Back to top

Homily 20, Third Sunday in Lent


1 Third Sunday in Lent according to Luke

2 Latin rubric (Luke 11:14–28): And he was casting out a devil, [and the same was dumb: and when he had cast out the devil, the dumb spoke: and the multitudes were in admiration at it: But some of them said: He casteth out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils. And others tempting, asked of him a sign from heaven. But he seeing their thoughts, said to them: Every kingdom divided against itself, shall be brought to desolation, and house upon house shall fall. And if Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because you say, that through Beelzebub I cast out devils. Now if I cast out devils by Beelzebub: by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. But if I by the finger of God cast out devils; doubtless the king­dom of God is come upon you. When a strong man armed keepeth his court, those things are in peace which he possesseth. But if a stronger than he come upon him, and overcome him; he will take away all his armour wherein he trusted, and will distribute his spoils. He that is not with me, is against me; and he that gathereth not with me, scattereth. When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through places without water, seeking rest; and not finding, he saith: I will return into my house whence I came out / And when he is come, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then he goeth and taketh with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and entering in they dwell there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first. And it came to pass, as he spoke these things, a certain woman from the crowd, lifting up her voice, said to him: Blessed is the womb that bore thee, and the paps that gave thee suck. But he said: Yea rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God, and keep it.]

3 Lines 129–30: As if to say: you who ought to recognize me, / And to bring heathen folk to me

4 Lines 171–72: They dare not correct the laity, out of fear, / When they themselves are guilty of wicked deeds

5 For they receive their entire income from the laity


Abbreviations: CA: Catena Aurea, ed. Newman; CT: Chaucer, Canterbury Tales; MED: Middle English Dictionary; NHC: Northern Homily Cycle; NIMEV: The New Index of Middle English Verse, ed. Boffey and Edwards; Tubach: Index Exemplorum, ed. Tubach. For manuscript abbreviations (ED, A, D, G, L, V), see the Introduction.

The NHC-poet must have been familiar with the centuries-old tradition of anti-clerical satire with its stinging attack on corruption in the church and its clergy, and this homily echoes many of its themes. Monks and friars, more often than priests, were the targets of this tradition, but the abuses mentioned most often (with the exception of simony) were similar: lechery, laziness, avarice, gluttony, the accumulation of wealth, the absence of teaching, and the failure to give a good example through the cleric’s own life. The NHC-poet departs somewhat from the tradition, at the very least in terms of the strength of feeling expressed, in his recurring emphasis on the consequence for parishioners of clerical malfeasance. Though the poet may be speaking to the clergy in this case, his real concern is, as ever, with the laity and with his attempt to set their feet on the path to heaven.

NIMEV 2968, 3288. Manuscripts: A: fols. 89r–94r; G: (missing); D: fols. 107r–110r; L: fols. 30r–30v.

8 Beelzebub. A name used interchangeably in the New Testament for Satan, the prince of demons.

10 faystere. Attested only in its verbal form, faistren (“to bring up”) by MED. For the noun form as it appears in this line of the Ashmole manuscript, McIntosh suggests the meaning “fosterer, boss” (p. 198).

62 Youre sonnes. Jesus, according to Luke (11:14–28), makes the point that since “your sons” (i.e., other Jews) cast out demons, these accusations should also be leveled against them. The NHC-poet expands on Luke’s “they shall be your judges” by categorizing these “sons” as good Jews who, along with Jesus, will judge the others on Doomsday and banish them from the joys of heaven (Luke 11:19–20).

104 este and nythe. See Third Sunday in Advent (3.27n). Este and eft are evidently the same word, both occurring only in the expression este/eft and nythe. See also Eleventh Sunday after Trinity for a further occurrence of the expression (46.294). Compare L: yst & nyth. D: onde & nyþe.

123–24 He that es noght with me, / Agaynes me forsothe es he. Cp. Matthew 12:30 and Luke 11:23: “He that is not with me is against me.”

