Alteckendorf is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of northeastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Alteckendorfois or Alteckendorfoises Alteckendorf is about 30 km north-west of Strasbourg and 20 km east of Saverne. Covering an area of 572 hectares, the commune is located on the plain of Alsace and more in the area of some loess hills behind Kochersberg and between the Vosges Mountains and Germany; the town is located 177 metres above sea level and is watered by the Landgraben stream, a tributary of the Zorn. It is surrounded by the Koppenberg and Schyrberg hills. To the north of the town is the Alteckendorf forest; the Sarreguemines-Strasbourg railway runs through the commune with a station on the south-east edge of the village. Neighbouring localities within a radius of 5 kilometres include Minversheim, Huttendorf, Lixhausen, Bossendorf and Schwindratzheim. Alteckendorf is an hour by car from Strasbourg and is near the famous militarily historical town of Haguenau.
The entire road network occupy 9 hectares out of the 572 hectares of the commune. The town is crossed from west to east by the D69; this road crosses the D25 at Altdorf linking Ettendorf to Hochfelden. This latter approach road is extended by several county roads; the nearest entrance to the Autoroute de L'Est is via the D32 through the toll-gate at Schwindratzheim. There is parking there for car-pooling; the Sarreguemines–Strasbourg railway line has passed through the commune since 1895 and occupies a total of ten hectares. The railway station located at Eckendorf is now disused; this building was purchased by the municipality in 1982 and transformed in 1984 into a multipurpose hall. Now the nearest SNCF station is at Mommenheim accessible from Alteckendorf by a bus connection on the TER Alsace service from Obermodern – Mommenheim. School buses to the College at Hochfelden and to the Bouxwiller High School are available during school terms; the type of climate prevailing in Alteckendorf is a degraded oceanic climate with a large amplitude of temperature.
Thus snowfall is common in winter while some summer days can be hot and stuffy. Situated between two mountain ranges. Rainfall is scarce and irregular compared to other French regions, with natural protection against the prevailing westerly winds from the Vosges; the town is subject to violent storms in spring and summer. The most devastating occurred on 30 May 2008 when floods and mudslides invaded homes; the communal territory of Alteckendorf is not crossed by streams of significant importance. There however two streams: The Landgraben has its source in the north in the commune of Buswiller, it flows south through Ettendorf through Alteckendorf and Minversheim. At Mommenheim, this modest stream takes the name of Minversheimerbach and empties into the River Zorn; the Schweinbachgraben or Schweingraben is a river that marks part of the eastern border of Alteckendorf. This stream has its source north of the village in the territory of Grassendorf, it flows south to join the Landgraben southwest of Minversheim.
The entire commune has been dedicated to agriculture for many centuries. The first written references date back to the 8th century when the abbey of Wissembourg declared themselves the owners of Alteckendorf; the landscape is shaped by the hand of man and there is little room for wilderness. The oldest map describing the territory dates back to the year 1760. Of a total of 1051.06 arpents, 635.70 arpents are devoted to arable land, 125.72 arpents of meadows, 118.78 arpents of pastures, 84.40 arpents of vineyards, 48.20 arpents of forest, 38.26 arpents of orchards and houses. The present village of Alteckendorf is the result of the merger of two distinct communities; the village of Eckendorf is mentioned in the year 742 under the name Echanhaime. Subsequently, the name was again mentioned in 744 with various spellings such as: Ecchenheim and Ecchenthorf, Ekindorf; the Abbey of Wissembourg was listed as the landowner from 752-787. In 1120, the monastery at Mauermünster-Sindelsberg was named as the landowner.
In 1146 it was recorded that the knight Simon de Frundsberg ceded his possessions at Ekindork for "16½ lötig Silberstücke" to the Abbey of Stürzelbronn. In 1194, the monastery at Neuburg was the landowner of Eckendorf. Altdorf does not appear until in history with a different name: Mazonivilare, because it is recorded in a document of 752 that Sigfrid, son of Sigismund gave up his property of "Villa Ecchenheimo et Mazonivilare". No mention of the village occurs later; the name Altdorf does not appear until 1331. The name Oberaltdorf was used to distinguish this village from the nearby hamlet of Niederaltdorf; the name Eckendorf is formed from Eck meaning "corner" or "locality" followed by the appellative Dorf meaning "village", to say "local village" according to Ernest Negro. The name of the hamlet of Oberaltdorf can be translated as "high old village"; the two villages were united in 1777 and called Alt und Eckendorf throughout the 19th century Alt-Eckendorf and since the beginning of the 20th century Alteckendorf.
