The Aberdeen Bestiary

Folio 31r - the hawk, continued. De turture; Of the turtle dove


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Commentary, Translation and Transcription

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It is not part of the project to provide a definitive edition of the text of the Bestiary, but to help readers by providing a transcription and translation of the text. Currently the following editorial conventions obtain:

Text

  1. The original capitalisation is retained, but capitals have been added for personal and place names, excluding deus and diabolus.
  2. The original punctuation, including a point and inverted semi-colon (both serving as commas), and a point (serving as a full stop), is represented by comma, full stop and question-mark; a colon has been inserted before quotations.
  3. Suggested readings are in [ ].
  4. Variants from other Bestiary texts (eg Ashmole 1511 and Patrologia Latina 176) are added where they indicate a corruption, elucidate a meaning and replace excised text. They are represented as [A: PL:]

Translation

  1. Direct quotations from the Bible, where identified, are cited from the Authorised Version in ( ).
  2. Paraphrased quotations are identified where possible and indicated as: (see Job, 18:22).
  3. Suggested translations of corrupt words are in [ ].
  4. Capitalisation is sparing; additional punctuation has been used where necessary to give the sense. Paragraphs have been created to break up the text.
you, O God, have conferred on all the elect the insight so that by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they may spread the wings of their thoughts in order to cast off the weight of their old way of life, and take on the plumage of virtue to fly anew. From this, evidently, Job is to infer that the man has no alertness of perception within himself, who can by no means transfer it from himself to others. Of domestic and wild hawks There are two kinds of hawk, domestic and wild. It is the same bird, however, but at different times it can be wild or domestic. The wild hawk is accustomed to prey on tame birds; the domestic hawk on wild. The wild hawk eats the prey it catches immediately; the domestic hawk keeps what it catches to leave for its master. Furthermore, its master opens the stomachs of the captured birds and takes their hearts to give them as food to his hawk. He throws away the intestines with the ordure, which produces putrefaction of the flesh with a stench if it remains inside. In a moral sense, the wild hawk seizes and devours the birds it catches as an evil man ceaselessly frustrates the actions and thoughts of ordinary people. The domestic hawk, in contrast, is like a spiritual father. As the hawk seizes wild birds, so the spiritual father leads worldly men to conversion by his preaching. As the hawk kills what it captures, so the spiritual father forces worldly men die to the world, through mortification of the flesh. The master of the domestic hawk, that is, the Lord Almighty, opens the stomachs of its prey when he cleanses weakness of the flesh by rebuking it through the Scriptures. He takes out the hearts when he exposes the thoughts of worldly men through confession. He throws out the intestines and ordure of the stomach when he makes the memory of sin offensive to us. As birds taken by the hawk come in this way to its master's table, so sinners, ground by the teeth of teachers, turn into the body of the Church. How the hawk should moult To allow domestic hawks to moult more easily, you need a mew that is secure and warm. Secure mews are like cloisters. When a wild hawk is placed there, in order to be tamed, it must be locked up. There it lets fall its old feathers and

Text

Domestic and wild hawks; how the hawk should moult. Missing letters in rubric [Acci]ptre, with a red rubricator's reminder on right edge. Initials type 2.

Folio Attributes

  • Initial Type 2

    Initial Type 2

    Initial Type 2
    Type 2 initial. Detail from f.5v

    Type 2 is much more common. The letter is made with burnished gold, filled with a blue or brown background which is decorated with a delicate white tracery. Many of these are embellished with red or blue traces or sprays. The Aberdeen Bestiary is a very early example of the use of sprays which culminates in the art of William de Brailes in the mid-thirteenth century (Morgan 1982,no.68). An elaborate spray is on f.41v. The fine white filigree pattern is also found on some of the illuminations (f.3r, f.11r, f.12r) suggesting that the main illuminator also made these initials. This type generally occupies two lines. This initial is generally used to introduce each new animal.

