Dicta mea sunt dicta patrum?
Tradition and innovation in John’s Confessio theologica
in Emotional monasticism
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This chapter shows how John’s Confessio theologica was both of a piece with traditional monastic texts and ‘new’ on the monastic scene. In his Confessio theologica, John both built on reform and devotional precedents long-established in the monastic sphere, and developed a distinctive focus on reforming his monks’ interior, emotional practices that was substantially his own. To do this, I first explore John’s sources for the Confessio theologica in this chapter. I start by tracing the age-old monastic precedents that John draws on in his Confessio theologica, precedents that scholars often cite but rarely examine. I also trace more rare sources of John’s, books that he encountered in his childhood monastery in Ravenna, under the guidance of monastic reformer Romualdus of Ravenna, or his time at Cluny or at Saint-Bénigne de Dijon, under the guidance of Odilo of Cluny and William of Volpiano. After carefully tracing his pedigree, I then highlight what is source-less in John’s Confessio theologica, showing which ideas are truly John’s own.

Emotional monasticism

Affective piety in the eleventh-century monastery of John of Fécamp

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