The archbishops: From 988 to 1161

Pages 298-326

The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 12. Originally published by W Bristow, Canterbury, 1801.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


From 988 to 1161

25. ÆTHELGAR succeeded him as archbishop (fn. 1) in 988. He was first a monk of Glastonbury, and was then made abbot of Hide, from whence he was promoted to the bishopric of Selsey, or, as it is now called, Chichester, and from thence to this see of Canterbury; upon which he went to Rome for the pall, which he received from the pope's hands. (fn. 2) He continued archbishop only one year and three months, when dying, he was buried in his own monastery, in the church or chapel of St. John Baptist. (fn. 3)

26. SIRICIUS was elected in his room. (fn. 4) He had been first a monk of Glastonbury, and then abbot of St. Augustine's, after which he was made bishop of Bath and Wells, from whence he was translated to this see. By his advice, the king, who in his distress readily consented to any means of getting rid of his inverterate enemies the Danes, was persuaded to bribe them with 30,000l. in ready money, to quit the kingdom, and to bind them by an oath to be quiet from thenceforth; but what little policy there was in this scheme of the archbishop, might easily be judged, and how pernicious it proved afterwards, may be seen in the course of this volume. (fn. 5) Having sat in this see somewhat more than four years, he died in 994, and was buried in his own church. (fn. 6) He died in a good old age, and gave his books, which were valuable, by his last will, to his church. (fn. 7)

27. ELFRIC succeeded next in 996, to this archbishopric. He was a man of great sanctity, and was bishop of Sherborne, (fn. 8) from whence he was translated hither, being elected in a synod held at Ambresbury; (fn. 9) and going to Rome, he received his pall from the pope there; he was a laborious compiler of sermons and homilies, and translated great part of the scripture into the Saxon tongue, (fn. 10) and wrote besides several other tracts of divinity. His sermon for Easter Sunday has often been printed, and shews very plainly, that the church of England had not at that time embraced the doctrine of Transubstantiation, and it is hardly possible to express the present sentiments of the church of England, and of other Protestant churches on this subject in plainer terms, than Elfric did in this discourse. He expelled the regular canons who would not abandon their wives from this cathedral, and brought in monks in their room. He died in the year 1005, having sat in this see eleven years, (fn. 11) and was buried first at Abingdon, but afterwards removed to his own church of Canterbury, and depo sited in the south cross of the choir, at the altar of St. John Baptist. (fn. 12)

28. ELPHEGE succeeded next to this archbishopric. (fn. 13) He was a native of Gloucestershire, and had been first a monk at Deihurst, near Gloucester. then a monk and prior of Glastonbury, after which he turned anchorite, from which state of life he was taken and made abbot of Bath, the church of which he repaired; after which he was promoted to the bishopric of Winchester, over which he presided five years, and from thence in 1006, to this patriarchal chair of Canterbury, being then of the age of 52 or 53 years, and afterwards went to Rome for his pall, which he received there (fn. 14)

Having sat in this see the space of six years, he was barbarously stoned to death by the Danes at Greenwich, on Saturday April 19, 1012, (fn. 15) whither they carried him prisoner, for refusing to pay the prodigious ransom they demanded of him, after having destroyed the city and church of Canterbury, and murdered the greatest part of the inhabitants, of which a full rela tion has already been made before. The archbishop being thus put to death, was buried first in the church of St. Paul, in London, (fn. 16) but his body was afterwards, with the consent of king Canute, conveyed in 1024, by archbishop Agelnoth, with great solemnity to Canterbury, where it was deposited in his own church. (fn. 17) He was afterwards canonized, the day of his translation being kept on April 19, and he had an altar appropriated to him and a shrine, which stood opposite the present high altar, as is plain from the words of archbishop Winchelsea's statutes, which mention the high altar and the two altars nearest to it, namely, of St. Dunstan and St. Elphege. (fn. 18)

29. LIVING, bishop of Wells, was about a year after the death of St. Elphege, translated to this archbishopric, and received his pall from the pope at Rome. (fn. 19) He consecrated king Edmund Ironside, at London, whom the Londoners and those of the nobility, at that time there, had, with unanimous consent, chosen king, as right heir to the crown, in opposition to king Knute, whom he afterwards crowned at the same place. (fn. 20) He was deeply involved in the calamities of those unhappy times; notwithstanding which, he appears to have been a great benefactor to his cathedral church, both in land and ornaments, and repaired the roof which had been burnt by the Danes. Having sat in this see about seven years, he died about the year 1020, (fn. 21) and was buried in his own cathedral. (fn. 22)

30. AGELNOTH, who was a monk of Glastonbury, was his successor in this see in the same year. (fn. 23) He was of noble extraction, and for his excellent natural disposition, was surnamed the GOOD. (fn. 24) Gervas says, (fn. 25) he was at the above time dean of this church, for there were, continues he, at this time, monks, as if cathedral canons, bearing indeed the habit of monks, but not observing the rule of the order in so strict a manner; for the monks taken in after the martyrdom of St. Elphege, with whom almost the whole convent, excepting only four monks, fell by the swords of the Danes, could neither be so fully informed, nor be restrained from their own will, so as to observe the rule in every part of it, they called their head and or chief; the dean, who after the arrival of Lanfranc, was called prior. (fn. 26)

He went to Rome for his pall, where he was received with much honour by the pope. (fn. 27) He consecrated after his return, the bishops of Landaff and St. David's, in his church of Canterbury, and in the year 1037, he croved king Harold at London, Having sat in the chair of this see upwards of seventeen years, in the interim of which time he perfected the works of his church's repair, which had been burnt and destroyed by the Danes, as has been mentioned before; he died on Oct. 29, 1038, and was buried in his own cathedral, before the altar of St. Benedict, towards the right hand, in the south cross wing of the nave of this church. He was canonized after his death.

31. EADSIN, chaplain to king Harold and bishop of Winchester, succeeded Agelnoth as archbishop in 1038, (fn. 28) and though he continued as such almost 11 years, yet he was that whole time afflicted with bodily infirmities; (fn. 29) he died on October 28, anno 1050, and was buried in his own church. (fn. 30) In the year 1040 he consecrated Hardicanute, as king, at London, who had been sent for from Flanders, on the death of king Harold Harefoot, by the unanimous consent of the nobles, both English and Danes; after whose short reign, he, with Alfric, archbishop of York, and the suffragan bishops, in 1042, crowned, anointed, and consecrated Edward, surnamed the Confessor, whom the clergy and Londoners had chosen as king, with great pomp, at Winchester, (fn. 31) or according to others, at Westminster. (fn. 32) Archbishop Eadsin was, after his death, canonized as a saint.

