Matthew (d. 1274)

Matthew (d. 1274)

infobox bishopbiog
name = Matthew

religion= Roman Catholic Church
See = Diocese of Ross
Title = Bishop of Ross
Period = 1272–1274
consecration = × December 25, 1274
Predecessor = Robert (II.)
Successor = Robert (III.)
post = Succentor of Ross (fl. 1255 × 1271) | ordination =
bishops =
date of birth = unknown
place of birth = unknown
date of death = 1274
place of death = Lyons, France (?)

Matthew (d. 1274) was a 13th century cleric based in the Kingdom of Scotland. Walter Bower called him "Macchabeus", [Dowden, "Bishops", p. 212; Watt, "Dictionary", p. 385.] a Latinisation of the Gaelic name "Mac Bethad" or "Mac Beathadh", previously held by a 12th century bishop. [Watt, "Fasti Ecclesiae", p. 266.] Either Bower is confused or Matthew changed his name or took a pseudonym more appropriate to the environment of the "international" church, a practise not unusual in the period. [Bartlett, "England", pp. 538-41.]

He was given the title of "Magister" ("Master") by Bower, indicating the completion of a university education and more particularly of a Masters' degree at some stage in his life, but details of this have not survived and the title may be spurious.Dowden, "Bishops", p. 213; Watt, "Dictionary", p. 385.] He is found as succentor of the cathedral of Ross in a Moray document dating between 1255 and 1271; he is the first person known to have held this position, and probably the first to have held this new position under the new cathedral constitution of 1256. [Innes (ed.), "Registrum Episcopatus Moraviensis", no. 282; Watt, "Dictionary", p. 385; Watt, "Fasti Ecclesiae", p. 284.]

After the death of Robert, Bishop of Ross, Matthew was part of the team of five "compromissarii" (delegated electors) who voted for the new bishop; as it happened, it was Matthew who was elected. [Dowden, "Bishops", pp. 212-3; Watt, "Dictionary", p. 385.] He travelled to the papal court at Orvieto, along with the archdeacon Robert de Fyvie, and without waiting very long, was consecrated by Pope Gregory X personally ("per nos ipsos") by December 28, 1272, on which date a mandate was issued authorising him to proceed to his bishopric. [Dowden, "Bishops", pp. 212-3; Watt, "Dictionary", p. 385; Watt, "Fasti Ecclesiae", p. 267.]

Presumably after returning to Ross, he travelled back to continental Europe to attend the Second Council of Lyon in France, held in the summer of 1274. There, according to Bower, he died (of unspecified causes); Bower on this occasion calls him "Magister Matthaeus episcopus Rossensis", "Master Matthew Bishop of Ross" rather than "Macchabeus". [Dowden, "Bishops", p. 213; Watt, "Dictionary", pp. 385-6.] Whether or not Bower's claim about his death at Lyons is true, the bishopric was certainly vacant by the following Christmas. [Watt, "Dictionary", p. 386; Watt, "Fasti Ecclesiae", p. 267.]



* Bartlett, Robert, "England Under the Norman and Angevin Kings", (Oxford, 2000)
* Dowden, John, "The Bishops of Scotland", ed. J. Maitland Thomson, (Glasgow, 1912)
* Innes, Cosmo Nelson, "Registrum Episcopatus Moraviensis; E Pluribus Codicibus Consarcinatum Circa A.D. Mcccc., Cum Continuatione Diplomatum Recentiorum Usque Ad A.D. Mdcxxiii", (Edinburgh, 1837)
* Watt, D. E. R., "A Biographical Dictionary of Scottish Graduates to A. D. 1410", (Oxford, 1977)
* Watt, D. E. R., "Fasti Ecclesiae Scotinanae Medii Aevi ad annum 1638", 2nd Draft, (St Andrews, 1969)

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