26 July 2014

Mundi secuta lubrica

Here is my translation of the hymn “Mundi secuta lubrica” (G. Fabricius), for the feast of St. Mary Magdalene. By the example of St. Mary Magdalene, we are consoled in the forgiveness offered and and by Jesus, who freely forgave Mary despite her many sins, when she repented the same, and showed by her actions her faith toward Him who alone has the power to offer such forgiveness and to save from eternal death. The melody is a variant of one of the most common (in many regional forms) assigned for the hymns of later authorship in Reformation cantionals.

SHE who the world’s brief joys pursued,
And flesh’s passions, vile and crude,
In grief a sighing suppliant bowed
To praise the very Son of God.

2. Not daring there to lift her face,
But in the dust with silent grace
She bent, with tears to bathe His feet,
And wipe them with her tresses sweet.

3. To God her heart within her cried,
And faith was deeply stirred inside
Tow’rd Him who tenderly doth own
And not deplore the mourner’s groan.

4. In Christ as God, confiding yet,
Her every hope she firmly set;
Th’ unrighteous to the Righteous prayed,
From sin was loosed, and righteous made.

5. Thee, Christ, we ask with humble plea
To pardon our iniquity;
The Father sent Thee, us to save
And not to lose us to the grave. Amen.

Translation © 2014 Matthew Carver.
1. Mundi secuta lubrica Blandaeque carnis noxia, Dolendo suspirans Dei Supplex adorat Filium.  
2. Non ausa vultum tollere, Humi recumbit cernua, Pedes rigavit fletibus,Tersitque muta crinibus.  
3. Cor clamat intus ad Deum, Fidesque pulsat intimum, Non abjicit suspiria, Deus pie gementium. 
4. Quae plurimam,_in Jesu Deo, Confisa, spem locaverat, Injusta Justum deprecans, Fit justa, crimen tollitur.  
5. Te, Christe, nostra vox rogat, Remitte, quod peccavimus, Servare nos, non perdere, Tuo_a Parente missus es. Amen.

08 July 2014

Herr, was sind das für Wunden

Here is my translation of the hymn “Herr, was sind das für Wunden” (Gregor Ritzsch, 1622). It is titled “A Spiritual Song on the tokens of Christ’s love, from the Prophet Zechariah 13:6.” The appointed melody is that of “O Christe Morgensterne,” which I give here in two specimens: the earlier tune in Gesius’ cantional of 1605; the newer tune in Witt’s choralbuch, 1731 (which though unknown to Ritzsch, has a very suitable character). (See Fischer I, 440.; Kümmerle II, 456–8.)

“O LORD, of wounds what manner
Are these Thy hands that mar?”
—“Your sins and your dishonor
Have made Me many a scar;
And these the tokens are.”

2. —“But Lord, I thought we ever
Have been Thy people dear,
And did Thee ev’ry favor,
And never once while here
Made Thee to shed a tear.”

3. —”What answer may I offer?
My friends whom I loved true
Required Me thus to suffer:
The wounds upon Me view
Were not they wrought by you?”

4. —”Alas, what cause for mourning
Sweet Jesus Christ, my Lord,
Are all Thy wounds and scorning
Which we did Thee afford
Whom Thou hast e’er adored!”

5. —“Yea, ye have Me afflicted
And caused me toil and hell;
Ye sinned; I was convicted,
Your sinning to dispel.
Then mark these tokens well.”

6. —”All praise, O Lord be giv’n Thee,
For all Thy grief and pain;
Thy love it was hath driv’n Thee
For us such stripes to gain;
All glory Thine remain. Amen.”

Translation © 2014 Matthew Carver.

1. Herr, was sind das für Wunden
in deinen Händen zart?
“Das haben eure Sünden
Gemacht, daß ich so hart
und sehr geschlagen ward.”

2. Dacht ich doch, Herr, wir wären
als deine lieben Leut,
die dich stets täten Ehren
und dir zu keiner Zeit
zufügten einig Leid.

3. “Ich kann nicht anders sagen:
Im Haus der Lieben mein
bin ich also geschlagen.
Seht an die Striemen mein,
ob sie nicht von euch sein?”

4. Ach das ist zu beweinen,
Süsser Herr Jesu Christ,
daß du so von den Deinen,
die du liebst jeder Frist,
verwundt und gschlagen bist.

5. “Ja, mir habt ihr Arbeite
und große Müh gemacht:
für ewre Sünd ich leide,
daß der nicht werd gedacht.
Solchs nehmt in gute Acht.”

6. Lob sei dir, Herr, gesungen
für alle Schmerzen dein,
daß dich dein Lieb gezwungen
für uns in solche Pein:
Ehr sei dem Namen dein, Amen.