A Comparsion of The Dream of the Road and The York Play of the Crucifixion

A Comparsion of The Dream of the Road and The York Play of the Crucifixion

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The Anglo-Saxon poem known as, The Dream of the Rood is the reverse image of the crucifixion. The Dream of the Rood is unique in describing the crucifixion from the vantage point of the Cross, and within the framework of a dream. In comparison, The York Play of the Crucifixion discusses each step in the process of tying Christ to the cross. Both representations of the crucifixion compare and contrast each other.
The Dream of the Rood there are three parts to the story: the Dreamer’s account of his dream of the Cross, the Rood’s monologue describing the Crucifixion, and the Dreamer’s determination to pursue the salvation of the Cross. The story begins with the narrator remembering a vision he received in a dream, where he comes across the rood on which Christ was crucified. “Attend to what I intend to tell you a marvelous dream that moved me at night when human voices are veiled in my sleep. In my dream I espied the most splendid tree. Looming aloft with light around, the most brilliant beam. That bright tree was covered with gold; gemstones gleamed fairly fashioned down to its foot, yet another five were standing.” (Lines 1-8) In the lines above, when the narrator first presents the rood he refers to it as though it were an icon. Later on, the rood (cross) will be presented as a loyal being to Christ. However, light was created for a purpose, to show the holiness of the tree. Correspondingly, “Yet another five were standing”, is referencing to the five wounds of Christ. The tree tells the story of the crucifixion to the dreamer. The reason the tree is telling the story is for originality purposes. The tree is conceivably the most common religion symbol in the spirituality of mankind. From the biblical custom and many others, the...

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...self. Nevertheless, Christ’s words were not cared for by the soldiers they only cared for the possession of Christ’s cloak. The audience’s role within the play is partly related to “All men that walk by way or street”; it is merely indicating the relation that Christians must reflect on between their daily work, and religious work.
After briefly going over the main ideas of both The Dream of the Rood and The York Play of the Crucifixion, it came to the assumption that there are many similarities and differences between the two texts. Both of the texts are quite diverse and therefore result in no similarities. One of the major differences, is the way Christ himself if portrayed in the texts. In The Dream of the Rood, Christ is portrayed as a warrior in a battle whereas in The York Play of the Crucifixion, Christ is portrayed as a traitor and has no heroic qualities.

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