In a letter to the people of Florence in the early part of 1067, the ardent reformer, Peter Damian, denounced a group of monks as locustae. These unnamed monks—whom it has long been accepted were the Vallombrosans—had been waging a campaign against their bishop, Peter Mezzabarba of Florence, whom they accused of obtaining his office by simony. Although Damian, who had been cardinalbishop of Ostia as well as prior of the eremitical community at Fonte Avellana, readily acknowledged that Mezzabarba might have a case to answer at Pope Alexander II's forthcoming council in Rome, he condemned their intrusion into matters of ecclesiastical politics that were none of their business. Yet it was clearly more than a matter of inappropriate activities. For he went on to dismiss in the bitterest of terms the dangerous pretensions of these monks to a superior holiness. Referring to their sanctity as odiosa, Damian concluded by saying that if monks like the Vallombrosans wanted to be holy they should not flaunt a spiritual arrogance in the face of weaker brethren. For Damian, the duty of monks was strictly defined by function: their calling was to weep for sins, not to announce them.