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Western Civilization 10, Lesson 120, Essay 2 – Mendicant Orders

The 13th century was certainly a wild time in the Western Civilization.  Not only were the Albigensians were growing in number, but so were the Mendicant Orders.  The Mendicant Orders were Christian orders that were based around a lifestyle of poverty and travel.  In this essay, I am going to talk about the Mendicant Orders and what they did.

The Mendicant Orders were created by St. Francis Assisi around the year 1209.  There were three main Mendicant Orders, all of which are still practiced today.  The Order of Friars Minor, more commonly referred to as Franciscans, was the first Order to be founded by St. Francis.  The Poor Clares was founded next.  Their purpose and practices were the same as the Order of Friars Minor, but was dedicated to women.  The final order was the Order of Laymens, which was open to anyone who wanted to join. 

All three orders lived in poverty and put lots of emphasis on humility, charity, prayer, and faith.  People associated with the orders were known to travel town to town preaching and hoping to get food and board in return.

In 1215, St. Dominic founded the Order of Dominican.  It was very similar to the orders created by St. Francis in lifestyle aspects, but was devoted to the Virgin Mary.

As you can see, a lot of religious activities were happening during the 13th century.  It is safe to say that life was never boring for the common folk during the 1200s.  Whether you were Christian or a believer of the Albigensians and their religion, you were in for an adventure.

Thanks for reading!


Author: sophiaelahirpc

10th Grade student in the Ron Paul Curriculum. Full-time teen writer living in Singapore.

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