32. ROBERT, surnamed Gemetricensis, from the place of his birth, being a Norman born, succeeded to this archbishopric on archbishop Eadsin's death in 1050. (fn. 33) He was bishop of London, and a familiar friend of king Edward, by whom he was appointed to this see out of gratitude for his having received some favours, when he was in exile, from him, he being then a monk at Gemetica. (fn. 34) He had continued in this chair scarcely two years, when he was ejected in 1052, and being adjudged a disturber of the nation's peace, he was obliged to fly into Normandy, where he died and was buried in the abbey of Gemetica, in which he had been brought up. (fn. 35)

33. STIGAND, chaplain to king Edward, succeeded next to this archbishopric, in the year 1052. He had been king Harold's chaplain, and had been first bishop of Sherburne, and was translated from thence to Winchester, which he kept together with this archbishopric, with the king's consent, whilst his predecessor was yet alive. (fn. 36) He was guilty of, what was deemed a flagrant irregularity, in making use of his predecessor's pall, which was contrary to the canon; and he was afterwards guilty of one still greater, in receiving his own pall from pope Benedict, whom the church of Rome had excommunicated. As soon as the Conqueror was seated on the throne, Stigand was deposed by him; and so fearful was he of this prelate's disposition towards him, that, when he returned into Normandy in 1067, he took Stigand with him; among others, this archbishop was, on his coming back, first formally suspended by the papal interdict, and at last in the octaves of Easter, anno 1070, in a great council held by the king's command at Winchester, and in his presence, he was degraded and deprived of the archbishopric, with the pope's consent, by his legate and two presbyter cardinals, for the three causes above-mentioned; after which he was cast into prison, (fn. 37) where he died and was buried at Winchester, with the king's licence, (fn. 38) and, it is said, with much solemnity. (fn. 39)

If we may believe the chronicler of St. Augustine's monastery, this archbishop Stigand, by his advice and cunning, together with Egelsine, abbot of that monastery, preserved to the Kentish men, their antient liberties and customs, when they were invaded by the Norman Conqueror, who never had a cordial affection to him before, and curtainly had much less afterwards: indeed his aversion to him was so great, that he resused to be crowned by him, preferring for that purpose Alured, archbishop of York, though that prelate had consecrated and crowed his enemy king Harold. (fn. 40)

Stigand was certainly no favourite with the monks, for they have branded his memory with the crimes of coveteousness, pride and ambition. Higden, p. 276, says, that he was a man who made a public market of all ecclesiastical matters, a man in every shape illiterate, but well fraught with riches, and soft speeches; and Bromton sums up his character by telling us, he was vir pessimus & simoniacus.

The above is the dark representation of Stigand's character, drawn up by his inveterate enemies the monks; the true one it may be perhaps difficult to draw. However, he seems to have been a man of a great spirit, and undaunted by opposition, but not so discreet as he ought to have been, as well in relation to the Conqueror, as in trusting to the precarious power of the pseudo pope Benedict. His actions otherwise, in relation to his country, in opposition to the Norman Conqueror, are in all respects highly justifiable, and give us a favourable opinion of him as an Englishman and true friend to his country. Malmsbury says, he was illiterate, as all were who were not monks; a prejudice which needs no comment. It is certain, that age of hurry and confusion abounded with the darkest ignorance; but if Stigand had been remarkably so, it would certainly have been objected to him at the council, as it was at that time, to Wistan, bishop of Worcester, which it does not appear to be, nor is it likely, considering his attendance at court as a royal chaplain. His coveteousness is the most unjustifiable part of his character, and is by no means to be palliated, but it is yet to be doubted whether even this was so great as represented; certainly in some cases he was very liberal, as to the churches of Ely, Winchester, and this of Canterbury. (fn. 41) On due investigation of the whole, it may be said, that he lost his see for not being a bigot to the church of Rome; his liberty for not being a traitor to his country, and his reputation with posterity for not having been a monk. (fn. 42)

34. LANFRANC, abbot of Caen, and before prior of Bec, in Normandy, a native of the city of Pavia, was called over by the Conqueror, on the deprivation of archbishop Stigand in 1070, to preside in this archiepiscopal see, being constituted archbishop on the feast of the Ascension, August 15, and consecrated in the year following, on Sunday the feast of St. John Baptist, June 24; immediately afterwards he went to Rome and received the pall there from the pope's own hands. (fn. 43) He was a prelate of a great and magnanimous mind, and carried all things as powerfully in the church, as the Conqueror did in the state, and becoming greatly in favour both with the pope and the king, he is said to have presumed on it, and to have treated his comprovincial bishops contemptuously, and to have upbraided them with their inexperience, as well as ignorance.

He performed great things, not only in his own church of Canterbury, but in that of Rochester, for he rebuilt both those cathedrals almost from the ground, (fn. 44) together with all the edifices belonging to the two monasteries, and his own palace likewise at Canterbury, and furnished both churches with rich and costly ornaments. (fn. 45) He re established in them both more strictly, the rules of the Benedictine order, (fn. 46) for turning out the seculars, he filled the stalls of both with monks, and increased the former number of them. (fn. 47) In the church of Canterbury he appointed, that the president over the convent should in future be stiled prior, who before was dignified with the name of dean. In the church of Rochester, he constituted successively, two bishops, Earnest and Gundulph, both of them from Normandy; by these means he fixed the monastical profession so firm in these and other churches, that it continued undisturbed and flourishing in them till the general dissolution of monasteries in England. Nor was Lanfranc's liberality confined only to the buildings of the abovementioned churches, for he purchased with his own money, different lands, and obtained for them, from the king, several grants of others. (fn. 48) His zeal for religion appeared still further in his building and endowing the priory of St. Gregory, in Canterbury, and in re-building the church of St. Albans, which he enriched with many valuable ornaments. He was abundantly charitable in relieving the poor, expending yearly 500l. in alms; and he built and endowed besides the two hospitals of St. John, without Northgate, and St. Nicholas, in Harbledown, both near Canterbury, and endowed them with sufficient revenues. (fn. 49)

