Times: 3.30am-4am, 1.45-2.45pm, 8pm-1.45am
The life of a monk was harsh and uncomfortable.
They lived in communal dormitories, or in single bare cells, which
were hot in summer and freezing in winter.
Between praying up to seven times a day and working a medieval monk
got little sleep. They averaged approximately five hours sleep
between evening prayers and the 2am church service, and then snatched
another half an hour before being up at 4am for more prayer.
They were allowed to rest again after their midday meal but many spent
that time in private reflection and reading.
They slept on narrow slabs of stone with only straw for padding, with
only coarse blankets as a covering.
When they joined the monastery novices or monks in training were issued
with only two sets of clothing and only two blankets. For monks like
Martin Luther in Northern Germany the nights were very chilly indeed.
For many the only personal items they owned, having renounced all their
material possessions, was a crucifix and their begging bowl.
| Rules for Monks
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