Thursday, 29 January 2015

Pont l'Évêque, Roger de (c.1115–1181),

Pont l'Évêque, Roger de (c.1115–1181)
Archbishop of York


Oxford DNB article
Frank Barlow, ‘Pont l'Évêque, Roger de (c.1115–1181)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004

David Knowles (1951). The Episcopal Colleagues of Archbishop Thomas Becket. Cambridge University Press. pp. 136–. ISBN 978-0-521-05493-5.

Michael Staunton (2001). The Lives of Thomas Becket. Manchester University Press. pp. 188–. ISBN 978-0-7190-5455-6.

Decima Langworthy Douie (1960). Archbishop Geoffrey Plantagenet and the Chapter of York. Borthwick Publications. pp. 5–. ISBN 978-0-900701-18-4.

England Under the Angevin Kings. Ardent Media. pp. 368–.

Speculum, Vol. 3, No. 1 (Jan., 1928), pp. 81-84

Guy, John (5 April 2012). Thomas Becket: Warrior, Priest, Rebel, Victim: A 900-Year-Old Story Retold. Penguin Books Limited. pp. 380–. ISBN 978-0-14-193328-3.

'List 1: Archbishops', in Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066-1300: Volume 6, York, ed. Diana E Greenway (London, 1999),


David Michael Smith; Marie Lovatt (2000). English Episcopal Acta: York, 1154-1181. British Academy. ISBN 978-0-19-726210-8.

Roger, bishop of Worcester (d. 1179)

Roger, bishop of Worcester, was a cousin of king Henry II. He was son of  Robert, 1st Earl of Gloucester the illegitimate son of Henry I, half brother of Empress Mathilda, who was her principal military supporter in England during the Anarchy. Henry owed his throne to Roger's father.

Roger became a priest and was ordained by Becket as Bishop of Worcester. He was very loyal to Becket's cause which led the king to denounce him as a ‘capital enemy of the kingdom and the commonwealth.


Roger (d.1179) (DNB00) - Wikisource

Burton, E. (1912). Roger, Bishop of Worcester. In The Catholic Encyclopedia.

Mary Gwendolen Cheney (1980). Roger, Bishop of Worcester: 1164-1179. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-821879-1.

Gourde, Leo T. (1943), "An Annotated Translation of the Life of St. Thomas Becket by William Fitzstephen" (Part  One)

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2. History or the contest between Thomas à Becket, archbishop of Canterbury, and Henry II, king of England, chiefly consisting of translations of contemporary letters. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 191–.

Becket's request to king Henry for his safe conduct p. 92

Denouncement by Henry
Materials, Volume 6 p. 63
MTB 252 John of Salisbury to Bartholemew bishop of Exeter
Materials for the history of Thomas Becket, Epistola 252
Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 191–.

Roger's Mission for Becket, May 1170

Extract from William fitzStephen Life of Thomas Becket
Section 102
Discourse between Henry and the bishop of Worcester, near Falaise

MTB 649 CTB 286 Letter May 1170 Thomas Becket to Roger, bishop  of Worcester

Roger, Bishop of Worcester, 1164-1179 by Mary G. Cheney
Robert B. Patterson
Vol. 57, No. 4 (Oct., 1982), pp. 872-873

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Inquest of Sheriffs, 1170

In order to put an end to local and provincial corruption in 1170 King Henry II ordered a full investigation into the activities of the sheriffs of all the counties in England, and the bailiffs in the royal desmesnes .  There had been many complaints about the bailiffs. After the Inquest was complete a large number of sheriffs were replaced with more dependable agents: of course the new replacements were beholden to the king personally for their positions. In a real sense by this act King Henry was, once more, centralising his power and control over his kingdom. Others have seen this act as awarding those worthy of merit a chance of getting a position in the administration and governance of the kingdom. Henry was perhaps demonstrating by these appointments that loyalty and usefulness was far more important to him, and that merit could definitely overcome a lack of blue blood. 


James J. Spigelman (2004). Becket & Henry: The Becket Lectures. James Spigelman. pp. 210–. ISBN 978-0-646-43477-3.

George Lyttelton (1767). The History of the Life of King Henry the Second Book II. W. Sandby. p. 165.

Kate Norgate (1887) England Under the Angevin Kings Volume 2 pp. 126-

M. T. Clanchy (2012). From Memory to Written Record: England 1066 - 1307. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 101–. ISBN 978-1-118-29598-4.

