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[Ms P, fol. 136rPaulus Diaconus
Ps.-Basil: Ms K1, fol. 143r; Ms E1, fol. 155r; Ms E2, fol. 234r]

Ch. 53

Translated by: Mariël Urbanus

1Omnes supervenientes hospites tanquam Christus suscipiantur. [Et] quia disposuerat, qualiter debeant fratres officium suum peragere orationis sive de his, qui in via, sive qui in opere sunt, et disposuerat de oratorio monasterii, necesse fuerat, ut diceret de susceptione hospitum, quomodo prius suscipiendi sunt, i. e. per orationem ducendi. Quia hospites propter illusiones debent duci ad orationem, ideo bene, postquam dixit de oratione fratrum et de oratorio monasterii, nunc subjunxit de oratione hospitum; ait enim: Omnes supervenientes hospites tanquam Christus suscipiantur et reliq.

1All arriving guests should be received like Christ. [And] because Benedict had prescribed how the brothers should perform their office of prayer, whether they travelling or working, and he had prescribed concerning the oratory of the monastery, it was necessary that he should speak [now] about the reception of guests – how they are to be received first, that is by leading them to prayer. Because guests must be led to prayer on account of trickery. It is therefore good [that] after he spoke of the prayers of the brothers and the oratory of the monastery, he now joined to it the prayer of the guests; for he said: All arriving guests should be received like Christ etc.

Notandum est enim, quia non dixit tantum hospites, sed praemisit omnes. In eo, quod dixit omnes, videtur esse arduum et pene difficile, eo quod multi sunt hospites, qui ad monasterium veniunt. Sed isto modo potest intelligi, sive ideo dixit omnes hospites, quia tunc pauci veniebant, sicut Cassianus dicit in collatione et in vita patrum legitur, quamquam dicat S. Benedictus, nunquam deesse monasterio hospites; potest etiam unus aut duo intelligi venisse; nam tanti tunc forte non erant, sicut nunc, et secundum hunc sensum intelligebat Theudulphus:1 Per Deum, si nunc adesset S. Benedictus, claudere illis ostium fecisset. [quoted in Martene, Commentarius, PL 66, col. 752B – Theodulf of Orleans?]

For it should be noted that he did not say guests alone, but prefaced it with the word all. In that he said all, it is seen that this is an arduous task and almost intractable, because there are many guests who come to the monastery. Yet it can be understood thus, that he says all guests, because at that time only a small number of people came [to the monastery], just as Cassian says in The Collations and as we read in the Life of the Fathers, although St. Benedict says that guests were never lacking in the monastery. Likewise it can be understood that one or two [guests] came; for perhaps there were not as many at that time as now, as Theodulf understood: If St Benedict, through God, were present today, he would shut the door to them.

Sive altero modo intelligitur omnes, subaudis: quos potest in monasterium recipere, tanquam Christus suscipiantur, quia regula nil impossibile dicit. Sive solvitur haec ratio in intentione, de qua intentione omnes debent ita recipi hospites sicut Christus, quamquam non possunt omnibus ita servire, sicut Christo, sed paucis. Quasi interrogasset aliquis S. Benedictum dicens: 'Pater Benedicte, [page 502] quare debeo omnes hospites sicut Christum suscipere?' ipse quasi respondens dicit: quia ipse dicturus est: Hospes fui et suscepistis me. [Mt 25:35]

Or all is understood in another way and you understand: those he can take into the monastery should be received as Christ, because the Rule says that nothing is impossible. Or the meaning is explained as an intention, according to which they must take in all guests as Christ, even though they cannot serve all as Christ, but only a few. It is as though someone were to ask St. Benedict, saying: ‘Father Benedict, [page 502] why is it so that I must receive all guests as Christ?’ He himself says, as if answering: For He himself will say: I was a stranger and you took me in. [Mt 25:35]

Sequitur: 2et omnibus congruus honor exhibeatur maxime domesticis fidei [cf. Gal 6:10] et peregrinis. Pulchre dixit congruus honor exhibeatur, quia omnibus non aequalis susceptio apta est; neque enim rectum est, si ea, quae paranda sunt diviti, i. e. lectio, cibus et potus abundantia praeparentur pauperi, diviti autem ea, quae pauperi. Majus enim peccatum est, quam merces, quia pauper nescit se moderari, qui si tantum sicut consuetus potens manducaverit, crapulationem ex hoc sentiet, et nobis dantibus peccatum generabit, sicut dicit B. Augustinus: Leve est peccatum, si ea, quae praeparamus diviti, praeparemus et pauperi. [cf. Augustine, Contra Litteras Petiliani II, c. 54, PL 43, col. 278; CSEL 52]

