Jacobus de Voragine/Giacomo da Varazze [de Voragine]
Latin (Medieval Era)
IACOBUS DE VORAGINE
HISTORIA SANCTI NICOLAI
Nicolaus civis Paterae urbis ex divitibus et sanctis parentibus originem duxit.
[Nicolas was a citizen of the city of Patera, and he took his origins from rich and holy parents.]
Pater eius Epiphanes, mater vero Iohanna dicta est.
[His father was Epiphanes, and his mother in fact was named Joanna.]
Quem cum primaevo iuventutis suae flore parentes genuissent,
[That is, when his parents had raised him since his very first years, among the elite youth,]
deinceps caelibem vitam duxerunt.
[he led a life of celibacy from then on.]
Hic prima die, dum balnearetur, erectus stetit in pelvi.
[He, on his very first day, while he was being bathed, stood upright on his pelvis.]
Insuper quarta et sexta feria tantum semel sugebat ubera.
[From there, he could suckle on the four- and six-teated wild animals, all at the same time.]
Factus autem iuvenis aliorum devitans lascivias ecclesiarum potius terebat limina
[And yet, once he became a young man, he, avoiding the lustful advances of the others, preferred rather to tread the steps of churches,]
et, quidquid ibi de sacra scriptura intellegere poterat,
[and, whatever he could manage to understand in those places that concerned holy scripture,]
[he retained by sheer memory.]
Parentibus vero suis defunctis cogitare coepit,
[In fact, when his parents had died, he began to ponder about]
qualiter tantam divitiarum copiam non ad laudem humanam, sed ad Dei gloriam dispensaret.
[the way he could not dispense so great an amount of riches, not to garner the praise of people, but for the glory of God.]
Tunc quidam contermineus suus satis nobilis tres filias ob inopiam prostituere cogitur,
[At that time, his own neighbor was forced to prostitute his three daughters, although noble-born, because he lacked money,]
ut sic earum commercio aleretur.
[and so that he could be fed by the business these girls conducted.]
Quod ubi sanctus comperit,
[When the holy man found this out,]
[he was utterly shocked at such a wicked deed]
et massam auri panno involutam in domum eius per fenestram nocte clam iecit
[and he threw a handful of gold, wrapped in cloth, though a window at his home secretly at night,]
et clam recessit.
[and he went away in stealth.]
Mane autem surgens homo massam auri reperit
[However, in the morning, the man, waking up, found the pile of gold]
et Deo gratiam agens primogenitae nuptias celebravit.
[and thanking God, he celebrated by marrying off his first-born daughter.]
Non multo post tempore Dei famulus simile peregit opus.
[Not much time passed when this servant of God performed a similar act.]
Quod rursus ille reperiens etiam laudes immensas prorumpens de cetero vigilare proposuit,
[Once again, our protagonist, finding this out, and completely avoiding the tremendous praise for looking for another man, he proposed]
ut sciret, quis esset, qui suae inopiae subvenisset.
[that he should know who the man actually was, who had given aid to his indigence.]
Post paucos etiam dies duplicatam auri massam in dornum proiecit,
[A few days later, he threw a bag of money, even twice as large, upon his step,]
ad cuius sonitum ille excitatur
[and the other man was woken up by his rumblings around,]
et Nicolaum fugientem insequitur talique voce alloquitur:
[and following Nicolas as he fled away, he addressed him with the following words:]
"Siste gradum teque aspectui ne subtrahas meo."
["Hold your step, wait, don't steal away from my sight."]
Sicque accurrens velocius Nicolaum hunc esse cognovit.
[And so, rushing upon him all the faster, he recognized this man as, Nicolas!]
Mox humi prostratus osculari volebat pedes eius,
[Soon the man, bowing down to the ground, yearned to kiss the other's feet,]
quod ille refutans ab eo exegit,
[which our protagonist refused, and instead he demanded from that fellow]
ne eum, quamdiu viveret, publicaret.
[that he not out him in public, so long as he lived.]
Post hoc Myreae civitatis defuncto episcopo
[After that, when the bishop of the city of Myria died,]
convenerunt episcopi illi ecclesiae de episcopo provisuri.
[those famous bishops of church convened to see to the matter of who would appointed the next bishop.]
Aderat autem inter eos quidam magnae auctoritatis episcopus,
[In any event, a certain bishop of great prestige stepped forward from among these men,]
ad cuius electionem omnium sententia dependebat.
[on whose opinion the selection of all of their members depended.]
Cum igitur cunctos ieiuniis et orationibus insistere monuisset,
[Therefore, after he had insisted that they all attend their fasts and prayers,]
nocte illa vocem audivit dicentem sibi,
[on that very night, he heard a voice telling him,]
ut hora matutina fores ecclesiae observaret
[that in the morning hour, he should look upon the porch of the church]
et, quem primum ad ecclesiam, cuius etiam nomen esset Nicolaus, venire conspiceret,
[and whomever he should see come to the church, whose name was also Nicolas,]
ipsum in episcopum consecraret.
[he should ordain that guy as the bishop.]
Hoc ergo aliis revelans episcopis admonuit,
[And so he, revealing this to the other bishops, advised,]
ut omnes orationibus insisterent
[that they all tend to their prayers]
et ipse pro foribus excubaret.
[and that he himself would sit down in front of the porch steps.]
Mirum in modum in hora matutinali quasi a Deo missus ante omnes se agebat Nicolaus,
[In miraculous fashion, Nicolas, as though sent by God in the morning hour, got up before all the others,]
quem apprehendens episcopus dixit ei:
[and him to whom the bishop, catching sight of him, said:]
"Quod tibi nomen est!"
["What is your name?"]
Ille ut erat columbina simplicitate plenus, inclinato capite:
[Our protagonist, since he fully straightforward, like a dove, and with his head cocked up, ]
"Nicolaus", inquit, "vestrae sanctitatis servus."
[he said, "Nicolas, the servant of your Holiness."]
Quem in ecclesiam ducentes licet plurimum renitentem in cathedram collocarunt.
[They, leading him into the church, set him upon the church throne, one that was beaming quite radiantly.]
Ipse autem eandem quam prius humiltatem et morum gravitatem in omnibus sectabatur,
[And yet, among all them in, he continued that very same humility and firmness of character that he had shown before,]
in oratione pervigilabat,
[he was must dutiful in prayer,]
[he kept his body lean,]
mulierum consortia fugiebat,
[he avoid the company of women,]
humilis erat in omnes suspiciendo,
[he was humble in his assumptions of everyone,]
efficax in loquendo,
[eloquent in speaking,]