Before his time, the archbishop and the monks of his church, had but one and the same revenue, and lived together in common. This the archbishop changed and put upon another footing, after the manner of foreign churches, for he separated the revenue, allotting one part for himself and his successors, and the other part for the maintenance of the prior and convent, (fn. 50) in like manner, as they are described in the survey of Domesday. He caused the sees of many bishops which were then in country villages, to be removed from thence into cities, according to the canon, so that a city with us (Westminster excepted, which once had its own bishop) has ever since been, and yet is known by having in it a bishop and a cathedral church. (fn. 51) The archbishop of York contending with him for the primacy, he brought the suit of it before the king at Windsor, and there by the judgment pronounced by Hugh, the pope's legate, ascertained his right to it, (fn. 52) but his greatest and most undaunted act was, when Odo, the great bishop of Baieux and earl of Kent, the king's half-brother, exercised more arbitrary power in this country than even the Conqueror himself dared to do, by violently taking from the churches of Canterbury and Rochester, many of their lands and estates; Lanfranc con tended with this most powerful adversary, and in a public hearing before the whole people of Kent, which lasted for three days, he obliged him to restore them again, (fn. 53) those to this church amounting to twenty-five manors; nor was it a small testimony of the esteem he was held in, for the excellency of his wisdom, as the greatness of his mind and power, that when the king went beyond sea, which he often did upon weighty occasions, he constituted the archbishop sole justiciary of the kingdom, during his absence; indeed the king confiding in him, consulted him upon every important occasion, especially in whatever the church was concerned; a remarkable instance of which occurred, when the king wished to seize on his brother Odo, bishop of Baieux and earl of Kent, but was afraid of it, for fear of offending the pope, Lanfranc advised him not to fear, but to commit him to safe custody, adding, that if the pope should call him to account for it, for laying hands upon a bishop, and an ecclesiastic, to tell him, that he had not imprisoned the bishop of Baieux, but the earl of Kent, his own liege man and subject. (fn. 54)

It is said, he persuaded the Conqueror to leave England to his younger son, Wm. Rufus, with whom he took part, and crowned him at Westminister, and afterwards, when the nobility armed against him in favour of his brother Robert, Lanfranc alone kept faithful to him, but he required an oath from the king however, to perform certain conditions, which he then dictated to him; upon which account, when the king afterwards had made his cause good, he bore such a secret hatred to the archbishop, especially when he reproved him for breaking his oath, that he ungratefully forgot his services and banished him the realm, and he continued for some time abroad, till by the intercession of many friends, he was permitted to return home.

Lanfranc, not long after his return, fell sick of an ague, of which he died on May 28, 1089, (fn. 55) having sat in this see nineteen years, and he was buried in his own cathedral, in the presence of the archbishop of York, and other bishops, in the Trinity chapel, at the east end of the church, on the south side the altar there; but on the pulling of it down afterwards, to erect the present chapel of the same name, his body was removed, and buried by order of the convent, at the altar of St. Martin, but there is no trace of it left, nor any monument or memorial extant of him. (fn. 56)

During his time, he held several councils at different times at London in 1075, at Winchester in 1076, and at London again in 1077, and another at Gloucester. (fn. 57) As a specimen of his learning, it is said, that he amended the texts of the Old and New Testament, that is, the faulty versions or corrupt copies of the sacred writings; (fn. 58) and he wrote several trea tises, which are among the Harleian manuscripts, and among those in the Bodleian library. (fn. 59) Besides what has been mentioned before, he did many great, good and pious acts; an account of which may be found in Parker, Godwin, and other writers.

Capgrave says, he was canonized. His anniversary was afterwards celebrated by the monks with great solemnities and a large distribution of alms. (fn. 60)

Lanfranc has been celebrated by all our historians as a man of wisdom, learning and munificence, of great magnanimity of mind, and of universal piety and approved goodness. He certainly deserved to be highly spoken of; but it should be remembered, that he was a foreigner and a favourite of the Conqueror, and was besides a monk, and that his character is given and handed down to us by the grateful monks, who were then almost the only historians of the age, and never failed to bestow extravagant praises on their benefactors, especially if belonging to their own order.

35. ANSELM, a native of the city of Aoust, in Piedmont, (fn. 61) and abbot of Bec, in Normandy, was no minated to this see by king William Rufus, in the year 1093, after a vacancy of it for more than four years; (fn. 62) for that king, who is recorded in history as notorious for all manner of sacrilegious rapine, had, upon Lanfranc's death, kept the see vacant for that time, making waste of all the revenues and possessions of this church, as he had done of several others; but falling sick and thinking himself at the point of death, he nominated Anselm, who was then in England, to the archbishopric, though upon his recovery, he is said to have repented that he had not sold it at the best price. (fn. 63)

Anselm was some time before he could be prevailed on to accept of the archbishopric, and when he did, he seems to have been constituted without any formal election. The convent having been destitute of a pastor for so long a time, were desirous of accepting one at any rate, and he was consecrated by the archbishop of York, assisted by most of the bishops of England, on the 2d of the nones of December, that year, and before the Easter following he received the pall in his own church, by the hands of the pope's legate. (fn. 64) When Anselm came to the archbishopric, he found the lands and revenues of it miserably wasted and spoiled, so that beyond the satisfying of the king's demands, there was not sufficient remaining for his bare subsistence; and the first year he sat in the archiepiscopal chair, he struggled with poverty, want and continual vexations through the king's displeasure, and the three next years he spent in banishment, during which time he was forced to borrow money for his maintenance; when king Henry came to the crown on the death of William Rufus, Anselm was in banishment, and the king was crowned at Westminister in his absence, by Maurice, bishop of London; soon after which, he recalled the archbishop home, promising by letters, to direct himself and his kingdom by his advice and counsel. Soon after his return, Anselm crowned at Westminister, queen Maud, daughter of Malcolm, king of Scotland, whom the king had then married. (fn. 65) And in 1099 he established the feast of Whitfuntide at Mortlake.

Two years after this, Anselm held a great council at Westminster, at which almost all the bishops were present; soon after which, the dissention began between the king and him, concerning the investiture of churches, which continued for some time with much altercation, when Anselm having suffered many injuries and affronts, left the kingdom, and the king seized upon all his revenues, which he retained in his hands no less than four years. The archbishop remained abroad till the year 1106, when on the feast of the Assumption, the king came to Bec, in Normandy, where the archbishop then was, when meeting together they were reconciled, and in a little time after, Anselm, by the king's command, returned to England. (fn. 66)

Notwithstanding the archbishop's absence, and these hard circumstances, incredible as it may seem, the church of Canterbury is recorded to have been in a great measure rebuilt, and the choir which Lanfranc had built pulled down, and the rebuilding of it begun and carried forward, to which Anselm is said to have contributed all he could, by authorizing the employing of the stock of the church towards it; and Eadmer tells us, that those things which he could not perform himself, he accomplished by his stebfast friends the priors of it, two of whom successively, Ernulph and Conrad, he had promoted to that office, to whose care he committed the management of it. (fn. 67) —In the synod held in London in 1102, he made a decree forbidding priests to marry, which H. Huntingdon observes, was not forbidden before. Having languished under a consumption for some months, he died, in the 76th year of his age, and the 16th of his primacy, in the year 1109 at Canterbury, (fn. 68) and was buried in this cathedral, at the head of his predecessor Lanfranc. (fn. 69) But afterwards, says Malmsbury, he had a more worthy monument in the east part of the church; for his body being removed to that part of it, was laid in the chapel of St. Peter and St. Paul, which has since been called by his name, on the south side of the high altar. (fn. 70)

