A Collection of Sayings of the Companions of Blessed Francis - 112 

As Rosalind B. Brooke points out, these are words of conflict: conflict about the Rule, about poverty, about privileges. Two of Leo's stories involve conflicts between Francis and the ministers in which the ministers use Elias as their tool. Another describes a conflict between Francis and a group of wise and learned brothers who use Cardinal Hugolino. Since she finds no evidence of tension among the ministers, Hugolino, and Francis in Thomas of Celano's Remembrance, Brooke suggests that Leo may have written this collection after 1247, that is, after Thomas's work. It seems more probable that The Words of Saint Francis appeared after 1257, when John of Parma was asked to resign. And since Bonaventure incorporates some allusions to the Words into his description of the composition of the Rule, Brooke believes that it may have been written before the Major Legend.26


1. Cf. Livarius Oliger, "Spirituels," in Dictionnaire de Théologie Catholique Contenant l'exposé des Doctrines de la Théologie Catholique Leurs Preuves et Leur Histoire, tome XIV, 2nd part, ed. Alfred Vacant, Eugene Mangenot, Émile Amman (Paris: Librairie Letouzey et Ané, 1941), 2522-49.

2. Curiously the collection known as the Intentio Regulae [Intention of the Rule (hereafter IntR)] seems to have been unique unto itself. Rosalind B. Brooke maintains, as does Duncan Nimmo, that the five paragraphs—stories that contain clear teachings that claim to come from Francis himself—were circulated separately. Cf. Scripta Leonis, Rufini et Angeli Sociorum S. Francisci [The Writings of Leo, Rufino and Angelo Companions of St. Francis], ed. and trans by Rosalind B. Brooke (Oxford: Oxford at The Clarendon Press, 1970), 57-8; Duncan Nimmo, Reform and Division in the Medieval Franciscan Order: From Saint Francis to the Foundation of the Capuchins. Bibliotheca Seraphico-Capuccina 33 (Rome: Capuchin Historical Institute, 1987), 93.

3. A number of compilations have emerged and are named according to the manuscript in which they are found: the two Compilations of Barcelona, another of Dubrovnik, and that of Sant'Antonio in Rome. Cf. Jacques Cambell, "Glanes franciscaines: la première compilation de Barcelone," in Ibero-Americano 23 (1963): 65-91, 391-453; idem, "Glanes franciscaines: la seconde compilation de Barcelone," in Ibero-Americano 25 (1965): 223-98: Andrew G. Little, "Description du manuscript Canonic. Miscell. 525 de la Bibliothèque Bodlienne à Oxford," in Opuscules de critique historique, I (Paris: Librairie Fischbacher, 1903), 253-97; Livarius Oliger, "Descriptio codicis S. Antonii de Urbe unacum appendice textuum de S. Francisco," in AFH 12 (1919): 321-57.

4. Cf. FA:ED II 118-230. The Assisi Compilation, found in Codex 1046 of the Biblioteca Communale Augusta of Perugia, is composed of the rotuli [scrolls] containing the information sent to Crescentius of Iesi by the companions, IntR, the Verba S. Francisci [The Words of St. Francis (hereafter WSF)], the Verba F. Conradi [The Words of Brother Conrad of Offida (hereafter WBC)], and 2C. For the difficulties inherent to these texts, see FA:ED II 113-7.

5. Infra. The Lemmens edition of A Mirror of Perfection (hereafter 1MP), the more simple of the two, is made up of two Admonitions, selections from the scrolls or AC, and from 2C. The Sabatier edition of A Mirror of Perfection (hereafter 2MP), contains Francis's CtC, selections from the scrolls or AC, IntR, WSF, WBC, and the Old Legend (hereafter OL).

6. Infra. DBF resembles the 2MP in the materials it contains, AC, IntR, WBC, OL. But it contains a large amount of original material that, at times, seems the product of the compiler's imagination or literary license.

7. Paul Sabatier, "S. Francisci Legendae Veteris Fragmenta Quaedam ou De Quelques Chapitres de la Compilation Franciscaine connue sous le nom de Legenda Antiqua (circa 1322) qui paraissent provenir de la Legenda Vetus (circa 1246)," in Opuscules de Critique Historique, t. I, ed. Andrew G. Little, Pierre Mondonnet, Paul Sabatier (Paris: Librairie Fischbacher, 1902), 63-134, 393-5.

8. John R.H. Moorman, The Sources for the Life of St. Francis of Assisi, with introduction by Andrew G. Little (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1940), 165.

9. Sophronius Clasen, Legenda Antiqua S. Francisci. Untersuchung die nachbonaventurianischen Franziskusquellen. Legenda trium sociorum, Speculum perfectionis, Actus B. Francisci et sociorum eius und verwandtes Schriftum. Studium et documenta franciscana, cura Fratrum Minorum in Austria, Belgio, Germania et Neerlandia edita, 5. (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1967), 225, n. 2.




Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 3, p. 112