Today two localities on the cadastral map located one kilo
Adamswiller is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of northeastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Adamswillerois or Adamswilleroises Adamswiller is located some 20 km north by north-west of Phalsbourg and 20 km south-east of Sarralbe; the D9 road from Mackwiller passes south through the western part of the commune on the way to Durstel in the south. The D182 runs off the D9 in the commune to Rexingen in the south-west. There is the D239 road from the village going north-east to join the D919 road just outside the commune; the commune is farmland with a little forest in the east. The commune is renowned for its pink sandstone from the north-east of the commune, approved for the restoration of historical monuments; the Eichel river forms the north-western border of the commune and the Marstbach forms the western border. The commune lies within the Northern Vosges Regional Natural Park; the commune was part of the County of La Petite-Pierre. Between Adamswiller and Mackwiller there have been found ancient tombs which have been given the name Totdenberg due to the heights on which they were found.
1281: Adelmanswiler 1793: Adamsweiller 1801: AdamswilerIn German: Adamsweiler. List of Successive Mayors of Adamswiller Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The commune has a number of buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: A Blacksmith's House at 27 Rue Principale The Town Hall / School at 44 Rue Principale A Farmhouse at 51 Rue Principale A Farmhouse at 55 Rue Principale The Au Cheval Noir restaurant at 59 Rue Principale The Weaver's House at 68 Rue Principale The Worker's House at 69 Rue Principale A Restaurant at 73 Rue Principale The Totenberg Tile Factory at RD 239 Houses and Farms A Public Bench at 12 Rue de la Gare is registered as an historical object. Other sites of interestThe Rauscher Quarry The Black Horse bistro The commune has several religious buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: A Monstrance Altar Bench at CD 239 A Lutheran Church at Rue Principale; the Church has several items which are registered as historical objects: The Furniture in the Church The Organ A Baptismal Ewer and Basin The Cemetery.
All movable items in the Cemetery are registered as historical objects. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department Communes of the Bas-Rhin department sorted by arrondissements and cantons Communities of Communes of the Bas-Rhin département Arrondissements of the Bas-Rhin département Cantons of the Bas-Rhin département Adamswiller on the old National Geographic Institute website Adamswiller on Lion1906 Adamswiller on Google Maps Adamswiller on Géoportail, National Geographic Institute website Adamsweiller on the 1750 Cassini Map Adamswiller on the INSEE website INSEE
In ancient Roman religion and myth, Mars was the god of war and an agricultural guardian, a combination characteristic of early Rome. He was second in importance only to Jupiter and he was the most prominent of the military gods in the religion of the Roman army. Most of his festivals were held in March, the month named for him, in October, which began the season for military campaigning and ended the season for farming. Under the influence of Greek culture, Mars was identified with the Greek god Ares, whose myths were reinterpreted in Roman literature and art under the name of Mars, but the character and dignity of Mars differed in fundamental ways from that of his Greek counterpart, treated with contempt and revulsion in Greek literature. Mars was a part of the Archaic Triad along with Jupiter and Quirinus, the latter of whom, as a guardian of the Roman people, had no Greek equivalent. Mars' altar in the Campus Martius, the area of Rome that took its name from him, was supposed to have been dedicated by Numa, the peace-loving semi-legendary second king of Rome.
Although the center of Mars' worship was located outside the sacred boundary of Rome, Augustus made the god a renewed focus of Roman religion by establishing the Temple of Mars Ultor in his new forum. Although Ares was viewed as a destructive and destabilizing force, Mars represented military power as a way to secure peace, was a father of the Roman people. In the mythic genealogy and founding myths of Rome, Mars was the father of Romulus and Remus with Rhea Silvia, his love affair with Venus symbolically reconciled the two different traditions of Rome's founding. The importance of Mars in establishing religious and cultural identity within the Roman Empire is indicated by the vast number of inscriptions identifying him with a local deity in the Western provinces. Mars may be a reflex of the Proto-Indo-European god Perkwunos, having a thunderer character. At least etymological Etruscan predecessors are present in Maris, though this is not universally agreed upon. Like Ares, the son of Zeus and Hera, Mars is considered to be the son of Jupiter and Juno.
