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Medieval Sourcebook:
The Golden Legend: Volume IV

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[Note: To make the text as useful as possible to readers, the Golden Legend is available at this site in multiple forms: very large files for each of the volumes, and by chapter.  See the Golden Legend Main Page/Index for other volumes or chapter length files.]


Compiled by Jacobus de Voragine, Archbishop of Genoa, 1275 First Edition Published 1470



From the Temple Classics Edited by F.S. ELLIS First issue of this Edition, 1900 Reprinted 1922, 1931



Here followeth the Life of S. Maturin.

S. MATURIN was born of the diocese of Sens, and his father was called Marin, which by the commandment of the Emperor Maximian, persecuted much strongly christian men, but his son Maturin, from the time of his infancy, privily in his heart and in will, was disciple of Jesu Christ, and was much sorrowful of the predication of his father and mother, forasmuch as they were paynims and miscreants. Wherefore he prayed many times our Lord Jesu Christ that by his benign grace he would convert them. So it happed on a night, as he slept, a voice said to him: Maturin, thy petition is heard and granted, who anon arose and gave and rendered great thankings to our Lord. The mother of S. Maturin, being inspired with the Holy Ghost, came to him and said: O my son what reward and what merit shall we have if we believe in Jesu Christ as by many times thou hast desired us. Then S. Maturin said to her: Mother, I let you wit that after the general resurrection, body and soul shall have joy without end, and that so much, that heart human may not think, ne tongue speak ne pronounce. Anon then the mother of S. Maturin went to her husband, his father, for to tell to him what her son had said: to whom the father said thus: I have this night seen in a vision that our son Maturin of S was entered into a sheepcote, and that there was delivered to him a great multitude of sheep; and then they both two received the holy sacrament of baptism of a holy bishop named Polycarp, which ordained and made S. Maturin priest when he was but twenty years old.

After that S. Maurice and his fellows were martyred, and that the people of the Romans had suffered many divers tribulations, the emperor Maximian had a daughter which had a wicked spirit in her body, which tormented her much and persecuted, for whom her father the emperor did do make many crafts of enchantments for to guerish and heal, but it availed nothing. Then the fiend that was within her cried and said by the mouth of the maid: O emperor, it availeth thee nothing that thou doest, for I will not depart from hence till thou hast brought hither out of France Maturin the servant of God, which by his prayers shall get health to thy daughter and unto the people. And anon the emperor with a great multitude of people went to see him, and brought him to Rome upon this condition, that they should swear and promise that, if it happed that he died by the way, they should bring or send him to the place to be buried whereas they had taken him. And when they came nigh to Rome the people came against him and received him much reverently. And anon as he was come to Rome he healed and delivered the daughter of the emperor from the hands of the fiend. Semblably all the other sick men that were presented to him, he healed them. Nevertheless it happed so that the day of the calends of November he rendered and gave up his soul to God much holily. Then took they the precious body and anointed it with noble ointments, and buried it with much reverence. Life of And when they had laid it in the earth, S. Victor on the morn they came unto the sepulchre and found the holy body above the earth nigh unto the same sepulchre, and then were they all abashed and wist not what to do. How be it when one of the knights, that had brought him out of France, had remembered of the promise that they had made, anon he said to the people the cause wherefore it was. And anon after, by the commandment of the emperor, the knights brought the body again much solemnly into his country, in a place where our Lord by the merits of the holy body hath showed many miracles and virtues, of which by the blessed prayers and his intercessions we may have part. Amen.

Here followeth of S. Victor, Martyr.

S. Victor, the glorious knight and martyr in the time of Antonin and Aurelian, emperors, was presented as a christian man unto a duke called Sebastian, which would have made S. Victor do sacrifice to the idols, to whom S. Victor answered that he was a true knight to Jesu Christ and that he would not do sacrifice. When the duke understood that, he commanded that his back should be all to-broken and his sinews to be drawn out, and this holy man gave great thankings to God for the torments that were done to him, and also of that, that he abode always in very faith. The duke was much moved and angry, and commanded that he should be put in a burning furnace. When S. Victor was therein he made his prayers unto our Lord, and he was therein three days whole without grieving of any fire or flame or fume and without any damage, and on the third day he was found whole and sound. After, the duke did do take venom, and to make by an enchanter mortal meat, and made him to eat it, which meat this holy man ate without any grievance or hurt. And yet he did do make by the enchanter more stronger venom than he did tofore, and gave it to S. Victor, which ate it without any hurt like as he did that other. When the enchanter saw that the venom might in no wise grieve the holy man, he burnt all his books and renounced all worldly goods, and converted him to the faith of God. After all these things the duke yet admonished S. Victor that he should do sacrifice to his gods, which thing S. Victor refused as he did tofore. Then the duke commanded that all the sinews of his body should be all drawn out and after put him in boiling oil, and after did do hang him by chains, and set unto his sides, pots all burning: but nevertheless he was always in such wise recomforted of our Lord that he felt no pain. Then the judge was much abashed, and commanded to take quick lime and vinegar meddled together, and made it to avale into his throat, and after did do put out his eyes. Then S. Victor said to him: Spare me not for I am all press and ready to suffer all torments. And then the tyrant commanded that his feet hung upward, and so hung three days long, in such wise that the most part of the blood of his body ran out at his nostrils. And at the end of three days the other knights came for to see if he were dead, and they that were blind came and were nigh him. By the prayers of this glorious saint they were enlumined again and had their sight. The which knights when they were returned to the duke, they told to him their adventure, how by the prayers of this holy man they had received their sight, and that they left him alive and whole. Then the duke commanded that he should be flayed, and in the meanwhile the wife of a knight named Corone cried with a high voice: Victor, thou wert born in a good time, and thy works be blessed for the acceptable sacrifice of the holiness of thy thought, the which our Lord hath received in gree as he did the sacrifice of Abel. When this woman, which was but sixteen years old, had said this and other good things and words, she put more to, and said: Lo! see ye not the angels of paradise that bring two crowns, of which thou shalt have the greater, and I the less, and how well that I be a feeble vessel, nevertheless I have firm hope in our Lord Jesu Christ, that he shall give to me his heritage. And when the duke understood the words that she had said, he commanded that she should do sacrifice to the gods, and she answered and said I am named Corone and thou requires" me to lose my coronet When the duke had heard her answer, he commanded his knights that by force they should make two trees to incline and bow down, that one against that other, and thereon they hung Corone and suddenly let the trees go, and so they did, when by the radour and force of the trees in springing she rendered her soul to our Lord in firm faith and affiance of the life eternal. And as the two said trees addressed, her glorious body abode in two pieces on the ground. After that the duke commanded that S. Victor should be beheaded, who, at the smiting off of his head, bled milk and blood together, which miracle much people saw, which then believed in our Lord Jesu Christ, qui cum Patre et Spiritu Sancto vivit et regnat Deus per omnia secula seculorum. Amen.

Of S. John and S. Paul.

Constance, the daughter of Constantine the emperor, had two provosts, that one was named John and that other Paul. It happed in that time that Gallican, which was duke and conductor of the host of the Romans, should go in battle against the barbarians which had taken Dacia and the country about, and he demanded that Constance, daughter of the emperor, should be given to him in marriage for a reward. The emperor would well, as for him, but he thought it might not be, because Constance, after that S. Agnes had healed her, would never consent to be married, for she had avowed virginity; wherefore she would rather suffer death than incline thereto, but nevertheless the maid, that trusted in God, said to her father that, at his returning from the battle, if he had victory, might well be spoken of the marriage, and in hope thereof she desired to have two daughters of Gallican for to dwell with her, that by them she might know the better the manners of their father, and she delivered to him her two provosts John and Paul to go with him to battle, which was so done. Then this duke went to battle and was discomfited, and fled into a city of Tarsus, and anon the barbarians assieged him. Then said S. John and S. Paul: Make shine avow to God of heaven that thou shalt never wed wife, and thou shalt vanquish shine enemies better than thou hast ; and then he did after their counsel; and on the morn a youngling that bare a cross on his shoulder appeared to him and said: Take thy sword and come after me. When Gallican the duke had taken his sword he led him through all his enemies to the king, whom he slew, and all the host was so afeard that they yielded them all to him, whom then he subdued and made them subjects and tributaries to Rome. And when he went by his enemies, two knights appeared and confirmed him in the faith, and after, he became christian, and returned again to Rome, and was received with great honour. And then he prayed the emperor to pardon him of taking of his daughter, for he purposed never to have wife, but keep him continent and chaste, and that pleased well to the emperor. Then were his two daughters also converted, and he left his duchy and gave all to poor people, and himself served God, and did after many miracles, insomuch that devils and wicked spirits went out of the bodies of creatures by his simple regard and sight. And hereof the renomee and fame went from the east unto the west, and the people came from far for to see the great man how he was changed. For he washed the feet of poor men, and set them at the table, and gave them to eat, he served the sick men, and did the office of servitude much busily.

It happed that when Constantine was dead, an emperor, son of the great Constantine was emperor, all of the heresy of the Arians, and held the empire. He had two nephews, of whom that one was called Gallus, and that other Julian. This Gallus was so bad that he did do slay him. Then Julian doubting and being afeard entered into religion, and dissembled and seemed to be holy, and was made rector. He was a magician and counselled with fiends, of whom he had answer that he should yet be emperor, and so it happed afterward, for such needs came to Constantine that, he created Julian governor of his host and named him Cæsar. He was a great battler and man of war. Then when Constantine was dead he became emperor. Then commanded he that Gallican, the duke, which was become so blessed man, should make sacrifice to the idols or else go out of the country, for the emperor durst not slay so great a man. Then he went to Alexandria, and there the miscreants made one to run him through with a sword, and so deserved he the crown of martyrdom. Then showed Julian the emperor the covetise of his heart, and he confirmed it by witness of the gospel saying: Our Lord Jesus said: who that renounceth not all that he hath may not be my disciple, and therefore when he heard that the blessed SS. John and Paul had the riches that Constance their lady had left to them, and they sustained the poor christian people of our Lord Jesu Christ, he demanded them that like as they had been with Constantine so would he that they should be with him. Then they said to him: When the glorious Constantine and Constant his son glorified them to be christian, we would well serve them, but sith that thou hast forsaken thy religion full of virtues, we be departed from thee, ne we will no more obey to thee. Julian then said to them: I had the estate of a clerk in the church, and if I would have abided I had had the most worshipful, but because it is vanity and folly to serve parishes and to be idle, I have set my heart in chivalry, and therefore I have made sacrifice to the gods, and they have given to me the empire; and thus ye that have been brought forth and nourished in palaces ought to be by my side, and if ye have me in despite, I shall do so much that I shall not be despised. Then answered they : We love better God than thee, and we doubt nothing thy menaces because that we will not anger our God. Then said Julian: If ye do not my will within ten days with your agreement, ye shall do it after against your will. The saints said to him: Think ye as though now the ten days were gone, and do this day that which thou purposes" to do then. To whom Julian: Ween ye that christian men shall make you martyrs? But if ye consent to me I shall punish you not as martyrs but as common enemies. Then John and Paul during these ten days emended to prayer and to alms, and after, on the tenth day, Terentian was sent to them, which said to them: Our lord Julian hath sent me to you, that ye should honour the image of Jove, which we to you, or else ye must die. Then they said to him: If Julian be thy lord have thou peace with him, we have none other Lord but Jesu Christ. When Julian heard these words he made their heads to be smitten off secretly, and to be buried in their house, and after, made to be said that they were sent into exile. Then anon after, the fiend entered into the son of Terentian and began to cry in that house that he was burnt of the devil When Terentian saw this he knowledged his trespass, and after became christian and put in writing the passion of these two holy saints, and his son was delivered of the devil. This was done in the year of grace four hundred and sixty-four.

S. Gregory recordeth that a lady visited oft and gladly the church of these two saints; and when she came on a time, she found two monks in strange habit, and she supposed that they had been monks. She commanded to give them her alms, but whilst her dispenser approached to them, they approached to her and said: Thou visitest now us, but we shall visit thee at the day of judgment, and shall give that we may. And when they had so said, anon they vanished away. Then let us pray unto God that by their merits he give to us in this world his grace, and in that other his glory. Per Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

Here followeth of S. Leo the Pope.

Leo the pope, as it is read in the miracles of our blessed Lady, in the church of S. Mary the More, as he sang there mass, and much people by order were communed and houseled, and a matron, a certain woman, kissed his hand, whereof he was tempted vehemently in his flesh. And this holy man was a great wreaker and avenger on himself, and cut off his hand that same day privily, and threw it from him. Afterward the people murmured among them because the pope sang no mass, and did not divine service solemnly as he was wont to do. Then Leo turned him unto the Blessed Virgin, our Lady, and committed himself wholly to her providence. Then she anon appeared to him and restored to him his hand and reformed it with her holy hands, commanding that he should go forth and offer sacrifice unto her son. Then this holy man Leo preached unto all the people that came thither, and showed evidently how his hand was restored to him again. This Leo the pope held the council at Chalcedon, and ordained virgins to be veiled. It was also made there a statute that the Virgin Mary should be called the mother of God. That same time Attila destroyed Italy. Then Leo waking, prayed in the church of the apostles three days and three nights, and after said to his men: Who that will follow me, let him follow. When then he approached to Attila, anon as he saw S. Leo he descended from his horse, and fell down plats to his feet, and prayed him that he should ask what he would. And he desired that he should go out of Italy and release the christian people that he had in captivity. And his servants reproved him that the triumphing prince of the world should be overcome of a priest. He answered: I have provided for myself and to you. I saw on his right side a knight standing with a sword drawn and saying to me: But if thou spare this man thou shalt be slain, and all thy men.

Then S. Leo wrote an epistle to Fabian, bishop of Constantinople, against Eutichius and Nestorius, which he laid upon the sepulchre of S. Peter, and was in continual fastings and prayers, saying: O holy Peter, what that I have erred in this epistle as man, thou to whom the cure of the Church i8 committed, correct and amend. And after forty days Peter appeared to him praying, and said: I have read it and amended it. Then Leo took the epistle, and found it corrected and amended with the hands of the apostle. Other forty days also he was continually in fastings and prayers at the sepulchre of S. Peter, beseeching to get him forgiveness of his sins. To whom Peter appeared and said: I have prayed our Lord for thee, and he hath forgiven thee all thy sins, save only of the imposition of thy hand thou shalt be examined. He died about the year of our Lord four hundred and sixty

Here followeth of S. Peter the Apostle, and First of his name.

Peter had a great name, for he was called Simon Barjona. And Simon is as much to say as right obedient or committing great heaviness. Barjona is as much to say as son of a dove, or of a culvert He was obedient when our Lord called him, for at the voice of one only calling, he obeyed to our Lord. He was committing heaviness and sorrow when he rented Jesu Christ, for he went out and wept bitterly. He was son of the dove, for he served God with simple intention. Secondly, he was called Cephas which is as much to say as chief, or stone, or blaming with the mouth. He was said chief by reason of the principality in prelation; a stone by reason of his steadfastness in his passion; blaming with his mouth by reason of constancy in his preaching. Thirdly, he was called Peter, which is as much to say as knowing or unhosing, and shoeing or unbinding knowing, for he knew the dignity of Christ when he said: Thou art Christ, son of the living God. In unhosing and shoeing, when he unshod his feet from the affection of all deadly and earthly work, saying: Lo! we have left all things, etc. Unbinding, for he hath unbounden the bonds of sin, and that was by the keys that he received of our Lord. And he had three surnames. He was said Simon Johanna, which is as much to say as the beauty of our Lord. Secondly, he was said Simon Johannis, that is to say, to whom it is given. And thirdly, he is said Barjona, that is to say, son of the dove, by which is given to under- stand that he had beauty of manners, gift of virtues, and abundance of tears, for the dove hath wailing for her song. This name Peter, Jesus promised to put to him: Johannis primo Thou shalt be called Cephas, that is to say, Peter. Secondly, he did that he promised, as it is said, Mathei quarto: And he named Simon Peter, etc. Thirdly, he confirmed it, Mathei XVI.: And I say to thee that thou art Peter, and upon this stone, etc. His martyrdom wrote Marcellus, Linus pope, Hegesippus, and Leo the pope.

Of Saint Peter.

S. Peter the apostle among all other, and above all other, was of most fervent and burning love, for he would have known the traitor that should betray our Lord Jesu Christ, as S. Austin saith: If he had known him he would have torn him with his teeth, and therefore our Lord would not name him to him, for as Chrysostom saith: If he had named him, Peter had arisen and all to-torn him. Peter went upon the sea; he was chosen of God to be at his transfiguration, and raised a maid from death to life; he found the stater or piece of money in the fish's mouth; he received of our Lord the keys of the kingdom of heaven; he took the charge to feed the sheep of Jesu Christ. He converted at a Whitsuntide three thousand men, he healed Claude with John, and then converted five thousand men; he said to Ananias and Saphira their death before; he healed Æneas of the palsy; he raised Tabitha ; he baptized Cornelia; with the shadow of his body he healed sick men; he was put in prison by Herod, but by the angel of our Lord he was delivered. What his meat was and his clothing, the book of S. Clement witnesseth, for he said: Bread only with olives, and seldom with worts, is mine usage, and I have such clothing as thou seest, a coat and a mantle, and when I have that, I demand no more. It is said for certain that he bare always a sudary in his bosom with which he wiped the tears that ran from his eyes; for when he remembered the sweet presence of our Lord, for the great love that he had to him he might not forbear weeping. And also when he remembered that he had rented him, he wept abundantly great plenty of tears, in such wise that he was so accustomed to weep that his face was burnt with tears as it seemed, like as Clement saith. And saith also that in the night when he heard the cock crow he would weep customably. And after that it is read in Historia Ecclesiastica that, when S. Peter's wife was led to her passion, he had great joy and called her by her proper name, and said to her: My wife, remember thee of our Lord.

On a time when S. Peter had sent two of his disciples for to preach the faith ot Jesu Christ, and when they had gone twenty days' journey, one of them died, and that other then returned to S. Peter and told him what had happened, some say that it was S. Marcial that so died, and some say it was S. Maternus, and others say that it was S. Frank. Then S. Peter gave to him his staff and commanded that he should return to his fellow, and lay it upon him, which he so did, then he which had been forty days dead, anon arose all living.

That time Simon the enchanter was in Jerusalem, and he said he was first truth, and affirmed that who that would believe in him he would make them perpetual. And he also said that nothing to him was impossible. It is read in the book of S Clement that he said that he should be worshipped of all men as God, and that he might do all that he would. And he said yet more: When my mother Rachel commanded me that I should go reap corn in the field, and saw the sickle ready to reap with, I commanded the sickle to reap by itself alone, and it reaped ten times more than any other. And yet he added hereto more, after Jerome, and said: I am the Word of God, I am the Holy Ghost, I am Almighty, I am all that is of God. He made serpents of brass to move, and made the images of iron and of stone to laugh, and dogs to sing, and as S. Linus saith, he would dispute with S. Peter and show, at a day assigned, that he was God. And Peter came to the place where the strife should be, and said to them that were there: Peace to you brethren that dove truth. To whom Simon said: We have none need of thy peace, for If peace and concord were made, we should not profit to find the truth, for thieves have peace among them. And therefore desire no peace but battle, for when two men fight and one is overcome then is it peace. Then said Peter: Why dreadest thou to hear of peace? Of sins grow battles, where is no sin there is peace; in disputing is truth found, and in works righteousness. Then said Simon: It is not as thou sayest but I shall show to thee the power of my dignity, that anon thou shalt adore me; I am first truth and may flee by the air; I can make new trees and turn stones into bread; endure in the fire without hurting; and all that I will I may do. S. Peter disputed against all these, and disclosed all his malefices. Then Simon Magus, seeing that he might not resist Peter, cast all his books into the sea, lest S. Peter should prove him a magician, by his books, and went to Rome where he was had and reputed as a god. And when Peter knew that, he followed and came to Rome. The fourth year of Claudius the emperor, Peter came to Rome, and sat there twenty-five years, and ordained two bishops as his helpers, Linus and Cletus, one within the walls, and that other without. He emended much to preaching of the Word of God, by which he converted much people to the faith of Christ, and healed many sick men, and in his preaching always he praised and preferred chastity. He converted four concubines of Agrippa the provost, so that they would no more come to him, wherefore the provost sought occasion against Peter.

After this, our Lord appeared to S. Peter, saying to him: Simon Magus and Nero purpose against thee, dread thee not, for I am with thee, and shall give to thee the solace of my servant Paul, which to-morn shall come in to Rome. Then Peter, knowing that he should not long abide here, assembled all his brethren and took Clement by the hand and ordained him a bishop, and made him to sit in his own seat. After this, as our Lord had said tofore, Paul came to Rome, and with Peter began to preach the faith of Christ.

Simon Magus was so much beloved of Nero that he weened that he had been the keeper of his life, of his health, and of all the city. On a day, as Leo the pope saith, as he stood tofore Nero, suddenly his visage changed, now old and now young, which, when Nero saw, he supposed that he had been the son of God. Then said Simon Magus to Nero: Because that thou shalt know me to be the very son of God, command my head to be smitten off and I shall arise again the third day. Then Nero commanded to his brother to smite off his head, and when he supposed to have beheaded Simon, he beheaded a ram. Simon, by his art magic went away unhurt, gathered together the members of the ram, and hid him three days. The blood of the ram abode and congealed. The third day he came and showed him to Nero, saying: Command my blood to be washed away, for lo I am he that was beheaded, and as I promised I have risen again the third day. Whom Nero seeing, was abashed and bowed verily that he had been the son of God. All this saith Leo. Sometime also, when he was with Nero secretly within his conclave, the devil in his likeness spake without to the people. Then the Romans had him in such worship that they made to him an image, and wrote above, this title: To Simon the holy God. Peter and Paul entered to Nero and discovered all the enchantments and malefices of Simon Magus, and Peter added thereto, seeing that like as in Christ be two substances that is of God and man, so are in this magician two substances, that is of man and of the devil. Then said Simon Magus, as S. Marcelle and Leo witness, lest I should suffer any longer this enemy, I shall command my angels that they shall avenge me on him. To whom Peter said: I dread nothing shine angels, but they dread me. Nero said: Dreadest thou not Simon, that by certain things affirmeth his godhead? To whom Peter said: If dignity or godhead be in him let him tell now what I think or what I do, which thought I shall first tell to thee, that he shall not mow lie what I think. To whom Nero said: Come hither and say what thou thinkest. Then Peter went to him and said to him secretly: Command some man to bring to me a barley-loaf, and deliver it to me privily. When it was taken to him, he blessed it, and hid it under his sleeve, and then said he: Now Simon say what I think, and have said and done. Simon answered: Let Peter say what I think. Peter answered: What Simon thinketh that I know, I shall do it when he hath thought. Then Simon having indignation, cried aloud: I command that dogs come and devour him. And suddenly there appeared great dogs and made an assault against Peter. He gave to them of the bread that he had blessed, and suddenly he made them to flee. Then said Peter to Nero: Lo! I have showed you what he thought against me, not in words but in deeds, for where he promised angels to come against me he brought dogs, thereby he showeth that he hath none angels but dogs. Then said Simon: Hear ye, Peter and Paul; if I may not grieve you here, ye shall come where me it shall behove to judge you. I shall spare you here. Hæc Leo. Then Simon Magus, as Hegesippus and Linus say, elate in pride avaunted him that he can raise dead men to life. And it happed that there was a young man dead, and then Nero let call Peter and Simon, and all gave sentence by the will of Simon that he should be slain that might not arise the dead man to life. Simon then, as he made his incantations upon the dead body, he was seen move his head of them that stood by; then all they cried for to stone Peter. Peter unnethe getting silence said: If the dead body live, let him arise, walk and speak, else know ye that it is a fantasy that the head of the dead man moveth. Let Simon be taken from the bed. And the body abode immovable. Peter standing afar making his prayer cried to the dead body, saying: Young man, arise in the name of Jesu Christ of Nazareth crucified, and anon, he arose living, and walked. Then, when the people would have stoned Simon Magus, Peter said: He is in pain enough, knowing him to be overcome in his heart; our master hath taught us for to do good for evil. Then said Simon to Peter and Paul: Yet is it not con e to you that ye desire, for ye be not worthy to have martyrdom, the which answered: That is, that we desire to have, to thee shall never be well, for thou liest all that thou sayest.

Then as Marcel saith: Simon went to the house of Marcel and bound there a great black dog at the door of the house, and said: Now I shall see if Peter, which is accustomed to come hither, shall come, and if he come this dog shall strangle him. And a little after that, Peter and Paul went thither, and anon Peter made the sign of the cross and unbound the hound, and the hound was as tame and meek as a lamb, and pursued none but Simon, and went to him and took and cast him to the ground under him, and would have strangled him. And then ran Peter to him and cried upon the hound that he should not do him any harm. And anon the hound left and touched not his body, but he all torent and tare his gown in such wise that he was almost naked. Then all the people, and especially children, ran with the hound upon him and hunted and chased him out of the town as he had been a wolf. Then for the reproof and shame he durst not come in to the town of all a whole year after. Then Marcel that was disciple of Simon Magus, seeing these great miracles, came to Peter, and was from then forthon his disciple.

And after, at the end of the year, Simon returned and was received again into the amity of Nero. And then, as Leo saith, this Simon Magus assembled the people and showed to them how he had been angered of the Galileans, and therefore he said that he would leave the city which he was wont to defend and keep, and set a day in which he would ascend into heaven, for he deigned no more to dwell in the earth. Then on the day that he had stablished, like as he had said, he went up to an high tower, which was on the capitol, and there being crowned with laurel, threw himself out from place to place, and began to fly in the air. Then said S. Paul to S. Peter: It appertaineth to me to pray, and to thee for to command. Then said Nero: This man is very God, and ye be two traitors. Then said S. Peter to S. Paul: Paul, brother, lift up shine head and see how Simon flyeth. Then S. Paul said to S. Peter when he saw him fly so high: Peter, why tarriest thou? perform that thou hast begun, God now calleth us. Then said Peter: I charge and conjure you angels of Sathanas, which bear him in the air, by the name of our Lord Jesu Christ, that ye bear ne sustain him no more, but let him fall to the earth. And anon they let him fall to the ground and brake his neck and head, and he died there forthwith. And when Nero heard say that Simon was dead, and that he had lost such a man, he was sorrowful, and said to the apostles: Ye have done this in despite of me, and therefore I shall destroy you by right evil example. Hæc Leo. Then he delivered them to Paulin, which was a much noble man, and Paulin delivered them to Mamertin under the keeping of two knights, Processe and Martinian, whom S. Peter converted to the faith. And they then opened the prison and let them all go out that would go, wherefore, after the passion of the apostles, Paulin, when he knew that they were christian, beheaded both Processe and Martinian.

The brethren then, when the prison was opened, prayed Peter to go thence, and he would not, but at the last he being overcome by their prayers went away. And when he came to the gate, as, Leo witnesseth, which is called Sancta Maria ad passus, he met Jesu Christ coming against him, and Peter said to him: Lord, whither goest thou? And he said to him: I go to Rome for to be crucified again, and Peter demanded him: Lord, shalt thou be crucified again, And he said: Yea, and Peter said then: Lord, I shall return again then for to be crucified with thee. This said, our Lord ascended into heaven, Peter beholding it, which wept sore. And when Peter understood that our Lord had said to him of his passion, he returned, and when he came to his brethren, he told to them what our Lord had said. And anon he was taken of the ministers of Nero and was delivered to the provost Agrippa, then was his face as clear as the sun, as it is said. Then Agrippa said to him: Thou art he that glorifiest in the people, and in women, that thou departest from the bed of their husbands. Whom the apostle blamed, and said to him that he glorified in the cross of our Lord Jesu Christ. Then Peter was commanded to be crucified as a stranger, and because that Paul was a citizen of Rome it was commanded that his head should be smitten off. And of this sentence given against them, S. Dionysius in an epistle to Timothy saith in this wise: O my brother Timothy, if thou hadst seen the agonies of the end of them thou shouldst have failed for heaviness and sorrow. Who should not weep that hour when the commandment of the sentence was given against them, that Peter should be crucified and Paul be beheaded? Thou shouldst then have seen the turbes ot the Jews and of the paynims that smote them and spit in their visages. And when the horrible time came of their end that they were departed that one from that other, they bound the pillars of the world, but that was not without wailing and weeping of the brethren. Then said S. Paul to S. Peter: Peace be with thee that art foundement of the church and pastor of the sheep and lambs of our Lord. Peter then said to Paul: Go thou in peace, preacher of good manners, mediator, leader, and solace of rightful people. And when they were withdrawn far from other I followed my master. They were not both slain in one street. This saith S. Dionysius, and as Leo the pope and Marcel witness, when Peter came to the cross, he said: When my Lord descended from heaven to the earth he was put on the cross right up, but me whom it pleaseth him to call from the earth to heaven, my cross shall show my head to the earth and address my feet to heaven, for I am not worthy to be put on the cross like as my Lord was, therefore turn my cross and crucify me my head downward. Then they turned the cross, and fastened his feet upward and the head downward. Then the people were angry against Nero and the provost, and would have slain them because they made S. Peter so to die; but he required them that they should not let his passion, and as Leo witnesseth, our Lord opened the eyes of them that were there, and wept so that, they saw the angels with crowns of roses and of lilies standing by Peter that was on the cross with the angels. And then Peter received a book of our Lord, wherein he learned the words that he said. Then as Hegesippus saith: Peter said thus: Lord, I have desired much to follow thee, but to be crucified upright I have not usurped, thou art always rightful, high and sovereign, and we be sons of the first man which have the head inclined to the earth, of whom the fall signifieth the form of the generation human. Also we be born that we be seen inclined to the earth by effect, and the condition is changed for the world weeneth that such thing is good, which is evil and bad. Lord, thou art all things to me, and nothing is to me but thou only, I yield to thee thankings with all the spirit of which I live, by which I understand, and by whom I call thee. And when S. Peter saw that the good christian men saw his glory, in yielding thankings to God and commending good people to him, he rendered up his spirit. Then Marcel and Apuleius his brother, that were his disciples, took off the body from the cross when he was dead, and anointed it with much precious ointment, and buried him honourably. Isidore saith in the book of the nativity and death of saints thus: Peter, after that he had governed Antioch, he founded a church under Claudius the emperor, he went to Rome against Simon Magus, there he preached the gospel twenty-five years and held the bishopric, and thirty-six years after the passion of our Lord he was crucified by Nero turned the head downward, for he would be so crucified: Hæc Isidorus.

That same day Peter and Paul appeared to S. Dionysius, as he saith in his foresaid epistle in these words: Understand the miracle and see the prodigy, my brother Timothy, of the day of the martyrdom ot them, for I was ready in the time of departing of them. After their death I saw them together, hand in hand, entering the gates of the city, and clad with clothes of light, and arrayed with crowns of clearness and light. Hæc Dionysius.

Nero was not unpunished for their death and other great sins and tyrannies that he committed, for he slew himself with his own hand, which tyrannies were overlong to tell, but shortly I shall rehearse here some. He slew his master Seneca because he was afraid of him when he went to school. Also Nero slew his mother and slit her belly for to see the place where he lay in. The physicians and masters blamed him, and said the son should not slay his mother that had borne him with sorrow and pain. Then said he: Make me with child, and after to be delivered, that I may know what pain my mother suffered. Which by craft they gave to him a young frog to drink, and grew in his belly, and then he said: But if ye make me to be delivered I shall slay you all; and so they gave him such a drink that he had a vomit and cast out the frog, and bare him on hand that because that he abode not his time it was misshapen, which yet he made to be kept. Then for his pleasure he set Rome afire, which burned seven days and seven sights, and was in a high tower and enjoyed him to see so great a flame of fire, and sang merrily. He slew the senators of Rome to see what sorrow and lamentation their wives would make. He wedded a man for his wife. He fished with nets of gold thread, and the garment that he had worn one day he would never wear it ne see it after. Then the Romans seeing his woodness, assailed him and pursued him unto without the city, and when he saw he might not escape them, he took a stake and sharped it with his teeth, and therewith stuck himself through the body and so slew himself. In another place it is read that he was devoured of wolves. Then the Romans returned and found the frog, and threw it out of the city and there burnt it.

In the time of S. Cornelius the pope, Greeks stole away the bodies of the apostles Peter and Paul, but the devils that were in the idols were constrained by the divine virtue of God, and cried and said: Ye men of Rome, succour hastily your gods which be stolen from you; for which thing the good christian people understood that they were the bodies of Peter and Paul. And the paynims had supposed that it had been their gods. Then assembled great number of christian men and of paynims also, and pursued so long the Greeks that they doubted to have been slain, and threw the bodies in a pit at the catacombs, but afterward they were drawn out by christian men. S. Gregory saith that the great force of thunder and lightning that came from heaven made them so afraid that they departed each from other, and so left the bodies of the apostles at the catacombs in a pit, but they doubted which bones were Peter's and which Paul's, wherefore the good christian men put them to prayers and fastings, and it was answered them from heaven that the great bones longed to the preacher, and the less to the fisher, and so were departed, and the bones were put in the church of him that it was dedicate of. And others say that Silvester the pope would hallow the churches and took all the bones together, and departed them by weight, great and small, and put that one-half in one church, and that other half in that other.

And S. Gregory recounteth in his dialogues that, in the church of S. Peter, where his bones rest, was a man of great holiness and of meekness named Gentian, and there came a maid into the church which was cripple, and drew her body and legs after her with her hands, and when she had long required and prayed S. Peter for health, he appeared to her in a vision, and said to her: Go to Gentian, my servant, and he shall restore thy health. Then began she to creep here and there through the church, and enquired who was Gentian, and suddenly it happed that he came to her that him sought, and she said to him: The holy apostle S. Peter sent me to thee that thou shouldest make me whole and deliver me from my disease, and he answered: If thou be sent to me from him, arise thou anon and go on thy feet. And he took her by the hand and anon she was all whole, in such wise as she felt nothing of her grief nor malady, and then she thanked God and S. Peter.

And in the same book S. Gregory saith when that a holy priest was come to the end of his life, he began to cry in great gladness: Ye be welcome, my lords, ye be welcome that ye vouchsafe to come to so little and poor a servant, and he said: I shall come and thank you. Then they that stood by demanded who they were that he spake to, and he said to them wondering: Have ye not seen the blessed apostles Peter and Paul and as he cried again, his blessed soul departed from the flesh.

Some have doubt whether Peter and Paul suffered death in one day, for some say it was the same one day, but one a year after the other. And Jerome and all the Saints that treat of this matter accord that it was on one day and one year, and so is it contained in an epistle of Denis, and Leo the pope saith the same in a sermon, saying: We suppose but that it was not done without cause that they suffered in one day and in one place the sentence of the tyrant, and they suffered death in one time, to the end that they should go together to Jesu Christ, and both under one persecutor to the end that equal cruelty should strain that one and that other. The day for their merit, the place for their glory, and the persecution overcome by virtue. Hæc Leo.

Though they suffered both death in one day and in one hour, yet it was not in one place but in diverse within Rome, and hereof saith a versifier in this wise: Ense coronatus Paulus, cruce Petrus, eodem-Sub duce, luce, loco, dux Nero, Roma locus. That is to say, Paul crowned with the sword, and Peter had the cross reversed, the place was the city of Rome. And howbeit that they suffered death in one day, yet S. Gregory ordained that that day specially should be the solemnity of S. Peter, and the next day commemoration of S. Paul, for the church of S. Peter was hallowed that same day, and also forasmuch as he was more in dignity, and first in conversion, and held the principality at Rome.

Here beginneth the Life of S. Paul the Apostle and Doctor.

Paul is as much to say as the mouth of a trumpet or of sense; or marvellously chosen, or a miracle of election. Or Paul is said of pause, that is rest, in Hebrew, or it is said little, in Latin. And by this be understood six prerogatives which Paul had before the other apostles. The first is a fruitful tongue, for he replenished the gospel from Jerusalem to Jericho, and therefore he is said the mouth of a trump. The second was virtuous charity, for he said: Who is sick, and I am not sick? and therefore he is said mouth of sense or understanding. The third is conversion much marvellous, and therefore he is said marvellously chosen, for he was marvellously chosen and converted. The fourth is the hand working, and therefore he is said marvellous of election, for it was a great miracle when he chose to get his dispenses with the labour of his hands, and to preach without ceasing. The fifth was contemplation delicious, for rest of thought is required in contemplation, for he was ravished unto the third heaven. The sixth was humility virtuous, and therefore he is said little. Of this name, Paul, be three opinions. Origen saith that he hath always two names, and was called Paulus and Saulus. And Rabanus saith that he was called Saulus, and that was after Saul the proud king, but after his conversion he was called Paul, as it were little and humble of spirit, and therefore he said: I am least of all the apostles. And Bede said that he was called Paul of Sergius Paulus proconsul, whom he converted to the faith. And Linus the pope writeth his passion.

Of S. Paul, Doctor and Apostle.

S. Paul the apostle, after his conversion, suffered many persecutions, the which the blessed Hilary rehearseth shortly, saying: Paul the apostle was beaten with rods at Philippi, he was put in prison, and by the feet fast set in stocks, he was stoned in Lystra. In Iconia and Thessalonica he was pursued of wicked people. In Ephesus he was delivered to wild beasts. In Damascus he was let by a lepe down of the wall. In Jerusalem he was arrested, beaten, bound, and awaited to be slain. In Cæsarea he was enclosed and defamed. Sailing towards Italy he was in peril of death, and from thence he came to Rome and was judged under Nero, and there finished his life. This saith S. Hilary: Paul took upon him to be apostle among the gentiles. In Lystra was a contract which he lost and redressed. A young man that fell out of a window and died, he raised to life, and did many other miracles. At the Isle of Melita a serpent bit his hand, and hurted him not, and he threw it into the fire. It is said that all they that came of the progeny and lineage of that man that then harboured Paul may in no wise be hurt of no venomous beasts, wherefore when their children be born they put serpents in their cradles for to prove if they be verily their children or no. In some place it is said that Paul is less than Peter, otherwhile more, and sometimes equal and like, for in dignity he is less, in preaching greater, and in holiness they be equal. Haymo saith that Paul, from the cock-crow unto the hour of five, he laboured with his hands, and after emended to preaching, and that endured almost to night, the residue of the time was for to eat, sleep, and for prayer, which was necessary. He came to Rome when Nero was not fully confirmed in the empire, and Nero hearing that there was disputing and questions made between Paul and the Jews, he, recking not much thereof, suffered Paul to go where he would, and preach freely. Jeronimus in his book, De viris illustribus, that the thirty-sixth year after the Passion of our Lord, second year of Nero, S. Paul was sent to Rome bound, and two years he was in free keeping and disputed against the Jews, and after, he was let go by Nero, and preached the gospel in the west parts. And the fourteenth year of Nero, the same year and day that Peter was crucified, his head was smitten off. Hæc Jeronimus. The wisdom and religion of him was published over all, and was reputed marvellous. He get to him many friends in the emperor's house and converted them to the faith of Christ, and some of his writings were recited and read tofore the emperor, and of all men marvellously commended, and the senate understood of him by things of authority.

It happed on a day that Paul preached about evensong time in a loft, a young man named Patroclus, butler of Nero, and with him well-beloved, went for to see the multitude of people, and the better for to hear Paul he went up into a window, and there sleeping, fell down and died, which when Nero heard he was much sorry and heavy therefor, and anon ordered another in his office. Paul knowing hereof by the Holy Ghost, said to them standing by him that they should go and bring to him Patroclus, which was dead, and that the emperor loved so much. Whom when he was brought, he raised to life and sent him with his fellows to the emperor, whom the emperor knew for dead, and, whiles he made lamentation for him, it was old to the emperor that Patroclus was come to the gate. And when he heard that Patroclus was alive he much marvelled, and commanded that he should come in. To whom Nero said: Patroclus, livest thou? And he said: Yea, emperor, I live; and Nero said: Who hath made thee to live again ? And he said: The Lord Jesu Christ, king of all worlds. Then Nero being wroth said: Then shall he reign ever and resolve all the royaumes of the world? To whom Patroclus said: Yea, certainly, emperor; then Nero gave to him a buffet, saying: Therefore thou servest him, and he said: Yea, verily, I serve him that hath raised me from death to life. Then five of the ministers of Nero, that assisted him, said to him: O emperor, why smitest thou this young man, truly and wisely answering to thee? Trust verily we serve that same King Almighty. And when Nero heard that he put them in prison, for strongly to torment them, whom he much had loved. Then he made to enquire and to take all christian men, and without examination made them to be tormented with overgreat torments. Then was Paul among others bound and brought tofore Nero, to whom Nero said: O thou man, servant of the great King, bound tofore me, why withdrawest thou my knights and drawest them to thee? To whom Paul said: Not only from thy corner I have gathered knights, but also I gather from the universal world to my Lord, to whom our king giveth such gifts that never shall fail, and granteth that they shall be excluded from all indigence and need; and if thou wilt be to him subject, thou shalt be safe, for he is of so great power that he shall come and judge all the world, and destroy the figure thereof by fire. And when Nero heard that he should destroy the figure of the world by fire, he commanded that all the christian men should be burnt by fire, and Paul to be beheaded, as he that is guilty against his majesty. And so great a multitude of christian people were slain then, that the people of Rome brake up his palace and cried and moved sedition against him, saying: Cæsar, amend thy manners and attemper thy commandments, for these be our people that thou destroyest, and defend the empire of Rome. The emperor then dreading the noise of the people, changed his decree and edict that no man should touch ne hurt no christian man till the emperor had otherwise ordained, wherefore Paul was brought again tofore Nero, whom as soon as Nero saw, he cried and said: Take away this wicked man and behead him, and suffer him no Ionger to live upon the earth. To whom Paul said: Nero, I shall suffer a little while, but I shall live eternally with my Lord Jesu Christ. Nero said: Smite off his head, that he may understand me stronger than his king, that when he is overcome we may see whether he may live after. To whom Paul said: To the end that thou know me to live everlastingly, when my head shall be smitten off, I shall appear to thee living, and then thou mayest know that Christ is God of life and of death. And when he had said this he was led to the place of his martyrdom, and as he was led, the three knights that led him said to him: Tell to us, Paul, who is he your king that ye love so much that for his love ye had liefer die than live, and what reward shall ye have therefor? Then Paul preached to them of the kingdom of heaven and of the pain of hell, in such wise that he converted them to the faith, and they prayed him to go freely whither he would. God forbid, brethren, said he, that I should flee, I am not fugitive, but the lawful knight of Christ. I know well that from this transitory life I shall go to everlasting life. As soon as I shall be beheaded, true men shall take away my body; mark ye well the place, and come thither to-morrow, and ye shall find by my sepulchre two men, Luke and Titus, praying. To whom when ye shall tell for what cause I have sent you to them, they shall baptize you and make you heirs of the kingdom of heaven. And whiles they thus spake together, Nero sent two knights to look if he were slain and beheaded or no, and when thus S. Paul would have converted them, they said: When thou art dead and risest again, then we shall believe, now come forth and receive that thou hast deserved. And as he was led to the place of his passion in the gate of Hostence, a noble woman named Plautilla, a disciple of Paul, who after another name was called Lemobia, for haply she had two names, met there with Paul, which weeping, commended her to his prayers. To whom Paul said: Farewell, Plautilla, daughter of everlasting health, lend to me thy veil or keverchief with which thou coverest thy head, that I may bind mine eyes therewith, and afterwards I shall restore it to thee again. And when she had delivered it to him, the butchers scorned her, saying: Why hast thou delivered to this enchanter so precious a cloth for to lose it ? Then, when he came to the place of his passion, he turned him toward the east, holding his hands up to heaven right long, with tears praying in his own language and thanking our Lord, and after that bade his brethren farewell, and bound his eyes himself with the keverchief of Plautilla, and kneeling down on both knees, stretched forth his neck, and so was beheaded. And as soon as the head was from the body, it said: Jesus Christus! which had been to Jesus or Christus, or both, fifty times. From his wound sprang out milk into the clothes of the knight, and afterward flowed out blood. In the air was a great shining light, and from the body came a much sweet odour.

