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which forms so important an element in mediaeval
history, and which has not altogether ceased in our
own times 19 .

The joint effect of these exemptions from public
burdens, and from ordinary courts, was the creation
of a class civilly distinct from the rest of the com-
munity. This is the first element in the change which
we are investigating : the clergy came to have a
distinct civil status.

From the same general causes flowed another result
of not less importance.

The funds of the primitive communities had consisted
entirely of voluntary offerings. Of these offerings those
officers whose circumstances required it were entitled
to a share. They received such a share only on the
ground of their poverty. They were, so far, in the
position of the widows and orphans and helpless poor.

self of it : and also b the fact that e. g. Athanasius (Socrat. E. E. 1. 33), and
Priscillian (Sulp. Sev. Chron. 49, p. 102, ed. Halm) did actually appeal. But,
according to the ordinary law, such a right did not exist where the ecclesiastical
judge was in the position of an arbitrator, accepted by both parties to a suit : cf.
Hebenstreit, Historic/, Jurisdictions Ecclesiastic a e ex Legibus utriusque Codicis illus-
trata, Diss. ii. § 26, iii. § 6, Lips. 1 776 : Bethmann-Hollweg, Der romische Civil-
prozess, Bd. 3. p. 114, Bonn, 1866.

19 On the Civil Law in respect of ecclesiastical jurisdiction see Fessler, Der
kanonische Process ... in der vorjustinianischen Periode, Wien, i860, and the
excellent section of Loning's Geschichte des deutschen KirchenrechU, Bd. i. pp.
253-313, 382-409 ; and for an account of the legislation which served as the basis
of the later Canon Law on the subject see Dove, Dc Jurisdictionis Ecclesiastical
apud Germanos Gallosque Progressu, Berlin, 1855, and Sohni, Die geisllichc
Qrrichtsbarkeit im frdnJcischen Reich in the Zcitachrift fur Eirchmrecht, vol. ix.
1870, pp. 193 sqq.

vi.] The Clergy as a Separate Class. 151

Like soldiers in the Koman army, or like slaves in a
Roman household, they were entitled to a monthly allow-
ance 20 . The amount of that allowance was variable.
When the Montanists proposed to pay their clergy
a fixed salary the proposal was condemned as a here-
tical innovation, alien to Catholic practice 21 . Those who
could supplemented their allowances by farming or by
trade. There was no sense of incongruity in their
doing so. The Apostolical Constitutions repeat with
emphasis the apostolical injunction, ' If any would
not work, neither should he eat 22 .' There is no early
trace of the later idea that buying and selling, handicraft
and farming, were in themselves inconsistent with the
office of a Christian minister. The bishops and pres-
byters of those early days kept banks, practised medi-
cine, wrought as silversmiths, tended sheep, or sold
their goods in open market 23 . They were like the second

30 ' Divisio mensurna,' St. Cyprian. Epist. 34 (28), p. 570, 39 (34), p. 582.

21 Euseb. H. E. 5. 18. 2: 5. 28. 10: this salary, like the allowances of the
Catholic clergy, was to be paid monthly (firjviaia Srjvapia f/tarov ntvTTjKOVTa), the
point of objection being apparently that it was fixed, and not dependent on the
freewill -offerings of the people.

21 Const. Apost. 2. 62.

33 This is proved by the existence of both general regulations and particular
instances : i. among the former are the enactment of the Civil Law exempting
clerks from the trading-tax : ' si exiguis admodum mercimoniis tenuem sibi victum
vestitumque conquirent' (Law of Constantius andConstans, a.d, 360, Cod. Theodos.
16. 2. 15), and the enactments of the Statuta Ecclesiae Antiqua, c. 51 'clericus
quantumlibet verbo Dei eruditus artificio victum quaerat;' c. 52 ' clericus victum
et vestimentum sibi artificiolo vel agricultura absque officii sui detrimento paret : '
ii. among the latter are the cases of Spiridion who tended sheep in Cyprus,
Socrates, H. E. 1. n, of a bishop who was a weaver at Maiuma, Sozom. H. E. 7.
28, of one who was a shipbuilder in Campania, S. Greg. M. Epist. 13. 26, vol. ii.
p. 1235, of one who practised in the law courts, ibid. 10. 10. vol. ii. p. 1048, of a
presbyter who was a silversmith at Ancyra, Corp. Inscr. Qraec. No. 9258: Basil,
Epitt. 198 (263% vol. iv. p. 290), speaks of the majority of his clergy as earning
their livelihood by sedentary handicrafts (rds iSpaias ruiv Ttx v *> v )> an( i Epiphanius,

