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11 November 2012


His life according to Sulpitius Severus and according to the Golden Legend of James of Voragine, as Englished by William Caxton.

His life, told in stained glass at Chartres Cathedral.

Sequence by Adam of St. Victor:

Gaude, Sion, quae diem recolis,
Qua Martinus compar Apostolis,
Mundum vincens, junctus caelicolis
Hic Martinus pauper et modicus,
Servus prudens, fidelis villicus,
Coelo dives, civis angelicus,

Hic Martinus jam catechuminus
Nudum vestit, et nocte protinus
In sequenti, hac veste Dominus
Est indutus.
Hic Martinus spernens militiam,
Inimicis inermis obviam
Ire parat, baptismi gratiam

Hic Martinus, dum offert hostiam,
Intus ardet per Dei gratiam,
Supersedens apparet etiam
Globus ignis.
Hic Martinus, qui coelum reserat,
Mari praeest et terris imperat;
Morbos sanat et monstra superat
Vir insignis.

Hic Martinus nec mori timuit
Nec vivendi laborem respuit,
Sicque Dei se totum tribuit
Hic Martinus qui nulli nocuit,
Hic Martinus qui cunetis profuit,
Hic Martinus qui trinae placuit

Hic Martinus, cujus est obitus
Severino per visum cognitus,
Dum coelestis canit exercitus
Dulce melos.
Hic Martinus, cujus Sulpitius
Vitam seribit, astat Ambrosius
Sepulturae, nil sibi conseius
Intrat coelos.

O Martine, pastor egregie,
O coelestis consors militiae,
Nos a lupi defendas rabie
O Martine, fac nunc quod gesseras,
Deo preces pro nobis offeras;
Esto memor, quam nunquam deseras
Tuae gentis. Amen.

Englished by Digby S. Wrangham:

Sion! rejoice, that celebratest here
The day, when Martin, the Apostles' peer,
The world o'ercome, doth, ranked with angels, wear
A crown of light.
This Martin, once a poor man, mean and low,
But a wise servant and true steward, now
To wealth in heaven is raised from earth below.
As angel bright.

This Martin in his catechumen's years
One naked clothes, when suddenly appears
To him the following night the Lord, who wears
That very dress.
This Martin, who a soldier's life had left,
Prepares all foes to meet, of arms bereft,
When he hath once obtained that precious gift,
Baptismal grace.

This Martin, as he celebrateth Mass,
Glows with an inward ardour by God's grace;
While, resting on his head, they also trace
A ball of fire.
This Martin, who to heaven unlocks the way,
Rules o'er the sea, and o'er the land holds sway,
Doth sickness heal and dreadful monsters slay,
Illustrious Sire!

This Martin neither held grim death in fear,
Nor yet refused the toil of life to bear;
Himself thus wholly to God's will, whilst here.
This Martin, who ne'er gave a creature pain.
This Martin, who to all the world brought gain,
This Martin, who well pleased Him who doth reign
As Triune King;

This Martin 'tis, whose death by God of old
To Severinus in a dream was told,
While from the lips of angel-cohorts rolled
Sweet melodies.
This Martin 'tis, whose life Sulpitius writes,
Whose burial also Ambrose' eyes delights.
Who, with clear conscience, enters heaven's far heights
Above the skies.

O Martin, famed 'mongst pastors here below!
The comrade of angelic cohorts now!
Against the rage of rabid wolf do thou
Our guardian be!
O Martin! do, as thou art wont to do,
And, offering prayer to God, for us still sue!
Remember those thou leftest not, life through,
Thy family! Amen.

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