Dionysius, in an epistle to Timothy, saith ot the death of Paul thus: In that hour full of heaviness, my wellbeloved brother, the butcher, saying: Paul, make ready thy neck; then blessed Paul looked up into heaven marking his forehead and his breast with the sign of the cross, and then said anon: My Lord Jesu Christ, into thy hands I commend my spirit, etc. And then without heaviness and compulsion he stretched forth his neck and received the crown of martyrdom, the butcher so smiting off his head. The blessed martyr Paul took the keverchief, and unbound his eyes, and gathered up his own blood, and put it therein and delivered to the woman. Then the butcher returned, and Plautilla met him and demanded him, saying: Where hast thou left my master? The knight answered: He lieth without the town with one of his fellows, and his visage is covered with thy keverchief, and she answered and said: I have now seen Peter and Paul enter into the city clad with right noble vestments, and also they had right fair crowns upon their heads, more clear and more shining than the sun, and hath brought again my keverchief all bloody which he hath delivered me. For which thing and work many believed in our Lord and were baptized. And this is that S. Dionysius saith. And when Nero heard say this thing he doubted him, and began to speak of all these things with his philosophers and with his friends; and as they spake together of this matter, Paul came in, and the gates shut, and stood tofore Cæsar and said: Cæsar, here is tofore thee Paul the knight of the king perdurable, and not vanquished. Now believe then certainly that I am not dead but alive, but thou, caitiff, thou shalt die of an evil death, because thou hast slain the servants of God. And when he had said thus he vanished away. And Nero, what for dread and what for anger, he was nigh out of his wit, and wist not what to do. Then by the counsel of his friends he unbound Patroclus and Barnabas and let them go where they would.

And the other knights, Longinus, master of the knights, and Accestus, came on the morn to the sepulchre of Paul, and there they found two men praying, that were Luke and Titus, and between them was Paul. And when Luke and Titus saw them they were abashed and began to flee, and anon Paul vanished away, and the knights cried after them and said: We come not to grieve you, but know ye for truth that we come for to be baptized of you, like as Paul hath said whom we saw now praying with you. When they heard that they returned and baptized them with great joy. The head of S. Paul was cast in a valley, and for the multitude of other heads of men that were there slain and thrown there, it could not be known which it was.

It is read in the epistle of S. Dionysius that on a time the valley should be made clean, and the head of S. Paul was cast out with the other heads. And a shepherd that kept sheep took it with his staff, and set it up by the place where his sheep grazed; he saw by three nights continually, and his lord also, a right great light shine upon the said head. Then they went and told it to the bishop and to other good christian men, which anon said: Truly that is the head of S. Paul. And then the bishop with a great multitude of christian men took that head with great reverence, and set it in a tablet of gold, and put it to the body for to join it thereto. Then the patriarch answered: We know well that many holy men be slain and their heads be disperpled in that place, yet I doubt whether this be the head of Paul or no, but let us set this head at the feet of the body, and pray we unto Almighty God that if it be his head that the body may turn and join it to the head, which pleased well to them all, and they set the head at the feet of the body of Paul, and then all they prayed, and the body turned him, and in his place joined him to the head, and then all they blessed God, and thus knew verily that that was the head of S. Paul. This saith S. Dionysius. And S. Gregory telleth that there was a man that fell in despair in the time of Justin the emperor, and made ready a cord to hang himself, and always he cried on S. Paul, saying: S. Paul, help me. Then came there a black shadow, saying to him: Hie thee, good man, make an end of that thou hast begun. And he alway made ready the cord, saying: Most blessed Paul, help me. And when all was ready there came another shadow, as it had been of a man that said to him that stirred him: Flee hence, thou most wretched, for Paul the advocate is come. Then the foul shadow vanished away, and the man coming again to himself, and casting away the cord, took condign penance for his offence and trespass. In the same epistle aforesaid, S. Denys bewailed the death of his master Paul with mild words, saying: Who shall give tears to mine eyes, and to my brows a fountain of water, that I may weep day and night that the light of the church is extinct. And who is he that shall not weep and wail and clothe him with clothes of mourning and sorrow, and in his mind be greatly abashed? Lo! Peter the foundement of the church and glory of saints and holy apostles is gone from us, and hath left us orphans. Paul also, the teacher and comforter of the people, is failed to us, and shall no more be found, which was father of fathers, doctor of doctors, pastor of pastors, profoundness of wisdom, a trump sounding high things, and a preacher of truth. I say verily, Paul to be most noble of the apostles, and never weary of preaching of the Word of God; he was an earthly angel, an heavenly man, image and similitude of divinity, and hath us all forsaken, needy and unworthy in this despised world, and is gone unto Christ his God, his Lord and friend. Also my brother Timothy, best beloved of my soul, where is thy master, thy father and lover? From whence shall he greet thee any more? Lo, thou art made an orphan and remainest alone. Now he shall no more write to thee with his own hand, my dearest son. Woe to me, my brother Timothy' what is happed to us of heaviness, of darkness, and harm. Because we be made orphans, now come not his epistles to thee, in which he wrote Paul the little servant of Jesu Christ. Now he shall no more write to the cities saying: Receive ye my well-beloved son. Shut, my brother, the books of the prophets and clasp them, for we now have none interpreter of the parables ne paradigmes, ne their dictes. David the prophet bewailed his son and said: Woe to me! who shall grant me to die for thee my son? And I may say woe to me, master mine, verily woe to me. Now the concourse of thy disciples coming to Rome and seeking, ceaseth and faileth. Now no man saith: Let us go and see our doctors, and ask we them how us behoveth to rule the churches to us committed, and shall interpret and expound to us the sayings of our Lord Jesu Christ and of the prophets. Verily, woe to these sons, my brother Timothy, that be deprived of their spiritual father. And also to us that be deprived of our spiritual masters which gathered together understanding and science of the old and new law and put them in their epistles. Where is now the renewing of Paul and the labour of his holy feet? Where is the mouth speaking, and the tongue counselling, and the spirit well pleasing his God? Who shall not weep and wail? For they that have deserved glory and honour towards God be put to death as malefactors and wicked men. Woe to me that beheld in that hour his blessed body all bewrapped in his innocent blood. Alas! my father and doctor, thou wert not guilty of such a death. Now whither shall I go for to seek thee, the glory of christian men and praising of good, true men? Who shall stint thy voice that sounded so high in the church in preaching the Word of God? Lo! thou hast entered in to thy Lord and thy God, whom thou hast desired with all shine affection. Jerusalem and Rome be evil friends, for they be equal in ill. Jerusalem hath crucified our Lord Jesu Christ, and Rome hath slain his apostles, Jerusalem serveth him that they crucified, and Rome in solemnising, glorifieth them that it hath slain. And now, my brother Timothy, these be they whom thou lovedst and desiredst with all shine heart, like as Saul and Jonathan that were not departed in life ne in death, and so I am not departed from my lord and master, but when ill and wicked men depart us. And the separation of one hour shall not be always, for his soul knoweth them that love him though they speak not to him which now be far from him. And at the day of the great resurrection they shall not be departed from him. Hæc Dionysius.

S. John Chrysostom saith in the book of praising of S. Paul, and commendeth this glorious apostle much, saying: What is founder sufficient in commendation of him, sith all the goodness that is in man the soul possesseth it only, and hath it in him, and not only of a man, but also of the angels ? And in what manner we shall say to you hereafter, Abel offered sacrifice, and of that he was praised, but we shall show thee the sacrifice of Paul, and it shall appear greater, inasmuch as heaven is higher than the earth. For Paul sacrificed himself every day, and offered double sacrifice in heart and in body, which he mortified. He offered not sheep ne meat, but he sacrificed himself in double wise, and yet that sufficed him not, but he studied to offer to God, all the world. For he environed all the world that is under heaven and made angels of men. And moreover men that were like fiends he changed them to angels. Who is he that is found pareil or like to this sacrifice, which Paul with the sword of the Holy Ghost offered up to the altar which is above heaven? Abel was slain by treason of his brother, but Paul was slain of them whom he desired to withdraw and save from innumerable evils. His deaths were so many that they may not well be numbered. He had as many as he lived days. Noah, as it is read, kept himself; his wife, and his children in the ark, but Paul in a more perilous and older flood, in an ark not made with boards, with pitch and glue, but with epistles made for boards, delivered and saved the universal world from the floods of error and of sin. This ark or ship was not borne to one place, but it was sent through the universal world, ne limed with pitch ne glue, but the boards thereof were anointed with the Holy Ghost. He took them that were worshippers of reasonable beasts, almost more fools than unreasonable beasts, for to be the followers of angels. He overcame that ark in which was received the crow, and sent him out again, and closing a wolf therein whose woodness he could not change. But this Paul took falcons and kites, and made of them doves, and excluded all woodness and ferocity from them, and brought to them the spirit of meekness. Some marvel of Abraham that at the commandment of God left his country and kindred, but how may he be compared to Paul, which not only left his country and kindred, but also himself and the world also. He forsook and despised all things and required to have but one thing, and that was the charity and love of Jesu Christ. Ne he desired things-present, ne things to come, etc. But Abraham put himself in peril for to save his brother's son, but Paul sustained many perils for to bring the universal world from perils of the devil, and brought others to great surety with his own death. Abraham would have offered his son Isaac to God, but Paul brought neither friend nor neighbour, but offered himself to God a thousand times. Some marvel of the patience of Isaac, for he suffered the pits that he made to be stopped, but Paul not beholding the pits stopped with stones, ne his own body beaten only, but them of whom he suffered great pains he studied to bring to heaven, and the more this well was stopped, so much the more it flowed out streams in shedding of water of scripture, of meekness and of patience. Of the patience of Jacob scripture marvelleth, which abode seven years for his spouse, but who hath that soul of an adamant that may follow the patience of Paul ? For he abode not only seven years for Christ his spouse, but all his lifetime. He was not only burnt with the heat of the day, ne suffered only the frost of the night, but suffering temptations, now with beatings, now stoned with stones, and always among his torments caught the sheep and drew them to the faith from the mouth of the devil. And also he was made decorate and made fair with the chastity of Joseph. And here I doubt lest some would take it for a leasing for to praise here Paul, which crucifying himself, not only the beauty of men's bodies, but all such things that were seen to be fair and clear that he beheld, set no more by them than we do by a little ashes or filth, and abode unmovable as a dead man to a dead man. All men wonder at Job, for he was a marvellous champion, but Paul was not only troubled by months, but many years enduring in agony, and always appeared clear. He put not away the woodness of his flesh with a shard or shell, but he ran daily, as the understanding mouth of a lion, and fought against innumerable temptations, which were more tolerable than a stone. Which not of three or four friends, but of all men and of his brethren he suffered opprobrium, and was confused and cursed of them all, and he took everything meekly and patiently. Job was a man of great hospitality, and had care of poor people, and that he did was to sustain the filth of the flesh. But S. Paul laboured to help the sickness of the souls. Job opened his house to every man that came, but the soul of Paul showed him to the universal world. Job had sheep and oxen innumerable, and of them he was liberal to poor men. Paul had no possession save his body, and with that he ministered suflicient]y to them that had need, which in a place saith: Unto my necessities, and to them that were with me, these hands have ministered. And to holy Job were given worms, wounds, and sores, which did to him much pain and sorrow; but an thou wilt consider Paul, thou shalt see betimes hunger, chains, and perils that he suffered of his known men and of strangers. He suffered of all the world, business for the churches, and burning for slanders. Thou mayst see that he was harder than any stone, and his soul overcame with infirmity, iron, and adamant. What Job suffered with his body, that Paul sustained with his mind, which is more grievous than any worm. And oft his eyes flowed of tears, not only on days, but also on nights. He was more tormented than a woman in the birth of her child, wherefore he said: My little children, whom yet I bring forth. Moses chose to be defaced out of the book of life for the health of the Jews, and offered himself to perish with others; but Paul would not only perish with his kindred, but, that all other should be saved, would be cast down from everlasting joy. And Moses repugned against Pharaoh, and Paul against the devil every day. He for one people of the Jews, and Paul fought for all the universal world, not by sweat, but by blood. S. John the Baptist ate locusts and wild honey, but Paul in the middle of the world was as straight in his conversation as S. John was in desert. Not only he was fed with locusts and wild honey, but with much fouler meat he was content. For oft he left his necessary meat for the fervent study that he had to preach the Word of God. Truly there appeared in S. John great constancy in preaching against Herodias; but Paul, not one, ne two, ne three, but he corrected innumerable men set up in high power, and also older tyrants. It resteth now that we compare Paul to angels, in which we shall preach a great thing, for with all charge, they obey unto God, which David saith, marvelling that they be mighty in virtue, and ever do the commandments of God. And also the prophet saith that he maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers fire burning. And all this we may find in Paul, that like to fire and a spirit he hath run throughout all the world, and with his preaching hath purged it. And yet he hath not sorted heaven, and that is wonderful, for he conversed such as in heaven, and was yet environed with his mortal flesh.

Ah ! Lord, how much be we worthy damnation, when we see all good things to be assembled in one man, and we study not to follow the least part of them. Ne he had in this world none other thing, ne none other nature, ne none other soul dissemblable to us, ne dwelling in none other world, but in the same earth, and the same region, also under the same laws nourished, and manners; and he surmounteth all men, that now be or have been, by virtue of his courage. Ne this thing is not to be marvelled in him only, that for the abundance of devotion he felt no pain, but he recompensed in him the virtue for his reward. And when he saw that his death approached, he called others to the delight of his joy, saying: Make ye joy and rejoice ye with me. And certainly he hasted more to wrongs and injuries which he suffered for his true preaching, and was gladder thereof than he were bidden to a feast of great joy. For he desired more death than bodily life, and he desired more poverty than riches, and travail than rest, for in his rest he chose rather weeping than rest. He used to pray more for his enemies than others do for their friends. And above all other thing he dreaded the wrath of God, and had none other desire, but only to please God. And he forsook not only all present things, but all things that be for to come. He refused all prosperities that ever were or ever shall be on earth, and if we shall speak of heavenly things, thou shalt see the love of him in Jesu Christ. And with this love he thought himself blessed. He coveted not to be fellow with angels ne archangels, ne with none order of angels, but he coveted more with the love of God to be least of them that be punished, than without his love to be among sovereign honours, and that was to him most greatest torment, for to depart from his love, for that departing should be to him a hell and pain without end. And on that other side, for to use the charity of Christ was to him life, world, and promission and all goods without number. And so he despised all that we dread, like as we despise a herb putrified and rotten. He reputed the tyrants conspiring their fury into the apostles, like as bitings of fleas, and he reputed death, cruelness, and a thousand torments, but as a play or game of children whilst he suffered them for Christ's sake. He thought he was made more fair with binding of chains than he had been crowned with a diadem. For when he was constrained to be in prison, he thought he was in heaven, and he received more gladlier beatings and wounds, than others victories. He loved no less sorrows than meeds, for he reputed those sorrows instead of rewards. And such things that be to us cause of sorrows; were unto him great delight, and was ever embraced with great weepings. Wherefore he said: Who is slandered and I burn not? and who can say: I delight in sorrowing? Many be wounded with the death of their children, and take comfort when they may weep enough, and it is most grievance to them when they be restrained from their weeping. In like wise Paul night and day had consolation of his tears and weeping. There could no man weep ne bewail his own defaults as he bewailed other men's defaults, for like as thou weenest him to be in torment that weepeth the perishing for his sins, the which desired to be excluded from the joy of heaven, to the end that they might be saved, for he felt as much the perishing of other souls as he felt or trowed himself to perish. To what thing may he then be likened, to what iron, or to what adamant? For he was stronger than any adamant, and more precious than gold or gems. That one matter he overcame with strength, and that other with preciousness. Then we may say that Paul is more precious than all the world and all that is therein, for he flew, as he had wings, through all the world in preaching, and he despised all labours and perils as though he had been without body. And like as he possessed heaven, so he despised all earthly things; and like as iron that is laid in the fire is made all fire, right so Paul, embraced with charity, was made all charity. And right as it had been a common father of all the world, so he loved all men, and surmounted all other fathers, bodily and ghostly, by curiosity and pity, and desired and hasted him to yield all men to God and to his kingdom, as though he had engendered them. all. This holy Paul that was so simple, and used the craft to make baskets, came to so great virtue, that in the space of thirty years he converted to the christian faith the Persians and Parthians, them of Media, the Indians, the Scythians, the Ethiopians, and the Saromates and the Saracens, and moreover all manner men. And like as fire put in straw or in tow wasteth it, right so wasted Paul all the works of the fiend. And when he was led through the great sea, he joyed him as greatly as though he had been led to see an empire. And when he was entered into Rome, it sufficed him not to abide there, but he went into Spain, and was never idle ne in rest, but was always more burning than fire in the love to preach the Word ot God, ne dreaded no perils, ne had no shame of despites, but was ever ready unto battle, and anon showed himself peaceable and amiable. And when his disciples saw him bound in chains, for all that he ceased not to preach whilst he was in prison. Wherefore some of the brethren considering his teaching, took the more strength to them, and were more constant against the enemies of Christ's faith. And all this, and much more saith S. John Chrysostom, which were overmuch to write here, but this shall suflfice. Then let us pray unto Almighty God, that by the merits of S. Paul we may have forgiveness of our sins and trespasses in this present life, that after the same we may come to everlasting joy in heaven.

Here follow the Lives of the Seven Brethren.

The seven brethren were the sons of S. Felicitas, whose names be Januarius, Felix, Philip, Silvanus, Alexander, Vital, and Marcial. All these were called by the commandment of the emperor Anthony, tofore Publius the provost. And then the provost counselled the mother that she should have pity upon herself and on her sons, who answered and said: Neither for thy flattering ne thy blandishing words thou mayst not draw me to thy desire, ne with thy threatenings thou mayst not break me. I am assured of the Holy Ghost, whom I have, that I shall alive overcome thee, and better shall vanquish thee when I am dead. And then she turned her to her sons, and said: My sons, see the heaven and look upward my dearest children, for Christ abideth you there. Fight ye strongly for Christ, and show you faithful and true in the love of Jesu Christ. And when the provost heard that, he commanded that she should be smitten and buffeted. And as the mother and her sons abode most constantly in the faith, the mother seeing and comforting them, they were slain with divers torments. And S. Gregory calleth this blessed Felicitas more than a martyr, for she suffered seven times death in her seven sons, and the eighth time in her proper body, and he saith in his homily that S. Felicitas in believing was the handmaid of Christ, and in preaching was made the martyr of Christ. And she dreaded to leave after her, for to live, her seven sons in prison, like as worldly friends dread lest they should die in prison. She childed and bare them by the Holy Ghost, whom she had borne to the world of her flesh; and them whom she knew well of her own flesh, she might not see die without sorrow. But it was the force of the love withinforth, that overcame the sorrow of the flesh. And I have said by right this woman to be more than a martyr, that so oft hath been extinct in her sons, in which she hath therein multiplied martyrdom. She overcame the victory of martyrdom, when for the love of God her only death sufficed her not. And they suffered death about the year of our Lord one hundred and ten, under Decius the emperor.

The Life of S. Theodora.

Theodora was a noble woman and a fair, in Alexandria in the time of Zeno the emperor, and had a rich man to her husband, and dreading God. The devil having envy to the holiness of Theodora, enticed a rich man of the town into the concupiscence of her; which sent her divers messengers and gifts, requiring that she would assent to his desire. But she refused their message and despised the gifts. He was so busy on her, and so much grievous, that she could have no rest, and was almost overcome. At the last he sent a witch and promised her many things if she could bring about that she should consent to his desire. And she went and exhorted her to do this sin with that man, and to have pity on him. To whom she said that, tofore God all things were known, wherefor she would in no wise do so great a sin. And this false enchantress said: whatsoever is done in the daytime God seeth and knoweth, but what is done after the sun is down in the west and is dark, God knoweth nothing thereof. To whom Theodora said: Sayst thou the truth? Yea, verily I tell you the truth. And so the woman being deceived, bade the man he should come at night, and she should accomplish his will and desire. And when this ill woman had told this to the man, he was glad and joyful, and kept his hour, and had his will of her and departed. Theodora, returning to herself, began to weep most bitterly, and smote her visage and breast, saying: Alas! alas! I have lost my soul, and have destroyed the beauty of my name. Her husband came from without, and found his wife so sorrowing and desolate, desired to know the cause for to comfort her, but she would receive no consolation.

In the morn early she went to a monastery of nuns, and demanded of the abbess if God could know any sin done and committed by night, after the day was passed. To whom she said: Nothing may be hid from God, for God seeth and knoweth all that is done in what hour it be committed by night or day. And then she wept bitterly saying: Give me the book of the Gospels that some lot may fall to me. And she opening the book found written: Quod scripsi scripsi. Then she returned home to her house. And on a day when her husband was out, she cut off her hair, and clad her with the clothes of her husband, and went to a monastery of monks which was eighteen miles thence, and hied her, and there required that she might be received with the monks. She was demanded of her name, and she said she was named Theodorus. And there she was received, and meekly did all the offces, and her services were acceptable to everybody. After certain years the abbot called brother Theodorus for to yoke the oxen, and commanded her that she should go to the city and fetch oil. Her husband wept much for sorrow and dread lest she were gone away with another man. And the angel of God appeared to him and said: Arise early and stand in the way of the martyrs Peter and Paul, and she that shall meet thee is thy wife. Which done, Theodora with her camels came, and, seeing her husband, knew him well, and said within herself: Alas! good husband, how much labour do I that I may have forgiveness of the sin that I have done to thee? And when she approached him she saluted him saying: Our Lord give thee joy, my lord. He nothing knew her, and when he had long abided he held him deceived. And a voice said to him: He that yesterday saluted thee was thy wife.

Theodora was of so great holiness, that she did many miracles. She saved a man all to-torn with a wild beast by her prayers, and she cursed that beast, and suddenly it died and fell down. The devil could not suffer her holiness, and appeared to her saying: Thou strumpet above all other, and adulterer, thou hast forsaken thy husband for to come hither and despise me. By my might and power I shall raise a battle against thee, and but I make thee reny the crucified God, say it am not I. She made the sign of the cross, and anon the devil vanished away. On a time as she returned from the city, and in a certain place was harboured, a wench came to her in the night, saying: Sleep with me this night, whom she refused. And then this wench went to another that lay in the same hostelry. When her belly began to swell, she was demanded of whom she had conceived. And she said: That monk hath lain by me. When the child was born they sent it to the abbot of the monastery, which blamed sore Theodorus, and he meekly demanded that it might be forgiven him. But he was cast out of the monastery, and took the child upon his shoulder, and so she abode out of the monastery seven years, and nourished the child with the milk of the beasts. The devil having envy of her much patience, in the likeness of her husband he transfigured him, and came and said to her: Come now thou, my wife, for if thou hast lain with another man I forgive it thee. And she had supposed it had been her husband, and said: I shall no more dwell with thee, for the son of John the knight hath lain by me, and I will do penance for that I have sinned against thee. And she made her prayer, and anon the devil vanished away, and she knew that it was the devil.

Another time the devil would make her afraid, for devils came to her in the likeness of terrible wild beasts, and a certain man said to them: Eat ye this strumpet; she then prayed, and anon they vanished away. Another time a multitude of knights came, with whom was a prince tofore, and the others worshipped him. Which knights said to Theodora, Arise and worship our prince. Which answered: I worship and adore my Lord God. And when it was told to the prince, he commanded that she should be brought tofore him, and to be tormented with so many torments that she should be esteemed for dead. And then she made her prayers, and all the multitude vanished away. Another time she saw there much gold, and she blessed her and commended her to God, and it vanished away. Another time she saw a basket borne full of all manner of good meat, and he that bare it said to her: The prince that beat thee saith that thou shouldest take this and eat, for he did it unwittingly. She blessed her, and anon he vanished away.

When the seven years were complete that she had been out of the monastery, the abbot considering her patience took her in again with her child. And unnethe two years after, when she had laudably accomplished her observance, she took the child and closed it with her in her cell. And when the abbot knew thereof he sent certain of his monks to take heed what she did and said. And she embracing the child and kissing said: My sweet son, the time of my death cometh, I leave and commend thee to God; take him for thy father and helper. And my sweet son, see that thou fast and pray, and serve my brethren devoutly. And she thus saying gave up her spirit, and slept in our Lord, about the year of grace four hundred, sixty and ten, which the child be holding began to weep bitterly. In that same night was a vision showed to the abbot in this wise. Him seemed that a great marriage was made, and thereto came angels, prophets, martyrs, and all saints, and in the middle of them was a woman beset about with great glory, and they that assisted her, worshipped her. And a voice was heard saying: This is Theodora the monk that was falsely accused of a child. And seven times be changed on her. She is chastised, because she defouled the bed of her husband. And then the abbot awoke, and astonished, went with his brethren to her cell, and found her there dead. And they entered in and uncovered her, and found that she was a woman. The abbot sent for the father of the wench that slandered her, and said to him: The man that hath lain by thy daughter is now dead, and took away the cloth and so knew that she was a woman. And all that heard thereof were in great dread. The angel of God spake to the abbot, saying: Arise hastily and take thy horse, and ride into the city, and him that thou meet, take and bring him with thee. And forth he rode, and met with a man running, whom the abbot demanded whither he ranne, and he said: My wife is now dead, and I go to see her. And the abbot took and set the husband of Theodora on his horse, and came together weeping much sore, and with great reverence and solemnity buried her. The husband of Theodora entered into the cell of his wife, and abode therein till that he died in our Lord. The child, following his nurse, Theodora, flourished in all honesty, and when the abbot of the monastery was dead, he was elected with one voice of the convent for to be abbot. Then let us pray to this holy saint Theodora, to pray Almighty God for us. Amen.

Here followeth the Life of S. Swithin, Bishop.

S. Swithin, the holy confessor, was born beside Winchester in the time of St. Egbert, king. He was the seventh king after Kenulf that S. Birinus christened. For S. Austin christened not all England in S. Ethelbert's days, but S. Birinus christened the west part of England in the days of Kenulf the king. And at that time this holy S. Swithin served our Lady so devoutly that all people that knew him had great joy of his holiness, and Elmeston, that was in that time Bishop of Winchester, made him priest. And then he lived a straighter living than he did before, and he became then so holy in living that King Egbert made him his chancellor and chief of his council, and set Ethulf his son and his heir under his rule and guiding, and prayed him to take heed to him that he might be brought up virtuously. And within short time after the king died, and then his son Ethult was made king after him. And he guided this land full well and wisely, that it increased greatly in good living, through the counsel of S. Swithin. And when Elmeston the Bishop of Winchester was dead, Swithin was made Bishop there after him, whereof the people were full glad, and by his holy living he caused the people to live virtuously, and to pay their tithes to God and holy church. And if any church fell down, or was in decay, S. Swithin would anon amend it at his own cost. Or if any church were not hallowed, he would go thither afoot and hallow it. For he loved no pride, ne to ride on gay horses, ne to be praised ne flattered of the people, which in these days such things be used over much. God cease it.

S. Swithin guided full well his bishopric, and did much good to the town of Winchester in his time. He did do make without the west gate of the town a fair bridge of stone at his proper cost. And on a time there came a woman over the bridge with her lap full of eggs, and a reckless fellow struggled and wrestled with her, and brake all her eggs. And it happed that this holy bishop came that way the same time, and bade the woman let him see her eggs, and anon he lift up his hand and blessed the eggs, and they were made whole and sound, ever each one, by the merits of this holy bishop, and being then glad she thanked God and this holy man for the miracle that was done to her.

And soon after died King Ethulf, and his son Egbert reigned after him. And after him was Ethelbert king; and in the third year of his reign died this blessed bishop S. Swithin. And when he should die, he charged his men to bury him in the churchyard, for the people should not worship him after his death. For he loved no pomp by his life, ne none would have after his death. He passed to our Lord the year of grace eight hundred and six. And he lay in the churchyard, ere he was translated, a hundred and nine years and odd days. But in the time of holy king Edgar his body was translated and put in a shrine in the abbey of Winchester by S. Dunstan and Ethelwold. And the same year was S. Edward, king and martyr shrined at Shaftesbury. These two bishops, Dunstan and Ethelwold, were warned by our Lord to see that these two holy Saints, Swithin and Edward, should be worshipfully shrined, and so they were within short time after. And a holy man warned Ethelwold whilst he lay sick, to help that these two holy bodies might be shrined, and then he should be perfectly whole, and so endure to his life's end; and the token is that, ye shall find on S. Swithin's grave two rings of iron nailed fast thereon. And as soon as he set hand on the rings they came off of the stone, and no token was seen in the stone, where they were fastened in. And when they had taken up the stone from the grave, they set the rings to the stone again, and anon they fastened to it by themselves. And then this holy bishop gave laud and praising to our Lord for this miracle. And at the opening of the grave of S. Swithin, such a sweet odour and savour issued out that king Edgar and all the multitude of people were fulfilled with heavenly sweetness, and a blind man received there his sight again, and many were healed of divers sickness and maladies by the merits of this holy saint, S. Swithin, to whom let us pray that he be our advocate to the good Lord for us, etc.

Here followeth the Translation of S. Thomas of Canterbury.

The translation of the glorious martyr, S. Thomas of Canterbury, we shall shortly rehearse unto the laud and praising of Almighty God, then in the fiftieth year after his passion, which was the year of jubilee, that is of remission. For, of ancient time, the fiftieth year was called the year of the jubilee of pardon and remission, and is yet used among religious men. For when a religious man hath continued in his order fifty years, then he shall be admitted to make his jubilee, and that made, he is pardoned and hath remission of many observances that tofore he was bounden unto. Then in this year of jubilee from his passion, was the solemnity of his translation accomplished, in the time of Honorius, the third pope of that name. The which granted yearly remissions and indulgences so great and large, that tofore in no time of mind hath been seen any popes to have granted and given like. Then let us call to mind that on a Tuesday his translation was accomplished. On the Tuesday happed to him many things. On a Tuesday he was born, on a Tuesday he was exiled, on a Tuesday our Lord appeared to him at Pountney in France, saying: Thomas, my church shall be glorified in thy blood. On a Tuesday he returned from his exile, and on a Tuesday he suffered martyrdom.

Then how this holy translation was fulfilled now ye shall hear. The reverend father in God, Stephen, Archbishop of Canterbury, Richard, bishop of Salisbury, Walter, the prior of the same place, with the convent, with spiritual songs and devout hymns, when it was night, went to the sepulchre of this holy martyr, and all that night and day of his translation, they persevered in prayers and fastings. And after midnight, four priests, elected and thereto chosen, approaching to his body, took up the holy head with great devotion and reverence, and unto them all offered it for to kiss it. Then the archbishop, and all the others, made great honour to it, and took all the relics of the precious body, and laid them in a chest, and shut it fast with iron locks, and set it in a place for to be kept unto the day that the translation should be solemnised. The day then of this holy translation being come, there were present a great innumerable multitude of people, as well of rich as of poor. There was Pandulphus, a legate of our holy father the pope, and two archbishops of France, of Rheims and Arles, with many other bishops and abbots, and also king Harry the Third with earls and barons, which king himself took the chest upon his shoulders, and with the other prelates and lords, brought it with great joy and honour in to the place where it is now worshipped, and was laid in a fair and much rich shrine. At whose holy translation were showed, by the merits of this holy martyr, S. Thomas, many miracles. To blind men was given their sight, to deaf men their hearing, to dumb men their speech, and to dead men was restored life.

Among all others there was a man, because of great devotion that he had to be at this holy translation and visit the holy martyr, which came to the bridge at Brentford by London; and when he was in the middle of the bridge, meeting there one, was cast into the water. This man, not forgetting himself, called S. Thomas unto his help, and besought him not to suffer his pilgrim to perish, ne to be there drowned. And five times he sank down to the ground, and five times arose above the water, and then he was cast to the dry ground. Then he affirmed that he received no water into his mouth, ne into his ears that did to him grievance ne hurt that he felt, save in his falling he felt in his mouth a little salt water; and added more thereto, saying that, when he sank, a bishop held him up that he might not sink.

This holy translation was done and accomplished the year of our Lord twelve hundred and twenty, in the nones of July, at three o'clock, in the fiftieth year after his passion. For this glorious saint our Lord hath showed many great miracles, as well by his life, as after his death and martyrdom. For a little tofore his death a young man died and was raised again by miracle. And he said that he was led to see the holy order of saints in heaven, and there he saw a seat void, and he asked for whom it was, and it was answered to him that, it was kept for the great bishop of England, S. Thomas of Canterbury. There was also a simple priest that daily sang no other mass but of our Lady, whereof he was put to S. Thomas his ordinary, whom accused, he opposed, and found him full simple of conning, wherefore he suspended him, and inhibited him his mass. Wherefore this priest was full sorry, and prayed humbly to our blessed Lady that he might be restored again to say his mass. And then our blessed Lady appeared to this priest, and bade him go to S. Thomas, and bid him by the token that the lady whom thou servest hath sewed his shirt of hair with red silk, which he shall find there as he laid it, that he give thee leave to sing mass, and assoil thee of his suspending and thine inhibiting, and restore thee again to thy service. And when S. Thomas heard this he was greatly abashed, and went and found like as the priest had said, and then assoiled him to say mass as he did before, commanding him to keep this thing secret as long as he lived.

There was a lady in England that desired greatly to have grey eyes, for she had a conceit that she should be the more beauteous in the sight of the people; and only for that cause she made a row to visit S. Thomas upon her bare feet. And when she came thither, and had devoutly made her prayers to have her desire, suddenly she wax stark blind, and then she perceived that she had offended and displeased our Lord in that request, and cried God mercy of that offence, and besought him full meekly to be restored of her sight again. And by the merits of the blessed S. Thomas she was restored to her sight again, and was glad to have her old eyes, and returned home again, and lived holy to her life's end. Also there was a lord's carver that brought water to him at his table, to whom the lord said: If thou hast ever stolen anything of mine, I pray God and S. Thomas that thou have no water in the bason, and suddenly it was all void of the water and dry, and there was he proved a thief.

There was a tame bird kept in a cage whicb was learned to speak. And on a time he fled out of the cage and flew into the field; and there came a sparrowhawk, and would have taken this bird and pursued after. And the bird being in great dread cried: S. Thomas! help! like as he had heard others speak, and the sparrowhawk fell down dead. and the bird escaped harmless.

Also there was a man that S. Thomas loved much in his days, and he fell in a grievous sickness, wherefore he went to the tomb of S. Thomas to pray for his health, and anon he had his desire and was all whole. And as he turned homeward, being all whole, then he began to dread lest this health should not be most profitable for his soul. Then he returned again to the tomb of S. Thomas, and prayed if his health were not profitable to his soul, that his old sickness might come again to him. And it came anon again to him, and endured unto his life's end. And in like wise there was a devout blind man which had his sight restored to him again by the merit of S. Thomas; but after, he repented him for he could not be so quiet in his mind as he was before, he had then so much letting by seeing the vanities of the world. Wherefore he prayed to our Lord that by the merits of S. Thomas, he might be blind again to the world as he was before, and anon he had his desire, and lived after full holily to his life's end. Who should tell all the miracles that our blessed Lord hath showed for this holy martyr, it should overmuch endure, for ever sith his passion unto this day, God hath showed continually for him many great miracles. Then let us pray this holy saint to be a special advocate for us wretched sinners unto our Lord God, who bring us unto his everlasting bliss in heaven.

Here followeth the Life of S. Kenelm, Kng and Martyr.

S. Kenelm, martyr, was king of a part of England by Wales. His father was king tofore him, and was named Kenulf, and founded the abbey of Winchcombe, and set therein monks. And when he was dead he was buried in the same abbey. And that time Winchcombe was the best town of that country. In England are three principal rivers, and they be Thames, Severn, and Humber. This king Kenelm was king of Worcestershire, Warwickshire and Gloucestershire, and the bishop of Worcester was bishop of those three shires, and he was king also of Derbyshire, Cheshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Herefo rdshire, Nottinghamshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Leicestershire, and Lincolnshire. All this was called the March of Wales, and of all those countries S. Kenelm was king, and Winchcombe, that time, was chief city of all these shires. And in that time were in England six kings, and before that, Oswald had been king of all England. And after him it was departed, in S. Kenelm's days. Kenulf, his father, was a full holy man, and Dornemilde and Quendred were sisters of S. Kenelm. And Kenulf, his father, died the year of our Lord eight hundred and nineteen. Then was Kenelm made king when he was seven years of age, and his sister Dornemilde loved him much, and they lived holily together to their lives' end. But Quendred, that other sister, turned her to wickedness, and had great envy of her brother Kenelm, because he was so rich above her, and laboured with all her power to destroy him, because she would be queen and reign after him, and let make a strong poison, and gave it to her brother. But God kept him that it never grieved him. And when she saw that she could not prevail against the king in that manner, she laboured to Askeberd, which was chief ruler about the king, and promised to him a great sum of money, and also her body at his will, if he would slay this young king her brother, and anon they accorded in this treason.

And in this while, and at that same time, this young holy king was asleep, and dreamed a marvellous dream. For him seemed that he saw a tree stand by his bedside, and that the height thereof touched heaven, and it shined as bright as gold, and had fair branches full of blossoms and fruit. And on every branch of this tree were tapers of wax burning and lamps alight, which was a glorious sight to behold. And him thought that he climbed upon this tree and Askeberd his governor stood beneath and hewed down this tree that he stood on. And when this tree was fallen down, this holy young king was heavy and sorrowful, and him thought there came a fair bird which flew up to heaven with great joy. And anon after this dream he awoke, and was all abashed of this dreme, which anon after, he told to his nurse named Wolweline. And when he had told to her all his dream, she was full heavy, and told to him what it meant, and said his sister and the traitor Askeberd had falsely conspired his death. For she said to him that he had promised to Quendred to slay thee, and that signifieth that he smiteth down the tree that stood by thy bedside. And the bird that thou sawest flee up to heaven, signifieth thy soul, that angels shall bear up to heaven after thy martyrdom. And anon after this, Askeberd desired the king that he should go and disport him by the wood's side named Clent; and as he walked, the young king was all heavy and laid him down to sleep, and then this false traitor purposed to have slain the king, and began to make the pit to bury him in. But anon, as God would, the king awoke, and said to this Askeberd that he laboured in vain, for God will not that I die in this place. But take this small rod, and thereas thou shalt set it in the earth, there shall I be martyred. And then they went forth together, a good way thence, till they came to a hawthorn, and there he pight the rod in the earth, and forthwith incontinent it bare green leaves, and suddenly it waxed to a great ash tree, the which standeth there yet unto this day, and is called Kenelm's ash. And there this Askeberd smote off this holy young king's head. And anon, his soule was borne up into heaven in likeness of a white dove. And then the wicked traitor drew the body into a great valley between two hills, and there he made a deep pit and cast the body therein, and laid the head upon it. And whilst he was about to smite off the head, the holy king, kneeling on his knees, said this holy canticle: Te Deum laudamus, till he came to this verse: Te martyrum candidatus, and therewith he gave up his spirit to our Lord Jesu Christ in likeness of a dove, as afore is said. Then anon this wicked man Askeberd went to Quendred, and told to her all along how he had done, whereof she was full glad, and anon after, took on her to be queen, and charged, on pain of death, that no man should speak of Kenelm. And after that she abandoned her body to wretched living of her flesh in lechery, and brought her own men to wretched living. And this holy body lay long time after in that wood called Clent, for no man durst fetch him thence to bury him in hallowed place for fear of the queen Quendred.

And it was so that a poor widow lived thereby, which had a white cow, which was driven in to the wood of Clent. And anon as she was there she would depart and go into the valley where Kenelm was buried, and there rest all the day sitting by the corpse without meat. And every night came home with other beasts, fatter, and gave more milk than any of the other kine, and so continued certain years, whereof the people marvelled that she ever was in so good point and ate no meat. That valley whereas S. Kenelm's body lay is called Cowbage.

After, on a time, as the pope sang mass at Rome in S. Peter's church, suddenly there came a white dove, and let fall a scroll on the altar whereon the pope said his mass. And these words were written therein in letters of gold:

In Clent in Cowbage, Kenelm, king born, Lieth under a thorn, His head off shorn.

And when the pope had said his mass, he showed the scroll to all the people, but there was none that could tell what it meant, till at last there came an Englishman, and he told it openly tofore all the people what it meant. And then the pope with all the people gave laud and praising to our Lord, and kept that scroll for a relic. And the feast of S. Kenelm was hallowed that day solemnly through all Rome. And anon after, the pope sent his messengers into England to the archbishop of Canterbury, named Wilfrid, and bade him, with his bishops, go and seek the place where the holy body lieth, which is named Cowbage, in the wood of Clent. And then this place was soon known, because of the miracle that was showed by the white cow. And when the archbishop, with other bishops, and many other people came thither and found the place, anon they Iet dig up the body, and took it up with great solemnity. And forthwith sprang up in the same place, whereas the body had lain, a fair well, which is called S. Kenelm's well unto this day, where much people have been healed of divers sicknesses and maladies. And when the body was above the earth, there fell a strife between them of Worcestershire and of Gloucestershire, who should have this body. And then a full good man that was there among them gave counsel that all the people should lie down and sleep and rest them, for the weather was then right hot. And which of the two shires that God would first awake, they to take this holy body and go their way. And all the people agreed thereto and lay them down to sleep. And it happed that the abbot of Winchcombe and all his men awoke first, and they took up the holy body, and bare it forth toward Winchcombe till they came upon an hill a mile from the abbey. And for heat and labour they were nigh dead for thirst, and anon they prayed to God, and to this holy saint to be their comfort. And then the abbot pight his cross into the earth, and forthwith sprang up there a fair well, whereof they drank and refreshed them much. And then took up this holy body with great solemnity. And the monks received it with procession solemnly, and brought it into the abbey with great reverence, joy and mirth, and the bells sounded and were rung without man's hand. And then the queen Quendred demanded what all this ringing meant. And they told her how her brother Kenelm was brought with procession into the abbey, and that the bells rung without man' s help. And then she said, in secret scorn: That is as true, said she, as both my eyes fall upon this book, and anon both her eyes fell out of her head upon the book. And yet it is seen on this day where they fell upon the psalter she read that same time. Deum laudemus. And soon after she died wretchedly, and was cast out into a foul mire, and then after, was this holy body of S. Kenelm laid in an honourable shrine, whereas our Lord showeth daily many a miracle. To whom be given laud and praising, world without end. Amen.

Here followeth the glorious Life and passion of the Blessed Virgin and Martyr S. Margaret, and first of her name.

Margaret is said of a precious gem, or ouche, that is named a margaret. Which gem is white, little and virtuous. So the blessed Margaret was white by virginity, little by humility, and virtuous by operation of miracles. The virtue of this stone is said to be against effusion of blood, against passion of the heart, and to confortation of the spirit. In like wise the blessed Margaret had virtue against shedding of her blood by constancy, for in her martyrdom she was most constant, and also against the passion of the heare, that is to say, temptation of the devil. For she overcame the devil by victory, and to the confortation of the spirit by doctrine, for by her doctrine she comforted much people, and converted to the faith of Christ. Theoteinus, a learned man, wrote her legend.

The holy S. Margaret was of the city of Antioch, daughter of Theodosius, patriarch and prince of the idols of paynims. And she was delivered to a nurse for to be kept. And when she came to perfect age she was baptized, wherefor she was in great hate of her father.

On a certain day, when she was fifteen years of age, and kept the sheep of her nurse with other maidens, the provost Olybrius passed by the way whereas she was, and considered in her so great beauty and fairness, that anon he burned in her love, and sent his servants and bade them take her and bring her to him. For if she be free I shall take her to my wife, and if she be bond, I shall make her my concubine. And when she was presented tofore him he demanded her of her lineage, name and religion. And she answered that she was of noble lineage, and for her name Margaret, and christian in religion. To whom the provost said: The two first things be convenient to thee, that is that thou art noble, and art called Margaret which is a most fair name, but the third appertaineth nothing to thee, that so fair a maid and so noble should have a God crucified. To whom she said: How knowest thou that Christ was crucified? He answered: By the books of christian men. To whom Margaret said: O what shame is it to you, when you read the pain of Christ and the glory, and believe one thing and deny another. And she said and affirmed him to be crucified by his will for our redemption, and now liveth ever in bliss. And then the provost, being wroth, commanded her to be put in prison. And the next day following commanded that she should be brought to him, and then said to her: O good maid, have pity on thy beauty, and worship our gods, that thou mayest be well. To whom she said: I worship him that maketh the earth to tremble, whom the sea dreadeth and the winds and creatures obey. To whom the provost said: But if thou consent to me I shall make thy body to be all to-torn. To whom Margaret said: Christ gave himself over to the death for me, and I desire gladly to die for Christ. Then the provost commanded her to be hanged in an instrument to torment the people, and to be cruelly first beaten with rods, and with iron combs to rend and draw her flesh to the bones, insomuch that the blood ran about out of her body, like as a stream runneth out of a fresh springing well. They that were there wept, and said: O Margaret, verily we be sorry for thee, which see thy body so foul, and so cruelly torn and rent. O how thy most beauty hast thou lost for thy incredulity and misbelief. Now believe, and thou shalt live. Then said she to them: 0 evil counsellors, depart ye, and go from me, this cruel torment of my flesh is salvation of my soul. Then she said to the provost: Thou shameless hound and insatiable lion, thou hast power over my flesh, but Christ reserveth my soul. The provost covered his face with his mantle, for he might not see so much effusion of blood, and then commanded that she should be taken down, and to shut her fast in prison, and there was seen a marvellous brightness in the prison, of the keepers.

