27 March 2020

The Dowry Dedication (2)

Possibly the concluding part of the prayers suggested to us is regarded as loosely based on Erasmus: "O alone of all women, Mother and Virgin, Mother most happy, Virgin most pure, sinful as we are, we come to see you who are all pure, we salute you, we honour you as how we may with our humble offerings. May thy Son grant us, that imitating thy most holy manners, we also, by the grace of the Holy Spirit may deserve spiritually to conceive the Lord Jesus in our inmost soul, and once conceived never to lose Him. Amen."

If so, I would observe that "Mother and Virgin" does not quite cature the Erasmian "theotokos kai parthenos". "We come to see you" has a suburban ring to it; "We honour you as how we may" seems to me a curious piece of English; and, most curiously of all, in the first sentence we have " ... you ... you ...you ..."; in the second sentence, " ... thy ... thy ...". It looks to me as though somebody has been doing some very hurried cutting and pasting.  



Atticus said...

Might one add that the clause "sinful as we are", placed as it is, has a very unfortunate ambiguity which caused this reader to stumble on first reading?

Josephus Muris Saliensis said...

It's a real shame that more care was not taken, on a prayer which will be read so widely tomorrow. It is a prayer which will serve as a formula for the act of Rededication, to be read once then put away, but not to provide the rich material for long meditation which it could so easily have become.

This half-hearted and inconsistent toying with "Thee" is so frequent now in recent Catholic prayers - deeply distracting. Perhaps as you say, a cut'n'paste weakness.