The Life of Hilarion

 The Meeting of Paul and Antony

Latin Migne PL 23





THE LIFE of HILARION by Saint Jerome






written in the year 390 in  Bethlehem


1. Before I begin to write the life of the blessed Hilarion I invoke the aid of the Holy Spirit who dwelt in him, that He who bestowed upon the saint his virtues may grant me such power of speech to relate them that my words may be adequate to his deeds. For the virtue of those who have done great deeds is esteemed in proportion to the ability with which it has been praised by men of genius. Alexander the Great of Macedon who is spoken of by Daniel as the ram, or the panther, or the he-goat, on reaching the grave of Achilles exclaimed “Happy Youth! to have the privilege of a great herald of your worth,” meaning, of course, Homer. I, however, have to tell the story of the life and conversation of a man so renowned that even Homer were he here would either envy me the theme or prove unequal to it. It is true that that holy man Epiphanius, bishop of Salamis in Cyprus, who had much intercourse with Hilarion, set forth his praises in a short but widely circulated letter. Yet it is one thing to praise the dead in general terms, another to relate their characteristic virtues. And so we in taking up the work begun by him do him service rather than wrong: we despise the abuse of some who as they once disparaged my hero Paulus, [See life of Paulus above. will now perhaps disparage Hilarion; the former they censured for his solitary life; they may find fault with the latter for his intercourse with the world; the one was always out of sight, therefore they think he had no existence; the other was seen by many, therefore he is deemed of no account. It is just what their ancestors the Pharisees did of old! they were not pleased with [Matt. xi. 18. John fasting in the desert, nor with our Lord and Saviour in the busy throng, eating and drinking. But I will put my hand to the work on which I have resolved, and go on my way closing my ears to the barking of Scylla’s hounds.

1. Scripturus Vitam beati Hilarionis, habitatorem ejus invoco Spiritum Sanctum; ut qui illi virtutes largitus est, mihi ad narrandas eas sermonem tribuat, ut facta dictis exaequentur. Eorum enim qui fecere, virtus (ut ait Crispus) tanta habetur, quantum eam verbis potuere extollere praeclara ingenia. Alexander Magnus Macedo, quem vel arietem, vel pardum, vel hircum caprarum Daniel vocat, cum ad Achillis tumulum pervenisset: Felicem te, ait, juvenis, qui magno frueris [Al. fruaris] praecone meritorum! Homerum videlicet significans. Porro mihi tanti ac talis viri conversatio [Al. conversio], Vitaque dicenda est, ut Homerus quoque si adesset, vel invideret materiae, vel succumberet. Quamquam enim [0029B] sanctus Epiphanius Salaminae Cypri episcopus, qui cum Hilarione plurimum versatus est, laudem ejus brevi epistola scripserit, quae vulgo legitur; tamen aliud est locis communibus laudare defunctum, aliud defuncti proprias narrare virtutes. Unde et nos favore magis illius, quam injuria, coeptum ab eo opus aggredientes, maledicorum voces contemnimus: qui olim detrahentes Paulo meo, nunc forte detrahent et Hilarioni: illum solitudinis calumniati, huic objicientes frequentiam: ut qui semper latuit, non 14 fuisse; qui a multis visus est, vilis existimetur. Fecerunt hoc et majores eorum quondam Pharisaei, quibus nec Joannis eremus ac jejunium, nec Domini Salvatoris turbae, cibi, potusque placuerunt. Verum destinato operi imponam manum, et Scylleos canes obturata [0029C] [Al. obdurata] aure transibo.

2. The birth place of Hilarion was the village Thabatha, situate about five miles to the south of Gaza, a city of Palestine. His parents were idolaters, and therefore, as the saying is, the rose blossomed on the thorn. By them he was committed to the charge of a Grammarian at Alexandria, where, so far as his age allowed, he gave proofs of remarkable ability and character: and in a short time endeared himself to all and became an accomplished speaker. More important than all this, he was a believer in the Lord Jesus, and took no delight in the madness of the circus, the blood of the arena, the excesses of the theatre: his whole pleasure was in the assemblies of the Church.

2. Hilarion ortus vico Tabatha, qui circiter quinque millia a Gaza urbe Palaestinae ad Austrum situs est, cum haberet parentes idolis deditos, rosa, ut dicitur, de spinis floruit. A quibus missus Alexandriam, grammatico traditus est: ibique quantum illa patiebatur aetas, magna ingenii et morum documenta [0030A] praebuit; in brevi charus omnibus et loquendi arte gnarus. Quodque his majus est omnibus, credens in Dominum Jesum, non circi furoribus, non arenae sanguine, non theatri luxuria delectabatur; sed tota illi voluntas [Al. voluptas] in Ecclesiae erat congregatione.

3. At that time he heard of the famous name of Antony, which was in the mouth of all the races of Egypt. He was fired with a desire to see him, and set out for the desert. He no sooner saw him than he changed his former mode of life and abode with him about two months, studying the method of his life and the gravity of his conduct: his assiduity in prayer, his humility in his dealings with the brethren, his severity in rebuke, his eagerness in exhortation. He noted too that the saint would never on account of bodily weakness break his rule of abstinence or deviate from the plainness of his food. At last, unable to endure any longer the crowds of those who visited the saint because of various afflictions or the assaults of demons, and deeming it a strange anomaly that he should have to bear in the desert the crowds of the cities, he thought it was better for him to begin as Antony had begun. Said he: “Antony is reaping the reward of victory like a hero who has proved his bravery. I have not entered on the soldier’s career.” He therefore returned with certain monks to his country, and, his parents being now dead, gave part of his property to his brothers, part to the poor, keeping nothing at all for himself, for he remembered with awe the passage in the Acts of the Apostles and dreaded the example and the punishment of Ananias and Sapphira; above all he was mindful of the Lord’s words, [Luke xiv. 33. “whosoever he be of you that renounceth not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.” At this time he was about fifteen years old. Accordingly, stripped bare and armed with the weapons of Christ, he entered the wilderness which stretches to the left seven miles from Majoma, the port of Gaza, as you go along the coast to Egypt. And although the locality had a record of robbery and of blood, and his relatives and friends warned him of the danger he was incurring, he despised death that he might escape death.

3. Audiens autem tunc celebre nomen Antonii, quod per omnes Aegypti populos ferebatur, incensus visendi ejus studio, perrexit ad eremum. Et statim ut eum vidit, mutato pristino habitu, duobus [Ms. tribus] 15 fere mensibus juxta eum mansit, contemplans ordinem vitae ejus morumque gravitatem. Quam creber in oratione, quam humilis in suscipiendis fratribus, severus in corripiendis, alacer in exhortandis esset: et ut continentiam, cibique ejus [0030B] asperitatem nulla umquam infirmitas frangeret. Porro frequentiam eorum, qui ad eum ob varias passiones aut impetus daemonum concurrebant, ultra non ferens: nec congruum esse ducens, pati in eremo populos civitatum: sicque sibi magis incipiendum esse, ut coepisset Antonius; illum quasi virum fortem victoriae praemia accipere: se necdum militare coepisse; reversus est cum quibusdam Monachis ad patriam: et parentibus jam defunctis, partem substantiae fratribus, partem pauperibus largitus est, nihil sibi omnino reservans, et timens illud de Actibus Apostolorum, Ananiae et Sapphirae vel exemplum, vel supplicium; maximeque Domini memor, dicentis: Qui non renuntiaverit omnibus quae habet, non potest meus esse discipulus (Luc. XIV, 33). Erat [0030C] autem tunc annorum quindecim. Sic nudus, et armatus in Christo, solitudinem, quae in septimo milliario a Majoma Gazae emporio per littus euntibus Aegyptum, ad laevam flectitur, ingressus est. Cumque essent cruenta latrociniis loca, et propinqui amicique ejus imminens periculum denuntiarent, contempsit mortem, ut mortem evaderet.

4. His courage and tender years would have been a marvel to all, were it not that his heart was on fire and his eyes bright with the gleams and sparks of faith. His cheeks were smooth, his body thin and delicate, unfit to bear the slightest injury which cold or heat could inflict. What then? With no other covering for his limbs but a shirt of sackcloth, and a cloak of skins which the blessed Antony had given him when he set out, and a blanket of the coarsest sort, he found pleasure in the vast and terrible wilderness with the sea on one side and the marshland on the other. His food was only fifteen dried figs after sunset. And because the district was notorious for brigandage, it was his practice never to abide long in the same place. What was the devil to do? Whither could he turn? He who once boasted and said, [Isa. xiv. 14.]]”I will ascend into heaven, I will set my throne above the stars of the sky, I will be like the most High,” saw himself conquered and trodden under foot by a boy whose years did not allow of sin.

4. Jejunium Hilarionis. Mirabantur omnes animum: mirabantur aetatem; nisi quod flamma quaedam [0031A] pectoris, et scintillae fidei in oculis relucebant. Laeves [Al. lenes] erant genae, delicatum corpus et tenue, et ad omnem injuriam impatiens: quod levi vel frigore, vel aestu, posset affligi. Igitur sacco tantum membra coopertus, et pelliceum habens ependyten, quem illi beatus Antonius proficiscenti dederat, sagumque rusticum, inter mare et paludem, vasta et terribili solitudine fruebatur, quindecim tantum caricas post solis occasum comedens. Et quia regio latrociniis infamis erat, numquam in eodem loco habitare consueverat. Quid [Al. mansitans. Quid] faceret diabolus? quo se verteret? Qui gloriabatur ante, dicens: In coelum ascendam, super sidera coeli ponam thronum meum, et ero similis Altissimo (Isa. XIV, 14), cernebat se vinci a puero, et prius [0031B] ab eo calcatum fuisse, quam per aetatem peccare potuisset.

5. Satan therefore tickled his senses and, as is his wont, lighted in his maturing body the fires of lust. This mere beginner in Christ’s school was forced to think of what he knew not, and to revolve whole trains of thought concerning that of which he had no experience. Angry with himself and beating his bosom (as if with the blow of his hand he could shut out his thoughts) “Ass!” he exclaimed, “I’ll stop your kicking, I will not feed you with barley, but with chaff. I will weaken you with hunger and thirst, I will lade you with heavy burdens, I will drive you through heat and cold, that you may think more of food than wantonness.” So for three or four days afterwards he sustained his sinking spirit with the juice of herbs and a few dried figs, praying frequently and singing, and hoeing the ground that the suffering of fasting might be doubled by the pain of toil. At the same time he wove baskets of rushes and emulated the discipline of the Egyptian monks, and put into practice the Apostle’s precept, [2 Thess. iii. 10. ]”If any will not work, neither let him eat.” By these practices he became so enfeebled and his frame so wasted, that his bones scarcely held together.

16 5. Titillabat itaque sensus ejus, et pubescenti corpori solita voluptatum incendia suggerebat. Cogebatur tirunculus Christi cogitare quod nesciebat, et ejus rei animo pompam volvere, cujus experimenta non noverat. Iratus itaque sibi, et pectus pugnis verberans (quasi cogitationes caede manus posset excludere): Ego, inquit, aselle, faciam, ut non calcitres: nec te hordeo alam, sed paleis. Fame te conficiam et siti; gravi onerabo pondere; per aestus indagabo et frigora, ut cibum potius quam lasciviam cogites. Herbarum ergo succo et paucis caricis post triduum vel quatriduum deficientem animam sustentabat, orans frequenter et [0031C] psallens, et rastro humum fodiens; ut jejuniorum laborem labor operis duplicaret. Simulque fiscellas junco texens, aemulabatur Aegyptiorum Monachorum disciplinam, et Apostoli sententiam, dicentis: Qui autem non operatur, non manducet (II Thess. III, 10): sic attenuatus, et in tantum exeso corpore, ut ossibus vix haereret.

6. One night he began to hear the wailing of infants, the bleating of flocks, the lowing of oxen, the lament of what seemed to be women, the roaring of lions, the noise of an army, and moreover various portentous cries which made him in alarm shrink from the sound ere he had the sight. He understood that the demons were disporting themselves, and falling on his knees he made the sign of the cross on his forehead. Thus armed as he lay he fought the more bravely, half longing to see those whom he shuddered to hear, and anxiously looking in every direction. Meanwhile all at once in the bright moonlight he saw a chariot with dashing steeds rushing upon him. He called upon Jesus, and suddenly before his eyes, the earth was opened and the whole array was swallowed up. Then he said, [Exod. xv. 1. ]”The horse and his rider hath He thrown into the sea.” And, [Ps. xx. 7. ]”Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we will triumph in the name of the Lord our God.”

6. Quadam nocte, infantum cepit audire vagitus, balatus pecorum, mugitus boum, planctum quasi muliercularum [Al. mulierum], leonum rugitus, murmur exercitus, et rursus variarum portenta vocum, ut ante sonitu quam aspectu territus cederet. Intellexit daemonum ludibria; et provolutus genibus, Christi crucem signavit in fronte: talique armatus, jacens fortius praeliabatur; quodammodo videre desiderans, [0031D] quos horrebat audire, et sollicitis oculis huc illucque circumspiciens. Cum interim ex improviso, splendente luna, cernit rhedam ferventibus equis super se irruere: cumque inclamasset Jesum, ante oculos ejus repentino terrae hiatu, pompa omnis absorpta est. Tunc ille ait: Equum et ascensorem [0032A] projecit in mare (Exod. XV, 1). Et, Hi in curribus, et hi in equis: nos autem in nomine Dei nostri magnificabimur (Ps. XVI, 18).

