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When Did the Wandering Jew Head North?

Cole, R; (2015) When Did the Wandering Jew Head North? Scandinavian Studies , 87 (2) pp. 214-233. 10.5406/scanstud.87.2.0214. Green open access

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Abstract

The landscapes of the north are haunted by several wanderers whose existence is marked by a supernatural longevity.1 The most widely described must be Starkaðr, condemned to live the lifetimes of three men, and to commit three evil deeds for each of them (Lindow 2001, 281–2). So, too, is there Norna-Gestr, who lived for three centuries after his mother defied a malevolent norn (Würth 1993, 435–6). In Iceland, with staff and walrus-skin belt, the hooded Bárðr Snæfellsáss traverses the glacier of Snæfellsjökull, returning whenever his people need him most.2 Elsewhere, Óðinn himself stalks the sagas, an incognito rambler testing those whose paths he crosses. This surplus of timeless flâneurs makes it hard to follow the northbound footprints of medieval Europe’s best-known pedestrian: the Wandering Jew. The story needs little introduction, but it may be useful to highlight briefly its most important elements: now known by many names Buttadeus, Cartaphilus3 ), the Wandering Jew once scorned Christ on the way to Golgotha, and was cursed to walk the earth without rest until the end of days.

Type: Article
Title: When Did the Wandering Jew Head North?
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.5406/scanstud.87.2.0214
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.5406/scanstud.87.2.0214
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1574405
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