THE INFLUENCE OF THE DOMINICANS
The early structure, development and legislation of the Order of Saint Augustine did not take place in a vacuum.
Right from the initial steps taken by Cardninal Richard Annibaldi as Cardinal Protector of the Order and the agent of the Popes in the formation of the Order, there was contemporary precedent that was followed.
The rule of life and the constitutions of various mendicant orders were affected by the legislation that Saint Dominic prepared for his Order of Preachers (Dominicans)
This was a natural step for a number of reasons. Firstly, the Dominicans began in 1512, i.e., almost half a century before the Grand Union (1256) of the Order of Saint Augustine.
Secondly, Dominic was a great organiser and legislator, who had universal approval of Church officials.
By the use of these initiatives, the Dominicans and also the Franciscans had both successfully demonstrated the process of formation of a mendicant order.
Copying from his documents, therefore, was thus a convenient and certain way to gain the approval of Rome for what was being instituted.
The early constitutions of the Order of Saint Augustine (1284-90) had a Dominican base, and along with it numerous Dominican articles that likewise stand as evidence of a complete legislative concordance.
Even before the Grand Union of 1256, this Dominican influence had been at work within some one of the branches that constituted it – certainly in some groups that joined the Grand Union, including instances in the Gianboniti (Hermits of Saint John the Good) and the Hermits of Brettino as early as the years 1239 and 1251.
After their official approbation by the Pope, the Carmelites and the Augustinians were encouraged to be influenced by the example of the Dominicans in their ministry to the Church at large.
As is explained on another page of Augnet, the Carmelites and the Augustinians understood the desire of the Pope for them in this regard, and responded positively.
(Continued on the next page.)