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179 [178]

King Edgar. Monkes. King Edgar. Monkerie.

MarginaliaDionysius.
Concilium Chalced. Can. A.
ego pascor. &c. That is: One thyng perteineth to Mōkes, another thyng to them of the Clergy. They of the Clergy feede their flocke: I am fed. &c. Et ex Dionysio. Also the same appeareth likewise by the iiij. Canon of the Councell of Chalcedone, where it is prouided, Ne Monachi se Ecclesiasticis negocijs immisceant. MarginaliaMonkes forbiddē to intermedle with matters ecclesiasticall.That is, That mōkes should not intermedle with matters of the Church. &c. Et Leo Epistola. 62. vetat Monachos & laicos, etsi scientiæ nomine glorientur, admitti ad officium docendi & concionandi.

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MarginaliaMonkes differing from Priestes.
Monkes in the primitiue time differing from Monkes in the ij. age of the church.
By these foresayd authors alledged it is euident: that Monkes in the former age of the Church, albeit they liued a solitary life, yet they were then no other but onely lay mē: differyng from Priestes, & differing from the other mōkes, whiche succeeded them afterward in the middle age of the Church, and that in iij. pointes. First they were tyde and bound to no prescript forme either of dyet, or apparell, or of any thyng els: as we may see testified by the wordes of S. Austen, which be these: MarginaliaAugust de institutis monachorum.Neq̀ inter haæc nemo vrgetur in aspera, quæ ferre nō potest: Nulli quod recusat imponitur. Nec ideo contemnitur a cæteris in ф eis immitandis se fatetur inualidam. Meminerunt enim quantopere commendata sit in Scripturis charitas. Meminerunt omnia munda mundis. &c. Non quod intrat in os coinquinat hominem, sed quod exit. Itaq̀ non reijciendis generibus ciborum, quasi pollutis, sed concupiscentiæ perdomandæ, & dilectioni fratrum retinendæ inuigilat omnis industria. And Sozomenus Libr. 3. cap. 16. MarginaliaSozomen. lib. 3. c. 16.speaking of the Mōkes of the same time, which in cities had seuerall mansions from other, sayth: Alij in turba ciuitatū conuersabantur, sci seipsos gerentes, vt nullius momenti viderentur, & a multis nihil differrēt. &c. 1. MarginaliaMonkes of the primatiue time were no clerkes but mere lay men.Some liued in Cities, so behauyng thēselues, as seemyng nothing worth: and they differed nothyng from the multitude. &c. The second poynt wherein they were discrepant from the latter Monkes: was, in that they remained no other but in the order of lay men (onely beyng of a straiter lyfe then the rest) & had nothyng to do in matters and charges Ecclesiasticall. Which was afterward broken, by Pope Bonifacius the. 4. MarginaliaMonkes of the olde time some maried: none restrayned from mariage as foloweth more (the Lord willyng) to be seene, and sayd. Thirdly, the foresayd Monkes of that age (albeit the most part of them liued sole and single from wiues) yet some of them were maried: certes none of them were forbiddē or restrained from mariage. Of such as were maryed, speaketh Athanasius in Epistola ad Dracontium qui ait se nouisse & Monachos & Episcopos coniuges & liberorum patres. &c. 1. MarginaliaAthanasius epistola ad Dracō.Which sayth that he knew both Monkes & Byshops maried men, and fathers of children. &c.

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And yet the sayd Monkes of the old tyme, though they were better then the other which folowed them: yet all that notwithstandyng, MarginaliaSuperstition crept in with monkery.
The ignorance of our free iustification by Christ, is the cause of all superstition.
superstition with them and among them begā then to creepe into the church, through the crafty subtilty of Sathan: And all for the ignoraunce of our free iustification by fayth in Iesus Christ. Examples do declare the vayne and prodigious superstitiō of these Monasticall sorte of men which examples do not lacke: if laysure rather did not lacke to bring them in. But ij. or iij. shall suffice for many: Which I purpose (the Lord willyng) here to inserte: to the intent the mynde of the godly reader may the better cōsider and vnderstād, how shortly after þe tyme of Christ and his Apostles, the doctrine of Christian iustification began to be forgotten: true Religion turned to superstition: And the price of Christes passion to be obscured through the vayne opinion of mēs merites. &c. A certeine Abbot named Moses thus testifieth of himselfe, in the Collatiōs of Cassianus: MarginaliaEx Cassia. cap. 17. collat. 2.that he so afflicted himselfe with much fastyng and watchyng, that sometymes for ij. or iij. dayes together, not onely he felt no appetite to eate, but also had no remēbraūce of any meate, at all: and by reason therof was driuen also frō sleepe. MarginaliaExamples declaring the blinde superstition of the monkes of the olde time.In somuch that he was caused to pray to God, but for a litle refreshyng of sleepe to be geuen him some peece of the night. In the same author, mention is made of a certaine old man an Heremite: who because he had conceiued in him selfe such a purpose neuer to eate meate without he had some gest, or straunger with him: some tyme was constreyned to absteine fiue dayes together vntill Sonday, while he came to the Church and there brought some straunger or other home with him.

