Cynewulf: Juliana

(1684 words)
  • Hugh Magennis (Queen's University Belfast)

Juliana, a saint’s life in Old English verse, is one of four Old English poems containing the name “Cynewulf” in runes, in what has been seen as a kind of “signature” by the poet (the other three poems are Elene, The Fates of the Apostles and Christ II). Like most Old English poems, it survives in only one copy. It occurs in the “Exeter Book”, a large collection of Old English poetry, dating from the later tenth century, and is 731 lines long, though with two large gaps in the text, each amounting to some 65-70 lines of poetry, due to the loss of folios. The date of the poem itself is not known but it is unlikely to come from much earlier than 800. As it appears in the Exeter Book, it is …

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Magennis, Hugh. "Juliana". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 14 April 2005
[, accessed 26 September 2016.]