HERE FOLLOWETH OF ST. REMIGIUS
Chapters 147 and 16 of the Golden Legend by Jacobus Voragine (1275), translated by William Caxton, 1483. Chapter 147 corresponds to the feast of the Translation of St. Remigius, October 1; chapter 16 is for the actual feast of this saint, January 13. This "reader's version" of the text provides section headings, paragraph breaks, and glosses.
Clotilde and Her ChildrenSt. Remigius converted to the faith the king and the people of France. The king had a wife named Clotilde, which was Christian, and she enforced her made effort much to convert her husband to the Christian faith, but she might could not. And when she had a child she would wanted to have christened him, but the king defended forbade it to her. And she rested not till at the last the king granted that it should be Christian, and after that it was christened, it died anon. immediately, very soon Then said the king: Now it appeareth well that Christ is a vile God, for because he may not keep protect him which in his faith should have been enhanced promoted in my kingdom after me.
And she said to him: Now feel I well that I am loved of by my God because he hath received the first fruit of my womb; he hath enhanced to a better kingdom my son, and to reign perpetually without end, which is much better than thy kingdom is.
And soon after she conceived again, and had a fair son, whom with great prayers she baptized as she did the first, but anon after, he was sick, so that they had no hope of his life. And then the king said to his wife: Certainly this is a feeble god which may not conserve, ne nor keep none that is baptized in his name, and if thou hadst a thousand and didst them to be baptized, all should perish.
Yet nevertheless the child revived and was whole, so that he reigned after his father, and the faithful queen enforced her to bring her husband to the faith, but he refused it in all manners.
The Angry MillerIt is said in that other feast which is after the Epiphany [see below], how the king was converted to the faith. And the foresaid king Clovis, when he was christened, said that he would give to St. Remigius, for to endow his church, as much land as he might go walk about whilst he slept at mid-day, and so it was done. But there was a man which had a mill within the circuit which St. Remigius had closed. And as St. Remigius went about it the milner put him out with great indignation and great despite. contempt And St. Remigius said to him: Friend, have no disdain and let it not be too hard if we have also this mill with that other.
Nevertheless the milner put him out, and anon the wheel of the mill began to turn contrary, and then the milner cried after St. Remigius and said: Servant of God, come and let us have the mill together.
And St. Remigius said: Nay, it shall neither be mine nor thine, and anon the earth opened and swallowed in all the mill.
St. Remigius Prophesies a FamineAnd St. Remigius knew by the spirit of prophecy and by the will of God, that a great famine should come, and assembled in a town great plenty of wheat. And the drunken villains townspeople of the town mocked and scorned him of his providence, prophecy and set the garners afire. And when he knew it he came thither, and because he was cold for age and his last time approached fast, he sat down by the fire and warmed him, and said with a peaceable heart: The fire is always good.
Nevertheless they that made that fire, and all the men of their lineage, were broken in their members and the women gouty. And this endured in the same town unto the time of Charles, which chased and made them go their way, and so disperpled dispersed them.
The Translation of St. RemigiusAnd it is to be known that the feast of St. Remigius that is hallowed in January is the feast of his blessed death and disposition, and this is the feast of the translation moving a saint's relics to a professedly more appropriate location of his blessed body. For when, after his death, the holy body should have been brought to the church of St. Timothy and Apollinarius with the shrine, and came nigh unto the church of St. Christopher, it began to weigh so much that they might not move it from thence in no manner. At the last they prayed our Lord that he would vouchsafe grant, deign to show them if it were his will that the body should be buried in that church, whereas no relics rest. And then anon they took up the body lightly enough and buried him there honourably. And many miracles were there showed, so that they enlarged and made the church more ample and large.
And then they made an oratory behind the altar, and would have dolven wanted to dig for to have laid the body in that oratory, but they could not move it in no manner. Then they watched, kept vigil, stayed up at night and prayed unto our Lord, and at midnight they fell all asleep, and on the morn they found the sepulchre with the body in the place, which angels had borne thither while they slept. And this was the kalends first day of the month of October which afterwards by long time on the same day, it was translated into a feretre a shrine for relics of a saint or shrine of silver. He flourished about the year of our Lord four hundred and ninety.
CHAPTER 16Remigius is said of remi, that is to say "feeding," and geos, that is "earth," as who saith one might say, interpret feeding the earthly people with doctrine. Or of geon, that is a "wrestler," for he was a pastor and a wrestler he fed his flock with the word of preaching, with suffrages of praying, and with example of conversation. There is three manner of armour that is for the defence, the shield, for to fight, the sword, for his salvation and health, the habergeon coat of mail and helm. He wrestled against the devil with the shield of faith, with the sword of the word of God, and with the helmet of hope. Ignatius Archbishop of Rheims wrote his life.
