Thomas de Cantilupe
Thomas de Cantilupe
|Bishop of Hereford|
Thomas de Cantilupe depicted in ancient (now lost) stained glass window in the Church of St James the Great, Snitterfield, Warwickshire, a manor held by the Cantilupe family until 1323; 1656 drawing by William Dugdale. On his tunic he displays the arms of Cantilupe modern
|Predecessor||John de Breton|
Hambleden, Buckinghamshire, England
|Died||25 August 1282 (aged 63–64)|
Ferento, Montefiascone, Papal States (now Italy)
|Feast day||25 August, 2 October|
|Venerated in||Roman Catholic Church; Anglican Communion|
|Title as Saint||Thomas of Hereford|
|Canonized||17 April 1320|
by Pope John XXII
|Attributes||dressed as a bishop|
|Monarch||Henry III of England|
|Preceded by||John Chishull|
|Succeeded by||Ralph Sandwich|
Thomas de Cantilupe (c. 1218 – 25 August 1282) (alias Cantelow, Cantelou, Canteloupe, etc., Latinised to de Cantilupo) was Lord Chancellor of England and Bishop of Hereford and was canonised in 1320 by Pope John XXII.
He was the third son of William II de Cantilupe (died 1251) (anciently Cantelow, Cantelou, Canteloupe, etc, Latinised to de Cantilupo),  2nd feudal baron of Eaton Bray in Bedfordshire, who was steward of the household to King Henry III (as his father William I de Cantilupe (died 1239) had been to Henry's father King John). Thomas's mother was Millicent (or Maud) de Gournai (d.1260), a daughter of Hugh de Gournai and widow of Amaury VI of Montfort-Évreux (d. 1213), Earl of Gloucester. He was born at Hambleden in Buckinghamshire, a manor belonging to his mother's first husband but awarded to her during her lifetime as her dowry. Thomas's uncle was Walter de Cantilupe (d. 1266), Bishop of Worcester.
On 25 February 1264, when he was Archdeacon of Stafford, Cantilupe was made Lord Chancellor of England, but was deprived of the office after de Montfort's death at the Battle of Evesham, and lived abroad for a while. Following his return to England, he was again appointed Chancellor of Oxford University, where he lectured on theology and held several ecclesiastical appointments.
Bishop of Hereford
Cantilupe was now a trusted adviser of King Edward I and when attending royal councils at Windsor Castle or at Westminster he lived at Earley in Berkshire. Even when differing from the king's opinions, he did not forfeit his favour.
Cantilupe had a "great conflict" in 1290 with the "Red Earl", Gilbert de Clare, 7th Earl of Gloucester, 6th Earl of Hertford, concerning hunting rights in Malvern, Worcestershire, and a ditch dug by de Clare. The issue was settled by costly litigation.
After the death in 1279 of Robert Kilwardby, Archbishop of Canterbury, a friend of Cantilupe's, and formerly his confessor, a series of disputes arose between him and John Peckham, the new archbishop. The disagreements culminated in Peckham excommunicating Cantilupe, who proceeded to Rome to pursue the matter with the pope.
Death, burial, and canonisation
Cantilupe died at Ferento, near Orvieto, in Italy, on 25 August 1282 He is buried in Hereford Cathedral. Part of the evidence used in his cause of canonisation was the supposed raising from the dead of William Cragh, a Welsh rebel who was hanged in 1290, eight years after Cantilupe's death. A papal inquiry was convened in London on 20 April 1307 to determine whether or not Cantilupe had died excommunicate, since this would have precluded his being canonised. Forty-four witnesses were called and various letters produced, before the commissioners of the inquiry concluded that Cantilupe had been absolved in Rome before his death. It was difficult for his cause of death to be determined as much of his body had disintegrated.
After a papal investigation lasting almost 13 years, Cantilupe was canonised by Pope John XXII on 17 April 1320. His feast day was fixed on 2 October. His shrine became a popular place of pilgrimage, but only its base survived the Reformation until a new upper section (a feretory) was recently recreated under the guidance of architect Robert Chitham. The new section is in vivid colours with a painted scene of the Virgin & Child holding the Mappa Mundi. A reliquary containing his skull has been held at Downside Abbey in Somerset since 1881.
