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Paris there were many who wanted to keep him at the University as a professor, now that Alexander of Hales was dead. This must be prevented, he says, as were he obliged to go to Paris both the Friar Minister and he himself would be deprived of their greatest help and support. The bishop adds that he hoped to reach England about 14th October, and that he had won his case against the Lincoln Chapter."
Bishop Grosseteste appears to have left the pope well satisfied with what he had accomplished. In his letters he gives a slight indication of what happened at his farewell interview with Innocent IV. Writing after his return to one of the cardinals in Curia, he begs him to try and procure for the archbishop of Canterbury the support of some Franciscan friars as permanent advisers. He thinks that some such counsellors are absolutely necessary for him ; and “on leaving,” he says, “I earnestly begged the lord pope to do what I suggested. He was favourable, and said that he would carry out my request.” It is to be feared, however, that unless you bring it to his memory, it will quickly pass from his mind. At this interview, too, Innocent IV charged the bishop with the transaction of a piece of business which Grosseteste did not much like. This was to urge the archbishop of York to carry out the pope's requests in behalf of John Ursarola, bishop of Cervia, who is described as “old, afflicted and poor.” The bishop of Lincoln on his return prefaces his letter to the archbishop, de Grey, by saying, that often “we are compelled by obedience to do something that causes us grief and which we would gladly omit, but cannot do so because it is enjoined upon us by a superior.” Thus, he says, he is obliged in this case to urge the request, which “at his i Grosseteste, Epist., 334.
? Ibid., 336.
leaving, the pope earnestly and firmly by word of mouth ordered to be made on his behalf and on that of the cardinals.' If, as may be supposed, the request of the pope had reference to the bestowal of some benefice on the aged bishop, it is easy to understand Grosseteste's extreme reluctance to forward it in any way, or to urge it upon the archbishop,
The bishop, on reaching England, wrote to the pope a letter of considerable interest. “On my return to England,” he says, “I met the king coming back from Wales, and had some private conversation with him. When amongst other things I had, in my fashion, spoken a few gentle, persuasive words about the obedience, fidelity and devotion to be shown to your Holiness and to the holy Roman Church, and about the need of supporting it, firmly and constantly, especially now that some are endeavouring—by God's help vainly—to disturb its tranquillity, he answered me in this fashion : 'Lord Bishop, we intend, as we ought, to guard untouched all that belongs to our Crown and royal estate. We desire that in this the lord pope and the Church should assist us. You may take it for certain that we shall show and observe, entirely and always, obedience, fidelity, and devotion to the lord pope as our spiritual father, and to the Roman Church as our mother, and that we will firmly, constantly, and truly abide by them in prosperity and adversity. The day when we shall not do all this, we will give our eyes to be plucked out and our head to be cut off. God forbid, that either life or death, or any other thing that can happen, should separate us from devotion to our father and mother in spiritual things. Indeed, over and besides the ordinary reasons which bind all Christian princes to the Church, we, above all other princes, are bound by a special reason to it: for when, whilst still young in age, we were deprived of our father, with our kingdom not only turned from us, but even fighting against us, our mother, the Roman Church, through the lord cardinal Gualo, then legate in England, brought back the kingdom to peace and subjection to us, and consecrating us king crowned us.'”
* Grosseteste, Epist., 337.
“This reply of the king," adds the bishop, “at his order I have written to you, so that you may know for certain what devotion the said lord has for you and the Roman Church.”
? Grosseteste, Epist., 338-339.
THE YEAR AFTER THE COUNCIL OF LYONS The representations of the English at the Council of Lyons do not appear to have produced any appreciable change in regard to the chief of their grievances. The bishops and the embassy from the king had returned in the autumn of 1245; and although the papal collector, Martin, was no longer present in the country, many things rendered it apparent that no great change of papal policy was contemplated. On 18th March, 1246, consequently, the king assembled a parliament in London to discuss the situation.' The grievances complained of by the English representatives at the Council were laid before the meeting, and as one result of its deliberations, letters were written to Pope Innocent to solicit his serious attention to their complaints. The king in his communication to the pope, called God to witness that he had always shown love for his “mother, the Roman Church,” for whom he could not have too great an affection. To her, he said, he turned with confidence in his needs, as a son "to the parent who has nursed him at her breasts." He could not, however, be deaf to the outcry of his nobles, clergy, and people, who invoked his royal aid to put a stop to oppressions, practised on them by the pope's nuncios, especially at
Ann. Mon., iii., 169.
that time, and he prayed the Holy Father to listen to the representations that are made to him.'
The barons write at somewhat greater length, and inclose a schedule of matters to which special exception is taken. Addressing Innocent IV as their “most holy and beloved father in Christ,” they remind him that they are all children of the Church, and that their interests should be safeguarded by him, who is their common father. “Our mother the Church,” they say, “is bound to cherish her sons, gathering them under the shelter of her wings (so to speak) in such a way, that the children are not dishonoured by their obedience to their mother, but are ever ready to defend her from attack in case of need.” “A mother should remember the children of her womb, lest, if she act in such a way as to deprive them of their milk, she may be reputed to be a step-mother. A father, withdrawing his love from his sons, should be called a stepparent rather than a father, as he treats his own children as if they were not his.” They then urge the pope not to turn a deaf ear to the words of the agents they are sending to represent their case. If he were to do so, then “a great scandal must certainly arise;" for unless the king and kingdom are forthwith freed from the evils of which complaint is made, “it will be necessary to build a wall to protect the house of God and the liberties of this kingdom.” This they “hitherto, and until the return of their embassy, have hesitated to do, out of reverence to the Apostolic See.” But "unless the said evils are quickly corrected by you, your Holiness must clearly understand what is really to be feared, namely, that the situation will become so dangerous both to the Roman Church and to the king, that it will be difficult to find any remedy."? | Rymer, i. 265.