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Encyclopedia > William Greenfield
Archbishop Greenfield's monument at York Cathedral
Archbishop Greenfield's monument at York Cathedral

William Greenfield (died 6 December 1315) served as both the Lord Chancellor of England and the Archbishop of York. He was also known as William of Greenfield. Image File history File links GreenfieldMonument. ... Image File history File links GreenfieldMonument. ... December 6 is the 340th day (341st on leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events August 13 - Louis X of France marries Clemence dAnjou. ... This article or section needs a complete rewrite for the reasons listed on the talk page. ... Arms of the Archbishop of York The Archbishop of York, Primate of England, is the metropolitan bishop of the Province of York, and is the junior of the two archbishops of the Church of England, after the Archbishop of Canterbury. ...

Contents


His Life

Greenfield was born in the eponymous Lincolnshire hamlet of Greenfield - but the date of his birth is now lost but we do know that he was related to a predecessor in the See, Archbishop Giffard - and it was Giffard that paid for the young Greenfield's Oxford education. in the year 1269 Giffard instructed that his bailiff at Churchdown (near Gloucester), "...to pay to Roger the miller of Oxford twenty shillings, for our kinsman William of Greenfield while he is studying there, because it would be difficult for us to send the money to him on account of the perils of the ways". After Oxford Greenfield studied in Paris, where he became a doctor of both civil and canon law. Giffard's brother was Bishop Godfrey Gifford - the Bishop of Worcester. A detail of the engraving of Daniel Maclises 1842 painting The Play-scene in Hamlet, portraying the moment when the guilt of Claudius is revealed. ... A see (from the Latin word sedem, meaning seat) is the throne (cathedra) of a bishop. ... Walter Giffard (died April 1279), chancellor of England and archbishop of York, was a son of Hugh Giffard of Boyton, Wiltshire, and after serving as canon and archdeacon of Wells, was chosen bishop of Bath and Wells in May 1264. ... The University of Oxford, located in the city of Oxford in England, is the oldest university in the English-speaking world. ... Giffards Arms Godfrey Giffard, (Born circa 1235?-Died 1302) Chancellor of England and Bishop of Worcester. ... The Bishop of Worcester controls the see of Worcester and has his seat in Worcester Cathedral. ...


Greenfield was the first of a number of Archbishops who ruled the northern English Archiepiscopal diocese as well as being significant statesmen during the fourteenth century.


Before being made Archbishop he was variously:

  • Dean of Chichester,
  • Rector of Stratford-upon-Avon
  • Prebend of Ripon - where his stall was for a time sequestrated, on account of his non-residence - as at this time he was mainly occupied on affairs of state as a clerk and counsellor to Edward I
  • Temporal Chancellor of Durham
  • Chancellor of England (1302-1305). On 30 September 1302 Greenfield received the custody of the great seal as chancellor at St. Radegund's (near Dover). During his absence in France, one Adam of Osgodby, then the Master of the Rolls, acted as his substitute.
  • Employed in the service of the State by King Edward I from 1290 onwards.

In religious terminology, a dean is a title accorded to persons holding cartain positions of authority within a religious heirarchy. ... Chichester is a small city in the south of England, in the county of West Sussex, with a population of about 25,000. ... The word rector (ruler, from the Latin regere) has a number of different meanings. ... Stratford-upon-Avon Stratford-upon-Avon is a town in Warwickshire, England. ... A prebendary is a post connected to a cathedral or collegiate church and is a type of canon. ... Ripon is a small cathedral city in the Harrogate borough of North Yorkshire, England, 214 miles NNW from London. ... Durham (IPA: locally, in RP) is a small city and main settlement of the City of Durham district of County Durham in North East England. ... The Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain, or Lord Chancellor and in former times Chancellor of England, is one of the most senior and important functionaries in the government of the United Kingdom. ... The Master of the Rolls is the third most senior judge of England, the Lord Chancellor of Great Britain traditionally being first and the Lord Chief Justice second. ...

