Latin/Greek Translations for Book 4
Lanfranc Verses (Battle Abbey)

Foxe text Latin

Sexagenus erat ... comæta.

[1563 only adds: Dux Normanorum transit mare, vicit Heraldum.]

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

It was the year 1066 when the English perished, a comet star showing. The duke of the Normans crossed the sea and conquered Harold.

Comment

This forms the introduction to the Battle Abbey Roll, a Latin inscription which was originally displayed in the abbey, but known to us only from sixteenth century versions of it published by Leland, Holinshed and Duchesne (cf. Encyclopaedia Britannica).

1570 Edition, page 237 | 1576 Edition, page 197 | 1583 Edition, page 194[Back to Top]
Verses about Abbot Robert, son of Herbert

Foxe text Latin

Filius est præsul ... & Abba. &c.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

The son is a bishop, the father is an abbot and each is a Simon:
What would we not hope for if we were to possess money?
Money has everything because it wants, it makes, it adds and it takes away.
It is all too unjust a thing, a bishop and an abbot made by money.

1570 Edition, page 253 | 1576 Edition, page 210 | 1583 Edition, page 207[Back to Top]
An allegation of the Emperor against the Pope

Foxe text Latin

Cæsar lex viua ... cuncta sibi.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

Caesar stands as the living law commanding kings as emperor, and under the living law are all rights given. That law punishes, it frees and itself binds. He is the founder of the law and must not be held by the law, but it has pleased him to be held under the law willingly. Whatever has pleased him will be like justice. God who binds and frees has brought him forth to the world; the divine power has divided the kingdom with him; it has given the stars to the celestial deities and all the rest to him.

1570 Edition, page 268 | 1576 Edition, page 223 | 1583 Edition, page 220[Back to Top]
A response from the Court of Rome against the Emperor

Foxe text Latin

Pars quoque papalis ... mens tua cedat ei. &c.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

The papal party also counters that of the emperor in this way. We grant that you reign, with the proviso that you be subject to Peter; for Christ creates both rights for us. The spirit and the body are effectually subject to me. I hold earthly things in my body and heavenly things in my mind; whence, by holding heaven, I loose and bind earth. The pope is seen to reveal the heavens, to touch celestial things. For he is entitled to give, to take, to bind, to loose everything. To him the new law and the old law have given every right: the ring and the staff, although they are thought to be earthly things, of right belong to heaven. What they seem to signify is: have regard to the laws of God; let your mind give way to him, etc.

1570 Edition, page 269 | 1576 Edition, page 223 | 1583 Edition, page 220[Back to Top]
Verses about the Emperor Frederick II

Foxe text Latin

Si probitas ... Fridericus qui iacet intus.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

If honesty, sense, the grace of virtues, wealth and nobility of birth could resist death, Frederick, who lies within, would not have died.

1570 Edition, page 417 | 1576 Edition, page 344 | 1583 Edition, page 339[Back to Top]
Poems exchanged by Frederick II and Pope Innocent IV

The Emperor Frederick to Pope Innocent

Foxe text Latin

Fata mouent ... esse caput.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

The fates warn, and the stars and flights of birds teach: at once I shall be the hammer of the whole world. Rome tottering for a long time after being driven by long errors will collapse, and cease to be the head of the world.

1570 Edition, page 418 | 1576 Edition, page 344 | 1583 Edition, page 339[Back to Top]
Poems exchanged by Frederick II and Pope Innocent IV

Pope Innocent of the Emperor Frederick

Foxe text Latin

Fata silent ... cuspide cuncta minatur.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

The fates are silent, the stars are silent, the bird predicts nothing: to know the future is the privilege of God alone. You are striving in vain to submerge Peter's ship: that ship floats but never sinks. Rumour reports, Scripture teaches, and your sins tell us that life for you is short, but your punishment will be everlasting. Julian realised what power the hand of God had: you are succeeding him and the anger of God holds you. FRE - rages in the world, DE - presses down lofty things into the deep, RI - searches out evil, CUS - threatens all with his spear.