The Constitutional History of Medieval England: From the English Settlement to 1485
By J. E. A. Jolliffe
(Jolliffe, 1937, p. 210)

David Charles Douglas; George William Greenaway (28 December 1995). English Historical Documents, 1042-1189. Psychology Press. pp. 482–. ISBN 978-0-415-14367-7. EHD 47
David Charles Douglas; George William Greenaway (28 December 1995). English Historical Documents, 1042-1189. Psychology Press. pp. 484–. ISBN 978-0-415-14367-7. EHD 48

The Governance of Mediaeval England from the Conquest to Magna Carta
By H. G. Richardson; G. O. Sayles
(Richardson & Sayles, 1963, p. 201)

The First Century of English Feudalism, 1066-1166: Being the Ford Lectures Delivered in the University of Oxford in Hilary Term 1929
By F. M. Stenton
(Stenton, 1932, p. 80)

Sanctuary and Crime in the Middle Ages, 400-1500
By Karl Shoemaker
(Shoemaker, 2011, p. 118)

Kings, Courts and Monarchy
By Harold Nicolson
 (Nicolson, 1962, p. 161)

Sunday, 18 January 2015

William, Archbishop of Sens

AKA Guillaume de Blois , Guillaume aux Blanches Mains, William of the White Hands, or Guillaume de Champagne.

Bishop of Chartres, 1165
Archbishop of Sens, 1169
Archbishop of Reims, 1175
Cardinal: Created cardinal bishop of Albano March 1179

First Minister of State of France. Peer of the French Realm
William of the White Hands was one of Becket's most faithful admirers. Rumours spread that William was to return invested in full legatine powers—William was not only Becket's friend, but also the head of the French hierarchy.

Guillaume aux Blanches Mains (1168–1176), son of Thibaud II, Count of Champagne, uncle of king Philip Augustus and first cousin of Henry II of France, who in 1172 in the name of Pope Alexander III placed the Kingdom of England under an interdict and in 1176 became Archbishop of Reims

François Du Chesne (1660). Histoire de tous les cardinaux françois de naissance  Guillaume de Champagne. pp. 165–.

Friday, 16 January 2015

The Four Enemies of the Martyr

Four persons were particularly hated by Becket. Three of them were at some time or other excommunicated by him. All were in the service of Henry II, in his Curia Regis or acted as his personal representatives, as envoys and agents to the Papal Curia or to the courts of Louis VII of France, or the Holy Roman Emperor. After Becket's murder all were well rewarded in later life by Henry II with a bishopric for their services in his cause against Becket and the Church. They were

John of Oxford
Richard of Ilchester
Geoffrey Ridel
Reginald Fitz Jocelin

King Henry's determination to promote them to bishops began after the Coronation of the Young King, the crowning of Henry's eldest son, because it had gone ahead against the pope's strict orders not to do so whilst Becket was in exile. This allowed the Pope to authorise Becket to lay an interdict on Henry's territories as punishment. And the threat and potential consequences of this interdict forced Henry to negotiate seriously with Becket. Henry's plans to reward the four with bishoprics probably along with Becket's excommunications/suspensions of the three (arch)bishops of York, London and Salisbury, his principal episcopal enemies, in 1170 were among the events which precipitated the final crisis that led to Becket's murder.

James J. Spigelman (2004). Becket & Henry: The Becket Lectures. James Spigelman. pp. 231–. ISBN 978-0-646-43477-3.

During Becket's absence in exile five Bishopric's had fallen vacant [ Bath and Wells, Lincoln, ] from which Henry was extracting a huge revenue. The right of electing a bishop or archbishop was, according to ecclesiastical Canon Law, anciently and exclusively in the gift of the priors and chapters of the cathedrals; this practice was confirmed by the royal concessions of kings, by bulls of the several popes, and by custom, Nevertheless the Norman and Plantagenet kings frequently usurped this right, frequently imposing their own candidate on the chapter. It was surely better for Henry to have Becket in England under his direct control rather than causing trouble on the Continent.

Christopher Robert Cheney (1956). From Becket to Langton: English Church Government, 1170-1213. Manchester University Press. pp. 20–.
How was the ideal bishop to be found? The Gregorian reformers of the eleventh and twelfth centuries replied: by the process of canonical election by the cathedral chapter - free election - subject always to examination of the elect by higher ecclesiastical authority. Whether free elections were best adapted to produce bishops able to resist the temptations of office and involvement in civil affairs is a nice but hypothetical point. In fact, England under the first Angevin kings seldom saw an election conducted with strict regard for the canons. Normally the king controlled it. It was exceptional for a bishop-elect to get possession of a see in England or Wales if Henry II or Richard or John preferred another candidate. The danger of this, as strict churchmen saw it, was that the king would choose a prelate solely for secular qualities. The suspicion was not wholly justified.