And whilst she was in prison, she prayed our Lord that the fiend that had fought with her, he would visibly show him unto her. And then appeared a horrible dragon and assailed her, and would have devoured her, but she made the sign of the cross, and anon he vanished away. And in another place it is said that he swallowed her into his belly, she making the sign of the cross. And the belly brake asunder, and so she issued out all whole and sound.

This swallowing and breaking of the belly of the dragon is said that it is apocryphal.

After this the devil appeared to her in likeness of a man for to deceive her. And when she saw him, she went to prayer and after arose, and the fiend came to her, and took her by the hand and said: It sufficeth to thee that thou hast done, but now cease as to my person. She caught him by the head and threw him to the ground, and set her right foot on his neck saying: Lie still, thou fiend, under the feet of a woman. The devil then cried: O blessed Margaret, I am overcome. If a young man had overcome me I had not recked, but alas! I am overcome of a tender virgin; wherefore I make the more sorrow, for thy father and mother have been my good friends. She then constrained him to tell why he came to her, and he answered, that he came to her to counsel her for to obey the desire and request of the provost. Then she constrained him to say wherefore he tempted so much and so often christian people. To whom he answered that naturally he hated virtuous men, and though we be oft put aback from them, yet our desire is much to exclude them from the felicity that they fell from, for we may never obtain ne recover our bliss that we have lost. And she then demanded what he was, and he answered: I am Veltis, one of them whom Solomon closed in a vessel of brass. And after his death it happed that they of Babylon found this vessel; and supposed to have founden great treasure therein, and brake the vessel, and then a great multitude of us devils flew out and filled full the air alway, awaiting and espying where we may assail rightful men. And when he had said thus, she took off her foot and said to him: Flee hence, thou wretched fiend. And anon the earth opened, and the fiend sank in. Then she was sure, for when she had overcome the master, she might lightly overcome the minister.

Then the next day following, when all the people was assembled, she was presented tofore the judge. And she not doing sacrifice to their false gods, was cast into the fire, and her body broiled with burning brands, in such wise that the people marvelled that so tender a maid might suffer so many torments. And after that, they put her in a great vessel full of water, fast bounden, that by changing of the torments, the sorrow and feeling of the pain should be the more. But suddenly the earth trembled, and the air was hideous, and the blessed virgin without any hurt issued out of the water, saying to our Lord: I beseech thee, my Lord, that this water may be to me the font of baptism to everlasting life. And anon there was heard great thunder, and a dove descended from heaven, and set a golden crown on her head. Then five thousand men believed in our Lord, and for Christ's love they all were beheaded by the commandment of the provost Olybrius, that time in Campolymeath the city of Aurelia. Then Olybrius, seeing the faith of the holy Margaret immoveable, and also fearing that others should be converted to the christian faith by her, gave sentence and commanded that she should be beheaded. Then she prayed to one Malchus that should behead her, that she might have space to pray. And that got, she prayed to our Lord, saying: Father Almighty, I yield to thee thankings that thou hast suffered me to come to this glory, beseeching thee to pardon them that pursue me. And I beseech thee, good Lord, that of thy abundant grace, thou wilt grant unto all them that write my passion, read it or hear, and to them that remember me, that they may deserve to have plain remission and forgiveness of all their sins. And also, good Lord, if any woman with child travailing in any place, call on me that thou wilt keep her from peril, and that the child may be delivered from her belly without any hurt of his members. And when she had finished her prayer there was a voice heard from heaven saying, that her prayers were heard and granted, and that the gates of heaven were open and abode for her, and bade her come into the country of everlasting rest. Then she, thanking our Lord, arose up, and bade the hangman accomplish the commandment of the provost. To whom the hangman said: God forbid that I should slay thee, virgin of Christ. To whom she said: If thou do it not thou mayest have no part with me. Then he being afraid and trembling smote off her head, and he, falling down at her feet, gave up the ghost.

Then Theotinus took up the holy body, and bare it into Antioch, and buried it in the house of a noble woman and widow named Sincletia. And thus this blessed and holy virgin, S. Margaret, suffered death, and received the crown of martyrdom the thirteenth kalends of August, as is founden in her story; and it is read in another place that it was the third ides of July. Of this virgin writeth an holy man and saith: The holy and blessed Margaret was full of the dread of God, sad, stable, and worshipful in religion, arrayed with compunction, laudable in honesty, and singular in patience, and nothing was found in her contrary to christian religion, hateful to her father, and beloved of our Lord Jesu Christ. Then let us remember this holy virgin that she pray for us in our needs, etc.

Here followeth of S. Praxede, Virgin.

S. Praxede was sister of S. Potentian which were the sisters of the SS. Donatus and Timothy, which were informed in the faith of the apostles. And when the cruel persecution was of many christian men, that were martyred and slain, they buried the bodies of the holy martyrs, and gave all their goods and faculties to poor people for God's love. And at last they slept in our Lord, and died about the year of our Lord, One hundred and sixty, under Mark Antony the provost.

Here followeth the life of S. Mary Magdalene, and first of her name.

Mary is as much to say as bitter, or a lighter, or lighted. By this be understood three things that be three, the best parts that she chose. That is to say, part of penance, part of contemplation within forth, and part of heavenly glory. And of this treble part is understood that is said by our Lord: Mary hath chosen the best part, which shall not be taken from her. The first part shall not be taken from her because of the end, which is the following of blessedness; the second because of continuance, for the continuance of her life is continued with the contemplation of her country. The third by reason of perdurableness; and forasmuch as she chose the best part of penance, she is said: a bitter sea, for therein she had much bitterness. And that appeared in that she wept so many tears that she washed therewith the feet of our Lord. And for so much as she chose the part of contemplation withinforth, she is a lighter, for there she took so largely that she spread it abundantly. She took the light there, with which after she enlumined other, and in that she chose the best part of the heavenly glory, she is called the light. For then she was enlumined of perfect knowledge in thought, and with the light in clearness of body. Magdalene is as much as to say as abiding culpable. Or Magdalene is interpreted as closed or shut, or not to be overcome. Or full of magnificence, by which is showed what she was tofore her conversion, and what in her conversion, and what after her conversion. For tofore her conversion she was abiding guilty by obligation to everlasting pain. In the conversion she was garnished by armour of penance. She was in the best wise garnished with penance. For as many delices as she had in her, so many sacrifices were found in her. And after her conversion she was praised by overabundance of grace. For whereas sin abounded, grace overabounded, and was more, etc.

Of Mary Magdalene.

Mary Magdalene had her surname of Magdalo, a castle, and was born of right noble lineage and parents, which were descended of the lineage of kings. And her father was named Cyrus, and her mother Eucharis. She with her brother Lazarus, and her sister Martha, possessed the castle of Magdalo, which is two miles from Nazareth, and Bethany, the castle which is nigh to Jerusalem, and also a great part of Jerusalem, which, all these things they departed among them. In such wise that Mary had the castle Magdalo, whereof she had her name Magdalene. And Lazarus had the part of the city of Jerusalem, and Martha had to her part Bethany. And when Mary gave herself to all delights of the body, and Lazarus entended all to knighthood, Martha, which was wise, governed nobly her brother's part and also her sister's, and also her own, and administered to knights, and her servants, and to poor men, such necessities as they needed. Nevertheless, after the ascension of our Lord, they sold all these things, and brought the value thereof, and laid it at the feet of the apostles. Then when Magdalene abounded in riches, and because delight is fellow to riches and abundance of things; and for so much as she shone in beauty greatly, and in riches, so much the more she submitted her body to delight, and therefore she lost her right name, and was called customably a sinner. And when our Lord Jesu Christ preached there and in other places, she was inspired with the Holy Ghost, and went into the house of Simon leprous, whereas our Lord dined. Then she durst not, because she was a sinner, appear tofore the just and good people, but remained behind at the feet of our Lord, and washed his feet with the tears of her eyes and dryed them with the hair of her head, and anointed them with precious ointments. For the inhabitants of that region used baths and ointments for the overgreat burning and heat of the sun. And because that Simon the Pharisee thought in himself that, if our Lord had been a very prophet, he would not have suffered a sinful woman to have touched him, then our Lord reproved him of his presumption, and forgave the woman all her sins. And this is she, that same Mary Magdalene to whom our Lord gave so many great gifts. And showed so great signs of love, that he took from her seven devils. He embraced her all in his love, and made her right familiar with him. He would that she should be his hostess, and his procuress on his journey, and he ofttimes excused her sweetly; for he excused her against the Pharisee which said that she was not clean, and unto her sister that said she was idle, unto Judas, who said that she was a wastresse of goods. And when he saw her weep he could not withhold his tears. And for the love of her he raised Lazarus which had been four days dead, and healed her sister from the flux of blood which had held her seven years. And by the merits of her he made Martelle, chamberer of her sister Martha, to say that sweet word: Blessed be the womb that bare thee, and the paps that gave thee suck. But, after S. Ambrose, it was Martha that said so, and this was her chamberer. This Mary Magdalene is she that washed the feet of our Lord and dried them with the hair of her head, and anointed them with precious ointment, and did solemn penance in the time of grace, and was the first that chose the best part, which was at the feet of our Lord, and heard his preaching. Which anointed his head; at his passion was nigh unto the cross; which made ready ointments, and would anoint his body, and would not depart from the monument when his disciples departed. To whom Jesu Christ appeared first after his resurrection, and was fellow to the apostles, and made of our Lord apostolesse of the apostles, then after the ascension of our Lord, the fourteenth year from his passion, long after that the Jews had slain S. Stephen, and had cast out the other disciples out of the Jewry, which went into divers countries, and preached the word of God. There was that time with the apostles S. Maximin, which was one of the seventy-two disciples of our Lord, to whom the blessed Mary Magdalene was committed by S. Peter, and then, when the disciples were departed, S. Maximin, Mary Magdalene, and Lazarus her brother, Martha her sister, Marcelle, chamberer of Martha, and S. Cedony which was born blind, and after enlumined of our Lord; all these together, and many other christian men were taken of the miscreants and put in a ship in the sea, without any tackle or rudder, for to be drowned. But by the purveyance of Almighty God they came all to Marseilles, where, as none would receive them to be lodged, they dwelled and abode under a porch tofore a temple of the people of that country. And when the blessed Mary Magdalene saw the people assembled at this temple for to do sacrifice to the idols, she arose up peaceably with a glad visage, a discreet tongue and well speaking, and began to preach the faith and law of Jesu Christ, and withdrew from the worshipping of the idols. Then were they amarvelled of the beauty, of the reason, and of the fair speaking of her. And it was no marvel that the mouth that had kissed the feet of our Lord so debonairly and so goodly, should be inspired with the word of God more than the other. And after that, it happed that the prince of the province and his wife made sacrifice to the idols for to have a child. And Mary Magdalene preached to them Jesu Christ and forbade them those sacrifices. And after that a little while, Mary Magdalene appeared in a vision to that lady, saying: Wherefore hast thou so much riches and sufferest the poor people our Lord to die for hunger and for cold? And she doubted, and was afraid to show this vision to her lord. And then the second night she appeared to her again and said in likewise and adjousted thereto menaces, if she warned not her husband for to comfort the poor and needy, and yet she said nothing thereof to her husband. And then she appeared to her the third night, when it was dark, and to her husband also, with a frowning and angry visage like fire, like as all the house had burned, and said: Thou tyrant and member of thy father the devil, with that serpent thy wife, that will not say to thee my words, thou restest now enemy of the cross, which hast filled thy belly by gluttony, with divers manner of meats and sufferest to perish for hunger the holy saints of our Lord. Liest thou not in a palace wrapped with clothes of silk. And thou seest them without harbour, discomforted, and goest forth and takest no regard to them. Thou shalt not escape so ne depart without punishment, thou tyrant and felon because thou hast so long tarried. And when Mary Magdalene had said thus she departed away. Then the lady awoke and sighed. And the husband sighed strongly also for the same cause, and trembled.

And then she said: Sir, hast thou seen the sweven that I have seen? I have seen, said he, that I am greatly amarvelled of, and am sore afraid what we shall do. And his wife said: It is more profitable for us to obey her, than to run into the ire of her God, whom she preacheth. For which cause they received them into their house, and ministered to them all that was necessary and needful to them. Then as Mary Magdalene preached on a time, the said prince said to her: Weenest thou that thou mayst defend the law that thou preachest? And she answered: Certainly, I am ready to defend it, as she that is confirmed every day by miracles, and by the predication of our master, S. Peter, which now sitteth in the see at Rome. To whom then the prince said: I and my wife be ready to obey thee in all things, if thou mayst get of thy god whom thou preachest, that we might have a child. And then Mary Magdalene said that it should not be left, and then prayed unto our Lord that he would vouchsafe of his grace to give to them a son. And our Lord heard her prayers, and the lady conceived. Then her husband would go to S. Peter for to wit if it were true that Mary Magdalene had preached of Jesu Christ. Then his wife said to him: What will ye do sir, ween ye to go without me? Nay, when thou shalt depart, I shall depart with thee, and when thou shalt return again I shall return, and when thou shalt rest and tarry, I shall rest and tarry. To whom her husband answered, and said: Dame, it shall not be so, for thou art great, and the perils of the sea be without number. Thou mightest lightly perish, thou shalt abide at home and take heed to our possessions. And this lady for nothing would not change her purpose, but fell down on her knees at his feet sore weeping, requiring him to take her with him. And so at last he consented, and granted her request. Then Mary Magdalene set the sign of the cross on their shoulders, to the end that the fiend might not empesh ne let them in their journey. Then charged they a ship abundantly of all that was necessary to them, and left all their things in the keeping of Mary Magdalene, and went forth on their pilgrimage. And when they had made their course, and sailed a day and a night, there arose a great tempest and orage. And the wind increased and grew over hideous, in such wise that this lady, which was great, and nigh the time of her childing, began to wax feeble, and had great anguishes for the great waves and troubling of the sea, and soon after began to travail, and was delivered of a fair son, by occasion of the storm and tempest, and in her childing died. And when the child was born he cried for to have comfort of the teats of his mother, and made a piteous noise. Alas! what sorrow was this to the father, to have a son born which was the cause of the death of his mother, and he might not live, for there was none to nourish him. Alas! what shall this pilgrim do, that seeth his wife dead, and his son crying after the breast of his mother? And the pilgrim wept strongly and said: Alas! caitiff, alas! What shall I do? I desired to have a son, and I have lost both the mother and the son. And the mariners then said: This dead body must be cast mto the sea, or else we all shall perish, for as long as she shall abide with us, this tempest shall not cease. And when they had taken the body for to cast it into the sea, the husband said: Abide and suffer a little, and if ye will not spare to me my wife, yet at least spare the little child that cryeth, I pray you to tarry a while, for to know if the mother be aswoon of the pain, and that she might revive. And whilst he thus spake to them, the shipmen espied a mountain not far from the ship. And then they said that it was best to set the ship toward the land and to bury it there, and so to save it from devouring of the fishes of the sea. And the good man did so much with the mariners, what for prayers and for money, that they brought the body to the mountain. And when they should have digged for to make a pit to lay the body in, they found it so hard a rock that they might not enter for hardness of the stone. And they left the body there Iying, and covered it with a mantle; and the father laid his little son at the breast of the dead mother and said weeping: O Mary Magdalene, why camest thou to Marseilles to my great loss and evil adventure? Why have I at thine instance enterprised this journey? Hast thou required of God that my wife should conceive and should die at the childing of her son? For now it behoveth that the child that she hath conceived and borne, perish because it hath no nurse. This have I had by thy prayer, and to thee I commend them, to whom I have commended all my goods. And also I commend to thy God, if he be mighty, that he remember the soul of the mother, that he by thy prayer have pity on the child that he perish not. Then covered he the body all about with the mantle, and the child also, and then returned to the ship, and held forth his journey. And when he came to S. Peter, S. Peter came against him, and when he saw the sign of the cross upon his shoulder, he demanded him what he was, and wherefore he came, and he told to him all by order. To whom Peter said: Peace be to thee, thou art welcome, and hast believed good counsel. And be thou not heavy if thy wife sleep, and the little child rest with her, for our Lord is almighty for to give to whom he will, and to take away that he hath given, and to reestablish and give again that he hath taken, and to turn all heaviness and weeping into joy. Then Peter led him into Jerusalem, and showed to him all the places where Jesu Christ preached and did miracles, and the place where he suffered death, and where he ascended into heaven. And when he was well-informed of S. Peter in the faith, and that two years were passed sith he departed from Marseilles, he took his ship for to return again into his country. And as they sailed by the sea, they came, by the ordinance of God, by the rock where the body of his wife was left, and his son. Then by prayers and gifts he did so much that they arrived thereon. And the little child, whom Mary Magdalene had kept, went oft sithes to the seaside, and, like small children, took small stones and threw them into the sea. And when they came they saw the little child playing with stones on the seaside, as he was wont to do. And then they marvelled much what he was. And when the child saw them, which never had seen people tofore, he was afraid, and ran secretly to his mother's breast and hid him under the mantle. And then the father of the child went for to see more appertly, and took the mantle, and found the child, which was right fair, sucking his mother's breast. Then he took the child in his arms and said: O blessed Mary Magdalene, I were well happy and blessed if my wife were now alive, and might live, and come again with me into my country. I know verily and believe that thou who hast given to me my son, and hast fed and kept him two years in this rock, mayst well re-establish his mother to her first health. And with these words the woman respired, and took life, and said, like as she had been waked of her sleep: O blessed Mary Magdalene thou art of great merit and glorious, for in the pains of my deliverance thou wert my midwife, and in all my necessities thou hast accomplished to me the service of a chamberer. And when her husband heard that thing he amarvelled much, and said: Livest thou my right dear and best beloved wife? To whom she said: Yea, certainly I live, and am now first come from the pilgrimage from whence thou art come, and all in like wise as S. Peter led thee in Jerusalem, and showed to thee all the places where our Lord suffered death, was buried and ascended to heaven, and many other places, I was with you, with Mary Magdalene, which led and accompanied me, and showed to me all the places which I well remember and have in mind. And there recounted to him all the miracles that her husband had seen, and never failed of one article, ne went out of the way from the sooth. And then the good pilgrim received his wife and his child and went to ship. And soon after they came to the port of Marseilles. And they found the blessed Mary Magdalene preaching with her disciples. And then they kneeled down to her feet, and recounted to her all that had happened to them, and received baptism of S. Maximin. And then they destroyed all the temples of the idols in the city of Marseilles, and made churches of Jesu Christ. And with one accord they chose the blessed S. Lazarus for to be bishop of that city. And afterward they came to the city of Aix, and by great miracles and preaching they brought the people there to the faith of Jesu Christ. And there S. Maximin was ordained to be bishop. In this meanwhile the blessed Mary Magdalene, desirous of sovereign contemplation, sought a right sharp desert, and took a place which was ordained by the angel of God, and abode there by the space of thirty years without knowledge of anybody. In which place she had no comfort of running water, ne solace of trees, ne of herbs. And that was because our Redeemer did do show it openly, that he had ordained for her refection celestial, and no bodily meats. And every day at every hour canonical she was lifted up in the air of angels, and heard the glorious song of the heavenly companies with her bodily ears. Of which she was fed and filled with right sweet meats, and then was brought again by the angels unto her proper place, in such wise as she had no need of corporal nourishing. It happed that a priest, which desired to lead a solitary life, took a cell for himself a twelve-furlong from the place of Mary Magdalene. On a day our Lord opened the eyes of that priest, and he saw with his bodily eyes in what manner the angels descended into the place where the blessed Magdalene dwelt, and how they lifted her in the air, and after by the space of an hour brought her again with divine praisings to the same place. And then the priest desired greatly to know the truth of this marvellous vision, and made his prayers to Almighty God, and went with great devotion unto the place. And when he approached nigh to it a stone's cast, his thighs began to swell and wax feeble, and his entrails began within him to lack breath and sigh for fear. And as soon as he returned he had his thighs all whole, and ready for to go. And when he enforced him to go to the place, all his body was in languor, and might not move. And then he understood that it was a secret celestial place where no man human might come, and then he called the name of Jesu, and said: I conjure thee by our Lord, that if thou be a man or other creature reasonable, that dwellest in this cave, that thou answer me, and tell me the truth of thee. And when he had said this three times, the blessed Mary Magdalene answered: Come more near, and thou shalt know that thou desirest. And then he came trembling unto the half way, and she said to him: Rememberest thou not of the gospel of Mary Magdalene, the renowned sinful woman, which washed the feet of our Saviour with her tears, and dried them with the hair of her head, and desired to have forgiveness of her sins? And the priest said to her: I remember it well, that is more than thirty years that holy church believeth and confesseth that it was done. And then she said: I am she that by the space of thirty years have been here without witting of any person, and like as it was suffered to thee yesterday to see me, in like wise I am every day lift up by the hands of the angels into the air, and have deserved to hear with my bodily ears the right sweet song of the company celestial. And because it is showed to me of our Lord that I shall depart out of this world, go to Maximin, and say to him that the next day after the resurrection of our lord, in the same time that he is accustomed to arise and go to matins, that he alone enter into his oratory, and that by the ministry and service of angels he shall find me there. And the priest heard the voice of her, like as it had been the voice of an angel, but he saw nothing; and then anon he went to S. Maximin, and told to him all by order. Then S. Maximin was replenished of great joy, and thanked greatly our Lord. And on the said day and hour, as is aforesaid, he entered into his oratory, and saw the blessed Mary Magdalene standing in the quire or choir yet among the angels that brought her, and was lift up from the earth the space of two or three cubits. And praying to our Lord she held up her hands, and when S. Maximin saw her, he was afraid to approach to her. And she returned to him, and said: Come hither mine own father, and flee not thy daughter. And when he approached and came to her, as it is read in the books of the said S. Maximin, for the customable vision that she had of angels every day, the cheer and visage of her shone as clear as it had been the rays of the sun. And then all the clerks and the priests aforesaid were called, and Mary Magdalene received the body and blood of our Lord of the hands of the bishop with great abundance of tears, and after, she stretched her body tofore the altar, and her right blessed soul departed from the body and went to our Lord. And after it was departed, there issued out of the body an odour so sweet-smelling that it remained there by the space of seven days to all them that entered in. And the blessed Maximin anointed the body of her with divers precious ointments, and buried it honourably, and after commanded that his body should be buried by hers after his death.

Hegesippus, with other books of Josephus accord enough with the said story, and Josephus saith in his treatise that the blessed Mary Magdalene, after the ascension of our Lord, for the burning love that she had to Jesu Christ and for the grief and discomfort that she had for the absence of her master our Lord, she would never see man. But after when she came into the country of Aix, she went into desert, and dwelt there thirty years without knowing of any man or woman. And he saith that, every day at the seven hours canonical she was lifted in the air of the angels. But he saith that, when the priest came to her, he found her enclosed in her cell; and she required of him a vestment, and he delivered to her one, which she clothed and covered her with. And she went with him to the church and received the communion, and then made her prayers with joined hands, and rested in peace.

In the time of Charles the great, in the year of our Lord seven hundred and seventy-one, Gerard, duke of Burgundy might have no child by his wife, wherefore he gave largely alms to the poor people, and founded many churches, and many monasteries. And when he had made the abbey of Vesoul, he and the abbot of the monastery sent a monk with a good reasonable fellowship into Aix, for to bring thither if they might of the relics of S. Mary Magdalene. And when the monk came to the said city, he found it all destroyed of paynims. Then by adventure he found the sepulchre, for the writing upon the sepulchre of marble showed well that the blessed lady Mary Magdalene rested and lay there, and the history of her was marvellously entailed and carved in the sepulchre. And then this monk opened it by night and took the relics, and bare them to his lodging. And that same night Mary Magdalene appeared to that monk, saying: Doubt thee nothing, make an end of the work. Then he returned homeward until he came half a mile from the monastery. But he might in no wise remove the relics from thence, till that the abbot and monks came with procession, and received them honestly. And soon after the duke had a child by his wife.

There was a knight that had a custom every year to go a pilgrimage unto the body of S. Mary Magdalene, which knight was slain in battle. And as his friends wept for him Iying on his bier, they said with sweet and devout quarrels, why she suffered her devout servant to die without confession and penance. Then suddenly he that was dead arose, all they being sore abashed, and made one to call a priest to him, and confessed him with great devotion, and received the blessed sacrament, and then rested in peace.

There was a ship charged with men and women that was perished and all to-brake, and there was among them a woman with child, which saw herself in peril to be drowned, and cried fast on Mary Magdalene for succour and help, making her avow that if she might be saved by her merits, and escape that peril, if she had a son she should give him to the monastery. And anon as she had so avowed, a woman of honourable habit and beauty appeared to her, and took her by the chin and brought her to the rivage all safe, and the other perished and were drowned. And after, she was delivered and had a son, and accomplished her avow like as she had promised.

Some say that S. Mary Magdalene was wedded to S. John the Evangelist when Christ called him from the wedding, and when he was called from her, she had thereof indignation that her husband was taken from her, and went and gave herself to all delight, but because it was not convenable that the calling of S. John should be occasion of her damnation, therefore our Lord converted her mercifully to penance, and because he had taken from her sovereign delight of the flesh, he replenished her with sovereign delight spiritual tofore all other, that is the love of God. And it is said that he ennobled S. John tofore all other with the sweetness of his familiarity, because he had taken him from the delight aforesaid.

There was a man which was blind on both his eyes, and did him to be led to the monastery of the blessed Mary Magdalene for to visit her body. His leader said to him that he saw the church. And then the blind man escried and said with a high voice: O blessed Mary Magdalene, help me that I may deserve once to see thy church. And anon his eyes were opened, and saw clearly all things about him.

There was another man that wrote his sins in a schedule and laid it under the coverture of the altar of Mary Magdalene, meekly praying her that she should get for him pardon and forgiveness, and a while after, he took the schedule again, and found all his sins effaced and struck out. Another man was holden in prison for debt of money, in irons. And he called unto his help ofttimes Mary Magdalene. And on a night a fair woman appeared to him and brake all his irons, and opened the door, and commanded him to go his way; and when he saw himself loose he fled away anon.

There was a clerk of Flanders named Stephen Rysen, and mounted in so great and disordinate felony, that he haunted all manner sins. And such thing as appertained to his health he would not hear. Nevertheless he had great devotion in the blessed Mary Magdalene and fasted her vigil, and honoured her feast. And on a time as he visited her tomb, he was not all asleep nor well awaked, when Mary Magdalene appeared to him Iike a much fair woman, sustained with two angels, one on the right side, and another on the left side, and said to him, looking on him despitously: Stephen, why reputest thou the deeds of my merits to be unworthy? Wherefore mayst not thou at the instance of my merits and prayers be moved to penance? For sith the time that thou begannest to have devotion in me, I have alway prayed God for thee firmly. Arise up therefore and repent thee, and I shall not leave thee till thou be reconciled to God. And then forthwith he felt so great grace shed in him, that he forsook and renounced the world and entered into religion, and was after of right perfect life. And at the death of him was seen Mary Magdalene, standing beside the bier with angels which bare the soul up to heaven with heavenly song in likeness of a white dove. Then let us pray to this blessed Mary Magdalene that she get us grace to do penance here for our sins, that after this life we may come to her in everlasting bliss in heaven. Amen.

Here followeth the life of S. Appollinaris, and first the interpretation of his name.

Appollinaris is said of pollens, that is, shining, and ares, that is virtue. That is to say, shining in virtues. Or it is said of pollo, which is as much to say as marvellous, and naris, that is, by discretion, as who saith, he was a man of marvellous discretion. Or he is said of A, that is, without, and polluo and ares, that is to say, virtuous without pollution of vices.

Of S. Appollinaris.

Appollinaris was disciple of S. Peter the apostle, and of him he was sent to Ravenna from Rome, and there he healed the wife of the tribune and judge of the town, and baptized her with her husband and household; which thing was told and showed to the provost, and anon he did do arrest Appollinaris and led him to the temple of Jupiter for to do sacrifice to him. And he said to the priests of the idols that the gold and silver that was set about the idols had been better to have been given to poor men than to be given to devils. And then he was anon taken and beaten sore with staves that he was left half dead, but he was taken up of his disciples and brought into the house of a widow, and there was kept and refreshed seven months. From thence he came to the city of Clacense, and there he healed a nobleman which was dumb. And as he entered into a house, there was a maid which had an unclean spirit within her, which crying said: Go from hence, thou servant of God, or I shall make thee to be bounden, hands and feet, and to be drawn out of the city; whom anon Appollinaris rebuked, and constrained the spirit to go out and depart from the maid. Then, when he had thus called the name of our Lord upon the dumb man, and had so cured him, and delivered the maid of the wicked spirit, more than five hundred men believed in our Lord Jesu Christ. The paynims then beat him with staves and forbade him that he should not name the name of Jesu Christ. He then Iying on the earth cried, and saying that Jesus was very God. Then they made him to stand barefoot upon burning coals, and yet always he preached constantly the law of Christ. And then they seeing that he would not cease, drove him out of the city. That time Rufus Patricius, duke of the city of Ravenna, had a daughter sick, and did call Appollinaris to heal her. And as soon as Appollinaris entered into the house his daughter died. To whom Rufus said: Would God thou hadst not entered into my house, for the great gods be wroth therefore, and would not heal my daughter, what mayst thou do to her? To whom Appollinaris said: Be thou not afraid, but promise to me that if the maid arise thou shalt not forbid her to follow her Maker. Which when he had promised he made his prayer, and anon the maid arose, and acknowledged the name of Christ, and was baptized, with her mother and a great multitude of people. And she abode a virgin. And when Cæsar heard hereof he wrote to the provost of the prætorium that he should make Appollinaris to do sacrifice, or to put him in exile. The provost then seeing that he would do no sacrifice, commanded that he should be beaten with staves and to be tormented on the gallows, whereas he always most constantly preached the name of our Lord. Then he commanded to cast hot scalding water in his fresh wounds, and he, sore bounden with great weight of iron, should have been sent into exile. That seeing the christians, and so great felony done to him, were moved in their courage, and ran upon the paynims, and of them slew more than two hundred. And when the provost saw that, he hid himself, and commanded Appollinaris into a straight and hard prison, and after, bound him sore with chains, and set him in a ship with three clerks following him, and so sent him forth in exile, where only he, with two clerks and two knights escaped the peril of the tempest, and those knights he baptized.

After this he returned again to Ravenna, and was taken of the paynims, and led to the temple of Jupiter, whose simulachre, when he saw it, he cursed it. And suddenly it fell down, and when the bishops saw that, they presented him to Thaurus the judge, whose son, which was blind, S. Appollinaris made to see. And when the judge saw that he believed on him, and made him to dwell four years with him in his house. After this, when the bishops had accused him to Vespasian, Vespasian commanded whosoever did any wrong to the gods, he should do satisfaction or to be driven from the city. It is not rightful, said he, that we should avenge the gods, but they themselves may avenge them of their enemies if they be wroth. Then Demosthenes Patricius, seeing that he would do no sacrifice, delivered him unto a centurion, then being christian, by whose prayer he went into the street of lepers, and that he should do there hide him from the woodness of the paynims. But the people followed him and beat him unto the death, where he abode and lived by the space after of eight days, and preached to his disciples, and then gave up his spirit unto our Lord and died, and there was honourably buried, about the year of our Lord seventy, under Vespasian. Of this martyr saith S. Ambrose in his preface: Appollinaris, most worthy bishop, was sent from Peter, prince of the apostles, to Ravenna, for to show the name of Jesu unto the paynims, who did marvellous signs of virtues to them that believe in Christ, and was all to-rent and torn with wood beatings of the wicked paynims. And because the christian men should not doubt, he did and performed marvels like to the apostles. After his torments he raised a maid from death to life. To blind men he gave sight, and to a dumb man he restored his speech; one that was vexed with a devil he delivered; he cleansed a leper, he healed the members broken with a pestilent sickness of another. The simulachre of the god Jupiter, with the temple, he overthrew. O most worthy bishop of marvellous praising, thou deservedst the power and dignity of the apostle. O most strong champion of our Lord, which in thine old age constantly preachedst our Lord Jesu Christ redeemer of the world.

Here followeth the life of S. Christine, and first the interpretation of her name.

Christine is as much to say as anointed with chrism. She had soothly the balm of good odour and savour in conversation. And oil of devotion in mind, and also the benediction of grace.

Christine was born in Tyre in Italy, and was come of noble kindred of father and mother. And because of her beauty her father enclosed her in a certain tower, with twelve chamberers to serve and await on her. And ordained there, with her, gods of silver and gold. And because of her great beauty she was desired of many noble men for to have wedded her; but her father in no wise would give her to no man, but would have her continue in her virginity to do worship and sacrifice to the gods. But she being inspired of the Holy Ghost, abhorred the sacrifice of the idols, and the incense that was delivered to her to do sacrifice with, she hid it in a window, and when her father came, the maidens and chamberers said to him: Thy daughter despiseth to offer to our gods, and saith that she is christian. Then her father provoked her with sweet and fair words for to do sacrifice to their gods. To whom she said: Call me not thy daughter, but this to whom sacrifice belongeth. I will not offer to no dead gods. But to God of heaven I offer sacrifice of laud and praising. Then said her father to her: O my daughter, thou oughtest not to offer to one God, lest the others be wroth to thee. To whom she said: Thou hast said well, not knowing the truth. I offer truly sacrifice to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. Then said the father: If thou worshippest three, why wilt thou not adore the others? To whom she said: They three be but one God. After this Christine brake all the gods, and the gold and silver she gave to poor people. Her father then came again for to worship his gods; and he not finding them demanded of the maidens what Christine had done to them: and when he had knowledge what she had done, commanded her to be despoiled, and to be beaten with twelve men unto the time that they began to fail, and were so weary that they might no more. Then Christine said to her father: O thou that without honour and with shame art abominable to God, for they that beat me fail and be faint, require thy gods that they give to them strength if they may. Then he did do bind her with chains of iron, and did do set her in prison. And when her mother heard that, she rent her clothes, and came to the prison, and fell down at her daughter's feet and said: My daughter Christine, the light of my eyes, have pity on me. To whom she said: Why callest thou me thy daughter? wottest thou not well that I have the name of my God? And when she might nothing make her to turn from her faith, she returned to her husband, and told to him what she had answered to her. Then the father commanded that she should be brought tofore him in judgment, and said to her: Do sacrifice to our god, or else thou shalt suffer many torments, and shalt no more be called my daughter. To whom she said: Thou hast gotten to me great grace, for now thou callest not me daughter of the devil. What is born of the devil is a devil. Thou art the son of the same Sathanas. Then he commanded that her flesh should be all torent, and drawn with hooks of iron, and her tender members to be all tobroken and departed from other. Christine then took part of her flesh and threw it in the visage of her father saying: O tyrant, take the flesh, which thou hast gotten, and eat it. Then her father set her upon a wheel, and put under fire and oil, and the flame issued out so great that it slew and burnt five hundred men. The father ascribed all this work to necromancy, and said she had done that by witchcraft, and commanded her again to prison, and bade her servants when it was night, that they should bind a great stone to her neck and cast her into the sea. And anon, as they had so done, the angels took her up, and Christ descended, and baptized her in the sea, saying: I baptize thee in the name of God my father and in me Jesu Christ his son, and in the Holy Ghost, and committed her to Michael the archangel, which led her to the land. And when her father heard that she was come again to land, he smote his forehead and said to her: By what witchcraft dost thou these things, that in the sea thou exercisest thy cursed works? To whom Christine said: O thou fool and unhappy! I have received this grace of Christ. Then he commanded that she should be put in prison, and on the morn to be beheaded. And that same night Urban her father was found dead. Then after him followed and succeeded a wicked and evil judge, named Dion, which did do make a tub of iron, and did do put therein pitch, oil and rosin, and set them afire. And when it was ready, he made Christine to be cast therein, and made four men move the tub that she should be the sooner consumed. Then Christine praised God, and thanked him that she was so renewed, and rocked as a child in a cradle. Then the judge being wroth made her head to be shaven, and naked to be led through the city unto the temple of Apollo, whom she commanded to overthrow, and anon fell down into powder. And when the judge heard thereof, he died and gave up his spirit. After him Julianus succeeded, which did do set afire a great furnace, and Christine to be cast therein. Wherein she abode five days with angels, singing and walking unhurt, and after issued out thereof safely without harm. And when Julianus heard thereof, he said that she did all this by art magic and witchcraft, and did do be put to her two adders, two servents and two asps. The serpents licked her feet, the two asps hung at her breasts, and did her no harm, and the two adders wound them about her neck and licked up her sweat. Julianus then said to his enchanter: Art thou not an enchanter? Move the beasts. And when he began to move them they made assault to him and slew him forthwith. Then Christine commanded that they should go to a desert place, and she raised the enchanter that was dead to life again, then Julianus commanded that her breasts should be cut off, out of whom flowed milk with blood. Then he made her tongue to be cut out of her head, but Christine lost not her speech for cutting out of her tongue, but took it and threw it in the visage of the judge and smote out therewith one of his eyes. Then was Julianus wroth and made to shoot at her. And she was smitten with one arrow in the side, and with another unto the heart, and she so smitten yielded up her soul unto God, and thus suffered martyrdom about the year of our Lord two hundred four score and seven. Her body was buried in a castle Bolsena between the old town and Viterbo and Tirus, which was not far from that castle which is now destroyed.

Here beginneth the Life of S. James the More, and Apostle, and first of the interpretation of his name.

This James the apostle is said James the son of Zebedee, brother of S. John the Evangelist and Boanerges, that is the son of thunder, and James the More. He was said James, son of Zebedee, not only in flesh but in the exposition of the name, for Zebedee is interpreted giving or given, and James gave himself to God by martyrdom of death, and he is given to us of God for a special patron. He is said James, brother of John, not only by flesh but by semblance of manners. For they both were of one love and of one study and of one will. They were of one love for to avenge our Lord, for when the Samaritans would not receive Jesu Christ, James and John said: If it please thee Lord let fire descend from heaven and destroy them. They were of like study for to learn, for these two were they that demanded of our Lord of the day of judgment, and of other things to come. And they asked that one of them might sit at the right side of him and that other on his left side. He was said the son of thunder, because of the sound of his predication, for he feared the evil and excited the slothful, and by the highness of his preaching he did marvels in converting them to the faith; whereof Bede saith of S. John, that he thundered so high, that if he had thundered a little higher, all the world might not have comprised him. He is said James the More, like as that other James is said James the Less. First by reason of his calling, for he was first called of Jesu Christ, secondly by reason of familiarity, for Jesu Christ was seen to have greater familiarity with him than with the Less James. Like as it appeareth at the raising of the maid, and at his holy transfiguration. Thirdly, by reason of his passion. For among all the apostles he was the first that suffered death, and he may be said More because he was first called to be an apostle, so he was first called to the glory perdurable.

Of S. James the More, and Apostle.

James the apostle, son of Zebedee, preached after the ascension of our Lord in the Jewry and Samaria, and after, he was sent into Spain for to sow there the word of Jesu Christ. But when he was there he profited but little, for he had converted unto Christ's law but nine disciples, of whom he left two there, for to preach the word of God, and took the other seven with him and returned again into Judea. Master John Beleth saith that he converted there but one man only, and when after he preached the word of God in Judea, there was an enchanter named Hermogenes with the Pharisees, which sent Philetus his disciple to S. James for to overcome him tofore all men, and to prove his preaching false. But the apostle overcame him tofore all men reasonably, and did many miracles tofore him. Philetus then returned to Hermogenes, and approved the doctrine of James to be true, and recited to him his miracles, and said that he would be his disciple, and desired and counselled Hermogenes in like wise to be his disciple. Then Hermogenes was wroth, and by his craft and enchantments he made Philetus in such wise that he might not move, and said: Now we shall see if thy James may save thee. Then Philetus sent his child to S. James and let him have knowledge hereof. Then S. James sent to him his sudary or keverchief and said: Say to him that our Lord redresseth them that be hurt, and unbindeth them that be empeshed; and as soon as he said so, and touched the sudary, he was unbound and loosed from all the enchanting of Hermogenes, and arose up and went joyfully to S. James. Then Hermogenes was angry, and called many devils, and commanded them that they bring to him S. James bound, and Philetus with him, for to avenge him on them, lest his disciples afterwards address them against him. Then when the devils came towards S. James, they cried, howling in the air, saying: James the apostle of God have pity on us, for we burn tofore our time come. To whom James said: Wherefore come ye to me? And they said: Hermogenes hath sent us to thee and to Philetus for to bring you to him, and the angel of God hath bound us with chains of fire and tormenteth us. And James said: The angel of God shall unbind you and bring him to me bounden, but hurt him not. Then they went and took Hermogenes and bound his hands, and brought him so bound to S. James, and they said to Hermogenes: Thou hast sent us thither where we were strongly tormented and grievously bound. And then said they to S. James: Give to us power against him that we may avenge the wrongs and our embracements. And James said to them: Lo! here is Philetus tofore you, why take ye him not? They answered: We may not touch him, ne as much as a flea that is in thy couch. Then said James to Philetus: To the end that thou do good for evil, like as Christ bade us, unbind him. And then Hermogenes was all confused. And James said to him: Go thy way freely where thou wilt, for it appertaineth not to our discipline that any be converted against his will, and Hermogenes said to him: I know well the ire of the devils, but if thou give to me somewhat of thine that I may have with me, they shall slay me. Then S. James gave to him his staff. Then he went and brought to the apostle all his books of his false craft and enchanting for to be burnt. But S. James, because that the odour of the burning might do evil or harm to some fools, he made them to be cast into the sea. And after he had cast his books into the sea he returned, and holding his feet said: O thou deliverer of souls, receive me penitent, and him that hath sustained till now missaying of thee. And then began he to be perfect in the dread of God our Lord, so that many virtues were done by him afterward.

And when the Jews saw Hermogenes converted they were all moved of envy, and went unto S. James and blamed him because that he preached Christ crucified. And he approved clearly the coming and passion of our Lord Jesu Christ in such wise that many believed in our Lord. Abiathar, which was bishop that year, moved the people against him, and then they put a cord about his neck and brought him to Herod Agrippa. And when he was led to be beheaded by the commandment of Herod, a man having the palsy cried to him. And he gave him health and said: In the name of Jesu Christ, for whom I am led to be beheaded, arise thou and be all whole, and bless our Lord thy Maker. And anon he arose and was all whole. A scribe named Josias, which put the cord about his neck and drew him, seeing this miracle fell down to his feet and demanded of him forgiveness and that he might be christened; and when Abiathar saw that, he made him to be taken, and said to him: But if thou curse the name of Christ thou shalt be beheaded with him. To whom Josias said: Be thou accursed, and accursed be all thy Gods, and the name of our Lord Jesu Christ be blessed world without end. Then Abiathar commanded to smite him on the mouth with fists, and sent a message to Herod, and gat consent that he should be beheaded with James. And when they should be beheaded both, S. James desired a potful of water of him that should smite off their heads, and therewith he baptized Josias, and then anon they were both beheaded and suffered martyrdom. S. James was beheaded the eighth kalends of April on our Lady's day of the Annunciation, and the eighth kalends of August he was translated to Compostella. And the third kalends of January he was buried, for the making of his sepulchre was from August unto January, and therefore the church hath established that his feast shall be hallowed in the eighth kalends of August, whereas is most convenable time. And as Master John Beleth saith, which made this translation diligently: When the blessed S. James was beheaded, his disciples took the body away by night for fear of the Jews, and brought it into a ship, and committed unto the will of our Lord the sepulture of it, and went withal into the ship without sail or rudder. And by the conduct of the angel of our Lord they arrived in Galicia in the realm of Lupa. There was in Spain a queen that had to name, and also by deserving of her life, Lupa, which is as much to say in English as a she-wolf. And then the disciples of S. James took out his body and laid it upon a great stone. And anon the stone received the body into it as it had been soft wax, and made to the body a stone as it were a sepulchre. Then the disciples went to Lupa the queen, and said to her: Our Lord Jesu Christ hath sent to thee the body of his disciple, so that him that thou wouldest not receive alive thou shalt receive dead, and then they recited to her the miracle by order; how they were come without any governaile of the ship and required of her place convenable for his holy sepulture. And when the queen heard this, she sent them unto a right cruel man, by treachery and by guile, as Master Beleth saith, and some say it was to the king of Spain, for to have his consent of this matter, and he took them and put them in prison. And when he was at dinner the angel of our Lord opened the prison and let them escape away all free. And when he knew it, he sent hastily knights after, for to take them, and as these knights passed to go over a bridge, the bridge brake and overthrew, and they fell in the water and were drowned. And when he heard that he repented him and doubted for himself and for his people, and sent after them, praying them for to return, and that he would do like as they would themselves. And then they returned and converted the people of that city unto the faith of God. And when Lupa the queen heard this, she was much sorrowful, and when they came again to her they told to her the agreement of the king. She answered: Take the oxen that I have in yonder mountain, and join ye and yoke them to my cart or chariot, and bring ye then the body of your master, and build ye for him such a place as ye will, and this she said to them in guile and mockage, for she knew well that there were no oxen but wild bulls, and supposed that they should never join them to her chariot, and if they were so joined and yoked to the chariot, they would run hither and thither, and should break the chariot, and throw down the body and slay them. But there is no wisdom against God. And then they, that knew nothing the evil courage of the queen, went up on the mountain, and found there a dragon casting fire at them, and ran on them. And they made the sign of the cross and he brake it on two pieces. And then they made the sign of the cross upon the bulls, and anon they were meek as lambs. Then they took them and yoked them to the chariot, and took the body of S. James with the stone that they had laid it on, and laid on the chariot, and the wild bulls without governing or driving of any body drew it forth unto the middle of the palace of the queen Lupa. And when she saw this she was abashed and believed and was christened, and delivered to them all that they demanded, and dedicated her palace into a church and endowed it greatly, and after ended her life in good works.

