The Shewings of Julian of Norwich, Part 1
THE SHEWINGS OF JULIAN OF NORWICH: FOOTNOTES2 Off, Of.
3 pretious . . . thornys, precious crowning with thorns.
5 sheweings, revelations.
6 onyd, joined, made one; discolloureing, discoloring.
7 deareworthy, precious, excellent.
11 fend, fiend.
12 worshippfull, honorable; blissed, blessed.
13 wele, well-being, joy; wo, woe.
14 sekirness, sureness, certainty.
15 be, by; irkehede, irritation.
16 ghostly, spiritual; arn, are; also sekirly, as securely.
17 cruelle, cruel.
18 likeing, pleasure, gratification; of the herde, because of the hard.
19 rewfull, rueful; will, desires.
20 solacid and myrthid, comforted and made happy; whan, when; fullhede, fulfillment, fullness.
21-22 His blissefull . . . enjoyand, His blessed heart, joyful even as it is cloven in two.
22-23 hey . . . moder, high spiritual vision of His precious mother.
25 gret nobleth of all things makyng, great nobility of all things in their creation; man makeyng, man's making, i.e., the human constitution.
26 pretious asseth, precious satisfaction (see note); man, man's.
28 be, by.
30 feith and trowthe, faith and truth; wete His privityes, know His secrets.
31 longyth, belongs, is appropriate for.
32 ground, foundation; beseekeing, beseeching.
33 sekir, sure; large, generous.
34 likyth Him, are pleasing to Him.
37 mede, mead, reward.
38 wonyth, dwells.
39 reuland and geveand, ruling and giving.
40 saveand and keepeand, saving and keeping.
41 cowde no letter, knew no letters, could not read; or, possibly, did not know Latin.
43 mende of, attention to, understanding, realization.
43-44 sekenesse, sickness.
45 methought, it seemed to me; sume feleing in, some feeling of.
46 be, by.
50 seene, saw; peynes, pains.
51 ner, nor.
52 fro, from.
53 trew minde in, true understanding of.
54-55 sekenesse so herde as to deth, a deathly sickness.
55 underfongyn, receive.
56 weneing, supposing.
57 seyen, saw; eardtly, earthly.
58 ghostly, spiritual.
59 fends, fiends.
61 lyven, live; worshippe, honor.
64 wotith, know.
68 very, true, genuine.
70 fro, from.
72 yers, years.
74 wened not a levyd, believed I would not live; langorid, languished.
75 wened, thought, supposed.
76 youngith, youth.
77 sweeme, a pity, regret.
77-78 me lekid to levin for, it gave me pleasure to live for.
78 ne, nor; aferd, afraid.
81 methought, it seemed to me; in reward of, in comparison with.
84 feleing, feeling.
85 God will, God's will, i.e., at God's disposal; durid, endured.
86 dede fro, dead from; middis, middle; stered, prompted, took a notion.
87 underlenand, leaning with support from beneath.
89 by than, by the time that.
89-90 I had sett my eyen, my eyes were fixed in the death stare.
90 sett, placed.
91 browte, brought; Louke, look
92 Methought, It seemed to me; eyen, eyes; sett, fixed.
93 Hevyn, Heaven.
94 dede, did.
95 duren to loke, be able to look; forth than, straight ahead rather than.
96 derke, dark.
97 wiste, knew.
98 mekil, much.
99 fends, fiends; party, part.
100 onethys, scarcely; ony feleing, any feeling; onde, breath.
100-01 went sothly, truly thought.
101 passid, died.
102 hele, well.
103 party, part; aforn, before.
104 privy, mysterious; kinde, nature.
105 levyn, live.
106 lever a be, rather have been.
109 minde, understanding, realization.
110 longeing, longing (possibly belonging).
111 kinde, natural, kindly.
112 would beene a dedely man, was willing to be a mortal person
114 rede blode trekelyn, red blood trickling.
115 freisly, afresh; ryth, right; that, when.
116 thornys, thorns.
118 ony mene, any intermediary.
119 herte, heart.
124 appereith, appears.
124-25 Benedicite, Domine, Blessed be Thou, Lord.
125 meneing, intention.
126 astonyed, astonished.
127 reverend and dredfull, revered and awe inspiring; homley, intimate, familiar (see note); synfull creture liveing, sinful creature living.
129 of fends or I dyed, by fiends before I died.
131 enow, enough; ya, yeah, indeed; leving, living; ageyn, against.
133 understondyng, mind.
134 waxen, grown.
135 wan, when.
136 party, part.
141 sothly, truly; mare, more.
144 homely, intimate.
146 wrappeth . . . becloseth us, winds about us, embraces us, and entirely encloses us.
149 hesil nutt, hazel nut.
151 lesten, last.
154 the being, existence.
157-58 substantially onyd, integrally joined.
158 ne very, nor true.
160 littlehede, smallness.
160-61 to nowtyn . . . made, value as nothing everything created.
161 howe, have (see note); unmade, without creator.
162 herete, heart; sekyn, seek.
164-65 Him liketh, it pleases Him.
166 nowted, stripped.
167 Whan, When.
169 sily, innocent, simple.
170 kinde yernings, natural yearning.
172 enow, enough.
175 arn, are.
180 lerne, teach; clevyn, cleave.
181 mende, mind.
182 menys, means, intermediaries.
183 sothly, truly.
184 clevyn, cleave.
185 menys, means, intermediaries.
187 hole, whole.
187-88 failith right nowte, nothing at all fails.
190 deareworthy, precious, excellent.
192 moder love, mother's love.
193 bare, bore.
198 wole, well (intensive); fele, many.
199 mene, means; kinde, nature; toke, took.
200 menys, means, helps; aforn, before; cum, come.
204-05 quickyth, gives life to.
206 nerest . . . grace, nearest in nature and most ready in grace.
208 beclosyd, enclosed; dispite of, contempt for.
209 longyth in kinde, belongs in nature.
211 bonys, bones.
212 herte, heart; bouke, trunk; arn, are.
213 ya, indeed; wasten and weren, waste and wear.
214 hole, whole.
216 herete, heart.
217 spedyth, prospers.
219 wetyn, know; mekyl, greatly
222 onenestimable, inestimable.
226 blyn, cease.
231 lest, least; his, its (the soul's).
233 his even Cristen, the soul's fellow Christians.
234 to lerne us, to teach us.
236 hey, high.
239 in reward of, in comparison with.
242 lesting, lasting.
242-43 bledeing of the hede, bleeding of the head.
243 blode, blood.
244 semand . . . veynis, seeming as if it had come out of the veins.
245 browne rede, deep (shining) red
248 plenteoushede, plenitude.
249 dropys, drops; evys, eaves; showre of reyne, shower of rain.
250 bodily witte, natural intelligence.
250-51 roundhede, roundness;
251 heryng, herring.
254 dropys of evese, drops from eaves.
255 hidouse, hideous.
257 curtes, courteous.
258 likeing, happiness, pleasure.
259 opyn, open.
261 glad cheere, both prive and partie, cheerful expression, both in private and in public.
266 manys, man's.
270-72 And . . . may, And our Lord wills this, that we desire and have faith, rejoice and take pleasure, comfort and console ourselves as we may.
276 weten, know.
277 govyn, given.
277-78 govyn of, given by.
278 mede, mead, reward.
282 goven, given.
285 be than, until.
287 Benedicite, Domine, Blessed be Thou, Lord.
288 toknys, tokens, signs.
290 bene, be.
292 wete, know.
294 seith, sees.
295 semith, seems.
300 stinted, stopped.
302 ell, else.
303 mekil sterid, much stirred; even Cristen, fellow Christians.
304 they, them.
306 domys day, judgment day; went a deid, expected to have died.
307 deith, dies; demyd, judged.
308 thei lovid, they loved.
308-09 make hem to have mende, make them realize.
310 went have, thought to have; mervil, strange.
310-11 sweeme . . . should leven, partly a pity, for I thought this vision was shown in order to benefit the living.
312 even Cristen, fellow Christians; lernyd, taught, instructed.
314 levyn, believe (see note).
315 curtes, courteous.
316 wolde shewyn, would show.
317-18 on to you all, to you, one and all.
320 hem, those.
321 wote, know.
323 sekir, sure.
326 onehede, unity
328 on . . . sight, one (whole) in my sight; hat, has.
334 hem, those; save, saved, i.e., achieve salvation.
335 leve, believe; levith, believes.
339 diligens, diligence.
342 hopinly, openly.
343 wolde, wish to.
346 henge, hung.
348 sollowing, soiling (see note); langoryng, languishing, lingering; mo, more.
350 ere, ear; overrede, overun.
351 tuther, other; therewhiles, meanwhile.
352 swemely, sorrowfully, fearfully.
355 sowte, sought.
356 sekyn, seek.
356-57 And . . . Him, If we see anything of Him.
357 sterid, stirred, prompted; sekyn, seek.
358 sowte, sought.
361 see ground, bottom of the sea.
362 dalis . . . wrekke, green dales, seeming as if it were grown over with moss, with wrak.
367 levyn, believe; thowe that us thinkeith, although we think.
369 abedyn, abided, waited for; trosted, trusted.
370 low, humble; sprets, spirits.
371 travel, travail; mornand, dredfull, mourning, fearful.
374 dede hame, skin, slough; mortal covering (fig., flesh).
378 reulihede and lenehede, piteousness and thinness.
379 stondyng, understanding that.
385 be synne, through sin.
386 And that made, And He who made.
388 overpassing, transcendence.
390 geynmakyng, remaking.
391 dedely, mortal.
393-94 dede hame, skin, slough, mortal covering (fig., flesh).
395 owen to trowen, ought to believe.
396 travel, travail.
399 chere, expression.
400 rewfull and dedely, rueful and like death.
401 lernyng, teaching.
402 ful mekyl, very much; sekyn, seek.
404 sekyng, seeking.
407 travel, travail.
408 God wille, God's will.
409-10 have him, conduct itself.
415 mown, may; on, one.
416-17 The sekyng . . . Church, The seeking is common; that is available in the discretion and teaching of Holy Church which every soul may have, and ought to have, by God's grace.
419 slauth, sloth; throw, through.
420 onskilful, senseless, unreasonable; veyne, vain.
421 gruching, grudging; ageyns, against.
422 thred, third.
425 swith sodeyn, very sudden; trowid, believed; hend, courteous.
426 mot, may.
427 poynte, point.
428 with avisement, thoughtfully, with full clarity.
431 be happe, ne be aventure, by chance nor by accident.
435 unwetyng, unknowing.
436 ben happis and aventures, are chances and accidents.
438 me behovith nedes to grant, I must concede.
441 sekir, certain.
442 dede, deed.
443 wold, would; wold shewen, would show.
448 ben al, is all; feilith nougte, nothing fails.
454 demyng, judgment.
459 heiest, highest.
463 or, before.
472 me behovyd nedis to assenten, I must necessarily assent.
473-74 seming of the scorgyng, seaming, furrowing, of the scourging (see note).
477 should a, should have.
478 migt, might; avisement, clarity.
479 sigt, sight.
480 al on blode and a passid over aboute, bloody all over and have passed entirely over it.
484 licur, liquor.
486 it is our kinde, it is of the same nature as our own.
489 braste her bands, burst their bonds.
490 longyd, belonged; curte, courte.
495 it nedith, it is needed.
498 er, before.
499 conable, suitable.
500 migte, might.
501 formys, forms.
502 menening, referring to.
506 ascappyn, escape; worshipply be, honorably by.
507 attemyd, esteemed.
508 mech, much.
510 migte, might; tokyn, taken.
511 wreth, wrath.
515 onmigte, powerlessness.
516 sigte, sight; I lauhyd migtily, I laughed mightily; lauhyn, laugh.
517 likeing, pleasure.
518-19 lauhyn, lawhyn, laugh.
522 sothfastnes, truth.
524 sadhede, sober mood; game, joy.
525 arneste, earnest, seriousness.
526 arneste, earnestly.
529 done, do.
530 dampnid, damned.
531 hose, whose.
532 invye, envy.
537 clepid, called.
540 to solacyn, to make comfortable.
544 thanke, thanks.
553 reme, realm.
554 leking, pleasing; underfongyn, received; rigte, right.
557 hem, those; her yongith, their youth.
559 on day, one day's.
561 lever, readier, more inclined.
562 soveren gostly lekyng, sovereign spiritual delight.
565 lestenid, lasted.
566 irkenes of, irriation with.
567 onethis, scarcely; leve, live.
570 mycti, mighty.
571 desesid me, made me uneasy.
573 dyvers, different.
577 spedeful, efficacious.
580 manys, man's.
582 soden, sudden.
585 passand, passing.
590 sithen, after.
591 langoring, languishing.
591-92 dede . . . browne blew, deathly to blue, and after a duller blue.
594-95 tho . . . clange, those that before were fresh, red, and pleasant in my eyes. This was a grievous change to see, this deep dying, and also the nose shriveled.
596 lifely, life-like.
598 Rode, Cross; harre, keen, fierce.
600 migte, might.
602 Blodeleshede, Bloodlessness.
607 party after party, step by step; dryande, drying.
609 pynyng, torture, suffering.
610 than I seid, when I said.
612 clongen, withered; peteuous, pitiable.
613 deyand, dying.
616 threst, thirst.
619 bonys, bones.
620 wryngyng of the naylys, twisting, drilling in, of the nails; weyte, weight.
623 wrangyng, twisting.
624 bakyn, baked.
625 clyngand, clinging; deyand, dying.
626-31 And . . . moysture, And in the beginning, while the flesh was still fresh and bleeding, the constant piercing of the thorns made the wounds wide. And furthermore, I saw that the sweet skin and the tender flesh, with the hair and the blood, were raised and loosened out from the bone with the thorns, where it [the skin] was pierced through in many pieces; [it was] like a cloth that is sagging, as if it would very soon have fallen off because of its heaviness and looseness, while it had natural moisture.
634 pety, pity.
635 ben, be.
636 dreyen, dry; stynte, diminish, stop; weyte, weight.
637 abute, about.
638 tother, other.
639 cloderyd, clotted.
640 smal, thin; ronkyllid, wrinkled.
641 a tannyd . . . akynned, a tanned color like a dry board when it is scorched
643 dryengs, dryings.
644 eyr, air.
645 askyd licour, needed moisture.
646 mynystid, ministered.
648 clyngand, withering up.
650 clyngyng dryand, withering drying.
651 peynd, made to suffer, tortured; thingke, think.
653 wiste, knew.
654 onys, once; mynde, realization
657-59 Than . . . praydd it, Then I thought, I knew very little what payne it was that I was asking for, and like a wretch I repented, thinking if I had known what it would be, I would have been loath to have prayed for it.
661 despeyr, despair.
667 onyd, joined.
667-68 mekylhede, greatness.
668 continyyd, continued.
669 fulsomely, abundantly; fully.
671 panys, pains.
676 onyng, empathy, union.
679 faledyn, failed; hyr, their.
680 thir, their; ther, their
681-82 than . . . faylon with Hym, then because of their nature they necessarily failed with Him; penys, pains.
684 feyling, failing.
685 privy kepyng, mysterious care.
686 on, one.
687 paynym, pagan.
689 ell, else.
690 auter, altar.
694 nawted, made nothing, a cipher.
696 wold a lokyd, would have looked; weste, knew.
698 uggyng, horror.
699 profir, proposition.
700 feyth, faith.
701 desesyd me, made me uneasy.
704 lever a ben, rather have been; domys day, judgment day
707 lerid, taught.
709 chase, chose.
710 hat be, has been.
711 done so, do so; chesyn, choose.
712 repentid me, repentid, changed my mind; wiste, known.
713 me had be loth, I should have been loath.
714 grutching and daming, grudging and curse.
715 wilful choys, deliberate choice.
716 tho be, those are.
721 chase, chose.
722 soverayn, sovereign; hede, heed.
723 onyd into, made one with.
727 langring, languishing.
729 allonly, only.
732 shamly, dispitous, shameful, pitiless.
734 sean, seen.
736 heyte and noblyth, height and nobility.
738 lothhede, loathing.
740 mannys, man's.
741 manys, man's.
747 ches, chose; desyr, desire.
748 wel payeyng, much satisfaction.
750 passyng, transcendent.
756 wet, expected to; ryth, right.
757 be semyng, by appearances.
759 chere, countenance, expression.
761 agreefe, sorrow.
762 menyng, intention, disposition, understanding.
769-70 should us agrevyn, would make us sad.
771-72 desese and travel, distress and labor.
772 frelete askyth, frailty requires.
777 payd, pleased, satisfied.
778 gramercy, thank you.
779 payde, pleased.
780-81 I myht suffre, I might suffer.
781 lifte, lifted.
782 gretly mervelyd, made to marvel greatly.
788 mede, reward.
788-89 Fader . . . mede, Father might have given Him no reward.
792 beyeng, buying (fig., redemption).
793 corone, crown.
799 diligens, diligence.
800 sotly, truly.
801 coude, could.
803 al thynkyth Him, He considers all; in reward of, considering.
804 sesin, cease.
808 creature, human.
823 plesance, pleasure.
824 lykyng, enjoyment.
826 thred, third.
827 curtes, courteous.
830 semys of the scorgyng, weals from the scourging (see note 473-74).
831 that, that which.
833 Goddys, God's.
839 upriste on Esterne morow, resurrection on Easter morning.
841 wil, desires.
845 wroute, wrought.
849 enow, enough.
850 ell, else.
851 mend, mind; gevere, giver.
853 solacyn, give solace to, please.
856 solacid, satisfied.
861 bawte, bought (fig., redeemed).
886 ryte, right.
888 wold se, would wish to see.
899 lerid . . . hirr, taught to long to see her.
903 gramercy, thank you.
904 wend a seen hir, expected to have seen her.
912 gove, given.
914 tymys, times.
931 letted, hindered.
934 forseyng, foreseeing; lettid, prevented.
935 a be, have been; steryng, agitation.
938 behovabil, necessary; fits in (see note 936).
942 in party nowtid, partly despised.
946 wern, were.
949 afferd, afraid.
960 sythen, since.
972 reuth, ruth, pity; ech, each.
974 lakid, blamed; rapyd, abused.
975 lettyn, prevent, lessen.
976 heynen, raise.
977 tobreke, utterly shatter.
982 nowting, humiliation.
989-90 gruching and dispeir, grudging and despair.
992 childer, children.
993 swemly, sadly.
996 esyd, eased.
1000 asyeth, reparation.
1001 manys, man's.
1003 sythe, since.
1007 hopyn, open; lite, luminous, without burden.
1009 councellid, counseled.
1011 onjoyeth, takes pleasure.
1014 sperid, barred, closed.
1022 owen, ought.
1035 threst, thirst.
1040 hole, whole.
1042 amenst, as concerns (see note).
1044 heyned ne lownyd, raised nor lowered.
1047 anemst, concerning.
1055 onpassible, impassible.
1056 threst, thirst.
1058 cum, come.
1064-65 thow . . . properties, And [this is true] even though longing and pity are two separate qualities.
1068 secyn, cease.
1071 On, one.
1073 On, one; wetyn, understand.
1079 loke, look; morning, mourning.
1085 trostily, trustfully.
1092 pesid, made peaceful.
1100 peynt, point.
1102 herth, earth.
1103 ethen, heathen.
1106 And stondyng, And this being so.
1108 That, What.
1110 stedfasty, steadfastly.
1111 sadly levyn, firmly believe.
1118 to maken prefe, to try to prove out, to test; longyth, belongs.
1122 coude, knew, could learn.
1134 deden Hym to ded, put Him to death.
1136 lered, taught.
1137 hopyng, hoping.
1144 besyn us, busy ourselves.
1146 to, two; privityes, secrets, mysteries.
1153-55 For al . . . Holy Church, For all that is helpful to us to know and understand, our Lord will [make it His] will most courteously to show us what it is [what these things are] by and through all the preaching and teaching of Holy Church.
1163 ageyn, against; thred, third.
1170 freindful mene, friendly intermediary.
1180 peynte, point.
1181 rythful, righteous.
1192 seith, sees; sowlys, souls.
1197 secyn, cease.
1206 dredful, reverent.
1211 His holy, His saints.
1217 trostily, with trust, confidence.
1221 hat to, has for.
1224 leven, believe.
1225 owe we, we ought.
1234 her, here.
1238 clepyth us, calls out to us; Entend, Attend, Listen.
1249 fele, many, several.
1250 heygh, high.
1253 myschevis, troubles, evils; to meken us, to make us meek.
1263 entendyn, attend, pay attention.
1267 concyvid a softe drede, conceived a quiet fear.
1274 Ryth, Just; bestly, bestial.
1276 yll, evil.
1277 that that Hym lykyt, that which pleases Him.
1283 goven, given.
1290 lift, lifted.
1299 hende neybor, courteous, affable neighbor.
1310 chousyn, chosen.
1311-13 al forbetyth . . . Helle, beats down man and woman and makes them irritated with themselves, so much that sometimes, in their own view, they think themselves worthy of nothing but to sink into Hell.
1317 ymage, image.
1318 domysman, judge.
1330 menys, means, ways.
1332 helyd, healed.
1338 mede, reward; underfongyn, receive.
1340 dispeir, despair.
1342 beand and werkand, existing and working.
1345 fel and fers, evil and fierce; and so mech . . . the more, and in as much as our need is [great] the more [He defends us].
1347 severayn, sovereign.
1348 privily, inwardly.
1353 consciens, conscience.
1355 frendful, friendly.
1365 leven, live.
1370 chargyn, charge, set down.
1374 the lother . . . synne, the more loath he is to sin.
1378 to haten, to be hated.
1380 And we gevyn, If we give.
1383 lawis, laws; tawth, taught.
1384 ageyn, in opposition to.
1392 Lordis, Lord's.
1398 besekyng, prayer, beseeching; sythen, after.
1405 for an impossible, as an impossibility, a logical absurdity.
1417 tresour, treasury; His holy, His saints.
1422 inderly, earnestly.
1439 felyth, feels.
1440 grece, grace.
1457 taryen and peyn, delay and trouble.
1458 leve, believe.
1460 trosten, trust.
1467 mytys, powers.
1468 will, desires.
1468-69 our stede . . . wonynge, our standing place and our dwelling.
1472 agen byeing, redemption.
1476 deds, deeds.
1477 dede, deed.
1482 dette, debt.
1486 other, either.
1494 diligens, diligence.
1499 onyth, binds, unites; thow, though.
1501 will, desires.
1502 ablith, makes able, fits the individual for.
1504 steryth, prompts, stirs.
1507 And thou besekyst, And you beseech.
1513 eur, your (see note).
1519 steryth, inspires.
1522 ablyng, fitting.
1524 buxum, obedient.
1526 nedys wherfore we prayen, that we need to pray.
1527 seying, seeing.
1529 fulsome, abundant; mytys, powers.
1530 continuate, continual.
1533 hey, high, great; wonyng, dwelling place.
1535 continuat, continual.
1540 fulsomely, completely, to the full; seand, seeing.
1541 feland, feeling; heryng, hearing.
1542 swelowyng, swallowing.
1544 leven, live; dedly, mortal.
1555 commend, coming.
1556-57 soverain, severeyn, sovereyn, sovereign.
1558 made, created, i.e., not self-generated.
1561 in reward of, in comparison with.
1562 onethys, scarcely; owte, anything; clertye, clarity.
1565-66 hoole and save, whole and safe.
1568 medyllid, mixed.
1578 cowd nowte, could not; dome, judgment.
1582 cowth, could.
1585 levyn, leave (see note).
1587 longyth . . . knoyn it, pertains to me to know it truly.
1604 encrecin and wexen be forthing, increase and grow with the helping.
1613-14 And . . . me, And this way of looking at things stayed with me.
1616 encrese and resyn, increase and rise.
1637 yeele me, yield myself.
1638 owyth, ought to do.
1639 longen, pertain; On, One.
1648 no, not.
1649 sumdel, something.
1651-52 frelte and overcummyng, frailty and defeats.
1652 onmyte and onwise, powerless and foolish.
1654 sey, saw.
1655 mischevous, ill.
1660 morning, mourning.
