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BERNARD


502


BERNARD


dialogue (Colloquium) on the Trinity. The "De Contemptu Mundi" contains about 3,000 verses, and is for the most part a verj' bitter satire against the moral disorders of the monastic poet's time. He spares no one; priests, nuns, bishops, monks, and even Rome itself are mercilessly scourged for their shortcomings. For this reason it was first printed by Matthias Flaccus as one of liis testes feritatis, or witnesses of the deep-seated corruption of the medieval Church f\ aria poemata de corrupto ecclesi^ statu, Basle, 1557), and was often reprinted by Protestants in the course of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Its complete Latin text is found in Thomas Wright (Anglo-Latin Satirical Poets of the Twelfth Centurj-, London, 1872). This Christian Juvenal does not proceed in an orderly manner against the vices and follies of his age. It has been well said that he seems to eddy about two main points: the transitorj- character of all material pleasures and the permanency of spiritual joys. Bernard of Cluny is indeed a IjTical wTiter, swept from one theme to another by the intense force of ascetic meditation and by the majestic power of liis owti verse, in which there lingers yet a certain fierce intoxication of poetic ^^Tath. His highly A^TOught pictures of heaven and hell were probably known to Dante; the roasting cold, the freezing fire, the devoiu-ing worm, the fiery floods, and again the glorious idji of the Ciolden Age and the splendours of the Heavenly Ivingdom are couched in a diction that rises at times to the height of Dante's genius. The enormity of sin, the charm of virtue, the torture of an evil conscience, the sweetness of a God-fearing life alternate with hea\'en and hell as the themes of liis majestic dithjTamb. Nor does he dwell in generalities; he returns again and again to the wickedness of woman (one of the fiercest arraignments of the sex), the evils of wine, money, learning, per- jury, soothsaj-ing, etc.; this master of an elegant, forceful, and abundant latinity cannot find words strong enough to convey liis prophetic rage at the moral apostasy of his generation, in almost none of whom does he find spiritual soundness. Youthful and simoniacal bishops, oppressive agents of eccle- siastical corporations, the officers of the Curia, papal legates, and the pope liimself are treated with no less severity than in Dante or in the sculptiu"es of medieval cathedrals. Only those who do not know the utter frankness of certain medieval moralists could borrow scandal from his verses. It may be added that in medieval times "the more pious the ■chronicler the blacker his colours. The early half of the twelfth centurj- saw the appearance of several new factors of secularism unknown to an earlier and more simply religious time: the increase of commerce and industrj- resultant from the Crusades, the growing independence of medieval cities, the secularization of Benedictine life, the development of pageantry and luxurj- in a hitherto rude feudal world, the reaction from the terrific conflict of State and Church in the latter half of the eleventh century. The song of the Cluniac is a great cry of pain WTimg from a deeply religious and even mystical soul at the first dawning consciousness of a new order of human ideals and aspirations. The turbid and irregular flow of his denunciation is halted occa- sionailj- in a dramatic way by glimpses of a Divine order of things, either in the faraway past or in the near future. This poet -preacher is also a prophet ; Anticlirist, he says, is born in Spain; Elijah has come to life again in the Orient. The last days are at hand, and it behoves the true Christian to awake and be ready for the dissolution of an order now grown intolerable, in which religion itself is henceforth represented by cant and hj-pocrisy.

The metre of this poem is no less unique than its diction; it is a dactylic hexameter in three sections.


devoid of csesura, with tailed rhjines and a feminine leonine rhyme between the two first sections; the verses are technically known as leonini criMati trilices dactylici, and are so difficult to construct in great numbers that the writer claims Divine inspira- tion (the impulse and inflow of the Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding) as the chief agency in the execu- tion of so long an effort of this kind. To .\rchbishop (then Dean) Trench, who first translated about one hundred lines (Sacred Latin Poetrj-, London. 1849, 1864). the metre seemed repulsive and awkward; to the famous liturgiologist Dr. Neale (The Rhythm of Bernard of Morlaix. Sth ed.. London, 1868) it seems one of the loveliest of medieval measures". It is, indeed, a solemn and stately verse, rich and sonorous, not meant, however, to be read at one sitting, at the risk of surfeiting the appetite. Bernard of Cluny is an erudite writer, and his poem leaves an excellent impression of the Latin culture of the Benedictine monasteries of France and England in the first half of the twelfth centurj- (Bishop Stubbs. Seventeen Lectures on Medieval Historj', London. 1893). The modern interest of English-speaking circles in this semi-obscure poet centres in the lovely hjTnns of exceptional piety, warmth, and delicacy of sentiment dispersed through his lurid satire; one of them, in particular, "Jerusalem the Golden", has been made imiversally famous in the translation of the above-mentioned Dr. Neale, first printed in his "Medi3?val HjTnns and Sequences" (London, 1851). Other translations of the brief portion made known in Enghsh by the aforesaid writers are owing to S. G. Duflfeld (1S67) and Charles Lawrence Ford (1898). A complete English translation (in prose) appeared from the pen of Henry Preble, in the ".American Journal of Theology" (1906, 72—101, 2S&-30S, 495-516), with a biographical note by Samuel Macauley Jackson.

Lf.tser. Poela- med. a-ri (17211. 412-414, 427; Morin in Rer. des quest, hist. (18S0). XL. 603-613; Owen in Eng. Hist. Rev. (1S871, II. 525; Bulletin critique (1890), XI, 297; Julh.n, Diet, of Hymnology, s. v.

Thomas J. Shah.\n.

Bernard of Compostella (1) Antiquus, a canon- ist of the early thirteenth century, a native of Com- postella in Spain. He is called Antiquus to dis- tinguish him from another, as below. He became a professor of canon law in the L'niversity of Bo- logna. Bernard compiled a collection of the decrees promulgated by Innocent III during the first ten years of his pontificate (1198-1208). This work, often called by the scholars of Bologna "Compilatio Romana", because the author took his documents from the Roman archives, was not of much practical worth, since an official or authentic collection, ex- tending to 1210, rendered Bernard's compilation superfluous. Only portions of either of these collec- tions were printed (ed. "Ant. Augustini Opera ", Lucca, 1769, IV, 600-608).— (2) JrxiOR or Moder- xrs, a canonist who lived in the middle of the thir- teenth centurj-, called Compost ellanus from the fact that he possessed an ecclesiastical benefice in Com- postella. He was known also as Brigantius from his birthplace in Galicia, Spain; later of Monte Mirato. Bernard was chaplain to Innocent IV, a noted canonist, at whose exhortation he ■nTote a work entitled "Margarita", an index of Innocent's "Apparatus ", or commentarj' on the five books of the Decretals of Oregon,- IX. The "Margarita" was published in Paris, 1516. Bernard was the first to write a commentarj' on the constitutions of Inno- cent IV (not published). A third work was entitled "Casus sen Notabilia" on the five books of Decretals, which was intended as a complete and practical commentarj', but which owing to the author's death, did not go bej'ond title sixth of the first book, con- sequentl.y not published.