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lation; for they brought to the management of their properties great capital and great intelligence, and largely employed and liberally rewarded the industry of the labourer." Observations of this kind had been made in ancient times; for hear what Peter the Venerable says, " Every body sees how secular masters rule over their peasants, servants, and hand-maids; for they are not satisfied with their due service, but always unmercifully claim their persons with their property, and their property with their persons, spoiling them of their goods as often as they please; oppressing them with innumerable claims of service, forcing many to leave their native soil, and fly to foreign parts. Now monks, though they may have such possessions, do not possess them in the same way; for they employ only the lawful and due services of the peasants to procure the conveniencies of life. They harass them with no exactions; they impose no intolerable burdens, and if they see them in want they maintain them at their own expense; they have servants and hand-maids, not as servants and hand-maids, but as brothers and sisters." It was well in general for peasants, when an abbot was their neighbour. John, abbot of Monte Cassino, grants the unlimited right of pasturage on the mountains by night and by day to the inhabitants of St. Pietro de Avellana, on condition of their giving yearly ten pounds of good wax to the abbey. The monastery of Stivagium, in the diocese of Toul, was so called from stiva, a plough-handle, because by the plough and agriculture it had enriched the neighbourhood †.
Minute sanitary laws, that would greatly edify us in England at the present day, emanated from such proprietors. Amongst the regulations given by Ignatius Squarcialupus, abbot of Monte Cassino, to the town of Citrarius, one is entitled, De non projiciendo in viis publicis, seu vicinalibus sorditias et immunditias. It is ordered-quod nullus homo vel mulier dictæ terræ et habitantes in ea, possit ullo unquam tempore in stradis et locis publicis, fidum, sorditias, stercora, opa olivarum macinata, et alia quæ generant fetorem et aeris corruptionem projicere, seu projici facere." It is a curious fact that six centuries ago the Cistercian monks of Waverley Abbey abandoned the use of the river Wey, though flowing beneath their windows, and resorted to a distant hill for pure soft water, which they collected and conveyed to the abbey in subterranean pipes, closely resembling those laid down on Hungay Hill for the supply of Farnham, and recommended now for the supply of London. These ancient waterworks of Waverley were planned and executed by a monk of the abbey called Brother Simon. Fra Giocondo rendered such service to Venice by his works for the preservation of the Peter the Venerable, Defence of Cluny.
† Servat. Index, Cœnob. Ord. Præmonst.
Lagoons, which were in danger of being choked, so as to render the air insalubrious, that Signor Luigi Cornaro said he should be called the second founder of that city. All works of this nature they used to designate as holy. It was the monks who, like this illustrious friar, constructed many of the old bridges, causeways, dikes, and embankments, so that their respective countries may be said to have eternal obligation to their memory.
It should not be forgotten that all kinds of industry were conducted by religious men. The best operatives, the most intelligent agriculturists of Europe, as well as some of the greatest artisans, have been monks. So early as in the ninth century the abbey of St. Germain formed one of the chief territorial properties in France, which was wholly agricultural. The monks of Tamié, in Savoy, had iron mines and manufactures which yielded an immense return. This monastery was celebrated for the security which it furnished to travellers, for its agricultural labours, and its charities to the poor*. All this agricultural organization, which certain modern reformers have attempted to establish in France at such a vast expense, and hitherto with so little fruit, had been realized by monks all over Europe more than six hundred years ago, only with this difference, that the monks did not demand twenty-five millions a year in order to make their experiments, but only some forests and marshes †. "We have read," says an historian of Morimond, "Varro and Columella on the manner of cultivating the ground with the Romans; Matthieu de Dombasle, Olivier de Serres, Moreau de Jonnès, and De Gasparin, in France, John Sinclair, in England, Ronconi, in Italy, Cotta, Burgsdoff, Kasthoffer, in Switzerland, Germany, and Belgium, have given us an idea of the progress of agricultural science in modern times. Well, after admiring the labours of these authors, we have studied the works of the first Cistercians, we have visited those executed by their successors at the present day, and we have been obliged to recognize that in whatever spots the monks have fixed their spades, are still to be found the Columns of Hercules, as far as farming is concerned." The right of feeding herds in forests was generally bestowed on monasteries. These herds were numerous. single night, during the reign of Charlemagne, we read of one abbey losing a hundred oxen by a disease there prevalent §. In 1858, when the English pillaged the abbey of St. Eloi, near Noyon, they took from it 423 horses, more than 200 foals, 552 horned cattle, 8000 sheep, and 800 swine . Every where the
*Chevray, Vie de S. Pierre de Tarentaise, 242. + Dubois, Hist. de l'Abbaye de Morimond, 217. + Id. 226. § Le President Fanchet Fleurs de la Maison de Charlemagne, 161. Moët de la Forte-Maison, Antiquités de Noyon, 453.
Cistercians, whose riches consisted in wool, had vast flocks of sheep. Those of England depended much on Flanders for the sale of their wool *. The monastic barns still existing in many places can give an idea of the extent of agricultural produce belonging to these houses. The greatest men in cloisters did not disdain to be occupied with such interests. Dom Mabillon was célérier, a sort of steward, at Corbie. Lanfranc one day returning from the monastery of Bec to a certain poor grange, rode with a cat in a bag behind him; a stranger who joined his company on the road, seeing something move in the bag, asked him what he carried, and he replied," Mures et rati valde nobis sunt infesti, et idcirco nunc affero catum ad comprimendum furorem illorum t." In consequence of their attention to agriculture, observations on the weather occupied the monks; and many curious deductions can be traced to them, as to men who wished to be useful as old Homer would say,
Τοῖς, οἳ νῦν γεγάασι, καὶ οἳ μετόπισθεν ἔσονται†.
