The Homilies of the Anglo-Saxon Church/XXIX

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IIII. IDUS AUGUSTI.

AUGUST X.

PASSIO BEATI LAURENTII MARTYRIS.

THE PASSION OF THE BLESSED MARTYR LAWRENCE.

On Decies dæge, þæs wælhreowan caseres, wæs se halga biscop Sixtus on Romana byrig drohtnigende. Ða færlice het hé his gesihum, ðone biscop mid his preostum samod geandwerdian. Sixtus ða unforhtmod to his preostum clypode, "Mine gebroðra, ne beo ge afyrhte, cumað, and eower nan him ne ondræde ða scortan tintregunga. Þa halgan martyras geðrowodon fela pinunga, þæt hí orsorge becomon to wulder-beage þæs ecan lifes." Þa andwyrdon his twegen diaconas, Felicissimus and Agapitus, "Ðu, ure fæder, hwider fare we butan ðe?" On ðære nihte wearð se biscop mid his twám diaconum hrædlice to ðam reðum ehtere gebroht. Se casere Decius him cwæð to, "Geoffra ðine lác ðam undeadlicum godum, and beo ðu þæra sacerda ealdor." Se eadiga Sixtus him andwyrde, "Ic symle geoffrode, and gýt offrige mine lác ðam Ælmihtigan Gode, and his Suna, Hælendum Criste, and ðam Halgum Gaste, hluttre onsægednysse and ungewemmede." Decius cwæð, "Gebeorh ðe and ðinum preostum, and geoffra. Soðlice gif ðu ne dest, þu scealt beon eallum oðrum to bysne." Sixtus soðlice andwyrde, "Hwene ær ic ðe sæde, þæt ic symle geoffrige ðam Ælmihtigum Gode." Decius ða cwæð to his cempum, "Lædað hine to ðam temple Martis, þæt he ðam gode Marti geoffrige: gif he nelle offrian, beclysað hine on ðam cwearterne Mamortini." Þa cempan hine læddon to ðam deofolgylde, and hine ðreatodon þæt he ðære deadan anlicnysse his lác offrian sceolde. Þaða he ðæs caseres hæse forseah, and ðam deofolgylde offrian nolde, ða gebrohton hi hine mid his twam diaconum binnan ðam blindan cwearterne. In the time of Decius, the cruel emperor, the holy bishop Sixtus was dwelling in Rome. Then he suddenly commanded his counts to bring the bishop together with his priests before him. Sixtus then with fearless mind called to his priests, "My brothers, be ye not afraid, come, and let none of you dread short torments. The holy martyrs suffered many tortures, that they might fearless come to the glory-crown of everlasting life." His two deacons, Felicissimus and Agapetus, then answered, "Thou, our father, whither shall we go without thee?" On that night the bishop with his two deacons was quickly brought to the cruel persecutor. The emperor Decius said to him, "Offer thy gift to the immortal gods, and be thou the chief of the priests." The blessed Sixtus answered him, "I have ever offered and will yet offer my gift to the Almighty God, and his Son, Jesus Christ, and to the Holy Ghost, in pure and unpolluted sacrifice." Decius said, "Take heed for thyself and thy priests, and offer; for if thou dost not, thou shalt be an example to all others." But Sixtus answered, "A little before I said to thee, that I always offer to Almighty God." Decius then said to his soldiers, "Lead him to the temple of Mars, that he may offer to the god Mars: if he will not offer, shut him in the prison Mamortinum." The soldiers led him to the temple, and urged him to offer his gift to the dead image. When he despised the emperor's command, and would not offer to the idol, they brought him with his two deacons into the dark prison.
Þa betwux ðam com Laurentius, his erce-diacon, and ðone halgan biscop mid ðisum wordum gespræc, "Ðu, mín fæder, hwider siðast ðu butan ðinum bearne? Þu halga sacerd, hwider efst ðu butan ðinum diacone? Næs ðin gewuna þæt ðu butan ðinum diacone Gode geoffrodest. Hwæt mislicode ðe, min fæder, on me? Geswutela ðine mihte on ðinum bearne, and geoffra Gode þone ðe ðu getuge, þæt þu ðy orsorglicor becume to ðam æðelan wulder-beage." Þaða se eadiga Laurentius mid þisum wordum and ma oðrum bemǽnde þæt he ne moste mid his lareowe ðrowian, ða andwyrde se biscop, "Min bearn, ne forlæte ic ðe, ac ðe gerist mara campdom on ðinum gewinne. We underfoð, swa swa ealde men, scortne ryne þæs leohtran gewinnes; soðlice þu geonga underfehst miccle wulderfulran sige æt ðisum reðan cyninge. Min cild, geswic ðines wopes: æfter ðrim dagum ðu cymst sigefæst to me to ðam ecum life. Nim nu ure cyrcan maðmas, and dæl cristenum mannum, be ðan ðe ðe gewyrð." Then among them came his archdeacon Lawrence, and spake to the holy bishop in these words, "Thou, my father, whither goest thou without thy child? Thou holy priest, whither hastenest thou without thy deacon? It was not thy wont to offer to God without thy deacon. What has displeased thee, my father, in me? Show thy power on thy child, and offer to God him whom thou hast trained up, that thou the less sorrowfully attain to the noble crown of glory." When the blessed Lawrence had, with these words and others more, lamented that he might not suffer with his teacher, the bishop answered, "My child, I forsake thee not, but thee befits a greater struggle in thy conflict. We, as old men, shall undergo the short course of a lighter conflict: but thou, a young man, wilt undergo a much more glorious triumph from this cruel king. My child, cease thy weeping: after three days thou wilt come to me triumphant to everlasting life. Take thou our church's treasures, and distribute to christian men, as it may seem good unto thee."
