Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAPTER LV: CONCERNING THE BRETHREN'S CLOTHES AND SHOES - The Rule of St. Benedict
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CHAPTER LV: CONCERNING THE BRETHREN’S CLOTHES AND SHOES - Saint Benedict, The Rule of St. Benedict 
The Rule of St. Benedict, translated into English. A Pax Book, preface by W.K. Lowther Clarke (London: S.P.C.K., 1931).
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CONCERNING THE BRETHREN’S CLOTHES AND SHOES
Let there be given to the brethren clothing suitable to the character and climate of the place where they live, since in cold regions one wants more and in hot regions less; and this the abbot has to take into consideration: we however are of opinion that a cowl and a tunic each is sufficient for monks in temperate localities, in winter a cowl of shaggy stuff, in summer one of smooth stuff or one old and worn; together with a scapular for work; and, as covering for the feet, sandals and shoes. Concerning the colour or coarseness of all these things let not the monks trouble themselves, but let them be such as can be obtained in the province in which they live and that can be bought fairly cheaply: but as to the size of the garments let the abbot have a care that they be not too small, but of proper size for the wearers. When receiving new clothes let them always at the same time return the old to be put away in the wardrobe for the poor; for it suffices a monk to have two tunics and two cowls, two instead of one, to provide for having to wash them and for night-wear; for anything in excess of this ought to be taken away as superfluous. And similarly shoes and anything else that is old let them give back when they receive new ones. Let those who are sent on a journey receive drawers from the wardrobe and take them back washed on their return. And let there be cowls and tunics somewhat better than they usually have, which those going on a journey may receive from the wardrobe and take back on their return.
For bedding let a rush mattress, blanket, coverlet and pillow suffice; and these beds are to be frequently searched, by the abbot, for private property, lest any be found: and if anyone be found to have anything he did not receive from the abbot, let him be subjected to very severe discipline. But at the same time, that this vice of private ownership may be wholly uprooted, let there be provided by the abbot all things that are necessary; that is to say cowl, tunic, sandals, shoes, girdle, knife, pen, needle, handkerchief, writing-tablet, that all plea of wanting anything be taken away: yet let the abbot be always mindful of that statement in the Acts of the Apostles that: “Distribution was habitually made to them all separately according as each had need”; and in the like manner let the abbot have regard to the infirmity of those who feel want, not to the malevolence of the envious: and yet in all his judgments let him remember the retribution of God.