152 The Clergy as a Separate Class. [lect.

generation of non-juring bishops a century and a half
ago, or like the early preachers of the Wesleyan
Methodists. They were men of the world taking part
in the ordinary business of life. The point about
which the Christian communities were anxious was,
not that their officers should cease to trade, but that,
in this as in other respects, they should be ensamples
to the flock. The chief existing enactments of early
local councils on the point are that bishops are not to
huckster their goods from market to market, nor are
they to use their position to buy cheaper and sell
dearer than other people 24 .

Into this primitive state of things the State intro-
duced a change.

1. It allowed the Churches to hold property 25 . And

Haeres. 80. 6, p. 1072, speaks of others doing it in order to earn money for the
poor : so Gennad. Be Script. Eccles. c. 69, of Hilary of Aries.

24 Cone. Illib. c. 19, 'Episcopi, presbyteres, et diacones de locis suis negotiandi
causa non discedant, nee circumeuntes provincias quaestuosas nundinas sectentur:'
Cone. Tarracon. c. 2 ' Quicumque in clero esse voluerit emendi vilius vel vendendi
carius studio non utatur.'

25 Iu several cases the Christian communities had held property before the time
of Constantine : but they probably did so rather by concession than of right : at
the same time it must be admitted that the question of the legal status of the
Christian communities in the first three centuries is one of great difficulty : (most
of the elements of the solution of the question will be found in Liming, Bd. i. pp.
195 sqq., who arrives at a different conclusion from that which is here stated :
and in the works mentioned in Lecture II, note 2). They had been formally
permitted by Gallienus, Euseb. H. E. 7. 13. 3, to have common cemeteries : and
De Rossi in the Bulletino di Archeol. Christian. Ann. iii. 1S65, pp. 89 (also in
the Eevue Arcktlologique, vol. xiii. 1S66, pp. 225 sqq.), maintains that the right
existed in relation to cemeteries from the first. But on the other hand, the pro-
ceedings in the case of Paul of Samosata seem to show that, at least in some caseB,
the property was held personally by the bishop : since Paul's opponents, not being
able to eject him by the ordinary processes of law, as they could have done if the
property had belonged to the community, had to seek the extraordinary interven-
tion of Aurelian (Euseb. H. E. 7. 30. 19). Lampridius mentions that in a special
aase Alexander Severus had allowed the Christians rather than the tavern-keepers

vi.] The Clergy as a Separate Class. 153

hardly had the holding of property become possible
before the Church became a kind of universal legatee.
The merit of bequeathing property to the Church was
preached with so much success that restraining enact-
ments became necessary. Just as the State did not
abolish, though it found it necessary to limit, its
concession of exemption to Church officers, so it pur-
sued the policy of limiting rather than of abolishing
the right to acquire property 26 . ' I do not complain of
the law,' says Jerome, writing on this point, 'but of
the causes which have rendered the law necessary 2 V

2. The enthusiasm, or the policy, of Constantine
went considerably beyond this. He ordered that not
only the clergy but also the widows and orphans who
were on the Church-roll should receive fixed annual
allowances 28 : he endowed some Churches with fixed

to occupy a piece of once public land (Lamprid. Vit. Alex. Sen. 49) : and, the year
before the Edict of Milan, Maximinus (Euseb. H. E. 9. 10. 1 1) restored the churches
and other property of which the Christians had been deprived : but it does not
appear that until that Edict the right of holding property was ordinary and incon-
testable. Even then the right was probably limited to the occupation of churches,
cemeteries, and other buildings used for worship or cognate purposes: the right
of receiving property bequeathed by will for the purpose of endowment was
not granted until a.d. 321, by a law which is preserved in Cod. Theodos.
16. 2. 4.

