The Registers of Bishop Henry Burghersh 1320-1342

The Registers of Bishop Henry Burghersh 1320-1342

III: Memoranda Register: Dispensations for Study cum ex eo, Licences for Non-Residence, Testamentary Business, Letters Dimissory, Appointment of Penitentiaries

Edited by Nicholas Bennett


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Lincoln Record Society



Newly-edited documents, showing the activity and ability of one of the foremost clergymen at the time.
The abilities of Henry Burghersh as an administrator were recognised in his tenure of some of the highest offices in the government of King Edward III: Treasurer, Chancellor, and subsequently a diplomatic envoy overseas. The register of his memoranda as bishop of Lincoln from 1320 to 1340 reveals the exercise of his talent in an ecclesiastical sphere. The huge quantity of business relating to the clergy and people of the most populous diocese in the country prompted the division of the register into classified sections, of which the first five are included here. There are dispensations under the papal constitution Cum ex eo, permitting rectors of parishes to be absent from their duties while studying at a university. There are licences allowing incumbents to be non-resident for other reasons: to go on pilgrimage, to seek recreation, or to serve in the household of a great lord. There are commissions dealing with testamentary business, to grant probate, audit the accounts of executors, or protect the interests of minors. Among these are six copies of wills, the earliest to be preserved in the Lincoln registers, providing a wealth of incidental detail of medieval life. There is a lengthy series of letters dimissory, permitting clerks from the diocese to be ordained by bishops elsewhere. A short section interpolated into this deals with the issue of licences granted to those permitted to hear confessions, an issue that aroused not a little ill-feeling between the friars and the secular clergy.
The documents here are presented with elucidatory notes and other material.

Dr Nicholas Bennett is Vice-Chancellor and Librarian of Lincoln Cathedral.


September 2011
514 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
Publications of the Lincoln Record Society
ISBN: 9780901503930
Format: Hardback
Lincoln Record Society
BISAC HIS037010, REL108020
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Table of Contents

The Text
Dispensations under the Constitution Cum ex eo
Licences for absence to visit Rome, stare in obsequiis, or for any other cause
Testamentary business
Letters dimissory to unbeneficed clerks
Appointment of penitentiaries
Letters dimissory to unbeneficed clerks [continued]

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