John Vatatzes the Merciful everybody awaits O may that glorious day dawn upon us again When the merciful king from his slumber awakes Constantinople will see Both the king with his saints. A few words about the sword symbolism In Christianity the sword symbolism deals with protection, righteousness, and justice. We see archangel Michael depicted in Christian art holding a sword (also with scales) to reinforce the concept of truth, purity, equanimity, and the justness revealed in the light of Christ. Furthermore, we see the sword (often flaming) blocking the gates of Eden as a sign of protection - only the pure of heart may enter. The poem is inspired by the Legend of the Reposed King, John Vatatzes A contemporary account during the reign of Andronikos Palaiologos (1282-1328), mentions that around the time that the Turks invaded Magnesia, on several occasions the castle guardsman had witnessed a lit candle circling around the city walls. He sent men to investigate the phenomenon but to no avail. Then the deaf-mute brother of the guardsman was sent, and he was given a revelation, and was completely healed upon his return. He said that at the area where the lit candle had appeared, he found a man of a grand royal stature, who loudly urged the Christians to continue the defense. Later he recognized the image of the man he had seen when visiting the holy shrine of St. John Vatatzes. Since then John was recognized as a Saint and his memory was set to be honoured on November 4. His incorrupt relics were transferred to Constantinople, which had been liberated from the Franks, where the legend of the reposed King became associated with him. At time of the fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Turks, his relics were hidden in a catacomb. The legend states that since that time, he has been awaiting the liberation of Constantinople. It also states that the holy king has his sword with him in its sheath, and that each year the blade of the sword emerges a few millimeters, until the time comes for the entire sword to emerge completely, which will signify the time for the liberation of the City. A contemporary Elder has said that the Merciful King has already arisen for some time, and that the sword has emerged completely from its sheath. He wanders the City in the form of a fool, and directs the armies of the Saints so as to take their place around the Queen of Cites. The Elder also maintains that the sacred relics of Emperor Saint John Vatatzes the Merciful were guarded by a family of Crypto-Christians, which kept them secret from generation to generation.