Although Wycliffite rhetoric rejected the compulsory community established by the late medieval English hierarchy in favour of an emphasis upon the individual, in practice Lollard communities demonstrated patterns of authority and coercion similar to those advocated by contemporary conservative ecclesiasts. Lollard communities were often dominated by a leader, such as the charismatic Wiliam White or the wealthy Sanders family of Amersham who used their economic power to coerce disciples, and many Lollard networks effectively disempowered individual interpretation and replaced it with the leader’s authorized beliefs.
In this paper the nature of the audience of a model sermon collection is investigated. A close reading of the newly identified preface to a collection of sermons for Sundays by John Waldeby OESA indicates that there were two groups of primary recipients: the young post-novitiate Austin Friars and the laity. The order’s documents concerning education reveal that these two recipients are closely associated with each other. The present paper considers the practical complications of this mixed audience which Waldeby would have had to taken into consideration.
Traditionally, scholars have accepted the Templar rule as the basis for the Order’s practice throughout the Order’s history and range. However, local practice (reflected particularly in Iberian Temple documents) frequently violated or altered written statutes regarding associates, women and child oblates or wards of the Temple. Unwritten local practices influenced written statutes through tradition and anecdotes. The written statutes in this area also reflect considerable revision, particularly in response to changing attitudes about the roles of these groups in monastic life during the 12th and 13th centuries.