Aldhelm or Adelme

Aldhelm or Adelme an English bishop, born in Wessex about 656, educated by Adrian in Kent, embraced the monastic life, and founded the abbey of Malmesbury, of which he was the first abbot;. He became bishop of Sherborne 705, and died May 25, 709. He is said to have lived a very austere life, "giving himself entirely to reading and prayer, denying himself in food, and rarely quitting the walls of the monastery. If we may believe the account of William of Malmesbury, he was also in the habit of immersing himself as far as the shoulders in a fountain hard by the abbey, and did not come forth until he had completely repeated the Psalter; this he did not omit, summer or winter." The first organ used in England is said to have been built under the directions of Aldhelm. According to Camden (Britannia in Wilt. p. 116), he was the first Englishman who wrote in Latin, and taught his people to compose Latin verses. His works have recently been collected and published under the title Aldhelmi opera que extant, omnia e codicibus MSS. emendavit, nonnulla nunc primum edidit J. A. Giles, LL.D. (Oxon. 1844, 8vo). — Collier, Eccl. Hist. 1, 283; Cave, Hist. Lit. anno 680; Landon, Eccles. Dict. 1, 91.

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