Reading 41: On Bloodlettings
Each year there are done six general (i.e. of all) bloodlettings: the first is at Lent, the second after Easter, the third after the feast of Saint John, the fourth after the feast of Saint Augustine, the fifth after the feast of Saint Martin, the sixth whenever the prior wishes. Outside of these the brothers shall not undergo bloodletting without reason. When the brothers undergo bloodletting, the infirmarer ought to send for a doctor/bloodletter and prepare the fire and the basins and bandages for binding their arms. The prior ought to announce the bloodletting in chapter, but let him make sure that in the two days after there does not follow a feast of nine lessons. Those who are in need of bloodletting and are not able to wait any longer without harm, shall give the prior notice. He shall chose others [i.e. to perform their duties], and he shall take care that juniors do not undergo bloodletting without elder brothers. In the bloodletting the convent shall be divided into two parts; the part of the prior shall be lessened [of blood, bled] with the prior, the part of the sub-prior, with the sub-prior. After chapter, those who are to be bled shall come to the infirmary. If, however, it is a feast of nine lessons, they shall be bled after the Gospel (the Gospel reading at Mass).
When they have undergone bloodletting, they shall rest and eat in a dark and isolated room, prepared by the Infirmarer. At the first lunch they shall be served, beside the meal of the convent, sage and soft eggs. After lunch, they shall rest and shall carry themselves appropriately and piously. The infirmarer ought to ask the prior or subprior concerning those who have undergone bloodletting and what is to be prepared for them during the entire bloodletting and let this be prepared for them as he (the prior or the sub-prior) has ordained. On the first day, they may sing their hours in the room. On the other days, however, they shall sing in church or in chapter, either all together or two-by-two. No one shall withdraw from the group, whether from meals or during the times of speech, without the permission of the group, unless he only goes to the dormitory out of personal necessity. Let them beware of having infirmary food prepared for them for the sake of the greediness of their stomach and contrary to their body's health, and let the Infirmarer be careful not to give [such food] to them. While sitting at the table let them avoid even more strictly jokes and immoderate laughter and idle chatter and constant talking and let them not anger their neighbors with insulting words, but let them behave themselves appropriately and nicely in everything. They ought to sing in time all the Matins and, according to the wish of the prior, the other hours according to his wish. They shall go up in the dormitory late, without noise and bustle, so that they do not bother the rest of the brothers.
On the third day they shall come in convent together with the other brothers for None, if it is sung after lunch, and to Vespers; for dinner they shall eat in the room, at Matins they shall rise, and in the next day they shall ask forgiveness in chapter, and it shall be assigned to them as penitence to sing Beati Immaculati (Psalm 118) until Dominum cum tribularer (a division of the Psalm). Those who have undergone bloodletting at other times may not ask for nothing beyond the communal food, unless there is someone who had not been at the general bloodletting. When the conversi undergo bloodletting, they shall eat in the refectory either before or after the convent, and they shall be served in accordance with the difference there is between canons and conversi.