Election to the See of York

Greenfield was elected by the Chapter of York on the 4th December 1304; however there was delay in his consecration due to the death of Pope Benedict X; when finally consecrated it was by Clement V at Lyons, on the 30th January 1306. Greenfield was strongly commended to the pope and cardinals by the King, who told them of his "...wisdom in council, industry, literary knowledge, and usefulness to the state".


Before his appointment Greenfield had lived for some time resident in Rome where the cost of his living and the procuring of the Papal assent were very heavy leaving Greenfield obliged to borrow money and to remark, "All the money lenders were ecclesiastics. The Jews had disappeared some years before and the greater part of the treasure of the country was now stored away in the chests of some wealthy clerk or in the coffers of the monastery." He was forced to raise money to pay his debts from the company of the Bellardi of Lucca. In an attempt to free himself from the Italian money lenders he exacted aids from the clergy, and borrowed from many church dignitaries in the north of England.


As a result of the ongoing war with Scotland York became almost the de facto capital of England, with Parliament being held there in 1298,9 and 1300. The Courts of Justice were also moved to York and did not return to London for seven years.


When the attack on the Templars in England began in 1308 Greenfield was favourable to them and so refused to take any part in actions against them within the province of Canterbury; he was however present at the Great Council of Vienne in 1312, when Pope Clement V issued an edict dissolving the Order of the Templars. The Seal of the Knights — the two riders have been interpreted as a sign of poverty or the duality of monk/soldier. ... Canterbury is a cathedral city in east Kent in South East England and is the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Primate of All England and nominal head of the Anglican Communion. ... This article is about the French département. ...


Greenfield died at his palace of Cawood, on the 6th December 1315, and was buried in the eastern part of the north transept of York Minster, where his monument still remains. A gold ring with a ruby was taken from his finger when in 1735 his tomb was opened; these memontoes have been preserved by the Cathedral authorities.


See also

  • Arthington Priory - which details some dealings that Greenfield had with the Priory and in particularly with a rowdy element amongst the nuns there!
Preceded by:
John Langton
Lord Chancellor
1302–1305
Succeeded by:
William Hamilton
Preceded by:
Thomas of Corbridge
Archbishop of York
1306–1315
Succeeded by:
See vacant for two years, then William Melton

The Priory (or rather Nunnery) of Arthington, in the Yorkshire village of Arthington was established by Peter de Arthington; nothing remains of the Priory today. ... John Langton (died 1337), chancellor of England and bishop of Chichester, was a clerk in the royal chancery, and became chancellor in 1292. ... This article or section needs a complete rewrite for the reasons listed on the talk page. ... Thomas of Corbridge was Archbishop of York between 1300-1304. ... Arms of the Archbishop of York The Archbishop of York, Primate of England, is the metropolitan bishop of the Province of York, and is the junior of the two archbishops of the Church of England, after the Archbishop of Canterbury. ... William Melton (died April 5, 1340) was the 43rd Archbishop of York (1317 - 1340). ...

Sources

  • Dictionary of National Biography
  • Raine's "Fasti Eboracenses"
  • Thomas Stubbs "Life of Greenfield" and "Chronicles of Edward I and Edward II"
  • Brittania Biographies

  Results from FactBites:
 
William Melton - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (657 words)
William Melton (died April 5, 1340) was the 43rd Archbishop of York (1317–1340).
He was elected by the Chapter of York within a month of Archbishop Greenfield's death, in December 1315, but difficulties arose and he was not consecrated until September 1317, at Avignon by Pope John XXII.
His heir was his nephew, William Melton Junior of Aston, near Sheffield, who was the progenitor of one of the most powerful knightly families in the south of Yorkshire.
Britannia Biographies: William Greenfield, Archbishop of York (632 words)
William Greenfield was the first of a succession of very distinguished prelates who presided over the northern English Archiepiscopal diocese and were great English statesmen, throughout the fourteenth century.
Greenfield was elected by the Chapter of York on 4th December 1304; but in consequence of the death of the Pope, Benedict X, some time elapsed before his consecration.
Greenfield died at his palace of Cawood, on 6th December 1315, and was buried in the north transept of York Minster, where his monument remains.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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