Prudentius Psychomachia

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Source of the text: THE LATIN LIBRARY at Ad Fontes Academy.


Ioannes Bergman, Aurelii Prudentii Clementis Carmina (Vienna and Leipzig: Hoedler-Pichler-Tempsky, 1926).

Ioannes Bergman, Aurelii Prudentii Clementis Psychamochia (Upsala: Almquist & Wiksel, 1897) with notes in Latin.

Albertus Dressel, Aurelii Prudentii Clementis Quae Extant Carmina (Leipzig: Herman Mendelssohn, 1860). Another scan.

Theodorus Obbarius, Aurelii Prudentii Clementis Carmina (Tubingen, 1845).

Aurelii Clementis Prudentii Opera Omnia in usum Delphini vol. 2 (London: Valpy, 1824), including Psych. with notes and running summary in Latin. vol. 1 vol. 3 (notes and indices, glosses, lists of editions and MSS)

Faustinus Arevalo Prudenti Carmina vol. 1 (Cath. Apoth. Hamart.) (Rome, 1788)

Christoph Cellarius, Aurelii Prudentii Clementis quae extant (1703) [1]

Nicolaas Heinzius (Dan. fil.), Aurelii Prudentii Clementis Quae Exstant (Elzevirius, 1667) [2] 1701 ed.


Life of Prudentius




Senex fidelis, prima credendi uia,

Faithful old man, first path of believing,

Abram, beati seminis serus pater,

Abram, father late in life of a blessed progeny,

adiecta cuius nomen auxit syllaba,

whose name grew with an added syllable,

Abram parenti dictus, Abraham Deo,

called Abram by his parent, Abraham by God,

senile pignus qui dicauit uictimae,

who dedicated as a sacrificial victim the child of his old age

docens ad aram cum litare quis uelit,

teaching that, when someone wants to make sacrifice at the altar,

quod dulce cordi, quod pium, quod unicum

that which is sweet to the heart, that which is loyal, that which is unique

that which is loyal: or perhaps, "that which is the object of his love."

deo libenter offerendum credito,

must be offered willingly with faith in God.

pugnare nosmet cum profanis gentibus

He urged us to fight with profane peoples

suasit, suumque suasor exemplum dedit,

and as he urged gave himself as an example

literally "his own example"

nec ante prolem coniugalem gignere

that one does not beget legitimate progeny

deo placentem, matre uirtute editam,

pleasing to God, born from mother Virtue,

quam strage multa bellicosus spiritus

before the warlike spirit has conquered with much carnage

portenta cordis saeuientis uicerit.

the raging monsters of the heart.

literally "the monsters of the raging heart" (transferred epithet).

uinctum feroces forte reges ceperant

Savage kings by chance had captured and bound

Loth inmorantem criminosis urbibus

Lot while he was dwelling in the criminal cities

Sodomae et Gomorrae, quas fouebat aduena

of Sodom and Gomorrha, which he inhabited as an immigrant,

pollens honore patruelis gloriae.

powerful thanks to the honor accorded his uncle's glory.

his uncle: Abraham

Abram sinistris excitatus nuntiis

Abram, roused by sinister news,

audit propinquum sorte captum bellica

heard that his kinsman, captured by chance of war,

seruire duris barbarorum uinculis:

was serving in the harsh chains of barbarians.

armat trecentos terque senos uernulas,

He armed three hundred and thrice six home-bred slaves,

The number 318 is given a symbolic interpretation below, lines 56-58.

pergant ut hostis terga euntis caedere,

so they could go and cut to pieces the traveling enemy's rearguard.

quem gaza diues ac triumphus nobilis

(the enemy) whom rich treasure and noble triumph

captis tenebant inpeditum copiis.

was keeping hindered with captured troops.

quin ipse ferrum stringit et plenus deo

Indeed the man himself drew his sword and, full of God,

reges superbos mole praedarum graues

defeated and put to flight haughty kings, weighed down by the mass of spoils,

pellit fugatos, sauciatos proterit,

crushed and bloodied them,

frangit catenas et rapinam liberat:

broke the chains and freed the booty:

aurum, puellas, paruulos, monilia,

gold, girls, boys, jewellery

greges equarum, uasa, uestem, buculas.

herds of horses, furniture, clothing, heifers.

Loth ipse ruptis expeditus nexibus

Lot himself, freed from the broken chains,

attrita bacis colla liber erigit.

raised as a free man his neck, worn down by the links.

Abram triumphi dissipator hostici

Abram, banisher of the enemy's triumph,

redit recepta prole fratris inclytus

returned famous, due to the recovery of his brother's son,

ne quam fidelis sanguinis prosapiam

lest a force of wicked kings possess

uis pessimorum possideret principum.

any family of faithful blood.

adhuc recentem caede de tanta uirum

While he was still fresh from such a great slaughter of men

donat sacerdos ferculis caelestibus,

the priest bestowed celestial food upon him,

dei sacerdos, rex et idem praepotens,

a priest of God (bestowed this), and likewise a very powerful king,

origo cuius fonte inenarrabili

whose origin from a secret, indescribable source

secreta nullum prodit auctorem sui,

brings forth no author of itself,

Melchisedech's parentage is not recorded in the Bible.

Melchisedech, qua stirpe, quis maioribus

Melchisedech, from what family, from what ancestors,

ignotus, uni cognitus tantum deo.

it is unknown, known only to the one God.

mox et triformis angelorum trinitas

And later a three-formed trio of angels

senis reuisit hospitis mapalia,

visited the hut of their aged host

et iam uietam Sarra in aluum fertilis

And now Sarra, fertile in her already aged womb

munus iuuentae mater exsanguis stupet,

is stunned at the gift of youth, a withered mother,

herede guadens, et cachinni paenitens.

rejoicing in her heir, and regretting her laughter.

haec ad figuram praenotata est linea,

This line has been marked out in advance figuratively

quam nostra recto uita resculpat pede:

which our life can retrace with a straight step:

uigilandum in armis pectorum fidelium,

there must be armed vigilance in the hearts of the faithful

omnemque nostri portionem corporis,

and every part of our body

quae capta foedae seruiat libidini,

that can be captured and enslaved to foul lust,

domi coactis liberandam uiribus;

must be freed by forces gathered at home;

nos esse large uernularum diuites,

we are greatly rich in home-bred slaves,

si quid trecenti bis nouenis additis

if we know what three hundred with twice nine added

possint figura nouerimus mystica.

can do through mystic symbolism.

The number 318, when written in Greek characters, spells the first two letters of the name Jesus (iota eta), and then tau, which looks like a cross.

mox ipse Christus, qui sacerdos uerus est,

Later Christ himself, who is the true priest,

parente inenarrabili atque uno satus,

born from a single and unknowable parent,

This explains the emphasis on Melchisedech's mysterious parentage above. It prefigures Christ's.

cibum beatis offerens uictoribus

offering food to the blessed victors

paruam pudici cordis intrabit casam,

will enter the small hut of the chaste heart,

monstrans honorem trinitatis hospitae.

and show it the honor of entertaining the Trinity.

animam deinde spiritus conplexibus

Then he will make the soul, piously married in the embraces of the (Holy) Spirit,

pie maritam, prolis expertem diu,

long lacking in issue,

faciet perenni fertilem de semine,

fertile from an eternal seed,

tunc sera dotem possidens puerpera

then, possessing the dowry of a late birthing

herede digno patris inplebit domum.

he will fill the house with an heir worthy of his father.

The allegory is as follows:

Abraham = the reader (nostra vita 51)

Lot = the body which must be liberated from

barbarian kings = lust (libido 54). The primary means is

318 servants = Christ; the reward is from

Melchisedech = Christ, who offers

food = eucharist (61), and a visit from

3 angels = the Trinity to

the hut of Abraham and Sarah = the reader's heart (cor 62). As a result of the visit

Sara = the soul (anima) becomes fertile and produces

Isaac = 'heres' (68) the 'heir', which is perhaps eternal life, or faith.

