And you, having received this our decree, keep to the purport of it, and break to pieces and destroy every idol; and if any one shall be detected from this time forth serving idols, or concealing them, let such an one be subjected to punishment by the sword. [The Viennams., here cited, interpolates still more.--R. And Matthew, having come to the gate of the church, stood upon a certain lofty and immoveable stone; and when the whole city ran together, especially the brethren who had believed, began to say: Men and women who appear in our sight, heretofore believing in the universe,  but now knowing Him who has upheld and made the universe; until now worshipping the Satyr, and mocked by ten thousand false gods, but now through Jesus Christ acknowledging the one and only God, Lord, Judge; who have laid aside the immeasurable greatness of evil, and put on love, which is of like nature with affectionateness, towards men; once strangers to Christ, but now confessing Him Lord and God; formerly without form, but now transformed through Christ; -- behold, the staff which you see in my hand, which Jesus, in whom you have believed and will believe, gave me; perceive now what comes to pass through me, and acknowledge the riches of the greatness which He will this day make for you. Nothing that Caravaggio had done before was equal in scale, majesty or beauty to the first painting he produced for the Contarelli Chapel in San Luigi dei Francesi, the French Church in Rome. the king prays: And now, since there is still in me a little unbelief, I beseech thee that thou wilt bring the body of Matthew from the sea. The king having heard this, and being the more exasperated by the pretended soldier, sent against the blessed Matthew four soldiers, having threatened them, and said: Unless you bring Matthew to me, I shall burn you alive with fire; and the punishment which he is to undergo, you shall endure. in the sense of an asylum, or place of refuge. Now I shall raise him up for myself, saith the Lord. And Matthew gave orders to Plato; and he, having gone forth, baptized them in the water of the fountain of the tree, in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost.  Psalm 3:5 according to the LXX. * Glory, honour, and worship to God, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages.  Or, giving drink to. And he commanded several executioners to come, and to lead him away to the place by the seashore, where the execution of malefactors was wont to take place, saying to the executioners: I hear, says he, that the God whom he proclaims delivers from fire those who believe in him. But I pray thee, Matthew, servant of God, forgive me as the herald of the good God; for assuredly the Jesus proclaimed by thee three days ago through the night appeared to me altogether resplendent as with lightning, like a beautiful young man, and said to me, Since thou art entertaining evil counsels in the wickedness of thine heart in regard to my servant Matthew, know I have disclosed to him that through thee will be the release of his body. Yet what Caravaggio is really depicting is the murderer's moment. And the king, having gone into his palace, broke all the idols to pieces, and gave a decree to those in his kingdom, writing thus: King Matthew, to all those under my kingdom, greeting. Saint Matthew, the first-century tax collector turned apostle who chronicled the life and ministry of Christ in his Gospel, is celebrated by the Church today, September 21. The Symbols of Saint Matthew . The Martyrdom of St Matthew 1599-1600 Oil on canvas, 323 x 343 cm Contarelli Chapel, San Luigi dei Francesi, Rome: Nothing that Caravaggio had done before was equal in scale, majesty or beauty to the first painting he produced for the Contarelli Chapel in San Luigi dei Francesi, the French Church in Rome. And then he thus blessed them, saying: The blessing and the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ shall be with you to time everlasting. Thus apply the fire to him; and if any of the same tribe with him rise up against you, he shall get the same punishment. has: After one hour he sees in that place an image of a cross coming up from the depth of the sea. And I know, O king, that thou also after this wilt believe in him. And the demon who had before appeared to the king in the form of a soldier, being again transformed into the form of a soldier, stood before the king, and said to him: Thou seest, O king, this stranger has bewitched them all. At this point Caravaggio left off the Martydom and turned his attention to the companion piece, the Calling. Steps ascend parallel to the picture towards the altar at the back. And he, having said Peace to thee and all the saints, went to heaven. And when they came near them, they heard their speaking indeed, but saw no one. And the bishop, seeing the repentance and tears of the king, gave him a hand, and raised him from the ground, and said to him: Rise up, and be of good courage; for the Lord God hath accepted thy repentance and conversion through the good offices of His servant and apostle Thomas. And the night having come, and he not being able to sleep because he was hungry,  leaped up at dawn, and went into the church, with only two soldiers without arms, to take Matthew by craft, that he might kill him. Blessed are they who observe his memory, for they shall be glorified to ages of ages. The Martyrdom of Saint Matthew (Italian: Martirio di San Matteo; 1599–1600) is a painting by the Italian master Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. And he fell on his face near the coffin, saying: Pardon me, Lord Jesus Christ, for what I have done against this holy man, for I was in ignorance. And the apostle exhorted the brethren to remain undismayed, and that they should rejoice, and accompany him with great meekness, singing and praising God, because they were deemed worthy to have the relics of the apostle. And he advanced his son to be a presbyter, and made him second to himself. For, behold, I will order the body to be thrown into the depths of the sea; and if thou deliver it as thou didst deliver it, in the funeral pile, I will forsake all my gods at once, and believe in thee alone.  Behold, O king, I have told thee all the truth.  The meaning is not clear.  The other [Vienna] ms. has, eleven. And straightway I saw him going up into heaven.  The other [Vienna] ms. has: And likewise his wife and his daughter-in-law deaconesses. The king says to him: Tell me first wherein his strength is, that I may know, and then I will draw up against him with a great force. for we see also the child Jesus, the Son of God, who is with thee. Blessed are they who observe his memory, for they shall be glorified to ages of ages.  The other [Vienna] ms. is much fuller here: And the cry of the multitude came to the king.  Comp. The third version dropped the architecture, reduced the number of actors, and moved the action closer to the viewer; more than this, it introduced the dramatic chiaroscuro which picks out the most important elements of the subject, in much the same way a spotlight picks out the action on a stage, but centuries before spotlights were imagined, and chose to represent the moment of greatest drama, as the murderer is about to plunge his sword into the fallen saint. Apparently re-inspired, or perhaps with renewed self-confidence, Caravaggio turned back to the Martydom, but this time working in his own idiom. And Matthew, having laid his hands on each one of the demoniacs, put the demons to flight, and made the people whole; and they followed him. Now therefore make haste, Matthew, and go down hence, because the departure from thy body through fire is at hand, and the crown of thy endurance.  The demon says to him: I cannot kill him. And as he said this a dreadful wonder appeared; for all the fire along with the wood went away from Matthew, and was poured round about their gods, so that nothing of the gold or the silver was any more seen; and the king fled, and said: Woe's me, that my gods are destroyed by the rebuke of Matthew, of which the weight was a thousand talents of gold and a thousand talents of silver. Whilst his victim helplessly props himself up on the ground, the Herculean youth seizes his wrist in his right hand, to hold the victim still for the death-blow. This is not the martyr, but his executioner. And as the bed was going into the palace, we  all saw Matthew rising up, as it were, from the bed, and going into heaven, led by the hand by a beautiful boy; and twelve men in shining garments came to meet him, having never-fading and golden crowns on their head; and we saw how that child crowned Matthew, so as to be like them, and in a flash of lightning they went away to heaven. They also appear on the left, where churches do not normally have steps.  In some of themss. For he had been blinded by the power of God.  I should be disposed to read ekaion, set fire to, for ekamnon, laboured. He has emerged from the depth of the picture to stand near the altar. And they said to him: Behold, he is in sight of thee.  Lit., of the same form with him. For, behold, thy wife, and thy son, and thy daughter-in-law, instructed by him, have believed in him, and along with him sing in the church.
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