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Wilfrid[a] (c. 633 – c. 709) was an English bishop and saint. Born a Northumbrian noble, he entered religious life as a teenager and studied at Lindisfarne, at Canterbury, in Gaul, and at Rome; he returned to Northumbria
Northumbria
in about 660, and became the abbot of a newly founded monastery at Ripon. In 664 Wilfrid
Wilfrid
acted as spokesman for the Roman position at the Synod of Whitby, and became famous for his speech advocating that the Roman method for calculating the date of Easter
Easter
should be adopted. His success prompted the king's son, Alhfrith, to appoint him Bishop
Bishop
of Northumbria. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
chose to be consecrated in Gaul
Gaul
because of the lack of what he considered to be validly consecrated bishops in England at that time. During Wilfrid's absence Alhfrith seems to have led an unsuccessful revolt against his father, Oswiu, leaving a question mark over Wilfrid's appointment as bishop. Before Wilfrid's return Oswiu had appointed Ceadda in his place, resulting in Wilfrid's retirement to Ripon
Ripon
for a few years following his arrival back in Northumbria. After becoming Archbishop of Canterbury
Canterbury
in 668, Theodore of Tarsus resolved the situation by deposing Ceadda and restoring Wilfrid
Wilfrid
as the Bishop
Bishop
of Northumbria. For the next nine years Wilfrid
Wilfrid
discharged his episcopal duties, founded monasteries, built churches, and improved the liturgy. However his diocese was very large, and Theodore wished to reform the English Church, a process which included breaking up some of the larger dioceses into smaller ones. When Wilfrid
Wilfrid
quarrelled with Ecgfrith, the Northumbrian king, Theodore took the opportunity to implement his reforms despite Wilfrid's objections. After Ecgfrith expelled him from York, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
travelled to Rome to appeal to the papacy. Pope Agatho
Pope Agatho
ruled in Wilfrid's favour, but Ecgfrith refused to honour the papal decree and instead imprisoned Wilfrid
Wilfrid
on his return to Northumbria
Northumbria
before exiling him. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
spent the next few years in Selsey, where he founded an episcopal see and converted the pagan inhabitants of the Kingdom of Sussex to Christianity. Theodore and Wilfrid
Wilfrid
settled their differences, and Theodore urged the new Northumbrian king, Aldfrith, to allow Wilfrid's return. Aldfrith agreed to do so, but in 691 he expelled Wilfrid
Wilfrid
again. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
went to Mercia, where he helped missionaries and acted as bishop for the Mercian king. Wilfrid appealed to the papacy about his expulsion in 700, and the pope ordered that an English council should be held to decide the issue. This council, held at Austerfield
Austerfield
in 702, attempted to confiscate all of Wilfrid's possessions, and so Wilfrid
Wilfrid
travelled to Rome to appeal against the decision. His opponents in Northumbria
Northumbria
excommunicated him, but the papacy upheld Wilfrid's side, and he regained possession of Ripon
Ripon
and Hexham, his Northumbrian monasteries. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
died in 709 or 710. After his death, he was venerated as a saint. Historians then and now have been divided over Wilfrid. His followers commissioned Stephen of Ripon
Ripon
to write a Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
(or Life of Wilfrid) shortly after his death, and the medieval historian Bede
Bede
also wrote extensively about him. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
lived ostentatiously, and travelled with a large retinue. He ruled a large number of monasteries, and claimed to be the first Englishman to introduce the Rule of Saint
Saint
Benedict into English monasteries. Some modern historians see him mainly as a champion of Roman customs against the customs of the British and Irish churches, others as an advocate for monasticism.

Contents

1 Background

1.1 Sources

2 Early life

2.1 Childhood and early education 2.2 Time at Rome and Lyon 2.3 Abbot of Ripon

3 Whitby

3.1 Background to Whitby 3.2 Synod

4 York

4.1 Elevation to the episcopate 4.2 Delays and difficulties 4.3 Favourable outcome 4.4 Diocesan affairs

5 Expulsion

5.1 Dispute with the king 5.2 Appeal to Rome

6 Missions in Sussex 7 Return to Northumbria
Northumbria
and exile

7.1 Return from exile 7.2 Mercia 7.3 Rome and final return to Northumbria

8 Other aspects

8.1 Cult of St Oswald 8.2 Monastic network 8.3 Builder and artistic patron

9 Resignation and death 10 Legacy 11 Notes 12 Citations 13 References 14 Further reading 15 External links

Background[edit]

Anglo-Saxon kingdoms in the late 7th century

Main article: Heptarchy During Wilfrid's lifetime Britain and Ireland consisted of a number of small kingdoms. Traditionally the English people
English people
were thought to have been divided into seven kingdoms, but modern historiography has shown that this is a simplification of a much more confused situation.[5] A late 7th-century source, the Tribal Hidage, lists the peoples south of the Humber
Humber
river; among the largest groups of peoples are the West Saxons (later Wessex), the East Angles and Mercians (later the Kingdom of Mercia), and the Kingdom of Kent. Smaller groups who at that time had their own royalty but were later absorbed into larger kingdoms include the peoples of Magonsæte, Lindsey, Hwicce, the East Saxons, the South Saxons,[6] the Isle of Wight, and the Middle Angles.[7] Other even smaller groups had their own rulers, but their size means that they do not often appear in the histories.[6] There were also native Britons in the west, in modern-day Wales and Cornwall, who formed kingdoms including those of Dumnonia, Dyfed, and Gwynedd.[8] Between the Humber
Humber
and Forth the English had formed into two main kingdoms, Deira
Deira
and Bernicia, often united as the Kingdom of Northumbria.[9] A number of Celtic kingdoms also existed in this region, including Craven, Elmet, Rheged, and Gododdin. A native British kingdom, later called the Kingdom of Strathclyde, survived as an independent power into the 10th century in the area which became modern-day Dunbartonshire
Dunbartonshire
and Clydesdale.[10] To the north-west of Strathclyde lay the Gaelic kingdom of Dál Riata, and to the north-east a small number of Pictish kingdoms.[11] Further north still lay the great Pictish kingdom of Fortriu, which after the Battle of Dun Nechtain in 685 came to be the strongest power in the northern half of Britain.[12][13][14] The Irish had always had contacts with the rest of the British Isles, and during the early 6th century they immigrated from the island of Ireland to form the kingdom of Dál Riata, although exactly how much conquest took place is a matter of dispute with historians. It also appears likely that the Irish settled in parts of Wales, and even after the period of Irish settlement, Irish missionaries were active in Britain.[15] Christianity
Christianity
had only recently arrived in some of these kingdoms.[16] Some had been converted by the Gregorian mission, a group of Roman missionaries who arrived in Kent
Kent
in 597 and who mainly influenced southern Britain. Others had been converted by the Hiberno-Scottish mission, chiefly Irish missionaries working in Northumbria
Northumbria
and neighbouring kingdoms.[17] A few kingdoms, such as Dál Riata, became Christian but how they did so is unknown.[18] The native Picts, according to the medieval writer Bede, were converted in two stages, initially by native Britons under Ninian, and subsequently by Irish missionaries.[19] Sources[edit] The main sources for knowledge of Wilfrid
Wilfrid
are the medieval Vita Sancti Wilfrithi, written by Stephen of Ripon
Ripon
soon after Wilfrid's death, and the works of the medieval historian Bede, who knew Wilfrid
Wilfrid
during the bishop's lifetime.[20][21] Stephen's Vita is a hagiography, intended to show Wilfrid
Wilfrid
as a saintly man, and to buttress claims that he was a saint.[22][23] The Vita is selective in its coverage, and gives short shrift to Wilfrid's activities outside of Northumbria. Two-thirds of the work deals with Wilfrid's attempts to return to Northumbria, and is a defence and vindication of his Northumbrian career.[22] Stephen's work is flattering and highly favourable to Wilfrid, making its use as a source problematic;[24] despite its shortcomings however, the Vita is the main source of information on Wilfrid's life.[25][26] It views the events in Northumbria
Northumbria
in the light of Wilfrid's reputation and from his point of view, and is highly partisan.[27] Another concern is that hagiographies were usually full of conventional material, often repeated from earlier saints' lives,[28] as was the case with Stephen's work.[29] It appears that the Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
was not well known in the Middle Ages, as only two manuscripts of the work survive.[30] Bede
Bede
also covers Wilfrid's life in his Historia ecclesiastica gentis Anglorum, but this account is more measured and restrained than the Vita.[24] In the Historia, Bede
Bede
used Stephen's Vita as a source, reworking the information and adding new material when possible. Other, more minor, sources for Wilfrid's life include a mention of Wilfrid
Wilfrid
in one of Bede's letters.[31] A poetical Vita Sancti Wilfrithi by Frithegod written in the 10th century is essentially a rewrite of Stephen's Vita, produced in celebration of the movement of Wilfrid's relics to Canterbury.[20] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
is also mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle,[32] but as the Chronicle was probably a 9th-century compilation, the material on Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may ultimately have derived either from Stephen's Vita or from Bede.[33] Another, later, source is the Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
written by Eadmer, a 12th-century Anglo-Norman writer and monk from Canterbury. This source is highly influenced by the contemporary concerns of its writer, but does attempt to provide some new material besides reworking Bede.[34] Many historians, including the editor of Bede's works, Charles Plummer, have seen in Bede's writings a dislike of Wilfrid. The historian Walter Goffart goes further, suggesting that Bede
Bede
wrote his Historia as a reaction to Stephen's Vita Sancti Wilfrithi, and that Stephen's work was written as part of a propaganda campaign to defend a "Wilfridian" party in Northumbrian politics.[35] Some historians, including James Fraser, find that a credible view,[27] but others such as Nick Higham are less convinced of Bede's hostility to Wilfrid.[35] Early life[edit] Childhood and early education[edit] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was born in Northumbria
Northumbria
in about 633.[36] James Fraser argues that Wilfrid's family were aristocrats from Deira, pointing out that most of Wilfrid's early contacts were from that area.[37] A conflict with his stepmother when he was about 14 years old drove Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to leave home, probably without his father's consent.[38] Wilfrid's background is never explicitly described as noble, but the king's retainers were frequent guests at his father's house, and on leaving home Wilfrid
Wilfrid
equipped his party with horses and clothes fit for a royal court.[26] Queen Eanflæd became Wilfrid's patroness following his arrival at the court of her husband, King Oswiu.[38] She sent him to study under Cudda, formerly one of her husband's retainers, but by that time in about 648 a monk on the island of Lindisfarne.[20] The monastery on the island had recently been founded by Aidan, who had been instrumental in converting Northumbria
Northumbria
to Christianity.[26] At Lindisfarne
Lindisfarne
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
is said to have "learned the whole Psalter
Psalter
by heart and several books".[39] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
studied at Lindisfarne
Lindisfarne
for a few years before going to the Kentish king's court at Canterbury
Canterbury
in 652, where he stayed with relatives of Queen Eanflæd.[20] The queen had given Wilfrid
Wilfrid
a letter of introduction to pass to her cousin, King Eorcenberht, in order to ensure that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was received by the king.[26] While in Kent, Wilfrid's career was advanced by Eanflæd's cousin Hlothere, who was later the King of Kent
Kent
from 673 to 685.[40] The Kentish court included a number of visiting clergymen at that time, including Benedict Biscop, a noted missionary.[41] Wilfrid appears to have spent about a year in Kent, but the exact chronology is uncertain.[42] Time at Rome and Lyon[edit]