Se erce-diacon ða, Laurentius, be ðæs biscopes hæse ferde and dælde þære cyrcan maðmas preostum, and ælðeodigum ðearfum, and wudewum, ælcum be his neode. He com to sumere wudewan, hire nama wæs Quiriaca, seo hæfde behyd on hire hame preostas and manega læwede cristenan. Ða se eadiga Laurentius ðwoh heora ealra fét, and ða wudewan fram hefigtimum heafod-ece gehælde. Eac sum ymesene man mid wope his fét gesohte, biddende his hæle. Laurentius ða mearcode rode-tacen on ðæs blindan eagan, and he ðærrihte beorhtlice geseah. Se erce-diacon ða-gyt geaxode má cristenra manna gehwær, and hí ær his ðrowunge mid gastlicere sibbe and mid fót-ðweale geneosode. The archdeacon Lawrence then, at the bishop's command, went and distributed the church's treasures to priests, and poor strangers, and widows, to each according to his need. He came to a widow, whose name was Quiriaca, who had hidden in her dwelling priests and many lay christians. Then the blessed Lawrence washed the feet of them all, and healed the widow of a wearisome headache. A blind man also with weeping sought his feet, praying for his cure. Lawrence then marked the sign of the rood on the blind man's eyes, and he straightways saw brightly. The archdeacon heard yet of more christian men elsewhere, and before his passion visited them with ghostly peace and with foot-washing.
Þaða hé ðanon gewende, ða wæs his láreow Sixtus mid his twam diaconum of ðam cwearterne gelædd, ætforan ðam casere Decium. He wearð þa geháthyrt ongean ðone halgan biscop, ðus cweðende, "Witodlice we beorgað ðinre ylde: gehyrsuma urum bebodum, and geoffra ðam undeaðlicum godum." Se eadiga biscop him andwyrde, "Ðu earming, beorh ðe sylfum, and wyrc dædbote for ðæra halgena blode ðe ðu agute." Se wælhreowa cwellere mid gebolgenum mode cwæð to his heah-gerefan, Ualeriane, "Gif ðes bealdwyrda biscop acweald ne bið, siððan ne bið ure ege ondrædendlic." Ualerianus him andwyrde, "Beo he heafde becorfen. Hat hí eft to ðæs godes temple Martis gelǽdan, and gif hí nellað to him gebigedum cneowum gebiddan, and heora lác offrian, underfón hí beheafdunge on ðære ylcan stowe." Þæs caseres cempan hine læddon to ðam deofolgylde mid his twam diaconum: ða beseah se biscop wið ðæs temples, and ðus cwæð, "Þu dumba deofolgyld, þurh ðe forleosað earme menn þæt ece lif: towurpe ðe se Ælmihtiga Godes Sunu." Þa mid þam worde tobærst sum dæl ðæs temples mid færlicum hryre. Laurentius ða clypode to ðam biscope, "Þu halga fæder, ne forlǽt ðu me, forðan ðe ic aspende ðære cyrcan maðmas swa swa ðu me bebude." Hwæt ða cempan ða hine gelæhton, forðan ðe hí gehyrdon hine be ðam cyrclicum madmum sprecan. Sixtus ða soðlice underhnáh swurdes ecge, and his twegen diaconas samod, Felicissimus and Agapitus, ætforan ðam temple, on ðam sixtan dæge þyses monðes. When he returned thence, his teacher Sixtus with his two deacons was led from the prison, before the emperor Decius. He was then exasperated against the holy bishop, thus saying, "Verily we have regard for thy age: obey our commands, and offer to the immortal gods." The holy bishop answered him, "Thou wretch, have regard for thyself, and make atonement for the blood of the saints which thou hast shed." The bloodthirsty executioner with wrathful mind said to his chief officer Valerianus, "If this audacious bishop be not slain, awe for us will be no longer formidable." Valerianus answered him, "Let his head be cut off. Order them again to the temple of the god, and if they will not pray to him with bended knees, and offer their gifts, let them suffer decapitation on the same place." The emperor's soldiers led him to the temple with his two deacons: then the bishop looked towards the temple, and thus said, "Thou dumb idol, through thee miserable men lose everlasting life: may the Almighty Son of God overthrow thee!" Then at that word a part of the temple burst asunder with a sudden fall. Lawrence then cried to the bishop, "Thou holy father, forsake me not, for I have distributed the church's treasures as thou commandedst." At this the soldiers seized him, for they heard him speak of the church's treasures. Sixtus then sank under the sword's edge, and his two deacons with him, Felicissimus and Agapetus, before the temple, on the sixth day of this month.
