`This Rule has been written in order that, by practising it in monasteries, we may show that we have attained some degree of virtue and the rudiments of monastic observance ... Whoever, therefore, thou art that hastenest to thy heavenly country, fulfil first of all by the help of Christ this little Rule for beginners. And then at length, under God's protection, shalt thou attain those loftier heights of wisdom and virtue.' The Rule of St Benedict, Chapter 73
This guide examines the lives of medieval monks in Britain. The monks were secluded in the great monasteries, freed from the temptations and distractions of the fallen world and governed by the triple vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Yet they contributed to the societies of their time to such an extent that they can be proclaimed pillars of the medieval economy.
Look out for more Pitkin Guides on the very best of British history, heritage and travel, particularly the other books in the 'Life in' series: Medieval England, Tudor England, Stuart England, Georgian England and Victorian Britain.