The Mystical Vine
A treatise on the Passion of Our Lord

Saint Bonaventure

Translated from the Latin by a Friar of S.S.F.
Edited by Matthew Dallman




The third bloodshedding occurred when they plucked his cheeks. The prophet testifies of this, where, in speaking of the adorable person of our Lord Jesus, he says, “I gave my body to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair.”[1]

Some interpret this of the laceration which his jaws suffered form the finger nails of those impious Jews, other as pulling of his beard. Whichever is right, neither could have been done without the shedding of blood. And so I envisage the sacrilegious hands of those wicked people, who, not content with blows, buffets, and spittings upon the most good Jesus’ loving face, were inflamed with passion, and by plucked his cheeks drew blood from his most dear countenance. So was the colour of our rose deepened still more.

I observe how admirable and how worthy of imitation was that patience of that unblemished Lamb, manifested in so much meekness, when those unchaste men lacerated his most chaste cheeks with their nails. All this was suffered that we might be helped to bear our sufferings more patiently, when in some way “shame has covered our face for his sake.”

1. Is 50:6. But the Septuagint, followed by R.V. and A.V., has “back” instead of “body.”


© Akenside Press and Matthew C. Dallman, 2016. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publisher, Akenside Press.