St. Martin of Tours 
	By St. Suplitius Serverus
SEVERUS to his dearest brother Desiderius sendeth greeting. I had 
determined, my like-minded brother, to keep private, and confine within the 
walls of my own house, the little treatise which I had written concerning the 
life of St. Martin. I did so, as I am not gifted with much talent, and shrank 
from the criticisms of the world, lest (as I think will be the case) my 
somewhat unpolished style should displease my readers, and I should be deemed 
highly worthy of general reprehension for having too boldly laid hold of a 
subject which ought to have been reserved for truly eloquent writers. But I 
have not been able to refuse your request again and again presented. For what 
could there be which I would not grant in deference to your love, even at the 
expense of my own modesty? However, I have submitted the work to you on the 
sure understanding that you will reveal it to no other, having received your 
promise to that effect. Nevertheless, I have my fears that yon will become the 
means of its publication to the world; and I well know that, once issued, it 
can never (1) be recalled. If this shall happen, and you come to know that it 
is read by some others, you will, I trust, kindly ask the readers to attend to 
the facts related, rather than the language in which they are set forth. You 
will beg them not to be offended if the style chances unpleasantly to affect 
their ears, because the kingdom of God consists not of eloquence, but faith. 
Let them also bear in mind that salvation was preached to the world, not by 
orators, but by fishermen, although God could certainly have adopted the other 
course, had it been advantageous. For my part, indeed, when I first applied my 
mind to writing what follows, because I thought it disgraceful that the 
excellences of so great a man should remain concealed, I resolved with myself 
not to feel ashamed on account of solecisms of language. This I did because I 
had never attained to any great knowledge of such things; or, if I had 
formerly some taste of studies of the kind, I had lost the whole of that, 
through having neglected these matters for so long a course of time. But, 
after all, that I may not have in future to adopt such an irksome mode of 
self-defense, the best way will be that the book should be published, if you 
think right, with the author's name suppressed. In order that this may be 
done, kindly erase the title which the book bears on its front, so that the 
page may be silent; and (what is quite enough) let the book proclaim its 
subject-matter, while it tells nothing of the author. 
Reasons for writing the Life of St. Martin. 
    Most men being vainly devoted to the pursuit of worldly glory, have, as 
they imagined, acquired a memorial of their own names from this source; viz. 
devoting their pens to the embellishment of the lives of famous men. This 
course, although it did not secure for them a lasting reputation, still has 
undoubtedly brought them some fulfilment of the hope they cherished. It has 
done so, both by preserving their own memory, though to no purpose, and 
because, through their having presented to the world the examples of great 
men, no small emulation has been excited in the bosoms of their readers. Yet, 
notwithstanding these things, their labors have in no degree borne upon the 
blessed and never-ending life to which we look forward. For what has a glory, 
destined to perish with the world, profited those men themselves who have 
written on mere secular matters? Or what benefit has posterity derived from 
reading of Hector as a warrior, or Socrates as an expounder of philosophy? 
There can be no profit in such things, since it is not only folly to imitate 
the persons referred to, but absolute madness not to assail them with the 
utmost severity. For, in truth, those persons who estimate human life only by 
present actions, have consigned their hopes to fables, and their souls to the 
tomb. In fact, they gave themselves up to be perpetuated simply in the memory 
of mortals, whereas it is the duty of man rather to 
seek after eternal life than an eternal memorial and that, not by writing, or 
fighting, or philosophizing, but by living a pious, holy, and religious life. 
This erroneous conduct of mankind, being enshrined in literature, has 
prevailed to such an extent that it has found many who have been emulous 
either of the vain philosophy or the foolish excellence which has been 
celebrated. For this reason, I think I will accomplish something well worth 
the necessary pains, if I write the life of a most holy man, which shall serve 
in future as an example to others; by which, indeed, the readers shall be 
roused to the pursuit of true knowledge, and heavenly warfare, and divine 
virtue. In so doing, we have regard also to our own advantage, so that we may 
look for, not a vain remembrance among men, but an eternal reward from God. 
For, although we ourselves have not lived in such a manner that we can serve 
for an example to others, nevertheless, we have made it our endeavor that he 
should not remain unknown who was a man worthy of imitation. I shall therefore 
set about writing the life of St. Martin, and shall narrate both what he did 
previous to his episcopate, and what he performed as a bishop. At the same 
time, I cannot hope to set forth all that he was or did. Those excellences of 
which he alone was conscious are completely unknown, because, as he did not 
seek for honor from men, he desired, as much as he could accomplish it, that 
his virtues should be concealed. And even of those which had become known to 
us, we have omitted a great number, because we have judged it enough   if only 
the more striking and eminent should be  recorded. At the same time, I had in 
the interests of readers to see to it that, no undue amount   of instances 
being set before them should make   them weary of the subject. But I implore 
those  who are to read what follows to give full faith to  the things 
narrated, and to believe that I have  written nothing of which I had not 
certain  knowledge and evidence. I should, in fact, have preferred to be 
silent rather than to narrate things which are false. (1) 
Military Service of St. Martin. 
    MARTIN, then, was born at Sabaria (1) in Pannonia, but was brought up at 
Ticinum, (2) which is situated in Italy. His parents were, according to the 
judgment of the world, of no mean rank, but were heathens. His father was at 
first simply a soldier, but afterwards a military tribune. He himself in his 
youth following military pursuits was enrolled in the imperial guard, first 
under king Constantine, and then under Julian Caesar. This, however, was not 
done of his own free will, for, almost from his earliest years, the holy 
infancy of the illustrious boy aspired rather to the service of God. (3) For, 
when he was of the age of ten years, he betook himself, against the wish of 
his parents, to the Church, and begged that he might become a catechumen. Soon 
afterwards, becoming in a wonderful manner completely devoted to the service 
of God, when he was twelve years old, he desired to enter on the life of a 
hermit; and he would have followed up that desire with the necessary vows, had 
not his as yet too youthful age prevented. His mind, however, being always 
engaged on matters pertaining to the monasteries or the Church, already 
meditated in his boyish years what he afterwards, as a professed servant of 
Christ, fulfilled. But when an edict was issued by the ruling powers (4) in 
the state, that the sons of veterans should be enrolled for military service, 
and he, on the information furnished by his father, (who looked with an evil 
eye on his blessed actions) having been seized and put in chains, when he was 
fifteen years old, was compelled to take the military oath, then showed 
himself content with only one servant as his attendant. And even to him, 
changing places as it were, he often acted as though, while really master, he 
had been inferior; to such a degree that, for the most part, he drew off his 
[servant's] boots and cleaned them with his own hand; while they took their 
meals together, the real master, however, generally acting the part of 
servant. During nearly three years before his baptism, he was engaged in the 
profession of arms, but he kept completely free from those vices in which that 
class of men become too frequently involved. He showed exceeding kindness 
towards his fellow-soldiers, and held them in wonderful affection; while his 
patience and humility surpassed what seemed possible to human nature. There is 
no need to praise the self-denial which he displayed: it was so great that, 
even at that date, he was regarded not so much as being a soldier as a monk. 
