Thursday, 20 September 2012

Rustics and Clause 16

Rusticus [Latin]
a countryman, rustic, peasant; in plur.: rustici, country people,rustics.

The word derives from the Latin villanus, meaning ‘one attached to a villa or farmhouse’. Villanus moved into the English language in two forms: villain defined by the OED as ‘a low-born, base-minded rustic’ (from c.1303), and villein ‘one of the class of serfs in the feudal system’.

Carl Stephenson (1956-05-01). Mediaeval Feudalism. Cornell University Press. pp. 33–. ISBN 978-0-8014-9013-2.

Clause 16

Clause 16 of the Constitutions states
The sons of rustics shall not be ordained without the consent of their lord, in whose land they are known to have been born.
This seems to be a rewrite in feudal language of a well-known and ancient canon of the Church
Canon 4
And no slave shall be received into any monastery to become a monk against the will of his master. And if any one shall transgress this our judgment, we have decreed that he shall be excommunicated, that the name of God be not blasphemed. But the bishop of the city must make the needful provision for the monasteries.

Pope Gregory I, The Great
Gregory (Epistle 10.9) orders two years, with special precautions in the case of slaves who wished to become monks
Huddleston, Gilbert. "Pope St. Gregory I ("the Great")." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 6. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1909. 22 Oct. 2012.
Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward. New Testament 1 Peter 2:18

Comment From Lyttleton

F. W. Maitland (1987). "The Serfs"Domesday Book and Beyond: Three Essays in the Early History of England. Cambridge University Press. pp. 26–. ISBN 978-0-521-34918-5.

George Lyttelton Baron Lyttelton (1771). The History of the Life of King Henry the Second,   W. Sandby and J. Dodsley. 

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