The Life of Saint Francis by Julian of Speyer - 371 

to grow somewhat tame under the whip, something of which he was ignorant in prosperity. For when he recovered a bit of his strength, but still needed the support of a staff to move about, he found that everything around him, which he used to find beautiful and desirable, was now the source of a certain loathing—and those who were fond of such things seemed foolish.a

But because prosperity after a danger has been wont to deceive the reckless, this man, since he had not yet fully shaken from his neck the yoke Gn 27:40 of perverse servitude, when prosperity smiled again, began to promise himself even greater worldly vanities than before.

Now a certain nobleman of Assisi, eager to increase his reputation and wealth, armed himself to go to Apulia. Francis, now having recovered his former strength of body and no less desirous of riches and glory, wanted to join this nobleman, like one who, light-headed, does not remember the fatherly correction he had received. But in this is wondrous proof of the divine plan, that he who had previously begun to grow gentle through infirmities and had already deserved, having been beaten, to be corrected to the full, now more miraculously began to be called back a second time from his purpose. So it might seem reasonable that he should have been even more enthusiastic.

3Now on a certain night, when he had directed all his attention to completing the trip to Apulia,b he was shown a vision of his house filled with military equipment, although it was usually filled with piles of cloth for sale. Amazed at this unusual scene, he was told that these things were to belong to him and his soldiers.c Waking up, however, although he saw a vision of this kind as approving his intention and interpreted it as a portent of successful accomplishment of his purpose, he nevertheless suddenly, amazingly began to grow lukewarm toward that which he had intended, to the extent that he had to force himself to accomplish it, until in the end, he refused entirely to go to Apulia. Thus, the future leader of a new army, from this change in himself, determined that the above-mentioned vision meant something far different

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Iuliani de Spira Officium Sancti Francisci, Fontes Franciscani, p.


2sicque factum est ut inciperet, etsi non plene, mansuescere sub flagellis, quod antea nesciebat in prosperis. 3Tandem namque tantillo virium resumpto, ut baculi adminiculo sustentatus incederet, totam ei circumiacentem contemplanti provinciam quodam modo taedium generabat quidquid visu pulchrum in desiderio prius habuerat; sed et talium amatores stultissimos reputabat.

4Sed quoniam prosperitas post periculum facile consuevit incautos decipere, coepit vir iste, arridentibus iterum prosperis, adhuc sibi maiora prioribus de saeculi vanitate promittere, qui plene necdum perversae servitutis iugum excusserat de cervice.

5Nam quodam nobili civitatis Assisii vanis laudibus augendisque pecuniis inhiante et ob hoc militaribus ornamentis ad eundum in Apuliam se parante, Franciscus, iam pristino corporis recuperato vigore, non minus divitiarum et gloriae cupidus, eidem nobili sociare se studuit, veluti qui levis animo iam iam paternae correctionis non meminit. 6Sed in hoc satis est divini dispositio miranda consilii, quod is, qui iam pridem mansuescere coeperat per languores meritoque ad plenum corrigi flagellatus debuerat, 7iam nunc secundo coepit inde mirabilius a suo proposito revocari, unde rationabiliter videbatur ad hoc debuisse potius animari.

3 1Nam quadam nocte, cum ad iter Apuliae consummandum tota se deliberatione dedisset, ostensa est ei per visionem domus sua militaribus apparatibus plena, quae venalium esse consueverat pannorum cumulis occupata. 2Stupenti igitur ad eventum rei insolitum responsum est, haec omnia fore sua militumque suorum. 3Evigilans autem, quamvis huiusmodi visionem suo proposito videret applaudere et ad illud exsequendum prosperitatis eam praesagium reputaret, subito tamen et mirabiliter circa haec eadem quae conceperat coepit tepescere, 4ita ut ad haec explenda iam a seipso vim fieri sibimet oporteret; donec tandem, non multo post, ire in Apuliam penitus recusaret. 5Sic novae militiae dux futurus ex hac ipsa sui mutatione perpendit, iam dictam visionem longe aliud quam crediderat importare;

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 371

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