He was a man of great austerity of manners, severe and grave in his discourse, of piety and learning, according to the mode of the times in which he lived. He is said to have founded the nunnery of St. Sepul. chre, near Canterbury. Archbishop Anselm wrote at least fifty different treatises, many of which are still extant among the Harleian MSS. and those in the Bodleian library. (fn. 71) Almost four hundred years after his death, by the procurement, and at the great expence of archbishop Morton, in king Henry VII.'s time, he was, on account of his piety and sufferings, canonized a saint. The archbishop is said to have borne for his arms, Argent, gutte de sang, a cross forme, gules.

After the see had continued five years vacant, king Henry I. invited the bishops and nobles of the realm to meet at Windsor, and sent for the prior and some of the monks of this church, to be present at this assembly, the occasion of which was unknown. When they were assembled, the king's intention was to have recommended Fabricious, abbot of Abindon, to be their metropolitan; but the bishops and some of the nobles proposing Ralph or Rodulph, bishop of Rochester, and having obtained the king's consent, they, with the assent of the prior and monks, elected and proclaimed him archbishop elect. (fn. 72).

36. RALPH, or RODULPH, bishop of Rochester, called by some by the surname of De Turbine, (fn. 73) was preserred to this archbishopric on Sunday, May 2, 1114, five years after the death of Anselm, from whom he was a very different character. Next year, anno 1115, on Sunday July 3, he was consecrated, and received the pall, which had been sent him from the pope, handsomely inclosed in a silver coffer, in his own church of Canterbury, where were assembled the several bishops of England, and the same day he consecrated Tegulf, bishop of Worcester. (fn. 74)

Having sat in this see for the space of eight years and an half, he died, worn out with a long sickness, on October 20, 1122, (fn. 75) and was buried, according to Eadmer, in the middle of the body of this cathedral, or according to others, in the south cross wing. (fn. 76) He is said, by William Malmsbury, who was well acquainted with him, to have been a man of eminent piety and learning, of a generous disposition and affable deportment, but too much addicted to jocularity for the dignity of his station, which gained him the name of Nugax, or the Trister. Certainly neither his temper or state of health qualified him for so venerable and great a trust, for he was satirically jocose and ridiculously merry upon trifles, playing with men and words, and this most dangerous kind of mirth was attended with a peevish and morose temper, insomuch, that he was always vexed himself, or vexing others (fn. 77) otherwise indeed, he is said to have been totally unfit for his station, being sometime before his promotion to it, while he lived in Normandy, seized with a palsy, which never left him, and was much afflicted with the gout; the former of which maladies occasioned at last his death.

Archbishop Ralph gave a penny a day out of his manor of Liminge, to Harbledown hospital, for ever; which gift was renewed and confirmed by his successor archbishop Theobald. (fn. 78) There is a long epistle, written by this archbishop, addressed to pope Calixtus, complaining of the injuries done to him and his church, by Thurstan, archbishop of York, and in defence of the see of Canterbury and its primacy over that of York, which is printed in the Decem. Scriptores, col. 1735. He is said to bear for his arms, Sable, a patriarchal cross, argent.

37. WILLIAM CORBOIL, prior of St. Osyth, in Essex, was next seated in the patriarchal chair of this see, in the year 1122, on the feast of the Purification, and was consecrated by the king's command, in his own church, by Richard, bishop of London, with the assistance of William, bishop of Winchester; and other bishops of the realm. (fn. 79)

Immediately after his consecration, he departed for the court of Rome, as did Thurstan, archbishop of York, at the same time, each on their own affairs; and the king sent thither the bishop of St. David's, and others, to assist the archbishop elect of Canterbury, should he meet with any obstructions. On their arrival there, Corboil found many obstructions had been raised by the archbishop of York, who had arrived there before him, to his receiving the pall; all which, through the mediation of the emperor and the king, who strongly interceded for him by their ambassadors, being removed, he received the pall with much solemnity; but at the same time he complained to the pope, in the full hearing of the senate of the church of Rome, that his church was injured by the incroaching proceedings of the archbishop of York; for that it had from the time of the first bishop of it, down to Ralph his immediate predecessor, been possessed of the primacy of all England, which he then earnestly requested for his church, and which, both antient custom and the authority of privileges preserved for so many years, had allowed; but the archbishop of York replying, that he was not summoned to Rome for that purpose, nor had he with him the proper evidences of his church's privileges, to answer these matters, without which he could not enter into them, they both returned home without any further investigation of the business, which was afterwards agitated by the pope's command in England, in the great council of the nation at Westminister in 1127. (fn. 80)

He returned from Rome with the title of apostolic legate, throughout England; after which he crowned king Henry at Windsor, at which time there was great contention between him and the archbishop of York, not only concerning the right of crowning the king, but the carrying of the cross; after this he celebrated a general council at Westminister, at which were present thirteen bishops, and in 1130, he performed the new dedication of his church of Canterbury, with great splendor and magnificence, in the presence of David, king of Scotland, and all the bishops. (fn. 81) At which time the seal of the priory of this church was renewed, being seemingly its second seal.

Archbishop Corboil obtained of king Henry, by his charter dated at Winchester, the custody and constabulary of the castle of Rochester, to be possessed for ever in future, and that by the advice of his barons; and he granted that the bishop and his succes sors should make a fortification and tower, according to their pleasure, in it, and that the knights who should be deputed to the custody of it, should have the keeping and defence of it, saving, nevertheless, their fealty, &c. (fn. 82) He restored the antient nunnery at Minster, in the Isle of Shepey, which had been destroyed by the Danes, long before the conquest, and about a year before his death, he rebuilt the church of St. Martin, in Dover, at a further distance from the town than where it stood before, with proper lodgings and accommodations, intending to fix in them a society of regular canons, whom he brought from Merton for that purpose; but the convent of Christchurch opposing his designs and threatening to make an appeal to the court of Rome, if necessary, it put a stop to the further progress of this design, and the archbishop dying not long after, the convent took this opportunity of sending thither twelve monks of their own house, and of constituting a prior over them. (fn. 83)

It was no small reproach to his character, that he fet the crown upon the head of king Stephen, contrary to the oath which he had before made to the empress Maud; (fn. 84) but he is said to have reslected on this action with so much sorrow, that he fell sick at Mortlake, and being carried to Canterbury in a horse litter, he died there on Dec. 19, 1136, having presided over this church almost fourteen years, (fn. 85) and was buried in his own cathedral. (fn. 86)

Archbishop Corboil appears to have been a weak man, too easily prevailed upon to forget the dignity of his station, and the obligation of his oaths; to which reproachful conduct he was most probably induced by the flattering promises made by king Stephen to the church, at his coronation. He is said to bear for his arms, Azure, a bend wavy in the sinister corner, in chief a cross couped, argent.