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MarginaliaCassianus lib. de spiritu Gastrimarg. cap. 40.Two other examples yet more wil I adde out of the said Cassianus, to declare how the subtilitie of Sathā, thorough superstition and false colour of holynes blyndeth the miserable eyes of such, which rather attende mens traditions, then the word of God. In the xl. chap. of the sayd author in his booke de Gastrimargia, is told of a certaine Abbot named Ioannes in the desert of Scythia: who sent ij. of his Nouices with figges vnto one that was sicke in the wildernes xviij. miles of from the Church. It chaunced these two young Nouices missyng the way, wandered so long in the wild forest or wildernes, & could not finde the Celle, that for emptines & werynes they waxed faynt and tyred. MarginaliaSuperstition.And yet rather would they dye, then tast the figges committed to them to cary. And so dyd, for shortly after they were found dead, their figges lying whole by them.

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MarginaliaCassian. lib. 6. cap. 2.An other story he also reciteth of two Monasticall brethren, who makyng their progresse in the desert of Thebalde: purposed with thēselues, to take no sustenaūce but such as the Lord should minister him selfe vnto them. It happened, as they were wanderyng desolate in the desert, and fayntyng almost for penury, certeine Mazices, a kynde of people by nature fearce and cruell: notwithstanding, beyng sodenly altered into a new nature of humanitie, came forth and of their owne accord offered bread vnto them. Which bread the one thankefully receaued as sent of God. The other as counting it sent of man and not of God refused it, and so for lacke perished.

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Hereunto might I also annexe the story of Mucius, who to declare his obedience, did not sticke at the commaūdement of his Abbot, to cast hys sonne into the water, not knowing whether any were appoynted there ready to rescue hym from drowning: so farre were the Mōkes in those dayes drowned in superstition. What is thys, but for mās traditions and commaundementes, to transgresse the commaundement of God, which sayth: Thou shalt do no murther. Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God? MarginaliaMonkery mother of superstition & hipocrisie.What man is so blynde, that seeth not by these & infinite examples mo: what pernitious superstition hath begon by reason of thys Monkery, almost from the beginning, to creepe into the Church. Wherfore I cannot maruell inough, seeing that age of the Church, had in it so many learned and famous Doctours, who not onely did approue and allow these monasticall sectes of life: but also certaine themselues were the authors and institutors of the same, yea and of mens traditions made the seruice of God. MarginaliaBassilus Magnus. Nazianzenus.In number of whom may be reckoned Bassilus Magnus, & Nazianzenus, who with immoderate austeritie did so plucke downe thēselues, that when they were called to the office of Byshops, they were not able to sustayne the labour therof.

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MarginaliaMonkes of the middle & latter age of the church described.After these foresayd Monkes of that tyme aboue recited, followed other Mōkes of the middle age of the church: who as in multitude, so also in superstition increasing, began by litle and litle from their desolate dens in the vaste wildernes, to approche more neare to great townes: where they had solēne monasteries foūded by Kinges & Queenes, and kinges daughters, and other rich Consuls, as is partly before touched, pag. 134. MarginaliaCauses of the founding of monasteries & Nunneries tending to the derogatiō of Christes passiō & christian faith.And the causes also touched withall, for the which they were first founded, as these: pro remedio animæ meæ: pro remissione peccatorum meorum, pro redemptione peccatorum meorum, et pro salute regnorum, quiq; meo subiacent regimini populorum. In honorem gloriosæ virginis. &c. For, all these impious and erronious titles and causes, we finde alledged in storyes, as in Malmesburiensis, Iornalensis, Henricus, & other moe. MarginaliaMost part of monasteries were builded vpō some murther.In which histories I also note, that the most part of these foresayd monasteries were erected first vpon some great murther, eyther by warre in the field, or priuately committed at home: as shall well appeare to them which read the bookes whom I haue alledged. But to returne to our Monkes agayne, who (as is sayd) first began to creepe from the colde field into warme townes and cloisters: from townes, then into cities, and at lēgth from their close celles and cities, into Cathedrall Churches (as here appeareth by this story of king Edgar) where, not onely they did abound in wealth and riches (especially these Monkes of our latter tyme) but much more did swimme in superstition, and pharisaicall hipocrisie, beyng yoked and tyed in all their doinges, to certayne prescript rules and formall obseruancies: in watching, in sleeping, in eating, in rising, in praying, in walking, in talking, in looking, in tasting, in touching, in handling, in their gestures, in their vestures, euery man apparelled not as the proper condition of other would require, nor as the season of þe yeare did serue: but as the coacted rules & order of euery sect did enforce thē. The number of which sectes was infinitely diuers: some after Basilius rule, went in white: some after Benets rule, in blacke: MarginaliaThe order of monkes Cluniack, by Otho set vp in king Edgars time.some Cluniacensis fyrst set vp by Otho in the tyme of thys king Edgar, wearing after the rule of Benets order: Some after Hieromes rule, leather gyrdled, and coaped aboue their white coate: Some Gregorians, copper coulored: some de valle vmbrosa gray Monkes: Some Grādimontenses, wearing a coate of mailes vpō their bare bodies, with a blacke cloke thereupon. Some Cistercianes, who had white rochets on a blacke coate: Some Celestines, all in blew, both cloke, coule, and cap: Some Charter Monkes, wearing hearecloth next their bodies: some

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