Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Little Flowers of Saint Francis (Penguin Classics)” as Want to Read:
The Little Flowers of Saint Francis (Penguin Classics)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Little Flowers of Saint Francis (Penguin Classics)

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  738 ratings  ·  31 reviews
St. Francis of Assisi--the saint who preached to birds and wolves, the saint whose vow of poverty changed Christian ethics forever, the saint who repented of his fleshly sins by loving the material world--was also a pretty great writer. His Little Flowers, a series of 53 short chapters ranging in form from wild stories to serene meditations, is perfect bedtime or devotiona ...more
Published 1959 by Penguin (first published 1390)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Little Flowers of Saint Francis, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Little Flowers of Saint Francis

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,753)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
It's good to remember that 7,000 miles and about 800 years separate me and this strange Italian man.
But not only is the world of space and time bigger than I am used to thinking; the possibilities that arise when a human being becomes a genuine friend of the Lord are much weirder, more surprising, delighting and baffling than I ever knew.
Because his mind was altogether freed and abstracted from earthly things he was like the swallow.

-Pope Gregory IX on St. Francis
Lee Ann
I really hated this. It took tremendous will power just to finish it. The first Franciscans seemed more crazy than holy. They falsely equated The Order with salvation, sometimes with very unchristian results. Francis at one point damned a monk to Hell for starting a school. Several times the authors told tales where someone left the Order and was almost immediately struck dead by God and dragged down to hell. The Order also seems very materialistic. Their Holy Poverty depends upon other people s ...more
Donna S
In a world that is so focused on material goods, we are witnessing the rise of a generation that wants it all, and feels entitled to have it all. This book is a humbling lesson in poverty and a reminder of what is truly needful.

"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." ~ Matthew 5:3
Interesting insight into Fransican spirituality. Helpful to read to understand some more Catholic spirituality and what is upheld as virtue. But truly not my cup of tea. I can't believe in the self-flagellation and self-loathing St Francis and his brothers believed in.
Father Serra chose the name Junipero based on his character in The Little Flowers, and I wanted to see what that was all about, and was not disappointed. He is, as the editor states, "the favourte of children everywhere."
St. Bonaventure's life was for me most enjoyable, having a more modern organization, but all three works had their own virtues and surprisingly little overlap.
"For, as in the picture of the Lord and the Blessed Virgin painted on wood, the Lord and the Blessed Virgin are honou
The format and translation of this book make it difficult to read (e.g., there are no paragraphs and the English is very dated). Furthermore, I found the first sections and the closing counsel from Friar Giles to be very interesting but the large middle part that delved into purgatory and several mystical passages were challenging for me on a conceptual level.

I read this book due to my fondness for Saint Francis and it did help provide some historical backdrop to his life. I came away with an ap
Voglio giustificare il voto basso. Non significa che non mi sia piaciuto leggere della vita di San Francesco, dei suoi miracoli e della fondazione dell'ordine. Innanzitutto, non ho gradito che in questa edizione sia stato mantenuto l'italiano volgare perché la lettura ne risente diventando poco scorrevole. In secondo luogo, non c'è un'introduzione e non ci sono approfondimenti, cose che avrei molto apprezzato. Il voto basso, quindi, va più che altro alla scelta editoriale e non al contenuto.
Una profunda y, a la vez, sencilla lectura sobre la espiritualidad de San Francisco y sus frailes. Un recordatorio de lo que significa amar a Dios y de como Dios desea regalarnos a todos sus virtudes y favores siempre y cuando nosotros estemos dispuestos a pedirlos con fervor y humildad.
J. Alfred
A collection of the sayings and legends of St Francis, collected apparently two hundred years or so after his death. Did you know that Francis apparentlly experienced stigmata after he prayed that he might feel the pains of Christ? That he tried to go and witness to the Islamic world? That Dante says that God raised up Francis (and Dominic) to heal the church of its materialism? None of this is in this book, but it's still pretty great. Fascinating stuff.
Matthew H
It was a good book of folk tales surrounding the Franciscan Order and it's founder, the devout Saint Francis.

You definitely need to have some faith to be able to take these stories at face value. Also, if you're not a Catholic you might have some trouble with some of the Theological principles.