Bernard, a man of the bishopric of Mutina, as Calixtus the pope saith, was taken and enchained and put into a deep tower, and called always the blessed S. James, so that S. James appeared to him and said: Come and follow me into Galicia, and then his bonds brake and S. James vanished away. And he went up into the high tower, and his bonds in his neck, and sprang down without hurting, and it was well sixty cubits of height. And as Bede saith: There was a man that had done a foul sin, of which the bishop doubted to assoil him, and sent him to S. James with a schedule in which the sin was written; and when he had laid the schedule upon the altar, on the day of S. James he prayed S. James, that by his merits his sin might be forgiven and defaced. And after, he opened the schedule and found the sin effaced and struck out. And then he thanked God and S. James.

Thirty men of Lorraine went together on pilgrimage to S. James about the year of our Lord a thousand and sixty-three, and all made faith to other that every man should abide and serve other in all estates that shall happen by the way, except one, that would make no covenant. It happed that one of them was sick and his fellows abode and awaited on him fifteen days, and at last they all left him, save he that promised not, which abode by him and kept him at the foot of the Mount St. Michael. And when it drew to night the sick man died, and when it was night, the man that was alive was sore afraid for the place which was solitary, and for the presence of the dead body, and for the cruelty of the strange people, and for the darkness of the night that came on. But anon S. James appeared to him in likeness of a man on horseback and comforted him and said; Give me that dead body tofore me, and leap thou up behind me on my horse. And so they rode all that night fifteen days journey that they were on the morn to see the sun rising at Montoia, which is but half a league from S. James. Then S. James left them both, commanding him that was alive, that he should assemble the canons of S. James to bury this pilgrim, and that he should say to his fellows, because they had broken their faith their pilgrimage availed them not. And he did his commandment, and when his fellows came they marvelled how he had so fast gone, and he told to them all that S. James had said and done.

And as Calixtus the pope rehearseth, there was a man of Almaine, and he went to S. James about the year one thousand four score and three, and came to Toulouse for to be lodged, and their host made them drunk. Then the host took a cup of silver and put it in their malle. And on the morn, when they were gone, he followed them as thieves, and bare them on hand that they had stolen his cup, and said that they should be punished if the cup were found on them. And he found it in the malle, and anon they were brought to judgment. And then the sentence was given, that all that they had should be given to the host, and that one of them should be hanged. And then the father would have died for his son and the son for the father. At last the son was hanged, and the father went forth weeping on his pilgrimage to S. James, and came again thirty-six days after, and then went for to see his son, and cried and wept, but the son which was hanged, began to comfort and said to his father: Right sweet father, weep no more, for I was never so well at ease, for the blessed S. James hath alway sustained me and held me up, and hath fed me with sweetness of heaven; and when the father heard him speak, he ran anon to the city and did so much that the people came, and his son was taken down all whole, as though he had never had harm, and the host was hanged which had put the cup in the malle.

Hugo de S. Victor rehearseth that the devil appeared in likeness of S. James to a pilgrim, and told to him many things of the unhappiness of the world, and said to him that he should be well blessed if he slew himself in the honour of him. And anon he took a knife and slew himself; and then the host in whose house he was lodged was held suspect, and was sore afraid to be put therefor to death. Then he that was dead revived again, and said that the devil had caused him to slay himself, and brought him into great torments. And S. James ran, and brought him tofore the throne of the judge, and when the devils accused him, he gat that he should be restored to his life.

There was a young man of the country of Lyons, as Hugh the abbot of Cluny witnesseth, that was accustomed to go oft to S. James, and the night tofore he should go thitherward he fell in fornication. And the next day he went forth. On a night it happed that the devil appeared to him in likeness of S. James, and said to him: Knowest thou who I am? And he answered: Nay. And the devil said to him: I am James the apostle, whom thou hast used to visit every year, and I am glad for thy devotion. But it is not long sith that thou, in going out of thy house, fellest in fornication, and hast presumed to come, not confessed thereof, wherefore thy pilgrimage may neither please God ne me. It appertaineth not to do so, for who that will come to me in pilgrimage, he must first show his sins by contrition and by confession, and after, by going on pilgrimage, punish them and make satisfaction. And this said, the devil vanished away. Then the young man was in great anguish, and disposed him to return home again to his house and confess him of his sins, and then to begin again his journey. And then the devil appeared to him again in likeness of the apostle, and warned him in no wise to do so, but said to him: This sin may in no wise be forgiven but if he cut off his members generative. But yet he should be more blessed if he killed himself, and be a martyr for the sake of him. And he, that same night, when his fellows slept, took a knife and cut off his genitals, and with the same knife smote himself into the belly. And his fellows awoke, and when they saw this thing they were sore afraid, and anon fled away lest they should be taken as suspect of the homicide. And after, as they made ready his pit, to bury him in, he revived again, and then all they were abashed and fled away. And he called them again, and told all that was befallen to him, saying: When I at the suggestion of the devil had slain myself, the devils took me and led me towards Rome, and anon S. James came after us, and blamed strongly the devils of their fallacy. And when they had long strived together, S. James constrained them to come into a meadow, where the Blessed Virgin sat speaking with many saints. And the blessed S. James complained for me, and then she blamed strongly the devils, and commanded that I should be restored again to my life. And then S. James took me, and rendered to me my life again, like as you see. And three days after his wounds were whole, and there appeared nothing but the traces where the wounds were, and then he reprised again his journey, and found his fellows, and recited to them all this by order.

And as Calixtus the pope rehearseth, there was a Frenchman, about the year of our Lord eleven hundred, would eschewe the mortality that was in France, and would visit S. James, and he took his wife and children and went thither. And when they came to Pampelona his wife died, and his host took from him all his money and his jument, upon which his children were borne. And this man, that thus went all discomforted, and bare his children on his shoulders, and led one after him, was in great anguish and sorrow. Then came a man to him, upon an ass, which had pity on him, and lent to him his ass for to bear his children. And when he came to S. James, and had done what he would, and prayed, S. James appeared to him, and demanded if he knew him, and he said nay. And S. James said to him: I am James the apostle, which have lent to thee mine ass, and yet I shall lend him to thee for to return. And I let thee wit that thine host is fallen from a soler and is dead. And thou shalt have again all that he hath taken from thee. And when all this was done, he returned joyous, with his children to his house. And as soon as his children were taken off from the ass, it was not known where it became.

A merchant was detained of a tyrant, and all despoiled, was wrongfully put in prison. And he called much devoutly S. James into his help. And S. James appeared to him tofore them that kept him, and they awoke, and he brought him into the highest of the tower, and anon the tower bowed down so low that the top was even with the ground. And he went, without leaping, and unbound of his irons. Then his keepers followed after, but they had no power to see him.

Three knights of the diocese of Lyons went to S. James, and that one was required of a poor woman for the love of S. James to bear her sack upon his horse; and he bare it. After, he found a man sick, and set him on his horse, and took the burden off the man, and the sack off the said woman, and followed his horse afoot. But he was broken with the heat of the sun, and with labour to go afoot, that when he came to S. James in Galicia, he was strongly sick. And his fellows prayed three days for the health of his soul, which three days he lay speechless, and his fellows abiding his death. The fourth he sighed greatly, and said: I thank God and S. James, for I am delivered by his merits when I would have done that which ye warned and admonished me. But the devils came to me and strained me so sore that I might not do nothing that appertained to the health of my soul. And I heard you well but I might not answer. And then the blessed S. James came, and brought in his left hand the sack of the woman, and in the right hand the bourdon of the poor pilgrim that I helped by the way, and held the bourdon for a spear, and the sack for a shield, and so assailed the devils as all angry, and lift up the bourdon, and feared the devils that they fled away; and thus the blessed S. James hath delivered me by his holy grace, and hath rendered to me my speech again. Call me the priest, for I may not be long in this life, it is time to amend our trespasses toward our Lord. And then he turned him to one of his fellows, and said to him: Friend, ride no more with thy lord, for certainly he is damned, and shall perish shortly by evil death, and therefore leave his company, and then he died. And when he was buried, his two fellows, knights, returned, and that other said to his master this that he had said to him, and he set not thereby, and had despite to amend him. And anon after he was smitten with a spear in battle and died.

And as Calixtus the pope saith, that there was a man of Viriliac went to S. James, and his money failed him by the way. And he had shame for to beg and ask alms, and he laid him under a tree, and dreamed that S. James fed him. And when he awoke he found a loaf, baked under ashes, at his head, and with that loaf he lived fifteen days till that he came again to his own place, and ate sufficiently twice a day of the same loaf, and always on the morn he found it whole in his satchel.

Also the same Calixtus rehearseth that a burgess of the city of Barcelona went to S. James about the year of our Lord eleven hundred, and required only that he should never be taken of any enemies, and as he returned by Sicily he was taken in the sea of Saracens, and led ofttimes to fairs for to be sold, but alway the chains with which he was bounden loosed. And when he had been sold fourteen times he was bound with double chains. Then he called S. James to his help, and S. James appeared to him and said: Because thou wert in my church, and thou settest nothing by the health of thy soul, but demandedst only the deliverance of thy body, therefor thou hast fallen in this peril. But because that our Lord is merciful, he hath sent me for to buy thee. And anon his chains brake, and he, bearing a part of the chains, passed by the countries and castles of the Saracens, and came home into his own country in the sight of all men, which were abashed of the miracle. For when any man would have taken him, as soon as they saw the chain they were afeard and fled. And when the lions and other beasts would have ran on him, in the deserts whereon he went, when they saw the chain they were afeard that they fled away.

It happed in the year twelve hundred and thirtyeight in a castle named Prato, between Florence and Pistoia, a young man deceived of simplesse by counsel of an old man, set fire in the corn of his tutor, which had charge to keep him, because that he would usurp to himself his heritage. Then he was taken, and confessed his trespass, and was judged to be drawn and burnt. Then he confessed him, and avowed to S. James. And when he had been long drawn in his shirt upon a stony way, he was neither hurt in his body ne in his shirt. Then he was bound to a stake, and fagots and bushes were set about him, and fire put thereto, which fire burnt atwo his bonds, and he always called on S. James, and there was no hurt of burning found in his shirt nor in his body, and when they would have cast him again into the fire, he was taken away from them by S. James, the apostle of God, to whom be given laud and praising.

Here followeth of S. Christopher and first of his name.

Christopher tofore his baptism was named Reprobus, but afterwards he was named Christopher, which is as much to say as bearing Christ, of that that he bare Christ in four manners. He bare him on his shoulders by conveying and leading, in his body by making it lean, in mind by devotion, and in his mouth by confession and predication.

Of S. Christopher.

Christopher was of the lineage of the Canaanites, and he was of a right great stature, and had a terrible and fearful cheer and countenance. And he was twelve cubits of length, and as it is read in some histories that, when he served and dwelled with the king of Canaan, it came in his mind that he would seek the greatest prince that was in the world, and him would he serve and obey. And so far he went that he came to a right great king, of whom the renomee generally was that he was the greatest of the world. And when the king saw him, he received him into his service, and made him to dwell in his court. Upon a time a minstrel sang tofore him a song in which he named oft the devil, and the king, which was a christian man, when he heard him name the devil, made anon the sign of the cross in his visage. And when Christopher saw that, he had great marvel what sign it was, and wherefore the king made it, and he demanded of him. And because the king would not say, he said: If thou tell me not, I shall no longer dwell with thee, and then the king told to him, saying: Alway when I hear the devil named, I fear that he should have power over me, and I garnish me with this sign that he grieve not ne annoy me. Then Christopher said to him: Doubtest thou the devil that he hurt thee not? Then is the devil more mighty and greater than thou art. I am then deceived of my hope and purpose, for I had supposed I had found the most mighty and the most greatest Lord of the world, but I commend thee to God, for I will go seek him for to be my Lord, and I his servant. And then departed from this king, and hasted him for to seek the devil. And as he went by a great desert, he saw a great company of knights, of which a knight cruel and horrible came to him and demanded whither he went, and Christopher answered to him and said: I go seek the devil for to be my master. And he said: I am he that thou seekest. And then Christopher was glad, and bound him to be his servant perpetual, and took him for his master and Lord. And as they went together by a common way, they found there a cross, erect and standing. And anon as the devil saw the cross he was afeard and fled, and left the right way, and brought Christopher about by a sharp desert. And after, when they were past the cross, he brought him to the highway that they had left. And when Christopher saw that, he marvelled, and demanded whereof he doubted, and had left the high and fair way, and had gone so far about by so aspre a desert. And the devil would not tell him in no wise. Then Christopher said to him: If thou wilt not tell me, I shall anon depart from thee, and shall serve thee no more. Wherefor the devil was constrained to tell him, and said: There was a man called Christ which was hanged on the cross, and when I see his sign I am sore afraid, and flee from it wheresoever I see it. To whom Christopher said: Then he is greater, and more mightier than thou, when thou art afraid of his sign, and I see well that I have laboured in vain, when I have not founden the greatest Lord of the world. And I will serve thee no longer, go thy way then, for I will go seek Christ. And when he had long sought and demanded where he should find Christ, at last he came into a great desert, to an hermit that dwelt there, and this hermit preached to him of Jesu Christ and informed him in the faith diligently, and said to him: This king whom thou desirest to serve, requireth the service that thou must oft fast. And Christopher said to him: Require of me some other thing, and I shall do it, for that which thou requirest I may not do. And the hermit said: Thou must then wake and make many prayers. And Christopher said to him: I wot not what it is; I may do no such thing. And then the hermit said to him: Knowest thou such a river, in which many be perished and lost? To whom Christopher said: I know it well. Then said the hermit, Because thou art noble and high of stature and strong in thy members, thou shalt be resident by that river, and thou shalt bear over all them that shall pass there, which shall be a thing right convenable to our Lord Jesu Christ whom thou desirest to serve, and I hope he shall show himself to thee. Then said Christopher: Certes, this service may I well do, and I promise to him for to do it. Then went Christopher to this river, and made there his habitacle for him, and bare a great pole in his hand instead of a staff, by which he sustained him in the water, and bare over all manner of people without ceasing. And there he abode, thus doing, many days. And in a time, as he slept in his lodge, he heard the voice of a child which called him and said: Christopher, come out and bear me over. Then he awoke and went out, but he found no man. And when he was again in his house, he heard the same voice and he ran out and found nobody. The third time he was called and came thither, and found a child beside the rivage of the river, which prayed him goodly to bear him over the water. And then Christopher lift up the child on his shoulders, and took his staff, and entered into the river for to pass. And the water of the river arose and swelled more and more: and the child was heavy as lead, and alway as he went farther the water increased and grew more, and the child more and more waxed heavy, insomuch that Christopher had great anguish and was afeard to be drowned. And when he was escaped with great pain, and passed the water, and set the child aground, he said to the child: Child, thou hast put me in great peril; thou weighest almost as I had all the world upon me, I might bear no greater burden. And the child answered: Christopher, marvel thee nothing, for thou hast not only borne all the world upon thee, but thou hast borne him that created and made all the world, upon thy shoulders. I am Jesu Christ the king, to whom thou servest in this work. And because that thou know that I say to be the truth, set thy staff in the earth by thy house, and thou shalt see to-morn that it shall bear flowers and fruit, and anon he vanished from his eyes. And then Christopher set his staff in the earth, and when he arose on the morn, he found his staff like a palmier bearing flowers, leaves and dates.

And then Christopher went into the city of Lycia, and understood not their language. Then he prayed our Lord that he might understand them, and so he did. And as he was in this prayer, the judges supposed that he had been a fool, and left him there. And then when Christopher understood the language, he covered his visage and went to the place where they martyred christian men, and comforted them in our Lord. And then the judges smote him in the face, and Christopher said to them: If I were not christian I should avenge mine injury. And then Christopher pitched his rod in the earth, and prayed to our Lord that for to convert the people it might bear flowers and fruit, and anon it did so. And then he converted eight thousand men. And then the king sent two knights for to fetch him to the king, and they found him praying, and durst not tell to him so. And anon after, the king sent as many more, and they anon set them down for to pray with him. And when Christopher arose, he said to them: What seek ye? And when they saw him in the visage they said to him: The king hath sent us, that we should lead thee bound unto him. And Christopher said to them: If I would, ye should not lead me to him, bound ne unbound. And they said to him: If thou wilt go thy way, go quit, where thou wilt. And we shall say to the king that we have not found thee. It shall not be so, said he, but I shall go with you. And then he converted them in the fatth, and commanded them that they should bind his hands behind his back, and lead him so bound to the king. And when the king saw him he was afeard and fell down off the seat, and his servants lifted him up and releved him again. And then the king inquired his name and his country; and Christopher said to him: Tofore or I was baptized I was named Reprobus, and after, I am Christopher; tofore baptism, a Canaanite, now, a christian man. To whom the king said: Thou hast a foolish name, that is to wit of Christ crucified, which could not help himself, ne may not profit to thee. How therefore, thou cursed Canaanite, why wilt thou not do sacrifice to our gods? To whom Christopher said: Thou art rightfully called Dagnus, for thou art the death of the world, and fellow of the devil, and thy gods be made with the hands of men. And the king said to him: Thou wert nourished among wild beasts, and therefore thou mayst not say but wild language, and words unknown to men. And if thou wilt now do sacrifice to the gods I shall give to thee great gifts and great honours, and if not, I shall destroy thee and consume thee by great pains and torments. But, for all this, he would in no wise do sacrifice, wherefore he was sent in to prison, and the king did do behead the other knights that he had sent for him, whom he had converted. And after this he sent in to the prison to S. Christopher two fair women, of whom that one was named Nicæa and that other Aquilina, and promised to them many great gifts if they could draw Christopher to sin with them. And when Christopher saw that, he set him down in prayer, and when he was constrained by them that embraced him to move, he arose and said: What seek ye? For what cause be ye come hither? And they, which were afraid of his cheer and clearness of his visage, said: Holy saint of God, have pity of us so that we may believe in that God that thou preachest. And when the king heard that, he commanded that they should be let out and brought tofore him. To whom he said: Ye be deceived, but I swear to you by my gods that, if ye do no sacrifice to my gods, ye shall anon perish by evil death. And they said to him: If thou wilt that we shall do sacrifice, command that the places may be made clean, and that all the people may assemble at the temple. And when this was done they entered in to the temple, and took their girdles, and put them about the necks of their gods, and drew them to the earth, and brake them all in pieces, and said to them that were there: Go and call physicians and leeches for to heal your gods. And then, by the commandment of the king, Aquilina was hanged, and a right great and heavy stone was hanged at her feet, so that her members were much despitously broken. And when she was dead, and passed to our Lord, her sister Nicæa was cast into a great fire, but she issued out without harm all whole, and then he made to smite off her head, and so suffered death.

After this Christopher was brought tofore the king, and the king commanded that he should be beaten with rods of iron, and that there should be set upon his head a cross of iron red hot and burning, and then after, he did do make a siege or a stool of iron, and made Christopher to be bounden thereon, and after, to set fire under it, and cast therein pitch. But the siege or settle melted like wax, and Christopher issued out without any harm or hurt. And when the king saw that, he commanded that he should be bound to a strong stake, and that he should be through-shotten with arrows with forty knights archers. But none of the knights might attain him, for the arrows hung in the air about, nigh him, without touching. Then the king weened that he had been throughshotten with the arrows of the knights, and addressed him for to go to him. And one of the arrows returned suddenly from the air and smote him in the eye, and blinded him. To whom Christopher said: Tyrant, I shall die to-morn, make a little clay, with my blood tempered, and anoint therewith thine eye, and thou shalt receive health. Then by the commandment of the king he was led for to be beheaded, and then, there made he his orison, and his head was smitten off, and so suffered martyrdom. And the king then took a little of his blood and laid it on his eye, and said: In the name of God and of S. Christopher! and was anon healed. Then the king believed in God, and gave commandment that if any person blamed God or S. Christopher, he should anon be slain with the sword.

Ambrose saith in his preface thus, of this holy martyr: Lord, thou hast given to Christopher so great plenty of virtues, and such grace of doctrine, that he called from the error of paynims forty-eight thousand men, to the honour of christian faith, by his shining miracles. And Nicæa and Aquilina, which long had been common at the bordel, under the stench of lechery, he called and made them serve in the habit of chastity, and enseigned them to a like crown of martyrdom. And with this, he being strained and bounden in a seat of iron, and great fire put under, doubted nothing the heat. And all a whole day during, stood bounden to a stake, yet might not be through-pierced with arrows of all the knights. And with that, one of the arrows smote out the eye of the tyrant, to whom the blood of the holy martyr re-established his sight, and enlumined him in taking away the blindness of his body, and gat of the christian mind and pardon, and he also gat of thee by prayer power to put away sickness and sores from them that remember his passion and figure. Then let us pray to S. Christopher that he pray for us, etc.

Lives of Of the Seven Sleepers.

The seven sleepers were born in the city of Ephesus. And when Decius the emperor came into Ephesus for the persecution of christian men, he commanded to edify the temples in the middle of the city, so that all should come with him to do sacrifice to the idols, and did do seek all the christian people, and bind them for to make them to do sacrifice, or else to put them to death; in such wise that every man was afeard of the pains that he promised, that the friend forsook his friend, and the son renied his father, and the father the son. And then in this city were founden seven christian men, that is to wit, Maximian, Malchus, Marcianus, Denis, John, Serapion, and Constantine. And when they saw this, they had much sorrow, and because they were the first in the palace that despised the sacrifices, they hid them in their houses, and were in fastings and in prayers. And then they were accused tofore Decius, and came thither, and were found very christian men. Then was given to them space for to repent them, unto the coming again of Decius. And in the meanwhile they dispended their patrimony in alms to the poor people; and assembled them together, and took counsel, and went to the mount of Celion, and there ordained to be more secretly, and there hid them long time. And one of them administered and served them always. And when he went into the city, he clothed him in the habit of a beggar.

When Decius was come again, he commanded that they should be fetched, and then Malchus, which was their servant and ministered to them meat and drink, returned in great dread to his fellows, and told and showed to them the great fury and woodness of them, and then were they sore afraid. And Malchus set tofore them the loaves of bread that he had brought, so that they were comforted of the meat, and were more strong for to suffer torments. And when they had taken their refection and sat in weeping and wailings, suddenly, as God would, they slept, and when it came on the morn they were sought and could not be found. Wherefore Decius was sorrowful because he had lost such young men. And then they were accused that they were hid in the mount of Celion, and had given their goods to poor men, and yet abode in their purpose. And then commanded Decius that their kindred should come to him, and menaced them to the death if they said not of them all that they knew. And they accused them, and complained that they had dispended all their riches. Then Decius thought what he should do with them, and, as our Lord would, he enclosed the mouth of the cave wherein they were with stones, to the end that they should die therein for hunger and fault of meat. Then the ministers and two christian men, Theodorus and Rufinus, wrote their martyrdom and laid it subtlely among the stones. And when Decius was dead, and all that generation, three hundred and sixty-two years after, and the thirtieth year of Theodosius the emperor, when the heresy was of them that denied the resurrection of dead bodies, and began to grow; Theodosius, then the most christian emperor, being sorrowful that the faith of our Lord was so felonously demened, for anger and heaviness he clad him in hair and wept every day in a secret place, and led a full holy life, which God, merciful and piteous, seeing, would comfort them that were sorrowful and weeping, and give to them esperance and hope of the resurrection of dead men, and opened the precious treasure of his pity, and raised the foresaid martyrs in this manner following.

He put in the will of a burgess of Ephesus that he would make in that mountain, which was desert and aspre, a stable for his pasturers and herdmen. And it happed that of adventure the masons, that made the said stable, opened this cave. And then these holy saints, that were within, awoke and were raised and intersalued each other, and had supposed verily that they had slept but one night only, and remembered of the heaviness that they had the day tofore. And then Malchus, which ministered to them, said what Decius had ordained of them, for he said: We have been sought, like as I said to you yesterday, for to do sacrifice to the idols, that is it that the emperor desireth of us. And then Maximian answered: God our Lord knoweth that we shall never sacrifice, and comforted his fellows. He commanded to Malchus to go and buy bread in the city, and bade him bring more than he did yesterday, and also to enquire and demand what the emperor had commanded to do. And then Malchus took five shillings, and issued out of the cave, and when he saw the masons and the stones tofore the cave, he began to bless him, and was much amarvelled. But he thought little on the stones, for he thought on other things. Then came he all doubtful to the gates of the city, and was all amarvelled. For he saw the sign of the cross about the gate, and then, without tarrying, he went to that other gate of the city, and found there also the sign of the cross thereon, and then he had great marvel, for upon every gate he saw set up the sign of the cross; and therewith the city was garnished. And then he blessed him and returned to the first gate, and weened he had dreamed; and after he advised and comforted himself and covered his visage and entered into the city. And when he came to the sellers of bread, and heard the men speak of God, yet then was he more abashed, and said: What is this, that no man yesterday durst name Jesu Christ, and now every man confesseth him to be christian? I trow this is not the city of Ephesus, for it is all otherwise builded. It is some other city, I wot not what. And when he demanded and heard verily that it was Ephesus, he supposed that he had erred, and thought verily to go again to his fellows, and then went to them that sold bread. And when he showed his money the sellers marvelled, and said that one to that other, that this young man had found some old treasure. And when Malchus saw them talk together, he doubted not that they would lead him to the emperor, and was sore afeard, and prayed them to let him go, and keep both money and bread, but they held him, and said to him: Of whence art thou? For thou hast found treasure of old emperors, show it to us, and we shall be fellows with thee and keep it secret. And Malchus was so afeard that he wist not what to say to them for dread. And when they saw that he spake not they put a cord about his neck, and drew him through the city unto the middle thereof. And tidings were had all about in the city that a young man had found ancient treasure, in such wise that all they of the city assembled about him, and he confessed there that he had found no treasure. And he beheld them all, but he could know no man there of his kindred ne lineage, which he had verily supposed that they had lived, but found none, wherefore he stood as he had been from himself, in the middle of the city. And when S. Martin the bishop, and Antipater the consul, which were new come into this city, heard of this thing they sent for him, that they should bring him wisely to them, and his money with him. And when he was brought to the church he weened well he should have been led to the Emperor Decius. And then the bishop and the consul marvelled of the money, and they demanded him where he had found this treasure unknown. And he answered that he had nothing founden, but it was come to him of his kindred and patrimony, and they demanded of him of what city he was. I wot well that I am of this city, if this be the city of Ephesus. And the judge said to him: Let thy kindred come and witness for thee. And he named them, but none knew them. And they said that he feigned, for to escape from them in some manner. And then said the judge: How may we believe thee that this money is come to thee of thy friends, when it appeareth in the scripture that it is more than three hundred and seventy-two years sith it was made and forged, and is of the first days of Decius the emperor, and it resembleth nothing to our money; and how may it come from thy lineage so long since, and thou art young and wouldst deceive the wise and ancient men of this city of Ephesus? And therefore I command that thou be demened after the law till thou hast confessed where thou hast found this money. Then Malchus kneeled down tofore them and said: For God's sake, lords, say ye to me that I shall demand you, and I shall tell to you all that I have in my heart. Decius the emperor that was in this city, where is he? And the bishop said to him there is no such at this day in the world that is named Decius, he was emperor many years since. And Malchus said: Sire, hereof I am greatly abashed and no man believeth me, for I wot well that we fled for fear of Decius the emperor, and I saw him, that yesterday he entered into this city, if this be the city of Ephesus. Then the bishop thought in himself, and said to the judge that, this is a vision that our Lord will have showed by this young man. Then said the young man: Follow ye me, and I shall show to you my fellows which be in the mount of Celion, and believe ye them. This know I well, that we fled from the face of the Emperor Decius. And then they went with him, and a great multitude of the people of the city with them. And Malchus entered first into the cave to his fellows, and the bishop next after him. And there found they among the stones the letters sealed with two seals of silver. And then the bishop called them that were come thither, and read them tofore them all, so that they that heard it were all abashed and amarvelled. And they saw the saints sitting in the cave, and their visages like unto roses flowering, and they, kneeling down, glorified God. And anon the bishop and the judge sent to Theodosius the emperor, praying him that he would come anon for to see the marvels of our Lord that he had late showed. And anon he arose up from the ground, and took off the sack in which he wept, and glorified our Lord. And came from Constantinople to Ephesus, and all they came against him, and ascended in to the mountain with him together, unto the saints in to the cave.

And as soon as the blessed saints of our Lord saw the emperor come, their visages shone like to the sun. And the emperor entered then, and glorified our Lord and embraced them, weeping upon each of them, and said: I see you now like as I should see our Lord raising Lazarus. And then Maximian said to him: Believe us, for forsooth our Lord hath raised us tofore the day of the great resurrection. And to the end that thou believe firmly the resurrection of the dead people, verily we be raised as ye here see, and live. And in like wise as the child is in the womb of his mother without feeling harm or hurt, in the same wise we have been living and sleeping in Iying here without feeling of anything. And when they had said all this, they inclined their heads to the earth, and rendered their spirits at the command of our Lord Jesu Christ, and so died. Then the emperor arose, and fell on them, weeping strongly, and embraced them, and kissed them debonairly. And then he commanded to make precious sepulchres of gold and silver, and to bury their bodies therein. And in the same night they appeared to the emperor, and said to him that he should suffer them to lie on the earth like as they bad lain tofore till that time that our Lord had raised them, unto the time that they should rise again. Then commanded the emperor that the place should be adorned nobly and richly with precious stones, and all the bishops that would confess the resurrection should be assoiled. It is in doubt of that which is said that they slept three hundred and sixty-two years, for they were raised the year of our Lord four hundred and seventy-eight, and Decius reigned but one year and three months, and that was in the year of our Lord two hundred and seventy, and so they slept but two hundred and eight years.

Here followeth the Lives of SS. Nazarien and Celsus, and first the interpretation of their names.

Nazarien is said of Nazareus, that is as much to say as consecrate or clean, or departed or flowered, or keeping. In a man be found these five: Cogitation, affection, intention, action, and locution or speech. Cogitation or thought ought to be holy, affection clean, intention right, action just, and locution or speech moderate. All these things were in S. Nazarien. He had an holy cogitation or thought, and thereof he is said consecrate. He had affection clean, and thereof he is said clean. He had intention right, and thereof he is said departed. Intention is that departeth works, for of a simple eye cometh a bright body. Of a shrewd eye is made a dark body. He had action just, and thereof he is said flowered, for a just man shall flower like a lily. Speaking or locution moderate, and thereof he is said keeping, for he hath kept his ways in such wise that he had not trespassed in his tongue. Celsus is as much to say as high, for he enhanced him above himself, when he overcame his childish age by virtue of his courage. It is said that Ambrose, in the Book of Gervase and Prothase, hath rehearsed the life and passion of them. In some books it is read that there was a philosopher having devotion to Nazarien that wrote his passion, which Ceracius, which buried the bodies of the saints, laid it at the head of them.

Of S. Nazarien and S. Celsus.

Nazarien was son of a nobleman named Africanus, but he was a Jew, and of S. Perpetua, a most christian woman, and come of the noblest of the Romans, and had been baptized of S. Peter the apostle. When he was nine years old he marvelled greatly seeing his father and mother so greatly to vary in the observation of their religion; for his mother kept the law of baptism, and his father followed the law of the Sabbath, wherefore to whom he might follow of them he doubted much, for they both laboured to draw him to their faith. At last by the will of God he followed the law of his mother, and received the holy baptism of S. Linus the pope. Which, when the father knew, he began to exhort and draw him from his holy purpose, and rehearsed to him by order all the manner of torments that were ordained for christian men, but he might not withdraw him from his holy purpose. That which is said, that he was baptized of Linus the pope, it is to understand that Linus was not then pope, but afterwards he was pope.

Nazarien lived after his baptism many years, as it shall appear hereafter, which suffered martyrdom under Nero, which crucified Peter the last year of his reign. Then when Nazarien would in no wise assent to his father, but preached Christ most constantly, his kindred dreaded lest he should be slain, and at their request and prayer he departed out of Rome, and took with him seven sumpters charged and laden with riches and goods, which all he gave to poor people in the parts of Italy to which he came. And the tenth year that he departed from Rome he came to Placentia, and from thence to Milan, and found there Gervase and Prothase holden in prison, whom he comforted. And when it was known that Nazarien had comforted and encouraged the said martyrs, he was anon taken and brought to the prefect. And he, always abiding steadfastly in the faith and knowledging of Christ, was beaten with staves, and so cast out of the city; and as he went from place to place, his mother, which then was dead, appeared to him, and comforted him, and warned him that he should go into France, and so he did. And when he came into a town of France, which that hight Gemellus, and had converted much people to the faith of Jesu Christ, there was a noble woman which offered to him her son named Celsus, which was an elegant and fair child, praying him that he would baptize him and take him with him. And when the prefect of France heard thereof, he took him and the child Celsus, with their hands bounden behind them, and a chain on their necks, and put them in prison for to torment them on the morn.

Then the wife of the prefect sent to him, affirming that it was not rightfully done that he should slay the innocents, but the gods almighty should presume to avenge them. By which words the prefect was corrected, and delivered the innocents, but charged and warned them that they should no more preach there. Then he came to the city of Treves and he was the first that preached Christ and converted many to the faith, and there edified a church. And when Cornelius, lieutenant of Nero, heard thereof, he sent thither an hundred knights for to take him. And they found him in an oratory that he had made, and took him and bound his hands, saying: The great Nero hath sent for thee; to whom Nazarien answered: The king all out of order, hath also knights out of order. Why came ye not honestly and said: Nero calleth thee? and I would have come. Then they led him bounden so to Nero; and Celsus the child weeping, they smote and buffeted him and constrained him to follow, and when Nero saw them he commanded to put them in prison till they there died by torments. And on a day when Nero sent his hunters to take wild beasts, suddenly a great multitude of wild beasts brake their ordinance, and entered the garden of Nero, where they slew and all torent many men, that Nero, all troubled, fled, and hurt his foot that unnethe he might come to his place, and after lay many a day, and might not remove for the pain of the wound. At the last he remembered of Nazarien and Celsus, and supposed his gods were wroth with him because he suffered them to live so long. Then, by the commandment of the emperor, knights beat them both and brought them tofore the emperor. Nero saw their visages shine like the sun, and he supposed that they had done it fantastically, to mock him by magic, and commanded them to put away their enchantments, and offer to the gods. Then was Nazarien led to the temple, and prayed that all men should go out. And then he made his prayers to God, and all the idols fell down and were broken. And when Nero heard that, he commanded to cast him into the sea. And if it happed that he escaped, they should follow and take him and burn him, and should take the ashes of him, and cast it into the sea.

Nazarien then, and the child Celsus, were put in a ship and brought into the middle of the sea, and were both cast in, and anon about the ship arose a great tempest, and about them was great calm and tranquillity. When they then that were in the ship were afraid to be perished, and repented them of the harm and wickedness that they had committed on the saints, Nazarien with the child Celsus, walked upon the sea and appeared to them with a glad cheer and entered into the ship to them, and then, they believing, by his prayer the sea was appeased. And from thence they sailed and came to a place six hundred paces beside Genoa, where they long preached, and after came to Milan where they found Gervase and Prothase in the place where they had left them. And when Anolinus the provost heard that, he sent him in exile, and Celsus the child abode in the house with a noble woman. Nazarien then came to Rome and found his father, then old and christian, and enquired of him how he was christened, which said that Peter the apostle had appeared to him and bade him believe as his wife and son did. Then from thence he was exiled of the bishops unto Milan again, from whence tofore he was exiled to Rome, and was now compelled again with wrong to go to Rome, where he was presented to the provost with the child Celsus, which then was led out of the gate of Rome, which is named three walls, with the child Celsus, and there was beheaded. Whose bodies christian men took up and by night buried them in a garden. And the next night they appeared to a holy saint named Ceracius, saying that he should bury their bodies in his house more deeper for dread of Nero. To whom he said: I pray you first my lords that ye make my daughter whole of the palsy, which anon, when she was whole, he took the bodies, and as they commanded he did.

Long time after this, God showed their bodies to S. Ambrose, and he left Celsus Iying in his place, and took up the body of Nazarien with as fresh blood as he had been buried the same day, smelling a marvellous sweet odour, incorrupt, with his hair and his beard, and brought it to the church of the apostles, and there buried it honorably, and after took up the body of Celsus and buried it in the same church. They suffered death about the year of our Lord fifty-seven. Of this martyr saith Ambrose in his preface: O thou holy noble champion and blessed martyr, shining by the shedding of thy blood, thou hast deserved to have the kingdom of heaven, which by the innumerable assaults of torments hast overcome the woodness of the tyrant by the constancy of faith, and hast gathered together a multitude of people to everlasting life. O thou martyr, of whose health the church joyeth more than the world joyed in his punishing: O thou blessed mother of her children glorified with torments, which led them not with wailing ne sorrowing to hell, but departing hence followed her with perpetual laud unto the heavenly kingdoms. All this and more saith S. Ambrose.

Here followeth the Life of S. Felix, and first of his name.

Felix is said of felicitas, that is blessedness; or else Felix as bearing strifes and tribulations of this world for everlasting life. Or Felix, bearing light or water to faith, which is to say, leading people to the faith.

Of S. Felix

Felix was chosen pope instead of Liberius, and was ordained and sacred, for because Liberius the pope would not consent to the heresy of the Arians, he was sent into exile of Constantius, son of Constantine, and there abode three years, wherefore all the clergy of Rome ordained Felix to be pope by the will and consent of Liberius. And then this Felix assembled a council of forty-eight bishops and condemned Constantius as Arian and heretic, and two priests, which favoured and sustained him in his heresy. For which thing Constantius was wroth and chased Felix out of his bishopric, and called again Liberius by this covenant, that he should be partner with him and the other whom Felix had condemned. And Liberius, which was tormented by the grievousness of his exile, submitted him unto the evil heresy, and thus the persecution grew more, in so much that many priests and clerks were slain within the church, without that Liberius defended them. And Felix, which was cast out of his bishopric, dwelled in his own heritage, of which he was put out, and martyred by smiting off his head, about the year of our Lord three hundred and forty.

Here followeth of the Saints Simplicien, Faustin, and Beatrice, and first of their names.

Simplicien is as much to say as simple, or without any pleat of falsehood. He was simple by meekness and humility, for he humbled himself to receive martyrdom; he was knowing, for he knew the christian faith, and for the faith he suffered martyrdom. Faustin is as much to say as fortunate. Beatrice is to say holding blessedness, or it is said of beata, that is blessed, and of ares, that is virtue, which is a blessed virtue. And Beatrice is said, sorrowful or heavy, for she was sorrowful of the passion of her brethren, and she was blessed by her martyrdom.

Of the Saints Simplicien, Faustin, and Beatrice.

Simplicien and Faustin, brethren, when they would not by no constraint do sacrifice to the idols, and refused it utterly, they suffered many torments at Rome under Diocletian, and at last sentence was given against them, and they were beheaded and their bodies cast into Tiber, the river. And Beatrice, their sister, took up the bodies of them and buried them honourably. Lucretius, which was provost of Rome, went on a time playing about the heritage of Beatrice, and saw her, and made her to be taken, and commanded her that she should make sacrifice to his gods, and she refused it. And Lucretius made his servants to strangle her in a night and let her lie. And Lucia, the virgin, took away the body and buried it with her brethren, and after that Lucretius entered into their heritage. And thus as he assailed the martyrs, and did do make a great feast to his friends, and as he sat at dinner, a young child that lay wound in small clouts in his mother's lap, which yet sucked, sprang out of the lap of his mother that held him, and all men seeing, escried and said: O thou Lucretius, hear and understand, thou hast slain and assailed the martyrs of God, and therefore thou art given into the possession of the fiend. And then anon Lucretius trembled and feared, and was forthwith ravished of the devil, and was so tormented by three hours of the devil that he died at that same dinner. And when they that were there saw that, they were converted to the faith, and recounted to all men how the passion of S Beatrice was avenged at the same dinner. And they suffered death about the year of our Lord two hundred and eighty-seven.

Here followeth the Life of S. Martha.

S. Martha, hostess of our Lord Jesu Christ, was born of a royal kindred. Her father was named Syro and her mother Encharia. The father of her was duke of Syria and places maritime, and Martha with her sister possessed by the heritage of their mother three places, that was, the castle Magdalen, and Bethany and a part of Jerusalem. It is nowhere read that Martha had ever any husband ne fellowship of man, but she as a noble hostess ministered and served our Lord, and would also that her sister should serve him and help her, for she thought that all the world was not sufficient to serve such a guest. After the ascension of our Lord, when the disciples were departed, she with her brother Lazarus and her sister Mary, also S. Maximin which baptized them, and to whom they were committed of the Holy Ghost, and many others, were put into a ship without sail, oars, or rudder governail, of the paynims, which by the conduct of our Lord they came all to Marseilles, and after came to the territory of Aquense or Aix, and there converted the people to the faith. Martha was right facound of speech, and courteous and gracious to the sight of the people.

There was that time upon the river of Rhone, in a certain wood between Arles and Avignon, a great dragon, half beast and half fish, greater than an ox, longer than an horse, having teeth sharp as a sword, and horned on either side, head like a lion, tail like a serpent, and defended him with two wings on either side, and could not be beaten with cast of stones ne with other armour, and was as strong as twelve lions or bears; which dragon lay hiding and lurking in the river, and perished them that passed by and drowned ships. He came thither by sea from Galicia, and was engendered of Leviathan, which is a serpent of the water and is much wood, and of a beast called Bonacho, that is engendered in Galicia. And when he is pursued he casts out of his belly behind, his ordure, the space of an acre of land on them that follow him, and it is bright as glass, and what it toucheth it burneth as fire. To whom Martha, at the prayer of the people, came into the wood, and found him eating a man. And she cast on him holy water, and showed to him the cross, which anon was overcome, and standing still as a sheep, she bound him with her own girdle, and then was slain with spears and glaives of the people. The dragon was called of them that dwelled in the country Tarasconus, whereof, in remembrance of him that place is called Tarasconus, which tofore was called Nerluc, and the Black Lake, because there be woods shadowous and black. And there the blessed Martha, by licence of Maximin her master, and of her sister, dwelled and abode in the same place after, and daily occupied in prayers and in fastings, and thereafter assembled and were gathered together a great convent of sisters, and builded a fair church at the honour of the blessed Mary virgin, where she led a hard and a sharp life. She eschewed flesh and all fat meat, eggs, cheese and wine; she ate but once a day. An hundred times a day and an hundred times a night she kneeled down and bowed her knees.

On a time, at Avignon, when she preached between the town and the river of Rhone, there was a young man on that other side of the river desiring to hear her words, and had no boat to pass over. He began to swim naked, but he was suddenly taken by the strength of the water, and anon suffocate and drowned, whose body unnethe was found the next day. And when it was taken up, it was presented at the feet of Martha for to be raised to life. She then, in manner of a cross, fell down to the ground and prayed in this manner: O Adonay, Lord Jesu Christ, which raisedst sometime my well-beloved brother, behold my most dear guest to the faith of them that stand here, and raise this child. And she took him by the hand, and forthwith he arose living and received the holy baptism.

