List 4: Chancellors

Pages 17-20

Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066-1300: Volume 6, York. Originally published by Institute of Historical Research, London, 1999.

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Gr. by abp. Thurstan to the cath. school of 100s. from synodals and Peter's pence, (fn. 53) 19 Oct. 1119 × 1135, possibly c. 1126 (EYC I no. 144, cal. EEA V no. 77; and see M. Brett, The English Church under Henry I (Oxford, 1975) pp. 168-73). For records of this payment in 1180s, see below. Papal conf. 16 June 1194 (HCY III 94-8; cf. EYC I no. 148, a ch. of abp. Geoffrey concerning synodals). See also Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 128-38, and Dobson pp. 68-73, especially on the school, which was moved in 1289 to allow for the widening of the nave (Reg. Romeyn I 381-2; A. Raine, Mediaeval York (1955) p. 32). For the appt. of a schoolmaster, see Cheney, 'Letters of Wickwane' pp. 629, 634.

Ruling of papal judges delegate 1191 that chanc. was third dignitary in precedence at York, next after prec. (HCY III 90-1).

Church of Wawne (E.R.) with its chapels annexed to chancellery by abp. 13 Nov. 1230 (Reg. Gray pp. 52-3 = Reg. Giffard p. 166). See Yorks. Fines 1246-72 p. 137 n., YMF I no. 8, Chronica de Melsa, ed. E. A. Bond (RS xliii, 1866-8) II 76-84, and Cheney, 'Letters of Wickwane' pp. 631-2 and 631 n. 5.

Church of Acklam annexed to chancellery 3 March 1222, Reg. Gray pp. 143-4; conf. by pope 15 March 1226 (CPL I 109 = Reg. Hon. III no. 5861, cf. no. 5860); cf. Chs. Bridlington p. 231.


1291 chancellery £33 6s. 8d. (Taxatio pp. 305b, 322a).


Masters of the schools

The master of the schools was the first, unnamed, dignitary to be appd. by abp. Thomas I, after 1070 and some time before the appts. of dean, prec. and treas., who were all in office by Dec. 1093 (Hugh the Chanter pp. 18-19; see discussion ibid. pp. xxv-xxvi, and Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 128-9).

[? Sirus

Occ. as can. (unident., preb., list 51) c. 1121 × 25 Jan. 1140 (EEA V no. 64). 'M. Suirus' occ. as mag. schol. among witnesses of a spurious ch. of abp. Thomas I for Durham, just possibly preserving the conflation of genuine witness-lists from chs. of abps. Thomas II and Thurstan (EEA V no. 3 and note). (fn. 54)]

M. Robert Magnus

preb. unident., list 50

Occ. many times, with and without title (see Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 131-2). First occ. as Robert mag. schol. 1157 × c. 1158 (Rouen MS Y 44 fo. 119r = EEA XX no. 86), 1157 × 62 (Reg. Melton I fo. 222v = EEA XX no. 68), before 1167 (EYC VI no. 133). (fn. 55) Can. of Rouen, occ. early 1170s (Spear, 'Chanoines de Rouen' p. 147). Occ. as M. Robert Magnus after 1164 (EEA XX nos. 14, 17, 104), but identity as mag. schol. assured by notice of his drowning off Norman coast 27 Sept. 1177 (Gesta Hen. II I 195, 'Robert Magnus magister scolarum Eboraci'; cf. Houedene II 147, 'Magister Robertus Magnus').

M. Guy

preb. unident., list 50

Prob. can. in 1170s (list 50). Occ. many times, with and without title (see Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 132-5). Occ. as Master, attesting after Hamo prec. and before Ralph [d'Aunay] archdcn. [of York], so prob. mag. schol. 28 Sept. 1177 × 22 Nov. 1181 (EYC III no. 1834 = EEA XX no. 8; see Clay, 'Precentors' p. 133). Continued in office during archiepiscopal vacancy, presum. the unnamed mag. schol. who received 100s. p.a. until Easter 1187, when he prob. d. or res. (Pipe Roll 28 Hen. II (PRS xxxi, 1910) p. 62, Pipe Roll 33 Hen. II (PRS xxxvii, 1915) p. 98; discussed by Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 133-4). Prob. to be identified with M. Guy, abp.'s clerk, who occ. 28 Sept. 1177 × 26 Nov. 1181 (Selby Coucher no. 752 = EYC XII no. 5; cf. Selby Coucher no. 757).

