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BECKET, plicit obedience to the king's pleasure, which was complied Abp. Cant. with by the laity; but when the clergy were soon after conHow it was vened at London, they refused to take any oath to the prejudice of pope Alexander, and so the business miscarried. However, the emperor, and part of the German clergy, kept up the competition, and set up another antipope after Paschal's death.

Chronic. Gervas. col. 1404.


In the beginning of the next year, the kings of France A. D. 1169. and England had an interview at Mount Miral in Champagne, where they concluded a peace on Twelfth-day, the beginning of the year being then computed either from Christmas or the first of January. At this treaty Henry, the king's eldest son, did homage to the king of France for the duchy of Bretagne, and for the provinces of Anjou and Maine; and Richard, the king's second son, married the king of France's daughter, and did homage for the duchy of Aquitaine. And now those of Poictou and Bretagne, who had deserted to France, were pardoned by the king of England, and restored to favour.

The arch

throws himself at the king's feet.

About this time archbishop Becket was persuaded by the pope's agents, and several persons of quality, to make a submission to the king of England, and to cast himself entirely upon his goodness, without any terms or reservation whatsoever; and this he was advised to do at the solemn interview when the king of France was present. It seems there was a rumour spread, that the king intended to undertake the crusade, provided the affairs of the Church were once settled to his satisfaction. The prospect of this expedition made the pope press an accommodation, and the archbishop not unwilling to comply. When he came, therefore, into the presence, he threw himself at the king's feet, and was immediately taken up by his highness; and here he behaved himself in his address with great submission, entreated the king's favour for the Church of England, and attributed the past disturbances and calamity to his own failings and faults; and at last made the king the umpire of the difference between them, saving the honour of God. The king of England was enraged with this clause of reservation, and reproached the archbishop with pride, ingratitude, and misbehaviour in his chancellorship. The archbishop kept his temper, and made a decent defence,


without falling into the extremes either of disrespect or HENRY abjectness. The king of England perceiving the archbishop K. of Eng. gained upon the audience, interrupted him, and applying to the king of France, told him, "that whatever Becket did not relish, he would be sure to pronounce contrary to the honour of God; and, at this rate," says he, "he will challenge as much of my right and prerogative as he has a mind to. However, that I may not seem to prejudice the honour of religion in any particular, I shall make him this offer: I have had a great many predecessors kings of Eng- The king land, some greater and some inferior to myself; there have large offer, been likewise many great and holy men in the see of Can- but is refused. terbury; let him, therefore, but pay me the same regard, and own my authority so far as the greatest of his predecessors owned the least of mine, and I am satisfied; and, as I never forced him out of England, I give him leave to return at his pleasure; and am willing he should enjoy his archbishoprick with the same privilege in every respect, that any other prelate of that see has done before him."

makes him a

Upon this the whole audience declared aloud, that the king had gone far enough in his condescensions. And the king of France being somewhat surprised at the archbishop's silence, asked him if he pretended to greater perfection than the saints, or thought himself a better man than St. Peter? that now an honourable peace was offered, and that he wondered at his standing off. The archbishop answered, that he was willing to receive his see upon the terms of his predecessors: but as for those customs which broke in upon the canons, he could not admit them. When those who endeavoured to compose the difference perceived things tending towards a rupture, they pulled the archbishop out of the presence, pressed him to throw off his disobliging reserve, and submit to the king's terms; but the archbishop, looking upon this as a betrayal of religion, refused their advice. By this conduct he lost his interest among the English and French nobility, who all exclaimed against him bishop comas a man of pride and obstinacy; and that since he had replained of fused such reasonable terms from both the kings, he ought for his obto be thrown out of their protection, and not suffered to live in either of their dominions. In short, the meeting broke up without effect, and both the kings were very

The arch



Id. col. 1405, 1406.

He is discountenanc

ed by the king of France.

BECKET, much displeased. The king of France made the archbishop Abp. Cant. immediately sensible of his dissatisfaction: for he neither visited him as he used to do, and which was worse, he withdrew his pension, and refused to furnish his family. The archbishop being thus straitened, thought to dismiss his retinue and go a-begging: but before he acted upon this notion the king of France sent for him. The archbishop thought the business was to banish him the kingdom, in which opinion he was farther confirmed by the manner of his reception; for it seems the king looked disturbed, and did not rise to him according to custom. But after a considerable silence, and the doom was expected, the king of France, rising up hastily, bursting out into tears, and throwing himself at the archbishop's feet, accosts him with this unexpected speech:


And afterwards unexpectedly received into his favour.