138 Fra rightwisnes to wrange gates. Here NHC breaks off before the conclusion of the Gospel pericope; what follows is not so much an explication but a lengthy and strongly worded diatribe against bad clergy, inspired by Jesus’ condemnation of those who do not “gather souls to God.” Neither Gregory nor Bede has a homily for this date, but Gregory’s Pastoral Care was probably an influence (see line 164n). Twelfth-century Anglo-Latin satires against corruption in the church and its clergy provided a rich source for the subsequent vernacular preaching of satire and complaint, as seen in the Speculum Stultorum, the Apocalipsis Goliae, and the work of Walter Map and Walter of Châtillon. Robert Mannyng, writing in the vernacular and a close contemporary of the NHC-poet, voices similar concerns in Handlyng Synne (see line 158n). Owst, in Literature and Pulpit, devotes two chapters to this topic, with pages 241–86 focusing chiefly on complaints against the clergy. As Kerby-Fulton points out, most of the anti-clerical satire which flourished in the monasteries and schools was written by clerics and for clerics; the NHC-poet’s intended audience, however, is the laity, with the result that he returns again and again to the consequences for the parishioners of the priest’s failure to teach them the right way (“Piers Plowman,” p. 531).

158 Thus God for slewthe sall thaim tyne. Compare Robert Mannyng’s words in Handlyng Synne: “A persone ys slogh [negligent] yn holy cherche / Þat on hys shepe wyl nat werche” (lines 4821–22).

161 Thaire parihssenes for to teche. The words found in 2 Timothy 4:2 were often cited in exhorting priests to this duty: “Preach the word: be instant in season, out of season: reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine.”

164 And lates thaire sawles in synne rust. This popular figure is based on Lamentations 4:1: “How is the gold become dim, the finest colour is changed, the stones of the sanctuary are scattered in the top of every street?” Gregory’s Pastoral Care (2.7), with which the NHC-poet was likely to have been familiar, quotes the scriptural text as part of the exhortation that priests not neglect their duty to parishioners. Compare also Chaucer’s later and famous portrayal of the Parson, in the General Prologue of CT:
This noble ensample to his sheep he yaf,
That first he wroghte, and afterward he taughte.
Out of the gospel he tho wordes caughte,
And this figure he added eek therto,
That if gold ruste, what shal iren do?
For if a preest be foul, on whom we truste,
No wonder is a lewed man to ruste;
And shame it is, if a prest take keep,
A shiten shepherde and a clene sheep. (CT I[A]496–504)
179 give to howse. The meaning of this phrase is by no means clear, but compare the MED citation from lines 1003–04 of King Horn: “Ant yshal do to house / Thy dohter wel to spouse,” with the meaning “bring home.” There is nothing comparable in either D or V; G has lost the pages containing this item.

223–24 And think that all thaire mete and drink, / Comes of thaire parihssen swink. Compare the words of the twelfth-century Latin satirist, Walter Map, who similarly cri­ticizes the abuse of tithing: “They buy themselves manors with the goods of the poor” (quoted in translation in Mann, Chaucer and Medieval Estates Satire, p. 58).

239 That mai we se be Saynte Bede. Tubach 542: Bede, preaches to stones. There is, alas, no evidence that this charming anecdote has any authentic connection to the Venerable Bede (d. 735), about whom very little is known beyond what he himself reports in the last chapter of his History of the English Church and People. His life, from the age of seven, was spent in the monastery of Wearmouth and Jarrow in the north of England, so the detail of Bede’s walk over the moors adds a pleasingly authentic touch. Gerould notes the probable source in Legenda Aurea (chapter 181, vol. 2, p. 375), as well as a version in the Alphabetum Narrationum (NEHC, p. 55). Neither of these (nor the version in the later English AT [637]), includes the moor or the birds who, along with the stones, respond to Bede’s sermon.

256 marstire. This spelling is not attested by MED, but the meaning seems obvious.

273 This mirakel have I tolde yow here. Following this unusually short exemplum the poet returns to the theme of priests and preaching, which occupies him for a further twenty lines.

280 And vikars als with thaire brade crownes. MED provides the following definition of vikar: “One appointed to act as priest in a parish in place of the real parson, a parish vicar.” All MED citations are much later than NHC. Given the criticism of priestly avarice and luxurious living in lines 205–10, this may be a further criticism, this time of a broad-brimmed hat as an illustration of pride and ostentation. There is little contemporary information regarding appropriate attire for the secular clergy, but the many allusions to their wearing of secular attire were probably intended as an index of spiritual laxity (Mayo, History of Ecclesiastical, pp. 47–48). The broad-brimmed hat featured in the Ellesmere portrait of the monk was particularly associated with clerical fashion in the fifteenth century; though this is too late for NHC, the proposed sumptuary law of 1402 which would have forbidden any cleric, with certain exceptions of rank, from wearing any hat “‘passing the points of the shoulders’ in the breadth of its brim” suggests an attempt to legislate against an offence which may well have begun earlier (Mullaney, “Language of Costume,” p. 41).