38. THEOBALD, (fn. 87) abbot of Bec, in Normandy, was elected to this see in 1138, after it had been vacant upwards of two years. He was elected by cardinal Albert, at a legantine synod convened for that purpose at London, though our historians in general say, that he was elected by the bishops of England, and that Alexander, bishop of Lincoln, declared publicly the election, and that he was afterwards consecrated by the legate, in the presence of the prior of this church. On the other hand, Gervas tells us, that Theobald was elected by the prior and monks, who were sent for to London for that purpose, and who publicly pronounced the election of him made by them, in the presence of the king, the legate, the bishops and nobles. (fn. 88)

He was consecrated by the legate about the feast of the Epiphany, and received his pall at the same time, in his own church, in which year he had the title of legate of the apostolic see confirmed to him. (fn. 89) He crowned king Stephen, together with his queen, in the church of Canterbury; the king in his rich habit was conducted by the archbishop and earls, to the church where the king stood in the archbishop's seat, the queen opposite to him; the archbishop put the crown on both, and afterwards celebrated mass before them. (fn. 90) In 1146, he went to the council which pope Eugenius had convened at Rhemes, without the king's licence, upon which all his goods were confiscated; on the other hand his suffragans were suspended by the pope, because the king prohibiting them, they did not come to it. (fn. 91) On the archbishop's return to Canterbury, where he was joyfully received, the king highly angered at his disobedience, hastened there, where though several messages passed between them, none of them effected a reconcilement, and the archbishop was compelled by him to quit the realm, and he remained abroad till peace was restored between them. (fn. 92) He again incurred the king's anger for refusing, together with the rest of the bishops, in the 15th year of that reign, to anoint and crown his son Eustace king, and notwithstanding the king used force to compel them, yet the archbishop, with the rest, continued resolute in their refusal, upon which his goods were again confiscated. (fn. 93)

During his dissentions with the king, his courage was so great, that he interdicted king Stephen and the whole realm, and taking advantage of the times, which were very troublesome, he went into Norfolk and lived retired there, till by the interposition of some of the bishops, he was restored to the king's favour, which he afterwards enjoyed, and was the chief means of concluding that final peace at Wallingford, between him and the empress Maud.

In 1151, he, as being legate of the apostolic see, celebrated a general council in the middle of Lent, at London, at which king Stephen and his son Eustace, were both present. (fn. 94) After king Stephen's death, he crowned king Henry II. at Westminister, in the presence of the archbishop of York and other bishops. Queen Alianor, who had been divorced from Lewis, king of France, being crowned at the same time. (fn. 95)

By his last will, which is printed from the registers of this church, (fn. 96) he gave whatever he had remaining, at the hour of his death, to the use of the poor; intimating that he had already given them almost all he had, reserving to himself only so much, as was absolutely necessary for the occasions of his family, and for the exigencies of his own languishing condition.—Having sat in this see for twenty-two years, he died purely of age, on April 18, 1161, (fn. 97) beloved by all people for his courteous disposition, and was buried in his own church, in the east end of the chapel of the Holy Trinity, opposite to the tomb of Lanfranc, but when this chapel was demolished to build up the present one, archbishop Theobald's remains were removed and buried before the altar of St. Mary, in the nave of this church, in a leaden chest, the place which he had desired in his life-time, and a marble tomb as before, was placed over him. (fn. 98) He is said to have been a man of no great learning, but of gentle and affable behaviour, being wise withal, that he was highly esteemed by all ranks of people, and charitable to the poor in a very extensive degree.

Gervas says, he was a great enemy to his own convent of Christ-church, (fn. 99) which well agrees with the general character given of him. The archbishop is said to bear for his arms, Azure, three bars, or, a chief dancette, gules.