However, in a version of his birth given by Ovid, he was the son of Juno alone. Jupiter had usurped the mother's function. Flora tested it on a heifer who became fecund at once, she plucked a flower ritually using her thumb, touched Juno's belly, impregnated her. Juno withdrew to the shore of Marmara for the birth. Ovid tells this story in his long-form poetic work on the Roman calendar, it may explain why the Matronalia, a festival celebrated by married women in honor of Juno as a goddess of childbirth, occurred on the first day of Mars' month, marked on a calendar from late antiquity as the birthday of Mars. In the earliest Roman calendar, March was the first month, the god would have been born with the new year. Ovid is the only source for the story, he may be presenting a literary myth of his own invention, or an otherwise unknown archaic Italic tradition. The consort of Mars was Nerio or Neriene, "Valor." She represents the vital force and majesty of Mars. Her name was regarded as Sabine in origin and is equivalent to Latin virtus, "manly virtue".
In the early 3rd century BC, the comic playwright Plautus has a reference to Mars greeting Nerio, his wife. A source from late antiquity says that Mars and Neriene were celebrated together at a festival held on March 23. In the Roman Empire, Neriene came to be identified with Minerva. Nerio originates as a divine personification of Mars' power, as such abstractions in Latin are feminine, her name appears with that of Mars in an archaic prayer invoking a series of abstract qualities, each paired with the name of a deity. The influence of Greek mythology and its anthropomorphic gods may have caused Roman writers to treat these pairs as "marriages." The union of Venus and Mars held greater appeal for poets and philosophers, the couple were a frequent subject of art. In Greek myth, the adultery of Ares and Aphrodite had been exposed to ridicule when her husband Hephaestus caught them in the act by means of a magical snare. Although not part of the Roman tradition, in 217 BC Venus and Mars were presented as a complementary pair in the lectisternium, a public banquet at which images of twelve major gods of the Roman state were presented on couches as if present and participating.
Scenes of Venus and Mars in Roman art ignore the adulterous implications of their union, take pleasure in the good-looking couple attended by Cupid or multiple Loves. Some scenes may imply marriage, the relationship was romanticized in funerary or domestic art in which husbands and wives had themselves portrayed as the passionate divine couple; the uniting of deities representing Love and War lent itself to allegory since the lovers were the parents of Concordia. The Renaissance philosopher Marsilio Ficino notes that "only Venus dominates Mars, he never dominates her". In ancient Roman and Renaissance art, Mars is shown disarmed and relaxed, or sleeping, but the extram
Altorf is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of northeastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Altorfois or AltorfoisesThe commune has been awarded one flower by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. A part of the Canton of Molsheim and its arrondissement, Altorf is located about 15 kilometres west of Strasbourg; the A352 National Highway runs from east to west across the southern portion of the commune but has no exit. Access to the commune is by road D392 which runs parallel but north of the highway and connects with Highway exit 8 to the east of the commune and west to Dorlisheim. Another access road is the D127 which comes from Jaegerhof just over the northern border south to the village continuing south to Griesheim-pres-Molsheim. There are a number of small country roads covering the commune. Most of the commune is farmland with some forests in the north-eastern portion; the Bras de la Bruches flows through the commune from west to east, through the village east to join the Muelbach and flows east under the name Altorfer Arm until it joins La Bruche river north of Eintzheim Airport.