Vacant Sees

Technically the See of Canterbury became "vacant" [from the king's point of view] after Becket went into exile late 1164.  It became fully vacant after his murder December 29th 1170.

After Becket fled to France any see or abbacy which fell vacant and required consultation with him to fill it remained vacant. Vacant sees were financially beneficial to the king as he could fill the coffers of his treasury with the revenues deriving from them.

St Asaph became vacant in 1165
Bath (& Wells) became vacant in 1166

Hereford became vacant in 1167
Ely became vacant in 1169
Chichester became vacant in 1169
Winchester became vacant in  1171
Norwich became vacant  in 1174.

King Henry was not in a hurry to have any of these posts filled until he probably realised that if and when Becket returned to England that one of Becket's first acts upon landing back home might be to set in motion elections for that purpose. If they were to be filled Henry wanted men of his own choosing, men who would be favorable and compliant towards his policies.


George Lord Lyttelton (1771). The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived ... 2. Ed. - London, Sandby 1767-1771. Sandby. pp. 3–.

Frank Barlow (1990). Thomas Becket. Chapter 10 - The Road to Glory: University of California Press. pp. 198–. ISBN 978-0-520-07175-9.

Anne Duggan (2004). Thomas Becket. Chapter 8 - A Hollow Peace and After: Bloomsbury USA. pp. ISBN 978-0-340-74137-5.

Everett U. Crosby (2013). The King's Bishops: The Politics of Patronage in England and Normandy, 1066-1216. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 18–. ISBN 978-1-137-35212-5.

Everett U. Crosby (2013). The King's Bishops: The Politics of Patronage in England and Normandy, 1066-1216. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 250–. ISBN 978-1-137-35212-5. 

Christopher Harper-Bill; Nicholas Vincent (2007). Henry II: New Interpretations. Boydell Press. pp. 180–. ISBN 978-1-84383-340-6.

Becket controversy - Wikipedia, End of dispute 

Reginald Allen Brown (1983). Anglo-Norman Studies: Proceedings of the Battle Conference 1982. David Walker - Crown and Episcopacy under the Normans and Angevins: Boydell & Brewer. pp. 220–. ISBN 978-0-85115-178-6.

The Court and Household of King Henry II, 1154-1189 
Lally, J. 
University of Liverpool 1970

Geoffrey Ridel

Geoffrey Ridel, archdeacon of Canterbury. Given the epithet The Archdiabolus. appointed by Henry to this post after Becket was forced to resign it, after his elevation to archbishop in 1163. Later became bishop of Ely.

An especial favorite of Henry II's, in 1162, following Becket's resignation from his post as Chancellor Becket having been elevated to Archbishop, Geoffrey Ridel was appointed by Henry II to become his acting chancellor. Perhaps to spite Becket he also made him archdeacon of Canterbury, early in 1163, as at the king's direct insistence, Becket had been forced to resign that post too. Both these offices Ridel held until his "election" as bishop of Ely in 1173.

On April 13 1169, Palm Sunday, Becket was at Clairvaux. There he announced, in addition to formally excommunicating Gilbert Foliot the Bishop of London, that he intended to excommunicate Geoffrey Ridel and Richard of Ilchester on Ascension Day as well

This he certified in a letter to the clergy of London

Saint Thomas ; John Allen Giles (1846). Epistolae Sancti Thomae Cantuariensis
Epistolae Sancti Thomae Cantuariensis, Volume 1 - Epistola CXXXVII: Apud Whittaker et socios. pp. 298–.

CTB 195
MTB 488
Vestram latere non debet prudentiam

Chretien Lupus(1728). Epistolae et vita D. Thomae martyris et Archi-episcopi Cantuariensis  Epistola XLIII: prostant apud Jo. Baptistam Albritium q. Hieron. et Sebastianum Coleti. pp. 265–.

James Craigie Robertson. Materials for the History of Thomas Becket, Volume 3 William Fitzstephen  Cambridge University Press. pp. 130–. ISBN 978-1-108-04927-6.

He was excommunicated by Becket on Ascension day 1169.

