Urticae

urtica-dioica-11_68792_1

De sacerdote, qui pro illusione nocturna psalmum in confessione iniunctum negligens, in locis genitalibus punitus est.

Sacerdos quidam in domo nostra, sicut ab eius ore audivi, die quadam confessionem fecit de illusione nocturna. iniunctus est ei psalmus unus pro satisfactione. quem cum per oblivionem negligeret, eadem die, circa loca genitalia tantum coepit pruritum et ardorem sentire, ac si carni eius ardentes urticae essent appositae. qui cum territus tactu exploraret quid esset, et nihil ibidem inveniret, recordatus est psalmi iniuncti et neglecti. imputansque immissam poenam eidem transgressioni, psalmum dixit, et dolor conquievit. confitens fugere debet oblivionem.

(Caesarius of Heisterbach, Dialogus Miraculorum 3.4)

Of a priest, who neglected the penance assigned him in confession for a nocturnal emission, and was punished in the genital area.

A priest, who was a monk in our house, and told me the story, confessed one day to a nocturnal emission, and a single psalm was assigned to him as a penance. He forgot to perform this small duty, and on the same day began to feel so great an irritation and burning in the genital area, as if glowing nettles were being applied to his skin, that he was somewhat alarmed. Unable to discover any outward cause for this, he suddenly remembered the psalm he had forgotten to say; and inferring that this had been sent as a punishment for his forgetfulness, he recited the psalm, and found the pain gone. The penitent ought to be very watchful against forgetfulness. (tr. G.G. Coulton & Eileen Power, debowdlerized by David Bauwens)

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