The Use Of Sexuality In The Story Of Judith

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When we look at 10th century literature and biblical stories, the subject of war has but one thing in common: the male warriors who use their bravery and carefully crafted weapons to seek victory upon their rivals. However, in the Anglo-Saxon story Judith; we seem to be introduced to a simpler form of weaponry: sex. Now, does the literature truly suggest that one can use sex to achieve success? Not only does Judith demonstrate that someone can use a tool as basic as sex to seek deliverance, it also shows us that warriors can come in any form, whether it be a man or a woman. We see that the theme of sex seems to play quite a significant role in this biblical story of vengeance and manipulation. In the text of Judith, we see a beautiful, widowed woman who seeks liberation for her fellow Israelites. We also see an army full of masculine warriors who have to spend a lot of time together and are desperately seeking women for their sexual pleasure. The leader of this particular army was Holofernes, a greedy and despicable man. Holofernes uses sex to keep himself and his fellow warriors happy. This is why the warriors would capture local women and bring them to their camp so that they could use them for the men’s sexual gratification. One example of the significance of sex in Judith is when Holofernes calls on his troops to bring Judith to his bed. “Then, corrupted by evil, he commanded that the blessed maiden should be hastily fetched to his bed, adorned with bracelets, decorated with rings (pg. 102, line 34, Judith).” Holofernes makes Judith be presented the way he wants in order to have sex with her. He also believes he can manipulate Judith and make her feel more inclined to having sex with him if he allows her to wear such lavish clothing and jewelry. We are also reminded that Holofernes intentions are ruthless when we see “he intended to violate the bright woman

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