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Hildegard of Bingen: Ordo Virtutum CONFUTATIO (19​–​21)

from ORDO VIRTUTUM by The Song Company


The Devil returns to reclaim his victim, but at Queen Humility’s command, he is swiftly defeated and bound by Victory, Chastity, and their sister Virtues, including Hope.


Penitens Anima
19 Ego omnes vias meas malas esse cognovi,
et ideo fugi a te.
Modo autem, o illusor, pugno contra te.
Inde tu, O regina Humilitas,
tuo medicamine adiuva me!
Humilitas ad Victoriam
O Victoria, que istum in cela superasti,
curre cum militibus tuis
et omnes ligate Diabolum hunc!
Victoria ad Virtutes
O fortissimi et gloriosissimi milites,
venite, et adiuvate me istum fallacem vincere.
O dulcissima bellatrix, in torrente fonte
qui absorbuit lupum rapacem –
o gloriosa coronata,
nos libenter militamus tecum contra illusorem hunc.
Ligate ergo istum, o Virtutes preclare!
O regina nostra, tibi parebimus,
et precepta tua in omnibus adimplebimus.
Gaudete, a socii,
quia antiquus serpens ligatus est!
Laus tibi, Christe, rex angelorum!
20 In mente altissimi o Satana,
Caput tuum conculcavi,
et in virginea forma dulce miraculum colui,
ubi filius dei venit in mundum;
unde deiectus es in omnibus spoliis tuis,
et nunc gaudeant omnes qui habitant in celis,
quia venter tuus confusus est.
Tu nescis quid colis,
quia venter tuus vacuus est
pulchra forma de viro sumpta –
ubi transis preceptum quod deus
in suavi copula precepit;
unde nescis quid sis!
Quomodo posset me hoc tangere
quod tua suggestio polluit
per immundiciam incestus?
Unum virum protuli, qui genus humanum
ad se congregat contra te; per nativitatem suam.
Humilitas (pro Virtutes)
O deus, quis es tu, qui in temet ipso hoc
magnum consilium habuisti,
quod destruxit infernalem haustum
in publicanis et peccatoribus,
qui nunc lucent in superna bonitate!
Unde, O rex, laus sit tibi.
21 O pater omnipotens,
ex te fluit fons in igneo amore,
perduc filios tuos in rectum ventum
velorum aquarum,
ita ut et nos eos hoc modo perducamus
in celestem Ierusalem.

The Soul, penitent
19 I recognized that all my ways were wicked,
and so I fled you. But now, you deceiver, I
will fight you face to face.
And so, O Queen Humility,
come with your medicine to help me!
Humility to Victory
O Victory, you who once conquered this creature
in the heavens, run now, with all your warriors,
and all of you bind this Devil!
Victory to the Virtues
O bravest and most glorious warriors,
come and help me to vanquish this deceitful one!
O sweetest warrior, in the cascade of the fountain
that swallowed up the rapacious wolf –
O glorious, crowned one,
we will gladly fight with you against that deceiver!
Bind him then, O you shining Virtues!
O our Queen, we obey you
and we shall carry out your orders to the full.
Rejoice, O companions,
because the ancient serpent is bound!
Praise be to You, Christ, King of the angels!
20 In the mind of the Most High, Satan,
I trampled on your head,
and in a virgin form I brought forth a sweet miracle
whereby the Son of God came into the world;
therefore you are laid low, with all your blunder,
and now let all who dwell in heaven rejoice,
because your belly has been confounded.
You don’t know what you are nurturing,
for your belly is devoid of the beautiful form
that woman receives from man;
in this you transgress the command
that God enjoined in the sweet act of love-making;
so you don’t even know what you are!
How can what you say touch me?
Because even your suggestion smirches
it with foulness. I did bring forth a man,
who gathers up mankind to Himself,
against you, through His Nativity.
Humility (for the Virtues)
O God, who are You, who held
such great counsel in Yourself,
a counsel that destroyed the draught of hell
in tax-collectors and sinners –
who now shine in the goodness from above!
Wherefore, o King, praise be to You!
21 O Almighty Father,
from You flowed a fountain in fiery love:
guide Your children into a fair wind,
sailing the waters,
so that we too may lead them in this way
into the heavenly Jerusalem.


from ORDO VIRTUTUM, released December 1, 2021


all rights reserved



The Song Company Sydney, Australia

The Song Company belongs to a land whose first peoples have always used songlines and vocal music to pass knowledge and culture from one generation to another. We bring together Australia’s finest voices in innovative performances, commissioning new music, emerging artist development, educational outreach, and collaborative music-making across art forms. ... more

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