Laurentius witodlice wearð siððan gebroht to ðam casere, and se reða cwellere hine ða befrán, "Hwær sind ðære cyrcan madmas ðe ðe betæhte wæron?" Se eadiga Laurentius mid nanum worde him ne geandwyrde. On ðam ylcan dæge betæhte se Godes feond ðone halgan diacon his heah-gerefan Ualeriane, mid ðysum bebode, "Ofgang ða madmas mid geornfulnysse, and hine gebig to ðam undeadlicum godum." Se gerefa ða hine betæhte his gingran, ðæs nama wæs Ypolitus, and he hine beclysde on cwearterne mid manegum oðrum. Þa gemette hé on ðam cwearterne ænne hæðenne man, se wæs ðurh micelne wóp ablend. Ða cwæð he him to, "Lucille, gif ðu gelyfst on Hælend Crist, he onliht ðine eagan." He andwyrde, "Æfre ic gewilnode þæt ic on Cristes naman gefullod wære." Laurentius him to cwæð, "Gelyfst ðu mid ealre heortan?" He andwyrde mid wope, "Ic gelyfe on Hælend Crist, and ðam leasum deofolgyldum wiðsace." Ypolitus mid geðylde heora wordum heorcnode. Se gesæliga Laurentius tæhte ða ðam blindan soðne geleafan ðære Halgan Þrynnysse, and hine gefullode. Lucillus æfter ðam fulluht-bæðe mid beorhtre stemne clypode, "Sy gebletsod se Eca God, Hælend Crist, ðe me ðurh his diacon onlihte. Ic wæs blind bám eagum, nu ic beorhtlice leohtes bruce." Witodlice ða fela oðre blinde mid wope comon to ðam eadigan diacone, and hé asette his handa ofer heora eagan, and hí wurdon onlihte. But Lawrence was afterwards brought to the emperor, and the fierce executioner asked him, "Where are the church's treasures which were committed to thee?" The blessed Lawrence answered him not a word. On the same day the foe of God committed the holy deacon to his chief officer Valerianus, with this command, "Exact the treasures with importunity, and make him bow to the immortal gods." The officer then committed him to his junior, whose name was Hippolytus, and he shut him in a prison with many others. He found in the prison a heathen man, who was blind through great weeping. He said to him, "Lucillus, if thou wilt believe in Jesus Christ, he will enlighten thine eyes." He answered, "I have ever desired to be baptized in the name of Christ." Lawrence said to him, "Believest thou with all thy heart?" He answered with weeping, "I believe in Jesus Christ, and renounce the false idols." Hippolytus with patience listened to their words. The blessed Lawrence then taught the blind man true belief in the Holy Trinity, and baptized him. Lucillus, after the baptismal bath, cried with clear voice, "Blessed be the Eternal God, Jesus Christ, who has enlightened me through his deacon. I was blind with both eyes, now I clearly enjoy the light." Then there came many other blind with weeping to the blessed deacon, and he set his hand over their eyes, and they were enlightened.
Se tún-gerefa Ypolitus cwæð ða to ðam diacone, "Geswutela me ðære cyrcan madmas." Laurentius cwæð, "Eala ðu Ypolite, gif ðu gelyfst on God Fæder, and on his Sunu Hælend Crist, ic ðe geswutelige ða madmas, and þæt ece líf behate." Ypolitus cwæð, "Gif ðu ðas word mid weorcum gefylst, ðonne do ic swa ðu me tihst." Laurentius ða halgode fant, and hine gefullode. Soðlice Ypolitus æfter ðam fulluht-bæðe wæs clypigende mid beorhtre stemne, "Ic geseah unscæððigra manna sawla on Gode blissigan." And he mid tearum to ðam eadigan diacone cwæð, "Ic halsige ðe on ðæs Hælendes naman, þæt eal min híwræden gefullod wurðe." Witodlice Laurentius mid bliðum mode him ðæs getiðode, and nigontyne wera and wifa his híwisces mid wuldre gefullode. The town-reeve, Hippolytus, said to the deacon, "Show me the church's treasures." Lawrence answered, "O thou Hippolytus, if thou wilt believe in God the Father, and in his Son Jesus Christ, I will show thee the treasures, and promise thee everlasting life." Hippolytus said, "If thou wilt indeed fulfil those words, I will do as thou exhortest me." Lawrence then hallowed a font, and baptized him. Verily Hippolytus, after the baptismal bath, cried with a clear voice, "I saw the souls of innocent men rejoicing in God." And he said with tears to the blessed deacon, "I beseech thee, in the name of Jesus, that all my household might be baptized." Lawrence granted him this with cheerful mind, and with glory baptized nineteen men and women of his family.