Transcription

electo, tu intelligentiam contulisti, ut flante spiritu sancto cogna\tionum alas expandat, quatenus pondera vetuste conversationis\ abiciat, et virtutum plumas in usum novi volatus sumat, ut \hinc videlicet colligat, qui [PL, quod] vigilantiam sensus in semetipso ex se\non habet, qui hanc ex se conferre aliis nequaquam valet. \ De domestico et silvestre accipitribus\ Due sunt species accipitris\ domesticus scilicet et silvestris. Idem tamen sed diversis temporibus potest esse sil\vestris et domesticus. Silvestris, rapere consuevit domesticas volucres \et domesticus silvestres. Silvestris quas rapit, continuo devorat,\ domesticus captas domino suo relinquendas servat. Porro dominus\ eius captarum volucrum ventres aperit, et earum corda accipitri\ in cibum tribuenda sumit. Interiora ventris cum fimo eicit, qui \intus remanens putredinem carnium cum fetore gignit. \Moraliter silvestris accipiter captas volucres et rapit et devorat, \quia quilibet perversus actus et cogitationes simplicium dissipare \non cessat. Domesticus vero accipiter est quilibet spiritualis pater. Qui tociens \silvestres volucres rapit, quotiens seculares ad conversionem predi\cando trahit. Captat occidit, dum seculares mundo mori per car\nis mortificatione cogit. Dominus autem eius, id est omnipotens dominus, ventres \earum aperit, quia molliciem carnalium per scriptas increpando solvit. \Corda vero extrahit dum cogitationes secularium per confessionem \manifestas facit. Interiora ventris cum fimo eicit, quando memoriam \peccati fetentem reddit. Ad mensam itaque domini capte vo\lucres veniunt, dum in corpus ecclesie peccatores [PL, doctorum] dentibus masti\cati sese convertunt. \ Qualiter accipiter plumescere debeat\ Domesticis accipitribus quo melius plumescere debeant, \munita ac tepentiva requiruntur loca. Loca munita \sunt claustra. In quibus dum silvestris accipiter ponitur, ut dome\sticus fiat, clausus tenetur. Ibi veteres pennas emittit, et novas\

Translation

you, O God, have conferred on all the elect the insight so that by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they may spread the wings of their thoughts in order to cast off the weight of their old way of life, and take on the plumage of virtue to fly anew. From this, evidently, Job is to infer that the man has no alertness of perception within himself, who can by no means transfer it from himself to others. Of domestic and wild hawks There are two kinds of hawk, domestic and wild. It is the same bird, however, but at different times it can be wild or domestic. The wild hawk is accustomed to prey on tame birds; the domestic hawk on wild. The wild hawk eats the prey it catches immediately; the domestic hawk keeps what it catches to leave for its master. Furthermore, its master opens the stomachs of the captured birds and takes their hearts to give them as food to his hawk. He throws away the intestines with the ordure, which produces putrefaction of the flesh with a stench if it remains inside. In a moral sense, the wild hawk seizes and devours the birds it catches as an evil man ceaselessly frustrates the actions and thoughts of ordinary people. The domestic hawk, in contrast, is like a spiritual father. As the hawk seizes wild birds, so the spiritual father leads worldly men to conversion by his preaching. As the hawk kills what it captures, so the spiritual father forces worldly men die to the world, through mortification of the flesh. The master of the domestic hawk, that is, the Lord Almighty, opens the stomachs of its prey when he cleanses weakness of the flesh by rebuking it through the Scriptures. He takes out the hearts when he exposes the thoughts of worldly men through confession. He throws out the intestines and ordure of the stomach when he makes the memory of sin offensive to us. As birds taken by the hawk come in this way to its master's table, so sinners, ground by the teeth of teachers, turn into the body of the Church. How the hawk should moult To allow domestic hawks to moult more easily, you need a mew that is secure and warm. Secure mews are like cloisters. When a wild hawk is placed there, in order to be tamed, it must be locked up. There it lets fall its old feathers and
  • Commentary

    Text

    Domestic and wild hawks; how the hawk should moult. Missing letters in rubric [Acci]ptre, with a red rubricator's reminder on right edge. Initials type 2.

    Folio Attributes

    • Initial Type 2

      Initial Type 2

      Initial Type 2
      Type 2 initial. Detail from f.5v

      Type 2 is much more common. The letter is made with burnished gold, filled with a blue or brown background which is decorated with a delicate white tracery. Many of these are embellished with red or blue traces or sprays. The Aberdeen Bestiary is a very early example of the use of sprays which culminates in the art of William de Brailes in the mid-thirteenth century (Morgan 1982,no.68). An elaborate spray is on f.41v. The fine white filigree pattern is also found on some of the illuminations (f.3r, f.11r, f.12r) suggesting that the main illuminator also made these initials. This type generally occupies two lines. This initial is generally used to introduce each new animal.