7. So many were his temptations and so various the snares of demons night and day, that if I wished to relate them, a volume would not suffice. How often when he lay down did naked women appear to him, how often sumptuous feasts when he was hungry! Sometimes as he prayed a howling wolf sprang past or a snarling fox, and when he sang a gladiatorial show was before him, and a man newly slain would seem to fall at his feet and ask him for burial.

7. Multae sunt tentationes ejus, et die noctuque variae daemonum insidiae: quas si omnes narrare velim, modum excedam voluminis. Quoties illi nudae mulieres cubanti, quoties esurienti largissimae apparuere dapes? Interdum orantem lupus ululans, et vulpecula ganniens transilivit, psallentique gladiatorum pugna spectaculum praebuit: et unus quasi interfectus, et ante pedes ejus corruens, sepulturam rogavit.

8. Once upon a time he was praying with his head upon the ground. As is the way with men, his attention was withdrawn from his devotions, and he was thinking of something else, when a tormentor sprang upon his back and driving his heels into his sides and beating him across the neck with a horse-whip cried out “Come! why are you asleep?” Then with a loud laugh asked if he was tired and would like to have some barley.

8. Oravit [Ms. orabat] semel fixo in terram capite, 17 et ut natura fert hominum, abducta ab oratione mens, nescio quid aliud cogitabat: insiliit [0032B] dorso ejus agitator, et latera calcibus, cervicem flagello verberans: Eia, inquit, cur dormitas? cachinnansque desuper, si [Al. cum] defecisset, an hordeum vellet accipere, sciscitabatur.

9. From his sixteenth to his twentieth year he shielded himself from heat and rain in a little hut which he had constructed of reeds and sedge. Afterwards he built himself a small cell which remains to the present day, five feet in height, that is less than his own height, and only a little more in length. One might suppose it a tomb rather than a house.

9. Tuguriolum Hilarionis.---Igitur a sexto decimo usque ad vicesimum suae aetatis annum, aestus et pluvias brevi tuguriunculo declinavit, quod junco et carice texerat. Exstructa deinceps brevi cellula, quae usque hodie permanet, altitudine pedum quinque, hoc est statura sua humiliore, porro longitudine paulo ampliore, quam ejus corpusculum patiebatur, ut sepulcrum potius, quam domum crederes.

10. He shaved his hair once a year on Easter Day, and until his death was accustomed to lie on the bare ground or on a bed of rushes. The sackcloth which he had once put on he never washed, and he used to say that it was going too far to look for cleanliness in goats’ hair-cloth. Nor did he change his shirt unless the one he wore was almost in rags. He had committed the Sacred Writings to memory, and after prayer and singing was wont to recite them as if in the presence of God. It would be tedious to narrate singly the successive steps of his spiritual ascent; I will therefore set them in a summary way before my reader, and describe his mode of life at each stage, and will afterwards return to proper historical sequence.

10. Cultus Hilarionis.---Capillum semel in anno die Paschae totondit: super nudam humum stratumque [0032C] junceum usque ad mortem cubitavit. Saccum quo semel fuerat indutus, numquam lavans: et SUPERFLUUM ESSE dicens munditias in cilicio quaerere. Nec mutavit alteram tunicam, nisi cum prior penitus scissa esset. Scripturas quoque sanctas memoriter tenens, post orationes et psalmos quasi Deo praesente recitabat. Et quia longum est per diversa tempora carptim ascensum [Al. ascensus] ejus edicere, comprehendam breviter ante lectoris oculos, Vitam ejus pariter exponens; et deinceps ad narrandi ordinem regrediar.

11. From his twentieth to his twenty-seventh year, for three years his food was half a pint of lentils moistened with cold water, and for the next three dry bread with salt and water. From his twenty-seventh year onward to the thirtieth, he supported himself on wild herbs and the raw roots of certain shrubs. From his thirty-first to his thirty-fifth year, he had for food six ounces of barley bread, and vegetables slightly cooked without oil. But finding his eyes growing dim and his whole body shrivelled with a scabby eruption and dry mange, he added oil to his former food and up to the sixty-third year of his life followed this temperate course, tasting neither fruit nor pulse, nor anything whatsoever besides. Then when he saw that his bodily health was broken down, and thought death was near, from his sixty-fourth year to his eightieth he abstained from bread. The fervour of his spirit was so wonderful, that at times when others are wont to allow themselves some laxity of living he appeared to be entering like a novice on the service of the Lord. He made a sort of broth from meal and bruised herbs, food and drink together scarcely weighing six ounces, and, while obeying this rule of diet, he never broke his fast before sunset, not even on festivals nor in severe sickness. But it is now time to return to the course of event.

11. Victus Hilarionis.---A vicesimo primo anno usque ad vicesimum septimum, tribus annis dimidium lentis sextarium madefactum aqua frigida comedit, et aliis tribus panem aridum cum sale et [0032D] aqua. Porro a vigesimo septimo usque ad tricesimum, herbis agrestibus, et virgultorum quorumdam radicibus crudis sustentatus est. A tricesimo autem primo usque ad tricesimum quintum, sex uncias hordeacei panis, et coctum modice olus absque oleo in cibo habuit. Sentiens autem caligare oculos suos, [0033A] et totum corpus impetigine et pumicea quadam scabredine contrahi, ad superiorem victum adjecit oleum: et usque ad sexagesimum tertium vitae suae annum hoc continentiae cucurrit gradum, nihil extrinsecus aut pomorum, aut leguminis, aut cujuslibet rei gustans. Inde cum se videret corpore defatigatum, et propinquam putaret imminere mortem, a sexagesimo quarto anno usque ad octogesimum 18 pane abstinuit, incredibili fervore mentis, ut eo tempore quasi novus accederet ad servitutem Domini, quo caeteri solent remissius vivere. Fiebat autem ei de farina et comminuto olere sorbitiuncula, cibo et potu vix quinque uncias appendentibus: sicque complens ordinem vitae, numquam ante solis occasum, nec in diebus festis, nec in gravissima valetudine [0033B] [Al. aegritudine] solvit jejunium. Sed jam tempus est ut ad ordinem revertamur.

12. While still living in the hut, at the age of eighteen, robbers came to him by night, either supposing that he had something which they might carry off, or considering that they would be brought into contempt if a solitary boy felt no dread of their attacks. They searched up and down between the sea and the marsh from evening until daybreak without being able to find his resting place. Then, having discovered the boy by the light of day they asked him, half in jest, “What would you do if robbers came to you?” He replied, “He that has nothing does not fear robbers.” Said they, “At all events, you might be killed.” “I might,” said he, “I might; and therefore I do not fear robbers because I am prepared to die.” Then they marvelled at his firmness and faith, confessed how they had wandered about in the night, and how their eyes had been blinded, and promised to lead a stricter life in the future.

12. Latrones veniunt ad Hilarionem nocte.---Cum habitaret adhuc in tuguriolo annos natus decem et octo, latrones ad eum nocte venerunt, vel aestimantes habere aliquid quod tollerent, vel in contemptum sui reputantes fieri, si puer solitarius eorum impetus non pertimesceret. Itaque inter mare et paludem a vespere usque ad solis ortum discurrentes, numquam locum cubilis ejus invenire potuerunt. Porro clara luce reperto puero, quasi per jocum: Quid, inquiunt, faceres, si latrones ad te venirent? Quibus ille respondit: Nudus latrones non timet. Et illi: Certe, aiunt, occidi potes. Possum, inquit, possum: et ideo latrones non timeo, quia mori paratus sum. [0033C] Tunc admirati constantiam ejus et fidem, confessi sunt noctis errorem, caecatosque oculos, correctiorem deinceps vitam pollicentes.

13. He had now spent twenty-two years in the wilderness and was the common theme in all the cities of Palestine, though everywhere known by repute only. The first person bold enough to break into the presence of the blessed Hilarion was a certain woman of Eleutheropolis who found that she was despised by her husband on account of her sterility (for in fifteen years she had borne no fruit of wedlock). He had no expectation of her coming when she suddenly threw herself at his feet. “Forgive my boldness,” she said: “take pity on my necessity. Why do you turn away your eyes? Why shun my entreaties? Do not think of me as a woman, but as an object of compassion. It was my sex that bore the Saviour. [Luke v. 31. ]They that are whole have no need of a physician, but they that are sick.” At length, after a long time he no longer turned away, but looked at the woman and asked the cause of her coming and of her tears. On learning this he raised his eyes to heaven and bade her have faith, then wept over her as she departed. Within a year he saw her with a son.

13. Mulier sterilis prima irrumpere ausa est ad eum.---Viginti et duos jam in solitudine habebat annos, fama tantum notus omnibus, et per totas Palaestinae vulgatus urbes, cum interim mulier quaedam Eleutheropolitana cernens despectui se haberi a viro ob sterilitatem (jam enim per annos quindecim nullos conjugii fructus dederat), prima irrumpere ausa est ad beatum Hilarionem; et nihil tale suspicanti, repente genibus ejus advoluta: Ignosce, inquit, audaciae: ignosce necessitati meae. Quid avertis oculos? quid rogantem fugis? Noli mulierem aspicere, sed miseram. Hic sexus genuit Salvatorem. [0033D] Non habent sani opus medico; sed qui male habent (Luc. V, 31). Tandem substitit, et post tantum [0034A] temporis visa muliere, interrogavit causam adventus ejus ac fletuum. Et postquam didicit, levatis ad coelum oculis, fidere jussit: euntemque lacrymis prosecutus, exacto anno vidit cum filio.

14. This his first miracle was succeeded by another still greater and more notable. Aristæneté the wife of Elpidius who was afterwards pretorian prefect, a woman well known among her own people, still better known among Christians, on her return with her husband, from visiting the blessed Antony, was delayed at Gaza by the sickness of her three children; for there, whether it was owing to the vitiated atmosphere, or whether it was, as afterwards became clear, for the glory of God’s servant Hilarion, they were all alike seized by a semi-tertian ague and despaired of by the physicians. The mother lay wailing, or as one might say walked up and down between the corpses of her three sons not knowing which she should first have to mourn for. When, however, she knew that there was a certain monk in the neighbouring wilderness, forgetting her matronly state (she only remembered she was a mother) she set out accompanied by her handmaids and eunuchs, and was hardly persuaded by her husband to take an ass to ride upon. On reaching the saint she said, “I pray you by Jesus our most merciful God, I beseech you by His cross and blood, to restore to me my three sons, so that the name of our Lord and Saviour may be glorified in the city of the Gentiles. Then shall his servants enter Gaza and the idol Marnas shall fall to the ground.” At first he refused and said that he never left his cell and was not accustomed to enter a house, much less the city; but she threw herself upon the ground and cried repeatedly, “Hilarion, servant of Christ, give me back my children: Antony kept them safe in Egypt, do you save them in Syria.” All present were weeping, and the saint himself wept as he denied her. What need to say more? the woman did not leave him till he promised that he would enter Gaza after sunset. On coming thither he made the sign of the cross over the bed and fevered limbs of each, and called upon the name of Jesus. Marvellous efficacy of the Name! As if from three fountains the sweat burst forth at the same time: in that very hour they took food, recognized their mourning mother, and, with thanks to God, warmly kissed the saint’s hands. When the matter was noised abroad, and the fame of it spread far and wide, the people flocked to him from Syria and Egypt, so that many believed in Christ and professed themselves monks. For as yet there were no monasteries in Palestine, nor had anyone known a monk in Syria before the saintly Hilarion. It was he who originated this mode of life and devotion, and who first trained men to it in that province. The Lord Jesus had in Egypt the aged Antony: in Palestine He had the youthful Hilarion.

14. Mulier nobilis uxor praefecti praetorio. Monachi non erant in Syria ante S. Hilarionem.---Hoc signorum ejus principium, majus aliud signum nobilitavit. Aristaenete 19 Elpidii, qui postea praefectus praetorio fuit, uxor, valde nobilis inter suos, et inter Christianos nobilior, revertens cum marito et tribus liberis a beato Antonio, Gazae propter eorum infirmitatem remorata est. Ibi enim sive ob corruptum aerem, sive (ut postea claruit) propter gloriam Hilarionis servi Dei, hemitritaeo pariter arrepti, omnes a medicis desperati sunt. Jacebat [0034B] ululans mater, et quasi inter tria filiorum discurrens cadavera, quem prius plangeret, nesciebat. Cognito autem quod esset quidam Monachus in vicina solitudine, oblita matronalis pompae (tantum se matrem noverat) vadit comitata ancillulis, et eunuchis [Al. vernaculis]: vixque a viro persuasum est, ut asello sedens pergeret. Ad quem cum pervenisset: Precor te, ait, per Jesum clementissimum Deum nostrum: obtestor per crucem ejus et sanguinem, ut reddas mihi tres filios; et glorificetur in urbe Gentilium nomen Domini Salvatoris, et ingrediatur servus ejus Gazam, et idolum Marnas corruat. Renuente illo, et dicente, numquam se eggressum de cella, nec habere consuetudinem, ut non modo civitatem, sed ne villulam quidem ingrederetur, [0034C] prostravit se humi crebro clamitans: Hilarion, serve Christi, redde mihi liberos meos. Quos Antonius tenuit in Aegypto, a te serventur in Syria. Flebant cuncti qui aderant, sed et ipse negans flevit. Quid multa? non prius mulier recessit, quam ille pollicitus est se post solis occasum Gazam introiturum. Quo postquam venit, singulorum lectulos et ardentia membra consignans, invocavit Jesum. Et, o mira virtus! quasi de tribus fontibus sudor pariter erupit: eadem hora acceperunt cibos, lugentemque matrem cognoscentes, et benedicentes Deum, sancti manus deosculati sunt. Quod postquam auditum est, et longe lateque percrebuit, certatim ad eum de Syria et Aegypto confluebant: ita ut multi crederent in Christum, et se monachos [0034D] profiterentur. Necdum enim tunc monasteria erant in Palaestina, nec quisquam monachum 20 ante [0035A] sanctum Hilarionem in Syria noverat. Ille fundator et eruditor hujus conversationis et studii in hac provincia fuit. Habebat Dominus Jesus in Aegypto senem Antonium; habebat in Palaestina Hilarionem juniorem.