1673 contrarioust, contrariness, perversity.
1674 rote, root.
1675 traveylid, belabored.
1677 wonnyng, dwelling.
1679 buxum, obedient.
1681 sow, saw.
1682 all, else; frowardness and a contrarioste, perversity and an opposition.
1685 contrariuste, contrariness.
1688 cowth, could.
1691 turnyng . . . good, turning everything to good for us.
1696 of us, away from us.
1697 cessyth, ceases.
1699 propirte, quality.
1720 seyth, sees.
1728 a touch, a bit; stede, standing place.
1732 wretches, times of wretchedness.
1733-34 buxumhede, obedience.
1734 stede, place.
1745 domys, judgments; pessible, at peace.
1779 awer, trouble (see note).
1781 eryn, err.
1785 makyn . . . it, make me courageous enough to ask this.
1792 Ho, Who.
1793 sen, see.
1794 mystily, obscurely, as if through a mist; symbolically (see note).
1795 botryn, both.
1804 rynnith, runs.
1805 slade, valley.
1813 brosyng, bruising.
1816 stonyed, stunned, astonished; mend, mind; luf, love.
1820 lang, long.
1830 nobleth, nobility, honor.
1834 skyl, reasonable.
1835 reward . . . drede, compensate him for this attack and for his fear.
1837 hole, wholeness, health; And ell, Or else.
1850 aret, attributed.
1852 mystye, symbolic, obscure (see note to line 1794).
1855 sumdele, somewhat.
1860 depart, separate.
1861 owe, ought.
1862 trostyn, trust.
1865 monethis, months.
1866 hede, heed.
1868 mysty and indifferent, unclear and irrelevant; assend, assented.
1872 sate, sat; tho, the.
1875 havyng, behavior.
1876 onlothfulhede, alacrity, good will.
1882 stonyed, stunned, stricken.
1884 lettid, hindered.
1895 syde, long, ample.
1896 sad, dignified.
1897 fulsomely featours, full, regular features.
1899 hey ward, high refuge.
1901 on to, in two.
1902 medlur, mixture.
1907 lofly, lovely.
1915 is this to menyn, means this; cyte, city, site.
1918 adyten him, prepare for him, assign to him.
1919 abeydand, waiting for; medlid, mingled.
1922 eyen, eyes.
1932 fornempts, right before; asyd, aside; lift, left.
1933 kirtle, coat, tunic; sengil, single; died with swete, stained with sweat.
1934 streyte fittyng, skimpy, close.
1935 weryd up, worn out.
1949 mete, food.
1953 myte . . . don, might be that the servant should do.
1955 delvyn and dykyn, digging and ditching; swinkin, working; swetyn, sweating.
1959-60 dygte this mete, prepared this food.
1967 dygte, prepared.
1973 rythful, fittingly; nerehede, closeness.
1980 slade, valley.
1994 anempts, pertains to.
1996 Hym, Himself.
2000 steytehede, skimpiness.
2001 waring, wearing; defaceing of swete, disfigurement of the sweat; travel, labor.
2022 privities, secrets.
2030 sore, physical pain.
2030-31 also swithe, at once.
2031 stod dredfully, stood in awe.
2032 even ryth, on the righthand of God.
2035 woon, achieved, won.
2039 sweppys, blows; scorgis, whippings.
2041 hedepanne, skull.
2048 rote, rout, i.e., throng, company of souls.
2052 streyte, scanty.
2054 wyde and syde, ample and long; than was than, than was then.
2056 medlur, mixture.
2059 sete, seat, site.
2060 unornely, without ornament, plainly.
2063 tho, the.
2071 cety, city.
2072 adyte, assigned.
2079-80 medlur bothen, mixture both.
2081 mischefe, harm, damage; deyand, dying.
2085 onethys, scarcely.
2090 medle, mixture.
2092 ilke, same.
2096 falyn, fall.
2099 grutchin ther agen, complain against it.
2100 duryin, endure.
2101 medlur, mixed state.
2103 us updrawand, drawing us up.
2106 wonand, dwelling; yemand, guiding, caring for.
2121 in our Lord menyng, in our Lord's view.
2124 be, by.
2127 gon, go.
2128-29 on syd . . . feblehede, one side falling too low, inclining to despair, nor on the other hand being too reckless, as if we did not care at all, but nakedly knowing our fragility.
2132 For otherwise . . . man, For the vision of God differs from the vision of man, and the vision of man, from the vision of God.
2146 asseth, atonement.
2163 awer, concern (see note 1779).
2174 ageyn byeng, redemption.
2191 slyppe, slime; medlid and gaderid, mingled and gathered.
2205 sotil, subtle.
2210 departing, division, separation.
2211 hesy, easy; trowen, believe.
2214 owe, ought.
2234 command, coming.
2239 berith, carries.
2248 feithyn, believe.
2251 we . . . sensual, we are made a physical, living being; as swithe, just as quickly.
2252 cure, care.
2256 abylith, enables.
2258 sensualite, concrete and bodily existence (see note 2250-51).
2259 cite, city.
2260 se, see, official domain.
2282 sotil, subtle.
2284 for the mene profir, on the basis of the intermediary's suggestion.
2287 ridier to us, more easy for us.
2291 of fulhede, for complete [understanding].
2293-94 Whither and, Whether if.
2296 mene, the medium.
2299 rotid, rooted.
2300 comenyng and daliance, mutuality and communion, i.e., familiar conversation.
2303 clepid, called, designated.
2304 cyte, city.
2313-15 For . . . substance, For until our soul has its full power, we cannot be entirely holy, and that is [can happen then] because our psycho-physical being by the power of Christ's passion is [then] brought up to the substance.
2318 heyhede, elevation; kindhede, natural placement. See note 2318.
2320 incres, increase.
2329 connyng of, knowledge of.
2331-33 For. . . spirite, For in our first creation, God gave us fully all we need [in this life], and also greater goods such as we may receive only in our spirit.
2335 There, Where.
2344 diverssetis, diversity.
2351 adyte, assigned.
2366 renued, renewed.
2380 lerand His loris, learning His lore.
2386 at onys, at once.
2404 yeldyng, repayment, harvest.
2419 kepid ondepartid, kept together.
2424 thred, third.
2429 perfitt, perfect.
2472 impropried to, embodied in.
2477 forthspreadyng, amplification.
2488 rayhid Him and dyte Him, arrayed and prepared Himself.
2495 throwes, times, torments.
2497 makyn aseth to, fully satisfy.
2522 bristinid, broken, beaten severely.
2538 bend payd, be satisfied (or, yield, pleased).
2539 And, If.
2551 assay, trial.
2572 al swithe, at once.
2578-79 blissid comon, blessed community.
2587 not . . . Child, nothing to do at all but see about the salvation of her child. .
2592 dispits, humiliations.
2606 rialtie, royalty.
2628 sothly, truly.
2630 shynand, shining.
2632 mone, lament.
2643 fordreth, fosters, helps.
2663 beyng, being, existence.
2678 semyt, seems.
2682 oggley, ugly; bolned quave of styngand myre, swollen heaving of stinking mire.
2685 bolnehede, swelling.
2687 belevith, stays, is left.
2690 severen, sovereign, the greatest possible.
2691 behest, promise.
2692 behoting, promise.
2705 behests, promises.
2712 trosty, in trust, without doubt.
2718 had . . . lovid of God, possessed infinitely by those whom God loves.
2719 mon, may.
2742 ich, each.
2748 lestid folowand, were going on consecutively; or, were perpetually in my mind.
2749 langiren, languish.
2752 hevyed, heaved, tossed.
2754 ferid, fared.
2755 leuhe . . . inderly, laughed loud and heartily.
2756 blode fast, bled profusely.
2758 recleshede, recklessness.
2760 shrevyn, absolved, shriven.
2761 levyn, believe.
2763 fole, fool.
2768 gan to slepyn, went to sleep.
2772 steknes, speckles, stitches (see note).
2773 rode, red; evisid, clipped.
2774 thounys, temples;shrewd, wicked.
2797 gemeth, guides.
2814 makar, maker.
2815 cite, city.
2831 leve, believe.
2845-46 And . . . more, And soon after all was closed, and I saw no more.
2850 parlement, debate.
2853 bidding of beds, praying of beads, i.e., saying the rosary.
2863 soverain, sovereign, the best possible.
2874 byddand, commanding.
2889-90 festyn it feyfully, fasten it faithfully.
2896 persivyn, understand.
2906 utter, outer.
2908 cheres, countenances.
2915 beer, endure.
2919 medlarid the thord, mingles the third.
2928 cleerty, clarity; feland, feeling.
2931 medled with ony, mixed with any.
2944 al He halsith us, He embraces us entirely.
2954 myrkehede, darkness.
2977 rith, exactly.
2978 sumdele, something.
2980-81 on . . . hevily, one is impatience or sloth, for we endure our trouble and pains heavily.
2999 astynten, stop.
3015 afray, sudden attack.
3031 thei arn rotid, they are rooted.
3045 moder barme, mother's bosom.
3050 medlid, mixed.
3059 us feile, we fail in.
3065 neden, are needed.
3066 threist, thirst.
3067 His holy, His saints.
3068 lively, living.
3087 tremelyn and quakyn, tremble and quake.
3089 tremeland and quakand, trembling and quaking.
3107 travellyn, work.
3128 behotist, promised.
3130 slauth, sloth; lesyng, losing.
3143 brynnyt, burns.
3146 flen, flee.
3148 neyghen, draw near to.
3148-49 shrewid peyne, wicked, i.e., severe pain.
3162-63 Accuse . . . demandand that, Do not accuse yourself too much, deciding that.
3171 gaf, gave.
3232 alsa, also.
3241 recles, careless.
3247 beseyn us, busy ourselves.
3249 swemefully, piteously.
3250 hath hast, has haste (i.e., is eager to).
3274 swemefully, sorrowfully.
3280 leve . . . Him, fail to keep Him in mind.
3282 swemely and monyng, sorrowful and lamenting.
3296 reynand, reigning.
3299 wonnyth, dwells.
3310 mede, reward.
3318 the agens, you against.
3321 customably, customarily, habitually.
3323 clevand, cleaving; seand, seeing.
3324 wittand, knowing.
3332 lyt, light.
3361 clerte, clarity.
3367 sperid, closed off; suich, such.
3389 beforn that, before.
3399-3400 merkness, darkness.
3424 heretique, heretic.
THE SHEWINGS OF JULIAN OF NORWICH: NOTESAbbreviations:
C&W A Book of Showings to the Anchoress Julian of Norwich, ed. Edmund Colledge and James Walsh. Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, 1978. [Includes both short and long versions.]
S1 London. British Library MS Sloane 2499. [Base text for this edition of the longer version.]
S2 London. British Library MS Sloane 3705.
P Paris. Bibliothèque Nationale MS Fonds anglais 40. [Base text for the longer version in C&W.]
A London. British Library MS Additional 37790. [Base text for the short version in C&W.]
The shorter version gives no preliminary summary. If not editorial, this outline supports other evidence that Julian not only added to her book but also reconsidered it as a whole. Internal references directing readers to past or future passages (e.g., in chapters 17 and 56) also indicate that she reviewed the whole work as a whole. The shorter version lacks such referrals.
4 the Trinite. S1 thee.
11 pretious. S1 barely legible. P precious.
16 also. S1 aso. P also.
26-27 and of the pretious asseth that He hath made for man synne. Asseth, "satisfaction," "compensation," or "amends," is both a legal and an ecclesiastical term. John A. Alford includes it in his Piers Plowman: A Glossary of Legal Diction (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer/Boydell & Brewer, 1988), pp. 10-11, directing readers to English Wycliffite Sermons, ed. Anne Hudson (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1983), 1, 497-99, for an entire sermon on the place of asseth in the economy of salvation. Mona Logarbo in "Salvation Theology in Julian of Norwich: Sin, Forgiveness, and Redemption in the Revelations," Thought 61 (1986), 374, points to derivation from OF assez which had its roots in Latin ad satis; she defines asseth in Julian as "that which makes sufficient"; what is sufficient for Julian, Logarbo indicates, is Christ's achieved filling in of the breach between God and humanity caused by the "great harm" of Adam's sin.
29 make wele. S1 make wle.
38 wonyth. S1 marginal gloss: dwelleth.
Eight chapter headings refer to Julian in the third person, those for chapters 2, 8, 9, 50, 51, 66, 69, and 81. All headings may be editorial, and those for chapters 9 and 81 almost certainly are, referring, as they do, to "the mekenes of this woman" and "this blissid woman."
42 the eighth day of May. P gives May 13 as the date.
44-45 three wounds. The shorter text adds a reference to Saint Cecelia: "For the thirde, I harde a man telle of halye kyrke of the storye of Saynte Cecylle. In the whilke schewynge I undyrstode that sche hadde thre woundys with a swerde in the nekke, with the whilke sche pynede to the dede. By the styrrynge of this I conseyvede a myghty desyre, prayande oure lorde god that he wolde grawnte me thre woundys . . ." [For the third, I heard a man tell of holy church's story of Saint Cecelia, from which account I understood that she had three wounds with a sword in her neck, with which she suffered till death. By this inspiration I conceived a mighty desire, praying our Lord God that He would grant me three wounds] (fol. 97v). This single mention of a normal and specific mode of receiving information is of hearing, not reading. Riehle believes that the request for three wounds and for physical illness owes something to women mystics on the continent whose writings may have reached England; the parallels he gives are approximate (pp. 28-30).
50 and suffer with Him. The shorter version adds, "not withstandynge that I leevyd sadlye alle the peynes of cryste as halye kyrke schewys & techys, & also the payntyngys of crucyfexes that er made be the grace of god aftere the techynge of haly kyrke to the lyknes of crystes passyoun, als farfurthe as manys witte maye reche" [notwithstanding that I firmly believed all the pains of Christ just as holy church shows and teaches, and also the paintings of crucifixes that are made to the likeness of Christ's passion, as far as man's intelligence may reach, by the grace of God, and after the teaching of holy church] (fol. 97r). Commentators cite this passage as evidence that religious art affects the images of the showings. For the possibility that "payntyngys" may be a neo-Platonic term, see C&W, I, 202, and the article cited there by G. V. Smithers, "Two Typological Terms in the Ancrene Riwle," Medium Aevum 34 (1965), 126-28.
Julian's desire to be in effect a fellow witness of the Crucifixion would not be unusual in the affective piety of the fourteenth century. Richard Rolle, the earlier fourteenth-century mystic, wrote a "Meditations on the Passion" in which the speaker attempts to view the events of Christ's last hours from arrest to entombment as if they were unfolding before his eyes in sequence (English Writings of Richard Rolle, ed. Hope Emily Allen [Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1931], pp. 17-36). The popular pseudo-Bonaventuran Meditationes vitae Christi (13th century) initiated and sustained many similar devotions. See Jantzen for a sketch of precedents and the role of monastic reading technique as an influence upon the development of such devotion (pp. 56-58). What is unusual about Julian's petition is the form its granting took. For the theme of Christ's suffering as it figures in the writings of female mystics in particular, see Petroff, pp. 9-16. For the distinctive caste of Julian's treatment of this theme, see Bhattacharji, pp. 85-88.
64 seying. S2; S1 sey. P's syntax is too different to furnish the word.
69 willfull longing to God. In medieval psychology the will was the faculty which could choose and love. Will and willful are specific, weighted words in Julian, usually carrying the sense of a sustained intentionality, a fully conscious choosing. See lines 85, 167-68, 225-28, and 2710-12 as typical examples. Though the request for a critical illness to death is the one that startles, to a great extent this third part of her third request, the desired willful longing to God, constitutes the core subject of the Shewings which also illustrates it. Longing may mean either yearning or belonging, and Julian's use frequently captures both definitions.
77 sweeme. S1 marginal gloss: regret.
89 My curate was sent for. A is more circumstantial: "thay that were with me sente for the persoun, my curette, to be atte myne endynge [the parson, my curate, to be at my end]. He come, and a childe with hym, and brought a crosse & be thanne I hadde sette myne eyenn [eyes], and myght nought speke. The persone sette the crosse before my face, and sayde: 'Dowghtter, I have brought the [thee] the ymage of thy sauioure"' (fol. 98r).
99 After this the other party of my body began to dyen. A reports, "Myne handdys felle downe on aythere syde, and also for vnpowere my heede satylde downe" [went limp] (fol. 98r).
100 onethys. S1 marginal gloss: scarcely.
onde. S1 marginal gloss: winde.
106 lever. S1 marginal gloss: rather.
126-27 that He that is so reverend and dredfull will be so homley. Homeliness is a favorite item in Julian's vocabulary. Along with courteous, it describes God's personal, loving attitude toward the individual soul. English mystics may also use homely in passages on intimate communion of the soul with the divine. The author of The Cloud of Unknowing writes that some aspirants do not reach "ravisching" - mystic union - "with-outyn moche & longe goostly excersise," but that others "ben so sotyl [subtle] in grace & in spirit, & so homely with God in this grace of contemplacion, that thei mowe [may] have it [i.e., God's presence] when thei wolen [wish to]" (ed. Phyllis Hodgson, EETS o.s. 218, 1944; rev. 1973 [London: Oxford University Press, 1981], p. 126). Compare The Book of Margery Kempe, ed. Meech and Allen, p. 90. According to Riehle, homeliness translates familiaritas, which Gregory the Great (c. 540-604) introduced into theological language to describe the mystical union of the soul and God (pp. 97-99). S1 here glosses homely in the margin as familiar. Julian sometimes uses the word in its specialized sense, sometimes colloquially.
129 or. S1 marginal gloss: before.
139 hir maker. S1 his. S2 agrees with P's her.
143 manhood. P; S1 omits.
145 for us. P to our helpe.
146-47 wrappeth us . . . tender love. S1 is intermittently blotched by ink that has soaked through from the other side of the page. P expands the clause: wrappeth us and wyndeth us, halseth us and all becloseth us, hangeth about us for tender love.
151 lesten. S1 marginal gloss: last.
152 it might suddenly have fallen to nowte for littil. The short text continues, "In this blyssede revelacion god schewyd me thre noughtes of whilke noughttes [showed me three naughts, of which naughts] this is the fyrste that was schewyd me. Of this nedes ilke [each] man and woman to hafe knawynge that desyres to lyeve contemplatyfelye [live as a contemplative], that hym lyke to nought alle thynge that es made for to hafe the love of god that es unmade" (fol. 99v). This passage implies that Julian may have written the short text with contemplatives in mind as her primary audience. The other "naughts" are probably sin and the devil (C&W, I, 215).
161 howe. P have. S1 marginal gloss: know. It is tempting to follow the marginal gloss and to emend howe to knowe, so that the sense would be more parallel with the have knoweing in line 160. As is, for to love and howe God that is unmade seems to mean "in order to love and have (possess, obtain) God who is without creator."
175-76 touchen the will. S1 marginal gloss: agreeing to his will.
207 oure God. P; S1 omits.
207-08 that hath us all in Himselfe beclosyd. P adds: "A man goyth vppe ryght and the soule of his body is sparyde [closed], as a purse fulle feyer. And whan it is tyme of his nescessery, it is openyde and sparyde ayen [again] fulle honestly. And that it is he that doyth this it is schewed ther wher he seyth, he comyth downe to vs to the lowest parte of oure nede" (fol. 12r). C&W offers the translation "cooked, digested food" for soule from OE sufol (II, 306). A. M. Allchin comments, "Julian is so integrated in herself, so penetrated throughout her being by this conviction of the all-encompassing goodness of God, that she can speak quite simply of the processes of the digestion and evacuation of food as ways in which God serves us. There are few spiritual writers who have spoken so directly and so naturally on this subject" (pp. 37-38).
209 simplest office that to. to P; S1 do.
212 bouke. S1 marginal gloss: Bulke.
216 herete. S1 marginal gloss: heart.
226 blyn. S1 marginal gloss: cease, leave fr.
233 even Cristen. S1 marginal gloss: Xstian neighbour.
235 the hey. S1 they hey.
241-51 In all the tyme . . . spreadeing on the forehead. In the course of an argument that cultural representations may be constitutive of the mystic's experience, Laurie A. Finke writes that this passage hints of an intense meditation upon a visual image (for instance, in a book of hours) in which particular details "lose their relationship to the whole composition and begin to remind her of other inanimate objects. As she traces the brushstrokes, following the change in color from brownish red to bright red, finally vanishing from the canvas, other images - pellets, raindrops, herring's scales - suggest themselves to her, transforming the suffering into an artistic vision, a representation that seems self-conscious in its artifice" (Feminist Theory, Women's Writing [Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1992], p. 97). Without taking anything from the absorbed intensity that Finke observes, the possibility also exists that this is simply another example of Julian's free use of everyday surroundings. Campbell has noted that fish, especially herring, may have formed a major source of wealth for Norwich as early as the eleventh century. A charter of between 1114 and 1160 records a render of at least 2,000 herring owed by a house in the city, and herring pies were among the renders which Norwich owed to the Crown in the thirteenth century (p. 7). My own sense of the passage is that this is an effort to communicate, to get the vision down exactly as remembered.
244 semand. S1 marginal gloss: seeming.
252 mynde. P; S1 omits.
258-59 He shewid this opyn example. Nuth regards this as an intimation of the lord and servant parable of chapter 51, pointing out that, like that parable, this and other passages that feature a lord or king in relation to a servant or subject appear only in the long text (p. 31).
266 hart. P; S1 partially illegible.
290 that ever was, is, and ever shal bene. This is the first of Julian's several echoes of the doxology: "Glory be to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit who was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end." Among many instances, see lines 815-16 and 836-37. This is the only familiar liturgical formula that Julian resorts to continually. She would have heard it at mass. J. P. H. Clark notes Julian's attribution of might, wisdom, and love to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit respectively as the common appropriation based on Augustine and developed by the scholastics ("Fiducia," p. 225).
303 sterid. S1 marginal gloss: stirr'd.
306 domys day. Two doomsdays await the soul; Julian refers to the individual judgment of the soul at the individual's moment of dying; at the apocalyptic doomsday at the end of time, souls and bodies will be reunited for a final, confirming, general judgment.
310 mervil. S1 marginal gloss: strange.
314 levyn. S1 marginal gloss: leave of. The word may be glossed either believe or leave. In the first case, Julian says that since God intends the revelation not for herself alone but also for all her even Christians, they should believe it. In the second case, she urges that Christians use her report of her beholding merely as a crutch, discarding it for beholding God Himself. See also notes to lines 1585 and 2876.
328-32 And God hat made al . . . and God is in al. In A this passages continues into Julian's apology (or apologia) for addressing fellow Christians as a teacher even though she is a woman (fols. 100v-101r), given below, Appendix A.
330-32 For in mankynd . . . and God is in al. This is Julian's first statement of an inclusiveness that binds God and human souls, creator, creatures, and creation, in an interpenetrating reality.
335 But in al thing I leve as Holy Church levith, preachith, and teachith. This is the first of Julian's affirmations of accordance with the Church's teaching.
leve. S1 gloss: beleeve.
348 sollowing. A reads sowlynge (fol. 101v), which C&W gives as "to soil," derived from OF suill(i)er, soill(i)er. For Biblical background, see C&W II, 324.
351 it vanyssched. P; S1 omits.
355 For I saw Him and sowte Hym. S1: For I saw him sowte; marginal gloss: sowght. P: And thus I saw him and sought him.
363-65 Than I understode . . . harme. S1 marginal gloss: NB. This nota bene annotation is comparable to marginal hands in earlier medieval manuscripts, which call the user's attention to passages some reader favored.
364 is with. P; S1 illegible.
366-67 will that. P; S1 illegible.
370 sprets. S1 marginal gloss: spirits.
375 the holy vernacle of Rome. According to the legend of the vernicle, St. Veronica's kerchief became impressed with an exact image of the face of the suffering Christ when she compassionately wiped His face as He carried the cross to Calvary. Preserved at St. Peter's in Rome, the cloth became an object of pilgrimage. C&W discusses Julian's use of the vernicle, gives an account the devotion's currency in fourteenth-century England, and provides a bibliography (I, 53-55).
