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Document Details :
Title: The Development of Jerome's Views on the Ascetic Life
Author(s): DRIVER, Steven D.
Journal: Recherches de Théologie et Philosophie Médiévales
Volume: 62 Date: 1995
Jerome's writings constitute one of the earliest and most extensive sources for the development of asceticism in the Latin West. His correspondence and his many other works span the crucial decades of the late fourth and early fifth centuries, a time in which loosely organized and somewhat anomalous groups of ascetics blossomed into coherent, regular monastic communities. Various forms of ascetic literature, each playing a vital role in the milieu in which it arose, came to be read by many of the larger body of believers. Jerome's literary endeavors attest the hunger of many Christians, both ascetic and worldly, for accounts of monks and for articulations of the principles by which they lived. His writings, and particularly the correspondence which spans his long and controversial career, chart the spiritual growth of an individual whose quest for and understanding of the perfect Christian life was influenced by his own experiences and by currents within wider ascetic movements.