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Bible Encyclopedias

1911 Encyclopedia Britannica


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ABSTEMII (a Latin word, from abs, away from, temetum, intoxicating liquor, from which is derived the English "abstemious" or temperate), a name formerly given to such persons as could not partake of the cup of the Eucharist on account of their natural aversion to wine. Calvinists allowed these to communicate in the species of bread only, touching the cup with their lip; a course which was deemed a profanation by the Lutherans. Among several Protestant sects, both in Great Britain and America, abstemii on a somewhat different principle have appeared in modern times. These are total abstainers, who maintain that the use of stimulants is essentially sinful, and allege that the wine used by Christ and his disciples at the supper was unfermented. They accordingly communicate in the unfermented "juice of the grape."

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Chisholm, Hugh, General Editor. Entry for 'Abstemii'. 1911 Encyclopedia Britanica. 1910.

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