395 owen to trowen. S1 marginal gloss: We ought to believe.
400 rewfull. P; S1 reuly.
403 this wrought. P: this is wrought.
404 fyndyng is. S1 reads fyndyng is is.
425 full. S1 marginal gloss: very.
440-41 For He is . . . no synne. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
467 meneing. S1 marginal gloss: speaking.
With dazzling rapidity, Julian moves in this chapter from the specific showing of the scourging to the cosmic theaters of God's redemptive blood, earth, heaven, and hell. The shift is also one from literal to typological to anagogical levels of allegory, as the transitions from blood to water, to generic liquid, and back to blood whip to a rhetorical peroration. But all this is guided by a specific, self-reflexive note on her associative process, "And than cam to my minde" (481).
473-74 seming of the scorgyng. The seming or furrowing is from gashes; Glasscoe's glossary gives weals. "Appearance" is surely one translation of seming, but derivation from seam, a furrow, groove, or gash from a long, incised wound is equally a possibility. Either makes sense. The MED cites Julian in giving "gash" for seam.
479 if it had be so in kind and in substance. Elizabeth N. Evasdaughter calls attention to the hypothetical phrasing; Julian noticed an "edge" between her visions and the ordinary perceived world and did not require that what was seen in them correspond to what would have been seen in non-visionary circumstances (p. 204).
480 it should have made the bed al on blode and a passid over aboute. Maria R. Lichtmann points to the "charged," "taboo" aspect of this profuse bleeding, an outpouring made even more taboo, she observes, when comparing its overflowing of boundaries to the necessity for containment of fluidity stressed in Talmudic texts (pp. 15, 18, note 11). Lichtmann's basic argument is that unlike those spiritual writers who wish to escape the prison of body, Julian regards the body as the locus of spiritual enlightenment, developing both an epistemology, the body as a vehicle for knowing God, and a theology of the body (p. 17). Elizabeth Robertson comments on this passage and compares Julian's "extraordinary and idiosyncratically female uses of blood imagery" with Richard Rolle's meditation upon Christ's blood (pp. 154-56).
483 hys. P; S1 is. to wassch us. P; S1 illegible.
Chapter XIII encres. S1 marginal gloss: encrease.
505-06 all sent of salvation. Marion Glasscoe comments that sent is used in a "common medieval context of divine dispensation and refers to those ordained by God to salvation" ("Visions and Revisions," 112).
510-11 But in God may be no wreth, as to my syte. Perhaps an implied contrast to the devil's malicious attitude, this comment can only be inferentially linked with what goes before; the theme will be taken up more fully in chapter 48.
518 seen. P; S1 ben.
522 sothfastnes. S1 marginal gloss: veracity, constancy.
524 game. P; S1 same.
Chapter XIV servants. S2; S1 servats.
546 that him. S1 that him hym.
554 underfongyn. S1 marginal gloss: received.
561 the lever he is to serve Him . . . his life. Here and in similar passages, the Paris manuscript gives she as the pronoun for the soul to S1's he or it. Perhaps because of Latin anima, the medieval pronoun for the soul is frequently feminine. The phrase the dayes of his is lightly crossed through in S1.
564 was in al peace. S1 reads was was.
567 onethis. S1 marginal gloss: scarcely.
574-76 I migte have seid with Seynt Paul . . . I perish. See Romans 8:35: "Who then shall separate us from the love of Christ?"; Matt. 8:25: "And they came to him and awakened him, saying: Lord, save us, we perish"; and Matt. 14:30: "he was afraid: and when he began to sink, he cried out, saying: Lord, save me." The passages from Matthew are conflated. Julian's references to the Bible are not so direct or so pervasive as those of most Middle English mystics; one gets the impression that Hilton would have no text without the Bible. Colledge and Walsh, whose appendices include a thorough one on Julian's Biblical allusions, regard her independence as a clue that she made her own translations from the Vulgate. Though she might have used a Wycliffite translation, her wording is not close to the only ones known to have been in circulation in her time. Other possibilities are a Wycliffite Bible unknown to us or an Anglo-French translation. They conclude that her own translating is most probable. ("Editing Julian of Norwich's Revelations," pp. 408-11). See also Pelphrey's appendix in Love Was His Meaning on the influence of Scripture, pp. 331-49. The evidence is also consistent with Biblical familiarity through hearing and quotation from memory.
587 folow. P; S1 illegible.
594-95 swemful. S1 marginal gloss: strange gastly.
597 same. P; S1 eche. Eche makes sense, but Julian elsewhere indicates that she is aware that Christ, in fact, died but once. See A, fol. 103v.
597-99 For that same tyme . . . sigte. S1 marginal gloss: NB. This is the only physical manifestion of the showings given a nota bene. Although cold is frequently a feature of representations of the Crucifixion in the thirteenth through the fifteenth centuries, the notice of a harsh wind is rare, if not unique, among them.
598 wonder. P; S1 wond.
606 and peynfully dreyden up all the lively spirits of Crists fleshe. Vincent J. DiMarco's note to Chaucer's Knight's Tale A.2743-56 is helpful: "According to the physiology developed from Galen, there were three kinds of virtues (otherwise called spirits) that operate most of the body's vital processes: the natural, situated in the liver; the vital, localized chiefly in the heart; and the animal, operating through the brain" (The Riverside Chaucer, ed. Larry D. Benson [Boston: Houghton-Mifflin, 1987], p. 839.) For passages where Chaucer chooses spirit rather than virtue, see The Knight's Tale A.1369 and The Book of the Duchess 489. Among Chaucerian cases, these are the most obviously physiological, Julian's context here. DiMarco notes Bartholomaeus Anglicus as a contemporary source. See On the Properties of Things: John Trevisa's Translation of Bartholomaeus Anglicus De Proprietatibus Rerum, ed. M. C. Seymour and others, 3 vols. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1975), 1, 103-08 (Book 3, chapters 14-16). Bartholomaeus credits Constantinus Africanus (d. 1097) as his authority; Chaucer readers will recall that as well as Galen, the second century Greek ("Galyen" A.431), "Constantyn" is among the numerous authorities known to the doctour of physik (A.433). Though her lively spirits seems to translate the vertues vitales standing in the Trevisa Bartholomaeus, it is doubtful if the work could have been known to Julian. Trevisa was a contemporary of Julian's, finishing his translation in 1398-99. But though there were numerous Latin manuscripts of Bartholomaeus available in the fourteenth century, the new English remained scarce, apparently until a printing in 1495 by Wynkyn De Worde. On the whole matter of physiological spirits, see also Walter Clyde Curry, Chaucer and the Mediaeval Sciences, 2nd rev. ed (New York: Barnes & Noble, 1960), pp. 140-45 and 203-06.
Chapter XVII S1 misnumbers as 18.
624 heire. S1 marginal gloss: haire.
629 thorow. P; S1 thowe.
645 askyd. P; S1 asky.
651 thingke P; S1 thynyn.
652 for it may not be told. The short text is more expansive here, including that Julian's mother and others were at her bedside: "Swilke paynes I sawe that alle es to litelle that y can telle or saye, for itt maye nought be tolde, botte ylke saule aftere the sayinge of saynte Pawle schulde feele in hym that in criste Jhesu. This schewynge of criste paynes fillyd me fulle of paynes, For I wate weele he suffrede nought botte anes botte as he walde schewe yt me and fylle me with mynde as I hadde desyrede before. My modere that stode emangys othere and behelde me lyftyd uppe hir hande before me face to lokke mynn eyenn for sche wenyd I had bene dede or els I hadde dyede and this encrysyd mekille my sorowe, for nought withstandynge alle my paynes, I wolde nought hafe beenn lettyd for loove that I hadde in hym" [I saw such pains that all I can tell or say is too little, for they may not be told; but each soul, after the saying of Saint Paul, should feel in him what Jesus Christ felt. This showing of the pains of Christ filled me full of pain, for I know well He suffered but once; but He wished to show this to me and fill me with full knowledge, as I had desired before. My mother, who stood among others and beheld me, lifted up her hand before my face to close my eyes, for she thought I was dead, or else had just died. And this increased my sorrow much, for notwithstanding all my pains, I did not want to be stopped (from seeing the showing) because of the love I had in Him.] (fol. 103v).
661 is. P; S1 omits.
663 sothfastly. S1 marginal gloss: assuredly.
664 so. P; S1 illegible.
Chapter XVIII with. S2; S1 omits.
687 Sain Dionyse of France. Tradition had gathered about the mid-third century career of Saint Dionysius or Denis of France, apostle and martyr in Gaul, the lives of two other figures, the Dionysius of Acts 17 converted by St. Paul (Dionysius the Areopagite) and the late fifth- or early sixth- century author of mystical tracts, pseudo-Dionysius, who assigned his work to the apostolic contemporary. Julian gives to her figure the inscription "To the unknown God" which Paul finds at Athens and claims as a reference to Christ. The Cloud of Unknowing author translated writings of pseudo-Dionysius. Although not all are persuaded, it has been suggested that familiarity with pseudo-Dionysius marks Julian's thought (Reynolds, "Some Literary," pp. 23-24). Classified as possibly pseudo-Dionysian are the seeing of God in a point (427-28); the statement that all kinds flow out of God (2600-04); and the special use of touch (e.g., 1237, 2317, and 3346).
689-90 kynde. auter. S1 marginal glosses: nature. Alter.
727-33 And thus saw I . . . dethe. A usual reading of this passage would regard it as a trope. Denise Levertov's "On a Theme from Julian's Chapter XX" enforces the difficult, literal reading. See Breathing the Water (New York: New Directions, 1984), pp. 68-69.
740 mannys. P; S1 manny.
Chapter XXI Crosse. S1 capitalizes Cross throughout this chapter.
756 wet. Perhaps P's wende is preferable.
Chapter XXII The ninth Revelation is of the. The, of S2; S1 he, o.
785 bodyly. S1 dodyly. P bodely.
787 mede. S1 marginal gloss: reward.
792 beyeng. S1 marginal gloss: buying.
798 never. S1 neve. P nevyr.
843 lykyng. S1 marginal gloss: liking.
847 And. P; S1 Ad.
Chapter XXIV two. S2; S1 tw.
871 that is to mene. S1 marginal gloss: conceive.
878 have. P; S1 hay.
915 conceyvyd. P; S1 grevid.
917 Lorde. P; S1 Lodd. And after this. The short version reads: "And eftyr this oure lorde schewyd hym to me mare gloryfyed as to my syght than I sawe hym before, and in this was I lerede that ilke saule contemplatyfe to whilke es gyffenn to luke and seke god schalle se hire and passe vnto god by contemplacioun" [And after this our Lord showed Himself to me more glorified in my sight than I had seen Him before, and in this I was taught that to each contemplative soul to whom it is given to look and seek God shall see her and pass to God by contemplation] (fol. 106r). In the short text there is no chapter division at this point; C&W refers hire to Mary above, citing a belief that one's last days may be graced by a vision of Mary occurring in a prayer frequently inscribed in French books of hours (I, 243). Though the pronoun in this passage is probably not evidence of the fact, elsewhere Julian clearly advances feminine aspects of divinity.
918-19 I was lernyd that our soule shal never have rest til it comith to Hym. As a number of commentators have observed, the language recalls St. Augustine's fecisti nos ad te et inquietum est cor nostrum, donec requiescat in te [you have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you (Confessions, 1.1)]. Reynolds places Augustine as second only to the Vulgate Bible as an influence upon Julian ("Some Literary," p. 22).
Chapter 27 is headed as 28 in S1. This chapter begins the discussion of sin that is quoted in T. S. Eliot's "Little Gidding." According to Loretta Lucido Johnson's work in progress, Eliot became acquainted with Julian when as an undergraduate he read W. R. Inge's Studies of English Mystics (1906). At that time he also read Evelyn Underhill's Mysticism (1911) and took notes upon it (Helen Gardner, The Composition of Four Quartets [New York: Oxford University Press, 1978], p. 69, note 82). Eliot later met Underhill and also May Sinclair, whose Defence of Idealism: Some Questions and Conclusions (New York: Macmillan, 1917) refers to Julian several times. (See esp. pp. 240-89.) Eliot reviewed some of Sinclair's work, and they met socially, according to Johnson's dissertation, T. S. Eliot's "Criterion," 1922-1939, Columbia University, 1980, pp. 13-15. Underhill was also a contributor to Criterion. Julian's writing therefore reached deeply into Eliot's past when he retrieved it in the early forties for three passages in "Little Gidding" (lines 166-68, 196-99, and 255-56). The quotations from Julian are a revision; early drafts show in their place a readaptation of the familiar Eucharistic prayer "Anima Christi." When he substituted Julian's "Sin is behovely" he needed to identify the lines (and also one from The Cloud of Unknowing) for his correspondent, friend, and consultant, John Hayward. Gardner's book includes an excerpt from the Hayward correspondence in which Eliot says that he read "Juliana" in the Cressy edition in a reprint published "where, do you think? Why, in St. Louis, Mo." (p. 7l). For details on the revision see Gardner, pp. 69-71 and pp. 201-24. Susan McCaslin reviews Eliot's choice of Julian with the further suggestion that in selecting Julian for a representation of the English mystical life, he has retrieved a writer whose experience and movements of thought between concrete and abstract parallel his own imaginative movements in their dealings with time's relation to eternity ("Vision and Revision in Four Quartets: T. S. Eliot and Julian of Norwich," Mystics Quarterly 12 , 172).
936 without reason and discretion. A adds, ". . . of fulle grete pryde. & neverthelesse Jhesu in this visioun enfourmede me of alle that me neded. I saye nought that me nedes na mare techynge, for oure lorde with the schewynge of this hase lefte me to haly kyrke [holy church], and I am hungery and thyrstye and nedy and synfulle and freele, & wilfully submyttes me to the techynge of haly kyrke with alle myne even crystenn in to the ende of my lyfe. He aunswerde be this worde, and sayde: "Synne is behovelye . . ." (fol. 106r). Watkin glosses behovely, usually translated necessary, "has its part in the Divine economy of good" (p. 22). Sheila Upjohn translates, "Sin is behovely - it had to be -" in In Love Enclosed: More Daily Readings with Julian of Norwich, ed. Robert Llewelyn (London: Darton, Longman and Todd, 1985), p. 29. I owe my acquaintance with Upjohn's clear translations from Julian to Rose Ronan Halpern and Mary Daley Ronan.
950-51 But I saw not synne, for I beleve it hath no manner of substance ne no party of being. That evil is a privation of good, a nothingness, rather than a part of creation was a common philosophical proposition which could have come to Julian from several sources, among them St. Augustine (see Confessions 3.7 and 7.12-16) or Boethius (Consolation 4.2); Colledge and Walsh have proposed that Julian just may have read Chaucer's translation of Boethius ("Editing Julian of Norwich's Revelations," p. 422).
Substance is technical and philosophical here, referring to the core reality of any manifestation, material or spiritual. Substance is the inner actuality independent of external changes. Later, Julian will assert that our natural substance is always kept safe in God (1565-66 and 1597-98), and even that there is no difference between God and our substance (2221), quickly re-stating: "God is God, and our substance is a creture in God" (2222-23). The "fullest substance" is the "blissid soule of Criste" (2203). Earlier uses of the word informed by this meaning occur at lines 157-58, "substantially onyd," and line 668, "a substance of kynd love."
960 sythen. P; S1 seith.
974 lakid. S1 marginal gloss: not liked of, from the dutch word lackon, to dispraise, to blame, being the opposit to the D. word prijsen, to praise.
994 menyng. S1 marginal gloss: thought.
1000 asyeth. S1 marginal gloss: satisfaction.
1008 mankynde. P; S1 mankyd.
1009 councellid. S1 counellid. P counceylyd.
1015 privy councell. The OED gives Barbour's Bruce, 1375, as its first instance of privy council to designate a group of private counsellors to the sovereign. Julian's quick troping of a political term new in the vernacular indicates an absorbing mind, or it may merely signal that she knew Latin. James F. Baldwin's The King's Council in England during the Middle Ages (1913; rpt. Gloucester, Mass.: Peter Smith, 1965) notes that the terms secretum consilium and privatum consilium appear in official records from the first quarter of the century; French equivalents such as le privé counseil also became current at this time. The term did not refer to the more powerful ancestor of the present British institution, but simply to a royal council secretly summoned (p. 105). Julian's diction is politically allusive. In this passage, it is an added force that "ryal lordship" referred to real and great, not titular, power in the daily world. The positioning of lord and servant in chapter 51 speaks to daily power relations with which Julian would expect any conceivable audience to identify. Even a term like courtesy, so frequent in her Shewings, was tinged by the existence of courts which functioned as real centers of power, sources of support, and cultural models.
1033 shalle. P; S1 sha.
1040 fully. P; S1 filly.
1042 amenst. Probably for anemst, "concerning," as in line 1047 and after. S1 reads amenst the God the godhede. S1 marginal gloss: as concerning, or w[i]th respect unto.
1077 dedes. S1 dedse. P dedys.
1078 harmes. P; S1 harmy.
1094-96 This is the grete dede . . . wele. S1 marginal gloss: NB. Several commentators have speculated that the great deed planned from time's beginning to be known only at time's end is universal salvation. Although she concludes that "Julian does not, strictly speaking, teach a doctrine of universal salvation," Joan Nuth assembles anew the evidence for such a possibility (pp. 162-69).
1099 growndid. S1 gowndid. P groundyd.
1118 prefe. P; S1 privy.
that. S1 reads that that, reiterating the word at the end of the MS line with an abbreviation at the head of the next line. The scribe does the same thing with the that in line 1123.
1123 that. S1 reads that that.
1133 But I saw not so propirly specyfyed the Jewes. Julian discriminates between what her visions tell her and what she understands to be the church's teaching. She does not contradict the second, but her showings simply do not include cursed Jews; and she says they do not. The devil is within her imaging of the spiritual world, but damned souls are not. She gives no evidence that she participated in the anti-Semitism of her time and place. The first legend of Jewish ritual child murder comes from Norwich, that of St. William, d. 1144. "The mutiliated body of this twelve-year-old boy was found in a wood outside Norwich; five years later it was alleged that he was a victim of ritual murder by Jews. The authorities seem not to have credited the story; but the common people did, and William was venerated locally as a martyr" (Donald Attwater, The Penguin Dictionary of Saints [Harmondsworth, Eng.: Penguin Books, 1965], p. 342). Chaucer readers will recall "yonge Hugh of Lyncoln" (d. 1255) "slayn also / With cursed Jewes," whom the Prioress apostrophizes as she closes a similar, later story (VII.684-85). England had expelled its Jews in 1290. There had been a Jewish community in Norwich from about 1144; Jews gave the city its "only early physicians" (Walter Rye, Some Historical Essays Chiefly Relating to Norfolk, Part II [Norwich: H.W. Hunt, 1926], p. 136). They did not have an easy time there. See V.D. Lipman, The Jews of Medieval Norwich (London: Jewish Historical Society, 1967) for an account of the community. The story of William and accounts of other episodes of Christian conflicts with the Jewish community during the some hundred and fifty years of its existence are given on pp. 49-64.
1135 dampnyd. P; S1 dampny.
1153 we may. P; S1 me way.
1158-59 He is the techyng, He is the techer, He is the leryd. For a survey of Christ as teacher in Julian and a compressed account of the background tradition see Sister Ritamary Bradley, "Christ, the Teacher."
1161 seke. P; S1 seky.
1166 Hys. P; S1 hss.
1167 a certeyn creature that I lovid. The short text does not give the information that the person in whom Julian takes an interest had begun in "good lyvyng," but does indicate that this beloved soul was a woman: "And when God alle myghttye hadde schewed me plentyuouslye and fully of his goodnesse, I desyred of a certayne persoun that I lovyd howe it schulde be with hire. And in this desyre I lettyd [hampered] myselfe, for I was noght taught in this tyme" (fol. 108r). It has been proposed that the person may have been a child, Emma, the daughter of Sir Miles Stapleton, whose house was visible from the cell window of Saint Julian's church, according to Robert Flood. Lady Emma Stapleton later was a recluse at White Friars Priory (1421-42). Flood imagines the circumstances of Julian's concern for this neighbor child, who would have traveled the road past the cell on her way to another of the Stapleton residences: "Doubtless she had many conversations with the lady through her window . . ." (p. 39). Of course any such identification is speculative. Flood's small book (see Introduction, p. 9, note 12), is an attractive, affectionate effort to propose for Julian's words literal details of the precise local world of their utterance as well as a report of the church structure, which Flood studied before the bombing of 1942.
1178 Hymselfe. S1 hymsef.
1188 by. P; S1 omits.
1189 onto. S1 reads onto to.
1191 Hymselfe. S1 hymsef.
werks. S1 weks. P workes.
1192 soule that seith. that. P; S1 the.
1198-1200 And by His sufferaunce we fallyn. . . . And be mercy and grace we arn reysid. Pelphrey writes that Julian uses neither of the chief versions of progress in spiritual life offered in medieval mystical theology, ascent (as in the image of Hilton's scale) or the triadic stages of purgation, illumination, and union with God. She does not speak about ascent or about distinctions in spirituality, but offers the image of falling and rising with the falls also benefitting the soul. A theology of falling and rising is developed through chapters 47-49 and 61-85 (Love Was His Meaning, pp. 199-204). For summing statements, see lines 2080-81, 3138-42, and 3333-35.
1199 sufferaunce. P; S1 suffranc.
Chapter XXXVI known. S2. S1 kowen.
1204 Hymselfe. S1 hymsef.
1209 shalle. P; S1 sha.
1216 He. P; S1 omits.
1229 shalle. P; S1 sha.
1233-34 matter of mekenes . . . matter to enjoyen in me. In their translation of the long text, Colledge and Walsh indicate that Julian uses matter in its philosophical sense as the primary stuff of creation "to which form is to be given" (Julian of Norwich: Showings, p. 239, note 163). Panichelli refers matter in this passage to the antecedent sin, and sets this dialectically against the view that sin has no "manner substance ne no party of being" which Julian has advanced in chapter 27 (pp. 304-05; p. 310).
1238-39 Lete be al thi love . . . thi salvation. Margaret Gascoigne, member of the seventeenth-century Benedictine community which almost certainly is responsible for the writing of S1 and P, quotes these lines and identifies them as being by "a deere childe of thine . . . Julian the Ankress" (see Introduction above, pp. 15-16). She follows the P reading, "Lett me aloone, my derwurdy chylde" (fol. 65v). C&W suggest that the P reading can be understood as "Do not seek to hinder me," with precedent for the phrase in Exodus 32:9-10 (II, 439). The S1 reading may be understood as "Allow all your love to come into its full existence," or as "Let alone - have done with - lesser attachments and loves." The second possibility would reinforce the folly of "beholdying of the reprovyd," which is the immediate context of this divine locution.
1240 Lordys. P; S1 Lods.
1245 we. P; S1 omits.
1259 for sorrow. for. P; S1 omits.
1264 that. S1 tha.
1273-74 For in every soule that shal be savid is a godly wil that never assentid to synne ne never shal. The statement has been called heretical (e.g., Hudleston, pp. xxiii-iv, and Wolters, pp. 37-38). See Hanshell's essay for a review of the question, and Clark, "Fiducia," for precedents in Cassian and William of St. Thierry (p. 218). See also Judith Lang, "'The Godly Wylle' in Julian of Norwich," The Downside Review, 102 (1984), 163-74; del Mastro (1988), pp. 84-93; Gilchrist, pp. 77-88; and C&W I, 254, note 9, and II, 443, note 15.
1278-79 as wele. as. P; S1 a.
1287-88 the goodnes of God suffrith never that soul to synne that shal come there. P reads: that soule to synne fynally that shalle come ther. Without fynally, Julian appears to be stating that God does not permit a Christian to sin at all. Pelphrey, opposing a suggestion that fynally may have been a scribal insertion, observes that without this, the sentence contradicts what Julian says elsewhere, that she has been given to understand that she and her even-Christians will sin (Love Was His Meaning, pp. 275-76).