For their motive was not exactly that which makes, perhaps, so many of the respectable classes now take an interest in the weather at harvest time; as when we read under the date of July 29, "This day, in consequence of the late rains and the lowering aspect of the harvest, the Society of Friends mustered in great numbers at the Corn Exchange." Observations of temperature were made five times a day at the convent Degli Angeli, in Florence, and in many monasteries of Italy and Germany. "In the middle ages," says Humboldt, "much was enunciated concerning the connexion of natural phenomena, which has at a later period been confirmed by sure experience, and has since become matter of scientific knowledge §." The falling stars of the tenth of August, as a recurring phenomenon, called the fiery tears of St. Laurence, as also the cold days of the saints Mamertus, Pancratius, and Servatius, had been observed by the monks. At Christ's College, Cambridge, is a manuscript ascribed to a monk, and entitled "Ephemerides Rerum Naturalium," in which the natural phenomena proper to each day of the year are indicated, such as the first blossoming of plants, the arrival of birds, &c. The tenth of August is marked by the word "meteorodes," which first suggested to Dr. Thomas Forster his inquiry into the August phenomenon. The notices of the seasons that occur in the monastic chronicles, indicate with what care observations of this kind were made. Thus one grave writer, speaking of the year 1288, mentions that in "October, November, and
* Mat. Paris, ad ann. 1254.
Vita Abb. Beccensium. § Cosmos, ii.
December the weather was as warm as in summer, so that the youth of Constance took the amusement of swimming in the lake and in the Rhine at Christmas, as if in July and August *.” The historian monk of St. Albans relates in great detail the atmospheric phenomena of each year. Thus he describes the tempest in 1234, which began in Bedfordshire, and thence passed eastward over the Isle of Ely and Norfolk to the sea. Similarly he fails not to mention the torrents of rain in July, about St. Mary Magdalen, which carried away wooden bridges and granaries. He records that "during the night of St. Lambert, on a Sunday in 1251, the darkness was so thick, that it seemed as if you could touch it; while the rain fell in such abundance, that the cataracts of heaven seemed opened to overwhelm the earth. "On the octave of the Epiphany, the next year, the fury of the south-west wind raged," he says, "with unheard of violence. In the cemetery of the monastery of St. Albans three oaks, not one of which three men could encompass with their arms, were uprooted." "In 1256 the flood of Deucalion," says, "seemed to return; for from the Assumption till the Purification the rains ceased not each day, so that all the roads became impassable and the fields barren." Again he says, On the day of the Holy Innocents this year, 1257, a vast inundation covered the country, which resembled a sea. One river alone, in the north of England, carried away seven great bridges of wood and stone. Mills and houses were destroyed also; and that night the hail was mingled with the tempest amidst thunder and lightning, which," he adds, "was a sad prognostic, since in winter such phenomena are almost always followed by bad seasonst." The monks sometimes had more reasons even than those of an agricultural kind for remembering such visitations, as may be gathered from what this historian adds; for he proceeds to say, "At the Ephiphany of our Lord, the king, never heeding the pluvial inundations, and the tempests of wind, and the impetuosity of the rivers, and all the troubles he was about to occasion, caused to be convoked the abbots of the Cistercian order to London, to receive his commands. So they came, for they could not help it, though strangely tormented and without hope of mercy; and, on arriving, they were required to give money." In 1254 he mentions an atmospheric phenomenon similar, in some respects, to what has lately puzzled the philosophers of Paris. This year," he says, on the Circumcision of our Lord, a wondrous ship appeared in the air about midnight. Some monks of St. Albans, who happened to be at St. Amphibale for the solemnity, having looked out at the stars, in order to
see if it was the hour to sing matins, perceived this surprising light and form."
The monks were attentive, and not always unintelligent observers of natural phenomena connected with the soil of their respective localities. Humboldt speaks repeatedly of the services he reaped from the observations of Franciscans and Jesuits on the deserts of the New World. In 1691, we find Dom Mabillon acknowledging with gratitude the receipt of a dissertation on the diseases in fruits of the preceding year, which work was entitled "De Constitutione anni 1690 ac de rurali Epidemia quæ Mutinensis agri, et vicinarum regionum colonos graviter afflixit,—dissertatio, ubi quoque rubiginis natura disquiritur, quæ fruges et fructus vitiando aliquam caritatem annonæ intulit*" The presence and escape of gases in marshes and mineral springs arrested the attention of Basilius Valentinus, an Erfurt Benedictine monk, at the close of the fifteenth century. So early as the end of the third century St. Patricius of Pertusa was led, by a consideration of the hot springs near Carthage, to form very correct views respecting these phenomena. Religion imposed no blindness with respect to any phenomena of either the ground or the heavens. Cardinal Nicholas de Cuss, almost a century before Copernicus, had reascribed to the earth both a rotation round its axis and a progressive movement round the sun; and, indeed, the example of Roger Bacon alone might prove that the cloistral influence has no inherent incompatibility with the cultivation of the natural sciences.
But we must return to our more immediate subject. The services of the monks, in regard to horticulture, deserve here a passing notice. Monastic gardens have been always celebrated. There, with men of elegant, pure, and aerial minds, who seemed the abstract of what is choicest in society, you might walk in groves, and orchards, and parterres; from the variety of curious flowers contemplate nature's workmanship and wonders; and then, for change-near to the murmur of some bubbling fountain, "that seems by some inexplicable association always to blend with, and never to disturb, our feelings, gay when we are joyful, and sad amid our sorrow"-you might hear discourses wise and charitable, enabling you to conceive in your imagination with what melodious harmony angels above sing their Maker's praises.
"How gaily murmur, and how sweetly taste,
The poet alludes to the abbey of Einseidelin. "At Alcobaça," says Lord Carnarvon, “we found in the gardens of the abbey a