Lyfing of Winchester

Lyfing of Winchester

Infobox bishopbiog
name =Lyfing of Winchester

religion =Catholic
See =Diocese of Crediton
Title = Bishop of Crediton
Period = 1027–1046
Predecessor = Ednoth
Successor =Leofric
ordination =
bishops = Bishop of Worcester
Bishop of Cornwall
post =Abbot of Tavistock
date of birth =
place of birth =
date of death =1046
place of death =

Lyfing of Winchester (died 1046) (also known as Livingus or Lifing) was an Anglo-Saxon Bishop of Crediton, Bishop of Cornwall and Worcester.


His uncle was Burhweald, bishop of Cornwall.Lawson "Cnut" pp. 116-117] He was probably a monk at either WinchesterBarlow "Lyfing (d. 1046)" "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography"] Glastonbury Abbey. In 1009, he became Abbot of Tavistock,Knowles "Heads of Religious Houses" pp. 72, 255] and that was always his favourite of the offices he held.Fact|date=April 2008 In 1027, he became the 9th Bishop of Crediton, and about the same time he became Bishop of Cornwall when his uncle Brihtwold died, so he united those two sees, with the seat at Crediton.Fryde "Handbook of British Chronology" p. 215] Barlow "English Church 1000-1066" p. 73] His elevation probably was due both to his family and to his assistance to Cnut in Rome.Lawson "Cnut" p. 137] There is also some indication he may have been a protege of Godwin, Earl of Wessex.

In 1038 or 1039 Lyfing also became Bishop of Worcester but was deprived of the see in 1040.Fryde "Handbook of British Chronology" p. 224] King Harold Harefoot gave Worcester to Lyfing because of Lyfing's support of Harold. His deprivation was due to King Harthacnut's belief that Lyfing was involved in the death of Harthacnut's half brother Alfred Atheling.Stenton "Anglo-Saxon England" p. 422-423] Lyfing was accused by Aelfric Puttoc, the archbishop of York, who briefly replaced Lyfing at Worcester.Stafford "Unification and Conquest" p. 80] Lyfing seems to have claimed that he was merely following the orders of Harold Harefoot.Mason "House of Godwine" p. 41] However, he was restored to Worcester in 1041 and held both sees until his death on either March 20, March 23 or March 25 1046.

Bishop Lyfing was a close friend and trusted counselor of King Canute the Dane and accompanied him on a pilgrimage to Rome in 1027. Florence of Worcester, the medieval chronicler, claims that Lyfing, along with Godwin, was instrumental in securing the succession of Edward the Confessor to the throne of England on Harthacnut's death.Stafford "Unification and Conquest" p. 86] A tradition at Worcester also recorded that it was Lyfing, along with Archbishop Eadsige of Canterbury, who forced Sweyn to release Eadgifu, the abbess of Leominster who Sweyn had kidnapped.Barlow "Godwins" p. 53] In revenge, Sweyn raided the lands of the diocese of Worcester.Barlow "English Church 1000-1066" p. 58]

Before Lyfing's death, Aldred, who succeeded him at Worcester, had probably been acting as his suffragan or co-bishop.Barlow "Edward the Confessor" p. 86] When Lyfing died, he chose to be buried at Tavistock Abbey. Lyfing was a pluralist and never enjoyed a good reputation. However, the D version of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle describes him as "the eloquent bishop", which may imply that he was noted as an important preacher.Lawson "Cnut" p. 66] Tavistock monk's also remembered him as a great benefactor to their monastery.Barlow "English Church 1000-1066" p. 74]




Further reading

* Conner, P. W. "Anglo-Saxon Exeter: A Tenth-century Cultural History" (1993)

External links

* [ Prosopography of Anglo Saxon England entry for Lyfing]

SHORT DESCRIPTION=Bishop of Credition; Bishop of Worcester; Bishop of Cornwall
DATE OF DEATH=March 1046

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