Saturday, July 21, 2012


An Ode by Conrad Celtis

Conrad Celtis (1459-1508), Odes 1.16 (tr. Reinhard P. Becker)
To Sepulus, the Superstitious

You wonder why I don't murmur prayers
in church grinding my teeth.
This is the reason: the powers in heaven
hear also the silent prayers within me.
You wonder why but rarely you see me
shuffle my feet about in temples.
God lives in us, so I don't have to stare
at him in the pictures of painted idols.
You wonder why I prefer to go
into fields with running brooks and sunshine.
Here appears the Almighty to me in his splendor
and here his temples tower around me.
The Muses, too, love the woods, but hostile
to poets are cities and raging mobs.
So go and make fun of my faith with your stupid
prattle, Sepulus, fool that you are.

Ad Sepulum disidaemonem

Miraris nullis templis mea labra moveri
    murmure dentifrago.
est ratio, taciti quia cernunt pectoris ora
    numina magna poli.
miraris videas raris me templa deorum
    passibus obterere.
est deus in nobis, non est quod numina pictis
    aedibus intuear.
miraris campos liquidos Phoebumque calentem
    me cupidum expetere.
hic mihi magna Iovis subit omnipotentis imago,
    templaque summa dei.
silva placet musis, urbs est inimica poetis,
    et male sana cohors.
i nunc, et stolidis deride numina verbis
    nostra procax Sepule.
Related post: A New Creed.

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