Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 1.djvu/612

This page needs to be proofread.
546

ANSELM


546


ANSELM


"Constitutio pro monachis de victu et vestitu' , in whicli lie determines exactly how much food, what articles of dress, etc., the monks were to receive from the different landed properties of the monasterj-. The work which maile the name of Ansegisus re- nowned for all times is his collection of the laws and decrees made by the Emperor Charlemagne and liis son Louis le D"(5bonnaire. These laws and decrees, being divided into articles or chapters, are generally called "Capitulars". Ansegisus was the first to col- lect all these "Capitulars" into the four books en- titled "Quatuor Libri Capitularium Regum Franco- rum". The first and the second book contained all "Capitulars" relating to church affairs, while the third and the fourth books had all the "Capitulars" relating to state affairs. It was completed in the year 827. Shortly afterwards it was approved by the Church in France, Germany, and Italy, and remained for a long time the official book on civil and canon law. Shortly before his death Ansegisus was at- tacked by paralysis which ended his holy and useful life on 20 July, 833 or 834. His earthly remains lie buried in the Abbey of Fontanelle, where his feast is celebrated on 20 July, the day of his death.

Lechxer. Martyrologium des Benediktiner Ordens (Augs- burg, 1855); Stadler, Heiligen Lexikon (Augsburg. ISoS). I, 234; Gesta abbal. Fontanell. in D'.\chery. SpicUeg., 1st ed., II, 279 aaa , and Mon. Germ. Hist. (Scriptores), II, 2S3 sqq.; Mabillox, Acta SS. ord. S. Bened. (Sasc, IV), IV (I), 630 sqq.; ZlEGELBArER, Hist. Rci Lit. Bened., IV, 216. 259. The Capilularia were first edited by Baluze (Paris, 1677-SS); for a new and critical edition see BoRETirs. in Mon. Germ. Hist. (Leges. Sect. II), Capitularia regum Francorum (Han- over, 18S3, 1890, 1897), I-II; the second volume is by Bore- Tirs AND Khause. The Pertz edition (op. cit.. Leges, I, 2.56 sqq.) is found in P. L., XCVII, 4S9 sqq.; Schmid in Kirchenlex.

Michael Ott.

Anselm, Nicholas. See Ascelin.

Anselm, S.atnt, Archbishop of Canterbury, Doctor of the Church, b. at Aosta, a Burgundian town on the confines of Lombardy, 1033-34; d. 21 April, 1109. His father, Gundidf . was a Lombard who had become a citizen of Aosta, and his mother, Ermenberga, came of an old Burgundian family. Like many other saints, Anselm learnt the first lessons of piety from his mother, and at a very early age he was fired with the love of learning. In after life he still cherished the memories of cliildliood, and his biographer, Eadmer, has preserved some incidents whicli he had learnt from the saint's own lips. The cliild had heard his mother speak of God, Who dwelt on high, ruling all things. Living in the mountains, he thought that Heaven must be on their lofty summits. "And while he often revolved these matters in his mind, it chanced that one night he saw in a vision that he must go up to tlie summit of the mountain and has- ten to the court of God, the great King. But before he began to ascend the mountain, he saw in the j^lain through which he had passed to its foot, women, who were the King's handmaidens, reaping the corn; but they were doing this very negligently and slothfuUy. Then, gricvitig for their sloth, and rebuking them, he bethought him that he would accuse them before their Lord and King. Thereafter, having climbed the mountain ho entered the royal court. There he found the King with only his cupbearer. For it seemed that, as it was now Autumn, the King had sent his household to gather the harvest. As the boy entered he was called by the Master, and drawing nigh he sat at his feet. Then with cheery kindliness he was asked who and whence he was and what he was seeking. To these questions he made answer as well as he knew. Then at the Master's command some moist white liread was brought him by the cu|v bearer and he feasted thereon in his presence, where- fore when morning came and he brought to mind the things he had .seen, tis a simnle and innocent child he Jaclieved that he liad truly been fed in heaven with


the bread of the Lord, and this he publicly atfirmea in the presence of others". (Eadmer, Life of St. Anselm, I, i.) Eadmer adds that the boy was beloved by all and made rapid progress in learning. Before he was fifteen he sought admission to a monastery. But the abbot, fearing the father's displeasure, re- fused him. The boy then made a strange prayer. He asked for an illness, thinking this would move the monks to jaeld to his wishes. The illness came, but his admission to the monastery was still denied him. None the less he determined to gain his end at some future date. But ere long he was drawn away by the pleasures of youth and lost his first ardour and his love of learning. His love for his mother in some measure restrained him. But on her death it seemed that his anchor was lost, and he was at the mercy of the waves.

At this time his father treated him with great harshness; so much so that he resolved to leave his home. Taking a single companion, he set out on foot to cross Mont Cenis. At one time he was faint- ing with hunger and was fain to refresh his strength TOth snow, when the servant found that some bread was still left in the baggage, and Anselm regained strength and continued the journey. After passing nearly three years in Burgundy and France, he came into Normandy and tarried for a while at Avranches before finding his home at the Abbey of Bee, then made illustrious by Lanfranc's learning, .\nselm profited so well by the lessons of this master that he became his most familiar disciple and shared in the work of teaching. After spending some time in this labour, he began to think that his toil \iould have more merit if he took the monastic habit. But at first he felt some reluctance to enter tlie Abbey of Bee, where he would be overshadowed by Lanfranc, After a time, however, he saw that it would profit him to remain where he would be surpassed by others. His father was now dead, ha\'ing ended his days in the monastic habit, and Anselm had some thought of living on his patrimony and relieving the needy. The life of a hermit also presented itself to him as a third alternative. Anxious to act with prudence, he first asked the adWce of Lanfranc, who referred the matter to the Archbishop of Rouen. This prel- ate decided in favour of the monastic life, and Anselm became a monk in the Abbey of Bee. This was in 1060. His life as a simple monk lasted for three years, for in 1063 Lanfranc was appointed Abbot of Caen, and Anselm was elected t o succeed him as Prior. There is some doubt as to the date of this appointment. But Canon Poree points out that Anselm, writing at the time of his election as Arch- bishop (1093), says that he had then lived thirty- three years in the monastic habit, three years as a monk without preferment, fifteen as prior, and fif- teen as abbot (Letters of Anselm, III, vii). This is confirmed by an entry in the chronicle of the Abbey of Bee, which was compiled not later than 1136 Here it is recorded that Anselm died in 1109, in the forty-ninth year of his monastic life atid the seventy- sixth of his age, having been three years a simple monk; fifteen, prior; fifteen, abbot; and sixteen, archbishop (Por<;e, Histoire de I'abbaye de Bee III, 173). At first his promotion to the office va- cated by Lanfranc gave offence to some of the other monks who considered they had a better claim than the young stranger. But Anselm overcame their opposition by gentleness, and ere long had won their affection and obedience. To the duties of prior he added those of teacher. It was likewise dming this period that he composed some of his philo,>-ophical and theological works, notably, the ".Moiiologium" and the " Proslogivun ". Besides giving good counsel to the monies imder his care, he foimd time to com- fort others by his letters. Rememl)ering his attrac- tion for the solitude of a hermitage we can hardly