Christine Mohrmann (whom I usually praise to the skies) provided this translation of the Collect in the Tridentine Missal for Pentecost 17:
Grant we beseech you O Lord that your people may avoid the temptations of the devil, and with pure minds follow you the only God.
Cranmer (1549) rendered it thus, from Trinity 18 in the Sarum Missal:
Lord we beseech thee grant thy people grace to avoid the infections of the Devil and with pure heart and mind to follow thee the only God.
Here is the Latin original as provided by S Pius V:
Da quaesumus Domine populo tuo diabolica vitare contagia, et te solum Deum pura mente sectari.
I just love the way Cranmer kept the idea of diabolical Evil as a contagion or infection which we catch and pass on. The 1662 Prayer Book, followed by Mohrmann, mess this up. But there are hundreds of sermons in it.
30 September 2017
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Yes, Mohrmann's "avoid the temptations of the devil" is asking too much, whereas Cranmer's "avoid the infections of the Devil" is more realistic (since we are promised trials in this life as a means of being assayed).
But (as a rhetorical note) why not use "contagions" rather than "infections"? At least these days, with "swine flue" rampant, "contagion" seems less clinical (to my ear), and connotes the idea of "contact". Perhaps it was the opposite in Cranmer's day?
Fr. H, We've been relying on The Propers as listed on the website: Maternal Heart of Mary, http://maternalheart.org/propers.html, which for Pentecost 17 shows: "Grant, O Lord, unto Thy people grace to avoid all contact with the devil, and with pure minds to follow Thee, the only God. Through our Lord." Close enough?
I like it, but I'm a sucker for cognates.
Interesting indeed. Most like contagion. Diabolus means divider, and he spreads division like contagion.
One man gossips and the sin spreads like an epidemic (Aen. IV: 173 et passim):
"Fama, malum qua non aliud VELOCIUS ullum ...
pedibus celerem et pernicibus alis,
monstrum horrendum, ingens, cui, quot sunt corpore plumae
tot vigiles oculi subter, mirabile dictu,
tot linguae, totidem ora sonant, tot subrigit aures."
Swift and ever increasing. Both the gossip and the sin spread.
Or the contagion of a man who vents his anger, unlike a rock thrown in still water, from which the waves, first large and fast diminish until they disappear and, in the wake, former even peace returns; instead wrath grows in size and fury in each next wave, each wider than the last, each more furious, until it stirs up and ends any peace in universal agitation and tsunami-like overturns all, if unchecked.
In the English text of the translation in "The Day Hours of the Church" compiled by Stanbrook Abbey, this collect is rendered as
"Grant to thy people, we beseech thee, O Lord, to avoid every contamination of the devil, and with pure minds to follow thee, the only God. Through our Lord."
In the English text of the translation in "The Day Hours of the Church" compiled by Stanbrook Abbey, this collect is rendered as:
"Grant to thy people, we beseech thee, O Lord, to avoid every contamination of the devil, and with pure minds, to follow thee, the only God. Through Our Lord."
P.S. Sorry if this turns out to be a double-post. I wasn't sure I had submitted the comment properly the firs time around.
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