Main Text

1-20: Introduction and Invocation of Christ

Christe, graues hominum semper miserate labores,

Christ, having always pitied the grievous sufferings of mankind,

qui patria uirtute cluis propriaque, sed una,

who are known and honored thanks to your father's power and your own--but it is one power,

(unum namque deum colimus de nomine utroque,

for we worship a single god under each name,

non tamen et solum, quia tu deus ex patre, Christe)

yet not merely one, because you, Christ, are God born from the Father--

dissere, rex noster, quo milite pellere culpas

teach us, our king, by what military force

mens armata queat nostri de pectoris antro,

the armed mind can expel sins from the hollow of the heart

exoritur quotiens turbatis sensibus intus

whenever conflict arises within our disturbed senses

seditio atque animam morborum rixa fatigat,

and the fight with the vices wears out the soul

quod tunc praesidium pro libertate tuenda

what defending force then for protecting our liberty

quaeue acies furiis inter praecordia mixtis

or what army can resist the madnesses mixed up in the heart

obsistat meliore manu. nec enim, bone ductor,

with superior force. For, good general,

magnarum virtutum inopes neruisque carentes

you have not exposed Christ's worshipers to the destroying vices

Christicolas uitiis populantibus exposuisti.

bereft of virtues and lacking strength.

ipse salutiferas obsesso in corpore turmas

You yourslef order the slavation-bringing troops to fight in the besieged body,

depugnare iubes, ipse excellentibus armas

you yourself arm the mind with excellent arts

artibus ingenium, quibus ad ludibria cordis

with which, powerful at resisting those mockers of the heart,

oppugnanda potens tibi dimicet et tibi uincat.

it can fight for you and win for you.

uincendi praesens ratio est, si comminus ipsas

The method victory is clear, if it is possible to note close at hand

uirtutum facies et conluctantia contra

the very faces of the virtues,

uiribus infestis liceat portenta notare.

and the monstrosities that fight against them with hostile strength.

21-39: Duel between Faith and The Worship of the Old Gods

prima petit campum dubia sub sorte duelli

The first to enter the field, intending to fight under the dubious fortunes of war,

This passage is discussed by William Allan Neilson, "The Beginnings of Modern Allegory," Harvard Studies and Notes in Philology and Literature vol. 6 (1899) p. 20 Karla Pollman in Von Göttern und Menschen erzählen: Formkonstanzen und Funktionswandel (Stuttgart: Steiner 2001) p. 111

pugnatura Fides, agresti turbida cultu,

was Faith, visibly agitated and in peasant dress,

agresti . . . cultu: "Non enim ad praedicandam philosophos, sed piscatores elegit. Ison. Cfr. Hermae Past. Mand. Prooem., ubi fidei magister intravit . . . habitu pastorali. . . . Opponitur Fides Culturae deorum 30, quam victimarum ac socerdotum vitiis coronatorum oranatu repraesentat. Vid. Serv. ad Virg. Aen. 2.133." (Dressel)

agresti cultu: id est rusricano habitu hoc est non humana philosophia vestita (Weitz glosses).

Catherine E. Karkov, "Broken Bodies and Singing Tongues: Gender and Violence in Cambridge, Corpus Christi College 23 Psychomachia" in Simon Keynes Lapidge, ed. Anglo-Saxon England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002)115-136.

nuda umeros, intonsa comas, exerta lacertos;

her shoulders uncovered, her hair uncut, her arms exposed,

Christian virtues were often (later?) portrayed as Amazons. In the Strasbourg MS of Harrad von Landsberg, the Amazon virtues all have swords, the vices lances. "Schon im 4ten Jahhundert schrieb Aurelius Prudentius eine Psychomachia, worin der Kampf der jungfrauelichen Tugenden mit dem Lastern vollig als Amazonenschlacht geschildert wird." Wolfgang Menzel, Christliche Symbolik (Regensburg: Verlag Joseph Manz, 1854) 53. [Check RAC s.v. Amazon]

Sil Pun. 15.670-71 turbati fugere Macae, fugere feroces / Autololes, Rhodanique comas intonsa iuventus [i.e. Gauls?]. Ov. Met. 7.175 f. Medea egreditur tectis vestes induta recinctas, nuda pedem, nudis umeros infusa capillis. Verg. Aen. 4.509 crines effusa sacerdos ter centum tonat ore deos.

Paula James, "Prudentius' Psychomachia: the Christian arena and the politics of display" in Miles, ed. Constructing Identities in Late Antiquity, p.71: "It seems that Faith is entering a battle arena, woefully ill-equipped to face the enemy. The logic is clear as she is by her nature unassailable, but in Prudentius she is actively seeking confrontation, an unexpected move. She initiates the fight in the familiar guise of a Christian martyr with no chance against a properly armoured opponent. This is the first indication that the virtues are going to fight back and turn the tables in a locality traditionally associated with their physical defeat and spiritual victory. This is precisely the problem Prudentius presents to later readers. The Christian Virtues [p.72] viciously defeat the pagan Vices but where do they stand on the moral high ground?"

Lines 22-27 were often quoted as indicative of the simplicity of the early church by medieval writers, e.g. John Wycliffe in De Apostasia, and Gerhohi Praepositi Reicherbergensis comm. on Psalm 54, p. 445 in MGH Libelli de lite imperatorum et Pontificum saec. XI et XII conscripti vol. 3. = PL 194.17.

See Carolin Oser-Grote, "Virtus Romana und Virtus Christiana. Die Rezeption und Transformation eines römischen Wertebegriffs bei Prudentius," in Therese Fuhrer und Michael Erler (Hrsg.), Zur Rezeption der hellenistischen Philosophie in der Spätantike (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner, 1999) pp. 213-28, esp. p. 220 on the dress of Fides.

namque repentinus laudis calor ad noua feruens

for her sudden lust for glory, burning for new battles,

proelia nec telis meminit nec tegmine cingi,

remembered to put on neither weapons nor armor,

pectore sed fidens ualido membrisque retectis

but having faith in her strong breast and uncovered limbs

prouocat insani frangenda pericula belli.

She courted the dangers of mad war that must be smashed.

ecce lacessentem conlatis uiribus audet

Behold, the first to collect her strength and strike at Faith

prima ferire Fidem Veterum Cultura Deorum.

as she called out her challenge was the Worship of the Old Gods.

illa hostile caput phalerataque tempora uittis

She (Faith), rising high, struck that hostile head

altior insurgens labefactat, et ora cruore

and the temples ornamented with fillets, and brought to the ground

ora cruore: Verg. Aen. 10.728 describing the gory jaws of Mezentius. Petron. Bellum Civile v.95, where Fortuna, like a man-eating beast let loose, salivates in expectation of human flesh. Ov. Met. 15.96-8, Pythagoras speech, 'nor did men defile their lips with blood' nec polluit ora cruore. See Victoria Rimell, Petronius and the Anatomy of Fiction (CUP 2002) 107.

de pecudum satiata solo adplicat et pede calcat

that mouth glutted with the blood of sacrificial animals, and with her foot stomped

The treading on the head is a sign of vitory. See Joshua 10:24: "'Come foreward and put your feet on the necks of these kings.' They came forward and put their feet upon their necks." And Passio Perpetuae 10.11, where Perpetuae in a vision defeats the Devil in a wrestling match in the arena, 'et cecidit in faciem at calcavi illi caput.' ("and he fell on his face and I trod on his head.")

Cp. Firmicus Maternus, De Errore Profanarum Religionum 6.8: alter cruentus ore dum viva pecodis [sic Turcan] membra discerpit. This is a reference to one of the members of the retinue of Liber, just before he is caught and thrown off a cliff by Lycurgus. In his discussion of the Bacchic mysteries Firmicus emphasizes the horror of omophagy in the cult. See 6.5: vivum laniant dentibus taurum, crudeles epulas annuis commemorantibus excitantes . . .

