Mendicant Orders

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Related to Mendicant Orders: Monastic orders
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

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.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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.
Francis of Assisi, along with Dominic Guzman, helped lead the major spiritual reform that produced two new mendicant orders, the Franciscans and the Dominicans.
They adorn the buildings of the lords of Verona from 1277-1386, the Scaligers, and show the family's firm allegiance to the mendicant orders as opposed to the papal powers.
In contrast to the mendicant orders and the Jesuits, the Benedictines' decentralized organization and openness to different theological traditions meant that Enlightenment influences could and did affect monastic life depending on the policies of individual abbots in the approximately 150 monasteries of the regions covered in L.'s study.
For students of religious studies and Irish history, this volume on mendicant orders during the middle ages examines the lives of these organizations and their members from religious, social, and practical viewpoints.
Building Colonial Cities of God: Mendicant Orders and Urban Culture in New Spain.
In this context, mendicant orders are of particular interest since they followed the rule of absolute poverty that prohibited possessions in general and thus, strictly speaking, the commissioning of art works.
Rivers argues that the mendicant orders inherited from the early Middle Ages both simple mnemonic techniques of rhetorical practice and a tradition of monastic meditation based on memory images.
In later centuries, as members of the mendicant orders grew more proficient in Arabic and Persian they compiled dictionaries, translated Islam's holy texts and began to render the scholastic classics, such as St.
He finds Vives's contribution rests on his conception of a lay, centralized administration of poor relief at a time where private charity and the mendicant orders were dominant.