Æfter ðisum sende se heah-gerefa, and bebead Ypolite þæt he Laurentium to ðæs cynges cafer-tune gelædde. Ypolitus þæt bebod mid eadmodre spræce cydde ðam eadigan Laurentie. He cwæð, "Uton faran, forðan ðe me and ðe is wuldor gegearcod." Hi ða hrædlice comon, and unforhte him ætforan stodon. Þa cwæð Ualerianus to ðam halgan cyðere, "Awurp nu ðine anwilnysse, and agif ða madmas." Se Godes cyðere him andwyrde, "On Godes ðearfum ic hí aspende, and hí sind ða ecan madmas, ðe næfre ne beoð gewanode." Se gerefa cwæð, "Hwæt fagettest ðu mid wordum? Geoffra ðine lác urum gudum, and forlǽt ðone drycræft ðe ðu on getruwast." Laurentius cwæð, "For hwilcum ðingum neadað se deofol eow þæt ge cristene men to his biggengum ðreatniað? Gif hit riht sy þæt we to deoflum us gebiddon swiðor þonne to ðam Ælmihtigan Gode, deme ge hwá þæs wurðmyntes wurðe sy, se ðe geworht is, oððe se ðe ealle ðing gesceop." Se casere ða andwyrde, "Hwæt is se ðe geworht is, oððe hwæt is se ðe geworhte?" Godes cyðere cwæð, "Se Ælmihtiga Fæder ures Hælendes is Scyppend ealra gesceafta, and ðu cwyst þæt ic me gebiddan sceole to dumbum stanum, ða ðe sind agrafene ðurh manna handa." Hwæt se casere ða hine gebealh, and het on his gesihðe ðone diacon unscrydan, and wælhreowlice swingan, and se casere sylf clypode, "Ne hyrw ðu ure godas." Se eadiga Laurentius on ðam tintregum cwæð, "Witodlice ic ðancige minum Gode, þe me gemedemode to his halgum; and ðu, earming, eart geancsumod on ðinre gewitleaste." Decius cwæð to ðam cwellerum, "Arærað hine upp, and æteowiað his gesihðum eal þæt wita-tól." Þa wurdon hrædlice forðaborene isene clutas, and isene clawa, and isen bedd, and leadene swipa and oðre gepilede swipa. Þa cwæð se casere, "Geoffra ðine lác urum godum, oððe þu bist mid eallum ðisum pinung-tólum getintregod." Se eadiga diacon cwæð, "Þu ungesæliga, þas estmettas ic symle gewilnode: hí beoð me to wuldre, and ðe to wite." Se casere cwæð, "Geswutela us ealle ða mánfullan ðine gelican, þæt ðeos burh beo geclænsod; and ðu sylf geoffra urum godum, and ne truwa ðu nateshwon on ðinum gold-hordum." Þa cwæð se halga martyr, "Soðlice ic truwige, and ic eom orsorh be minum hordum." Decius andwyrde, "Wenst ðu la þæt þu beo alysed mid ðinum hordum fram ðisum tintregum?" and het ða mid gramlicum mode þæt þa cwelleras mid stearcum saglum hine beoton. Witodlice Laurentius on ðam gebeate clypode, "Þu earming, undergyt huru nu þæt ic sígrige be Cristes madmum, and ic ðine tintregu naht ne gefrede." Decius cwæð, "Lecgað ða isenan clutas hate glowende to his sidan." Se eadiga martyr ða wæs biddende his Drihten, and cwæð, "Hælend Crist, God of Gode, gemiltsa þinum ðeowan, forðan ðe ic gewreged ðe ne wiðsoc, befrinen ic ðe geandette." Þa het se casere hine aræran, and cwæð, "Ic geseo þæt ðu, ðurh ðinne drycræft, ðas tintregan gebysmerast; ðeah-hwæðere ne scealt ðu me gebysmrian. Ic swerige ðurh ealle godas and gydena, þæt þu scealt geoffrian, oððe ic ðe mid mislicum pinungum acwelle." Laurentius ða bealdlice clypode, "Ic on mines Drihtnes naman nateshwon ne forhtige for ðinum tintregum, ðe sind hwilwendlice: ne ablin ðu þæt ðu begunnen hæfst." After this the chief officer sent, and commanded Hippolytus to lead Lawrence to the king's court. Hippolytus with humble speech made known that command to the blessed Lawrence. He said, "Let us go, for glory is prepared for me and for thee." They went quickly, and stood fearless before him. Then said Valerianus to the holy martyr, "Cast away now thy obstinacy, and give up the treasures." The martyr of God answered him, "On God's poor I have spent them, and they are the everlasting treasures which will never be diminished." The officer said, "Why playest thou with words? Offer thy gift to our gods, and forsake the magic in which thou trustest." Lawrence said, "For what reason does the devil compel you to urge christian men to his worship? If it be right that we should pray to devils rather than to the Almighty God, judge which is worthy of that honour, he who is made, or he who created all things." The emperor then answered, "What is he who is made, or what is he who made?" God's martyr said, "The Almighty Father of our Saviour is the Creator of all creatures, and thou sayest that I shall pray to dumb stones, which are carved by the hands of men." The emperor was then wroth, and commanded the deacon to be unclothed in his sight, and cruelly scourged, and the emperor himself cried, "Insult not our gods." The blessed Lawrence said in torments, "Verily I thank my God, who has vouchsafed to number me with his holy; and thou, wretch, art afflicted in thy foolishness." Decius said to the executioners, "Raise him up, and manifest to his sight all the torture-tools." Then were quickly brought forth iron plates, and iron claws, and an iron bed, and leaden whips, and other leaded whips. Then said the emperor, "Offer thy gift to our gods, or thou shalt be tortured with all these torture-tools." The blessed deacon said, "Thou unblessed, these luxuries I have ever desired; they will be to me a glory, and to thee a torment." The emperor said, "Declare to us all the wicked thy like, that this city may be cleansed; and do thou thyself offer to our gods, and trust thou in no wise to thy treasures." Then said the holy martyr, "Verily I trust, and I am careless for my treasures." Decius answered, "Thinkest thou then that thou wilt be redeemed by thy treasures from these torments?" and then in angry mood commanded the executioners to beat him with stout clubs. But Lawrence, during the beating, cried, "Thou wretch, know at least that I triumph regarding Christ's treasures, and I feel not thy torments." Decius said, "Lay the iron plates glowing hot to his side." The blessed martyr then was praying to his Lord, and said, "Saviour Christ, God of God, have mercy on thy servant, for, accused, I denied thee not; questioned, I acknowledged thee." Then the emperor commanded him to be raised, and said, "I see that thou, through thy magic, mockest these torments; nevertheless thou shalt not mock me. I swear by all the gods and goddesses, that thou shalt offer, or I will slay thee by divers tortures." Lawrence then boldly cried, "I, in the name of my Lord, in no wise fear thy torments, which are transitory: cease thou not from what thou hast begun."
