Genesis iii. 15.

June 26, 2010

I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed: she shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel.

15. “I will put enmities between thee and the woman”: the Protoevangelium of Christ and the Blessed Virgin.

(i) Translation.

Vulgata: Inimicitias ponam inter te et mulierem, et semen tuum et semen illius.  Ipsa conteret caput tuum, et tu insidiaberis calcaneum ejus.

LXX: καὶ ἔχθραν θήσω ἀνὰ μέσον σοῦ καὶ ἀνὰ μέσον τῆς γυναικὸς καὶ ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ σπέρματός σου καὶ ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ σπέρματος αὐτῆς · αὐτός σου τηρήσει κεφαλήν, καὶ σὺ τηρήσεις αὐτοῦ πτέραν.

Masoretic interlinear: “And-enmity I-will-put between-you and-between the-woman and-between offspring-of-you and-between offspring-of-her he he-will-crush-you head and-you you-will-strike-him heel.”

The chief differences between the three renderings are as follows.

1. The Vulgate has plural, inimicitias; LXX and Masoretic have singular.

2. The Vulgate has the feminine ipsa; LXX and Masoretic have masculine.

3. The Vulgate and Masoretic have “crush” (conteret, shuph); the LXX has τηρήσει, which GELS translates as “guard, keep, watch over, observe, lie in wait.”  GELS also suggests this may be an error for τειρήσει, which it gives as “bruise, break”; this reading would more or less agree with the other two renderings.  L&S, however, give the meaning of τειρήσει as “rub, rub away, wear out, afflict.”

4. The Vulgate has insidiaberis; LXX has τηρήσεις, as in the first reading of the first verb; Masoretic here also repeats the verb, shuph; the interlinear renders it here, however, as “strike.” The LXX and the Vetus Latinus based on it are used by SS. Chrysostom and Augustine.  St. Jerome, infra, presumably writing before the completion of the Vulgate, replaces the LXX verbs with the Hebrew, rendering it in both cases as “crush,” but retains the masculine pronoun:

St. Jerome: “He shall guard your head, and you shall guard his heel.  The Hebrew text is better: He shall crush your head, and you shall crush his heel; for our steps are hindered by the snake, and the Lord shall swiftly crush Satan beneath our feet” (LHQG).

The readings of the Vulgate are here briefly defended:

a. “Ipsa,” “She”

The fact that today the LXX and Masoretic Hebrew read “he” or “it” should not be given much weight.  The original, inspired Hebrew text consisted only of consonants, from which the gender of the pronoun could not be determined, and the Masoretic insertion of vowels was made as late as A.D. 800-900.  Furthermore, even assuming the correct reading was still preserved among the Jews at that date, a scribal error in the Masoretic points that would change the gender of the pronoun was easily possible; cf. Thomas Sennott, The Woman of Genesis, pp 45-49.  The same work also shows, following Cornelius, that Josephus, Philo and even Maimonides in the 11th century all read a feminine pronoun; Josephus and Philo knew both Hebrew and Greek.[1] Furthermore, see the grammatical points mentioned by Cornelius, infra {c.}; it is quite possible that a scribe could have regularized what was originally a feminine pronoun with a masculine verb by making the pronoun masculine.  More important than either of these considerations is the authority of the Vulgate, which as St. Alphonsus says should always be preferred to the Hebrew as currently extant in case of any conflict.[2] Then there is the argument from tradition. Ipsa was universally read in Europe from the adoption of the Vulgate until the Reformation (Luther and the King James both have the masculine); and was universally read in the Catholic Church until the 1960s.[3] Thomas Nelson observes[4] that that tradition itself is conclusive confirmation that the correct reading is ipsa.  Finally there is the testimony of the Blessed Virgin herself in two apparitions.  It seems that Our Lady in her appearance in 1531 to Juan Diego and Bishop Zumarraga did not refer to herself, in Spanish, as the Lady “de Guadalupe” (no one has an explanation of what this could possibly mean), but in Aztec, as “te coatlaxopeuh,” meaning she who “crushes the stone serpent” – thereby referring not only to the serpent idol Quetzalcoatl (whom she crushed through the conversion of eight million Indians in seven years), but ultimately to the serpens antiquus, Satan.  Three centuries later, in 1831, Our Lady gave us the Miraculous Medal, whose image is a depiction of her crushing the serpent’s head; the Medal’s authority is confirmed by the incorrupt preservation of the body of the woman to whom it was revealed, St. Catherine Labouré.[5] The evidence for reading ipsa here is thus conclusive.

