The friars were the "begging" orders of clergy, founded in the Middle Ages. Though they had convents as headquarters, they differed from monks in not being cloistered or confined. They were sent out to preach, teach and heal the sick in streets and country lanes, and had to live on alms and food given them. The most famous of the orders are: the Dominicans or Black Friars, founded by St. Dominic in 1216; the Franciscans or Grey Friars, founded by St. Francis of Assisi in 1209; the Carmelites or White Friars, whose origin is somewhat doubtful, and the Augustinian or Austin Friars, added by Pope Alexander the Fourth in 1256.
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