Imágenes de páginas

(says Dr. Lowth) I presume, is, thar a man's real worth is to be estimated, not from the outward and accidental advantages of birth, rank, and fortune, but from the endowments of his mind and his moral qualifications." It is generally agreed that his parents' circumftances would not afford their son a liberal education. However he was put by some genepous patron to fchool at Winchester, where he made some progrefs in grammatical knowledge ; but in other re{pects his education was very defeclive. He acted as secretary to Nicholas Uvedale, Governor of Winchefter Castle, who afterwards recommended him to Edyngdon, Bishop of Winchelter, through whom he became known to king Edward III. In the year 1356, he was made surveyor of the king's works at the Castle and in the park of Windsor. Great part of the Caftle was pulled down by his advice, and rebuilt in a much more magnificent manner, under his fole direction. He was likewise architect of Queen borough Castle, and, by his talents and good behaviour, foon acquired a confiderable share of his foyereign's confidence and favour. He received holy orders in the year 1351, and was soon gratified with a number of eçclefiaftical benefices. tended the king at Calais, in the year 1360. In June 1363, he was Warden and Jylticiary of the king's forests on this fide the Trent. In the suc

ceeding years, he was made keeper of the Privy Seal ; and in two years after secretary to the king; at which period he was considered as chief of the privy council. Besides the profits arising to him from these places, he enjoyed church benefices to the amount of 8421. per annum, before he was promoted to the bishoprick of Winchester. William de Edyngdon, bishop of that see, dying in the year 1366, Wykeham was unanimously elected as his successor, by the prior and convent, approved by the pope,

and confecrated next year at St. Paul's, in London, by the arch

bishop of Canterbury. In the course of the same year, he was conftituted chancelļor of England. In 1371, he resigned the great feal, in consequence of a complaint by the parliament, that ecclesiastics were vested with the highest cignities of the state. During the respite which Wykeham enjoyed from ffate affairs, he employed his whole attention in reforming the ecclefiaftical abuses which had


in. to his diocese; and in repairing all the episcopal buildings, on which he expended no less than 20,000 marks. In the reformation of abuses, he met with some obstructions from the ma. fter of the hospital at St. Cross., This hospital, at Sporkeford, near Win., cheiter, was founded by Henry de Blois, bishop of Winchester, and brother to king Stephen, about the year 1136, for the health of his own soul and the souls of his predeceffors, and of the kings of England. The founder's inftitution requires, that thirteen poor men so decayed and pasti their strength, that without charitable affitance they cannot maintain themselves, shall abide continually in che hospital, who shall be provided, with proper cloathing, and beds suite able to their infirmities; and shall have an allowance daily of good wheat bread, good beer, three messes each for dinner, and one for supper. If any

of these shall happen to rea cover his health and strength, he shall be respectfully discharged, and ano. ther taken in' his place. That besides these thirteen poor, an hundred other poor, of modeft behaviour, and the most indigent that can be found, shall be received daily at dinner time; and have each a loaf of coarser bread, one mess, and a proper

allowance of beer, with leave to carry away with them whatever remains after dinner. The founder also ordered other cha. rities to be distributed to the poor in general, as the revenues of the hospi. cal should be able to bear, the whole of which was to be applied to such uses. The endowment of the hospital


He at

[ocr errors]

and the master and bretha Coc 246 THE NEW CHRISTIAN'S MAGAZINE, confifted chiefly of the impropriation hundred poor were, fed in a place of nineteen considerable rectories, for called Hundred Mennelhall; each of the most part belonging to the diocese them had a loaf of coarser bread, of of Wincheker, and of the bilhop's

five marks weight, three quarts of patronage; the greatest part of which small 'beer, a lufficient quantity of were afterwards converted into annual portage, or a mess of pulie, one here penfions. I do not find when or by ring or two pilcha'ds, or two eggs or what means this alteration was made; one farthing's worth of cheese, value but it seems to have taken place not three-pence q.week : -of which long after the first foundation of the hundred poor were always thirteen of hospital. The revenues of the Hof the poorer scholars of the great grampital appear, by an old record of in mar fchool of Winchester sent by the quifition, produced in Wykeham's schoolmaster. On the anniversary of time by the prior of Winchester, from the founder's obit, Augult 9, being the archives of the monaftry, without the eve of St. Laurence, three hunc date, to have amounted to about dred


were received at the hospi. 250l. per annum; they are said by tal; to each of the first hundred were Wykeham, in his letters to the

pope, given one loaf, and one mefs of the to be about 300l. per annum, and iame fort with those of the brethren's are proved by the testimony of one ordinary allowance, and three quarts who had been long steward of the hos of beer


to the second hundred was pital, and many others, to have been, given the usual hundredman's allow. át that time, above 400l. per annum. ance ; and to each of the third hun. The whole revenues of the hospital dred half a loaf of the brethren's were free from all taxes, both to the bread. On fix holidays in the year king and pope, as being wholly ap the hundred men had each a loaf of propriated to the poor, except 71. 45. the better sort of bread, and a double 60. (called elsewhere 81.) per annum,

mess. There were besides, mainwhich was the valuation of the prior's tained in the hospital, a fteward, er maker's portion.