  • 1. Bromton, col. 879, calls him Stilgar.
  • 2. W. Malmsb, de Antiq. Glaston. Eccl. p. 325. R. de Diceto, col. 460. Gervas, col. 1648, who says, that this archbishop having expelled the clerks from Canterbury, brought the monks into it.
  • 3. After the above chapel was consumed, his remains were removed to the upper south wing of the cathedral, and deposited at the altar of St. John the Evangelist there. S. Durham, col. 162. Bromton, col. 872, 877. Gervas, col. 1647. Thorn, col. 1780.
  • 4. Gervas, col. 1648, calls him Siricius.
  • 5. Gervas, col. 1648. Knyghton, col. 2315, says, it was a tax or tribute of 10,000l. as does S. Durham, col. 162, Bromton, col. 879, says, this was the first tribute paid to them; the second being, 16,000l. the third, 24,000l. the sourth,30,000l. and the fifth, 40,000l. till at last money being wanting, they again went on in plundering the country.
  • 6. Chron. Sax. Bromton, col. 879. Somner, p. 120, says, he died in 993.
  • 7. Battely's Somner, p. 120. His body was afterwards deposited in the crypt, at the altar of St. Paulinus, which was directly under that of St. John, in the south upper cross wing above.
  • 8. He is said by some to have been first a monk of Glastonbury, afterwards abbot of Abingdon; but this Wharton denies, and says, he was only a monk there. Capgrave says, he was abbot of St. Alban's, which Eadmer, in the life of Osbern, confirms.
  • 9. The Pagus Ambri of Matthew Westminster.
  • 10. Several of his writings are in the Benet, Cottonian, and other libraries, and part of his translation of the scriptures is among the Bodleian MSS. His sermon for Easter Sunday has been printed in Latin and Saxon, at London, anno 1566, with a preface by archbishop Parker, concerning the author and his writings,—Epistolæ duæ ad Wulfinos Eboraci & Shireburnie Episcopos, were published at London, 1623 and 1638, octavos, as they had been before, in Fox's Acts and Monuments, vol. ii. 1538.
  • 11. Gervas. col. 1648. Chron. Tab. col. 2245, place this archbishop, who is called Alric, before Siricius, and say he succeeded to this see in 989, and died in 1000; and that Siricius succeeded, who died in 1005. Bromton, col. 885, cals him Alric, alias Wolric, and says, he sat eleven years.
  • 12. Some have thought that Elsric, the learned grammarian, and this archbishop, were one and the same person; but Wharton, in his Ang. Sacr. vol. i. p. 125, has a differetation—De Duobus Elfriciis— in which he asserts the contrary, and that the grammarian Elfric, was archbishop of York. The last will and testament of this archbishop, in Saxon, is in the Cotton library, marked CLAUDIUS, B. 6. which shews him to have died wealthy; in it, he mentions his sisters and their children, and his kindred; and gives lands at different places to Christ-church, Abingdon, and St. Alban's monasteries, to which latter he gave all his books and furniture. See Hickes's Thesaurus Dissert. Epist. p. 62. Harris's History of Kent, p. 515; in the former is a Latin, in the latter an English translation.
  • 13. His life is in Brit. Sanct. vol. i. p. 233.
  • 14. W. Malmsbury de Antiq. Glaston. Eccl. p. 325. Higden, p. 272. Bromton, col 886, 890. Gervas, col. 1648.
  • 15. After which his head is said to have been struck off with a hatchet.
  • 16. Hist. Eccl. Elien, cap. xiii. R. de Diceto, col. 464.
  • 17. S. Durham, col. 177, anno 1023. Bromton, col. 909.—See Osbern in vita Elphegi. Leland's Collections, vol. i. p. 19, 84.
  • 18. Battely's Somner, p. 121.
  • 19. Chron Saxon.
  • 20. Bromton, col. 903, 906. Leland's Collect. vol. iii. p. 400.
  • 21. Battely's Somner, p. 121, pt. ii. p. 68.
  • 22. His body was afterwards deposited at the altar of St. Martin, in the upper north cross wing.
  • 23. See Biog. Brit. vol. i. p. 66.
  • 24. W. Malmsb. de Antiq. Glaston. Eccl. p. 325. He was the son of a noble person named Agelmar. S. Durham, col. 177. R. de Dicero, col. 467.
  • 25. Col, 1650.
  • 26. Gervas, Battely's Somner, p. 120.
  • 27. During his stay at Rome, he purchased from the pope an arm of St. Augustine, bishop of Hippo, for 100 talents, or 6000 pounds weight of silver; and one talent, or 60 pounds weight of gold; so astonishing a sum, as to make the story of it almost incredible.
  • 28. Bromton, col. 932. Hist. Ramesiensis, p. 50. Battely's Somner, p. 68.
  • 29. On account of his infirmities he committed the charge of his see to Siward, abbot of Abingdon, and afterwards bishop of Rochester, who nevertheless, says Lambarde, p. 88, did not vouchsafe to find him necessaries.
  • 30. Battely's Somner, p. 68, pt. ii. p 68. Chron. Tab.col. 2247. R de Diceto, col. 475. The Saxon Chronicle places his death in September, anno 1047. His remains were afterwards deposited in the crypt, on the north side of Becket's altar there.
  • 31. Anno 1043. Simon Durham, col. 179. Ralph de Diceto, 474. Gervas, col. 1651.
  • 32. Bromton, col. 936. Knyghton, col. 2329, anno 1042.
  • 33. The Saxon Chron. places the succession of Robert, in the time of Lent, anno 1048. Higden in 1051.
  • 34. Higden. Gervas, col. 1651. Lel. Coll. vol. i. p. 144.
  • 35. Battely's Somner, pt. i. and ii. p. 68.
  • 36. R. de Diceto, col. 475. Gervas, 1652. Knyghton, 2345. Higden, p. 276.
  • 37. S. Durham, col. 197. R. de Diceto, 482. Gervas, col. 1652. Knyghton, 2343. Bromtor, col. 966, says. that he lived in prison on a daily allowance, at the king's expence, solemnly affirming upon oath that he had no money; the falsity of which the monk says, was proved after his death, by the discovery of his riches.
  • 38. See Battely, pt. ii. p. 68.
  • 39. He was, and that through the king's favour to him at last, very solemnly interred in the church of Winchester, in a leaden chest, on the south side of the high altar near the bishop's chair, where his remains rested till the 14th century, when bishop Fox built two curious partition walls in the church, dividing the presbitery from the side isles and placed three cossins on each wall, containing the bones of Saxon and other kings and bishops; and in one of them, on the north side, those of Stygand, with Wyne the bishop, and this inscription on the north side of the chest: Hic jacet, STYCANDUS Archiepiscopus. But in the great rebellion of the last century, when the rebel Colonel Sandys came with his forces, and committed such outrages in that church, they threw down the chests and forced them open, employing the bones in breaking the curious painted glass windows; but the scattered bones being by some good persons collected together, were, after the restoration, inclosed in two chests, and placed upon the same wall; and upon that in which archbishop Stygand's were inclosed, this inscription: IN THIS CHEST IN THE YEAR OF OUR LORD 1661, WERE PROMISCUOUSLY LAID UP THE BONES OF PRINCES AND PRELATES, WHICH AND BEEN SCATTERED ABOUT WITH SACRILECIOUS BARBARITY, IN THE YEAR OF OUR LORD 1642.—See Dart's Canterbury, p. 118.
  • 40. See Bromton, col. 962.