Eusebius telleth in the book of the Historia Ecclesiastica that a woman named Emorissa, after that she was healed of our Lord, she made in her court an image like unto Jesu Christ, with cloth and hem, like as she saw him when she was healed, and worshipped him much devoutly. The herbs that grew under the image tofore that she had touched the hem, were of no virtue, but, after that she had touched it, they were of so much virtue that many sick people by them were healed. That woman Emorissa, whom our Lord healed, Ambrose saith that it was Martha. S. Jerome saith, and it is had in Historia Tripartita, that Julianus Apostata took away that image that Emorissa made, and set his own there, which, with the stroke of thunder, was all tobroken. Our Lord came to her a year tofore her death, and showed to her that she should depart out of this world, and all that year she was sick and laboured in the fevers, and eight days tofore her death she heard the heavenly fellowship of angels bearing her sister's soul into heaven, and anon did do come all the convent of brethren and of sisters, and said to them: My friends and most sweet fellows, I pray you to rejoice and enjoy with me, for I see the fellowship of angels bear the soul of my sister Mary unto heaven. O most fair and sweet sister, thou livest now with thy master and my guest in the blessed seat in heaven. And then anon Martha said to them that were present, that her death was nigh, and bade to light the tapers about her, and that they should wake unto her death. And about midnight tofore the day of her death, they that should watch her were heavy of sleep and slept, and there came a great wind and extinguished and did out the lights. She then, seeing a great tourbe of wicked spirits, began to pray and said: My father Eli, my dear guest, these deceivers be gathered for to devour me, bringing written, all the evil deeds that ever I did. O blessed Eli be not withdrawn from me, but intend in to mine help; and forthwith she saw her sister coming to her, holding a brand in her hand, and lighted the tapers and lamps, and as each of them called other by their name, Christ came to them saying: Come, my well-beloved hostess, for where I am thou shalt be with me. Thou hast received me in thine harbour and I shall receive thee in mine heaven, and all them that call upon thee, I shall hear them for thy love. Then the hour of her death approaching, she commanded that she should be borne out of the house that she might behold and look up into heaven, and to lay her on the earth, and to hold the sign of the cross tofore her, and saying these words, she prayed: My sweet guest, I beseech thee to keep me, thy poor creature, and like as thou hast vouchsafed to be lodged with me, so I beseech thee to receive me into thine heavenly harbour. And then she bade that the passion after Luke should be read tofore her, and when this was said: Pater, in manus tuas commendo spiritum meum, she gave up her spirit and died in our Lord. The next day following, that was the Sunday, whiles they said lauds about her body, and did her obsequies, and about the hour of tierce, at Petrogoricke, our Lord appeared to the blessed Frontonius singing mass, which after the epistle slept in his chair, and said to him: My wellbeloved Frontonius, if thou wilt fulfil that thou behightest long sith to my hostess Martha, arise anon and follow me. Whose commandment he obeyed, and suddenly both came to Tarascona, and singing the office about the body and the other answering, they with their own hands laid the body into the sepulchre. And troth it was that at Petrogoricke, when they had sung in the choir and the deacon should go read the gospel and receive the benediction, they awoke the bishop, demanding the benediction. Then the bishop awoke and said: Why have ye awakened me, my brethren? Our Lord Jesu Christ hath led me to his hostess Martha, and we have laid her in her sepulchre. Now send thither messengers for to fetch our ring of gold and our gloves, which whiles I made me ready to bury her, I delivered them to the sexton, and I have forgotten them there because ye awoke me so soon. Then were messengers sent forth, and as the bishop said, they found his ring and one glove which they brought again, and that other the sexton retained for a witness and memory. And the blessed Frontonius added thereto, saying that after her sepulture, a brother of the same place, a learned man in the law, demanded of our Lord what was his name?To whom he answered not, but showed a book open in his hand in which was written this versicle: In everlasting memory shall be my rightful hostess, and she shall dread none evil in the last day; and when he should turn the leaves of the book, in every leaf he found that same written, where afterward many miracles were showed and done at her tomb. Then Clovis, king of France, was after this made a christian man, and baptized of S. Remigius, and suffering great pain in his reins, came to her tomb and there received very health. For which cause he enriched that place, and the space of three miles way about on both sides of the river of Rhone, as well towns as castles, he gave to the same place, and that place he made free. Martilla, her servant, wrote her life, which afterward went into Sclavonia, and there preached the gospel of Christ, and after ten years, from the death of Martha, she rested in our Lord. Then let us pray to this blessed Martha, hostess of our Lord, that after this short life we may be harboured in heaven with our blessed Lord Jesu Christ, to whom be given joy, laud and praising, world without end. Amen.

Here follow the Lives of Abdon and Sennen.

Abdon is said of abscin in Greek, which is as much to say as cutte in Latin, and dolos, which is to say, as seeing. He was cut and hewn in his body and saw God by martyrdom. Sennen is said of senos in Greek, which is as much to say as wit, and en, that is, in, and thereof is Sennen as in wit, or senex as old, as who says he was old in wit.

Of SS. Abdon and Sennen.

Abdon and Sennen suffered martyrdom under Decius the emperor. When Decius the emperor had surmounted Babylon and the other provinces, he found some christian men within the city, and brought them with him bounden to the city of Corduba. And made them there to die by divers torments. And then Abdon and Sennen, which were as governors of the country, took the bodies and buried them. Then were they accused and brought to Decius, and he did do lead them with him bounden in chains to Rome. Then were they brought tofore Decius, and tofore the senators. Then was it commanded that they should do sacrifice, and they should have all their things freely, or else they should be devoured by bitings of wild beasts. But they despised to make sacrifice, and spit against the false idols and statues; and then were they drawn to the place of martyrdom, and made to be brought to them two lions and two bears, which did to them none harm ne touched them not, but rather kept them from harm. Then began they to cast spears and swords at them, and at last they were all tohewen with swords, and then they were bound by the feet and drawn through the town unto the idol of the sun, and when they had lain there three days, Quirinus, sub-deacon, took the bodies up and buried them in his house. And they suffered death about the year of our Lord two hundred and fifty-three.

Here followeth the Life of S. Germain, and first of his name.

Germain is said of germ and ana that is, high. This is to say, sovereign germ. Three things be found in seed germining, that is to wit, natural heat, humour nutrimental, and reason of seed. Then the holy S. Germain is said as seed germining. For in him was heat by burning of love, humour by fatness of devotion, and reason of the seed by virtue of predication, by which he engendered much people to the faith and in good manners. And Constance the priest wrote his life to S. Severin, bishop of Auxerre.

Of S. Germain.

Germain was of much noble lineage, born in the city of Auxerre, and was taught and informed well in the arts liberal. And after, he went to Rome for to learn the science of the decretals, droits and law. And there received he so much of dignity that the senate sent him unto France for to have and obtain the dignity of the duchy of all Burgundy. And thus as he governed the city more diligently than all the others, there was in the midst of the city a tree, which was a pine, on which men hung on the branches, for the great marvel of their hunting, the heads of wild beasts. But S. Amadour, which was bishop of that city, reproved them of such vanities, and warned them, and desired that they should hew down that tree to the end that none ill occasion might come to the christian men; but they would not consent thereto in no manner. And on a time when Germain was not in the town, the bishop did do cut down this tree and made it to be burnt. And when Germain knew it, he was much angry and forgat the christian religion, and came with a great multitude of knights and assayed if he might slay the bishop. And then the bishop knew, by revelation divine, that Germain should be his successor, and gave place to his woodness, and went to the city of Autun, and after he came again to Auxerre. And then he shut and enclosed subtilly Germain within the church, and there sacred him, and said that he should be his successor in the bishopric, and so he was. For anon after S. Amadour died, and all the people required Germain to be bishop, and then he gave all his riches to poor people, and changed his wife into his sister, and tormented so his body by the space of thirty years that he never ate bread of wheat, ne drank wine, ne he used no pottage, and would have no salt to savour his meat, and twice in the year he drank wine, and that was at Christmas and at Easter, and to quench and to take away the savour of the wine, he put in plenty of water, and in his refection, he took of the ashes after his barley bread, and fasted every day, and ate never till night. In winter ne in summer he had but one clothing, that was the hair, his coat and his gown, and if it so happed that he gave not his vestment to any poor man he wore it so long that it was broken and unpieced. His bed was all environed with ashes, and hair, and with a sack, and had not his head addressed upon a pillow more higher than his shoulders. But every day he wept, and bare about his neck relics of saints. He ware none other clothing. He wore seldom hosen or shoon, and seldom was gird; and the life that he lived was above man's power, his life was such that it was great miracle and pity to see his flesh; and was as a thing not credible; and he did so many miracles that but if his merits had gone before, they should have been trowed fantastic.

On a time he was harboured in a place where every night the table was made ready for to eat after supper, when men had supped, and he was much amarvelled thereof, and demanded of the host of the house wherefore they made ready for to eat after supper. And the host said to him, that it was for his neighbours, which would come and drink one after the other. And that night S. Germain established him to wake for to see what it was. It was not long after that there came thither a great multitude of devils, and came to the table in guise of men and women. And when the holy man saw them, he commanded them that they should not go away, and after he sent for to wake the neighbours on all sides, in such wise that every body was found in his bed, and in their houses, and made the people to come and see if they knew any of them, but they said nay. And then he showed them that they were devils, whereof the people were much abashed because the devils had mocked them so. And then S. Germain conjured that they never after returned thither ne came more there.

That same time S. Lupus flourished which was bishop of Troyes; the city was assieged of the king Attila, and S. Lupus went upon the gate, and cried and demanded what he was that so letted them. To whom he said: I am Attila, the scourge of God. And then the meek bishop answered and said: I am Lupus, alas, the waster of the flock of God, and have need of the scourge of God, and commanded then to open the gates. And the people of the king Attila were all made blind by the will of God, so that they passed through the town, and saw no man of the city ne did no harm to any body. Then the blessed Germain took with him S. Lupus, and they both went into Britain whereas the heresies then were; but when they were on the sea a great tempest came and arose, which by the prayer of S. Germain anon ceased, and then they were received honestly of the people of the country, whose coming devils had said tofore, which S. Germain had cast out of bodies that they had vexed, and when they had overcome the heresies they returned again unto their own places.

On a time it happed that S. Germain lay sick in a street, which street was afire. To whom the people came and desired to bear him out of the street for dread of the fire, but he would not be borne thence, but put himself against the fire, which burnt all about him, and touched not him ne the house that he was in.

Another time he returned into Britain for the heresies. One of his disciples followed him hastily, and fell sick by the way, and died there. And when S. Germain returned, he demanded to see the sepulchre of his disciple that was dead, and it was opened to him. And he called him by his name, and demanded him what he did and made, and if he would dwell any more with him, and anon the body spake, and said that he was well, and all things were sweet to him, and would no more be called again into this world he said. And the saint granted him that he should be in rest, and he laid down his head and slept in our Lord.

He preached on a time in Britain so much, that the king denied him lodging, and his people. Then it happed that the king's cowherd went with his portion that he fetched at the palace, and bare it to his little house. And he saw the blessed Germain and his men seek their lodging where they might be harboured that night. And the cowherd brought them into his house, and saw that they had much hunger. But he had not meat enough for him and for his guests. This cowherd had but one calf, which he did do slay for to give to them, and he received them debonairly with the little good that he had. And when they had supped and had said graces, S. Germain bade him bring to him the bones of the calf and to lay them upon the skin. And after made his prayer to God, and anon the calf arose to life without tarrying. And on the morn S. Germain came hastily to the king, and demanded him why he had denied him lodging. Then the king, being sore abashed, could not answer. Then he said to the king: Go out, and leave thy realm to one better than thou art. And then S. Germain ordained the cowherd to be governor of the realm. Then as the Saxons fought against the Britons and saw that they were but a few men, and saw the holy men pass by them, they called them, and the saints preached so much to them that they came to the grace of baptism. And on Easter day they cast off their armour. and through burning charity of faith purposed to fight. And when that other party heard that, they purposed to go against them hardily. And S. Germain hid himself apart with his people, and warned them, when he should cry Alleluia ! that they should answer Alleluia! And when the said S. Germain had cried: Alleluia! and the other had answered, their enemies had so great fear, that they cast away all their armours, and had weened verily that all the mountains had fallen on them, and heaven also, and so all afraid fled away.

On a time as S. Germain passed by Autun, he went to the tomb of S. Cassian and enquired of him how it was with him. And he answered him out of the tomb and said: I am in sweet rest, and abide the coming of our Redeemer; and he said again: Rest thou then still in the name of our Lord, and pray for us devoutly, that we may deserve the holy joys of the resurrection. And when S. Germain came in to Ravenna, he was received much honorably of the Queen Placida, and of Valentinian her son. And at the hour of supper she sent to him a right great vessel of silver full of delicious meat, the which he retained for to give to poor men. And instead hereof, he sent to the queen a dish of tree and a barley loaf, the which she received gladly, and after did do cover the dish with silver, and kept it long, with great devotion.

On a time when the lady had bidden him for to dine with her, he granted it debonairly, and because he was weary of travail and fastings, he rode from his hostel unto the palace upon an ass, and whiles he dined his ass died. And when the queen knew that his ass was dead, she was much sorrowful, and did do present to him a right good horse of right great beauty, and great. And when he saw him so richly adorned and arrayed, he would not take it, but said: Show me mine ass, for he that brought me hither shall bring me home. And went to the dead ass, and said: Arise, and let us return home, and anon he arose and awoke, as he had slept, and as he had had no harm. And then S. Germain mounted on his ass and rode to his lodging, but ere he departed from Ravenna, he said that he should not be long in this world; and a while after he fell sick of the fevers or axes, and the seventh day after passed out of this world unto our Lord, and his body was borne into France, like as he had desired of the queen, and he died about the year of our Lord four hundred and twenty-one.

S. Germain had promised to S. Eusebius, which was bishop of Vercelli, that when he returned he would hallow him his church that he had founded. And when S. Eusebius understood that he was dead, he would himself hallow his church, and did do light the tapers. But the ofter they lighted them, so oft they went out, and were quenched, and when S. Eusebius saw this, he apperceived well that the hallowing was done, or else it should be done another time, or it should be reserved to another bishop. And when the body of S. Germain was brought to Vercelli, as soon as his body was brought into the church, all the tapers were lighted by themselves by God's grace. Then S. Eusebius remembered of the promise of S. Germain, and that which he had promised, living, he accomplished it being dead. But it is not to be understood that this was the great Eusebius, bishop of Vercelli, that this was done in his time. For he died under Valens the emperor, and from the death of him unto the death of S. Gerrnain was more than fifty years. But this was another Eusebius under whom this thing was done. Then let us pray unto this holy Germain, that he pray for us to God Almighty, that after this life we may come to everlasting bliss in heaven. Amen.

Here next followeth the Life of S. Eusebius, and first of his name.

Eusebius is said of eu, which is as much to say as good, and sebe, that is, eloquence or station. Or Eusebius is as much to say as worship; he had bounty in sanctification, eloquence in defence of the faith, station in the steadfastness of martyrdom, and good worshipping in the reverence of God.

Of S. Eusebius.

Eusebius was always a virgin, and whilst he was yet young in the faith he received baptism and name of Eusebius the pope, in which baptism the hands of angels were seen that lifted him out of the font. On a day a certain lady was esprised of his beauty, and would have gone to his chamber, and the angels kept the door in such wise that she might not enter, and on the morn she went to him and kneeled down at his feet, and required of him mercy and forgiveness of that she had been in will to have made him sin, and he pardoned her debonairly. And when he was ordained to be a priest, he shone in so great holiness, that when he sang the solemnities of the masses the angels served him. After this, when the heresy of the Arians had infected all Italy, and Constantine the emperor favouring them, Julius the pope sacred Eusebius into bishop of Vercelli the city, the which held the principate of the other cities in Italy. And when the heretics heard say that, they shut fast the doors of the church, which was of our Blessed Lady and Blessed Virgin S. Mary. Then the blessed saint kneeled down, and anon the doors opened by his prayer. Then put he out Eugenius, bishop of Milan, which was corrupted of this evil heresy, and ordained in his place Denis, a man right catholic. And thus Eusebius purged all the church of the occident, and Anastasius purged the orient of the heresy Arian. Arius was a priest of Alexandria, which said and affirmed that Christ was a pure creature, and said that he was not God, and for us was made, that we by him as by an instrument were made of God. And therefore Constantine ordained a council at Nice whereas this error was condemned. And after this Arius died of a miserable death, for he voided all his entrails beneath at his fundament. And Constantius, son of Constantine, was corrupt with this heresy, for which cause this Constantius had great hate against Eusebius, and assembled a council of many bishops, and called Denis, and sent many letters to Eusebius, and he knew well that the malice of him was so great that he deigned not come to him. Wherefore the emperor established against the excusation of him that the council should be solemnised at Milan which was nigh to him. And when he saw that Eusebius was not there, he commanded to the Arians that they should write their faith and send it to Denis, bishop of Milan, and twenty-nine bishops he made subscribe the same faith. And when Eusebius heard that, he issued out of his city for to go to Milan, and said well tofore that he should sufler much. And thus as he came to a flood for to go to Milan, the ship tarried long on that other side of the river, but the ship came at his commandment and bare him over and his fellowship, without governor. Then the foresaid Denis came against him and kneeled down to his feet and required pardon. And when Eusebius could not be turned by gifts ne by menaces of this emperor, he said tofore them all: Ye say that the Son is less than the Father, wherefore have ye then made my son and my disciple greater than me? for the disciple is not above the master, nor the son above the father. Then were they moved by this reason, and showed to him the writing that they had made and Denis had written, and they said that he had written, and he said: Nay, I shall not subscribe after my son, to whom I am sovereign by authority, but burn this writing, and after write another, if ye will, ere I shall write. And thus by the will of God that schedule was burnt, which Denis and the twenty-nine bishops had subscribed, and then the Arians wrote again another schedule and delivered it to Eusebius and to the other bishops for to subscribe, but the bishops, enhardened of Eusebius, would in no wise consent to subscribe, but they were glad that thilke schedule, which by constraint they had subscribed, was burnt. Then was Constantius angry, and delivered Eusebius to the will of the Arians, and anon they drew him from the middle of the bishops and beat him cruelly, and drew him from the highest of the palace by the steps down to the lowest, and from the lowest to the highest, unto the time that his head was all tobruised and bled much blood, and yet he would not consent to them. And then they bound his hands behind him, and after, drew him with a cord about his neck, and he thanked God, and said that he was all ready for to die for the defence of the faith of holy Church. Then Constantius exiled Liberius the pope, Denis, Paulinus, and all the other bishops that Eusebius had enhardened. And then the Arians led Eusebius into Jerapolin, a city of Palestine, and enclosed him in a strait place, in so much that it was strait and short that he might not stretch out his feet, ne turn him from one side to another, and he had his head so strait that he might not move it, ne turn hither ne thither his members in no manner, save only his shoulders and arms, the place was so strait in Iength and in breadth. And when Constantius was dead, Julian succeeded him, and would please every man, and commanded that all the bishops which had been exiled should be repealed, and the temples of the gods to be opened, and would that all men should use peace under what law he were. And by this occasion Eusebius issued out of prison and came to Athanasius, and told to him what he had suffered. Then Julian died, and Jovinian reigned, and the Arians ceased. S. Eusebius returned to the town of Vercelli, where the people received him with great joy. And after, when Valens reigned, the Arians came again in their forces, and entered into the house of Eusebius, and stoned him with stones, and so put him to death, and he died debonairly in our Lord, and was buried in tbe church that he had made. And it is said that he impetred and gat grace of our Lord that no Arian might live in that city. And after the chronicles he lived eighty-eight years. He flourished about the year of our Lord three hundred and fifty.

Here followeth the Seven Maccabees.

There were seven Maccabees with their worshipful mother, and a priest named Eleazar which would eat no swine's flesh because it was defended in their law. And after that it is contained in the first book of the Maccabees, they suffered great torments, and such as never were heard tofore, and it is to understand that the church of the orient maketh the solemnities of the saints of that one and of that other Testament. And the church of the occident maketh no feast of them of the Old Testament, save of the Innocents, because that the souls of the saints of that time descended into hell, but she maketh feast of the Innocents because Jesu Christ was slain in every each of them, and also of the Maccabees. And there be four reasons wherefore the church maketh solemnities of the Maccabees, howbeit that they descended into hell. The first reason is because they had prerogative of martyrdom not tofore like heard, and above that any other of the Old Testament have suffered. And therefore be they privileged that their passion be solemnised by their merit. And this reason is set in Scholastica Historia. The second reason is for the representation of the mystery, the number of seven is universal and general. And by them be understood and signified all the fathers of the Old Testament worthy to be solemnised. And howbeit that the church maketh not solemnity of them because they descended into hell, and also because that there came such a multitude of new saints, nevertheless in these seven is done reverence to them all. For as it is said by the number of seven is assigned an university. The third is because of the ensample of suffering. And there be purposed in example of good christian men for two things, that is to say the constancy; after the constancy of them they be enhardened in the love of the faith, and also for to suflfer for the law of the gospel, like as they did for the law of Moses. The fourth reason is for because of their torments. For they suffered such torments for their law that they held for to defend like as christian men do for the law of the gospel. And Master John Beleth assigneth these three last reasons in his sum of the office.

Here followeth the feast of S. Peter ad Vincula, at Lammas.

The feast of S. Peter the apostle that is called ad Vincula was established for four causes. That is to wit, in remembrance of the deliverance of S. Peter, and in mind of deliverance of Alexander, for to destroy the customs of the paynims and for to get absolution of spiritual bonds. And the first cause which is in remembrance of S. Peter. For as it is said in the History Scholastic that Herod Agrippa went to Rome, and was right familiar with Gaius, nephew of Tiberius emperor. And on a day as Herod was in a chariot brought with Gaius, he lifted up his hands unto heaven and said: I would gladly see the death of this old fellow Peter, and the Lord of all the world. And the chariot man heard this word said of Herod, and anon told it to Tiberius. Wherefore Tiberius set Herod in prison. And as he was there he beheld on a day by him a tree, and saw upon the branches of this tree an owl which sat thereon, and another prisoner which was with him, that understood well divinations. said to him: Thou shalt be anon delivered, and shalt be enhanced to be a king, in such wise that thy friends shall have envy at thee, and thou die in that prosperity. And know thou for truth, that when thou shalt see the owl over thee, at the end of five days after thou shalt die for certain. And anon after Tiberius died, and Gaius was emperor. Which delivered Herod out of prison and enhanced him gloriously, and sent him as king into Judea, and anon as he came he sent his puissance, and set hand to for to put some of the church to affliction, and did do slay James, brother of S. John the Evangelist, with a sword, before the day of Easter. And because it was a thing agreeable, and pleased the Jews, he took Peter on Easter-day, and enclosed him fast in prison, and would after Easter bring him forth and show him to the people and slay him, but the angel came marvellously, and unbound him and loosed his chains, and sent him forth all quit to the service of preaching the Word of God. And the felony of this king suffered not to abide any dilation of vengeance, for the next day following, he made to come the keepers for to begin to torment them with divers pains for the fleeing of Peter, but he was let to do that, that the deliverance grieved them not. For he went hastily to Cæsarea and there was smitten of an angel and died. Thus rehearseth Josephus in the Book of Antiquity. For when he came into Cæsarea, all the men and women of that province came to him, and when the day came that he should go in judgment and take possession of the country, he went and clad him with a vestment of tissue marvellously shining of gold and silver, and when the sun smote and shone on it, it was more shining than the sun. For it was so bright that no man might behold it, and the brightness was like red metal, and gave fear and dread to them that looked thereon, and therefore the pride of him was so great that, he better seemed a man made by craft than by nature human. And then the people began to cry and say: We have seen thee till now like a man, but now we confess that thou art above nature human. And thus as he was flattered with honours, and refused not divine worship, he being there set, he saw above his head an owl sitting, which was messenger of his hasty death. And when he had apperceived the owl, and beheld the people that were there assembled and come at his commandment, he said to them: Certainly, I that am your lord shall die within five days. For he knew it well, because the diviner had told him that he should die within fire days that he had seen the owl sitting above him. And incontinent, after this thing thus accomplished, he was smitten suddenly in such wise that worms ate his bowels, and on the fifth day he died. And this saith Josephus. And because then in remembrance of the deliverance of S. Peter prince of the apostles from the cruel vengeance of the cruel tyrant, which as soon as he was enhanced to be king went to pursue and destroy the church, therefore the church halloweth the feast of S. Peter ad vincula. And the epistle is sung in the mass in which this deliverance is witnessed here to be done.

The second cause of the establishing of this feast was because Alexander the pope, which was the sixth after Peter, and Hermes, provost of Rome, which was converted to the faith by the same Alexander, were holden in divers places in the prison of Quirinus the judge. Which judge said to Hermes the provost: I marvel of thee that art so wise a man, that thou wilt leave the great worldly honours that thou hast, and the great riches that thou receivest of thy provostry, and wilt thou leave all these things for dreaming of another life. To whom Hermes said: Tofore this time I despised and scorned, and weened there had been none other life than this. Quirinus answered: Make proof to me that there is another life, and anon I shall apply me to thy faith. To whom Hermes said: Alexander, whom thou holdest in thy prison, shall inform thee better than I. Then Quirinus cursed Alexander, and said to him: I will that thou shalt make proof of this thing to me, and thou sendest me to Alexander, whom I hold bounden in chains for his evil deeds. Truly I shall double the prison upon thee and Alexander, and I shall set watch upon you. And if I find thee with him or him with thee, I shall verily give faith to thine and his words. And then he doubled their keepers and showed this to Alexander, and then Alexander prayed to God, and an angel came to him and brought him into the prison to Hermes. And when Quirinus came to the prison he found them both together, whereof he was much amarvelled. And then Hermes recounted to Quirinus how Alexander had healed his son and raised him from death. And Quirinus then said to Alexander: I have a daughter named Balbina which is sick of the gout, if thou mayst heal her, I promise thee that I shall receive thy faith if thou mayst get for her health. To whom Alexander said: Go anon, and bring her to me into my prison. And Quirinus said to him: How may I find thee in thy prison and art here? And Alexander said: Go thy way anon, for he that brought me hither shall soon bring me thither. And Quirinus went then and fetched his daughter, and brought her into the prison where Alexander was and found him there, and then kneeled down to his feet. And his daughter began to kiss the chains with which S. Alexander was bounden, hoping thereby to receive her health. And S. Alexander said to her: Daughter, kiss not my chains, but seek the chains of S. Peter and kiss them with devotion, and thou shalt receive thy health. And anon, Quirinus did do seek the chains of Peter and they were found. And Alexander did the daughter do kiss them, and anon as she had kissed them she received her health and was all whole. Then Quirinus demanded pardon and forgiveness, and delivered Alexander out of prison, and received the holy baptism, he and all his meiny and many others. Then Alexander established this feast to be hallowed alway the first day of August, and did do make a church in the honour of S. Peter, whereas he set the chains and named it S. Peter ad vincula. And to that church come much people at that solemnity, and the people kiss there the bonds and chains of S. Peter. The third cause of this establishment, after Bede, is this: Antony and Octavius were so conjoined together by affinity, that they departed between them two the empire of the world. Octavius had in the occident Italy, France, and Spain, and Antony had in the east, Asia, Pontus, and Africa. Antony was wild, jolly, and ribald, and had the sister of Octavius to his wife, and left her, and took Cleopatra, which was Queen of Egypt; and for this cause Octavius had him in great despite, and went with force of arms against Antony in Asia, and overcame him in all things. Then Antony and Cleopatra fled as vanquished, and slew themselves by great sorrow, and Octavius destroyed entirely the realm of Egypt, and made it to be under the Romans. And from thence he went in all the haste he might into Alexandria, and despoiled it of all riches and brought them to Rome, and increased so the common profit of Rome that there was given for one penny that which tofore was sold for four. And because the battles of the people had wasted and destroyed the city of Rome, he renewed it, saying: I found it covered with tiles, and I shall leave it now covered with marble. And for these causes he was made emperor, and the first that ever was called Augustus. And of him been all other that come after him called Augustus. Like as after his uncle Julius Cæsar they be called Cæsarians. Also this month of August which tofore was called Sextilis, the people entitled it to his name and called it Augustus, in the honour and remembrance of the victory of the emperor that he had the first day of this month. In so much that all the Romans made that day great solemnity unto the time of Theodosius the emperor, which began to reign the year of our Lord four hundred and twenty-six. Then Eudosia, daughter of the said Theodosius the emperor, and wife of Valens, went by a vow to Jerusalem, and there a Jew gave to her for great love a great gift. And they were the bonds, that is to wit the two chains, with which S. Peter under Herod was bounden with. Whereof she was much joyous, and when she returned to Rome she saw that the Romans hallowed the first day of August in the honour of an emperor paynim which was dead. Then was she much sorrowful because they did so much honour to a man damned, and thought that they might not lightly be withdrawn from this custom. But if she might so much do, she would not leave it thus, but that it should be made in the honour of S. Peter, and that all the people should name that day the day of S. Peter ad vincula. And hereof she had collation with S. Pelagius the pope, and brought them with fair words to that, that the remembrance of the prince of paynims was forgotten, and the memory of the prince of the apostles was hallowed. And it pleased right well to all the people. Then she brought forth the chains which she had brought from Jerusalem, and showed them to all the people. And the pope brought forth the chain with which he had been bound under Nero, and as soon as that chain touched that other, all three by miracle were but one, like as they had been never but one. Then the pope and the queen established that the foolish religion of the people, making solemnity of a paynim, were changed into better, and was made of S. Peter, prince of the apostles. And the pope and the queen set the chains in the church of S. Peter ad vincula. And were given of the queen to the said church right great gifts and right fair privileges, and it was established that day to be hallowed over all. And this is that Bede saith, and Sigbert also saith the same of this thing. And of what great virtue this chain is, it appeareth well in the year of our Lord four hundred and fortyfour:

There was an earl which was nigh to the emperor Otto, that was so cruelly vexed and tormented with the devil tofore all the people that, with his own teeth he bit and tare himself. And by the commandment of the emperor he was led to pope John, for to put the chain about his neck, and there was another put about the neck of this wood man and demoniac. And it did him none allegement because it had no virtue. And at last the very chain of S. Peter was brought and put about the neck of the said man demoniac. But it was of such virtue that the devil might not bear it, but departed and went out crying, tofore them all. Then Theodoric, bishop of Metz, took that chain, and said he would not depart from it in no manner but if his hand were cut off, and for this cause was great discord between the pope and the bishop and the other clerks. And at the last the emperor appeased the noise and gat of the pope that he had a link of the chain. And he kept it much worthily in great devotion. Miletus also recounteth in his chronicle, and it is written in the History Tripertite, that in that time there was a great horrible dragon which appeared at Epirus. And the bishop Donatus spit in his mouth and killed him forthwith. But that bishop made tofore the sign of the cross with his fingers upon the dragon, for he was so great that there behoved seven couple oxen to draw him thence out of the town in to a place where he was burnt, for because the stench of him should not corrupt the air.

Yet saith the same Miietus, and also it is said in the History Tripertite, that the devil appeared in a town named Crete in the semblance of Moses, and this Crete is nigh to a mountain which is nigh to the sea, and assembled a great multitude of Jews of all places and brought them to the top and highest of all the mountain, and promised them to lead them and to go dry foot with them upon the sea in to the land of promise. And there he assembled people without number. And some believe that the devil had despite of the Jew that had given this chain to the queen by which the feast of Octavius ceased to be made. And when the devil saw that he had there of the Jews without number, about that great mountain, he made many fall down from the top to the ground beneath, and made of them without number to be drowned in the sea; and thus the devil avenged him on them. And many of them that escaped became christian. For when they would have gone up on the mountain with the others, they might not go up so sharp rocks, in such wise that they that went up were all tocut with the stones, and the others were drowned in the sea, and were all dead. And when the others would have done the same, and tarried because they wist not what was happed of the others, certain fishers going by them told what was fallen of the others, and thus they that might escape returned, and went not after the others. And all these things be contained in the said History. The fourth cause of the institution of this feast may be assigned here in this wise. For our Lord delivered S. Peter out of his chains by miracle, and gave him power to bind and to unbind. For we be holden and bounden unto the bond of sin and have need to be assoiled. Therefore we worship the solemnity of the chains aforesaid. For as he deserved to be unbound of the bonds of his chains, so received he power of our Lord Jesu Christ to assoil us. And this last reason may be lightly apperceived, for thou seest that the epistle accordeth the absolution and loosing of the chains made to the apostle. And the gospel recordeth the power that was given to him for to assoil. and the orison of the death requireth that absolution be made to us, and this, that sometime he giveth absolution, and assoileth the damned otherwhile, by the power of the keys which he received; it appeareth in a miracle of the blessed Virgin Mary:

On a time there was a monk, a scholar, which was in the city of Cologne in the monastery of S. Peter, which monk was sinful; and when this monk was surprised with sudden death, the devils accused him and cried on him that he had done all manner sins. That one said: I am Covetise, which so oft thou hast coveted against the commandment of God. And another said: I am Vain Glory, of which thou hast enjoyed thee, in making a vaunt among men. And another said: I am thy Leasing, in which thou oft sinnedst in Iying, and other in like wise. And contrary to them, some good works that he had done excused him, saying: I am Obedience, which thou didst to thine elders and sovereigns. Another said: I am the Song of psalms, which thou hast sung to God much ardently. And S. Peter, to whom he was a monk, went to God for to pray for him. And our Lord answered to him: Hath not the prophet said, by my inspiration, Domine, quis habitabit in tabernaculo tuo? Lord, who shall dwell in thy tabernacle, or who shall rest in thy holy mountain? He that shall be without spot of sin. How may this man then be saved which is not entered without syot, ne hath done no righteousness? And yet Peter prayed for him with the blessed Virgin, mother of God. Then our Lord gave upon him this sentence: that the soul should return again to the body and that he should do penance. And then S. Peter, with the key that he held in his hand, feared the devils and made them to flee, and after delivered the soul to a monk of the same monastery, and commanded him that he should bring it to the body. And he bare it to him and required of him for his reward that he had brought it again, that he should say every day for him the psalm: Miserere mei deus, and that he should oft sweep his sepulture and keep it clean. And thus he revived from the death and came again to the world, and did his penance, and recounted to all the people this that had happed to him. Then let us pray this glorious apostle S. Peter to be our advocate to our Lord Jesu Christ, that we may by the power of the keys given to him have very absolution of our sins, that after the accomplishment of this short and transitory life we may come to everlasting life in heaven. Amen.

Here followeth the Life of S. Stephen the Pope.

When S. Stephen the pope had converted many of the paynims unto the christian faith, both by word and by example, and had also buried many bodies of the martyrs, in the year of our Lord two hundred and sixty he was sought by great study of Valerian and of Galien, then emperors, for because that he and his clerks should do sacrifice unto their idols or else to be slain by divers torments. And the said emperors made ordinance that whomsomever brought them, he should have all their substance, and for that cause ten of his clerks were taken and brought forth, and anon without audience were beheaded. And the day following S. Stephen the pope was taken and brought to the temple of Mars their god, to the end that he should adore and do honour to the idol, or else he should have sentence to be beheaded. But when he was entered into the temple he prayed to our Lord Jesu Christ that he would destroy the temple. And anon a great part of the temple fell, and all they that were there fled for dread that they had. And then he went to the cemetery of S. Luke, and when Valerian heard that he sent to him more knights than he did tofore. And when they came they found him singing mass, and anon he finished devoutly that which he had begun. And that done they beheaded him in his seat.

Here followeth the Invention of S. Stephen, Promartyr.

The invention of the holy body of S. Stephen, promartyr, was made in the year of our Lord four hundred and seventeen, in the seventeenth year of Honorius the emperor. The invention of him, the translation, and the conjunction, were made to order. For a priest named Lucian of the country of Jerusalem, of whom Gennadius recounteth among the noble men and writeth thus, that on a Friday when he was in his bed and rested and unnethe awoke, he saw an ancient man of noble stature with a long beard, with a seemly visage environed in a white mantle in which there were little ouches or crosses of gold tissued. He was hosed with hosen broidered with gold above, which held in his hand a rod of gold with which he touched him, and said: Go and with great diligence open our tombs, for we be laid in a place dishonest and of despite. Go thou therefore unto John the bishop of Jerusalem and say to him that he lay us in a more honourable place. And because that drought and tribulation is through the world, God hath ordained to be debonair and merciful to the world by our suffrages and prayers. And Lucian said to him: Sir, who art thou? I am, said he, Gamaliel, which nourished the apostle Paul and enseigned him the law of my fathers, and he that lieth with me is S. Stephen, which was stoned of the Jews and cast out of the city for to be devoured of the beasts and birds, but he kept him, to whom he kept his faith, without hurting, and I with great diligence took up the body and with great reverence buried it in my new tomb. And that other that lieth with me is Nicodemus, my nephew, which went by night to Jesu Christ and received baptism of Peter and John, and therefore the princes of priests were angry with him and would have slain him, but that they left at reverence of us. Nevertheless they took away all his substance and deposed him from his principate, and beat him strongly and let him lie for dead. And then I led him into my house, where he lived after but a few days, and when he was dead I buried him at the feet of S. Stephen. And the third that is with me is Abibas, my son, which in the twentieth year of his age received baptism with me and was a clean virgin, and learned the law of God with my disciple Paul. And Ethea my wife and Selimus my son, which would not receive the faith of Jesu Christ, were not worthy to be in our sepulture, thou shalt find them buried in another place, and shalt find their tombs void and idle. And when he had said all this S. Gamaliel vanished away, and then Lucian awoke and prayed to God if this vision were true that it might be showed yet the second time and the third time. And the next Friday after following, he appeared like as he did tofore, and said to him: Wherefore hast thou disdained to do that which I have required thee? And he said to him: Sir, I have no disdain, but I have prayed God if it be in his name that it appear to me yet once again; and Gamaliel said to him: Because thou hast thought in thy courage that if martyr thou find us how thou mightest devise the relics of each of us, I shall enseign thee of every each by similitude to know the tombs and relics of each of us. And then he showed three paniers of gold, and the fourth of silver, of the which that one was full of red roses, the other twain of white roses, and the fourth, which was of silver, was full of saffron. And Gamaliel said to him: These paniers be our tombs, and these roses be our relics, and the first full of red roses is the tomb of S. Stephen, which only of us all deserved the crown of martyrdom. The other twain, full of white roses, be the tombs of me and Nicodemus which persevered with a clean heart in the confession of Jesu Christ, and the fourth of silver, which is full of saffron, is of Abibas my son, which shineth by whiteness of virginity, and issued out of this world pure and net. And this said he vanished away. And the Friday after that week following, he appeared to him again all angry, and blamed him grievously of his delayment and negligence. And anon Lucian went to Jerusalem and recounted all by order to John the bishop, and called the other bishops, and went to the place that was showed to Lucian, and when they had begun to delve, and moved the earth, a right sweet savour was felt. And by the marvellous flavour and sweetness; and by the merits of the saints, seventy sick men were healed of their infirmities. And thus the relics of these saints were transported into the church of Sion which is in Jerusalem, in the which S. Stephen used the office of the archdeacon. And there were they ordained for right honourably. In the same hour descended from heaven much rain, and of this vision and invention Bede maketh mention in his chronicle. And this invention, saith S. Bede, was in the same day that his passion is hallowed, and his passion as it is said was the same day also. But the feasts have been changed by double reason. The first reason is because that Jesu Christ was born in earth that man should be born in heaven, therefore it appertaineth that the feast of S. Stephen should follow the nativity of Christ. For he was first martyred for Christ for to be born in heaven, and so it signifieth that the one follow that other, and therefore it is sung in the church: Yesterday Christ was born in earth, that this day Stephen should be born in heaven. The second reason is that, the feast of the invention is more solemnly made than the feast of his passion, and that is only for the nativity of our Lord Jesu Christ. Nevertheless our Lord hath showed many miracles in the invention of him. And because his passion is more worthy than his invention, therefore ought it to be more solemn, and therefore the church hath transported his passion to the time in which it is had in greater reverence. And as S. Austin saith: The translation of him was in this manner. Alexander, senator of Constantinople, went with his wife to Jerusalem and made there a fair oratory to S. Stephen the first martyr, and after his death he did him to be buried by hls body. And seven years after, Juliana his wife would return into her country because that the princes did to her wrong, and would carry with her the body of her husband. And when she had made long request to the bishop with many prayers, the bishop showed to her two tombs of silver and said to her: I wot not which of these twain is thy husband. And she said to him: I wot well, and went hastily and embraced the body of Stephen, and thus by case of fortune, when she weened to have taken the body of her husband, she took the body of the promartyr, and when she was within the ship with the body, there were heard hymns and songs of angels, and a right sweet odour, and the devils cried and moved great tempest saying: Alas! alas! for the first martyr Stephen passeth here by, which beateth us cruelly with fire. And the mariners were in great doubt and cried on S. Stephen, and anon he appeared to them and said: I am here, doubt ye nothing, and anon great peace was, and fair weather in the sea. Then were there heard the voice of devils crying: Felon prince, burn this ship, for Stephen our adversary is within it. With that, the prince of devils sent five devils for to burn the ship, but the angel of our Lord plunged them down in the ground of the sea. And when they came to Chalcedon the devils cried, saying: The servant of God cometh which was stoned to death of the felon Jews.

Then came they in safety in to Constantinople, and the body of S. Stephen was brought with great reverence in to a church. And this saith S. Austin: The conjunction of the body of S. Stephen with the body of S. Laurence was made by this ordinance. It happed that Eudoxia, daughter of Theodosius the emperor, was greatly tormented with a devil, and when it was told to her father, which was at Constantinople, he commanded that his daughter should be brought thither, and that she should touch the relics of S. Stephen the first martyr. And the devil cried within her: If Stephen come not to Rome I shall not issue out of her, for it is the will of the apostles. And when the emperor heard that, he impetred and gat of the clergy and people of Constantinople that they gave to the Romans the body of S. Stephen, and they should have therefore the body of S. Laurence. And the emperor wrote to S. Pelagius the pope, upon which the pope, by the council of the cardinals, consented to the request of the emperor, and then went the cardinals to Constantinople and brought to Rome the body of S. Stephen. And the Greeks came for to have the body of S. Laurence. The body of S. Stephen was received into Capua, which gat by their devout prayers the right arm, and builded their church metropolitan, that is to say the archbishop's see, in the honour of him. And when the Romans were come to Rome, they would have borne the body of S. Stephen unto the church of S. Peter ad vincula. They that bare it stood still and might go no further, and the devil which was in the maid cried: Ye travail you for naught, for he shall not be here, but with Laurence his brother, whereas he is. And for this cause was the body borne thither, and the maid touched the body and was all whole. And S. Laurence, as enjoying him of the coming of his brother and smiling, turned him into that other part of the sepulchre, and made place and left half the place void. And when the Greeks set their hands for to have borne away Laurence, they fell down to the earth as they had been dead. But the pope and the clerks prayed for them and all the people, and yet unnethe with great pain came they to life again at evensong time. Nevertheless they were all dead within ten days after, and the Latins, and all they that so consented, entered into frenzy and might not be whole unto the time that the two bodies were entombed together, and then was there a voice heard from heaven that said: O blessed Rome which hast enclosed in one tomb the glorious jewels, the bodies of S. Laurence of Spain and of S. Stephen of Jerusalem. This conjunction was made about the year of our Lord nine hundred and twenty-five.

S. Austin recounteth in the twenty-second book of the City of God, that six dead bodies were raised by the invocation and prayers of S. Stephen, that is to wit, that there was one that lay dead and the name of S. Stephen was called over him and he was anon raised to life.

Also there was a child which was slain with a cart, whom his mother bare to the church of S. Stephen and was anon raised to life. And there was a nun which was at her last end, and was borne to the church of S. Stephen, and there died in the sight of all the people, and aher she arose all whole. Also a maid of Hippo, of whom her father bare her coat to the church of S. Stephen, and after laid it on the body of the dead maid, and anon she arose. And a young man of Hippo died, and anon as the body of him was anointed with the oil of S. Stephen he arose to life. Another child was borne dead to the church of S. Stephen, and by the merits of S. Stephen was anon re-established to life. And of this precious martyr, saith S. Austin: Gamaliel, master of the school, and with a stole about his neck, made revelation of him. Saul despoiled and stoned him, Jesu Christ, wrapped in poor clothes, enriched him, and crowned him with his precious blood and stones. And S. Stephen shone in beauty of body, in flower of age, in fair speech of reason, wisdom of holy thought, in works of divinity. He was a strong pillar of the faith of God, for when he was taken and holden with tongs among the hands of them that stoned him, in the furnace of the fire of faith, he was distrained, smitten, demeaned, and beaten, the faith increased and was not vanquished. And S. Augustine saith in another place upon this authority: Hard brain, etc.-he was not flattered but put out, he was not tasted but hurt, he feared ne trembled not, but was chauffed. And in another place he saith thus: Behold Stephen thy fellow, he was a man as thou art, and of the mass of sin as thou art, and bought with the same price that thou wert, he was deacon and read the gospel that thou readest or hearest. There he found written: Love your enemies. And this blessed promartyr S. Stephen, learned in reading, and profited and accomplished in obeying. Then let us pray devoutly to him that he pray for us to that blessed Lord for whom he suffered death, and prayed for them that pursued him, that he pray for us, and that we may feel the effect of his prayer like as Saul did, which after was called Paul, the holy doctor and apostle. Amen.