In the north-east another waterway forms the north-eastern border of the commune. The only other hamlet in the commune is that of Forstoff north-east of Altorf village, it was known as Altum Coenobium in 787. The origin of the commune name Altorf is from the form Alt-dorf; the old spelling was still visible before the Second World War. However the spelling Altorf through Altorfium / Atorfium it is more to come from the Latin root altum. Climate in this area has mild differences between highs and lows, there is adequate rainfall year-round; the Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Cfb". Altorf is located on the ancient Roman via romana or Bergstrasse which connected Strasbourg to the strategic pass of Donon; the funerary steles of the 3rd century attest to a Roman presence. The village's history became intertwined with that of its Benedictine abbey, founded in 960 by Hugues III of Eguisheim called l'Enroue, Count of Nordgau and his wife Countess Hewilde, his father, Count Eberhard IV was buried in the abbey in 972, sealing the connection between the family and Altorf.
The abbey had was built following a cenobite community of monks called the Altum Coenobium, reported in 787, where the name of the abbey and village came from. Pope Saint Leo IX, son of the powerful empire family of Eguisheim-Dabo came to Altorf in 1049 to honor his ancestors, he endowed it with relics. The reliquary in oriental style represents a bust in polychrome wood and with the words notitia altorfensis is one of the major parts of the Abbey. Cyriac of Malaga, who had cured epilepsy of the daughter of the Emperor Diocletian in the 4th century, became the patron saint of the village and he is celebrated on 8 August. Altorf was a place of pilgrimage for epileptics and people possessed with demons with many healings reported in the abbey archives in the 13th century; the chapel was consecrated in 974, under the leadership of Maïeul, Bishop of Cluny, Erchembald, Bishop of Strasbourg. As with the abbeys of Steige and Marmoutier, the Altorf Abbey was successful because of its many dependencies.
The churches of Barembach and Grendelbruch, although remote, were incorporated into the abbey by a papal bull of 1192 from Pope Celestin III which involved in particular the attachment of tithes. In particular its properties along the right bank of the Bruche extending from the course of the Rothaine into the plain of Alsace were attached to the bishopric of Strasbourg in 1226, extinguishing the line of Eguisheim. In addition, the emperors gave the abbey the right to issue currency, from the Ottonian revival at the end of the 10th century; the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa explicitly recognized this right with a charter in 1153. In the 13th century however, this privilege was transferred to Dachstein Molsheim; the cultural influence of the abbey led to the establishment of a university, subsequently transferred to Molsheim in the Carthusian heartland there to be moved aside to form the University of Strasbourg. Economic and cultural power caused the shedding blood in Altorf in 1262 when the village and monastery were burned by the Strasbourgers who were in revolt against Bishop Walter de Geroldseck.
In 1525 there was the peasant revolt. A century during the Thirty Years War which included Swedish and French forces. In 1606, Altorf Abbey joined the Union of Bursfeld which included a hundred Benedictine monasteries and was in 1624 formally called the Benedictine Congregation of Strasbourg; the Peasants' epic struggle, which had originated from the Holy Roman Empire in 1524, crystallized in Lower Alsace around Altorf and Boersch. The leaders of the movement were Erasmus Gerber and Georg Ittel from Molsheim and Rosheim, established themselves with a group of 1500 men at their headquarters in Altorf, from where the contagion spread throughout the province in a week with their troops raiding monasteries and mistreating Jews. Father Nartz reported these events in his mo
Avolsheim is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of north-eastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Avolsheimoises; the commune has been awarded one flower by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. Avolsheim is located some 22 km west by 18 km north of Obernai. Access to the commune is by the D422 from Odratzheim in the north which passes through the centre of the commune and the town and continues south to Molsheim; the D127 goes east from the town to Dachstein. Apart from the significant sized urban area the commune is mixed farmland; the Bruche river flows north through the east of the commune and abruptly turns right near the northern border of the commune before continuing east to join a branch of the Rhine at Strasbourg. The Mossig river flows from the north-west forming the northern border of the commune before joining the Bruche; the first written record of the name of a village in the current commune dates from the year 788 and is called Hunzolfesheim.