2i The most stringent enactment was that of Valentinian and Valens in a. D.
370, Cod. Theodos. 16. 2. 20, to the effect that ' ecclesiastici' are not even to visit
the houses of widows and wards : (it was addressed to Bishop Damasus and read
in the Roman churches.)

47 St. Hieron. Epist. 52 (2), ad Nepotianum, c. 6 'Pudet dicere sacerdotes idolo-
rum, iaiini, et aurigae, et scorta, haereditates capiunt : solis clericis et monachis
hac lege [i.e. the law referred to in the preceding note] prohibetur: et prohibetur
non a persecutoribus sed a principibus christianis. Nee de lege conqueritur : sed
doleo cur mcruerimus hanc legem,' cf. St. Ambros. Epist. 18. 13 : Expos. Evang.
sec. Luc. 8. 79, vol. i, p. 1491.

28 Theodoret. H.E.i. 10: Incert. Auct. de Constant, ap. Hanel, Corpus Leyum,
p. 196 'literas ad provinciarum praesides dedit quibus imperabat ut per singulis
uibe3 virginibus et viduia et aliis qui divino ministerio erant con«ecrati, annuum

154 The Clergy as a Separate Class* [lect.

revenues chargeable upon the lands of the munici-
palities 29 : in some cases he gave to churches the rich
revenues or the splendid buildings of heathen temples 30 .

This is the second element in the change : the clergy
became not only independent, but in some cases
wealthy. In an age of social decay and struggling
poverty they had not only enough but to spare. They
could afford to lend : and they lent. The frequent
repetition in provincial councils of the rule that the
clergy should not take interest upon their loans, while
it shows that the practice was reprehended, shows also
that it existed 31 .

The effect of the recognition of Christianity by the
State was thus not only to create a class civilly distinct
from the rest of the community, but also to give that
class social independence. In other words, the Chris-
tian clergy, in addition to their original prestige as

frumentum suppeditaretur : ' cf. Euseb. H. E. 10, 6. Julian not only withdrew
the privilege, but also compelled widows and virgins to repay what they had re-
ceived from the public funds, Sozom. H. E. 5. 5 : but the privilege was restored
by his successor, Theodoret. H. E. 4. 4.

89 Euseb. Vit. Const. 4. 28 : Sozom. H. E. 1. 8. 10 : 5. 5. 3.

30 Later writers sometimes represented the transfer of temples and their revenues
to the Christian churches as having been made on a considerable scale : e. g. Theo-
phanes, p. 42, ed. Class. : Niceph. Callist. 7. 46 : Cedren. pp. 478, 498. But al-
though instances of such a transfer can be found, e. g. that of the Temple of Mithra
at Alexandria, Sozom. H. E. 5. 7, and that which is recorded in an extant inscrip-
tion at Zorava in Trachonitis (Qtov yiyovw oikos to tuiv fiai/Aovwv tearayiiyiov, Le
Bas et Waddington, No. 2498), yet on the other hand the confiscation of temples
and their revenues did not become general until the time of Theodosius, and the
funds so realized were applied not to Christian, but to imperial and secular pur-
poses: this is shown by Cod. Theodos. 16. 10. 19 (law of A. D. 4o8 = Constit. Sir-
mond. 12, p. 466, ed. Hiinel) 'templorum detrahantur annonae et rem annonariam
juvent, expensis devotissimoruni militum profuturae : ' so ibid. 16. 10. 20.

n Councils of Elvira, c. 20 : Aries, c. 1 2 : Laodicea, c. 4 : Nicaea, c. 1 7 : 1 Tours,
c. 13: Tarragon, c. 3: 3 Orleans, c. 27: Trull, c. 10: so also the Cod. Eocles.
Afric. c. 16: Can Apost. 44.

vi.] The Clergy as a Separate Class. 155

office-bearers, had the privileges of a favoured class,
and the power of a moneyed class.

