Simon Langton (archbishop)

Simon Langton (archbishop)

Infobox Archbishop of York
name = Simon Langton

consecration = never consecrated
began = never enthroned
term_end = August 1215
Election quashed
predecessor = Geoffrey Plantagenet
successor = Walter de Gray
birth_date =
birthplace =
death_date = 1248
deathplace =
tomb =

Simon Langton was an English medieval ecclesiatic and Archbishop of York elect.


Simon held the prebend of Strensall in the diocese of York by 20 November 1214. He was the brother of Stephen Langton, who became Archbishop of Canterbury in 1207. [ British History Online Archbishops of York] accessed on 15 September 2007] A third brother Walter was a layman, and when he died childless in 1234, Simon was left with the lands and debts. Simon probably studied at Paris, where his brother was a noted instructor.Cazel "Langton, Simon (d. 1248)" "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography" [ Online Edition] accessed 12 November 2007] Simon was employed by his brother in the negotiations with King John in 1210, when Simon told John that Stephen Langton would not lift the interdict unless John put himself "wholly in his mercy."Poole "Domesday Book to Magna Carta" p. 446-447] He had also appeared at the 1208 Winchester council to present the papal demands to allow Stephen Langton into the see of Canterbury.Joliffe "Angevin Kingship" p. 168]

Simon was elected in June of 1215 to fill the Archbishopric of York. King John had wanted the selection of Walter de Gray, John's Chancellor and Bishop of Worcester. However, the canons of York felt that Walter was uneducated, and selected Simon instead. John objected, and wrote to Pope Innocent III complaining of the election of the brother of one of his staunchest enemies, and Innocent agreed.Bartlett "England Under the Norman and Angevin Kings" p. 406-407] Simon had previously been forbidden to seek the office, and accordingly Simon's election was quashed on 20 August 1215 by the pope.Fryde "Handbook of British Chronology" p. 281] Simon then proceeded to join Prince Louis of France's invasion of England in 1215, and acted as Louis' chancellor, against the express wishes of the pope. Because of this, in 1216 he was excommunicated, and deprived of all benefices, [ British History Online Prebendary of Strensall] accessed on 15 September 2007] He was eventually absolved, and made an official of the papal court and allowed to hold a prebend in France.

On 14 May 1227 he was appointed Archdeacon of Canterbury, and held that office until his death in 1248. [ British History Online Archdeacons of Canterbury] accessed on 15 September 2007] In January of 1235 he was employed by King Henry III of England to negotiate a renewal of the truce with France.Powell "The House of Lords" p. 158] He also represented Archbishop Edmund Rich at Rome in a number of disputes. Besides the renewal of the peace treaty, Simon represented King Henry in many diplomatic missions. He was a patron to the Franciscans in England and left a library to the University of Paris.



* Bartlett, Robert "England Under the Norman and Angevin Kings: 1075-1225" Oxford:Clarendon Press 2000 ISBN 0-19-822741-8
* [ British History Online Archbishops of York] accessed on 15 September 2007
* [ British History Online Archdeacons of Canterbury] accessed on 15 September 2007
* [ British History Online Prebendary of Strensall] accessed on 15 September 2007
* Cazel, Jr., Fred A. "Langton, Simon (d. 1248)" "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography" Oxford University Press, 2004 [ Online Edition] accessed 12 November 2007
* Joliffe, J. E. A. "Angevin Kingship" London:Adam and Charles Black 1955
* Poole, A. L. "Domesday Book to Magna Carta 1087-1216" Second Edition Oxford:Clarendon Press reprint 1986 ISBN 0-19-821707-2
* Powell, J. Enoch and Keith Wallis "The House of Lords in the Middle Ages: A History of the English House of Lords to 1540" London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson 1968

NAME= Langton, Simon
SHORT DESCRIPTION=Archbishop of York elect; Archdeacon of Canterbury

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