Next: 2Fitting honour should be shown to all, especially fellows in faith [cf. Gal 6:10] and pilgrims. Beautifully he said fitting honour should be shown to all, because it is not appropriate to receive everyone equally. Nor is it indeed right, if those things which should be provided for a rich guest, that is a reading, food and drink, should be prepared in abundance for a poor guest, while to a rich guest those things are provided which should be prepared for the poor. For the sin is bigger than the reward, because the poor man does not know how to control himself, and if he were accustomed to eat like a powerful man, he would become gluttonous as a result and create a sin for us giving [alms], just as St Augustine says: Committing a sin is easy, if those things we prepare for a rich man we prepare as well for a poor man. [cf. Augustine, Contra Litteras Petiliani, II, c. 54]

Et bene dixit congruus exhibeatur omnibus, quia si ea, quae pauperi praeparantur, praeparentur diviti, i. e. faba aut aliquid rusticum, et voluerimus ei pedes lavare, sicut pauperi, non erit honor diviti, sed magis derisio et in stultitiam reputabitur et damnum etiam pro hoc monasterio generabitur. Et propterea dixit omnibus congruus honor exhibeatur, i. e. juxta qualitatem personae ita recipiendus est hospes.

And well [Benedict] says fitting honour should be shown to all, because if those things prepared for a poor guest are prepared for a rich guest, like a bean-pot or something else fitting for peasants, and we would want to wash his feet, just as we would a poor guest, honour will not be paid to the rich guest, but rather mockery, and it would be considered silliness and would as well produce harm to the monastery on this account. And that is why [Benedict] said fitting honour should be shown to all, that is, a guest should be received in accordance with his status.

Sed videtur sibimet S. Benedictus esse contrarius in eo, quod hic dicit omnibus congruus honor exhibeatur, et inferius dicit 15peregrinorum pauperumque maxime susceptionum cura sollicita exhibeatur et reliq. Quomodo omnibus congruus honor exhiberi debet, si pauperum et peregrinorum maxima susceptio debet esse? Cui respondendum est: non est B. Benedictus sibi contrarius, quia haec sententia, in qua dicit omnibus congruus honor exhibeatur, ad exteriorem attinet hominem, illa autem sententia, qua dicit pauperum et peregrinorum etc. attinet ad interiorem hominem, ac si diceret: in praeparatione servitii unusquisque hospes juxta suam mensuram recipiendus est, tamen in mente debet praeferri pauper diviti.

However, it seems that St Benedict contradicts himself in that here he says fitting honour should be shown to all, and below he says 15the greatest care should be shown in the reception of the pilgrims and the poor etc. In what way should fitting honour be presented to all, if the reception of the poor and the pilgrims should be the greatest? To this it should be answered: it is not St. Benedict himself who contradicts himself, because this sentence in which he says fitting honour should be shown to all pertains to the outer man, while that sentence in which he says the pilgrims and the poor etc. pertains to the inner man, as if he had said: in providing service, every single guest must be received according to his own measure, nevertheless by intention preference must be given to a poor man over a rich man.

Sequitur: 3Ut ergo nunciatus fuerit hospes, occurratur ei a priore vel a fratribus cum omni officio caritatis, 4et primitus orent pariter, et sic sibi socientur in pace. 5Quod pacis osculum non prius offeratur, nisi oratione praemissa, [page 503] propter illusiones diabolicas. 6In ipsa autem salutatione omnis exhibeatur humilitas.

Next: 3Therefore, when a guest shall be announced, he should be met by a prior or brothers with every service of charity, 4and first they should pray together and thus be united in peace. 5This kiss of peace should not be offered until the prayer is finished, [page 503] because of diabolical trickery. 6Every humility should be shown in the greeting itself.

Et hoc sciendum est, quia cum dicit omnis exhibeatur humilitas, attendendum est, quia potest esse humilitas et non omnis, eo quod potest esse humilitas corporis sine humilitate mentis et reliq. B. vero Benedictus vult, quia, sicut exhibetur humilitas corporis, ita etiam et animae exhibeatur; ideo dixit: omnis humilitas. Si autem talis fuerit hospes, debet etiam exponi lectio; post lectionem debet ei exhiberi omnis humanitas.

