Benedict of Aniane, Saint

Benedict of Aniane, Saint, c.750–821, French abbot who became a monastic adviser to Louis I. He first founded (c.780) an austere monastic community at Aniane in Languedoc, based on Eastern asceticism. In 799, he founded a large monastery based on the more moderate Benedictine Rule (see Benedict, Saint). As the leading reformer of French monastic houses, he presided over a series of councils of abbots at Aachen (816–819) that centralized and imposed regulations on all Carolingian monasteries. This legislation was essential to the development of Benedictine dominance in Western monasticism. Feast: Feb. 11. See Benedictines; monasticism.

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