  • Translation
    you, O God, have conferred on all the elect the insight so that by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they may spread the wings of their thoughts in order to cast off the weight of their old way of life, and take on the plumage of virtue to fly anew. From this, evidently, Job is to infer that the man has no alertness of perception within himself, who can by no means transfer it from himself to others. Of domestic and wild hawks There are two kinds of hawk, domestic and wild. It is the same bird, however, but at different times it can be wild or domestic. The wild hawk is accustomed to prey on tame birds; the domestic hawk on wild. The wild hawk eats the prey it catches immediately; the domestic hawk keeps what it catches to leave for its master. Furthermore, its master opens the stomachs of the captured birds and takes their hearts to give them as food to his hawk. He throws away the intestines with the ordure, which produces putrefaction of the flesh with a stench if it remains inside. In a moral sense, the wild hawk seizes and devours the birds it catches as an evil man ceaselessly frustrates the actions and thoughts of ordinary people. The domestic hawk, in contrast, is like a spiritual father. As the hawk seizes wild birds, so the spiritual father leads worldly men to conversion by his preaching. As the hawk kills what it captures, so the spiritual father forces worldly men die to the world, through mortification of the flesh. The master of the domestic hawk, that is, the Lord Almighty, opens the stomachs of its prey when he cleanses weakness of the flesh by rebuking it through the Scriptures. He takes out the hearts when he exposes the thoughts of worldly men through confession. He throws out the intestines and ordure of the stomach when he makes the memory of sin offensive to us. As birds taken by the hawk come in this way to its master's table, so sinners, ground by the teeth of teachers, turn into the body of the Church. How the hawk should moult To allow domestic hawks to moult more easily, you need a mew that is secure and warm. Secure mews are like cloisters. When a wild hawk is placed there, in order to be tamed, it must be locked up. There it lets fall its old feathers and
  • Transcription
    electo, tu intelligentiam contulisti, ut flante spiritu sancto cogna\tionum alas expandat, quatenus pondera vetuste conversationis\ abiciat, et virtutum plumas in usum novi volatus sumat, ut \hinc videlicet colligat, qui [PL, quod] vigilantiam sensus in semetipso ex se\non habet, qui hanc ex se conferre aliis nequaquam valet. \ De domestico et silvestre accipitribus\ Due sunt species accipitris\ domesticus scilicet et silvestris. Idem tamen sed diversis temporibus potest esse sil\vestris et domesticus. Silvestris, rapere consuevit domesticas volucres \et domesticus silvestres. Silvestris quas rapit, continuo devorat,\ domesticus captas domino suo relinquendas servat. Porro dominus\ eius captarum volucrum ventres aperit, et earum corda accipitri\ in cibum tribuenda sumit. Interiora ventris cum fimo eicit, qui \intus remanens putredinem carnium cum fetore gignit. \Moraliter silvestris accipiter captas volucres et rapit et devorat, \quia quilibet perversus actus et cogitationes simplicium dissipare \non cessat. Domesticus vero accipiter est quilibet spiritualis pater. Qui tociens \silvestres volucres rapit, quotiens seculares ad conversionem predi\cando trahit. Captat occidit, dum seculares mundo mori per car\nis mortificatione cogit. Dominus autem eius, id est omnipotens dominus, ventres \earum aperit, quia molliciem carnalium per scriptas increpando solvit. \Corda vero extrahit dum cogitationes secularium per confessionem \manifestas facit. Interiora ventris cum fimo eicit, quando memoriam \peccati fetentem reddit. Ad mensam itaque domini capte vo\lucres veniunt, dum in corpus ecclesie peccatores [PL, doctorum] dentibus masti\cati sese convertunt. \ Qualiter accipiter plumescere debeat\ Domesticis accipitribus quo melius plumescere debeant, \munita ac tepentiva requiruntur loca. Loca munita \sunt claustra. In quibus dum silvestris accipiter ponitur, ut dome\sticus fiat, clausus tenetur. Ibi veteres pennas emittit, et novas\
Folio 31r - the hawk, continued. De turture; Of the turtle dove | The Aberdeen Bestiary | The University of Aberdeen