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Ira justa Conditoris

He who once, in righteous vengeance

The Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ
1 July

The Hymns of the Breviary and Missal

  1. Ira justa Conditoris
    Imbre aquarum vindice
    Criminosum mersit orbem,
    Noe in arca sospite:
    Mira tandem vis amoris
    Lavit orbem Sanguine.
  2. Tam salubri terra felix
    Irrigata pluvia,
    Ante spinis quæ scatebat,
    Germinavit flosculos:
    Inque nectaris saporem
    Transiere absynthia.
  3. Triste protinus venenum
    Dirus anguis posuit,
    Et cruenta belluarum
    Desiit ferocia:
    Mitis Agni vulnerati
    Hæc fuit victoria.
  4. O scientiæ supernæ
    Altitudo impervia!
    O suavitas benigni
    Prædicanda pectoris!
    Servus erat morte dignus,
    Rex luit pœnam optimus.
  5. Quando culpis provocamus
    Ultionem Judicis,
    Tunc loquentis protegamur
    Sanguinis præsentia:
    Ingruentium malorum
    Tunc recedant agmina.
  6. Te redemptus laudet orbis
    Grata servans munera,
    O salutis sempiternæ
    Dux et auctor inclyte,
    Qui tenes beata regna
    Cum Parente et Spiritu.
  1. He who once, in righteous vengeance,
    Whelmed the world beneath the Flood,
    Once again in mercy cleansed it
    With the stream of His own Blood,
    Coming from His throne on high
    On the painful Cross to die.
  2. Blest with this all-saving shower,
    Earth her beauty straight resumed;
    In the place of thorns and briars,
    Myrtles sprang, and roses bloomed:
    Bitter wormwood of the waste
    Into honey changed its taste.
  3. Scorpions ceased; the slimy serpent
    Laid his deadly poison by;
    Savage beasts of cruel instinct
    Lost their wild ferocity;
    Welcoming the gentle reign
    Of the Lamb for sinners slain.
  4. Oh, the wisdom of th’ eternal!
    Oh, its depth and height divine!
    Oh, the sweetness of that mercy
    Which in Jesus Christ doth shine!
    Slaves we were condemned to die!
    Our King pays the penalty!
  5. When before the Judge we tremble,
    Conscious of His broken laws,
    May this Blood, in that dread hour,
    Cry aloud, and plead our cause;
    Bid our guilty terrors cease,
    Be our pardon and our peace.
  6. Prince and Author of Salvation!
    Lord of majesty supreme!
    Jesu, praise to Thee be given
    By the world Thou didst redeem;
    Who with the Father and the Spirit,
    Reignest in eternal merit.
Author: Unknown, 17th cent. Meter: Trochaic tetrameter: the lines are here divided at the caesura. Translation by Father Caswall. There are four translations. Liturgical Use: Hymn for Matins on the Feast of the Most Precious Blood.
  1. “The just wrath of the Creator did once submerge the sinful world beneath an avenging rain of waters, Noe being safe in the Ark; finally, however, the wondrous power of love purified the world with Blood.” Note the two abl. absol. constructions in lines 2 and 4: “A flood of water being the avenger” ... “Noe the while being safe in the ark.”
  2. “Watered by such salubrious rain, the happy earth which formerly abounded with thorns, now buds forth flowers; and (the bitterness of) wormwood hath been changed into the sweetness of nectar.” Absynthium, absinth, bitter herbs. Inque: Contr.: Et absynthia transierunt in saporem nectaris. When Adam fell, God cursed the earth and henceforth it was to bring forth thorns and thistles (cf. Gen. 3, 17-19).
  3. “Forthwith the dire serpent laid aside his baneful poison, and the bloodthirsty ferocity of the brute creation subsided: such was the victory of the gentle wounded Lamb.” Anguis, the devil.
  4. “O the inscrutable depth of heavenly wisdom! O the ineffable sweetness of that loving Heart! A slave was worthy of death, a King of infinite goodness suffered the punishment!” Scientiæ: O altitudo divitiarum sapientiæ et scientiæ Dei: quam incomprehensibilia sunt judicia ejus, et investigabiles viæ ejus (Rom. 11, 33).
  5. “When by our sins we provoke the vengeance of the Judge, may we then be protected by the presence of this eloquent Blood: then may the hosts of threatening evils depart.” Loquentis, pleading.
  6. “O Thou who art the Prince and august source of eternal salvation, and who dost possess the blessed kingdom with the Father and the Holy Spirit, may the ransomed world praise Thee, preserving Thy acceptable gifts.”