De mortibus boum - the ecloge about salvation during the plague. Literary and theological approximations and translation


The article presents the poem De mortibus boum, most probably written by Endelechius at the beginning of the 5th century. The poem refers to the classical bucolic tradition, and at the same time breaks with the convention of this literary genre, as it realistically depicts the deadly cattle plague, but is allegorical in nature. It is a praise and promotion of Christianity that permeated the countryside. The cross marked on the foreheads of animals by the Christian shepherd symbolizes the victory of the new religion over paganism and the hope of mankind, whose image is the flock. The author of the article presents and systematizes the thoughts of several philologists who deal in detail with this poem. An integral part of the study is the translation of De mortibus boum into Polish.


Key terms: Endelechius, Christian bucolic, allegorical interpretation, deadly plague, the cross as a sign of salvation.

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Published : 2021-06-15

Gacia, T. (2021). De mortibus boum - the ecloge about salvation during the plague. Literary and theological approximations and translation. Vox Patrum, 78, 141-156.

Tadeusz Gacia
Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski Jana Pawła II, Wydział Nauk Humanistycznych  Poland

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