Wandering Jew

(redirected from Ewige Jude)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

Wandering Jew,

in literary and popular legend, a Jew who mocked or mistreated Jesus while he was on his way to the cross and who was condemned therefore to a life of wandering on earth until Judgment Day. The story of this wanderer was first recorded in the chronicles of Roger of Wendover and Matthew of Paris (13th cent.), but not until the early 17th cent. was he identified as a Jew. The story is common in Western Europe, but it presents marked national variations. Among the innumerable treatments of the subject is Shelley's Queen Mab.


See G. K. Anderson, The Legend of the Wandering Jew (1965); G. Hasan-Rokem and A. Dundes, ed., The Wandering Jew: Essays in the Interpretation of a Christian Legend (1986).

wandering jew,

common name for several creeping plants of the genus Tradescantia (including Zebrina) in the spiderwortspiderwort,
common name for some members of the Commelinaceae, a family of tropical and subtropical succulent herbs found especially in Africa and the Americas. Species of the spiderworts (genus Tradescantia) and the dayflowers (genus Commelina
..... Click the link for more information.
 family. T. pendula is most commonly cultivated in window boxes and hanging pots. Wandering jew is classified in the division MagnoliophytaMagnoliophyta
, division of the plant kingdom consisting of those organisms commonly called the flowering plants, or angiosperms. The angiosperms have leaves, stems, and roots, and vascular, or conducting, tissue (xylem and phloem).
..... Click the link for more information.
, class Liliopsida, order Commelinales, family Commelinaceae.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Wandering Jew


(Ahasuerus; in Russian, Agasfer or the Eternal Jew), a character in legends that appeared in the Middle Ages; supposedly condemned by God to eternal wandering for not having allowed Christ to rest on his way to the Crucifixion. The character of Ahasuerus the Wanderer has attracted the imagination of many writers. There have been poems about him by C. F. D. Schubart, N. Lenau, and J. W. Goethe; a philosophical drama by E. Quinet; and a satirical novel by E. Sue.


Shubart, C. F. D. Legenda ob Agasfere“vechnom zhide.”
Edited and with a foreword by M. Gorky. Petrograd, 1919. Sue, E. Agasfer, vols. 1–4. Moscow-Leningrad, 1933–36.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Wandering Jew

doomed to live forever for scorning Jesus. [Fr. Lit.: The Wandering Jew]

Wandering Jew

condemned to eternal wandering for mocking Christ. [Christian Legend: NCE, 2926; Fr. Lit.: Wandering Jew]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Not only does Der ewige Jude subscribe to such theories that lay claim to the visual markers of race, it also mimics the "monologic structure" of observation that characterizes both Lavater's physiognomic gaze and the famous panoptic penitentiary of Jeremy Bentham.
Der ewige Jude's objective is not only to present images of deviant Jewish physiognomies, but also to correct false notions that the viewing audience may have of Judaism itself, and ultimately to teach the viewer not to trust his or her own perception.
(1) In disfavor today for its authoritarian tone, which appears to be built into its very structure, the omniscient voice-over of Der ewige Jude is essential to its persuasiveness and its goal of indoctrination.
Recall that just as Barthes begins by studying advertising images because, he argues, "the signification of the image is undoubtedly intentional," the intentional and indeed calculated purpose of a pseudo-documentary propaganda film like Der ewige Jude is obvious, and subject to a Barthes-inspired reading of images.
In the case of Der ewige Jude the linguistic message that performs anchorage, in order to eliminate any elusive "third meaning" that might escape the control of the film director, is the voice-over narration, which forces upon images a particular interpretation in order to avoid any alternative reading on the part of the viewer.
(61) As one of the most effective ideological tools of the film, anchorage is essential for the polemic purposes of Der ewige Jude. Without the voice-over narration, the many ambiguous images tell a different story--one of poverty, suffering, and even of moments of community, joy, humor, and pleasure, as for example in the clips of Der Purimshpiler.
In Der ewige Jude, this direction would be towards identification with the Jewish figures or a feeling of empathy with their situation.
Der ewige Jude was not a commercial success, unlike its fictional counterparts Jud Su[beta] and Die Rothschilds.
Der ewige Jude illustrates the Nazi obsession with training its German subjects to become "physiognomic surveillance machines," equipped to critically survey the population with a camera-like gaze that, with its potential for unconscious optics, penetrates to an inner, racial essence concealed from everyday sight.
Operating as it does on two levels, at once instructing the viewer in Nazi core beliefs as well as initiating the viewer into a method of investigative vision, Der ewige Jude offers a revealing look into the way that the National Socialist media had the power to shape not only what its viewers thought, but to actually distort epistemological attitudes for the benefit of the state.