Þa wearð se casere mid swyðlicere hátheortnysse geyrsod, and het ðone halgan diacon mid leadenum swipum langlice swingan. Laurentius ða clypode, "Hælend Crist, þu ðe gemedemodest þæt ðu to menniscum menn geboren wære, and us fram deofles ðeowte alysdest, onfoh minne gást." On ðære ylcan tide him com andswaru of heofonum, þus cweðende, "Gyt ðu scealt fela gewinn habban on ðinum martyrdome." Decius ða geháthyrt clypode, "Romanisce weras, gehyrde ge ðæra deofla frofor on ðisum eawbræcum, ðe ure godas geyrsode ne ondræt, ne ða asmeadan tintregan? Astreccað hine, and mid gepiledum swipum swingende geangsumiað." Laurentius ða astreht on ðære hengene, mid hlihendum muðe ðancode his Drihtne, "Drihten God, Fæder Hælendes Cristes, sy ðu gebletsod, þe us forgeafe ðine mildheortnysse; cyð nu ðine arfæstnysse, þæt ðas ymbstandendan oncnawon þæt ðu gefrefrast ðine ðeowan." On ðære tide gelyfde án ðæra cempena, ðæs nama wæs Romanus, and cwæð to ðam Godes cyðere, "Laurentie, ic geseo Godes engel standende ætforan ðe mid hand-claðe, and wipað ðine swatigan limu. Nu halsige ic ðe, þurh God, þæt þu me ne forlæte." Þa wearð Decius mid facne afylled, and cwæð to his heah-gerefan, "Me ðincð þæt we sind ðurh drycræft oferswiðde." And he het ða alysan ðone diacon of ðære hengene, and betæcan ðam tún-gerefan Ypolite, and nyste ða-gýt þæt hé cristen wæs. Then was the emperor excited with violent fury, and commanded the holy deacon to be scourged a long time with leaden whips. Lawrence then cried, "Saviour Christ, thou who hast vouchsafed to be born a mortal man, and hast redeemed us from the devil's thraldom, receive my spirit." At the same time an answer came to him from heaven, thus saying, "Yet thou shalt have much affliction in thy martyrdom." Decius then furious cried, "Roman men, heard ye the comfort of the devils to this impious, who dreads not our irritated gods, nor the devised torments? Stretch him, and, scourging with leaded whips, afflict him." Lawrence then, stretched on the cross, with laughing mouth thanked his Lord, "Lord God, Father of Jesus Christ, be thou blessed, who hast given us thy mercy; manifest now thy favour, that these standing about may know that thou comfortest thy servants." At that time one of the soldiers, whose name was Romanus, believed, and said to the martyr of God, "Lawrence, I see God's angel standing before thee with a hand-cloth, and wiping thy sweating limbs. I now beseech thee, through God, that thou forsake me not." Then was Decius filled with guile, and said to his chief officer, "Methinks that we are overcome by magic." And he then ordered the holy deacon to be loosened from the cross, and delivered to the town-reeve Hippolytus, and knew not yet that he was a christian.
Þa betwux ðam brohte se gelyfeda cempa Romanus ceacfulne wæteres, and mid wope ðæs halgan Laurenties fét gesohte, fulluhtes biddende. Laurentius ða hrædlice þæt wæter gehalgode, and ðone geleaffullan ðegen gefullode. Þaða Decius þæt geaxode, ða het he hine wǽdum bereafian, and mid stearcum stengum beatan. Romanus ða ungeaxod clypode on ðæs caseres andwerdnysse, "Ic eom cristen." On ðære ylcan tide het se reða cwellere hine underhnígan swurdes ecge. Eft on ðære ylcan nihte, æfter ðæs cempan martyrdome, ferde Decius to ðam hatum baðum wið þæt botl Salustii, and het ðone halgan Laurentium him to gefeccan. Þa ongann Ypolitus sarlice heofian, and cwæð, "Ic wylle mid ðe siðian, and mid hluddre stemne hryman, þæt ic cristen eom, and mid þe licgan." Laurentius cwæð, "Ne wep ðu, ac swiðor suwa and blissa, forðan ðe ic fare to Godes wuldre. Eft æfter lytlum fyrste, ðonne ic ðe clypige, gehyr mine stemne, and cum to me." Then meanwhile the believing soldier Romanus brought a jugful of water, and with weeping sought the feet of the holy Lawrence, craving baptism. Lawrence then quickly hallowed the water, and baptized the believing servant. When Decius heard of it, he ordered him to be stript of his garments and beaten with stout staves. Romanus then unasked cried in the emperor's presence, "I am a christian." At the same time the fierce executioner ordered him to fall under the sword's edge. Again, on the same night, after the soldier's martyrdom, Decius went to the hot baths, opposite the house of Sallust, and commanded the holy Lawrence to be fetched to him. Then Hippolytus began sorely to lament, and said, "I will go with thee, and with loud voice cry that I am a christian, and lie with thee." Lawrence said, "Weep not, but rather be silent and rejoice, for I go to God's glory. After a little time hence, when I call, hear my voice, and come to me."
