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Cap. LI

[Ms P, fol. 134vPaulus Diaconus
Ps.-Basil: Ms K1, fol. 141r; Ms E1, fol. 152v; Ms E2, fol. 232r]

Ch. 51

Translated by: Corinna Prior

1Fratres qui pro quovis responso diriguntur et ea die sperantur reverti ad monasterium, non praesumant foris manducare, etiam si a quovis rogentur, 2nisi forte ab abbate suo eis praecipiatur.

1Brothers, who are sent out on account of business and are expected to return to the monastery on the same day, may not presume to eat outside even if they are asked by someone, 2unless by chance he is instructed by his abbot to do so.

Hoc notandem est, quia in hoc capitulo, quod dicit nisi forte ab abbate suo eis praecipiatur, intelligitur: si talis est persona, quae non debet contemni, veluti est episcopus aut abbas aut certe talis monachus religiosus, unde securus sit, quia cum religione manducat, potest dare licentiam manducandi; nam si alia persona est, non debet dare licentiam abbas suo monacho manducare, etiam si abbas fuerit aut episcopus, si talis est, in quo non est religiositas nec cum religione manducat, quia non tantum attendenda est persona, quantum religio in persona.

It must be noted that Benedict says unless by chance he is instructed by his abbot, because in this chapter it is understood: if there is such a person who ought not to be slighted, such as a bishop or an abbot or indeed such a great devout monk about whom the abbot is sure, he can grant the brother permission to eat since the person eats with reverence; on the other hand, if he is another type of person, the abbot ought not to give permission to his monk to eat [with him] even if that man is an abbot or a bishop, if he is such a man in whom there is no religiosity nor does he eat with reverence, since not only the person must be attended to, but also the reverence in the person.

Hoc iterum notandum est, quia de illo dicit monacho, qui sub uno die exit et in illo die revertitur.

Again it ought to be noted that he is speaking about that monk who leaves and returns in the same day.

Sciendum est enim, quia ille frater debet manducare cum illa persona digna, ad quam mittitur, ante1 horam etiam dicit, i. e. si, cum mittitur, [et] ante horam rogaverit, eum secum manducare, debet manducare, si digna fuerit persona.

For it must be understood that because that brother ought to eat with that worthy person to whom he is sent, still Benedict says before the hour,1 that is if when he is sent and asked to eat with him before the [appointed] hour, he ought to eat, if the person is worthy.

Tria enim inspicienda sunt in manducare: prius religio personae, i. e. si reverens et timoratus sit, sive monachus sive episcopus sive abbas aut clericus, ut cum reverentia et lectione et timore Dei manducet; deinde scandalum inspiciendum est, ne forte ille homo, quia potens est, pro indignatione, quia non manducavit cum illo ille frater, noceat monasterio et damnum magnum faciat; deinde necessitas inspicienda est, quia non habet, quid aut unde aut ubi manducet.

For three scenarios ought to be examined in relation to eating: first the reverence of the person, that is whether he is reverent and devout, or whether he is a monk or bishop or abbot or cleric, so that he eats with reverence, reading, and the fear of God; then, cause for offence ought to be considered, lest by chance that man, since he is powerful, cause harm and great damage to the monastery on account of his indignation that the brother did not eat with him; finally, necessity ought to be considered since the monk does not know, what or from whence or where he may eat [next].

Sequitur: 3Quod si aliter fecerint, excommunicentur.

It follows: 3Should he do otherwise, let him be excommunicated.

Hoc notandum est, quia, cum dicit excommunicentur, S. Benedictus illum judicavit.

It ought to be noted that when he says let him be excommunicated, St. Benedict judged him.

Isto enim modo debet esse excommunicatus: alii dicunt, ut debeat solummodo vinum non bibere et cum fratribus insimul manducare; alii dicunt: debent [page 498] in culpa minori excommunicati esse, i. e. si fratres ad sextam, illi ad nonam, si fratres ad nonam, illi ad vesperam, et in oratorio satisfaciant. Si autem in labore vadunt generaliter omnes et non possunt venire ad manducandum in monasterium, tunc possunt ibidem manducare eo ordine, quo in monasterio. Nam si generalitas ibi non manducat, non debet ibi manducare vel bibere, sed in monasterio. Si vero generaliter ibi manducant, non debet aut bibere aut manducare, nisi grandis labor factus fuerit; melius est enim, ut omnes aequaliter laborent, quam unus fortiter et alter leniter, et ob hoc, quotiens vult, bibat.

For he ought to be excommunicated in this way: some say that he only ought to not drink wine and eat together with the brothers; others say they ought to be excommunicated in accordance with a minor fault, that is if the brothers [eat] at Sext, they do so during Nones, and if the brothers eat at Nones, they do so at Vespers and they make satisfaction in the oratory.2 If however all go generally in work and they are not able to return to the monastery for the purpose of eating, then they are able to eat there in the same order as in the monastery. For if in general he does not eat there, he ought not to eat or drink there, but rather in the monastery. But if they generally do eat there, one ought not eat or drink unless great labour is underway; for it is better that all labour equally, rather than for one to work more strongly and another more moderately, and on account of this, one drinks as often as he wishes.

Ipse tamen abbas non debet ita permittere, ut ita fiat, quia S. Benedictus dicit: Si omnes greges meos plus in ambulando fecero laborare, quam oportet, morientur cuncti una die. [Regula Benedicti, c. 64.18] Si autem exierint de monasterio longe causa laboris, possunt manducare, etiam si non sit generalitas ibi, eo quod non possunt ad monasterium venire hora manducandi.

Still the abbot ought not to permit this to happen, since St. Benedict says: If I work all my flocks too much by walking them more than is fitting, all will die together on the (same) day [Regula Benedicti c. 64.18]. If, however, they go far from the monastery for the sake of work, they can eat even if they generally do not eat there because they are not able to return to the monastery at the hour of eating.

Nunc autem intuendum est, quomodo intelligi debet istud, quod dicit si eadem die sperantur reverti et reliq., cum potest ire viginti miliaria longe in die et iterum reverti, sicuti est in aestivo tempore. Iste talis, si jejunaverit, valde laboravit, et plus iste, qui obedientiam facit, laboravit in jejunando, quam ille, qui in minori culpa excommunicatur.

Now, however, it must be considered how it ought to be understood when Benedict says brothers who are expected to return on the same day and so on, since one is able to go twenty thousand paces away in a day and return again, as it is in the summer. Such a man, if he fasts and worked vigorously in obedience, he worked in fasting more than he who was excommunicated on account of a minor fault.

Et ob hoc ita debet intelligi, ut ille, qui praeest, sicut considerans discernit in personis, ita etiam debet considerare in longitudine itineris, h. e. sicut licentiam dat manducandi pro persona digna ante horam, ita etiam debet dare licentiam manducandi, si ad horam manducandi vel paulo post non poterit ad monasterium reverti.

And on account of this it ought thus to be understood that the man who is in charge, just as he, considering, distinguishes among persons, ought in the same way to consider the length of the journey, that is just as he grants a worthy person permission to eat before the [appointed] hour, indeed in the same say he ought to grant permission to eat if the brother is not able to return to the monastery at the hour of eating or shortly after.

Et hoc sciendum est, quia, sicut hi agunt, qui in monasteriis sunt, ita debet etiam agere ille, qui in cella est constitutus.

And this is to be understood since just as those who are in monasteries act, thus also a brother who is established in a cell ought to do.

1. qui ante (?). (Mittermüller).

1. Perhaps a reference to RB 48.18.
2. Refer to the procedure laid out in chapter 24 of this commentary.

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