1288 but which synne shal be rewardid . . . made knowen. Charles Cummings comments upon Julian's insights as analogous to Christ's appearance to Thomas, with wounds in hands and side, the risen Christ standing in continuity with the historical Jesus. Julian's insight amounts to a "safeguard of individual identity. The continuity of the individual person is preserved, with his or her unique identity shaped through life by failures as well as triumphs. . . . The total reality of sinful as well as virtuous deeds remains a fact of personal history and world history. It is the same, historical, sinful, forgiven person who is predestined, called, justified and glorified" ("Wounded in Glory," Mystics Quarterly 10 , 74-75).
1293 Thomas of Inde. S2. A agrees. Variations in S1 and in P offer different examples of how manuscript variations may occur. S1 reads those of Inde, a contraction of Thomas in the copy text evidently responsible for this Mandevillian aura. The Paris manuscript gives Thomas and Jude. Here the scribe evidently transcribes the i/j and the minims of u/n from copy, perhaps accurately, but less probably, as j and n. So far as we know, Jude's life was blameless; the doubter's journey to India long formed a part of his tradition. Saint John of Beverley's story is told in Bede. Julian clearly relishes the heavenly fame of her neighbor and the immortal survival of his local identity. There are fewer local persons in the longer text - her mother and the child accompanying her curate disappear. The designation of the beloved of chapter 35 has been changed from "person" to "creature." But although Saint Cecilia is excised, the long text includes more anecdotal material drawn from church or Biblical legend, the stories of "Sain Dionyse of France," Pilate, the vernicle, and this neighboring saint.
1296 party. P; S1 illegible.
1311 and noyith him in his owne syte. The temperate noyith may indicate, as suggested in C&W, that the S1 scribe mistook a noght in the exemplar; the A reading in the corresponding passage is noghtes (I, 256 and II, 449). The P reading is purgyth. There is, however, something psychologically appropriate about noyith. Further, the Middle English shades into stronger meanings than does our annoy, including impair, damage, and distress.
1315 tunyd. P has a more probable turned, but a musical metaphor is not impossible.
1318 undertakyth. P; S1 underforgyth. S1 marginal gloss: undergoeth.
1322 wil be cast in. P reads we be cast in, which may be preferable. The wil of S1, however, is a more powerful corrective to the popular impression that Julian is unrealistically optimistic.
Chapter XL we. S2; S1 omits.
1355 He. P offers it, making the soul the one who has been in pain and prison.
1358 onyd. P; S1 onye.
1379-80 For a kynde soule hath non helle but synne. P adds, "For alle is good but syn and nought is yvell but synne." The short text includes this statement and continues, "Synne es nowthere deed no lykynge, botte when a saule cheses wilfully synne, that is payne, as fore his god, atte the ende he hase ryght nought" [Sin is neither deed nor inclination, but when a soul chooses sin wilfully, that is payne, and as to his good (or, before his God), at the end he has absolutely nothing] (fol. 109r).
1382 wyllyng. P; S1 willy.
1387 evyn. P; S1 evn.
1388 hate. P; S1 hatenly.
1390 God. P; S1 omits.
1391 After this, our Lord shewid for prayers. The short text differs in many details in the discussion of prayer, including reference to the common daily prayers said by lay people: "and in this we say Pater noster, Ave, and Crede with devocioun as god wille gyffe it" (fol. 109v). With the bidding of beads mentioned in the long text's account of the apparition of the fiend (chapter 69) and a reserved attitude toward "menes" (chapter 6), these constitute Julian's reflections on ordinary prayer. Molinari discusses Julian's teachings on contemplative prayer (Love Was His Meaning, pp. 73-139). Pelphrey's dis- cussion of Julian's theology of prayer (pp. 214-54) supplements Molinari.
1397 shewed. P; S1 swewid.
1404 And in the sixth reason. The seeming skip from one to six may be partly explained as follows: The first reason, stated comprehensively, is that the Lord is "ground of thi besekyng," which also serves as a heading for a subset, the four clauses that follow, which are reasons 2, 3, 4, and 5, respectively. The interrogative, "How shuld it than be?" with its implied answer, is the sixth reason and the conclusion of the reasoning process. Julian's designation of the first reason as "And thou besekyst it" remains a problem.
1413 onyd. P; S1 ony.
1425 febelnes. P; S1 febihede. Perhaps febilhede would be preferable.
1431 discrecion. P; S1 illegible.
1432 fifteenth Revelation. P; S1 fifth.
1433 aforn. S1 for aforn.
1434 Thankyng is a new, inward knowing. Thankyng. P; S1 thakyng. See Father John-Julian, OJN, "Thankyng in Julian," Mystics Quarterly, 15 (1989), 70-74, for the view that the etymological link that thank shares with think (OE thencan) informs this passage and others (e.g., line 1012) where Julian speaks of thanking. Using P's true for new, and amending lovely to lowley, he translates thankyng in this passage as "a steadfast, inner awareness with great veneration and humble awe, which turns us with all our strength towards the deeds to which our good Lord guides us" (72). The link with think seems especially valuable as an example of Julian's way with words, although the P reading and the emendation conventionalize the more spiky, difficult, and rewarding, S1 reading thakyng (throbbing, beating).
1475 to. P; S1 omits.
1477 the dede that is now in doyng. This on-going deed is not the eschatological deed that is to make all things well ultimately (chapter 30). See Hanshell, pp. 80-81, and Pelphrey, Love Was His Meaning, pp. 295-305.
1486 other. S1 has a squiggle over the o which might suggest owther or nother. S2 reads either.
1513 Hymselfe. P; S1 hymsefe. eur. P gives oure, S2 our. The scribe of S has written eur above a canceled but still legible the. Eur, an infrequent form of eower, is the indefinite your, equivalent to one's. Pronoun shifts are common in Middle English. Compare the movement from first to third to a second person thyselfe in lines 408-11 above, and, more jarringly, the my of line 3110 below.
1513-16 But whan . . .syte. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1516 unperceyvable. P; S1 onperciable.
1541 fulsomly. P; S1 fusumly.
1545 strengthyth. P; S1 stengtneth.
1565 kynde substance. See note 950-51.
1569 is herd. is. P; S1 omits.
1583 Hymselfe. S1 hymseff.
1585 I myte in no way levyn the lower dome. Levyn could mean either "believe" or "leave" and make satisfactory sense, but to translate "leave" sharpens Julian's sense of dilemma, evident also in her acceptance of damnation as a doctrine and her vision's resistance to offering "sight" of this idea. "Believe" is attractive in that it would confirm Julian's loyalty, after a single backsliding (see chapter 66) to her vision's authority, but such a translation would tendentiously contradict other affirmations, such as those in lines 334-38 and 1611-17, of adherence to church teaching. On the two "domes" of God and of the church, see Pelphrey, Love Was His Meaning, pp. 295-99. For a succinct outline of Julian's apparent divergences from "popular under-standing" of the Church's teaching, see M. L. del Mastro (1988).
1596 kyndly. P; S1 kyndy.
1597 kindly substance. See note 950-51.
1599-1600 But our passand life . . . what ourself is. The place of the concept of self in the Shewings is discussed by Ritamary Bradley, "Perception of Self in Julian of Norwich's Showings," The Downside Review 104 (1986), 227-39.
1604 forthing. S1 foething. P fortheryng.
1615 liken. S1 marginal gloss: loven.
1616 encrese. P; S1 encrecy.
1621 I saw sothfastly that our Lord was never wroth. Robert Llewelyn discusses as basic to Julian's theology the passages in which she says she sees no wrath in God ("Woman of Consolation and Strength," Julian: Woman of Our Day, ed. Llewelyn, pp. 121-39).
1625-26 God is the goodnes . . . goodnes. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1649-50 But how I understode . . . grace. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1676 is. P; S1 omits.
1681 wrath. P; S1 illegible.
1681-82 For I sow no wrath . . . love. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1692-94 Mercy . . . lif. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1699 moderhode. P; S1 moderid.
1714-15 And whan I saw all this . . . wasten our wreth. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1734-35 For I saw . . . God. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1737 agaynst. P; S1 ageys.
1749 oureselfe. P; S1 ourseffe.
1757 cum. S1 cun; P come.
1767 knowyng. P; S1 kowyng.
1779 awer. The definitions given here, trouble, and at 2163, concern, are contextual. Awer may come from awerden (OE) which means to harm or destroy. The MED yields awer-mod, "a disposition to do harm, ill-will," citing Ormulum, line 4720 (c. 1200). Perhaps in the late fourteenth century, a local variant meant being troubled oneself rather than troubling others. S2, which modernizes words from S1 a number of times, lets awer stand in both passages. P gives feer.
This chapter is the longest and most significant addition to the long text, its parable of the lord and the servant Julian's most searching consideration of sin and evil. With its explication, the parable adds one-seventh to the length of the text. Most writers on Julian conclude that the reason for its omission from the shorter text resides in her need to ponder the "mysty" example. The unfolding of the vision in her understanding took "nere twenty yeres." Readers may see in the "example" and in Julian's analysis a compact, striking fable of theodicy, but Julian refers it only to sin. Julian gives her own vision a full four-level allegoresis with typological, tropological, and anagogical levels as well as the literal one. See Patricia Mary Vinje on Julian as an allegorical writer. For a discussion of the status of the parable as a showing and its links to Julian's themes, see Glasscoe, "Means of Showing," pp. 167-75. Sister Anna Maria Reynolds (1984), pp. 118-25, discusses the chapter as a "concise and accurate" summary of salvation history.
1794 full mystily. Late Middle English blends OE mist and ME mystike to give mystily, "conveyed darkly and symbolically, after the manner of Scriptural parables" (C&W II, 513).
1796 syght. P; S1 sgte.
1810 that. P; S1 the.
1829-30 a ledying . . . enjoyen. P's reading is easier to follow: "a ledyng of my understandyng in to the lorde, in restoryng whych I saw hym hyely enjoy. . . ."
1835 reward. P; S1 illegible.
mayme. P; S1 maine.
1866ff. It longyth to the. . . . Julian outlines a method and proceeds to analyze the showing in accordance with it, much as a Jungian-trained psychologist would lead a client to "work" a dream. R. H. Thouless in The Lady Julian: A Psychological Study (London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, and New York: Macmillan, 1924), pp. 81-84, was, so far as I know, the first to notice the resemblance to clinical dream analysis. Nuth finds a basis for Julian's method in the monastic practice of lectio divina, meditating upon details of a reading (p. 36).
1868-69 seeing. P; S1 omits.
1884 blyndyd. P; S1 blindhed.
1890 knowyng. P; S1 kowyng.
1893 bryngen. S1 brynen. P bryng.
1896 The color of his cloth was blew as asure. In the ante-reliquary chapel of Norwich Cathedral, the vaulting has at its crown a small medallion with a figure of Christ in a blue mantle. The painting scheme is put at 1325 by E. W. Tristram in English Wall Painting of the Fourteenth Century (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1955), p. 230. Blues were, of course, particularly clear and brilliant in the illuminated manuscripts of the period. Later, Julian sees Christ himself in a medley of colors, and notes that they are more glorious than the robe of the lord as God the Father (2054-57). Pelphrey finds the image of Christ's new, multi-colored garment reminiscent of the emerald rainbow surrounding the throne of Christ in Revelations 4:3 and the garment of the Son of Man in Revelations 1:13 (p. 197).
1905 the Fadir. the P; S1 omits.
1913 Notwithstonding I saw. S1 here has ne saw. P, more comprehensibly, omits ne.
1925 al. S1 a; P all.
1937 lord. P; S1 Lodd.
1938-39 And inward . . . to hym. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
1946 that is to sey. that. P; S1 tha.
1950 a man. S1 reads a a man.
1965 groundyd. P; S1 grounld.
1984 understode. S1 undestode; P understonde.
1985 that. P; S1 tha.
1986 Lord. S1 Lod. P Lorde.
1999 The which kirtle. P reads wyth, white. now. P reads noght, possibly correct. However, the now compresses the human and divine identities of God's Son, looking forward to His ascension, and anticipating the nows of lines 2058-59.
2003 I stond before The in Adams kirtle. For background on this figure, see Grayson.
2012 shall. P; S1 sha.
2021 Lordis. S1 Lodis. P Lordys.
2029 wombe. P; S1 wonbe.
2032 even. S1 eve. P evyn.
2041 pecys. P; S1 pets.
2045 mankynd. S1 mankyd. P mankynde.
2052 streyte. P; S1 steyte.
Chapter LII mother. S2; S1 bother. perfectly as in heaven. S2; S1 omits.
2074-75 God enjoyeth that He is our moder. This theme, anticipated in line 1699, is here introduced almost casually, embedded in other relationships of the soul to God which are traditional analogies of varying currency which in Julian seem to stand half-way between figurative and literal. The theme will close in chapter 83 when in a Trinitarian sentence Julian refers to the light, "our Moder, Criste" (3355-56). Intensive treatment of the motherhood of Christ comes in chapters 57-63. For discussion of doctrinal, devotional, and rhetorical aspects of the motherhood of Christ in the tradition that preceded her and in The Shewings, see Heimmel, Brrresen, Bynum, Cabassut, McLaughlin, McNamer, Molinari (esp. pp. 169-86), Pelphrey (esp. pp. 84-89), and Bradley, "The Motherhood Theme."
2080-81 We have in us . . . deyand. See note 1198-1200.
2122-24 But we may wele be grace kepe us from the synnes which will ledyn us to endles paynes . . . and eschewen venial. The distinction is between mortal and venial sin, mortal sins being so grave in nature and undertaken so deliberately and whole-heartedly, that one suffices to damn an uncontrite soul. Venial sins are less critical deviations, almost inescapable ones, from love of God and neighbor.
2123 paynes. S1 payes. P payne.
2139 never. S1 neve.
2145 two. P; S1 tw.
2146 asseth. S1 marginal gloss: propitiation.
Chapter LIII ruthfulhede. In view of lines 2170 and 2173 the word should perhaps be rythfulhede. S2 reads ruthfulnes, however.
2162-67 And in this that I have now seyd . . . in the syte of God. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2163 grete. P; S1 gre.
2166 evermore. S1 evemore. P evyr more.
2169 Lord. S1 Lod. P Lorde.
2177-88 For I saw . . . knitt to God. For the biblical basis, see especially Eph. 1:3-10 and Col. 1:12-20.
2181-84 The Mid-Person . . . without begynnyng. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2187 the myte of. Repeated in S1.
2202 ever. S1 eve; P evyr. mankynd. S1 makynd. P mankynde.
2205 which knott is sotil. It is possible, if no more than that, that Julian contributed to Donne's "the subtle knot which makes us man" ("The Ecstasy"). Julian's work was saved and copied in circles which would have been congenial to his recusant ancestors.
that it is onyd. P; S1 that is onyd.
2207-08 that al the soules . . . in this holyhede. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
Chapter LIV For the use of substance in this chapter, see note 950-51.
2210 departing. S1 marginal gloss: difference.
2211-14 For it is full hesy. . . savid be Crist. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2217-18 And hey understonding . . . our soule. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2221-23 And I saw no difference . . . creture in God. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2225-26 The hey goodnes. . . and He in us. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2230-31 our sensual soule. See note 2250-51.
2232-34 For it is not ell . . . which we se not. S1 marginal gloss: NB Fides quid.
2241 His Fader. his. P; S1 ha.
2247-48 And notwithstanding . . . than in erth. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2250-51 And what tyme that our soule is inspirid into our body. "Julian distinguishes between 'the substance' of the soul grounded and dwelling in God and 'the sensuality' of the soul in which God dwells. The sensuality is the soul as informing the body, its life principle and the subject of our psycho-physical experience. It begins to exist 'what time our soul is inspired in our body"' (Watkin, p. 17). For a recent comment on "sensualyte" in Julian, see Lichtmann. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2251 as. P; S1 aso.
2260 in which se. Julian is referring to the center of authority in a bishop's jurisdiction. She uses various figures of location - home, city, seat, see - to denote God's abiding presence in the human soul.
2276 never. S1 neve. P nevyr.
2284 I myte not, for the mene profir. A friendly voice had proposed to Julian who is gazing upon the image of Christ crucified that she look up to "His Fader," a suggestion which she declines (lines 696-706).
2287-90 And thuss I saw . . . to whom it is onyd. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2294-97 God is nerer . . . shall never departyn. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2298-99 For our soule sittith in God in very rest . . . endles love. S1 marginal gloss: NB. The seated soul is at rest, as Julian says not only of the human soul seated in Christ but also of the soul of Christ reciprocally seated in the human soul (lines 2298-2306). The theme of the soul as Christ's seat reappears: "And this was a singlar joy and bliss to me, that I saw Him sitten" (lines 2825-26). See also lines 2375-77 and 2791-97. Riehle discusses the popularity of the image of God sitting in the soul in medieval mysticism and most particularly among English writers, where allegorical interpretations of the Song of Songs 2:3 informed the theme as did emphasis on the help a seated position gives for full meditative concentration (pp. 132-36). James Walsh in "God's Homely Loving: St. John and Julian of Norwich on the Divine Indwelling," The Month, n.s. 19 (1958), 164-72, discusses the Johannine basis of Julian's passage. See also J. P. H. Clark, "Nature, Grace and the Trinity in Julian of Norwich," The Downside Review, 100 (1982), 203-20. The key Biblical passage is John 15:4. Julian, of course, is aware that souls are not literally seated, and takes care to make that unmistakable when she says of the Father as lord and the Son as servant, "But it is not ment that the Son syttith on the ryte hond, syde be syde, as on man sittith be another in this lif, for ther is no such syttyng, as to my syte, in the Trinite" (lines 2066-68).
2302-04 And anempts our substaunce and sensualite . . . God. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2303 substaunce. P; S1 substane.
2307-09 And I saw . . . our own soule. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2315 substance. P; S1 substane.
2316-17 I had in partie touching. C&W: "The word is technical, belonging to the vocabulary of the spiritual senses, and frequently employed by Julian to convey that she is being directly affected and moved by the Holy Spirit to experience the reality of God, in a way which is above intellectual comprehension, but which accompanies and supports some form of inner seeing" (II, 573-74, note to 38). For other examples see lines 1237 and, especially, 3346. See note 687 above for the possible influence of pseudo-Dionysius.
2318 heyhede. Thus S1, with the marginal gloss: kindhede. P reads kyndnesse which seems more likely in view of the reliance upon the idea of "kindhede" in this passage. S2 confirms S1's heyhede, and the gloss kindhede. "Substantial heyhede" and "substantial kindhede" are informed here by the philosophical sense of substance. See note 950-51.
2320-22 For in kind . . . fulfilling. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2330 werkynges. P; S1 wekyng.
Chapter LVII substance. S2; S1 subsance. In chapters LVII-LXIII the scribe of S1 fre-quently (but not always) capitalizes the words Moder and Moderhede. The visual effect in reading the manuscript is quite striking in that the masculine pronouns for God are not capitalized. Some of the effect is muted in the present edition in that I have followed the policy of the Middle English Texts Series and thus capitalized personal pronouns and titles for God. But I have followed the manuscript's capitalization of Moder and Moderhede in these chapters, given the possibility that the practice might reflect scribal intention or, perhaps, even Julian's authority.
2334-35 And anempts our substance . . . worship. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2335 I. P; S1 omits.
2341 godhede. S1 marginal gloss: goodnes.
2347 in. P; S1 is.
2374 never. S1 neve. P nevyr.
2380 kepyng. P; S1 kepid.
2381 substance. S1 substane. P substaunce.
2387 Hymself. S1 hymseffe.
2400 kyndly. S1 kindy. P kyndely.
2404 yeldyng. P; S1 reldyng.
2424 thred. S1 tred. P thurde.
2430 gevyng. P; S1 vefyng.
2430-32 And our substance . . . al goodnes. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2433 is hole. S reads is is hole.
2436 wretchidnes. S1 wretchidns. P wrechydnesse.
2439-41 which manner of bliss we myte never had ne known . . . wherby we have this bliss. This is Julian's version of the fortunate fall.
2462 wyllyth. P; S1 omits.
2475 taken. P takyng. The reference is to the Incarnation. See lines 2470-71.
2488 rayhid. For arrayed, the S2 reading; P has arayed.
2491 but. P; S1 omits.
2497 aseth. S1 marginal gloss: satisfaction.
2511 tenth. S1, S2, and P read ninth. However, the quotation following is from the tenth showing. See chapter 24.
2522-23 she suffrid that it be bristinid in brekyng downe of vices. This is as close as Julian comes to using motherhood to figure a God who judges and disciplines as well as creates and loves. Others had occasionally developed the image severely. The thirteenth-century mystic Gertrude of Helfta sees God as a mother who loves but also tests, to the point of frightening the strayed child back into her arms by wearing terrifying masks (Bynum, pp. 189-90). In fact the word bristinid is very strong, appearing chiefly in violent contexts. See MED s.v.
2527-28 our dett that we owen, be Gods biddyng. The transfer of the fourth commandment's obligation from human to divine parent accords with the longer version's deletion of reference to Julian's own mother.
2533 kyndelyth. P; S1 kydelyth.
2538 to bend payd with Him. Thus S1; P has a less resonant be for bend.
2539 And we fallen, hastily He reysith us. See note 1198-1200.
2540 strenthyd. P; S1 stengtid.
2544-47 And than wene we . . . ourselfe. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2555-57 For therby . . . not profitt us. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2558 syth. S1 marginal gloss: afterwards.
2560 never. S1 neve. P nevyr.
2570 myselfe. S1 reads myselfe my.
2572 al swithe. S1 marginal gloss: immediately or all on a sudden.
2573-74 For if He sen . . . for love. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2583 foode of mercy. P offers flode for foode.
2588 to don it. it. P; S1 us.
2593 myght. P; S1 my.
2600 that is to sey. S1 that it is to sey.
2605-07 For of all kyndes . . . worshipp. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2616 begynnyng. S1 begynnig; P begynyng.
2619 bryngen. S1 byngen. P bryng.
2629 sothly. S1 sothy; P trewly.
2631 techyth. P; S1 tehith.
2635 never. S1 neve. P nevyr.
2643 fordreth. P; S1 foethes.
2649 other. P; S1 othe.
2658-60 Thus I understode . . . be grace. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
Chapter LXIV God wil we take. we take S2; S1 omits we.
2682 a bolned quave of styngand myre. The S1 marginal gloss gives "puffed up" for bolned and "a quaggmire," for quave. P's "a swylge stynkyng myrre" helps with "styngand."
2684 swyft. P; S1 swifie.
2687 I. P; S1 omits.
2691 yf. S1's reading. S2 joins P in reading that. That does accord with a security which Julian seems to feel throughout.
2703 over. P reads evyr.
2710-12 And thus I understode . . . that grace. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2716-17 This reverens . . . is knitt. S1 marginal gloss: Timor domini quid.
2725 himselfe. S1 himseffe. P them selfe.
2728-30 For it is His will . . . lovith. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2729-30 he shall not dredyn but Him that he lovith. P gives the reading she here. See note 561 above.
2734 if we knowen. S1 omits we; P includes it.
2735 great. P; S1 gre.
2740 the morne. S1 reads the the morne.
2742 none of the day overpassid. Since none could here mean noon or nones, the hour of the office nones (from L nona, nine, the ninth hour of the day reckoned from sunrise), that is, about 3 p.m., it is difficult to fix the time exactly. P reads or paste for overpassid. Julian uses both clock time and canonical hours in fixing times. (See lines 2865-66.) The hour of mid-day appears as an ordinary sense of the word by the fourteenth century. Marion Glasscoe in "Time of Passion: Latent Relationships between Liturgy and Meditation in Two Middle English Mystics" (Langland, the Mystics and the Medieval English Religious Tradition: Essays in Honour of S. S. Hussey, ed. Helen Phillips [Cambridge: D. S. Brewer/Boydell & Brewer, 1990]), pp. 154-58, argues that the showings assume sharper definition when related to the liturgy of the hours. The showings began, as Julian writes at the close of chapter 65, at about 4 a.m., the hour of Lauds.
2750 fulfillid. S1 fufillid. P fulfyllyd.
2753 peynes. S1 peyes. P paynes.
2759 that sawe. P; S1 than saw I.
