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Philippe de Thaon

TextEdit

BestiaireEdit

Anglo-Norman originalEdit

Monosceros est beste, un corn ad en la teste,
Pur çeo ad si à nun, de buc ad façun;
Par pucele est prise, or oez en quel guise.
Quant hom le volt cacer e prendre & enginner,
Si vent hom al forest ù sis repairs est;
Là met une pucele hors de sein sa mamele,
E par odurement monosceros la sent;
Dunc vent à la pucele, e si baiset sa mamele,
En sun devant se dort, issi vent à sa mort;
Li hom survent atant, ki l’ocit en dormant,
U trestut vif le prent, si fait puis sun talent.
Grant chose signefie, ne larei ne l’ vus die.

Monosceros Griu est, en Franceis un corn est
Beste de tel baillie Jhesu Crist signefie;
Un Deu est e serat e fud e parmaindrat;
En la virgine se mist, e pur hom charn i prist,
E pur virginited pur mustrer casteed;
A virgine se parut e virgine le conceut,
Virgine est e serat e tuz jurz parmaindrat.
Or oez brefment le signefiement.

Ceste beste en verté nus signefie Dé;
La virgine signefie sacez Sancte Marie;
Par sa mamele entent sancte eglise ensement;
E puis par le baiser çeo deit signefier,
E (?Que) hom quant il se dort en semblance est de mort
Dés cum hom dormi, ki en la cruiz mort sufri,
E sa destructiun nostre redemptiun,
E sun traveillement nostre reposement,
Si deceut Dés Diable par semblant cuvenable;
Anme e cors sunt un, issi fud Dés & hom,
E çeo signefie beste de tel baillie.

English translation (Thomas Wright, 1841)Edit

Monosceros is an animal which has one horn on its head,
therefore it is so named; it has the form of a goat,
it is caught by means of a virgin, now hear in what manner.
When a man intends to hunt it and to take and ensnare it,
he goes to the forest where is its repair;
there he places a virgin, with her breast uncovered,
and by its smell the monosceros perceives it;
then it comes to the virgin, and kisses her breast,
falls asleep on her lap, and so comes to its death;
the man arrives immediately, and kills it in its sleep,
or takes it alive and does as he likes with it.
It signifies much, I will not omit to tell it you.

Monosceros is Greek, it means one horn in French:
a beast of such a description signifies Jesus Christ;
one God he is and shall be, and was and will continue so
he placed himself in the virgin, and took flesh for man's sake,
and for virginity to show chastity;
to a virgin he appeared and a virgin conceived him,
a virgin she is, and will be, and will remain always.
Now hear briefly the signification.

This animal in truth signifies God;
know that the virgin signifies St. Mary;
by her breast we understand similarly Holy Church;
and then by the kiss it ought to signify,
that a man when he sleeps is in semblance of death;
God slept as man, who suffered death, on the cross,
and his destruction was our redemption,
and his labour our repose,
thus God deceived the Devil by a proper semblance;
soul and body were one, so was God and man,
and this is the signification of an animal of that description.

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