  • 41. He gave to the church of Ely, a rich vestment of great value, than which the nation could not shew a richer, which the Conqueror took away afterwards; and a large cross, gilt, with our Saviour's image, and those of St. John Baptist and the Virgin Mary, which Nigellus the bishop made away with. It ought not to be omitted that William the Conqueror delivered out of the bishop's treasury a large silver cross, gilt, with the image of St. John, and the blessed Virgin, to the church of Winchester, for the health of the archbishop's soul, which had been given to him by queen Emma, and this was placed in the pulpitum of the church till the reformation, when it was, as appears by the inventory, seized to the king's use. Dart's Canterbury, p. 118.
  • 42. See Dart's Canterbury, p. 117.
  • 43. His liberality in this was not confined to his own church, for when Gundulph, bishop of Rochester, on the church and priory of Rochester having been rebuilt, translated the bodies of his predecessors into the new fabric with great solemnity.—Lansranc was present there with his purse, and of his own charge incoffered in a curious work of clean silver the body of Paulinus, the third bishop of Rochester; which shrine was afterwards held in great estimation. Lambarde, p. 410.
  • 44. Antiq. Eccles. Brit. p. 95. Anglia Sacra, p. i. p. 55, 56, 337. Gervas, col. 1654. Knyghton, col. 2361.
  • 45. R. de Diceto, col. 483. Bromton, col. 968.
  • 46. He found in them a deviation, by the remissness and neglect of former times, from their first institution; for their better observance of it, therefore, he gave them in writing certain ordinances, which were intituled the statutes of Lanfranc for the order of the Benedictines. They may be found printed in Reyner's Apostolatus Benedictorum; and in Wilkins's Councils, tom. i. p. 328. Battely's Somner, p. 122.
  • 47. Gervas says, he increased their number to one hundred and forty or one hundred and fifty.
  • 48. Anglia Sacra, pt. i. p. 392.
  • 49. Batt. Somn. p. 122, pt. ii. p. 69.
  • 50. Gervas, col. 1311:
  • 51. Gervas, col. 1654. Battely's Somner, p. 122.
  • 52. Gervas, ibid. R. de Diceto, col. 484. Bromton, 970. Gervas, 1653. Knyghton, col. 2345, 2348.
  • 53. Anglia Sacra, pt. i. p. 339. R. de Diceto, col. 429. Lambarde, p. 236. see vol. ii. of the Hist. of Kent, under Boxley. Gervas, col. 1655.
  • 54. Knyghton, col. 2359.
  • 55. Bromton, col. 986. Gervas, 1655. Knyghton, 2360.
  • 56. Gervas says, that on the pulling down of the Trinity chapel, archbishop Lanfranc was found in a very weighty sheet of lead, in which he had lain from the first day of his interment, his limbs untouched, mitred, pinned, to that hour. He was carried into the vestry and replaced in his lead, till it was generally agreed what was to be done with so considerable a prelate; from the length of time, his bones were much decayed and almost all reduced to dust, a decay occasioned by the moisture of the cloaths, the natural coldness of the lead, and above all, the transitory condition of mortality; however, the larger bones collected with the other dust, were re-interred in a leaden coffin at the altar of St. Martin, as above-mentioned.
  • 57. Bromton, col. 975, 976. Knyghton, col. 2351.
  • 58. Anglia Sacra, pt. i. p. 55. Gervas, col. 1655. Archbishop Parker, as appears from Brown's Fasc. Rerum. p. 34, directed Mr. Lambarde, author of the Perambulation, to insert in the Textus Rossensis, the following remarkable words: Quando Willielmus Rex gloriosus morabatur in Normannia, Lanfrancus erat princeps & custos Angliæ, subjectis sibi omnibus principibus & juvantibus in his quæ ad defensionem vel pacem pertinebant regni secundum leges patriæ: Lectioni assiduus & ante episcopatum & in episcopatu quando poterat.— Et quia scripturæ, scriptorum vitio, erant nimium corruptæ, omnes tam veleris quam novi Testamenti Libros, nec non etiam scripta sanctorum sacra secundum orthodoxam fidem studuit corrigere. Mr. Lambarde, accordingly inserted this passage in 1573. Archbishop Lanfranc, it is said, bore for his arms, Girony, gules and azure, on a globe, a cross potent, or.
  • 59. His works were printed by Dacherius, in folio, at Paris, in 1648, and some other tracts were published by Lucas. Dr. Cave thinks some of his tracts are lost; as his Commentary on the Psalms, his Ecclesiastical History, and Life of William the Conqueror.
  • 60. Anglia Sacra. pt. i. p. 56.
  • 61. W. Gemeticen, p. 672. Knyghton, col. 2377. See his life in Biog. Brit. vol. i. p. 161, 240. He was then in his 60th year.
  • 62. See Gervas, col. 1658.
  • 63. Though the king could not retract Anselm's promotion, yet he strove to make himself the best amends he could for it, by demanding of him 1000l. for his present use, alledging the justice of his demand, from his having given the promotion to him gratis. See R. de Diceto, col. 495. Gervas, col. 1658.—Bromton, col. 988, says, that although the king had given the archbishopric to Anselm, yet he was not suffered to receive any thing from it beyond the king's orders until the yearly sum, which he imposed on the archbishopric, after the death of Lanfranc was paid. Stow's Chron. p. 129.
  • 64. Anglia Sacra, vol. i. p. 109. Knyghton, col. 2376. Simon Durham, col. 219, 221.
  • 65. Simon Durham, col. 225. Gervas, 1338, 1659.
  • 66. Eadmer, p. 108. Ypodigma Neustriæ, p. 441. Knyghton, col. 2369, 2377. Simon Durham, col. 227. Bromton, col. 995. Gervas, col. 1659. See a full account of the dissentions between the king and archbishop, in R. de Diceto, col. 493.
  • 67. Eadmer, 1. iii. p.55. Battely's Somner, p.12, 69. Gervas, col.1311.
  • 68. Simon Durham, col. 232. R. de Diceto, col. 501.
  • 69. Eadmer's words are, In majori ecclesia; and in relation to the sepulture of his successor archbishop Ralph, he says, he was buried in medio aulæ majoris ecclefiæ, which have been that of St. John Baptist in the insirmary. Leland says, Poter and St. Poul.— Anselm, behind the altar.
  • 70. For the finding of a light before his tomb, king Stephen gave the manor of Berksore, near Shepey, to this convent. Lib. Eccl. Cant. See Battely's Somner, p. 122. Weever has given him this epitaph:— Hic jacet ANSELMUS post mortem vivere certus, Cantuar, archiepus qui omni bonitate refertus. Vir sobrius, castus, vir vitans undique fastus. Vir gremiis plenis, largus largitor egenis. Vir bene politus, sagax, doctus, eruditus. Dogmata maturusque inter contagia purus. An. domini mil. cent. que nono, qui die quoque mensis April vicesimo uno mortis hunc enecat ensis.
  • 71. One of these, No. 876 3, shews that the treatise, called Elucidarium, was falsely attributed to him. His works were printed at Nuremberg, in folio, in 1491; and at Cologne, in three volumes, in 1573; and there again in four volumes, in 1612.
  • 72. See Eadmer, p. 109 et seq. Knyghton, col. 2380.
  • 73. Eadmer, f. 34, 113. Bromton, col. 1004. Sigefred, brother of archbishop Ralph, was first abbot of Glastonbury, and then bishop of Chichester.