2767 I lay still. I P; S1 omits.
2772 blak spots therin like blak steknes. P: blacke spottes . . . lyke frakylles. S 2: frecknes. Steknes is difficult; Glasscoe's glossary gives "speckles." The word may be from sticchen, "to stitch," or "to stick" (i.e., to fasten). ME stiche "stitch" is from OE stice, equivalent to Old Frisian steke. The OED gives steke as a Scottish or Northern form for stitch, but with examples from 1520. Contemporary personifications of pestilence sometimes were pictured with spots like small, vertical stitches or gashes; more rarely a fiend would be thus dappled, or even a suffering Christ. Judging from accounts of symptoms, the plague itself could be the source of the detail in this, Julian's only non-waking vision. For bubonic plague, the initial symptom was a blackish postule, followed by a subcutaneous hemorrhaging making the blotches purple. With fatal septiacaemic plague, a rash came within hours, and the larger "buboes" that Boccaccio describes in The Decameron, perhaps the best-known of medieval descriptions of plague symptoms, did not have time to form. Julian would have been six or seven when the Plague arrived in Norwich in January of 1349. It lasted till spring of 1350. Morbidity was extraordinary. Half of the beneficed clergy and variously one-third to fifty per cent of the secular population are estimated to have perished. See Robert S. Gottfried, The Black Death: Natural and Human Disaster in Medieval Europe (New York: Free Press/Macmillan, 1983) p. 8, pp. 65-66.
2784 I askid hem that wer with me if thei felt ony stynke. James T. McIlwain conjectures that the foul smell, not perceptible to others, may have come from infected mucus membranes. He discusses the physical symptoms that Julian reports and offers possible diagnoses. For the period, Julian's account of symptoms is unusally rich, he says ("The 'Bodelye syeknes' of Julian of Norwich," Journal of Medieval History 10 , 171).
2791-92 And than our Lord . . . herte. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2816 than. P; S1 that.
2819 than. P; S1 that.
Chapter LXIX S1 omits numbering this chapter. S2 gives the number.
2851 soft. S1 foft. P is onomatopoeic: "softe whystryn."
2856 that had. S1 reads that had that had.
2866 prime day. Soon after sunrise, indicated by the liturgical hour. Matins and lauds, prime, tierce, sext, nones, vespers, and compline were scheduled times for common daily prayer in monastic houses. Most religious and, in the fourteenth century and usually in abbreviated forms, some devout lay people, said the hours.
2869 For therwith is the fend overcome, as our Lord Jesus Criste seid aforn. In the short version an apostrophe to sin follows, "A, wriched synne, whate ert thou?" (fol. 113r). See Appendix A. For a cogent explanation of why Julian would omit this passage, stylistically a tour de force, see C&W, I, 271.
2876 and therefore I leve it. Leve is neatly ambiguous, both "believe" and "leave" making sense. Piquantly ambiguous leaves occur also at lines 314 and 1585.
2878-80 Thus I am bounden . . . I had ravid. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2886 thereupon. P; S1 therupo.
2893 blindhede. S1 blinhede. P blyndnesse.
Chapter LXXI glad. S2; S1 gad.
2904-05 For He havith us . . . His mede. S1 marginal gloss: NB. He P; S1 be.
2912 nede. P; S1 omits.
2915 beer. P; S1 barer.
2917 agaynst. P; S1 ageys.
2922 alle manner. P; S1 alivaner.
2925 withouten end. S1 withoutend end.
2926 never. S1 neve.
2931 medled. S1 blotched, perhaps medlid. P meddlyd.
2936-38 And thus we arn ded . . . never fro us. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2949 And in this I saw matter of myrth . . . monyng. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2950 sekirness. S1 sekirne. P feythfulnes.
2957-58 This weping meneth not al . . . understondyng. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2961 stynten of. S1 stynt n of. Perhaps the reading should be stynt ne of, thus creating a neither-nor syntax.
2963 thynke. S1 thyke. P thyngk.
2964 in. S1 in in.
2967-68 I it am . . . that is all. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
Chapter LXXIII sekenes. S2; S1 sekernes.
2976-78 For the bodily sygte, I have seid . . . sumdele. Of the nearly identical passage in the short text, Lynn Staley Johnson argues that Julian here conjures up a scribe whose activity verifies Julian's account of her visions (p. 830). Johnson believes, however, that the force of the scribal scene is mitigated in the long text because Julian has assumed a more authoritative persona in no need of an exterior scribal validation and because in the long text the position of the passage is further from the conclusion.
2978 never. S1 neve. P nevyr.
2980-87 That on is onpatience or slaith . . . most enclinand to these. As Julian will state again (lines 3127-32), she regards sloth as a particular obstacle in a religious vocation. By Julian's time, analysis of this capital sin had a long history. What she calls "onpatience," a restlessness exacerbated by enclosure, as much as laziness or bearing "trevell . . . hevily," remained in the continuum commentators discuss. Sloth (acedia) as a deterrent in the life of anchoritic withdrawal is discussed in the milieu of the Lower Egyptian hermits of the fourth century. On the somnolence side, Clay (Hermits and Anchorites, p. 101) calls attention to the Hortus Deliciarum of Herrad, twelfth-century abbess of Landsberg, where in one illumination various climbers lose their footing from a ladder of virtues, beguiled by characteristic distractions, the knight by a horse, the anchorite ("inclusus") by a bed. The illumination is reproduced in the edition of Aristide D. Caratzas with notes and commentary by A. Straub and G. Keller (New York: Caratzas Bros., 1977), Plate LVI, p. 197. For other references in Julian see lines 418-20 and the self-criticism of lines 2665-67. The early appearance of the sin in hermitic texts is set forth by Siegfried Wenzel, The Sin of Sloth: Acedia in Medieval Thought and Literature (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1960), pp. 2-18; see also p. 211, note 87.
S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2981 peynes. S1 peyes; P payne.
2989 Lord. S1 Lod. P Lorde.
2992 peynes. S1 peyes; P paynes.
2992-93 And the cause . . . onknoweing of love. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
2997-99 For som of us leven . . . we astynten. S1 marginal gloss: NB. S1 reads we s astynten.
3006-07 And this drede . . . waykenes. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3008 another. P; S1 anothe.
3027-28 For it may never . . . goodnes. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3043 asunder. S1 asuder. P onsonder. The discussion of dread closes the short text: "Therefore it is goddes wille and oure spede that we knawe thamm thus ysundure; for god wille ever that we be sekere in luffe, & peessabille & ristefulle as he is to us, and ryght so of the same condicioun as he is to us, so wille he that we be to oure selfe and to oure even christenn. Amen. Explicit Juliane de Norwych" (fol. 115r).
3044-49 That drede . . . good, and true. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3055-56 Desir we . . mytyly. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
Chapter LXXV and littlenes. S2; S1 lulshed; and omitted.
3064-65 I shall seyen, neden. P I shall say nede. C&W emend to I shall say (vs) nede, noting that the opening sentences of this chapter are much corrupted (p. 678).
3066-69 For the threist of God . . . longith. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3067 drawyn. P; S1 anwin.
3083-84 And evermore . . . suffrid. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3096 in. P; S1 omits.
Chapter LXXVI S1 gives only the number, not its customary abbreviation for chapter.
3106-08 And therefore it is Goddis will . . . risen redily. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3110-11 to my mynde. P reads to mynde.
3110-12 The soule . . . agayne it. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3112 agayne. P; S1 ageys.
3116 I. P; S1 omits.
3121 This blissid freind is Jhesus. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3130-32 namely in slauth . . . goodness. See note 2980-87. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
Chapter LXXVII specially. S2; S1 speially.
3137-38 Our good Lord shewid the enmite . . . of his parte. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3143 he hath. P; S1 omits he.
3148-50 I know wele . . . tendirly. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3159-61 For whan we have mend . . . that seen it. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3161 this. P; S1 omits.
3164-65 tho thou do. thou P; S1 omits thou.
3170-72 Our wey and our Hevyn . . . Hevyn. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3171 He gaf understonding. S1 reads he he.
3175-76 For our curtes Lord . . . desiren. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3180-81 And to be like our Lord . . . bliss. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3182 is. P; S1 omits.
3184 of His. P; S1 is of His.
3190 hem. S1 him; P them.
3200-03 And be this meke knowing . . . one us to Him. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3245 kepith. S1 repith (?), though, if so, the e is oddly formed.
P kepyth. S2 has clepyth, which could be the preferred reading.
3247 not that we beseyn. S1 is partially illegible. P reads nott that we besy, which makes better sense.
3249 alufe. P reads aloone.
3253 shewyng. P; S1 sweing.
3266 in the last end. This, the only apocalyptic touch in The Shewings, may indicate that Julian considers her own time the final stage of secular history before the general judgment. Belief that the last end was imminent was common in the fourteenth century.
in. P; S1 omits.
3267 wonnyth. S1 wonnyh; P dwellyth.
3270 it. P; S1 omits.
3271-72 I leve and understonde . . . not shewid me. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3276-77 And all swich . . . it is Christ in us. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3286-89 But thow . . . in His syte. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3298-3301 Mervelous and solemne . . . fallings. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3302 is. P; S1 omits.
3302-03 For it is the most . . . penance. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
3306-09 For His love . . . as to my syte. S1 marginal gloss: NB.
Chapter LXXXII blame. S2; S1 blom. And so we. S1 reads we we.
3324 the. S1 reads the the.
3334 in falling and in ryseing. See note to lines 1198-1200.
3335 ever. S1 eve. P evyr.
3344 be. P; S1 omits.
3345 ende. P; S1 illegible.
Chapter LXXXIII clarity. S2; S1 illegible.
3348 I it am. P; S1 omits.
3349 propertees. P; S1 illegible.
Chapter LXXXIV nedefull. S2 gives medefull, an attractive reading.
3368 with. P; S1 wth.
3369 the of. of P; S1 soft.
Chapter LXXXV He never. S2; S1 he neve.
3388 P's reading also has appeal: with one voyce.
3402-03 And fifteen yer after and more I was answerid in gostly understonding. Colledge and Walsh believe this indicates that Julian began working on the long account about 1388. They further posit two editions by Julian of the long text because Chapter l's summary of the fourteenth showing does not mention the lord and servant allegory of chapter 51, and this is the only summary without reference to the revelation's visions or locutions (I, 25). Full understanding of the lord and servant showing comes in the five years between the fifteen years mentioned here and the twenty years, short of three months, mentioned in chapter 51. Perhaps discovery of another manuscript of Julian will confirm this, as the appearance of the short version corroborated Blomefield.
Chapter LXXXVI This heading has been taken as evidence that the short text is the earlier version of the Shewings. It is possible that the statement is an editor's summary of the chapter's first sentence, which could point to the future rather than to the work itself in any form.
3413 The Paris manuscript closes here with the rubric: Deo gracias. Explicit liber revelacionum Julyane anatorite Norwyche cuius anime propicietur deus. [Thanks be to God. This ends the book of revelations to Julian, anchorite of Norwich, for whose soul God be prayed.]
3417 S2 inserts: "Here end the sublime and wonderful revelations of the unutterable love of God in Jesus Christ, vouchsafed to a dear lover of his and in her to all his dear friends and lovers, whose hearts, like hers, do flame in the love of our dearest Jesu." P and the short version lack the warning following, one that is probably not authorial. Although in part conventional, such caveats can be intimidating and sometimes were meant to be. The Cloud of Unknowing opens with a very strong prohibition: "I charge thee & I beseche thee, with as moche power & vertewe as the bonde of charite is sufficient to suffre, what-so-ever thou be that this book schalt have in possession, outher [either] bi propirte outher by keping, by bering as messenger or elles bi borowing, that in as moche as in thee is by wille & avisement, neither thou rede it, ne write it, ne speke it, ne yit suffre it be red, wretyn, or spokyn, of any or to any, bot yif it be of soche one or to soche one that hath (bi thi supposing) in a trewe wille & by an hole entent, purposed him to be a parfite folower of Criste, not only in actyve levyng, bot in the sovereinnest pointe of contemplatife leving . . ." The author goes on to insist that the book must be read "al over." As for "Fleschely janglers, opyn preisers & blamers of hem-self or of any other, tithing tellers, rouners & tutilers of tales, & alle maner of pinchers" (tellers of tidings, whisperers and tale bearers, and all kinds of fault finders), he does not care if they never see the book. "For myn entent was never to write soche thing unto hem [them]. & therfore I wolde that thei medel not ther-with, neither thei ne any of thees corious lettred or lewed [learned or unlearned] men. Ye, though al that thei be ful good men of active levyng yit this mater acordeth nothing to hem" (ed. Hodgson, pp. 1-3).
3418 them. S2; S1 then.
Revelations to one who could not read a letter. Anno Domini 1373.
A Particular of the Chapters.
The first chapter, off the noumber of the Revelations particularly.
This is a Revelation of love that Jesus Christ, our endless blisse, made in
sixteen Sheweings or Revelations particular. Off the which, the first is of His
pretious coroning with thornys; and therewith was comprehended and specifyed
the Trinite with the incarnation, and unite betwix God and man soule, with many
faire sheweings of endless wisedome and teacheing of love, in which all the
sheweings that follow be grounded and onyd. The second is the discolloureing of
His faire face in tokenyng of His deareworthy passion. The third is that our Lord
God, almighty wisedome, all love, right as verily as He hath made every thing
that is, also verily He doith and workeith all thing that is done. The fourth is the
scourgeing of His tender body with plentious sheddyng of His blood. The fifth is
that the fend is overcome by the pretious passion of Christe. The sixth is the
worshippfull thankeing of our Lord God, with which He rewardeth His blissed
servants in Hevyn. The seventh is often feeleing of wele and wo. Feleing of wele
is gracious touching and lightening, with trew sekirness of endless joy. The
feleing of wo is temptation be heavyness and irkehede of our fleshly liveing, with
ghostly understanding that we arn kept also sekirly in love in wo as in wele be
the godeness of God. The eighth is the last paynes of Christ and His cruelle
dyeing. The ninth is of the likeing which is in the blissefull Trinite of the herde
passion of Christe and His rewfull dyeing, in which joy and likeing He will wee
be solacid and myrthid with Him till whan we come to the fullhede in Heavyn.
The tenth is our Lord Jesus shewith in love His blissefull herte even cloven on
two enjoyand. The eleventh is an hey, ghostly sheweing of His deareworthy
moder. The twelfth is that our Lord is most worthy being. The thirteenth is that
our Lord God wil we have gret regard to all the deeds that He hath done in the
gret nobleth of all things makyng and of the excellency of man makeyng, which
is above all His workes, and of the pretious asseth that He hath made for man
synne, turneing all our blame into endlesse worshippe; where also our Lord
seith, Behold and see, for be the same mightie wisedome and goodnesse I shall
make wele all that is not wele, and thou shalt see it. And in this He will we keepe
us in the feith and trowthe of Holy Church, not willing to wete His privityes
now, but as it longyth to us in this life. The fourteenth is that our Lord is
ground of our beseekeing. Herein were seene two properties: that one is rightfull
prayer, that other is sekir truste, which He will both be alike large, and thus our
prayers likyth Him, and He of His goodnesse fullfilleth it. The fifteenth, that we
shall sodenly be taken from al our peyne and from all our wo, and, of His
goodnesse, we shall come up aboven where we shall have our Lord Jesus to our
mede and be fullfilled of joy and blisse in Hevyn. The sixteenth is that the
blissefull Trinite, our Maker, in Christe Jesus our Saviour, endlessely wonyth in
our soule worshipfully reuland and geveand all things, us mightily and wisely
saveand and keepeand for love; and we shall not be overcome of our enemy.
The second chapter. Of the tyme of these revelations, and how shee
asked three petitions.
These Revelations were shewed to a simple creature that cowde no letter the
yeere of our Lord 1373, the eighth day of May, which creature desired afore three
gifts of God. The first was mende of His passion. The second was bodily seke-
nesse in youth at thirty yeeres of age. The third was to have of Gods gift three
wounds. As in the first methought I had sume feleing in the passion of Christe,
but yet I desired more be the grace of God. Methought I would have beene that
time with Mary Magdalen and with other that were Crists lovers, and therefore
I desired a bodily sight wherein I might have more knowledge of the bodily
peynes of our Saviour, and of the compassion our Lady and of all His trew lovers
that seene that time His peynes, for I would be one of them and suffer with Him.
Other sight ner sheweing of God desired I never none till the soule was departid
fro the body. The cause of this petition was that after the sheweing I should have
the more trew minde in the passion of Christe.
The second came to my mynde with contrition frely desireing that sekenesse
so herde as to deth that I might in that sekeness underfongyn alle my rites of
Holy Church, myselfe weneing that I should dye, and that all creatures might
suppose the same that seyen me, for I would have no manner comfort of eardtly
life. In this sekenesse I desired to have all manier peynes bodily and ghostly that
I should have if I should dye, with all the dreds and tempests of the fends, except
the outpassing of the soule. And this I ment for I would be purged be the mercy
of God and after lyven more to the worshippe of God because of that sekenesse;
and that for the more speede in my deth, for I desired to be soone with my God.
These two desires of the passion and the sekenesse I desired with a condition,
seying thus: "Lord, thou wotith what I would, if it be Thy will that I have it, and
if it be not Thy will, good Lord, be not displeased, for I will nought, but as Thou
wilt." For the third, by the grace of God and teachyng of Holy Church, I con-
ceived a mighty desire to receive three wounds in my life; that is to sey, the
wound of very contrition, the wound of kinde compassion, and the wound of
willfull longing to God. And all this last petition I asked without any condition.
These two desires foresaid passid fro my minde, and the third dwelled with me
Of the sekenese opteyned of God be petition. Third chapter.
And when I was thirty yers old and halfe, God sent me a bodely sekeness in
which I lay three dayes and three nights, and on the fourth night I tooke all my
rites of Holy Church and wened not a levyd till day; and after this I langorid
forth two dayes and two nights. And on the third night I wened oftentimes to
have passyd, and so wened they that were with mee; and, in youngith yet, I
thought great sweeme to dye; but for nothing that was in earth that me lekid to
levin for, ne for no peyne that I was aferd of, for I trusted in God of His mercy.
But it was to have lyved that I might have loved God better and longer tyme,
that I might have the more knoweing and lovyng of God in blisse of Hevyn. For
methought all the time that I had lived here so little and so short, in reward of
that endlesse blisse, I thought, nothing. Wherefore I thought, "Good Lord, may
my living no longer be to Thy worshippe?" And I understood by my reason and
be my feleing of my peynes that I should dye, and I assented fully with all - with
all the will of my herte to be at God will. Thus I durid till day, and be than my
body was dede fro the middis downewards as to my feleing. Then was I stered to
be sett upright, underlenand with helpe, for to have more fredam of my herte to
be at Gods will, and thinkeing on God while my life would lest.
My curate was sent for to be at my endeing, and by than he cam I had sett my
eyen and might not speke. He sett the cross before my face and seid, "I have
browte thee the image of thy maker and Saviour. Louke thereupon and comfort
thee therewith." Methought I was wele for my eyen were sett up rightward into
Hevyn where I trusted to come be the mercy of God, but nevertheless I assented
to sett my eyen in the face of the Crucifix, if I might; and so I dede. For me-
thought I might longer duren to loke even forth than right up. After this my
sight began to failen and it was all derke about me in the chamber as it had be
night, save in the image of the Cross wherein I beheld a comon light, and I wiste
not how. All that was beside the Cross was uggely to me as if it had be mekil
occupyed with the fends. After this the other party of my body began to dyen so
ferforth that onethys I had ony feleing, with shortnesse of onde; and than I went
sothly to have passid.
And in this, sodenly all my peyne was taken fro me, and I was as hele, and
namely in the other party of my body, as ever I was aforn. I mervalid at this
soden change, for methought it was a privy workeing of God and not of kinde,
and yet by the feleing of this ease I trusted never the more to levyn. Ne the
feleing of this ease was no full ease to me, for methought I had lever a be
deliveryd of this world. Than came suddenly to my minde that I should desyre
the second wounde of our Lords gracious gift, that my body might be fullfilled
with minde and felyng of His blissid passion, for I would that His peynes were
my peynes, with compassion, and, afterward, longeing to God. But in this I
desired never bodily sight nor sheweing of God, but compassion as a kinde soule
might have with our Lord Jesus that for love would beene a dedely man, and
therefore I desired to suffer with Him.
Here begynnith the first revelation of the pretious crownyng of Criste etc.
in the first chapter, and how God fullfilleth the herrte with most joy, and
of His greate meekenesse; and how the syght of the passion of Criste is
sufficient strength ageyn all temptations of the fends, and of the gret
excellency and mekenesse of the blissid Virgin Mary. The fourth chapter.
In this sodenly I saw the rede blode trekelyn downe fro under the garlande hote
and freisly and ryth plenteously, as it were in the time of His passion that the
garlande of thornys was pressid on His blissid hede. Ryte so, both God and man,
the same that sufferd thus for me, I conceived treuly and mightily that it was
Himselfe shewed it me without ony mene.
And in the same sheweing sodenly the Trinite fullfilled the herte most of joy;
and so, I understood, it shall be in Hevyn withoute end to all that shall come
there. For the Trinite is God, God is the Trinite. The Trinite is our maker and
keeper, the Trinite is our everlasting lover, everlasting joy and blisse, be our
Lord Jesus Christ; and this was shewed in the first and in all, for where Jesus
appereith the blissid Trinite is understond, as to my sight. And I said, "Bene-
dicite, Domine." This I said for reverence in my meneing with a mighty voice,
and full gretly was astonyed for wonder and mervel that I had, that He that is so
reverend and dredfull will be so homley with a synfull creture liveing in wretched
flesh. This I tooke for the time of my temptation, for methowte by the sufferance
of God I should be tempted of fends or I dyed. With this sight of the blissid pass-
sion, with the Godhede that I saw in myne understonding, I knew wele that it
was strength enow to me, ya, and to all creturers leving, ageyn all the fends of
Hell and ghostly temptation.
In this He browght our blissid Lady to my understondyng. I saw hir ghostly in
bodily likeness, a simple mayde and a meke, young of age and little waxen above
a child, in the stature that she was wan she conceived with child. Also God
shewid in party the wisedam and the trueth of hir soule, wherein I understood
the reverend beholding that she beheld hir God and maker mervelyng with
greate reverence that He would be borne of hir that was a simple creature of His
makeyng. And this wisdam and trueth, knowyng the greteness of hir maker and
the littlehede of hirselfe, that is made, caused hir sey full mekely to Gabriel,
"Lo, me, Gods handmayd." In this sight I understoode sothly that she is mare
than all that God made beneath hir in worthyness and grace. For aboven hir is
nothing that is made but the blissid manhood of Criste, as to my sight.
How God is to us everything that is gode, tenderly wrappand us;
and all thing that is made, in regard to Almighty it is nothing;
and how man hath no rest till he nowteth himselfe and all thing for
the love of God. The fifth chapter.
In this same time our Lord shewed to me a ghostly sight of His homely love-
ing. I saw that He is to us everything that is good and comfortable for us. He is
oure clotheing, that for love wrappeth us, halsyth us, and all becloseth us for
tender love, that He may never leeve us, being to us althing that is gode as to
myne understondyng. Also in this He shewed a littil thing the quantitye of an
hesil nutt in the palme of my hand, and it was as round as a balle. I lokid there
upon with eye of my understondyng and thowte, What may this be? And it was
generally answered thus: It is all that is made. I mervellid how it might lesten, for
methowte it might suddenly have fallen to nowte for littil. And I was answered
in my understondyng, It lesteth and ever shall, for God loveth it; and so all thing
hath the being be the love of God.
In this littil thing I saw three properties: the first is that God made it, the
second is that God loveth it, the third, that God kepith it. But what is to me
sothly the maker, the keper, and the lover I canot tell, for till I am substantially
onyd to Him I may never have full rest ne very blisse; that is to sey, that I be so
festined to Him, that there is right nowte that is made betwix my God and me.
