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Life of Our Most Holy Father St. Benedict
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CHAPTER XXXIX

Of the measure or quantity of meat.

We think it sufficient for daily refection, both at the sixth and ninth hour, that there be at all seasons two dishes, because of the infirmities of different people; so that he who cannot eat of one, may make his meal of the other. Let therefore two dishes of hot food suffice for the Brethren, and if there be any apples or young vegetables, let them be added as a third dish. Let one pound weight of bread suffice for the day, whether there be one refection, or both dinner and supper. If they are to sup, let a third part of that pound be reserved by the Cellarer, to be put before them at supper.

If their labour be great, it shall be in the power of the Abbot to add what he shall think fitting to their ordinary allowance; taking care always to avoid surfeiting, that the Monks be not overtaken with indigestion, because there is not sin more contrary to a Christian than gluttony, as our Lord saith: “Take heed to yourselves lest perhaps your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness.”183183Luc. xxxi. 34.. But to children to tender age, let not the same quantity be given, but less than to the older, in all things preserving frugality. Let all, except the very weak and the sick, abstain from eating the flesh of four-footed beasts.


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