TLL s.v. calco: 5 diaboli caput, sim. (in allegoriis biblicis; similia, sed de securitate eundi, non de pugna, v. suo C 3): Tert. cult. fem. 1, 6 sic -bit mulier diaboli caput, dum de capite 137 65eius … ornamenta struit (cf. Vvlg. gen. 3, 15 ipsa [mulier] conteret caput tuum). Iren. 4, 40, 3. Hil. in Matth. 3, 4 (ex psalm. 90, 13) -urum leonem et draconem (ϰαταπατήσεις, Vvlg. conculcabis). 3, 5 a nobis victo et -ato diaboli capite. Lvcif. epist. 1 init. Athan. 1, 25 p. 109, 22. Hier. epist. 7, 3 -at super colubri caput. Avg. in psalm. 137 70103 serm. 4, 6. serpentem i. diabolum: Lvcif. Athan. 2, 32 p. 204, 25. Carm. epigr. 748, 7 aspide -ato sponsi virtute triumphant. Hier. epist. 23, 2 -ato diabolo. Ennod. epist. 2, 14, 1 p. 54, 22 inimicum fide perseverante.

elisos in morte oculos, animamque malignam

the eyes crushed out in death, and the broken passage of her blocked throat

See Maria Lueken, Christianorum Maro et Flaccus (2002) p. 57 on the Vergil imitatio.

Verg. Aen. 8.260 angit inhaerens elisos oculos. Servius comments: multi 'elidens' legunt, . . . nam 'elisos' soloecophanes est. Cp. John Levertt Moore, "Servius on the Tropes and Figures of Vergil: Second Paper" AJP 12 (1891) 267-292, a very interesting looking article. The first installment is AJP 12 (1891) 157-192.

fracta intercepti commercia gutturis artant,

constricted her malignant breath,

difficilemque obitum suspiria longa fatigant.

and long breaths wear out her difficult demise.

exultat uictrix legio, quam mille coactam

There was exultation from the victorious legion that Queen Faith

martyribus regina Fides animarat in hostem.

had gathered from the innumerable martyrs against the enemy.

nunc fortes socios parta pro laude coronat

Now for the glory they have won she crowns her brave comrades

Imitated by Heinrich Bebel (1472-1518), Triumphus Veneris 6.291-2 (Ed. Marcel Angres, Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2003, p. 75)

floribus ardentique iubet uestirier ostro.

with flowers and orders that they be clothed in flame colored purple

exim gramineo in campo concurrere prompta

Next in teh grassy plain, ready to engage in battle

uirgo Pudicitia speciosis fulget in armis,

The maiden Pudicitia gleams in handsome armor,

quam patrias succincta faces Sodomita Libido

whom, girded with her native torches, the Sodomite Libido

adgreditur piceamque ardenti sulpure pinum

approaches, and a torch, pitchy with burning sulphur

ingerit in faciem pudibundaque lumina flammis

she thrusts in her face, and seeks her bashful eyes with the flames,

adpetit, et taetro temptat subfundere fumo.

and strives to fill [them] with foul smoke.

sed dextram furiae flagrantis et ignea dirae

but, the right hand of the flaming fury, and the flaming weapon

tela lupae saxo ferit inperterrita uirgo,

of the prostitute [lit. 'she-wolf'] the unafraid virgin strikes with a rock,

excussasque sacro taedas depellit ab ore.

and she thrusts away the shaken-off torches from her holy face.

tunc exarmatae iugulum meretricis adacto

then, the neck of the disarmed bawd

transfigit gladio; calidos uomit illa uapores

she pierces through with drawn sword; the other one vomits forth hot vapors

sanguine concretos caenoso; spiritus inde

clotted with filthy blood; from which,

sordidus exhalans uicinas polluit auras.

breathing forth her filthy spirit, she fouls the surrounding air.

"hoc habet," exclamat uictrix regina, "supremus

"That's done it!" exclaims the conquering queen, "This

hic tibi finis erit, semper prostrata iacebis,

will be your final end, always you will lie flattened

nec iam mortiferas audebis spargere flammas

nor will you dare to strew your death-bearing flames

in famulos famulasue dei, quibus intima casti

among the men and women of God, servants whose inmost chambers

uena animi sola feruet de lampade Christi.

of a chaste heart burn from the light of Christ alone.

tene, o uexatrix hominum, potuisse resumptis

You, o tormentress of men, are you to have been able, with strength restored,

uiribus extincti capitis recalescere flatu,

to rekindle your breath anew once it was snuffed out

Assyrium postquam thalamum ceruix Olofernis

like after the chopped neck of Holofernix the lustful Assyrian

caesa cupidineo madefactum sanguine lauit,

washed the bedroom bloody with weaving passion

gemmantemque torum moechi ducis aspera Iudith

and violent Judith spurned the bejeweled head of the adulterous leader with difficulty

spreuit et incestos conpescuit ense furores,

despised and unholy she restrained madness with a sword,

famosum mulier referens ex hoste tropaeum

the famous woman bringing back the trophy from the enemy

non trepidante manu uindex mea caelitus audax?

not trembling with the hand you hold me champion, or daring heavenly heroine?

at fortasse parum fortis matrona sub umbra

perhaps the equally strong matron

legis adhuc pugnans, dum tempora nostra figurat,

of law, fighting against this under the shadow, while our times it foreshadows

uera quibus uirtus terrena in corpora fluxit

tryly for which the power changed earthly things into our bodies

grande per infirmos caput excisura ministros.

greatly through infirmities the agents cut off the heads.

numquid et intactae post partum uirginis ullum

and surely after birth to an untouched virgin

fas tibi iam superest? post partum uirginis, ex quo

does any right now survive for you? after birth to a virgin, from which

corporis humani naturam pristina origo

pure origin abandoned the nature of a human body

deseruit carnemque nouam uis ardua seuit,

he forsook and new flesh sowed divine strength,

atque innupta deum concepit femina Christum,

and the woman married to God conceived Christ,

mortali de matre hominem, sed cum patre numen.

by mother a mortal man, but by father divine.

inde omnis iam diua caro est quae concipit illum

thence from all now is who conceived that divine flesh

naturamque dei consortis foedere sumit.

and the nature of God begins union with the consort.

Verbum quippe caro factum non destitit esse

Indeed the word made flesh does not cease to be

quod fuerat, Verbum, dum carnis glutinat usum,

What had been, the Word, while to flesh glued in use,

maiestate quidem non degenerante per usum

this majesty, this does not lower (Christ) through using

carnis, sed miseros ad nobiliora trahente.

flesh, but drags miserable people to more noble things.

ille manet quod semper erat, quod non erat esse

This remains which always was, that which was not to be

incipiens: nos quod fuimus iam non sumus, aucti

begins: we that were now are now, we are increased

nascendo in melius: mihi contulit et sibi mansit.

born into better things: gathered to me and remained together.

nec deus ex nostris minuit sua, sed sua nostris

God did not diminish Himself from our nature, but gave himself to us

dum tribuit nosmet dona ad caelestia uexit.

a gift while He bore us to heaven.

dona haec sunt, quod uicta iaces, lutulenta Libido,

These are the gifts, that you lie conquered, filthy Lust,

nec mea post Mariam potis es perfringere iura.

nor are you able to break my laws through Mary.

tu princeps ad mortis iter, tu ianua leti,

you, o prince, journey unto death, you are the door of death,

corpora conmaculans animas in tartara mergis.

you submerge souls with filthy bodies in Hell

abde caput tristi, iam frigida pestis, abysso;

hang your head low, now cold plague, into the abyss

occide, prostibulum; manes pete, claudere Auerno,

die, prostitute, go to the ghosts, drown in the inferno

inque tenebrosum noctis detrudere fundum.

and thrust your bottom into the darkest night.

te uoluant subter uada flammea, te uada nigra

The shallow flames turn under you, the sulfurous black

sulpureusque rotet per stagna sonantia uertex,

waters roll you through churning torrents,

nec iam Christicolas, furiarum maxima, temptes,

now you cannot tempt Christ's followers with maximum fury

ut purgata suo seruentur corpora regi."

so that their bodies might be saved from purgatory by the king

dixerat haec et laeta Libidinis interfectae

She said that, and joyful for the death of fallen Lust

morte Pudicitia gladium Iordanis in undis

washed the corrupted sword in the waters of the Jordan

abluit infectum, sanies cui rore rubenti

which was befouled with the red dew of blood

haeserat et nitidum macularat uulnere ferrum.

tainting the shining metal from the wounding.

expiat ergo aciem fluuiali docta lauacro

So the wise heroine cleansed the conquering edge

uictricem uictrix, abolens baptismate labem

in the cleansing river, obliterating by baptism the stain

hostilis iuguli; nec iam contenta piatum

of the enemy's neck; now no longer

condere uaginae gladium, ne tecta rubigo

to sheath the cleansed sword in its scabbard, lest a covering rust

occupet ablutum scabrosa sorde nitorem,

overtake the clean surface with a dirty squalor,

catholico in templo diuini fontis ad aram

She consecrated it at the altar of the sacred font in the universal shrine,

consecrat, aeterna splendens ubi luce coruscet.

that it might shine glittering in the light.

ecce modesta graui stabat Patientia uultu

per medias inmota acies uariosque tumultus,

uulneraque et rigidis uitalia peruia pilis

spectabat defixa oculos et lenta manebat.

hanc procul Ira tumens, spumanti feruida rictu,

sanguinea intorquens subfuso lumina felle,

ut belli exsortem teloque et uoce lacessit,

inpatiensque morae conto petit, increpat ore,

hirsutas quatiens galeato in uertice cristas.

