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17. Buchedd Luc

edited by Alaw Mai Edwards

A very abbreviated life of the Evangelist. The only manuscript dates from the end of the sixteenth century.

§1

Luc oedd vn o’r pedwar evangelystor1 pedwar evangelystor That is, Mathew, Mark, Luke and John, the authors of the four Gospels in the New Testament. evangelystor is a Welsh adaption of the Latin evangelizator ‘evangelist’. The variant efangelystwr also occurs in Middle Welsh, see GPC 1170. a disgybl i Bawl Ebostol2 Pawl Ebostol Paul the Apostle or Apostle of the Gentiles (see Buchedd Paul Ebostol). Luke and Paul’s friendship is apparent in their Lives and Luke was Paul’s companion on his travels: ‘Luke is with me’ (II Timotheus 4: 11; cf. Acts 16: 10 f.; 20: 5 f., 27–8). The forms ebostol and abostol are familiar in Middle Welsh (apostol is a later form, see GPC 173 and ‘Breuddwyd Pawl Ebostol’ from ‘Llyfr yr Ancr’ (LlA 152–6)). a meddic3 meddic This is the constant form in this text although the termination -yg/yc is also common in Middle Welsh. Luke was a medical doctor according to tradition, and he is referred to as the ‘dearest doctor’ in the New Testament (Colossians 4:14). Lewys Glyn Cothi also calls him a doctor (GLGC 4.13). However, he is also referred to as a doctor in the spiritual sense in the Welsh text, cf. 9. yr oeddid yn i alw ef. A Phawl Ebostol yn y ddangos a Luc yn yscrifennu pob dysc a gaphai ef gan Bawl.4 yscrifennu pob dysc a gaphai ef gan Bawl This is a reference to the tradition that Luke obtained most of his material to write his Gospel and Acts from the apostles, and Paul in particular (cf. Ryan 2012: 640). Seemingly, Luke did not personally witness the life of Christ. Ac o’r achos hwnn fu y alw ef yn veddic, canys yn gynn ebrwydded ac y clywai ef fod vn allan o’r phydd Gatholic, parod fyddai ef y’w troi ef y’r phydd, ac y’w ddwyn i’r iawn5 y’w ddwyn i’r iawn As a noun, iawn can mean ‘righteousness’ cf. LlA 26 ef adylyir pregethv vdunt [y rhai drwg] oe trossi yr yawn, ‘he should preach to them [the bad people] to turn them to righteousness’. trwy gynghorau1 A black mark on the manuscript has affected lines 9–13. a dysc. Ac am hynny y gelwid ef yn veddic.

§2

Mewn dinas ydd oedd a elwid An[ti]och,6 Antioch The capital city of Syria and the birthplace of Luke according to the traditions about him. There is a reference in the Legenda Aurea to how Luke was able to convince the Christians of Antioch – who had lost their faith and were under siege by the Turks – to restore their faith in God, see Ryan 2012: 640. It is possible that this reference echoes that episode, or it might be a general reference to Luke preaching the Gospel in Antioch, cf. GLGC 4.19–20 Pregethu llyfr Iesu–’n frau / yn Antioch a wnâi yntau ‘He generously preached the book of Christ in Antioch’. ac o achos i fod ef ynn dwyn y bobyl a oeddynt ynghyfyrgoll y lawenydd nef i gellid i alw ef yn feddic da, perphaidda ac a fuassei erioed. Ac ni orfu arno ef ddioddef vn verthyroliaeth,7 merthyroliaeth ‘martyrdom’. Some traditions about Luke claim that he was crucified, which is contradicted here as the author states that he experienced a natural death. Lewys Glyn Cothi also emphasizes that he was not a ‘martyr’ and died ‘without pain’ and peacefully (see GLGC 4.23–9). namyn marw megis be i bai ef yn kysgu. Ac ef a gladdwyd yn anrhydeddus yn ninas Bethania.8 Bethania There are several descriptions of how and where Luke died. The two main traditions are that he died either in Bethany or in the region of Boeotia in Greece. His place of death is not specified in the Legenda Aurea, but the author quotes an ancient prologue to the ‘Gospel according to Luke’ by St Jerome who notes that he died in ‘Bithynia’ (Ryan 2012: 635). However, the Anti-Marcionite Prologues state that he died at the age of 84 in Boeotia (Gregory 2003: 44). Evidently, the two traditions appear to originate from ancient Greek and Latin prologues. The Scottish Legendary and the Festial follow the same tradition as the Welsh text (see Metcalfe 1891–6: 00 and Erbe 1905: 00) and in his poem to Luke, Lewys Glyn Cothi says that ‘in the land of Betanïa he was buried with the holy books’ (GLGC 4.29–30). Bethany is a village near Jerusalem (ODCC3 197). According to the New Testament it was the home of Mary, Martha and Lazarus, and Jesus stayed there before the passion (Matthew 21:17; Mark 11:11-12). Ac oddyno y cyfodwyd y gorph y le a elwir Constantinobl,9 Constantinobl Constantinople was founded by Constantine the Great when he made this city the new capital city of the Roman Empire in 330 (ODCC3 409). In the same year he built a church there, which was completed by his son Constantius II. The church was dedicated to the Holy Apostles, and attempts begun to translate the relics of the twelve apostles to the church. It appears that relics of only three saints, that is Luke, Timoetheus and Andrew, were actually obtained. The tradition that Constantine ordered St Luke’s relics to be translated to the church is widespread. Lewys Glyn Cothi notes: O’i lety y translatiwyd, a’i frifiau, Luc, a’i farf lwyd, / a’i estynnu ’Nghonstinobl / i ar bawb o rywiau bobl (GLGC 4.31–4). ac yno y gwnaeth Duw lawer o wrthiau erddaw ef, ac y cafas pawb a’r a ddelai yno iechyd o bob rhyw glefyd a fai arnaw.