By all these qualities he had so endeared himself to the whole body of his 
comrades, that they esteemed him while they marvelously loved him. Although 
not yet made a new creature (5) in Christ, he, by his good works, acted the 
part of a candidate for baptism. This he did, for instance, by aiding those 
who were in trouble, by furnishing assistance to the wretched, by supporting 
the needy, by clothing the naked, while he reserved nothing for himself from 
his military pay except what was necessary for his daily sustenance. Even 
then, far from being a senseless hearer of the Gospel, he so far complied with 
its precepts as to take no thought about the morrow. 
Christ appears to St. Martin. 
    ACCORDINGLY, at a certain period, when he had nothing except his arms and 
his simple military dress, in the middle of winter, a winter which had shown 
itself more severe than ordinary, so that the extreme cold was proving fatal 
to many, he happened to meet at the gate of the city of Amiens (1) a poor man 
destitute of clothing. He was entreating those that passed by to have 
compassion upon him, but all passed the wretched man without notice, when 
Martin, that man full of God, recognized that a being to whom others showed no 
pity, was, in that respect, left to him. Yet, what should he do? He had 
nothing except the cloak in which he was clad, for he had already parted with 
the rest of his garments for similar purposes. Taking, therefore, his sword 
with which he was girt, he divided his cloak into two equal parts, and gave 
one part to the poor man, while he again clothed himself with the remainder. 
Upon this, some of the by-standers laughed, because he was now an unsightly 
object, and stood out as but partly dressed. Many, however, who were of 
sounder understanding, groaned deeply because they themselves had done nothing 
similar. They especially felt this, because, being possessed of more than 
Martin, they could have clothed the poor man without reducing themselves to 
nakedness. In the following night, when Martin had resigned himself to sleep, 
he had a vision of Christ arrayed in that part of his cloak with which he had 
clothed the poor man. He contemplated the Lord with the greatest attention, 
and was told to own as his the robe which he had given. Ere long, he heard 
Jesus saying with a clear voice to the multitude of angels standing round -- 
"Martin, who is still but a catechumen, clothed (2) me with this robe." The 
Lord, truly mindful of his own words (who had said when on earth -- "Inasmuch 
(3) as ye have done these things to one of the least of these, ye have done 
them unto me), declared that he himself had been clothed in that poor man; and 
to confirm the testimony he bore to so good a deed, he condescended to show 
him himself in that very dress which the poor man had received. After this 
vision the sainted man was not puffed up with human glory, but, acknowledging 
the goodness of God in what had been done, and being now of the age of twenty 
years, he hastened to receive baptism. He did not, however, all at once, 
retire from military service, yielding to the entreaties of his tribune, whom 
he admitted to be his familiar tent-companion. (4) For the tribune promised 
that, after the period of his office had expired, he too would retire from the 
world. Martin, kept back by the expectation of this event, continued, although 
but in name, to act the part of a soldier, for nearly two years after he had 
received baptism. 
Martin retires from Military Service. 
    IN the meantime, as the barbarians were rushing within the two divisions 
of Gaul, Julian Caesar, (1) bringing an army together at the city (2) of the 
Vaugiones, began to distribute a donative to the soldiers. As was the custom 
in such a case, they were called forward, one by one, until it came to the 
turn of Martin. Then, indeed, judging it a suitable opportunity for seeking 
his discharge -- for he did not think it would be proper for him, if he were 
not to continue in the service, to receive a donative -- he said to Caesar, 
"Hitherto I have served you as a soldier: allow me now to become a soldier to 
God: let the man who is to serve thee receive thy donative: I am the soldier 
of Christ it is not lawful for me to fight." Then truly the tyrant stormed on 
hearing such words, declaring that, from fear of the battle, which was to take 
place on the morrow, and not from any religious feeling, Martin withdrew from 
the service. But Martin, full of courage, yea all the more resolute from the 
danger that had been set before him, exclaims, "If this conduct of mine is 
ascribed to cowardice, and not to faith, I will take my stand unarmed before 
the line of battle tomorrow, and in the name of the Lord Jesus, protected by 
the sign of the cross, and not by shield or helmet, I will safely penetrate 
the  ranks of the enemy." He is ordered, therefore,   to be thrust back into 
prison, determined on proving his words true by exposing himself unarmed to 
the barbarians. But, on the following day, the enemy sent ambassadors to treat 
about peace and surrendered both themselves and all their possessions. In 
these circumstances who can doubt that this victory was due to the saintly 
man? It was granted him that he should not be sent unarmed to the fight. And 
although the good Lord could have preserved his own soldier, even amid the 
swords and darts of the enemy, yet that his blessed eyes might not be pained 
by witnessing the death of others, he removed all necessity for fighting. For 
Christ did not require to secure any other victory in behalf of his own 
soldier, than that, the enemy being subdued without bloodshed, no one should 
suffer death. 
Martin converts a Rubber to the Faith. 
    FROM that time quitting military service, Martin earnestly sought after 
the society of Hilarius, bishop of the city Pictava, (1) whose faith in the 
things of God was then regarded as of high renown, and in universal esteem. 
For some time Martin made his abode with him.   Now, this same Hilarius, 
having instituted him in the office of the diaconate, endeavored still more 
closely to attach him to himself, and to bind him by leading him to take part 
in Divine service. But when he constantly refused, crying out that he was 
unworthy, Hilarius, as being a man of deep penetration, perceived that he 
could only be constrained in this way, if he should lay that sort of office 
upon him, in discharging which there should seem to be a kind of injury done 
him. He therefore appointed him to be an exorcist. Martin did not refuse this 
appointment, from the fear that he might seem to have looked down upon it as 
somewhat humble. Not long after this, he was warned in a dream that he should 
visit his native land, and more particularly his parents, who were still 
involved in heathenism, with a regard for their religious interests. He set 
forth in accordance with the expressed wish of the holy Hilarius, and, after 
being adjured by him with many prayers and tears, that he would in due time 
return. According to report Martin entered on that journey in a melancholy 
frame of mind, after calling the brethren to witness that many sufferings lay 
before him. The result fully justified this prediction. For, first of all, 
having followed some devious paths among the Alps, he fell into the hands of 
robbers. And when one of them lifted up his axe and poised it above Martin's 
head, another of them met with his right hand the blow as it fell; 
nevertheless, having had his hands bound behind his back, he was handed over 
to one of them to be guarded and stripped. The robber, having led him to a 
private place apart from the rest, began to enquire of him who he was. Upon 
this, Martin replied that he was a Christian. The robber next asked him 
whether he was afraid. Then indeed Martin most courageously replied  that he 
never before had felt so safe, because he  knew that the mercy of the Lord 
would be especially present with him in the midst of trials. He added that he 
grieved rather for the man in whose hands he was, because, by living a life of 
robbery, he was showing himself unworthy of the mercy of Christ. And then 
entering on a discourse concerning Evangelical truth, he preached the word of 
God to the robber. Why should I delay stating the result? The robber believed; 
and, after expressing his respect for Martin, he restored him to the way, 
entreating him to pray the Lord for him. That same robber was after- 
wards seen leading a religious life; so that, in fact, the narrative I have 
given above is based upon an account furnished by himself. 
The Devil throws himself in the Way of Martin. 