15. Facidia is a hamlet belonging to Rhino-Corura, a city of Egypt. From this village a woman who had been blind for ten years was brought to the blessed Hilarion, and on being presented to him by the brethren (for there were now many monks with him) affirmed that she had spent all her substance on physicians. The saint replied: “If you had given to the poor what you have wasted on physicians, the true physician Jesus would have cured you.” But when she cried aloud and entreated pity, he spat into her eyes, in imitation of the Saviour, and with similar instant effect.

15. Caeca mulier a decem annis.---Facidia viculus est Rhinocorurae urbis Aegypti. De hoc ergo vico, decem jam annis caeca mulier adducta est ad beatum Hilarionem: oblataque ei a fratribus (jam enim multi cum eo Monachi erant) omnem se substantiam expendisse ait in medicos. Cui respondit: Si quae in medicis perdidisti, dedisses pauperibus, curasset te verus medicus Jesus. Clamante autem illa, et misericordiam deprecante, exspuit in oculos ejus: statimque Salvatoris exemplum virtus eadem [0035B] prosecuta est.

16. A charioteer, also of Gaza, stricken by a demon in his chariot became perfectly stiff, so that he could neither move his hand nor bend his neck. He was brought on a litter, but could only signify his petition by moving his tongue; and was told that he could not be healed unless he first believed in Christ and promised to forsake his former occupation. He believed, he promised, and he was healed: and rejoiced more in the saving of the soul than in that of the body.

16 Auriga Gazensis.---Auriga quoque Gazensis in curru percussus a daemone, totus obriguit; ita ut nec manum agitare, nec cervicem posset [Al. possit] reflectere. Delatus ergo in lecto, cum solam linguam moveret ad preces, audit non prius posse sanari, quam crederet in Jesum, et se sponderet arti pristinae renuntiaturum. Credidit, spopondit, sanatus est: magisque de animae, quam de corporis salute exsultavit.

17. Again, a very powerful youth called Marsitas from the neighbourhood of Jerusalem plumed himself so highly on his strength that he carried fifteen bushels of grain for a long time and over a considerable distance, and considered it as his highest glory that he could beat the asses in endurance. This man was afflicted with a grievous demon and could not endure chains, or fetters, but broke even the bolts and bars of the doors. He had bitten off the noses and ears of many: had broken the feet of some, the legs of others. He had struck such terror of himself into everybody, that he was laden with chains and dragged by ropes on all sides like a wild bull to the monastery. As soon as the brethren saw him they were greatly alarmed (for the man was of gigantic size) and told the Father. He, seated as he was, commanded him to be brought to him and released. When he was free, “Bow your head,” said he, “and come.” The man began to tremble; he twisted his neck round and did not dare to look him in the face, but laid aside all his fierceness and began to lick his feet as he sat. At last the demon which had possessed the young man being tortured by the saint’s adjurations came forth on the seventh day.

17. Marsitas, juvenis fortissimus.---Praeterea fortissimus juvenis nomine Marsitas de territorio Jerosolymae, tantum sibi applaudebat in viribus, ut quindecim frumenti modios diu longeque portaret; et hanc haberet palmam fortitudinis suae, si asinos [0035C] vinceret. Hic affectus pessimo daemone, non catenas, non compedes, non claustra ostiorum integra patiebatur: multorum nasum et aures morsibus amputaverat: horum pedes, illorum crura fregerat. Tantumque sui terrorem omnibus incusserat, ut oneratus catenis et funibus, in diversa nitentium, quasi ferocissimus taurus ad monasterium pertraheretur; quem postquam fratres videre, perterriti (erat enim mirae magnitudinis) nuntiaverunt patri. Ille sicut sedebat, jussit eum ad se pertrahi, et dimitti. Solutoque: Inclina, ait, caput, et veni. Tremere ille, et cervicem flectere, nec aspicere 21 contra ausus, omnique ferocitate deposita, pedes coepit sedentis lambere. Adjuratus itaque daemon, et tortus, qui juvenem possederat, septima die egressus [0035D] est.

18. Nor must we omit to tell that Orion, a leading man and wealthy citizen of Aira, on the coast of the Red Sea, being possessed by a legion of demons was brought to him. Hands, neck, sides, feet were laden with iron, and his glaring eyes portended an access of raging madness. As the saint was walking with the brethren and expounding some passage of Scripture the man broke from the hands of his keepers, clasped him from behind and raised him aloft. There was a shout from all, for they feared lest he might crush his limbs wasted as they were with fasting. The saint smiled and said, “Be quiet, and let me have my rival in the wrestling match to myself.” Then he bent back his hand over his shoulder till he touched the man’s head, seized his hair and drew him round so as to be foot to foot with him; he then stretched both his hands in a straight line, and trod on his two feet with both his own, while he cried out again and again, “To torment with you! ye crowd of demons, to torment!” The sufferer shouted aloud and bent back his neck till his head touched the ground, while the saint said, “Lord Jesus, release this wretched man, release this captive. Thine it is to conquer many, no less than one.” What I now relate is unparalleled: from one man’s lips were heard different voices and as it were the confused shouts of a multitude. Well, he too was cured, and not long after came with his wife and children to the monastery bringing many gifts expressive of his gratitude. The saint thus addressed him—”Have you not read what befell Gehazi and Simon, one of whom took a reward, the other offered it, the former in order to sell grace, the latter to buy it?” And when Orion said with tears, “Take it and give it to the poor,” he replied, “You can best distribute your own gifts, for you tread the streets of the cities and know the poor. Why should I who have forsaken my own seek another man’s? To many the name of the poor is a pretext for their avarice; but compassion knows no artifices. No one better spends than he who keeps nothing for himself.” The man was sad and lay upon the ground. “Be not sad, my son,” he said; “what I do for my own good I do also for yours. If I were to take these gifts I should myself offend God, and, moreover, the legion would return to you.”

18. Orion vir primarius.---Sed nec illud tacendum est, quod Orion [Al. Orionus] vir primarius et ditissimus urbis Ailae, quae mari Rubro imminet, a legione possessus daemonum, ad eum adductus est. [0036A] Manus, cervix, latera, pedes ferro onerati erant, furorisque saevitiam torvi oculi minabantur. Cumque deambularet sanctus cum fratribus, et de Scripturis nescio quid interpretaretur, erupit ille de manibus se tenentium: et amplexus [Al. amplexans et amplexatus] eum post tergum, in sublime levavit. Clamor ortus ab omnibus: timebant enim ne confecta jejuniis membra collideret. Sanctus arridens: Silete [Al. sinite], inquit, et mihi meum palaestritam dimittite. Ac sic reflexa super humeros manu, caput ejus tetigit: apprehensoque crine, ante pedes adduxit: stringens e regione ambas manus ejus, et plantas utroque calcans pede, simulque ingeminans, torquere [Al. torquere, ait], daemonum turba, torquere. Cumque ille ejularet, et reflexa cervice [0036B] terram vertice tangeret: Domine, inquit, Jesu, solve miserum, solve captivum. Ut unum, ita et plures vincere tuum est. Rem loquor inauditam, ex uno hominis ore diversae voces, et quasi confusus populi clamor audiebatur. Curatus itaque et hic, non post multum temporis cum uxore et liberis venit ad monasterium, plurima, quasi gratiam redditurus, dona afferens. Cui sanctus: Non legisti, inquit, quid Giezi (IV Reg. V), quid Simon (Act. VIII) passi sint: quorum alter accepit pretium, alter obtulit: ut ille venderet gratiam Spiritus sancti, hic mercaretur? Cumque Orion flens diceret: Accipe, et da pauperibus; respondit: Tu melius potes tua distribuere, qui per urbes ambulas, et nosti pauperes. EGO QUI MEA reliqui, cur aliena appetam? Multis nomen [0036C] pauperum, occasio avaritiae est: misericordia vero artem non habet. NEMO MELIUS erogat, quam 22 qui sibi nihil reservat. Tristi autem et in terra jacenti: Noli, inquit, contristari fili; quod facio pro me, et pro te facio. Si enim haec accepero, et ego offendam Deum et ad te legio revertetur.

19. There is a story relating to Majomites of Gaza which it is impossible to pass over in silence. While quarrying building stones on the shore not far from the monastery he was helplessly paralysed, and after being carried to the saint by his fellow-workman immediately returned to his work in perfect health. I ought to explain that the shore of Palestine and Egypt naturally consists of soft sand and gravel which gradually becomes consolidated and hardens into rock; and thus though to the eye it remains the same it is no longer the same to the touch.

19. Paralyticus curatus.---Quis vero possit silentio praeterire, quod Gazanus Majomites haud longe a monasterio ejus, lapides ad aedificandum de ora maris caedens, totus paralysi dissolutus, et ab operis sociis delatus ad sanctum, statim sanus ad opus reversus est? Etenim littus quod Palaestinae Aegyptoque praetenditur [Fort. protenditur] per naturam molle arenis in saxa durescentibus asperatur; paulatimque cohaerescens sibi glarea, perdit [0036D] tactum, cum non perdat aspectum.

20. Another story relates to Italicus, a citizen of the same town. He was a Christian and kept horses for the circus to contend against those of the Duumvir of Gaza who was a votary of the idol god Marnas. This custom at least in Roman cities was as old as the days of Romulus, and was instituted in commemoration of the successful seizure of the Sabine women. The chariots raced seven times round the circus in honour of Consus in his character of the God of Counsel. Victory lay with the team which tired out the horses opposed to them. Now the rival of Italicus had in his pay a magician to incite his horses by certain demoniacal incantations, and keep back those of his opponent. Italicus therefore came to the blessed Hilarion and besought his aid not so much for the injury of his adversary as for protection for himself. It seemed absurd for the venerable old man to waste prayers on trifles of this sort. He therefore smiled and said, “Why do you not rather give the price of the horses to the poor for the salvation of your soul?” His visitor replied that his office was a public duty, and that he acted not so much from choice as from compulsion, that no Christian man could employ magic, but would rather seek aid from a servant of Christ, especially against the people of Gaza who were enemies of God, and who would exult over the Church of Christ more than over him. At the request therefore of the brethren who were present he ordered an earthenware cup out of which he was wont to drink to be filled with water and given to Italicus. The latter took it and sprinkled it over his stable and horses, his charioteers and his chariot, and the barriers of the course. The crowd was in a marvellous state of excitement, for the enemy in derision had published the news of what was going to be done, and the backers of Italicus were in high spirits at the victory which they promised themselves. The signal is given; the one team flies towards the goal, the other sticks fast: the wheels are glowing hot beneath the chariot of the one, while the other scarce catches a glimpse of their opponents’ backs as they flit past. The shouts of the crowd swell to a roar, and the heathens themselves with one voice declare Marnas is conquered by Christ. After this the opponents in their rage demanded that Hilarion as a Christian magician should be dragged to execution. This decisive victory and several others which followed in successive games of the circus caused many to turn to the faith.

20. Maleficium dissolutum in Circensibus.---Sed et Italicus ejusdem oppidi municeps Christianus, adversus Gazensem Duumvirum, Marnae idolo deditum, Circenses equos [Al. circi equos curules] nutriebat. [0037A] Hoc siquidem in Romanis urbibus jam inde servabatur a Romulo, ut propter felicem Sabinarum raptum, Conso, quasi consiliorum Deo, quadrigae septeno currant circumitu; et equos partis adversae fregisse, victoria sit. Hic itaque aemulo suo habente maleficum, qui daemoniacis quibusdam imprecationibus et hujus impediret [Al. praecantationibus et hujus praeparet] equos, et illius concitaret ad cursum, venit ad beatum Hilarionem, et non tam adversarium laedi, quam se defendi obsecravit. Ineptum visum est venerando seni in hujuscemodi nugis orationem perdere. Cumque subrideret et diceret: Cur non magis equorum pretium pro salute animae tuae pauperibus erogas? Ille respondit, functionem esse publicam; et hoc se non tam velle, [0037B] quam cogi: nec posse hominem Christianum uti magicis artibus; sed a servo Christi potius auxilium petere, maxime contra Gazenses adversarios Dei: et non tam sibi quam Ecclesiae Christi insultantes. Rogatus ergo a fratribus qui aderant, scyphum fictilem quo bibere consueverat, aqua jussit impleri, eique tradi. Quem cum accepisset Italicus, et 23 stabulum, et equos, et aurigas suos, rhedam, carcerumque repagula aspersit. Mira vulgi exspectatio: nam et adversarius hoc ipsum irridens, diffamaverat; et fautores Italici sibi certam victoriam pollicentes exsultabant. Igitur dato signo hi advolant, illi praepediuntur. Sub horum curru rotae fervent, illi praetervolantium terga vix cernunt. Clamor fit vulgi nimius [Codd. nimius attollitur]: ita ut Ethnici [0037C] quoque ipsi concreparent, Marnas victus est a Christo. Porro furentes adversarii, Hilarionem maleficum [0038A] Christianum ad supplicium poposcerunt. Indubitata ergo victoria et illis, et multis retro Circensibus plurimis fidei occasio fuit.