"My lord, you are the only discerning person: nobody's eyes have been open upon this occasion but yours. As for who advised you to waive the mention of God's honour to humour a mortal man, we were all no better than stark blind. Father, I am sorry for what I have done : I entreat your pardon, and that you would absolve me for this misbehaviour: and as for my person and kingdom, they are both entirely at your service."

These caresses seem to have something of finesse and reason of state in them: however, the archbishop was handsomely accommodated at Sens, and fared the better for the different interests of the French and English court.

Some few days after it was reported to the king of France, that the king of England had broken the articles of the late treaty with the Poictovins and Bretons. Upon this he seemed to admire the prudence and precaution of the archbishop of Canterbury, in not resigning without the fullest and most explicit security.

The king of England, on the other side, sent the king of France word, he was very much surprised to hear the archbishop countenanced by that prince, considering his late obstinacy in refusing so reasonable an offer. The king of France told the ambassadors, that since their master insisted so much upon the ancient usages of his kingdom, he


should take the freedom to receive exiles, and especially HENRY. ecclesiasticks, into his protection, according to the custom- K. of Eng. ary practices of the kings of France.

Id. col.

The archbishop conceiving himself aggrieved, and that 1407. there was no likelihood of accommodating the difference, proceeded to censure, and excommunicated all those who had seized the revenues of the Church. This discipline reached a great many of the court: insomuch that there were scarcely any in the chapel-royal that were qualified to salute the king with the kiss of peace, according to the custom of the Church: no excommunicated person being admitted to this


mands the

The king being uneasy at seeing his courtiers thus marked The king and disabled in their character, sent two archdeacons to complains to the pope, Rome to complain of the usage: they had likewise instruc- and detions to press the pope to send legates to their master to sending of absolve those under censure, and persuade the archbishop legates. to reasonable terms; and that if this were not done, the king would be obliged to secure the honour and peace of his Ibid. government some other way.

This plain dealing made the pope apprehensive of a rupture; and that the king might either break off from the communion of the Roman Church, or at least declare for the antipope, supported by the emperor. To prevent these consequences, the pope dispatched his legates to the English court with a letter of great ceremony and compliance. The pope Amongst other things he acquaints the king, that he had writes a complying furnished the legates with full powers to put an end to the letter. controversy between his highness and the archbishop, and to determine any other difference which should happen to arise. He informs the king farther, that he had restrained the archbishop from exercising his authority to the disadvantage either of his highness, or any of his ministers. And in case the archbishop should pronounce any censure against the king or kingdom, his holiness declares the sentence null and void: and if necessity require, the king had the liberty of publishing the pope's letter; otherwise he was earnestly desired to keep it secret. And to give farther satisfaction, he orders the legates to absolve those of the king's council and court, who lay under an excommunication. Hoveden,

fol. 295.


Abp. Cant.

The legates were Gratian, the late pope Eugenius's nephew, and Vivian, an advocate in the court of Rome. These men quickly arranged, as it was thought, the difference between the king and the archbishop: the king consenting that the archbishop should return into England, and enjoy the revenues and jurisdiction of his see, saving the honour of the crown and government.


tiones, &c.
tom. 1. p.


See Records, num. 24.

The English court being now in France, Vivian had orders to go into England to absolve those who were excommunicated; and Gratian was to use his interest with archbishop Becket to complete the agreement. But the king having occasion to remove the next morning, the legates began to suspect there might be a sinister meaning in the saving clause, and refused to stand to the articles.

The king sends ano

Upon this the king sends an expostulatory letter to the ther expos- pope, in which he complains, that his holiness, when he tulatory let- dispatched his first legates, promised to furnish them with



sufficient authority to decide the difference, without having recourse to an appeal; that this commission was afterwards revoked, which made the archbishop refuse to be bound thereby.

That the late legates, when the matter was brought to a point, renounced their agreement; that they cavilled at inserting the clause for saving the king's honour, notwithstanding they had passed it before. From hence he proceeds to tell the pope, that if he continued his partiality for archbishop Becket, and did not restrain him from disturbing the kingdom by his excommunications, he should despair of justice from his holiness, and be forced to take other measures.

The differ

Not long after, the kings of France and England had anence almost other interview at the mount of Martyrs; and here, after adjusted.

other matters, they discussed the business relating to archbishop Becket. The king of England, without any clause of reservation, consented that the archbishop should enjoy his see with the privileges of his predecessors, and offered a thousand marks to defray the expense of his voyage into


England. The archbishop, who was present, replied, that he had been damaged to the value of thirty thousand marks, Gervas, col. and that, without restitution, the guilt of the injustice would


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