    Martin, then, having gone on from thence, after he had passed Milan, the 
devil met him in the way, having assumed the form of a man. The devil first 
asked him to what place he was going. Martin having answered him to the effect 
that he was minded to go whithersoever the Lord called him, the devil said to 
him, "Wherever you go, or whatever you attempt, the devil will resist you." 
Then Martin, replying to him in the prophetical word, said, "The Lord is my 
helper; I will not fear what man can do unto me."(1) Upon this, his enemy 
immediately vanished out of his sight; and thus, as he had intended in his 
heart and mind, he set free his mother from the errors of heathenism, though 
his father continued to cleave to its evils. However, he saved many by his 
    After this, when the Arian heresy had spread through the whole world, and 
was especially powerful in Illyria, and when he, almost single-handed, was 
fighting most strenuously against the treachery of the priests, and had been 
subjected to many punishments (for he was publicly scourged, and at last was 
compelled to leave the city), again betaking himself to Italy, and having 
found the Church in the two divisions of Gaul in a distracted condition 
through the departure also of the holy Hilarius, whom the violence of the 
heretics had driven into exile, he established a monastery for himself at 
Milan. There, too, Auxentius, the originator and leader of the Arians, 
bitterly persecuted him; and, after he had assailed him with many injuries, 
violently expelled him from the city. Thinking, therefore, that it was 
necessary to yield to circumstances, he withdrew to the island Gallinaria,(2) 
with a certain presbyter as his companion, a man of distinguished excellences. 
Here he subsisted for some time on the roots of plants; and, while doing so, 
he took for food hellebore, which is, as people say, a poisonous kind of 
grass. But when he perceived the strength of the poison increasing within him, 
and death now nearly at hand, he warded off the imminent danger by means of 
prayer, and immediately all his pains were put to flight. And not long after 
having discovered that, through penitence on the part of the king, permission 
to return had been granted to holy Hilarius, he made an effort to meet him at 
Rome, and, with this view, set out for that city. 
Martin restores a Catechumen to Life. 
    As Hilarius had already gone away, so Martin followed in his footsteps; 
and having been most joyously welcomed by him, he established for himself a 
monastery not far from the town. At this time a certain catechumen joined him, 
being desirous of becoming instructed in the doctrines: and habits of the most 
holy man. But, after the lapse only of a few days, the catechumen, seized with 
a languor, began to suffer from a violent fever. It so happened that Martin 
had then left home, and having remained away three days, he found on his 
return that life had departed from the catechumen; and so suddenly had death 
occurred, that he had left this world without receiving baptism. The body 
being laid out in public was being honored by the last sad offices on the part 
of the mourning brethren, when Martin hurries up to them with tears and 
lamentations. But then laying hold; as it were, of the Holy Spirit, with the 
whole powers of his mind, he orders the others to quit the cell in which the 
body was lying; and bolting the door, he stretches himself at full length on 
the dead limbs of the departed brother. Having given himself for some time to 
earnest prayer, and perceiving by means of the Spirit of God that power was 
present,(2) he then rose up for a little, and gazing on the countenance of the 
deceased, he waited without misgiving for the result of his prayer and of the 
mercy of the Lord. And scarcely had the space of two hours elapsed, when he 
saw the dead man begin to move a little in all his members, and to tremble 
with his eyes opened for the practice of sight. Then indeed, turning to the 
Lord with a loud voice and giving thanks, he filled the cell with his 
ejaculations. Hearing the noise, those who had been standing at the door 
immediately rush inside. And truly a marvelous spectacle met them, for they 
beheld the man alive whom they had formerly left dead. Thus being restored to 
life, and having immediately obtained baptism, he lived for many years 
afterwards; and he was the first who offered himself to us both as a subject 
that had experienced the virtues(3) of Martin, and as a witness to their 
existence. The same man was wont to relate that, when he left the body, he was 
brought before the tribunal of the Judge, and being assigned to gloomy regions 
and vulgar crowds, he 
received a severe 4 sentence. Then, however, he added, it was suggested by two 
angels of the Judge that he was the man for whom Martin was praying ; and 
that, on this account, he was ordered to be led back by the same angels, and 
given up to Martin, and restored to his former life. From this time forward, 
the name of the sainted man became illustrious, so that, as being reckoned 
holy by all, he was also deemed powerful and truly apostolical. 
Martin restores one that had been strangled. 
    NOT long after these events, while Martin was passing by the estate of a 
certain man named Lupicinus, who was held in high esteem according to the 
judgment of the world, he was received with shouting and the lamentations of a 
wailing crowd. Having, in an anxious state of mind gone up to that multitude, 
and enquired what such weeping meant, he was told that one of the slaves of 
the family had put an end to his life by hanging. Hearing this, Martin entered 
the cell in which the body was lying, and, excluding all the multitude, he 
stretched himself upon the body, and spent some little time in prayer. Ere 
long, the deceased, with life beaming in his countenance, and with his 
drooping eyes fixed on Martin's face, is aroused; and with a gentle effort 
attempting to rise, he laid hold of the fight hand of the saintly man, and by 
this means stood upon his feet. In this manner, while the whole multitude 
looked on, he walked along with Martin to the porch of the house. 
High Esteem in which Martin was held. 
    NEARLY about the same time, Martin was called upon to undertake the 
episcopate of the church at Tours ;(1) but when he could not easily be drawn 
forth from his monastery, a certain Ruricius, one of the citizens, pretending 
that his wife was ill, and casting himself down at his knees, prevailed on him 
to go forth. Multitudes of the citizens having previously been posted by the 
road on which he traveled, he is thus under a kind of guard escorted to the 
city. An incredible number of people not only from that town, but also from 
the neighboring cities, had, in a wonderful manner, assembled to give their 
votes.(2) There was but one wish among all, there were the same prayers, and 
there was the same fixed opinion to the effect that Martin was most worthy of 
the episcopate, and that the church would be happy with such a priest. A few 
persons, however, and among these some of the bishops, who had been summoned 
to appoint a chief priest, were impiously offering resistance, asserting 
forsooth that Martin's person was contemptible, that he was unworthy of the 
episcopate, that he was a man despicable in countenance, that his clothing was 
mean, and his hair disgusting. This madness of theirs was ridiculed by the 
people of Sounder judgment, inasmuch as such objectors only proclaimed the 
illustrious character of the man, while they sought to slander him. Nor truly 
was it allowed them to do anything else, than what the people, following the 
Divine will, desired(3) to be accomplished. Among the bishops, however, who 
had been present, a certain one of the name Defensor is said to have specially 
offered opposition; and on this account it was observed that he was at the 
time severely censured in the reading from the prophets. For when it so 
happened that the reader, whose duty it was to read in public that day, being 
blocked out by the people, failed to appear, the officials falling into 
confusion, while they waited for him who never came, one of those standing by, 
laying hold of the Psalter, seized upon the first verse which presented itself 
to him. Now, the Psalm ran thus: "Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou 
hast perfected praise because of thine enemies, that thou mightest destroy the 
enemy and the avenger."(4) On these words being read, a shout was raised by 
the people, and the opposite party were confounded. It was believed that this 
Psalm had been chosen by Divine ordination, that Defensor(5) might hear a 
testimony to his own work, because the praise of the Lord was perfected out of 
the mouth of babes and sucklings in the case of Martin, while the enemy was at 
the same time both pointed out and destroyed. 