21. There was a youth in the neighbourhood of the same market-town of Gaza who was desperately in love with one of God’s virgins. After he had tried again and again those touches, jests, nods, and whispers which so commonly lead to the destruction of virginity, but had made no progress by these means, he went to a magician at Memphis to whom he proposed to make known his wretched state, and then, fortified with his arts, to return to his assault upon the virgin. Accordingly after a year’s instruction by the priest of Æsculapius, who does not heal souls but destroys them, he came full of the lust which he had previously allowed his mind to entertain, and buried beneath the threshold of the girl’s house certain magical formulæ and revolting figures engraven on a plate of Cyprian brass. Thereupon the maid began to show signs of insanity, to throw away the covering of her head, tear her hair, gnash her teeth, and loudly call the youth by name. Her intense affection had become a frenzy. Her parents therefore brought her to the monastery and delivered her to the aged saint. No sooner was this done than the devil began to howl and confess. “I was compelled, I was carried off against my will. How happy I was when I used to beguile the men of Memphis in their dreams! What crosses, what torture I suffer! You force me to go out, and I am kept bound under the threshold. I cannot go out unless the young man who keeps me there lets me go.” The old man answered, “Your strength must be great indeed, if a bit of thread and a plate can keep you bound. Tell me, how is it that you dared to enter into this maid who belongs to God?” “That I might preserve her as a virgin,” said he. “You preserve her, betrayer of chastity! Why did you not rather enter into him who sent you?” “For what purpose,” he answers, “should I enter into one who was in alliance with a comrade of my own, the demon of love?” But the saint would not command search to be made for either the young man or the charms till the maiden had undergone a process of purgation, for fear that it might be thought that the demon had been released by means of incantations, or that he himself had attached credit to what he said. He declared that demons are deceitful and well versed in dissimulation, and sharply rebuked the virgin when she had recovered her health for having by her conduct given an opportunity for the demon to enter.

21. Virginem ab incantatione amatoria liberat.---De eodem Gazensis emporii oppido, virginem Dei vicinus juvenis deperibat. Qui cum frequenter tactu, jocis, nutibus, sibilis, et caeteris hujusmodi, quae solent moriturae virginitatis esse principia, nihil profecisset, perrexit Memphim, ut confesso vulnere suo, magicis artibus rediret armatus ad virginem. Igitur post annum doctus ab Aesculapii vatibus, non remediantis animas, sed perdentis, venit praesumptum animo stuprum gestiens, et subter limen domus puellae portenta quaedam verborum, et portentosas figuras sculptas in aeris Cyprii lamina defodit. [0038B] Illico insanire virgo, et amictu capitis abjecto, rotare crinem, stridere dentibus, inclamare nomen adolescentis. Magnitudo quippe amoris se in furorem verterat. Perducta ergo a parentibus ad monasterium, seni traditur: ululante statim et confitente daemone, Vim sustinui, invitus abductus sum: quam bene Memphis somniis homines deludebam! O cruces! 24 o tormenta quae patior! Exire me cogis, et ligatus subter limen teneor. Non exeo, nisi me adolescens qui tenet, dimiserit. Tunc senex: Grandis, ait, fortitudo tua, qui licio et lamina strictus teneris. Dic, quare ausus es ingredi puellam Dei? Ut servarem, inquit, eam virginem. Tu servares, proditor castitatis? Cur non potius in eum qui te mittebat, es ingressus? Ut quid, respondit, intrarem in eum, [0038C] qui habebat collegam meum amoris daemonem? Noluit autem Sanctus antequam purgaret virginem, vel [0039A] adolescentem, vel signa jubere perquiri, ne aut solutus incantationibus recessisse daemon videretur, aut ipse sermoni ejus accommodasse fidem: asserens fallaces esse daemones, et ad simulandum esse callidos; et magis reddita sanitate increpuit virginem, cur fecisset talia, per quae daemon intrare potuisset.

22. It was not only in Palestine and the neighbouring cities of Egypt or Syria that he was in high repute, but his fame had reached distant provinces. An officer of the Emperor Constantius whose golden hair and personal beauty revealed his country (it lay between the Saxons and the Alemanni, was of no great extent but powerful, and is known to historians as Germany, but is now called France), had long, that is to say from infancy, been pursued by a devil, who forced him in the night to howl, groan, and gnash his teeth. He therefore secretly asked the Emperor for a post-warrant, plainly telling him why he wanted it, and having also obtained letters to the legate at Palestine came with great pomp and a large retinue to Gaza. On his inquiring of the local senators where Hilarion the monk dwelt, the people of Gaza were much alarmed, and supposing that he had been sent by the Emperor, brought him to the monastery, that they might show respect to one so highly accredited, and that, if any guilt had been incurred by them by injuries previously done by them to Hilarion it might be obliterated by their present dutifulness. The old man at the time was taking a walk on the soft sands and was humming some passage or other from the psalms. Seeing so great a company approaching he stopped, and having returned the salutes of all while he raised his hand and gave them his blessing, after an hour’s interval he bade the rest withdraw, but would have his visitor together with servants and officers remain: for by the man’s eyes and countenance he knew the cause of his coming. Immediately on being questioned by the servant of God the man sprang up on tiptoe, so as scarcely to touch the ground with his feet, and with a wild roar replied in Syriac in which language he had been interrogated. Pure Syriac was heard flowing from the lips of a barbarian who knew only French and Latin, and that without the absence of a sibilant, or an aspirate, or an idiom of the speech of Palestine. The demon then confessed by what means he had entered into him. Further, that his interpreters who knew only Greek and Latin might understand, Hilarion questioned him also in Greek, and when he gave the same answer in the same words and alleged in excuse many occasions on which spells had been laid upon him, and how he was bound to yield to magic arts, “I care not,” said the saint, “how you came to enter, but I command you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to come out.” The man, as soon as he was healed, with a rough simplicity offered him ten pounds of gold. But the saint took from him only bread, and told him that they who were nourished on such food regarded gold as mire.

22. Candidatum Constantii a daemone liberat. Decuriones locorum.---Non solum autem in Palaestina, et in vicinis urbibus Aegypti vel Syriae, sed etiam in longinquis provinciis fama ejus percrebuerat. Namque Candidatus Constantii imperatoris, rutilus coma, et candore corporis indicans provinciam (inter Saxones quippe et Alemanos gens ejus non tam lata quam valida; apud historicos Germania, nunc Francia vocatur), antiquo, hoc est, ab infantia [0039B] possessus daemone, qui noctibus eum ululare, ingemiscere, fremere dentibus compellebat, secreto ab imperatore Evectionem petiit, causam ei simpliciter indicans. Et acceptis ad Consularem quoque Palaestinae litteris, cum ingenti honore et comitatu Gazam deductus est. Qui cum a decurionibus illius loci quaesisset, ubi habitaret Hilarion monachus, 25 territi Gazenses vehementer, et putantes eum ab Imperatore missum, ad monasterium adduxerunt; ut et honorem commendato exhiberent; et si quid ex praeteritis injuriis in Hilarionem esset offensae, novo officio deleretur. Deambulabat tunc senex in arenis mollibus, et secum de psalmis nescio quid submurmurabat; vidensque tantam turbam venientem [Al. venientium], substitit. Et resalutatis omnibus, manuque [0039C] eis benedicens, post horam caeteros abire praecepit, illum vero cum servis suis et apparatoribus remanere; ex oculis enim ejus et vultu, cur venisset agnoverat. Statim ergo ad interrogationem Dei servi suspensus homo, vix terram pedibus tangere coepit, et immane rugiens, Syro quo interrogatus fuerat sermone, respondit. Videres de ore barbaro, et qui Francam tantum et Latinam linguam noverat, Syra ad purum verba resonare: ut non stridor, non aspiratio, non idioma aliquod Palaestini deesset eloquii. Confessus est itaque, quo in eum intrasset ordine. Et ut interpretes ejus intelligerent, qui Graecam tantum et Latinam linguam noverant, Graece quoque eum interrogavit. Quo similiter et in verba eadem respondente, multasque incantationum [0039D] occasiones, et necessitates magicarum artium obtendente, non curo, ait, quomodo intraveris; sed [0040A] ut exeas in nomine Domini nostri Jesu Christi, impero. Cumque curatus esset, simplicitate rustica decem auri libras offerens, hordeaceum ab eo panem accepit: audiens quod qui tali cibo alerentur, aurum pro luto ducerent.

23. It is not enough to speak of men; brute animals were also daily brought to him in a state of madness, and among them a Bactrian camel of enormous size amid the shouts of thirty men or more who held him tight with stout ropes. He had already injured many. His eyes were bloodshot, his mouth filled with foam, his rolling tongue swollen, and above every other source of terror was his loud and hideous roar. Well, the old man ordered him to be let go. At once those who brought him as well as the attendants of the saint fled away without exception. The saint went by himself to meet him, and addressing him in Syriac said, “You do not alarm me, devil, huge though your present body is. Whether in a fox or a camel you are just the same.” Meanwhile he stood with outstretched hand. The brute raging and looking as if he would devour Hilarion came up to him, but immediately fell down, laid its head on the ground, and to the amazement of all present showed suddenly no less tameness than it had exhibited ferocity before. But the old man declared to them how the devil, for men’s sake, seizes even beasts of burden; that he is inflamed by such intense hatred for men that he desires to destroy not only them but what belongs to them. As an illustration of this he added the fact that before he was permitted to try the saintly Job, he made an end of all his substance. Nor ought it to disturb anyone that [Matt. viii. and Mark v] by the Lord’s command two thousand swine were slain by the agency of demons, since those who witnessed the miracle could not have believed that so great a multitude of demons had gone out of the man unless an equally vast number of swine had rushed to ruin, showing that it was a legion that impelled them.

23. Bruta animalia curata.---Parum est de hominibus loqui, bruta quoque animalia quotidie ad eum furentia pertrahebantur, in quibus Bactrum camelum enormis magnitudinis, qui jam multos obtriverat, triginta et eo amplius viri distentum solidissimis funibus cum clamore adduxerunt. Sanguinei erant oculi, spumabat os, volubilis lingua turgebat, et super omnem terrorem rugitus personabat immanis. Jussit igitur eum dimitti senex. Statim vero et qui adduxerant, et qui cum sene erant, usque ad unum [0040B] omnes diffugere. Porro ille solus perrexit obviam, et sermone Syro: Non me, inquit, terres, diabole, tanta mole corporis: et in vulpecula, et in camelo unus atque idem es. Et interim porrecta stabat manu. Ad quem dum furens, et quasi eum devoratura 26 bellua pervenisset, statim corruit: submissumque caput terrae coaequavit, mirantibus cunctis qui aderant, post tantam ferociam, tantam subito mansuetudinem. Docebat autem senex, hominum causa diabolum etiam jumenta corripere: et tanto eorum ardere odio, ut non solum ipsos, sed et ea quae ipsorum essent, cuperet interire. Hujusque rei proponebat exemplum, quod antequam beatum Job tentare permitteretur, omnem substantiam ejus interfecerit. Nec movere quempiam debere, quod Domini jussione, [0040C] duo millia porcorum a daemonibus interfecta sunt (Matth. VIII, et Marc. V); siquidem eos qui viderant, non potuisse aliter credere exisse de homine tantam daemonum multitudinem, nisi grandis porcorum numerus, et quasi a multis actus, pariter corruisset.

24. Time would fail me if I wished to relate all the miracles which were wrought by him. For to such a pitch of glory was he raised by the Lord that the blessed Antony among the rest hearing of his life wrote to him and gladly received his letters. And if ever the sick from Syria came to him he would say to them, “Why have you taken the trouble to come so far, when you have there my son Hilarion?” Following his example, however, innumerable monasteries sprang up throughout the whole of Palestine, and all the monks flocked to him. When he saw this he praised the Lord for His grace, and exhorted them individually to the profit of their souls, telling them that the fashion of this world passes away, and that the true life is that which is purchased by suffering in the present.

24. Hilarionem colebat M. Antonius.---Tempus me deficiet, si voluero universa signa, quae ab eo perpetrata sunt, dicere. In tantam enim a Domino fuerat elevatus gloriam, ut beatus quoque Antonius audiens conversationem ejus, scriberet ei, libenterque ejus epistolas sumeret. Et si quando de Syriae partibus ad se languentes perrexissent, diceret eis: Quare vos tam longe vexare voluistis, cum habeatis ibi filium meum Hilarionem? Exemplo itaque ejus [0040D] per totam Palaestinam innumerabilia monasteria esse coeperunt, et omnes ad eum Monachi certatim currere. [0041A] Quod [Al. Quos] ille cernens, laudabat Domini gratiam; et ad profectum animae singulos cohortabatur, dicens: Praeterire figuram hujus mundi; et illam esse veram vitam, quae vitae praesentis emeretur incommodo.

