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For the purposes of the new edition, every poem has been assigned a unique short title. The original short titles, taken eclectically from a number of sources, are retained as alternative short titles.
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CSM Number : 45
Short name: The Wicked Knight who Built a Monastery Alternative: Will Taken for Deed
Incipit: A Virgen Santa Maria/ tant’ é de gran piedade
Refrain: A Virgen Santa Maria/ tant’ é de gran piedade/ que ao peccador colle/ por feito a voontade.
Summary of narrative
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Setting: unspecified Protagonist(s): an evil knight

A knight led a dissolute life. He offended his neighbours, he robbed people, and he destroyed churches and monasteries.

Eventually, he determined to make amends for his sins. While eating one day, he decided to build on his estate a monastery, complete with cloister, church, cemetery and infirmary. He planned to live there as a friar alongside fifty or one hundred monks.

He found a perfect place to build, but was suddenly stricken with a fatal illness. He died and devils came to take his soul. Angels also arrived and contested the devils’ possession of the soul.

An angel brought the case before the Virgin and she, in turn, asked Christ to give her the soul.

God granted her wish and gave to the angel a white cloth like a penitent’s habit. The angel, bearing this cloth, frightened the devils away. Yelping, the devils retreated to hell.

The angels, singing Surgat Deus, restored the soul to the knight’s body. He built a monastery and led a chaste life there.

Metrical data
Stanza: 15' 15' 15' 15' Refrain: 15' 15'
No. of Stanzas: 18
Rhyme scheme: AA | bbba Zejel:
MS locations:
T45, E45, To83
Poncelet reference
Fuit, inquit, miles quidam genere nobilissimus, et his quae ad (591)
angels, chastity, devils, habit (monastic), heaven, hell, knight, monastery, monastery (construction of), monks, soul, surgery, thief/ thieves, vow
Click HERE for a list of recordings of this poem
Miracle Collection
Will Taken for Deed Thott
(Copenhagen, Royal Library, MS Thott 128)
Will Taken for Deed Gil de Zamora
(Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, MS 9503)
Will Taken for Deed BL Mariale 3
(London, BL, Additional MS 35112, ff. 21-80; 90-94)
Will Taken for Deed Lisbon Mariale
(Lisbon, B.N., MS Alcobacense 149)
Will Taken for Deed John of Garland
Will Taken for Deed Gautier de Coinci
Will Taken for Deed Mariale Magnum
(Paris Bibliothèque Nationale lat 3177)
Will Taken for Deed Jean Mielot, Miracles de Nostre Dame
(Oxford, Bodleian, Douce MS 374)
Will Taken for Deed Vendôme Collection
(Vendôme, Bibliothèque Publique MS 185)
Will Taken for Deed Paris Mariale 1
(Paris Bibliothèque Nationale 14463)
Sources of the Cantigas of Alfonso el Sabio [AC]
Dexter, Elise Forsythe
Viejos, viejas y alcahuetas. Consideraciones acerca de la vejez en las Cantigas de Santa María
Fidalgo, Elvira
Cincuenta leyendas por Gil de Zamora, combinadas con las Cantigas de Alfonso el Sabio
Fita, Fidel
Confession in the Cantigas de Santa Maria
MacKay, Angus, & Geraldine McKendrick
Osservazioni sulle Cantigas di Alfonso X e sui Miracles di Gautier de Coincy
Marullo, Teresa
La literatura caballeresca en la obra de Alfonso X
Montoya Martínez, Jesús
Tres ensayos sobre el arte en las Cantigas de Santa Maria de Alfonso el Sabio
Sánchez Cantón, Francisco Javier