b. “conteret, insidiaberis”; “she shall crush, thou shalt lie in wait”

St. Jerome’s use of two verbs is also entirely justified, as the single Hebrew verb shuph includes the meanings of both Latin verbs, conteret and insidiaberis, and this combination is the only one that makes logical sense in the context of the passage; cf. Sennott pp 72-76, Unger 30-32.  At the same time, the allegorical and morical senses drawn by SS. Augustine and Gregory from the LXX verbs are also valid, because the original shuph also included, as a secondary sense, the meaning given in the LXX.

c. General analysis.

Cornelius: “She shall crush thy head – there are three readings of this passage.  The first is that of the Hebrew codices[6], which is it, the seed, shall crush thy head; and this reading is followed by St. Leo, and from him Lipomanus.  The second is: He, man, or Christ, shall crush thy head: thus the Septuagint and the Chaldaic.  The third is: She shall crush thy head.  So read the Roman Bible and nearly all the Latin versions, with SS. Augustine, Chrysostom, Ambrose, Gregory, Bede, Alcuin, Bernard, Eucherio, Rupert and others.  There exist certain Hebrew copies that instead of hu [masc.] read hi [fem.].  Furthermore, hu is often put instead of hi, especially when there is emphasis, and something masculine is attributed to a woman, as here with the crushing of the serpent’s head.  Examples are here verses 12 and 20, Gen. xvii. 14, Gen xxiv. 44, Gen xxxviii. 21 et 25.  Nor is it a problem that the verb is masculine, iascuph, ‘crush’; for it is common in Hebrew to put the masculine for the feminine, and the reverse, especially if there is a reason and some mystery, just as there is here, as I shall now say.  So hi iascuph [fem. pron., masc. verb] is put for hi tascuph [fem. pron., fem. verb].  Likewise in Gen. ii. 23 we read iichare issa, not tichare issa.  Whence Josephus, book I, ch. III, reads as our version has: for he has, as Ruffinus translates, ‘The woman warned that she would inflict wounds on his head.’  From which it is clear that at that time Josephus’s text had ἀυτή, that is, she, but that heretical scribes have since removed the word γυνή.

“None of these three readings is to be rejected; on the contrary, they are all true: for because God here sets as adversaries the woman with her seed against the serpent with his seed, accordingly He wishes to say that the woman will crush the serpent’s head with the help of her seed; just as on the other side the serpent lies in wait for both her heel and that of her seed.  And so it seems that in the Hebrew Moses here mixed a masculine verb with a feminine pronoun, writing hi iascuph, she shall crush, to signify that both the woman and her seed, and indeed the woman through her seed – Christ – will crush the serpent’s head” (Commentaria, pp 105-106).

(ii) Literal, Allegorical, Moral senses.

St. Chrysostom: “See here, beloved, how great the care for the human race is that God shows to us by the punishment assigned to this beast.  And this is certainly of the visible serpent: but it is permissible afterwards to consider the order of the writings, and recognize that if these things are said of the sensible serpent, much more are they to be taken of the spiritual serpent.  For God humiliated him and subjected him to our feet, and granted that we might press on his head.  Or is this not what this passage signifies: Tread upon serpents and scorpions?[7] Moreover, lest we think this to be said of sensible beasts, there follows: and upon all the power of the enemy.  Do you see the enormous love for man[8] that God shows from what is said of the punishment inflicted on the devil’s instrument?” (Homiliæ in Genesin, xvii. 2.).

