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.

Wednesday 22 March 2023

St Thomas of Pontefract

Today is March 22nd, the anniversary of the beheading in 1322 in my home town of Pontefract of Thomas Earl of Lancaster following his defeat at the Battle of Boroughbridge. Within a very short time this often turbulent over-mighty subject of his cousin King Edward II was being hailed as a martyr - hence St Thomas of Pontefract - and his tomb became a focus of pilgrimage, something which endured to the dissolution of the monasteries.

Last year to mark the seven hundredth anniversary of his death I posted a lengthy piece about him, with links to other websites, and which can be seen at Thomas of Lancaster - from Rebel Earl to Popular Saint

This year in addition to posting that link, I am adding the links to three articles about Earl Thomas and his relationship with King Edward from the Edward II blog. They can be read at Thomas Of Lancaster And His Relationship With Edward II (1),  at Thomas of Lancaster And His Relationship With Edward II (2) and at Thomas of Lancaster And His Relationship With Edward II (3)

I am also adding a link to the History of Parliament Trust website which has an article about Thomas’s defeat, capture, death and posthumous cult at ‘Oh! Earl of Lancaster! Where is your power, where are your riches, with which you hoped to subdue all?’ Thomas of Lancaster’s defeat at the battle of Boroughbridge, 16 March 1322 

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