25. Wishing to set the monks an example of humility and of zeal he was accustomed on fixed days before the vintage to visit their cells. When the brethren knew this they would all come together to meet him, and in company with their distinguished leader go the round of the monasteries, taking with them provisions, because sometimes as many as two thousand men were assembled. But, as time went on, all the settlements round gladly gave food to the neighbouring monks for the entertainment of the saints. Moreover, the care he took to prevent any brother however humble or poor being passed over is evidenced by the journey which he once took into the desert of Cades to visit one of his disciples. With a great company of monks he reached Elusa, as it happened on the day when the annual festival had brought all the people together to the temple of Venus. This, goddess is worshipped on account of Lucifer to whom the Saracen nation is devoted. The very town too is to a great extent semi-barbarous, owing to its situation. When therefore it was heard that Saint Hilarion was passing through (he had frequently healed many Saracens possessed by demons), they went to meet him in crowds with their wives and children, bending their heads and crying in the Syriac tongue Barech, that is, Bless. He received them with courtesy and humility, and prayed that they might worship God rather than stones; at the same time, weeping copiously, he looked up to heaven and promised that if they would believe in Christ he would visit them often. By the marvellous grace of God they did not suffer him to depart before he had drawn the outline of a church, and their priest with his garland upon his head had been signed with the sign of Christ.

25. Visitabat monasteria Hilarion.---Volens autem exemplum eis dare et humilitatis, et officii, statis diebus ante vindemiam lustrabat cellulas monachorum. Quod postquam cognitum est a fratribus, omnes ad eum confluebant: et comitati tali duce, circumibant monasteria, habentes viaticum suum: quia interdum usque ad duo millia hominum congregabantur. Sed et procedente tempore, unaquaeque villa vicinis monachis ad susceptionem sanctorum gaudens cibos offerebat. Quantum autem fuerit in [0041B] eo studii, ut nullum fratrem quamvis humilem, quamvis pauperem praeteriret, vel illud indicio est, quod vadens in desertum Cades ad unum de discipulis suis visendum, cum infinito agmine monachorum pervenit Elusam [Al. Elusium et Eolesam], eo forte 27 die, quo anniversaria solemnitas omnem oppidi populum in templum Veneris congregaverat. Colunt autem illam ob Luciferum, cujus cultui Saracenorum natio dedita est. Sed et ipsum oppidum ex magna parte semibarbarum est propter loci situm. Igitur audito quod Sanctus Hilarion praeteriret (multos enim Saracenorum arreptos a daemone frequenter curaverat), gregatim ei cum uxoribus et liberis obviam processere, submittentes colla, et voce Syra BARECH, id est, benedic, inclamantes. Quos ille blande [0041C] humiliterque suscipiens, obsecrabat ut Deum magis quam lapides colerent: simulque ubertim flebat, coelum spectans, et pollicens, si Christo crederent, ad eos se crebro esse venturum. Mira Domini gratia, non prius abire passi sunt, quam futurae Ecclesiae lineam mitteret; et sacerdos eorum, ut erat Coronatus, Christi signo denotaretur.

26. Another year, again, when he was setting out to visit the monasteries and was drawing up a list of those with whom he must stay and whom he must see in passing, the monks knowing that one of their number was a niggard, and being at the same time desirous to cure his complaint, asked the saint to stay with him. He replied, “Do you wish me to inflict injury on you and annoyance on the brother?” The niggardly brother on hearing of this was ashamed, and with the strenuous support of all his brethren, at length obtained from the saint a reluctant promise to put his monastery on the roll of his resting places. Ten days after they came to him and found the keepers already on guard in the vineyard through which their course lay, to keep off all comers with stones and clods and slings. In the morning they all departed without having eaten a grape, while the old man smiled and pretended not to know what had happened.

26. Monachus avarus.---Alio quoque anno cum exiturus esset ad visenda monasteria, et digereret in schedula, apud quos manere, quos in transitu visitare deberet, scientes monachi quemdam de fratribus parciorem, simulque cupientes vitio ejus mederi, rogabant ut apud eum maneret. Et ille: Quid, inquit, vultis et vobis injuriam, et fratri vexationem facere? Quod postquam frater ille parcus audivit, [0041D] erubuit; et annitentibus cunctis, vix ab invito impetravit, ut suum quoque monasterium in mansionum ordinem poneret. Post diem ergo decimum venerunt [0042A] ad eum, custodibus jam in vinea, qua venirent illi, dispositis, qui cum lapidibus et glebarum jactu, fundaeque vertigine accedentes deterrerent, sine esu uvae mane omnes profecti sunt, ridente sene, et dissimulante scire quod evenerat.

27. Once when they were being entertained by another monk whose name was Sabus (we must not of course give the name of the niggard, we may tell that of this generous man), because it was the Lord’s day, they were all invited by him into the vineyard so that before the hour for food came they might relieve the toil of the journey by a repast of grapes. Said the saint, “Cursed be he who looks for the refreshment of the body before that of the soul. Let us pray, let us sing, let us do our duty to God, and then we will hasten to the vineyard.” When the service was over, he stood on an eminence and blessed the vineyard and let his own sheep go to their pasture. Now those who partook were not less than three thousand. And whereas the whole vineyard had been estimated at a hundred flagons, within thirty days he made it worth three hundred. The niggardly brother gathered much less than usual, and he was grieved to find that even what he had turned to vinegar. The old man had predicted this to many brethren before it happened. He particularly abhorred such monks as were led by their lack of faith to hoard for the future, and were careful about expense, or raiment, or some other of those things which pass away with the world.

27. Monachus largus Sabas.---Porro suscepti ab alio monacho, cui Sabas vocabulum est (debemus quippe parci tacere vocabulum, largi dicere); quia Dominicus erat dies, invitabantur ab eo universi in vineam, ut ante horam cibi uvarum pastu laborem viae sublevarent. Et sanctus: Maledictus, ait, qui prius refectionem corporis, quam animae quaesierit. Oremus, psallamus, reddamus Domino officium, et sic ad 28 vineam properabimus [Al. properabitis]. Completo itaque ministerio, in sublimi stans benedixit [0042B] vineae, et suas ad pascendum dimisit oves. Erant autem qui vescebantur, non minus tribus millibus. Cumque centum lagenis aestimata fuisset integra adhuc vinea, post dies viginti trecentas fecit. Porro ille parcus frater multo minus solito colligens, etiam id quod habuerat versum in acetum sero doluit. Hoc multis fratribus senex ante futurum praedixerat. Detestabatur autem praecipue monachos, qui infidelitate quadam in futurum reservarent sua, et diligentiam haberent, vel sumptuum, vel vestitus, aut alicujus earum rerum, quae cum saeculo transeunt.

28. Lastly he would not even look at one of the brethren who lived about five miles off because he ascertained that he very jealously guarded his bit of ground, and had a little money. The offender wishing to be reconciled to the old man often came to the brethren, and in particular to Hesychius who was specially dear to Hilarion. One day accordingly he brought a bundle of green chick-pea just as it had been gathered. Hesychius placed it on the table against the evening, whereupon the old man cried out that he could not bear the stench, and asked where it came from. Hesychius replied that a certain brother had sent the brethren the first fruits of his ground. “Don’t you notice,” said he, “the horrid stench, and detect the foul odour of avarice in the peas? Send it to the cattle, send to the brute-beasts and see whether they can eat it.” No sooner was it in obedience to his command laid in the manger than the cattle in the wildest alarm and bellowing loudly broke their fastenings and fled in different directions. For the old man was enabled by grace to tell from the odour of bodies and garments, and the things which any one had touched, by what demon or with what vice the individual was distressed.

28. Frater nimis cautus.---Denique unum de fratribus in quinto fere a se milliario manentem, quia comperiebat hortuli sui nimis cautum timidumque [0042C] custodem, et pauxillum habere nummorum, ab oculis abegerat. Qui volens sibi reconciliari senem, frequenter veniebat ad fratres, et maxime ad Hesychium, quo ille vehementissime delectabatur. Quadam igitur die ciceris fascem virentis, sicut in herbis erat detulit. Quem cum Hesychius posuisset in mensa ad vesperum, exclamavit senex, se putorem ejus ferre non posse, simulque unde esset rogavit. Repondente autem Hesychio, quod frater quidam primitias agelli sui fratribus detulisset, non sentis, inquit, putorem teterrimum, et in cicere foetere avaritiam? Mitte bubus, mitte brutis animalibus, et vide an comedant. Quod cum ille juxta praeceptum in praesepe posuisset, exterriti boves et plus solito mugientes, ruptis vinculis in diversa fugerunt. Habebat [0042D] enim senex hanc gratiam, ut ex odore corporum vestiumque, et earum rerum quas quis tetigerat, sciret cui daemoni, vel cui vitio subjaceret.

29. His sixty-third year found the old man at the head of a grand monastery and a multitude of resident brethren. There were such crowds of persons constantly bringing those who suffered from various kinds of sickness or were possessed of unclean spirits, that the whole circuit of the wilderness was full of all sorts of people. And as the saint saw all this he wept daily and called to mind with incredible regret his former mode of life. When one of the brethren asked him why he was so dejected he replied, “I have returned again to the world and have received my reward in my lifetime. The people of Palestine and the adjoining province think me of some importance, and under pretence of a monastery for the well-ordering of the brethren I have all the apparatus of a paltry life about me.” The brethren, however, kept watch over him and in particular Hesychius, who had a marvellously devoted affection and veneration for the old man. After he had spent two years in these lamentations Aristæneté the lady of whom we made mention before, as being then the wife of a prefect though without any of a prefect’s ostentation, came to him intending to pay a visit to Antony also. He said to her, “I should like to go myself too if I were not kept a prisoner in this monastery, and if my going could be fruitful. For it is now two days since mankind was bereaved of him who was so truly a father to them all.” She believed his word and stayed where she was: and after a few days the news came that Antony had fallen asleep.

[0043A] 29. Turbarum inimicus erat Hil.---Igitur sexagesimo tertio vitae suae anno cernens grande monasterium, et multitudinem fratrum secum habitantium; turbasque eorum, qui diversis languoribus, et immundis spiritibus occupatos ad se deducebant, ita ut omni genere hominum solitudo per circumitum repleretur, flebat quotidie, et incredibili 29 desiderio conversationis antiquae recordabatur. Interrogatus a fratribus quid haberet, cur se conficeret, ait: Rursum ad saeculum redii, et recepi mercedem meam in vita mea. En homines Palestinae, et vicinae provinciae existimant me alicujus esse momenti; et ego sub praetextu monasterii ad dispensationem fratrum, vilem [Fort. utilem] supellectilem habeo. Servabatur autem a fratribus, maxime ab Hesychio, qui [0043B] miro amore venerationi senis deditus erat. Cumque ita vixisset [Al. duxisset] lugens biennium, Aristaenete illa, cujus supra ecimus mentionem, praefecti tunc uxor, sed nihil de praefecti ambitu habens, venit ad eum, volens etiam ad Antonium pergere. Cui ille flens: Vellem, ait, ipse quoque ire, si non carcere hujus monasterii clausus tenerer, et si eundi fructus esset. Biduum enim hodie est, quod totus mundus tali parente orbatus est. Credidit illa et substitit. Et post paucos dies veniente nuntio, Antonii dormitionem audivit.

30. Some may wonder at the miracles he worked, or his incredible fasting, knowledge, and humility. Nothing so astonishes me as his power to tread under foot honour and glory. Bishops, presbyters, crowds of clergymen and monks, of Christian matrons even (a great temptation), and a rabble from all quarters in town and country were congregating about him, and even judges and others holding high positions, that they might receive at his hands the bread or oil which he had blessed. But he thought of nothing but solitude, so much so that one day he determined to be gone, and having procured an ass (he was almost exhausted with fasting and could scarcely walk) endeavoured to steal away. The news spread far and wide, and, just as if a public mourning for the desolation of Palestine were decreed, ten thousand people of various ages and both sexes came together to prevent his departure. He was unmoved by entreaties, and striking the sand with his stick kept saying: “I will not make my Lord a deceiver; I cannot look upon churches overthrown, Christ’s altars trodden down, the blood of my sons poured out.” All who were present began to understand that some secret had been revealed to him which he was unwilling to confess, but they none the less kept guard over him that he might not go. He therefore determined, and publicly called all to witness, that he would take neither food nor drink unless he were released. Only after seven days was he relieved from his fasting; when having bidden farewell to numerous friends, he came to Betilium attended by a countless multitude. There he prevailed upon the crowd to return and chose as his companions forty monks who had resources for the journey and were capable of travelling during fasting-time, that is, after sunset. He then visited the brethren who were in the neighbouring desert and sojourning at a place called Lychnos, and after three days came to the castle of Theubatus to see Dracontius, bishop and confessor, who was in exile there. The bishop was beyond measure cheered by the presence of so distinguished a man. At the end of another three days he set out for Babylon and arrived there after a hard journey. Then he visited Philo the bishop, who was also a confessor; for the Emperor Constantius who favoured the Arian heresy had transported both of them to those parts. Departing thence he came in three days to the town Aphroditon. There he met with a deacon Baisanes who kept dromedaries which were hired, on account of the scarcity of water in the desert, to carry travellers who wished to visit Antony. He then made known to the brethren that the anniversary of the blessed Antony’s decease was at hand, and that he must spend a whole night in vigil in the very place where the saint had died. So then after three days journey through the waste and terrible desert they at length came to a very high mountain, and there found two monks, Isaac and Pelusianus, the former of whom had been one of Antony’s attendants.

