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 The Versified Life of Saint Francis  - 519 

In his days, like the sun in its brilliance, even so did he
Shine in the Lord's temple. To the end a true saying 1 Tm 1:15

55It was, a penetrating sword-like sermon, kindling men's
Hearts like flame, like honey filling the innermost core.
The miracles, which were wrought by Christ to bring Francis
Honor, and with which he wished to highlight his everlasting
Name, are read in clear tone by Octavian for the common

60Benefit. More profuse is the speech by lord Rayner.a
The latter in years mature, the former in nature, and lower
In rank as prelate; plainly the latter was senior as prelate.
The former, though junior in age, came of lineage nobler.
The holy father spoke with heart broken Ps 109:17 [Vulgate, Ps 108:17] and voice serene:

65 "To the praise of the Trinity, of Christ and of Mary,
His Mother, and of Saints Peter and Paul, it is our duty
To canonize on earth the blessed father Francis
Whom Christ already glorified in the realm above."
It was a case of a holy father having the sole right

70To inscribe a holy father in the list of the Saints.
Let us illustrate more clearly his quality and stature
Among apostolic pontiffs.b This man is a fiery-red gem,
A laurel, a vine, or a balsam-tree. The others
Were crystal or myrtle or wild-vine or olive.

75Amongst them then he is like a gem amid crystals,
A laurel in a grove of myrtles, like a true vine
Amid wild vine, a balsam-tree amid olives. Sir 24:20
Right was it that such a great father
Should canonize such a great father: one that had learnt

80What rewards after death
Were owing to his merits in life; one that revered
Him when living, and when buried should honor him still.
And so, that mirror of ancestral magnitude, chief
Of the Minors, though minor on earth, his standing is major Lk 9:48

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Legenda Sancti Francisci Versificata, Fontes Franciscani, p.


Stella dat in medio nebulae, quasi luna diebus
Plena suis, quasi sol splendens, sic iste refulsit
In templo Domini. Completur sermo fidelis,
Sermo quasi gladius penetrans, quasi flamma virorum

55Pectora succendens, quasi mel praecordia replens.
Signaque Francisci, quae fecit ad eius honorem
Christus et aeterna voluit clarescere fama,
In commune bonum legit Octavianus aperte,
Declarat dominus Rainerus apertius: ille

60Annis, hic animis maturus; in ordine fratrum
Posterior, et simpliciter praelatior ille
Exstitit, hic aetate minor sed stemmate maior.
Sanctus corde pater compuncto, voce serena:
" Ad laudem Trinitatis ", ait, " Christique, Mariae

65Matris, sanctorum Petri Paulique beatum
Patrem Franciscum, quem glorificavit in astris
Christus, et in terris auctorizare tenemur ".
Sic in catalogo sanctorum solus habebat
Iure pater sanctus patrem conscribere sanctum.

70Quoque magis liqueat qualis quantusque sit iste
Inter apostolicos: hic est carbunculus, hic est
Laurus, hic est vitis, aut hic balsamus; illi
Sunt vitra, vel myrti, vel labruscae, vel olivae.
Inter eos est ergo quasi carbunculus inter

75Vitra, quasi laurus inter myrtos, quasi vitis
Inter labruscas, quasi balsamus inter olivas.
A tali tanto talem tantumque decebat
Auctorizari patre patrem, qui didicisset
Ex eius meritis in vita quanta referri

80Praemia deberent post mortem, qui veneratus
Esset viventem, venerareturque sepultum.
Sic igitur speculum maiorum, duxque Minorum,
Quo minor in terris, est maior in aethere; qui nil

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 519

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