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Book 24 Canticle of Canticles
SOLOMON'S CANTICLE OF CANTICLES
This Book is called the Canticle of Canticles, that is to say, the most
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 1
The spouse aspires to an union with Christ, their mutual love for one
1:1. Let him kiss me with the kiss of his mouth: for thy breasts are
Let him kiss me... The church, the spouse of Christ, prays that he may
1:2. Smelling sweet of the best ointments. Thy name is as oil poured
1:3. Draw me: we will run after thee to the odour of thy ointments. The
Draw me... That is, with thy grace: otherwise I should not be able to
1:4. I am black but beautiful, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, as the tents
I am black but beautiful... That is, the church of Christ founded in
1:5. Do not consider me that I am brown, because the sun hath altered my
1:6. Shew me, O thou whom my soul loveth, where thou feedest, where thou
1:7. If thou know not thyself, O fairest among women, go forth, and
If thou know not thyself, etc... Christ encourages his spouse to follow
1:8. To my company of horsemen, in Pharao's chariots, have I likened
1:9. Thy cheeks are beautiful as the turtledove's, thy neck as jewels.
1:10. We will make thee chains of gold, inlaid with silver.
1:11. While the king was at his repose, my spikenard sent forth the
1:12. A bundle of myrrh is my beloved to me, he shall abide between my
1:13. A cluster of cypress my love is to me, in the vineyards of
1:14. Behold thou are fair, O my love, behold thou are fair, thy eyes
1:15. Behold thou art fair, my beloved, and comely. Our bed is
1:16. The beams of our houses are of cedar, our rafters of cypress
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 2
Christ caresses his spouse: he invites her to him.
2:1. I am the flower of the field, and the lily of the valleys.
I am the flower of the field... Christ professes himself the flower of
2:2. As the lily among thorns, so is my love among the daughters.
2:3. As the apple tree among the trees of the woods, so is my beloved
2:4. He brought me into the cellar of wine, he set in order charity in
2:5. Stay me up with flowers, compass me about with apples: because I
2:6. His left hand is under my head, and his right hand shall embrace
2:7. I adjure you, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, by the roes, and the
2:8. The voice of my beloved, behold he cometh leaping upon the
The voice of my beloved: that is, the preaching of the gospel
2:9. My beloved is like a roe, or a young hart. Behold he standeth
2:10. Behold my beloved speaketh to me: Arise, make haste, my love, my
2:11. For winter is now past, the rain is over and gone.
2:12. The flowers have appeared in our land, the time of pruning is
2:13. The fig tree hath put forth her green figs: the vines in flower
2:14. My dove in the clefts of the rock, in the hollow places of the
2:15. Catch us the little foxes that destroy the vines: for our vineyard
Catch us the little foxes... Christ commands his pastors to catch false
2:16. My beloved to me, and I to him who feedeth among the lilies,
2:17. Till the day break, and the shadows retire. Return: be like, my
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 3
The spouse seeks Christ. The glory of his humanity.
3:1. In my bed by night I sought him whom my soul loveth: I sought him,
In my bed by night, etc... The Gentiles as in the dark, and seeking in
3:2. I will rise, and will go about the city: in the streets and the
3:3. The watchmen who keep the city, found me: Have you seen him, whom
3:4. When I had a little passed by them, I found him whom my soul
3:5. I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the roes and the harts
3:6. Who is she that goeth up by the desert, as a pillar of smoke of
3:7. Behold threescore valiant ones of the most valiant of Israel,
3:8. All holding swords, and most expert in war: every man's sword upon
3:9. King Solomon hath made him a litter of the wood of Libanus:
3:10. The pillars thereof he made of silver, the seat of gold, the going
3:11. Go forth, ye daughters of Sion, and see king Solomon in the
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 4
Christ sets forth the graces of his spouse: and declares his love for
4:1. How beautiful art thou, my love, how beautiful art thou! thy eyes
How beautiful art thou... Christ again praises the beauties of his
4:2. Thy teeth as flocks of sheep, that are shorn, which come up from
4:3. Thy lips are as a scarlet lace: and thy speech sweet. Thy cheeks
4:4. Thy neck, is as the tower of David, which is built with bulwarks: a
4:5. Thy two breasts like two young roes that are twins, which feed
Thy two breasts, etc... Mystically to be understood: the love of God and
4:6. Till the day break, and the shadows retire, I will go to the
4:7. Thou art all fair, O my love, and there is not a spot in thee.