St. Augustine: “Now enmities are not put between him and the man, but between him and the woman.  Is this because he does not deceive and tempt men?  It is obvious that he does deceive men.  Or is it because he did not deceive Adam himself, but his wife?  But is he not still on this account the enemy of him to whom the deception came through his wife, especially because it is already said of the future: I will put enmities between thee and the woman?  If he did not deceive Adam in his turn, neither did he deceive Eve herself in her turn.  Why then is this said, except to show manifestly that we can only be tempted by the devil through that animal part which shows itself as the image or exemplar of a woman in one person, concerning which we have said many things already?  Now with regard to the placing of the enmities[9] between the seed of the devil and the seed of the woman: by the devil’s seed is signified a perverse suggestion; by the woman’s seed, the fruit of a good work, by which one resists the perverse suggestion.  And therefore he observes the foot of the woman, so that when she falls into forbidden pleasure, he may then seize her; and she observes his head, so that she may reject him at the very beginning of his evil counsel” (De Genesi contra Manichæos, II. xviii. 28.  Cf. S. Thomas, ST. IIa-IIae q. clxv. a. ii. ad 4.).

Pope St. Gregory the Great: “When the ancient enemy does not kill in the beginning of his intention, nor intercept us in the path of action, he extends harder snares at the end.  He then besieges all the more wickedly, as he sees this is his only remaining way to deceive.  The Prophet had observed the snares laid for his end when he said: They will watch my heel.[10] Now because the heel is the end of the body, what is signified by this except the end of an action?  Therefore, whether it is evil spirits, or depraved men following their pride, they watch the heel when they desire to spoil the end of a good action.  Whence it is said to the same serpent: She shall watch your head, and you her heel. For to watch the head of the serpent is to observe the beginning of his suggestion, and with the hand of careful consideration to tear it out completely from its attack of the heart” (Moralium Liber I., 54., col. 552.).

(iii) Protoevangelium RC: “Because Adam had fallen away from the obedience of God, and had violated the prohibition, Of every tree of paradise thou shalt eat, but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat: for in what day soever thou shalt eat of it, thou shalt die the death, he fell into that utter disaster whereby he lost the holiness and justice in which he had been created, and began to experience evil.  Because of this, the faithful should not think that sin, and the punishment of sin, fell only upon Adam, but should keep in mind that from him, just as from the woman, they justly remained for all posterity.

“When our race had falled from the highest grade of dignity, it was not able to be lifted again and restored to its original place, by any powers of men or Angels; wherefore the consequence of the fall, and the release from its evils, was that the Son of God should take on the weakness of our flesh, and, by his infinite power and virtue, lift and destroy the infinite force of sin, and reconcile us to God in his blood.

“Faith in and confession of this redemption is necessary for the salvation of men, and always has been, as God showed from the beginning: for in the condemnation of the human race that immediately followed upon sin, there was also shown the hope of redemption by these words, by which He proclaimed the specific defeat the devil would suffer by the liberation of men: I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed.  She shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel; and from then on He frequently confirmed this promise …” (I. iii. 2-4.).

Note: This passage, especially in conjunction with the teachings of PP. Bl. Pius IX and St. Pius X, infra, teaches clearly that Adam and Eve were saved by explicit faith in Christ, foreknowledge of Whom God revealed to them “clearly and openly” in paradise, and the sight of Whose mother crushing the serpent’s head dried the tears of Adam.  Cf. Unger, The First Gospel, pp 89, 271-272.

St. Irenæus: “For God hated him who seduced man; but he slowly and gradually showed His mercy to him who was seduced … “For which reason He placed enmity between the serpent and the woman, and their seed, watching each other: with him who would be bitten in the foot also having power to trample on the head of the enemy; and with the other – the one biting – killing, and hindering the steps of man, until the seed came that was predestined to crush his head: Mary’s Son, of Whom the Prophet said: Thou shalt walk upon the asp and the basilisk: and thou shalt trample under foot the lion and the dragon:[12] signifying that sin, which was raised and expanded against man, and rendered him cold, would be purged, along with the reign of death; and that at the end of time He would crush the attacking lion of the human race, Antichrist; and that He would bind the dragon, the ancient serpent,[13] and subject him to the power of man whom he had conquered, in order to crush all his power” (Contra Hæreses, III. xxiii. 5, 7.).

Pope St. Leo the Great: “For the almighty and clement God, Whose nature is goodness, Whose will is power, Whose work is mercy, signified beforehand, at the very beginning of the world, as soon as the diabolical malice had killed with its envious poison, the remedies that He had prepared, in His mercy, for the restoration of mortal men; declaring to the serpent that there would come a woman’s seed Who by His own power would crush the exaltation of his noxious head; that is, he signified that Christ would come in the flesh, both God and Man, and, born from a Virgin, would condemn the violator of the human race by His incorrupt birth” (Sermo II. in Nativitate Domini, i.; PL 54:123).

