Mendicant Orders


Also found in: Dictionary, Wikipedia.
Related to Mendicant Orders: Monastic orders

Mendicant Orders

 

Catholic monastic orders whose members had to take a vow of poverty and renounce all worldly goods.

Most of the mendicant orders were formed in the 13th century, at a time when anticlerical heretical teachings were fairly widespread. The first of the mendicant orders was the Franciscan Order, founded by Francis of Assisi. Noting the popularity of the ideals of “evangelical poverty,” the papacy sought to use mendicant orders as a means of discouraging the masses of believers from participation in heretical movements and as a means of consolidating its influence and political stature. In 1210, Pope Innocent III approved the founding of the Franciscan Order. In 1216 the mendicant order of the Dominicans was approved; in 1245 (or 1247) the Carmelites, who had been active since the second half of the 12th century, were reorganized into a mendicant order. In 1256 small monastic congregations were united into the mendicant order of the Augustinians. Other mendicant orders, including the Brothers of Charity and the Servants of St. Mary, were formed later. In the 13th century the Dominicans and, to a certain extent, the Franciscans were placed in charge of the Inquisition. In the late 13th century members of mendicant orders undertook missionary work.

By placing the process of establishing mendicant orders under its control, the papacy, as it were, sanctioned certain ideas advanced by popular heresies. The charters of the mendicant orders provided for the renunciation of any personal property or permanent residence; members of the orders were obliged to live solely on alms. However, the principle of mendicancy was systematically violated from the earliest days of the mendicant orders. By the 13th century the mendicant orders were hardly distinguishable from other monastic orders.

References in periodicals archive ?
Between them, the two leading mendicant orders, through their extensive patronage at this time, contributed to a revolution in art which was no less momentous than that in religious behaviour.
And of course both Aquinas and Bonaventure were themselves considered dangerous innovators as members of these new mendicant orders that had disrupted the conservative tranquility of the ecclesial order.
While it does not answer in any simple way the question posed by the editors as to whether, and how much, the mendicant orders were directly responsible for artistic innovation, it provides us with probing case studies.
Clearly Giles wants to distinguish the Augustinian Order from the other mendicant Orders, particularly the Franciscan; the ruckus caused by the Celestines and the likes of Jacopone da Todi had not died down in Rome.
Gustav Medicus likewise complements his up-to-date scholarly assessment of Giotto's achievement (including issues of attribution) with insightful correlations between the artist's understanding of human nature and the aims of contemporary mendicant orders, and in his entry on Duccio di Buoninsegna be brings to life the scene in which Duccio's great Maesta altarpiece was brought to the cathedral in Siena: "all shops were closed, and contemporary documents describe a magnificent procession, amid the ringing of all the bells in the city, of church dignitaries, government magistrates, drummers and trumpeters, and the general populace of Siena, leading the altarpiece from Duccio's studio down to and around the town square, and up the hill to the cathedral" (310).
This global mission was to be carried out through the office of bishops, mendicant orders, and political institutions, which could be designated by the pope as instruments within the mission of God.
He cites the historical example of the infection known as the "imperial papacy" in the thirteenth century and the counterbalance to that over-centralizing impetus in the emergence of the mendicant orders and the universities.
Vasco de Quiroga attempted to organize the native people into congregaciones, each containing a hospital, where friars of the mendicant orders (those sworn to poverty) could teach them Christianity and Spanish culture.
Here also, however, his argument is that Counter-Reformation era missionaries succeeded only to the extent that they took upon themselves the responsibilities the mendicant orders once accepted, mostly those involved with arbitrating social conflict.
The appointment of Papal Inquisitors was made not from among bishops (who might have a conflict of interest) but from among the mendicant orders, known for their theological knowledge and their absence of worldly motives.
The argument hinges on a dating of Monarchia (1312-14) that has been out of favour in recent decades, and evidendy on a conviction that Dante's aim in Paradiso `was to correct his earlier errors': every `section' of Paradiso amends one of Dante's other works except cantos X-XIV, `which deal with the mendicant orders'; in these `Dante shows no interest elsewhere except in Il fiore', where `the mendicant orders had been lampooned' (pp.
Aided by a bawdy female attendant and smarmy friar, the couple contrive a secret "marriage" that was almost certainly illegal, given the limited authority of mendicant orders.