That the ascetic ideal was by no means wholly extinct is evident from the Book of Governors written by Thomas, bishop of Marga, in 840 which bears witness to a Syrian monasticism founded by one Awgin of Egyptian descent, who settled in Nisibis about 3 50, and lasting uninterruptedly until the time of Thomas, though it had long been absorbed in the great Nestorian movement that had annexed the church in Mesopotamia.
The great church movement of his time - the reformation of English monasticism on Benedictine lines - found in him a sympathizer, but in no sense an active participant.
Thus one of the most important of all medieval ecclesiastical institutions, monasticism, came to an end in England.
What may be called the inner side of Benedictine life and history is treated in the article Monasticism; here it is possible to deal only with the broad facts of the external history.
On Benedictine nuns much will be found in the above-mentioned authorities, and also in Lina Eckenstein, Woman in Monasticism (1896).
Indeed, the early conviction of the essential difference between the life of this world and that of the next lived on, and, as the Church became increasingly a worldinstitution, found vent in monasticism, which was simply the effort to put into more consistent practice the other-worldly life, and to make more thoroughgoing work of the saving of one's soul.
There were Christian monks as early as the 3rd century, and before the end of the 4th monasticism (q.v.) was an established institution both in East and West.
The existence of monasticism made it possible at once to hold up a high moral standard before the world and to permit the ordinary Christian to be content with something lower.
But when, in consequence of the Arab invasion, the monasticism of those countries was cut off from intercourse with the rest of Christendom, it decayed.
It has been pointed out how Charlemagne pressed the monks into the service of his civilizing aims. We admire this; but it is certain that he thereby alienated monasticism from its original ideals.
A large number of the reformed monasteries attached themselves to the congregation of Cluny, thus assuring the influence of reformed monasticism upon the Church, and securing likewise its independence of the diocesan bishops, since the abbot of Cluny was subordinate of the pope alone.
Like the new theology and the new science of law, the new monasticism was also rooted in Latin soil.
Eugenius retained the stoic virtues of monasticism throughout his stormy career, and was deeply reverenced for his personal character.
In the earliest age of Christian monasticism the ascetics were accustomed to live singly, independent of one another, at no great distance from some village, supporting themselves by the labour of their own hands, and distributing the surplus after the supply of their own scanty wants to the poor.
Monasticism in the West owes its extension and development to Benedict of Nursia (born A.D.
The chief importance of the monastic rule and institute of St Basil lies in the fact that to this day his reconstruction of the monastic life is the basis of the monasticism of the Greek and Slavonic Churches, though the monks do not call themselves Basilians.
However, the eastern hankering after the eremitical life long survived, and it was only by dint of legislation, both ecclesiastical (council of Chalcedon) and civil (Justinian Code), that the Basilian cenobitic form of monasticism came to prevail throughout the Greek-speaking lands, though the eremitical forms have always maintained themselves.
Greek monachism underwent no development or change for four centuries, except the vicissitudes inevitable in all things human, which in monasticism assume the form of alternations of relaxation and revival.
Hannay's Spirit and Origin of Christian Monasticism (1903).
As the election of any cardinal seemed impossible, on the 5th of July 1294 the Sacred College united on Pietro di Morrone; the cardinals expected to rule in the name of the celebrated but incapable ascetic. Apocalyptic notions then current doubtless aided his election, for Joachim of Floris and his school looked to monasticism to furnish deliverance to the church and to the world.
The lines laid down by St Basil have continued ever since to be the lines in which Greek and Slavonic monasticism has rested, the new multitudinous modifications of the monastic ideal, developed in such abundance in the Latin Church, having no counterpart in the Greek.
But climatic conditions and racial temperament rendered the Oriental manner of monasticism unattainable, as a rule, in the West.
St Benedict's rule was a new creation in monastic history; and as it rapidly supplanted all other monastic rules in western Europe, and was for several centuries the only form of monasticism in Latin Christianity (outside of Ireland), it is necessary to speak in some little detail of its spirit and inner character.'
But with the 10th century we reach the period of orders, and it is on this line that all subsequent developments in Western monasticism have run.
In all these lesser orders may be discerned the tendency of a return to the elements of Eastern monasticism discarded by St Benedict - to the eremitical life; to the purely contemplative life with little or no factor of work; to the undertaking of rigorous bodily austerities and penances - it was at this time that the practice of self-inflicted scourgings as a penitential exercise was introduced.
- Up to this point we have met only with monasticism proper; and if the term were taken strictly, the remainder of this article would be concerned only with the later history of the institutes already spoken of; for neither canons regular, friars, nor regular clerks, are in the strict sense monks.
But it is usual, and it will be convenient here, to use the term monasticism in a broader sense, as equivalent to the technical " religious life," and as embracing the various forms that have come into being so prolifically in the Latin Church at all periods since the middle of the r r th century.
