A Companion to Medieval Rules and Customaries


A Companion to Medieval Rules and Customaries offers an introduction to the rules and customaries of the main religious orders in medieval Europe: Benedictine, Cistercian, Carthusian, Augustinian, Premonstratensian, Templar, Hospitaller, Teutonic, Dominican, Franciscan, and Carmelite. As well as introducing the early history and spirituality of the orders, scholars survey the central topics – organization, doctrine, morality, liturgy, and culture, as documented by these primary sources.

Contributors are: James Clark, Tom Gaens, Jean-François Godet-Calogeras, Holly Grieco, Emilia Jamroziak, Gert Melville, Stephen Molvarec, Carol Neel, Krijn Pansters, Matthew Ponesse, Bert Roest, Kristjan Toomaspoeg, Paul van Geest, Ursula Vones-Liebenstein, and Coralie Zermatten.

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Krijn Pansters, Ph.D. (2007) in Medieval History, Radboud University Nijmegen, and Ph.D. (2019) in Medieval Theology, KU Leuven, teaches Christian Spirituality at Tilburg University (School of Catholic Theology, Franciscan Study Center).
"Pansters' profound and content-rich introduction to the subject, the structure and aim of the volume, and the largely uniform organization of the individual contributions, which are very convincing throughout, will make the work essential reading for the future study of medieval normative texts."
Robert Harlaß, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, on H-Soz-Kult

"Pansters designates three broad categories of religious: monks [...], canons [...], and mendicants.[...] To facilitate comparison across the articles, authors were invited to address a shared set of conceptual and methodological issues (including questions of group origins, characteristic spiritual practices, the survival and authenticity of textual sources, and contributions in the areas of education, theology, the arts, craftwork, and architecture). This shared framework productively links the various articles and lends admirable coherence to the volume."

"A Companion to Medieval Rules and Customaries provides a useful starting point for scholars interested in extending their understanding of the ideals and realities of formal religious orders and for advanced students in search of steady guidance through the sometimes-bewildering world of monastic rules and customaries."

Alison I. Beach, University of St Andrews, in Church History, 2021, pp 938-939 (doi:10.1017/S0009640722000269)

The implementation of the idea to collect normative texts in a handbook is very successful. Current editions, historical as well as research-historical contexts as well as central regulations with regard to the organization, the communal life, and the spirituality and culture of the orders are presented. This handbook now invites complementary comparative studies and at the same time lays a valuable foundation for them.

Julia Bruch, Universität zu Köln, in Historische Zeitschrift, 2022, 748-749

"Undoubtedly, the individual contributions will enrich the study of the respective communities as well as spiritual life in the Middle Ages as a whole. The book can thus be consulted with great profit by both religious and wider medieval studies. As a "handbook" on medieval rules, consuetudines, and statutes, the volume thus promises to be of valuable service to future research."

Stephan Flemmig, Jena in: Zeitschrift für Historische Forschung 49 (2022) 105-106

Die Umsetzung der Idee, normative Texte in einem Handbuch zu sammeln, ist sehr gut gelungen. Präsentiert werden aktuelle Editionen, historische sowie for forschungsgeschichtliche Kontexte und darüber hinaus zentrale Regelungen zur Organisation,dem Zusammenleben, zur Spiritualität und Kultur der Orden. Dieses Handbuch fordert nun ergänzende vergleichende Studien heraus und legt zugleich einen wertvollen Grundstein dafür.

Julia Bruch, Universität zu Köln, in Historische Zeitschrift, 2022, 748-749

"Durch die profunde und inhaltsreiche Einführung Pansters´ in das Thema, die Struktur und das Ziel des Bandes sowie die weitgehend einheitliche Gliederung der durchweg sehr überzeugenden Einzelbeiträge wird das Werk für die künftige Beschäftigung mit mittelalterlichen normativen Texten eine zentrale Lektüre darstellen."

Robert Harlaß, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, on H-Soz-Kult

"Zweifellos werden die einzelnen Beiträge die Beschäftigung mit den jeweiligen Gemeinschaften sowie mit demgeistlichen Leben im Mittelalter insgesamt bereichern. Das Buch kann damit sowohl von der Ordens- als auch von der weiteren mediävistischenforschung mit großem Gewinn konsultiert werden. Als „Handbuch“ zu den mittelalterlichen Regeln, consuetudines und Statuten verspricht der Band der zukünftigen Forschung somit wertvolle Dienste zu leisten."

Stephan Flemmig, Jena in: Zeitschrift für Historische Forschung 49 (2022) 105-106
 List of Contributors

1 Medieval Rules and Customaries Reconsidered
  Krijn Pansters

2 The Rule of Saint Benedict
  James G.Clark

3 The Cistercian Customaries
  Emilia Jamroziak

4 The Carthusian Customaries
  Stephen J. Molvarec and Tom Gaens

5 The Rule of Saint Augustine
  Paul van Geest

6 The Customaries of Saint-Ruf
  Ursula Vones-Liebenstein

7 The Premonstratensian Project
  Carol Neel

8 Templars, Hospitallers, and Teutonic Knights
  Kristjan Toomaspoeg

9 The Dominican Constitutiones>
  Gert Melville

10 The Rule of Saint Francis
  Holly J. Grieco

11 The Rules of Poor Clares and Minoresses
  Bert Roest

12 The Rule of the Franciscan Third Order
  Jean-François Godet-Calogeras

13 The Carmelite Rule
  Coralie Zermatten

14 The Augustinian Rules and Constitutions
  Matthew Ponesse

All interested in the history and spirituality of medieval religious rules and customaries. Keywords: medieval religious orders, vita religiosa, monasticism, mendicants, rules, customaries, constitutions, medieval spirituality, virtues, Benedictines, Cistercians, Carthusians, Franciscans, Dominicans, Augustinians.
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