It was found in 1051 spelled Avelsheim Afelsheim in 1350 with a dialectal form Âfelse. In 1496 it was written Afeltzheim and in 1589 Avelssheim again but with two "s". Since the village has had its present name and its spelling has not changed; the prefix offe was the origin of the name Avolsheim and therefore means "Open Town". It is possible that this name was given to the village since it was devoid of walls, which in the Middle Ages was rare. There is an old local saying in dialect: Es steht offe wie Âfelse suggesting that at one time the steeple at Avolsheim, which remained so long in ruins so was "open to the sky", that this could have been the origin of its name; this argument, with the previous one, are confirmed by the popular phrase, Fescht wie Landau un Offe wie Âfelse meaning "A Fort like Landau or open like Avolsheim". Avolsheim is located on the Gallo-Roman road linking Molsheim to Saverne. Many objects dating from this period were excavated in 1930. In the 10th century the area had two distinct hamlets: Avelsheim one hand, corresponding to the current village, Tumpfieter, Dompieter, or Domphietenheim, a village consisting of a group of a few farms and a mill located at a church called the Dompeter.
The last mention of this hamlet was in the 16th century. It died as a village by the end of the same century. For some historians doubt remains: it may have disappeared in the 17th century, its destruction following the Siege of Dachstein by the armies of Turenne. According to the papal bull of Leo IX in 1051 Avolsheim, including the Mont Sainte-Odile Abbey, was part of the possessions of the bishopric of Strasbourg. Avolsheim was put in vassalage to the Counts of Ostoffen to von Murnhart in 1384, remained with von Beger until 1521. From 1534 until the Revolution, the area was a fief of the dignitaries of the diocese; the village has been linked to the sub-prefecture of Molsheim since the Revolution. Avolsheim was once on the Sélestat to Saverne railway line before the section from Molsheim to Saverne was removed in 1967 and replaced with a bicycle path. List of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 728 inhabitants; the evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793.
From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger communes that have a sample survey every year. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The commune has many buildings that are registered as historical monuments: A Vineyard Farmhouse at 3 Rue de la Boucherie A Vineyard Farmhouse at 4 Rue de Dompeter The Audéoud House or Maison des Soeurs at 1 place de l'Ecole A Stonemason's House at 2 place de l'Ecole A Vineyard Farmhouse at 4 Place de l'Eglise A Guardhouse at 16 Rue de la Paix A Vineyard Farmhouse at 2 Rue de la Paix A Boatman's House at 5 Rue de la Paix A former Presbytery now Town Hall at 8 Rue de la Paix A Fisherman's House at 9 Rue de la Paix A Stonemason's House at 2 bis Rue Saint-Ullrich A Farmhouse at 5 Route du Vin Houses and FarmsOther sites of interestThe Avolsheim Dam was built in 1682 on the Bruche Canal, built by Vauban; this canal was used to transport blocks of sandstone to Strasbourg from quarries at Soultz-les-Bains and Wolxheim which were necessary for the construction of the Citadel of Strasbourg.
This dam enabled the keeping of the water level high enough to supply the canal located a little further down. The commune has two religious buildings that are registered as historical monuments: The Chapel of Saint-Ullrich; the original building dates back to the end of the 10th century. In 1774 the chapel was transformed to become the new church adopting the facade, seen today; the chapel consists of an original Tetraconch, the oldest still existing in Alsace located along the ancient Roman road in the foothills of the Vosges. Taking the form of a clover leaf covered by a dome, the chapel is surmounted by an unusual octagonal tower. In 1774 a church was built next to the chapel to replace the Dompeter, too far away; the church was demolished in 1911 because the building was too small. The central dome and mural paintings were revealed in 1968; the chapel contains two items that are registered as historical objects: A Monumental Painting An Altar (18
Pottery is the process of forming vessels and other objects with clay and other ceramic materials, which are fired to give them a hard, durable form. Major types include earthenware and porcelain; the place where such wares are made by a potter is called a pottery. The definition of pottery used by the American Society for Testing and Materials, is "all fired ceramic wares that contain clay when formed, except technical and refractory products." In archaeology of ancient and prehistoric periods, "pottery" means vessels only, figures etc. of the same material are called "terracottas". Clay as a part of the materials used is required by some definitions of pottery, but this is dubious. Pottery is one of the oldest human inventions, originating before the Neolithic period, with ceramic objects like the Gravettian culture Venus of Dolní Věstonice figurine discovered in the Czech Republic dating back to 29,000–25,000 BC, pottery vessels that were discovered in Jiangxi, which date back to 18,000 BC.
