A palindrome for St. Martin’s Day

From a reader from back on 11/11/11:

I thought that you and your readers might find this legend of Satan, St. Martin of Tours, and two exquisitely long palindromes, to be of interest particularly on this palindromic day of 11/11/11.

From The Book of Days, Vol. II, R. Chambers, ed., W. & R. Chambers, Ltd., London & Edinburgh, 1864, p. 568:

“Martin, having occasion to visit Rome, set out to perform the journey thither on foot. Satan, meeting him on the way, taunted the holy man for not using a conveyance more suitable to a bishop. In an instant the saint changed the Old Serpent into a mule, and jumping on its back, trotted comfortably along. Whenever the transformed demon slackened pace, Martin, by making the sign of the cross, urged it to full speed. At last, Satan, utterly defeated, exclaimed:

‘Signa te signa: temere me tangis et angis:
Roma tibi subito motibus ibit amor.’

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. AnnTherese says:

    I love a saint with a sense of humor! The goose is a symbol for St. Martin (It is said that as he was hiding from the people who wanted to make him Bishop, a honking goose gave away his hiding spot.) ‘Tis a good day for roast goose with apple stuffing!

  2. marcelus says:

    Patron Saintof Buenos Aires. What do you make of it?

    When thhe spaniards founded BA for the second time, they had to draw from a bowl filled with saints names, one name. The first time, Saint Martin’s name came up. Unsatisfied since a french Saint was not a likely candidate saint to be patron of a spanish colony, they put St. Martin’s name back in the bowl and on theey went. This time, Martin’s name came up again. They repeated the process for a 3rd time and …. his name came up again.Thus they surrendered and St Martin of Tours became the French patron of one of the m0st important colonies.

  3. Imrahil says:

    Saint Martin, Sa-aint Martin!
    Saint Martin went through wind and snow,
    his horse was the reverse of slow.
    St Martin rode, his heart was light,
    his warming mantle kee. ping. tight.

    ‘n the snow sat, in the snow sat,
    in the snow there sat a poor poor lad,
    wore clothes not, wore but a rag.
    Oh sir, please help me in my want,
    or survive in this frost. I. can’t.

    Saint Martin, Sa-aint Martin,
    Saint Martin ripped back the rein,
    his horse stood still in the same vein.
    Saint Martin splitted with his sword
    without delay the mantle warm.
    (well that doesn’t rhyme)

    Saint Martin, Sa-aint Martin,
    Saint Martin gave the half one fast
    the beggar wants to thank, aghast.
    Saint Martin, though, went on in haste,
    his mantle-half around. his. waist.

    Though that’s not a palindrom, of course.

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