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The Passio Andreae and The Dream of the Rood

  • Thomas D. Hill (a1)

Abstract

For nearly a century now, scholars have raised the question of the influence of the apocryphal Passio Andreae on The Dream of the Rood, but this suggestion has been discussed in terms of broad similarities. One striking specific parallel concerns the history of the Cross. In the accounts of the passion of Jesus in the gospels, Jesus is forced to bear the Cross from Jerusalem to Golgotha. In The Dream of the Rood, however, Jesus goes willingly to the place where the Cross (which has been used before) has already been set up. This account of the sequence of the passion corresponds exactly to the passion of Andrew in which Andrew goes willingly and of his own volition to a Cross which has been used as a gallows before. This correspondence, together with other points of similarity, suggest that The Dream of the Rood poet used some form of the Passio Andreae as a model for his narrative.

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