostles, Soul and Body, Elene and a poetic, homiletic fragment. The tree learns that it is not to be the bearer of a criminal, but instead Christ crucified. The vision ends, and the man is left with his thoughts. The story is told from the perspective of the Cross.