Section 6

1. Igitur Martīnus inde prōgressus cum Mediōlānum praeterisset, diabolus in itinere, hūmānā speciē assumptā, sē eī obvium tulit, quō tenderet quaerēns. cumque id a Martīnō rēspōnsī accēpisset, sē quō Dominus vocāret intendere, āit ad eum: 2. 'quōcumque ieris vel quaecumque temptāveris, diabolus tibi adversābitur.' tunc eī prophētica vōce rēspondēns, 'Dominus mihi,' inquit, 'adiūtor est: nōn timēbō, quid faciat mihi homō.' statimque dē cōnspectū eius inimīcus ēvānuit. 3. itaque ut animō ac mente concēperat, mātrem ā gentīlitātis absolvit errōre, patre in malīs persevērante: plūrēs tamen suō salvāvit exemplō. 4. Dehinc cum haeresis Arriāna per tōtum orbem et maximē intrā Īllyricum pullulāsset, cum adversus perfidiam sacerdōtum sōlus paene ācerrimē repugnāret multīsque suppliciīs esset adfectus — nam et pūblicē virgīs caesus est et ad extrēmum dē cīvitāte exīre compulsus —, Ītaliam repetēns, cum intrā Galliās quoque discessū sānctī Hilarī, quem ad exsilium haereticōrum vīs coēgerat, turbātam ecclēsiam comperisset, Mediōlāni sibi monastērium statuit. ibi quoque eum Auxentius, auctor et prīnceps Arriānōrum, gravissimē īnsectātus est, multīsque adfectum iniūriīs dē cīvitāte exturbāvit. 5. cēdendum itaque temporī arbitrātus ad īnsulam, cui Gallīnāria nōmen est, sēcessit comite quōdam presbyterō, magnārum virtūtum virō. hīc aliquamdiū rādīcibus vīxit herbārum: quō tempore helleborum, uenēnātum, ut ferunt, grāmen, in cibum sumpsit. 6. sed cum vim venēnī in sē grassantis vīcīnā iam morte sēnsisset, imminēns perīculum ōrātiōne repulit statimque omnis dolor fugātus est. 7. nec multō post, cum sānctō Hilariō comperisset rēgis paenitentiā potestātem indultam fuisse redeundi, Rōmae eī temptāvit occurrere prōfectusque ad urbem est.

The Devil confronted Martin outside Milan. Martin was able to convert his mother and others in Illyricum, but not his father. Publicly beaten and forced out of Illyricum for advocating the orthodox version of Christianity, Martin returned to Italy and settled in Milan, but there too suffered persecution by members of the clergy who ascribed to the Arrian sect. So he withdrew to a small island, where he lived off roots and plants.

Mediolanum:  Mediolanum, -i n., mod. Milan, in northern Italy.

se ei obvium tulit: 'brought himself in the way for him', i.e., 'met him'.

quo: 'where' (Adv.)

id . . . responsi: 'the following response' (introducing indirect statement). The genitive is partitive. (AG 346)

quocumque ieris: 'wherever you go' (> eo, ire), future perfect where Eng. would use future or present (AG 478).

inimicus evanuit: 'the devil vanished' (> evanesco).

haeresis Arriana: the Arrian heresy, the principal heresy which denied the divinity of Jesus Christ, so called after its author, Arius (d. 336). The controversy between it and its ultimately successful rival, the Orthodox version of Christianity, was the major political/theological struggle of the fourth century. Martin and Hilary, like most of the Western clergy, were staunchly Orthodox.

Illyricum: a vague term embracing the whole of the Danube frontier area in the western and central Balkans. It included Pannonia, Martin's home district.

pullulasset: 'had spread', = pullulavisset (> pullulo (1)).

solus paene: 'almost alone'. paene often modifies the word it follows.

virgis caesus est: 'was beaten with sticks', 'was flogged'.

civitate: 'city' (a later Latin sense), presumably Sabaria in Upper Pannonia, where Martin's parents lived.

ad extremum: 'finally'

cum . . . comperisset: 'when he had learned' (> comperio, -ire).

coegerat: 'had compelled' (> cogo).

turbatam: (sc. esse) 'had been thrown into confusion', infinitive in indirect statement after comperisset.

Auxentius: Auxentius bishop of Milan, and the most prominent supporter of Arianism in the West (d. 373 or 374).

cedendum itaque tempori arbitratus: 'and so, having decided that he should yield to circumstances'. cedendum (sc. esse) is impersonal passive (A&G 208d).

Gallinaria:  Isola Gallinaria, a small island off the coast of Albegna, in Luguria.

ut ferunt: 'so they say', parenthetical.

in cibum: 'as food'.

vicina iam morte: 'and death was already upon him', ablative absolute.

indultam fuisse: 'had been granted' (> indulgeo).

Romae:  'at Rome', locative.

prōgredior -gredī -gressus sum: come or go forth, proceed

quōcumque: (adv.) to whatever place, whithersoever

adversor -versārī: turn to or against, oppose

prophēticus -a -um: predicting, prophetic, prophetical

adiūtor -ōris m.: helper, assistant

cōnspectus -ūs m.: view, sight

persevērō -āre: persevere, be persistent in

salvō -āre: save

dehinc: (adv.) from here, hence

haeresis -is f.: heretical religious doctrine, heresy

pullulō -āre: put forth; spread

perfidia -ae f.: faithlessness, treachery, perfidy

pūblicē: (adv.) before the people, publicly

virga -ae f.: rod, switch for flogging

discessus -ūs m.: departure, flight

haereticus -ī m.: heretic

insector -ārī -ātus sum: pursue

exturbō -āre: drive or thrust out, drive away

sēcēdō -cēdere -cessī -cessum: go apart, separate, withdraw

rādīx rādīcis f.: root

herba -ae f.: herb; grass; meadow

helleborum -ī n.: hellebore

venēnātus -a -um: filled with poison, envenomed

grāmen -inis n.: a blade of grass; plant, herb

venēnum -ī n.: poison, venom

grassor -ārī -ātus sum: attack, proceed against

immineō -minēre -minuī: overhang, project over (+ dat.)

paenitentia -ae f.: repentance, penitence

indulgeō indulgēre indulsī indultum: indulge in; concede, grant, allow (+ dat.)

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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-6