By H. Maynard Smith D.D. Oxon (auth.)
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Extra resources for Pre-Reformation England
In consequence it became necessary to farm out the tithe to some layman on the spot. Peterborough had six rectories, Tewkesbury sixteen, but they both farmed out all but one. 6 Cirencester had eleven livings, and farmed out all of them. There is a petition to John XXIII in 1412 from Norwich complaining that these laymen took the 1 Phillimore, Eccles. Law, 220. • Maitland, Canon Law, 63. 3 15 Richard II, cap. 6; 4 Henry IV, cap 4· 4 Offer, The Bishop's Register, 14. s Hartridge, Vicarages, 193. 6 Ibid.
3 The same suspicion is aroused by Skelton's verses: Yet take they care of souls And wotteth never what they read, Paternoster, Ave, nor Creed, Construe not unto a whistle Neither Gospel nor Pistle, Their matins madly said, Nothing devoutly prayed: Their learning is so small, Their Primes and Houres fall And leap out of their lips Like sawdust on dry chips. • Skelton is not the only scholar, accustomed to courts and polite Rashdall, Universities, ii. 626. Cf. Emden, An Oxford Hall, 209. z Rashdall, ii.
702. The king's reply is printed i. 735· 24 THE CONDITION OF PRE-REFORMATION ENGLAND PT. I conquer Ferrara. 1 No one understood papal policy better than Henry VII, so we need not take his proposals too seriously. His letter was a move for position in the diplomatic game. The unity of Christendom was about to be shattered : and it was shattered because of weakness at the centre. The Papacy had for the time ceased to be religious, and no well-informed man trusted the Pope, while the scandals at the Roman Court were a byword.