Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Saturday, 30 January 2021

The remembrance of King Charles I

I am not the only Oxford-based blogger to mark today’s anniversary of the death of King Charles I. Two others, both of them friends of mine, have posted on the theme, and I am sure that will not mind me sharing their reflections.

Tony Morris blogs about Oxford and its history, and in his post he looks at surviving links to the time when the King, the part of Parliament loyal to him, his residual Court, Army and Mint were based in Oxford as well as a physical survival from the trial in Westminster Hall which survives in the Ashmolean Museum. His post can be seen at https://morrisoxford.co.uk/bradshaws-hat/

Fr Hunwicke has two posts that relate to the Royal Martyr. The first, from yesterday, is about a much happier time in the King’s life when he and his Queen were starting their family and the celebrations that marked the birth of the future King Charles II in 1630. It can be read at 

Fr John has a much more extensive and expansive post today which looks at devotion to ‘blessed Charles the Martyr’ through the prism of the Ordinariate. This is a reissue of a post he wrote in 2014 and which continues to provide food for reflection and devotion. It blends a breadth of spirituality and of history with a strong sense of place and a typically distinctive voice. In so doing he draws out something that academic historians have stressed for a while but which has percolated but little to the man or woman in the street, in the newspaper offices and in the broadcasting studio, that is that the English, Scottish and Irish Civil Wars of the era were as much as anything religious wars. The politics and constitutional claims were a way of securing a religious position against opponents.

The post can be viewed, together with comments at blessed Charles Stuart ... and a Beatification ...

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