4:8. Come from Libanus, my spouse, come from Libanus, come: thou shalt
4:9. Thou hast wounded my heart, my sister, my spouse, thou hast wounded
4:10. How beautiful are thy breasts, my sister, my spouse! thy breasts
4:11. Thy lips, my spouse, are as a dropping honeycomb, honey and milk
4:12. My sister, my spouse, is a garden enclosed, a garden enclosed, a
My sister, etc., a garden enclosed... Figuratively the church is
4:13. Thy plants are a paradise of pomegranates with the fruits of the
4:14. Spikenard and saffron, sweet cane and cinnamon, with all the trees
4:15. The fountain of gardens: the well of living waters, which run with
4:16. Arise, O north wind, and come, O south wind, blow through my
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 5
Christ calls his spouse: she languishes with love: and describes him by
5:1. Let my beloved come into his garden, and eat the fruit of his apple
Let my beloved come into his garden, etc... Garden, mystically the
5:2. I sleep, and my heart watcheth: the voice of my beloved knocking:
5:3. I have put off my garment, how shall I put it on? I have washed my
5:4. My beloved put his hand through the key hole, and my bowels were
My beloved put his hand through the key hole, etc... The spouse of
5:5. I arose up to open to my beloved: my hands dropped with myrrh, and
5:6. I opened the bolt of my door to my beloved: but he had turned
5:7. The keepers that go about the city found me: they struck me: and
5:8. I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if you find my beloved,
5:9. What manner of one is thy beloved of the beloved, O thou most
5:10. My beloved is white and ruddy, chosen out of thousands.
My beloved, etc... In this and the following verses, the church
5:11. His head is as the finest gold: his locks as branches of palm
5:12. His eyes as doves upon brooks of waters, which are washed with
5:13. His cheeks are as beds of aromatical spices set by the perfumers.
5:14. His hands are turned and as of gold, full of hyacinths. His belly
5:15. His legs as pillars of marble, that are set upon bases of gold.
5:16. His throat most sweet, and he is all lovely: such is my beloved,
5:17. Whither is thy beloved gone, O thou most beautiful among women?
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 6
The spouse of Christ is but one: she is fair and terrible.
6:1. My beloved is gone down into his garden, to the bed of aromatical
My beloved is gone down into his garden... Christ, pleased with the good
6:2. I to my beloved, and my beloved to me, who feedeth among the
6:3. Thou art beautiful, O my love, sweet and comely as Jerusalem
6:4. Turn away thy eyes from me, for they have made me flee away. Thy
6:5. Thy teeth as a flock of sheep, which come up from the washing, all
6:6. Thy cheeks are as the bark of a pomegranate, beside what is hidden
6:7. There are threescore queens, and fourscore concubines, and young
6:8. One is my dove, my perfect one is but one, she is the only one of
One is my dove, etc... That is, my church is one, and she only is
6:9. Who is she that cometh forth as the morning rising, fair as the
Who is she, etc... Here is a beautiful metaphor describing the church
6:10. I went down into the garden of nuts, to see the fruits of the
6:11. I knew not: my soul troubled me for the chariots of Aminadab.
6:12. Return, return, O Sulamitess: return, return that we may behold
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 7
A further description of the graces of the church the spouse of Christ.
7:1. What shalt thou see in the Sulamitess but the companies of camps?
How beautiful are thy steps, etc... By these metaphors are signified the
7:2. Thy navel is like a round bowl never wanting cups. Thy belly is
7:3. Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins.
7:4. Thy neck as a tower of ivory. Thy eyes like the fishpools in
7:5. Thy head is like Carmel: and the hairs of thy head as the purple of
Thy head is like Carmel... Christ, the invisible head of his church, is
7:6. How beautiful art thou, and how comely, my dearest, in delights!
7:7. Thy stature is like to a palm tree, and thy breasts to clusters of
7:8. I said: I will go up into the palm tree, and will take hold of the
7:9. Thy throat like the best wine, worthy for my beloved to drink, and
7:10. I to my beloved, and his turning is towards me.
7:11. Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field, let us abide in
7:12. Let us get up early to the vineyards, let us see if the vineyard
7:13. The mandrakes give a smell. In our gates are all fruits: the new
Canticle of Canticles Chapter 8
The love of the church to Christ: his love to her.
8:1. Who shall give thee to me for my brother, sucking the breasts of my
8:2. I will take hold of thee, and bring thee into my mother's house:
8:3. His left hand under my head, and his right hand shall embrace me.
His left hand, etc... Words of the church to Christ. His left hand,
8:4. I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, that you stir not up, nor
8:5. Who is this that cometh up from the desert, flowing with delights,
Who is this, etc... The angels with admiration behold the Gentiles
8:6. Put me as a seal upon thy heart, as a seal upon thy arm, for love
8:7. Many waters cannot quench charity, neither can the floods drown it:
8:8. Our sister is little, and hath no breasts. What shall we do to our
Our sister is little, etc... Mystically signifies the Jews, who are to
8:9. If she be a wall: let us build upon it bulwarks of silver: if she
8:10. I am a wall: and my breasts are as a tower since I am become in
8:11. The peaceable had a vineyard, in that which hath people: he let
8:12. My vineyard is before me. A thousand are for thee, the peaceable,
8:13. Thou that dwellest in the gardens, the friends hearken: make me
8:14. Flee away, O my beloved, and be like to the roe, and to the young
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