And it should be known that when Benedict says every humility should be shown, close attention must be paid, because humility may be not every humility, because there can be humility of the body without humility of the mind etc. St. Benedict truly wishes that, just as humility of the body is shown, thus humility of the mind should be shown as well; therefore he said: every humility. If moreover the guest is right for it, he should also be offered a reading. After the reading, every kindness should be shown to him.

In lectione etenim hospiti legenda ista debet esse discretio: si [vero] talis est hospes, qui de monasterio montis pedalis2 vicinus vester tarde [illum] ad vestrum monasterium, hoc est post duos vel tres menses, aut hinc illuc ierit, quoties ita tarde ierit, toties legenda est lectio sicut hospiti. Si autem talis homo nobilis venit ad vestrum monasterium, veluti est comes, aut vester vicinus seu etiam nobilis homo ex alia regione semel in vestrum monasterium venerit, ita eis exhiberi debet omnis humanitas, ut tanquam Christus suscipiantur et eis lectionem legere, quamvis unus sit vester vicinus et alter de longe venerit, tamen quia tarde veniunt ad monasterium, ideo debetis eis lectionem legere.

For discretion must be observed in reading the reading to the guest: if the guest is like your neighbour from the monastery of Monte Pedale,1 [and he] comes late2 [in the day?] to your monastery, that is after two or three months, or should he go back and forth, as often as he comes late, so many times a reading must thus be read as to a guest. If however a nobleman comes to your monastery, such as a count, either your neighbour or even a nobleman from another area, should he come one time to your monastery, all kindness must thus be shown to him, in order that he is received as Christ and a reading is read to him, even though one of the guests may be your neighbour and the other may have come from afar. Since they came to the monastery late, that is why you ought to read a reading to him.

Sciendum est enim, quia sunt multi, qui postquam prima vice legant lectionem hospiti, jam postea nunquam legunt eidem hospiti, etiamsi post unum vel duos vel decem annos venerit. Isti tales non regulariter faciunt, eo quod regula dicit, hospiti legi lectionem. Jam vero si humanitas illi exhibenda est, cur non et lectio illi legenda est, quod melius est? Unde ista potest esse discretio: si [enim] frequenter venerit ipse hospes ad monasterium, ita ut post 15 vel 20 dies venerit, quoties venerit, toties illi lectio legenda est et omnis humanitas praebenda. Quid est omnis humanitas? i. e. omnis dilectio.

For it should be known that there are many [monks], who after the first time they read a reading to a guest, then afterwards never read to the same guest, even if he should come after one or two or ten years. They do not act according to the Rule, because the Rule says that a reading is read to a guest. For certainly if every kindness must be shown to him, why should a reading not be read to him, which is better? Discretion may follow from this: [for] if a guest himself should come often to the monastery, that is after 15 or 20 days, as often as he comes, that many times a reading must be read to him and every kindness provided to him. What is every kindness? It is every love.

Et hoc sciendum est, quia non omnibus aequaliter debet fieri praeparatio; aliter enim episcopis, aliter presbyteris, aliter laicis, aliter canonicis, aliter comitibus, aliter ceteris, secundum unamquamque personam, [page 504] quod viderit, ita debet fieri praeparatio.

And it needs to be understood that preparations should not be made equally for all, indeed differently for bishops, priests, laypeople, canons, counts, and others: according to [the status] of every single person [page 504] the preparation shall be made so that [the difference] shall be seen.

Sciendum est, quia sunt alii abbates, qui praeparant sibi pulmenta plura causa gastrimargiae tam pro pauperibus quam pro divitibus. Et cum interrogati fuerint, quare hoc faciant, mittunt occasiones dicentes, causa hospitis se facere. Non videtur ita ratio esse plena, quia unicuique personae congrue debet fieri praeparatio; tamen ille videat, qui hoc agit.

It must be understood that there are some abbots who prepare many dishes for themselves because of gluttony, not only for the poor but also for the rich. And when asked why they do this, they make excuses, declaring that they do it on account of the guest. This reasoning does not seem to be satisfactory, because provision should be made fittingly for each person; he should see that he does so.

Quod vero non omnibus aequaliter debet fieri praeparatio, B. Gregorius docet in I. libro IV. partis moralium, ubi Job dicit: Cujus adjutor es? numquid imbecillis? Adjuvare imbecillem caritatis est, adjuvare potentem velle, elationis. [Gregory the Great, Moralia in Hiob XVII, c. 18.26, CCSL 143A, p. 866]

That provision should not be made equally for all St. Gregory teaches in book one, part four of the Moralia, where Job says: Whose helper are you? Surely not of the weak? To help the weak is charity, to want to help the powerful is exaltation [Gregory the Great, Moralia in Hiob XVII, c. 18.26].