Still, it's an inspirational (and short) read about a Godly man.
This hardback Quality Book Club Edition has one prayer or thought per page of St. Francis of Assisi. The entries are short and concise, thus called the Little Flowers. I have given this book to my fried Donna, a Franciscan as I feel pretty sure it will be appreciated there. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to deepen their spiritual life.
Adamo Lanna
Sì, dunque, San Francesco ha fatto tanti bei miracoli e poi dopo un cento anni circa ne hanno tratto questa serie tv su libro. Io dico la verità li ho letti, e neanche mi sono annoiato anzi tre o quattro sono sfiziosi, in fondo poi il fantasy mi è sempre piaciuto.
I didn't really know what to do with this as I have no real understanding of saints and how to read about St. Francis. I appreciated the stories, but kind of left wanting a more objective look of St. Francis. This definitely piqued my interest significantly.
I really wish I liked magic realism, or at least symoblic legendism, as a genre. As I am, I kept thinking, "Come on Frankie, show us you're true colors." And then I had to hit myself to keep from singing that horrible song...
This book shares stories about St. Francis and members of his order. There seems to be a lot of lore in the book, but what I couldn't help admire these men with such passion for Christ, for prayer, and for poverty.
Towards the end of '08, I read the first 40 or so pages (the preface, introduction, and chronology) and was captivated!!! But, I have to put school readings first... I can't wait to come back to this text. (3-19-09)
Rick Davis
A collection of stories about Francis and his monks that are equal parts history, folk tales, and anecdotes. The high points for me were the stories of Friar Juniper. He's a Franciscan Amelia Bedelia.
A wonderful, early portrayal of a fascinating, complex man and the movement he began which renewed Christendom. This is the most readable of the early biographies of St. Francis I have found.
These are the writings of St. Francis. I found it difficult to get through, but not a bad read for anyone. I felt it was mostly about living the best life you can for your fellow man.
I've not read this version, only the Italian "I Fioretti di San Francesco", but if one cannot read that, why not read this. The gospel of the Middle Ages with the "Alter Christus".
Still remember many of the stories. Fantastic book. Deeply moved me to approach my faith from a different perspective, one of a simpler life.
in a time people may think religion is just part of a resume this little gem of a book can reexamine that
Monica Myllers
I love the message that St. Francis gives with his great love for all beings and nature.
I am not particularly religious, especially not Catholic, but this is really fascinating.
I love this book. St. Francis is such a peaceful figure.
one of the most spiritual people who has ever lived
Geraldine Cooper
What a beautiful man. A very joyful and delightful book.
Love all things St. Francis of Assisi
adult faith in action
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 58 59 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Spiritual Exercises
  • The Ascent of Mount Carmel
  • Revelations of Divine Love
  • The Rule of Saint Benedict
  • The Way of Perfection
  • The Cloud of Unknowing
  • Introduction to the Devout Life
  • Catherine of Siena: The Dialogue (Classics of Western Spirituality)
  • The Life of St. Anthony
  • A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life
  • Apologia Pro Vita Sua (A Defense of One's Life) (Dover Giant Thrift Editions)
  • The Desert Fathers
  • Abandonment to Divine Providence
  • St. Francis of Assisi: A Biography
  • Saint Francis of Assisi
  • The Sayings of the Desert Fathers: The Alphabetical Collection (Cistercian studies 59)
  • Journal of a Soul
  • Scivias (Classics of Western Spirituality)
Saint Francis of Assisi (1181-1226) was a Roman Catholic friar and the founder of the Order of Friars Minor, more commonly known as the Franciscans.

"To most people ... there is a fascinating inconsistency in the position of Saint Francis. He expressed in loftier and bolder language than any earthly thinker the conception that laughter is as divine as tears. He called his monks the mountebanks of G
More about Francis of Assisi...
Francis and Clare: The Complete Works The Life and Prayers of Saint Francis of Assisi Canticle of the Sun (Calligrapher's Notebooks) The Writings of St. Francis of Assisi (Hodder Christian Classics) Peace of Heart

Share This Book

“All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.” 4016 likes
“And St. Francis said: 'My dear son, be patient, because the weaknesses of the body are given to us in this world by God for the salvation of the soul. So they are of great merit when they are borne patiently.” 38 likes
More quotes…