University of Massachusetts, Amherst Leaf 19
This leaf is from an Italian Bible of the early fourteenth century, and measures 23.5 x 17 cm. The leaves from this bible provide us with clear insight into Otto Ege's selection method. All the Leaf 19s on this site contain a large beautiful initial letter denoting the start of a new book of the Bible--thus we can expect that all of the rest of the specimens of Leaf 19 in the Ege portfolios are leaves that contain the ending of one Biblical book and the beginning of another, and we can assume that Ege chose them for the sake of the single large decorated initial. Apart from the arresting initial, the leaves contain red and blue ink scrollwork, with headers in alternating red and blue. Missing pieces of text (sometimes fairly lengthy ones) have attention drawn to them by being outlined in red. See Denison University Leaf 19 for more information about this manuscript.
Text: Song of Songs 8:6-14, Prologue to Wisdom, and Wisdom 1:1-2:7 (recto). A scan of the verso is not currently available. The translation of the prologue, which is a Jerome apocrypha, is by Catherine Kavanaugh.
University of Massachusetts, Amherst Leaf 19 Recto
Póne me ut signáculum super cor tuum, ut signáculum super bráchium tuum, quia fortis est ut mors diléctio, dura sicut inférnus aemulátio: lámpades ejus lámpades ignis atque flammárum. Aquae multae non potuérunt extínguere caritátem, nec flúmina óbruent illam. Si déderit homo omnem substántiam domus suae pro dilectióne, quasi nihil despíciet eam. Sóror nostra parva, et úbera non habet; quid faciémus soróri nostrae in die quando alloquénda est. Si murus est, aedificémus super eum propugnácula argéntea; si óstium est, compingámus illud tábulis cédrinis. Ego murus, et úbera mea sicut turris, ex quo facta sum coram eo, quasi pacem repériens. Vínea fuit pacífico in ea quae habet pópulos: trádidit eam custódibus; vir affert pro fructu ejus mille argénteos. Vínea mea coram me est. Mille tui pacífici, et ducénti his qui custódiunt fructus ejus. quae hábitas in hortis, amíci auscúltant; fac me audíre vocem tuam. Fuge, dilécte mi, et assimiláre cápreae, hinnulóque cervórum super montes arómatum.
Explicit canticum canticorum. Incipit prologus sancti Ieromini presbyterii in liber sapientie.
Liber Sapientiae apud Hebraeos nusquam est: unde et ipse stylus Graecam magis quam Hebraeam eloquentiam redolet. Hunc Judaei Babylonis esse affirmant; qui proinde Sapientiae nominant, quia in eo Christi adventus, qui est sapientia Patris, et passio ejus evidenter exprimitur.
Explicit prologus. Incipit liber sapientie.
Dilígite justítiam, qui judicátis terram. Sentíte de Dómino in bonitáte, et in simplicitáte cordis quaerite illum: quóniam invenítur ab his qui non tentant illum, appáret autem eis qui fidem habent in illum. Pervérsæ enim cogitatiónes séparant a Deo; probáta autem virtus córripit insipiéntes. Quóniam in malévolam ánimam non introíbit sapiéntia, nec habitábit in córpore súbdito peccátis. Spíritus enim sanctus disciplínae effúgiet fictum, et áuferet
se a cogitatiónibus quæ sunt sine intelléctu, et corripiétur a superveniénte iniquitáte. Benígnus est enim spíritus sapiéntiae, et non liberábit malédicum a lábiis suis: quóniam renum illíus testis est Deus, et cordis illíus scrutátor est verus, et linguae ejus audítor. Quóniam spíritus Dómini replévit orbem terrárum, et hoc quod cóntinet ómnia, sciéntiam habet vocis. Propter hoc qui lóquitur iníqua non potest látere, nec praetériet illum corrípiens judícium. In cogitatiónibus enim ímpii interrogátio erit; sermónum autem illíus audítio ad Deum véniet, ad correptiónem iniquitátum illíus. Quóniam auris zeli audit ómnia, et tumúltus murmuratiónum non abscondétur. Custodíte ergo vos a murmuratióne quae nihil prodest, et a detractióne párcite linguae: quóniam sermo obscúrus in vácuum non ibit, os autem quod mentítur occídit ánimam. Nólite zeláre mortem in erróre vitae vestrae, neque acquirátis perditiónem in opéribus mánuum vestrárum. Quóniam Deus mortem non fecit, nec laetátur in perditióne vivórum. Creávit enim ut essent ómnia, et sanábiles fecit natiónes orbis terrárum: et non est in illis medicaméntum extermínii, nec inferórum regnum in terra. Justítia enim perpétua est, et immortális. Ímpii autem mánibus et verbis accersiérunt illam, et aestimántes illam amícam, defluxérunt; et sponsiónes posuérunt ad illam, quóniam digni sunt qui sint ex parte illíus. II. Dixérunt enim cogitántes apud se non recte: Exíguum et cum taedio est tempus vitae nostrae, et non est refrigérium in fine hóminis, et non est qui ágnitus sit revérsus ab ínferis. Quia ex níhilo nati sumus, et post hoc érimus tamquam non fuérimus. Quóniam fumus flatus est in náribus nostris, et sermo scintílla ad commovéndum cor nostrum: qua extíncta, cinis erit corpus nostrum, et spíritus diffundétur tamquam mollis aër; et transíbit vita nostra tamquam vestígium nubis, et sicut nébula dissolvétur quae fugáta est a rádiis solis, et a calóre illíus aggraváta. Et nomen nostrum obliviónem accípiet per tempus, et nemo memóriam habébit óperum nostrórum. Umbrae enim tránsitus est tempus nostrum, et non est revérsio finis nostri: quóniam consignáta est, et nemo revértitur. Veníte ergo, et fruámur bonis quae sunt, et utámur creatúra tamquam in juventúte celériter. Vino pretióso et