7th-century crypt at Hexham
Hexham
monastery, where Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may have deposited any relics he brought back from the continent

Wilfrid
Wilfrid
left Kent
Kent
for Rome in the company of Benedict Biscop,[43] another of Eanflæd's contacts.[20] This is the first pilgrimage to Rome known to have been undertaken by English natives,[44] and took place some time between 653 and 658.[26] According to Wilfrid's later biographer, Stephen of Ripon, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
left Biscop's company at Lyon, where Wilfrid
Wilfrid
stayed under the patronage of Annemund, the archbishop. Stephen says that Annemund
Annemund
wanted to marry Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to the archbishop's niece, and to make Wilfrid
Wilfrid
the governor of a Frankish province, but that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
refused and continued on his journey to Rome.[20] There he learned the Roman method of calculating the date of Easter, and studied the Roman practice of relic collecting.[45] After an audience with the pope, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
returned to Lyon.[20] Stephen of Ripon
Ripon
says that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
stayed in Lyon
Lyon
for three years, leaving only after the archbishop's murder. However, Annemund's murder took place in 660 and Wilfrid
Wilfrid
returned to England in 658, suggesting that Stephen's chronology is awry.[20][b] Stephen says that Annemund gave Wilfrid
Wilfrid
a clerical tonsure, although this does not appear to mean that he became a monk, merely that he entered the clergy. Bede
Bede
is silent on the subject of Wilfrid's monastic status,[47] although Wilfrid
Wilfrid
probably became a monk during his time in Rome, or afterwards while he was in Gaul.[48] Some historians, however, believe that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was never a monk.[47] While in Gaul, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
absorbed Frankish ecclesiastical practices, including some aspects from the monasteries founded by Columbanus. This influence may be seen in Wilfrid's probable adoption of a Frankish ceremony in his consecration of churches later in his life, as well as in his employment of Frankish masons to build his churches.[49] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
would also have learned of the Rule of Saint
Saint
Benedict in Gaul, as Columbanus' monasteries followed that monastic rule.[50] Abbot of Ripon[edit] After Wilfrid's return to Northumbria
Northumbria
in about 658, Cenwalh, King of Wessex, recommended Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to Alhfrith, Oswiu's son, as a cleric well-versed in Roman customs and liturgy.[51] Alhfrith was a sub-king of Deiria under his father's rule, and the most likely heir to his father's throne as his half-brothers were still young.[52] Shortly before 664 Alhfrith gave Wilfrid
Wilfrid
a monastery he had recently founded at Ripon,[43][51] formed around a group of monks from Melrose Abbey, followers of the Irish monastic customs.[52] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
ejected the abbot, Eata, because he would not follow the Roman customs;[51] Cuthbert, later a saint, was another of the monks expelled.[20] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
introduced the Rule of Saint
Saint
Benedict into Ripon, claiming that he was the first person in England to make a monastery follow it,[53] but this claim rests on the Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
and does not say where Wilfrid
Wilfrid
became knowledgeable about the Rule, nor exactly what form of the Rule was being referred to.[54] Shortly afterwards Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was ordained a priest by Agilbert, Bishop
Bishop
of Dorchester in the kingdom of the Gewisse, part of Wessex.[38] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was a protégé of Agilbert, who later helped in Wilfrid's consecration as a bishop.[55] The monk Ceolfrith
Ceolfrith
was attracted to Ripon
Ripon
from Gilling Abbey, which had recently been depopulated as a result of the plague. Ceolfrith later became Abbot of Wearmouth-Jarrow
Wearmouth-Jarrow
during the time the medieval chronicler and writer Bede
Bede
was a monk there.[56] Bede
Bede
hardly mentions the relationship between Ceolfrith
Ceolfrith
and Wilfrid, but it was Wilfrid
Wilfrid
who consecrated Ceolfrith
Ceolfrith
a priest and who gave permission for him to transfer to Wearmouth-Jarrow.[57] Whitby[edit] Main article: Synod of Whitby Background to Whitby[edit] The Roman churches and those in Britain and Ireland (often called "Celtic" churches) used different methods to calculate the date of Easter. The church in Northumbria
Northumbria
had traditionally used the Celtic method, and that was the date observed by King Oswiu. His wife Eanflæd and a son, Alhfrith, celebrated Easter
Easter
on the Roman date however,[58] which meant that while one part of the royal court was still observing the Lenten fast, another would be celebrating with feasting.[59] Oswiu called a church council held at Whitby Abbey
Whitby Abbey
in 664 in an attempt to resolve this controversy. Although Oswiu himself had been brought up in the "Celtic" tradition, political pressures may have influenced his decision to call a council, as well as fears that if dissent over the date of Easter
Easter
continued in the Northumbrian church it could lead to internal strife.[58] The historian Richard Abels speculates that the expulsion of Eata from Ripon
Ripon
may have been the spark that led to the king's decision to call the council.[60] Regional tensions within Northumbria
Northumbria
between the two traditional divisions, Bernicia
Bernicia
and Deira, appear to have played a part, as churchmen in Bernicia
Bernicia
favoured the Celtic method of dating and those in Deira
Deira
may have leaned towards the Roman method.[61] Abels identifies several conflicts contributing to both the calling of the council and its outcome, including a generational conflict between Oswiu and Alhfrith and the death of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Deusdedit. Political concerns unrelated to the dating problem, such as the decline of Oswiu's preeminence among the other English kingdoms and the challenge to that position by Mercia, were also factors.[62] Synod[edit] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
attended the synod, or council, of Whitby, as a member of the party favouring the continental practice of dating Easter, along with James the Deacon, Agilbert, and Alhfrith. Those supporting the "Celtic" viewpoint were King Oswiu, Hilda, the Abbess of Whitby, Cedd, a bishop, and Colmán of Lindisfarne, the Bishop
Bishop
of Lindisfarne.[63] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was chosen to present the Roman position to the council;[63] he also acted as Agilbert's interpreter, as the latter did not speak the local language.[64][c] Bede
Bede
describes Wilfrid
Wilfrid
as saying that those who did not calculate the date of Easter
Easter
according to the Roman system were committing a sin.[65] Wilfrid's speech in favour of adopting Roman church practices helped secure the eclipse of the "Celtic" party in 664,[36][66][d] although most Irish churches did not adopt the Roman date of Easter
Easter
until 704, and Iona
Iona
held out until 716.[67][e] Many of the Irish monasteries did not observe the Roman Easter, but they were not isolated from the continent; by the time of Whitby the southern Irish were already observing the Roman Easter
Easter
date, and Irish clergy were in contact with their continental counterparts.[68] Those monks and clergy unable to accept the Whitby decision left Northumbria, some going to Ireland[69] and others to Iona.[51] York[edit]

King Oswiu of Northumbria's family tree

Elevation to the episcopate[edit] After the supporters of the Celtic dating had withdrawn following the Council of Whitby, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
became the most prominent Northumbrian cleric. As a result, and because of his performance at Whitby,[70] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was elected to a bishopric in Northumbria
Northumbria
about a year after the council.[71] It is unclear where his diocese was located, although he was considered to be Alhfrith's bishop.[51] The Vita Sancti Wilfrithi states that, nominated by both Oswiu and Alhfrith, he was made bishop at York, and that he was a metropolitan bishop, but York at that time was not a Metropolitan Diocese.[72][f] Bede
Bede
says that Alhfrith alone nominated Wilfrid,[74] and that Oswiu subsequently proposed an alternative candidate, "imitating the actions of his son".[75] Several theories have been suggested to explain the discrepancies between the two sources.[72] One is that Alhfrith wished the seat to be at York,[51] another is that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was bishop only in Deira, a third supposes that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was never bishop at York
York
and that his diocese was only part of Deira.[72] However, at that time the Anglo-Saxon dioceses were not strictly speaking geographical designations, rather they were bishoprics for the tribes or peoples.[76] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
refused to be consecrated in Northumbria
Northumbria
at the hands of Anglo-Saxon bishops. Deusdedit had died shortly after Whitby, and as there were no other bishops in Britain whom Wilfrid
Wilfrid
considered to have been validly consecrated[51] he travelled to Compiègne, to be consecrated by Agilbert, the Bishop
Bishop
of Paris.[77] During his time in Gaul
Gaul
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was exposed to a higher level of ceremony than that practised in Northumbria, one example of which is that he was carried to his consecration ceremony on a throne supported by nine bishops.[78] Delays and difficulties[edit] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
delayed his return from Gaul, only to find on his arrival back in Northumbria
Northumbria
that Ceadda had been installed as bishop in his place.[43] The reason for Wilfrid's delay has never been clear, although the historians Eric John and Richard Abels theorise that it was caused by Alhfrith's unsuccessful revolt against Oswiu. They suggest that the rebellion happened shortly after Whitby, perhaps while Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was in Gaul
Gaul
for his consecration. Because Oswiu knew that Alhfrith had been a supporter of Wilfrid's, Oswiu prevented Wilfrid's return, suspecting Wilfrid
Wilfrid
of supporting his rivals.[70][79] That Ceadda was supported by Oswiu, and Wilfrid
Wilfrid
had been a supporter of Oswiu's son, lends further credence to the theory that Alhfrith's rebellion took place while Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was in Gaul.[80] Stephen of Ripon reported that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was expelled by "Quartodecimans", or those who supported the celebration of Easter
Easter
on the 14th day of the Jewish month Nisan, whether or not this was a Sunday. However, as the Irish church had never been Quartodecimans, Stephen in this instance was constructing a narrative to put Wilfrid
Wilfrid
in the best light.[81] During his return to Northumbria
Northumbria
Wilfrid's ship was blown ashore on the Sussex coast, the inhabitants of which were at that time pagan. On being attacked by the locals, Wilfrid's party killed the head priest before refloating their ship and making their escape.[20] The historian Marion Gibbs suggests that after this episode Wilfrid visited Kent
Kent
again, and took part in the diplomacy related to Wigheard's appointment to the see of Canterbury. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may also have taken part in negotiations to persuade King Cenwalh of Wessex
Wessex
to allow Agilbert
Agilbert
to return to his see.[82] Favourable outcome[edit] Denied episcopal office, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
spent the three years from 665 to 668 as abbot of the monastery at Ripon.[83] He occasionally performed episcopal functions in Mercia
Mercia
and Kent, but never did so north of the river Humber.[51] The historian James Fraser argues that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may not have been allowed to return to Northumbria
Northumbria
and instead went into exile at the Mercian court,[74] but most historians have argued that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was at Ripon.[20][51][83]