It needyth us to have knoweing of the littlehede of creatures and to nowtyn
allthing that is made for to love and howe God that is unmade. For this is the
cause why we be not all in ease of herete and soule, for we sekyn here rest in
those things that is so littil, wherin is no rest, and know not our God that is al
mighty, al wise, all gode; for He is the very rest. God will be knowen, and Him
liketh that we rest in Him. For all that is beneth Him sufficeth not us. And this
is the cause why that no soule is restid till it is nowted of all things that is made.
Whan he is willfully nowtid for love, to have Him that is all, then is he abyl to
receive ghostly rest.
Also our Lord God shewed that it is full gret plesance to Him that a sily soule
come to Him nakidly and pleynly and homely. For this is the kinde yernings of
the soule by the touching of the Holy Ghost, as be the understondyng that I have
in this sheweing: "God of Thy goodnesse, give me Thyselfe, for Thou art enow
to me, and I may nothing aske that is less that may be full worshippe to Thee.
And if I aske anything that is lesse, ever me wantith; but only in Thee I have
all." And these words arn full lovesome to the soule, and full nere, touchen the
will of God and His goodness. For His goodness comprehendith all His creatures
and all His blissid works and overpassith without end. For He is the endleshede,
and He hath made us only to Himselfe and restorid us be His blissid passion,
and kepith us in His blissid love; and all this is of His goodness.
How we shold pray; and of the gret tender love that our Lord hath to mannes
soule, willing us to be occupyed in knowing and loveing of Him. The sixth chapter.
This sheweing was made to lerne our soule wisely to clevyn to the goodnes of
God. And in that time the custome of our prayeing was browte to mende, how
we use for lak of understonding and knowing of love to make many menys. Than
saw I sothly that is more worshippe to God, and more very delite, that we
faithfully pray to Himselfe of His goodness and clevyn thereto be His grace with
trew understondyng and stedfast be love, than if we made all the menys that
herte can thinke. For if we make all these menys, it is to litil and and not full
worshippe to God, but in His goodnes is all the hole, and there failith right
For thus as I shall say came to my minde: In the same time we pray to God for
His holy flesh and for His pretious blode, His holy passion, His deareworthy
death and wounds; and all the blissid kindenes, the endles life, that we have of
all this, is His goodnes. And we pray Him for His sweete moder love, that Him
bare, and all the helpe we have of her is of His godeness. And we pray by His
Holy Cross that He dyed on, and all the vertue and the helpe that we have of the
Cross, it is of His godeness. And on the same wise, all the helpe that we have of
special saints and all the blissed company of Hevyn, the dereworthy love and
endles freindshippe that we have of them, it is of His godenes. For God of His
godenes hath ordeyned meanys to helpe us, wole faire and fele, of which the
chiefe and principal mene is the blissid kinde that He toke of the Mayd, with all
the menys that gone aforn and cum after which belongyn to our redemption and
to endless salvation.
Wherefore it pleaseth Him that we seke Him and worship be menys, under
stondyng and knoweing that He is the goodness of all. For the goodness of God is
the heyest prayer and it comith downe to the lowest party of our nede. It quick-
yth our soule and bringith it on life and makyth it for to waxen in grace and
vertue. It is nerest in kind and ridiest in grace. For it is the same grace that the
soule sekith and evir shall, till we know oure God verily that hath us all in
Himselfe beclosyd. For He hath no dispite of that He hath made ne He hath no
disdeyne to serve us at the simplest office that to our body longyth in kinde, for
love of the soule that He hath made to His owne likness. For as the body is
cladde in the cloth, and the flesh in the skyne, and the bonys in the flesh, and
the herte in the bouke, so arn we, soule and body, cladde in the goodnes of God
and inclosyd; ya, and more homley, for all these may wasten and weren away, and
the godenes of God is ever hole, and more nere to us withoute any likenes, for
treuly our lover desireth that our soule cleve to Hym with all the might and that
we be evermore clevand to His godenes. For of all thing that herete may thinke,
it plesyth most God and sonest spedyth, for our soule is so specially lovid of
Him that is heiest that it overpassyth the knoweing of all creatures. That is to
seyen, there is no creature that is made that may wetyn how mekyl, and how
swetely, and how tenderly our Maker loveth us. And therefore we may with His
grace and His helpe stond in ghostly beholding with everlestyng merveyling in.
this hey, overpassing, onenestimable love that Almitie God hath to us of His
godenes. And therefore we may aske of our lover with reverence all that we
For our kindly will is to have God and the gode will of God is to have us, and
we may never blyn of willing ne of longyng till we have Him in fullhede of joy;
and than may we no more willen. For He will that we be occupyed in knoweing
and loveing til the tyme that we shall be fulfilled in Hevyn. And therefore was
this lesson of love shewid, with all that followith, as ye shal se. For the strength
and the ground of all was shewed in the first sight. For of all thing, the behold
ing and the lovyng of the Maker makith the soule to seeme lest in his owne
sight, and most fillith it with reverend drede and trew mekenes, with plenty of
charite to his even Cristen.
How our Lady, beholdyng the gretenes of hir Maker, thowte
hirselfe leste; and of the great droppys of blode renning from
under the garland; and how the most joy to man is that God
most hie and mightie is holyest and curtesiest. Seventh chapter.
And to lerne us this, as to myne understondyng, our Lord God shewed our
Lady Saint Mary in the same tyme, that is to mene the hey wisedome and trewth
she had in beholding of hir Maker, so grete, so hey, so mightie, and so gode.
This gretenes and this noblyth of the beholdyng of God fulfilled her of reverend
drede, and with this she saw hirselfe so litil and so low, so simple and so pore,
in reward of hir Lord God, that this reverent drede fulfillid hir of mekenes. And
thus by this grounde she was fulfillid of grace and of al manner vertues and
overpassyth all creatures. In all the tyme that He shewed this that I have seid
now, in ghostly sight I saw the bodyly sight lesting of the plentious bledeing of
the hede. The grete dropis of blode fel downe from under the garland like
pellots semand as it had cum out of the veynis, and in the comeing out it were
browne rede, for the blode was full thick, and in the spredeing abrode it were
bright rede, and whan it come to the browes, than it vanyshid; notwithstondying
the bleding continuid till many things were seene and understondyn. The faire-
hede and the livelyhede is like nothing but the same. The plenteoushede is like
to the dropys of water that fallen of the evys after a greate showre of reyne that
fall so thick that no man may numbre them with bodily witte; and for the round-
hede, it were like to the scale of heryng in the spreadeing on the forehead. These
three come to my mynde in the tyme: pellotts, for roundhede in the comynge out
of the blode; the scale of heryng, in the spreadeing in the forehede, for round-
hede; the dropys of evese, for the plentioushede inumerable. This shewing was
quick and lively and hidouse and dredfull, swete and lovely.
And of all the sight it was most comfort to me, that our God and Lord that is
so reverent and dredefull is so homley and curtes, and this most fullfilled me
with likeing and sekirnes of soule. And to the understondyng of this He shewid
this opyn example. It is the most worshippe that a solemne King or a grete Lord
may doe a pore servant if he will be homely with him, and namely if he shewith
it himselfe, of a full trew meneing and with a glad cheere, both prive and partie.
Than thinkyth this pore creature thus: A, what might this nobil Lord doe more
worshipp and joy to me than to shew me that am so simple this mervelous
homlyhede? Sothly it is more joy and likeing to me than he gave me grete gifts
and were himselfe strange in maner. This bodily example was shewid so hey that
manys hart might be ravishid and almost forgettyng himselfe for joy of this grete
homlyhede. Thus it fareith be our Lord Jesus and be us, for sothly it is the most
joy that may be, as to my sight, that He that is heyest and mightyest, noblest and
worthyest, is lowest and mekest, homlyest and curteysest. And treuly and sothly
this mervelous joy shall be shewne us all whan we se Him. And this will our
Lord, that we willen and trowen, joyen and liken, comfortyn us and solacyn us as
we may with His grace and with His helpe into the tyme that we se it verily. For
the most fulhede of joy that we shal have, as to my sight, is the mervelous
curtesie and homlyhede of our Fader that is our maker in our Lord Jesus Criste
that is our brother and our Saviour.
But this mervelous homlyhede may no man weten in this tyme of life, but he
have it of special shewing of our Lord, or of grete plenty of grace inwardly govyn
of the Holy Ghost. But faith and beleve with charite deservith the mede; and so
it is had be grace; for in faith with hope and charete our life is groundyd. The
shewyng, made to whome that God will, pleynly techith the same, openyd and
declarid with many privy points longing to our faith which be worshipfull to
knowen. And whan the shewyng, which is goven in a tyme, is passyd and hid,
than the feith kepyth be grace of the Holy Ghost into our life end. And thus be
the shewyng: It is not other than the faith ne less ne more as it may be seene be
our Lords meneing in the same matter be than it come to the end.
A recapitulation of that is seid; and how it was shewid to hir
generally for all. Eighth chapter.
And as longe as I saw this sight of the plentious bleding of the hede I might
never stinte of these words, "Benedicite, Domine," in which sheweyng I under
stode six things. The first is the toknys of the blissid passion and the plentious
sheddyng of His pretious blode. The second is the Maiden that is derworthy
moder. The third is the blissfull Godhede that ever was, is, and ever shal bene,
al mighty, al wisdam, al love. The fourth is al thing that He hath made; for wele
I wete that Hevyn and erth and all that is made is mekil and large, faire and
gode, but the cause why it is shewid so litil to my sight was for I saw it in the
presence of Him that is the maker of all thing; for a soule that seith the maker
of all, all that is made semith full litil. The fifth is He that made all things for
love; be the same love it is kept and shall be withoute end. The sixth is that God
is al thing that is gode, as to my sight, and the godenes that al thing hath, it is
He. And al these our Lord shewid me in the first sight with time and space to
And the bodily sight stinted and the gostly sight dwellid in myne un-
derstondyng. And I abode with reverent drede, joyand in that I saw. And I
desired as I durst to se more, if it were His will, or ell lenger time the same.
In al this I was mekil sterid in charite to mine even Cristen, that thei might
seen and knowyn the same that I saw, for I would it were comfort to they. For
al this sight was shewid general. Than said I to them that were aboute me, "It
is today domys day with me"; and this I said for I went a deid, for that day
that a man deith, he is demyd as he shal be without end, as to my understond
yng. This I seid for I would thei lovid God the better for to make hem to have
mende that this life is shorte as thei might se in example. For in al this time I
went have deid. And that was mervil to me, and sweeme in partie, for methowte
this vision was shewid for hem that should leven. And that I say of me, I sey in
the person of al myn even Cristen, for I am lernyd in the gostly shewing of our
Lord God that He menyth so; and therefore I pray you al for Gods sake, and
counsel you for your owne profitt, that ye levyn the beholding of a wretch that
it was shewid to, and mightily, wisely, and mekely behold God that of His curtes
love and endles godenes wolde shewyn it generally in comfort of us al. For it is
God's will that ye take it with gret joy and likyng as Jesus had shewid it on to
Of the mekenes of this woman kepeing hir alway in the feith of Holy Church;
and how he that lovyth his evyn Cristen for God lovith all thing. Ninth chapter.
For the shewing I am not goode but if I love God the better. And in as much
as ye love God the better, it is more to you than to me. I sey this not to hem
that be wise, for thei wote it wele, but I sey it to yow that be simple for ese and
comfort, for we arn al one in comfort. For sothly it was not shewid me that God
lovid me better than the lest soule that is in grace, for I am sekir that there be
many that never had shewing ner sight but of the comon techyng of Holy Church
that loven God better than I. For if I loke singularly to myselfe I am right nowte;
but in general I am, in hope, in onehede of charite, with al myn evyn Cristen.
For in this onehede stond the life of all mankinde that shall be savid.
For God is all that is good, on to my sight. And God hat made al that is made
and God lovith al that He hath made; and he that generaly loveith al his evyn
Cristen for God, he lovith al that is. For in mankynd that shall be savid is
comprehendid al, that is to sey, all that is made and the Maker of al; for in man
is God, and God is in al. And I hope be the grace of God he that beholdith it
thus shal be truely taught and mightily comforted if he nedith comforte.
I speake of hem that shal be save, for in this time God shewid me none other.
But in al thing I leve as Holy Church levith, preachith, and teachith. For the
feith of Holy Church, the which I had afornhand understonden and, as I hope, by
the grace of God wilfully kept in use and custome, stode continualy in my sight,
willing and meneing never to receive onything that might be contrary therunto.
And with this entent I beheld the shewing with al my diligens, for in al this blis-
sid shewing, I beheld it as one in Gods meneyng. All this was shewid by thre,
that is to sey, be bodily sight, and by word formyd in my understonding, and be
gostly sight. But the gostly sight - I cannot ne may not shew it as hopinly ne as
fully as I wolde. But I truste in our Lord God Almightie that He shal of His
godenes, and for yowr love, make yow to take it more gostly and more swetely
than I can or may telle it.
The second Revelation is of His discolouryng etc; of our redemption,
and the discolouring of the vernacle; and how it plesith God we seke
Him besily, abiding Him stedfastly and trusting Hym mightily. Tenth chapter.
And after this I saw with bodily sight, in the face of the crucifix that henge
before me in the which I behelde continualy, a parte of His passion - despite,
spitting and sollowing, and buffetting and many langoryng peynes, mo than I can
tel, and often changing of colour. And one time I saw how halfe the face, begyn-
ing at the ere, overrede with drie blode til it beclosid to the mid-face. And after
that, the tuther halfe beclosyd on the same wise, and therewhiles it vanyssched
in this party, even as it came. This saw I bodily - swemely and derkely, and I
desired more bodily sight to have sene more clerely. And I was answered in my
reason: If God wil shew thee more, He shal be thy light; thee nedith none but
Him. For I saw Him and sowte Hym, for we arn now so blynd and so unwise that
we never sekyn God til He of His godenes shewith Him to us. And we ought se
of Him graciously, than arn we sterid by the same grace to sekyn with gret desire
to se Him more blisfully. And thus I saw Him and sowte Him, and I had Him
and I wantid Hym. And this is and should be our comon werkeyng in this, as to
One tyme mine understondyng was led downe into the see ground, and there
I saw hill and dalis grene, semand, as it were, mosse begrowne, with wrekke and
with gravel. Than I understode thus, that if a man or a woman were under the
broade watyr, if he might have sight of God, so as God is with a man contin-
ually, he should be save in body and soule and take no harme; and, overpassing,
he should have mor solace and comfort than al this world can telle. For He will
that we levyn that we se Him continually thowe that us thinkeith that it be but
litl, and in this beleve He makith us evermore to getyn grace. For He will be
sene and He wil be sowte, He wil be abedyn and He wil be trosted.
This second sheweing was so low and so litil and so simple that my sprets were
in grete travel in the beholding, mornand, dredfull, and longand. For I was sum
time in doute whither it was a shewing. And than divers times our gode Lord
gave me more sight whereby I understode treuly that it was a shewing. It was a
figure and likenes of our foule dede hame, that our faire, bright, blissid Lord
bare for our sins. It made me to thinke of the holy vernacle of Rome which He
hath portrayed with His owne blissid face whan He was in His herd passion
wilfully going to His deth and often chongyng of colour. Of the brownehede and
blakehede, reulihede and lenehede of this image, many mervel how it might be,
stondyng He portraied it with His blissid face, which is the faire hede of Heavyn,
flowre of erth, and the fruite of the mayden wombe. Than how might this image
be so discolouring and so fer fro faire?
I desire to sey like as I have understond be the grace of God. We know in our
faith and beleve be the teaching and preching of Holy Church, that the blissid
Trinite made mankinde to His image and to His likenes. In the same maner wise
we knowen that whan man felle so deepe and so wretchidly be synne, there was
none other helpe to restore man but throw Him that made man. And that made
man for love, be the same love He would restore man to the same blisse and
overpassing. And like as we were like made to the Trinite in our first makyng,
our Maker would that we should be like Jesus Criste, our Saviour in Hevyn with-
out ende, be the vertue of our geynmakyng. Than atwix these two He would, for
love and worshippe of man, make Himselfe as like to man in this dedely life, in
our foulehede and our wratchidnes, as man myght be without gilte. Whereof it
meneith as it was aforseyd - it was the image and likenes of our foule blak dede
hame wherein our faire bryte blissid Lord God is hid. But ful sekirly I dar sey,
and we owen to trowen, that so faire a man was never none but He, till what
tyme His faire colour was chongyd with travel and sorrow and passion, deyeng.
Of this it is spoken in the eighth Revelation where it tretith more of the same
likenes. And there it seith of the vernacle of Rome, it mevyth be dyvers
chongyng of colour and chere, sometyme more comfortably and lively and some-
time more rewfull and dedely, as it may be seene in the eighth Revelation.
And this vision was a lernyng to myn understondyng that the continual sekyng
of the soule plesith God ful mekyl, for it may do no more than sekyn, suffrin,
and trusten. And this wrought in the soule that hath it be the Holy Ghost. And
the clernes of fyndyng is of His special grace whan it is His will. The sekyng with
feith, hope, and charite plesyth our Lord, and the finding plesyth the soule and
fulfillith it with joy. And thus was I lernyd to myn understondyng, that sekyng is
as good as beholdyng for the tyme that He will suffer the soule to be in travel.
It is God wille that we seke Him to the beholdyng of Him, for be that He shall
shew us Himselfe of His special grace whan He wil. And how a soule shall have
him in His beholdyng, He shal teche Himselfe; and that is most worshipp to Him
and profitt to thyselfe, and most receivith of mekenes and vertues with the grace
and ledyng of the Holy Goste. For a soule that only festenith him on to God
with very troste, either be sekyng or in beholdyng, it is the most worshipp that
he may don to Him, as to my sight.
These arn two werkyng that mown be seene in this vision. That on is sekyng;
the other is beholdyng. The sekyng is common; that, every soule may have with
His grace, and owith to have, that discretion and techyng of the Holy Church. It is
God wil that we have thre things in our sekyng. The first is that we sekyn wil-
fully and bisily withouten slauth as it may be throw His grace, gladly and merili
withoute onskilful hevynes and veyne sorow. The second is that we abide Him
stedfastly for His love withoute gruching and striveing ageyns Him in our lives
end, for it shall lesten but a while; the thred, that we trosten in Him mightily of
ful sekird feith, for it is His wil. We knowen He shall appere sodenly and blis-
fully to al His lovers, for His werkyng is privy, and He wil be perceivid; and His
appering shal be swith sodeyn, and He wil be trowid, for He is full hend and
homley. Blissid mot He ben.
The third Revelation etc.; how God doth al thing except synne, never chongyng His
purpose without end, for He hath made al thing in fulhede of goodnes. The eleventh chapter.
And after this I saw God in a poynte, that is to sey in myn understonding, be
which sight I saw that He is in al things. I beheld with avisement, seing and
knowing in sight with a soft drede, and thought, What is synne? For I saw treuly
that God doth al thing be it never so litil. And I saw truly that nothing is done
be happe, ne be aventure, but al thing be the foreseing wisedome of God. If it be
happe or adventure in the sight of man, our blindhede and our onforesight is the
cause, for the things that arn in the foreseing wisdam of God fro withoute
beginning (which rightfully and worshippfully and continualy He ledyth to the
best end as they comen aboute) fallyn to us sodenly, ourselfe unwetyng; and thus
be our blindhede and our onforsighte, we seyen these ben happis and aventures.
But to our Lord God thei be not so.
Wherefore me behovith nedes to grant that al thing that is done, it is wel
done, for our Lord God doth alle. For in this time the werkyng of cretures was
not shewid, but of our Lord God in the creature. For He is in the mydde poynt
of all thyng, and all He doith; and I was sekir He doith no synne. And here I
saw sothly that synne is no dede, for in al this was not synne shewid. And I
wold no lenger mervel in this, but beheld our Lord, what He wold shewen. And
thus as it might be for the time, the rightfulhede of Gods werkyng was shewid to
Rightfulhede hath two faire properties: it is right and it is full, and so arn al
the werks of our Lord God. And thereto nedith neither the werkyng of mercy
ner grace, for it ben al rightfull, wherin feilith nougte. And in another time He
shewid for the beholdyng of synne nakidly, as I shal sey, where He usith werkyng
of mercy and grace. And this vision was shewid to myne understondeng. For our
Lord will have the soule turnid truly into the beholdyng of Him, and generally
of all His werks, for they arn full gode, and al His doings be easye and swete,
and to gret ease bringing the soule that is turnyd fro the beholdyng of the blind
demyng of man on to the faire, swete demyng of our Lord God.
For a man beholdith some dedes wele done and some dedes evil. But our Lord
beholdyth hem not so. For as al that hath being in kinde is of Godds makyng, so
is al thing that is done in propertie of Gods doing. For it is easye to understonde
that the best dede is wele done. And so wele as the best dede is done and the
heiest, so wele is the lest dede done, and al in propertie and in the ordir that our
Lord hath it ordeynit to from withoute begynning, for ther is no doer but He. I
saw ful sekirly that He chongyth never His purpos in no manner thyng, nor never
shall, withoute end. For ther was nothyng onknowen to Him in His rightfull
ordenance from without begynnyng. And therefore al thyng was sett in ordir, or
anything was made, as it should stonde withoute end, and no maner thyng shall
failen of that poynt. For He made al thinge in fulhede of godenes, and therefore
the blissid Trinite is ever ful plesid in al His werks. And al this shewid He ful
blisfully meneing thus: Se I am God; se I am in al thing; se I doe al thyng; se I
left never myne hands of myn werks, ne never shall withoute ende; se I lede al
thing to the end I ordeynd it to fro withoute beginnyng be the same might, wis-
dam, and love that I made it. How should anything be amysse? Thus migtily,
wisely, and lovinly was the soule examynyd in this vision. Than saw I sothly that
me behovyd nedis to assenten with gret reverens, enjoyand in God.
The fourth Revelation etc.; how it likith God rather and better to wash us in His
blode from synne than in water, for His blode is most pretius. Twelfth chapter.
And after this I saw, beholding the body plentiously bleding in seming of the
scorgyng, as thus: The faire skynne was brokyn ful depe into the tender flesh with
sharpe smyting al about the sweete body. So plenteously the hote blode ran oute
that there was neither sene skynne ne wound, but as it were al blode. And whan
it come wher it should a fallen downe, than it vanyshid. Notwitstondyng the
bleding continued a while til it migt be sene with avisement, and this was so
plenteous to my sigt that methowte if it had be so in kind and in substance for
that tyme, it should have made the bed al on blode and a passid over aboute.
And than cam to my minde that God hath made waters plentiuous in erthe to
our service and to our bodily ease for tender love that He hath to us, but yet
lekyth Him better that we take full homely hys blissid blode to wassch us of
synne, for there is no licur that is made that He lekyth so wele to give us. For it
is most plentiuous as it is most pretious, and that be the vertue of His blissid
godhede. And it is our kinde and al blisfully beflowyth us be the vertue of His
pretious love. The dereworthy blode of our Lord Jesus Criste, as verily as it is
most pretious, as verily it is most plentiuous. Beholde and se: The pretious
plenty of His dereworthy blode desendith downe into Helle and braste her bands
and deliveryd al that were there which longyd to the curte of Hevyn. The
pretious plenty of His dereworthy blode overflowith al erth and is redye to wash al
creaturs of synne which be of gode will, have ben, and shal ben. The pretious
plenty of His dereworthy blode ascendid up into Hevyn to the blissid body of our
Lord Jesus Christe, and there is in Him, bleding and praying for us to the Father,
and is and shall be as long as it nedith. And evermore it flowith in all Hevyns
enjoying the salvation of al mankynde that arn there and shal ben, fulfilling the
noumber that failith.
The fifth Revelation is that the temptation of the fend is overcome be the passion
of Criste, to the encres of joy of and to His peyne everlestingly. Thirteenth chapter.