Quod enim dicit omnis humanitas ei exhibeatur, subaudiendum est: sufficiens honestas. Inter caritatem vero et humanitatem potest esse ista differentia: Caritas est in spiritualibus sive etiam corporalibus rebus, quae fiunt amore Dei; humanitas vero in temporalibus tantum rebus, quae dantur sive amore Dei, sive causa saeculi. In hoc loco humanitas, quia Dei amore datur, intelligitur de temporalibus, i. e. panis et vinum, cibus, lectus etc. Nam etiam potest dici humanitas, sicut dixi, quae non datur Dei amore, sed saeculi causa, sicut saeculares dant sibi invicem.

For what [Benedict] says – every kindness should be shown to him – must be understood to mean sufficient honour. Between charity and kindness the difference can be that charity is in spiritual as well as bodily matters, which are done for the love of God; kindness however is only in earthly matters, which is done either for the love of God or for a worldly cause. In this passage kindness, because it is given for the love of God, is understood to refer to the things of this world, that is bread and wine, food, a bed etc.

Humanitas est, quae vulgo dicitur mináida.

Kindness is what is called mináida3 in the vernacular.

Sequitur: 6Omnibus venientibus sive discedentibus hospitibus 7inclinato capite vel prostrato omni corpore in terram Christus in eis adoretur, qui et suscipitur. 8Suscepti autem hospites ducantur ad orationem, et postea sedeat cum eis prior, aut cui jusserit ipse. 9Legatur coram hospite lex divina, ut aedificetur, et post haec omnis ei exhibeatur humanitas. 10Jejunium a priore frangatur propter hospitem, nisi forte praecipuus sit dies jejunii, qui non possit violari; 11fratres autem consuetudines jejuniorum prosequantur. 12Aquam in manibus abbas hospitibus det. 13Pedes omnibus hospitibus tam abbas quam cuncta congregatio lavet, 14quibus lotis hunc versum dicant: Suscepimus Deus misericordiam tuam in medio templi tui". [Ps 47:10] 15Pauperum autem et peregrinorum maxime [page 505] susceptionum cura sollicite exhibeatur, quia in ipsis magis Christus suscipitur; nam divitum terror ipse sibi exigit honorem.

Next: 6To all arriving or departing guests 7with bowed head or the whole body prostrate on the ground, Christ, who is also received, should be worshipped in them. 8Once received, guests should be led to prayer and afterward a senior, or whoever [the abbot] orders, should sit down with them. 9The divine law should be read to a guest for his edification, and after that every kindness should be shown him. 10A superior may break his fast for a guest, unless it is a major fast day that cannot be violated; 11the brothers, however, should keep their accustomed fasts. 12The abbot should pour water on guests’ hands. 13The abbot as well as the whole community should wash the feet of all guests, 14and when they have been washed say this verse: God, we have received your mercy in the middle of your temple. [Ps 47:10] 15The greatest care should be shown [page 505] in the reception of the poor and pilgrims because in them especially Christ is received (for awe of the rich itself secures honourable treatment).

In hoc enim, quo dicit inclinato capite vel prostrato omni corpore discretionem salutandi nos docuit, quia aliter salutare debemus reges et episcopos et abbates, et aliter alios. Reges enim et episcopos et abbates prostrati in terra debemus salutare propter exemplum Nathan prophetae, qui prostratus salutavit David regem. Reginam cum videt, non debet monachus prostratus salutare, sed unum genu in terram ponere, aut humiliari debet capite suo; abbatem vero nostrum, si rarius videmus, in terra salutare debemus; ceteros autem, i. e. comites, presbyteros, monachos et reliquos inclinato capite salutare debemus.

For in this passage, where he says with bowed head or the whole body prostrate he teaches us distinctions in greeting, because we must greet a king, a bishop and an abbot in one way, and others in another. For we must greet a king, a bishop and an abbot prostrate on the ground, according to the example of the prophet Nathan, who greeted king David prostrate. When he sees a queen, a monk should not prostrate himself to greet [her], but place one knee on the ground, or he should bow [humiliari] his head; and certainly our abbot, if we see him only occasionally, we must greet on the ground. Others, however, that is, counts, priests, monks etc., we must greet with a bowed head.