Wulfhere of Mercia's family tree

Wilfrid's monasteries in Mercia
Mercia
may date from this time,[84] as King Wulfhere of Mercia
Mercia
gave him large grants of land in Mercia.[20] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may have persuaded King Ecgberht of Kent
Kent
in 669 to build a church in an abandoned Roman fort at Reculver.[85] When Theodore, the newly appointed Archbishop of Canterbury, arrived in England in 669[86] it was clear that something had to be done about the situation in Northumbria. Ceadda's election to York
York
was improper,[83] and Theodore did not consider Ceadda's consecration to have been valid.[87] Consequently, Theodore deposed Ceadda,[g] leaving the way open for Wilfrid,[83] who was finally installed in his see in 669,[71] the first Saxon to occupy the see of York.[89] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
spent the next nine years building churches, including at the monastery at Hexham, and attending to diocesan business.[20] He continued to exercise control over his monastic houses of Ripon
Ripon
and Hexham
Hexham
while he was bishop.[88] Oswiu's death on 15 February 670 eliminated a source of friction and helped to assure Wilfrid's return.[90] While at York, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was considered the "bishop of the Northumbrian peoples"; Bede
Bede
records that Wilfrid's diocese was contiguous with the area ruled by Oswiu.[91] The diocese was restricted to north of the Humber, however.[92] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may also have sought to exercise some ecclesiastical functions in the Pictish kingdom, as he is accorded the title "bishop of the Northumbrians and the Picts" in 669. Further proof of attempted Northumbrian influence in the Pictish regions is provided by the establishment for the Picts
Picts
in 681 of a diocese centred on Abercorn, in the old territory of the British kingdom of Gododdin. The grants of land to Wilfrid
Wilfrid
west of the Pennines
Pennines
testify to Northumbrian expansion in that area.[69] The Vita Sancti Wilfrithi claims that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
had ecclesiastical rule over Britons and Gaels.[93] In 679, while Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was in Rome, he claimed authority over "all the northern part of Britain, Ireland and the islands, which are inhabited by English and British peoples, as well as by Gaelic and Pictish peoples".[94] Diocesan affairs[edit] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
did not attend the Council of Hertford held in September 672, but he did send representatives. Among the council's resolutions was one postponing a decision on the creation of new dioceses, which affected Wilfrid
Wilfrid
later.[95] Another ruling confirmed that the Roman calculation for the date of Easter
Easter
should be adopted, and that bishops should act only in their own dioceses.[96] During the middle 670s Wilfrid
Wilfrid
acted as middleman in the negotiations to return a Merovingian prince, Dagobert II, from his exile in Ireland to Gaul.[97][h] Wilfrid was one of the first churchmen in Northumbria
Northumbria
to utilise written charters as records of gifts to his churches. He ordered the creation of a listing of all benefactions received by Ripon, which was recited at the dedication ceremony.[20] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was an advocate for the use of music in ecclesiastical ceremonies. He sent to Kent
Kent
for a singing master to instruct his clergy in the Roman style of church music, which involved a double choir who sang in antiphons and responses.[20] Bede
Bede
says that this singing master was named Æddi (or Eddius in Latin) and had the surname Stephen. Traditionally historians have identified Æddi as Stephen of Ripon, author of the Vita Sancti Wilfrithi, which has led to the assumption that the Vita was based on the recollections of one of Wilfrid's long-time companions. However, recent scholarship has come to believe that the Vita was not authored by the singing master, but by someone who joined Wilfrid
Wilfrid
in the last years of Wilfrid's life, not a close companion.[99] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
introduced the Rule of Saint
Saint
Benedict into the monasteries he founded.[20] It appears likely that he was the first to introduce the Benedictine Rule into England, as evidence is lacking that Augustine's monastery at Canterbury
Canterbury
followed the Rule.[100] He also was one of the first Anglo-Saxon bishops to record the gifts of land and property to his church, which he did at Ripon. Easter
Easter
tables, used to calculate the correct date to celebrate Easter, were brought in from Rome where the Dionysiac Easter
Easter
tables had been recently introduced.[20] He set up schools and became a religious advisor to the Northumbrian queen Æthelthryth, first wife of Ecgfrith. Æthelthryth
Æthelthryth
donated the land at Hexham
Hexham
where Wilfrid
Wilfrid
founded a monastery and built a church using some recycled stones from the Roman town of Corbridge.[101][102] When Wilfrid
Wilfrid
arrived in York
York
as bishop the cathedral's roof was on the point of collapse; he had it repaired and covered in lead, and had glass set in the windows.[103] The historian Barbara Yorke says of Wilfrid
Wilfrid
at this time that he "seems to have continued a campaign against any survival of 'Irish errors' and distrusted any communities that remained in contact with Iona
Iona
or other Irish religious houses which did not follow the Roman Easter".[104] He also worked to combat pagan practices, building a church at Melrose on a pagan site.[105] Contemporaries said of him that he was the first native bishop to "introduce the Catholic way of life to the churches of the English".[106] He did not neglect his pastoral duties in his diocese,[26] making visits throughout the diocese to baptise and perform other episcopal functions, such as consecrating new churches.[107] Some of the monasteries in his diocese were put under his protection by their abbots or abbesses, who were seeking someone to help protect their endowments.[108] In ruling over such monasteries, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may have been influenced by the Irish model of a group of monasteries all ruled by one person, sometimes while holding episcopal office.[109] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was criticised for dressing his household and servants in clothing fit for royalty.[110] He was accompanied on his travels by a retinue of warriors, one of whom, while at York, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
sent to abduct a young boy who had been promised to the church but whose family had changed their mind.[111] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
also educated young men, both for clerical and secular careers.[112] Expulsion[edit]

Map showing monasteries and bishoprics in Northumbria
Northumbria
around 670. Bishoprics are underlined.

Dispute with the king[edit] In 677[113] or 678, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
and Ecgfrith quarrelled, and Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was expelled from his see.[20] Abbess Hilda of Whitby
Hilda of Whitby
was a leader in a faction of the Northumbrian church that disliked Wilfrid, and her close ties with Theodore helped to undermine Wilfrid's position in Northumbria.[43] Another contributory factor in Wilfrid's expulsion was his encouragement of Æthelthryth's entry into a nunnery;[102] he had personally given her the veil, the ceremony of entering a nunnery, on her retirement to Ely Abbey.[114] Æthelthryth
Æthelthryth
had donated the lands Wilfrid
Wilfrid
used to found Hexham
Hexham
Abbey, and the historian N. J. Higham argues that they had been part of the queen's dower lands, which, when Ecgfrith remarried, his new queen wanted to recover.[115] The historian Eric John feels that Wilfrid's close ties with the Mercian kingdom also contributed to his troubles with Egfrith, although John points out that these ties were necessary for Wilfrid's monastic foundations, some of which were in Mercia.[100] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
not only lost his diocese, he lost control of his monasteries as well.[83] Theodore took advantage of the situation to implement decrees of some councils on dividing up large dioceses.[83] Theodore set up new bishoprics from Wilfrid's diocese, with seats at York, Hexham, Lindisfarne, and one in the region of Lindsey. The Lindsey see was quickly absorbed by the Diocese
Diocese
of Lichfield, but the other three remained separate.[116] The bishops chosen for these sees, Eata at Hexham, Eadhæd
Eadhæd
at Lindsey, and Bosa at York, had all either been supporters of the "Celtic" party at Whitby, or been trained by those who were.[88] Eata had also been ejected from Ripon
Ripon
by Wilfrid.[51] The new bishops were unacceptable to Wilfrid, who claimed they were not truly members of the Church because of their support for the "Celtic" method of dating Easter, and thus he could not serve alongside them.[88] Another possible problem for Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was that the three new bishops did not come from Wilfrid's monastic houses nor from the communities where the bishops' seats were based. This was contrary to the custom of the time, which was to promote bishoprics from within the locality.[117] Wilfrid's deposition became tangled up in a dispute over whether or not the Gregorian plan for Britain, with two metropolitan sees, the northern one set at York, would be followed through or abandoned.[118] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
seems to have felt that he had metropolitan authority over the northern part of England, but Theodore never acknowledged that claim, instead claiming authority over the whole of the island of Britain.[119] Appeal to Rome[edit] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
went to Rome after his expulsion to appeal against Theodore and Ecgfrith's decisions,[113][120] the first Englishman to challenge a royal or ecclesiastical decision by petitioning the papacy.[83][i] On the way he stopped at the court of Aldgisl, the Frisian king in Utrecht
Utrecht
for most of 678.[113] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
had been blown off course on his trip from England to the continent, and ended up in Frisia
Frisia
according to some historians.[122] Others state that he intended to journey via Frisia
Frisia
to avoid Neustria, whose Mayor of the Palace, Ebroin, disliked Wilfrid.[20] He wintered in Frisia, avoiding the diplomatic efforts of Ebroin, who according to Stephen attempted to have Wilfrid
Wilfrid
killed. During his stay, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
attempted to convert the Frisians, who were still pagan at that time. Wilfrid's biographer says that most of the nobles converted,[123] but the success was short-lived.[124] After Frisia, he stopped at the court of Dagobert II
Dagobert II
in Austrasia, where the king offered Wilfrid
Wilfrid
the Bishopric of Strasbourg, which Wilfrid refused.[20] Once in Italy, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was received by Perctarit, a Lombard king, who gave him a place at his court.[125] Pope Agatho
Pope Agatho
held a synod in October 679, which although it ordered Wilfrid's restoration and the return of the monasteries to his control, also directed that the new dioceses should be retained.[113] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was, however, given the right to replace any bishop in the new dioceses to whom he objected.[83][j] The council had been called to deal with the Monothelete controversy, and Wilfrid's concerns were not the sole focus of the council. In fact, the historian Henry Chadwick thought that one reason Wilfrid
Wilfrid
secured the mostly favourable outcome was that Agatho wished for Wilfrid's support and testimony that the English Church was free of the monothelete heresy.[127] Although Wilfrid
Wilfrid
did not win a complete victory, he did secure a papal decree limiting the number of dioceses in England to 12.[128] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
also secured the right for his monasteries of Ripon
Ripon
and Hexham
Hexham
to be directly supervised by the pope, preventing any further interference in their affairs by the diocesan bishops.[129] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
returned to England after the council via Gaul. According to Stephen of Ripon, after the death of Dagobert II, Ebroin wished to imprison Wilfrid, but Wilfrid
Wilfrid
miraculously escaped.[130] In 680 Wilfrid
Wilfrid
returned to Northumbria
Northumbria
and appeared before a royal council. He produced the papal decree ordering his restoration, but was instead briefly imprisoned and then exiled by the king.[131][132] Wilfrid stayed for a short time in the kingdom of the Middle Angles and at Wessex,[83] but soon took refuge in Sussex with King Æthelwealh of Sussex.[133] Missions in Sussex[edit]

