Cry Mea Culpa, and Lowly Kneel

 

Archbishop Turpin of Reims in the Codex Palatinus Germanicus 112.
Archbishop Turpin of Reims in the Codex Palatinus Germanicus 112.

Archbishop Turpin, above the rest,
Spurred his steed to a jutting crest.
His sermon thus to the Franks he spake:—
“Lords, we are here for our monarch’s sake;
Hold we for him, though our death should come;
Fight for the succour of Christendom.
The battle approaches — ye know it well,
For ye see the ranks of the infidel.
Cry mea culpa, and lowly kneel;
I will assoil you, you should to heal.
In death ye are holy martyrs crowned.”
The Franks alighted, and knelt on ground;
In God’s high name the host he blessed,
And for penance gave them — to smite their best.

— La Chanson de Roland (The Song of Roland), XCII,
translated into English verse by John O’Hagan.

Curator: Christian Clay Columba Campbell

Christian Clay Columba Campbell is a Roman Catholic of the Anglican Use. As Senior Warden of the Cathedral of the Incarnation (Orlando, FL), he organised the process by which the parish accepted the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, petitioning to join the Catholic Church. The Anglican Cathedral is now the Church of the Incarnation in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter. Personal queries should be directed to me at eccentricbliss dot com.

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