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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. In 1668 he was ordained a priest, became court preacher of Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705) in 1677 and became a dreaded chancellor of immense popularity. He scourged the sinful enjoyment of life and ranted repeatedly from the pulpit against the bad habit of "drinking". About it he wrote the famous epistle "The drunkard," in which the horrors of intoxication and alcoholism and the accompanying moral decay are described:

O drunkenness, you heavy addiction, bring some man into great fornication.
Of honor and goodness, in mockery 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.
From the Kingdom of God to eternal suffering, 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 temperance and reason: the wine is a medicine, but if he is drunk without a manner, he is a poison. The wine is a refreshment of the heart, but when it is consumed unconsciously, it is a death of the soul.

The preacher liked to drink himself beer, Obviously he was not always satisfied with it, because he reproached the Augsburger brewing guild with the following biting words: In some brewers, however, one finds such feeble beer that the raindrops, provided they only make their way over the shingles, have a better power to have each other. There are also some who make such a devastating 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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