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By Martin Heale

Even supposing hundreds and hundreds of established priories have been based throughout medieval Europe, they continue to be little studied and masses misunderstood. this primary full-length examine of the heritage of the one hundred forty or so daughter homes of English monasteries takes factor with the orthodox opinion that they have been essentially administrative in functionality. the writer starts through analyzing the explanations for the basis of those monasteries (frequently at the initiative of neighborhood landowners, or to foster very important neighborhood cults centering on relics of images), and the kinfolk among established priories and their mom homes, bishops and buyers. He is going directly to examine way of life in cells, the priories' interplay with their neighbours, their position within the area people, and their monetary viability. the weird trend of dissolution of those homes is additionally published. all through, Dr Heale argues that the established priories sheds loads of mild at the international of the small non secular condo, and means that those shadowy associations have been way more important to medieval faith and society than has been preferred.

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The Dependent Priories of Medieval English Monasteries

Even supposing hundreds of thousands of established priories have been based throughout medieval Europe, they continue to be little studied and masses misunderstood. this primary full-length research of the historical past of the one hundred forty or so daughter homes of English monasteries takes factor with the orthodox opinion that they have been basically administrative in functionality.

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Economic Reasons In the eyes of many historians, the daughter house was first and foremost an administrative tool. As we have seen, this was overwhelmingly the view of Professor Knowles, whose judgements remain highly influential today in writings on medieval monasticism. 34 All these writers couple together alien and English dependencies in their analyses without considering whether the two were necessarily alike. But in fact there is good reason to believe that French abbeys had a much greater need to dispatch monks to oversee the property granted to them by the Anglo-Norman baronage than did their English counterparts.

134–7. 48 If this late twelfth-century account can be trusted, it appears that on receipt of property in Devon, Battle immediately dispatched monks to administer its holdings in both Cullompton and Exeter. At first a single monk, Gunter, ‘an enterprising man’, was sent to Exeter but his replacement, Cono, was given an assistant. Cono ‘put his mind straightaway to enlarging and building up the place committed to him’, and through a combination of energetic management and the propagation of the cult of St Olaf he was able to attract sufficient benefactions to initiate the foundation of a sizeable cell, for which a new church dedicated to St Nicholas was built.

McCann (London, 1952). St Benedict himself established twelve monasteries at Subiaco, before departing to Monte Cassino, but each was ruled by its own abbot: C. Butler, Benedictine Monachism. Studies in Benedictine Life and Rule (London, 1919), pp. 8–9. Adomnán of Iona, Life of St Columba, ed. R. Sharpe (London, 1995). 16 THE DEPENDENT PRIORY AS DAUGHTER HOUSE houses, all of St Columba’s foundation, on both sides of the Irish Sea. 4 Although much about the organisation of the Ionan familia remains unclear, it retained sufficient cohesion to persist into the twelfth century.

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