- The 13th century was the heyday of monasticism in the West; the Mendicant orders were in their first fervour and enthusiasm; the great abbeys of Benedictines, Cistercians and Augustinian canons reflected the results of the religious reform and revival associated with Hildebrand's name, and maintained themselves at a high .and dignified level in things religious and secular; and under the Benedictine rule were formed the new congregations or orders of Silvestrines (1231), Celestines (c. 1260) and Olivetans (1319), which are described under their several headings.
See the works of Helyot and Heimbucher, referred to below under " Literature "; also Lina Eckenstein, Woman under Monasticism (1896); and for information on the various orders of women, J N.
The views of the new Protestantism concerning monasticism are probably no less excessive than those of the old.
It may perhaps be agreed that not the least of the services rendered to the Christian people at large by monasticism is this: Into every life the spirit.
The literature on monasticism is immense.
The inner spirit and working of the older monasticism is well portrayed in F.A.
It is probable that Sozomen did not approve of Socrates's freer attitude towards Greek science, and that he wished to present a picture in which the clergy should be still further glorified and monasticism brought into still stronger prominence.
Another view, promulgated like the above by Hector Boece in his Latin history of Scotland (1516), makes them the direct successors in the 9th to the 12th century of the organized Irish and Iona monasticism of the 6th to the 8th century.
Pp. 180-186 of Burkitt's Evangelion Da-Mepharreshe (Cambridge, 1904); articles on "Aphraates and Monasticism," by R.
22), it is but seldom that one could learn from the pages of Socrates that there was such a thing as monasticism in those days.
- Monasticism is, as it has always been, an important feature in the Eastern Church.
Lake in Early Days of Monasticism on Mount Athos (1909) traces the development through three well-defined stages in the 9th and 10th centuries - (a) the hermit period, (b) the loose organization of hermits in lauras, (c) the stricter rule of the monastery, with definite buildings and fixed rules under an ii-youµevos or abbot.
The facts concerning the rise of the Orders of Mendicant Friars are related in the articles on the several orders (Franciscans, Dominicans, Carmelites, Augustinian Hermits), and in that On Monasticism (§ Ii), where the difference between friars and monks is explained.
Great stress is laid upon virginity (although there is not a sign of monasticism), upon fasting (especially for the bishop), upon the regular attendance of the whole clerical body and the " more perfect " of the laity at the hours of prayer.
In Egypt, the first home of monasticism, the jurisdiction of the abbot, or archimandrite, was but loosely defined.
(1870); Lina Eckenstein, Woman under Monasticism; Bishop Grafton, Vocation.
This feeling is exhibited in the value set on fasting in the Christian church from the earliest times, and in an extreme form in the self-torments of later monasticism; while both tendencies, anti-worldliness and antisensualism, seem to have combined in causing the preference of celibacy over marriage which is common to most early Christian writers.'
Although thoroughly devoted to the ideals of monasticism, he discharged his episcopal duties with remarkable zeal and fidelity.
It shows that the " sobriety " of the Antiochene scholars can be predicated only of their exegesis; their style of piety was as exaggerated in its devotion to the ideals of monasticism as was that of their monophysite opponents.
In medieval ecclesiastical usage the term might be applied to almost any person having ecclesiastical authority; it was very commonly given to the more dignified clergy of a cathedral church, but often also to ordinary priests charged with the cure of souls and, in the early days of monasticism, to monastic superiors, even to superiors of convents of women.
In 1881 he published a work on monasticism, Das M onchtum, seine Ideale and seine Geschichte (5th ed., 1900; English translation, 1901), and became joint-editor with Emil Schiirer of the Theologische Literaturzeitung.
Lucius, Die Therapeuten and ihre Stellung), and accepted in England, to the effect that the De Vita Contemplativa is not a work of Philo's at all, but a forgery put forward about the end of the 3rd century and intended to procure the authority of Philo's name for the then rising monasticism of the Church.
A vigorous campaign against monasticism took place; the monasteries were closed, and many of them pulled down or converted into barracks; monks and nuns were compelled to marry, and exiled in large numbers to Cyprus; the literary and artistic treasures were sold for the benefit of the imperial treasury.
The history of monasticism is one of alternate periods of decay and revival.
Feasy's Monasticism (1898), and F.
Thus monasticism is not a creation of Christianity; it is much older, and before the Christian era a highly organized monasticism existed in India.
A general sketch of pre-Christian asceticism and monasticism, with indication of the chief authorities, is given in O.
Hannay, Spirit and Origin of Christian Monasticism (1903), app. i: the view now common among scholars is there maintained, that these pre-Christian realizations of the monastic idea had little, and indeed no, influence on the rise and development of Christian monasticism.
The Danish inroads had told heavily upon it; the monasteries had been special points of attack, and though Alfred founded two or three monasteries and imported foreign monks, there was no general revival of monasticism under him.