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fifth day before the ides of January, there was a great earthquake in England, at York, and in the neighbourhood. After the Nativity of our Lord, John, king of England, came to Lincoln, but he could not come to an agreement with the canons of the church of Lincoln as to the election of a bishop. For the king wished to make an election according to his own pleasure, and the canons also wished to be at liberty to elect; which, however, the king would not concede to them.
In the same year, in the month of January, on the day of the Conversion of Saint Paul, being the fifth day of the week, John, king of England, crossed over the river Humber, and came to Cottingham, and was entertained by William de Stuteville; and on the next day he came to Beverley, where, being induced by a sum of money so to do, he made a stay with John Le Gros, who had been excommunicated by Geoffrey, archbishop of York; and when the canons of Beverley wished to receive him with a procession and the ringing of bells, he refused to be so received, and would not allow them to be rung. On his departure from Beverley, Henry des Chapelles, a servant of Geoffrey, archbishop of York, was seized and thrown into prison, because he would not allow the king to take any of the archbishop's wines. The said king also gave orders that all the servants of the archbishop of York, wherever they might be found, should be arrested; which was accordingly done.
In the month of February, at the Purification of Saint Mary, John, king of England, and queen Isabel, his wife, were at Scarborough, from which place the king proceeded as far as the borders of his kingdom, and went through the land, and put the subjects of his kingdom to their ransom, that is to say, compelled them to pay fines ; charging them with having laid waste his forests. When he had come to Extoldesham, he heard that at Choresbridge there was a treasure concealed, on which he made people dig there; but nothing was found beyond some stones, sealed with brass, iron, and lead.
In the same year, at the vigil of the Purification of Saint Mary, William, bishop of Glasgow, landed at Dover, in England, on his return from his consecration. In the same year, immediately after the Purification of Saint Mary, Philip, bishop of Durham, crossed over between Dover and Witsand, for the purpose of going on a pilgrimage to Saint Jago.
In the same year, between the Nativity of our Lord and the
beginning of the fast, Roderic and Machdunlef were slain in Ulster, in a barn belonging to the White Monks, by the servants of John de Courcy, the said John not knowing thereof, as it is said ; and, after he heard of it, he was very sorry, and, for this crime, sent the murderers into banishment.
At Mid-Lent, John, king of England, and queen Isabel, his wife, were at York, and Geoffrey, archbishop of York, made his peace with the king on payment of a pecuniary fine, upon the understanding that, by the decision of four bishops and four barons, elected on behalf of the king and on behalf of the archbishop, amends should be made for the faults committed by either side. Here also, William de Stuteville and James de Poterne, whom the archbishop had excommunicated, received absolution from him.
In the meantime, Reginald Arundel, præcentor of the church of York, departed this life; on hearing of which, Geoffrey, archbishop of York, wished to give the præcentorship to one of his own people, but the dean and chapter. would not allow thereof, but, against the will of the archbishop, gave to Hugh Murdac the archdeaconry of Cleveland, which the said bishop had the day before given to Master Ralph de Kime, his own officer; and, when the archbishop wanted to instal him in place of the præcentor, the dean said to him, “ You have no right to instal any one, and you shall not instal him; for, by the authority of the council of Lateran, we have given away this archdeaconry." As the archbishop could not succeed according to his wishes, he proceeded to excommunicate Hugh Murdac.
In the meantime, Honorius, archdeacon of Richmond, proceeded to Rome, on account of the injuries which Geoffrey, archbishop of York, had done him; he having, contrary to the ancient dignities of the archdeaconry of Richmond and the customs thereof, laid claim to the right of institution to churches and the synodals. For the archbishop alleged that the said Honorius had resigned all these things to him, and, by his charter, confirmed the same.
This Honorius in every way contradicted, and made complaint to pope Innocent of the injuries which the archbishop of York had done him, and obtained from him a letter to the following effect:The Letter of pope Innocent to Geoffrey, archbishop of York.
“Innocent, the bishop, servant of the servants of God, to the archbishop of York, health and the Apostolic benediction.
