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ROGER OF WENDOVER Flowers of history. The history of England from the descent of the saxons to A.D. 1235. vol.1

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ROGER OF WENDOVER
Flowers of history. The history of England from the descent of the saxons to A.D. 1235. vol.1
page 529



still rare on account of its recency. Wulfric replied that he did not know whether he had any of the new coinage or not ; upon which the man said, " Look into your purse, and you will find there two pieces and a half." Astonished at this, Wulfric did as he was bidden, and found the money, which he devoutly bestowed in alms. The man, receiving the money, said, "Ma y he, for whose love you have done this, return you a proper retribution. I tell you in his name, that you will shortly remove from this place to another, and from thence to a third, where you will at last find repose : there you will persevere in the service of God, who will at last summon you away to join the communion of saints." Of the conversion of Saint Wulfric, and the austerity of his life. After a while, Wulfric attached himself to William the lord of his native village, and every day ate at his table ; where, also, he prepared himself for austerity of life by abandoning the use of flesh. This man of God was now eager for a life of solitude, and was sent by his lord, the aforesaid knight, to Heselberg, a village about thirty miles to the east of Exeter, inspired, it is believed, to this by the suggestions of the Holy Spirit. Here, buried in a cell near the church, he devoted himself to the service of Christ, whose favour he gained by much labour and affliction both of the flesh and of the spirit ; for he so mortified the flesh by abstinence and watching, that in a short time his skin hardly adhered to his bones, and he presented to the eye of the beholder the appearance not of a carnal but of a spiritual being. He contented himself with a plain dress, under which was a shirt of sackcloth ; but when he had worn this a few days, he began to entertain thoughts of exchanging it for a coat of mail. When his lord, the aforesaid knight, heard of this, he sent the man of God a coat of mail, dedicating an instrument of war to the service of the heavenly warfare. A t night he used to plunge naked into a bath of very cold water, and there offer to the Lord the psalmody of king David. In this way he often mortified in the coldness of the water the fleshly tendencies which he sometimes fell most strongly. He was humble and pleasant in speech to all men : his discourse always sounded like celestial harmony to those who


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