Here followeth of S. Dominic, and first of his name.

Dominic is said as a keeper of our Lord, or else as kept of God. Or it is said of dominicus as to the etymology of this name, that is dominus. It is said keeper of our Lord in three manners, that is to wit, keeper of the honour of our Lord, as touching to God, keeper of the vineyard or the flock of our Lord, unto his neighbour, keeper of the will of our Lord, or of his commandments as touching himself. Secondly, he is said dominicus, as kept of our Lord. Our Lord kept him in his threefold state. Of whom the first is that he was a layman. In the second he was a canon regular, and the third as apostle. For in the first state he kept himself in making himself to begin laudably and well, in the second to perform well, and in the third to accomplish well. In the third he may be said Dominic by the etymology of this name Dominus. Dominus is said as giving menaces, giving a gift or giving less. So S. Dominic was giving, that is to understand, giving threatening by relieving of injuries, giving gifts by largess of franchise. For he gave not only to poor men, but he would oft sell himself for to relieve and buy poor men, and in giving less, that was by making his body lean, for he gave alway less to his body than it desired or appetited.

Of S. Dominic, Friar and Preacher.

Dominic was duke of the order of the friars preachers, and a noble father of the parts of Spain, of a town called Calaroga, of the diocese of Osma, and his father was named Felix and his mother Joanna, of whom he came as of the flesh. And his mother, tofore that he was born, saw in her sleep that she bare a little whelp in her belly which bare a burning brand in his mouth, and, when he was issued out of her womb, he burnt all the world. And also it seemed to a woman that was godmother to him at the font and held him, that the child Dominic had a star right clear in his forehead, which enlumined all the world. And as he was yet a child and in the keeping of his nourice, he was oft found leaving his bed and Iying on the bare ground. And after, when he was sent to Palentia for to learn, he tasted ne drank never wine in ten years. And when he saw that great famine was there, he sold his books, and all his substance, and gave the price of them to poor people. And when his good renown grew, he was made canon regular, of the bishop of Osma, in his church. And after, he was mirror of life unto the people and was ordained sub-prior of the canons. And day and night he entended to reading and in praying to God continually that he would give him grace that he might extend to the health of his neighbours. In the book of collations of fathers he read curiously, and took the thirteenth great perfection. He went with the said bishop to Toulouse, and there he reprehended his host of heresy, and converted him to the faith of Jesu Christ, and presented him to our Lord as an handful of the first fruit of the tocoming harvest. It is read in the gests of the Earl of Montfort, that one day as S. Dominic preached against the heresies, that he put in writing the authorities that he purposed, and delivered the schedule to a heretic for to argue against his objections. And that night the heretics assembled at the fire, and he showed to them that schedule, and they bade him to cast it in the fire, and if the schedule burned, their faith was not but treachery, and if it burned not, then he preached the very faith of the church of Rome. And then was the schedule cast in the fire, and when it had been in the fire a while, it sprang out all safe. And then one of them that was more hard than the others said: Cast it in again, and ye shall prove better and more plainly the truth. Then it was thrown in again, and it issued out again without burning. Then said he: Let it be cast in the third time, and then shall we know without doubt the issue of this thing; and it was cast in again, and it came out the third time without lesion or hurt. And yet the heretics, abiding in their hardness, sware among them firmly that none of them should publish this thing. Nevertheless, a knight that was there, which was somewhat according to our faith, disclosed this miracle, and it is said a semblable thing happed at the Mount Victorial in the temple Jupiter. That a disputation was ordained against the heretics, like as the malady of the heresy grew in the parties of Albigenses, that disputation solemn was at the temple of Jupiter, and were ordained judges on both parties. To whom the affrmation of the faith that every each should enseign, should be written in a book. And the book of S. Dominic was chosen and presented among the others, upon the which the judges strove against them, howbeit, it was ordained that the books of one part and that other should be cast into the fire. And they that burned not should be holden without doubt for the very faith. And so the books were thrown into a great fire burning, and anon the book of the heresies was burnt, and the book of S. Dominic was saved and not burnt, but sprang out of the fire without hurting, and it was cast in the second time, and it leapt out without burning. And after this, the other christian men went home again to their proper places, and the bishop of Osma died, and S. Dominic abode there alone with a few christian men and catholic, against the heretics, and denounced and preached the word of God firmly. And the adversaries of truth mocked him, and spit at him, and threw at him filth of the streets, and other right foul things, and bound behind him wisps of straw in great despite. And when they threatened and menaced him, he answered, without fear or dread: I am not worthy to be martyred, ne I have not yet deserved that death by glory. And therefore he passed hardily by the way where they despised him, and sang, and went joyously. And they marvelled and said to him: Hast thou no dread of death? What wouldst thou have done if we had taken thee? I had prayed you, said he, that ye should not have slain me suddenly, but little and little ye should have hewn member from member, one after another, and then that ye had showed tofore mine eyes my members so detrenched, and then that ye had left my body so lying, and fouled in my blood, without to have slain me at your will. He found a man that for the great poverty that he suffered was joined to the heretics, and S. Dominic, seeing this, ordained himself to be sold, and that the price of him should be given to the poor man to bring him out of his poverty. And this did he for to bring him of the foul error he was in. And so he would have been sold if the divine mercy had not otherwise purveyed.

Another time a woman came to complain to him that her brother was in the hands of the Saracens in great captivity, and that she knew no way how to deliver him. And he was moved of pity in his heart, and offered himself to be sold for the redemption of that other. But God, that knew him more necessary for the redemption spiritual of many captives, suffered it not, and yet he intended to be his pledge and to lie for him, his charity was so great. In a time he was lodged with certain ladies which, by occasion of religion, they had to be deceived of the heretics, and then he fasted and his fellow with him, all the Lent, with bread and water, so that by the shadow of religion he took from them that error, and in the night he woke, save when necessity was, he lay down under a table without other thing. And thus these women were brought to the knowledge of truth.

And then began he to think of the establishment of his order, and of what office it might be for to go and preach through the world, and for to enhaunce the christian faith against the heretics. And when he had dwelled ten years in the parts of Toulouse, after the death of the bishop of Osma, unto the time that the council should be solemnised at Lateran, then he went to Rome with Fulco, bishop of Toulouse, to the council general, for to get of Innocent the pope, that the order, which is said the order of the preachers, might be confirmed to him and to his successors, and the pope would not lightly accord to this thing. And then it happed on a night that the pope saw in a vision that the church of Lateran was suddenly menaced for to fall and overthrow, and as he beheld it, all afeard, he saw on that side S. Dominic running against it, and sustained and bare it up, and kept it from falling. And then awoke the pope, and understood the vision, and received joyously the petition of the man of God, and bade that he and his brethren should seek some rule approved, and he would confirm it at his will. And then S. Dominic came to his brethren, and showed to them what the pope had said, and they were of number about sixteen or seventeen friars, which anon called counsel of the Holy Ghost, and chose the rule of S. Austin, preacher and holy doctor, and would of one will be in deed and name preachers. And established therewith some customs more straiter in their living, which they took above and promised to keep them truly. In this time Innocent the pope died, and Honorius was made pope and sovereign bishop of the church. And he gat of the same Honorius the confirmation of his order, in the year of our Lord one thousand two hundred and sixteen. And on a time as he prayed at Rome in the church of S. Peter for the increasing of his order, he saw coming to him the glorious princes of the apostles, Peter and Paul, and him seemed that Peter gave to him the staff first, and S. Paul delivered to him the book, and they said to him: Go and preach, for thou art chosen of God to do that occupation and ministry, and in a little moment him seemed that he saw his sons spread throughout the world, two and two, preaching to the people the word of God. For which cause he came again to Toulouse, and departed his brethren, some to Paris, some into Spain, and others to Bologna, and he returned again to Rome.

There was a monk, before the establishment of this order, which was ravished in spirit and saw the Blessed Virgin our Lady S. Mary kneeling, with her hands joined, praying her son for the human lineage. And he oft withstood her request, and at the last he said to her that so busily required him: Mother, what may I do more for them? I have sent to them patriarchs and prophets, and little have they amended them. After, I came to them myself, and after that I have sent to them apostles, and they have slain them. I sent to them also martyrs, confessors, and doctors, and they accorded not to them, ne to their doctrine, but because it appertaineth not to me to withsay thy request, I shall give to them my preachers, by whom they may be enlumined and made clean, or else I shall come against them myself if they will not amend them. And another saw a like vision that same time when the twelve abbots of the order of Citeaux were sent to Toulouse against the heretics. For when the son had answered to his mother as is above said, the mother said to him: Fair son, thou oughtest not to do to them after their malice, but after thy mercy. To whom the son, vanquished by her prayers, said: I shall yet do to them mercy at thy request, for I shall send to them my preachers that shall warn and inform them. And if then they correct them not, I shall spare them no more.

A friar minor, that long time had been fellow with S. Francis, recounted to many of the friars of the order of the preachers that when S. Dominic was at Rome for the confirmation of his order of the pope, he saw on a night Jesu Christ in the air, holding three spears in his hand, and brandishing them against the world, and his mother ran hastily against him, and demanded him what he would do. And he said to her: All the world is full of vices, of pride, of luxury, and of avarice, and therefore I will destroy them with these three spears. Then the Blessed Virgin fell down at his feet and said: Dear son, have pity, and tarry thy justice by thy mercy. And Jesu Christ said to her: Seest thou not how many wrongs and injuries they do to me? And she answered: Son, attemper thy wrath and tarry a little, I have a true servant and a noble fighter against the vices, which shall run over all and vanquish the world, and subdue them under thy signory, and I shall give to them another servant into his help that shall fight as he doth. And our Lord, her son, said: I am appeased and receive thy prayer, but I would see whom thou wouldst send in so great an office. And then she presented to him S. Dominic, and Jesu Christ said: Truly this is a good and noble fighter, and shall do diligently that thou hast said. And then she showed to him and offered to him S. Francis, and he praised him as he did the first. And S. Dominic considered diligently his fellow in that vision, for he had never seen him before, and he found him on the morn in the church, and knew him by that he had seen him in the vision without other shower, and began to kiss him, and said: Thou art my fellow, thou shalt run with me, and we shall be together, and none adversary shall surmount us. And then he recounted to him all by order the said vision, and from then forthon they were one heart and one soul in our Lord, and commanded that this love should be kept to them that should come after perdurably.

And when on a time S. Dominic had received a novice into the order, some that had been his fellows perverted him in such wise that he would return to the world, and demanded after his gown; and when S. Dominic heard that, he went to prayer, and as the young man had despoiled him of his religious clothing, and they had done on him his shirt, he began to cry with a high voice and say: I chauffe, I burn, certainly I am all burnt, do off, do off this cursed shirt which burneth all my body; and might not endure in no wise till he was despoiled of this shirt and clothed again with his religious clothes, and brought again into the cloister of the religious. And when S. Dominic was at Bologna, what time the friars were gone to sleep, a friar converse began to be tormented of the devil, and when friar Rainer of Lausanne knew it he said it to S. Dominic, and S. Dominic commanded that he should be brought into the church tofore the altar of our Lady, and ten friars might unnethe bring him. And then said S. Dominic: I conjure thee, wicked spirit, that thou tell to me wherefore thou vexest thus the creature of God, and wherefore and how thou enteredst here? And he answered: I vex him for he hath deserved it. He drank yesterday in the city without licence of the prior, and made not the sign of the cross thereon, and I entered then in sign of a bubble, to the end that he should drink me with the wine the sooner. Then it was founden that he had drunk in the town. And in the meanwhile he made the sign of the cross, and they rung to matins, and when the devil heard that he said: I may no longer abide here, sith they with the great hoods arise. And thus he was constrained by the prayer of S. Dominic to issue and go his way, and the friar was delivered and whole, and was well ware ever after to do against the will of the prior.

And as S. Dominic on a time came to a river toward the parts of Toulouse, his books, which had no custody, fell in the water, and he could not find them, but must leave them behind him. And the third day after a fisher cast his hook into the water, and supposed to have taken up some great fish, and drew up the books of S. Dominic without any wetting, like as they had been kept diligently in an almary. And on a time when he came to a monastery, and all the brethren were at rest, and he would not distrouble ne awake them, he put him to prayer, and entered in with his fellow, the gates being shut and closed; also in like wise in the conflict of the heretics, as he was with a converse of the Cistercians of an eventide, and came to a certain church, and found it shut and closed, he made his prayers and suddenly they were in the church, and abode there all that night in prayer. And when he had prayed, he had always a custom to stanch his thirst at some well or fountain, lest he should have any desire to drink in the house of his host.

There was a scholar in the house of the friars at Bologna for to hear mass, and it happed that S. Dominic sang the mass, and when it came to the offering, the scholar went and kissed the hand of S. Dominic with great devotion, and when he had kissed it, he felt come out of his hand so great sweetness, and so sweet an odour as he ever had felt tofore in his life; and from then forthon the ardour and burning of lechery began to wax cold in him, so that he which tofore had been vain and lecherous, was after so continent that his flesh shone all of clearness and chastity, and the flesh of S. Dominic shone much of great chastity and purity, of whom the odour cured the filths of the thought.

There was a priest which saw S. Dominic so ardently in his predication with his fellows, and he concluded in himself that he would join him to them if he might have a book of the New Testament necessary to him for to preach, and as he thought of this there came a young man bearing a book of the New Testament to sell under his vestment; and anon the priest bought it with great joy, but as he doubted yet a little he made his prayer to Almighty God and made the cross upon the book without forth, and sith opened the book and looked within forthwith, and the first chapter that he found was in the Acts of the Apostles, that which is said to Peter when he came first to his sight, which was this: Arise up, descend and go with them nothing doubting, for I have sent them. Then he went and joined him to them.

On a time when a noble master in science and in fame was regent in Toulouse in theology, on a morning, tofore the day, while he purveyed his lessons, he was surprised with sleep, and inclined him on his chair a little, and him seemed that seven stars stood tofore him; and as he marvelled of the novelty of this, the said stars grew suddenly into so great light that they enlumined all the world; and when he awoke he was strongly amarvelled, and when he entered into the schools, and as he read, S. Dominic with six friars of the same habit entered and came amiably to him, and showed their purpose, and said that they coveted to haunt his schools. Then this master remembered his vision and doubted not but these were the seven stars that he had seen.

When S. Dominic was on a time at Rome, master Reynold of S. Amian, dean of Orleans, which was wise in the law canon, and had been five years doctor, was come with the bishop of Orleans to the sea for to pass to Rome, and had been long in purpose for to have left the world, and to entend to preaching, but he was not avised how he might accomplish it; and when he had heard the institution of the order of the preachers of a cardinal to whom he had told his will, he called S. Dominic and exposed to him his purpose. And then he had counsel to enter in to the order. But without tarrying, he was taken with so grievous sickness that he was in despair of his health. And then S. Dominic prayed heartily to our Blessed Lady the Virgin, to whom he had committed all the order, that she would give to that dean health for a little time. And suddenly the queen of mercy came with three maidens, and Reynold waking, and abiding the death, saw her come to him, and our Lady said to him: Be of good cheer, require of me what thou wilt and I shall give it to thee. And as he thought what he should require, one of the maidens said to him softly that he should require nothing but to commit him all to her will. And when he had so done, then she put forth her virginal hand and touched his ears, his nostrils, mouth, hands, feet, and reins, and anointed them with the ointment of health, which she had brought with her, in saying properly the form of the words which appertain to the members. And she said to the reins: These reins be restrained with the girdle of chastity; and then she turned to the feet and said: I anoint these feet in preparation of the evangel of peace. And she said: I shall send to thee an ampul for to reestablish thee to full health. And then she showed to him the habit of the order, and said to him: This is the habit of thine order. And S. Dominic, being in prayer, saw all this vision. And on the morn S. Dominic came to him and found him all whole, and heard of him all the ordinance of the vision. And he took the habit that the virgin showed to him, for tofore the friars used surplices. And the third day the mother of God was there, and anointed the body of Reynold, that she took not only away the heat of fevers, but also extincted and quenched the ardour of luxury, like as he confessed after, that one only moving of luxury was not after in him. And this vision saw again a religious man of the hospital with his own eyes, being present S. Dominic, and was astonished thereof: And this vision S. Dominic published to many brethren after his death. Then was Reynold sent to Bologna and entended much ardently to preaching, and increased the number of the friars. And after that, he was sent to Paris, and a while after he died in our Lord.

There was a young man, nephew of the cardinal Stephen, fell with his horse into a ditch, and was drawn out thereof all dead, and offered to S. Dominic, and he made his prayers, and the young man reestablished to life. In the church of S. Sixtus a mason had been hired of the friars for to repair the broken walls, and a piece of the wall fell upon the man and slew him, but S. Dominic commanded that the body should be brought to him, and anon, by the help of his prayers, he was reestablished to life and to health.

In the same church at Rome one time there were forty friars, and they had but little bread. Then S. Dominic commanded to divide the bread in as many parts as there were friars, and as soon as each of them had broken a morsel of bread with joy, there came two young men of the same habit and form, which entered into the refectory or fraitour, and the laps of their mantles, that hung on their necks, were full of bread; and when they had given it all stilly to S. Dominic, they departed so suddenly that none of them wist whence they came, ne whither they went; and then S. Dominic gave forth with his hand here and there to the friars, and said: Now eat, my brethren.

When S. Dominic on a time was in his journey grievously troubled with great floods of rain, he made the sign of the cross and chased away the rain from him and from his fellow like as he had a pavilion upon him, and the ground was all wet about him, and no drop came nigh him the space of three cubits.

On a time as he passed by ship towards the parts of Toulouse, the shipman demanded of him a penny for his passage, and the holy man of God promised to him the kingdom of heaven for his labour, saying that he was the disciple of Jesu Christ and that he bare neither gold, ne silver, ne money, and he drew him forcibly by the cope and said: Thou shalt leave here thy cope or thou shalt pay me a penny. The good man of God lift up his eyes to heaven and prayed a little, and as he had a little thought he looked upon the ground and saw a penny, which without doubt was procured by the will of God. Then said he: Lo! my brother, take it there and let me go in peace.

It happed on a time that when this holy man S. Dominic was in his voyage, a religious man, which was of good conversation and holy, accompanied with him, but he was of a strange language, and they were sorry that they could not understand each other for to comfort each other. And they prayed and gat grace of our Lord that in three days that they went together, what by signs and what by words, each of them understood what the other meant.

There was a man which was vexed with many devils and was offered and brought to him. And he took a stole and put it about his own neck, and after bound it about the neck of the demoniac, and commanded them that were in him that from thence forthon they should torment no more that man. And anon they were tormented within him, and began to cry: Let us go! wherefore constrainest thou for to be so tormented? And he said: I shall not let ye go till ye have given to me pledge that ye shall not return again. And they said: What pledge may we give to you? And he said: The holy martyrs that rest in yonder church. And they said: We may not, for our merits require it not. And he said: Ye must needs give them, or I shall not suffer you to go quit. And they answered that they would do their pains. And a little while after they said: How be it that we be not worthy, we have gotten that the holy martyrs shall be our pledges. And he required them to have a sign and token of this thing. And they said: Go to the shrine where the heads of the martyrs be, and ye shall find them reversed and turned. And then he went and found like as they had said.

And as he preached on a time, some ladies that had been deceived of heretics, kneeled at his feet and said to him: Servant of God, help us if it be true that thou preachest; the spirit of error hath blinded our minds. And he said: Be ye firm and tarry a little, and ye shall see what Lord ye have served. And anon they saw spring out of the middle of them a cat right horrible, which was more than a great dog, and had great eyes and flaming, her tongue long, broad and bloody, and long unto the navel. He had the tail short and raised up on high, and showed the after end which way he turned him, out of which there issued a terrible stench. And when he had turned hither and thither among the ladies long, at the last he mounted up by the bell rope into the steeple, and vanished away, leaving a great stench after him. And the ladies thanked God and were converted to the faith catholic.

When he had overcome some heretics in the parts of Toulouse, and they were condemned to be burnt, he saw one among them which was named Raymond. And he said to the ministers: Keep ye this man that he be not burnt in no manner with the others. And then he said to him, speaking sweetly to him: I know well, son, that thou shalt yet be a good man. And he was left, and abode twenty years in his evil heresy, and in the end he was converted and was a friar preacher in that order, and finished his life well and laudably. And as he was on a time in Spain accompanied with some friars, he saw in a vision a right great dragon which swallowed in to him the brethren that were with him. And when he understood this vision, he warned his brethren to resist strongly the fiend their enemy. And a little while after, all those friars except friar Adam and two converts departed from him. And he demanded one of them if he would go also. And he said: Nay, father, I shall not leave the head for to follow the feet. And anon he gave himself to prayer and converted almost all by his prayer. He was at S. Sixtus, on a time, at Rome, and suddenly the Holy Ghost lighted on him. And he called his brethren into the chapter, and said apertly tofore them all, that four of his brethren should die shortly, two in body and twain in soul, and anon two friars died in our Lord, and twain departed out of the order. He was on a time at Bologna and a friar, an Almaine born, named Conrad with him, whom the friars desired much to have into the order. And as S. Dominic spake to the prior of Cassamary of the Cistercians in the vigil of the assumption of our Lady, of certain matter, and he said to him by amiable affiance: I tell to thee prior a thing which I never yet said to no man, ne thou shalt never tell it as long as I shall live, and that is this: I never yet required thing of God in this life, but that I had my desire. And the said prior said to him that peradventure he should die before. And S. Dominic by the spirit of prophecy said to him that he should live long after him. And the prior said to him: Father, require master Conrad that he give himself into the order, for the friars desire him much. And he said: Brother, thou requirest a much hard thing. Then when compline was said, the other friars went to rest, and he abode in the church, and did as he had been accustomed all the night to be, in orison and prayer. And when the friars assembled at prime, and the chanter began: Jam lucis orto, master Conrad came suddenly, which desired to be stirred with new light, and fell down at the feet of S. Dominic and required the habit of the order, and received it perseverantly. And he was right religious, and a gracious lector oft in the order, which, as he lay in dying and had closed his eyes, the friars weened that he had been dead, and he opened his eyes, and looking about said: Dominus vobiscum, which is to say, Our Lord be with you. And they answered : Thy spirit be with God. And then said he: All christian souls by the mercy of God may rest in peace. And forthwith he died, and rested in our Lord. S. Dominic was of much steadfast equality of thought, but if he had been moved by pity and by mercy, for he had a joyous heart, a peacable visage of a man within forth, the compunction appeared outward, and that showed debonairty. In the daytime there was none more common to his fellows and brethren in all honesty, and at hours in the night and in his prayers there was none more steadfast. The day he departed to his neighbours, and the night to God. His eyes were like a well of tears, and oft when our Lord's body was lifted up at the mass, he was so ravished in his mind, as he had seen Jesu Christ in his flesh, for which cause he would not much hear mass with the other. He had a custom, right common, for to wake all the night in the church, in such wise that seldom he rested in his bed for to sleep; and when he was weary and necessity of sleep constrained him, he rested him tofore an altar inclined, or had a stone under his head. He received with his proper hand, three times in the night, discipline with a chain of iron, that one for himself, that other for the sinners that be in the world, and the third for them that be tormented in purgatory.

He was on a time chosen to be bishop in Cotoranense, but he refused utterly, affirming to leave rather the earth than to consent to the election that was made to him. It was asked of him on a time wherefore he dwelled not more gladly in the diocese of Toulouse than in the diocese of Carcassonne, and he said that in the diocese of Toulouse I find much people which honour me, and in Carcassonne it is all the contrary, for there all men assail me. It was demanded of him by a man in what book he most studied, and he answered: In the book of charity. On a time the holy man Dominic woke in the church of Bologna, and the devil appeared to him in the form of a friar, and S. Dominic supposed that he had been a friar, and made him a sign that he should go to rest with the other friars. And he made to him signs again in mocking him. Then S. Dominic would know what he was that so despised his commandment, and lighted a candle at the lamp, and beheld him in his face. And he confessed that he was the devil, and when he had blamed him strongly, anon the devil enjoyed him that he had made him break his silence, and S. Dominic said that he might well speak, as prior and master of the friars, and constrained him to say whereof he tempted the friars in the quire. He said: I make them to come late, and to go out early. Then he brought him into the dortour, and asked him whereof he tempted the friars there, and he said: I make them sleep long and arise late, and thus I keep them from divine service, and in the meanwhile to have unclean thoughts. And after he led him in the refectory or fraitour, and demanded him whereof he tempted them there. And then the devil sprang upon the tables and said ofttimes: Now more, now less. And when the saint asked him what he meant thereby, he said: I tempt some friars to take much meat by which they be let to do God's service, and some that they take less than they should do, for to make them over feeble to keep the observances of their order. After, he brought him into the parlour or locutory, and demanded him whereof he tempted the brethren there. Then he put out his tongue oft, and made a marvellous sound of confusion. And the saint demanded him what he meant thereby. And he said: This place is all mine, for when the friars be assembled to speak, I tempt them that they speak confusedly, and that they meddle words without profit, and that one tarry ne abide not till the other have spoken. And at the last he brought him to the chapter. But when he was tofore the door of the chapter he would in no wise enter in, and said: I shall not come in there, never, for this is a cursed house and is hell to me, for whatsomever I win in other places I lose all here, for when I have made any friar to sin by any negligence he purgeth him anon of that negligence in this place of malediction, and accuseth him tofore all the brethren, for they be here warned, confessed, accused, beaten and assoiled, and I here lose all, whereof I sorrow for losing of that I joyed to have won in other places. And when he had said all this he vanished away. And in the end when the term of his pilgrimage approached, he was at Bologna, and began to languish by grievous infirmity of his body. And the dissolution of his body was shown to him by a vision, for he saw a right fair youngling which called him and said thus:

Come my friend, come to joys, come. And then he assembled twelve friars of the convent of Bologna, and to the end that he would not leave them both disherited and orphans, he made his testament and said: These be the things that I leave to you, possessing by rightful heritage, as to my sons. First, to have charity, to keep humility, to possess voluntary poverty; and exhorted as much as he might straightly that there should be none temporal possessions in his order. And that he that should presume to touch and foul the order of friar-preachers with earthly riches, he prayed fearfully that he should have the malediction and curse of God Almighty and of him. And the friars made much sorrow of his departing. And he in recomforting them sweetly said: My brethren, let not my departing trouble you, and doubt ye nothing, for ye shall have me more profitable dead than living.

And he came to his last hour in the year of our Lord one thousand two hundred and twenty-one and so slept in our Lord Jesu Christ, whose departing out of this world was showed the same day and the same hour to the friar general, then prior of the preachers of Brescia, and afterward to the bishop of the same city in this manner. For as he slept a light sleep, the head inclined to a wall, he saw the heaven open, and put down to the earth two white ladders, of which Jesu Christ and his mother held the end on high, and the angels descended and ascended by the ladders, singing. In the midst of the ladders there was a seat set, and upon the seat sat S. Dominic with his head covered like a friar. And Jesu Christ and his mother drew up the ladders into heaven so high, that he that sat was lifted up into heaven, and then the opening of heaven was shut and closed. And then the same friar came to Bologna, and found tbat the same day and the same hour S. Dominic died.

There was a friar named Raoul, which was that time that he died at Tybur, and went to the altar to sing mass, and when he came to the canon, in which is remembered the living men, he thought to pray the health of S. Dominic, and suddenly he was ravished in his mind, and saw the holy man S. Dominic crowned with a crown of gold laureate, and going out of Bologna by the way royal. And then he marked the day and hour, and found that S. Dominic was then dead. And when the body of him had lain long under earth, and miracles showed without ceasing, and that his holiness might not be hid, there issued and came out the place where he lay a right great odour, the same time when his tomb was opened, which was bounden with iron bonds and instruments and cement, and the stone taken away and the body translated to an higher place. And the odour surmounted all aromatics, ne there was none odour like to that. And that was not only in the bones of the holy body, but in the powder and chest, and in all the earth about was like savour. In such wise as the earth was borne into far regions and retained long the same odour. And this odour also abode in the hands of the friars that had touched some things of the holy relics, that how well that they were washen and frotten yet retained they long and many days the sweet odour, and bare witness of the sweet flavour and air.

In the province of Hungary a nobleman, his wife and his son, went to visit in a church the relics of S. Dominic. And the son was sick and came to his last end and died, and the father laid the corpse of the child tofore the altar of S. Dominic and began to weep and say: Blessed Dominic, I came to thee all glad and joyful, but alas I go home sorrowfully, I came with my son but I return without him, yield to me again my son, give to me again the gladness of my heart. And about midnight the child revived and went about in the church.

There was a young man which was serf and bond to a young lady, and went to fish in a water, and he fell therein, and was drowned, and he was a long while in the water and was drawn out all dead. And the lady prayed S. Dominic for the raising of him, and promised that she should go barefoot unto his relics, and if he were raised she would make him a friar and quit him his bondage, and he arose up tofore them all, and she accomplished her avow. In that same province of Hungary there was a man that wept because that his son was dead, and prayed S. Dominic for his raising to life, and about the cock-crowing the dead body arose and opened his eyes, saying to his father: Wherefore, father, have ye your face so wet? And he said: Son, they be the tears of thy father for thou wert dead, and I remained alone and sorrowful. And he said: Father, ye wept much, but S. Dominic had pity of your weeping and gat by his merits to render me to you all whole.

A sick man there was which had been eighteen years blind, and desired to visit the relics of S. Dominic. As proving and assaying, he arose out of his bed and anon he felt so great virtue in himself that he began hastily to go, and the more he went, the more he was stronger to go and the more clearlier he saw, and when he came he received perfect health.

In that province a lady ordained to do sing a mass in the honour of S. Dominic, and she found not the priest at the hour due. And she wrapped three candles, that she had made ready, in a towel, and laid them in a vessel, and then she turned her a little, and after came again and found her candles enlumined and burning apertly, and each body ran for to see this great marvel, and abode there so long till the candles were burnt without impairing of the towel.

There was a scholar at Bologna which was named Nicholas, which suffered great pain in his reins and in his knees, so that he had none hope of hearth, and avowed to S. Dominic, and took a thread to make a candle of his length, and measured him in length and breadth, and when the thread attained to his knees he called at every measure the name of Jesu Christ and of S. Dominic, anon he felt allegeance and said: I am delivered: and anon he stood up and wept for joy and came to the church, without any aid, where the body of S. Dominic rested. And God showed for him miracles without number in that city.

In Augusta, the city of Sicily, was a maid which was sick of the stone and should have been cut, and for this peril her mother commended her to S. Dominic, and the night following, S. Dominic came to the maid sleeping, and laid in her hand the stone with which she had been tormented. And then she awoke and found herself delivered of the pain, and delivered to her mother the stone and told her vision by order. And the mother bare the stone to the friars, and they hung it tofore the image in mind and remembrance of this fair miracle that S. Dominic had done.

In Palatium in Sicily, there was a poor woman that had a son that was greatly tormented with scrofula, which children be wont to have in their neck, and could find no remedy. She avowed to God and to S. Dominic that, if he might be delivered she would make him to labour in the works of the church of friars for no hire, but gladly for naught, and the night following a man appeared to her in the habit of a friar and said: Woman, knowest thou these things? and named to her four things, that was: araign, vert, pelletre, lapacium and the juice of porret; and she said she knew them well, and he said: Go and take these things and confite them with the juice of porret, and lay them on the sore of the neck of thy son and he shall be all whole. Then she awoke and did so, and he was all whole, and the mother accomplished her vow.

There was a man of Piedmont, swollen like a monster, avowed him to S. Dominic and he appeared to him in his sleep, and opened his belly without pain, and took out all the ordures, and anointed him with his holy hand and healed him perfectly.

In the city of Augusta, when in the feast of the translation of S. Dominic certain women were at the solemnities of the masses, and when they returned homeward to their houses, they saw without, a woman that spinned in the feast of so great a saint, and they took and reproved her charitably why she span at the feast of one so great a saint, and she was angry and answered: Ye that be women of the friars, keep ye their feasts. And anon the eyes of that woman swelled and there came out rotten matter, and there issued worms, so that one of the neighbours took eighteen worms out of her eyes. And then she repented her and came to the church of the friars, and confessed her sins and avowed that from that forthon she would never missay to the servant of God, Dominic, but should devoutly hold his feast, and anon she was made whole.

There was a nun named Mary which was sick at Tripolin, in the monastery of Mary Magdalene, and was smitten in the thigh so grievously that five months during they doubted that she would have died, and then she bethought her and prayed thus in herself: Lord God, I am not worthy to pray to thee ne to be heard of thee, but I pray my lord, S. Dominic, that he be mediator between thee and me, that he may get to me the benefit of health. And when she had long prayed in tears she slept, and saw S. Dominic with two friars, that opened the curtain that hung afore her bed, and entered and said to her: Wherefore desirest thou so sore to be healed? And she said: Sir, that I might more devoutly serve God. And then he drew out his ointment, which was of sweet odour, from under his cope and anointed her thigh, and she was anon all whole and said: This ointment is much precious, sweet and light. And when she demanded how it was made, he said to her: This ointment is the ointment of love, and is so precious that it may not be bought for no price. For in the gifts of God is none better than love, for there is nothing more precious than charity, but it is soon lost if it be not well kept. Then he appeared to her sister that night, that slept in the dortour, saying: I have healed thy sister; which anon arose and ran thither and found her whole. And when she felt her anointed with sensible unction she wiped it with great reverence with a bundle of silk. And when she had told all this to the abbess, to her sister, and to her confessor, and had showed the unction and bundle, they were smitten with the novelty of the savour, so sweet-smelling that it might not be compared to none other aromatic, and they kept that unction with great reverence. How agreeable the place is unto God where the body of S. Dominic resteth, howbeit that many miracles be showed there. Yet one shall I say to you here and that shall suffice.

Master Alexander, bishop of Vendome, rehearseth in his postils upon this word: Mercy and truth have met together, that a scholar dwelling at Bologna which was all given to wicked vanities of the world saw a vision. That him seemed he was in a great field, and that a great tempest of thunder and lightning descended from heaven upon him, and then he fled the tempest, and came tofore an house and found it shut, and knocked at the door for to enter in, and the hostess answered: I am Righteousness that am inhabited here, and this house is mine and thou art not righteous, therefore thou mayst not inhabit here. And then he wept bitterly for these words, and went to another house that he saw beyond that, and knocked at the door for to come in, but the hostess which was within answered: I am Truth, and thou art not true, therefore I may not receive thee. And from thence he went to the third house beyond that, and required that he might come in for the tempest, and he that was within said: I am Peace that dwell here, and peace is not with felons but only with men of goodwill. And because I think the thoughts of peace, I shall give to thee good counsel. My sister dwelleth above me which always helpeth caitiffs; go to her and do that she shall counsel thee. And then he went to that house, and she that was within said: I am Mercy that dwell here, if thou wilt be saved from this tempest, go to the house of the friars preachers at Bologna and there thou shalt find the stable of doctrine, the rack of scripture, the ass of simpleness, the ox of discretion, and Mary illumining, Joseph profiting, and the child Jesu saving. And when this scholar awoke he came to the house of friars, and recounted his vision by order, and required to have the habit, and he received it and abode in the order.

S. Dominic, tofore the institution of the order, saw Jesu Christ holding three darts in his hand, and menaced the world. Then I, friar John of Vigny, translator of this book, will no more rehearse this vision, for in this present chapter it is rehearsed tofore, and was showed also to a monk, wherefore I here make an end. Then let us consider the holy life, the holy conversation, and the holy miracles, that God hath showed for this blessed man S. Dominic, and let us pray him to be mediator between God and us, that we may deserve to be anointed with the ointment of charity and of mercy, that after this short life we may come to everlasting life in heaven. Amen.

Here followeth the Life of S. Sixtus, and first of his name.

Sixtus is said of sios, that is God; and of status, that is to say, state, so Sixtus is as much to say as godly state. Or sistus is said of sisto, sistis, as it were steadfast and firm, and fixus, that is fixed. For he was steadfast and fixed in the faith; in passion, and in good works and operation.

Of S. Sixtus, Pope and Martyr.

Sixtus, the pope, was of Athens, and was first a philosopher, and after, was disciple of Jesu Christ, and was the sovereign bishop. And after was presented to Decius and Valerian, emperors, with two of his disciples and deacons Felicissimus and Agapitus. And when Decius might not incline them in no manner, he made them to be brought to the temple of Mars for to sacrifice to him, or for to be put in prison of Mamertine, and when he had refused to do sacrifice and was brought into prison of Mamertine, the blessed S. Laurence cried after him saying: Father, whither goest thou without thy son? Priest, whither goest thou without thy minister? To whom Sixtus said: Son, I leave thee not, but greater battles be due to thee, after three days, thou deacon shalt follow me priest, but in the meanwhile take the treasures of the church and depart them where thou wilt. And when he had distributed them to poor christian men, Valerian the provost ordained that Sixtus should be brought again for to do sacrifice in the temple of Mars, and if he refused it he should have his head smitten off. And when he was led, the blessed Laurence cried after him saying: Father, leave me not, for I have dispended all thy treasures, and then the knights heard speak of the treasures, and held Laurence, and then they beheaded Sixtus, Felicissimus and Agapitus, and so they three suffered death together. In this same day is the feast of the transfiguration of our Lord, and the blood of Christ is renewed of new wine if it may be founden of a ripe grape, in some churches, and this day be the grapes blessed in some places, and the people take thereof and eat it instead of holy bread. And the reason why is, of this that our Lord said in his supper to his disciples: I shall not drink of this generation of the vine tofore I shall drink it new with you in the realm of my Father. And this transfiguration in that which he said new, representeth the glorious invocation that Jesu Christ had after his resurrection, and therefore, on this day of the transfiguration, which representeth the resurrection, men seek new wine. And it is to wit that some say that the transfiguration was made in veer, but the disciples disclosed it not, but kept it secret, because our Lord commanded that they should not disclose it till he was risen from death to life. But after they manifested and disclosed it on this day.

Here beginneth the Life of S. Donatus, and first of his name.

Donatus is as much to say as born of God, and that is by regeneration of grace, infusion, and glorification. For there is treble generation spiritual of God, that is to say: Of nativity, religiosity, and of body mortality. For when saints die that is said that they be born, for the passing out of this world of saints, is not said death of saints, but natality. The child appetiteth to be born to have larger place to dwell in, more meat for to eat, better air to respire, and to see light. And when the saints issue out of the belly of holy church their mother, by death, the four things they receive aforesaid after their manner, and therefore they be said born or giving, or given of God.

Of S. Donatus.

Donatus was nourished and taught of the emperor Julian. Then this Julian was ordained to be sub-deacon, but when he was enhanced to be emperor he slew the father and mother of Donatus. And Donatus fled into the city of Aretino and dwelled there with Hilary, monk, and did there many miracles. For the provost of the city had a son demoniac, and when he was brought tofore S. Donatus, the wicked spirit began to cry and say: In the name of our Lord Jesu Christ, do me no harm, ne be grievous to me, ne that I go out of my house. O Donatus, wherefore constrainest thou me to issue out with torments? But he was anon delivered when Donatus prayed. There was a man named Eustace which received in Tuscany the rents of the prince, and left the money in the keeping of his wife Eufronia. But for sorrow that she had of the enemies that destroyed the country, she hid the money and died for sorrow. And when her husband came again, he could not find the money, and when he with his children should be brought to torment, he fled to S. Donatus. And Donatus went with him to the sepulchre of his wife, and said with a clear voice: Eufronia, I conjure thee by the virtue of the Holy Ghost that thou say where thou hast laid this money. And she answered out of the sepulchre and said: At the entrance of the house where I dalve it. And then they went thither and found it like as she had said. And a little while after Satirus the bishop died in our Lord, and all the clergy chose Donatus to be bishop in his place, and so he was.

On a day, as S. Gregory recounteth, in his dialogues, when S. Donatus houseled the people after mass, and the deacon ministered the blood of our Lord to the people, suddenly the deacon fell with the chalice by the impulsion and thrusting of the paynims that came thither, and the chalice brake, whereof he was sorry and so was all the people. And S. Donatus gathered together the pieces of the chalice and made his prayer, and remised it in his first form. And a little piece the devil took away and hid it, which piece lacketh yet in the chalice. And that chalice is kept yet in the said church in witness of this miracle. And the paynims that saw this were converted to the faith, insomuch that eighty of them received baptism.

There was a well or a fountain infected, that who that drunk of it was anon dead. And S. Donatus went anon thither upon his ass for to pray and make the water whole, and anon, a horrible dragon issued out of the fountain, and wound his tail about the legs of the ass, and addressed him against Donatus, and Donatus smote him with his staff, or as some say he spit in his mouth, and he died. And then he prayed to our Lord, and chased away all the vermin out of the fountain. Another time, when he and his fellows had great thirst, he made a fountain to sourde tofore them.

The daughter of the emperor Theodosius was tormented with a devil, and was brought to S. Donatus, and he said: Thou foul spirit, go out and dwell no more in this creature, which is the form of God. To whom the devil said: Give me place where I shall issue out, and tell me whither I shall go. S. Donatus said to him: from whence camest thou hither? and he said: From desert. And Donatus answered: Return thou thither; and the devil said: I see in thee the sign of the cross, out of which the fire springeth against me, and for dread of the fire I doubt for to go, give me place and I shall issue out. And Donat said: Lo! here is place that thou mayst go thy way, and return thither that thou camest from. And then he made all the house to tremble and went his way.

There was a man borne to be buried, and there came a man that brought an obligation, and said that he owed to him two hundred shillings, and therefore he would not suffer him to be buried in no wise, wherefore his wife, which was widow, came to S. Donat and showed to him that matter, and said that thilke man had received all that money. Then went S. Donatus to the corpse, and touched the dead man with his hand, and said: Arise thou up, and see what thou shalt do to this man that suffereth not to bury thee; the which then sat up and proved that he had paid it and vanquished him tofore all men, and took the obligation in his hand and rent it in pieces, and after, said to S. Donatus: Father, command me to sleep again. And he said: Son, go now into rest forthon.

And in that time it had not rained well in the year, and that the earth had been barren and brought forth no fruit. The miscreants came to the emperor Theodosius, requiring that he should deliver to them Donatus which had made that by his art magic. But, at the request of the emperor, Donatus came and prayed our Lord that he would send them rain, and he sent to them so great abundance that all the other were wet, and he went home alone dry. In that time that the Goths destroyed Italy, and that much people departed from the faith of God, Evadrian the provost was reproved of apostasy, and S. Donatus and S. Hilary reproved him, and then he took them and would have constrained them to do sacrifice to Jupiter, but they refused it, and he did do beat Hilary so much, all despoiled, that he gave up his spirit to God, and he laid Donatus in prison, and after, did do smite off his head, the year of our Lord three hundred and eighty.

Here beginneth the Life of S. Ciriacus, Martyr.