If you recognized the authority of the Apostolic See, and the reverence due to the same, you would not presume in any way to derogate from the fulness of its power, and the privileges of its dignity, inasmuch as, you, who have been set apart by her to share her anxieties, have more frequently found her acting as your assistant in the emergencies into which, in your rashness, you had brought yourself. For you cannot excuse yourself, as you ought to have been able to do, on the ground that you were ignorant of that privilege, by which the means of appealing to the Apostolic See lie open to all who have been unjustly aggrieved, inasmuch as you yourself have sometimes appealed to our presence, and from grievances committed by you, appeal has been made to us, not once only, but many times, so that it is not possible for you to be ignorant of the said privi. lege. But, to let alone other considerations, if on this ground only, you ought to have abstained from all molestation of those subject to you, when they invoked our name, because, in many and arduous emergencies, you have both asked and obtained that favour should be shown to you by the Apostolic See. But, as the result of circumstances sufficiently shows, you neither regard our authority, nor recognize the favour that has been shown to you, nor do you pay any deference to appeals which are interposed, by those aggrieved, to the Apostolic See. For instance, when our beloved son, Master Honorius, the archdeacon of Richmond, being in full possession of the liberties of the archdeaconry of Richmond, had, together with his clerks, appealed from you to the Apostolic See, by reason of manifest grievances and various injuries, you nevertheless pronounced upon him, and some of his clerks, sentence of suspension, and upon some churches in the same archdeaconry you pronounced sentence of interdict. And, not content with this indiscretion, after he had set out on his journey for the purpose of coming to the Apostolic See, suspending some of his clerks, and laying an interdict upon their churches, and excommunicating others, (in deed only, for of right you could not,) you extorted from the rest a certain sum of money, disturbing and molesting, in many respects, his state of quiet, as also that of his clerks. Wherefore, because we neither will, nor ought to leave the excesses of such great presumption uncorrected, we do, by these Apostolic writings, enjoin and command your brotherhood, of yourself, to correct such matters as have been previously mentioned, in order that you may not compel us to be incensed against you to a greater degree, having hitherto borne with your
temerity on so many occcasions. Otherwise, know that we have, by our writings, sent word and enjoined our venerable brother, the bishop of Ely, and our dearly-beloved son, the abbat of Waltham, that they are to denounce the aforesaid sentences of excommunication, suspension, and interdict, in such manner pronounced by you, as being null and void, and, on pain of ecclesiastical censure, all power of appeal removed, to compel you to make restitution of all that which you have torted either from the clerks or from the churches of the said archdeaconry, after appeal to ourselves lawfully interposed, as also compensation for their losses sustained, and whatever they shall find left unchanged by you or your people, to the prejudice of him or of his people, they are, relying upon our authorization, to replace in its former state; and are, by means of the stringent measures before stated, to prevent you from unjustly molesting the archdeacon or his clerks, or presuming to disturb their quiet or their liberties; and you shall know for certain that it is a hard thing for you to kick against the pricks, unless you abstain from conduct of this nature, and reverently pay obedience to our mandates. If otherwise, we shall proceed still further, perchance, to lay our hands upon you more heavily than you apprehend, that so your excesses may not be laid to our charge. Given at the Lateran, on the third day before the nones of February, in the fourth year of our pontificate."
In the same year, that is to say, in the year from the Incarnation of our Lord 1201, being the third year of the reign of John, king of England, the said king, and queen Isabel, his
wife, were crowned at Canterbury, by Hubert, archbishop of Canterbury, in the cathedral church there, on Easter day, which fell on the ninth day before the calends of April, being the feast of the Annunciation of our Lord, in presence of John, archbishop of Dublin, William, bishop of London, Gilbert, bishop of Rochester, Eustace, bishop of Ely, and John, bishop of Norwich.
Shortly after Easter, the king issued commands that the earls and barons of England should, at Pentecost, be at Portsmouth, ready, with their horses and arms, to cross over with him. For the men of Poitou had prevailed against the guardians of his territories, and had laid siege to his castles, and Guarine de Clapion, the seneschal of Normandy, had, by command of his lord, John, kingof England, laid siege to the castle of Driencourt, which Richard, king of England, had given to Ralph
82 This word is omitted in the original.
À PROPHECY EXPLAINED BY THE LEARNED.
de Issoudon, count de Auche, brother of Hugh Le Brun. But, on hearing of the approach of the king of England, Philip, king of France, raised all the aforesaid sieges, before the king of England had arrived in Normandy.
In the meantime, the earls of England met to hold an interview 83 between them at Leicester, and, by common consent, sent word to the king that they would not cross over with him unless he should restore to them their rights. On this, the king, following bad advice, demanded possession of their castles, and, beginning with William d'Aubigny, demanded of him the castle of Beauvoir; on which the said William satisfied him by delivering his son as a hostage, and so retained possession of his castle.
In the same year, William de Stuteville was appointed by the king sheriff of York. In the same year, Philip, bishop of Durham, on his road to Saint Jago, was, on Easter-day, at Saint John d’Angely, where the head is kept of Saint John the Baptist, which Herod caused to be cut off in prison, and gave in a charger to the dancing-girl, the daughter of Herodias, his wife. On the same day, William, king of the Scots, was at Karel, in Scotland.
In the same year, pope Innocent the Third reigning in the eity of Rome, Saphadin, the brother of Saladin, in the Holy City of Jerusalem, Alexander,84 the fratricide, in the city of Constantinople, Leo in Armenia, Aimeric de Lusignan in the cities of Tyre and Sidon, and in Acre, and the Isle of Cyprus, Raymond being prince of the city of Antioch, Otho, brother of Henry, duke of Saxony, being, in Germany, elected emperor of the Romans, Philip reigning in France, John in England, Swere Birkebain in Norway, Canute in Denmark, William in Scotland, Gurthred in the Isle of Man, and John de Courcy in Ulster, our learned men declared that the old dragon was let loose, which is the same as the Devil and Satan, saying, “Woe, woe to those who dwell upon the earth, inasmuch as the old dragon is let loose, which is the Devil and Satan !"_according to what was said by Saint John the Apostle and Evangelist, who at the [last] Supper reclined upon the breast of the Lord, and who drank the streams of the Gospel from the sacred spring itself of the breast of the Lord: “I, John, saw an angel come down from heaven, having the keys of the bottomless pit, and
83 The first step towards gaining the Magna Charta.