bestiae et dracones cognoverunt in deserto salvatorem mundi

Yesterday I had the pleasure to read an wonderful article in the new New York Book Review of Books titled The Egyptian Connection. I recommend it heartily to all who are interested in the same things that I like, and those keen on the pageantry of paganry and the mist off The Dream of the Rood.

Maurice asks that you eat forever the body:

Like the image of Christ receiving the submission of the beasts, the poem is a celebration of the victorious Christ. Christ the young warrior mounts the cross because he chooses to, and he remains in control. When he is taken down, his men are standing around their fallen chieftain, who lies there “worn out after battle.” Instead of the fear-filled disciples of the gospel, “The Dream of the Rood” reimagines them as brave followers, or comitates, who would follow their Lord to his death. The poem ends with Christ’s liegemen seated at a banquet: paradise reimagined as a sort of semi-Christian Valhalla, a heavenly Anglo-Saxon mead hall “where the people of God are seated at the feast in eternal bliss.”

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