Lbeck's Dance of Death

Index + Chapter 1

See the translation and comments below.

dyt is dat register

Dat erste capittel is, wo de dot is vifleie art, unde wo alle geboren creatr mt sterven.
Wo des dodes stunde eddeler is wan de stunde der gebort: dat ii capittel.
Van slimheit des ttliken gudes jegen dat ewige gud: dat iii capittel.
Van dem pawese: iiij. v. vi.
Van dem keiser: vii. viii.
Van der keiserinnen: ix. x.
Van den cardinalen: xi. xii.
Van den koningen: xiii. xiiij.
Van den bischopen: xv. xvi.
Van den hertogen: xvii. xviii.
Van den abbeten: xix. xx.
Van den godesridderen: xxi. xxii capittel.
Van den monneken: xxiii. xxiiij.
Van den ridderen: xxv. xxvi.
Van den cannonniken: xxvii. xxviii capittel.
Van den borgermsteren: xxix. xxx capittel.
Van den arsten: xxxi. xxxii.
Van den junkheren: xxxiii. xxxiiij.
Van den kluseneren: xxxv. xxxvi capittel.

Van den borgeren: xxxvii. xxxviii capittel.
Van den studenten: xxxix. xl.
Van den kpluden: xli. xlii.
Van den klsternonnen: xliii, xliiij.
Van den amptluden: xlv. xlvi.
Van den werkmsteren: xlvii. xlviii capittel.
Van den buren: xlix. l.
Van den baginen: li. lii.
Van den hoveruteren: liii. liiij.
Van den junkvrowen: lv. lvi.
Van den amptgesellen: lvii. lviii.
Van der ammen mit dem kinde: lix. lx capittel.
Wrumme dat so vele plage is in der werlt: lxi.
Wo in vrtiden alle state der minschen beter weren wan nu: dat lxii gesette.
Wo dat de hilgen Godes breklike minschen sint gewest alse
wi unde hebben sik gewalt gedn umme Got, unde wo Got plichtich is up uns vele plage to senden: dat lxiii capittel.
Wo wi sunderliken dre schedichlike viande hebben, unde ein exempel van twn kluseneren: lxiiij capittel.
Van dem lesten gerichte

unde van dem hilgen levende des groten hilgen sunte Jeronimi, unde van der kortheit und armode desses levendes: dat lxv gesette.
Wo alle minschen werden gestrafet, de sik sulven unde k de werlt eddel holt unde se doch it nicht mit dogeden bewisen: dat lxvi cap.
Wo nemant eddel is men de

umme siner rechtverdicheit vorhoget wert van Gode, alse de hilgen Godes: lxvii.
Dat lxviii unde dat leste gesette is, wo dat de dach unde de stunde des dodes allene Gode dem heren bekant is, unde wo de dichter desses bokes begeret, dat Got em wille sine sunde vorgeven unde em gnedich sin.

Dat erste capittel

AL dat geboren wert kumt in de nt,
Dat it mt liden den bitteren dt.
Van vfleie dt hebbe ik gelesen:
Des rsten kone wi nicht genesen;
Dat is de dt der natr, des wi vorbeiden,
Wan sik de sele van dem live schal scheiden.
Dit is dat greselikeste unde bitterlikeste an dessem leven,
Alse de mster Aristotiles it heft beschreven.
Adam heft uns gebracht bi dit ungemak,
Do he in dem paradise mit Even Godes gebot brak.
De ander dt heft manningen vordorven,
Dat is, de der ere is gestorven;
De wecht grote sunde unde schande kleine.
De dridde dt maket de sele reine,
Unde is, de der werlde stervet unde r valscheit nicht en acht.
De vrde dt heft manningen in de helle gebracht
Unde is, wan de sele mit dtliken sunden wert vordorven,
So is se dt vor Gode gestorven.
Mit bicht, ruwe, bote mach se wedderkrigen dat leven.
Wil Got r dit van siner gnaden geven,