St. Isidore: “Some, however, have understood what is said, I will put enmities between thee and the woman, of the Virgin of whom the Lord was born, because at that time it was promised that the Lord would be born from her, to triumph utterly over the enemy, and to destroy death, whose author he was. “For they also understand what follows, She shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel, of the fruit of Mary’s womb, Who is Christ.  That is: ‘You shall attack His foot, so that He dies.  But He will rise again, with you conquered, and shall crush your head, which is death: just as David had said to the Son in the person of the Father: Thou shalt walk upon the asp and the basilisk: and thou shalt trample under foot the lion and the dragon.  The asp is death; the basilisk, sin; the lion, Antichrist; the dragon, the devil” (Quæstiones in VT, v. 6-8.).

St. Bernard: “The angel was sent, it says, to a Virgin.[14] A virgin in flesh, a virgin in mind, a virgin in avowal; and, finally, the virgin the Apostle describes, holy in mind and body;[15] not discovered recently, or by chance, but chosen from the beginning of the world, foreknown and prepared by the Most High for Himself, promised by the prophets.  Search the Scriptures, and test what I say.  Do you wish me to bring forth more witnesses?  To say little of many things, whom else does it seem to you God foretold, when He said to the serpent: I will put enmities between you and the woman?  And if you still doubt that He did not say this of Mary, hear what follows: She shall crush thy head.  For whom is this victory safeguarded, if not Mary?  Far from doubt, she crushed that poisonous head who brought to nothing every kind of evil suggestion, whether of carnal allurements or spiritual pride” (Sermones de Tempore, De Laudibus Virginis Matris, “super Missus est,” II. 4.).

“In truth that singular fool, the prince of folly, who, having truly changed like the moon, lost his wisdom in his glory, is trampled and crushed beneath the feet of Mary, and suffers a miserable slavery.  For most certainly she is the woman once promised by God, who would crush the head of the ancient serpent with her foot of virtue; she is the one for whose heel he lay in wait, with much cunning, but in vain.  For she alone crushed all heretical depravity” (Sermo xxvii de Sanctis, Dominica infra Octavam Assumptionis B. V. Mariæ, 4.).

St. Bonaventure: “It was also fitting that the blessed Virgin Mary, through whom our shame is taken away, should conquer the devil, so that she did not succumb to him even a little.  And for this reason Bernard and Augustine[16] expound of her this passage in Gen. iii: She shall crush thy head.  If therefore suggestion is the devil’s head,[17] no suggestion of the devil found entrance into the Virgin’s mind, and so she was immune from both mortal and venial sin” (Sententiarum III., iii. 1. 2. 1.).

St. Louis de Montfort: “It is principally of these last, cruel persecutions of the devil, that will grow every day until the reign of Antichrist, that one should understand this first and celebrated prophecy and punishment of God, delivered in the earthly paradise against the serpent.  It is relevant to explain it here for the glory of the Most Holy Virgin, the salvation of her children and the confusion of the devil.  I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed; she shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel.

“God has only ever made and formed one enmity, but it is irreconcilable, and will endure and grow until the end: it is between Mary, His noble Mother, and the devil; between the children and servants of the Blessed Virgin, and the children and fiends of Lucifer.  The most terrible of the enemies God has made against the devil is Mary, His holy Mother.  In earthly paradise, even though she only existed as yet in His mind,[18] He gave her such hatred for this accursed enemy of God; such industry for discovering the malice of this ancient serpent; such power to vanquish, strike down and crush this impious, proud being, that he fears her, not only more than all Angels and men, but even, in a sense, more than God Himself.  It is not that the wrath, the hatred and the power of God are not infinitely greater than those of the Blessed Virgin, for Mary’s perfections are limited; but it is primarily because Satan, being proud, suffers infinitely more to be vanquished and punished by a little and humble handmaid of God, and her humility humiliates him more than the divine power; secondly because God has given Mary such great power against the devils that, as they have been forced to admit against their will by the mouth of the possessed, they fear a single one of her sighs for a soul more than the prayers of all the saints, and a single one of her threats against them more than all their other torments.

