What did Bear's father do for him when he was twelve?

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Bear explains that his father, growing tired of him, paid his fees so that he could enter the abbey and study. He then gave him his blessing and left.

Avi writes:

"A punctilious man, my father," Bear went on. "He paid my fees in full, gave me his hasty blessing and walked away. I never saw him more. Willy-nilly, I was enrolled in the Benedictine abbey to be a monk. Twelve years of age—younger than you—and already in robes."

Bear explains to Crispin that he ate too much food for his father's liking and caused too much trouble. He also tells Crispin that he thinks his father may have traded him to God for profit and wonders what kind of person would trade a child for a sack of wool.

Bear says his father was a man who paid attention to detail and correct behavior. After his father left, he stayed at the abbey for seven years and learned to be quiet, among other things. Bear says that it's only his education that keeps him from being hanged, because common law doesn't let priests be hanged and, if you can read, you're considered a priest.

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When he was twelve, Bear's father paid his fees at a Benedictine abbey so that Bear could train to be a monk. Bear confides to Crispin that his father might have become 'weary' of the responsibilities of fatherhood. Bitterly, Bear surmises that his father might have even committed him to the abbey so that he could 'fulfill a pledge he'd made in exchange for some profitable trade.'

Bear tells Crispin that he never saw his father again. After his father paid his fees, Bear stayed at the abbey for seven years. There, he learned how to pray, how to be silent, and how to read in English, French, and Latin. Shortly before he took his vows, Bear admits that he ran away from the abbey and joined a group of mummers.

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