The Minor Legend - 710 

but by the enkindling of his soul, into the manifest likeness of Christ Jesus crucified. The vision, which disappeared after a secret and intimate conversation, inflamed him interiorly with a seraphic ardor and marked his flesh exteriorly with a likeness conformed to the Crucified; it was as if the liquefying power of fire preceded the impression of the seal.

Third Lesson

The marks of nails began to appear immediately in his hands and feet. The heads of these appeared on the inner side of the hands and the upper side of the feet and their points on the opposite sides. The heads of the nails in his hands and feet were round, and their points, which were hammered and bent back, emerged and stuck out from the flesh. The bent part of the nails on the bottom of his feet were so prominent and extended so far out that they did not allow the sole of his feet to touch the ground. In fact, the finger of a hand could be put easily into the curved loop of the points, as I heard from those who saw them with their own eyes. His right side also appeared as though it were pierced with a lance. It was covered with a red wound from which his sacred blood often flowed. His tunic and underwear were soaked with such a quantity of blood that his brother-companions, when they washed these clothes, undoubtedly observed that the servant of the Lord had the impressed likeness of the Crucified in his side as well as in his hands and feet.

Fourth Lesson

The man, filled with God, Gn 41:38 realized that the stigmata which was impressed so splendidly on his flesh, could not be concealed from his intimate companions; nevertheless, he feared making public the Lord's sacrament. He was thrown into an agony of doubt as to whether to tell what he had seen or be silent about it. Forced by the sting of conscience, he finally recounted with great fear the vision in detail to some of the brothers who were closer to him. He added that He who appeared to him told him some things which he would never disclose to any person as long as he lived. After the true love of Christ transformed the lover into his image, 2 Cor 3:18a the forty




Legenda Minor, Fontes Franciscani, p. 1001-1003

sed per incendium mentis totum in Christi Iesu crucifixi expressam similitudinem transformandum. 4Disparens igitur visio, post arcanum ac familiare colloquium, mentem ipsius seraphico interius inflammavit ardore, carnem vero Crucifixo conformi exterius insignivit effigie, 5tamquam si ad ignis liquefactivam virtutem praeambulam sigillativa quaedam esset impressio subsecuta.

Lectio tertia.

3 1Statim namque in manibus eius et pedibus apparere coeperunt signa clavorum, ipsorum capitibus in interiore parte manuum et superiore pedum apparentibus, et eorum acuminibus exsistentibus ex adverso. 2Erantque clavorum capita in manibus et pedibus rotunda et nigra, ipsa vero acumina oblonga, retorta et repercussa, quae de ipsa carne surgentia, carnem reliquam excedebant. 3Siquidem repercussio ipsa clavorum sub pedibus adeo prominens erat et extra protensa, ut non solum plantas solo libere applicari non sineret, verum etiam intra curvationem arcualem ipsorum acuminum facile immitti valeret digitus manus, sicut et ab eis ipse accepi, qui oculis propriis conspexerunt. 4Dextrum quoque latus quasi lancea transfixum rubra cicatrice obductum erat, quod saepe sanguinem sacrum effundens, tunicam et femoralia in tanta copia respergebat, ut postmodum fratres socii ea lavantes pro tempore indubitanter adverterent, quod si cut in manibus et pedibus, sic et in latere famulus Domini expresse haberet impressam similitudinem Crucifixi.

Lectio quarta.

4 1Cernens autem vir Deo plenus, quod stigmata carni tam luculenter impressa socios familiares latere non possent, timens nihilominus publicare Domini sacramentum, in magno positus fuit dubitationis agone, utrum quod viderat diceret, vel taceret. 2Compulsus tandem conscientiae stimulo, quibusdam ex fratribus intimioribus sibi cum multo timore seriem retulit visionis praefatae; 3addens, quod is qui sibi apparuerat aliqua dixerit, quae numquam, dum viveret, alicui hominum aperiret. 4Postquam igitur verus Christi amor in eamdem imaginem transformavit amantem,

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, p. 710