Stanzaic Life of Christ, da Harley MS. 3909, Higden’s Polychronicon and the Legenda Aurea, righe da 6601 a 6668, 1300-1399, Regno Unito. British Library, London.

Wiche wommon by-fore was
louet with Ihesu derworthely,
and in hym fonde godenesse and grace,
Veronica heght ho weterly,—

And asket hir of swete Ihesu.
thenne criet ho, ‘alas! alas!’
and sayd that lord ful wel ho kn[e]w
that Pilate slogh witheouten trespas.

Wen Volusian herd of this,
that Crist was slayne that he so soht
woo he was forsothe i-wis
and thoght his gate ther seruet of noᵹght.

Thenne sayd Veronica to the knight
and bad hym be of god comford,
and sayde ho cowthe schew hym a sight
that schuld fully hele his lorde.

‘ffor when my lorde,’ sayde this wommon,
‘swete Ihesu, was her preching,
forto loke my lord opon
I hade a wonder grete likyng,

‘That what tyme so he wer away
that I might haue of hym no sight,
heuy I was that ilke day
and my hert might no-way be light.

‘So to a payntour forthe I went
hys ymage to paynt apertely,
that wat tyme Ihesu wer absent
I might haue a comfort therbi.

‘And as I went so theder-ward
to seche the payntour, sothe to say,
my lorde Ihesu come me to-warde
and asket whider I was in way.

‘When that I told hym myn entent
that to the payntour I wolde goo,
my keuerchaf of my hede he hent
and layde hit on hys visage tho.

‘Anone his liknesse verrayli
schowet hym on my waile oright,
glad and ioyful thenne was I
and thenket God with al my might.

Ther-fore ᵹif that thi lord may se
that ymage and that fayre lickenesse,
trowely therto trust may he
to be clene schwt of his sekenesse.’

Thenne was Volusian swithe glad
And asket whether hit might be boght
for any gold the emperour had,
and ho says, ‘nay, that might hit noght,

‘Saue onely with deuocion
And gode beleue in God al-might,
but to go with the I am boune
that ymage forto schew in sight.’

So Veronica forthe went
to Rome with that worthi knight
forto schewe with gode entent
that ymage, as ho had bihight.

When thay to Rome comen wer
the knyght went to the emp[er]our
and told his ernde fully enter,
of Ihesu Crist our sauiour,

How that Pilate hym had slayne
and the Iewes vnright-wisly,
but ᵹet one thyng to make hym fayne
he sayd he had ther al-redy.

‘With me is comen a matroun
that his ymage withe hir has broght,
thurgh seght of wicheche saluacioun
wold falle, ᵹif ᵹe wer trw of thoght.’

Alla riga 6609, qualcuno ha aggiunto “Volusian the messenger from the emperor to Pilate.” Alla riga 6652, la stessa persona ha scritto “Veronica the painter.”


Traduzione in inglese moderno di Mary-Catharine Carroll


Traduzione in italiano di Manu

Segnalato da Mary-Catharine Carroll




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A woman who once
was very dear to Jesus
and found goodness and grace in him,
her name was Veronica,—

When he [Volusian] asked her about sweet Jesus
She cried out, ‘alas! alas!’
and told him she knew
that Pilate had killed him without reason.

When Volusian hear this, Volusian the messenger from the emperor to Pilate.
that Christ, whom he had sought, had been killed
it troubled him
and he thought he would never meet him [Jesus].

Then Veronica said to the knight
and told him to be comforted,
and said how she would show him a sight
that should fully heal his master.

‘For when my Lord,’ said the woman
‘sweet Jesus, was here preaching,
I had a great desire
to look upon him,

‘So that when he was away
and I could not see him,
I was heavy [sad] that day
and my heart could not be light.

‘So I went straight to a painter
to have his image clearly painted
so that when Jesus was absent
I might be comforted [by the image].

