Don Faustino Avagliano, OSB, one of the most illustrious doctores honoris causa of the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, died unexpectedly during the night of 4–5 September 2013.
Don Faustino Avagliano, OSB, one of the most illustrious doctores honoris causa of the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, died unexpectedly during the night of 4–5 September 2013. He was born in 1941 near the noted Benedictine Abbazia SS. Trinità Cava dei Tirreni. He received his licentiate in church history from the Gregorian University and in theology from the Lateran University, and his doctorate in 1983 from the University of Cassino. In the Archive of Montecassino he succeeded the noted don Tommaso Leccisotti. During his tenure as archivist don Faustino assisted numerous scholars, and was an invaluable guide especially to Virginia Brown, Roger Reynolds, Richard Gyug, Charles Hilken, and Luisa Nardini from the Institute with their research for the Monumenta Liturgica Beneventana project. A member of the Medieval Academy of America and Centro Storico Benedettino Italiano, among many other organizations, don Faustino was a prolific scholar and editor who produced dozens of books and articles on Montecassino and southern Italian monasteries. The celebration of his honorary doctorate at the Pontifical Institute was especially memorable because he carried with him numerous precious manuscripts from the Abbey; these were exhibited in the Library of the Pontifical Institute and viewed with appreciation by many in Toronto. The Institute's website is graced with many images drawn from the Abbey’s splendid edition of the De rerum naturis by Rabanus Maurus. Don Faustino was a gentle and modest monk and prior of Montecassino whose kindness and generosity will be greatly missed not only in his Abbey, but by countless scholars who worked with its rich collection of manuscripts and archival material.