Martin as Bishop of Tours. 
    And now having entered on the episcopal office, it is beyond my power 
fully to set forth how Martin distinguished himself in the discharge of its 
duties. For he remained with the utmost constancy, the same as he had been 
before. There was the same humility in his heart, and the same homeliness in 
his garments. Full alike of dignity and courtesy, he kept up the position of a 
bishop properly, yet in such a way as not to lay aside the objects and virtues 
of a monk. Accordingly he made use, for some time, of the cell connected with 
the church but afterwards, when he felt it impossible to tolerate the 
disturbance caused by the numbers of those visiting it, he established a 
monastery for himself about two miles outside the city. This spot was so 
secret and retired that he enjoyed in it the solitude of a hermit. For, on one 
side, it was surrounded by a precipitous rock of a lofty mountain, while the 
river Loire had shut in the rest of the plain by a bay extending back for a 
little distance; and the place could be approached only by one, and that a 
very narrow passage. Here, then, he possessed a cell constructed of wood. Many 
also of the brethren had, in the same manner, fashioned retreats for 
themselves, but most of them had formed these out of the rock of the 
overhanging mountain, hollowed into caves. There were altogether eighty 
disciples, who were being disciplined after the example of the saintly master. 
No one there had anything which was called his own; all things were possessed 
in common. It was not allowed either to buy or to sell anything, as is the 
custom among most monks. No art was practiced there, except that of 
transcribers, and even this was assigned to the brethren of younger years, 
while the elders spent their time m prayer. Rarely did any one of them go 
beyond the cell, unless when they assembled at the place of prayer. They all 
took their food together, after the hour of fasting was past. No one used 
wine, except when illness compelled them to do so. Most of them were clothed 
in garments of camels' hair.(1) Any dress approaching to softness(2) was there 
deemed criminal, and this must be thought the more remarkable, because many 
among them were such as are deemed of noble rank. These, though far 
differently brought up, had forced themselves down to this degree of humility 
and patient endurance, and we have seen numbers of these afterwards made 
bishops. For what city or church would there be that would not desire to have 
its priests from among those in the monastery of Martin? 
Martin demolishes an Altar consecrated to a 
    But let me proceed to a description of other excellences which Martin 
displayed as a bishop. There was, not far from the town, a place very close to 
the monastery, which a false human opinion had consecrated, on the supposition 
that some martyrs had been buried together there. For it was also believed 
that an altar had been placed there by former bishops. But Martin, not 
inclined to give a hasty belief to things uncertain, often asked from those 
who were his elders, whether among the presbyters or clerics, that the name of 
the martyr, or the time when he suffered, should be made known to him. He did 
so, he said, because he had great scruples on these points, inasmuch as no 
steady tradition respecting them had come down from antiquity. Having, 
therefore, for a time kept away from the place, by no means wishing to lessen 
the religious veneration with which it was regarded, because he was as yet 
uncertain, but, at the same time not lending his authority to the opinion of 
the multitude, lest a mere superstition should obtain a firmer footing, he one 
day went out to the place, taking a few brethren with him as companions. There 
standing above the very sepulchre, Martin prayed to the Lord that he would 
reveal, who the man in question was, and what was his character or desert. 
Next turning to the left-hand side, he sees standing very near a shade of a 
mean and cruel appearance. Martin commands him to tell his name and character. 
Upon this, he declares his name, and confesses his guilt. He says that he had 
been a robber, and that he was beheaded on account of his crimes; that he had 
been honored simply by an error of the multitude; that he had nothing in 
common with the martyrs, since glory was their portion, while punishment 
exacted its penalties from him. Those who stood by heard, in a wonderful way, 
the voice of the speaker, but they beheld no person. Then Martin made known 
what he had seen, and ordered the altar which had been there to be removed, 
and thus he delivered the people from the error of that superstition. 
Martin causes the Bearers of a Dead Body to stop. 
    Now, it came to pass some time after the above, that while Martin was 
going a journey, he met the body of a certain heathen, which was being carried 
to the tomb with superstitious funeral rites. Perceiving from a distance the 
crowd that was approaching, and being ignorant as to what was going on, he 
stood still for a little while. For there was a distance of nearly half a mile 
between him and the crowd, so that it 
was difficult to discover what the spectacle he beheld really was. 
Nevertheless, because he saw it was a rustic gathering, and when the linen 
clothes spread over the body were blown about by the action of the wind, he 
believed that some profane rites of sacrifice were being performed. This 
thought occurred to him, because it was the custom of the Gallic rustics in 
their wretched folly to carry about through the fields the images of demons 
veiled with a white covering. Lifting up, therefore, the sign of the cross 
opposite to them, he commanded the crowd not to move from the place in which 
they were, and to set down the burden. Upon this, the miserable creatures 
might have been seen at first to become stiff like rocks. Next, as they 
endeavored, with every possible effort, to move forward, but were not able to 
take a step farther, they began to whiff themselves about in the most 
ridiculous fashion, until, not able any longer to sustain the weight, they set 
down the dead body. Thunderstruck, and gazing in bewilderment at each other as 
not knowing what had happened to them they remained sunk in silent thought. 
But when the saintly man discovered that they were simply a band of peasants 
celebrating funeral rites, and not sacrifices to the gods, again raising his 
hand, he gave them the power of going away, and of lifting up the body. Thus 
he both compelled them to stand when he pleased, and permitted them to depart 
when he thought good. 
Martin escapes from a Falling Pine-tree. 
    Again, when in a certain village he had demolished a very ancient temple, 
and had set about cutting down a pine-tree, which stood close to the temple, 
the chief priest of that place, and a crowd of other heathens began to oppose 
him. And these people, though, under the influence of the Lord, they had been 
quiet while the temple was being overthrown, could not patiently allow the 
tree to be cut down. Martin carefully instructed them that there was nothing 
sacred in the trunk of a tree, and urged them rather to honor God whom he 
himself served. He added that there was a moral necessity why that tree should 
be cut down, because it had been dedicated to a demon. Then one of them who 
was bolder than the others says, "If you have any trust in thy God, whom you 
say you worship, we ourselves will cut down this tree, and be it your part to 
receive it when falling; for if, as you declare, your Lord is with you, you 
will escape all injury." Then Martin, courageously trusting in the Lord, 
promises that he would do what had been asked. Upon this, all that crowd of 
heathen agreed to the condition named; for they held the loss of their tree a 
small matter, if only they got the enemy of their religion buried beneath its 
fall. Accordingly, since that pine-tree was hanging over in one direction, so 
that there was no doubt to what side it would fall on being cut, Martin, 
having been bound, is, in accordance with the decision of these pagans, placed 
in that spot where, as no one doubted, the tree was about to fall. They began, 
therefore, to cut down their own tree, with great glee and joyfulness, while 
there was at some distance a great multitude of wondering spectators. And now 
the pine-tree began to totter, and to threaten its(1) own ruin by falling. The 
monks at a distance grew pale, and, terrified by the danger ever coming 
nearer, had lost all hope and confidence, expecting only the death of Martin. 