An unnamed mag. schol. in office, receiving 100s. for year from Michaelmas 1187 to Michaelmas 1188 and for next half year to Easter 1189, when abpric. was filled (Pipe Roll 34 Hen. II (PRS xxxviii, 1925) p. 10, Pipe Roll 1 Ric. I, ed. J. Hunter (Rec. Comm., 1844) p. 10; see Clay, 'Precentors' p. 134). Possibly to be identified with M. Simon of Apulia, below.


For the replacement of the title mag. schol. by that of chanc., see HCY III 90-1 and Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 135-6.

M. Simon of Apulia

preb. South Newbald, list 36

Clerk of abp.[-el.] Geoffrey (Gir. Cambr. IV 383; Houedene III 221). First occ. as chanc. shortly after 12 Nov. 1189 and certainly before 3 June 1190 (Delisle-Berger, Introduction, pp. 105-6, cal. Cal. Docs. France no. 48; for date cf. nos. 47, 49), so possibly to be identified with unnamed mag. schol. who occ. from Michaelmas 1187 to Easter 1189 (above). Occ. frequently (see Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 134-6, e.g. HCY III 91; Reg. Romeyn I 227; Selby Coucher no. 975; EYC I no. 345, II no. 842; ULL Fuller Collection II/17/1). Appd. dean by end of 1193, conf. Jan. 1194 (list 2).

John de Sancto Laurentio

preb. unident., list 50

First occ. as John chanc. 14-15 June 1195 (Councils & Synods I (2) 1046), and with full name and title 6 Sept. 1199 (Rot. Chart. p. 17a). In receipt of 100s. p.a. from synodals (EYC I no. 148; cf. above). Occ. several times. Last occ. as chanc. of York June × Sept. 1224 (Cart. Treas. York no. 38). If, as seems likely, he is to be identified with the preb. of London of the same name, who occ. as can. of St Paul's from before 1191, he d. Aug. 1224 (1 Fasti I 69-70; cf. his successor's first occ. as chanc., below).

M. Richard de Cornubia (fn. 56)

preb. unident., list 50

Can. by 27 Jan. 1217 (list 50). First occ. as chanc. 1 July 1225 (Kirkstall Coucher no. 368). Occ. several times. Prob. still alive 10 Nov. 1233 (Reg. Gray p. 64). D. by 3 Nov. 1234 (below; cf. Reg. Gray p. 68). Occ. as Richard 'de Norcie Waleys' chanc. c. 1230 (R. B. Dobson, The Jews of Medieval York (York, 1974) pp. 49-50 and frontispiece, cal. Chs. Vicars Choral no. 22). (fn. 57)

M. John Blund (fn. 58)

preb. unident., list 50

Royal clerk prob. by 1227; can. of Chichester when el. abp. of Canterbury 26 Aug. 1232, qua. by pope 1 June 1233 (1 Fasti V 61, II 6). First occ. as chanc. 3 Nov. 1234 (Close Rolls 1234-7 p. 6; cf. p. 217). Occ. several times. D. as chanc. 1248 (Chron. Maj. V 41). Writer of 'Tractatus de anima' (Russell, Dict. of Writers pp. 56-8; Sharpe, Handlist no. 605).

M. John of Exeter alias Gervais (fn. 59)

prebs. Fenton, Warthill, lists 25, 45

Clerk of Exeter, learned in physical sciences, papal disp. to hold an additional benefice 2 Jan. 1248, at request of Richard, earl of Cornwall (CPL I 241 = Reg. Innoc. IV no. 3527). First occ. as chanc. of York 11 March 1256, sent to Curia in connection with el. of abp. Sewal de Boville; papal chapl. (Reg. Alex. IV no. 1218, cal. CPL I 328). Occ. several times. Appd. bp. of Carlisle by abp. before 18 June 1260 (CPL I 372-3 = Reg. Alex. IV no. 3131), but ineffective (1 Fasti II 20). Still chanc. when prov. by pope to bpric. of Winchester 22 June 1262; cons. prob. 10 Sept.; temps. 18 Oct. (ibid. p. 87).

