Abstract

The central crux of the alliterative St. Erkenwald is what it means for a hagiographic miracle to coincide with the performance of one of the Church's sacraments. A consideration of the poem's representation of baptism reveals a tension between the story the poet tells and the poem's genre and status as representational art. Many critics have highlighted the poem's orthodoxy; this essay argues instead that while the poem registers an awareness of religious controversies current in late medieval England, it remains deeply unresolved on contemporary theological and ecclesiological questions.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1080-6547
Print ISSN
0013-8304
Pages
pp. 89-115
Launched on MUSE
2007-03-06
Open Access
No
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