"en tibi Martis," ait, "spectatrix libera nostri,

excipe mortiferum securo pectore ferrum,

nec doleas, quia turpe tibi gemuisse dolorem."

sic ait, et stridens sequitur conuicia pinus

per teneros crispata notos, et certa sub ipsum

defertur stomachum rectoque inliditur ictu,

sed resilit duro loricae excussa repulsu.

prouida nam Virtus conserto adamante trilicem

induerat thoraca umeris squamosaque ferri

texta per intortos conmiserat undique neruos.

inde quieta manet Patientia, fortis ad omnes

telorum nimbos et non penetrabile durans.

nec mota est iaculo monstri sine more furentis,

opperiens propriis perituram uiribus Iram.

scilicet indomitos postquam stomachando lacertos

barbara bellatrix inpenderat et iaculorum

nube superuacuam lassauerat inrita dextram,

cum uentosa leui cecidissent tela uolatu,

iactibus et uacuis hastilia fracta iacerent,

uertitur ad capulum manus inproba et ense corusco

conisa in plagam dextra sublimis ab aure

erigitur mediumque ferit librata cerebrum.

aerea sed cocto cassis formata metallo

tinnitum percussa refert aciemque retundit

dura resultantem, frangit quoque uena rebellis

inlisum chalybem, dum cedere nescia cassos

excipit adsultus ferienti et tuta resistit.

Ira, ubi truncati mucronis fragmina uidit

et procul in partes ensem crepuisse minutas,

iam capulum retinente manu sine pondere ferri,

mentis inops ebur infelix decorisque pudendi

perfida signa abicit monumentaque tristia longe

spernit, et ad proprium succenditur effera letum.

missile de multis, quae frustra sparserat, unum

puluere de campi peruersos sumit in usus:

rasile figit humi lignum ac se cuspide uersa

perfodit et calido pulmonem uulnere transit.

quam super adsistens Patientia "uicimus," inquit,

"exultans Vitium solita uirtute, sine ullo

sanguinis ac uitae discrimine; lex habet istud

nostra genus belli, furias omnemque malorum

militiam et rabidas tolerando extinguere uires.

ipsa sibi est hostis uesania seque furendo

interimit moriturque suis Ira ignea telis."

haec effata secat medias inpune cohortes

egregio comitata uiro; nam proximus Iob

haeserat inuictae dura inter bella magistrae,

fronte seuerus adhuc et multo funere anhelus,

sed iam clausa truci subridens ulcera uultu,

perque cicatricum numerum sudata recensens

millia pugnarum, sua praemia, dedecus hostis.

illum diua iubet tandem requiescere ab omni

armorum strepitu, captis et perdita quaeque

multiplicare opibus, nec iam peritura referre.

ipsa globos legionum et concurrentia rumpit

agmina, uulniferos gradiens intacta per imbres.

omnibus una comes uirtutibus adsociatur,

auxiliumque suum fortis Patientia miscet.

nulla anceps luctamen init uirtute sine ista

uirtus, nam uidua est quam non Patientia firmat.

forte per effusas inflata Superbia turmas

effreni uolitabat equo, quem pelle leonis

texerat et ualidos uillis onerauerat armos,

quo se fulta iubis iactantius illa ferinis

inferret tumido despectans agmina fastu.

turritum tortis caput adcumularat in altum

On such hairstyles: Juvenal Sat. 6.502, Statius Silv. 1.2.113, Tertull. de cultu fem. 3.7, Jerome de virgin. serv. ep. 8 ornare crinem et alienis capillis turritam cervicem struere. Marquardt, Romische Privatalterthumer (1867) 203-204.

crinibus, extructos augeret ut addita cirros

congeries celsumque apicem frons ardua ferret.

carbasea ex umeris summo collecta coibat

palla sinu teretem nectens a pectore nodum.

a ceruice fluens tenui uelamine limbus

concipit infestas textis turgentibus auras.

nec minus instabili sonipes feritate superbit,

inpatiens madidis frenarier ora lupatis.

huc illuc frendens obuertit terga, negata

libertate fugae, pressisque tumescit habenis.

hoc sese ostentans habitu uentosa uirago

inter utramque aciem supereminet et phaleratum

circumflectit equum, uultuque et uoce minatur

aduersum spectans cuneum, quem milite raro

et paupertinis ad bella coegerat armis

Mens Humilis, regina quidem, sed egens alieni

auxilii proprio nec sat confisa paratu.

Spem sibi collegam coniunxerat, edita cuius

et suspensa ab humo est opulentia diuite regno.

ergo Humilem postquam male sana Superbia Mentem

uilibus instructam nullo ostentamine telis

aspicit, in uocem dictis se effundit amaris:

"non pudet, o miseri, plebeio milite claros

adtemptare duces ferroque lacessere gentem

insignem titulis, ueteres cui bellica uirtus

diuitias peperit, laetos et gramine colles

imperio calcare dedit? nunc aduena nudus

nititur antiquos, si fas est, pellere reges!

en qui nostra suis in praedam cedere dextris

sceptra uolunt! en qui nostras sulcare nouales

aruaque capta manu popularier hospite aratro

contendunt, duros et pellere Marte colonos!

nempe, o ridiculum uulgus, natalibus horis

totum hominem et calidos a matre amplectimur artus,

uimque potestatum per membra recentis alumni

spargimus, et rudibus dominamur in ossibus omnes.

quis locus in nostra tunc uobis sede dabatur,

congenitis cum regna simul dicionibus aequo

robore crescebant? nati iam luce sub una

et domus et domini paribus adoleuimus annis,

ex quo plasma nouum de consaepto paradisi

limite progrediens amplum transfugit in orbem,

pellitosque habitus sumpsit uenerabilis Adam,

nudus adhuc, ni nostra foret praecepta secutus.

quisnam iste ignotis hostis nunc surgit ab oris

inportunus, iners, infelix, degener, amens,

qui sibi tam serum ius uindicat, hactenus exul?

nimirum uacuae credentur friuola famae,

quae miseros optare iubet quandoque futuri

spem fortasse boni, lenta ut solacia mollem

desidiam pigro rerum meditamine palpent.

quidni illos spes palpet iners, quos puluere in isto

tirones Bellona truci non excitat aere,

inbellesque animos uirtus tepefacta resoluit?

anne Pudicitiae gelidum iecur utile bello est?

an tenerum Pietatis opus sudatur in armis?

quam pudet, o Mauors et uirtus conscia, talem

contra stare aciem ferroque lacessere nugas,

et cum uirgineis dextram conferre choreis,

Iustitia est ubi semper egens et pauper Honestas,

arida Sobrietas, albo Ieiunia uultu,

sanguine uix tenui Pudor interfusus, aperta

Simplicitas et ad omne patens sine tegmine uulnus,

et prostrata in humum nec libera iudice sese

Mens Humilis, quam degenerem trepidatio prodit!

faxo ego, sub pedibus stipularum more teratur

inualida ista manus; neque enim perfringere duris

dignamur gladiis, algenti et sanguine ferrum

inbuere fragilique uiros foedare triumpho."

talia uociferans rapidum calcaribus urget

cornipedem laxisque uolat temeraria frenis,

hostem humilem cupiens inpulsu umbonis equini

sternere deiectamque supercalcare ruinam.