Verum quia de hospitibus dicimus, dicendum est nunc, unde hospites pauperes, aut unde divites pasci debemus.3 Omnia [enim], quidquid venerit in monasterium, i. e. aurum, argentum, aes, ferrum, arbores, vinum, poma, animalia et reliq., sive de omnibus, quae in monasterio laborantur, decima de his omnibus in hospitale pauperum dari debet solummodo, i. e. ut non alii, hoc est servi vel nobiles, sed solummodo pauperes pascantur, quia sic scriptum est in lege: Et nullus pauper debet ab his decimis excusari. [not identified]

But because we are discussing guests, it should now be stated from where we must feed the poor guests, and from where the rich guests. A tenth part (a tithe) of whatever comes into the monastery, that is, gold, silver, copper, iron, wood, wine, fruit, animals etc. and of all things which are produced in the monastery should be devoted to the provision of the poor alone in order that no others, that is servants or nobles, but only the poor are fed [of this tithe], because thus is written in the law: And no one must excuse a poor man from these tithes [not identified].

Verum quia Dominus dicit in evangelio: Nisi abundaverit justitia vestra plus quam scribarum et pharisaeorum, non intrabitis in regnum coelorum [Mt 5:20]- justitia pharisaeorum et scribarum est, decimas dare - nos [vero], ut possimus intrare in regnum coelorum, duas decimas demus, quia, si ita non fecerimus plus quam scribae et pharisaei, non intrabimus in regnum coelorum. Id est, cum damus decimas, deinde demus nonam partem quasi decimam; istam enim nonam partem debemus dare in hospitale divitum, quidquid fuerit, et ex his debemus praeparare ad necessaria divitum omnia, quidquid opus fuerit, et omnem humanitatem eis impendere.

Because the Lord speaks in truth in the Gospel: Unless your righteousness shall exceed that of the scribes and the Pharisees, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven [Mt 5:20] – the righteousness of the Pharisees and the scribes is that they give tithes – [however] we, in order that we may enter the kingdom of heaven, should give two tithes, because if we shall thus not provide more than the scribes and the Pharisees, we shall not enter the kingdom of heaven. That is, when we give the tithes, then we give a ninth part as if it were a tithe. For that ninth part we must give for the provision of the rich, whatever it may be, and from it we must prepare all things according to the necessities of the rich, whatever need there is, and we must devote all kindness to them.

Quod vero dicit jejunium a priore frangatur, i. e. non debet custodire jejunium, sed manducare cum hospite. Praecipuus dies [page 506] jejunii est, veluti est indictum jejunium, et sicut Quadragesimae dies vel litaniae et ceteri dies jejuniorum, quod ecclesia celebrat. Istud vero, quod dicit fratres autem consuetudines jejuniorum prosequantur, i. e. custodiant vel consequantur.

But what he says – a superior may break his fast – means that he ought not to keep his fast, but eat with the guest. A major fast [page 506] day is one when a fast is prescribed, and such as Lent and the days of litany and other days of fast which the Church celebrates. But what he says – the brothers, however, should keep their accustomed fasts – means that they should keep and follow it.

Notandum est enim, quia, si potest fieri, talis claustra hospitum esse debet nobilium, sicut monachorum cum sua ordinatione; talis etiam debet esse claustra pauperum, qualis infirmorum; talis etiam monachorum hospitum, qualis etiam infirmorum, ubi omnia necessaria eorum praeparari possint. Si autem non potest esse, sicut dixi, separata loca episcoporum a divitibus, simul tamen sint separata a pauperibus et abbatibus et monachis, eo quod non possunt in simul convenire episcopi et comites cum pauperibus et abbatibus et peregrinis. Domestici fidei sunt, qui vicini fidei nostrae sunt, veluti sunt canonici et religiosi laici. Domesticus enim fidei est, sicut Hieronymus dicit, qui eadem religione tibi conjungitur, quem a consortio fraternitatis peccata non separant. [Jerome, Epistola 120, c. 1, PL 22, col. 982]