“God has not put only one enmity, but enmities: not only between Mary and the demon, but between the race of the Blessed Virgin and the race of the demon; that is to say that God has put enmities, antipathies and secred hatreds between the true children and servants of the Blessed Virgin and the children and slaves of the devil; they have no love for each other, there is no point of inner correspondence between the one group and the other.  The children of Belial, the slaves of Satan, the friends of the world (for these are all the same) have always persecuted until now, and will persecute more than ever those who belong to the Most Holy Virgin, as Cain once persecuted his brother Abel, and Esau his brother Jacob, who were figures of the reprobate and the predestined.  But the lowly Mary will always have the victory over the proud devil, and so great a victory that she will crush his head, where his pride lies; she will always uncover his infernal snares, she will destroy his diabolical counsels, and will safeguard her faithful servants from his cruel claw until the end of time” (Vraie Dévotion, 51-52, 54.).

Note: St. Louis is the only writer to have advanced this application to end times so explicitly, but his testimony should not be treated lightly on that account, as the work in which this exposition occurs has been unanimously and overwhelmingly praised and recommended by Popes Bl. Pius IX, Leo XIII, St. Pius X, Benedict XV, Pius XI, Pius XII and John Paul II.  Furthermore, this interpretation is strongly supported by Apoc. xii, especially verses 1-4 and 17.

St. Alphonsus: “Even more was it fitting that God preserved her from original sin, because He predestined her to crush the head of the infernal serpent, who by seducing our first parents brought death to all men, as the Lord foretold: I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed; she shall crush thy head. If Mary was to be the brave woman stationed in the world to conquer Lucifer, certainly it would not have been fitting for her first to be conquered by Lucifer and made his slave; more quickly: it was reasonable that she should be preserved from every stain and from every suggestion of the enemy.  Just as he had already infected the entire human race with his poison, the proud one sought likewise to infect this Virgin’s purest soul.  But praised be always the divine goodness, that prevented her from this end with such grace, that remaining free from every guilt of sin, she could so batter and confound his pride, as St. Augustine, or whoever may be the true author, wrote in this commentary on Genesis: ‘If the head of original sin is the devil, Mary crushed this head, because no subjection to sin had entrance into the Virgin’s soul, and so she was immune from every stain’” (Glorie di Maria, II. i. 1.).

Ven. John Cardinal Henry Newman: “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed. The Seed of the woman is the Word Incarnate, and the Woman, whose seed or Son He is, is His Mother Mary.  This interpretation, and the parallelism it involves, seem to me undeniable; but at all events (and this is my point) the parallelism is the doctrine of the Fathers, from the earliest times; and, this being established, we are able, by the position and office of Eve in our fall, to determine the position and office of Mary in our restoration” (Mary: The Second Eve, p 2.).

Pope Bl. Pius IX: “Truly the Fathers and the Writers of the Church, learned in the pronouncements of heaven, held nothing more time-honored than, through books composed with tireless effort for the purposes of explaining the Scriptures, vindicating dogmas and educating the faithful, to  proclaim and show forth in many and marvelous ways the Virgin’s highest holiness and dignity, her preservation from all stain of sin, and her glorious victory over the most foul enemy of the human race.  Wherefore, in describing the words by which God announced at the very beginning of the world the remedies prepared by His goodness for the restoration of mortal men, blunted the audacity of the deceitful serpent and wondrously raised the hope of our race, saying I will put enmities between thee and the woman, between thy seed and her seed, they taught that this divine utterance clearly and openly foretold the merciful Redeemer of the human race, the Only-Begotten Son of God Christ Jesus, and indicated His most blessed mother the Virgin Mary, and expressed conspicuously the very same enmities of both with the devil.  Hence Christ, the mediator between God and men, having taken on human nature, expunged the handwriting of the decree against us and triumphantly fastened it to the cross, and likewise the most holy Virgin, joined to Him by a most intimate and indissoluble bond, one with Him and through Him carried out their enmities against the poisonous serpent, and, triumphing over him completely, crushed his head with her immaculate foot” (Apostolic Letter “Ineffabilis Deus,” 1854, Acta I. i., p 619).

