St. Anthony's Brief Prayer

A case of diabolical obsession, that yielded to the power of St Anthony of Padua, was recorded in Portugal during the reign of King Denis.

Under the guise of a heavenly visitant, the devil frequently appeared to a woman of Lisbon and urged her to throw herself into the river Tagus in order to obtain the remission of her sins and eternal happiness.

The tormented woman at length decided to drown herself. Passing a Franciscan chapel on her way to the river, she entered, and kneeling before the altar of St. Anthony, implored the Saint to help her save her soul. Overcome by fatigue, she fell asleep.

During her slumber St Anthony appeared to her, revealed the deceit of the "father of lies" and released her from the obsession. On awaking, the woman found a letter which the Saint had given her during the vision. It contained the prayer now known as the "Brief of St Anthony." The original of Saint Anthony's Brief was preserved with the crown jewels by the King of Portugal. Pope Sixtus V caused the efficacious lines to be inscribed on an obelisk, which he had erected in the quadrangle in front of Saint Peter's.


Behold, the Cross of the Lord! 
Begone, all evil powers! 
The Lion of the tribe of Judah, 
The Root of David, has conquered! 
Alleluia, Alleluia! 


Ecce Crucem Domini! 
Fugite partes adversae! 
Vicit Leo de tribu Juda, 
Radix David! Alleluia!

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