Map showing the location of Selsey

Wilfrid
Wilfrid
spent the next five years preaching to, and converting the pagan inhabitants of Sussex, the South Saxons. He also founded Selsey Abbey,[43] on an estate near Selsey
Selsey
of 87 hides, given to Wilfrid
Wilfrid
by Æthelwealh, king of the South Saxons.[134] Bede
Bede
attributes Wilfrid's ability to convert the South Saxons to his teaching them how to fish, and contrasts it with the lack of success of the Irish monk Dicuill.[135] Bede
Bede
also says that the Sussex area had been experiencing a drought for three years before Wilfrid's arrival, but miraculously when Wilfrid
Wilfrid
arrived, and started baptising converts, rain began to fall.[136] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
worked with Bishop
Bishop
Erkenwald
Erkenwald
of London, helping to set up the church in Sussex. Erkenwald
Erkenwald
also helped reconcile Wilfrid
Wilfrid
and Theodore before Theodore's death in 690.[137] The mission was jeopardised when King Æthelwealh died during an invasion of his kingdom by Cædwalla of Wessex.[83] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
previously had contact with Cædwalla, and may have served as his spiritual advisor before Cædwalla's invasion of Sussex.[138] After Æthelwealh's death and Cædwalla's accession to the throne of Wessex, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
became one of the new king's advisors, and the king was converted.[139] Cædwalla confirmed Æthelwealh's grant of land in the Selsey
Selsey
area and Wilfrid
Wilfrid
built his cathedral church near the entrance to Pagham Harbour, believed to be what is now Church Norton.[140] Cædwalla sent Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to the Isle of Wight, which was still pagan, with the aim of converting the inhabitants.[83][k] The king also gave Wilfrid
Wilfrid
a quarter of the land on the island as a gift.[142] In 688, the king relinquished his throne and went on a pilgrimage to Rome to be baptised, but died shortly after the ceremony.[139] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was probably influential in Cædwalla's decision to be baptised in Rome.[138] During his time in Sussex Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was reconciled with Archbishop Theodore; the Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
says that Theodore expressed a desire for Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to succeed him at Canterbury.[143] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may have been involved in founding monasteries near Bath as well as in other parts of Sussex, but the evidence backing this is based on the wording used in the founding charters resembling wording used by Wilfrid
Wilfrid
in other charters, not on any concrete statements that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was involved.[144] Return to Northumbria
Northumbria
and exile[edit] Return from exile[edit] In 686 Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was recalled to Northumbria
Northumbria
after the death of Ecgfrith in battle with the Picts.[71][145] During the 680s Theodore had created two more dioceses in Northumbria, at Ripon, and at Abercorn
Abercorn
in the Pictish kingdom, but both were short-lived.[116] After Ecgfrith's death, Theodore wrote to the new king of Northumbria, Aldfrith, and to Æthelred, king of Mercia
Mercia
and the Abbess of Whitby, Ælfflæd, suggesting that an agreement be made allowing Wilfrid's return to Northumbria. Aldfrith agreed, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
returned to the north, and Bosa was removed from York. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
did not recover the whole of his previous bishopric however, as Hexham
Hexham
and Lindisfarne
Lindisfarne
remained separate sees.[20][l] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
appears to have lived at Ripon, and for a time he acted as administrator of the see of Lindisfarne
Lindisfarne
after Cuthbert's death in 687.[145] In 691, the subdivision issue arose once more, along with quarrels with King Aldfrith over lands,[20] and attempts were made to make Wilfrid
Wilfrid
either give up all his lands or to stay confined to Ripon.[144] A proposal to turn Ripon
Ripon
into a bishopric was also a source of dispute. When no compromise was possible Wilfrid
Wilfrid
left Northumbria
Northumbria
for Mercia, and Bosa was returned to York.[20] Something of the reception to Wilfrid's expulsion can be picked up in a Latin letter which has survived only in an incomplete quotation by William of Malmesbury
William of Malmesbury
in his Gesta pontificum Anglorum. We have it on William's authority that the letter was written by Aldhelm
Aldhelm
of Malmesbury and addressed to Wilfrid's abbots. In it, Aldhelm
Aldhelm
asks the clergymen to remember the exiled bishop "who, nourishing, teaching, reproving, raised you in fatherly love" and appealing to lay aristocratic ideals of loyalty, urges them not to abandon their superior.[147][148] Neither William nor the citation itself gives a date, but the letter has been assigned to Wilfrid's exile under Aldfrith in the 690s.[149] Mercia[edit] During his stay in Mercia
Mercia
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
acted as bishop with the consent of King Æthelred.[150] Information on Wilfrid's life at this time is meagre, as the Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
says little of this period.[151] He is generally considered to have been Bishop
Bishop
of Leicester until about 706, when he is held to have been transferred to Hexham.[152] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
became involved in the missionary efforts to the Frisians, which he had started in 678 during his stay in Frisia. Wilfrid
Wilfrid
helped the missionary efforts of Willibrord, which were more successful than his own earlier attempts.[124] Willibrord
Willibrord
was a monk of Ripon
Ripon
who was also a native of Northumbria.[153] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was present at the exhumation of the body of Queen Æthelthryth
Æthelthryth
at Ely Abbey in 695. He had been her spiritual adviser in the 670s, and had helped the queen become a nun against the wishes of her husband King Ecgfrith of Northumbria. The queen had joined Ely Abbey, where she died in 679. The ceremony in 695 found that her body had not decayed, which led to her being declared a saint.[154] Wilfrid's testimony as to the character and virginity of Æthelthryth was recorded by Bede.[114] In about 700, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
appealed once more to Pope Sergius I over his expulsion from York, and the pope referred the issue back to a council in England. In 702 King Aldfrith held a council at Austerfield
Austerfield
that upheld Wilfrid's expulsion, and once more Wilfrid
Wilfrid
travelled to Rome to appeal to the pope.[155] The Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
gives a speech, supposedly delivered by Wilfrid
Wilfrid
there, in defence of Wilfrid's record over the previous 40 years.[156] The council was presided over by Berhtwald, the new Archbishop of Canterbury, and the decision of the council was that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
should be deprived of all his monasteries but Ripon, and that he should cease to perform episcopal functions. When Wilfrid
Wilfrid
continued his appeal to the papacy, his opponents had him and his supporters excommunicated.[20] Rome and final return to Northumbria[edit] On his way to Rome Wilfrid
Wilfrid
stopped in Frisia
Frisia
to visit Willibrord.[123] Following Wilfrid's arrival in Rome the pope held a council, which declared that the King of Northumbria
Northumbria
should follow the earlier papal decrees restoring Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to his see.[155] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was disconcerted to find that the papal court spoke Greek, and his biographer noted that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was displeased when the pope discussed the appeal with advisers in a language Wilfrid
Wilfrid
could not understand.[157] The pope also ordered another council to be held in Britain to decide the issue, and ordered the attendance of Bosa, Berhtwald and Wilfrid. On his journey back to England Wilfrid
Wilfrid
had a seizure at Meaux, but he had returned to Kent
Kent
by 705.[20] Aldfrith died soon after Wilfrid's arrival back in England. The new king, Eadwulf, had been considered one of Wilfrid's friends, but after his accession to the throne he ordered Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to stay out of Northumbria. Eadwulf's reign lasted only a few months however, before he was expelled to make way for Aldfrith's son Osred,[20] to whom Wilfrid
Wilfrid
acted as spiritual adviser.[43] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
may have been one of Osred's chief supporters, along with Oswiu's daughter Abbess Ælfflæd of Whitby,[158] and the nobleman Beornhæth.[159] Once Osred was secure on the throne Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was restored to Ripon
Ripon
and Hexham
Hexham
in 706. When Bosa of York died, however, Wilfrid
Wilfrid
did not contest the decision to appoint John of Beverley
John of Beverley
to York. This appointment meant John's transfer from Hexham, leaving Wilfrid
Wilfrid
free to perform episcopal functions at Hexham,[20] which he did until his death.[160] Other aspects[edit] Cult of St Oswald[edit] Main article: Oswald of Northumbria Sometime after the translation of the relics of Oswald of Northumbria to Bardney Abbey
Bardney Abbey
by Osthryth between 675 and 679,[161] Wilfrid, along with Hexham
Hexham
Abbey, began to encourage and promote the cult of the dead king. Barbara Yorke sees this advocacy as a major factor in the prominence given to Oswald in Bede's Historia ecclesiastica gentis Anglorum.[162] Historian D. P. Kirby regards Wilfrid's championing of Oswald as being a contributing factor in Wilfrid's expulsion from York in 678. Kirby believes that Ecgfrith felt Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was promoting Oswald's branch of the Northumbrian royal family over his own.[88] One of Wilfrid's protégés, Willibrord, became a missionary to the Frisians
Frisians
in 695, perhaps inspired by Wilfrid's example. Willibrord
Willibrord
may have felt it expedient to leave Northumbria, where he was known as one of Wilfrid's followers.[163] Monastic network[edit]