And after, er God shewid ony words, He sufferd me to beholden in Him a
conable tyme, and all that I had sene, and all intellecte that was therein, as the
simplicite of the soule migte take it. Than He, without voice and openyng of
lippis, formys in my soule these words: Herewith is the fend overcome. These
words seyd our Lord menening His blissid passion as He shewid aforn. In this
shewid our Lord that the passion of Him is the overcomming of the fend. God
shewid that the fend hath now the same malice that he had aforn the incarna-
tion. And as sore he travilith and as continually he seeth that all sent of salva-
tion ascappyn him worshipply be the vertue of Cristes pretious passion. And that
is his sorow and ful evyl he is attemyd, for all that God sufferith him to doe
turnith us to joye and him to shame and wo. And he hath as mech sorow when
God givith him leave to werkyn as when he werkyth not. And that is for he may
never doe as yvel as he would, for his migte is al tokyn in Godds hand. But in
God may be no wreth, as to my syte. For our gode Lord endlesly hath regarde to
His owne worshippe and to the profite of al that shall be savid. With might and
ryht He withstondith the reprovid, the which of mallice and shrewidnes bysyen
hem to contriven and to done agens Gods wille. Also I saw our Lord scorne his
malice and nowten his onmigte, and He wil that we doe so.
For this sigte I lauhyd migtily, and that made hem to lauhyn that were about
me, and ther lauhyng was a likeing to me. I thowte that I wold that al myn evyn
Christen had seen as I saw and than should thei al lauhyn with me. But I saw not
Criste lawhyn; for I understode that we may lauhyn in comforting of ourselfe
and joying in God, for the devil is overcome. And then I saw Him scorne his
malice; it was be ledyng of myn understondyng into our Lord, that is to sey, an
inward sheweing of sothfastnes, withoute chongyng of chere. For as to my sight,
it is a worshipfull property that is in God which is durabil.
And after this I fel into a sadhede, and seid, "I se three things, game, scorne,
and arneste; I se game that the fend is overcome. I se scorne that God scornith
him and he shal be scornyd. And I se arneste that he is overcome be the blissfull
passion and deth of our Lord Jesus Criste; that was done in ful arnest and with
sad travelle." And I seid, "He is scornid." I mene that God scornith him; that is
to sey, for He seeth him now as He shall done withoute end. For in this God
shewid that the fend is dampnid. And this ment I when I seid he shall be scornyd
at domys day generally of all that shal be savyd to hose consolation he hath gret
invye. For than he shall seen that all the wo and tribulation that he hath done
to them shal be turnid to encres of their joy without ende. And al the peyne and
tribulation that he would a brougte hem to shal endlesly goe with him to Helle.
The sixth Revelation is of the worshippfull thanke with which He
rewardith His servants, and it hath three joyes. Fourteenth chapter.
After this our good Lord seid, I thanke thee of thy travel and namely of thy
youthe. And in this myn understondyng was lifted up into Hevyn, where I saw our
Lord as a lord in his owne house, which hath clepid al his derworthy servants
and freinds to a solemne feste. Than I saw the Lord take no place in His owne
house, but I saw Him rialy regne in His hous, and fulfillid it with joy and mirth,
Hymselfe endlesly to gladen and to solacyn His derworthy frends ful homeley and
ful curtesly, with mervelous melody of endles love in His owen faire blissid
chere, which glorious chere of the godhede fulfillith Hevyns of joy and bliss.
God shewid three degrees of blis that every soule shal have in Hevyn that
wilfully hath servid God in any degre in erthe. The first is the worshipful thanke
of our Lord God that he shal recevyn whan he is deliverid of peyne. This thanke
is so high and so worshipful that him thinkith it fillith him, thow there were no
more. For methowte that all the peyne and travel that might be suffryd of all
liveing men might not deserve the worshipfull thanke that one man shall have
that wilfully hath servid God. The second, that all the blissid creatures that arn
in Hevyn shall se that worshipfull thankyng, and He makyth his service knowen
to al that arn in Hevyn. And in this time this example was shewid. A king, if he
thanke his servants, it is a gret worship to hem; and if he makyth it knowen to
all the reme, than is his worshippe mekil incresid. The third is that as new and
as leking as it is underfongyn that tyme, rigte so shall it lesten withoute ende.
And I saw that homely and swetely was this shewid, that the age of every man
shal be knowen in Hevyn, and shal be rewardid for his wilful service and for his
time. And namely the age of hem that wilfully and frely offir her yongith to God,
passingly is rewardid and wonderly is thankyd. For I saw that whan or what tyme
a man or woman be truly turnid to God, for on day service and for his endles
wille he shall have al these three degres of blisse. And the more that the lovand
soule seeth this curtesy of God, the lever he is to serve Him al the dayes of his life.
The seventh Revelation is of oftentymes felyng of wele and wo
etc.; and how it is expedient that man sumtymes be left
withoute comfort, synne it not causeing. Fifteenth chapter.
And after this He shewid a soveren gostly lekyng in my soule. I was fulfillid of
the everlesting sekirnes migtily susteinid withoute any peynful drede. This felyng
was so gladd and so gostly that I was in al peace and in reste, that there was
nothing in erth that should a grevid me. This lestenid but a while, and I was
turnyd and left to myselfe in hevynes and werines of my life and irkenes of
myselfe that onethis I coude have patience to leve. There was no comfort nor
none ease to me, but feith, hope, and charite. And these I had in truthe, but litil
in feling. And anone after this our blissid Lord gave me ageyne the comfort and
the rest in soule in likyng and sekirnes so blisful and so mycti, that no drede, no
sorow, ne peyne bodily that might be suffrid, should have desesid me. And than
the peyne shewid ageyn to my feling, and than the joy and the lekyng, and now
that one, and now that other, dyvers tymes, I suppose aboute twenty tymes. And
in the same tyme of joy I migte have seid with Seynt Paul, nothing shal depart
me from the charite of Criste. And in the peyne I migte have seid with Peter,
Lord save me, I perish.
This vision was shewid me after myn understondyng that it is spedeful to some
soulis to fele on this wise, somtime to be in comfort, and somtyme to faile and
to be left to hemselfe. God wille we knowen that He kepyth us even alike sekir
in wo and in wele. And for profitt of manys soule, a man is sumtyme left to
himselfe, althowe synne is not ever the cause. For in this tyme I synned not
wherfore I shulde be left to myselfe, for it was so soden. Also I deservyd not to
have this blissid felyng. But frely our Lord gevyth whan He wille, and suffrith us
in wo sumtyme, and both is one love. For it is Godds wil we hold us in comfort
with al our migte for blisse is lestinge without ende, and peyne is passand and
shal be browte to nougte to hem that shall be savyd. And therefore it is not
Godds will that we folow the felynge of peyne in sorow and mornyng for hem,
but sodenly passing over and holden us in endless likyng.
The eighth Revelation is of the last petiuous peynes of Christe deyeng,
and discoloryng of His face and dreyeng of flesh. Sixteenth chapter.
After this Criste shewid a partie of His passion nere His deyeng. I saw His
swete face as it was drye and blodeles with pale deyeng, and sithen more pale,
dede, langoring, and than turnid more dede into blew, and sithen more browne
blew, as the flesh turnyd more depe dede. For His passion shewid to me most
propirly in His blissid face, and namly in His lippis. There I saw these four
colowres, tho that were aforn freshe, redy, and likyng to my sigte. This was a swem-
ful chonge to sene, this depe deyeng, and also the nose clange and dryed, to my
sigte, and the swete body was brown and blak, al turnyd oute of faire lifely
colowr of Hymselfe on to drye deyeng. For that same tyme that our Lord and
blissid Savior deyid upon the Rode, it was a dry, harre wynde and wonder colde,
as to my sigte. And what tyme the pretious blode was bled oute of the swete body
that migte passe therfro, yet there dwellid a moysture in the swete flesh of
Criste, as it was shewyd.
Blodeleshede and peyne dryden within and blowyng of wynde and cold com-
myng fro withouten metten togeder in the swete body of Criste. And these four,
tweyn withouten and tweyn within, dryden the fleshe of Criste be process of tyme.
And thow this peyne was bitter and sharpe, it was full longe lestyng as to my
sighte and peynfully dreyden up all the lively spirits of Crists fleshe. Thus I saw
the swete fleshe dey, in semyng be party after party, dryande with mervelous
peynys. And as longe as any spirit had life in Crists fleshe, so longe sufferid He
peyne. This longe pynyng semyd to me as if He had bene seven night ded deyand
at the poynt of outpassing awey, sufferand the last peyne. And than I said, it
semyd to me as if He had bene seven night dede, it menyth that the swete body
was so discoloryd, so drye, so clongen, so dedely, and so peteuous as He had be
seven night dede, continuly deyand. And methowte the deyeng of Crists flesh was
the most peyne, and the last, of His passion.
Of the grevous bodyly threst of Criste causyd four wysys and of His petouous
coronyng; and of the most payne to kinde lover. Seventeenth chapter.
And in this deyng was browte to my mynde the words of Criste, "I threst." For
I saw in Criste a doble threst, one bodely, another gostly, the which I shal speke
of in the thirty-first chapter. For this word was shewid for the bodyly threst
the which I understode was causid of failyng of moysture, for the blissid flesh
and bonys was left al alone without blode and moysture. The blissid bodye dreid
alone long tyme with wryngyng of the naylys, and weyte of the bodye. For I
understode that for tenderness of the swete hands and of the swete fete, be the
gretnes, hardhede, and grevoushed of the naylis, the wounds wexid wide and the
body saggid for weyte be long tyme hanging, and peircing and wrangyng of the
hede and byndyng of the crowne, al bakyn with drye blode, with the swete heire
clyngand, and the drye flesh, to the thornys, and the thornys to the flesh, deyand.
And in the begynnyng, while the flesh was fresh and bledand, the continuant
sytyng of the thornys made the wounds wyde. And ferthermore I saw that the
swete skyn and the tender flesh, with the heere and the blode, was al rasyd and
losyd abov from the bone with the thornys where thorow it were daggyd on many
pecys as a cloth that were saggand as it wold hastely have fallen of for hevy and
lose while it had kynde moysture. And that was grete sorow and drede to me.
For methowte I wold not for my life a sen it fallen. How it was don I saw not,
but understode it was with the sharpe thornys and the boystrous and grevous
setting on of the garland onsparably and without pety. This continuid a while,
and sone it began to chongyn, and I beheld and merveled how it migt ben; and
than I saw it was for it began to dreyen and stynte a party of the weyte and sette
abute the garland. And thus it envyronyd al aboute, as it were garland upon
garland; the garland of the thornys was dyed with the blode, and the tother
garland and the hede al was on colour, as cloderyd blode whan it is drey. The
skynne of the flesh that semyd of the face and of the body was smal, ronkyllid,
with a tannyd colour lyke a dry borde whan it is akynned, and the face more
browne than the body.
I saw four maner of dryengs. The first was blodeless; the secund was payne
folowyng after; the thred, hangyng up in the eyr as men hang a cloth to drye; the
forth, that the bodily kynd askyd licour, and ther was no manner of comfort
mynystid to Hym in al His wo and disese. A, hard and grevous was His peyne,
but mech more hard and grevous it was whan the moysture faylid and al beganne
to drye thus clyngand. These were the paynys that shewdyn in the blissful hede.
The first wrought to the deyng whyl it was moyst; and that other, slow, with
clyngyng dryand, with blowing of the wynde from withowten that dryed Him
more, and peynd with cold, than myn herte can thingke; and other paynys, for
which paynys I saw that all is to litil that I can sey, for it may not be told. The
which shewing of Cristes peynys fillid me ful of payne. For I wiste wele He
suffryd but onys, but as He wold shewn it me and fillen me with mynde as I had
And in al this tyme of Cristes paynys I felte no payn, but for Cristes paynys.
Than thowte me, I knew but litil what payne it was that I askyd, and as a wretch
repentid me, thynkand if I had wiste what it had be, lothe me had be to have
praydd it; for methowte it passid bodely dethe, my paynes. I thowte, Is any payne
like this? And I was answered in my reason: Helle is another payne, for there is
despeyr. But of al paynes that leden to salvation, this is the most payne: to se thy
love suffir. How might any payne be more to me than to se Him that is al my
life, al my blisse, and al my joy suffren? Here felt I sothfastly that I lovyd Criste
so mech above myselfe that there was no payne that might be suffrid leke to that
sorow that I had to se Him in payne.
Of the spiritual martyrdam of our Lady and other lovers of Criste, and how
al things suffryd with Hym goode and ylle. Eighteenth chapter.
Here I saw a part of the compassion of our Lady Seynt Mary, for Christe and
she were so onyd in love that the gretnes of His lovyng was cause of the mekyl
hede of hyr payne. For in thys I saw a substance of kynd love continyyd be grace
that creatures have to Hym, which kynde love was most fulsomely shewyd in His
swete moder, and overpassyng. For so mech as she lovid Him more than al
others, hir panys passyd al others. For ever the heyer, the myghtyer, the sweter
that the love be, the mor sorow it is to the lover to se that body in payne that is
lovid. And al His disciples and al His trew lovers suffrid panys more than ther
owne bodyly deyng. For I am sekir by my myn owne felyng that the lest of hem
lovid Hym so far above hemself that it passyth al that I can sey. Here saw I a
gret onyng betwyx Christe and us, to myn understondyng. For whan He was in
payne, we were in peyne. And al cretures that might suffre payne suffrid with
Hym, that is to sey, al cretures that God hathe made to our service. The firma-
ment, the erth, faledyn for sorow in hyr kynde in the tyme of Crists deyng. For
longith it kyndely to thir properte to know Hym for ther God in whome al ther
vertue stondyth. Whan He faylid, than behovyd it nedis to them for kyndnes to
faylon with Hym as mech as thei myght for sorow of His penys. And thus thei
that were His frends suffryd peyne for love.
And generaly al, that is to sey, thei that knew Hym not, suffrid for feylyng of
al manner of comfort save the myghty, privy kepyng of God. I mene of two
manner of folke, as it may be understode by two personys: that on was Pilate,
that other was Sain Dionyse of France, which was that tyme a paynym. For whan
he saw wonderous and mervelous sorowes and dreds that befallen in that tyme,
he seyd, "Either the world is now at an end or ell He that is maker of kynde suf-
fryth." Wherfor he did write on an auter, "This is the auter of onknown God."
God of His godenes that maketh the planets and the elements to werkyn of kynd
to the blissid man and the cursid, in that tyme it was withdrawen from bothe.
Wherfore it was that thei that knew Him not were in sorow that tyme. Thus was
our Lord Jesus nawted for us, and we stond al in this manner nowtid with Hym;
and shal done til we come to His blisse, as I shal sey after.
Of the comfortable beholdyng of the crucifyx; and how the
desyre of the flesh without consent of the soule is no synne. And the
flesh must be in peyne, suffring til bothe be onyd to Criste. Nineteenth chapter.
In this I wold a lokyd up of the Crosse, and I durst not, for I weste wele whyl
I beheld in the Cross I was seker and save; therefore I wold not assenten to put
my soule in perel, for beside the Crosse was no sekernes for uggyng of fends.
Than had I a profir in my reason as it had be frendly seyd to me, Loke up to
Hevyn, to His Fader; and than saw I wele with the feyth that I felte that ther was
nothyn betwix the Crosse and Hevyn that myght have desesyd me. Either me
behovyd to loke up or else to answeren. I answered inwardly with al the myghts
of my soule, and said, "Nay, I may not, for Thou art my Hevyn." This I seyd for
I wold not, for I had lever a ben in that peyne til domys day than to come to Hevyn
otherwyse than by Hym. For I wiste wele that He that bonde me so sore, He
sholde onbynde me whan that He wolde.
Thus was I lerid to chose Jesus to my Hevyn, whome I saw only in payne at
that tyme. Me lekyd no other Hevyn than Jesus, which shal be my blisse whan I
come there, and this hath ever be a comfort to me, that I chase Jesus to my Hevyn
be His grace in al this tyme of passion and sorow. And that hat be a lernyng to
me that I should evermor done so - chesyn only Jesus to my Hevyn in wele and
wo. And thow I as a wretch had repentid me - I sayd aforn if I had wiste what
peyne it had be, me had be loth to have prayed - here saw I sothly that it was
grutching and daming of the flesh without assent of the soule, in whych God
assignyth no blame. Repenting and wilful choys be two contrarys which I felte
both in one at that tyme, and tho be two parties, that one outward, that other
inward. The outeward party is our dedely fleshede which is now in peyne and wo,
and shal be in this life, whereof I felt mech in this tyme, and that party was that
repentid. The inward party is an high blisfull life, which is al in pece and in love,
and this was more privily felte, and this party is in which, mightyly, wysly, and
wilfully, I chase Jesus to my Hevyn. And in this I saw sothly that the inward
party is master and soverayn to the outeward, and not charging ne takyng hede
to the will of that, but al the entent and will is sett endlesly to be onyd into our
Lord Jesus. That the outeward part should draw the inward to assent was not
shewid to me, but that the inward drawith the outeward by grace and bothe shal
be onyd in blisse without end be the vertue of Criste - this was shewid.
Of the onspekabyl passion of Criste, and of three things of the passion
alway to be remembrid. Twentieth chapter.
And thus saw I our Lord Jesus langring long tyme, for the onyng of the God-
hede gave strength to the manhode for love to suffre more than al man myght
suffryn. I mene not allonly more peyne than al men myght suffre, but also that
He suffrid more peyne than al men of salvation that ever was from the first
begynnyng into the last day myght tellyn or ful thynkyn, havyng regard to the
worthynes of the heyest, worshipful kyng, and the shamly, dispitous, peynful
dethe. For He that is heyest and worthyest was fullyest nowtyd and utterlyest
dispisid. For the heyest poynte that may be sean in the passion is to thynkyn and
knowen what He is that suffryd.
And in this He browte a part in mende the heyte and noblyth of the glorius
Godhede and, therwith, the pretioushed and the tendernes of the blisfull body
which be together onyd, and also the lothhede that is in oure kynd to suffre
peyne. For as mech as He was most tender and clene, ryght so He was most strong
and myghty to suffir. And for every mannys synne that shall be savid He suffrid,
and every manys sorow and desolation He saw, and sorowid for kyndenes and
love. For in as mekyl as our Lady sorowid for His peynes, as mekyl He suffrid
sorrow for her sorow, and more, in as mekyl as the swete manhode of Hym was
worthier in kynd. For as long as He was passible, He suffryd for us and sorowyd
for us. And now He is uprysyn and no more passibyl, yet He suffryt with us. And
beholdyng al this be His grace, saw that the love of Hym was so strong whych
He hath to our soule, that wilfully He ches it with gret desyr and myldly He
suffrid it with wel payeyng. For the soule that beholdyth it thus, whan it is
touchid be grace, he shal veryly se that the peynys of Crists passion passen al
peynys; that is to sey, which peynys shal be turnyd into everlestyng passyng joyes
by the vertue of Crists passion.
Of three Beholdyngs in the passion of Criste, and how we be now deyng in
the Crosse with Criste, but His chere puttyt away al peyne. Twenty-first chapter.
Tis Goddys wille, as to myn understondyng, that we have three manner of
beholdyngs in His blissid passion. The first is the herd peyn that He suffrid with
contrition and compassion. And that shewid our Lord in this tyme, and gave me
myght and grace to se it. And I loked after the departing with al my myght and
wet have seen the body al ded, but I saw Hym not so. And ryth in the same tyme
that methowte, be semyng, the life myght ne lenger lesten and the shewyng of
the end behovyd nedis to be, sodenly, I beholdyng in the same Crosse, He
chongyd His blissfull chere. The chongyng of His blisful chere chongyd myn, and
I was as glad and mery as it was possible. Than browte our Lord merily to my
mynde, Where is now ony poynte of the peyne or of thin agreefe? And I was full
mery. I understode that we be now, in our Lords menyng, in His Crosse with
Hym in our peynys and our passion, deyng. And we wilfully abydyng in the same
Cross with His helpe and His grace into the last poynte, sodenly He shall chonge
His chere to us, and we shal be with Hym in Hevyn.
Betwix that one and that other shal be no tyme, and than shal al be browte to
joy, and so mente He in this shewyng, Where is now ony poynt of thy peyne or thyn
agreefe? And we shal be full blissid. And here saw I sothfastly that if He shewid
now us His blissful chere, ther is no peyne in erth nor in other place that should
us agrevyn, but al things should be to us joy and blisse. But for He shewith to us
time of passion as He bare in this life and His Crosse, therefore we arn in desese
and travel with Hym as our frelete askyth. And the cause why He suffrith is for
He wil of His godeness make us the heyer with Hym in His bliss. And for this
litil peyne that we suffre here, we shal have an hey endles knowyng in God whych
we myght never have without that; and the harder our peynys have ben with Him
in His Cross, the more shall our worshippe be with Hym in His kyngdom.
The ninth Revelation is of the lekyng etc., of three Hevyns, and the infinite love of Criste, desiring
every day to suffre for us, if He myght, althow it is not nedeful. Twenty-second chapter.
Than seyd our good Lord Jesus Christe, askyng, Art thou wele payd that I
suffrid for thee? I sayd, "Ya, good Lord, gramercy; ya, good Lord, blissid mot
thou be." Than seyd Jesus, our kinde Lord, If thou art payde, I am payde; it is a
joy, a blis, an endles lekyng to me that ever suffrid I passion for the, and if I myht
suffre more, I wold suffre more. In this felyng my understondyng was lifte up into
Hevyn, and there I saw thre Hevyns, of which syght I was gretly mervelyd. And
thow I se thre Hevyns, and all in the blissid manhode of Criste, non is more, non
is less, non is heyer, non is lower, but evyn lyke in blis.
For the first Hevyn Christe shewyd me His Fader, in no bodyly lyknes, but in
His properte and in His werkyng; that is to sey, I saw in Criste that the Fader is.
The werkyng of the Fader is this, that He gevyth mede to His son Jesus Criste.
This geft and this mede is so blisful to Jesus, that His Fader myht have goven
Hym no mede that myght have lykyd Hym better. The first Hevyn - that is the
plesyng of the Fader - shewid to me as an Hevyn, and it was ful blisfule, for He
is ful plesed with al the dedes that Jesus hath done aboute our salvation. Where-
fore we be not only His be His beyeng but also by the curtes geft of His Fader.
We be His blis, we be His mede, we be His worshippe, we be His corone; and
this was a singular mervel and a full delectable beholdying, that we be His corone.
This that I sey is so grete blis to Jesus that He settith at nowte al His travel, and
His herd passion, and His cruel and shamful deth.
And in these words, If that I might suffre more, I would suffer more, I saw sothly
that as often as He myght deyen, so often He wold, and love should never let
Him have rest til He had don it. And I beheld with gret diligens for to wetyn
how often He would deyn if He myght, and sotly the noumbre passid myn under-
stondyng and my wittis so fer that my reson myghte not ne coude comprehend it;
and whan He had thus oft deyid, or should, yet He would sett it at nowte for
love, for al thynkyth Him but litil in reward of His love. For thowe the swete
manhood of Criste might suffre but onys, the godenes in Him may never sesin of
profir. Every day He is redy to the same if it myght be. For if He seyd He wold
for my love make new Hevyns and new erth, it were but litil in reward, for this
might be done every day if He wold, withoute any travel. But for to dey for my
love so often that the noumbre passith creature reson - it is the heyest profir
that our Lord God myght make to manys soule, as to my syte.
Than menyth He thiss: How shold it than be that I shold not do for thi love
al that I myght, which dede grevyth me not, sith I wold for thi love dey so often
having no reward to my herd peynys? And here saw I for the second beholdyng
in this blissid passion, the love that made Him to suffre passith as far al His
peynes as Hevyn is above erth, for the peynes was a nobele, worshipfull dede don
in a tyme be the werkyng of love. And love was without begynnyng, is, and shall
be without endyng; for which love He seyd ful swetely these words, If I myght
suffre more, I wold suffre more. He sayd not, "If it were nedeful to suffre more";
for thow it were not nedeful, if He myght suffre more, He wold. This dede and
this werke about our salvation was ordeynyd as wele as God myght ordeyn it.
And here I saw a full blisse in Criste, for His blisse shold not a be full if it myte
any better have be done.
How Criste wil we joyen with Hym gretly in our redemption and to desire
grace of Hym that we may so doe. Twenty-third chapter.
