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Document Details :
Title: Anne and Joachim's Marriage and the Oldest Dutch Poetry
Author(s): CASPERS, Charles M.A.
Journal: Marriage, Families & Spirituality
Volume: 25 Issue: 1 Date: 2019
The so-called Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew contains a passage about St. Anne’s lament of the fact that she is still barren after twenty years of marriage. As she looks at a nest of sparrows, she compares her own situation with that of the animals that have been privileged with offspring. Two sentences commonly regarded as the oldest sample of Dutch poetry (c. 1100), written on a flyleaf of MS Bodley 340 in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, show remarkable similarity with this lament. In this article we will investigate whether it is possible and plausible that Anne’s words were a source of inspiration for this old and enigmatic poem.