Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 1.djvu/621

This page needs to be proofread.




Paclioniian monks tliemsclvos, St. Anthony was looked upon as the founder and father of C'hristian nionaehisin. This great position was no doubt due to his commanding personahty and high character, riualities that stand out clearly in all the records of liira that have come down. The best study of his character is Newman's in the "Church of the Fathers" (reprinted in "Historical Sketches"). The following is his estimate: "His doctrine surely was pure and unimpeachable; and his temper is high and heavenly, without cowardice, w'lthout gloom, without formality, without self-complacency. Superstition is abject and crouching, it is full of thoughts of guilt; it distrusts God, and dreads the powers of evil. Anthony at least had nothing of this, being full of holy confidence, divine peace, cheerful- anil valorousness, be lie (as some men may iudge)cver so much an enthusiast " (op. cit., Anthony in Conflict'). Full of enthusiasm he certainly was, but it did not make him fanatical or morose; his urbanity and gentleness, his moderation and stand out in many of the stories related of him. Abbot Moses in (!a.ssian (Coll. II) says he had heard Anthony maintaining that of all virtues discretion was the most essential for attaining perfection; and the little-known story of Eulogius and the Cripple, preserved in the Lausiac History (xxi), illustrates the kind of advice and direction he gave to those who sought his guidance.

Tlie monasticism established under St. Anthony's direct influence became the norm in Northern Egypt, from I.ycopolis (Asyiit) to the Mediterranean. In contradistinction to the fully ccenobitical system, established by St. Pachomius in the south, it con- tinued to be of a semi-eremitical character, the monks living commonly in separate cells or huts, and com- ing together only occasionally for church scrvice.s; they were left very much to their own devices, and the life they lived was not a community life accord- ing to rule, as now understood (see Butler, op. cit., Part I, 233-238). This was the form of monastic life in the deserts of Nitria and Scete, as portrayed by Palladius and Cassian. Such groups of semi- indeixjndent hermitages were later on called Lauras, and have always existed in the East alongside of the Basilian monasteries; in the West St. Anthony's monachism is in some measure represented by the Carthusians. Such was St. Anthony's life and char- acter, and such his nMe in Christian historj'. He is justly recognized as the father not only of monas- ticism, strictlj' so called, but of the technical re- ligious life in every shape and form. Few names have exercised on the human race an influence more deep and lasting, more wide-spread, or on the whole more beneficent.

It remains to say a word on the controversy carried on during the present generation concerning St. Anthony and the Life. In 1S77 Weingarten denied the ."^thanasian authorship and the historical char- acter of the Life, which he pronounced to be a mere romance; he held that up to 3-10 there were no Christian monks, and that therefore the dates of the "real" Anthony had to be shifted nearly a century. Some imitators in England went still further and questioned, even denied, that St. Anthony had ever existed. To anyone conversant with the literature of monastic ICgj'pt, the notion that the fictitious hero of a novel could ever have come to occupy Anthony's position in monastic history can ap|)ear nothing else than a fantastic I)arailox. .\s a matter of fact these theories are abandoned on all hands; the Life is received as certainly historical in substance, and as probably by .\thanasius, and the traditional account of monas- tic origins is reinstated in its great outlines. The episode is now chiefly of interest as a curious ex- unple of a tlieory that was broached and became

the fashion, and then was completely abandoned, all within a single generation. (On the controversy see Butler, on. cit.. Part 1, 215-228; Part II, ix-xi). Tlio Greek lAfe i.s uiiiuiik llie work.s of .\thanasius (cti. Ben. 1, ii; 1'. U., XXVI). \ conlemporary I.alin Iriin>liilicin is in KosWKVDH V i/«- I'alrum (/'. /-., LXXIII). unci nii i:iii;li»b traniiliitiori by Kouekthon in the vol. of tin; A'f.-rfjc anit PoKt-N icene Library containing writings of .Sr. .\ihanasus. Further materiaU have been collected into a co-or<linateii sketch by Tili.kmont {Mrmoira, VII). Ha.nnav'.s Chrisdan Monnstici«ni (I^ndon, 1903). contains some good passugcfi on .St. Anthony (9.5 m)., 274 nq.). In the BoMuncfist Acla Sanctorum and other Livea of the Saints, St. Anthony's feast occurs on 21 January,

E. C. Butler.

Anthony, Saint, Knights of. See Military


Anthony, Saint, Orders of, religious communities or ortiers under the patronage of St. Anthony the Hermit, father of monasticism, or professing to follow his rule.

I. Disciples of St. Anthony (.\ntoni.\n's), men drawn to his hermitage in the Thebaid by the fame of his holiness, and forming the first monastic com- munities. Having changed his abode for the sake of solitude, the saint was again surrounded by followers (according to Rufinus, (i.OOO). living apart or in com- mon. These he guided solely by his word and examnle. The rule bearing his name was compiled from his letters and precepts. There are still in the Orient a number of monasteries claiming St. An- thony's rule, but in reality their rules date no further back than St. Basil. The Maronite .\n- tonians were divided into two congregations called respectively St. Isaiah and St. I'^liseus, or St. An- thony. Their constitutions were approved by Clement XII, the former in I7-l(), the latter in 1732. The former has 19 convents and 10 hospices; the latter, which has been subdivided, 10 convents and 8 hospices under the Aleppo branch, and 31 convents and 27 hospices under the Baladite branch.

II. Antonines (HosriTAL Huotheus of St. An- thony), a congregation founded by a certain Gaston of Dauphin^; (c. 1095) and his son, in thank.sgiving for miraculous relief from "St. Anthony's fire", a disease then epidemic. Near the Church of St. An- thony at Saint-Didier de la Mothe they built a hospital, which became the central house of the ortler. The members devoted themselves to the care of the sick, particularly those afllicted with the above mentioned; they wore a black habit with the Greek letter Tnu (St. .\nthony's cross) in blue. .\t first laymen, they received monastic vows from Honorius III (121S), and were constituted canons regular with the Rule of St. .\ugustine by Boniface V'HI (1297). The congregation spread through I'rance, Spain, and Italy, and gave the Church a number of distinguished scholars and prelates, .\mong their privileges was that of caring for the sick of the papal household. With wealth came relaxation of discipline and a reform was or- dained (1616) and partially carried out. In 1777 the congregation was canonically united with the Knights of Malta but was .suppressed during the F'rcnch Revolution.

III. .-Vntonians, a congregation of orthodox Armenians founded during the .seventeenth century at the time of the persecutions of Catholic .Armenians. Abram .\tar Poresigh retired to the Libanus with three companions, and founded the mona-sterj' of the Most Holy Saviour under the protection of St. An- thony, to supply members for mi-ssion work. A secoTnl foundation was mailc on Mount Lebanon, and a third in Rome (17.")3), which approved by Clement XIII. Some members of this congregation took an unfortunately prominent part in the Ar- menian Schism (1870^0).

IV. Coxgreoation of St. Anthony, in Flanders, founded in 1015, and placed under the rule of