This is the index

The first chapter is how Death is five kinds and how all born creatures must die.
How the hour of death is greater than the hour of birth: the II chapter.
About the wickedness of earthly goods against the eternal good: The III chapter.
About the pope: IV. V. VI.
About the emperor: VII. VIII.
About the empress: IX. X.
About the cardinal: XI. XII.
About the king: XIII. XIV.
About the bishop: XV. XVI.
About the duke: XVII. XVIII.
About the abbot: XIX. XX.
About the Knight Templar: XXI. XXII chapter.
About the monk: XXIII. XXIV.
About the knight: XXV. XXVI.
About the canon: XXVII. XXVIII chapter.
About the mayor: XXIX. XXX chapter.
About the physician: XXXI. XXXII.
About the nobleman: XXXIII. XXXIV.
About the hermit: XXXV. XXXVI chapter.
About the citizen: XXXVII. XXXVIII chapter.
About the student: XXXIX. XL.
About the merchant: XLI. XLII.
About the nun: XLIII, XLIV.
About the craftsman: XLV. XLVI.
About the churchwarden: XLVII. XLVIII chapter.
About the peasant: XLIX. L.
About the beguine: LI. LII.
About the rider: LIII. LIV.
About the maiden: LV. LVI.
About the journeyman: LVII. LVIII.
About the nurse with child: LIX. LX chapter.
Why there are so many plagues in this world: LXI.
How, in the past, people of all stations were better than now: the LXII section.
How God's holy [men] have been fragile humans like us and have used power for God, and how God is obliged to send us many plagues: the LXIII chapter.
How we in particular have three harmful enemies, and an example with two hermits: LXIV chapter.
About the final reckoning and about the holy life of the great holy Saint Hieronymus, and about the shortness and poverty of this life: the LXV section.
How all humans will be punished, that hold themselves and the world for noble and yet do not prove it with deeds: the LXVI chap.
How no one is noble except those who for their righteousness are raised by the Lord, like God's holy [men]: LXVII.
The LXVIII and the last section is how the day and the hour of death is only known to the Lord, and how the author of this book wishes that God will forgive him his sins and be him merciful.

The first chapter

All that is born comes into the distress
that it must suffer the bitter death.
About five [kinds of] death I have read:(1)
The first we can't be spared from;
That is nature's death, which we are waiting for
when the soul has to part from life
It is the most terrible and bitter [thing] in this life,
as the master Aristotle(2) has described it.
Adam has brought [it to] us with his misdeed,
when he in Paradise with Eve broke the command of God.(3)
The second death has corrupted many [people],
that is those who die from honour;(4)
They pay little heed to great sins and infamies.
The third death makes the soul pure,
and is those who die from the world(5) and don't pay heed to its deceit.
The fourth death has brought many [people] into Hell
and is when the soul becomes corrupted with deadly sins,(6)
thus is [the soul] dead, dead for God(7)
With confession, repentance and penance can you take life back.
God will give it to you out of his mercy,

[Continued on the next page.]

Original page Original page

Click the little pictures to see the original pages.

Footnotes: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7)

Apparently the good preacher has been reading the writings of St. Augustine who speaks of "mors corporis" (physical death, also known as "mors temporalis") and "mors animae" (death of the soul), which leads to "mors aeterna" (everlasting death).

And of course he has read the 4 places in the Revelation that mentions 2 kinds of Death - E.g.: Rev. 2,11 " [...] He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death." (the 3 other places are Rev. 20,6; 20,14 and 21,8).

The preacher repeats an old fallacy: It wasn't Aristotle but rather Socrates who was sentenced to drink hemlock. In the writings of Plato one can read Socrates' last conversation with his pupils while the poison was taking effect.
See the page about Adam, Eve and the original sin.
Die from the honour.....: Lose honour.
Die from the world.....: Renounce this world.
Deadly sin: A mortal sin is a voluntary act against the law of God and thus an aversion from God - as opposed to a venial sin that may be remitted.

Mortal sin is often confused with the seven capital sins / vices, namely vainglory (pride), envy, anger, sloth, covetousness (avarice), gluttony and lust.

Dead for God.....: Dead in eyes of God.

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