Early Neolithic pottery artefacts have been found in places such as Jōmon Japan, the Russian Far East, Sub-Saharan Africa and South America. Pottery is made by forming a ceramic body into objects of a desired shape and heating them to high temperatures in a kiln and induces reactions that lead to permanent changes including increasing the strength and solidity of the object's shape. Much pottery is purely utilitarian, but much can be regarded as ceramic art. A clay body can be decorated after firing. Clay-based pottery can divided in three main groups: earthenware and porcelain; these require more specific clay material, higher firing temperatures. All three are made for different purposes. All may be decorated by various techniques. In many examples the group a piece belongs to is visually apparent, but this is not always the case; the fritware of the Islamic world does not use clay, so technically falls outside these groups. Historic pottery of all these types is grouped as either "fine" wares expensive and well-made, following the aesthetic taste of the culture concerned, or alternatively "coarse", "popular" "folk" or "village" wares undecorated, or so, less well-made.
All the earliest forms of pottery were made from clays that were fired at low temperatures in pit-fires or in open bonfires. They were hand undecorated. Earthenware can be fired as low as 600°C, is fired below 1200°C; because unglazed biscuit earthenware is porous, it has limited utility for the storage of liquids, eating off. However, earthenware has a continuous history from the Neolithic period to today, it can be made from a wide variety of clays, some of which fire to a buff, brown or black colour, with iron in the constituent minerals resulting in a reddish-brown. Reddish coloured varieties are called terracotta when unglazed or used for sculpture; the development of ceramic glaze which makes it impermeable makes it a popular and practical form of pottery. The addition of decoration has evolved throughout its history. Stoneware is pottery, fired in a kiln at a high temperature, from about 1,100°C to 1,200°C, is stronger and non-porous to liquids; the Chinese, who developed stoneware early on, classify this together with porcelain as high-fired wares.
In contrast, stoneware could only be produced in Europe from the late Middle Ages, as European kilns were less efficient, the right sorts of clay less common. It remained a speciality of Germany until the Renaissance. Stoneware is tough and practical, much of it has always been utilitarian, for the kitchen or storage rather than the table, but "fine" stoneware has been important in China and the West, continues to be made. Many utilitarian types have come to be appreciated as art. Porcelain is made by heating materials including kaolin, in a kiln to temperatures between 1,200 and 1,400 °C; this is higher than used for the other types, achieving these temperatures was a long struggle, as well as realizing what materials were needed. The toughness and translucence of porcelain, relative to other types of pottery, arises from vitrification and the formation of the mineral mullite within the body at these high temperatures. Although porcelain was first made in China, the Chinese traditionally do not recognise it as a distinct category, grouping it with stoneware as "high-fired" ware, opposed to "low-fired" earthenware.
This confuses the issue of. A degree of translucency and whiteness was achieved by the Tang Dynasty, considerable quantities were being exported; the modern level of whiteness was not reached until much in the 14th century. Porcelain was made in Korea and in Japan from the end of the 16th century, after suitable kaolin was located in those countries, it was not made outside East Asia until the 18th century. Before being shaped, clay must be prepared. Kneading helps to ensure an moisture content throughout the body. Air trapped within the clay body needs to be removed; this is called de-airing and can be accomplished either by a machine called a vacuum pug or manually by wedging. Wedging can help produce an moisture content. Once a clay body has been kneaded and de-aired or wedged, it is shaped by a variety of techniques. After it has been shaped, it is dried and fired. Greenware refers to unfired objects. At sufficient moisture content, bodies at this stage are in their most plastic form (as they are soft and mal
The Benedictines the Order of Saint Benedict, are a monastic Catholic religious order of monks and nuns that follow the Rule of Saint Benedict. They are sometimes called the Black Monks, in reference to the colour of the members' religious habits. Despite being called an order, the Benedictines do not operate under a single hierarchy but are instead organised as a collection of independent monastic communities, with each community within the order maintaining its own autonomy. Unlike other religious orders, the Benedictines do not have a superior general or motherhouse with universal jurisdiction. Instead, the order is represented internationally by the Benedictine Confederation, an organisation, set up in 1893 to represent the order's shared interests; the monastery at Subiaco in Italy, established by Saint Benedict of Nursia c. 529, was the first of the dozen monasteries he founded. He founded the Abbey of Monte Cassino. There is no evidence, that he intended to found an order and the Rule of Saint Benedict presupposes the autonomy of each community.
