Case Western Reserve University Leaf 10
This mid-thirteenth century German psalter has acquired the nickname "The Laughing Carp Psalter" due to its penwork illustrations. The decorative style involves using fish (one of the leading medieval symbols for Christ) to complete lines of text that do not reach to the right margin of the page; this maintains the aesthetic of a full page within the borders of the leaf. The leaf itself measures 19.5 x 14cm, with slightly yellowed and stained vellum, and is lined in ink. The ink used for the bulk of the text is very dark, but fades into brown in places. Blue, red, coral, orange, and white are used in the decoration, and scribal corrections are included above each line where necessary. See Denison University Leaf 10 for more information about this manuscript.
Text: Isaiah 12:6 and 38:10-14 (recto); Isaiah 38:14-20 (verso).
Case Western Reserve University Leaf 10 Recto
Exsúlta et lauda, habitátio Sion, quia magnus in médio tui Sanctus Israël.
Ego dixi in dimídio diérum meórum: Vadam ad portas ínferi;
Quæsívi resíduum annórum meórum. Dixi: Non vidébo Dóminum Deum in terra vivéntium;
Non aspíciam hóminem ultra, et habitatórem quiétis.
Generátio mea abláta est, et convolúta est a me, quasi tabernáculum pastórum.
Præcísa est velut a texénte vita mea; dum adhuc ordírer, succídit me: de mane usque ad vésperam fínies me.
Sperábam usque ad mane; quasi leo, sic contrívit ómnia ossa mea:
De mane usque ad vésperam fínies me. Sicut pullus hirúndinis, sic clamábo; meditábor ut colúmba.
Attenuáti sunt óculi mei, suspiciéntes in excélsum. Dómine, vim pátior: respónde pro me.
6 Rejoice, and praise, O thou habitation of Sion: for great is he that is in the midst of thee, the Holy One of Israel.
10 I said: In the midst of my days I shall go to the gates of hell: I sought for the residue of my years. 11 I said: I shall not see the Lord God in the land of the living. I shall behold man no more, nor the inhabitant of rest. 12 My generation is at an end, and it is rolled away from me, as a shepherd's tent. My life is cut off, as by a weaver: whilst I was yet but beginning, he cut me off: from morning even to night thou wilt make an end of me. 13 I hoped till morning, as a lion so hath he broken all my bones: from morning even to night thou wilt make an end of me. 14 I will cry like a young swallow, I will meditate like a dove: my eyes are weakened looking upward: Lord, I suffer violence, answer thou for me.
Case Western Reserve University Leaf 10 Verso
Dómine, vim pátior: respónde pro me. Quid dicam, aut quid respondébit mihi, cum ipse fécerit?
Recogitábo tibi omnes annos meos in amaritúdine ánimæ meæ.
Dómine, si sic vívitur, et in tálibus vita spíritus mei, corrípies me, et vivificábis me. Ecce in pace amaritúdo mea amaríssima.
Tu autem eruísti ánimam meam ut non períret; projecísti post tergum tuum ómnia peccáta mea.
Quia non inférnus confitébitur tibi, neque mors laudábit te: non exspectábunt qui descéndunt in lacum veritátem tuam.
Vivens, vivens ipse confitébitur tibi, sicut et ego hódie; pater fíliis notam fáciet veritátem tuam.
Dómine, salvum me fac! et psalmos nostros cantábimus cunctis diébus vitæ nostræ in domo Dómini.
14 I will cry like a young swallow, I will meditate like a dove: my eyes are weakened looking upward: Lord, I suffer violence, answer thou for me. 15 What shall I say, or what shall he answer for me, whereas he himself hath done it? I will recount to thee all my years in the bitterness of my soul. 16 O Lord, if man's life be such, and the life of my spirit be in such things as these, thou shalt correct me, and make me to live. 17 Behold in peace is my bitterness most bitter: but thou best delivered my soul that it should not perish, thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back. 18 For hell shall not confess to thee, neither shall death praise thee: nor shall they that go down into the pit, look for thy truth. 19 The living, the living, he shall give praise to thee, as I do this day: the father shall make thy truth known to the children. 20 O Lord, save me, and we will sing our psalms all the days of our life in the house of the Lord.