293 Yitt es a worde in oure Gospell. The NHC-poet now returns to the concluding verses of the Gospel pericope (Luke 11:24–28), turning his attention away from the priests who teach God’s word and towards those who receive it.

294 almos. This appears to be the noun almos used with an adjectival meaning, though no such form is listed by MED.

302 For in weete stede findes he moste reste. Springs, wells, and streams are among the favored habitats of the devil (J. Russell, Lucifer, p. 71). The idea that the devil prefers wet places could also have been influenced by English folkloric traditions. The monsters of Beowulf, for instance, inhabit misty moorlands, and Grendel’s mother lives behind a waterfall (e.g., Beowulf, ed. Klaeber, lines 1258–61, 1357–62). Guthlac, the seventh-century saint, who goes to live in the marshy fens of East Anglia, is much abused by the demons who live there (Felix’s Life, pp. 89, 103).

313 He comis and findis his chaumbir swepid. Bede explains that the house is “swept and garnished, that is, purified by the grace of baptism from the stain of sin, yet replenished with no diligence in good works” (CA 3.408).

324 sevene fendes. For medieval writers, the number seven often suggests the seven deadly sins, as indicated by the next line: “That es to saie with synnes all.” Compare Bede: “By the seven evil spirits which he takes to himself, he signifies all the vices” (CA 3.408).

349–50 This er the wordes of oure Gospell / Als man with Yngliss tonge mai tell. Our author has been so warmly energized by his subject matter on this occasion, that he has abandoned his usual orderly sequence of Gospel paraphrase, homily, and exemplum with the result that this couplet occurs just a few lines from the end of the entire item.


For manuscript abbreviations (ED, A, D, G, L, V), see the Introduction.

17 slightis. MS: mightes, canceled, followed by slightis.

259 fayr. So D. MS: full.