Later engraving of a picture commissioned in 1519 showing Cædwalla confirming a grant of land, at Selsey, to Wilfrid

Wilfrid's network of monasteries extended across at least three of the kingdoms of England in his day.[164] They included Hexham, Ripon, Selsey, and Oundle,[26] as well as possibly Peterborough, Brixworth, Evesham, Wing, and Withington.[165] At his monasteries and dioceses he built churches in a style akin to that of the continent and Rome,[166] travelling between them with a large entourage of up to 120 followers.[68] He made many contacts and friends, not only in Northumbria
Northumbria
and the other English kingdoms, but also in Gaul, Frisia, and Italy. Nobles sent their sons to him for fostering, and Wilfrid was known to help his protégés, no matter if they became clerics or not. The historian Peter Brown speculated that one reason for Wilfrid's exile in 678 was that he was overshadowing the king as a patron.[167] His contacts extended to the Lombard kingdom in Italy, where they included King Perctarit
Perctarit
and his son Cunipert.[26] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was a prolific founder of churches, which he then controlled until his death, and was a great fundraiser, acquiring lands and money from many of the kings he was in contact with.[168] He was also noted for his ability to attract support from powerful women, especially queens. Queen Eanflæd, his first patron, introduced him to a number of helpful contacts, and he later attracted the support of Queen Æthelthryth, who gave the endowment for Hexham
Hexham
Abbey.[169] Ælfflæd, sister of King Aldfrith of Northumbria
Northumbria
and daughter of Wilfrid's old patron Queen Eanflæd, helped to persuade the Northumbrians to allow Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to return from his last exile.[170][171] Builder and artistic patron[edit] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
built a church capable of accommodating a congregation of 2,000 at Hexham, using stone from Hadrian's Wall.[167] The 12th-century writer Ailred of Rievaulx, whose family helped restore Hexham, credited Wilfrid
Wilfrid
as the designer of a church beautifully embellished with paintings and sculpture.[172][173] It appears that the churches at Hexham
Hexham
and Ripon
Ripon
(which Wilfrid
Wilfrid
also built) were aisled basilicas, of the type that was common on the continent. Ripon was the first church in Northumbria
Northumbria
to incorporate a porticus, similar to those of churches in Kent.[174] 12th-century pilgrims' accounts declared that the church at Hexham
Hexham
rivalled those of Rome.[20] The crypts at both Ripon
Ripon
and Hexham
Hexham
are unusual, and perhaps were intended by Wilfrid
Wilfrid
to mimic the Roman catacombs which he had seen on his travels.[20] They are still extant, although the fabric of Wilfrid's churches above ground has been replaced by later structures. The churches were finished with glazed windows, made by glassmakers brought over from the continent.[175] As well as his building projects Wilfrid
Wilfrid
also commissioned works to embellish the churches, including altar cloths made of silk woven with gold threads, and a gospel book written on parchment dyed purple, with gold lettering. The gospels were then enclosed in a gold book cover set with gems. When the church he had built at Ripon
Ripon
was consecrated, a three-day feast was held to accompany the ceremony.[26][m] Resignation and death[edit] After his final return to Northumbria
Northumbria
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
retired to the monastery at Ripon, where he lived until his death during a visit to Oundle,[177] at the age of 75.[178] A little over a year before his death in either 709[177] or 710[179][n] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
suffered another stroke or seizure, which led him to make arrangements for the disposition of his monasteries and possessions. He was buried near the altar of his church in Ripon. Bede
Bede
records the epitaph that was placed on the tomb.[20][o] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was succeeded at Hexham
Hexham
by Acca of Hexham, a protégé who had accompanied him to Rome in 703.[180][181] The monastery at Ripon
Ripon
celebrated the first anniversary of Wilfrid's death with a commemoration service attended by all the abbots of his monasteries and a spectacular white arc was said to have appeared in the sky starting from the gables of the basilica where his bones were laid to rest.[160][182][183] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
left large sums of money to his monastic foundations, enabling them to purchase royal favour.[184] Soon after his death a Vita Sancti Wilfrithi, was written by Stephen of Ripon, a monk of Ripon.[177] The first version appeared in about 715 followed by a later revision in the 730s,[104] the first biography written by a contemporary to appear in England.[185] It was commissioned by two of Wilfrid's followers, Acca of Hexham, and the Abbot of Ripon, Tatbert.[26] Stephen's Vita is concerned with vindicating Wilfrid
Wilfrid
and making a case for his sainthood, and so is used with caution by historians,[138][186] although it is nevertheless an invaluable source for Wilfrid's life and the history of the time.[26] Legacy[edit]

Icon
Icon
of Saint
Saint
Wilfrid, who is also venerated in the Orthodox Church.

Wilfrid
Wilfrid
(right), with saints Cuthbert
Cuthbert
(centre) and Aidan (left), depicted in a stained-glass window in a modern church near Acomb, Northumberland

Wilfrid's feast day is 12 October[187] or 24 April.[188] Both dates were celebrated in early medieval England, but the April date appeared first in the liturgical calendars.[20] The April date is the date when his relics were translated to a new shrine.[189] Immediately after his death Wilfrid's body was venerated as a cult object, and miracles were alleged to have happened at the spot where the water used to wash his body was discarded.[20] A cult grew up at Ripon
Ripon
after his death and remained active until 948, when King Eadred
Eadred
destroyed the church at Ripon; after the destruction, Wilfrid's relics were taken by Archbishop Oda of Canterbury,[190] and held in Canterbury Cathedral.[191] This account appears in a foreword written by Oda for Frithegod's later poem on Wilfrid's life.[192] However, according to Byrhtferth's Vita Sancti Oswaldi, or Life of Saint
Saint
Oswald, Oda's nephew, Oswald, Archbishop of York, preserved the relics at Ripon
Ripon
and restored the community there to care for them.[20] The two differing accounts are not easily reconciled, but it is possible that Oswald collected secondary relics that had been overlooked by his uncle and installed those at Ripon.[193][p] The relics that were held at Canterbury
Canterbury
were originally placed in the High Altar in 948, but after the fire at Canterbury
Canterbury
Cathedral
Cathedral
in 1067, Wilfrid's relics were placed in their own shrine.[194] After the Norman Conquest of England, devotion continued to be paid to Wilfrid, with 48 churches dedicated to him and relics distributed between 11 sites.[20] During the 19th century, the feast of Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was celebrated on the Sunday following Lammas
Lammas
in the town of Ripon
Ripon
with a parade and horse racing, a tradition which continued until at least 1908.[195] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
is venerated in the Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church[188] and the Anglican Communion.[187] He is usually depicted either as a bishop preaching and baptising or else as a robed bishop holding an episcopal staff.[189] Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was one of the first bishops to bring relics of saints back from Rome. The papacy was trying to prevent the removal of actual body parts from Rome, restricting collectors to things that had come in contact with the bodily remains such as dust and cloth.[196] Wilfrid was known as an advocate of Benedictine monasticism,[47] and regarded it as a tool in his efforts to "root out the poisonous weeds planted by the Scots".[197] He built at Ripon
Ripon
and Hexham, and lived a majestic lifestyle.[53] As a result of his various exiles, he founded monastic communities that were widely scattered over the British Isles, over which he kept control until his death.[184] These monastic foundations, especially Hexham, contributed to the blending of the Gaelic and Roman strains of Christianity
Christianity
in Northumbria, which inspired a great surge of learning and missionary activity; Bede
Bede
and Alcuin were among the scholars who emerged from Northumbrian monasteries influenced by Wilfrid. Missionaries inspired by his example went from Northumbria
Northumbria
to the continent, where they converted pagans in Germany and elsewhere.[198] One commentator has said that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
"came into conflict with almost every prominent secular and ecclesiastical figure of the age".[199] Hindley, a historian of the Anglo-Saxons, states that " Wilfrid
Wilfrid
would not win his sainthood through the Christian virtue of humility".[38] The historian Barbara Yorke said of him that "Wilfrid's character was such that he seems to have been able to attract and infuriate in equal measure".[184] His contemporary, Bede, although a partisan of the Roman dating of Easter, was a monk and always treats Wilfrid
Wilfrid
a little uneasily, showing some concern about how Wilfrid
Wilfrid
conducted himself as a clergyman and as a bishop.[200] The historian Eric John feels that it was Wilfrid's devotion to monasticism that led him to believe that the only way for the Church to be improved was through monasticism. John traces Wilfrid's many appeals to Rome to his motivation to hold together his monastic empire, rather than to self-interest. John also challenges the belief that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was fond of pomp, pointing out that the comparison between the Irish missionaries who walked and Wilfrid who rode ignores the reality that the quickest method of travel in the Middle Ages was on horseback.[100] The historian Peter Hunter Blair summarises Wilfrid's life as follows: " Wilfrid
Wilfrid
left a distinctive mark on the character of the English church in the seventh century. He was not a humble man, nor, so far as we can see, was he a man greatly interested in learning, and perhaps he would have been more at home as a member of the Gallo-Roman episcopate where the wealth which gave him enemies in England would have passed unnoticed and where his interference in matters of state would have been less likely to take him to prison."[201] R. W. Southern, another modern historian, says that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
was "the greatest papal enthusiast of the century".[157] James Campbell, a historian specialising in the Anglo-Saxon period, said of him "He was certainly one of the greatest ecclesiastics of his day. Ascetic, deemed a saint by some, the founder of several monasteries according to the rule of St Benedict, he established Christianity
Christianity
in Sussex and attempted to do so in Frisia. At the same time, his life and conduct were in some respects like those of a great Anglo-Saxon nobleman."[202] Notes[edit]

