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Abraham a Sancta Clara

The preacher and writer (1644-1709) was called by the civil name Johann Ullrich Megerle and joined in 1662 in the Order of Augustinians in Maria-Brunn Wien on. He was ordained a priest in 1668, became court preacher to Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705) in 1677, and became a dreaded pulpit speaker of immense popularity. He scourged the sinful enjoyment of life and ranted repeatedly from the pulpit against the bad habit of "drinking". About this he wrote the famous epistle "The Sauffnarr "In which the horrors of drunkenness and alcoholism and the accompanying moral decay are described:

O drunkenness, you heavy addiction, bring some man into great fornication.
Of honor and good, in ridicule and shame, of wife and child in foreign land.
From art and wisdom to great folly, from healthy bodies to great illness.
From joy and bliss to tears, from food and drink to starvation.
From peace and quiet in fear and distress, from long life to death.
The eternal suffering of the Kingdom of God, all this comes from drunkenness.
Consider your last hour well, so you will not get drunk.
No fools-bells are taken so clearly as the one who shows off the drunken fool,
so on all lanes makes obviously, so tomorrow over it discusses the whole parish.
That's rare - that's true - my darn fool!

Abraham a Sancta Clara - plaque and image

As a cautionary tale, he liked to recount the well-known story of a banal singer who was drunk in the intoxication had fallen into a plague pit. He did not mention a name but could use it Dear Augustin Have meant. The preacher, however, was not fundamentally against the enjoyment of wine, but only recommended moderation and understanding: wine is a medicine, but if it is drunk without a manner, it is a poison. The wine is a refreshment of the heart, but if it is consumed unconscious, it is a death of the soul.

The preacher liked to drink himself beer, Obviously he was not always satisfied with it, because he rebuked the Augsburger brewing guild with the following biting words: In some bräuer but one finds so feeble beer, that the raindrops, provided they take their way only on the shingles, a better force in to have each other. There are also some who make such a dissolute potion, that it is more harmful than useful, and often dwells in the human body no better than a regiment of hussars in one country.

Picture right: By Wolfgang Sauber - Eig. Plant, CC BY-SA 4.0 , Link

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