Section 22

1. Frequenter autem diabolus, dum mille nocendi artibus sānctum virum conābātur illūdere, vīsibilem sē eī formīs dīversissimīs ingerēbat. nam interdum in Iovis persōnam, plērumque Mercurī, saepe etiam sē Veneris ac Minervae trānsfigūrātum vultibus offerēbat: adversus quem semper interritus signō sē crucis et ōrātiōnis auxiliō protegēbat. 2. audiēbantur plērumque convīcia, quibus illum turba daemonum protervīs vōcibus increpābat: sed omnia falsa et vāna cognoscēns nōn movēbātur obiectīs. 3. testābantur etiam aliquī ex frātribus, audīsse sē daemonem protervīs Martīnum vōcibus increpantem, cur intrā monastērium aliquōs ex frātribus, quī ōlim baptismum dīversīs errōribus perdidissent, conversōs posteā recēpisset, expōnentem crīmina singulōrum: 4. Martīnum diabolō repugnantem rēspondisse cōnstanter, antīqua dēlicta meliōris vītae conversātiōne purgārī, et per misericordiam Dominī absolvendōs esse peccātīs, quī peccāre dēsierint. contrā dīcente diabolō, nōn pertinēre ad vēniam crīminōsōs, et semel lapsīs nūllam ā Dominō praestārī posse clēmentiam, tunc in hanc vōcem fertur exclāmāsse Martīnus: 5. 'sī tū ipse, miserābilis, ab hominum īnsectātiōne dēsisterēs et tē factōrum tuōrum vel hōc tempore, cum diēs iūdiciī in proximō est, paenitēret, ego tibi vērē cōnfīsus in Dominō Iēsū Christō misericordiam pollicērer.' ō quam sāncta dē Dominī pietāte praesumptio, in quā etsi auctōritātem praestāre nōn potuit, ostendit affectum. 6. et quia dē diabolō eiusdemque artibus sermō exortus est, nōn ab rē vidētur, licet extrīnsecus, referre quod gestum est, quia et quaedam in eō Martīnī virtūtum portio est et rēs digna mīrāculō rectē memoriae mandābitur, in exemplum cavendī, sī quid deinceps uspiam tale contigerit. 

dum . . . conabatur: when(ever) he was trying'. cum would have been more regular.

artibus: 'cunning methods'.

visibilem se ei formis diversissimis ingerebat: 'used to make himself visible to him in a great variety of forms'.

se . . . offerebat: 'he used to present himself'.

vultibus: 'with respect to his appearance' (> vultus, -ūs, m.).

protervis vocibus: 'with impudent words'.

increpabat: 'used to rebuke'.

obiectis: 'by their taunts' (> obicio, -icere, -ieci, -iectum, bring up as a reproach, throw in a person's teeth).

cur . . . recepisset: 'because he had received'. cur = 'because' is rare, but classical. See below, 23.4.

aliquos: direct object of recepisset, below.

conversos: 'after they had repented' (> convertor, -verti, -versus sum, return, repent, convert [eccl.]).

exponentem: 'describing'. The antecedent is the demon, parallel to increpantem above.

Martinum . . . respondisse: '(they say that) Martin responded'.

delicta . . . conversatione purgari: 'that sins were cleansed by repentance' (> conversatio, -onis, f. (eccl.)).

absolvendos esse peccatis, qui peccare desierint: '(those) who had ceased to sin ought to be absolved of their sins' (desierint is pf. subj. in a relative clause of characteristic (AG 535a), > desino, -sinere, -sii).

non pertinere ad veniam criminosos: 'that guilty men had nothing to do with mercy'. criminosus, -i, m.: a guilty man (late Lat.). pertineo, -ēre: apply to, be suitable to.

lapsis: 'to those who had fallen', i.e., into sin after baptism (> labor, labi, lapsus sum).

in hanc vocem: 'in these words', 'as follows'.

te . . . paeniteret: 'you would repent' (> paeniteo, impersonal construction, standard with this verb, with accusative of person regretting and genitive of the thing causing regret, also standard with this verb).

in proximo: 'at hand'.

in qua etsi auctoritatem praestare non potuit, ostendit affectum: 'in which, even if he could not provide a guarantee, he did show his feelings' (> affectus -ūs, m.).

non ab re videtur: 'it does not seem out of place' (impersonal construction).

licet extrisecus: 'though it is not directly relevant' (lit. 'though it is exterior').

in eo: 'in this', i.e. in the incident about to be related.

res miraculo digna: 'a miraculous event' (lit. 'a thing worthy of a miracle').

memoriae mandabitur: 'will be committed to memory', i.e., 'will be recorded for posterity'.

in exemplum cavendi: 'as a cautionary example' (lit., 'for an example of taking care').

contigerit: 'happens' (> contingo, -tingere, -tigi).

vīsibilis -e: visible

interdum: (adv.) meanwhile

trānsfigūrō -āre: transform, transfigure, metamorphose

interritus -a -um: unaffrighted, undisturbed

prōtegō -tegere -tēxī -tēctum: cover in front, protect

convīcium -ī n.: quarreling, altercation

turbo -inis m.: whirlwind, tornado

protervus -a -um: violent, vehement

increpō -āre -uī -itum: make a noise; blame, rebuke

tēstor -ārī: bear witness, testify

cōnstanter: (adv.) steadfastly, uniformly

dēlictum -ī n.: crime, transgression, fault

conversātiō -ōnis f.: frequent use; dealing, conversation

purgō -āre: make clean, purify

peccātum -ī n.: fault, transgression, sin

crīminōsus -ī m.: guilty man, criminal

lapsō -āre: fall down, slip

clēmentia -ae f.: gentleness, mildness

exclāmō -clāmāre: cry out, shout

miserābilis -e: pitiable, miserable, wretched

īnsectātiō -ōnis f.: pursuit

dēsistō -sistere -stitī: desist from, stop, cease (+abl. or inf.)

proximum -i n.: neighborhood, vicinity

paeniteō -ēre -uī: cause to repent

praesumptiō -ōnis f.: anticipation; presumption

exorior -orīrī -ortus sum: rise up, appear, arise

extrinsecus: (adv.) moreover

portiō -ōnis f.: share, part, portion

mīrāculum -ī n.: wonder, marvel, miracle

rēctē: rightly, properly

mandō -āre: to commit, consign, commend

deinceps: (adv.) in turn, in succession

uspiam: (adv.) at or in any place, anywhere

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Suggested Citation

Christopher Francese, Sulpicius Severus: Life of St. Martin. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2011. ISBN: 978-1-947822-03-0. http://dcc.dickinson.edu/sulpicius-severus/section-22