1570 Edition, page 418 | 1576 Edition, page 344 | 1583 Edition, page 339[Back to Top]
Poems exchanged by Frederick II and Pope Innocent IV

Frederick to Innocent

Foxe text Latin

Fata mouent ... christianoq; gregi.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

The fates warn, the stars teach, the flights of birds tell that you are soon destined to fall into the caves of black Styx. It is not Peter's ship but that of Christ which swims in the waves; that ship floats, but never sinks. Rumour reports, your writings tell us, and your abominable sins show us your destruction and death. A fly strangled Adrian, and does not the anger of God think also of exacting punishment from you? Benedict hanged himself in prison, and the other one caught in debauchery perished, wounded by his own sword. Satan, himself more wicked, killed Silvester: so you will be gaining rewards worthy of your deeds. You note in what you sa that you are innocent, although you are about to harm the world and its Christian flock.

1570 Edition, page 418 | 1576 Edition, page 344 | 1583 Edition, page 339[Back to Top]
Poems exchanged by Frederick II and Pope Innocent IV

Frederick to Innocent afresh

Foxe text Latin

Esses si membrum ... sidera, jura, Deos.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

If you were a limb you would not be boasting that you are the head of the world and the city when you are a burden to the world and the city. Now you are not a member, but a rotten corpse, a sore that should be cut away with the sword, a ridiculous head. By Daniel you are said to be an 'abomination', a sin and the head of evils, by Paul to be the son of destruction. We make Christ only our head, but you make yourself the head of the evils of the whole world. And the head is one, as Paul says everywhere. You, foolish jester, tell me what sort of head. The head then of a monstrous body, and you are giving birth to monsters, you are giving birth to monsters who are monks and you are fondling abominable prostitutes. Your religion is debauchery, anger, arrogance, murder, error, pleasure, disasters and shameful profit. From this then it is clear that you spurn Christ: that you are a hateful enemy and a disgrace to God. In the end the King will come gliding down from high heaven, and then your sacraments will not defend you, nor your masses and crosses; not the plumes rising on the top of your head, not a powerful diploma, not your sacred cohort; not your triple crown, nor your see gained with blood, no honour of your throne and no purple. Judas sold Christ for thirty pieces of silver, you are selling more bodies of your Christ. You are selling for a little piece of bronze bodies of Christ, and the pole, heavenly spirits, the stars, the laws and the Gods.

1570 Edition, page 418 | 1576 Edition, page 344 | 1583 Edition, page 339[Back to Top]
Quotation from Virgil, Aeneid 1.26

Foxe text Latin

Manet alta mente repostum

Judicium Paridis.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

There remains buried deep in her heart the judgment of Paris.

1570 Edition, page 436 | 1576 Edition, page 359 | 1583 Edition, page 354[Back to Top]
Verses about Benedict XI

Foxe text Latin

A re nomen habens ... Maledicte.

Translation

J. Barrie Hall

Having your name from your actions, speak well, do well, Benedict. Or, turning the actions round, speak ill, do ill, Maledict.

1570 Edition, page 458 | 1576 Edition, page 377 | 1583 Edition, page 372[Back to Top]
Epitaph on Edward II

Foxe text Latin

Dum viguit rex ...reganvit honestas.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

While the king was active and your power was very strong,
Deceit lay hidden, there was great peace, and honesty reigned.

1570 Edition, page 480 | 1576 Edition, page 395 | 1583 Edition, page 389[Back to Top]
Epitaph on Pope Benedict XII

Foxe text Latin

Hic situs est Nero ... repleta mero.

Translation

John Wade, University of Sheffield

Here lies Nero, death to the laymen, a viper to the clergy, a deviant from the truth, a cask filled with unmixed wine.

1576 Edition, page 401 | 1583 Edition, page 397[Back to Top]
Anti-papal poem in which the pope makes the emperor and laymen asses

Foxe text Latin

Immensum scelus est ... gramine damna viæ. &c.

Translation

J. Barrie Hall

The injury which you have done to the pilgrim by taking away his straw is a great crime. You did not heed the fact that he had endured many dangers, was destined to endure very many more, and that he was a pilgrim. You did not heed the fact that the journey he had to travel was over very great expanse of land and sea. You took no heed of holy men or of holy temples, nor even of holy Jerusalem which belongs to holy men. In doing this to an unknown pilgrim you are a thief, and you well know in what honour a thief ought to die. You may have confessed, you may have been convicted, but do you have the means to cloak such injuries? He came back through the same places, and realised that so violent an evil was unexpectedly at hand. I say nothing of the pope whose protection hired such an one and whose help you disparage. Though he were the messenger of the whole church, he suffered loss on the road through the taking away of his grass.

1570 Edition, page 507 | 1576 Edition, page 419 | 1583 Edition, page 414[Back to Top]
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