In the current Latin edition of the Roman Martyrology (2004 edition), Cantilupe is listed under 25 August as follows: "At Montefiascone in Tuscia, the passing of Saint Thomas Cantelupe, Bishop of Hereford in England, who, resplendent with learning, severe toward himself, to the poor however showed himself a generous benefactor".
Cantilupe appears to have been an exemplary bishop in both spiritual and secular affairs. His charities were large and his private life blameless. He was constantly visiting his diocese, correcting offenders and discharging other episcopal duties, and he compelled neighbouring landholders to restore estates which rightly belonged to the see of Hereford. Cantilupe has been lauded as the "Father of Modern Charity," and is cited as an inspiration by Mother Teresa and Melinda Gates.
- Rouault, L'Abbé Laurent, La Vie des Evesques de Coutances, augmentée de celle de ... St Thomas de Chanteloup, Coutances, 1748
- Dugdale, William (1605-1686), Antiquities of Warwickshire, 1656, pp.504-5
- The commonly accepted modern spelling appears to be "Cantilupe", as used by the Dictionary of National Biography for all members of this family
- The spelling used by modern historians is "de Cantilupe", which is followed in this article
- Sanders, I.J. English Baronies: A Study of their Origin and Descent 1086-1327, Oxford, 1960, p. 40
- B.W.Holden, biography of William II de Cantilupe (d.1251), Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
- 'Parishes: Hambleden', in A History of the County of Buckingham: Volume 3, ed. William Page (London, 1925), pp. 45-54
- Walsh 2007, p. 598
- Fryde et al. 1996, p. 85
- See Cantilupe seals discussed in M Julian-Jones, Thesis on de Cantilupe and Corbet families, 2015, Online Research @Cardiff (ORCA), Cardiff University
- Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
- Fryde et al. 1996, p. 250
- Nott, James (1885). Some of the Antiquities of Moche Malvern (Great Malvern). Malvern: John Thompson. p. 14. Retrieved 6 January 2010.
- Bartlett 2004, p. 23
- Bartlett 2004, p. 123
- Pilgrimage page at Hereford Cathedral official website Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine accessed 8 February 2012.
- Unofficial translation. Cf. Martyrologium Romanum, ex decreto sacrosancti oecumenici Concilii Vaticani II instauratum auctoritate Ioannis Pauli Pp. II promulgatum, editio [typica] altera, Typis Vaticanis, A.D. MMIV (2004), p. 475.
- "Parish and Community Magazine November 2017" (PDF). The Parishes of BROSELEY with BENTHALL and JACKFIELD & LINLEY with WILLEY and BARROW. 19 November 2017. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 January 2018. Retrieved 25 December 2017.
- "Cantilupe Society | The Online Books Page". onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Cantilupe, Thomas de". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- Alington, Gabriel (2001). St Thomas of Hereford. Leominster.
- Bartlett, Robert (2004), The Hanged Man: A Story of Miracle, Memory, and Colonialism in the Middle Ages, Princeton University Press, ISBN 0-691-11719-5
- Fryde, E. B.; Greenway, D. E.; Porter, S.; Roy, I. (1996), Handbook of British Chronology (Third Edition, revised ed.), Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-56350-X
- Walsh, Michael (2007), A New Dictionary of Saints: East and West, Burns & Oates, ISBN 0-86012-438-X
- Royal Berkshire History: St. Thomas Cantilupe of Hereford
- Catholic Encyclopedia
- Catholic Online Saints and Angels
- Pilgrimage page at Hereford Cathedral
- Stirnet: CZmisc02 (subscription required)
| Lord Chancellor
(Keeper of the Great Seal)
|Catholic Church titles|
John de Breton
| Bishop of Hereford
Richard de S. Agatha
| Chancellor of the University of Oxford
Henry de Cicestre?
or Nicholas de Ewelme