331 For. MS: W, canceled, followed by Ffor.
Dominica iii in Quadragesima secundum Lucam.1

Erat Jesus eiciens demonium etc.2







































































   Saynte Luke saise that a man doumbe was,
Of whaim Criste chasid oute Sathanas;
This man spake when the fende was oute,
And all folk ferlied that was aboute;
And Jewes that had at Criste envye,
Saide Criste did oft swilk maistrie,
In a fendes name that hight
Beelzebub of mikil might,
That than was halden fendes maistire,
And of other fendes faystere.
For haythen man god was he,
Als clerkes may on bokes se,
And of fendes prince was he callde,
And for thaire allir lorde talde.
Forthi saide the wickid Jewes,
That Criste wroght thorghe his vertues
And did mirakles thorghe his slightis,
And noght thorghe his awne mightes.
For wald thai noght for God him knawe,
Bot bad he suld som ferli schawe
Of hevene, als who saie: “We trowe in thi slightis,
If hevene bere wittnes of thi mightis;
For rightli maie thou make na ruse
Of thinge that thou in erde duse.
Bot ger us taken of hevene se,
And than es right we trow in thee;
For if thou taken of hevene schawe,
For Goddes sonne we will thee knawe.”
When Criste wist what thai walde mene,
He saide to thaim than all bedene:
“That kingdome that gase in twynne
Sall barette thole if were beginne;
And ilk howse on other sall fall,
Thare conteke sondres bernes all.
Forthi if Sathanas kyngerike,
Es sondrid in itself with swik,
How sall it stand or be stedfast,
For ye saie here that I outecast
The fende in Belzebus name.
If I so did, it ware his schame,
Als so saie, if I, with his might,
Caste oute the fende that es his knight;
Than ware ayther with other wrothe so,
And swilk contek betwix thaim two,
That nowthir walde do other will.
Bot nowe ar thai anefalde in ylle,
And for thaire willes anefalde ere,
Will none of thaim on other were.
For aye the langare that Sathan
Wonnes within a synfull man,
The bettir paied es Belzebub,
That first fellid Adam with his club.
And be this resoune may ye se,
Thatt ye lyed forsothe on me.”
Yit proved Criste with mo resounes,
That thai saide als fals felounes,
Thare thai saide that he kest oute wightis,
Thorghe the craft of Belzebub mightis:
“If I,” he saide, “fendes outecast
In Belzebub, that of fendes es maste,
I ask yow how and in whas mightis,
Youre sonnes dryves oute ylle wightis?”
Thaire sonnes his folowars he callde,
That sall with him in dome be balde,
On Domesdaie with him to deme,
And synfull man fra joye to fleme.
Forthi saide Jesus, sothe to saie,
Thai sulde deme the Jewes on Domesdaie;
For som men folowid Criste in lare,
That tha Jewes sonnes ware,
And oft in Cristis name thai kest,
Fendes full fell oute of thaire rest.
Forthi askid Criste in whase name,
Thaire sonnes didd the fendes schame.
Als who saie — “Sithen ye selcouthes se,
That mi dissiples duse thorghe me,
Ye mai wele witte that I am he,
That gives thaim crafte and pousté,
To dryve develes oute of thaire denne,
Thare thai er in synfull men.”
Yit schewes Criste that God gon him sende,
Mankynde fro fendes to defende;
For he saide, “If I outecaste
In Goddis fingir the foule gaste,
Goddes Kingdome es commen now,
Forsothe here ymanges yow.”
Goddes Kingdome was Criste,
That es God in werld to triste
For when Criste had mankinde here tane
Than was God and man all ane;
And Goddes fingir in Hali Writte,
Betaknes Goddes might and his witte,
That all thinge may leefe and bynde,
Als we in Hali Boke writen finde.
Yit proves Criste with resoune hende,
That he es strenger than the fende;
And sais whiles ane armid wight,
Yemes his howse with all his might,
All that he weldes es in pese.
Bot if a man that strangere es
Him ovrecome, his gude he him reves,
And him in howse no wepen leves,
Als so saie, “Thof the fende be stythe,
And armid hard with este and nythe,
Agaynes me fallis he full swithe,
If I with him mi maistrie kithe;
And oft sithis I fell him with fight,
For he haves to me no myght.
For or I come to him he ese,
In synfull man wonand in pese.
Bot als swithe als he me seese,
Als a thefe oute of hole he flees;
And be this resoune maye ye se,
That I am stranger than es he:
With mi Godhede I ger him fle,
And noght thorghe Belzebus pousté.”
Thus provid Criste with resoune right,
That he kest oute with his awne might
The fende of this combird manne,
Fra whaim the fende his speche had tane.
Yit schewid Criste apertelie
The Jewis pride and thaire envye,
And saide, “He that es noght with me,
Agaynes me forsothe es he;
Als so saie, “So fares it of yowe,
For mi Godhede will ye noght trowe;
And he that gedirs noght with me,
His gude thewes sckatirs he;
Als so saie, ye that suld me knawe,
And haythen folk toward me drawe,3
And will noght sawles with me gadir
To God, that es youre gasteli fadir,
Ye skatir thaim with costis ylle
Fra God, for ye gere thaim ga will;
For ye suld teche thaim the lawe
Of rightwisnes, and ye thaim drawe
With wickid costis and ylle lates
Fra rightwisnes to wrange gates.”

