by Hildegard of Bingen

Translated by Rupert Chappelle

O You, Happy Roots

O you, happy roots,
with whom works of miracles
and not works of crime,
for burning predestined you were planted.

And to you, thoughtful fiery voice,
becoming the whetstone,
subverting the darkness.
Rejoice in that which is on top.

Rejoice in him,
who the many did not see on earth,
although they ardently cried for.
Rejoice in that which is on top. 

(trans. Rupert Chappelle)

O Holy Fire

O Holy Fire which soothes the spirit
life force of all creation
holiness you are in living form

You are a holy ointment 
for perilous injuries
You are  holy in cleansing 
the fetid wound.

O breath of holiness
o fire of loving
o sweet taste in the breast
you fill the heart 
with the good aroma of virtues.

O fountain of purity
in/with whom it is considered
that God collected the lost 
and the sinners/damned saved.

O robe of life and hope for the companions
our brothers all of the church 
and the belt of honesty
save the blessed.

Caring for all those
who are held down by enemies
and dissolve/break the chains/restraints/laws.
whom the divine will save and free.

O path of strength
that enters all places 
in the high places and in the plains
and in all the depths
you call and unify all.

From you the clouds/smoke flows,
the ether files,
stones/jewels have/given their feeling/qualities
water streams shown their way (given their course),
and earth made green and fresh.

You always teach comprehending 
by inspiriational wisdom with pleasure/joy/happiness.

Praise be to you,
who is the sound of praise, 
and joy of life, 
hope and noble strength
giving the premium of the light.

(trans. Rupert Chappelle)

O Vos Felices Radices

O vos felices radices
cum quibus opus miraculorum,
et no opus criminum,
per torrens iter perspicuae umbrae plantum est.

Et o tu, ruminams ignea vox,
praecurrens liminatem lapidem,
subvertentem abyssum,
gaudete in capite vestro.

Gaudete in ilio,
quem no viderunt in terris multi,
qui ipsum ardenter vocaverunt.
Gaudete in capite vestro.

O Ignis Spiritus

O ignis spiritus paracliti,
vita vite omnis creature,
sanctus es vivificando formas

Sanctus es unguendo 
periculose fractos:
sanctus es tergendo 
fetida vulnera.

O spiraculum sanctitatis,
o ignis caritatis,
o dulcis gustus in pectoribus 
et infusio cordium
in bono odore virtutum.

O fons purissimus,
in quo consideratur
quod Deus alienos colligit
et perditos requirit.

O lorica vite et spes compaginis
membrorum omnium, 
et o cingulum honestatis
salva beatos.

Custodi eos 
qui carcerati sunt ab inimico,
et solve ligatos
quos divina vis salvare vult.

O iter fortissimum 
quo penetravit omnia;
in altissimis et in terrenis
et in omnibus abyssis
tu omnes componis et colligis.

De te nubes fluunt,
ether volat,
lapides humorem habent,
aque rivulos educunt,
et terra viriditatem  sudat.

Tu etiam semper educis doctos 
per inspirationem sapiente letificos.

Unde laus tibi sit
qui es sonus lauudus, 
et gaudium viter, 
spes et honor fortissimus 
dans premia luics.

8 Antiphons for St. Ursula

 Divine devotion
bestowed the kiss of Peace
upon the Virgin Ursula,
with her flock,
and before all people.

And thus,
wherever they went they were welcomed,
for the joy of the celestial paradise,
which they received,
was the honor of their religious life,
made manifest.

From their homeland and from other lands
religious men and sages joined them,
keeping them in holy care,
and ministering to them in all ways.

Therefore God in the first woman foretold
that woman by man is protected and so nourished.

Even as the air flies,
attending to all creatures,
so too does the firmament of heaven sustain it,
and the air is nourished through this enfoldment

And for that reason these young girls
were sustained by the supreme man
for their holy nature is the standard of royal descent.

For truly God showered them in a dew,
from which grew many aspects of fame,
thus all people partook of this honorable fame
as nourishment.

But the devil in his envy
mocked that of the Divine,
thus none of God's works
remained unspoilt.

(trans. Norma Gentile)

In Matutinis Laudibus

 Studium divinitatis
in laudibus excelsis osculum pacis
Ursule virgini cum turba sua
in omnibus populis dedit.

Unde quocumque venientes perrexerunt,
velut cum gudio celestis paradisi
suscepte sunt,
quia in religione morum honorifice

De patria etiam earum et de aliis regionibus
viri religiosi et sapientes ipsis adiuncti sunt,
que eas in virginea custodia servabant,
et qui eis in omnibus ministrabant.

Deus enim in prima muliere presignavit,
ut mulier a viri custodia nutriretur.

Aer enim volat
et cum omnibus creaturis officia sua exercet,
et firmamentum eum sustinet,
ac aer in viribus istius pascitur.

Et ideo puelle iste
per summum virum sustentabantur,
vexillate in regali prole virginee nature

Deus enim rorem in illas misit,
de quo multiplex fama crevit,
ita quod omnes populi exhac honorabili fama
velut cibum gustabant.

Se diabolus in invidia
sua instud irrisit,
qua nullum opus Dei
intactum dimisit.

Gregorian Chants
Loving tenderness abounds for all
from the darkest
to the most eminent one beyond the stars,

Exquisitely loving all
she bequeaths the kiss of peace
upon the ultimate King.

Proceeding from the finger of God,
made in the image of God,
this creation was held
within a womb of mixed blood
because of Adam's exiled wanderings,

yet the elements responded with joy for you,
O praiseworthy Mary,
as the heavens shimmered
and sounded praise to you

Today a closed portal has been opened
that which the serpent suffocated in the wise-woman
is revealed to us.
Now the flower of the Virgin
is alight in the dawn.

O blessed child,
the choosen Disibodi,
whom God so inspired.
that in time your sacred deeds
became the wonders of God,
wafting like the gentle scent
of a healing perfume

(trans. Norma Gentile)

Caritas abundat in omnia,
de imis excellentissima
super sidera,

atque amantissima in omnia,
quia summo Regi
osculum pacis dedit.

Cum processit factura digiti Dei,
formata ad imaginem Dei,

in ortu mixti sanguinis
per peregrinationem casus Ade,

elementa susceperunt gaudia in te,
o laudabilis Maria,
Celo rutilante
et in laudibus sonante.

Hodie aperuit nobis clausa porta
quod serpens in muliere suffocavit,
unde lucet in aurora
flos de Virgine Maria.

O beata infantia
electi Disibodi,
que a Deo ita inspirata est
quod postea sanctissima opera
in mirabilibus Dei
ut suavissimum odorem
balsami exsudasti

Continue on to Book Two

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