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CHAPTER XLIII.

Of those who come late to the work of God or to table.

As soon as the signal for Divine Office shall be heard, each one, laying aside whatever occupation he may happen to be engaged in, shall hasten with all speed, and yet with gravity, lest an occasion be given for light behaviour. Let nothing, therefore, be preferred to the Work of God. If any one shall come to Matins after the “Gloria” of the ninety-fourth Psalm, which we would have said slowly and leisurely for this very purpose, let him not stand in his order in the choir, but last of all, or in a place which the Abbot shall have set apart for such negligent people; that he may be seen by him and by all the rest, till the Work of God be ended, thus and do penance and make public satisfaction.

We have judged it fitting they should stand in the last place, or apart, for this reason; that being seen by all, they may for very shame’s sake amend. For if they remain outside the Oratory, some one will perchance either return to his cell and sleep, or at least sit without, and, abandoning himself to idle talk, give an occasion to the evil one. Let him therefore enter in, that he may not lose all, and may be amended for the time to come. In the day Hours, let him that shall come to the Work of God, after the verse “Deus in adjutorium,” and “Gloria” of the first Psalm, stand last, as directed above, and not presume to join himself to the choir of singers until he has made satisfaction, unless the Abbot shall, by his permission, give him leave; on condition, however, that he afterwards make amends for his fault.

He that cometh not to table before the verse, “Oculi omnium,” or, “Edent pauperes,” so that all may say the verse and pray, and all at once sit down to table together, shall be corrected once or twice, if this have happened through his own fault or negligence. And if he do not afterwards amend, let him not be admitted to a share of the common table, but being separated from the company of his Brethren, let him eat alone, and let his portion of wine be taken away from him, till be make satisfaction and amend his ways. He shall suffer the like penalty, who is not present at the verse “Confiteantur,” or. “Memoriam,” that is said after meat. And let not any one presume to take meat or drink before or after the appointed time. Moreover, if anything be offered to a Brother by the Prior and that Brother refuse it, but afterwards have a mind for it, he shall receive neither that, nor anything else, until he have made suitable atonement.

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