Ruthwell Cross Inscription (8th c)
Girded him then
When he would
Step on the gallows,
Fore all mankind
Bow me durst I not.
Rood was I reared now
Rich king heaving,
The lord of light-realms;
Lean me I durst not.
Us both they basely mocked and handled,
Was I there with blood bedabbled,
Gushing grievous from his dear side
When his ghost he had uprendered.
Christ was on rood-tree,
But fast from afar
His friends hurried
To aid their atheling (prince).
Everything I saw.
Sorely was I with sorrows harrowed,
Yet humbly I inclined
To the hands of his servants
Striving with might to aid him,
With streals (shafts) was I all wounded.
Down they laid him limb-weary,
O’er his lifeless head then stood they,
Heavily gazing and heaven’s chieftain.
-Trans. Professor Stephens
For more on the Ruthwell Cross, see my posts The Ruthwell Cross and The Ruthwell Cross and Caution When Analysing Historical Christianity.