Around 1400 a Latin commentary on the Apocalypse - for the main part identical to Bede's Expositio Apocalypseos - was translated into Dutch. The only copy of the translation is to be found in manuscript Wiesbaden, Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv, 3004 B 10.
In this article I seek to answer two questions: (1) Why was the Dutch translation of Bede's commentary not more widely disseminated, i.e. why are there no other textual witnesses? (2) What might have inspired the translation of this commentary in Flanders around 1400?
The answer to the first question seems to be that readers were not familiar with the themes of Apocalypse-exegesis, since the entire genre does not exist in Middle-Dutch. The answer to the second question must lie in the 'apocalyptic culture' of the time. Numerous contemporary texts and works of art focus on the Last Judgment and the events which were believed to precede it. The translator and his readership were troubled by these future events and sought answers, even though Bede's commentary did not provide the answers sought.
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