A Christian monastic order founded by St. Romuald (ca. 920-1027) in about 1012 at Camaldoli near Arezzo in Italy. An independent offshoot of the Benedictines, it was begun as part of the monastic reform movement of the 11th and 12th centuries. The order prescribes a combination of the solitary life of a hermit with an austere version of the common life of a monk. Although a part of the Benedictine confederation, the Camaldolese sees itself as rooted in the Desert Fathers and Mothers, which precede both Benedict and Romuald. Beginners live in the monastery and the more proficient live in the hermitage; together they form one unit. This ideal union was not always followed and independent monasteries and hermitages were founded. In 1935 the two branches were reunited. The Congregation of Monte Corona, a Camaldolese reform group, was founded in 1523 and still exists in small numbers.