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The Barbes’ Way Of Life

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Chapter Summary

In the Church of Rome, the rule of three religious vows, which dated back to the hermits of Saint Augustine, was gradually adopted by all monastic orders: chastity, poverty and obedience. All testimonies concur on the fact that the barbes exercised some sort of professional activity. Cross-examined in 1532, the future barbe Pierre Griot declared he was first a muleteer, ideally compatible with itinerancy. The author affirms that the barbes were particularly attentive to the sick, the infirm and the injured, and they developed skills that would enable them to bring solace. The Waldensians made no difficulties about asking their parish priest to baptise their children, marry them, accompany their dead to the cemetery or even to have mass said for the salvation of their souls. The ceremony to a baptism took place during the annual synod.

Keywords: baptism; Barbes; Church of Rome; Life; parish priest; Pierre Griot; Saint Augustine; Waldensians

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