In this doctrinal appraisal Dr Garde contends that English religious poetry in the early medieval 'age of faith' was intended to convey conventional Christian teaching to unlearned audiences. In this reading, Old English religious verse is dominated by the Christus Victor tradition, the exegetical perceptions often assumed in modern criticism are not justified. The tradition of Christ's triumphant Descent into hell, regardedas apocryphal by many critics, is discussed in the context of theResurrection and Christian expectations of eternal life in the Adventlyrics, the Descent poems, Christ II and Phoenix. The Dreamof the Rood, Elene and Christ IIIare seen as describingChrist's Incarnation, death, Descent, Resurrection and Ascension,the Pentecostal phenomenon and the Church in the world. Expectationsof judgment, the future resurrection of flesh, and the prospect ofeternal bliss for righteous Christians complete the credal sequence.The author suggests that unstated, wholly familiar perceptions ofsalvation in Christ underlie all Old English religious verse, andthat interpreters ignore these traditions at their peril.J
UDITH GARDE's published work includes contributions to theJournal of Literature and Theology and Neophilologus.
An approach to medieval orthodoxy; the Junius Codex; the advent lyrics; "The Dream of the Rood"; descent into hell; Christ - Ascension, Session, Pentecost, return in judgement; "Elene"; Christ phoenix - eschatology in the verse.