A letter from Radegund of Thuringia (after 561?) thanks to The Sinister Origin of Cathedrals on Carolyn Emerick Norðfolc Volklorist

https://epistolae.ctl.columbia.edu/letter/947.html

thanks to The Sinister Origin of Cathedrals
Carolyn Emerick Norðfolc Volklorist

A letter from Radegund of Thuringia (after 561?)
Sender
Radegund of Thuringia
Receiver
Amalfred/Hamalafred
Translated letter:
The Thuringian War [The Fall of Thuringia]
Oh, sad state of war, malevolent destiny
That fells proud kingdoms in a sudden slide!
The rooves that stood so long in happiness are broken
To lie fallen beneath the vast charred ruin.
The palace courts, where art once flouished
Are vaulted now with sad, glowing ashes.
Towers artfully gilded, then shone golden-red,
Now drifting ashes blur the glitter to pallor.
The captive maid given to a hostile lord, her power fell
From the heights of glory to the lowest depths. (10)
The entourage of servants, standing resplendent, her youthful peers
Were dead in a day, besmirched with funeral ashes.
The bright attendant halo of powerful ministers
Now lie still without tomb or funeral service. The conquering flame belching, reddens the gold hair of her beloved
While the milk-white woman lies on the ground.
Alas, the corpses lie shamefully unburied on the field,
An entire people, strewn in a common grave.
Not Troy alone must mourn her ruins:
The Thuringian land suffered equal slaughter. (20)
The matron was rapt away, with streaming hair, bound fast
Without even a sad farewell to the household gods.
Nor could the captive press a kiss on the threshhold
Nor cast one backward glance toward what was lost.
A wife’s naked feet trod in her husband’s blood
And the tender sister stepped over the fallen brother.
The boy torn from his mother’s embrace, his funeral plaint
Hung on her lips, with all her tears unshed.
So to lose the life of a child is not the heaviest lot,
Gasping, the mother lost even her pious tears. (30)

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~ by affliction-magazinedotcom on April 19, 2019.

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