But he, trusting in the Lord, and waiting courageously, when now the falling 
pine had uttered its expiring crash, while it was now falling, while it was 
just rushing upon him,  simply holding up his hand against it, he put in its 
way the sign of salvation. Then, indeed, after the manner of a spinning-top 
(one might have thought it driven(2) back), it swept round to the opposite 
side, to such a degree that it almost crushed the rustics, who had taken their 
places there in what was deemed a safe spot. Then truly, a shout being raised 
to heaven, the heathen were amazed by the miracle, while the monks wept for 
joy; and the name of Christ was in common extolled by all. The well-known 
result was that on that day salvation came to that region. For there was 
hardly one of that immense multitude of heathens who did not express a desire 
for the imposition of hands, and abandoning his impious errors, made a 
profession of faith in the Lord Jesus. Certainly, before the times of Martin, 
very few, nay, almost none, in those regions had received the name of Christ; 
but through his virtues and example that name has prevailed to such an extent, 
that now there is no place thereabouts which is not filled either with very 
crowded churches or monasteries. For wherever he destroyed heathen temples, 
there he used immediately to build either churches or monasteries. 
Martin destroys/Heathen females and Altars. 
    Nor did he show less eminence, much about the same time, in other 
transactions of a like 
kind. For, having in a certain village set fire to a very ancient and 
celebrated temple, the circle of flames was carried by the action of the wind 
upon a house which was very close to, yea, connected with, the temple. When 
Martin perceived this, he climbed by rapid ascent to the roof of the house, 
presenting himself in front of the advancing flames. Then indeed might the 
fire have been seen thrust back in a wonderful manner against the force of the 
wind, so that there appeared a sort of conflict of the two elements fighting 
together. Thus, by the influence of Martin, the fire only acted in the place 
where it was ordered to do so. But in a village which was named Leprosum, when 
he too wished to overthrow a temple which had acquired great wealth through 
the superstitious ideas entertained of its sanctity, a multitude of the 
heathen resisted him to such a degree that he was driven back not without 
bodily injury. He, therefore, withdrew to a place in the vicinity, and there 
for three days, clothed in sackcloth(1) and ashes fasting and praying the 
whole time, he besought the Lord, that, as he had not been able to overthrow 
that temple by human effort, Divine power might be exerted to destroy it. Then 
two angels, with spears and shields after the manner of heavenly warriors, 
suddenly presented themselves to him, saying that they were sent by the Lord 
to put to flight the rustic multitude, and to furnish protection to Martin, 
lest, while the temple was being destroyed, any one should offer resistance. 
They told him therefore to return, and complete the blessed work which he had 
begun. Accordingly Martin returned to the village; and while the crowds of 
heathen looked on in perfect quiet as he razed the pagan temple even to the 
foundations, he also reduced all the altars and images to dust. At this sight 
the rustics, when they perceived that they had been so astounded and terrified 
by an intervention of the Divine will, that they might not be found fighting 
against the bishop, almost all believed in the Lord Jesus. They then began to 
cry out openly and to confess that the God of Martin ought to be worshiped, 
and that the idols should be despised, which were not able to help them. 
Martin offers his Neck to an Assassin. 
    I shall also relate what took place in the village of the AEdui. When 
Martin was there overthrowing a temple, a multitude of rustic heathen rushed 
upon him in a frenzy of rage. And when one of them, bolder than the rest, made 
an attack upon him with a drawn sword, Martin, throwing back his cloak, 
offered his bare neck to the assassin. Nor did the heathen delay to strike, 
but in the very act of lifting up his right arm, he fell to the ground on his 
back, and being overwhelmed by the fear of God, he entreated for pardon. Not 
unlike this was that other event which happened to Martin, that when a certain 
man had resolved to wound him with a knife as he was destroying some idols, at 
the very moment of fetching the blow, the weapon was struck out of his hands 
and disappeared. Very frequently, too, when the pagans were addressing him to 
the effect that he would not overthrow their temples, he so soothed and 
conciliated the minds of the heathen by his holy discourse that, the light of 
truth having been revealed to them, they themselves overthrew their own 
Cures effected by St. Martin. 
    Moreover, the gift(1) of accomplishing cures was so largely possessed by 
Martin, that scarcely any sick person came to him for assistance without being 
at once restored to health. This will clearly appear from the following 
example. A certain girl at Treves(2) was so completely prostrated by a 
terrible paralysis that for a long time she had been quite unable to make use 
of her body for any purpose, and being, as it were, already dead, only the 
smallest breath of life seemed still to remain in her. Her afflicted relatives 
were standing by, expecting nothing but her death, when it was suddenly 
announced that Martin had come to that city. When the father of the girl found 
that such was the case, he ran to make a request in behalf of his all but 
lifeless child. It happened that Martin had already entered the church. There, 
while the people were looking on, and in the presence of many other bishops, 
the old man, uttering a cry of grief, embraced the saint's knees and said: "My 
daughter is dying of a miserable kind of infirmity; and, what is more dreadful 
than death itself, she is now alive only in the spirit, her flesh being 
already dead before the time. I beseech thee to go to her, and give her thy 
blessing; for :I believe that through you she will be restored to health." 
Martin, troubled by such an address, was bewildered, and shrank back, saying 
that this was a matter not in his own hands; that the old man was mistaken in 
the judgment he 
had formed; and that he was not worthy to be the instrument through whom the 
Lord should make a display of his power. The father, in tears, persevered in 
still more earnestly pressing the case, and entreated Martin to visit the 
dying girl. At last, constrained by the bishops standing by to go as 
requested, he went down to the home of the girl. An immense crowd was waiting 
at the doors, to see what the servant of the Lord would do. And first, 
betaking himself to his familiar arms in affairs of that kind, he cast himself 
down on the ground and prayed. Then gazing earnestly upon the ailing girl, he 
requests that oil should be given him. After he had received and blessed this, 
he poured the powerful sacred liquid into the mouth of the girl, and 
immediately her voice returned to her. Then gradually, through contact with 
him, her limbs began, one by one, to recover life, till, at last, in the 
presence of the people, she arose with firm steps. 
Martin casts out Several Devils. 
    At the same time the servant of one Tetradius, a man of proconsular rank, 
having been laid hold of by a demon, was tormented with the most miserable 
results. Martin, therefore, having been asked to lay his hands on him, ordered 
the servant to be brought to him; but the evil spirit could, in no way, be 
brought forth from the cell in which he was: he showed himself so fearful, 
with ferocious teeth, to those who attempted to draw near. Then Tetradius 
throws himself at the feet of the saintly man, imploring that he himself would 
go down to the house in which the possessed of the devil was kept. But Martin 
then declared that he could not visit the house of an unconverted heathen. For 
Tetradius, at that time, was still involved in the errors of heathenism. He, 
therefore, pledges his word that if the demon were driven out of the boy, he 
would become a Christian. Martin, then, laying his hand upon the boy, cast the 
evil spirit out of him. On seeing this, Tetradius believed in the Lord Jesus, 
and immediately became a catechumen, while, not long after, he was baptized; 
and he always regarded Martin with extraordinary affection, as having been the 
author of his salvation. 