   This worde es mikil agaynes clerkes,
That suld kenne lawde men Goddes werkes,
And gedir thaim to Goddes horde,
With rightwisnes and Goddis worde;
And leves for forworthinnes,
So mikil thai lufe thaire awne ese.
Thaim burd think, if thai ware wise,
How thai sall stand at Goddes assyse,
To yelde acounte of all thaire witte,
How thai in the werld have spendid it.
To God what sall this persounes saie,
When thai er chalangid on Domesdaie,
To yelde of all thaire live acounte?
And what thair rentes maye amounte,
That thai of the lawde takes here,
And of God will thaim noght lere,
How thai sall thaire sawles save,
That the fende thaim noght crave,
To bringe thaire sawles to hell pyne?
Thus God for slewthe sall thaim tyne.
Than mai thir men of Hali Kirk,
Drede full sare for thai ware yrk
Thaire parihssenes for to teche,
For thai er made Goddes leche.
Bot now lives ovre mani in lust,
And lates thaire sawles in synne rust,
And lawde mennes als swa,
For att thaim ensaumpil thai ta,
To life in synne and in folye,
In lust of flehsse and glotonye.
Thus in wickidnes thai live,
For othir ensawmpil nane thai give.
The lawde amende thai ne maie for drede,
When thai er coupeabil of wickid dede.4
Thir persones and vikars that riche are,
Thai suffir thaire parihssenes missefare.
Of thair godes thai suld thaim dele
To all tho that had no catele.
And pure clerkes to sette to lare,
And helpe chappemen to gette thaire ware;
And pure maidens to give to howse,
To gude yomen for to spouse;
And other gode dedes at thaire powere,
To do till all that had misstere.
Bot now than do thai nothinge so,
That geres thir lawed menne missego;
For thai live all in likinge and lust
Of flehsse, that geres the saule rust;
For riche persones lufes now,
Flehssli lust more than sawle prowe.
Thai wene to folowe Cristis trace,
With lust, likinge, rivere and chase.
Thai fede thair flehsse with gode metes,
That lawde folk bringes to thaim and getes.
Thai live of lawde folc travayle,
And right noght till thaim thai avayle;
For thare thai suld with sermoune till
The lawde folk hertes and will,
To right langinge of hevenes rike,
With wickid ensawmpil thai thaim swike;
For wickid ensaumpil thai thaim give,
In wickidnes forthe for to live;
For thare thai suld thaim mekenes schewe,
Thai schewe thaim pride and other unthewe;
And thare thai suld kenne thaim to dele,
And parte with god of thaire catele,
Thare kenne thai thaim with covetise,
To spare thaire godes on ylle wise.
For we se so thir persones spare,
That thai lat pure men missefare;
We se thaim faire grehoundes fede,
And thole the pure dye for nede.
And ylle ensaumpil thus thai give,
To thaire parihssenes wele to live.
Forthi methink it na ferlie,
Thofe lawde folk live in folye,
When thai se prestis and persounes,
Missetake agaynes God als felownes:
Goddes felounes I thaim call,
That thus geres men in synne fall,
With ensaumpile of ylle life,
That now es in this werld full rife.
Forthi I rede persounes and prestis,
That thai bere God in thaire brestis,
And think that all thaire mete and drink,
Comes of thaire parihssen swink;
And give thaim ensawmpil how that thai,
Sall toward hevene take the waie,
And sithen hald thaim wele tharein,
And yeme thaim fra dedeli synne.
For wele es thaim that with prechinge,
Mai bringe saules to hevenes Kinge;
For all that till him saules ledes,
Maie siker be of heveneli medes.
And thof the prechoure may no man drawe,
Fra synfull will to Cristen lawe,
Tyne he ne maie his travaile,
For mede of God maye he noght faile;
For God that his entente wele knawes,
Es full wele paied of all his sawes.

   That mai we se be Saynte Bede,
That mikil wroght Goddes dede.
   For writen in his lyfe we finde,
That he was in his elde blynde;
Bot noghtforthi he prechid aie,
And nameli everilk a hali daie.
Thof he ware blynde wald he noght leve
The fende fele saules for to reve.
And als he ones to prechinge fore,
His knave wexe werie on a more;
Him to rest had he gude will,
And bad his maistir thare stand still;
And saide, “Mikil folk es commen here,
Youre prechinge now for to here.”
And Bede wende his sawe sothe ware,
And stude and prechid right thare
His knave restid him ynoghe,
And his marstire to hethinge loghe;
For na man herd his spell bot he,
And stones and fowhles on the tre.
A fayr mirakel maie men here se,
Of Godes awne faire priveté;
For when he had saide what he walde,
The hard stones on him callde,
And all thir fouhles also,
Or ever thai wald ferrer go;
And said to him als thai ware menne:
“Blissid be thou that can so kenne —
Wele has thou prechid here saule hele,
For Goddes wordes will tow noght fele.”
Here mai we se withouten faile,
That God was paied of his travaile;
So es he of all verraymente,
That prechis his worde with gode entente.
This mirakel have I tolde yow here,
To gerre thir lerid men lawde lere,
For siker may thai be of medes,
That oft spekes of saule nedes.
Bot of all es thare no men,
So mikil halden the lawde to ken,
Als parihsse prestis er and persounes,
And vikars als with thaire brade crownes.
For all thaire livynge of the lawde thai take:5
Forthi thaim aght be warre for wrake.
Thai take of thaim offirand and tende,
And techis thaim noght fro the fende.
Thai gedir noght to Goddes horde
Sawles, with lare of Goddes worde.
Forthi, saise Criste in oure Gospell,
Als ye before hafe herd me tell:
“He that gadirs noght with me
His sawles mede skatirs he.”
For man skatirs with wickidnes,
The gude of kynde that in him es.
Yitt es a worde in oure Gospell,
That almos ware yow for to tell;
For when Criste had casten obak
The Jewes, that agayne him spak,
He saide to thaim, “When Sathanas
Oute of the combird mannes hert gase,
He gase be stedes unwattirye,
To seke him rest and findis all drye.
Forthi in thaim may he noght geste,
For in weete stede findes he moste reste;
That es to saye when Sathanase,
Oute of a synfull mannes hert gase,
He gase thir hali men to spye,
If thai be thorghe penaunce drie;
Or if thaire willis be watterye,
With wete of willis of liccherye.
And if he find thaim noght wate,
In thaim hase he than nane inlate.
Than saise the fende, “Agayne I go
Into the stede thare I come fro.”
He comis and findis his chaumbir swepid,
Thare he and other gastis er kepid;
For with him bringes he sevene gastes
That mannes godenes gasteli wastis.
For all samen wone thai thare,
And mase that man werse than he was are.
Thare Criste spekis of swepynge,
Es for to saie gasteli clensinge,
For schrift clenses man of synne.
Bot if he eftsones fall tharein,
Than findis Sathan him tome and lendes
In him with other sevene fendes;
That es to saie with synnes all,
That his schrift gert fra him fall.
For man that schrives him of his synne,
And sithen falles eft tharein,
He is coupeabil of all that wyte,
Whareof his schrift made him qwite.
For when man schrives him of synne,
He makes a vowe his sake to blynne;
And bettir him ware no vowe to make,
Than eftir the vowe to fall in sake.
Forthi he that will him right schrive,
His schrift he hald with clene lyve,
For wers than he was es he elles,
Als Jhesu in oure Gospell tellis.
When Criste had saide this last sawe,
A wommane thare spak that folowid o rawe,
And saide full hye till him right thare:
“Blissid be the wombe that thee bare,
And the pappis that thou soukid,
For all es in thi handis lowkid.”
“Ya, and als,” than saide he,
“Blissid mote thai all be
That heres Goddes wordes in lede
And fullfillis it in dede.”
This er the wordes of oure Gospell,
Als man with Yngliss tonge mai tell.
God gife us grace his worde to yeme,
So that we maie finde him qweme,
On Domesdaie when blast of beme,
Sall ger us come whare he sall deme;
And that we may with him wende
Into the joye withouten ende. Amen.