30. Contemptus gloriae mirabilis. Dracontius et Philo episcopi exsules.---Mirentur alii signa quae fecit: mirentur incredibilem abstinentiam, scientiam, humilitatem. Ego nihil ita stupeo, quam gloriam illum [0043C] et honorem calcare potuisse. Concurrebant episcopi, presbyteri, clericorum et monachorum greges, matronarum quoque Christianarum (grandis tentatio) et hinc inde ex urbibus et agris vulgus ignobile: sed [0044A] et potentes viri, et judices, ut benedictum ab eo panem, vel oleum acciperent. At ille nihil aliud nisi solitudinem meditabatur, intantum, ut quadam die proficisci statuerit: et adducto asello (nimis quippe exesus jejuniis, vix ingredi poterat) iter arripere conaretur. 30 Quod cum percrebuisset, et quasi vastitas et justitium Palestinae indiceretur, plus quam decem millia hominum diversae aetatis et sexus ad retinendum eum congregata sunt. Immobilis ille ad preces, et baculo arenas discutiens, loquebatur: Fallacem Dominum meum non faciam; non possum videre subversas ecclesias, calcata Christi altaria, filiorum meorum sanguinem. Universi autem qui aderant, intelligebant revelatum ei quiddam esse secreti, quod nollet confiteri; et nihilominus custodiebant [0044B] eum, ne proficisceretur. Decrevit ergo, publica omnes voce contestans, non cibi se, non potus quidquam sumere, nisi dimitteretur. Et post septem dies, inediae tandem relaxatus, ac valedicens plurimis, cum infinito agmine prosequentium venit Betilium, ubi persuasis turbis ut reverterentur, elegit quadraginta monachos, qui haberent viaticum, et possent jejunantes ingredi, id est, post solis occasum; visitatisque fratribus, qui in vicina eremo erant, et in loco qui dicitur Lychnos morabantur, perrexit post triduum ad castrum Theubatum, ut videret Dracontium episcopum et confessorem, qui ibi exsulabat. Quo incredibiliter consolato tanti viri praesentia, post aliud triduum multo Babylonem labore pervenit, ut viseret Philonem episcopum [0044C] et ipsum confessorem. Constantius enim rex, Arianorum favens haeresi, utrumque in ea loca deportaverat. Inde egrediens, post triduum venit ad oppidum Aphroditon: ubi convento diacono Baisane [0045A] (qui locatis dromadibus camelis, ob aquae in eremo penuriam consueverat euntes ad Antonium ducere), confessus est fratribus instare 31 diem dormitionis beati Antonii; et pervigilem noctem in ipso quo defunctus fuerat loco, a se ei debere celebrari. Tribus igitur diebus per vastam et horribilem solitudinem, tandem ad montem altissimum pervenerunt, repertis ibi duobus monachis, Isaac et Pelusiano, quorum Isaac interpres Antonii fuerat.

31. The occasion seems a fitting one, since we are on the spot itself, to describe the abode of this great man. There is a high and rocky mountain extending for about a mile, with gushing springs amongst its spurs, the waters of which are partly absorbed by the sand, partly flow towards the plain and gradually form a stream shaded on either side by countless palms which lend much pleasantness and charm to the place. Here the old man might be seen pacing to and fro with the disciples of blessed Antony. Here, so they said, Antony himself used to sing, pray, work, and rest when weary. Those vines and shrubs were planted by his own hand: that garden bed was his own design. This pool for watering the garden was made by him after much toil. That hoe was handled by him for many years. Hilarion would lie upon the saint’s bed and as though it were still warm would affectionately kiss it. The cell was square, its sides measuring no more than the length of a sleeping man. Moreover on the lofty mountaintop, the ascent of which was by a zig-zag path very difficult, were to be seen two cells of the same dimensions, in which he stayed when he escaped from the crowds of visitors or the company of his disciples. These were cut out of the live rock and were only furnished with doors. When they came to the garden, “You see,” said Isaac, “this garden with its shrubs and green vegetables; about three years ago it was ravaged by a troop of wild asses. One of their leaders was hidden by Antony to stand still while he thrashed the animal’s sides with a stick and wanted to know why they devoured what they had not sown. And ever afterwards, excepting the water which they were accustomed to come and drink, they never touched anything, not a bush or a vegetable.” The old man further asked to be shown his burial place, and they thereupon took him aside; but whether they showed him the tomb or not is unknown. It is related that the motive for secrecy was compliance with Antony’s orders and to prevent Pergamius, a very wealthy man of the district, from removing the saint’s body to his house and erecting a shrine to his memory.

31. Habitaculum S. Antonii. Cellula Antonii. Ignotum sepulcrum B. Antonii.---Et quia se praebet occasio, et ad loci venimus, dignum videtur brevi sermone habitaculum tanti viri describere. Saxeus et sublimis mons per mille circiter passus, ad radices suas aquas exprimit, quarum alias arenae ebibunt, [0045B] aliae ad inferiora delapsae, paulatim rivum efficiunt; super quem ex utraque ripa palmae innumerabiles multum loco et amoenitatis et commodi tribuunt. Videres senem huc atque illuc cum discipulis beati Antonii discurrere. Hic, aiebant, psallere, hic orare, hic operari, hic fessus residere solitus erat. Has vites, has arbusculas ipse plantavit: illam areolam manibus suis ipse composuit. Hanc piscinam [Mss. piscinulam] ad irrigandum hortulum multo sudore fabricatus est. Istum sarculum ad fodiendam terram pluribus annis habuit. Jacebat in stratu ejus, et quasi calens adhuc cubile deosculabatur. Erat autem cellula non plus mensurae per quadrum tenens quam homo dormiens extendi poterat. Praeterea in sublimi montis vertice, quasi per cochleam ascendentibus, [0045C] et arduo valde nisu [Al. adnisu], duae ejusdem mensurae cellulae visebantur: in quibus venientium frequentiam, et discipulorum suorum contubernium fugiens moratus est. Verum hae in vivo excisae saxo, ostia tantum addita habebant. Postquam autem ad hortulum venerant: Videtis, inquit Isaac, hoc pomarium [Al. pomerium] arbusculis consitum, et oleribus virens; ante hoc ferme triennium cum onagrorum grex vastaret, unum e ductoribus eorum stare jussit, baculoque tundens latera: Quare, inquit, comeditis quod non seminastis? Et exinde exceptis aquis, ad quas potandas ventitabant, numquam eos nec arbusculam, nec olera contigisse. Praeterea rogabat senex, ut sibi locum tumuli ejus ostenderent. Qui cum seorsum eum abduxissent, utrum [0045D] monstraverint necne ignoratur. Causam occultandi juxta praeceptum Antonii fuisse referentes, ne Pergamius, qui 32 in illis locis ditissimus erat, sublato ad villam suam sancti corpore, martyrium fabricaretur.

32. Having returned to Aphroditon and keeping with him only two of the brethren, he stayed in the neighbouring desert, and practised such rigid abstinence and silence that he felt that then for the first time he had begun to serve Christ. Three years had now elapsed since the heavens had been closed and the land had suffered from drought, and it was commonly said that even the elements were lamenting the death of Antony. Hilarion did not remain unknown to the inhabitants of that place any more than to others, but men and women with ghastly faces and wasted by hunger earnestly entreated the servant of Christ, as being the blessed Antony’s successor, to give them rain. Hilarion when he saw them was strangely affected with compassion and, raising his eyes to heaven and lifting up both his hands, he at once obtained their petition. But, strange to say, that parched and sandy district, after the rain had fallen, unexpectedly produced such vast numbers of serpents and poisonous animals that many who were bitten would have died at once if they had not run to Hilarion. He therefore blessed some oil with which all the husbandmen and shepherds touched their wounds, and found an infallible cure.

[0046A] 32. Pluviam impetrat Hilarion.---Igitur reversus ad Aphroditon, duobus secum tantum retentis fratribus, in vicina eremo moratus est: tanta abstinentia et silentio, ut tunc primum se coepisse Christo servire diceret. Porro jam triennium erat, quod clausum coelum illas terras arefecerat; ut vulgo dicerent, Antonii mortem etiam elementa lugere. Non latuit fama Hilarionis accolas quoque illius loci: et certatim virilis ac muliebris sexus ore luridi, et attenuati fame, pluvias a servo Christi, id est, a beati Antonii successore deprecabantur. Quos ille cernens, mire doluit. Elevatisque in coelum oculis, et utrasque in sublime erigens palmas, statim impetravit quod rogaverant. Ecce autem sitiens arenosaque regio, postquam pluviis irrigata est, tantam serpentum [0046B] et venenatorum animalium ex improviso ebullivit multitudinem, ut percussi innumerabiles, nisi ad Hilarionem concurrissent, statim interirent. Benedicto itaque oleo universi agricolae atque pastores tangentes vulnera, certam salutem resumebant.

33. Seeing that even there surprising respect was paid to him, he went to Alexandria, intending to cross from thence to the farther oasis of the desert. And because he had never stayed in cities since he entered on the monk’s life, he turned aside to some brethren at Bruchium, not far from Alexandria, whom he knew, and who welcomed the old man with the greatest pleasure. It was now night when all at once they heard his disciples saddling the ass and making ready for the journey. They therefore threw themselves at his feet and besought him not to leave them; they fell prostrate before the door, and declared they would rather die than lose such a guest. He answered: “My reason for hastening away is that I may not give you trouble. You will no doubt afterwards discover that I have not suddenly left without good cause.” Next day the authorities of Gaza with the lictors of the prefect having heard of his arrival on the previous day, entered the monastery, and when they failed to find him anywhere they began to say to one another: “What we heard is true. He is a magician and knows the future.” The fact was that the city of Gaza on Julian’s accession to the throne, after the departure of Hilarion from Palestine and the destruction of his monastery, had presented a petition to the Emperor requesting that both Hilarion and Hesychius might be put to death, and a proclamation had been published everywhere that search should be made for them.

33. Pergit in alias regiones.---Videns etiam ibi se miris honoribus affici, perrexit Alexandriam, inde ad ulteriorem [Mss. interiorem] Oasim eremum transiturus. Et quia numquam ex quo coeperat esse monachus, in urbibus manserat, divertit ad quosdam fratres sibi notos in Bruchio, haud procul ab Alexandria; qui cum miro gaudio suscepissent senem, et jam vicina nox esset, repente audiunt discipulos ejus asinum sternere, illumque parare proficisci. Itaque advoluti pedibus, rogabant ne hoc faceret; [0046C] et ante limen prostrati, citius se mori, quam tanto carere hospite testabantur. Quibus ille respondit: Idcirco abire festino, ne vobis molestiam generem. Certe ex posterioribus cognoscetis, non sine causa me subito ambulasse. Igitur altera die Gazenses cum lictoribus praefecti (nam pridie eum venisse cognoverant) intrantes monasterium, cum illum minime invenissent invicem loquebantur: Nonne vera sunt quae audivimus? magus est, et futura cognoscit. Urbs enim Gaza, postquam, profecto de Palaestina Hilarione, Julianus in imperium 33 successerat, destructo monasterio ejus, precibus ad imperatorem datis, et Hilarionis, et Hesychii mortem impetraverat: amboque ut quaererentur, toto orbem scriptum erat.

34. Having then left Bruchium, he entered the oasis through the trackless desert, and there abode for a year, more or less. But, inasmuch as his fame had travelled thither also, he felt that he could not be hidden in the East, where he was known to many by report and by sight, and began to think of taking ship for some solitary island, so that having been exposed to public view by the land, he might at least find concealment in the sea. Just about that time Hadrian, his disciple, arrived from Palestine with information that Julian was slain and that a Christian emperor [Jovian, a.d., 363–4.]had commenced his reign; he ought therefore, it was said, to return to the relics of his monastery. But he, when he heard this, solemnly refused to return; and hiring a camel crossed the desert waste and reached Paretonium, a city on the coast of Libya. There the ill-starred Hadrian wishing to return to Palestine and unwilling to part with the renown so long attaching to his master’s name, heaped reproaches upon him, and at last having packed up the presents which he had brought him from the brethren, set out without the knowledge of Hilarion. As I shall have no further opportunity of referring to this man, I would only record, for the terror of those who despise their masters, that after a little while he was attacked by the king’s-evil and turned to a mass of corruption.

34. De Adriano discipulo. Egressus ergo de Bruchio, [0046D] per inviam solitudinem intravit Oasim: ibique anno plus minus exacto, quia illuc quoque sua fama pervenerat, quasi jam in Oriente latere non posset, ubi multi illum et opinione, et vultu noverant, ad solas navigare insulas cogitabat; ut quem [0047A] terra vulgaverat, saltem maria celarent. Eodem ferme tempore Hadrianus discipulus ejus de Palaestina supervenit, dicens Julianum occisum, et Christianum imperatorem (Jovinianum) regnare coepisse; revertique eum debere ad monasterii sui reliquias. Quod ille audiens detestatus est: et conducto camelo, per vastam solitudinem, pervenit ad maritimam urbem Libyae, Paretonium: ubi Hadrianus infelix volens Palaestinam reverti, et pristinam sub nomine magistri quaerens gloriam, multas ei fecit injurias. Ad extremum, convasatis quae a fratribus ei missa detulerat, nesciente illo, profectus est. Super hoc quia alter locus referendi non est, hoc tantum dixerim in terrorem eorum qui magistros despiciunt; quod post aliquantulum temporis computruerit [0047B] morbo regio.

