He seems to have actually taken part in the teaching activities of the abbey. In the preface to the first volume he regrets that except for Alfred 's translations, Englishmen had no means of learning the true doctrine as expounded by the Latin fathers. John Earle Anglo-Saxon Literature, thinks he aimed at correcting the apocryphal, and to modern ideas superstitious, teaching of the earlier Blickling Homilies.
The first series of forty homilies is devoted to plain and direct exposition of the chief events of the Christian year; the second deals more fully with church doctrine and history. In his Grammar, he translated the Latin grammar into English, creating what is considered the first vernacular Latin grammar in medieval Europe.
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In his glossary the words are not in alphabetical order, but grouped by topics. Finally, his Colloquy was intended to help students to learn how to speak Latin through a conversation manual. A third series of homilies, the Lives of the Saints, hagiography dates from to The first one shows how the Church was still fighting against the ancient religion of Britain, but also against the religion of the Danish invaders.
This, the Old English Hexateuchwas revolutionary, for it was the first time that the Bible was translated from Latin into the vernacular, that is, into Old English. This preface was to ensure that the uneducated who might read this translation of the Old Testament would understand that they ought not believe that the practices of the ancient Israelites were still acceptable for Christians.
Rather, he translated much of it by its meaning; he recognized that the meaning of what the Bible said was the most important thing to be conveyed, not the word order. There is no certain proof that he remained at Cerne.
It has been suggested that this part of his life was chiefly spent at Winchester; but his writings for the patrons of Cerne, and the fact that he wrote in his Canons as a pastoral letter for Wulfsigethe bishop of Sherbornethe diocese in which the abbey was situated, afford presumption of continued residence there.
His main theme is God's mercy. He writes, for example: Instead, it is strong and works great things always. Without humility no person can thrive in the Lord. And then they would have some kindness in their souls.
However, in the past, there have been attempts to identify him with three different people: Mores made him abbot of St Augustine's at Dover, and finally archbishop of Canterbury.
The New Cambridge Medieval History. The edition includes translations which were actually by Mss Gunning and Wilkinson, but they are credited only in the preface.
Gregory ; new edition, Migne 's Patrologia Latina vol. Hamilton, Rolls Series, p. Another copy of the text, without lavish illustrations but including a translation of the Book of Judgesis found in Oxford, Bodleian Library, Laud Misc.