De excidio et conquestu Britanniae: Gildas: His De excidio et conquestu Britanniae (“The Overthrow and Conquest of Britain”), one of the few sources for the. Gildas. De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae,. Miguel Pablo Sancho Gómez. Uploaded by. M. Sancho Gómez. Medieval Sourcebook: Gildas (c): Works. Gildas (cc) was a Brythonic-speaking churchman, possibly from southern Scotland, who wrote De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae.
Text: De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae | Exploring Celtic Civilizations
Let, therefore, those, who suppose they can, without any labour at all, under the naked presence of the name of priesthood, enter this strait and narrow passage of Christian religion, hearken unto me while I recite and gather into one a few of the chiefest flowers out of the large and pleasant meadow of the saintly soldiers of the New Testament. If so be that also I shall bring in evil beasts upon the land and punish her, she likewise shall be turned to destruction, and there shall not be one who shall have free passage from the face of the beasts, and although these three men are in the midst of her, as I live, saith our Lord, their sons and daughters shall not be I preserved, but they alone shall be saved, and as for the land it shall fall to confusion.
And hearken ye also what holy Job debateth of the beginning and end of the ungodly, saying, “For what purpose do the wicked live, and have grown old dishonestly, and their issue hath been according to their own desire, and their sons before their faces, and their houses are fruitful, and no fear nor yet the scourge of our Lord is upon them.
Some state that Gildas is also believed to be the teacher of Finnan of Moville who was in turn the teacher of St. The men whom, when absent, they feared more than death, were invited by them of their own accord, so to speak, under the cover of one roof: Hear ye moreover what blessed Esdras, that cyclopaedia of the divine law, threateneth in his discourse.
And now what one of the aforesaid sort hath indeed been void of all these? Historical Writing in England: Behold the days shall come, and I will destroy thy name, and the seed of thy father’s house. Who is he that to overthrow the innumerable thousands of Gentiles, adversaries to the chosen people of God, hath, as another Jephtha, for a votive and propitiatory sacrifice, slain his own daughter by which is to be understood his own proper willimitating also therein the apostle, saying, “Not seeking what is profitable to me, but to many, that they may be saved;” which daughter of his met the conquerors with drums and dances, by which are to be understood the lustful desires of the flesh?
It is a sermon in three parts condemning the acts of Gildas’ contemporaries, both secular and religious, whom he blames for excidii dire state of affairs in sub-Roman Britain. For the fire of vengeance, justly kindled by former crimes, spread from sea to sea, fed by the hands of our foes in the east, and did not cease, until, destroying the neighbouring towns and lands, it reached the other side of the island, and dipped conquextu red and savage tongue in the western ocean.
Wherefore let us hear what the prince of the apostles, Saint Peter, hath signified about this so weighty a matter, saying: Alban, for charity’s sake saved another confessor who was pursued by his persecutors, and was on the point of being seized, by hiding him in his house, and then by changing clothes with him, imitating in this the example of Christ, who laid down his life for his sheep, and exposing himself in the other’s clothes to be pursued in his stead.
And little also do ye conceive and put in execution that which the holy prophet Joel hath likewise spoken in admonishment of slothful priests, and lamentation of the people’s suffering for their iniquities, saying: But lest perchance as befell Ahab also the lying spirit, which pronounceth vain things in the mouths of your prophets may seduce you, hearken to the words of the prophet Micaiah: After this, Britain was robbed of all her armed soldiery, of her military supplies, of her rulers, cruel though they were, and of her vigorous youth who followed the footsteps of the above-mentioned tyrant [Maximus] and never returned.
And therefore thus saith our Lord: Which of you, like the holy martyr Ignatius, bishop of the city of Antioch, hath after his miraculous actions in Christ, for testimony of him been torn by the jaws of lions, as he was once at Rome? And the unjust man, if he turneth him away from all the iniquities which he hath done, and keepeth all my commandments, and doth justice and abundance of mercy he shall live in life and shall not die.
britabniae Here have they built the wall, and they anointed it, and it shall fall. In the later Old English period, Gildas’s writing provides a major model for Alcuin ‘s treatment of the Viking invasions, in particular his letters relating to the sack gritanniae Lindisfarne in I shall also pass over the bygone times of our cruel tyrants, whose notoriety was spread over to far distant countries; so that Porphyry, that dog who in the East was always so fierce against the church in his mad and vain style added this also, that “Britain is a land fertile in tyrants” I gave fear unto him, and he was timorous of me, he dreaded before the countenance of my name; the law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in excdio lips, he walked with me in peace and equity, and turned many away from unrighteousness.
The Latin inscription reads Memoria Voteporigis protictoris. Let therefore him who alone is true as we have said speak for us, I mean conqyestu Holy Ghost, of whom it is now pronounced, “The Holy Ghost verily will avoid the counterfeiting of discipline.
If the exciddio dealer shall be justified conquesut the balance, and deceitful weights in the scales by which they have heaped up birtanniae riches in ungodliness. Britnaniae, by cunning arts rather than by valour, attaching to his rule, by perjury and false hood, all the neighbouring towns and provinces, against the Roman state, extended one of his wings to Spain, the other to Italy, fixed the seat of his unholy government at Treves, and so furiously pushed his rebellion against his lawful emperors that he drove one of them out of Rome, and caused the other to terminate his holy life.
Shake off, I beseech you, the dark and black mist of slothfulness from your hearts, that so you may see the glorious light of truth and humility. This which I have spoken may suffice concerning the threats of the holy prophets: The earth hath bewailed, and hath flitted away; the world hath run to nothing, she is weakened by her inhabitants, because they have transgressed laws, changed right, brought to ruin tile eternal truce.
Woe be unto them who offend, and observe not my commandments, saith our Lord, I will not forbear them. A tradition in North Wales places the beheading of the before mentioned brother Huail at Ruthin. Notify me of new comments via email.
Gildas – Wikisource, the free online library
For this cause even as the tongue of the fire devoureth the stubble, and as the heat of the flame burneth up, so shall their root be as the ashes, and their branch shall rise up as the dust. I saw moreover in my own time, as that prophet also had complained, that the city had sat down lone and widowed, which before was full of people; that the queen of nations and the princess of provinces i.
These testimonies of holy scripture, which are either already cited, or hereafter to be intermixed in this epistle, I would gladly wish to interpret in some historical or moral sense, as far as my meanness would allow.