35. The old man accompanied by Gazanus went on board a ship which was sailing to Sicily. Half way across the Adriatic he was preparing to pay his fare by selling a copy of the Gospels which he had written with his own hand in his youth, when the son of the master of the ship seized by a demon began to cry out and say: “Hilarion, servant of God, why is it that through you we cannot be safe even on the sea? Spare me a little until I reach land. Let me not be cast out here and thrown into the deep.” The saint replied: “If my God permit you to remain, remain; but if He casts you out, why bring odium upon me a sinner and a beggar?” This he said that the sailors and merchants on board might not betray him on reaching shore. Not long after, the boy was cleansed, his father and the rest who were present having given their word that they would not reveal the name of the saint to any one.

35. Evangeliorum codicem manu sua scripserat.---Habens igitur senex Gazanum secum, ascendit classem, quae Siciliam navigabat. Cumque venundato Evangeliorum codice, quem manu sua adolescens scripserat, dare naulum disponeret in medio ferme Adriae, naucleri filius arreptus a daemone, clamare coepit, et dicere: Hilarion serve Dei, cur nobis per te et in pelato tutos esse non licet? Da mihi spatium donec ad terram veniam, ne hic ejectus, praecipiter in abyssum. Cui ille: Si Deus meus, ait, tibi concedit ut maneas, mane; sin autem ille te ejicit, quid mihi invidiam facis, 34 homini peccatori atque mendico? Hoc autem dicebat, ne nautae et negotiatores qui in navi erant, se, cum ad terram [0047C] pervenissent, proderent. Nec multo post purgatus est puer, patre fidem dante, et caeteris qui aderant, nulli se super ejus nomine locuturos.

36. On approaching Pachynus, a promontory of Sicily, he offered the master the Gospel for the passage of himself and Gazanus. The man was unwilling to take it, all the more because he saw that excepting that volume and the clothes they wore they had nothing, and at last he swore he would not take it. But the aged saint, ardent and confident in the consciousness of his poverty, rejoiced exceedingly that he had no worldly possessions and was accounted a beggar by the people of the place.

36. Ingressus autem Pachynum promontorium Siciliae, obtulit nauclero Evangelium pro subvectione sua et Gazani. Qui nolens accipere, maxime cum videret illos, excepto illos codice, et his quibus vestiti erant, amplius nihil habere, ad extremum jurat se non accepturum. Sed et senex accensus fiducia pauperis conscientiae, in eo magis laetabatur, et quod nihil haberet saeculi, et ab accolis illius loci mendicus putaretur.

37. Once more, on thinking the matter over and fearing that merchants coming from the East might make him known, he fled to the interior, some twenty miles from the sea, and there on an abandoned piece of ground, every day tied up a bundle of firewood which he laid upon the back of his disciple, and sold at some neighbouring mansion. They thus supported themselves and were able to purchase a morsel of bread for any chance visitors. But that came exactly to pass which is written: [Matt. v. 14.] “a city set on a hill cannot be hid.” It happened that one of the shields-men who was vexed by a demon was in the basilica of the blessed Peter at Rome, when the unclean spirit within him cried out, “A few days ago Christ’s servant Hilarion entered Sicily and no one knew him, and he thinks he is hidden. I will go and betray him.” Immediately he embarked with his attendants in a ship lying in harbour, sailed to Pachynus and, led by the demon to the old man’s hut, there prostrated himself and was cured on the spot. This, his first miracle in Sicily, brought the sick to him in countless numbers (but it brought also a multitude of religious persons); insomuch that one of the leading men who was swollen with the dropsy was cured the same day that he came. He afterwards offered the saint gifts without end, but the saint replied to him in the words of the Saviour to his disciples: [Matt. x. 8. ]Freely ye received, freely give.”

37. Fugit ad mediterranea loca. Hydropicus curatus. Porro recogitans ne negotiatores de Oriente [0048A] venientes se notum facerent, ad mediterranea fugit loca, id est, vicesimo a mari millario; ibique in quodam deserto agello, lignorum quotidie fascem alligans, imponebat dorso discipuli. Quo in proxima villa venundato, et sibi alimoniam, et his qui forte ad eos veniebant, pauxillulum panis emebant. Sed vere juxta quod scriptum est: Non potest civitas latere super montem posita (Matth. V, 14), Scutarius quidam cum in basilica beati Petri Romae torqueretur, clamavit in eo immundus spiritus: Ante paucos dies Siciliam ingressus est Hilarion servus Christi, et nemo eum novit, et putat se esse secretum; ego vadam, et prodam illum. Statimque cum servulis suis ascensa in portu nave, appulsus est Pachynum, et deducente se daemone, ubi ante tugurium [0048B] senis se prostravit, illico curatus est. Hoc initium signorum ejus in Sicilia, innumerabilem ad eum deinceps aegrotantium, sed et religiosorum hominum adduxit multitudinem: in tantum, ut de primoribus viris quidam tumens morbo intercutis aquae, eodem 35 die quo ad eum venerat, curatus sit. Qui postea offerens ei infinita munera, audivit dictum Salvatoris ad discipulos: Gratis accepistis, gratis date (Matth. X, 8).

38. While this was going on in Sicily Hesychius his disciple was searching the world over for the old man, traversing the coast, penetrating deserts, clinging all the while to the belief that wherever he was he could not long be hidden. At the end of three years he heard at Methona from a certain Jew, who dealt in old-clothes, that a Christian prophet had appeared in Sicily, and was working such miracles and signs, one might think him one of the ancient saints. So he asked about his dress, gait, and speech, and in particular his age, but could learn nothing. His informant merely declared that he had heard of the man by report. He therefore crossed the Adriatic and after a prosperous voyage came to Pachynus, where he took up his abode in a cottage on the shore of the bay, and, on inquiring for tidings of the old man, discovered by the tale which every one told him where he was, and what he was doing. Nothing about him surprised them all so much as the fact that after such great signs and wonders he had not accepted even a crust of bread from any one in the district. And, to cut my story short, the holy man Hesychius fell down at his master’s knees and bedewed his feet with tears; at length he was gently raised by him, and when two or three days had been spent in talking over matters, he learned from Gazanus that Hilarion no longer felt himself able to live in those parts, but wanted to go to certain barbarous races where his name and fame were unknown.

38. Hesychius discipulus quaerit Hilarionem. Dum haec ita geruntur in Sicilia, Hesychius discipulus ejus, toto senem orbe quaerebat, lustrans littora, deserta penetrans; et hanc tantum habens fiduciam, quia ubicumque esset, diu latere non posset. Transacto igitur jam triennio, audivit Methonae a quodam [0048C] Judaeo, vilia populis scruta vendente, Prophetam Christianorum apparuisse in Sicilia, tanta miracula et signa facientem, ut de veteribus sanctis putaretur. Interrogans itaque habitum ejus, incessum et linguam, maximeque aetatem, nihil discere potuit. Ille enim qui referebat, famam ad se venisse tantum hominis testabatur. Ingressus igitur Adriam, prospero [Al. propero] cursu venit Pachynum; et in quadam curvi littoris villula, famam senis sciscitatus, consona voce omnium cognovit ubi esset, quid ageret: nihil in eo ita cunctis admirantibus, quam quod post tanta signa atque miracula, ne fragmen quidem panis a quoquam in illis locis accepisset. Et ne longum faciam, sanctus vir Hesychius ad magistri [0049A] genua provolutus, plantasque ejus lacrymis rigans, tandem ab eo sublevatus, post bidui triduique sermonem audit a Gazano, non posse senem jam in illis habitare regionibus; sed velle ad barbaras quasdam pergere nationes, ubi et nomen et rumor suus incognitus foret.

39. He therefore brought him to Epidaurus, a town in Dalmatia, where he stayed for a few days in the country near, but could not be hid. An enormous serpent, of the sort which the people of those parts call boas because they are so large that they often swallow oxen, was ravaging the whole province far and wide, and was devouring not only flocks and herds, but husbandmen and shepherds who were drawn in by the force of its breathing. He ordered a pyre to be prepared for it, then sent up a prayer to Christ, called forth the reptile, bade it climb the pile of wood, and then applied the fire. And so before all the people he burnt the savage beast to ashes. But now he began anxiously to ask what he was to do, whither to betake himself. Once more he prepared for flight, and in thought ranged through solitary lands, grieving that his miracles could speak of him though his tongue was silent.

39. Comburit serpentem boam dictum. Duxit itaque eum ad Epidaurum Dalmatiae oppidum, ubi paucis diebus in vicino agello mausitans, non potuit abscondi. Si quidem draco mirae magnitudinis, quos gentili sermone boas vocant, ab eo quod tam grandes sint, ut boves glutire soleant, omnem late vastabat provinciam, et non solum armenta et pecudes; sed agricolas quoque et pastores tractos ad se vi spiritus absorbebat. Cui cum pyram jussisset praeparari, [0049B] et oratione ad Christum emissa, evocato praecepisset struem lignorum scandere, ignem supposuit. Tum itaque cuncta spectante plebe, immanem bestiam concremavit. 36 Unde aestuans, quid faceret, quo se verteret, aliam parabat fugam; et solitarias terras mente perlustrans, moerebat [Al. mirabatur] quod tacente de se lingua, miracula loquerentur.

40. At that time there was an earthquake over the whole world, following on the death of Julian, which caused the sea to burst its bounds, and left ships hanging on the edge of mountain steeps. It seemed as though God were threatening a second deluge, or all things were returning to original chaos. When the people of Epidaurus saw this, I mean the roaring waves and heaving waters and the swirling billows mountain-high dashing on the shore, fearing that what they saw had happened elsewhere might befall them and their town be utterly destroyed, they made their way to the old man, and as if preparing for a battle placed him on the shore. After making the sign of the cross three times on the sand, he faced the sea, stretched out his hands, and no one would believe to what a height the swelling sea stood like a wall before him. It roared for a long time as if indignant at the barrier, then little by little sank to its level. Epidaurus and all the region roundabout tell the story to this day, and mothers teach their children to hand down the remembrance of it to posterity. Verily, what was said to the Apostles, [Matt. xvii. 20 sq.]”If ye have faith, ye shall say to this mountain, Remove into the sea, and it shall be done,” may be even literally fulfilled, provided one has such faith as the Lord commanded the Apostles to have. For what difference does it make whether a mountain descends into the sea, or huge mountains of waters everywhere else fluid suddenly become hard as rock at the old man’s feet?

40. Egressum terminis mare compescit. Ea tempestate, terrae motu totius orbis, qui post Juliani mortem accidit, maria egressa sunt terminos suos, et quasi rursum Deus diluvium minaretur, vel in antiquum chaos redirent omnia, naves ad praerupta delatae montium pependerunt. Quod cum viderent Epidauritani, frementes scilicet fluctus et undarum [0049C] moles, et montes gurgitum littoribus inferri, verentes, quod jam evenisse cernebant, ne oppidum funditus subverteretur, ingressi sunt ad senem: et quasi ad praelium proficiscentes, posuerunt eum in littore. Qui cum tria crucis signa pinxisset in sabulo, manusque contra tenderet, incredibile dictu est in quantam altitudinem intumescens mare ante eum steterit: ac diu fremens, et quasi ad obicem indignans, paulatim in semetipsum relapsum est. Hoc Epidaurus et omnis illa regio usque hodie praedicat, matresque docent liberos suos ad memoriam in posteros transmittendam. Vere illud quod ad Apostolos dictum est: Si credideritis, dicetis huic monti, [0050A] transi in mare, et fiet (Matth. XVII, 19), etiam juxta litteram impleri potest, si tamen quis habuerit apostolorum fidem, et talem qualem illis habendam Dominus imperavit. Quid enim interest, utrum mons descendat in mare, an immensi undarum montes repente obriguerint, et ante senis tantum pedes saxei, ex alia parte molliter fluxerint?

41. The whole country marvelled and the fame of the great miracle was in everyone’s mouth, even at Salonæ. When the old man knew this was the case he escaped secretly by night in a small cutter, and finding a merchant ship after two days came to Cyprus. Between Malea and Cythera, the pirates, who had left on the shore that part of their fleet which is worked by poles instead of sails, bore down on them with two light vessels of considerable size; and besides this they were buffeted by the waves on every side. All the rowers began to be alarmed, to weep, to leave their places, to get out their poles, and, as though one message was not enough, again and again told the old man that pirates were at hand. Looking at them in the distance he gently smiled, then turned to his disciples and said, [Matt. xiv. 32.] “O ye of little faith, wherefore do ye doubt? Are these more than the army of Pharaoh? Yet they were all drowned by the will of God.” Thus he spake, but none the less the enemy with foaming prows kept drawing nearer and were now only a stone’s throw distant. He stood upon the prow of the vessel facing them with out-stretched hand, and said, “Thus far and no farther.” Marvellous to relate, the boats at once bounded back, and though urged forward by the oars fell farther and farther astern. The pirates were astonished to find themselves going back, and laboured with all their strength to reach the vessel, but were carried to the shore faster by far than they came.

