There is perhaps no subject of greater interest, nor one which awakens more sympathy, than that of the Leper; it affords a most curious, though painful topic of enquiry, particularly in the present day, when so much has been said and written, as to the probability and possibility of the loathsome scourge again obtaining a hold in this, our own country.
s granted to all the possessions of the Lazar Houses; this, however, does not appear to have always been acted upon, at least in this country, as at Canterbury, etc.
A Prior--usually a Leper--and a number of Priests were attached to each house.
Where a chapel was not attached, the inmates appear to have attended the parish church for service.
There was a special order of Knights founded very early, in Jerusalem, united to the general order of the Knights Hospitallers, whose especial province was to look after the sick, particularly Lepers. They seem to have separated from the Knights Hospitallers at the end of the 11th, or beginning of the 12th centuries. They were at first designated Knights of S. Lazarus, or, of SS. Lazarus and Mary of Jerusalem, from the locality of their original establishment, and from their central preceptory being near Jerusalem. The Master or Prior of the Superior Order was a Leper, that he might be more in sympathy with his afflicted brethren. They were afterward