were envious of
powerful deeds
was called
great; (see note)
held to be; ruler
boss; (see note)
god of heathen men

accounted the lord of them all

through [Beelzebub’s] powers
performed; skills; (t-note)

commanded; marvel show
From; will believe; powers

let us see a sign from heaven

at once
divides in two
suffer strife; war
Where strife divides all men
divided against itself; treachery

cast out

would be to his shame
That is to say
each would be angry with the other
such strife

unified; evil
because their wills are united
make war


When; spirits

Through; greatest
with whose power
evil; (see note)

judgment; certain


evil; resting place

did shame to the fiends
Since; wonders
skill; power
dwelling place
did send him

By; spirit

taken on human nature

Signifies; knowledge
loose and bind


as long as; man

belongings; steals

malice and envy; (see note)

make known
often; vanquish

before; is



revealed; openly

(see note)

is it with you
Since; believe
joins not together
habits squanders


separate; evil behavior
make them willingly go [astray]

evil behavior and false pretence
ways; (see note)

teach ignorant men

But fail [to do this] out of feebleness
They ought to think
give; knowledge
income; may amount to
from the laity take wages

So that; claim

because of their laziness; destroy; (see note)
may these
parishioners; (see note)
too many [of the clergy]
(see note)

For they take their example from them [the clergy]

allow; to go astray/nobr>
poor; teach
merchants; look after
bring to the home; (see note)
Of; marry


go wrong

think; path
lechery, robbery and hunting

off of ignorant people’s work
do nothing worthwhile for them


bad habits
teach; share
divide well; possessions

hoard; evil manner
in such a way


Do wrong; evildoers
cause people


remember; (see note)



His effort will not be in vain

who knows his intention
satisified; words

(see note)

every single
Though; desist
many; deprive of
servant; grew; moor
He desired greatly to rest

believed; true

laughed his master to scorn; (see note)
no one; words
divine mystery

as if
soul’s health
you not conceal


(see note)
To cause these learned men to teach the laity

So greatly required to teach the laity

(see note)

wary of vengeance
offerings and tithes

reward wastes

human nature
(see note)
charitable; would be; (see note)

passes through waterless regions

take his lodging
wet places; (see note)


swept; (see note)

Who destroy man’s spiritual goodness
together dwell
make; previously

empty; enters
(see note)

deserving; punishment
sin to cease
it would be better
[again] into sin

[Let him] hold to his shrift



among the people

(see note)

blast of trumpet


[Homilies 21–24 not included in this edition. See Explanatory Notes.]

Go To Homily 25, Easter Monday