^ Originally spelled Wilfrith;[4] ^ Annemund
Annemund
was murdered at the command of Balthild, the regent of Chlothar III.[46] ^ Agilbert
Agilbert
was later expelled from his English bishopric by the King of Wessex
Wessex
when the king could not understand Agilbert.[64] ^ It is unclear how much of the speech in Bede's account of the council is actually Wilfrid's and how much was composed by Bede.[63] ^ Some Welsh churches did not adopt the Roman Easter
Easter
until 768.[67] ^ York
York
did not attain metropolitan status until 735.[73] ^ Theodore shortly afterwards reconsecrated Ceadda and gave him the bishopric of Lichfield.[88] The Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
Vita Sancti Wilfrithi
says that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
urged Theodore to appoint Ceadda to Lichfield.[20] ^ Dagobert became king of Austrasia
Austrasia
in 676, but was assassinated in 680.[98] ^ And he was the only English bishop to appeal a royal verdict to the papacy until 1088 when William de St-Calais
William de St-Calais
appealed a decision of King William II of England
William II of England
to Rome.[121] ^ The copy of the decrees of Agatho has had interpolations added to it, partly to support the later Canterbury– York
York
disputes over primacy that started under Archbishop Lanfranc
Lanfranc
after the Norman conquest of England. However, the Life of Wilfrid
Wilfrid
also confirms the basics of the council decrees, it is only in the decrees discussion of metropolitan status for Theodore that it is possibly corrupt.[126] ^ When Wilfrid
Wilfrid
returned to Northumbria, he gave the Wight mission to his nephew,[83] Beornwine, who was not apparently an ordained priest.[141] ^ The only authority for the expulsion of Bosa is Stephen of Ripon's Vita Sancti Wilfrithi, and it is possible that Bosa was not expelled, as he was still bishop at his death in 706.[146] ^ The book, which was given to Ripon, does not survive.[176] ^ Both years are given as death dates in sources. The discrepancy over his death date involves the fact that two dates were associated with Wilfrid's cult, 24 April and 12 October. Stephen of Ripon expressly states that Wilfrid
Wilfrid
died on a Thursday, and neither date in 709 was a Thursday. 24 April 710, however, was a Thursday, and is likely to be Wilfrid's death date. A complication is the fact that the October date is the more common commemoration date, but the April date is the one first associated with Wilfrid's cult, appearing in 7th- and 8th-century saints calendars. The October date probably arose because the April date conflicted with Lent
Lent
and Easter.[20] ^ The epitaph is recorded in Book V, Chapter XIX. An online translation is at the Medieval Sourcebook, part of the Online Reference Book for Medieval Studies by the City University of New York. ^ The early 12th century writer Eadmer, who wrote a Vita Sancti Wilfrithi, took this approach to the problem of the differing accounts of Wilfrid's relics, and appears to have been the first writer to suggest this solution.[34]

Citations[edit]

^ Hutchinson-Hall Orthodox Saints p. 78 ^ "About the Diocese" Roman Catholic Diocese
Diocese
of Middlesbrough ^ "History Archived 9 October 2016 at the Wayback Machine." Ripon Cathedral ^ Fraser From Caledonia to Pictland p. 47 ^ Keynes "Heptarchy" Blackwell Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England ^ a b Yorke Kings and Kingdoms pp. 9–11 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings pp. 5–7 ^ Yorke Conversion of Britain p. 37 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms p. 74 ^ Yorke Conversion of Britain p. 38 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms pp. 83–86 ^ Charles-Edwards "'Continuation of Bede" Seanchas pp. 137–145 ^ Woolf "Dun Nechtain" Scottish Historical Review pp. 182–201 ^ Woolf "Verturian hegemony" Mercia
Mercia
pp. 106–112 ^ York
York
Conversion of Britain pp. 50–56 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 2 ^ Yorke Conversion of Britain pp. 123–124 ^ Yorke Conversion of Britain pp. 114–115 ^ Yorke Conversion of Britain pp. 128–129 ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj Thacker "Wilfrid" Oxford Dictionary of National Biography ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
p. 151 ^ a b Goffart Narrators of Barbarian History pp. 285–286 ^ Coredon Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases p. 146 ^ a b Brown "Royal and Ecclesiastical" Renascence p. 28 ^ Laynesmith "Stephen of Ripon" Early Medieval Europe p. 163 ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Fletcher Barbarian Conversion pp. 175–180 ^ a b Fraser From Caledonia to Pictland pp. 266–267 ^ Blair Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England p. 322 ^ Heffernan Sacred Biography pp. 137–142 ^ Higham (Re-)reading Bede
Bede
pp. 98 and 237 footnote 200 ^ Goffart Narrators of Barbarian History p. 322 ^ Under the years 656, 661, 664, 675, 678, 685, 709, and 710. See the index to Michael Swanton's Anglo-Saxon Chronicle ^ Swanton "Introduction" Anglo-Saxon Chronicle
Anglo-Saxon Chronicle
pp. xviii–xix ^ a b Philpott "Eadmer, his Archbishops and the English State" Medieval State p. 101 ^ a b Higham (Re-)reading Bede
Bede
pp. 58–63 ^ a b Mayr-Harting Coming of Christianity
Christianity
p. 107–112 ^ Fraser Caledonia to Pictland pp. 190–191 ^ a b c d Hindley A Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons pp. 78–83 ^ Quoted in Yorke Conversion of Britain p. 181 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms pp. 36–37 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 36 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
p. 156 ^ a b c d e f Thacker "St. Wilfrid" Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England p. 474–476 ^ Herrin Formation of Christendom pp. 267–268 ^ Brown "Royal and Ecclesiastical" Renascence pp. 29–31 ^ Levison England and the Continent p. 10 ^ a b c Cubitt "Clergy in Early Anglo-Saxon England" Historical Research p. 277 ^ Farmer "Introduction" Age of Bede
Bede
p. 22 ^ Coates "Construction of Episcopal Sanctity" Historical Research pp. 1–2 ^ Coates "Ceolfrid" Journal of Medieval History pp. 76–77 ^ a b c d e f g h i j Kirby Earliest English Kings pp. 87–88 ^ a b Higham Convert Kings p. 42 ^ a b Lawrence Medieval Monasticism
Monasticism
p. 57 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
p. 199 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
pp. 111–112 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
pp. 162–163 ^ Coates "Ceolfrid" Journal of Medieval History p. 82 ^ a b Kirby Making of Early England pp. 46–47 ^ John "Societal and Political Problems" Land, Church and People pp. 52–53 ^ Abels "Council of Whitby" Journal of British Studies p. 9 ^ John Reassessing Anglo-Saxon England pp. 24–25 ^ Abels "Council of Whitby" Journal of British Studies pp. 2–3 ^ a b c Blair Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England p. 131 ^ a b Fletcher Barbarian Conversion p. 263 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
pp. 83–84 ^ Stenton Anglo Saxon England p. 123–125 ^ a b Yorke Conversion of Britain p. 117 ^ a b Brown Rise of Western Christendom pp. 361–362 ^ a b Yorke Kings and Kingdoms pp. 84–85 ^ a b John Reassessing Anglo-Saxon England pp. 32–33 ^ a b c Fryde, et al. Handbook of British Chronology p. 224 ^ a b c John "Societal and Political Problems" Land, Church, and People pp. 42–49 ^ Hall "York" Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England p. 428 ^ a b Fraser Caledonia to Pictland p. 193 ^ Quoted in Fraser Caledonia to Pictland p. 193 ^ Abels "Council of Whitby" Journal of British Studies p. 17 ^ Mayr-Harting Coming of Christianity
Christianity
p. 129–147 ^ Thomson Western Church p. 56 ^ Abels "Council of Whitby" Journal of British Studies pp. 18–19 ^ Farmer "Introduction" Age of Bede
Bede
p. 23 ^ Rollason "Hagiography and Politics" Holy Men and Holy Women p. 100 ^ Gibbs "Decrees of Agatho" Speculum pp. 220–221 ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l John Reassessing Anglo-Saxon England pp. 34–35 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 95 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 95 ^ Lapidge "Theodore" Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England p. 445 ^ Blair,Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England p. 135 ^ a b c d e Kirby Earliest English Kings pp. 90–93 ^ Brown Rise of Western Christendom Second Edition p. 359 ^ Fraser Caledonia to Pictland p. 197 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 21 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 22 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings pp. 70–71 ^ Quoted in Fraser Caledonia to Pictland p. 196 ^ Stenton Anglo Saxon England 3rd ed. pp. 133–134 ^ Blair Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England p. 136 ^ Kirby Making of Early England p. 265 ^ Wallace-Hadrill Long-haired Kings p. 238 ^ Kirby "Bede" English Historical Review pp. 102–104 ^ a b c John Reassessing Anglo-Saxon England pp. 35–37 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society pp. 190–191 ^ a b Stenton Anglo Saxon England 3rd ed. p. 135 ^ Blair Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England p. 146 ^ a b Yorke Conversion of Britain p. 12 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 186 ^ Quoted in Brown Rise of Western Christendom p. 359 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 94 ^ Farmer "Introduction" Age of Bede
Bede
p. 24 ^ Campbell "First Century of Christianity" Essays in Anglo-Saxon History p. 65 ^ Dodwell Anglo-Saxon Art p. 179 ^ Fraser Caledonia to Pictland p. 78 ^ Fraser Caledonia to Pictland p. 63 ^ a b c d Stenton Anglo Saxon England p. 136 ^ a b Goffart Narrators p. 322 ^ Higham Kingdom of Northumbria
Northumbria
pp. 135–136 ^ a b Kirby Making of Early England pp. 48–49 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society pp. 98–99 ^ Gibbs "Decrees of Agatho" Speculum p. 216 ^ Fraser Caledonia to Pictland pp. 209–210 ^ Hindley A Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons p. 48 ^ Southern Western Society pp. 184–185 ^ Blair Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England p. 137 ^ a b Levison England and the Continent pp. 50–51 ^ a b Hindley Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons pp. 121–122 ^ Levison England and the Continent p. 14 ^ Gibbs "Decrees of Agatho" Speculum pp. 217–219 ^ Chadwick "Theodore" Archbishop Theodore pp. 88–95 ^ Loyn Anglo-Saxon Governance p. 57 ^ Levison England and the Continent pp. 24–25 ^ Eddius Stephanus "Life of Wilfrid" Age of Bede
Bede
pp. 142–143 ^ Lyon
Lyon
Constitutional and Legal History p. 49 ^ Mayr-Harting Coming of Christianity
Christianity
p. 118 ^ Stenton Anglo Saxon England 3rd ed. p. 138 ^ Tyler "Reluctant Kings" History p. 149 ^ Coates "Role of Bishops" History p. 180 ^ Fletcher Barbarian Conversion p. 244 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms p. 56 ^ a b c Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 100 ^ a b Kirby Making of Early England p. 50 ^ Mee History of Selsey
Selsey
pp. 12–13 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 90 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms p. 164 ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings p. 102 ^ a b Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 96 ^ a b Stenton Anglo Saxon England p. 139 ^ Cubitt "Wilfrid's "Usurping Bishops"" Northern History pp. 20–21 ^ Ehwald (ed.) Aldhelmi Opera pp. 500–502 ^ Whitelock English Historical Documents no. 165 ^ Foley Images of Sanctity p. 53. ^ Kirby Earliest English Kings pp. 120–121 ^ Kirby "Bede" English Historical Review p. 105 ^ Fryde, et al. Handbook of British Chronology p. 218 ^ Fletcher Barbarian Conversion p. 199 ^ Goffart Narrators pp. 260–261 ^ a b Stenton Anglo-Saxon England p. 143 ^ Goffart Narrators pp. 263–264 ^ a b Southern Western Society pp. 57–58 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms p. 88 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms p. 92 ^ a b Goffart Narrators p. 271 ^ Craid "Oswald" Oxford Dictionary of National Biography ^ Yorke "Adaptation of the Anglo-Saxon Royal Courts" Cross Goes North p. 249 ^ John Reassessing Anglo-Saxon England p. 57 ^ Campbell Anglo-Saxon State p. 46 ^ Farmer "Introduction" Age of Bede
Bede
p. 26 ^ Brown Rise of Western Christendom p. 52 ^ a b Brown Rise of Western Christendom pp. 362–363 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 97 ^ Tyler "Reluctant Kings" History p. 156 ^ Mitchell "Anglo-Saxon Double Monasteries" History Today
History Today
p. 37 ^ Thacker "Ælfflæd" Blackwell Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England p. 6 ^ Dodwell Anglo-Saxon Art pp. 92 and 275 footnote 38 ^ Gilbert " Saint
Saint
Wilfrid's Church at Hexam" Saint
Saint
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
at Hexham
Hexham
p. 81 ^ Farmer " Saint
Saint
Wilfrid" Saint
Saint
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
at Hexham
Hexham
p. 45 ^ Kirby Making of Early England p. 259 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
p. 228 ^ a b c Hindley Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons p. 62 ^ Kirby Making of Early England p. 158 ^ Kirby "Bede" English Historical Review p. 101 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
p. 189 ^ Levison England and the Continent p. 61 ^ Farmer Age of Bede
Bede
p.182 ^ Forster St Wilfrid
Wilfrid
of Ripon
Ripon
p.16 ^ a b c Yorke Conversion of Britain p. 163 ^ Farmer " Saint
Saint
Wilfrid" Saint
Saint
Wilfrid
Wilfrid
at Hexham
Hexham
p. 38 ^ Yorke Kings and Kingdoms p. 73 ^ a b Holford-Strevens, et al. Oxford Book of Days pp. 411–412 ^ a b Walsh New Dictionary of Saints p. 623–624 ^ a b Farmer Oxford Dictionary of Saints pp. 536–538 ^ Blair Church in Anglo-Saxon Society p. 314 ^ Gem "Significance of the 11th century Rebuilding" Medieval Art and Architecture at Canterbury
Canterbury
Before 1220 p. 2 ^ Brooks Early History of the Church of Canterbury
Canterbury
p. 53 ^ Thacker "Saint-making and Relic
Relic
Collecting" St Oswald of Worcester pp. 254–255 ^ Nilson Cathedral
Cathedral
Shrines p. 64 ^ "Feast of St Wilfrid" Folklore pp. 464–466 ^ Ortenberg "Anglo-Saxon Church and the Papacy" English Church and the Papacy p. 45 ^ Quoted in Lawrence Medieval Monasticism
Monasticism
p. 57 ^ Higham Kingdom of Northumbria
Northumbria
pp. 155–156 ^ Quoted in Hindley Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons p. 62 ^ Brown Rise of Western Christendom Second Edition pp. 363–364 ^ Blair World of Bede
Bede
p. 152 ^ Campbell " Bede
Bede
I" Essays in Anglo-Saxon History p. 16