sed cadit in foueam praeceps, quam callida forte

Fraus interciso subfoderat aequore furtim,

Fraus detestandis Vitiorum e pestibus una,

fallendi uersuta opifex, quae praescia belli

planitiem scrobibus uitiauerat insidiosis

hostili de parte latens, ut fossa ruentes

exciperet cuneos atque agmina mersa uoraret;

ac ne fallacem puteum deprendere posset

cauta acies, uirgis adopertas texerat oras,

et superinposito simularat caespite campum.

at regina humilis, quamuis ignara, manebat

ulteriore loco nec adhuc ad Fraudis opertum

uenerat aut foueae calcarat furta malignae.

hunc eques illa dolum, dum fertur praepete cursu,

incidit, et caecum subito patefecit hiatum.

prona ruentis equi ceruice inuoluitur, ac sub

pectoris inpressu fracta inter crura rotatur.

at Virtus placidi moderaminis, ut leuitatem

prospicit obtritam monstri sub morte iacentis,

intendit gressum mediocriter, os quoque parce

erigit et comi moderatur gaudia uultu.

cunctanti Spes fida comes succurrit et offert

ultorem gladium laudisque inspirat amorem.

illa cruentatam correptis crinibus hostem

protrahit et faciem laeua reuocante supinat,

tunc caput orantis flexa ceruice resectum

eripit ac madido suspendit colla capillo.

extinctum Vitium sancto Spes increpat ore:

"desine grande loqui; frangit deus omne superbum,

magna cadunt, inflata crepant, tumefacta premuntur.

disce supercilium deponere, disce cauere

ante pedes foueam, quisquis sublime minaris.

peruulgata uiget nostri sententia Christi

scandere celsa humiles et ad ima redire feroces.

uidimus horrendum membris animisque Goliam

inualida cecidisse manu: puerilis in illum

dextera fundali torsit stridore lapillum

traiectamque cauo penetrauit uulnere frontem.

ille minax, rigidus, iactans, truculentus, amarus,

dum tumet indomitum, dum formidabile feruet,

dum sese ostentat, clipeo dum territat auras,

expertus pueri quid possint ludicra parui

subcubuit teneris bellator turbidus annis.

me tunc ille puer uirtutis pube secutus

florentes animos sursum in mea regna tetendit,

seruatur quia certa mihi domus omnipotentis

sub pedibus domini, meque ad sublime uocantem

uictores caesa culparum labe capessunt."

dixit, et auratis praestringens aëra pinnis

in caelum se uirgo rapit. mirantur euntem

Virtutes tolluntque animos in uota uolentes

ire simul, ni bella duces terrena retardent.

confligunt Vitiis seque ad sua praemia seruant.

uenerat occiduis mundi de finibus hostis

Luxuria, extinctae iamdudum prodiga famae,

delibuta comas, oculis uaga, languida uoce,

perdita deliciis, uitae cui causa uoluptas,

elumbem mollire animum, petulanter amoenas

haurire inlecebras et fractos soluere sensus.

ac tunc peruigilem ructabat marcida cenam,

sub lucem quia forte iacens ad fercula raucos

audierat lituos, atque inde tepentia linquens

pocula lapsanti per uina et balsama gressu

ebria calcatis ad bellum floribus ibat.

non tamen illa pedes, sed curru inuecta uenusto

saucia mirantum capiebat corda uirorum.

o noua pugnandi species! non ales harundo

neruum pulsa fugit, nec stridula lancea torto

emicat amento, frameam nec dextra minatur;

sed uiolas lasciua iacit foliisque rosarum

dimicat et calathos inimica per agmina fundit.

inde eblanditis Virtutibus halitus inlex

inspirat tenerum labefacta per ossa uenenum,

et male dulcis odor domat ora et pectora et arma

ferratosque toros obliso robore mulcet.

deiciunt animos ceu uicti et spicula ponunt,

turpiter, heu, dextris languentibus obstupefacti

dum currum uaria gemmarum luce micantem

mirantur, dum bratteolis crepitantia lora

et solido ex auro pretiosi ponderis axem

defixis inhiant obtutibus et radiorum

argento albentem seriem, quam summa rotarum

flexura electri pallentis continet orbe.

et iam cuncta acies in deditionis amorem

sponte sua uersis transibat perfida signis

Luxuriae seruire uolens dominaeque fluentis

iura pati et laxa ganearum lege teneri.

ingemuit tam triste nefas fortissima Virtus

Sobrietas, dextro socios decedere cornu

inuictamque manum quondam sine caede perire.

uexillum sublime crucis, quod in agmine primo

dux bona praetulerat, defixa cuspide sistit,

instauratque leuem dictis mordacibus alam

exstimulans animos nunc probris, nunc prece mixta:

"quis furor insanas agitat caligine mentes?

quo ruitis? cui colla datis? quae uincula tandem,

pro pudor, armigeris amor est perferre lacertis,

lilia luteolis interlucentia sertis

et ferrugineo uernantes flore coronas?

his placet adsuetas bello iam tradere palmas

nexibus, his rigidas nodis innectier ulnas,

ut mitra caesariem cohibens aurata uirilem

conbibat infusum croceo religamine nardum,

post inscripta oleo frontis signacula, per quae

unguentum regale datum est et chrisma perenne,

ut tener incessus uestigia syrmate uerrat

sericaque infractis fluitent ut pallia membris,

post inmortalem tunicam quam pollice docto

texuit alma Fides, dans inpenetrabile tegmen

pectoribus lotis, dederat quibus ipsa renasci,

inde ad nocturnas epulas, ubi cantharus ingens

despuit effusi spumantia damna Falerni

in mensam cyathis stillantibus, uda ubi multo

fulcra mero ueterique toreumata rore rigantur?

excidit ergo animis eremi sitis, excidit ille

fons patribus de rupe datus, quem mystica uirga

elicuit scissi salientem uertice saxi?

angelicusne cibus prima in tentoria uestris

fluxit auis, quem nunc sero felicior aeuo

uespertinus edit populus de corpore Christi?

his uos inbutos dapibus iam crapula turpis

Luxuriae ad madidum rapit inportuna lupanar,

quosque uiros non Ira fremens, non idola bello

cedere conpulerant, saltatrix ebria flexit!

state, precor, uestri memores, memores quoque Christi

quae sit uestra tribus, quae gloria, quis deus et rex,

quis dominus meminisse decet. uos nobile Iudae

germen ad usque dei genetricem, qua deus ipse

esset homo, procerum uenistis sanguine longo.

excitet egregias mentes celeberrima Dauid

gloria continuis bellorum exercita curis,

excitet et Samuel, spolium qui diuite ab hoste

adtrectare uetat nec uictum uiuere regem

incircumcisum patitur, ne praeda superstes

uictorem placidum recidiua in proelia poscat.

parcere iam capto crimen putat ille tyranno,

at uobis contra uinci et subcumbere uotum est.

paeniteat, per si qua mouet reuerentia summi

numinis, hoc tam dulce malum uoluisse nefanda

proditione sequi; si paenitet, haud nocet error.

paenituit Ionatham ieiunia sobria dulci

conuiolasse fauo sceptri mellisque sapore

heu male gustato, regni dum blanda uoluptas

oblectat iuuenem iurataque sacra resoluit.

sed quis paenituit, nec sors lacrimabilis illa est,

nec tinguit patrias sententia saeua secures.

en ego Sobrietas, si conspirare paratis,

pando uiam cunctis Virtutibus, ut malesuada

Luxuries, multo stipata satellite, poenas

cum legione sua Christo sub iudice pendat."

sic effata crucem domini feruentibus offert

obuia quadriiugis, lignum uenerabile in ipsos

intentans frenos. quod ut expauere feroces

cornibus obpansis et summa fronte coruscum,

uertunt praecipitem caeca formidine fusi

per praerupta fugam. fertur resupina reductis

nequiquam loris auriga comamque madentem

puluere foedatur. tunc et uertigo rotarum

inplicat excussam dominam; nam prona sub axem

labitur et lacero tardat sufflamine currum.

addit Sobrietas uulnus letale iacenti,

coniciens silicem rupis de parte molarem.

hunc uexilliferae quoniam fors obtulit ictum

spicula nulla manu sed belli insigne gerenti,

casus agit saxum, medii spiramen ut oris

frangeret, et recauo misceret labra palato.

dentibus introrsum resolutis lingua resectam

dilaniata gulam frustis cum sanguinis inplet.

insolitis dapibus crudescit guttur, et ossa

conliquefacta uorans reuomit quas hauserat offas.