Indeed it must be noted that if it can be arranged, the cells of the noble guests must be like the cells of the monks who have taken their vows; so as well must be the cells of the poor, which are like the cells of the sick. The cells of the visiting monks should be like the cells of the sick as well, where all the necessary things can be prepared for them. If, however, it is not possible [to arrange it] just as I said, let the places of the bishops be separated from the rich, and at the same time let them be separated from the poor, abbots, and [visiting] monks, because bishops and counts cannot be put up together in the same place with the poor, abbots, and pilgrims. Fellows in faith are those who are our neighbours in faith, as the canons and the lay brothers are. For a fellow in faith is, as Jerome said, he who by the same religion is united to you, as long as he is not separated from brotherly fellowship by sins. [Jerome, Epistola 120, c. 1]

Sequitur: 17Coquina abbatis et hospitum super se sit [deputata], ut incertis horis supervenientes hospites, qui nunquam desunt monasterio, non inquietent fratres. In quam coquinam ad annum ingrediantur duo fratres, qui ipsum officium bene impleant. 18Quibus, ut indigent, administrentur solatia, ut absque murmuratione serviant, et iterum quando occupationem minorem habent, exeant, ubi eis imperatur, in opera. 19Et non solum in ipsis, sed et in omnibus officiis monasterii ita sit consideratio, 20ut quando indigent solatia, adcommodentur eis, et iterum, quando vacant, obediant imperanti. 21Item et cellam hospitum habeat assignatam frater, cujus animam timor Dei possidet, 22ubi sint lecti strati sufficienter, et domus Dei a sapientibus sapienter administretur.

Next: 16The kitchens of the abbot and the guests should be separate so that guests, who are never absent from a monastery and appear at unpredictable times, do not disturb the brothers. 17Two brothers able to fulfil the duties well should serve in the guests’ kitchen a year at a time. 18They should be given help if they need it so they can serve without grumbling and conversely, when they have little to do, they should go out and do the work assigned them. 19This consideration should be shown not only to them but also to all monastery officials, 20so that when they need help, it should be given to them and when they are free, they should obey orders. 21A God-fearing brother should be assigned to the guest quarters, 22where sufficient beds should be made up, and the house of God should be managed wisely by the wise.

Isto namque modo agenda est coquina hospitum atque abbatis: debet enim juxta coquinam monachorum coquina hospitum atque abbatis esse, i. e. ut per claustram monasterii illuc non possit quis intrare, nisi, cum necessitas fuerit, de foris intret. Verum debet esse inter coquinam [page 507] fratrum et abbatis fenestra, per quam possit cibus in refectorium inferri.

For the kitchen of the guests and the abbot should be managed this way: the kitchen of the guests and the abbot must be near the kitchen of the monks, that is in order that no one can enter through the enclosure of the monastery, except, when necessary, to enter from outside. Certainly there should be a window between the kitchen [page 507] of the brothers and of the abbot through which food can be brought into the refectory.

Deinde debet esse unus monachus sub cellarario, ut, cum hospes fuerit pransurus, debeat porrigere pisces et cetera ad coquendum. In ipsa autem coquina abbatis debet esse canonicus, qui praeparet cibum. Et ille monachus, si talis necessitas non est, ut ipse adjuvet clericum, debet stare in coquina fratrum, et per fenestram recipere cibum a clerico, et sic ministrare. Si autem talis necessitas fuerit, ut per se debeat adjuvare clericum coquere, tunc ille monachus debet adjuvare, et cellararius debet ministrare, sicut monachum jam superius dixi facere.

Furthermore there must be one monk under the cellarer4 in order that, when a guest eats his meal, he can provide fish etc. for cooking. Moreover in the kitchen of the abbot itself there must be a canon to prepare the food. And that monk, when he is not needed to help that cleric, must stand in the kitchen of the brothers and receive food from the cleric through the window and attend in this fashion. If, however, there is such need for him to help the cleric cook, then that monk should help and the cellarer should serve, just as I said before that the monk should do.

Debet etiam abbas duos monachos cum laicis ponere ad coquinam illorum hospitum, i. e. laicorum et ceterorum, qui foris manducare debent, quia nunquam debet laicus in refectorium mitti ad manducandum vel bibendum; debet vero ille monachus intus esse in coquina abbatis propter illos, qui in refectorio manducare debent, i. e. monachos vel clericos canonicos.

The abbot should also assign two monks with laymen to the kitchen of those guests, that is the laymen and all the rest, who must eat outside because a layman must never be admitted into the refectory to eat or drink. That monk should be inside in the kitchen of the abbot on account of those who eat in the refectory, the monks and the canonical clerics.