    About the same time, having entered the dwelling of a certain householder 
in the same town, he stopped short at the very threshold, and said, that he 
perceived a horrible demon in the courtyard of the house. When Martin ordered 
it to depart, it laid hold of a certain member of the family, who was staying 
in the inner part of the house; and the poor wretch began at once to rage with 
his teeth, and to lacerate whomsoever he met. The house was thrown into 
disorder; the family was in confusion; and the people present took to flight. 
Martin threw himself in the way of the frenzied creature, and first of all 
commanded him to stand still. But when he continued to gnash with his teeth, 
and, with gaping mouth, was threatening to bite, Martin inserted his fingers 
into his mouth, and said, "If  you possess any power, devour these." But then, 
as if redhot iron had entered his jaws, drawing his teeth far away he took 
care not to touch the fingers of the saintly man; and when he was compelled by 
punishments and tortures, to flee out of the possessed body, while he had no 
power of escaping by the mouth, he was cast out by means of a defluxion of the 
belly, leaving disgusting traces behind him. 
Martin performs Various Miracles. 
    In the meanwhile, as a sudden report had troubled the city as to the 
movement and inroad of the barbarians, Martin orders a possessed person to be 
set before him, and commanded him to declare whether this message was true or 
not. Then he confessed that there were sixteen demons who had spread this 
report among the people, in order that by the fear thus excited, Martin might 
have to flee from the city, but that, in fact, nothing was less in the minds 
of the barbarians than to make any inroad. When the unclean spirit thus 
acknowledged these things in the midst of the church, the city was set free 
from the fear and tumult which had at the time been felt. 
    At Paris, again, when Martin was entering the gate of the city, with large 
crowds attending him, he gave a kiss to a leper, of miserable appearance, 
while all shuddered at seeing him do so; and Martin blessed him, with the 
result that he was instantly cleansed from all his misery. On the following 
day, the man appearing in the church with a healthy skin, gave thanks for the 
soundness of body which he had recovered. This fact, too, ought not to be 
passed over in silence, that threads from Martin's garment, or such as had 
been plucked from the sackcloth which he wore, wrought frequent miracles upon 
those who were sick. For, by either being tied round the fingers or placed 
about the neck, they very often drove away diseases from the afflicted. 
A Letter of Martin effects a Cure, with Other 
    Further, Arborius, an ex-prefect, and a man of a very holy and faithful 
character, while his daughter was in agony from the burning fever of a quartan 
ague, inserted in the bosom of the girl, at the very paroxysm of the heat, a 
letter of Martin which happened to have been brought to him, and immediately 
the fever was dispelled. This event had such an influence upon Arborius, that 
he at once consecrated the girl to God, and devoted her to perpetual 
virginity. Then, proceeding to Martin, he presented the girl to him, as an 
obvious living example of his power of working miracles, inasmuch as she had 
been cured by him though absent; and he would not suffer her to be consecrated 
by any other than Martin, through his placing upon her the dress 
characteristic of virginity. 
    Paulinus, too, a man who was afterwards to furnish a striking example of 
the age, having begun to suffer grievously in one of his eyes, and when a 
pretty thick skin(1) having grown over it had already covered up its pupil, 
Martin touched his eye with a painter's brush, and, all pain being removed, 
thus restored it to its former soundness. He himself also, when, by a certain 
accident, he had fallen out of an upper room, and tumbling down a broken, 
uneven stair, had received many wounds, as he lay in his cell at the point of 
death, and was tortured with grievous sufferings, saw in the night an angel 
appear to him, who washed his wounds, and applied healing ointment to the 
bruised members of his body. As the effect of this, he found himself on the 
morrow restored to soundness of health, so that he was not thought to have 
suffered any harm. But because it would be tedious to go through everything of 
this kind, let these examples suffice, as a few out of a multitude; and let it 
be enough that we do not in Striking cases ['of miraculous interposition] 
detract from the truth, while, having so many to choose from, we avoid 
exciting weariness in the reader. 
How Martin acted towards the Emperor 
    And here to insert some smaller matters among things so great (although 
such is the nature of our times in which all things have fallen into decay and 
corruption, it is almost a pre-eminent virtue for priestly firmness not to 
have yielded to royal flattery), when a number of bishops from various parts 
had assembled to the Emperor Maximus, a man of fierce character, and at that 
time elated with the victory he had won in the civil wars, and when the 
disgraceful flattery of all around the emperor was generally remarked, while 
the priestly dignity had, with degenerate submissiveness, taken a second place 
to the royal retinue, in Martin alone, apostolic authority continued to assert 
itself. For even if he had to make suit to the sovereign for some things, he 
commanded rather than entreated him; and although often invited, he kept away 
from his entertainments, saying that he could not take a place at the table of 
one who, out of two emperors, had deprived one of his kingdom, and the other 
of his life. At last, when Maximus maintained that he had not of his own 
accord assumed the sovereignty, but that he had simply defended by arms the 
necessary requirements(1) of the empire, regard to which had been imposed upon 
him by the soldiers, according to the Divine appointment, and that the favor 
of God did not seem wanting to him who, by an event seemingly so incredible, 
had secured the victory, adding to that the statement that none of his 
adversaries had been  slain except in the open field of battle, at length, 
Martin, overcome either by his reasoning or his entreaties, came to the royal 
banquet. The king was wonderfully pleased because he had gained this point. 
Moreover, there were guests present who had been invited as if to a festival; 
men of the highest and most illustrious rank,--the prefect, who was also 
consul, named Evodius, one of the most righteous men that ever lived; two 
courtiers possessed of the greatest power, the brother and uncle of the king, 
while between these two, the presbyter of Martin had taken his place; but he 
himself occupied a seat which was set quite close to the king. About the 
middle of the banquet, according to custom, one of the servants presented a 
goblet to the king. He orders it rather to be given to the very holy bishop, 
expecting and hoping that he should then receive the cup from his right hand. 
But Martin, when he had drunk, handed the goblet to his own presbyter, as 
thinking no one worthier to drink next to himself, and holding that it would, 
not be right for him to prefer either the king himself, or those who were next 
the king, to the presbyter. And the emperor, as well as all those who were 
then present, admired this conduct so much, that this very thing, by which 
they had been undervalued, gave them pleasure. The report then ran through the 
whole palace that Martin had done, at the king's dinner, what no bishop had 
dared to do 
at the banquets of the lowest judges. And Martin predicted to the same Maximus 
long before, that if he went into Italy to which he then desired to go, waging 
war, against the Emperor Valentinianus, it would come to pass that he should 
know he would(2) indeed be victorious in the First attack, but would perish a 
short time afterwards. And we have seen that this did in fact take place. For, 
on his first arrival Valentinianus had to betake himself to flight but 
recovering his strength about a year after. wards, Maximus was taken and slain 
by him within the walls of Aquileia. 
Martin has to do both with Angels and Devils. 