41. Fugit Cyprum. Mirabatur omnis civitas, et magnitudo signi Salonis quoque percrebuerat. Quod intelligens senex, in brevi lembo clam nocte fugit, et inventa post biduum oneraria navi, perrexit Cyprum. Cumque inter Maleam et Cytheram piratae derelicta classe in littore, quae non antemna, sed conto regitur, duobus haud parvis myoparonibus occurrissent, et denuo hinc inde fluctus occurrerent, [0050B] remiges omnes qui in navi erant trepidare, flere, discurrere, praeparare contos, 37 et quasi non sufficeret unus nuntius, certatim seni piratas adesse dicebant. Quos ille procul intuens subrisit. Et conversus ad discipulos dixit: Modicae, inquit fidei, quare trepidatis (Matth. XIV, 32)? Numquid plures sunt hi quam Pharaonis exercitus? tamen omnes Deo volente submersi sunt. Loquebatur his, et nihilominus spumantibus rostris hostiles carinae [Al. turbae] imminebant, jactu tantum lapidis medio. Stetit ergo in prora [Al. ora] navis, et porrecta contra venientes manu: hucusque, ait, venisse sufficiat. O mira rerum fides! statim resiluere naviculae, et impellentibus contra remis, ad puppim impetus redit. Mirabantur piratae post tergum se redire nolentes: totoque corporis [0050C] nisu, ut ad navigium pervenirent, laborantes, velocius multo quam venerant, ad littus ferebantur.

42. I pass by the rest for fear I should seem in my history to be publishing a volume of miracles. I will only say this, that when sailing with a fair wind among the Cyclades he heard the voices of unclean spirits shouting in all directions from towns and villages, and running in crowds to the shore. Having then entered Paphos, the city of Cyprus renowned in the songs of the poets, the ruins of whose temples after frequent earthquakes are the only evidences at the present day of its former grandeur, he began to live in obscurity about two miles from the city, and rejoiced in having a few days rest. But not quite twenty days passed before throughout the whole island whoever had unclean spirits began to cry out that Hilarion Christ’s servant had come, and that they must go to him with all speed. Salamis, Curium, Lapetha, and the other cities joined in the cry, while many declared that they knew Hilarion and that he was indeed the servant of Christ, but where he was they could not tell. So within a trifle more than thirty days, about two hundred people, both men and women, came together to him. When he saw them he lamented that they would not suffer him to be quiet, and thirsting in a kind of manner to avenge himself, he lashed them with such urgency of prayer that some immediately, others after two or three days, all within a week, were cured.

42. Multos ab immundis spiritibus curat.---Praetermitto caetera, ne videar in narratione signorum volumen extendere. Hoc solum dicam, quod prospero cursu inter Cycladas navigans, hinc inde clamantium de urbibus et vicis, et ad littora concurrentium, immundorum spirituum voces audiebat. Ingressus ergo Paphum, urbem Cypri nobilem carminibus poetarum, quae frequenter [Vel frequenti] terrae motu lapsa, nunc ruinarum tantum vestigiis quid olim fuerit, ostendit, in secundo ab urbe milliario habitabat ignobilis, gaudensque quod paucis diebus quiete [0051A] viveret. Verum non ad plenum viginti transiere dies, cum per omnem illam insulam quicumque immundos habebant spiritus, clamare coeperunt, venisse Hilarionem servum Christi, et ad eum se debere properare. Hoc Salamina, hoc Curium, hoc Lapetha et urbes reliquae conclamabant, plerisque asserentibus scire se quidem Hilarionem, et vere illum esse famulum Dei, sed ubi esset ignorare. Intra triginta igitur nec multo amplius dies, ducenti ferme, tam viri quam mulieres, ad eum congregati sunt. Quos cum vidisset, dolens quod se non paterentur quiescere, et quodammodo in ultionem sui saeviens, tanta eos orationum instantia flagellavit, ut quidam statim, alii post biduum triduumve, omnes vero intra unam hebdomadam curarentur.

43. Here he stayed two years, always thinking of flight, and in the meantime sent Hesychius, who was to return in the spring, to Palestine to salute the brethren and visit the ashes of his monastery. When the latter returned he found Hilarion longing to sail again to Egypt, that is to the locality called Bucolia; but he persuaded him that, since there were no Christians there, but only a fierce and barbarous people, he should rather go to a spot in Cyprus itself which was higher up and more retired. After long and diligent search he found such a place twelve miles from the sea far off among the recesses of rugged mountains, the ascent to which could hardly be accomplished by creeping on hands and knees. Thither he conducted him. The old man entered and gazed around. It was indeed a lonely and terrible place; for though surrounded by trees on every side, with water streaming from the brow of the hill, a delightful bit of garden, and fruit-trees in abundance (of which, however, he never ate), yet it had close by the ruins of an ancient temple from which, as he himself was wont to relate and his disciples testify, the voices of such countless demons re-echoed night and day, that you might have thought there was an army of them. He was highly pleased at the idea of having his opponents in the neighbourhood, and abode there five years, cheered in these his last days by the frequent visits of Hesychius, for owing to the steep and rugged ascent, and the numerous ghosts (so the story ran), nobody or scarcely anybody either could or dared to go up to him. One day, however, as he was leaving his garden, he saw a man completely paralysed lying in front of the gates. He asked Hesychius who he was, or how he had been brought. Hesychius replied that he was the agent at the country-house to which the garden belonged in which they were located. Weeping much and stretching out his hand to the prostrate man he said, “I bid you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ arise and walk.” The words were still on the lips of the speaker, when, with miraculous speed, the limbs were strengthened and the man arose and stood firm. Once this was noised abroad the need of many overcame even the pathless journey and the dangers of the place. The occupants of all the houses round about had nothing so much in their thoughts as to prevent the possibility of his escape, a rumour having spread concerning him to the effect that he could not stay long in the same place. This habit of his was not due to levity or childishness, but to the fact that he shunned the worry of publicity and praise, and always longed for silence and a life of obscurity.

[0051B] 43. In secretiorem locum ascendit. Bucolia Aegypti. Paralyticus curatus.---Manens itaque ibi biennio, et semper de fuga cogitans, Hesychium ad se veris tempore reversurum, Palaestinam ad salutationem fratrum, et monasterii sui 38 cineres visendos misit. Qui cum revertisset, cupienti rursum ad Aegyptum navigare, hoc est, ad ea loca, quae vocantur Bucolia, eo quod nullus ibi Christianorum esset, sed barbara tantum et ferox natio, suasit ut in ipsa magis insula ad secretiorem locum conscenderet. Quem cum diu lustrans omnia, reperisset, perduxit eum duodecim millibus a mari procul inter secretos asperosque montes, et quo vix reptando manibus genubusque posset ascendi. Qui introgressus, contemplatus quidem est terribilem valde et remotum locum, [0051C] arboribus hinc inde circumdatum, habentem etiam aquas de supercilio collis irriguas, et hortulum peramoenum, et pomaria plurima, quorum fructum numquam in cibo sumpsit: sed et antiquissimi juxta templi ruinam ex quo (ut ipse referebat et ejus discipuli testantur) tam innumerabilium per noctes et dies daemonum voces resonabant, ut exercitum crederes. Quo ille valde delectatus, quo scilicet antagonistas haberet in proximo, habitavit ibi per annos quinque, et saepe invisente se Hesychio, in hoc extremo jam vitae suae tempore refocillatus est, quod propter asperitatem difficultatemque loci, et umbrarum (ut ferebatur vulgo) multitudinem, aut nullus, aut rarus ad se vel posset, vel auderet ascendere. Quodam autem die egressus hortulum, vidit hominem [0051D] toto corpore paralyticum jacentem ante fores. Interrogavitque Hesychium quisnam esset, vel quomodo fuisset adductus. Qui respondens, ait, procuratorem se fuisse villulae, ad cujus jus hortulus quoque, in quo ipsi erant, pertineret. Et ille collacrymans tendensque ad jacentem manum: Tibi, inquit, dico in nomine Domini nostri Jesu Christi surge, et ambula. Mira velocitas. Adhuc verba in ore loquentis volvebantur, et jam membra solidata ad [0052A] standum, hominem surrigebant. Quod postquam auditum est, etiam difficultatem loci, et iter invium plurimorum vicit necessitas. Nihil aeque per circumitum cunctis villis observantibus, quam ne quo modo elaberetur. Disseminaverat enim hoc de eo rumor, diu eum in eodem loco manere non posse. Quod ille non levitate quadam, aut puerili sensu victus faciebat; sed honorem fugiens et importunitatem; semper 39 enim silentium et vitam ignobilem desiderabat.

44. In his eightieth year, during the absence of Hesychius, he wrote by way of a will a short letter with his own hand, and left him all his riches (that is to say, a copy of the gospels, and his sack-cloth tunic, cowl and cloak), for his servant had died a few days before. Many devout men therefore came to the invalid from Paphos, and specially because they had heard of his saying that he must soon migrate to the Lord and must be liberated from the bonds of the body. There came also Constantia a holy woman whose son-in-law and daughter he had anointed with oil and saved from death. He earnestly entreated them all not to let him be kept even a moment of time after death, but to bury him immediately in the same garden, just as he was, clad in his goat-hair tunic, cowl, and his peasant’s cloak.

44. Testamentum Hilarionis.---Olei unctione curati filia et gener Constantiae. Igitur octogesimo aetatis suae anno, cum absens esset Hesychius, quasi testamenti vice brevem manu propria scripsit epistolam, omnes divitias suas ei derelinquens (Evangelium [0052B] scilicet, et tunicam sacceam, cucullam et palliolum), nam minister ejus ante paucos dies obierat. Venerunt itaque ad aegrotantem de Papho multi religiosi viri; et maxime quod eum dixisse audierant, jam se ad Dominum migraturum, et de corporis vinculis liberandum; sed et Constantia quaedam sancta femina, cujus generum et filiam de morte liberaverat unctione olei: quos omnes adjuravit, ut ne puncto quidem horae post mortem reservaretur; sed statim eum in eodem hortulo terra operirent, sicut vestitus erat in tunica cilicina et cuculla, et sago rustico.

45. His body was now all but cold, and nought was left of life but reason. Yet with eyes wide open he kept repeating, “Go forth, what do you fear? Go forth, my soul, why do you hesitate? You have served Christ nearly seventy years, and do you fear death?” Thus saying he breathed his last. He was immediately buried before the city heard of his death.

45. Jamque modicus calor tepebat in pectore, nec praeter sensum quidquam vivi hominis supererat, et tamen apertis oculis loquebatur: Egredere, quid times? egredere, anima mea, quid dubitas? Septuaginta [0052C] prope annis servisti Christo, et mortem times? In haec verba exhalavit spiritum. Statimque humo obrutum, ante urbi sepultum, quam mortuum nuntiaverunt.

46. When the holy man Hesychius heard of his decease, he went to Cyprus and, to lull the suspicions of the natives who were keeping strict guard, pretended that he wished to live in the same garden, and then in the course of about ten months, though at great peril to his life, stole the saint’s body. He carried it to Majuma; and there all the monks and crowds of towns-folk going in procession laid it to rest in the ancient monastery. His tunic, cowl and cloak, were uninjured; the whole body as perfect as if alive, and so fragrant with sweet odours that one might suppose it to have been embalmed.

40 46. Hesychius furatur corpus S. Hilarionis. Integrum corpus Hilarionis et illaesae vestes.---Quod postquam sanctus vir audivit Hesychius, perrexit ad Cyprum, et simulans se velle habitare in eodem hortulo, ut diligentis custodiae suspicionem accolis tolleret, cum ingenti vitae suae periculo, post decem fere menses corpus ejus furatus est. Quod Majumam deferens, totis monachorum et oppidorum turbis prosequentibus, in antiquo monasterio condidit; illaesa tunica, cuculla, et palliolo, et toto corpore, quasi adhuc viveret, integro, tantisque fragrante odoribus, [0052D] ut delibutum unguentis putares.

47. In bringing my book to an end I think I ought not to omit to mention the devotion of the holy woman Constantia who, when a message was brought her that Hilarion’s body was in Palestine, immediately died, proving even by death the sincerity of her love for the servant of God. For she was accustomed to spend whole nights in vigil at his tomb, and to converse with him as if he were present in order to stimulate her prayers. Even at the present day one may see a strange dispute between the people of Palestine and the Cypriotes, the one contending that they have the body, the other the spirit of Hilarion. And yet in both places great miracles are wrought daily, but to a greater extent in the garden of Cyprus, perhaps because that spot was dearest to him.

47. Constantia dolore mortua propter furatum corpus S. Hilarionis.---Non mihi videtur in calce libri tacenda Constantiae illius sanctissimae mulieris devotio, quae perlato ad se nuntio, quod corpusculum Hilarionis Palaestinae esset, statim exanimata est, veram in servum Dei dilectionem etiam morte comprobans. Erat enim solita pervigiles in sepulcro ejus noctes ducere, et quasi cum praesente ad adjuvandas orationes [0053A] suas sermocinari. Cernas usque hodie miram inter Palaestinos et Cyprios contentionem, his corpus Hilarionis, illis spiritum se habere certantibus. Et [0054A] tamen in utrisque locis magna quotidie signa fiunt; sed magis in hortulo Cypri, forsitan quia plus illum locum dilexerit.


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