Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Chrodegang Rules: The Rules for the Common Life of the Secular Clergy from the Eighth and Ninth Centuries. Critical Texts with Translations and Commentary

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Chrodegang Rules: The Rules for the Common Life of the Secular Clergy from the Eighth and Ninth Centuries. Critical Texts with Translations and Commentary

Article excerpt

The Chrodegang Rules: The Rules for the Common Life of the Secular Clergy from the Eighth and Ninth Centuries. Critical Texts with Translations and Commentary, ed. Jerome Bertram (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2005). 304 pp. ISBN 0-7546-5251-3. £5 5.00. Periodically throughout the history of the Church in the West, the secular clergy have been a target for reformers. The mode of life of priests who received a stipend for their work, could own property, and move freely about the world was often contrasted unfavourably with monks living cloistered under a common rule of life. The first surviving rule to govern the lives of secular clergy was drawn up for the cathedral chapter of Metz in ad 75 5 by St Chrodegang, a prince of the royal house, who was Bishop of Metz from 742 to 766. His was an admirably practical and well-structured rule to govern every aspect of the daily life of priests living in community, for which St Benedict's monastic rule was laid heavily under contribution. The original state of Chrodegang's text (the true priority is argued by Bertram) is attested by four manuscripts, three of the ninth or tenth centuries, while the oldest, now in Bern, was probably part of the chapter book of Metz from Chrodegang's own time. …

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