In the meantime, cooperating with these causes,
though wholly different from them, was another group
of causes which operated in the same general direction.

The fourth century of our era saw not only the
recognition of Christianity by the State as the religion
of the State, but also the first great development within
Christianity itself of those practices and tendencies
which are covered by the general name of Monasticism.
Those practices and tendencies consist in the main of
two elements — asceticism and isolation from the world.
Each of these elements has a separate history: the
significance of monasticism lies in their combination.

1. Asceticism belongs to almost the first beginnings
of the Christian faith. The teaching of our Lord had
been a teaching of self-abnegation : the preaching of
more than one Apostle had gone beyond this and had
been a preaching of self-mortification. The maxim of
the Master had been, ' Sell all that thou hast and give
to the poor 32 :' the maxim of the Apostle was, ' Mortify
your members which are upon earth 83 / Those who
had begun by giving a literal interpretation to the
one — ' having all things common 3 V proceeded to give
a literal interpretation to the other — 'crucifying the
flesh 3 V In other words, the profound reaction against
current morality which had already expressed itself in
some of the philosophical sects expressed itself within

sa S. Matt. 19. 21. w Col. 3. 5.

84 Acta 2. 44. 85 Gal. 5. 34.

156 The Clergy as a Separate Class. [lect.

the limits of Christianity. In our own days, in which
the social system has become more settled, and in
which the divine influence of the Christian faith has
raised even the current standard, it is difficult to
realize to ourselves the passionate intensity of that
striving after the moral ideal. We know of men
struggling for freedom : but in those days they
struggled less for freedom than for purity. Such
struggles admit of no compromise : for compromise,
like diplomacy, finds no place in the melee of the
battlefield. And this struggle for moral purity be-
came a war a outrance against human nature. At first
it was confined to a few : it rather hovered on the
outskirts of Christianity than found a recognized place
within : it was Judseo-Christian or Gnostic rather than
Catholic : it was rather discouraged than inculcated —
until, with the sudden rush of a great enthusiasm, it
became a force which even the whole weight of the
confederated Churches could not resist 36 .

2. Side by side with it, but for the first three cen-
turies confined to a still smaller number of persons 37 ,

38 The tendency towards the laudation of virginity is found in e. g. Herm. Sim.
9. 10. 11 : St. Justin M.Apol. I. 15 : Athenag. Legal. 32 : Origen, e. Ccls. 7. 48 :
Tertull. Be V eland. Yirg. 2, Be Exhort. Cast. 21 : St. Cyprian. Be Habitu Virg. c.
3, p. 189: Be Mortalitate, 26, p. 314: Epist. 55 (52), c. 20, p. 63S, 62 (60), c. 3,
p. 699

37 There is the instance of Narcissus of Jerusalem.. Euseb. H. E. 6. 9. 6, of the
fugitives from the Decian persecution mentioned by Dionysh.s of Alexandria ap.
Euseb. H. E. 6. 42. 1, of those with whom ' the great monk' Antony met before
he himself founded the later system of Egyptian inonachism, (pseudo-)Athanas.Ftk
-S. Anton, c. 3, Op. vol. i, p. 634. The fact that in the middle of the fourth cen-
tury there was already a irapaSoffts dypafos (Sozoin. 1 . 13) of monastic rules is a
further proof of the existence of monks before that time : on the other hand Ter-
tulliau's protest that the Christians were not ' Brachmanae, Gymnosophistae, silvi-
colae, exulea vitae' (Apol. 42) shows that the tendency had nut become general.

Vl.] The Clergy as a Separate Class. 157

was the tendency to live in partial or total isolation
from society.

This, like the ascetic tendency, was not confined to
Christianity. It had already taken an important place
in the religions of both Egypt and the East.

In Egypt there had been for several centuries a
great monastery of those who were devoted to the
worship of the deity whom the Greeks called Serapis.
The monks, like Christian monks, lived in a vast
common building, which they never left : they might
retain a limited control over their property, but they
were dead to the world 38 .