Pope St. Pius X: “In the Holy Scriptures, whenever it is prophesied of the grace to come in us,[20] almost every time the Protector of men is joined with His most holy Mother.  The lamb, the ruler of the world, will be sent out, but from the rock of the desert; a flower will rise up, but from the root of Jesse.  And certainly Adam looked out upon Mary crushing the serpent’s head, and he held back the flowing tears the curse had brought on” (Litteræ Encyclicæ, “Ad diem illum lætissimum,” 1904; 7.).[21]

In summary: that this passage is the Protoevangelium, the first announcement of the good news of salvation, cannot be doubted by any Catholic.  “The woman” and “her seed” are not “types” or “figures,” but rather, as Pope Bl. Pius IX writes, a “clear and open,” literal reference to Our Lady and Our Lord.[22] It is further indisputable that they are united in the fight against and triumph over the serpent; this is an important point even in the expositions of the Fathers, such as Irenæus and Leo, whose texts do not have the feminine pronoun, which as we have shown is to be considered the correct text.  This union is implied even in the grammar of the original Hebrew, which as Cornelius shows is in all probability a feminine pronoun with a masculine verb.  The precise significance of this feminine pronoun, that is, of the manner in which Mary crushes the serpent’s head, is more open to debate, but it seems that the most probable interpretation is twofold.  Broadly, the passage refers to her direct participation in Christ’s salvation of man, in His Incarnation, Life, Passion and Resurrection; in this sense it is true that it is by her seed, Jesus Christ, that she crushes the  serpent’s head.[23] Strictly, however, it refers to Mary’s individual triumph over Satan, which itself has two parts: first, her personal defeat of him at the Immaculate Conception, and throughout her sinless life; second, her ongoing battle with the devil on behalf of the elect until the end of time.  In every victory in this battle, she renews the crushing of the serpent’s head that she achieved by her personal victory.  The full scope of the strict meaning is admirably contained in the following passage:

Pope St. Pius X: “But the Virgin herself will never cease to be with us in our trials, however difficult, and to continue the battle she fought even from her conception, so that every day it may be repeated: ‘Today the head of the ancient serpent was crushed by her.’”[24]


[1] ibid. pp 49-51.

[2] ibid. p 58.

[3] The Nova Vulgata, breaking with 1600 years of Catholic tradition, has ipsum.

[4] Which Bible Should You Read? pp 25-28.

[5] Sennott, pp 78-80; Nelson, p 27.

[6] i.e. the Masoretic text.

[7] Luke x. 19.

[8] φιλανθροπίαν.  PL translates humanitatem.

[9] Note the plural.

[10] Ps. lv. 7.

[11] See Note following.

[12] Ps. xc. 13.

[13] Apoc. xii. 9.

[14] Luke i. 26-27.

[15] 1 Cor. vii. 34.

[16] The exposition attributed to St. Augustine is almost certainly not by him; cf. St. Alphonsus, infra.

[17] St. Augustine: “What is the serpent’s head?  The first suggestion of sin” (Enarr. in Ps. ciii. iv. 6.).

[18] Cf. Bl. Anne Emmerich: “I saw the second Person of the Godhead descend with something like a crooked blade and take the Blessing from Adam before he consented to sin.  At the same instant I saw the Virgin float from Adam’s side like a small, radiant cloud to God in His glory on high” (Die Sünde und ihre Folgen: 1. Der Sündenfall).

[19] See Note following.

[20] cf. 1. Petr. i. 10.

[21] Cf. Bl. Anne Emmerich: “Finally I saw an image on earth like the one God gave to Adam, that a Virgin would appear and restore to him his lost salvation” (Die Sünde und ihre Folgen: 2. Die Verheißung des Heiles).

[22] Cf. the PBC decree, supra, {Gen. intro.}: “Whether in particular the literal, historical sense can possibly be called into doubt, where it is treated … of … the promise of a future Redeemer?  Resp. No.”  Unger, pp 82-83.

[23] Cf. Bl. Anna Emmerich: “I saw Adam and Eve surrounded by sons, and crying in great sadness to God, that He might also grant them daughters.  They had the Promise that the woman’s seed would crush the serpent’s head” (Die Sünde und ihre Folgen: 4. Die Familie Adams).

[24] Ad diem illum lætissimum, 25.  The quotation is from the Antiphon for the Magnificat at II Vespers of the Office of the Immaculate Conception.

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