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all the hostages of the king of England that he had in his possession to be set at liberty, and forgave the sum of money owing to him from the king of England. After his decease, his heir, with some of the nobles, opposed the things beforementioned being done; on which, the clergy would on no account allow the body of the duke to be buried : consequently, his body was kept above ground for eight days, until all the hostages given by the king of England had been set at liberty; some of whom, on their coming to England, related all these things as what they had seen and heard. They also asserted that, at their departure, there was produced and offered to them, four thousand marks and more, money belonging to the king of England, to be brought back; but that, on account of the perils of the journey, they had not dared on any account to take charge thereof.
All these things were done by God, that He might abase the haughty, and manifest His power before mortals; and when He pursues with His deserved vengeance the injuries done to Him and His, we are to believe that the same has happened not only for our sakes, but also to assert His power; nor must we boastfully ascribe to ourselves what has been wrought solely by the mercy of the Lord. In the meantime, when Baldwin de Bethune had come near the territories of the said duke of Austria, and heard of his death, he did not proceed any further, but returned to the king of England, and brought back the ladies before-named, and restored them to the king.
In the same year, Walter, archbishop of Rouen, gave to Philip, king of France, one thousand pounds of money Anjouin for the ransom of his lands, which the said king of France had taken possession of during the war; and, at the same time, Robert, earl of Leicester, offered to Philip, king of France, for his ransom, one thousand pounds sterling, and to release him from all claim for ever, by himself and his heirs, to the castle of Passy with all its appurtenances, and to ask a confirmation of the same from our lord the pope, and a confirmation from the king of England. But, as there was not yet an end of the war between himself and the king of England, he put off for the present the consideration of the offers which the earl of Leicester had made him.
In the same year, in the month of January, being the Lord's Day next after the octave of the Epiphany, Hugh, bishop of Lincoln, Master Winmer, archdeacon of Northampton, and Hugh, prior of Pontefract, to whom our lord the pope, Ce
lestinus, had entrusted the charge of enquiring into the excesses of which Geoffrey, archbishop of York, was accused by his canons of the church of York before the and cardinals, arrived at York, and proceeded in conformity with the mandate of our lord the pope; which was to the following effect: The Letter of pope Celestinus, directing an inquisition to be
made into the alleged excesses of the archbishop of York. “Celestinus, the bishop, servant of the servants of God, to his venerable brother, the bishop of Lincoln, and his dearly beloved sons, the archdeacon of Northampton, and the prior of Pontefract, greeting. Jesus Christ, the mediator between God and man, whose
foresight in His ordinances is not deceived, has willed that the source of the discipline of the whole Church, and the direction of the holy Church of Rome should be reserved for Himself, and that all other (churches] should also be subject to His government and supervision : that so, the plenitude of power being expressly reserved unto Kim, it may belong to Him to correct the excesses also of other churches], and, with the authority of the Apostolic sway, approve of what is done in a manner deserving of praise. Wherefore, inasmuch as by Divine providence we have been chosen to the governance thereof, it is our wish so to love our brethren and fellow-bishops, with due considerateness and discretion, that we may not seem to prefer their affection and friendship to the duties unto which we are called ; and the more especially, as love has its limits, and each is bound to love the man, but not the errors of the man. And whereas, it has come to our hearing, from the information of the clergy and the chapter of the church of York, and the testimony of our dearly beloved sons Robert of York, and Roger of Selby, and of eleven other abbats of the Præmonstratensian order, seems manifestly to declare the same, that our venerable brother, Geoffrey, the archbishop of York, disregarding the oaths of the office entrusted to him, being uselessly engaged in hunting, hawking, and other military pursuits, has given neither hand nor thought since his promotion to the ordination of the clergy, the dedication of churches, or the celebrations of synods, nor yet has pronounced a blessing upon any abbat, although with sufficient indiscretion he has accustomed his tongue at his own pleasure to pronounce maledictions against and to excommunicate both clerks and abbats;
the liberties and approved customs of his church he nullifies and subverts ; appeals which are wont to be the refuge of the oppressed, he has, to the injury of the Roman See, brought into contempt. Many, because they have made appeals to ourselves, he has ordered to be thrown into prison and placed in irons; the beneficed clergy of his church, after appeal made to us, he has spoiled of honors and benefices, and some of the canons, despising their appeal, he had subjected to excommunication. In his presence, the privileges of the Roman Pontiffs are utterly deprived of all authority; and he, who otherwise would probably have been safe by pleading our privileges in his presence, loses the benefit of the protection he thereby hoped to gain. When it so happens that any one has been restored to a church or possession by the judges de legated by our authority, the person by whom the said judgment is to be put in execution, he immediately looks upon as an enemy
Indeed, many so restored, he has reduced to destitution; and entering their churches by force, by means of his servants, is said to have broken down the doors of the churches, and to have by violent means expelled them. Many persons also he has perniciously made to incur the danger of perjury, withdrawing them by means of violent compulsion from the obedience which by oath they had canonically promised his archdeacons to observe. Still more, attacking the greater church with a multitude of armed men, he has caused the doors of the chapter-house to be broken open by force and carried away; the property of the canons, and that of many other persons who had deposited their possessions in the church as in a treasury, he has caused by violence to be withheld from them; respecting all which matters, the chapter of York has made appeal to our presence. We have also understood from the testimony of the persons before-named, that sometimes when churches have been vacant, he has not admitted fit and proper persons when presented by those to whom the presentation belongs, but has given the same to either youths or persons of bad character, thus discharging the duty both of him who presents and of him who institutes; or else at his own sole will he causes them to be vacated, in order that their revenues may be applied to his own use, and that which was intended for the sustenance of some worthy clerk, he does not hesitate to retain in his own hands. They
26 “ Ut” is probably a misprint for “aut.