§1

Luke was one of the four evangelists and a pupil of the Apostle Paul and he was called a doctor. And the Apostle Paul instructed him and Luke would write all he learnt from Paul. And for this reason he was called a doctor, because as soon as he heard that someone was outside the Catholic faith, he would be ready to turn him to the [true] faith, and to bring him to righteousness through counsel and learning. And because of that he was called a doctor.

§2

He was in a city called Antioch, and because he brought the people who had gone astray [back] to the joy of heaven, he could be called a good doctor, the most perfect that had ever been. And he did not have to suffer any martyrdom, except death as if he were falling asleep, and he was buried honourably in the city of Bethany. And from there his body was translated to a place called Constantinople, and God performed many miracles there because of him, and everyone who came there was cured of any kind of disease from which he was suffering.

1 pedwar evangelystor That is, Mathew, Mark, Luke and John, the authors of the four Gospels in the New Testament. evangelystor is a Welsh adaption of the Latin evangelizator ‘evangelist’. The variant efangelystwr also occurs in Middle Welsh, see GPC 1170.

2 Pawl Ebostol Paul the Apostle or Apostle of the Gentiles (see Buchedd Paul Ebostol). Luke and Paul’s friendship is apparent in their Lives and Luke was Paul’s companion on his travels: ‘Luke is with me’ (II Timotheus 4: 11; cf. Acts 16: 10 f.; 20: 5 f., 27–8). The forms ebostol and abostol are familiar in Middle Welsh (apostol is a later form, see GPC 173 and ‘Breuddwyd Pawl Ebostol’ from ‘Llyfr yr Ancr’ (LlA 152–6)).

3 meddic This is the constant form in this text although the termination -yg/yc is also common in Middle Welsh. Luke was a medical doctor according to tradition, and he is referred to as the ‘dearest doctor’ in the New Testament (Colossians 4:14). Lewys Glyn Cothi also calls him a doctor (GLGC 4.13). However, he is also referred to as a doctor in the spiritual sense in the Welsh text, cf. 9.

4 yscrifennu pob dysc a gaphai ef gan Bawl This is a reference to the tradition that Luke obtained most of his material to write his Gospel and Acts from the apostles, and Paul in particular (cf. Ryan 2012: 640). Seemingly, Luke did not personally witness the life of Christ.

5 y’w ddwyn i’r iawn As a noun, iawn can mean ‘righteousness’ cf. LlA 26 ef adylyir pregethv vdunt [y rhai drwg] oe trossi yr yawn, ‘he should preach to them [the bad people] to turn them to righteousness’.

6 Antioch The capital city of Syria and the birthplace of Luke according to the traditions about him. There is a reference in the Legenda Aurea to how Luke was able to convince the Christians of Antioch – who had lost their faith and were under siege by the Turks – to restore their faith in God, see Ryan 2012: 640. It is possible that this reference echoes that episode, or it might be a general reference to Luke preaching the Gospel in Antioch, cf. GLGC 4.19–20 Pregethu llyfr Iesu–’n frau / yn Antioch a wnâi yntau ‘He generously preached the book of Christ in Antioch’.

7 merthyroliaeth ‘martyrdom’. Some traditions about Luke claim that he was crucified, which is contradicted here as the author states that he experienced a natural death. Lewys Glyn Cothi also emphasizes that he was not a ‘martyr’ and died ‘without pain’ and peacefully (see GLGC 4.23–9).

8 Bethania There are several descriptions of how and where Luke died. The two main traditions are that he died either in Bethany or in the region of Boeotia in Greece. His place of death is not specified in the Legenda Aurea, but the author quotes an ancient prologue to the ‘Gospel according to Luke’ by St Jerome who notes that he died in ‘Bithynia’ (Ryan 2012: 635). However, the Anti-Marcionite Prologues state that he died at the age of 84 in Boeotia (Gregory 2003: 44). Evidently, the two traditions appear to originate from ancient Greek and Latin prologues. The Scottish Legendary and the Festial follow the same tradition as the Welsh text (see Metcalfe 1891–6: 00 and Erbe 1905: 00) and in his poem to Luke, Lewys Glyn Cothi says that ‘in the land of Betanïa he was buried with the holy books’ (GLGC 4.29–30). Bethany is a village near Jerusalem (ODCC3 197). According to the New Testament it was the home of Mary, Martha and Lazarus, and Jesus stayed there before the passion (Matthew 21:17; Mark 11:11-12).

9 Constantinobl Constantinople was founded by Constantine the Great when he made this city the new capital city of the Roman Empire in 330 (ODCC3 409). In the same year he built a church there, which was completed by his son Constantius II. The church was dedicated to the Holy Apostles, and attempts begun to translate the relics of the twelve apostles to the church. It appears that relics of only three saints, that is Luke, Timoetheus and Andrew, were actually obtained. The tradition that Constantine ordered St Luke’s relics to be translated to the church is widespread. Lewys Glyn Cothi notes: O’i lety y translatiwyd, a’i frifiau, Luc, a’i farf lwyd, / a’i estynnu ’Nghonstinobl / i ar bawb o rywiau bobl (GLGC 4.31–4).

1 A black mark on the manuscript has affected lines 9–13.