Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Devils Talking

I'm compiling a list of places in Anglo-Saxon literature where devils, demons or the Devil himself speak. Off the top of my head I have:

Genesis B -- the Devil in that whole Fall of the Angels and then Fall of Man thingy.

Juliana -- the devil that Juliana captures and forces to confess.

Christ and Satan -- the Devil.

Guthlac -- the devils who torment St. Guthlac by showing him monks being bad (oh, and dragging him to the hellmouth and threatening to throw him in).

Andreas -- when the devil shows up to convince the men to attack Andrew and later encourages them when they are torturing the Saint.

Elene -- devil shows up to stir up the people to go against Judas. (I had forgotten this. Thanks Jason Fisher)

Are there any I've missed in the poetry? Can you think of any in the Prose?

Yes. Gospel of Nicodemus (thanks Vellum)

Also, possibly, sermons for first Sunday in Lent because the text is Matt 4:1-11 (thanks Derek).

LS 14 (MargaretCCCC 303) 16.7: se deofol hire to cwæð: Sathana urne cyning, hine gewræc drihten of paradises myrhþe (cf. Pass.Marg.[Par] 10.7 tunc demon dixit). (thanks Hilary)

Other possibilities:
Mark 5:12
Acts 19:15
thanks (Eutychus)

And I will check out Peter Dendle's book (Thanks Dr. Virago).

Looking through Saints' Lives and using the concordance to find references to Satan and Devil will certainly be a way to go as well, but I am mainly looking for long speeches by the devil or demons rather than things about them.

Updates: Vellum points out some devil talking in prose: Gospel of Nicodemus. Jason Fisher reminds me that the devil makes an appearance in Elene as well. Derek suggest sermons for the first Sunday in Lent. Dr. Virago points to Peter Dendle's Satan book (you know he also wrote a book on zombies. How cool is that?). Eutychus points out places in Scripture that would work and Hilary notes the Life of St Margaret.


Anonymous said...

Er, Paradise Lost?

Michael said...

Milton is early Modern, not Anglo-Saxon, but since I think he got the inspiration for Paradise Lost through Genesis B via Francis Junius, there's a connection.

Vellum said...

I did my MA dissertation comparing the rhetoric used by the devil in Juliana and the Old English Gospel of Nichodemus with their Latin counterparts, so you could add Nichodemus to your list. An anthropomorphized Hell speaks in that one, too. :)

Michael said...

Sweet. I really wanted at least prose example and Nicodemus is a fun one. Thanks, Vellum!

Vellum said...

No problem -- if you're going to Kalamazoo in May, I'm presenting a bit of my research on it. The session's called "Gospel Truth: Old English Translations of Scripture in Anglo-Saxon Culture". Actually, fellow medieval blogger Larry Swain from Modern Medieval is (entirely by coincidence) presenting in the same session!

Jason Fisher said...

Mike, doesn’t the Devil make an appearance (and speak) in Cynewulf’s Elene?

Jason Fisher said...

PS. Bosworth and Toller give numerous citations in their entries Satan and deófol. I haven’t gone looked closely at their references, but something there might be helpful.

Michael said...

I had forgotten that the devil makes an appearance in Elene; it's not all just Judas Syriacus. And it's a nice long speech, too.

Anonymous said...

It seems the Saints Lives would be a good place to find related material.

Dr. Virago said...

Peter Dendle has a book on this -- Satan Unbound: The Devil in Old English Narrative Literature. Mine his bibliography!

Derek the Ænglican said...

An obvious place would be *any* sermon for the first Sunday in Lent as the text is Matt 4:1-11--the temptation of Jesus by Satan. Aelfric has one and IIRC, there's one in the Blickling Book and another in Irving.

bathtoaster said...

LS 14 (MargaretCCCC 303) 16.7: se deofol hire to cwæð: Sathana urne cyning, hine gewræc drihten of paradises myrhþe (cf. Pass.Marg.[Par] 10.7 tunc demon dixit).

Eutychus2 said...

Mark 5:12
Acts 19:15
thanks for the article

Eutychus2 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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Matt Fellows said...

Perhaps this isn't the best place to ask this question, but i couldnt find your email. Professor Drout, has a Tolkien scholar ever offered a formal critique of Moorcock's `Epic Pooh` essay?

Anonymous said...

Aelfric's "Forty Soldiers" in _Lives_ has a brief bit of direct speech: "Wa is me earmum þæt ic eom oferswyþed fram þysum halgum werum, and ic eom gebysmorod" etc (line 222 and thereabouts in Skeat).

Banshee said...

Sigerson has a translation of the story about St. Moling from the Felire of Oengus in his Bards of the Gael and Gall, though you probably can find the original Felire version online or in your library.

Anyway, Satan tries to trick St. Moling, St. Moling won't be tricked. Satan asks how he can get the saint's blessing, St. Moling makes suggestions that prove inapplicable, and then Satan sings a little song.