[Song of Songs 8:6-14]
6 Put me as a seal upon thy heart, as a seal upon thy arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy as hard as hell, the lamps thereof are fire and flames. 7 Many waters cannot quench charity, neither can the floods drown it: if a man should give all the substance of his house for love, he shall despise it as nothing. 8 Our sister is little, and hath no breasts. What shall we do to our sister in the day when she is to be spoken to? 9 If she be a wall: let us build upon it bulwarks of silver: if she be a door, let us join it together with boards or cedar. 10 I am a wall: and my breasts are as a tower since I am become in his presence as one finding peace. 11 The peaceable had a vineyard, in that which hath people: he let out the same to keepers, every man bringeth for the fruit thereof a thousand pieces of silver. 12 My vineyard is before me. A thousand are for thee, the peaceable, and two hundred for them that keep the fruit thereof. 13 Thou that dwellest in the gardens, the friends hearken: make me hear thy voice. 14 Flee away, O my beloved, and be like to the roe, and to the young hart upon the mountains of aromatical spices.
Here ends the Song of Songs. Here begins the prologue of Saint Jerome the Presbyter to the book of Wisdom.
The Book of Wisdom is found nowhere among the Hebrews, as a result of which it is far more redolent of Greek style than of Hebrew eloquence. The Jews affirm this to be Babylonian. Therefore they call it Wisdom, for in it the coming of Christ, who is the Wisdom of the Father, and His Passion, is evidently expressed.
Here ends the prologue. Here begins the book of Wisdom.
1 Love justice, you that are the judges of the earth. Think of the Lord in goodness, and seek him in simplicity of heart. 2 For he is found by them that tempt him not: and he sheweth himself to them that have faith in him. 3 For perverse thoughts seperate from God: and his power, when it is tried, reproveth the unwise: 4 For wisdom will not enter into a malicious soul, nor dwell in a body subject to sins. 5 For the Holy Spirit of discipline will flee from the deceitful, and will withdraw himself from thoughts that are without understanding, and he shall not abide when iniquity cometh in. 6 For the spirit of wisdom is benevolent, and will not acquit the evil speaker from his lips: for God is witness of his reins, and he is a true searcher of his heart, and a hearer of his tongue. 7 For the spirit of the Lord hath filled the whole world: and that, which containeth all things, hath knowledge of the voice. 8 Therefore he that speaketh unjust things cannot be hid, neither shall the chastising judgment pass him by. 9 For inquisition shall be made into the thoughts of the ungodly: and the hearing of his words shall come to God, to the chastising of his iniquities. 10 For the ear of jealousy heareth all things, and the tumult of murmuring shall not be hid. 11 Keep yourselves therefore from murmuring, which profiteth nothing, and refrain your tongue from detraction, for an obscure speech shall not go for nought: and the mouth that belieth, killeth the soul. 12 Seek not death in the error of your life, neither procure ye destruction by the works of your hands. 13 For God made not death, neither hath he pleasure in the destruction of the living. 14 For he created all things that they might be: and he made the nations of the earth for health: and there is no poison of destruction in them, nor kingdom of hell upon the earth. 15 For justice is perpetual and immortal. 16 But the wicked with works and words have called it to them: and esteeming it a friend have fallen away, and have made a covenant with it: because they are worthy to be of the part thereof.
1 For they have said, reasoning with themselves, but not right: The time of our life is short and tedious, and in the end of a man there is no remedy, and no man hath been known to have returned from hell: 2 For we are born of nothing, and after this we shall be as if we had not been: for the breath in our nostrils is smoke: and speech a spark to move our heart, 3 Which being put out, our body shall be ashes, and our spirit shall be poured abroad as soft air, and our life shall pass away as the trace of a cloud, and shall be dispersed as a mist, which is driven away by the beams of the sun, and overpowered with the heat thereof: 4 And our name in time shall be forgotten, and no man shall have any remembrance of our works. 5 For our time is as the passing of a shadow, and there is no going back of our end: for it is fast sealed, and no man returneth. 6 Come therefore, and let us enjoy the good things that are present, and let us speedily use the creatures as in youth. 7 Let us fill ourselves with costly wine...