Decius ða het gearcian eal þæt pinung-tól ætforan his dómsetle, and Laurentius him wearð to gelæd. Decius cwæð, "Awurp ðone truwan ðines drycræftes, and gerece ús ðine mægðe." Se eadiga Laurentius andwyrde, "Æfter menniscum gebyrde ic eom Hispanienscis, Romanisc fostor-cild, and cristen fram cild-cradole, getogen on ealre godcundre ǽ." Decius andwyrde, "Soðlice is seo ǽ godcundlic ðe ðe swa gebylde þæt ðu nelt ure godas wurðian, ne ðu nanes cynnes tintregan þe ne ondrætst." Laurentius cwæð, "On Cristes naman ne forhtige ic for ðinum tintregum." Se wælhreowa casere ða cwæð, "Gif ðu ne offrast urum godum, eall ðeos niht sceal beon aspend on ðe mid mislicum pinungum." Laurentius cwæð, "Næfð min niht nane forsworcennysse, ac heo mid beorhtum leohte scinð." Þa het se wælhreowa mid stanum ðæs halgan muð cnucian. Hwæt ða Laurentius wearð gestrangod ðurh Godes gife, and mid hlihendum muðe cwæð, "Sy ðe lóf, Drihten, forðan ðe ðu eart ealra ðinga God." Decius cwæð to ðam cwellerum, "Ahebbað þæt isene bed to ðam fyre, þæt se modiga Laurentius hine ðæron gereste." Hí ðærrihte hine wædon bereafodon, and on ðam heardan bedde astrehton, and mid byrnendum gledum þæt bed undercrammodon, and hine ufan mid isenum geaflum ðydon. Decius then commanded all the torture-tools to be prepared, before his doom-seat, and Lawrence was led to him. Decius said, "Cast away trust in thy magic, and recount to us of thy family." The blessed Lawrence answered, "According to human birth I am Spanish, a Roman foster-child, and a christian from my cradle, trained up in all divine law." Decius answered, "In sooth the law is divine, which has so emboldened thee that thou wilt not worship our gods, nor dreadest any kind of torment." Lawrence said, "In the name of Christ I fear not for thy torments." The cruel emperor then said, "If thou offerest not to our gods, all this night shall be spent on thee with divers tortures." Lawrence said, "My night has no darkness, but shines with bright light." Then the cruel one commanded the mouth of the saint to be struck with stones. But Lawrence was strengthened through the grace of God, and said with laughing mouth, "Lord, be to thee praise, for thou of all things art God." Decius said to the executioners, "Raise the iron bed to the fire, that the proud Lawrence may rest thereon." They straightways bereft him of his garments, and stretched him on the hard bed, and filled the bed underneath with burning coals, and from above pierced him with iron forks.
Decius cwæð ða to þam Godes cyðere, "Geoffra nu urum godum." Laurentius andwyrde, "Ic offrige me sylfne ðam Ælmihtigan Gode on bræðe wynsumnysse; forðan þe se gedrefeda gast is Gode andfenge onsægednys." Soðlice ða cwelleras tugon ða gleda singallice under þæt bedd, and wið-ufan mid heora forcum hine ðydon. Ða cwæð Laurentius, "Eala ge ungesæligan, ne undergyte ge þæt eowre gleda nane hǽtan minum lichaman ne gedoð, ac swiðor célinge?" He ða eft mid þam wlitegostan nebbe cwæð, "Hælend Crist, ic ðancige ðe þæt ðu me gestrangian wylt." He ða beseah wið þæs caseres, þus cweðende, "Efne ðu, earming, bræddest ænne dæl mines lichaman, wend nu þone oðerne, and et." He cwæð ða eft, "Hælend Crist, ic ðancige ðe mid inweardre heortan, þæt ic mót faran into ðinum rice." And mid þysum worde hé ageaf his gast, and mid swylcum martyrdome þæt uplice rice geferde, on ðam he wunað mid Gode á on ecnysse. Þa forlét se wælhreowa casere ðone halgan lichaman uppon ðam isenan hyrdle, and tengde mid his heahgerefan to ðam botle Tyberianum. Decius said to the martyr of God, "Offer now to our gods." Lawrence answered, "I will offer myself to the Almighty God, in the odour of pleasantness; for the afflicted spirit is an acceptable sacrifice to God." But the executioners drew the burning coals constantly under the bed, and from above pierced him with their forks. Then said Lawrence, "O ye unblessed, understand ye not that your glowing embers cause no heat to my body, but rather cooling?" He then again with the most beautiful countenance said, "Saviour Christ, I thank thee that thou wilt strengthen me." He then looked towards the emperor, thus saying, "Behold, thou, wretch, hast roasted one part of my body, turn now the other, and eat." He then said again, "Saviour Christ, I thank thee with inward heart, that I may go into thy kingdom." And with these words he gave up his ghost, and with such martyrdom went to the realm on high, in which he dwelleth with God through all eternity. The cruel emperor then left the holy body on the iron hurdle, and with his chief officer hastened to the house of Tiberius.