"ebibe iam proprium post pocula multa cruorem,"

uirgo ait increpitans, "sint haec tibi fercula tandem

tristia praeteriti nimiis pro dulcibus aeui.

lasciuas uitae inlecebras gustatus amarae

mortis et horrifico sapor ultimus asperat haustu."

caede ducis dispersa fugit trepidante pauore

nugatrix acies. Iocus et Petulantia primi

cymbala proiciunt; bellum nam talibus armis

ludebant resono meditantes uulnera sistro.

dat tergum fugitiuus Amor, lita tela ueneno

et lapsum ex umeris arcum pharetramque cadentem

pallidus ipse metu sua post uestigia linquit.

Pompa, ostentatrix uani splendoris, inani

exuitur nudata peplo; discissa trahuntur

serta Venustatis collique ac uerticis aurum

soluitur, et gemmas Discordia dissona turbat.

non piget adtritis pedibus per acuta frutecta

ire Voluptatem, quoniam uis maior acerbam

conpellit tolerare fugam; formido pericli

praedurat teneras iter ad cruciabile plantas.

qua se cumque fugax trepidis fert cursibus agmen,

damna iacent, crinalis acus, redimicula, uittae,

fibula, flammeolum, strophium, diadema, monile.

his se Sobrietas et totus Sobrietatis

abstinet exuuiis miles damnataque castis

scandala proculcat pedibus, nec fronte seueros

coniuente oculos praedarum ad gaudia flectit.

fertur Auaritia gremio praecincta capaci,

quidquid Luxus edax pretiosum liquerat, unca

corripuisse manu, pulchra in ludibria uasto

ore inhians aurique legens fragmenta caduci

inter harenarum cumulos. nec sufficit amplos

inpleuisse sinus; iuuat infercire cruminis

turpe lucrum et grauidos furtis distendere fiscos,

quos laeua celante tegit laterisque sinistri

uelat opermento; uelox nam dextra rapinas

abradit spoliisque ungues exercet aënos.

Cura, Famis, Metus, Anxietas, Periuria, Pallor,

Corruptela, Dolus, Commenta, Insomnia, Sordes,

Eumenides uariae monstri comitatus aguntur.

nec minus interea rabidorum more luporum

Crimina persultant toto grassantia campo,

matris Auaritiae nigro de lacte creata.

si fratris galeam fuluis radiare ceraunis

germanus uidit conmilito, non timet ensem

exerere atque caput socio mucrone ferire,

de consanguineo rapturus uertice gemmas.

filius extinctum belli sub sorte cadauer

aspexit si forte patris, fulgentia bullis

cingula et exuuias gaudet rapuisse cruentas:

cognatam Ciuilis agit Discordia praedam,

nec parcit propriis Amor insatiatus Habendi

pigneribus spoliatque suos Famis inpia natos.

talia per populos edebat funera uictrix

orbis Auaritia, sternens centena uirorum

millia uulneribus uariis: hunc lumine adempto

effossisque oculis uelut in caligine noctis

caecum errare sinit perque offensacula multa

ire, nec oppositum baculo temptare periclum.

porro alium capit intuitu fallitque uidentem,

insigne ostentans aliquid, quod dum petit ille,

excipitur telo incautus cordisque sub ipso

saucius occulto ferrum suspirat adactum.

multos praecipitans in aperta incendia cogit

nec patitur uitare focos, quibus aestuat aurum,

quod petit arsurus pariter speculator auarus.

omne hominum rapit illa genus, mortalia cuncta

occupat interitu, neque est uiolentius ullum

terrarum Vitium, quod tantis cladibus aeuum

mundani inuoluat populi damnetque gehennae.

quin ipsos temptare manu, si credere dignum est,

ausa sacerdotes domini, qui proelia forte

ductores primam ante aciem pro laude gerebant

uirtutum, magnoque inplebant classica flatu.

et fors innocuo tinxisset sanguine ferrum,

ni Ratio armipotens, gentis Leuitidis una

semper fida comes, clipeum obiectasset et atrae

hostis ab incursu claros texisset alumnos.

stant tuti Rationis ope, stant turbine ab omni

inmunes fortesque animi; uix in cute summa

praestringens paucos tenui de uulnere laedit

cuspis Auaritiae. stupuit Luis inproba castis

heroum iugulis longe sua tela repelli;

ingemit et dictis ardens furialibus infit:

"uincimur, heu, segnes nec nostra potentia perfert

uim solitam, languet uiolentia saeua nocendi,

sueuerat inuictis quae uiribus omnia ubique

rumpere corda hominum; nec enim tam ferrea quemquam

durauit natura uirum, cuius rigor aera

sperneret aut nostro foret inpenetrabilis auro.

ingenium omne neci dedimus; tenera, aspera, dura,

docta, indocta simul, bruta et sapientia, nec non

casta, incesta meae patuerunt pectora dextrae.

sola igitur rapui quidquid Styx abdit auaris

gurgitibus. nobis ditissima Tartara debent

quos retinent populos. quod uoluunt saecula nostrum est,

quod miscet mundus, uesana negotia, nostrum.

qui fit praeualidas quod pollens gloria uires

deserit et cassos ludit fortuna lacertos?

sordet Christicolis rutilantis fulua monetae

effigies, sordent argenti emblemata, et omnis

thensaurus nigrante oculis uilescit honore.

quid sibi docta uolunt fastidia? nonne triumphum

egimus e Scarioth, magnus qui discipulorum

et conuiua dei, dum fallit foedere mensae

haudquaquam ignarum dextramque parabside iungit,

incidit in nostrum flammante cupidine telum,

infamem mercatus agrum de sanguine amici

numinis, obliso luiturus iugera collo?

uiderat et Iericho propria inter funera quantum

posset nostra manus, cum uictor concidit Achar.

caedibus insignis murali et strage superbus

subcubuit capto uictis ex hostibus auro,

dum uetitis insigne legens anathema fauillis

maesta ruinarum spolia insatiabilis haurit.

non illum generosa tribus, non plebis auitae

iuuit Iuda parens, Christo quandoque propinquo

nobilis et tali felix patriarcha nepote.

quis placet exemplum generis, placeat quoque forma

exitii: sit poena eadem, quibus et genus unum est.

quid moror aut Iudae populares aut populares

sacricolae summi (summus nam fertur Aaron)

fallere fraude aliqua Martis congressibus inpar?

nil refert armis contingat palma dolisue."

dixerat et toruam faciem furialiaque arma

exuit inque habitum sese transformat honestum;

fit Virtus specie uultuque et ueste seuera

quam memorant Frugi, parce cui uiuere cordi est

et seruare suum; tamquam nil raptet auare,

artis adumbratae meruit ceu sedula laudem.

huius se specie mendax Bellona coaptat,

non ut auara lues, sed Virtus parca putetur;

nec non et tenero pietatis tegmine crines

obtegit anguinos, ut candida palla latentem

dissimulet rabiem diroque obtenta furori,

quod rapere et clepere est auideque abscondere parta,

natorum curam dulci sub nomine iactet.

talibus inludens male credula corda uirorum

fallit imaginibus, monstrumque ferale sequuntur

dum credunt Virtutis opus; capit inpia Erinys

consensu faciles manicisque tenacibus artat.

attonitis ducibus perturbatisque maniplis

nutabat Virtutum acies errore biformis

portenti, ignorans quid amicum credat in illo

quidue hostile notet: letum uersatile et anceps

lubricat incertos dubia sub imagine uisus,

cum subito in medium frendens Operatio campum

prosilit auxilio sociis, pugnamque capessit

militiae postrema gradu, sed sola duello

inpositura manum, ne quid iam triste supersit.

omne onus ex umeris reiecerat, omnibus ibat

nudata induuiis multo et se fasce leuarat,

olim diuitiis grauibusque oppressa talentis,

libera nunc miserando inopum, quos larga benigne

fouerat effundens patrium bene prodiga censum.

iam loculos ditata fidem spectabat inanes,

aeternam numerans redituro faenore summam.