Ciriacus was ordained deacon of Marcellus, the pope, and was taken and brought to Maximian the emperor, and was commanded that he and his fellows should delve the earth and should bear it on their shoulders unto the place that he made. And there was S. Saturninus whom Ciriacus and Sisinnius helped for to bear. And after, Ciriacus was put and enclosed in prison, and at the last was presented tofore the provost. And as Apronianus led him, suddenly came a voice with light from heaven which said: Come ye blessed of my Father, etc. And then Apronianus believed, and made himself to be baptized, and came to the provost confessing Jesu Christ. To whom the provost said: Art not thou made christian? Which answered: Alas! for I have lost my days. The provost answered: Truly now thou losest thy days, and commanded to smite off his head. And when Saturninus and Sisinnius would not make sacrifice, they were tormented with divers torments and at the last were beheaded. And the daughter of Diocletian, named Arthemia, was tormented of the devil, and the devil cried within her and said: I shall not go out tofore that Ciriacus the deacon come; and then was Ciriacus brought to her, and then said the devil: If thou wilt that I issue and go out, give me a vessel where I may enter in, and then answered Ciriacus: Lo! here is my body, enter therein if thou mayst, and he said: Into thy vessel I may not enter, for it is signed and closed on all sides, but if thou cast me out here I shall make thee soon come into Babylon. And when he was constrained to go out, Arthemia cried and said: I see the God that Ciriacus preacheth, and when he had baptized her, and had grace of Diocletian and of Serena his wife, he dwelled and lived surely in a house that he gave him. Then came there a message from the king of Persia to Diocletian, praying him that he would send him Ciriacus, for his daughter was tormented of a devil. And then, by the prayers of Diocletian, Ciriacus went gladly with largo and smaragdo, with all things necessary in the ship, in to Babylon. And when they came to the daughter, the devil cried to him through the mouth of the maiden: O Ciriacus, thou art weary of travel, and he said: I am not weary, but am governed overall by the help of God. And the devil said: Nevertheless, I have brought thee thereas I would have thee. And Ciriacus said: Jesu Christ commandeth thee that thou go out. And then the devil issued out and said: O name terrible that constraineth me; and the maid was then made whole, and was baptized with father and mother, and much other people. And they offered to him many gifts, but he would take none, and abode there forty-five days, fasting on bread and water, and at the last he came to Rome. And after two months Diocletian was dead, and Maximian succeeded to the empire, and was wroth with Arthemia his sister, and took Ciriacus and bound him with chains, and commanded to draw him tofore his chair. This Maximian may be called and said the son of Diocletian, because he succeeded him, and had his daughter to wife, which was called Valeriana; and after, he commanded to Carpasius his vicar, to constrain Ciriacus and his fellows to do sacrifice, or else slay them bv divers torments. And he took Ciriacus and threw pitch molten and burning hot on his head, and hung him in the torment named eculee, and after, he did do smite off the head of Ciriacus, and also beheaded his fellows, about the year of our Lord three hundred. And Carpasius gat the house of S. Ciriacus, and in despite of christian men he made a bath in the same place where Ciriacus baptized, and there bathed, and made banquets in eating and drinking. And suddenly he with nineteen fellows died there, and therefore the bath was closed up. And the paynims began to dread and honour christian men.

Here followeth the Life of S. Laurence, and first of his name.

Laurence is said as holding a crown made of laurel. For sometimes they that vanquished in battle were crowned with laurier boughs and branches, showing victory, and it is always of convenable verdure, of odour agreeable, and virtuous of strength; and the blessed Laurence is said of laurier, for he had victory in his passion, whereof Decius, confused, said: I ween now that we be vanquished. He had verdure in cleanness of heart and purity, for he said: My voice hath no darkness. He had odour of perpetual memory, whereof it is said: He departed all and gave to poor people, and therefore remaineth his droiture perdurably, which he fulfilled with holy works, and hallowed it by his glorious martyrdom. He had strength by his virtuous preaching, by which he converted Lucillus the Roman provost. This is that tree of such virtue that the leaf brake the stone, healed the deaf, and doubted no thunder. And thus Laurence brake the hard heart, gave spiritual reward, and defended the sentence from the thunder of evil people.

Of S. Laurence the glorious Martyr.

Laurence, martyr and subdeacon, was of the lineage of Spain, and S. Sixtus brought him thence. And as Master John Beleth saith: When the blessed Sixtus went into Spain, he found there two young men, Laurence, and Vincent his cousin, right ordinate by honesty of manners, and noble in all their works, and brought them with him to Rome. Of whom that one, that was Laurence, abode with him, and Vincent his cousin returned into Spain, and there finished his life by glorious martyrdom. But in this reason Master Beleth repugneth the time of martyrdom of that one and of that other. For it is said that Laurence suffered death under Decius, and Vincent under Diocletian, and between Decius and Diocletian were about forty years. And there were seven emperors between them, so that the blessed Vincent might not be young, and the blessed Sixtus ordained Laurence his archdeacon. And in his time Philip the emperor, and Philip his son, received the faith of Jesu Christ. And when they were christened, they entended greatly to enhance the church. And this emperor was the first that received the faith of Jesu Christ, whom, as it is said, Origen converted to the faith. How be it that it is read in another place otherwise, and that S. Pontius had done it. And he reigned the year one thousand from the building of Rome, so that the year one thousand should rather be given to Christ than to the idols. And that year was hallowed of the Romans with right great apparel of games and great esbatements. And there was a knight with Philip the emperor named Decius, which was noble, and much renowned in arms and in battles. And when in that time France rebelled against this emperor, he sent thither Decius for to take away the contentious and subdue them to Rome. And Decius, so sent thither, made all things well, and subdued them all to Rome, and had victory. And when the emperor heard his coming, and would honour him more highly, and went against him unto Verona, but for as much as evil people feel them more honoured, so much more they are swollen in pride, then Decius, elate in pride, began to covet the empire, and on a time when Decius knew that the emperor slept in his pavilion, he entered in secretly and cut the throat of his lord sleeping. And then he drew to him by gifts and prayers, and also by promises, all them of the host that the emperor had brought, and went anon to the city of Rome. And when Philip the younger heard this thing, he was sore afraid and doubted strongly. And as Sicardus saith in his chronicle, he delivered all his father's treasure and his, to S. Sixtus and to S. Laurence, to the end that if it happed to him to be slain of Decius that they should give this treasure to poor people and to the churches. And wonder not that the treasures that Laurence gave be not named the treasures of the emperor, but of the church, or peradventure they were said treasures of the church. For Philip had left them to be dispended to the church, and after, Philip fled and hid him for fear of Decius. And then the senate went against Decius and confirmed him in the empire. And because he was not seen to have slain his lord by treason, but only for he had renied the idols, therefore he began right cruelly to persecute the church and christian men, and commanded that they should be destroyed without mercy. And many thousand martyrs were slain, among whom Philip was crowned with martyrdom. And after that Decius made a search of the treasures of his lord. Then was Sixtus brought to him as he that adored Jesu Christ, and had the treasures of the empire. And then commanded Decius that he should be put in prison so long that, by torments he should reny God, and tell where the treasures were. And the blessed Laurence followed him, and cried after him: Whither goest thou, father without a minister? What thing is in me that hath displeased thy fatherhood, or what thing hast thou seen in me? Hast thou seen me forsake my lineage, or go out of kind? Prove me whether thou hast chosen a convenable minister to whom thou hast committed the dispensation of the body and blood of our Lord. To whom S. Sixtus said: I shall not leave thee, my son, but greater strifes and battles be due to thee for the faith of Jesu Christ. We, as old men, have taken more lighter battle, and to thee as to a young man shall remain a more glorious battle of which thou shalt triumph and have victory of the tyrant, and shalt follow me within three days. Then he delivered to him all the treasures, commanding him that he should give them to churches and poor people. And the blessed man sought the poor people night and day, and gave to each of them that as was needful, and came to the house of an old woman, which had hid in her house many christian men and women, and long she had had the headache, and S. Laurence laid his hand opon her head, and anon she was healed of the ache and pain.

And he washed the feet of the poor people and gave to each of them alms. The same night he went to the house of a christian man and found therein a blind man, and gave to him his sight by the sign of the cross. And when the blessed Sixtus would not consent to Decius, ne offer to the idols, he commanded that he should be led forth and beheaded. And the blessed Laurence ran after him and said: Forsake me not, holy father, for I have dispended the treasures that thou deliveredst to me. And when the knights heard speak of the treasures, they took Laurence and brought him to the provost, and the provost delivered him to Decius. And Decius Cæsar said to him: Where be the treasures of the church, which we know well that thou hast hid? And he answered not. Wherefore he delivered him to Valerianus the provost to the end that he should show the treasures and do sacrifice to the idols, or to put him to death by divers torments. And Valerianus delivered him to a provost named Hippolitus for to be in prison. And he enclosed him in prison with many others. And there was in prison a paynim named Lucillus, which had lost the sight of his eyes with overmuch weeping. And S. Laurence promised to him to re-establish his sight if he would believe in Jesu Christ and receive baptism, and he required anon to be baptized. Then S. Laurence took water and said to him: All things in confession be washed. And when he had diligently informed him in the articles of the faith, and he confessed that he believed all, he shed water on his head, and baptized him in the name of Jesu Christ. And anon, he that had been blind received his sight again. And therefore came to him many blind men, and went again enlumined from him, and having their sight. And then again Hippolitus said to him: Show to me the treasures; to whom Laurence said: Hippolitus, if thou wilt believe in our Lord Jesu Christ, I shall show to thee the treasures, and promise to thee the life perdurable. And Hippolitus said: If thou dost this that thou sayest, I shall do that thou requirest. And in that same hour Hippolitus believed and received the holy baptism, he and all his meiny. And when he was baptized he said: I have seen the souls of the innocents joyous and glad. And after this, Valerianus sent to Hippolitus that he should bring him Laurence. And Laurence said to him: Let us go together, for the glory is made ready to me and to thee. And then they came to judgment. And he was inquired again of the treasures, and Laurence demanded dilation of three days, and Valerianus granted him on pledge of Hippolitus. And S. Laurence in these three days gathered together poor people, blind and lame, and presented them tofore Decius, in the palace of Salustine, and said: These here be the treasures perdurable, which shall not be minished, but increase, which he departed to each of them. The hands of these men have borne the treasures into heaven. Then Valerianus in the presence of Decius said: What variest thou in many things? Sacrifice anon, and put from thee thine art magic. And Laurence said to him: Whether ought he to be adored that maketh, or he that is made? And then Decius was angry, and commanded that he should be beaten with scorpions, and that all manner of torments should be brought tofore him. And then commanded he him that he should do sacrifice for to eschew these torments, and S. Laurence answered: Thou cursed man, I have always coveted these meats. To whom Decius said: If these be meats for thee, show to me them that be like to thee, that they may eat with thee. To whom Laurence said: They have given their names in to heaven, and thou art not worthy to see them. And then, by the conmmandment of Decius, he was beaten all naked with rods and staves, and pieces of iron burning were laid to his sides. And Laurence said: Lord Jesu Christ, God! Son of God, have mercy upon me, thy servant, which am accused, and I have not renied thee, and they have demanded me, and I have confessed thee to be my Lord. And then Decius said to him: I know well that thou despisest the torments by thine art magic, but me thou mayst not despise. I swear by my gods and goddesses but that thou wilt do sacrifice to them, thou shalt be punished by divers torments. Then he commanded that he should be long beaten with plummets, and then he prayed, saying: Lord Jesu Christ, receive my spirit. And then came a voice from heaven, Decius hearing, which said: Yet many torments be due to thee. And then Decius said, replenished with felony: Ye men of Rome, have ye heard the devils comforting this cursed man, which adored not the gods, ne doubted not the torments, ne dreaded not the prince's wrath? And then commanded he again that he should be beaten with scorpions. And then Laurence smiling rendered thankings to God, and prayed for them that were there. And in that same hour a knight named Romaine believed in God, and said to S. Laurence: I see tofore thee a right fair youngling standing, and with a linen cloth cleansing thy wounds. I adjure thee by the living Lord God that thou leave not, but haste thee to baptize me. And then said Decius to Valerianus: I ween that we shall now be overcome by art magic. And then he commanded that he should be unbounden and enclosed in the prison of Hippolitus. And then Romaine brought an urcelle or a cruse with water, and fell down at the feet of S. Laurence, and received baptism of him. And when Decius knew it, he commanded that Romaine should be beaten with rods, and he was so much beaten that he might not hold him upon his legs, but in no manner might no man make him say but that he was a good christian and freely baptized. And then Decius did do smite off his head. And that night was Laurence led to Decius, and when Hippolitus, which was there, saw that, he began to weep, and would have said that he was christened. And Laurence said to him: Hide Jesu Christ within thee, and when I shall cry, hear and come thither. And then all manner of torments that could be devised or thought were brought tofore Decius. And then said Decius to Laurence: Or thou shalt make sacrifice to the gods, or this night shall all these torments be dispended on thee. And then Laurence said to him: My night hath no darkness, but all things shine in my sight. And then said Decius: Bring hither a bed of iron, that Laurence contumax may lie thereon. And the ministers despoiled him, and laid him stretched out upon a gridiron of iron, and laid burning coals under, and held him with forks of iron. Then said Laurenee to Valerianus: Learn, thou cursed wretch, that thy coals give to me refreshing of coldness, and make ready to thee torment perdurable, and our Lord knoweth that I, being accused, have not forsaken him, and when I was demanded I confessed him Christ, and I being roasted give thankings unto God. And after this he said with a glad cheer unto Decius, Thou cursed wretch, thou hast roasted that one side, turn that other, and eat. And then he, rendering thankings to our Lord, said: I thank thee, Lord Jesu Christ, for I have deserved to enter into thy gates. And so gave up his spirit. And then Decius, being all confused, walked into the palace of Tiberius with Valerianus, and left the body Iying upon the fire, which Hippolitus in the morning took away, with Justin the priest, and buried it with precious ointments in the field Veranus. And the christian men that buried him, fasted three days and three nights, and hallowed the vigils, weeping there and wailing. But many doubt if he suffered under this Decius, for it is read in the chronicle that Sixtus was long after Decius. Eutropius nevertheless affirmeth and saith that, Decius moving persecution against christian men, among other he slew the blessed Laurence, deacon and martyr. And it is said in a chronicle authentic enough, that it was not under this Decius, the emperor that succeeded to Philip, but under another Decius younger, which was Cæsar and not emperor, that he suffered martyrdom. For between Decius the emperor and this Decius the younger, under whom it is said that Laurence was martyred, there were many emperors and popes. Also, it is said that Gallus, and Volusianus his son, succeeded Decius. And after them,Valerianus, with Gallianus his son, held the empire, and they made Decius the younger, Cæsar, and not emperor. For, anciently, when any was made Cæsar, neverthemore he was Augustus ne emperor, as it is read in the chronicles, that Diocletian made Maximian Cæsar, and after from Cæsar he was made Augustus and emperor. In the time of these emperors, Valerianus and Gallianus, Sixtus held the see of Rome, and this Decius was called Cæsar, and not emperor but Decius Cæsar only. And he martyred the blessed Fabian, and Cornelius succeeded after Fabian which was martyred under Valerianus and Gallianus, which reigned fifteen years. And Lucian succeeded Cornelius, and Stephen the pope succeeded Lucian, and Denys succeeded Stephen, and Sixtus succeeded Denys. And this is contained in that chronicle, and if this be true, that which Master John Beleth putteth may be true. And it is read in another chronicle that the said Gallianus had two names, and was called Gallianus and Decius, and under him Sixtus and Laurence suffered martyrdom, about the year of our Lord two hundred and sixty. Godfrey, in his book that is called Pantheonides, affirmeth that Gallianus was called by another name, Decius.

S. Gregory saith in his dialogues that there was a nun Sabina which held her continent of her flesh, but she eschewed not the janglery of her tongue, and she was buried in the church of S. Laurence the holy martyr, and was laid tofore the altar of the martyr, and was taken of the devils and departed and sawn asunder, and that one part was burnt, and that other part remained whole, so that on the morning the burning appeared visibly. Gregory of Tours saith that when a certain priest repaired the church of S. Laurence, and one of the beams was over short, and required S. Laurence that he which had nourished poor men would help his poverty, and the beam grew so suddenly that there remained a great part, and the priest cut that part into small pieces, and cured and healed therewith many maladies. And this witnesseth S. Fortunatus:

It happed at Prioras, a castle in Italy, that a man was sore vexed with toothache, and he attouched this wood, and anon the ache was gone. S. Gregory telleth in his book of dialogues that a priest named Sanctulus repaired a church of S. Laurence, which had been burnt of Lombards, and hired many workmen; and one time he had nothing to set tofore them, and then he made his prayers, and after looked in his panier, and there he found a much white loaf of bread, but him seemed that it sufficed not for one dinner for three persons. S. Laurence, which would not fail his workmen, did do multiply it, that his workmen were sustained thereby ten days.

In the church of S. Laurence at Milan was a chalice of crystal, marvellously clear, and as the deacon bare it on a day suddenly to the altar, it fell out of his hands to the ground, and was all tobroken. And then the deacon, weeping, gathered together the pieces and laid them on the altar, and prayed the holy martyr S. Laurence that the chalice broken might be made whole again, and then anon it was founden all whole. It is read in the book of the miracles of our Blessed Lady S. Mary, that a judge named Stephen was at Rome and took gladly gifts, and perverted the judgments. And this judge took away by force three houses that were longing to the church of S. Laurence, and a garden of S. Agnes, and possessed them wrongfully. It happed that the judge died and was brought to judgment tofore God. And when S. Laurence saw him, he went to him in great despite, and strained him three times by the arm right hard, and tormented him by great pain. And S. Agnes and other virgins deigned not to look on him, but turned their visages away from him, and then the judge giving sentence against him, said: Because he hath withdrawn other men's things, and hath taken gifts and sold truth. that he should be put in the place of Judas the traitor. And S. Projecte, whom the said Stephen had much loved in his life, came to the blessed Laurence and to S. Agnes, and cried them mercy for him. Then the Blessed Virgin Mary, and they, prayed to God for him, and then it was granted to them that the soul of him should go again to the body, and there should do his penance thirty days; and our Blessed Lady commanded him that as long as he lived he should say the psalm: Beati immaculati. And when the soul came to the body again, his arm was like as it had been burnt, like as he had suffered that hurt in his body, and that token and sign was in him as long as he lived. Then rendered he that which he had taken and did his penance. And at the thirtieth day he passed out of this world to our Lord. It is read in the life of Henry the emperor, that he and Cunegonde his wife were virgins together. By the atisement of the devil he had his wife suspected of a knight, and he made his wife go barefoot upon burning ashes fifteen paces, and when she ascended upon them she said this: As I am not corrupted ne defouled of Harry ne of all other, so Jesu Christ help me. Then Henry the emperor was ashamed, and gave her a buffet on the cheek, and a voice said: The Virgin Mary hath delivered thee, virgin, and she went without any hurt upon the burning ashes. And when the emperor was dead, there went a great multitude of devils tofore the cell of an hermit, and he opened the window and demanded at the last what they were, and one answered: A legion of devils we be that go to the death of the emperor, if peradventure we may find anything in him. He adjured him that he should come again to him, which returning said: We have profited nothing, for when this false suspicion of his wife and all the good things and evil things were laid in a balance, this burnt and bruled Laurence brought forth a pot of gold of much great weight. And when we supposed to have surmounted, he cast that pot in the balance on that other side, so that it weighed more and was heavier. And then I was angry and brake an ear of the pot, and he called that pot a chalice, which the emperor had given to the church of Eichstadt, which he had in special devotion, and had do made it in the honour of S. Laurence. And for the greatness of it, it had two ears. And it was founden then that the emperor died that time, and one ear was broken off the chalice.

Gregory rehearseth in his register that his predecessor coveted to make better some things about the body of S. Laurence, but he wist not where it lay. Nevertheless, the body of S. Laurence was discovered and unheled by ignorance, but all they that were there present, as well monks as others, were dead in fifteen days after. It is to wit that the passion of S. Laurence was most excellent in four things, like as it is founden by the sayings of S. Maximin bishop, and of S. Austin. First, in the sourness of his passion or bitterness; secondly, in profit or effect; thirdly, in constancy or strength; and fourthly, in the marvellous battle and manner of his victory. First, it was right excellent in the bitterness of the pain; this saith S. Maximin; and after some books of S. Ambrose: Brethren, S. Laurence was not slain by short and simple passion, for who that is smitten by a sword he dieth but once, and who that is cast in a fire is delivered at once, but this holy man was tormented by long and multiplied pains, so that the death should not fail him at torment ne fail him at the end. We read that the blessed children went through the flames, and have gone upon the coals burning bare foot, whereof S. Laurence is not to be preferred of lesser glory, for as they went in their pains through the flames, this, in his torment, lay upon the fire. They defouled and trod upon the fire with their feet, and this was restrained for to lay his sides therein. They prayed in their pains holding up their hands to our Lord God, but he was stretched in his pain, and prayed our Lord with all his body. And it is to wit that the blessed Laurence is he that, after S. Stephen, ought to hold the primacy. Not only for that he suffered greater pain than other martyrs, as is well found and read that many have suffered as much pain, but it is said for six causes. First, for the place of the passion, for it was at Rome, which is head of the world, and siege of the apostles. Secondly, for the office of the predication, for he accomplished diligently the office of preaching. Thirdly, for the laudable distribution of the treasures, that he gave all to poor men wisely. And these three reasons putteth master William of Auxerre. Fourthly, for the antiquity and proved martyrdom. For if it be said that some other have had greater pain, always it is not so authentic, and also some time in doubt, but the passion of S. Laurence is much solemn and approved in the church. And therefore many saints approve his passion in their sermons and affirm it. Fifthly, for the degree of dignity. For he was archdeacon of the siege of Rome, and as it is said, there was never sith archdeacon in Rome. Sixthly, for the cruelty of torments, for he suffered them right grievous, as he that was roasted upon a gridiron of iron. Whereof S Austin saith: Sith that the members were broken by many diverse beatings, he was commanded to be tormented upon a griddle of iron, and was laid thereupon, which by continual heat that was thereunder, the griddle had the force to burn, so that he was tormented by the turning of his members more forcibly for the pain was the more long. Secondly, he was right excellent in effect or profit, for after this that Austin and Maximin say, this bitterness of pain made him high by glorification, and honourable by opinion, and laudable by devotion, and noble by contention. First, it made him high by glorifcation, whereof S. Austin saith: Persecutor, thou wert wood against the martyr and more than wood, for when thou assembledst pain thou increasedst his glory, thine engine found not glory of the aid when the instruments of the torments transported him in the honour of victory. And after Maximin, and in some books of Ambrose, it is said: How be it that the members were bounden in the heat of the sparcles, the force of the faith was not corrupt. The body suffered impairing, but he gat the gain of health, and S. Austin saith truly: His body is blessed, for torment never changeth him out of the faith of God, but his religion crowned him in holy rest. Secondly, he was honourable by opinion, and renomee after Maximin and Ambrose, that say: We may liken the blessed Laurence to mustard seed which is broken by many manners, when by the grace of his mystery he replenished the world of good odour, for tofore that he was constitute in his body, he was humble, unknown, and serviceable; and after that he was all tobroken and burnt, he shed in all the churches of the world the odour of his nobleness. Also this is a holy thing and pleasant, that the solemnity of S. Laurence be nobly honoured, whose shining flames, he as vanquisher, holy church halloweth this day in all the world, in so much that his glorious passion enlumineth all the world by the glory of his martyrdom. Thirdly, he was louable by devotion. Wherefore was he so louable, and so with devotion to be reputed, S. Austin showeth it by three reasons, and saith thus: We ought to receive the blessed man with devotion; first, for he gave his precious blood for the love of our Lord, and after, for because he had unto our Lord great affinity, showing that the faith of christian men ought to deserve to be of the company of martyrs; thirdly, because he was so holy of conversation that in the time of peace he deserved the crown of martyrdom. Fourthly, he made himself noble by following, whereof S. Austin saith that the cause of all his passion was because he exhorted others to be like to him. In three things he showed him to us following: First, in strong suffering of adversities, whereof S. Austin saith: The most profitable form for to inform the people to God is the fair speech of martyrs. It is light to pray, and it is profitable to admonish and warn, the things and the examples be better than the words. And it is more to teach by work than by voice. And in this right excellent manner of teaching the persecutors might feel of Laurence how he shone by great dignity. And how the marvellous strength of his courage gave not only place of belief, but also comforted and strengthened others by ensample of his suffering. Secondly, by greatness of the faith and fervour of love. Whereof Maximin saith, and Ambrose also, when he vanquished by faith the flames of the persecutors, he showed to us by the fire of faith that he overcame the embracements of the fire of hell, and by the love of Christ not to fear the day of doom. Thirdly, in burning love. Maximin and Ambrose say that, S. Laurence enlumined the world plainly of the same light that he was embraced with, and chauffed the hearts of all christian people by the flames that he suffered. By these three things saith S. Maximin, after the books of S. Ambrose, that we be called to the faith by the example of S. Laurence, and embraced to martyrdom, and chauffed to devotion. Thirdly, he was right excellent in constancy and in strength. And hereof saith S. Austin: The blessed Laurence dwelled in Jesu Christ unto the temptation, unto the demand of the tyrant, and unto the death, in whom the occision was long, and because that he had well eaten and well drunken, he was fat of this meat, and drunken of the chalice, so that he felt not the torments ne eschewed them, but succeeded to the realm of heaven. He was so constant that he set not by the torments; but after that S. Maximin saith: He was made more perfect in dread, more ardent in love, and more joyous in burning. For the first it is said thus: He was stretched upon the flames of the great brands of fire, and turned oft from that one side to that other. And how much more he suffered of pains, so much more he dreaded God. And of the second he saith thus: When the grain of the mustard is ground it chauffeth, and when Laurence suffered torments he was inflamed again, and tormented of a new manner of marvellous torments, and the greater torments that the wood persecutors did, the more devout was Laurence to our Saviour. And as to the third, he saith thus: He was chauffed in the law of Jesu Christ, that by great highness of courage he despised the torments of his own body, that in having victory of his wood tormentor, he was joyous for to despise it by the fire. Fourthly, he was right excellent in the marvellous battle, and in the manner of his victory, and as it appeareth openly by the words of S. Maximin and of S. Austin, the blessed Laurence had five burnings without forth, which he all overcame manly and extincted them. The first was the fire of hell, the second material flame, the third carnal concupiscence, the fourth of burning covetise, and the fifth of a mad woodness. The quenching of the first fire, that is of hell, Maximin saith: It might give no place of burning to the worldly fire; for to burn his body which quenched the fire perdurable of hell, he went through the fire earthly and material of this world, but he escaped and eschewed then the horrible flame of the fire perdurable of hell. The quenching of the second fire, he saith also, he travailed by bodily burning but the divine ardour quenched the material burning. And yet saith he: How be it the evil people put under the fagots and wood for to increase and make great flame, S. Laurence esprised by the heat of the faith felt not the flames. And S. Austin saith: The charity of Jesu Christ may not be surmounted with flames, for the fire that burnt without forth was more feeble than that which he embraced within forth. And of the quenching of the third fire of carnal concupiscence, saith S. Maximin: S. Laurence passed through the fire which he abhorred being not burnt, but he enlumined shone; he burned lest he should burn, and because he should not burn he was burnt. Of the quenching of the fourth fire, that is of avarice; of them that covet the treasures of which they be deceived, said S. Austin thus: A man covetous is armed by double ardour of money, and is enemy of truth; his avarice is for to steal gold, and by his felony he loseth our Lord. He hath nothing, he profiteth nothing, human cruelty is withdrawn by his winds and corporal matter, and Laurence goeth to heaven, and he faileth in his flames. Of the quenching of the fifth fire, that is of the furious woodness, how, that is to say, furious woodness of the persecutors was deceived and brought to nought, saith Maximin thus: When the woodness of the ministers of the flames was surmounted, he restrained the burning of the worldly woodness, and till that time the devil's entent profited till that the true man ascended and mounted into heaven gloriously unto his Lord God. And he made to cool the cruelty of the persecutors, confused all with their fires, and showeth that the woodness of the persecutors was fire, when he said: The woodness of the paynims made ready a griddle of iron upon the fire strongly burning, and that was done to the end that he should avenge the fires and great heats of indignation. And it was no wonder though he surmounted these three great fires without forth. For as it is had of the words of the said Maximin: He had within forth three refroidours or colds, and bare in his heart three fires by which he assuaged by coldness all the fire without forth, and surmounted with the embracing of more fire. And the first coldness was the desire of celestial glory, the second was the remembrance of the law of God, and the third was the cleanness of his conscience.

By this treble coldness he quenched all the fire without forth, and he was cold of the first refroidour, which is desire of heavenly glory. As S. Ambrose saith: The blessed Laurence might not feel the torments of fire in his entrails, which within him possessed the refroidour of paradise. Though the burnt flesh lay tofore the tyrant, and the body burnt, nevertheless the body suffered no pain in earth whose soul and courage was in heaven. Of the second coldness or refroidure that is the remembrance of the law of God, he saith thus: When he remembered tofore the commandments of Jesu Christ, all was cold that he suffered. Of the third, which is purity and cleanness of conscience, he saith thus: The right strong martyr truly is burnt in his entrails, but he, seeking the kingdom of heaven, enjoyeth as a vanquisher by the refroidure of the cleanness of his conscience. And as S. Maximin saith: He had three fires within forth, by the which he surmounted by embracing all the fires without forth. The first was the greatness of the faith; the second the ardent dilection; the third the very knowledge of God, which embraced him as fire. Of the first fire saith S. Ambrose: As much as the burning of the faith chauffed him, so much cooled him the flame of the torment. We read in the gospel that the fire of the faith is the fire of the Saviour. The evangelist said: I came into the earth to put fire therein, and with this fire was S. Laurence embraced, and felt not the burning of the flames. And of the second fire he saith thus: The martyr Laurence burned withoutforth of the embracements of the tyrants, but the greater flame of the love of God burneth him withinforth. Of the third fire he saith thus: The right cruel flame of the persecutor might not surmount the martyr, for he was overmuch more ardently chauffed in his thought by the rays of truth, that he felt not the flame withoutforth, which he vanquished and overcame. Laurence, among the other martyrs, hath three privileges as towards office. The first, he hath only a vigil among all the other martyrs. But at this day the vigils of saints be changed into fastings by many, and as Master John Beleth rehearseth: It was sometime the custom that men went with their wives and children at the solemnity of feasts, and woke there all the night with tapers and light; but because many adventures were made in these vigils, it was established that the vigils should be turned into fastings, and nevertheless the ancient name is retained, and is yet retained, and is called vigil. The second privilege is in the octaves or utas; for he only with S. Stephen have their octaves among all other martyrs, like as S. Martin hath among the confessors. The third is in the reprising of the anthems, for he only and S. Paul have that only. But Paul hath that for the excellence of his preaching, and Laurence for the excellence of his passion.

Here followeth of S. Hyppolitus, Martyr, and first of his name.

Hyppolitus is said of hyper, that is as much to say as upon, and litos, that is a stone, as who saith upon a stone, that is to understand, founded upon Christ. Or of in and polis, that is a city. Or Hyppolitus is as much to say as polished. He was well founded upon the stone Christ by constancy and steadfastness; he was in the city above by desire and coveting, he was polished by the bitterness of his torments.

Of S. Hyppolitus.

Hyppolitus buried the body of S. Laurence, and after, he came into his house, and gave the peace to his servants and to his chamberers, and communed them with the sacrament of the altar, which Justin the priest had sacred. And the table was covered, but ere he took any meat, the knights came and haled him away, and brought him to the emperor. And when Decius the emperor saw him, he smiling said to him: Art thou now made an enchanter, which hast borne away the body of Laurence? And Hyppolitus said: That have I done, not as an enchanter, but as a christian man. Then Decius, being replenished with great fury, commanded that he should be despoiled of his habit that he ware as a christian man, and that his mouth should be beaten with stones. To whom Hyppolitus said: Thou hast not despoiled me but rather clothed. To whom Decius said: How is it that thou art now so foolish, that art not ashamed of thy nakedness? Now therefore make thou sacrifice, and thou shalt live, or else thou shalt perish with Laurence. To whom Hyppolitus said: I would I might be made the example of S. Laurence, whom thou presumest to name with thy foul mouth and pollute. Then Decius made him to be beaten with staves, and all to-rent with combs of iron. And he confessed with a clear voice that he was christian. And when he had despised these torments, he did him to be clothed with the vesture of a knight that he tofore used, in exhorting him to receive his amity and his first chivalry. And Hyppolitus said: I am the knight of Jesu Christ. And then Decius, replenished with great wrath, delivered him to Valerian the provost, that he should take all his faculties, and slay him by divers torments. And then he found that all the meiny of Hyppolitus' house were christian, and all were brought tofore him, and when he would have constrained them to do sacrifice, one named Concordia, nurse of Hyppolitus, answered for them all: We had liefer die with our Lord chastely than live sinfully; and then Decius, being present, commanded that she should be beaten with plummets of lead unto the time that she gave over her spirit, and Hyppolitus said: Lord, I thank thee that thou hast sent my nurse tofore the sight of thy saints. And after that Valerian did do lead Hyppolitus with his meiny to the gate Tyburtine, and Hyppolitus comforted them all and said: Brethren, dread ye not, for ye and I have one only God. And then Valerian commanded that all they should be beheaded before Hyppolitus, and then he made Hyppolitus to be bound by the feet unto the necks of wild horses, and made him to be drawn among thorns, briars, and rocks, till he rendered and gave to God his spirit. He died about the year of our Lord two hundred and sixty-six. And then Justin the priest took the bodies of them, and buried them by the body of S. Laurence, but he could not find the body of S. Concordia, for it was cast into a privy.

A knight, that was named Porphyry, weened that the blessed Concordia had gold and precious stones in her clothes, and came to a man named Irenæus, which was secretly a christian man, and said to him: Keep my counsel secret, and draw Concordia out of the privy, for I trow that there be in her vestments gold and precious stones. And he said: Show to me the place where she lieth and I shall keep thy counsel, and shall tell to thee what I shall find. And then he drew her out of the privy chamber, and found nothing, and then the knight fled away anon. And Irenæus called to him a christian man named Abundinus, and bare the body to S. Justin, and he took it devoutly and buried it by the body of S. Hyppolitus with the others. And when Valerian heard hereof he did do take Irenæus and Abundinus, and threw them all quick into the privy; and Justin took out their bodies and buried them with the other.

And after these things done, Decius and Valerian ascended into a golden chariot for to go and torment christian men, and Decius was ravished of a devil and cried: O Hyppolitus thou hast bounden me with sharp chains and leadest me away. And Valerian cried also: O Laurence, thou drawest me with fiery chains; and the same hour Valerian died; and Decius returned home and died the third day, tormented of the devil, and cried: Laurence, cease thou a little, I conjure thee to cease thy torments, and so died. And when Tryphonia his wife, which was much cruel, saw this thing, she left all and took Cyrilla her daughter, and went to S. Justin and did do baptize her with many others. And that other day after, that as Tryphonia prayed, she gave up her spirit and died, and Justin the priest buried her body by S. Hyppolitus. And forty-seven knights hearing that the queen and her daughter were become christian, came with their wives to Justin the priest for to receive baptism. Claudius the emperor, when Cyrilla would not do sacrifice, did do cut her throat, and did do behead the other knights. And the bodies were borne with the others into the field Veranus and there buried. And it is to be noted here expressly that Claudius succeeded Decius, which martyred S. Laurence and S. Hyppolitus, but he succeeded not Decius the emperor, for after the chronicles, Volusianus succeeded Decius, and Gallianus succeeded Volusianus, and Claudius succeeded Gallianus, so it behoveth that Gallianus had two names, that is to wit, Gallianus and Decius, and so saith Vincent in his chronicle and Godfrey in his book. Gallianus called one unto his help that was named Decius, whom he made Cæsar, but not emperor, so saith Richard in his chronicle.

Of this martyr, saith Ambrose in his preface: The blessed martyr Hyppolitus considered that Jesu Christ was very duke, and he would be his knight, and had liefer be his knight than duke of knights, and he pursued not S. Laurence which was put under his keeping, but followed him, so that in suffering martyrdom he left the law of the tyrant, and came and possessed the treasure of very riches, which is the glory of the king perdurable and perpetual. There was a carter named Peter which yoked his oxen in the cart in the feast of Mary Magdalene, and followed his oxen and began to curse them, and anon the oxen and the cart were smitten with thunder. And that same Peter which had so cursed was tormented of cruel torments, for fire took him so that he burnt the sinews and the flesh from his thigh, and the bone appeared, and that the thigh and leg fell off. Then he went to a church of our Lady and hid his leg in a hole of the church, and prayed our Lady with tears devoutly for his deliverance. And on a night the blessed Virgin with S. Hyppolitus came tofore him in a vision, and she prayed to Hyppolitus that he would re-establish Peter in his first health, and anon S. Hyppolitus took his leg in the hole, and took and set it in his place, like as one grafteth in a tree. And he felt so much pain in that vision that he awoke and cried so loud that he awoke all the meiny. And they arose and took light, and saw that Peter had two legs and two thighs, but they had supposed that it had been illusion, and they touched yet and yet eft again, and saw that he had verily his members, and then they awoke him and demanded of him how it happed. And he weened that they had mocked him. And when he saw it, he was all abashed, yet nevertheless the new thigh was softer than the old, and he might not well sustain his body therewith. And because this miracle should be published, he halted a whole year, and then the blessed Virgin appeared to him and said to S. Hyppolitus that he should perform that which appertained to that cure, and then he awoke and felt himself all whole. And then he entered into a recluage. To whom the devil appeared oft-time in the likeness of a woman naked, and joined to him naked, and the more he defended him the more the devil approached near, in tempting him shamefully, and when he had been shamefully travailed of her, he took the stole off a priest's neck and girt him with it, and anon the devil departed and left Iying there a stinking and rotten carrion. And so great stench issued that there was none that saw it but said that it was the body of some dead woman which the devil had taken.

Here followeth the Assumption of the Glorious Virgin our Lady S. Mary.

We find in a book sent to S. John the Evangelist, or else the book, which is said to be apocryphal, is ascribed to him, in what manner the Assumption of the blessed Virgin Mary was made. The apostles were departed and gone in to divers countries of the world for cause of preaching, and the blessed Lady and Virgin was in a house by the Mount of Sion, and as long as she lived she visited all the places of her son with great devotion, that is to say the place of his baptism, of his fasting, of his passion, of his sepulture, of his resurrection, and of his ascension. And after that Epiphanius saith, she lived four-and-twenty years after the ascension of her son, and he saith also: When our Lady had conceived Jesu Christ she was of the age of fourteen years, and she was delivered in her fifteenth year, and lived and abode with him three and thirty years. And after his death she lived four-and-twenty years, and by this account when she departed out of this world she was seventy-two years old; but it is more probable that which is read in another place, that she lived after the ascension of her son twelve years, and so then she was sixty years old. And on a day, when all the apostles were spread through the world in preaching, the glorious Virgin was greatly esprised and embraced with desire to be with her son Jesu Christ, and her courage was eschaufed and moved, and great abundance of tears ran withoutforth, because she had not equally the comforts of her son, which were withdrawn from her for the time. And an angel came tofore her, with great light, and saluted her honourably as the mother of his Lord, saying: All hail! blessed Mary, receiving the blessing of him that sent his blessing to Jacob, lo! here a bough of palm of paradise, Lady, which I have brought to thee, which thou shalt command to be borne tofore thy bier. For thy soul shall be taken from thy body the third day next following, and thy son abideth thee, his honourable mother. To whom she answered: If I have found grace tofore thine eyes, I pray thee that thou vouchsafe to show to me thy name, and yet I pray thee more heartily that my sons and my brethren the apostles may be assembled with me, so that tofore I die I may see them with my bodily eyes, and after, to be buried of them, and they being here, I may yield up my ghost to God. And also yet I pray and require that my spirit, issuing out of the body, see not the horrible ne wicked spirit ne fiend, and that no might of the devil come against me. And then the angel said: Lady, wherefore desirest thou to know my name? which is great and marvellous. All the apostles shall assemble this day to thee and shall make to thee noble exequies at thy passing, and in the presence of them thou shalt give up thy spirit. For he that brought the prophet by his hair from Judea to Babylon, may without doubt suddenly in an hour bring the apostles to thee. And wherefore doubtest thou to see the wicked spirit, sith thou hast broken utterly his head, and hast despoiled him from the empire of his power? Nevertheless thy will be done, that thou see not the fiend. And this said, the angel mounted into heaven with great light, and the palm shone by right great clearness, and was like to a green rod whose leaves shone like to the morrow star. And it happed as S. John the Evangelist preached in Ephesus, the heaven suddenly thundered, and a white cloud took him up and brought him tofore the gate of the blessed Virgin Mary. And he knocked at the door and entered and saluted the Virgin honourably. Whom the blessed Virgin beheld, and was greatly abashed for joy, and might not abstain her from weeping, and said to him: John, my son, remember thee of the word of thy master, by which he made me mother unto thee, and thee a son unto me. Lo! I am called of thy master and my God. I pay now the debt of condition human, and recommend my body unto thy busy cure. I have heard say that the Jews have made a council, and said: Let us abide brethren unto the time that she that bare Jesus be dead, and then incontinent we shall take her body and shall cast it into the fire and burn it. Thou therefore take this palm, and bear it tofore the bier when ye shall bear my body to the sepulchre. Then said John: O would God that all my brethren the apostles were here, that we might make thine exequies convenably as it behoveth and is digne and worthy. And as he said that, all the apostles were ravished with clouds from the places where they preached, and were brought tofore the door of the blessed Virgin Mary. And when they saw them assembled, they marvelled, and said: For what cause hath our Lord assembled us here? Then S. John went out and said to them that our Lady should pass and depart out of this world, and added more thereto, saying: Brethren, beware and keep you from weeping when she shall depart, because that the people that shall see it be not troubled, and say: Lo! there, how they dread the death which preach to others the resurrection. And Denis, disciple of Paul, affirmeth this same in the book of divine names, that is to wit that all the apostles were assembled at the assumption and death of our Lady Mary and were together there, and that each of them made a sermon unto the praisirg and laud of Jesu Christ and the blessed Virgin his mother. He said thus, speaking to Timothy: Thus we and thou, as thou well knowest, and many of our holy brethren, did assemble at the vision of the mother that received God. And James, brother of God, was there. And Peter the apostle, most noble and sovereign of the theologians. And after that me seemed that all the Hierarchies lifted her up, after and according to her virtue without end. This saith S. Denis. And when the blessed Virgin Mary saw all the apostles assembled, she blessed our Lord, and sat in the midst of them where the lamps, tapers, and lights burned. And about the third hour of the night Jesu Christ came with sweet melody and song, with the orders of the angels, the companies of patriarchs, the assembly of martyrs, the convents of confessors, the carols of virgins. And tofore the bed of our blessed Lady the companies of all these saints were set in order and made sweet song and melody. And what exequies were done of our blessed Lady, and there hallowed it is all said and enseigned in the foresaid book which is attributed to S. John.

For first, Jesu Christ began to say: Come my chosen and I shall set thee in my seat, for I have coveted the beauty of thee. And our Lady answered: Sir, my heart is ready, and all they that were come with Jesu Christ entuned sweetly saying: This is she that never touched the bed of marriage in delight, and she shall have fruit in refection of holy souls. Then she sang of herself, saying: All the generations shall say that I am blessed, for he that is mighty hath done great things to me, and the name of him is holy. And the chanter of chanters entuned more excellently above all others, saying: Come from Lebanon, my spouse, come from Lebanon, come, thou shalt be crowned. And she said: I come, for in the beginning of the book it is written of me that I should do thy will, for my spirit hath joyed in thee, God my health. And thus in the morning the soul issued out of the body and fled up in the arms of her son. And she was as far estranged from the pain of the flesh as she was from corruption of her body. Then said our Lord to the apostles: Bear ye the body of this virgin, my mother, into the vale of Jehosaphat and lay ye her in a new sepulchre that ye shall find there, and abide me there three days till that I return to you. And anon she was environed with flowers of roses, that was the company of martyrs, and with lilies of the valley, that was the company of angels, of confessors and virgins. And the apostles cried after her saying: Right wise virgin, whither goest thou? Lady, remember thee of us. And then the company of saints that were abiden there were awaked with the sound of the song of them that mounted, and came against her, and saw their king bear in his proper arms the soul of a woman, and saw that this soul was joined to him, and were abashed and began to cry, saying: Who is this that ascendeth from the desert, full of delices, joined to her friend ? And they that accompanied her said: This is the right fair among the daughters of Jerusalem, and like as ye have seen her full of charity and dilection, so is she joyously received, and set in the seat of glory on the right side of her son. And the apostles saw the soul of her being so white that no mortal tongue might express it. And then three maidens that were there took off the clothes from the body for to wash it. The body anon shone by so great clearness that they might well feel it in touching and washing but they might not see it. And that light shone as long as they were about the washing of it. And then the apostles took the body honourably and laid it on the bier, and John said to Peter: Bear this palm tofore the bier, for our Lord hath ordained thee above us, and hath made thee pastor and prince of his sheep. To whom Peter said: It appertaineth better to thee to bear it, for thou art chosen virgin of our Lord, and thou oughtest to bear this palm of light at the exequies of chastity and holiness, thou that drankest at the fountain of perdurable clearness. And I shall bear the holy body with the bier, and these other apostles our brethren shall go round about the body yielding thankings to God. And then S. Paul said to him: I, that am least of the apostles and of you all, shall bear with thee. And then Peter and Paul lifted up the bier, and Peter began to sing and say: Israel is issued out of Egypt, and the other apostles followed him in the same song. And our Lord covered the bier and the apostles with a cloud, so that they were not seen, but the voice of them was heard only. And the angels were with the apostles singing, and replenished all the land with marvellous sweetness. And then all the people was moved with that sweet melody, and issued hastily out of the city and enquired what it was, and then there were some that said to them that Mary such a woman is dead, and the disciples of her son Jesu bear her and make such melody as ye hear about her. And then ran they to arms, and they warned each other saying: Come and let us slay all the disciples, and let us burn the body of her that bare this traitor. And when the prince of priests saw that, he was all abashed and full of anger, and said: Lo! here the tabernacle of him that troubled us and our lineage. Behold what glory he now receiveth, and in saying so, he laid his hands on the bier willing to turn it, and overthrew it to the ground.

