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Wandering, Begging Monks – Spiritual Authority and the Promotion of Monasticism in Late Antiquity - California Scholarship Online
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Wandering, Begging Monks: Spiritual Authority and the Promotion of Monasticism in Late Antiquity

Daniel Folger Caner and Jeffrey Wilson


An apostolic lifestyle characterized by total material renunciation, homelessness, and begging was practiced by monks throughout the Roman Empire in the fourth and fifth centuries. Such monks often served as spiritual advisors to urban aristocrats whose patronage gave them considerable authority and independence from episcopal control. This book studies this type of Christian poverty and the challenge it posed for episcopal authority and the promotion of monasticism in late antiquity. Focusing on devotional practices, the author draws together diverse testimony from Egypt, Syria, Asia Minor, a ... More

Keywords: apostolic lifestyle, material renunciation, homelessness, begging, monks, Roman Empire, spiritual advisors, urban aristocrats, patronage, episcopal control

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2002 Print ISBN-13: 9780520233249
Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520233249.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Daniel Folger Caner, author

Jeffrey Wilson, editor