  • 74. Simon Durham, col. 236. R. de Diceto, col. 502. Gervas, col. 1660.
  • 75. Gervas says, 3 cal. November, col. 1660, 1662. Knyghton, col. 2380.
  • 76. Gervas says, he was buried in the south cross of the nave of the church built by Lanfranc, towards the left hand as you enter near the lower portico, where was the altar of St. Benedict. Howbeit, says bishop Godwyn, I see not any monument or other sign of his sepulture there at all. But no marvel, continues Mr. somner, because the modern nave or body of the church was built long since this archbishop's time. His burial place was in the elder or former body of the church, which archbishop Sudbury some time afterwards took down, and which was after his death rebuilt; besides, it is hard to find a monument, much more an epitaph, so antient any where in England, for the age, it seems, was not very ambitious of either. The antient custom was to put a plate of lead, with the interred party's name inseribed on it, into the sepulchre, with the corpse, so had arch bishops Dunstan, and Richard the immediate successor of Becket. Simon Istip is the first of the archbishops that has an epitaph on his tomb in the whole church, about whose time they became common and frequent; thus far, Mr. Somner, p. 123. See M. Paris ad. ann. 1257, p. 1258, edit. Lond.
  • 77. Besides this, he seems to have added to these manners, those of haughtiness and insolence; an instance of which he shewed most shamefully, at the solemn coronation of Adelicia, king Henry's queen, when in the midst of his celebration of masse, perceiving the king present with his crown on, he imperiously commanded him to pull it off, and could hardly be persuaded by the nobles not to force it from the king's head, because neither he nor any of his predecessors had set it thereon. The archbishop, inflexible to their entreaties, took the crown off, the king humbly and meekly submitting; and immediately afterwards, all those who stood round and had seen what had passed, petitioning the archbishop to relent and place the crown on the king's head again, he condescendingly acquiesced in it, and immediately with uplisted hands crowned the king again himself. See Parker Antiq. Brit. Eccl. p. III, 112, Eadmer, p. 137. Knyghton, col. 2379.
  • 78. See archives of Harbledown hospital.
  • 79. He was nominated to this see by the king at Gloucester, on the above least, which he then celebrated there with great solemnity with his bishops and nobles; and there at this feast he seems to have been elected, after the same manner that his predecessor had been at Windsor. See Simon Durham, col. 247. R. de Diceto, col. 504. Battely, pt. ii. p. 48.
  • 80. Simon Durham, col. 248. R. de Diceto, col. 504. Gervas, col. 1662.
  • 81. Gervas, col. 1663. S. Durham, col. 254. Leland's Coll. vol. i. p. 89.
  • 82. Regist. Priorat. Christi, Cant. 31.
  • 83. See Dover, in the History of Kent.
  • 84. Hollingshed Chron. vol. iii. p. 96. R. de Diceto, col. 505. Bromton, col. 1016, 1023. Knyghton, col. 1384.
  • 85. Steph. Birchington. Bromton, col. 1027. Gervas says, fifteen years, col. 1664.
  • 86. Gervas says, he was buried in the south cross of the nave of the church built by Lanfranc, towards the right hand as you enter near the lower portico, where was the altar of St. Benedict.
  • 87. See more of Theobald, in Bourget's Hist. of the Royal Abbey of Bec, published by Nichols, 1779, p. 25.
  • 88. See M. Paris, &c. Gervas, col. 1348, 1665. R. de Diceto, col. 507.
  • 89. Gervas, col. 1348, 1665. Though the title of legate of the apostolic see had been before conferred on his predecessor, yet this archbishop seems to have been the first who had that of Legatus Natus conferred on him, by pope Innocent II. This title was retained until archbishop Cranmer's time, when the pope's authority ceasing, a decree passed in the synod, anno 1534, that the archbishops, laying aside that title, should be stiled primates and metropolitans of all England. Parker, in Cranmer's Life.
  • 90. See Gervas, col. 1588.
  • 91. R. de Diceto, col. 509. Gervas, col. 1666.
  • 92. See Gervas, col. 1363.
  • 93. H. Hunt. l. viii. p. 395. Parker Antiq. Brit. Eccl. p. 127. Gervas, col. 1371, 1668; and others.
  • 94. Gervas, col. 1369, 1667.
  • 95. M. Paris, p. 88. Gervas, col. 1376, 1668. R. de Diceto, col. 529.
  • 96. Anglia Sacra, p. xi. p. 11.
  • 97. In 1160. Chron. Tables, col. 2255. Among the Chartæ Antiq. of the dean and chapter, in their treasury, are several seals of this archbishop appendant to them, viz. one oval; archbishop robed with pall, crozier, &c. blessing—Counterseal, a head bearded in profile; legend SIGNUM SECRETUM, marked A 69-74-84—One 31/8 by 23/8 diam. H. 145—One 3¼ by 2¼ diam. archbishop sitting robed and mitred, with crozier, blessing; legend SIGILLUM THEOBALDI DEI GRATIA CANTUARIENSIS archiep. Counterseal, as before, p. 115-122-123. One 3 by 2¼ diam. the archbishop robed, blessing, his crozier in his left hand; legend SIGILLU TEDBALDI DEI GRA ARCHIEPICCOPI CANTUARIENSIS. No counterseal. R. 1.z. 65-89.
  • 98. Gervas says, that on the demolition of the chapel, when the tomb of archbishop Theobald, which was constructed of marble, was opened, and the stone coffin was discovered; on the removing of the upper stone of it, he appeared perfect and stiff, adhering together by the bones and nerves, and a small degree of skin and flesh. The spectators were surprized, and placing him on the bier, thus carried him to the vestry; mean while, the story was divulged abroad, and many on account of his unusual preservation, stiled him St. Theobald. He was taken out of his tomb, his corpse so far uncorrupted, and his linen garments entire; and by order of the convent, he was buried before the altar of St. Mary, as above-mentioned, which stood at the east end of the north isle of the nave of this church, that is, in the old nave of it, before it was pulled down by archbishop Sudbury; since which, we have heard no more of St. Mary's altar. Probably those were his remains, which were discovered on the new paving of the choir, a few years ago, in the wall at the north east end of the present nave, as has been mentioned before, in the account of this church; but there is no knowledge left of any tomb for him here. Of late years, the marble tomb in the Trinity chapel against the south wall has been supposed to have been his, but how true, the above account shews. Weever, in his Funeral Monuments, p. 27, has given the following inscription, as having been on his tomb:—Hic jacet THEOBALDUS Cantuar. archiepiscopus ob morum placabilitatem atq; constantiam. Henry II. valde gratiosus, affabilis, veridicus, prudens, & amicus firmus, in omnes liberalis, & in pauperes munifious; qui sue tandem senectutis & languidæ vitæ pertisus anteactam vitam morti persolvit. Anno Dom. 1160 cum 22 annis sedisset. Anima ejus requiescat in pace.—Amen.—If this epitaph was ever on his tomb, that last mentioned could not belong to him.
  • 99. Col. 1367, 1666.