When Monte Cassino was sacked by the Lombards about the year 580, the monks fled to Rome, it seems probable that this constituted an important factor in the diffusion of a knowledge of Benedictine monasticism. It was from the monastery of St. Andrew in Rome that Augustine, the prior, his forty companions set forth in 595 on their mission for the evangelization of England. At various stopping places during the journey, the monks left behind them traditions concerning their rule and form of life, also some copies of the Rule. Lérins Abbey, for instance, founded by Honoratus in 375 received its first knowledge of the Benedictine Rule from the visit of St. Augustine and his companions in 596. Gregory of Tours says that at Ainay Abbey, in the sixth century, the monks "followed the rules of Basil, Cassian and other fathers and using whatever seemed proper to the conditions of time and place", doubtless the same liberty was taken with the Benedictine Rule when it reached them. In Gaul and Switzerland, it supplemented the much stricter Irish or Celtic Rule introduced by Columbanus and others.
In many monasteries it entirely displaced the earlier codes. By the ninth century, the Benedictine had become the standard form of monastic life throughout the whole of Western Europe, excepting Scotland and Ireland, where the Celtic observance still prevailed for another century or two. Through the work of Benedict of Aniane, it became the rule of choice for monasteries throughout the Carolingian empire. Monastic scriptoria flourished from the ninth through the twelfth centuries. Sacred Scripture was always at the heart of every monastic scriptorium; as a general rule those of the monks who possessed skill as writers made this their chief, if not their sole active work. An anonymous writer of the ninth or tenth century speaks of six hours a day as the usual task of a scribe, which would absorb all the time available for active work in the day of a medieval monk. In the Middle Ages monasteries were founded by the nobility. Cluny Abbey was founded by William I, Duke of Aquitaine in 910; the abbey was noted for its strict adherence to the Rule of St. Benedict.
The abbot of Cluny was the superior of all the daughter houses, through appointed priors. One of the earliest reforms of Benedictine practice was that initiated in 980 by Romuald, who founded the Camaldolese community; the dominance of the Benedictine monastic way of life began to decline towards the end of the twelfth century, which saw the rise of the Franciscans and Dominicans. Benedictines took a fourth vow of "stability". Not being bound by location, the mendicants were better able to respond to an "urban" environment; this decline was further exacerbated by the practice of appointing a commendatory abbot, a lay person, appointed by a noble to oversee and to protect the goods of the monastery. Oftentimes, this resulted in the appropriation of the assets of monasteries at the expense of the community which they were intended to support; the English Benedictine Congregation is the oldest of the nineteen Benedictine congregations. Augustine of Canterbury and his monks established the first English Benedictine monastery at Canterbury soon after their arrival in 597.
Other foundations followed. Through the influence of Wilfrid, Benedict Biscop, Dunstan, the Benedictine Rule spread with extraordinary rapidity, in the North it was adopted in most of the monasteries, founded by the Celtic missionaries from Iona. Many of the episcopal sees of England were founded and governed by the Benedictines, no fewer than nine of the old cathedrals were served by the black monks of the priories attached to them. Monasteries served as places of refuge for the weak and homeless; the monks studied the healing properties of plants and minerals to alleviate the sufferings of the sick. Germany was evangelized by English Benedictines. Willibrord and Boniface preached there in the seventh and eighth centuries and founded several abbeys. In the English Reformation, all monasteries were dissolved and their lands confiscated by the Crown, forcing their Catholic members to flee into exile on the Continent. During the 19th century they were able to return to England, including to Selby Abbey in Yorkshire, one of the few great monastic churches to survive the Dissolution.
St. Mildred's Priory, on the Isle of Thanet, was built in 1027 on the site of an abbey founded in 670 by the daughter of the first Christian King of Kent; the priory is home to a community of Benedictine nuns. Five of