Ridel was temporarily released from this sentence by the papal nuncios Vivian and Gratian at Bur-le-Roi on 1 September 1169.

Paul de Rapin-Thoyras; Thomas Rymer; Jean Le Clerc; Stephen Whatley, Michael Van der Gucht (1727). Acta regia  Volume 4 Mr Rymer's Foedera  Letter Henry II to Pope Alexander 1169: Printed for J. and J. Knapton. pp. 350–.

Richard Barber (2003). Henry Plantagenet. Boydell Press. pp. 137–. ISBN 978-0-85115-993-5.

The sentence was reimposed by Becket in October 1169, however, following the failure of the negotiations for Becket's reconciliation with Henry II, which was attributed in part to Ridel's malign influence.


Geoffrey Ridel (bishop of Ely) - Wikipedia,,_Geoffrey_(d.1189)_(DNB00)

Geoffrey Ridel

Ridel, Geoffrey (d. 1189), administrator and bishop of Ely
Oxford DNB

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Reginald Fitz Jocelin

Reginald Fitz Jocelin, named "The Lombard" (Lombardus) by Herbert of Bosham, was the son of Jocelin de Bohun, bishop of Salisbury. Much given to hawking, in early life he was one of the many friends of Thomas Becket and became his household clerk when Becket became archbishop. In June 1164 Reginald served Becket's interests in France at both the court of the French King, Louis VII, and also at the papal Curia. But by 1167, following Becket's excommunication of his father, Joscelin de Bohun, whom he greatly esteemed, he changed sides and started serving King Henry II instead.  As archdeacon of Salisbury [an appointment which was probably arranged for him by his father] he was sent by King Henry in 1167 to the Pope and on several other occasions to protest against Becket's actions. As a skilled diplomat he gained great favour with the Pope and became Henry's favorite envoy. On the other hand by these interventions he gained Becket's huge wrath for his interference with his campaign for ecclesiastical freedom. On one occasion in his displeasure Becket described him as "that offspring of fornication, that enemy to the peace of the Church, that traitor." [Warren Henry II p. 535]

During the progress of the quarrel between Henry II and Archbishop Thomas the archbishop had excommunicated Reginald's father, the Bishop of Salisbury. Reginald, who had a strong affection for his father, wholly withdrew from the archbishop, and became one of his most dangerous and outspoken opponents.

Reginalf fitzJocelin, archdeacon of Salisbury together with Clarembald abbot-elect of St. Augustine's Canterbury they were instrumental in gaining from the Pope Becket's suspension in 1168

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 338–.

After the murder of  Becket he was sent in 1171 to plead the king's innocence before the pope.


Fitzjocelin, Reginald (DNB00) - Wikisource


John Gough Nichols (1873). The Herald and GenealogistJoscelin de Bohun [and the de Bohun Family]: Nichols. pp. 303–.

John Gough Nichols (1873). The Herald and GenealogistReginald de Bohun: Nichols. pp. 305–.

Stephen Hyde Cassan (1829). Lives of the Bishops of Bath. pp. 105–.

W. H. Rich Jones (2012). Vetus Registrum Sarisberiense Cambridge University Press. pp. 71–. ISBN 978-1-108-05151-4.

Thomas Cox; Anthony Hall; Robert Morden (1738). Nottinghamshire - Somersetshire. and sold. pp. 841–.

 R. Allen Brown; Reginald Allen Brown (1983). Anglo-Norman Studies: Proceedings of the Battle Conference 1982. Boydell & Brewer. pp. 221–. ISBN 978-0-85115-178-6.

William Stubbs  The Constitutional History of England, in Its Origin and Development. Cambridge University Press. pp. 305–. ISBN 978-1-108-03631-3.

'Archdeacons: Wiltshire,' in Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066-1300: Volume 4, Salisbury, ed. Diana E Greenway, 33-37

Jesse Russel; Ronald Cohn ( 2013). Reginald Fitz Jocelin. Book on Demand. ISBN 978-5-510-59476-8.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.   J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 256–.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 283–.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 338–.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 432–4.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 437–8.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 447–.

Richard Hurrell Froude; James Bowling Mozley (1839). Remains of the Late Reverend Richard Hurrell Froude: v. 2.. J. G. & F. Rivington. pp. 483–.

John D. Cotts (2009). The Clerical Dilemma: Peter of Blois and Literate Culture in the Twelfth Century. CUA Press. pp. 29–. ISBN 978-0-8132-1676-8.