And in these three words, It is a joy, a blis, an endles lykyng to me, were
shewid three Hevyns, as thus: For the joy I understode the plesance of the
Fader, and for the blis, the worshippe of the Son, and for the endles lykyng the
Holy Gost. The Fader is plesid, the Son is worshippid, the Holy Gost lykith.
And here saw I for the thred beholdyng in His blisful passion, that is to sey, the
joy and the blis that make Hym to lekyn it. For our curtes Lord shewid His
passion to me in five manners, of which the first is the bledyng of the hede, the
second is discoloryng of His face, the third is the plentiuous bledyng of the body
in semys of the scorgyng, the fourth is the depe deyng. These four are aforseyd
for the peynys of the passion. And the fifth is that was shewid for the joy and
the bliss of the passion.
For it is Goddys wille that we have trew lekyng with Hym in our salvation,
and therin He wil we be myghtyly comfortid and strengthnid, and thus wil He
merily with His grace that our soule be occupyed. For we arn His blisse; for in
us He lekyth without end, and so shal we in Hym, with His grace. And al that
He hath done for us, and doth, and ever shal, was never coste ne charge to
Hym, ne myte be, but only that He dede in our manhood begynnyng at the
sweete incarnation and lesting to the blissid upriste on Esterne morow. So long
durid the cost and the charge aboute our redemption in dede, of which dede He
enjoyeth endlesly, as it is afornseyd. Jesus wil we takyn hede to the blis that
is in the blisful Trinite of our salvation, and that we desiren to have as mech
gostly lykyng with His grace, as it is afornseyd. That is to sey, that the likyng of
our salvation be like to the joy that Criste hath of our salvation, as it may be
whil we arn here. Al the Trinite wroute in the passion of Criste, minystryng
abundance of vertues and plenty of grace to us be Hym; but only the Mayden
Son suffrid, whereof all the blissid Trinite endlesly enjoyeth. And this was
shewid in these words, Art thou wel payd? and be that other word that Criste
sayd, If thou art payed, than am I paide; as if He seyd, "It is joy and likyng enow
to me and I aske nowte ell of the for my travel, but that I myght wel payen the."
And in this He browte to mend the property of a glad gevere. A glad gever
takyth but litil hede of the thyng that he gevith, but al his desire and al his
intent is to plesyn hym and solacyn hym to whome he gevyth it. And if the
receiver take the geft heyly and thankfully, than the curtes gever settith at nowte
all his coste and al his travel for joy and delite that he hath, for he hath plesid
and solacid hym that he lovyth. Plenteously and fully was this shewid. Thynke
also wisely of the gretnes of this word evere, for in that was shewid an high
knowing of love that He hath in our salvation with manyfold joyes that folow of
the passion of Criste. One is that He joyeth that He hath don it in dede, and
He shal no more suffre; another, that He browte us up into Hevyn and made us
for to be His corone and endles blisse. Another is that He hath therwith bawte
us from endless peynys of Helle.
The tenth Revelation is that our Lord Jesus shewith in love His blissid herte
cloven in two enjoyand. Twenty-fourth chapter.
Than with a glad chere our Lord loked into His syde and beheld, enjoyand;
and with His swete lokyng He led forth the understondyng of His creture be the
same wound into Hys syde withinne. And than He shewid a faire, delectabil
place and large enow for al mankynd that shal be save to resten in pece and in
love. And therwith He browte to mende His dereworthy blode and pretious
water which He lete poure al oute for love. And with the swete beholdyng He
shewid His blisful herte even cloven on two. And with this swete enjoyyng He
shewid onto myn understondyng, in party, the blissid Godhede, steryng than the
pure soule for to understonde, as it may be said; that is to mene, the endles
love that was without begynnyng, and is, and shal be ever.
And with this our gode Lord seyd full blisfully, Lo, how that I lovid the; as if
He had seid, "My derling, behold and se thy Lord, thy God that is thy maker and
thyn endles joy; se what likyng and bliss I have in thy salvation, and for my love
enjoy now with me." And also, for more understondyng, this blissid word was
seyd: Lo, how I lovid the. Behold and se that I lovid the so mekyl ere I deyd for the
that I wold dey for the, and now I have deyd for the, and suffrid wilfuly that I may.
And now is al my bitter peyne and al my hard travel turnyd to endles joy and bliss
to me and to the. How should it now be that thou should onythyng pray me that
lekyth me, but if I shuld ful gladly grant it the? For my lekyng is thy holynes and
thyn endles joy and bliss with me.
This is the understondyng simply as I can sey of this blissid word, Lo, how I
lovid the. This shewid our gode Lord for to make us glad and mery.
The eleventh Revelation is an hey gostly shewing of His Moder. Twenty-fifth chapter.
And with this same chere of myrth and joy, our gode Lord lokyd downe on
the ryte syde and browte to my mynde where our Lady stode in the tyme of His
passion, and seid, Wilt the se here? And in this swete word, as if He had seyd, "I
wote wele thou wold se my blissid moder, for after myselfe she is the heyest joy
that I myte shew the and most lykyng and worshippe to me, and most she is desyrid
to be seene of my blissid cretures." And for the hey, mervelous, singular love
that He hath to this swete mayden, His blissid moder our Lady Seyt Mary, He
shewid hir heyly enjoyng as be the menyng of these swete words, as if He seyd,
"Wil thou se how I love hir that thou myte joy with me in the love that I have
in her and she in me?" And also to more understondyng this swete word our Lord
God spekyth to al mankynde that shal be save, as it were al to one person, as if
He seyd, "Wilt tho seen in hir how thou art lovid? For thy love I made her so
hey, so noble, and so worthy, and this likyth me, and so wil I that it doith the."
For after Hymselfe, she is the most blisful syte.
But herof am I not lerid to longen to seen hirr bodyly presense while I am here,
but the vertues of hir blissid soule, her truth, her wisdam, hir charite, wherby I
may leryn to know myselfe and reverently drede my God. And whan our gode
Lord had shewid this, and seid this word, Wilt thou seen hir? I answerid and
seyd, "Ya, good Lord, gramercy; ya, good Lord, if it be thy wille." Oftentymes I br> prayd this and I wend a seen hir in bodily presens, but I saw hir not so. And
Jesus in that word shewid me a gostly syte of hir. Ryte as I had seen hir aforn
litil and simple, so He shewid hir than hey and noble and glorious and plesyng to
Hym above al creatures; and He wil that it be knowen that al those that lyke in
Hym should lyken in hir and in the lykyng that He hath in hir and she in Him.
And to more understondyng He shewid this example: as, if a man love a creature
syngularly above al creatures, he wil make al creature to loven and to lyken that
creature that he lovith so mekyl. And in this word that Jesus seid, Wilt thou se
hir? methowte it was the most likyng word that He might have gove me of hir
with the gostly shewyng that He gave me of hir. For our Lord shewid me
nothyng in special but our Lady Seynt Mary, and hir He shewid three tymys. The
first was as she conceyvyd, the second was as she was in hir sorows under the
Cross, the third is as she is now in likyng, worshippe, and joye.
The twelfth Revelation is that the Lord our God is al sovereyn beyng. Twenty-sixth chapter.
And after this our Lorde shewid Hym more gloryfyed, as to my syte, than I
saw Him beforne, wherin I was lernyd that our soule shal never have rest til it
comith to Hym knowing that He is fulhede of joy, homley and curtesly blisful and
very life. Our Lord Jesus oftentymes seyd, I it am, I it am, I it am that is heyest,
I it am that thou lovist, I it am that thou lykyst, I it am that thou servist, I it am
that thou longyst, I it am that thou desyrist, I it am that thou menyst, I it am that
is al, I it am that Holy Church prechyth and teachyth the, I am that shewed me
here to thee. The nombre of the words passyth my witte and al my understondyng
and al my mights, and it arn the heyest, as to my syte. For therin is compre-
hendid, I cannot tellyn - but the joy that I saw in the shewyng of them passyth
al that herte may willen and soule may desire; and therefore the words be not
declaryd here. But every man, after the grace that God gevyth him in under-
stondyng and lovyng, receive hem in our Lords menyng.
The thirteenth Revelation is that our Lord God wil that we have grete
regard to all His deds that He hav don in the gret noblyth of al things makyng
and of etc; how synne is not knowin but by the peyn. Twenty-seventh chapter.
After this the Lord browte to my mynd the longyng that I had to Hym aforn.
And I saw that nothyng letted me but synne, and so I beheld generally in us al.
And methowte, if synne had not a ben, we should al a ben clene and like to our
Lord as He made us. And thus, in my foly, aforn this tyme, often I wondrid whi
by the gret forseyng wysdam of God the begynyng of synne was not lettid. For
than, thowte me, al shuld a be wele. This steryng was mikel to forsakyn, and
nevertheless mornyng and sorow I made therefor without reason and discretion.
But Jesus, that in this vision enformid me of all that me nedyth, answerid by
this word, and seyd: Synne is behovabil, but al shal be wel, and al shal be wel, and
al manner of thyng shal be wele. In this nakid word synne, our Lord browte to my
mynd generally al that is not good, and the shamfull dispite and the utter nowt-
yng that He bare for us in this life, and His dyeng, and al the peynys and pas-
sions of al His creatures, gostly and bodyly - for we be all in party nowtid, and
we shall be nowtid followyng our Master Jesus till we be full purgyd, that is to
sey, till we be fully nowtid of our dedly flesh and of al our inward affections
which arn not very good - and the beholdyng of this with al peynys that ever
wern or ever shal be; and with al these I understond the passion of Criste for
most peyne and overpassyng. And al this was shewid in a touch, and redily
passid over into comforte. For our good Lord wold not that the soule were
afferd of this uggly syte.
But I saw not synne, for I beleve it hath no manner of substance ne no party
of being, ne it myght not be knowin, but by the peyne that it is cause of; and
thus peyne - it is somethyng, as to my syte, for a tyme, for it purgith and
makyth us to knowen our selfe and askyn mercy. For the passion of our Lord is
comforte to us agens al this, and so is His blissid wille. And for the tender love
that our good Lord hath to all that shal be save, He comfortith redyly and
swetely, menyng thus: It is sothe that synne is cause of all this peyne, but al shal
be wele, and al shall be wele, and all manner thing shal be wele. These words
were seyd full tenderly, shewyng no manner of blame to me ne to non that shall
be safe. Than were it a gret unkindness to blame or wonder on God for my synne,
sythen He blamyth not me for synne. And in these same words I saw a mervel-
ous, hey privitye hid in God, which privity He shall openly make knowen to us
in Hevyn, in which knowyng we shal verily see the cause why He suffrid synne
to come, in which syte we shall endlesly joyen in our Lord God.
How the children of salvation shal be shakyn in sorowis, but Criste enjoyth
wyth compassion; and a remedye agayn tribulation. Twenty-eighth chapter.
Thus I saw how Criste hath compassion on us for the cause of synne. And ryte
as I was aforn in the passion of Criste fulfillid with peyne and compassion, like
in this I was fulfild a party with compassion of al myn even Cristen, for that
wel, wel belovid people that shal be savid. That is to sey, Gods servants, Holy
Church, shal be shakyn in sorows and anguis and tribulation in this world, as
men shakyn a cloth in the wynde. And as to this our Lord answerid in this manner:
A gret thing shall I makyn hereof in Hevyn, of endles worshipps and everlestyng
joyes. Ya, so ferforth I saw that our Lord joyth of the tribulations of His ser-
vants. With reuth and compassion to ech person that He lovyth to His bliss for
to bringen, He levyth upon them something that is no lak in Hys syte, wherby thei
are lakid and dispisyd in thys world, scornyd, rapyd, and outcasten. And this He
doith for to lettyn the harme that thei shuld take of the pompe and the veyn
glory of this wrechid lif, and mak ther way redy to come to Hevyn, and heynen
them in His bliss without end lestyng. For He seith, I shall al tobreke you for
your veyn affections and your vicious pryde, and after that I shal togeder gader you,
and make you mylde and meke, clene and holy, by onyng to me. And than I saw
that ech kynde compassion that man hath on his even Cristen with charite, it is
Criste in him.
That same nowting that was shewid in His passion, it was shewid ageyn here
in this compassion, wherein were two maner of understondyngs in our Lords
menyng. The one was the bliss that we arn bowte to, wherin He will be enjoyen.
That other is for comforte in our peyne, for He will that we wettyn that it shal
al be turnyd to worshippe and profite be vertue of His passion, and that we
wetyn that we suffir not alone, but with Him, and seen Hym our grounde, and
that we seen His penys and His nowting passith so fer al that we may suffre that it
may not be ful thowte; and the beholdyng of this will save us from gruching and
dispeir in the felyng of our peynys. And if we se sothly that our synne deservyth
it, yet His love excusith us, and of His gret curtesye He doith awey al our
blame, and He holdyth us with ruth and pite as childer, inocents and unlothfull.
Adam synne was gretest, but the satisfaction for it is more plesyng to God
than ever was the synne harmfull. Twenty-ninth chapter.
But in this I stode beholdyng generally, swemly and mournyng, seyng thus to
our Lord in my menyng with ful gret drede: "A, good Lord, how myte al ben wele
for the grete hurte that is come by synne to the creatures?" And here I desirid
as I durst to have sum more open declaryng wherwith I myte be esyd in this.
And to this our blisfull Lord answerd full mekely and with ful lovely chere and
shewid that Adams synne was the most harme that ever was don or ever shal to
the world ende. And also He shewid that this is openly knowen in al Holy Chirch
in erth. Furthermore He leryd that I should behold the glorious asyeth, for this
asyeth makyng is more plesyng to God and more worshipfull for manys salvation
without comparison than ever was the synne of Adam harmfull. Than menyth
our blissid Lord thus in this techyng, that we should take hede to this: For sythe
I have made wele the most harme, than it is My wil that thou knowe thereby that I
shal make wel al that less.
How we shuld joye and trusten in our Savior Jesus not
presumyng to know His privy counsell. Thirtieth chapter.
He gave me understondyng of two parties. That one party is our Savior and our
salvation. This blissid parte is hopyn and clere and faire and lite and plentiuous,
for al mankynde that is of good wille, and shal be, is comprehendid in this parte.
Herto arn we bounden of God and drawen and councellid and lerid inwardly be
the Holy Gost and outwardly be Holy Church in the same grace. In this will our
Lord we be occupyed, joyeng in Him, for He onjoyeth in us, and the more
plentiuously that we take of this with reverens and mekenes the more thanke we
deserven of Hym and the more spede to ourselfe, and thus, may we sey, enjoy-
ing our part is our Lord. That other is hid and sperid from us, that is to sey, al
that is besiden our salvation. For it is our Lords privy councell, and it longyth
to the ryal lordship of God to have His privy councell in pece, and it longyth to
His servant for obedience and reverens not to wel wetyn His conselye.
Our Lord hath pety and compassion on us, for that sum creatures make them
so besy therin. And I am sekir if we wisten how mekil we shuld plese Hym and
ese our selfe to leven it, we wolden. The seynts that be in Hevyn, thei wil noth-
yng wetyn but that our Lord will shewen hem, and also their charite and their
desire is rulid after the wil of our Lord, and thus owen we to willen like to hem.
Than shal we nothyng willen ne desiren but the wille of our Lord, like as thei
do. For we arn al on in Goddis menyng. And here was I lerynyd that we shal
trosten and enjoyen only in our Savior, blisful Jesus, for althynge.
Off the longyng and the spiritual threst of Criste which lestyth
and shall lesten til domys day. And be the reason of His body,
He is not yet full gloryfyed ne al unpassible. Thirty-first chapter.
And thus our good Lord answerid to al the question and doubts that I myte
makyn, sayeing ful comfortably, I may makyn al thing wele, I can make al thing
wele, and I wil make al thyng wele, and I shall make al thyng wele, and thou shal se
thiself that al manner of thyng shal be wele. That He seyth, I may, I understond for
the Fader, and He seith, I can, I understond for the Son, and where He seith, I
will, I understond for the Holy Gost, and wher He seith, I shall, I understond
for the unite of the blissid Trinite, three persons and one trouthe; and where
He seith, Thu shal se thi selfe, I understond the onyng of al mankynd that shalle
be save into the blisful Trinite. And in thes five words God wil be onclosid in
rest and in pees, and thus shal the gostly threst of Criste have an end.
For this is the gostly thrist of Criste, the luf longyng that lestith and ever shal
til we se that syte on Domys Day. For we that shal be save and shal be Crists
joye and His blis, some be yet here, and some be to cum, and so shal sum be
into that day. Therefore this is His thrist: a love longyng to have us al togeder
hole in Him to His blis, as to my syte. For we be not now as fully as hole in
Him as we shal be then. For we knowen in our feith, and also it was shewid in
alle, that Criste Jesus is both God and man. And amenst the Godhede, He is
Hymselfe heyest blis, and was from without begynnyng, and shall be from with-
oute end, which endles blis may never be heyned ne lownyd in the selfe. For this
was plentiuously sen in every shewyng, and namely in the twelfth, wher He
seith, I am that is heyest.
And anemst Crists manhood, it is knowen in our feith, and also shewyd, that He
with the vertue of Godhede, for love, to bring us to His blis, suffrid peynys and
passions and deid. And these be the werks of Crists manhode wherin He enjoyeth,
and that shewid He in the ninth Revelation, wher He seith, It is a joye, a blis, a
endles lykyng to me that ever I suffrid passion for the. And this is the blis of
Crists werks, and thus He menyth where He seith in the selfe shewing, we be
His blis, we be His mede, we be His worship, we be His corone. For anemst that
Criste is our hede, He is glorifyed and onpassible, and anemst His body, in which
al His members be knitt, He is not yet ful glorifyed ne al onpassible. For the
same desire and threst that He had upon the Cross, which desire, longyng, and
thrist, and, as to my syte, was in Him fro withoute begynnyng, the same hath He
yet and shal, into the tyme that the last soule that shal be savid is cum up to
For as verily as there is a properte in God of ruth and pity, as veryly there is
a property in God of threst and longyng. And of the vertue of this longyng in
Criste, we have to longen ageyn to Him, withoute which no soule comyth to
Hevyn. And this propertye of longyng and threst comyth of the endles goodnes
of God, ryte as the property of pite comith of His endles goodnes, and thow long-
yng and pite arn two sundry properties, as to my syte. And in this stondyth the
poynt of the gostly thrist which is lestyng in Hym as long as we be in nede, us
drawing up to His blis. And al this was sen in the shewyng of compassion, for
that shal secyn on Domys Day. Thus He hath ruth and compassion on us, and
He hath longyng to have us, but His wisdam and His love suffrith not the end to
cum til the best tyme.
How al thyng shal be wele and Scripture fulfillid, and we must stedfastly
holdyn us in the faith of Holy Chirch as is Crists wille. Thirty-second chapter.
On tyme our good Lord seid, Al thyng shal be wele, and another tyme He seid,
Thu shalt sen thiself that al manner thyng shal be wele. And in these two, the
soule toke sundry understondyng. On was this: that He wil we wetyn that not
only He takith hede to noble thyngs and to grete, but also to litil and to smale,
to low and to simple, to on and to other. And so menyth He in that He seith,
Al manner thyngs shal be wele. For He will we wetyn the leste thyng shal not be
forgottyn. Another understondyng is this: that there be dedes evyl done in our
syte and so grete harmes takyn, that it semyth to us that it were impossibil that
ever it shuld cum to gode end, and upon this we loke sorowyng and morning
therefore, so that we cannot restyn us in the blisful beholdyng of God as we
shuld doe. And the cause is this, that the use of our reason is now so blynd, so
low, and so symple, that we cannot know that hey, mervelous wisdam, the myte,
and the goodness, of the blisful Trinite; and thus menyth He wher He seith,
Thou shalt se thiself that al maner thyng shal be wele. As if He seid, "Take now
hede faithfuly and trostily, and at the last end thou shalt verily sen it in fulhede
of joye." And thus in these same five words afornseid, I may make al thyngs
wele etc., I understond a myty comforte of al the works of our Lord God that
arn for to comen.
Ther is a dede the which the blisful Trinite shal don in the last day, as to my
syte. And whan the dede shall be and how it shal be done, it is onknown of all
creatures that are beneath Criste, and shal be, till whan it is don. And the cause
He wil we know is for He wil we be the more esyd in our soule and pesid in
love, levyng the beholdyng of al tempests that myte lettyn us of trewth, enjoyeng
in Hym. This is the grete dede ordeynyd of our Lord God from without begynnyng,
treasured and hid in His blissid breast, only knowen to Hymself, be which dede
He shal make al thyngs wele. For like as the blisful Trinite made al thyngs of
nowte, ryte so the same blissid Trinite shal make wele al that is not wele.
And in this syte I mervelid gretely and beheld our feith, merveland thus: Our
feith is growndid in Goddys word, and it longyth to our feith that we levyn that
Goddys word shal be savid in al things. And one peynt of our feith is that many
creatures shal be dampnyd - as Angells that fellyn out of Hevyn for pride which
be now fends, and man in herth that deyth oute of the feith of Holy Church,
that is to say, thei that be ethen men, and also man that hath receyvid Christen-
dam and livith uncristen life, and so deyth out of charite - all these shall be
dampnyd to Helle without end, as Holy Church techyth me to belevyn.
And stondyng al this, methowte it was impossibil that al manner thyng should
be wele as our Lord shewid in this tyme. And as to this I had no other answere
in shewyng of our Lord God but this: That is impossible to the is not impossible
to Me. I shal save My worde in al things, and I shal make al thing wele. Thus I was
tawte by the grace of God that I should stedfasty hold me in the faith as I had
afornehand understonden, and therewith that I should sadly levyn that al thyng
shal be wele, as our Lord shewid in the same tyme. For this is the great dede
that our Lord shal done, in which dede He shal save His word in al thing, and
He shal make wele al that is not wele. And how it shal be don there is no creature
benethe Criste that wot it, ne shal wetyn it, till it is don, as to the understondyng
that I toke of our Lords menyng in this tyme.
Al dampnyd soule be dispisid in the syte of God, as the devil; and these
Revelations withdraw not the feith of Holy Church, but comfortith; and the
more we besy to know Gods privites, the less we knowen. Thirty-third chapter.
And yet in this I desired as I durst that I myte have had ful syte of Helle and
Purgatory. But it was not my mening to maken prefe of anythyng that longyth to
the feith. For I levyd sothfastly that Hel and Purgatory is for the same end that
Holy Church techith. But my menyng was that I myte have seen for leryng in al
thyng that longyth to my feith, wherby I myte liven the more to Gods worship,
and to my profit. And for my desire I coude of this ryte nowte, but as it is afor-
seid in the fifth shewing, wher that I saw that the devil is reprovid of God and
endlesly dampned. In which syte I understode that al creatures that arn of the
devils condition in this life, and therin enden, there is no more mention made
of hem aforn God and al His holy than of the devil, notwithstondying that thei
be of mankynd, whether they have be cristenyd or not.
For thow the Revelation was made of goodnes, in which was made litil men-
tion of evil, yet I was not drawne therby from any poynt of the feith that Holy
Church techyth me to levyn. For I had syte of the passion of Criste in dyvers
shewyngs, in the first, in the second, in the fifth, and in the eighth, as it is seid
aforn, wheras I had in party a felyng of the sorow of our Lady and of His trew
freinds that sen Hym in peyne. But I saw not so propirly specyfyed the Jewes
that deden Hym to ded, notwithstondyn I knew in my feith that thei wer accursid
and dampnyd without end, savyng those that converten be grace. And I was
strengthyd and lered generaly to kepe me in the feith in every pointe, and in al
as I had afore understoden, hopyng that I was therin with the mercy and the
grace of God, desyring and prayng in my menyng that I myte continue therin on
to my lifs end. And it is Gods will that we have gret regard to al His dedes that
He hath don, but evermore it us nedyth levyn the beholdyng what the dede shal
be; and desir we to be leke our brethren which be seynts in Hevyn that wille
ryth nowte but God wille. Than shal we only enjoyen in God, and ben wel payd
both with hyding and with shewyng. For I saw sothly in our Lordis menyng, the
more we besyn us to knowen His privities in this or any other thyng, the ferther
shal we be from the knowing thereof.
Go To The Shewings of Julian of Norwich, Part II