A kingly tree

A curious Toft plate from North Staffordshire, circa 1680. The imagery relates to the popular belief that King Charles II hid in an oak tree to escape the puritans of Oliver Cromwell, but it also seems to partake of the deeper Anglo-Saxon ‘Dream of the Rood’ tradition that conflated Christ, the cross and native trees. Since Charles is not just in the oak tree, but is the tree.

dp164619

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