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(St Wilfrid) (c.634–709/10)" ((subscription or UK public library membership required)). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/29409. Retrieved 9 November 2007.  Thomson, John A. F. (1998). The Western Church in the Middle Ages. London: Arnold. ISBN 0-340-60118-3.  Tyler, Damian (April 2007). "Reluctant Kings and Christian Conversion in Seventh-Century England". History. 92 (306): 144–161. doi:10.1111/j.1468-229X.2007.00389.x.  Wallace-Hadrill, J. M. (1982). The Long-haired Kings. Toronto: University of Toronto Press in association with Medieval Academy of America. ISBN 0-8020-6500-7.  Walsh, Michael J. (2007). A New Dictionary of Saints: East and West. London: Burns & Oats. ISBN 0-86012-438-X.  Whitelock, Dorothy (ed.). English Historical Documents: Volume 1 c. 500–1042 (Second ed.). London: Eyre Methuen. OCLC 23967961. CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link) Woolf, Alex (October 2006). "Dún Nechtain, Fortriu
Fortriu
and the Geography of the Picts". The Scottish Historical Review. 85 (2): 182–201. doi:10.1353/shr.2007.0029. JSTOR 25529917.  Woolf, Alex (2001). "The Verturian Hegemony: A Mirror in the North". In Brown, Michelle P; Farr, Carol Ann. Mercia: An Anglo-Saxon Kingdom in Europe. London: Leicester University Press. pp. 106–112. ISBN 0-7185-0231-0.  Yorke, Barbara (2003). "The Adaptation of the Anglo-Saxon Royal Courts to Christianity". In Carver, Martin. The Cross Goes North: Processes of Conversion in Northern Europe AD 300–1300. Woodbridge, UK: Boydell Press. pp. 244–257. ISBN 1-84383-125-2.  Yorke, Barbara (2006). The Conversion of Britain: Religion, Politics and Society in Britain c. 600–800. London: Pearson/Longman. ISBN 0-582-77292-3.  Yorke, Barbara (1997). Kings and Kingdoms of Early Anglo-Saxon England. New York: Routledge. ISBN 0-415-16639-X. 

Further reading[edit]

Foley, W. T. (1989). "Imitation Apostoli: St Wilfrid
Wilfrid
of York
York
and the Andrew Script". American Benedictine Review. 40: 13–31.  Pelteret, David (1998). " Saint
Saint
Wilfrid: Tribal Bishop, Civic Bishop
Bishop
or Germanic Lord?". In Hill, Joyce; Swan, Mary. The Community, the Family and the Saint: Patterns of Power in Early Modern Europe. Brepols. pp. 159–180. ISBN 2-503-50668-2.  Sims-Williams, Patrick (April 1988). "St Wilfrid
Wilfrid
and Two Charters Dated AD 676 and 680". Journal of Ecclesiastical History. 39 (2): 163–183. doi:10.1017/S0022046900020649.  Stancliffe, Clare (2003). Bede, Wilfrid, and the Irish. Jarrow Lecture 46. Jarrow, UK: St Paul's Church Jarrow. ISBN 9780021678822.  Wood, I. N. (January 1995). "Northumbrians and Franks in the age of Wilfrid". Northern History. 31: 10–21. doi:10.1179/007817295790175327. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Wilfrid.

Ecclesiastical History Book V – Chapter XIX contains Wilfrid's epitaph. From the Medieval Sourcebook Wilfrid
Wilfrid
2 at Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England – listing of most contemporary and close to contemporary mentions of Wilfrid
Wilfrid
in the primary sources. Includes some spurious charter listings.

Christian titles

Preceded by Chad of Mercia Bishop
Bishop
of the Northumbrians 664–678 Succeeded by Bosa as Bishop
Bishop
of York

Succeeded by Eata of Hexham as Bishop
Bishop
of Lindisfarne

Preceded by Cuthwine of Leicester Bishop
Bishop
of Leicester 692–705 Succeeded by Headda

Preceded by John of Beverley Bishop
Bishop
of Hexham 705–709 Succeeded by Acca

v t e

Saints of Anglo-Saxon England

British / Welsh

Alban of St Albans Aldatus of Oxford Amphibalus
Amphibalus
of St Albans Arilda of Oldbury Barloc
Barloc
of Norbury Brannoc of Braunton Branwalator of Milton Credan of Bodmin Congar of Congresbury Dachuna of Bodmin Decuman
Decuman
of Watchet Elfin of Warrington Ivo of Ramsey Judoc
Judoc
of Winchester Juthwara of Sherbourne Melorius of Amesbury Nectan of Hartland Neot
Neot
of St Neots Patrick of Glastonbury Rumon
Rumon
of Tavistock Samson of Dol Sativola
Sativola
of Exeter Urith
Urith
of Chittlehampton

East Anglian

Æthelberht of East Anglia Æthelburh of Faremoutiers Æthelflæd of Ramsey Æthelthryth
Æthelthryth
of Ely Æthelwine of Lindsey Athwulf of Thorney Blitha of Martham Botwulf of Thorney Cissa of Crowland Cuthbald of Peterborough Eadmund of East Anglia Eadnoth of Ramsey Guthlac of Crowland Herefrith of Thorney Hiurmine of Blythburgh Huna of Thorney Pega
Pega
of Peakirk Regenhere of Northampton Seaxburh of Ely Tancred of Thorney Torthred of Thorney Tova of Thorney Walstan
Walstan
of Bawburgh Wihtburh
Wihtburh
of Ely Wulfric of Holme

East Saxon

Æthelburh of Barking Hildelith
Hildelith
of Barking Osgyth Sæbbi of London

Frisian, Frankish and Old Saxon

Balthild
Balthild
of Romsey Bertha of Kent Felix of Dommoc Grimbald of St Bertin Monegunda of Watton Odwulf of Evesham Wulfram of Grantham

Irish and Scottish

Aidan of Lindisfarne Boisil
Boisil
of Melrose Echa of Crayke Ultan the Scribe Indract of Glastonbury Maildub of Malmesbury

Kentish

Æbbe of Thanet (Domne Eafe) Æthelberht of Kent Æthelburh of Kent Æthelred of Kent Albinus of Canterbury Berhtwald of Canterbury Deusdedit of Canterbury Edburga of Minster-in-Thanet Eanswith
Eanswith
of Folkestone Eormengyth of Thanet Mildrith
Mildrith
of Thanet Nothhelm of Canterbury Sigeburh of Thanet

