Once upon a time, Exhilaratus, our monk, a lay-brother, whom you know, was sent by his master to the monastery of the man of God, to carry to him two wooden bottles, commonly called flagons, full of wine. The servant, as he was going, hid one of them in a bush for himself, and presented the other to venerable Benedict. He took it very thankfully, and, when the man was going away, he gave him this warning: "Take heed, my son," said he, "that you don't drink of that flagon which you have hidden in the bush. First be careful to examine it, and you shall then find what is within it."
The poor man, thus pitifully confounded by the man of God, went his way, and coming back to the place where the flagon was hidden, and desirous to try the truth of what was told him, as he examined the flagon, a snake immediately leaped forth. Then Exhilaratus, perceiving what had gotten into the wine, began to be afraid of the wickedness that he had committed.
OSB Index | Gen. Information | Saint Benedict