Ypolitus ða bebyrigde ðone halgan lichaman mid micelre arwurðnysse on ðære wudewan leger-stowe Quiriace, on ðysum dægðerlicum dæge. Witodlice æt ðære byrgene wacode micel menigu cristenra manna mid swiðlicere heofunge. Se halga sacerd Iustinus ða him eallum gemæssode and gehuslode. Æfter ðisum gecyrde Ypolitus to his hame, and mid Godes sibbe his hywan gecyste, and hí ealle gehuslode. Þa færlice, mid ðam ðe hé gesæt, comon ðæs caseres cempan, and hine gelæhton, and to ðam cwellere gelæddon. Hine befrán ða Decius mid smercigendum muðe, "Hwæt la, eart ðu to dry awend, forðan ðe ðu bebyrigdest Laurentium?" He andwyrde, "Þæt ic dyde na swa swa dry, ac swa swa cristen." Decius ða yrsigende het mid stanum his muð cnucian, and hine unscrydan, and cwæð, "La hú, nære ðu geornful biggenga ura goda? and nu ðu eart swa stunt geworden þæt furðon ðe ne sceamað ðinre næcednysse." Ypolitus andwyrde, "Ic wæs stunt, and ic eom nu wís and cristen. Þurh nytenysse ic gelyfde on þæt gedwyld þe ðu gelyfst." Decius cwæð, "Geoffra ðam godum ðylæs ðe ðu þurh tintrega forwurðe, swa swa Laurentius." He andwyrde, "Eala gif ic moste ðam eadigan Laurentium geefenlæcan!" Decius cwæð, "Astreccað hine swa nacodne, and mid stiðum saglum beatað." Þaða hé langlice gebeaten wæs, þa ðancode he Gode. Decius cwæð, "Ypolitus gebysmrað eowre stengas; swingað hine mid gepiledum swipum." Hi ða swa dydon, oðþæt hí ateorodon. Ypolitus clypode mid hluddre stemne, "Ic eom cristen." Eornostlice se reða casere, ðaða he ne mihte mid nanum pinungum hine geweman fram Cristes geleafan, ða het he his heah-gerefan þæt hé mid wælhreawum deaðe hine acwellan sceolde. Hippolytus then buried the holy body with great reverence in the burial-place of the widow Quiriaca, on this present day. But at the grave there watched a great many christian men with great lamentation. The holy priest Justin celebrated mass to and houseled them all. After this Hippolytus returned to his home, and with God's peace kissed his family, and houseled them all. Then suddenly, while he was sitting, the emperor's soldiers came, and seized him, and led him to the executioner. Decius then asked him with smiling mouth, "What, art thou turned magician, since thou hast buried Lawrence?" He answered, "I did not that as a magician, but as a christian." Decius then in wrath ordered his mouth to be stricken with stones, and him to be stript, and said, "How, wast thou not a diligent worshiper of our gods? and now thou art become so foolish that thou art not ashamed of thy nakedness." Hippolytus answered, "I was foolish, and I am now wise and a christian. Through ignorance I believed in the error in which thou believest." Decius said, "Offer to the gods, lest, as Lawrence, thou perish by torments." He answered, "O, if I might imitate the blessed Lawrence!" Decius said, "Stretch him thus naked, and beat him with strong clubs." When he had long been beaten he thanked God. Decius said, "Hippolytus mocks your staves, scourge him with leaded whips." They then did so, till they were worn out. Hippolytus cried with a loud voice, "I am a christian." So the fierce emperor, when he could not, by any torments, seduce him from belief in Christ, commanded his chief officer to slay him by the most cruel death.
On ðam ylcan dæge asmeade Ualerianus his æhta, and gemette nygontyne wera and wifa his híwisces, ðe wæron æt ðæs eadigan Laurenties handum gefullode. To ðam cwæð Ualerianus, "Sceawiað eowre ylde, and beorgað eowrum feore, ðylæs ðe ge samod losian mid eowrum hlaforde Ypolite." Hi ða anmodlice andwyrdon, "We wilniað mid urum hlaforde clænlice sweltan, swiðor ðonne unclænlice mid eow lybban." Þa wearð Ualerianus ðearle geháthyrt, and het lædan Ypolitum of ðære ceastre mid his hiwum. Ða se eadiga Ypolitus gehyrte his hired, and cwæð, "Mine gebroðra, ne beo ge dreorige ne afyrhte, forðan ðe ic and ge habbað ænne Hlaford, God Ælmihtigne." Soðlice Ualerianus het beheafdian on Ypolitus gesihðe ealle his hiwan, and hine sylfne het tigan be ðam fotum to ungetemedra horsa swuran, and swa teon geond ðornas and bremelas: and he ða mid þam tige his gast ageaf on ðam ðreotteoðan dæge þises monðes. On ðære ylcan nihte gegaderode se halga Iustinus heora ealra lic, and bebyrigde. On the same day Valerianus took an account of his property, and found nineteen men and women of his family, who had been baptized at the hands of the blessed Lawrence. To them said Valerianus, "Consider your age, and have regard for your life, lest ye perish together with your lord Hippolytus." They unanimously answered, "We desire to die purely with our lord, rather than to live impurely with you." Then was Valerianus greatly irritated, and ordered Hippolytus to be led from the city with his household. The blessed Hippolytus then cheered his household, and said, "My brothers, be ye not sad nor afraid, for I and ye have one Lord, God Almighty." So Valerianus ordered, in the sight of Hippolytus, all his domestics to be beheaded, and himself he ordered to be tied by the feet to the necks of untamed horses, and so to be drawn through thorns and brambles: and he with that binding gave up his ghost on the thirteenth day of this month. On the same night the holy Justin gathered the bodies of them all and buried them.