horruit inuictae Virtutis fulmen et inpos

mentis Auaritia stupefactis sensibus haesit

certa mori: nam quae fraudis uia restet, ut ipsa

calcatrix mundi mundanis uicta fatiscat

inlecebris spretoque iterum sese inplicet auro?

inuadit trepidam Virtus fortissima duris

ulnarum nodis, obliso et gutture frangit

exsanguem siccamque gulam; conpressa ligantur

uincla lacertorum sub mentum et faucibus artis

extorquent animam, nullo quae uulnere rapta

palpitat atque aditu spiraminis intercepto

inclusam patitur uenarum carcere mortem.

illa reluctanti genibusque et calcibus instans

perfodit et costas atque ilia rumpit anhela,

mox spolia exstincto de corpore diripit, auri

sordida frusta rudis nec adhuc fornace recoctam

materiam, tineis etiam marsuppia crebris

exesa et uirides obducta aerugine nummos

dispergit seruata diu uictrix et egenis

dissipat ac tenues captiuo munere donat.

tunc circumfusam uultu exultante coronam

respiciens alacris media inter milia clamat:

"soluite procinctum, iusti, et discedite ab armis!

causa mali tanti iacet interfecta; lucrandi

ingluuie pereunte licet requiescere sanctis.

summa quies nil uelle super quam postulet usus

debitus, ut simplex alimonia uestis et una

infirmos tegat ac recreet mediocriter artus

expletumque modum naturae non trahat extra.

intressurus iter peram ne tollito, neue

de tunicae alterius gestamine prouidus ito,

nec te sollicitet res crastina, ne cibus aluo

defuerit: redeunt escae cum sole diurnae.

nonne uides ut nulla auium cras cogitet ac se

pascendam, praestante deo, non anxia credat?

confidunt uolucres uictum non defore uiles,

passeribusque subest modico uenalibus asse

indubitata fides dominum curare potentem

ne pereant. tu, cura dei, facies quoque Christi,

addubitas ne te tuus umquam deserat auctor?

ne trepidate, homines; uitae dator et dator escae est.

quaerite luciferum caelesti dogmate pastum,

qui spem multiplicans alat inuitiabilis aeui,

corporis inmemores: memor est qui condidit illud

subpeditare cibos atque indiga membra fouere."

his dictis curae emotae, Metus et Labor et Vis

et Scelus et placitae fidei Fraus infitiatrix

depulsae uertere solum. Pax inde fugatis

hostibus alma abigit bellum, discingitur omnis

terror et auulsis exfibulat ilia zonis.

uestis ad usque pedes descendens defluit imos,

temperat et rapidum priuata modestia gressum.

cornicinum curua aera silent, placabilis inplet

uaginam gladius, sedato et puluere campi

suda redit facies liquidae sine nube diei,

purpuream uideas caeli clarescere lucem.

agmina casta super uultum sensere Tonantis

adridere hilares pulso certamine turmae,

et Christum gaudere suis uictoribus arce

aetheris ac patrium famulis aperire profundum.

dat signum felix Concordia reddere castris

uictrices aquilas atque in tentoria cogi.

numquam tanta fuit species nec par decus ulli

militiae, cum dispositis bifida agmina longe

duceret ordinibus peditum psallente caterua,

ast alia de parte equitum resonantibus hymnis.

non aliter cecinit respectans uictor hiantem

Istrahel rabiem ponti post terga minacis,

cum iam progrediens calcaret litora sicco

ulteriora pede, stridensque per extima calcis

mons rueret pendentis aquae nigrosque relapso

gurgite Nilicolas fundo deprenderet imo,

ac refluente sinu iam redderet unda natatum

piscibus et nudas praeceps operiret harenas.

pulsauit resono modulantia tympana plectro

turba dei celebrans mirum ac memorabile saeclis

omnipotentis opus, liquidas inter freta ripas

fluctibus incisis et subsistente procella

crescere suspensosque globos potuisse teneri.

sic expugnata Vitiorum gente resultant

mystica dulcimodis Virtutum carmina psalmis.

uentum erat ad fauces portae castrensis, ubi artum

liminis introitum bifori dant cardine claustra.

nascitur hic inopina mali lacrimabilis astu

tempestas, placidae turbatrix inuida pacis,

quae tantum subita uexaret clade triumphum.

inter confertos cuneos Concordia forte

dum stipata pedem iam tutis moenibus infert,

excipit occultum Vitii latitantis ab ictu

mucronem laeuo in latere, squalentia quamuis

texta catenato ferri subtegmine corpus

ambirent sutis et acumen uulneris hamis

respuerent, rigidis nec fila tenacia nodis

inpactum sinerent penetrare in uiscera telum.

rara tamen chalybem tenui transmittere puncto

commissura dedit, qua sese extrema politae

squama ligat tunicae sinus et sibi conserit oras.

intulit hoc uulnus pugnatrix subdola uictae

partis et incautis uictoribus insidiata est.

nam pulsa culparum acie Discordia nostros

intrarat cuneos sociam mentita figuram.

scissa procul palla structum et serpente flagellum

multiplici media camporum in strage iacebant.

ipsa redimitos olea frondente capillos

ostentans festis respondet laeta choreis.

sed sicam sub ueste tegit, te, maxima Virtus,

te solam tanto e numero, Concordia, tristi

fraude petens. sed non uitalia rumpere sacri

corporis est licitum, summo tenus extima tactu

laesa cutis tenuem signauit sanguine riuum.

exclamat Virtus subito turbata: "quid hoc est?

quae manus hic inimica latet, quae prospera nostra

uulnerat et ferrum tanta inter gaudia uibrat?

quid iuuat indomitos bello sedasse Furores

et sanctum Vitiis pereuntibus omne receptum,

si Virtus sub pace cadit?" trepida agmina maestos

conuertere oculos: stillabat uulneris index

ferrata de ueste cruor, mox et pauor hostem

comminus adstantem prodit; nam pallor in ore

conscius audacis facti dat signa reatus

et deprensa tremunt languens manus et color albens.

circumstat propere strictis mucronibus omnis

Virtutum legio exquirens feruente tumultu

et genus et nomen, patriam sectamque, deumque

quem colat et missu cuiatis uenerit. illa

exsanguis turbante metu: "Discordia dicor,

cognomento Heresis; deus est mihi discolor," inquit,

"nunc minor, aut maior, modo duplex et modo simplex,

cum placet, aërius et de phantasmate uisus,

aut innata anima est quoties uolo ludere numen;

praeceptor Belia mihi, domus et plaga mundus."

non tulit ulterius capti blasphemia monstri

Virtutum regina Fides, sed uerba loquentis

inpedit et uocis claudit spiramina pilo,

pollutam rigida transfigens cuspide linguam.

carpitur innumeris feralis bestia dextris;

frustatim sibi quisque rapit quod spargat in auras

quod canibus donet, coruis quod edacibus ultro

offerat, inmundis caeno exhalante cloacis

quod trudat, monstris quod mandet habere marinis.

discissum foedis animalibus omne cadauer

diuiditur, ruptis Heresis perit horrida membris.

conpositis igitur rerum morumque secundis

in commune bonis, tranquillae plebis ad unum

sensibus in tuta valli statione locatis

struitur media castrorum sede tribunal

editiore loco, tumulus quem uerti

exstruitur media castrorum sede tribunal

editiore loco, tumulus quem uertice acuto

excitat in speculam, subiecta unde omnia late

liber inoffenso circum inspicit aëre uisus.

hunc sincera Fides simul et Concordia, sacro

foedere iuratae Christi sub amore sorores,

conscendunt apicem; mox et sublime tribunal

par sanctum carumque sibi supereminet aequo

iure potestatis, consistunt aggere summo

conspicuae populosque iubent adstare frequentes.

concurrunt alacres castris ex omnibus omnes,

nulla latet pars Mentis iners, quae corporis ullo

intercepta sinu per conceptacula sese

degeneri languore tegat, tentoria apertis

cuncta patent uelis, reserantur carbasa, ne quis

marceat obscuro stertens habitator operto.

auribus intentis expectant contio, quidnam

uictores post bella uocet Concordia princeps,

quam uelit atque Fides Virtutibus addere legem.

erumpit prima in uocem Concordia tali

adloquio: "cumulata quidem iam gloria uobis,

o patris, o domini fidissima pignera Christi,

contigit: extincta est multo certamine saeua

barbaries, sanctae quae circumsaepserat urbis

indigenas, ferroque uiros flammaque premebat.

publica sed requies priuatis rure foroque

constat amicitiis: scissura domestica turbat

rem populi, titubatque foris quod dissidet intus.

ergo cauete, uiri, ne sit sententia discors

Sensibus in nostris, ne secta exotica tectis

nascatur conflata odiis, quia fissa uoluntas

confundit uariis arcana biformia fibris.

quod sapimus coniungat amor; quod uiuimus uno

conspiret studio: nil dissociabile firmum est.

utque homini atque deo medius interuenit Iesus,

qui sociat mortale patri, ne carnea distent

Spiritui aeterno sitque ut deus unus utrumque,

sic, quidquid gerimus mentisque et corporis actu,

spiritus unimodis texat conpagibus unus.

pax plenum Virtutis opus, pax summa laborum,

pax belli exacti pretium est pretiumque pericli.

