The Litany of Creation
This 8th century Irish litany is for private use only. It can be
downloaded in pdf
format: The Litany of Creation
(pdf) Note that "besom" (the word, used in Isaias 14:23, is pronounced
"bee-zum") is translated as
"broom," a very common medieval metaphor for "spiritual
house-cleaning," confession, self-examination, practices that help one
to stay in a state of grace, etc.
The Litany of
I entreat Thee by the tenth order in the compact earth;
I entreat laud-worthy Michael to help me against demons.
Together with Michael I entreat Thee by land and sea unrestingly; I
entreat Thee without contempt by every property of God the Father.
I entreat Thee, O Lord, by the suffering of Thy body, white with
fasting; I entreat Thee by the contemplative life, I entreat Thee by
the active life.
I entreat the company of heaven with Michael for my soul; I entreat the
saints of the world to help me on earth.
I entreat the company of heaven with bright-armed Michael; I entreat
Thee by the triad, wind, and sun and moon.
I entreat Thee by water and cruel air; I entreat Thee by fire; I
entreat Thee by earth.
I entreat Thee by the trinity, the arched torrid zone, I entreat Thee
by the two temperate zones, I entreat Thee by the two frigid zones.
I entreat Thee by the compass of the tuneful firmament; I entreat every
stately-branching order, the host of the bright stars.
I entreat Thee by the kings with their royal mighty train of kings; I
entreat all mysteries, I entreat the glories of Michael.
I entreat Thee by every living creature that ever tasted death and
life; I entreat Thee by every inanimate creature because of Thy fair
I entreat Thee by Thy love, which is deeper than the ocean; I entreat
Thine own self, O King of the fierce sun.
Every saint that is, was, and shall be, and every holy virgin without
deceit, with Michael the fair guardian, to help me without... May this
host protect me! I entreat Thee, O Father, I entreat.
I beseech Thee, O Father, that I may be in Thy ranks; this is in brief
the wise "besom of devotion."
Though it be brief in words, it is a pure brightly ordered strain; it
is full of devotion, it is in perfect clerkship.
It is a summons to saints, it is a summons to the elements, it is an
entreaty to angels. It is a breast-plate to my soul, it is a protection
to me, body and heart, it is a pleasant ready nurture, it is a praising
of the King of heaven.
It is sanctficiation to men who recite it continually; it is a judgment
of him who recites it, it is devotion, it is suffering.
It is a partaking of the Body of Christ, and it is a hard conflict; it
is fair perfect faith, it is converse with angels.
Every angel, every strain, every dear fair-hued saint, every creature
under Thy sway, by them I entreat Thee, O Father. I entreat.
I entreat Thee by time with its clear divisions, I entreat Thee by the
darkness, I entreat Thee by the light.
I entreat all the elements in heaven and earth, that the eternal
sweetness may be granted to my soul.
Thy boundless pity, Thy might over battles, Thy gentleness to Thy
debtors, O beloved speedy King, I entreat.
To help me out of every conflict, by them I entreat Thee, O Father. I
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