In the greatest of Oriental religions there had also
been for many centuries a monastic system, which
gained so firm a hold upon the professors of that
religion that to the present day, in some countries
where Buddhism prevails, every member of the popu-
lation, whether he will or no, must at some period of

S8 The institution of monachism in Egypt goes back to remote times : a hiero-
glyphic inscription in the Louvre, No. 3465, speaks of an abbess of the nuns of
Ammon (Bevillout in the Archives des Missions scientifiques et UtUraires, 3 mo se'rie,
vol. 4, p. 479) : but our chief knowledge of it is derived from the papyri, which
exist in considerable numbers, referring to the Serapeum at Memphis. The most
important of them are published by Brunet de Presle, Papyrus Qrecs du Musee du
Louvre et de la Bibliotheque Imperiale, in the Notices et Extraits des MSS. de la
Bibliotheque Impiriale, vol. xviii, pp. 261 sqq., who has also published an excellent
Mimoire sur le Sirapeum de Memphis in the Mcmoires presentes par divers savans
a VAcadimie des Inscriptions et Belles-lettres, i re serie, vol. ii, pp. 552 sqq. (see also
Leemans, Papyri Graeci Musei Ant. publ. Lugduni-Batavi, pap. B, p. 9, and Mai,
Class. Auct. vol. v, pp. 352, 601). The worship of Serapis was widely spread in both
Greece and Italy (see e.g. Herzberg, Die Geschichte Ch'iechenlands miter der Herr-
schaft der Rbmer, Bd. ii, p. 267 : Preller in the Berichte der konigl. sacks. Gesell-
schaft d. Wissenschaft, phil. hist, classe, Bd. vi, 1854, pp. 196 sqq. : Boissier, La
Religion Romaine, vol. i, pp. 400 sqq.), and there were associations of Serapis-wor-
shippers (e.g. at Athens, a decree of which is to be found in the Corpus Inter.
Ch-aec. No. 120 = Hicks, Greek Inscriptions in the British Museum, part i, No.
21), but there are no traces of religious recluses out of Egypt.

158 The Clergy as a Separate Class. [lect.

his life adopt the monastic habit, and live, if only for
a month or two, in retreat 39 .

The fact that Christian monasticism first appears in
Egypt 4 ", where the Serapeum was a familiar object to
the inhabitants of Memphis 41 , and also in those extreme
parts of Asia Minor which were locally nearest to the
Buddhist populations 42 , has led to the supposition that
one or other or both of these external causes may
account for its introduction into Christianity 43 .

89 R. S. Hardy, Eastern Monachism, p. 57.

40 The early appearance of Monasticism in Egypt is shown not only by the
' Eremitenroman ' (Weingarten, p. 20), entitled Vita S. Antonii, and ascribed to St.
Athanasius (Op. vol. i, pp. 630 sqq.), but also by the more important treatise De
Vita Contemplativa, which is printed among the works of Philo (Op. vol. ii. pp. 471
sqq. ed. Mang.). The controversies which have for some time been carried on as
to the probable authorship and date of this treatise (of which a short and convenient
account will be found in Kuenen, De Qodsdienst van Israel, Eng. Trans, vol. iii, pp.
217 sqq.) seem to have been set at rest by Lucius, Die Therapeuten und ihre Stellung
in der Geschichte der Askese, Strassburg, 1879, who maintains that it is really an
account, written not long before the time of Eusebius, of the communities of Chris-
tian ascetics which had already begun to exist in Egypt : (see Hilgenfeld's pane-
gyric upon the work in his Zeitschrift f. wissensch. 1'heologie, Bd. xxiii. 1880, pp.
423 sqq.).

41 The remains of the Serapeum were first explored by Mariette, and have been
described in his work entitled Le S&rapeum de Memphis, Paris, 1857.

