IN Libro primo potissimum egi de Amore humano &
prauis effectibus eius; in hoc potissimum agam de A-
more diuino & sanctis effectibus eius. est igitur A-
mor hic affectio vehemens cordis & animæ ac mentis
applicatio ad aliquid diligendum: inclinat enim Amor
Amantem. neque enim in hoc laborat, licet labor non
amantibus grauis sit; neque difficultatem non nouit
sed impatiens est nisi inueniat quod desiderat: nec aliud
cogitat quam quod diligit; nec accipit de dilatione so-
latium. Lucerna fulgoris verus Amor, ardens in mente
per desideriū, & splendens in facie per exemplum & hic
Amor iam nudus non est & purè naturalis, sed indutus
fontani Amoris radio; iā infusus, iā purgatus, iam illu-
minatus & eleuatus supra naturæ potentiam; iam pa-
tiens, iam formatus, qui cum forma est, pure naturalis
& per se agens informis est, impotens & depressus, A-
mor naturalis, fulgor oculi in tenebris: Amor infusus
fulgor oculi in lumine, vel verius, lumen efficax in
Amor ceteros affectus in se ducit & captiuat: vi-
get namque ipse Amor. cum præsto est quod amatur;
& languet cum abest.
Description of Love
In the first book I have chosen to treat human love and its evil effects. In this one I
will above all treat divine love and the holy effects thereof. Thus this love is the
violent emotion of the heart and the applying of soul and mind to loving something.
For love manipulates the lover.
Now for the lover this is not a heavy burden to bear, although for non-lovers toil
weighs them down. Also he knows all about trouble, but cannot bear it unless he finds
what he desires. Nor does he think of anything else than that which he loves. Nor does
he allow himself to be consoled when fulfillment is delayed. True love is a splendidly
shining torch, burning2 in the mind through desire and shining on the face through example,
and this love is no longer naked and purely physical, but enveloped by the radiance of
love, which is its source. Already purified, already illuminated and elevated above the
power of nature, then love that is combined with beauty endures and is beautiful.
Physical love is a gleaming of the eye in darkness, and as it acts on its own impulse,
it is formless, tyrannical and degraded; or more according to the truth it is the light
in the splendour that causes the effects. Love leads the other emotions towards itself
and captivates them. For love itself is strong when it is with what is loved, it withers
away when this is absent.
References, across this site, to this page:
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'True love is a splendidly shining torch, burning ...': This marks the start of a mystico-philosophical effusion on love that
defies adequate translation or interpretation. Consequently the translation only presents a possible solution.