Mercian

Ælfnoth of Stowe Ælfthryth of Crowland Æthelberht of Bedford Æthelmod of Leominster Æthelred of Mercia Æthelwynn of Sodbury Aldwyn of Coln Beonna of Breedon Beorhthelm of Stafford Coenwulf of Mercia Cotta of Breedon Credan of Evesham Cyneburh of Castor Cyneburh of Gloucester Cynehelm of Winchcombe Cyneswith of Peterborough Eadburh of Bicester Eadburh of Pershore Eadburh of Southwell Eadgyth of Aylesbury Eadweard of Maugersbury Ealdgyth of Stortford Earconwald
Earconwald
of London Egwin of Evesham Freomund of Mercia Frithuric
Frithuric
of Breedon Frithuswith
Frithuswith
of Oxford Frithuwold of Chertsey Hæmma of Leominster Merefin Mildburh
Mildburh
of Wenlock Mildgyth Mildrith
Mildrith
of Thanet Milred of Worcester Oda of Canterbury Oswald of Worcester Osburh of Coventry Rumwold of Buckingham Tibba of Ryhall Werburgh
Werburgh
of Chester Wærstan Wigstan
Wigstan
of Repton Wulfhild of Barking

Northumbrian

Acca of Hexham Æbbe "the Elder" of Coldingham Æbbe "the Younger" of Coldingham Ælfflæd of Whitby Ælfwald of Northumbria Æthelburh of Hackness Æthelgyth of Coldingham Æthelsige of Ripon Æthelwold of Farne Æthelwold of Lindisfarne Alchhild of Middleham Alchmund of Hexham Alkmund of Derby Balthere of Tyningham Beda of Jarrow Bega of Copeland Benedict Biscop Bercthun
Bercthun
of Beverley Billfrith of Lindisfarne Bosa of York Botwine of Ripon Ceadda of Lichfield Cedd
Cedd
of Lichfield Ceolfrith
Ceolfrith
of Monkwearmouth Ceolwulf of Northumbria Cuthbert
Cuthbert
of Durham Dryhthelm of Melrose Eadberht of Lindisfarne Eadfrith of Leominster Eadfrith of Lindisfarne Eadwine of Northumbria Ealdberht of Ripon Eanmund Eardwulf of Northumbria Eata of Hexham Ecgberht of Ripon Eoda Eosterwine of Monkwearmouth Hilda of Whitby Hyglac Iwig of Wilton John of Beverley Osana of Howden Osthryth of Bardney Oswald of Northumbria Oswine of Northumbria Sicgred of Ripon Sigfrith of Monkwearmouth Tatberht
Tatberht
of Ripon Wihtberht
Wihtberht
of Ripon Wilfrith of Hexham Wilfrith II Wilgils
Wilgils
of Ripon

Roman

Anselm of Canterbury Augustine of Canterbury Firmin of North Crawley Birinus
Birinus
of Dorchester Blaise Florentius of Peterborough Hadrian of Canterbury Honorius of Canterbury Justus
Justus
of Canterbury Laurence of Canterbury Mellitus
Mellitus
of Canterbury Paulinus of York Theodore of Canterbury

South Saxon

Cuthflæd
Cuthflæd
of Lyminster Cuthmann of Steyning Leofwynn
Leofwynn
of Bishopstone

West Saxon

Æbbe of Abingdon Ælfgar of Selwood Ælfgifu of Exeter Ælfgifu of Shaftesbury Ælfheah of Canterbury Ælfheah of Winchester Æthelflæd of Romsey Æthelgar of Canterbury Æthelnoth of Canterbury Æthelwine of Athelney Æthelwold of Winchester Aldhelm
Aldhelm
of Sherborne Benignus of Glastonbury Beocca of Chertsey Beorhthelm of Shaftesbury Beornstan of Winchester Beornwald
Beornwald
of Bampton Centwine of Wessex Cuthburh
Cuthburh
of Wimborn Cwenburh
Cwenburh
of Wimborne Dunstan
Dunstan
of Canterbury Eadburh of Winchester Eadgar of England Eadgyth of Polesworth Eadgyth of Wilton Eadweard the Confessor Eadweard the Martyr Eadwold of Cerne Earmund of Stoke Fleming Edor
Edor
of Chertsey Evorhilda Frithestan of Winchester Hædde of Winchester Humbert of Stokenham Hwita of Whitchurch Canonicorum Mærwynn
Mærwynn
of Romsey Margaret of Dunfermline Swithhun of Winchester Wulfsige of Sherborne Wulfthryth of Wilton

Unclear origin

Rumbold of Mechelen

v t e

Bishops and Archbishops of York

Pre-Reformation bishops

Paulinus Chad Wilfrid Bosa John of Beverley Wilfrid
Wilfrid
II

Pre-Reformation archbishops

Egbert Æthelbert Eanbald I Eanbald II Wulfsige Wigmund Wulfhere Æthelbald Hrotheweard Wulfstan I Oscytel Edwald Oswald Ealdwulf Wulfstan II Ælfric Puttoc Cynesige Ealdred Thomas of Bayeux Gerard Thomas II Thurstan William FitzHerbert Henry Murdac William FitzHerbert Roger de Pont L'Évêque Geoffrey Plantagenet Simon Langton Walter de Gray Sewal de Bovil Godfrey Ludham William Langton Bonaventure Walter Giffard William de Wickwane John le Romeyn Henry of Newark Thomas of Corbridge William Greenfield William Melton William Zouche John of Thoresby Alexander Neville Thomas Arundel Robert Waldby Richard le Scrope Thomas Langley Robert Hallam Henry Bowet Philip Morgan Richard Fleming John Kemp William Booth George Neville Lawrence Booth Thomas Rotherham Thomas Savage Christopher Bainbridge Thomas Wolsey

Post-Reformation archbishops

Edward Lee Robert Holgate Nicholas Heath Thomas Young Edmund Grindal Edwin Sandys John Piers Matthew Hutton Tobias Matthew George Montaigne Samuel Harsnett Richard Neile John Williams Accepted Frewen Richard Sterne John Dolben Thomas Lamplugh John Sharp Sir William Dawes Bt Lancelot Blackburne Thomas Herring Matthew Hutton John Gilbert Robert Hay Drummond William Markham Edward Venables-Vernon-Harcourt Thomas Musgrave Charles Longley William Thomson William Connor Magee William Maclagan Cosmo Lang William Temple Cyril Garbett Michael Ramsey Donald Coggan Stuart Blanch John Habgood David Hope John Sentamu

v t e

Bishops of Chichester

Bishops of Selsey

Wilfrid Eadberht Eolla Sigeferth Aluberht Oswald Gislhere Tota Wihthun Æthelwulf Cynered Guthheard Wighelm Beornheah Wulfhun Guthheard Ælfred Daniel Brihthelm Eadhelm Æthelgar Ordbriht Ælfmær Æthelric I Grimketel Heca Æthelric II Stigand See translated

High Medieval

Stigand of Selsey Godfrey Ralph de Luffa Seffrid Hilary John of Greenford Seffrid Simon of Wells Nicholas de Aquila Richard Poore Ranulf of Wareham Ralph Neville Robert Passelewe Richard de la Wich John Climping Stephen Bersted Gilbert of St Leonard

Late Medieval

John Langton Robert de Stratford William Lenn William Reade Thomas Rushhook Richard Mitford Robert Waldby Robert Reed Stephen Patrington Henry Ware John Kemp Thomas Polton John Rickingale Thomas Brunce Simon Sydenham Richard Praty Adam Moleyns Reginald Pecock John Arundel Edward Story Richard FitzJames

Early modern

Robert Sherborne Richard Sampson George Day John Scory George Day John Christopherson William Barlow Richard Curteys Thomas Bickley Anthony Watson Lancelot Andrewes Samuel Harsnett George Carleton Richard Montagu Brian Duppa Henry King Peter Gunning Ralph Brideoake Guy Carleton John Lake Simon Patrick Robert Grove John Williams Thomas Manningham Thomas Bowers Edward Waddington Francis Hare Matthias Mawson Sir William Ashburnham

Late modern

John Buckner Robert Carr Edward Maltby William Otter Philip Shuttleworth Ashurst Gilbert Richard Durnford Ernest Wilberforce Charles Ridgeway Winfrid Burrows George Bell Roger Wilson Eric Kemp John Hind Martin Warner

v t e

Bishops of Lincoln

Leicester

Cuthwine Wilfrid Headda Aldwine Torhthelm Eadbeorht Unwona Wernbeorht Hræthhun Ealdred Ceobred see removed to Dorchester

Dorchester

Harlardus Wigmund Coenwulf Wynsige Æthelwold Oscytel united see: Leofwine Alnothus Æscwig Ælfhelm Eadnoth (I) Æthelric Eadnoth (II) Ulfus Normanus Wulfwig Remigius de Fécamp

High Medieval

Remigius de Fécamp Robert Bloet Alexander Robert de Chesney Geoffrey Plantagenet Walter de Coutances Hugh of Avalon William de Blois Hugh of Wells Robert Grosseteste Henry of Lexington Richard of Gravesend Oliver Sutton

Late Medieval

John Dalderby Anthony Bek Henry Burghersh Thomas Bek John Gynwell John Bokyngham Henry Beaufort Philip Repyngdon Richard Fleming William Grey William Alnwick Marmaduke Lumley John Chadworth Thomas Rotherham John Russell

Early modern

William Smyth Thomas Wolsey William Atwater John Longland Henry Holbeach John Taylor John White Thomas Watson Nicholas Bullingham Thomas Cooper William Wickham William Chaderton William Barlow Richard Neile George Montaigne John Williams Thomas Winniffe Robert Sanderson Benjamin Lany William Fuller Thomas Barlow Thomas Tenison James Gardiner William Wake Edmund Gibson Richard Reynolds John Thomas John Green Thomas Thurlow

Late modern

George Pretyman (later Pretyman Tomline) George Pelham John Kaye John Jackson Christopher Wordsworth Edward King Edward Hicks William Swayne Nugent Hicks Aylmer Skelton Leslie Owen Maurice Harland Kenneth Riches Simon Phipps Bob Hardy John Saxbee Christopher Lowson

v t e

Bishops of Hexham

erected from united Northumbrian diocese St Eata Trumbert St Cuthbert St Eata St John of Beverley St Wilfrid St Acca St Frithubeorht St Eahlmund Tilbeorht Æthelberht Heardred Eanbehrt Tidfrith See united to Lindisfarne

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 298402404 LCCN: n84070070 ISNI: 0000 0000 6629 6685 GND: 118807293 SELIBR: 210359 SUDOC: 06992

.