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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.
page 364



having worked them up with great care and labour, he burst forth into prayer, saying, " I entreat you, Ο good Jesus, to give also to him, to whom you have by your favour granted to imbibe sweetly the words of your knowledge, that he may hereafter arrive at the fountain of all wisdom, and may appear for ever before your face. Moreover, I most humbly entreat all those to whom this history may ever come, all those of my nation who either read or hear it, to remember often to entreat the Divine clemency for my infirmities, both of mind and body, and to give me this requital in their provinces, so that I may find in all of them the fruit of their pious intercession. Amen !" Moreover, the fame of this venerable man was so well known to the Roman pontiff, that his eminence entreated his aid to explain certain obscure questions in the Holy Scriptures. But that he ever went to Rome I do not positively affirm. Nevertheless, I have no doubt that he was invited thither, as this letter will plainly show, which formerly pope Sergius directed to the abbot Ceolfrid, and which is couched in the following terms:— " Sergius, the bishop, the servant of the servants of God, to Ceolfrid, the religious abbot, health, and the apostolical benediction. With what words, and in what manner can we express the clemency and unspeakable providence of our God, and give proper thanks for all his benefits towards us, in that He leads us who are placed in darkness and the shadow of death to the fight of knowledge ? We therefore exhort the god-beloved kindness of your pious spirit, that (as there have arisen some questions about certain articles relating to ecclesiastical affairs, which cannot be cleared up without a more protracted examination, for which purpose we have need of conferring with some one thoroughly imbued with a knowledge of literature), you, as becomes a devout helper of our holy mother, the universal church, will not delay to accommodate your obedient devotion to this our exhortation, but that you will, without any delay, send to the sight of our mediocrity that religious servant of God, the venerable Bede, a priest of your monastery, to the threshold of the chief apostles, my lords Peter and Paul, your lovers and protectors, who, by the favour of God shown to your holy kings, you may not doubt shall return successfully to you, when the desired examination of the aforesaid articles have been completed by AA2


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