M. William de Wickwane

preb. North Newbald, list 35

First occ. as chanc. 12 Feb. 1264 (Rotuli Ricardi Gravesend, ed. F. N. Davis et al. (CYS xxxi, 1925) p. 239). Occ. several times. Also preb. of Ripon (Cheney, 'Letters of Wickwane' pp. 631-2). Chanc. until became abp. of York, el. 22 June 1279; cons. 17 Sept.; temps. 28 Oct. (list 1). For his letter-book as chanc., see Cheney, 'Letters of Wickwane'.

M. Thomas of Corbridge

prebs. Osbaldwick, Stillington, lists 38, 41

Can. by 11 Sept. 1277 (list 38). First occ. as Master Th. chanc. 17 Feb. 1280 (Reg. Epp. Peckham I 95). Res. to have abp.'s coll. to chapel of St Mary and Holy Angels 16 June 1290 (Reg. Romeyn I 385; Misc. Reg. fo. 2r; cf. Reg. Nic. IV nos. 4010-11, cal. CPL I 524), but his possession was impeded; excomm. by abp. 31 July 1290 for resuming chancellery which had already been coll. to M. Thomas of Wakefield (Reg. Wickwane I 389; below); gained possession of sacristy of chapel and excomm. revoked 24 March 1291 (ibid. II 2). Abp. of York, el. 12 Nov. 1299, cons. 28 Feb. 1300, temps. 30 Apr. (list 1).

M. Thomas of Wakefield (fn. 60)

preb. Botevant, list 19

Subdean (last occ. 8 May 1290, list 6). Abp.'s coll. to chancellery 16 June 1290 (Reg. Romeyn I 385). Prob. not in full possession until Dec. 1290 (ibid. p. 2). D. by 8 July 1297 (Reg. Newark p. 219).

M. Robert de Ripplingham (fn. 61)

preb. Botevant, list 19

Abp.'s coll. to chancellery 8 July 1297 in succession to the late M. Thomas of Wakefield, with mandate to induct dated 10 July (Reg. Newark p. 219). Occ. frequently, last 23 March 1328 (CPL II 276). D. between 24 and 30 Aug. 1332 (2 Fasti VI 9). Author of 'Questiones super I Sententiarum' (Sharpe, Handlist no. 1509). Donor of 'the chancellor's window' in nave of Minster (south aisle, 3rd from east,), in which he is depicted teaching his pupils (bottom of central light) (J. Toy, The Windows of York Minster (York, 1985) SXXXI = 28).


  • 53. 40s. from synodals of E.R. archdcnry. after Easter, 30s. from Rome-scot of W.R. archdcnry., and 30s. from synodals of Nottingham archdcnry. at Michaelmas; see Clay, 'Precentors' pp. 129-30, who records that it is a later addition in the MS which gives the 30s. from the W.R. (not noted in EEA V no. 77).
  • 54. The note to EEA V no. 3 suggests a genuine witness-list of abp. Thomas II, but the appearance of four of the names - Fulk, Serlo, Tosti and Hugh Sottovagina - in addition to that of Sirus, in the period 1125 × 33 (ibid. no. 74) may indicate that a witness-list temp. abp. Thurstan should also be hypothesized.
  • 55. Temp. Bartholomew, archdcn. of Richmond, list 13.
  • 56. For the probability that he took his name from Cornwell (Oxon), see Beverley Fasti p. 79 n.
  • 57. It is possible that the scribe repeated the name of the previous witness, Geoffrey 'de Norwyc', and clumsily emended it to read 'Cornewaleys'.
  • 58. A theologian who lectured in Paris and Oxford; he was at Paris when the university was dispersed 1229. For his career, see Biog. Ox. I 206; N. Vincent in EEA IX, Winchester 1205-38 p. xlii; DNB.
  • 59. He held several churches in Exeter dioc.; for these and for his career, see Biog. Ox. II 757-8; DNB s.n. John. He was also known as M. John Gervasii, e.g., CPR 1232-47 p. 116, of 23 Aug. 1235.
  • 60. D.Th. by 1290; for his career, see Biog. Ox. III 1955.
  • 61. Fellow of Merton Coll. 1284-97; D.Th. by 1297; for his career, see Biog. Ox. III 1577.