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Understanding Benedictine responses to papal reform legislation : normative practice at Saint-Trond during the abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272)

Johan Belaen (UGent)
(2019) REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE. 114(1-2). p.59-98
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Abstract
This article examines the contents of manuscript 3704 (II 1031) of the Royal Library of Belgium, a mid-13th-century chapter book that once belonged to the abbey of St.-Trond. The chapter book was manufactured at the request of Abbot William of Ryckel (1249- 1272) and contains several types of monastic legislation: the Rule itself, the Ordinationes that were imposed on Benedictine Monasticism by Pope Gregory IX in 1237, and finally a series of statutes (referred to as constitutiones) that were drawn up for the community of St.-Trond by papal legate Hugues of St.-Cher and other ecclesiastic visitors from the Liège diocese during the 1250s. By carefully reconstructing the historical context of these visitations (in particular William's attempt to tighten his grip on the abbey's economic management) I will try to adjust the common held belief that Benedictine communities resisted the reform ideals that were promoted by the papacy. The conclusion is that Benedictines were essentially receptive to new trends in monastic government, be it by integrating them in tailor-made institutions that served local reform initiatives.
Cet article examine le contenu du manuscrit 3704 (II 1031) de la Bibliothèque royale de Belgique, un livre capitulaire du milieu du 13e s. qui appartenait autrefois à l'abbaye de St-Trond. Le livre capitulaire a été fabriqué à la demande de l'abbé Guillaume de Ryckel (1249-1272) et contient plusieurs types de législation monastique : la Règle elle-même, les Ordinationes imposées au monachisme bénédictin par le pape Grégoire IX en 1237, et enfin une série de statuts (appelés constitutiones) qui furent élaborés pour la communauté de St-Trond par Hugues, légat papal, et d'autres visiteurs ecclésiastiques du diocèse de Liège dans les années 1250. En reconstituant soigneusement le contexte historique de ces visites (en particulier la tentative de William de resserrer son emprise sur la gestion économique de l'abbaye), j'essaierai d'ajuster la croyance commune selon laquelle les communautés bénédictines résistaient aux idéaux de réforme qui étaient promus par la papauté. La conclusion est que les bénédictins étaient essentiellement réceptifs aux nouvelles tendances du gouvernement monastique, que ce soit en les intégrant dans des institutions sur mesure qui servaient les initiatives locales de réforme.
Dieser Artikel untersucht den Inhalt des Manuskripts 3704 (II 1031) der Königlichen Bibliothek Belgiens, ein Kapitelbuch aus der Mitte des 13. Jahrhunderts, das einst der Abtei von Sint- Truiden gehörte. Das Kapitelbuch wurde auf Wunsch des Abtes Willem van Ryckel (1249-1272) erstellt und beinhaltet verschieden Arten klösterlicher Gesetzgebung: Die Ordensregel selbst, die Ordinationes, die der Benediktinischen Klostergemeinschaft im Jahr 1237 von Papst Gregor IX. auferlegt wurden, und schließlich eine Reihe von Statuten (constitutiones genannt), die während der 1250er Jahre vom päpstlichen Gesandten Hugo von Saint-Cher und von anderen kirchlichen Besuchern aus der Lütticher Diözese für die Gemeinschaft von Sint-Truiden aufgestellt wurden. Indem der historische Kontext (insbesondere Willems Versuch, Einfluss auf die wirtschaftliche Verwaltung des Klosters zu nehmen) rekonstruiert wird, will ich versuchen, die weitverbreitete Unterstellung, dass die Benediktinischen Gemeinschaften den vom Heiligen Stuhl geförderten Reformidealen widerstanden, anzupassen. Schlussfolgerung ist, dass die Benediktiner im Grunde empfangsbereit waren für neue Trends in der Klosterverwaltung, sie jedoch in maßgeschneiderte Institutionen integrierten, die lokalen Reforminitiativen dienten.
Keywords
Religious studies, MONASTICISM

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MLA
Belaen, Johan. “Understanding Benedictine Responses to Papal Reform Legislation : Normative Practice at Saint-Trond during the Abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272).” REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE, vol. 114, no. 1–2, 2019, pp. 59–98.
APA
Belaen, J. (2019). Understanding Benedictine responses to papal reform legislation : normative practice at Saint-Trond during the abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272). REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE, 114(1–2), 59–98.
Chicago author-date
Belaen, Johan. 2019. “Understanding Benedictine Responses to Papal Reform Legislation : Normative Practice at Saint-Trond during the Abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272).” REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE 114 (1–2): 59–98.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Belaen, Johan. 2019. “Understanding Benedictine Responses to Papal Reform Legislation : Normative Practice at Saint-Trond during the Abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272).” REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE 114 (1–2): 59–98.
Vancouver
1.
Belaen J. Understanding Benedictine responses to papal reform legislation : normative practice at Saint-Trond during the abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272). REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE. 2019;114(1–2):59–98.
IEEE
[1]
J. Belaen, “Understanding Benedictine responses to papal reform legislation : normative practice at Saint-Trond during the abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272),” REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE, vol. 114, no. 1–2, pp. 59–98, 2019.
@article{8630743,
  abstract     = {This article examines the contents of manuscript 3704 (II 1031) of the Royal Library of Belgium, a mid-13th-century chapter book that once belonged to the abbey of St.-Trond. The chapter book was manufactured at the request of Abbot William of Ryckel (1249- 1272) and contains several types of monastic legislation: the Rule itself, the Ordinationes that were imposed on Benedictine Monasticism by Pope Gregory IX in 1237, and finally a series of statutes (referred to as constitutiones) that were drawn up for the community of St.-Trond by papal legate Hugues of St.-Cher and other ecclesiastic visitors from the Liège diocese during the 1250s. By carefully reconstructing the historical context of these visitations (in particular William's attempt to tighten his grip on the abbey's economic management) I will try to adjust the common held belief that Benedictine communities resisted the reform ideals that were promoted by the papacy. The conclusion is that Benedictines were essentially receptive to new trends in monastic government, be it by integrating them in tailor-made institutions that served local reform initiatives.},
  author       = {Belaen, Johan},
  issn         = {0035-2381},
  journal      = {REVUE D HISTOIRE ECCLESIASTIQUE},
  keywords     = {Religious studies,MONASTICISM},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1-2},
  pages        = {59--98},
  title        = {Understanding Benedictine responses to papal reform legislation : normative practice at Saint-Trond during the abbacy of William of Ryckel (1249-1272)},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1484/j.rhe.5.117522},
  volume       = {114},
  year         = {2019},
}

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