‘And as I went that way
to see the painter, truthfully
my Lord Jesus came toward me
and asked where I was going.

‘When I told him my intention
that I was going to the painter,
he took the kerchief [veil] from my head
and laid it on his face.

‘Soon his true image
immediately appeared on my veil,
I was glad and joyful
And thanked God with all my might.

Therefore if your master may see
the image and the fair likeness,
then he may be truly assured
to be healed of his sickness.’

Volusian was then very glad
And asked whether it [the veil] could be purchased
with the Emperor’s gold
and she [Veronica] said ‘no, it may not,

‘Only with devotion
And true belief in almighty God,
but I must go with you
to show [display] the image.’

So Veronica went forth Veronica the painter
with the good knight to Rome
to show with good intention
the image, as she had promised.

When they arrived in Rome
the knight went to the Emperor
and told [him] the full story,
of Jesus Christ our Saviour,

How Pilate had killed him
and the wicked Jews,
but get one thing to make him pretend[?]
He [Volusian] said he already had [the one thing].

‘A matron came with me
and has brought his [Jesus’] image with her,
the sight of which [by seeing it] salvation
would be a trap, if you had erroneous thoughts.’

Una donna un tempo
fu assai cara a Gesù
e in lui trovò bontà e grazia,
Veronica si chiamava, —

Quando egli [Volusiano] le chiese del dolce Gesù
ella gridò “ahimè, ahimè!”
e gli disse che aveva saputo
che Pilato l’aveva ucciso, e Gesù senza colpa.

Quando Volusiano udì, Volusiano, messaggero dell’imperatore a Pilato
che Cristo, che egli cercava, era stato ucciso
si turbò
pensando che non l’avrebbe mai incontrato [Gesù].

Parlò allora Veronica a quel signore
e gli disse che avrebbe avuto conforto,
perché gli avrebbe mostrato un’immagine
che avrebbe curato per sempre il suo padrone.

“Quando il mio Signore”, disse la donna,
“il mio dolce Gesù, qui predicava,
grande era il mio desiderio
di guardarlo,

“Così che quando era lontano
e non potevo vederlo,
ero triste tutto il giorno
e avevo un peso al cuore.

“Dunque andai subito da un pittore
per avere la sua immagine ben dipinta
così che quando Gesù era lontano
da essa avrei potuto aver conforto.

“E mentre ero in cammino
e andavo dal pittore, in verità
il mio Signor Gesù mi venne incontro
e chiese dove andavo.

Quando gli dissi il mio intento,
cioè che da un pittore andavo
lui prese il velo che avevo sul capo
e il volto vi posò sopra.

Subito la sua vera immagine
apparve sul mio velo,
e io felice, piena di gioia
ringraziai Dio con tutte le mie forze.

Perciò se il tuo signore vedrà
l’immagine e la bella somiglianza,
con certezza
sarà guarito dal suo male.

Volusiano fu allora assai felice
e chiese di poterlo comprare [il velo]
con tutto l’oro dell’Imperatore
ed ella [Veronica] disse, “no,

“Solo si può con devozione
e vera fede in Dio Onnipotente,
ma io verrò con te
per mostrare [far vedere] l’immagine”.

Così Veronica si mise in cammino Veronica il pittore
con il buon cavaliere, verso Roma
per mostrare con buon intento
l’immagine, come promesso.

Quando furono a Roma
il cavaliere andò dall’Imperatore
e narrò [a lui] tutta la storia
di Gesù Cristo, nostro Salvatore,

di come Pilato lo ebbe ucciso
e dei malvagi Ebrei,
per avere una cosa che lo mostrasse come vero [?]
la qual cosa egli [Volusiano] disse già di possedere .

“Una donna ha viaggiato con me
E ha portato con sé l’immagine di lui [ Gesù],
vedendo la quale [attraverso la cui visione] la salvezza
sarebbe un inganno, per chi avesse pensieri falsi.