Themistius Orat. 10 polemou athlon eirene See Augustine Epist. 205 non paz quaeritur, ut bellum excitetur: sed bellum geritur, ut pax acquiratur.

sidera pace uigent, consistunt terrea pace.

nil placitum sine pace deo: non munus ad aram

cum cupias offerre probat, si turbida fratrem

mens inpacati sub pectoris oderit antro,

nec, si flammicomis Christi pro nomine martyr

ignibus insilias seruans inamabile uotum

bile sub obliqua, pretiosam proderit Iesu

inpendisse animam, meriti quia clausula pax est.

non inflata tumet, non inuidet aemula fratri,

omnia perpetitur patiens atque omnia credit,

nunquam laesa dolet, cuncta offensacula donat,

occasum lucis uenia praecurrere gestit,

anxia ne stabilem linquat sol conscius iram.

quisque litare deo mactatis uult holocaustis,

offerat in primis pacem: nulla hostia Christo

dulcior: hoc solo sancta ad donaria uultum

munere conuertens liquido oblectatur odore.

sed tamen et niueis tradit deus ipse columbis

pinnatum tenera plumarum ueste colubrum

rimante ingenio docte internoscere mixtum

innocuis auibus; latet et lupus ore cruento

lacteolam mentitus ouem sub uellere molli,

cruda per agninos exercens funera rictus.

hac sese occultat Photinus et Arrius arte,

inmanes feritate lupi. discrimina produnt

nostra recensque cruor, quamuis de corpore summo,

quid possit furtiua manus." gemitum dedit omnis

Virtutum populus casu concussus acerbo.

tum generosa Fides haec subdidit: "immo secundis

in rebus cesset gemitus. Concordia laesa est,

sed defensa Fides: quin et Concordia sospes,

germanam comitata Fidem, sua uulnera ridet.

haec mea sola salus, nihil hac mihi triste recepta.

unum opus egregio restat post bella labori,

o proceres, regni quod tandem pacifer heres

belligeri, armatae successor inermus et aulae,

instituit Solomon, quoniam genitoris anheli

fumarat calido regum de sanguine dextra.

sanguine nam terso templum fundatur et ara

ponitur auratis Christi domus ardua tectis.

tunc Hierusalem templo inlustrata quietum

suscepit iam diua deum, circumuaga postquam

sedit marmoreis fundata altaribus arca.

surgat et in nostris templum uenerabile castris,

omnipotens cuius sanctorum sancta reuisat.

nam quid terrigenas ferro pepulisse phalangas

Culparum prodest, hominis si Filius arce

aetheris inlapsus purgati corporis urbem

intret inornatam templi splendentis egenus?

hactenus alternis sudatum est comminus armis:

munia nunc agitet tacitae toga candida pacis,

atque sacris sedem properet discincta iuuentus."

haec ubi dicta dedit, gradibus regina superbis

desiluit tantique operis Concordia consors

metatura nouum iacto fundamine templum.

aurea planitiem spatiis percurrit harundo

dimensis, quadrent ut quattuor undique frontes,

ne commissuris distantibus angulus inpar

argutam mutilet per dissona semetra normam.

Aurorae de parte tribus plaga lucida portis

inlustrata patet, triplex aperitur ad austrum

portarum numerus, tris occidualibus offert

ianua trina fores, totiens aquilonis ad axem

panditur alta domus. nullum illic structile saxum,

sed caua per solidum multoque forata dolatu

gemma relucenti limen conplectitur arcu,

uestibulumque lapis penetrabile concipit unus.

portarum summis inscripta in postibus auro

nomina apostolici fulgent bis sena senatus.

Spiritus his titulis arcana recondita mentis

ambit et electos uocat in praecordia sensus;

quaque hominis natura uiget, quam corpore toto

quadrua uis animat, trinis ingressibus aram

cordis adit castisque colit sacraria uotis;

seu pueros sol primus agat, seu feruor ephebos

incendat nimius, seu consummabilis aeui

perficiat lux plena uiros, siue algida borrae

aetas decrepitam uocet ad pia sacra senectam,

occurrit trinum quadrina ad compita nomen,

quod bene discipulis disponit rex duodenis.

quin etiam totidem gemmarum insignia textis

parietibus distincta micant, animasque colorum

uiuentes liquido lux euomit alta profundo.

ingens chrysolitus, natiuo interlitus auro,

hinc sibi sapphirum sociauerat, inde beryllum,

distantesque nitor medius uariabat honores.

hic chalcedon hebes perfunditur ex hyacinthi

lumine uicino; nam forte cyanea propter

stagna lapis cohibens ostro fulgebat aquoso.

sardonicem pingunt amethystina, pingit iaspis

sardium iuxta adpositum pulcherque topazon.

has inter species smaragdina gramine uerno

prata uirent uoluitque uagos lux herbida fluctus.

te quoque conspicuum structura interserit, ardens

chrysoprase, et sidus saxis stellantibus addit.

stridebat grauidis funalis machina uinclis

inmensas rapiens alta ad fastigia gemmas.

at domus interior septem subnixa columnis

crystalli algentis uitrea de rupe recisis

construitur, quarum tegit edita calculus albens

in conum caesus capita et sinuamine subter

subductus conchae in speciem, quod mille talentis

margaritum ingens, opibusque et censibus hastae

addictis, animosa Fides mercata pararat.

hoc residet solio pollens Sapientia et omne

consilium regni celsa disponit ab aula,

tutandique hominis leges sub corde retractat.

in manibus dominae sceptrum non arte politum

sed ligno uiuum uiridi est, quod stirpe reciso,

quamuis nullus alat terreni caespitis umor,

fronde tamen uiret incolumi, tum sanguine tinctis

intertexta rosis candentia lilia miscet

nescia marcenti florem submittere collo.

huius forma fuit sceptri gestamen Aaron

floriferum, sicco quod germina cortice trudens

explicuit tenerum spe pubescente decorem

inque nouos subito tumuit uirga arida fetus.

reddimus aeternas, indulgentissime doctor,

grates, Christe, tibi, meritosque sacramus honores

ore pio; nam cor uitiorum stercore sordet.

tu nos corporei latebrosa pericula operti

luctantisque animae uoluisti agnoscere casus.

nouimus ancipites nebuloso in pectore sensus

sudare alternis conflictibus, et uariato

pugnarum euentu nunc indole crescere dextra,

nunc inclinatis uirtutibus ad iuga uitae

deteriora trahi seseque addicere noxis

turpibus et propriae iacturam ferre salutis.

o quotiens animam, uitiorum peste repulsa,

sensimus incaluisse deo! quotiens tepefactum

caeleste ingenium post gaudia candida taetro

cessisse stomacho! feruent bella horrida, feruent

ossibus inclusa, fremit et discordibus armis

non simplex natura hominis; nam uiscera limo

effigiata premunt animam, contra ille sereno

editus adflatu nigrantis carcere cordis

aestuat, et sordes arta inter uincla recusat.

spiritibus pugnant uariis lux atque tenebrae,

distantesque animat duplex substantia uires,

donec praesidio Christus deus adsit et omnes

uirtutum gemmas conponat sede piata,

atque, ubi peccatum regnauerat, aurea templi

atria constituens texat spectamine morum

ornamenta animae, quibus oblectata decoro

aeternum solio diues Sapientia regnet.