Remigius, an holy doctor theologian, teacher of doctrine and confessor one who proclaims his faith glorious of our Lord, was tofore his birth provided of foreseen by our Lord, and foreseen of by a holy hermit. When the persecution of the Vandals had almost wasted laid waste, devastated and destroyed nigh all France, there was a man recluse, holy and virtuous, which had lost his sight, which oft prayed to our Lord for peace and welfare of the church of France. He had on a time a vision, and him seemed it seemed to him, he seemed to see an angel came to him and said: Know thou that the woman that thou knowest named Aline shall bring forth a son that shall be named Remigius, which shall deliver all the country from this persecution.
And when he awoke he came to the house of this Aline and told to her his vision, and she would not believe it because of her age. The recluse said: It shall be so as I have said, and when thou hast given thy child suck, thou shalt give to me of some of thy milk, to put upon mine eyes, and therewith I shall be whole and recover my sight again.
And like as he said all these things happened. And the woman had a child named Remigius, which when he came to the age of discretion, he fled the world, and entered into a reclusage. hermitage And sith after, afterwards for the great renown of his holy life, when he had been twenty-two years therein he was elect and chosen to be Archbishop of Rheims.
He was so debonair mild that little birds came and ate on his table and took meat food at his hand.
The Miracle of the WineIt happed on a day that he was lodged in an house of a good woman which had but a little wine in her tonnel cask or vessel, and St. Remigius went in to the cellar and made the sign of the cross upon the ton, barrel and prayed a while. Anon the ton was so full that it leapt over, overflowed by the merits of the good saint.
The Conversion of King ClovisNow it happed that Clodovius the king of France, which was a paynim, pagan might could not be converted for any preaching that his wife might do, which was a Christian woman, unto the time that a great host of Alemans Germans came into France. Then by the admonishment of his wife he made a vow that if the God that his wife worshipped would give him victory, he would be baptized at his returning from the battle. Thus, as he demanded, he vanquished the battle, and after came to Rheims to St. Remigius and prayed him that he would christen him. And when St. Remigius baptized him he had no chrisom holy oil, traditionally blessed at Easter to be used throughout the year ready, then a dove descended from heaven which brought the chrisom in an ampull flask of which the king was anointed and this ampull is kept in the church of St. Remigius at Rheims, of which the kings of France be anointed when they be crowned.
The Wayward BishopSt. Remigius had a niece which was married to a clerk cleric (including those in minor orders) named Genebaldus, which by devotion left his wife for to enter into religion. life as a monk Then St. Remigius saw that the see of Rheims was over great, and ordained a see seat, capital city of a bishopric at Laon and made Genebald first bishop of that place. When Genebald was bishop his wife came thither to see him, and he remembered of the privity intimacy that they were wont to have together, and lay on a night with her, and engendered on her a child. When his wife knew that she was great pregnant and let him have knowledge thereof, and when he wist knew that it was a son, he commanded that it should be named Thief, because he had engendered it by theft. After, for to quench the suspicion and the words of the people, he suffered that his wife should come to him as she did tofore, and anon after she conceived a daughter, whom he commanded to name a Fox's Whelp.
And after [he] came to St. Remigius and confessed him of his sin, and took the stole off his neck and would leave his bishopric. But St. Remigius, after he had confessed him, comforted him, and gave him penance, and shut him in a little cell seven years long, and gave to him bread and water, and in the meanwhile he governed the church himself.
At the end of seven years an angel came to the prison, and said to him that he had done well his penance, and bade him go out of the prison. To whom he said: I may not go out, for my lord St. Remigius hath closed the door and sealed it.
And the angel said to him: Know thou that the door of heaven is opened to thee; I shall open this door without breaking of the seal which St. Remigius hath sealed.
And anon the door was opened. Then Genebald fell down in the midst of the door in manner of a cross, and said: If our Lord Jesu Christ came hither I shall not go out but if St. Remigius, which shut and closed me herein, come and bring me out.
And then the angel went anon and fetched St. Remigius and brought him to Laon, and he delivered him out of prison, and remised reappointed him and set him again in his see there, where he lived after, all the days of his life, holily.
After his death, Thief his son was made bishop after him, which is also a saint in heaven.
And at the last St. Remigius, after that God had shown many miracles for him, he departed out of this life unto everlasting joy the year of the incarnation of our Lord five hundred.
VORAGINE'S ETYMOLOGY FOR THE NAME REMIGIUS
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