Wisdom's Watch Upon the Hours
Written by Dominican preacher and mystic Bl. Henry Suso (c. 1300-1366), Horologium Sapientiae, or Wisdom's Watch upon the Hours, was one of the most successful religious writings of its time. Early translations of this literary masterpiece appeared in many languages, including French, Dutch, Italian, English, Czech, Swedish, Danish, Hungarian, and possibly Polish. Now the first translation based on Pius Kunzle's critical Latin edition is offered to the English-speaking world.
Essentially a dialogue between the author, who was by nature and calling a romantic, and Divine Wisdom, the Watch tells of Suso's service to and espousal of Wisdom, his "most cruel bride," with a charm reminiscent of contemporary chivalric romance literature. The Watch's many readers doubtless esteemed it for its devotional fervor and for the solutions Suso offers to the problems inseparable from a sincere Christian life. He teaches that a devotion of sharing in the Savior's self-sacrifice is the path to spiritual perfection, as well as a consolation for the soul amid life's cares. Based on his own shrewd observations on shunning "sensory forms and earthly imaginings," Suso develops the essential elements of ascetic and mystical theology.
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