which filled his contemporaries with wonder, and which drew men of every condition, even the Pope himself, to Perugia to hear from Ægidius' lips the Word of Life. The answers and advice these visitors received were remembered, talked over, and committed to writing, and thus was formed a collection of the familiar "Dicta" or "Sayings" of Ægidius, which have often been edited in Latin and translated into different languages. St. Bonaventure held these "Sayings" in high esteem, and they are cited in the works of many subsequent ascetical writers. They are short, pithy, popular counsels on Christian perfection, applicable to all classes. Saturated with mysticism, yet exquisitely human and possessing a picturesque vein of originality, they faithfully reflect the early Franciscan spirit and teaching. The latest and best edition of the "Dicta" is that published at Quaracchi, in 1905. There is a critical English translation of the same: "The Golden Words of the Blessed Brother Giles", together with a sketch of his life, by the writer of this article (Philadelphia, 1906); also a new German version, "Der selige Ægidius von Assisi, sein Leben und seine Sprüche", by Gisbert Minge (Paderborn, 1905).
Acta SS., III, April, 220 sqq.: Chronica XXIV Generalium (Quaracchi, 1897), 74–115; Vita Beati Ægidii Assisiatis (Quaracchi, 1901); Fratini, Vita del B. Egidio d'Assisi (Assisi, 1898); Sabatier, Actus B. Francisci et sociorum ejus (Paris, 1902), Robinson, The Blessed Giles of Assisi in Franciscan Monthly (London, Jan.–June, 1906).
Ægidius of Viterbo, cardinal, theologian, orator, humanist, and poet, b. at Viterbo, Italy; d. at Rome, 12 November, 1532. He entered the Augustinian Order at an early age and became its general. Ægidius is famous in ecclesiastical history for the boldness and earnestness of the discourse which he delivered at the opening of the Fifth General Council, held in 1512, at the Lateran. It is printed in Harduin's collection of the councils (IX, 1576). Leo X made him cardinal, confided to him several sees in succession, employed him as legate on important missions, and gave him (1523) the title of (Latin) Patriarch of Constantinople. His zeal for the genuine reformation of ecclesiastical conditions prompted him to present to Adrian VI a "Promemoria", edited by Constantin Höfler in the proceedings of the Munich Academy of Sciences [III class, IV, 3 (B) 62–89]. He was universally esteemed as a learned and virtuous member of the great pontifical senate and many deemed him destined to succeed Clement VII. He wrote many works, but only a few of his writings have been printed in the third volume of the "Collectio Novissima" of Martène. He was a profound student of the Scriptures and a good scholar in Greek and Hebrew.
When urged by Clement VII to publish his works, he is said, by the Augustinian Thomas de Herrera, to have replied that he feared to contradict famous and holy men by his exposition of Scripture. The Pope replied that human respect should not deter him; it was quite permissible to preach and write what was contrary to the opinions of others, provided one did not depart from the truth and from the common tradition of the Church (Nat. Alex., Hist. Eccl., saec. XV, 1, 5, 16; XVII, 354). His principal work is an historical treatise yet unpublished: "Historia viginti sæculorum per totidem psalmos conscripta". It deals in a philosophico-historical way with the history of the world before and after the birth of Christ, is valuable for the history of its own time, and offers a certain analogy with Bossuet's famous "Discours sur l'histoire universelle". The six books of his important correspondence (1497–1523) concerning the affairs of his order, much of which is addressed to Gabriel of Venice, his successor, are preserved at Rome in the Bibliotheca Angelica. Cardinal Hergenröther praises particularly the circular letter in which Ægidius made known (27 February, 1519), his resignation of the office of General of the Augustinian Order (Lämmer, "Zur Kirchengeschichte des XVI. und XVII. Jahrhunderts", Freiburg, 1863, 64–67). Other known works of Ægidius are a commentary on the first book of the "Sentences" of Peter Lombard, three "Eclogæ Sacræ", a dictionary of Hebrew roots, a "Libellus de ecclesiæ incremento", a "Liber dialogorum", and an "Informatio pro sedis apostolicæ auctoritate contra Lutheranam sectam".
Card. Hergenröther, in Kirchenlex., I, 255–256; Ossinger, in Biblioth. Augustiniana (Ingolstadt, 1769) I, 190–198; Fabricius-Mansi, Bibl. Lat., I, 23; Pastor, Gesch. der Päpste (3d ed.), III, 100, 184, 723.
Ægidius Romanus. See Egidio de Colonna.
Ælbert of York. See Ethelbert (Archbishop of York).
Ælfege. See St. Elphege.
'Ælfleda. See Elfleda.
Ælfred. See Alfred the Great.
Ælfric, Abbot of Eynsham, also known as "the Grammarian", the author of the homilies in Anglo-Saxon, a translator of Holy Scripture, and a writer upon many miscellaneous subjects. He seems to have been born about 955, and to have died about 1020. The identity of this writer has been the subject of much controversy. Even in Freeman's "Norman Conquest" he is wrongly identified with Ælfric, Archbishop of Canterbury (1005). But of late years nearly all scholars have come round to the opinion of Lingard and Dietrich that there was but one Ælfric famous in Anglo-Saxon literature, and that this man was never raised to any higher dignity than that of Abbot. Of his career we know but little. He was undoubtedly a monk of the Old Monastery of Winchester under Saint Athelwold, whose life he subsequently wrote in Latin. Some time after his ordination into the priesthood, he was sent to Carne Abbey, or as he himself writes it "Cernel", in Dorsetshire. Thence he became, in 1005, abbot of the recently-founded monastery of Eynsham, near Oxford, where he probably remained until his death. Of all the writers in Anglo-Saxon who have been preserved to us Ælfric was the most prolific. He is especially remembered for his Homilies, around the theological teaching of which concerning the Blessed Sacrament a great controversy has raged. Already in the reign of Queen Elizabeth it was asserted by Mathew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, that Ælfric in his Homily for Easter Day clearly evinced his disbelief in Transubstantiation, and that he must, moreover, be regarded as expressing the sentiments of the whole Anglo-Saxon church, of which he was a prominent and trusted representative. The details of the controversy cannot be discussed here. It may, however, be noted that the Anglican writer, W. Hunt, who eighteen years ago in the "Dictionary of National Biography" described Ælfric as vigorously opposing "the doctrine of the Catholic Church on the subject of the Eucharist," has recently so far modified his view to allow that "it is possible to reconcile Ælfric's words with the present teachings of Rome; his expressions are loose and unphilosophical, and, therefore, capable of being interpreted according to demand." ("The English Church to the Norman Conquest," p. 376.) This latter view is undoubtedly the more correct. Ælfric never intended to attack the doctrine of the Real Presence. He quotes with approval instances of the miraculous appearance of blood at the breaking of the Host. But he had adopted the views of Ratramnus of Corbie, whom he repeatedly paraphrases, insisting that in the Eucharist was a "spiritual" presence as opposed to a "bodily" (i.e., fleshly or carnal) one. That