Eornostlice æfter ðæra halgena ðrowunge, ferde Decius on gyldenum cræte and Ualerianus samod to heora hæðenum gylde, þæt hí ða cristenan to heora mánfullum offrungum geðreatodon. Ða wearð Decius færlice mid feondlicum gaste awéd, and hrymde, "Eala ðu, Ypolite, hwider tihst ðu me gebundenne mid scearpum racenteagum?" Ualerianus eac awéd hrymde, "Eala ðu, Laurentius, unsoftlice tihst ðu me gebundenne mid byrnendum racenteagum." And he ðærrihte swealt. Witodlice Decius egeslice awedde, and binnon ðrym dagum mid deoflicre stemne singallice hrymde, "Ic halsige ðe, Laurentius, ablín hwæthwega ðæra tintregena." Hwæt ða, la asprang micel heofung and sarlic wóp on ðam hame, and ðæs caseres wíf hét út-alædan ealle ða cristenan ðe on cwearterne wæron, and Decius on ðam ðriddan dæge mid micclum tintregum gewát. But after the passion of those saints, Decius and Valerianus went together in a golden chariot to their temple, that they might force the christians to their wicked offerings. Then became Decius suddenly frantic with a fiendlike spirit, and cried, "O thou, Hippolytus, whither drawest thou me bound with sharp chains?" Valerianus also frantic cried, "O thou, Lawrence, unsoftly thou drawest me bound with burning chains." And he forthwith died. But Decius became horribly frantic, and for three days, with fiendlike voice, constantly cried, "I beseech thee, Lawrence, cease somewhat of those torments." Hereupon great lamentation and sore weeping arose in the dwelling, and the emperor's wife ordered all the christians who were in prison to be led out, and on the third day Decius in great torments departed.
Soðlice seo cwén Triphonia gesohte ðæs halgan sacerdes fét Iustines mid biterum tearum, and hire dohtor Cyrilla samod, biddende þæs halgan fulluhtes. Iustinus ða mid micelre blisse hí underfeng, and him bebead seofon dagena fæsten, and hí syððan mid þam halgum fulluht-bæðe fram eallum heora mándædum aðwoh. Þaða þæs caseres ðegnas gehyrdon þæt seo cwén Triphonia and Decius dohtor Cyrilla to Cristes geleafan, and to ðam halwendum fulluhte gebogene wæron, hí ða mid heora wifum gesohton ðone halgan sacerd, and bædon miltsunge and fulluhtes. Se eadiga Iustinus, ðisum gewordenum, rædde wið þa cristenan hwæne hí to bisceope ceosan woldon on Sixtes setle. Hi ða anmodlice sumne arwurðfulne wer gecuron, ðæs nama wæs Dionisius, ðone gehadode se bisceop Maximus, of ðære byrig Ostiensis, to ðam Romaniscum bisceop-setle, wið wurðmynte. But the queen Tryphonia, together with her daughter Cyrilla, sought the feet of the holy priest Justin with bitter tears, praying for holy baptism. Justin then with great joy received them, and enjoined them a fast of seven days, and afterwards, by the holy baptismal bath, washed them from all their sins. When the emperor's thanes heard that the queen Tryphonia and the daughter of Decius, Cyrilla, had turned to the faith of Christ and to the salutary baptism, they with their wives sought the holy priest, and prayed for mercy and baptism. The blessed Justin, these things being done, took counsel with the christians, whom they would choose for bishop in the chair of Sixtus. They then unanimously chose a venerable man whose name was Dionysius, whom the bishop Maximus, of the city of Ostia, consecrated to the Roman episcopal see with honour.
Uton nu biddan mid eadmodre stemne ðone halgan Godes cyðere Laurentium, þæs freols-tíd geswutelað þes andwerda dæg ealre geleaffulre gelaðunge, þæt he us ðingige wið ðone Heofenlican Cyning, for ðæs naman he ðrowode mid cenum mode menigfealde tintregu, mid ðam he orsorhlice on ecnysse wuldrað. Amen. Let us now pray with humble voice the holy martyr of God, Lawrence, whose festival this present day makes known to all the faithful church, that he intercede for us with the Heavenly King, for whose name he suffered with bold mind many torments, with whom he free from care glorieth to eternity. Amen.