    IT is also well known that angels were very often' seen by him, so that 
they spoke in turns with him in set speech. As to the devil, Martin held him 
so visible and ever under the power of his eyes, that whether he kept himself 
in his proper form, or changed himself into different shapes of spiritual 
wickedness, he was perceived by Martin, under whatever guise he appeared. The 
devil knew well that he could not escape discovery, and therefore frequently 
heaped in suits upon Martin, being unable to beguile him by trickery. On one 
occasion the devil, holding in his hand the bloody horn of an ox rushed into 
Martin's cell with great noise, and holding out to him his bloody right hand, 
while at the same time he exulted in the crime he had committed, said: "Where, 
O Martin, is thy power? I have just slain one of your people." Then Martin 
assembled the brethren, and related to them what the devil had disclosed, 
while he ordered them carefully to search the several cells in order to 
discover who had been visited with this calamity. They report that no one of 
the monks was missing, but that one peasant, hired by them, had gone to the 
forest to bring home wood in his wagon. Upon hearing this, Martin instructs 
some of them to go and meet him. On their doing so, the man was found almost 
dead at no great distance from the monastery. Nevertheless, although just 
drawing his last breath, he made known to the brethren the cause of his wound 
and death. He said that, while he was drawing tighter the thongs which had got 
loose on the oxen yoked together, one of the oxen, throwing his head free, had 
wounded him with his horn in the groin. And not long after the man expired. 
You(1) see with what judgment of the Lord this power was given to the devil. 
This was a marvelous feature in Martin that not only on this occasion to which 
I have specially referred, but on many occasions of the same kind, in fact as 
often as such things occurred, he perceived them long beforehand, and(2) 
disclosed the things which had been revealed to him to the brethren. 
Martin preaches Repentance even to the Devil. 
    Now, the devil, while he tried to impose upon the holy man by a thousand 
injurious arts, often thrust himself upon him in a visible form, but in very 
various shapes. For sometimes he presented himself to his view changed into 
the person of Jupiter, often into that of Mercury and Minerva. Often, too, 
were heard words of reproach, in which the crowd of demons assailed Martin 
with scurrilous expressions. But knowing that all were false and groundless, 
he was not affected by the charges brought against him. Moreover, some of the 
brethren bore witness that they had heard a demon reproaching Martin in 
abusive terms, and asking why he had taken back, on their subsequent 
repentance, certain of the brethren who had, some time previously, lost their 
baptism by falling into various errors. The demon set forth the crimes of each 
of them; but they added that Martin, resisting the devil firmly, answered him, 
that by-past sins are cleansed away by the leading of a better life, and that 
through the mercy of God, those are to be absolved from their sins who have 
given up their evil ways. The devil saying in opposition to this that such 
guilty men as those referred to did not come within the pale of pardon, and 
that no mercy was extended by the Lord to those who had once fallen away, 
Martin is said to have cried out in words to the following effect: "If thou, 
thyself, wretched being, wouldst but desist from attacking mankind, and even, 
at this period, when the day of judgment is at hand, wouldst only repent of 
your deeds, I, with a true confidence in the Lord, would promise you the mercy 
of Christ."(1) O what a holy boldness with respect to the loving-kindness of 
the Lord, in which, although he could not assert authority, he nevertheless 
showed the feelings dwelling within him! And since our discourse has here 
sprung up concerning the devil and his devices, it does not seem away from the 
point, although the matter does not 
bear immediately upon Martin, to relate what took place; both because the 
virtues of Martin do, to some extent, appear in the transaction, and the 
incident, which was worthy of a miracle, will properly be put on record, with 
the view of furnishing a caution, should anything of a similar character 
subsequently occur. 
A Case of Diabolic Deception. 
    There was a certain man, Clarus by name, a most noble youth, who 
afterwards became a presbyter, and who is now, through his happy departure 
from this world, numbered among the saints. He, leaving all others, betook 
himself to Martin, and in a short time became distinguished for the most 
exalted faith, and for all sorts of excellence. Now, it came to pass that, 
when he had erected an abode for himself not far from the monastery of the 
bishop, and many brethren were staying with him, a certain youth, Anatolius by 
name, having, under the profession of a monk, falsely assumed every appearance 
of humility and innocence, came to him, and lived for some time on the common 
store along with the rest. Then, as time went on, he began to affirm that 
angels were in the habit of talking with him. As no one gave any credit to his 
words, he urged a number of the brethren to believe by certain signs. At 
length he went to such a length as to declare that angels passed between him 
and God; and now he wished that he should be regarded as one of the prophets. 
Clarus, however, could by no means be induced to believe. He then began to 
threaten Clarus with the anger of God and present afflictions, because he did 
not believe one of the saints. At the last, he is related to have burst forth 
with the following declaration: "Behold, the Lord  will this night give me a 
white robe out of heaven, clothed in which, I will dwell in the midst of you; 
and that will be to you a sign that I am the Power of God, inasmuch as I have 
been presented with the garment of God." Then truly the expectation of all was 
highly raised by this profession. Accordingly, about the middle of the night, 
it was seen, by the noise of people moving eagerly about, that the whole 
monastery in the place was excited. It might be seen, too, that the cell in 
which the young man referred to lived was glittering with numerous lights; and 
the whisperings of those moving about in it, as well as a kind of murmur of 
many. voices, could be heard. Then, on silence being  secured, the youth 
coming forth calls one of the l t brethren, Sabatius by name, to himself, and 
shows t him the robe in which he had been clothed. He again, filled with 
amazement, gathers the rest together, and Clarus himself also runs up; and a 
light being obtained, they all carefully inspect the garment. Now, it was of 
the utmost softness, of marvelous brightness, and of glittering purple, and 
yet no one could discover what was its nature, or of what sort of fleece it 
had been formed. However, when it was more minutely examined by the eyes or 
fingers, it seemed nothing else than a garment. In the meantime, Clarus urges 
upon the brethren to be earnest in prayer, that the Lord would show them more 
clearly what it really was. Accordingly, the rest of the night was spent in 
singing hymns and psalms. But when day broke, Clarus wished to take the young 
man by the hand, and bring him to Martin, being well aware that he could not 
be deceived by any arts of the devil. Then, indeed, the miserable man began to 
resist and refuse, and affirmed that he had been forbidden to show himself to 
Martin. And when they compelled him to go against his will, the garment 
vanished from among the hands of those who were conducting him. Wherefore, who 
can doubt that this, too, was an illustration of the power of Martin, so that 
the devil could no longer dissemble or conceal his own deception, when it was 
to be submitted to the eyes of Martin? 
Martin is tempted by the Wiles of the Devil. 
    It was found, again, that about the same time there was a young man in 
Spain, who, having by many signs obtained for himself authority among the 
people, was puffed up to such a pitch that he gave himself out as being Elias. 
And when multitudes had too readily believed this, he went on to say that he 
was actually Christ; and he succeeded so well even in this delusion that a 
certain bishop named Rufus worshiped him as being the Lord. For so doing, we 
have seen this bishop at a later date deprived of his office. Many of the 
brethren have also informed me that at the same time one arose in the East, 
who boasted that he was John. We may infer from this, since false prophets of 
such a kind have appeared, that the coming of Antichrist is at hand; for he is 
already practicing in these persons the mystery of iniquity. And truly I think 
this point should not be passed over, with what arts the devil about this very 
time tempted Martin. For, on a certain day, prayer(1) having been previously 
offered, and the fiend himself being surrounded by a purple light, in order 
that he might the more easily deceive people by the brilliance of the splendor 
assumed, clothed also 
in a royal robe, and with a crown of precious stones and gold encircling his 
head, his shoes too being inlaid with gold, while he presented a tranquil 
countenance, and a generally rejoicing aspect, so that no such thought as that 
he was the devil might be entertained--he stood by the side of Martin as he 
was praying in his cell. The saint being dazzled by his first appearance, both 
preserved a long and deep silence. This was first broken by the devil, who 
said: "Acknowledge, Martin, who it is that you behold. I am Christ; and being 
just about to descend to earth, I wished first to manifest myself to thee." 
