The Form and Manner of Life of Cardinal Hugolino - 73 

The Form and Manner of Life of Cardinal Hugolino (1219)


In his letter to Pope Honorius III, August 27, 1218, Cardinal Hugolino, Papal Legate in Tuscany and Lombardy, described communities of reli- gious women who were living in those territories. Many stood in need of both spiritual and administrative assistance which religious men were re- luctant or unable to supply. The Premonstratensians, for example, had withdrawn from the pastoral assistance to their female communities in 1198, the Cistercians in 1212. Furthermore, many women, inspired by the preaching of the Mendicant Friars Preachers and the Lesser Brothers, had formed communities based on the ideals of Saint Dominic or Saint Fran- cis. Eventually these communities were neglected because of the itinerancy of the friars who were reluctant to establish fixed residences in or near these communities.a Eventually Hugolino received authority from the Pope to correct this situation and, in doing so, saw the need to provide a more stable form of life for these women, among whom were the Poor Ladies of San Damiano.

The following document, the Form and Manner of Life, was provided by Cardinal Hugolino sometime after August 27, 1218, since there is no mention of such a document in the Pope’s letter.b Unfortunately the original of this document has been lost. The translation that follows is based on the earliest known edition of the text, a manuscript sent by Gregory IX, Cardinal Hugolino, to a newly established monastery in Pamplona on




Clare of Assisi: Early Documents, p. 73