Sunday, 22 May 2016

Garnier - Fetching Becket's Pallium from the Pope, July 1162


120 The abbot of Evesham was then summoned [by Becket], Father Adam de Saint Luz [Senlis], shrewd and well-known. [Thomas] commanded him to go fetch his pallium. Two good clerics and a monk went with him [the abbot]. And they found Pope Alexander at Montpellier.

121 The clerics were well-versed in the arts, the decretals [of the canon law], and the [civil] law. Each of the three gave his petition by himself. And they spoke very well and learnedly all three. And Pope Alexander listened to them well, this I believe, but he did not grant permission for the pallium [to be given] to them. 605

122 They went many times to the cardinals. The cardinals demanded to know from them a great number of times what they had brought with them for the Pope and whoever else [them] , [saying] that they had been chased out of Rome and had run away from it without any of their incomes, penniless. 610

123 The messengers always replied to their demands that they had come from a distant country; that whatever they had brought they had already spent. The pallium which they sought holily and without conditions, never would they handle it simoniacally.

124 Never could they anymore take demands for all their but how the abbot saw a place to speak, and [that after he] saw that the cardinals completely surrounded the Pope, that his request much well began to be able to be presented, but not a word of the decretal would he mention.

125 "My Lord," he said "this is what God who is Truth says, (which you must observe, as it is in God's place which you sit.):
'Ask justly', says God, 'and you will receive it; seek piously and you will find it; the door will be opened for you, if you knock on the true door.' 625

[Note: Luke 11:9-10 ' 9 And I say to you, Ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you shall find: knock, and it shall be opened to you. 10 For every one that asketh, receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened. ']

126 "We are very fatigued and have come from far away. That which we wish to have we ask for piously; here we must seek for that which we require. You will open the door for it; we have knocked with dignity. You occupy the place of God; we shall find God in you."

127 Then the Pope said to him, when he had completely finished, "Frater [Brother] thou wilt take from here that which thou hast asked for thou has sought for it justly, and thou wilt find it; We will open my [our] door to thee, because thou hast knocked on it." He then had the pallium brought before him. 635

128 They were given charge of the pallium by the Pope, and they were all to return home with it. Thus it came to Thomas without gift and without sin; neither had he for this handed over either money, or gold, or silver.An example that his successors to the see [of Canterbury] ought to follow. 640
The Text

Guernes (de Pont-Sainte-Maxence) (1922). La vie de saint Thomas Becket. C.W.K. Gleerup. pp. 22–. 

120 Mes l'abé d'Evesham aveit dunkes mandé,
Dan Adam de Saint Liz, prudume e renumé ;
Ke pur sun palle alast li aveit comandé.
Dui bon clerc e uns moines i sunt od li alé,
600 E pape Alisandre unt a Munpelier trové.

121 Bon clerc furent des arz, de decré e de lei.
Sa peticiun fist des treis chescon par sei,
E mult parlerent bien e clergilment tut trei.
E Alisandre pape les oï bien, ceo crei,
605 Mes il ne lur fist pas del palliun l'otrei.

122 Il en sunt plusurs feiz as cardunals alé.
Li cardunal lur unt mainte feiz demandé
K'il orent l'apostoile e a els aporté ;
K'il esteient de Rome chacié e debuté,
610 N'aveient de lur rentes un denier muneé.

123 Li messagier lur unt tut adès respundu
K'il de luntein païs esteient la venu ;
Ceo qu'orent aporté, orent pres despendu.
Le palle requereient saintement e a nu ;
615 Ja pur simonials n'en sereient tenu.

124 Unc ne porent plus prendre pur tut lur demander.
Mes quant li abes vit k'il ot liu de parler,
E vit les cardunals entur la pape ester,
Sa requeste mult bel cumença a mustrer ;
620 Mes n'i volt mot de lei ne de decré soner.

125 " Sire, fet il, ceo dit Deus, ki est veritez
(Par tut le deveiz fere, quant el liu Deu seez) :
'Demandez justement ', fet Deus, 'e vus l'avrez ;
Querez le seintement, e vus le troverez ;
625 Li uis vus ert overz, s'al verrai us butez '.
126 " Mult sumes travaillié e mult de luinz venum.
Ceo que volum aver saintement demandum ;
Ici devom trover ceo que nus requerum.
Vus nus overeiz l'us ; dignement i butum.
Vus estes 630 el liu Deu, Deu en vos troverum. "

127 Dunc li dist l'apostoille, quant il ot parfiné :
" Frater , tu prendras ci ceo que as demandé.
Tu l'as quis justement, e tu l'avras trové ;
Nus t'overum mes l'uis, car tu i as buté. "
635 Dunc aveit hum avant le palliun porté.

128 Le palliun lur a l'apostoile chargié,
E il s'en sunt od tut ariere repairié.
Einsi i vint Thomas senz dun e senz pechié ;
N'i ad pur ceo denier ne or n'argent baillié.
640 Essample i deivent prendre li successur del sié.

[Note: John of Salisbury was a member of the group who went to fetch Becket's pallium.]


Guernes (de Pont-Sainte-Maxence); tr. Jacques Thomas (2002). La vie de Saint Thomas de Canterbury. Volume 1.  pp. 61- Peeters. ISBN 978-90-429-1188-8.

Garnier de Pont Sainte Maxence (1859). Celestin Hippeau, ed. La vie de saint Thomas le martyr, publ. par C. Hippeau. pp. 24–.
La vie de saint Thomas le martyr: archevêque de Canterbury pp. 24-
edited by Célestin Hippeau

La vie de Saint Thomas le martyr  pp. 22-
edited by Emmanual Wahlberg 1922
Lines 596-640 Stanzas 120-128
Guernes (de Pont-Sainte-Maxence); trans Jacques Thomas (2002). La vie de Saint Thomas de Canterbury. Peeters. ISBN 978-90-429-1188-8.

Janet Shirley (1975). Garnier's Becket: Translated from the 12th-century Vie Saint Thomas Le Martyr de Cantorbire of Garnier of Pont-Sainte-Maxence. Llanerch. ISBN 978-1-86143-023-6.

Anne J. Duggan (2016). Pope Alexander III (1159–81): The Art of Survival. Chapter 8 Curius Case of Becket's Pallium: Taylor & Francis. pp. 348–. ISBN 978-1-317-07836-4.

The Pallium
The Catholic Historical Review
Vol. 8, No. 1 (Apr., 1922), pp. 64-71
Published by: Catholic University of America Press
Stable URL:

John Morris; Saint Thomas (à Becket) (1859). The Life and Martyrdom of Saint Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, Etc. pp. 57–.

Frank Barlow (1990). Thomas Becket. University of California Press. pp. 73–. ISBN 978-0-520-07175-9.

Gervase of Canterbury vol 1 p.171
[Says Pope was already at Sens]

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