When Martin kept silence on hearing these words, and gave no answer whatever, 
the devil dared to repeat his audacious declaration: "Martin, why do you 
hesitate to believe, when you see? I am Christ." Then Martin, the Spirit 
revealing the truth to him, that he might understand it was the devil, and not 
God, replied as follows: "The Lord Jesus did not predict that he would come 
clothed in purple, and with a glittering crown upon his head. I will not 
believe that Christ has come, unless he appears with that appearance and form 
in which he suffered, and openly displaying the marks of his wounds upon the 
cross." On hearing these words, the devil vanished like smoke, and filled the 
cell with such a disgusting smell, that he left unmistakable evidences of his 
real character. This event, as I have just related, took place in the way 
which I have stated, and my information regarding it was derived from the lips 
of Martin himself; therefore let no one regard it as fabulous? 
Intercourse of Sulpitius with Martin. 
    Fort since I, having long heard accounts of his faith, life and virtues, 
burned with a desire of knowing him. I undertook what was to me a pleasant 
journey for the purpose of seeing him. At the same time, because already my 
mind was inflamed with the desire of writing his life, I obtained my 
information partly from himself, in so far as I could venture to question him, 
and partly from those who had lived with him, or well knew the facts of the 
case. And at this time it is scarcely credible with what humility and with 
what kindness he received me; while he cordially wished me joy, and rejoiced 
in the Lord that he had been held in such high estimation by me that I had 
undertaken a journey owing to my desire of seeing him. Unworthy me! (in fact, 
I hardly dare acknowledge it), that he should have deigned to admit me to 
fellowship with him! He went so far as in person to present me with water to 
wash my hands, and at eventide he himself washed my feet; nor had I sufficient 
courage to resist or oppose his doing so. In fact, I felt so overcome by the 
authority he unconsciously exerted, that I deemed it unlawful to do anything 
but acquiesce in his arrangements. His conversation with me was all directed 
to such points as the following: that the allurements of this world and 
secular burdens were to be abandoned in order that we might be free and 
unencumbered in following the Lord Jesus; and he pressed upon me as an 
admirable example in present circumstances the conduct of that distinguished 
man Paulinus, of whom I have made mention above. Martin declared of him that, 
by parting with his great possessions and following Christ, as he did, he 
showed himself almost the only one who in these times had fully obeyed the 
precepts of the Gospel. He insisted strongly that that was the man who should 
be made the object of our imitation, adding that the present age was fortunate 
in possessing such a model of faith and virtue. For Paulinus, being rich and 
having many possessions, by selling them all and giving them to the poor 
according to the expressed will of the Lord, had, he said, made possible by 
actual proof what appeared impossible of accomplishment. What power and 
dignity there were in Martin's words and conversation! How active he was, how 
practical, and how prompt and ready in solving questions connected with 
Scripture! And because I know that many are incredulous on this point,--for 
indeed I have met with persons who did not believe me when I related such 
things,--I call to witness Jesus, and our common hope as Christians, that I 
never heard from any other lips than those of Martin such exhibitions of 
knowledge and genius, or such specimens of good and pure speech. But yet, how 
insignificant is all such praise when compared with the virtues which he 
possessed! Still, it is remarkable that in a man who had no claim to be called 
learned, even this attribute [of high intelligence] was not wanting. 
Words cannot describe the Excellences of Martin. 
    But now my book must be brought to an end, and my discourse finished. This 
is not because all that was worthy of being said concerning Martin is now 
exhausted, but because I, just as sluggish poets grow less careful towards the 
end of their work, give over, being baffled by the immensity of the matter. 
For, although his 
outward deeds could in some sort of way be set forth in words, no language, I 
truly own, can ever be capable of describing his inner life and daily conduct, 
and his mind always bent upon the things of heaven. No one can adequately make 
known his perseverance and self-mastery in abstinence and fastings, or his 
power in watchings and prayers, along with the nights, as well as days, which 
were spent by him, while not a moment was separated from the service of God, 
either for indulging in ease, or engaging in business. But, in fact, he did 
not indulge either in food or sleep, except in so far as the necessities of 
nature required. I freely confess that, if, as the saying is, Homer himself 
were to ascend from the shades below, he could not do justice to this subject 
in words; to such an extent did all excellences surpass in Martin the 
possibility of being embodied in language. Never did a single hour or moment 
pass in which he was not either actually engaged in prayer; or, if it happened 
that he was occupied with something else, still he never let his mind loose 
from prayer. In truth, just as it is the custom of blacksmiths, in the midst 
of their work to beat their own anvil as a sort of relief to the laborer, so 
Martin even when he appeared to be doing something else, was still engaged in 
prayer. O truly blessed man in whom there was no guile--judging no man, 
condemning no man, returning evil for evil to no man! He displayed indeed such 
marvelous patience in the endurance of injuries, that even when he was 
chief(1) priest, he allowed himself to be wronged by the lowest clerics with 
impunity; nor did he either remove them from the office on account of such 
conduct, or, as far as in him lay, repel them from a place in his affection. 
Wonderful Piety of  Martin. 
    No one ever saw him enraged, or excited, or lamenting, or laughing; he was 
always one and the same: displaying a kind of heavenly happiness in his 
countenance, he seemed to have passed the ordinary limits of human nature. 
Never was there any word on his lips but Christ, and never was there a feeling 
in his heart except piety, peace, and tender mercy. Frequently, too, he used 
to weep for the sins of those who showed themselves his revilers--those who, 
as he led his retired and tranquil life, slandered him with poisoned tongue 
and a viper's mouth. And truly we have had experience of some who were envious 
of his virtues and his life--who really hated in him what they did not see in 
themselves, and what they had not power to imitate. And--O wickedness worthy 
of deepest grief and groans!--some of his calumniators, although very few, 
some of his maligners, I say, were reported to be no others than bishops! 
Here, however, it is not necessary to name any one, although a good many of 
these people are still venting(1) their spleen against myself. I shall deem it 
sufficient that, if any one of them reads this account, and perceives that he 
is himself pointed at, he may have the grace to blush. But if, on the other 
hand, he shows anger, he will, by that very fact, own that he is among those 
spoken of, though all the time perhaps I have been thinking of some other 
person. I shall, however, by no means feel ashamed if any people of that sort 
include myself in their hatred along with such a man as Martin. I am quite 
persuaded of this, that the present little work will give pleasure to all 
truly good men. And I shall only say further that, if any one read this 
narrative in an unbelieving spirit, he himself will fall into sin. I am 
conscious to myself that I have been induced by belief in the facts, and by 
the love of Christ, to write these things; and that, in doing so, I have set 
forth what is well known, and recorded what is true; and, as I trust, that man 
will have a reward prepared by God, not who shall read these things, but who 
shall believe them.(2)