have also stated in addition, that, whereas spiritual gifts ought to be bestowed without reward and without corruptness, frequently, when he gives a benefice, he either splits it into two parts, contrary to the canonical statutes of the church, or else retains upon it a new and unusual charge; many, too, who have been excommunicated or suspended, he has absolved, through the intervention of nothing else than money. In his sight, religious and honest men are despised and contemned; while low and suspected persons easily obtain his familiar acquaintanceship and favour. Wherefore, if such is his mode of life, and among such is his conversation, it is to be feared lest he may prove to the flock entrusted to his charge, rather a rock of offence and a stumbling-block, than an example of erudition, or a solace or protection against spiritual wickedness. Wherefore, inasmuch as the things that have been here stated, demand the care of an enquiry, we have thought proper to entrust to your discretion, in which we have full confidence, the enquiry into these matters, giving you, by these Apostolic writings, our commands forthwith to repair to the church of York, and, convoking the abbats, priors, and other ecclesiastical persons of the diocese of York, to make diligent enquiry whether he has thus negligently and perniciously treated the church and province of York. And if, upon the matters above stated, lawful accusers shall come forward, you are to hear what they shall think proper to allege against the aforesaid archbishop, and, after diligently hearing and learning the same, to make it your care to transmit to us their attestation, enclosed under your seals, assigning to the parties a fitting time within which, being sufficiently instructed thereon, they are to appear at the Apostolic See, there to receive, the Lord so providing, what is directed by the canons of the Church. If, however, accusers shall not be forthcoming, and if public report shall be in his disfavour, then you are, by our authority, to call upon him to clear himself by (the oaths of ] three bishops and as many abbats, all obstacle of appeal removed. And if he shall chance to make any default therein, you are to cause him to be suspended from his archiepiscopal duties and administration, and to appear in the Apostolical presence, to the end that, the Lord instructing him, he may there be taught how it befits him, and those like him, to minister in the house of the Lord. And if the said archbishop shall think fit to allege
anything against them, you are to hear the same as well, and to transmit it to us, enclosed under your seals, in order that a determination may, in due conformity with the canons, be come to thereon. Moreover, if the said archbishop shall, for the purpose of eluding our mandate, before your citation shall reach him, have interposed an appeal, or have commenced his journey on his way to the Apostolic See, you are to appoint him a time within three months, upon which he is to be bound, in his own person, to appear in our presence. And if he shall fail so to do, you shall, by our authority, from that period, pronounce him suspended from all pontifical duties, and from the administration of the archbishopric, all power of appeal set aside. And if you shall be unable all of you to take part in carrying out these instructions, then
carry out the same. Given at Saint Peter's, at Rome, on the sixth day before the ides of June, in the fourth year of our pontificate.”
Accordingly, upon the authority of these letters, the said bishop of Lincoln and his colleagues came to York for the purpose of making the said enquiry, and, having summoned before them in the cathedral church, the abbats, priors, and ecclesiasti. cal personages of the diocese of York, proceeded, according to the tenor of this Apostolic mandate, to make diligent enquiry upon all the heads which were contained in the said writing. Many abbats, priors and other persons of good character, accused the said archbishop on all the above heads, in presence of the clerk and people of the household of the said archbishop, who excused him as far as they could, and said that before their citation the said archbishop had made an appeal, and had set out on his road to the Supreme Pontiff: after hearing whom, the said bishop of Lincoln and his colleagues, attentively hearing the accusations of the adversaries of the archbishop of York, and having committed the same to writing with all care, had the same transmitted to the Supreme Pontiff
, enclosed under the testimony of their seals, assigning the archbishop a time within three months, in obedience to the precept of the Supreme Pontiff; and of their own kindness they gave him an additional term of six weeks, within which he was personally to appear in the Apostolical presence: adding, that if he should not do so, he was to know that he was from thenceforth suspended from all pontifical duties by the Apostolic authority, as also from the administration of the archbishopric.
They also assigned to the adversaries of the archbishop a time at the