Deinde alium fratrem debet constituere ad pauperes, alium vero debet constituere super monachos hospites, quia solet evenire, ut veniant uno tempore et comites et episcopi et abbates et pauperes. Hi tales non possunt insimul convenire, et ideo necesse est, ut separatim suscipiantur. Si enim non est talis potentia, ut per singulos habeat claustram, debet habere cubicula.

Furthermore a different brother must be appointed for the poor, another for visiting monks, because it often happens that counts, bishops, abbots, and the poor come at the same time. These [guests] cannot assemble at the same time and therefore it is necessary that they should be received separately. It it is not possible that each [group] should have a separate cell, each should have sleeping quarters.

Debet etiam alium fratrem constituere, qui lecta hospitum et cetera ordinet.

Furthermore another brother must be appointed who should arrange the beds of the guests etc.

Quod enim dicit lecti strati sufficienter, ita intelligitur, i. e. tantos pauperes debet suscipere, quibus sufficienter sint strati lecti. Nam divites, quotquot venerint, necesse est, ut eorum milites etiam suscipiantur, si ipsi suscipiantur divites.

For when [Benedict] says sufficient beds should be made up, it should be understood thus: for as many guests as must be received, sufficient beds should be made up. For however many rich men come, it is necessary that their soldiers are received as well if the rich themselves are received.

Dives enim, sicut Cassiodorus dicit, dictus est a divo, qui quasi Deus nihil creditur indigere. [Cassiodor, Expositio psalmorum 48:17, CCSL 97, p. 438]

For a ‘rich man’, just as Cassiodorus says, is derived from the word ‘divine,’ who just like God is believed to lack nothing. [Cassiodorus, Expositio psalmorum 48.17]

Quod enim dicit cum omni officio caritatis, - quasi diceret: cum omni praeparatione tam mentis quam corporis administretur, i. e. gubernetur, regatur, disponatur.

When he says with every service of charity, it is as if he said: he should be provided with every provision of the mind as well as the body, that is, he should be directed, managed and ordered.

Verum cum in refectorio manducat hospes, non ita debet moram agere [page 508] in cibis ministrandis hospitibus, ut ex hoc fratres moram patiantur exeundi de refectorio.

But when a guest eats in the refectory, he should not wait so long [page 508] in being served a meal that as a result the brothers have to endure delay in leaving the refectory.

Quod vero dicit 13pedes hospitum cuncta congregatio lavet, per dies vicissim discretio facienda est. Ista enim debet esse discretio in pauperibus suscipiendis, i. e. si duo vel tres venerint, alii debiles, alii sani, debiles magis debet adjuvare, si non potest omnibus,4 i. e. sanis et debilibus.

But when he says 13the whole community should wash the feet of the guests, day after day, again a distinction must be made. For this is the necessary distinction in receiving the poor, that is, if two or three should come, some sick, others healthy, [then] the sick must be helped more if it not possible [to help] all,5 that is [both] the healthy and the sick.

Nam apud nos ad horam nonam suscipiuntur hospites; quodsi talis venerit postea, non ejicit jam susceptos pro illo debili, nam si potest debilem suscipere, suscipit, sin alias, dicit illi debili, ut inveniat sibi aliam mansionem, quia alios jam susceptos habemus.

Guests are received by us until the ninth hour; and if such a sick man shall come after the ninth hour, he6 should not throw out the guests [that already have been taken in] for that sick man, for if it is possible to receive the sick man, then he is received. However, if it is otherwise, he says to the sick man that he should find himself a different lodging place, because we have already received others.

Sic enim facimus (de) pedes lavare pauperibus, i. e. illi, qui offerunt in die ad missam, illi etiam post vesperam vadunt pedes pauperibus lavare, et cantando lavant pedes, et post lotos pedes miscent, et post miscere dicunt capitula et orationem hanc: Adesto Domine officio servitutis nostrae et reliq. Item si desunt pauperes de longe, quibus lavetis pedes, et vicini vestri venerint ad monasterium vestrum, i. e. tales vicini, qui habuerint nimiam indigentiam, quamvis vicini vestri sint illi pauperes, tamen si ibi in vestro hospitali manserint, eo quod manent, lavare illis debetis pedes, sicut longinquis, quia non custoditur propinquitas loci, quo veniunt, sed mansio, quia (qua) manent. Et non solum istis pauperibus vicinis pro necessitate lavare debetis pedes, verum etiam illis hominibus, quos vos pascitis, et quotidie in vestro monasterio sunt, debetis lavare pedes, ut regula adimpleatur.

