Dialogue on the Threshold

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Saturday, 14 March 2015

His manner of life

Aut lego vel scribo, doceo scrutorve sophian:
obsecro celsithronum nocte dieque meum.
vescor, poto libens, rithmizans invoco musas,
dormisco stertens: oro Deum vigilans.
conscia mens scelerum deflet peccamina vitae:
parcite vos misero, Christe, Maria, viro.

Sedulius Scottus (d. after 874)

The Oxford Book of Medieval Latin Verse, ed. F. J. E. Raby, 
Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1959, p. 130.

Whether reading or writing, whether teaching or prying into philosophy, / I make entreaty to my [Lord's] high throne both night and day. / I eat, I freely drink, I invoke the Muses in verse, / Snoring I doze off: awake in the night I pray to God. / Aware of its wickedness my mind bewails my life's sins: / Christ, Mary, have mercy on a wretched man.

trans. Alistair Ian Blyth

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