Then suddenly both his hands waxed dry and cleaved to the bier, so that he hung by the hands on the bier, and was sore tormented and wept and brayed. And the angels that were there in the clouds blinded all the other people that they saw nothing. And the prince of priests said: S. Peter, despise me not in this tribulation, and I pray thee to pray for me to our Lord. Thou oughtest to remember when the chamberer, that was usher, accused thee, and I excused thee. And S. Peter said to him: We be now empeshed in the service of our Lady, and may not now entend to heal thee, but and if thou believest in our Lord Jesu Christ, and in this that bare him, I ween and hope that thou soon shalt have health and be all whole. And he answered: I believe our Lord Jesu Christ to be the Son of God, and that this is his right holy mother, and anon his hands were loosed from the bier, but yet the dryness and the pain ceased not in him. And then S. Peter said to him: kiss the bier and say: I believe in God Jesu Christ that this woman bare in her belly, and remained virgin after the childing. And when he had so said, he was anon all whole perfectly. And then said Peter to him: Take that palm of the hand of our brother John, and lay it on the people that be blind, and who that will believe shall receive his sight again. And they that will not believe shall never see. And then the apostles bare Mary unto the monument and sat by it, like as our Lord had commanded, and at the third day Jesu Christ came with a great multitude of angels and saluted them, and said: Peace be with you. And they answered: God, glory be to thee which only makest the great miracles and marvels. And our Lord said to the apostles: What is now your advice that I ought now to do to my mother of honour and of grace? Sire, it seemeth to us thy servants that like as thou hast vanquished the death and reignest world without end, that thou raise also the body of thy mother and set it on thy right side in perdurability. And he granted it. And then Michael the angel came and presented the soul of Mary to our Lord. And the Saviour spake and said: Arise up, haste thee, my culver or dove, tabernacle of glory, vessel of life, temple celestial, and like as thou never feltest conceiving by none atouchment, thou shalt not suffer in the sepulchre no corruption of body. And anon the soul came again to the body of Mary, and issued gloriously out of the tomb, and thus was received in the heavenly chamber, and a great company of angels with her. And S. Thomas was not there, and when he came he would not believe this. And anon the girdle with which her body was girt came to him from the air, which he received, and thereby he understood that she was assumpt into heaven. And all this heretofore is said and called apocryphum. Whereof S. Jerome saith in a sermon to Paula and Eustochia her daughter: That book is said to be apocryphum, save that some words which be worthy of faith and be approved of saints as touching nine things, that is to wit, that the comfort of the apostles was promised and given to the virgin, and that all the saints assembled there, and that she died without pain, and was buried in the vale of Jehosaphat. And there were made ready the obsequies and the devotion ot Jesu Christ, and the coming of the celestial company, and the persecution of the Jews, and the shining of the miracles, and that she was assumpt into heaven, body and soul. But many other things be put there more at fantasy and simulation than at truth. As that, that Thomas was not there, and when he came he doubted, and other things semblable, which be better not to believe them than not to believe her clothes and vestments were left in her tomb, to the comfort of good christian men. And of one part of her vestments it is said there happed such a great miracle as followeth. When the Duke of Normandy had assieged the city of Chartres, the bishop of the city took the coat of our Lady and set it on the head of a spear like a banner and went out against the enemy surely, and the people followed him. And anon all the host of the enemies were turned into frenzy, and were blind and trembled, and all were abashed. And when they of the city saw this thing, above the divine demonstrance they went on eagerly and slew their enemies, the which thing displeased much the virgin S. Mary, as it was proved by that that her coat vanished away, and the duke, their enemy, found it in his lap.

It is read in the revelations of S. Elizabeth that, on a time as she was ravished in spirit, she saw in a place much far from folk a tomb or a sepulchre environed with much light, and was like the form of a woman withinforth, and there was about it a great multitude of angels, and a little while after she was taken out of the sepulchre and borne up on high with that multitude. And then came against her a man bearing in his right arm the sign of the cross, and had with him many angels without number, which received her much joyously and led her with great melody into heaven. And a little while after, Elizabeth demanded of an angel to whom she spake oft, of that vision that she saw. It is showed to thee, said the angel, in that vision that, the Virgin our Lady is assumpt into heaven as well in her body as in her soul. It is said in the same revelations that it was showed to her that the fortieth day after the soul departed from her body she was so assumpt into heaven, and also that when our blessed Lady spake to her, she said: After the Ascension of our Lord a whole year, and as many days more as be from the Ascension unto her assumption, she overlived. And also she said: All the apostles were at my departing, and buried my body honourably, and forty days after was raised. And then S. Elizabeth demanded of her whether she should hide this thing, or that she should manifest it and show it. And she said: It is not to be showed to fleshly ne unbelieving people, ne it is not to be hid to devout and christian people. It is to be noted that the glorious Virgin Mary was assumpt and lifted up into heaven entirely joyously and gloriously. She was received entirely, that is, wholly, as the church believeth debonairly, and that aflirm many saints, and enforce them to prove it by many reasons. And the reason of S. Bernard is such. He saith that God hath made the body of S. Peter and S. James so gloriously to be honoured that he hath enhanced them by marvellous honour, that to them is deputed place convenable for to be worshipped. and all the world goeth to seek and offer to them. Then if the body of his blessed mother were on the earth, and not haunted by devout visitation of christian men, it should be marvel to hear that God would not have done as much worship to his mother, and honoured as much her body as the bodies of other saints upon the earth. Jerome saith thus, that the Virgin Mary mounted into heaven the eighteenth calends of September. That which he saith of the assumption of the body of Mary, the church will rather debonairly believe it, than rashly to explain it, and he proved it afterward that it is to be believed that they that arose with our Lord have accomplished their perdurable resurrection. Wherefore should not we say then that it is done in the Blessed Virgin Mary. And also many believe that S. John the Evangelist is glorified in his flesh with Jesu Christ; and then much more our Lady ought to be glorified in heaven, both body and soul, which saith: Worship thy father and mother, and he came not to break the law but to fulfil it, and therefore he honoureth his mother above all other. S. Austin affirmeth not this only, but he proveth it by three reasons. And the first reason is the unity and assembly of the flesh of our Lord and of our Lady, and saith thus: Putrefaction and worms is the reproach of condition human, which Jesus never touched, and the flesh of Jesu is out of this reproof, the nature of Mary is out thereof, for it is proved that Jesu Christ hath taken his flesh of her. The second reason is the dignity of the body of her of whom himself saith: This is the siege of God, the chamber of our Lord of heaven, and the tabernacle of Christ. She is worthy to be where he is, so precious a treasure is more worthy to be kept in heaven than in earth. The third reason is perfect entireness of her virginal flesh, and saith thus: Enjoy thou Mary of honourable gladness in body and in soul. In thy proper son, and by thy proper son, thou oughtest to have no harm of corruption; where thou haddest no corruption of virginity in childing so great a son, so thou whom he endued with so great glory shouldst be alway without corruption, and live entirely, which barest entire him that is perfect of all, and that she be with him whom she bare in her womb, and that she be at him whom she childed, gave suck and nourished. Mary, mother of Jesu Christ, administress and servant. And because I may none other thing feel, I dare none otherwise say ne presume. And hereof saith a noble versifier: Transit ad æthera, virgo puerpera, virgula Jesse, Non sine corpore, sed sine tempore, tendit adesse. The virgin that childed mounted into heaven, the little rod of Jesse, not without body, but without time, she entendeth to be there, virgin pure and net. Secondly, she was assumpt and taken up gladly. And hereof saith Gerard, bishop and martyr, in his homily: The heavens received this day the Blessed Virgin, the angels were glad, the archangels enjoyed, the thrones sang, the dominanations made melody, the principalities harmonised, the potestates harped, cherubim and seraphim sang laudings and praisings, and bringing her with thankings and lauds unto the siege of the divine and sovereign majesty. Thirdly, she was lifted up in heaven so honourably that, Jesu Christ himself, with all the strength of the heavenly company, came against her. Of whom S. Jerome saith: Who is he that is sufficient to think how the glorious queen of the world went up this day, and how the multitude of the celestial legions came against her with great talent of devotion, and with what songs she was brought unto her seat, and how she was received of her son and embraced with peaceable cheer and clear face, and how she was enhanced above all other creatures? And yet he saith: It is on this day that the chivalry of heaven came hastily for to meet with the mother of God, and environed her with great light, and brought her to her seat with praisings and songs spiritual. And then enjoyed them the celestial company of Jerusalem with so great gladness that no man may recount ne tell, and made joy and song, all enjoying in charity because that this feast is every year hallowed of us, and made continuous with all others. And it is to believe that the Saviour himself came and met with her hastily, and brought her with him, and set her in her seat with great joy. And how had he accomplished otherwise that which he commanded in the law, saying: Honour thy father and mother. Fourthly, she was received excellently. S. Jerome saith: This is the day in which the Virgin Mary, not corrupt, went unto the highness of the throne, and she was there enhanced in the heavenly kingdom and honoured gloriously, sitting next unto Christ. And how she is enhanced in the heavenly glory, Gerard the bishop rehearseth in his homilies, saying: Our Lord Jesu Christ alone may praise this blessed Virgin his mother as he did, and magnify, so that she be continually praised of that majesty, and honoured and environed of the company of angels, enclosed with the turmes of archangels, possessed of the thrones and girt about of the dominations, environed with the service of the potestates, beclipped with the embracements of the principates, enjoyed with the honours of the virtues, obeyed with lauds and praisings of the cherubins, and possessed on all parts with not recountable songs of the seraphins. And the over great and ineffable Trinity enjoyeth in her perdurable gladness, and his grace redoundeth all in her and maketh all other to entend and await on her. The overshining order of the apostles honour her with ineffable laud. The honourable multitude of martyrs beseech her in all manner as one so great a lady. The fellowship of confessors innumerable continue their song to her, the right noble and white company of virgins make noble carolling of the glory of her. Hell, full of malice, howleth, and the cursed devils cry unto her and dread her.

There was a clerk, devout unto the virgin Mary, which studied every day how he might comfort her against the pain of the five wounds of Jesu Christ, saying thus: Rejoice thee virgin and mother undefouled, which receives the joy of the angels, enjoy that thou conceivedst, enjoy thee that childedst the light of clearness, enjoy thee mother which never wert touched, all features and all creatures praise thee mother of light, be thou for us always praying to our Lord. And as this clerk had lain long with an over great sickness, and came toward his end, he began to dread, and was troubled, and our blessed Lady appeared to him and said: Son, wherefore tremblest thou by so great fear, which hast so oft showed to me joy? Be thou joyful now thyself, and that thou mayest enjoy perdurably, come with me.

There was a monk much jolly and light of his living but devout to our Lady, which on a night went to do his folly accustomed, but when he passed before the altar of our Lady, he saluted the virgin, and so went forth out of the church. And as he should pass a river he fell into the water and drowned, and the devils took the soul. Then came angels for to deliver it, and the devils said to them: Wherefore come ye hither? Ye have nothing in this soul. And anon the Blessed Virgin came, and blamed them because they had taken the soul which was hers. And they said that they had found him finishing his life in evil works. And she said: It is false that ye say, I know well that when he went into any place he saluted me first, and when he returned and came again also; and if ye say that I do you wrong, let us put it again in judgment of the sovereign king. And when they strove tofore our Lord of this matter, it pleased him that the soul should return again to the body and repent him of his sins and trespasses. And then the brethren saw that the matins were over long deferred, and sought the sexton, and went to the river and found him there drowned. And when they had drawn the body out of the water what they should do they wist not, and marvelled what he had done; and suddenly he came again to life, and told what he had done, and after finished his life in good works.

There was a knight which was mighty and rich, that dispended follily his goods, and came to so great a poverty that he which had been accustomed to give largely great things, had need to demand and ask the small. And he had a right chaste wife, and much devout to the blessed Virgin Mary. And a great solemnity approached, at which the knight was accustomed to give many gifts. And he had nothing to give, whereof he was greatly ashamed. And he went into place desert, full of heaviness, and of weeping, so long that the feast was passed, for to wail there his evil fortune and for to eschew shame. And anon a knight, much horrible, came, sitting on an horse, which arreasoned the knight and enquired of him the cause of his great heaviness. And he told him all by order that as was happed to him. And this foul knight said to him: If thou wilt a little obey to me, thou shalt abound in glory and in riches more than thou wert tofore. And he promised to the devil that he would do so gladly if he accomplished that he promised. And then he said to him: Go home into thine house, and thou shalt find in such a place there, so much gold and so much silver. And thou shalt find there also precious stones, and do so much that such a day thou bring me hither thy wife. And the knight returned home into his house, and found all things like as the devil had promised. And anon he bought a palace and gave great gifts, and bought again his heritage, and took his men again to him. And the day approached which he had promised to lead his wife to the fiend, and called her, saying: Let us go to horseback, for ye must come with me unto a place far hence. And she trembled and was afeard, and durst not gainsay the commandment of her husband. And she commended herself devoutly to the Blessed Virgin, and began to ride after her husband. And when they had ridden a good while they saw in the way a church, and she descended from the horse and entered into the church. Her husband abode without. And as she commended herself devoutly to the Blessed Virgin Mary in great devotion and contemplation, she suddenly slept, and the glorious virgin did on semblable habit of this lady and departed from the altar and issued out and mounted upon the horse. And the lady abode sleeping in the church, and the knight weened that she had been his wife that was with him, and went always forth. And when he was come to the place assigned, the devil came with a great rese to the place, and when he approached and came near, he quaked and trembled anon and durst go no nearer. Then said he to the knight: Thou most traitor of all men, wherefore hast thou deceived me, and hast rendered to me harm for such great good as I have given to thee? I said to thee that thou shouldst bring thy wife to me, and thou hast brought the mother of God. I would have thy wife, and thou hast brought to me Mary. For thy wife hath done to me many injuries, wherefore I would take on her vengeance. And thou hast brought to me this for to torment me, and for to send me to hell. And when the knight heard this he was sore abashed, and might not hold him from weeping, ne durst not speak for dread and marvel. And then the Blessed Mary said: Thou felon spirit, by what folly dost thou will to grieve and annoy my devout servant? This shall not be left in thee unpunished. I bind thee in this sentence, that thou descend into hell, and that thou henceforth have no presumption to grieve none that call upon me. And then he went away with great howling. And the man sprang down from his horse and kneeled down on his knees to her feet. And the Virgin our Lady blamed him, and commanded him to return again to his wife, which yet slept in the church, and bade him that he should cast away all the riches of the devil. And when he came again he found his wife yet sleeping, and awoke her, and told to her all that was befallen. And when they were come home they threw away all the riches of the devil, and dwelled alway in the louings of our Lady, and received afterward many riches that our Lady gave to them.

There was a man which was ravished in judgment tofore God, for he had much sinned, and the devil was there and said: Ye have nothing on this soul, but it ought to be mine, for I have thereof an instrument public. To whom our Lord said: Where is thine instrument? I have, he said, an instrument that thou saidest with thy proper mouth and hast ordained it for to endure perpetually. For thou saidest in what hour that ye eat of it ye shall die, and this is of the lineage of them that took of the meat forbidden. And by right of this instrument public he ought to be judged to me. And then our Lord said: Let the man speak, but the man spake not. And the devil said yet again: The soul is mine, for if he hath done any good deeds, the wicked deeds pass the good without comparison. And then our Lord would not anon give sentence against him, so that he gave him term of eight days, so that at the end of eight days he should appear again tofore him, and give account of all these things. And as he went from the visage of our Lord, sorrowing and trembling, he met with a man which asked the cause of his heaviness. And he told to him all by order, and he said to him: Doubt thee nothing, ne be not afeard, for I shall help thee manly from the first. And he demanded of him his name, and he said: Verity. And after he found another which pronounced to help him for the second. And when he had asked his name, he said his name was Righteousness. At the eighth day he came to the doom tofore the judge, and the devil opposed to him the first case, and Truth answered and said: We know well that there is double death, corporal and infernal, and this instrument that the devil allegeth against thee speaketh no word of the death of hell, but of the death of the body, and of that it is clear that all men be enclosed in that sentence, that is to wit that he dieth in his body, and that is not the death of hell. And as touching the death of the body, the sentence endureth always, but as to the death of the soul, it is repealed by the death of Jesu Christ. Then the devil saw that he was discharged of the first. Then he opposed and alleged the second, but Righteousness came and answered thus: Howbeit that he hath been thy servant many years, nevertheless reason gainsayeth it. For reason murmured always because he served so cruel a lord. But at the third objection, he had none help, and our Lord said: Bring forth the balance, and let all the good and evil be weighed; and then Truth and Righteousness said to the sinner, Run with all thy thought unto the Lady of mercy which sitteth by the judge, and study to call her to thine help. And when he had so done, the Blessed Virgin Mary came in to his help and laid her hand upon the balance whereas were but few good deeds. And the devil enforced him to draw on that other side, but the mother of mercy won and obtained and delivered the sinner. And then he came again to himself and amended his life.

It happed in the city of Bourges, about the year of our Lord five hundred and twenty-seven, that when the christian men were communed and houseled on an Easter day, a child of a Jew went to the altar with the other children, and received our Lord's body with the others. And when he came home, his father demanded him whence he came, and he answered that he came from school, and that he had been houseled with them at mass. And then the father full of woodness took the child and threw him into a burning furnace that was there. And anon the mother of God came in the form of an image, which the child had seen standing on the altar, and kept him from the fire without taking any harm. And the mother of the child, with her great crying, made to assemble many christian men and Jews, the which saw the child in the furnace without any harm or hurt, and drew him out, and demanded him how he escaped, and he answered and said: That reverend lady which stood upon the altar came and helped me, and put away all the fire from me. Then the christian men, understanding this to be the image of our Lady, took the father of the child and threw him into the furnace, which incontinent was burnt and consumed. There were certain monks tofore day standing by a river, and talked and jangled there of fables and idle words. And they heard a great rowing and oars beating the water coming hastily. And the monks asked, Who be ye? And they said: We be devils that bear to hell the soul of Ebronien, provost of the house of the king of France, which was apostate in the monastery of S. Gall. And when the monks heard that they doubted strongly, and cried high: S. Mary, pray for us! And the devils said: Well have ye called Mary, for we would have disjoined you and have drowned you because of your dissolute and out of time jangling. And then the monks returned to their convent, and the devils went in to hell. There was a woman that suffered many griefs and injuries of a devil which appeared visibly to her in the form of a man, and she sought many remedies, now holy water, now one thing, now another, but he ceased not. And then a holy man counselled her that, when he came to her that she should lift up her hands to heaven and cry: S. Mary, help me! And when she had so done, the devil fled all afraid as he had been smitten with a stone, and after stood and said: The cursed devil enter into his mouth that taught thee that, and anon vanished away and never came again.

Here followeth yet of the Assumption of our Blessed Lady.

The manner of the assumption of the right holy Virgin Mary, is showed in a sermon made and ordained of divers sayings of saints, the which is read solemnly in many churches, and therein is contained all that I can find in the world, in narrations of holy fathers, of the departing out of this life of the glorious virgin Mary, mother of God, that I have set here to the louing and praising of her. S. Cosmo, which had to surname Vestitor, saith he hath learned of his foregoers which did that ought not to be forgotten, and saith that Jesu Christ ordained and disposed the life of his mother to be finished. He sent an angel accustomed, which showed to her tofore the demonstrance of her departing, that the death should not come suddenly and give to her tribulation. And she had prayed him, her son, face to face, when he was here in earth, that she should not see any wicked spirit. He sent then to her the angel tofore with these words: It is time to take my mother with me, and thus as thou hast replenished the earth with joy, so make heaven to enjoy. Thou shalt render the mansions of my father joyous. And thou shalt comfort the spirits of my saints. Be not thou wroth to leave the world corruptible with his covetises, but take the celestial palace. Mother, be not afeard to be taken from thy flesh, thou that art called to the life perdurable, to joy without failing, to the rest of peace, to sure conversation, to refection not recordable, to light not quenchable, to day not evening, to glory not recountable, to myself, thy son, maker of all things, for I am life perdurable, love not corruptible, habitation not recordable, light without darkness, bounty not estimable. Give to the earth without trembling that which is his. None shall ravish thee out of mine hands, for in my hands be all the ends of the world; deliver to me thy body, for I have put in thee my deity or godhead. The death shall never have joy on thee, for thou hast borne the very light; breaking ne destruction shall not environ thee, for thou hast deserved to be my vessel. Come thou anon to him which is born of thee for to receive the guerdons of the womb of the mother, and the reward of thy milk for my meat. Come now fast, and haste thee to join thee to me, thine only son. I know well thou shalt not be constrained for the love of another son rather than of me that showeth thee virgin and mother. I show thee a wall of steadfast faith, thou art an arch of salvation, a bridge to them that fleet, a staff to the feeble, a ladder to them that go up and mount to heaven, the most debonair advocate for sinners. I shall bring the apostles to thee, of whom thou shalt be buried right of their hands, for it appertaineth to my spiritual children of light, to whom I have given the Holy Ghost to bury thy body, and that they accomplish in thy person the service of thy marvellous departing out of the earth. And after that the angel had recounted these things, he gave to our Lady a bough of palm, sent from the plant of paradise, in token of the victory against the corruption of death and clothes of immortality, and when he had said, he styed up into heaven from whence he came from. Then the Blessed Virgin Mary assembled her neighbours and said to them: I let you wit certainly that I am at the end of my temporal life, and shall hastily depart; wherefore it behoveth that ye wake, for to every each that shall pass out of this world, come gladly good angels and wicked spirits. And when they heard this they began to weep and say: Thou doubtest the sight of the spirits, which hast deserved to be mother of the maker of all things, and barest him that robbed hell, which hast deserved to have the seat above Cherubin and Seraphin, how shall we do then? And whither shall we flee? And there were a great multitude of women weeping, and said that she should not leave them orphans. And the Blessed Virgin, our Lady, said in comforting them: Ye that be mothers of sons corruptible, may not well suffer to be a little while thence from your children, how then ought not I to desire to go to my son, which am mother and virgin, and he is only son of God the Father. And if ye or any of ye had but one son, ye would desire to see him and be comforted in the lineage of him, and I then, that am not corrupt, wherefore should not I be desirous to see him which is life of all creatures? And whilst they spake these things, the blessed S. John, the Evangelist, came and inquired how the matter went, and then when our Lady had told to him of her hasty departing, he fell down stretched to the earth, and said, with weeping tears: O Lord, what be we? Wherefore sendest thou to us so many tribulations? Why hast thou not erst taken away the soul from my body, and that I had been better visited of thy blessed mother, than I should come to her departing? And then the Blessed Virgin led him weeping into her chamber, and showed to him the palm and the vestments which the angel had brought, and after, laid her down in her bed for to be there till her passing. And anon after came a great noise of thunder, and a whirlwind brought a cloud whiter than snow, in which the apostles were brought tofore the gate of our Blessed Lady, like as it had rained, so fell they down one after another. And as they marvelled of this thing, John came to them and told to them what the angel had showed to our Lady. And then they all wept and S. John comforted them, and then they dried their eyes and entered in to the Blessed Virgin, and saluted her honourably and adored, and she said to them: My dear children, God, my son, keep you all. And when they had told to her of their coming, she said to them all their estate, and the apostles said: Right honourable Lady and Virgin, we, in beholding thee, be greatly comforted, like as we should be in our Lord and master, and we have only comfort in ourselves because we hope that thou shalt be mediatrix for us unto God. And then she saluted Paul by name: God save thee, expositor of my comfort, howbeit that thou hast not seen Jesu Christ in his flesh. Nevertheless I am comforted, said S. Paul, that I may see thee in the flesh. And unto this day I have preached to the people that thou hast borne Jesu Christ. And now I shall preach that thou art borne up to heaven to him. And after, the Virgin showed to him that which the angel had brought, and warned them that the lights should not be put out till that she were departed, and there were two hundred and twenty tapers.

And then she clad her with the cloth of mortality and saluted them all, and ordained her body to abide in her bed unto her issue and departing. And Peter stood at the head, and John at the feet, and the other apostles were about the bed, and gave laud to the virgin mother of God. And then Peter began the song and said: Enjoy thou spouse of God in the chambers celestial, thou candlestick of light without darkness, by thee is showed the everlasting light and clearness. The blessed archbishop of Constantinople witnesseth that all the apostles were assembled at the passing of the blessed Virgin Mary, the right sweet mother of God, saying thus: Blessed Lady, mother of God, thou that hast received of the nature human the death which may not be eschewed, yet shalt thou not sleep, ne the eye shall not slumber that keepeth thee. Thy departing hence ne thy dormition shall not be without witness. The heavens recount the glory of them that sang over thee in earth, and of them shall the truth be showed. The clouds cry to thee honour, and to him that ministereth to thee. The angels shall preach the service of life done in thee by the apostles which were assembled with thee in Jerusalem. And S. Denis, Areopagite, witnesseth the same, saying: We, as I know well, and they and many of our brethren, were assembled for to see the body of her that bare God. And James, the brother of God, and Peter, the right noble and sovereign of theologians, were present. And after, it pleased them that, after this vision, all the sovereign priests sang louings after that each of them had conceived in his thought of the bounty of her. And S. Cosmo, in following the narration, saith: And after this a great thunder knocked at the house with so great an odour of sweetness, that with the sweet spirit the house was replenished, in such wise that all they that were there save the apostles, and three virgins which held the lights, slept. Then our Lord came with a great multitude of angels and took the soul of his mother, and the soul of her shone by so great light that none of the apostles might behold it. And our Lord said to S. Peter: Bury the corpse of my mother with great reverence, and keep it there three days diligently, and I shall then come again, and transport her unto heaven without corruption, and shall clothe her of the semblable clearness of myself; that which I have taken of her, and that which she hath taken of me, shall be assembled together and accord. That same S. Cosmo rehearseth a dreadful and marvellous mystery of dissension natural and of curious inquisition. For all things that be said of the glorious virgin, mother of God, be marvellous above nature and be more to doubt than to enquire. For when the soul was issued out of the body, the body said these words: Sire, I thank thee that I am worthy of thy grace; remember thee of me, for I ne am but a thing faint, and have kept that which thou deliveredst me. And then the other awoke and saw the body of the virgin without soul, and then began strongly to weep and were heavy and sorrowful. And then the apostles took up the body of the Blessed Virgin and bare it to the monument, and .S. Peter began the psalm: In exitu Israel de Egypto, and then the companies of angels gave louings and praisings to the virgin in such wise that all Jerusalem was moved for that great joy, so that the sovereign priests sent great multitude of people with glaives and staves, and one of them, in a great fury, came to the bier and would have thrown it down with the body of the blessed mother of God. And because that he enforced him so maliciously to touch and draw down the corpse, he lost his hands by his deserving, for both his hands were cut off by the wrists and hung on the bier, and he was tormented by horrible sorrow, and he required pardon and promised amends. And S. Peter said to him: Thou mayst in no wise have pardon if thou kiss not the bier of the Blessed Virgin, and that thou confess also Jesu Christ the Son of God to be formed in her. And then, when he had so done his hands were joined again to his wrists, and was all whole. Then S. Peter took a leaf of the palm and gave it to him and said: Go in to the city and lay it on them that be sick, and they that will believe shall receive health. And then when the apostles came to the Vale of Jehosaphat, they found a sepulchre like unto the sepulchre of our Lord, and laid therein the body with great reverence, but they durst not touch it, which was the right holy vessel of God, but the sudary in which she was wrapped, and laid it in the sepulchre. And as the apostles were about the sepulchre after the commandment of our Lord, at the third day, a cloud much bright environed the sepulchre, and the voice of angels was heard sound sweetly and a marvellous odour was felt sweet smelling. And when our Lord was come and seen descended there. all were marvellously abashed, and he bare the body with him of the Blessed Virgin with much great glory. And then the apostles kissed the sepulchre and returned into the house of S. John Evangelist in praising him as keeper and guard of so noble a virgin. And notwithstanding, one of the apostles failed at this great solemnity, and when he heard so great miracles, he marvelled and required with great desire that her sepulchre might be opened for to know the truth of all these things. And the apostles denied it to him. All said that it ought enough to suffice the witness of so great persons, to the end that lest peradventure the misbelieved men should say that the body were stolen away or drawn by theft. And he then, which was angry, said: Why defend ye to me that which am semblable to you in your common treasures? And at the last they opened the sepulchre and found not the body, but they found only but the vestments, and the sudary. S. Germain, Archbishop of Constantinople, saith that he found written in the History Euthimiata in the third book of the fortieth chapter, and the same witnesseth the great Damascene, that as the noble empress Helen in mind of holy church had made many churches in Constantinople, among all other she edified in the time of Marcian the emperor at Balthernas a marvellous church in the honour of the Virgin Mary, and called Juvenal archbishop of Jerusalem and all the other bishops of Palestine which dwelled then in the city royal for the cene which had been holden in Chalcedon, and she said to them: We have heard say that the body of the right holy virgin our Lady is in such a place, in such a tomb in the Vale of Jehosaphat; we will then that for the guard of this city, that the body of that Blessed Virgin be transported hither with due honour and reverence. And Juvenal answered to her, like as he had found in ancient histories, that the body was borne into glory, and was not in the monument, for there was nothing left but the vestments and the sudary only. And those vestments Juvenal sent then into Constantinople, and were there laid honourably. And let no man ween that I have made this of my proper head and engine, but I have set it here which I have by doctrine and study learned of the lesson of them, which by tradition and learning of their foregoers have received it. And hitherto endure the words of the said sermon.

Yet of the Assumption of our Blessed Lady.

Verily John Damascene, which for the time was a Greek, saith many marvellous things of the assumption of the right holy and glorious Virgin Mary. For he saith in his sermons that, this day the right holy and sumptuous ark which bare within her her maker was brought and set in the temple which was not made of hands. On this day the right holy culver or dove, innocent and simple, fled from the ark, that is to say from the body in which God received and found rest. On this day the virgin that conceived, not knowing the passions earthly, but induced by the entendements celestial shall not fail, but shall be called very heaven, soul dwelling in the celestial tabernacles. And howbeit that the right holy soul be separate from her blessed body, and that her body was laid in sepulchre, nevertheless it is not dead, ne shall not be corrupt by rotting, that is to wit, the body of whom, childing, the virginity remained without any hurting or dissolution, and is transported to better and more holy life without corruption of death for to remain in the tabernacles perdurable. And like as the sun shining clear other while, is hid and appeareth failing a short time, yet she hath nothing lost of her light, but in herself is the fountain of light perdurable. And thou art the fountain of light without wasting, the treasure of life, howbeit that by short interval or space of time thou shalt be brought to corporal death, nevertheless thou givest to us, abundantly, clearness of light without default, and thy holy dormition or sleeping is not called death, but a passing or departing, or more properly a coming, for thou departing from the body camest to heaven, and Jesu Christ, angels and archangels, and all the heavenly company came to meet thee. The foul and damned spirits doubt much thy noble and excellent coming, and thou, blessed and glorious virgin thou wentest not to heaven as did Elijah, and thou mountedst not as Paul did unto the third heaven only, but thou camest and touchedst the siege royal of thy son. The death of other saints may well be said death, for that death maketh them blessed, but he hath no place in thee. For thy death ne thy transmigration or thy perfection, or thy departing, maketh thee not ne giveth thee surety to be blessed, for thou art beginning, middle and end of all weals and goods, which exceed thought human. Thy surety, thy very perfection, and thy conception without seed, and thy divine habitation have made thee blessed; whereof thou saidest thyself that, thou art not made blessed by thy death, but of thy conception in all generations. And death hath not made thee blessed, but thou hast ennoblished the death in taking away the heaviness and sorrow thereof, converting it into joy. For God said: Lest peradventure the first form of man, that is to wit Adam, put forth his hand, and take of the tree of life, and live perdurably, how then shall not she live in heaven perdurably that bare this life which is perdurable and without end? Sometime God putteth out of Paradise the first parents which slept in the death of sin, buried from the beginning of inobedience and gluttony, and now she that hath borne life to all human lineage, and was obedient to God the Father, and put away from her all ordure of sin, how shall not she be in heaven? Wherefore should not she enjoy the gates of heaven? Eve stretched her ear to the serpent, of whom she took the venom mortal, and because she did it for delight, she was subdued to bearing and bringing forth children in sorrow and pain, and was condemned with Adam. But this Blessed Virgin that inclined her ear to the word of God, whom the Holy Ghost replenished, which bare in her womb the mercy of the Father; which conceived without knowledge of man, and childed without pain and sorrow, how durst death swallow her? How might anything have corruption that bare life? And yet saith the said Damascene in his sermons: Verily the apostles were departed through the world in all countries and entended to preaching to men, and to draw them out of the deep darkness by one holy word, and brought them to the table celestial and to the solemn espousals of God. And then the divine commandment, which is a net or cloud, brought them from all the parts of the world into Jerusalem, in assembling them between his wings. And then Adam and Eve our first parents cried: Come to us, right holy and wholesome celyer, which fulfillest our desire. And the company of saints which was there, said again: Remain with us our comfort and leave us not orphelins, thou art the comfort of our travails, refreshing of our sweatings, that if thou live it is to us a glorious thing to live with thee, and if thou die, it is glorious to us to die with thee. How should we be in this life, and shall be destitute of the presence of thy life. And, as I suppose, such things and semblable said the apostles with great plenty of them of the church, with great wailings and sighs in complaining them from the departing. And she, returning towards her son, said: Sire, I pray thee to be very comforter to my sons whom it pleased thee to call brethren, which be heavy and sorrowful of my departing. And with that I shall bless them with my hand, give to them thy blessing upon my blessing. And then she stretched out her hand, and blessed all the college of good christian men, and then said after: Lord, I commend my spirit into thy hands, receive my soul, thy love, which thou hast kept without blame of sin to thyself. And I commend my body to the earth for to keep it whole, or where it shall please thee to enhabit it, transport me to thee, so where thou art the infantment or fruit of my womb that I be dwelling with thee. All these words heard the apostles. Then said our Lord: Arise up, my beloved, and come to me. O thou most fair among women, my love, thou art fair, and no spot of filth is in thee. And when the right Blessed Virgin heard that, she commended her spirit into the hands of her son. Then the apostles were bedewed with tears, and kissed the tabernacle. And by the blessing and holiness of the holy body, whosoever touched the bier devoutly were healed of whatsoever sickness they had. Devils were chased from demoniacs, the air and the heaven were purified by the assumption of the soul, and the earth by the deposition of the body. And the water was sanctified by the washing of the body. For the body was washed with right holy water and clean. And the holy body was not made clean by the water, but the water was hallowed of her. And after, the holy body was wounden and wrapped in a clean sudary, and was laid upon the bed, and lamps burnt full bright about her. Ointments gave a great and fragrant odour, the louings and praisings of angels resounded. And the apostles and other that were there sang divine songs. And the ark of our Lord was borne in to Mount of Sion, unto the Vale of Jehosaphat, upon the heads of the apostles. And the angels went tofore some, and some followed the body, and other conveyed her. And she was accompanied of all the plenty of the church. And some of the Jews who heard it, in their evil malice descended down from the Mount of Sion, and one of them, which was a member of the devil, ran follily unto the holy body, and assailed it for to have cast it to the earth, drawing it with both his hands, and both his hands cleaved to the bier, and were departed from the body, like as two staves had been sawed off, and so he was like a trunk till that faith changed his thought. And he wailing so ruefully repented him, and they that bare the bier tarried, and made that Jew worship and touch the holy body, and then came his hands again into their first estate, and then was the body borne unto the Vale of Jehosaphat, and there it was embraced and kissed, and songs sung of holy louings and praisings, and there were wept many tears, and then the holy body was laid in the tomb honourably, but her soul was not left in hell, nor her flesh felt never corruption. And they that she was the well which never was digged, the field not eared, the vine not cut, the olive bearing fruit which shall not be holden in the bosom of the earth. For it appertaineth that the mother be enhanced with the son. And that she mount to him, like as he descended in to her. And that she that hath kept her virginity in her childing ought to see no corruption. And she that bare the creator of all the world in her belly ought to dwell in divine tabernacles. And that she whom the Father had taken to espouse, were kept in the chambers celestial. And those things that long to the son, ought to be possessed of the mother. And all this saith John Damascene.

Yet of the Assumption of our Lady, after S. Austin.

S. Austin showeth authentically in a sermon of the right holy Assumption of our Blessed Lady, saying: We that have begun to speak of the body of the virgin perdurable, and of the Assumption of her blessed soul, we say thus: first, that we find nothing of her written sith that our Lord hanging on the cross commended her to his disciple, save that Luke recordeth in his writings, saying that all they were by one courage persevering with the Virgin Mary, mother of our Lord Jesu Christ. What is then to say of her death, and of her Assumption? Whereof the scripture remembereth nothing, it is then as meseemeth to be enquired, what thing which is according to truth, without which authority is nothing. We remember the condition human: we doubt not to say that surely she went to temporal death. And if we say that she is resolved into common putrefaction in worms and into ashes or dust; it behoveth us to weigh and think such thing as appertaineth to so great holiness, and to the seignory of such a chamber of God. We know well that it was said to the first father: Thou art powder, and into powder thou shalt return; but the flesh of Jesu Christ escaped from this condition, for his flesh suffered never corruption. Then is except from this general sentence the nature taken of the virgin. And God said to the woman Eve: I shall multiply thy diseases and thou shalt bring forth children with pain and sorrow. But Mary suffered never such diseases, of whom the sword of sorrow pierced the soul. But Mary childed without sorrow. And then if she were quit, and had no part of sorrow in childing, then ought she not to have part of diseases, ne of corruption. But she is except of some other generalities, because that the dignity gave to her such seignory. And though we say that she suffered death, yet is she not retained with the bonds of death. If our Lord would keep his mother entire and whole, and the chastity of her virginity, wherefore may he not keep without corruption, of stench, of rottenness? It appertaineth then to the debonairty of our Lord, to keep the honour of his mother which was not come to break the law, but to accomplish it, and in his life had worshipped her tofore all others by the grace of her conceiving. And therefore we ought well to believe that he honoureth her at her death with singular salvation, and of special grace. And rottenness and worms be but reproach of human condition. And when Jesu Christ is out of that reproach, the nature of Mary is excepted, the which is the nature that he took of her. For the flesh of Jesu Christ is the flesh of Mary, the which he bare above the stars in worshipping man above nature, and in worshipping more his mother. Yet if he be son of the very mother, then it is a convenable thing that she be mother of the same son. Not as to the unity of the person, but to the unity of bodily nature. If grace without property of especial and temporal nature may make unity, how much more then may the grace of corporal and especial nativity make unity of grace? Like as the disciples in Jesu Christ of whom he saith himself that, they be one, as we be. And after he saith: Father, I will that where I am they be with me. And then if he will have with him them that be joined so with him in the faith, and that they be judges with him, what shall then be judged of his mother? Where is she worthy to be but in the presence of her son? Therefore I understand and believe that the soul of Mary be honoured of her son by a right excellent prerogative, possessing her body glorified in Jesu Christ, whom she conceived. And why should not she possess her body glorified by which she conceived? For so great a hallowing is more worthy to be in heaven than in earth. The seat of God, the chamber of our Lord, and the worthy tabernacle of Jesu Christ, ought and appertaineth better to be there as he is, than elsewhere, and so right precious treasure is more worthy to be in heaven than in earth. And by right, no resolution of rottenness may not follow so great entireness of thing not corruptible. And because I feel not that the right holy body be not delivered into meat of worms, I doubt to say it. And because that the gift of grace incomparable surmounteth greatly this estimation that I feel that, the consideration of many scriptures admonish me to say truth. God saith sometime to his ministers: Whereas I am there shall be my minister. If this sentence be general to all them that have ministered Jesu Christ by faith and by work, how is there any more special than Mary? For without doubt she was administress in all work. For she bare him in her belly, she childed him, she nourished him and laid him in the crib, she went with him into Egypt, and kept him all her life unto the death of the cross, and departed not from him, but followed him. His divinity might not be to her incredible, for she knew well that she had not conceived of the seed of man but by divine inspiration. Then she having faith in the puissance of her son, as of the virtue of God not changeable, said, when the wine failed: Son, they have no wine. She wist that he might do all things. And he accomplished anon that miracle. And then seest thou that Mary was administress of Jesu Christ by faith and work. Then if she be not whereas Jesu Christ will that his ministers be, where shall she be then? And if she be there, is it not by grace pareil and like? And if it be not equal, where is the equal measure of God that rendereth to every each after his desert? If by the desert of Mary is given to living men much grace, shall then the grace be lessed to her being dead? Nay, nay, for if the death of all saints be precious, certes, I judge the death of Mary to be right precious, which is received to the joys perdurable by the debonairty of her son Jesu Christ, more honourably than the others, whom he had honoured by grace tofore his other saints. And I say that she ought not to be put, ne is not set to the common humanity after the death, that is to wit of worms, of rottenness, and of powder, she that bare in her belly the Saviour of all men. If the divine volunty vouchsafed to keep the vestments of the children from hurting among the flames of fire, why should not he then keep in his mother that which he kept in a strange vesture? It pleased him to keep Jonas in the belly of the whale without corruption. Should not he then keep his mother not corrupt? He kept Daniel alive in the pit of lions from their distempered hunger. Ought he not to keep Mary for so many gifts of merits and dignities? And we know well that all these dignities that we have said have not kept nature, for we doubt not but grace hath kept more the entireness of Mary than nature. And then our Lord maketh Mary to enjoy in her proper son, both in soul and in body, as she that never had tatche ne spot of corruption in bringing forth so great a son. For she is always without corruption that was full of so much grace. She is living entirely, she that childed the life of all. And then, if I have said as I ought to say, Jesu Christ approve it, thou and thine; and if I have not said as I ought to say, I pray thee to pardon me, thou and thine.


addressed, v. n,, stood erect.

adjousted, v., Fr. ajouter, added.

allegeance, n., alleviation.

ampul, n., a vessel for holy oil.

araign, n., a cobweb, vitriol may be meant.

aspre, adj., rude or uncouth.

attisement, n., instigation.

avale, v., run down.

axes, n, agues.

celyer, n., refuge or hiding place.

cene, n., council.

chauffed, v., Fr. chauffer, warmed or comforted.

conjured, v., Fr. conjurer, exorcised.

dalve, v., buried.

defended, pp., forbidden.

detrenched, p. a., O. Fr. destrancher, hewed in pieces. did do make=caused to be made.

disperpled, pp., scattered. droiture, n. (Fr.), integrity.

eculee, n., the rack.

empeshed, v., Fr. empeche, hindered.

engine, n., imagination.

enseigned, v., Fr. enseigner, instructed.

entailed, pp., Fr. entailler, engraved.

esbatements, n. (Fr.), pageants.

esprised, pp., Fr. epris, smitten.

facound, adj., eloquent.

froten, pp, Fr. frotter, rubbed.

governor, n., helm or rudder.

gree, n., favour.

jument, n., a mare.

Iapacium, n., sorrel.

Iargo, n., treasure.

aurier, n., laurel.

Iepe, n., a basket.

letted, v., attacked injured.

louings, n., pres. part., thanksgivings.

more, adj., bigger. mow, v., to be able.

occision, n., slaughter. orphelins, n. (Fr.), orphans.

pelletre, n,, pyrethrum officinarum, or pellitory of Spain.

porret, n., a leek.

prelation, n., preference.

prest, adj., prepared.

radour, adj., violence.

recluage, n., hermitage.

releved, v., Fr., relever, set upright.

rese, n., disturbance.

sacred, v., consecrated.

smaragdos, n., emeralds or jewels.

soler, n., an upper chamber.

sourde, v., spring up.

styed, v., ascended.

sndary, n., a napkin.

sumpters, n., pack-horses or mules.

tatche, Fr. tache, stain.

turbes or tourbes, n., crowds.

turmes. n., assemblies.

unheled, n., laid bare.

unnethe, adv., scarcely.

veer, n., spring.

wood, ady., mad.


Printed in Great Britain by T. and A. CONSTABLE LTD. at the University Press, Edinburgh


The Golden Legend or Lives of the Saints. Compiled by Jacobus de Voragine, Archbishop of Genoa, 1275.  First Edition Published 1470. Englished by William Caxton, First Edition 1483, Edited by F.S. Ellis, Temple Classics, 1900 (Reprinted 1922, 1931.)

Scanned by Robert Blackmon. [email protected].

This text is part of the Internet Medieval Source Book. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts related to medieval and Byzantine history.

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