This is how we administer the washing of the feet of the poor: they, who celebrate mass that day, in addition they go after vespers to wash the feet of the poor, and while singing they wash the feet, and after they have washed the feet they dry them. After they are dried, the monks say the chapters [of the liturgy for that day] and this prayer: Be near Lord to our office of service etc. Similarly, if there are no poor people from afar whose feet you could wash, and your neighbours should come to your monastery, that is such neighbours who are in great need, [then], even though these poor people are your neighbours, nevertheless if they stay in your guesthouse, you should wash their feet for that reason, just as you wash the feet of those from afar. The proximity of the place from which they came should not be considered, but rather the house in which they stay. And not only should you wash the feet of those poor from nearby out of necessity, but you should also wash the feet of those men whom you feed and who are in your monastery every day, in order that the Rule is carried out.

Sequitur: 23Hospitibus autem, cui non praecipitur, nullatenus societur neque colloquatur, 24sed si obviaverit aut viderit, salutatis humiliter, ut dictum est, et petita benedictione pertranseat dicens, sibi non licere colloqui cum hospite.

Next: 23No one should associate or speak with guests at all unless permission is granted, 24but if he meets or sees a guest, he should greet him humbly, as was said, and move on after asking for a blessing, saying that he is not allowed to converse with a guest.

Hoc quod dicit et petita benedictione pertranseat dicens, sibi non licere colloqui cum hospite, ita distinguendum est: [Dicens, distinctio;] deinde5 annecti, sibi non licere colloqui cum [page 509] hospite. Societur attinet, quando hospitis manum prendit; potest enim quis sociari cum hospite et non loqui, i. e. potest manum ejus tenere et ei jungi, et tamen non loqui.

That he says and move on after asking for a blessing, saying that he is not allowed to converse with a guest is to be understood thus: even if a monk is connected to a guest, it is not allowed for him to speak [page 509] with a guest. Associate pertains to when [a monk] takes the hand of a guest; for it is possible that one associates with a guest and does not speak; that is he can hold his hand and join him and yet not speak [to him].

Hoc vero notandum: quod dicit, ut, cum indigent solatia administrentur, isto modo debet fieri: cum multi sunt hospites, debet hospitalarius dicere abbati aut priori: quia hospites multos habeo. Et tunc debent jubere fratribus duobus vel tribus, qui adjuvent illum, et illi propter honestatem melioribus vel mundis vestimentis induti servire debent hospitibus et illi fratri impendere adjutorium, donec necesse fuerit. Post vero illi fratres ire in aliam obedientiam debent, ubi eis imperatum fuerit, et ille hospitalarius debet suum ministerium perficere.

Certainly this must be observed: when he says that when they are lacking, comfort should be given, it is to be done this way: when there are many guests, the hospitalarius7 should say to the abbot or the prior: 'I have many guests.' And then they should order two or three brothers to help him, and these [brothers], because of the honour [of the task], should attend to the guests dressed in better and cleaner clothes and aid [the hospitalarius] as long as necessary. Afterwards these brothers should return to another obedience in which they are commanded,8 and the hospitalarius should continue his attendance.

Ita et cellararius debet facere, cum cuppas aut pannos lavare vult; quaerere fratres debet ad sibi obediendum, ut eum adjuvare possint, quia illas cuppas vel pannos de XV in XV dies propter munditiam lavare debent.

The same goes for the cellarer, when he wishes to clean washtubs and garments; he should ask for brothers to follow his orders, so they are able to help him, because those washtubs and garments should be cleaned every fifteen days for the sake of hygiene.

1. + 821. (Mittermüller).
2. Pedemontium (Piemont) (?). (Mittermüller).
3. debent (?).(Mittermüller).
4. omnes (?). (Mittermüller).
5. Aliquid omissum esse videtur. (Mittermüller).

1. Hildemar refers here to the monastery of San Pietro al Monte in Civate, of which the monastery where Hildemar resided, San Calocero, was a dependency.
2. The meaning of the word tarde in this context is not clear to me.
3. Hildemar very rarely refers to the vernacular. It is however unclear to which vernacular he refers here, for the word does not resemble a Germanic, Roman or Celtic language. With thanks to Peter Schrijver for this information.
4. The monk who is in charge of all the supplies of the monastery.
5. Translated omnes as Mittermüller proposes, not omnibus as it says in the text.
6. Presumably the porter is meant, this is not further specified.
7. The monk responsible for the guests.
8. By the person under whose obedience they ordinarily live.

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