42 There are some, though not considerable, traces of monasticism in Armenia at
the beginning of the fourth century, to which period the foundation of the monas-
tery of Etchmiazin is traditionally ascribed : (see the life of St. Gregory the Illumi-
nator by Agathangelos, translated in Langlois, Historiens de VArmenie,~Pa.ria, 1867,
vol. i, p. 181). There are also some, though not considerable, traces of Buddhism
having spread as far as Parthia a century and a half earlier than the above-men-
tioned date (Max Miiller, Selected Essays, vol. ii, p. 316). But there is no trace of
actual contact between Buddhism and Christianity, nor is there anything in the
form of early Armenian monasticism which shows a specially Buddhist impress.

43 Kiiuffer in the Zweite Denkschrift der hiet.-theol. Geselhchaft zu, Leipsig, Leip-
sig, 1819: and Weingarten, in his valuable essay Der Ursprungdes Monchtums, in the
Zeitschrift fiir Kirchengeschichte, Bd. i. 1877, pp. 1 sqq. (since published separately),
trace Christian monachism to Egyptian influences : Hilgenfeld, in his Zeitschrift
fiir wissenschaftliche Theologie, Bd. xxi. 1878, pp. 147 sqq., lays great stress on
Buddhist influences: the general view, which is given above, that both these in-
fluences were subordinate in their effects to causes which existed within Chris-

vi.] The Clergy as a Separate Class. 159

But great enthusiasms are never adequately explained
by external causes. No torch would have kindled so
great a conflagration if the fuel had not been already
gathered together for the burning. The causes of the
sudden outburst of monasticism in the fourth century
must be sought, and can be found, within Christianity
itself. They lie in the general conditions of the age.
It was an age, in the first place, in which the artificial
civilization of the Empire seemed to culminate. That
civilization carried in its train a craving for artificial
luxuries and artificial excitements. Such a craving
is never satisfied. It begets a vague restlessness,
which in its turn passes into ennui. There are men
who stand on the threshold of life who yet are weary
of it. There are those who have passed through life
and have found it vanity. There are social ambitions
which have been disappointed, and political schemes
which have been baffled, and moral reformations which
have failed, — and which have resulted in an exodus
of despair.

Again, it was an age of newly realized religious
freedom, in which, after the lapse of half a century,
men began to idealize the age which had preceded it.
The age of martyrdoms had ceased, but the spirit of
the martyrs began to live again. For martyrdom had
been in many cases the choice of a sublime enthusiasm.
There had been men and women who, so far from
shrinking from it, had sought and welcomed the occa-

tianity itself, lias been stated with great force by Keim, Ursprung d?x Monehwesens
in his collection of essays entitled Aus dem Urchristenthum, pp. 304 sqq., Zurich,
1878 : see also the excellent lecture of Harnack, Das Monchthum seiwi Ideale und
seine Geschichte, Giessen, 1881.

160 The Clergy as a Separate Class. [lect.

sion of it 4 *. They had ' counted it all joy to suffer for
His name's sake.' All this had come to a sudden end.
Persecution had ceased. But the idea of the merit
of suffering had not ceased. There were those who,
if they could not be martyrs in act, would at least be
martyrs in will (txaprvpe? Tfj irpoaipecrei) 45 . They sought
lives of self-mortification. They would themselves tor-
ture the flesh which the licfcors would no longer scourge.
They would construct for themselves the prisons which
no longer kept Christian confessors for the lions.

And again, it was an age in which the antithesis
between mind and matter, between the unreal world
of sense and the real world of spirit, expressed itself
in more than one philosophy and more than one
religion. It was the first and fullest bloom in the
Western world of that love of haze upon the horizon
which, however alien to the modern temper, has almost
won its way to a permanent place among human
tendencies, and which is known by the name of
mysticism. There were men to whom philosophy
had ceased to be philosophy, and had become an
emotion. There were the pure and passionate souls
to whom contact with sin was intolerable, and who
fled from a world which they did not know to dream
of a world which could be but a dream. There were

41 For instances see Euseb. De Martyr. Pulaestinae, 3. 3: Acta Thcodoii, c. 22 in
Ruinart, Acta Marty rum sinccra, p. 346, Tertull. Ad Scapulam, 5 : Le Blant, Sur la
Preparation au Martyre dans les premises siecles de I'Eglise, in the Memoires de

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