John D. Cotts (2009). The Clerical Dilemma: Peter of Blois and Literate Culture in the Twelfth Century. CUA Press. pp. 82–. ISBN 978-0-8132-1676-8. 

Peter of Blois and the Later Career of Reginald fitzJocelin
Lena Wahlgren
The English Historical Review
Vol. 111, No. 444 (Nov., 1996), pp. 1202-1215
Published by: Oxford University Press

Extracts from various collections of correspondence

Materials for the History of Thomas Becket Volume 6 Epistola 643

Becket to his clerks Alexander and John
after 2nd September 1169

Take care when dealing with our business, and be on your guard when dealing with our adversaries. Maintain a constant vigilance, especially with him, that bastard, that fornicator and enemy of ecclesiastical peace, son of the priest Reginald [bishop] of Salisbury, who brings shame upon our person, in so far as he can, and makes known everywhere saying we are a traitor, and that he had been given our promise that his father would not be harmed in any way. It is certain we would no more make such a promise to  him as we would to a dog
He says, too, that if the pope were to die, he would cause us to be struck from the book of life [and not be listed amongst the righteous], boasting that he would be able to obtain this on sale venally in the  Roman curia, so to speak, by means of gifts [bribes]. He has even suggested to the king of England that he petition the Lord Pope to grant authority to any bishop in England to crown his son as king, as well as consecrate bishops as if thus he might thereby deceive the Lord Pope.

John (of Salisbury) .Edited By W.J.Millor, S.J. and C.N.L. Brooke (1979). The Letters of John of Salisbury. Volume 2 The Later Letters (1163-1180) Clarendon Press. ISBN 978-0-19-822240-8.

Letter  216 To Richard de Bohun, bishop of Coutances
John (of Salisbury, Bishop of Chartres) (1848). Joannis Saresberiensis Postea Epizcopi Carnotensis Opera Omnia .... Epistola 208: Apud J. H. Parker. pp. 49–.

John Allen Giles (1846). The Life and Letters of Thomas À Becket: Now First Gathered from the Contemporary Historians. Letter 59: Whittaker. pp. 75–.
Letter 59. John Of Salisbury To The Bishop Of Constance [Coutances].

The affliction of my lord of Salisbury, however just may have been its cause, gives me annoyance, and the more so, because I do not clearly see the issue of this crisis. What entreaties I have used with his lordship of Canterbury to relax the sentence, is known to Him who is the inspector and judge of the heart. But I failed, and I think it useless to detail to you the reasons of my failure, because your friend, master Gilbert, has heard them from the archbishop's own mouth. To say nothing of the rest, that which principally vexes the archbishop is, that his lordship of Salisbury has set an example of disobedience to others, and to this hour is aiding and abetting the bishop of London and his adherents, who are seeking the archbishop's life to take it away. He says, also, that Salisbury has written to him contumaciously, and sought to cloak his sin of disobedience under the pretext of a frivolous appeal. But he has not even yet repented of his presumption or renounced his appeal, but dissembling the injustice of it by a certain hesitation both in word and in action, throws impediments in the way of his superior who would correct him, and yet, with a pretence of humility, sues for mercy. No one, therefore, can prevail on the archbishop to do more than this, to show fatherly mercy on the bishop, and treat him with benevolence for the future, if he will withdraw from the appeal, openly confess his offence, and remain henceforth in his obedience. For of the archbishop's kindness, if the bishop will only do what is necessary, I have not the slightest doubt. You know what the pope has lately written on the subject, and what remedy the dean has obtained in this cause from the apostolic see. If, however, his promises do not fail, but what he swore to is fulfilled, the archbishop and his clerks will make his peace in a very short time, and a truce will be proclaimed between the throne and the altar. Meanwhile, as you musthave heard, we are forbidden by authority from telling what has been done at Rome. When the bargain comes to be ratified or broken, we shall be at liberty to tell all. But since his lordship of Salisbury and Reginald the archdeacon urge me in this matter, wishing me to write to them and tell them what I can discover, I beg of you to let the archdeacon have this letter which I send for him, and do your best to get him well through the business.

Letter 217,  John of Salisbury to Reginald, archdeacon in the diocese of Salisbury
John (of Salisbury, Bishop of Chartres) (1848). Joannis Saresberiensis Postea Epizcopi Carnotensis Opera Omnia .... Epistola 207: Apud J. H. Parker. pp. 46–.

