The New Student's Reference Work/Dominicans

Domin′icans, the name by which the disciples of St. Dominic became known.  The order was founded in 1216.  Its members took a vow to eat no meat, to wear no linen clothes, to fast and to preach continually.  They also took the vow of absolute poverty and of obedience to their head; and went about preaching and teaching, begging their living as they went, and thus were often called the Begging Friars or Brothers.  In England they were called the Black Friars on account of the black cloak they wore.  They soon spread through Europe, and many of the greatest teachers and preachers of the middle ages belonged to the order.  See Life of St. Dominic by Archbishop Alemany and The Coming of the Friars by Dr. Jessopp.