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Philippus

May 3
Ryan 65
Maggioni 62
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May 3: Philip and the Dragon

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Today, May 3, is the feast day for James the Just and Philip the Apostle. I already prepared a blog entry about James, and this is the entry for Philip the Apostole.

There is only a brief entry for Philip in the Legenda Aurea, the "Golden Legends," or lives of the saints written by Jacobus of Voragine - but this brief entry contains a wonderful story: Philip and the Dragon.

If you have visited the lovely church of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, you may have seen there a fresco by Lippi which depicts the whole story (see below).

Although there is only a brief entry for Philip in the Golden Legends, there is an apocryphal book, The Acts of Philip, which you can read online, as well as an apocryphal Gospel of Philip found in the Nag Hammadi Library. For more information, see the pages at Catholic Forum, St. Patrick's - DC, Catholic Online, the Catholic Encyclopedia and wikipedia. You can read the English version of the Legenda Aurea by Caxton online. In Ryan's English translation, you will find Philip listed as 1.65. The Latin text below is from Maggioni, vol. I, p. 443-4.

Since this is both a saint's tale AND an animal story, I have included this story at the Bestiaria Latina website, where you can find a segmented text, grammar notes, study guide, etc.

Philippus apostolus cum XX annis per Scythiam predicasset a paganis tenetur et ad immolandum statue Martis ab eisdem compellitur. Tunc subito draco quidam ingens desub base statim exiit, qui filium pontificis qui ignem ministrabat in sacrificio interfecit duosque tribunos quorum ministri Philippum in vinculis detinebant extinxit ceterosque adeo sui flatus fetore infecit ut omnes morbidi redderentur. Dixitque Philippus: "Credite mihi et statuam istam confringite et in loco eius crucem domini adorate ut infirmi vestri sanentur et mortui suscitentur." At hii qui cruciabantur clamabant: "Tantum fac ut sanemur et hunc Martem protinus confringemus." Tunc Philippus draconi precepit ut in locum desertum descenderet ita ut nulli omnino noceret. Qui statim recessit et ulterius non comparuit. Tunc Philippus omnes sanavit et illis tribus mortuis vite beneficium impetravit; sicque universis credentibus per annum unum eis adhuc predicavit et eis presbiteros et diacones ordinans in Asiam in civitatem Ierapolin venit ibique heresim Hebionitarum, qui Christum carnem phantasticam assumpsisse dogmatizabant, extinxit. Erant autem illi due sacratissime virgines per quas dominus multos ad fidem convertit. Philippus autem ante septem dies obitus sui omnes episcopos et presbiteros convocavit eisque dixit: "Hos septem dies propter admonitionem vestram mihi dominus concessit." Erat autem annorum LXXXVII. Post hoc infideles ipsum tenuerunt et cruci ad instar magistri quem predicabat affixerunt et sic ad dominum migravit et feliciter vitam complevit. Iuxta autem eum due filie eius, una a dextris et alia a sinistris, sepultae sunt.

Filippino Lippi, Philip Driving the Dragon from the Temple of Hieropolis.
1502 - Santa Maria Novella, Florence.
(to see a larger view, click on the image; read more)

 


© The segmented texts, annotations and audio files at BestLatin.net are copyrighted by Laura Gibbs, 2006. No copyright is claimed for any images.