Catholic CornucopiadCheney

O nimis felix

O more than blessed

The Hymns of the Breviary and Missal

  1. O nimis felix, meritique celsi,
    Nesciens labem nivei pudoris,
    Præpotens Martyr, nemorumque cultor,
       Maxime Vatum.
  2. Serta ter denis alios coronant
    Aucta crementis, duplicate quosdam;
    Trina te fructu cumulate centum
       Nexibus ornant.
  3. Nunc potens nostril meritis opimis
    Pectoris duros lapides revelle,
    Asperum planans iter, et reflexos
       Dirige calles.
  4. Ut pius mundi Sator et Redemptor,
    Mentibus culpæ sine labe puris,
    Rite dignetur veniens beatos
       Ponere gressus.
  5. Laudibus cives celebrent superni
    Te Deus simplex, pariterque trine,
    Supplices et nos veniam precamur:
       Parce redemptis.
  1. O more than blessed, merit high attaining,
    Pure as the snow-drift, innocent of evil,
    Child of the desert, mightiest of Martyrs,
       Greatest of Prophets.
  2. Thirtyfold increase some with glory crowneth;
    Sixtyfold fruitage prize for others winneth;
    Hundredfold measure, thrice repeated, decks thee,
       Blest one, for guerdon.
  3. O may the virtue of thine intercession,
    All stony hardness from our hearts expelling,
    Smooth the rough places, and the crooked straighten
       Here in the desert.
  4. Thus may our gracious Maker and Redeemer,
    Seeking a station for His hallowed footsteps,
    Find, when He cometh, temples undefiled,
       Meet to receive Him.
  5. Now as the Angels celebrate Thy praises,
    Godhead essential, Trinity co-equal;
    Spare Thy redeemed ones, as they bow before Thee,
       Pardon imploring.
This is a continuation of the two preceding hymns. Translation by M. J. Blacker and G. H. Palmer. Liturgical Use: Hymn for Lauds.
  1. “O thrice happy thou, and of exalted merit, knowing no stain upon thy snow-white purity; thou mightiest of martyrs, friend of solitude, greatest of prophets.” Nemorum, nemus, a grove, forest, a place of solitude: some texts have eremi; eremus, desert, wilderness, solitude.
  2. “Crowns enriched with thrice tenfold increase adorn some; others a double crown adorns; but a triple crown with fruitage heaped up with a hundred twinings adorns thee.” Constr.: Serta (crowns, garlands) aucta ter denis crementis (increase, fruit) coronant alios, quosdam duplicata serta coronant; te ornant trina fructu cumulata serta centum nexibus. The stanza plainly refers to the Parable of the Sower, some of whose seed falling on good ground “brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, and some thirtyfold” (Matt. 13, 8). Our Lord Himself explains the meaning of this parable (Matt. 13, 18-23). The triple crown ascribed to St. John is probably that referred to in the preceding stanza, viz., that of martyr, hermit, and prophet. Note the following:
    Some crowns with glory thirtyfold are shining:
    Others, a double flower and fruit combining:
    Thy trinal chaplet bears an intertwining
       Hundredfold fruitage.
    —H. T. Henry.
  3. “Now rendered powerful by thy rich merits, pluck out the stony hardness of our hearts, make plain the rough way, and make straight the crooked paths.” (Cf. Luke 3, 4-5.)
  4. “So that the loving Creator and Redeemer of the world, coming, may becomingly condescend to direct His blessed footsteps into our hearts free from all stain of sin.”
  5. “With songs of praise let the heavenly citizens extol Thee, God, One and Three; suppliantly we pray for pardon: spare Thy redeemed ones.”