John Allen Giles (1846). The Life and Letters of Thomas À Becket: Now First Gathered from the Contemporary Historians. Letter 60: Whittaker. pp. 77–.

John of Salisbury to Reginald, archdeacon in the diocese of Salisbury

He is inhuman, and earns the opprobrious stigma of utter impiety who is not hurt by his father's affliction, especially when many substantial evidences of the father's kindness towards his son shine out clearer than day.  One knows that by the judgement of the Lord the whole race of the Canaanites were condemned to perpetual slavery because their father Ham, from whom came their race and their name, was cruel to his father.

God knows I have worked hard with the archbishop of Canterbury, trying now soothing, now harsher words--every kind of language in fact; but alas my labour was to no purpose. It would be tedious and in effect superfluous to repeat all the objections he makes to my pleas and arguments, because Master Gilbert, who I know is faithful to you, heard it all in full from him in person. I call God as witness to my soul that--to speak from full conviction--the archbishop truly loves the bishop and wishes to procure his welfare and security; but he is insistent that one who has given an example of disobedience and unlawful temerity to others, should also show himself an example to others of saving, essential obedience. If he allows himself to be persuaded by the authority of Scripture, by friends' advice and the Pope's mandate, he will find the archbishop, of whom he is maybe more frightened than is right, a most kind father, readier far for pardon than for vengeance. You can and should recall the recent reply on this topic from the Holy See to the bishop of Coutances--it came or should have come to your notice. You know too what comfort your dean drew from it; or if you do not, Heaven grant that everything he did at Rome both in this case and others become known to you and to the whole world. If we were yet permitted to publish it, the world would readily learn what was arranged as to the customs on which turns the case between the royal and ecclesiastical powers, on peace for the archbishop and freedom for the Church, on full restoration and security for all the exiles; also, what he swore and the security he gave for his compacts. So long as fulfilment of promises is hoped for and looked for, we are bound to silence by mandate; but there is nothing covered which may not be revealed, and that, God willing, presently.

In the spring of 1168, following the successful diplomacy of Reginald Fitz Jocelin, the Pope asks Becket to relax the sentence on the bishop of Salisbury, specifying the terms.

Letter 272
John of Salisbury to Baldwin archdeacon of Totnes

A petition went to the Pope from the king and the legates, with many others supporting it, on behalf of the bishop of Salisbury; finally the Pope agreed to pardon the injury and insult to himself, and write to the archbishop of Canterbury requesting and advising him to pardon his own injury, to relax the sentence of suspension and toreceive the bishop back to favour and friendship; this is on condition that the bishop comes in person and offers sufficient guarantee that he would make satisfaction, or else sends two of the leading clerks of his cathedral, but not the dean, to swear that the bishop had given them this instruction and not afterwards countermanded it: that is, to swear an oath in the bishop's name and on his behalf that he will make satisfaction to the archbishop for his obstinacy and injury to him.From this it can be deduced with good reason that the Pope either did not know of or did not think fit to confirm the legates' previous sentence of absolution on the bishop. The bishop had previously obtained a letter on almost the samelines, except that it laid no burden of an oath on either himself or his representatives. But he has so far made no use of it,whether because it annoyed the king, or because it was thought ineffective. What decision the two groups of messengers will carry back with them was still unknown when the bearer of the letter returned. But the Pope has written to the most Christian king to say that he will not fail God's Church and His faithful archbishop of Canterbury, so long as he can support his cause with justice.

Letter 278 To Archbishop Thomas Becket, when Reginald [FitzJocelin] was at Rome
John (of Salisbury, Bishop of Chartres) (1848). Joannis Saresberiensis Postea Epizcopi Carnotensis Opera Omnia .... Epistola 237: Apud J. H. Parker. pp. 107–.
MTB 316 CTB 165
James Craigie Robertson; Joseph Brigstocke Sheppard (1882). Materials for the history of Thomas Becket: Epistles, CCXXVII-DXXX. Volume 6 Epistola 316Longman. p. 216-

No one is surprised today if the Romans cheat their friends, since it is well known, notorious indeed, that among them 'every man has trust in them in proportion to the money he pours from his coffer'.The intention of laws and canons is often twisted, so that the man who makes the richer gifts is richer too in justice. There is nothing surprising in finding double-dealing there, since it frequently happens that God's law suffers damage when their avarice invents the need for a dispensation, though reason never leads to the perversion of justice and the conversion of righteousness to a laughing stock.