We prominently witness the basics of the Anglo-Saxon culture in regards to religion throughout Judith and The Dream of the Rood. The Anglo-Saxon church believed strongly in the moral idea of martyrs. In Christian terms, the theory of a martyr is one who surrenders their life for Jesus Christ, willingly suffering death for his honor and teachings. The “rood” or old English translation of the cross where Jesus’ crucifixion took place exemplifies this theory. Christ is portrayed as a heroic warrior, “Then the young warrior, God Almighty,/stripped Himself, firm and unflinching (line 41-41), while the cross, personified as loyal to his lord continues to sacrifice, and struggle to help and maintain victory for his master. “They insulted us both together; I was drenched in the blood/ that streamed from the Man’s side after He set His spirit free” (line 50-51). The image of the crucifixion of Jesus on the cross is a common theme in the culture. The last focal point of this poem is the fact that the Cross tells the dreamer to spread the word of Christianity and the Lord’s teachings. This dictates the Anglo-Saxon believe of the Lord’s power in his victory and battle over death to save and restore humanity. “He has redeemed us; He has given life to us,/and a home in heaven./Hope is renewed” (lines 147-149). On the other hand, Judith contains the ideology of a woman saint. This poem demonstrates the disappearance of the strong and ridged gender categories. Here, the importance of being a loyal and empowering for Jesus Christ is the primer importance. “Judith then had won outstanding glory in the struggle according as God the Lord of heaven, who gave her the victor, granted her” (page 112).
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