with his two servants and two horses, The particular allowances to the a porter, twelve servants, two teams, poor, with their valuation, according of fix horses each, and three carters, to the above-mentioned record of in. The founder had constituted the quifition, were as follows: each of master and brethren of the hospital of the thirteen fecular brethren had daily St. John of Jerusalem, guardians and one loaf of good wheat bread, of five adminiftrators of his hospital of St. marks weight, (or 31. 402.) one gal. Cross, saving to the bishop of Win. lon and half of good small beer, a chefter his canonical jurisdiction. fufficient quantity of pottage, three A dispute arising between Richard meffes at dinner, namely, one mess Toclive, bishop of Winchester, im.. called mortrell, made of milk and mediate fucceffor to Henry de Blois, waftelbread; one mess of Aeth or fish; and one pictance as the day should re John of Jerusalem, concerning the quire; and one mess at supper, the administration of the hospital, king whole valued at 17d. q: a week ; Henry the second interposed ; and in Wykeham's time at 30. a day. by his mediation an agreement was Onfix holidays in the year they had made between them : the master and white bread and ale in the same quan brethren ceded to the bishop of Wintities; and one of their meffes was chester, and his successors, the admied roast meat or fish of a better fort, and nistration of the hospital, the bishop on the eves of those holidays, and giving then the impropriation of the that of the founder's obit, they had churches of Morden and Hanniron for an extraordinary allowance of four the payment of 33 marks per annum, gallons of ale among then. The and procuring them a discharge from


of St.

the pension of ten marks, two wax candles, and ten pounds of wax, paid to the monks of St. Swichin, for the house of St. Crofs: and the bishop moreover, out of regard to God, and for the health of the king's foul and his own, (because the revenues of the hospital were sufficient for the main. tenance of many more poor, and ought not to be converted to other uses, as Wykeham represents to the pope) orders that, besides the number instituted by the founder, one hundred additional poor shall also be fed every day in the same manner at she hospital. This agreement is dared April 10, 1385, and was made Dover in the presence of the king, and a tested by him. This new inftitution of feeding, one hundred additional poor was not of long continuance: it had ceased long before Wykeham's time; and instead of it, by what authority we cannot say, was introduced the eftablishment of four priests, thirteen secular clerks, and seven choristers, who were maintained in the hospital for the performance of divine service in the church. The four priests dined at the master's table, and had each a ftipend of 31. 6s. 8d. per annum; the thirteen clerks had each daily a loaf of wheat bread, weight 61 shillings and eight-pence, (i. e. 31b. Icz.) three quarts of beer, and one mess of flesh or fish of the brethren was allotted to two of them; the seven chorilters had each one loaf of the common family bread, and the fragments of the master's table and common hall, so as to have a sufficient provision; and were taught at school in the hospital.”

After the death of the Black prince, John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, who had been forming intrigues for the succestion, and alloa ciated with ford Latimer, and Alice Perrers, the old king's mistress, re. sumed all his influence at court, from whence he and his associates had been banilhed by a parliamentary remon, Arance, and now he relolved to make his enemies feet his resentment: as

Wykeham had fill adhered to the prince of Wales, and the true interest of his country, he was of course considered as an enemy by the duke of Lancalter, who suborned certain persons io bring articles of accusation againk the good prelate. He was charged with having embez zled the public revenue, and with divers acts of fraud, extortion, and misconduct during the time in whicha, he had a fhare in the adminiftra.. tion of affairs. Of all the articles, his accusers could only prove the last, which was an irregular proceeding as chancellor, in the case of one Joha Gray, relating to a fine of sol. Upon this, judgment was given, that his temporalicies lhould be seized into the king's hands. These were accordingly seized, and the bi-shop was forbidden to come within twenty

miles of the court. Next year, the commons petitioned the king, that, in confideration of the year of his jubilee, being the fif. teenth of his reign, a general pardoa might be his subjects of all crimes committed before the be. ginning of the said year. His majef complied with their request; but Sir William Wykeham was expressly excepted from the benefit of this amnesty. The convocation however, deeply impressed with a sense of the injuries which had been done to the bishop of Winchester, refused to grant any fuhhdy, until thac prelate's grievances should be redressed, and peritioned the kiog in his behalf; in consequence of this remonftrance; che bishop was permitted to come to Southwark, and take his place again in the convocation : but his temporalities, instead of being restored, were granted to Richard prince of Wales. Nevertheless, in June fol. lowing, Wykenam recovered them, in consideration of his having undertaken 10 equip, at his own expence, three ships of war, with fifty men at asms, and fifty archers each, for one quarter of a year, as such wages as were usually paid by the king ; but


[ocr errors]

the king was to pay the mariners : and in case fuch voyage should not take place, the bifhop was to pay to his majesty the fum, to which the wages of the said 300 men, by reaConable computation, should amount.

At the acceflion of Richard II. the bishop's pardon passed the privy seal, in the most extensive terms ; and, by another instrument, he was indulged with a full remission of all the burdens which were imposed upon him, when his temporalities were restored. This pardon and remiffion were solemnly confirmed in parliament, at the request, and on the pesition, of the commons. In a word, the bishop had no other enemies than che duke of Lancaster, and his ad. herents ; but was considered by the nation in general, as a staunch friend to the interests of his country : for, as often as the commons, in subsequent parliaments, complained of Richard's administration, and petitioned for commissioners to rectify the disorders of his reign, the bishop of Winchefter was always mentioned in the lift, and appointed accordingly. He was no sooner delivered of the persecution raised by his enemies, than he began to execute the noble plan he had laid for his two colleges at Winchester and Oxford.-His design was to provide for the perpetual maintenance and instruction of two hundred scholars, to be conducted through a perfect course of education ; from the first elements of letters chrough the whole circle of the sciences. " The work (says Dr. Lowth) which demanded his attention at this time, was to erect his college at Oxford; the society of which he had already compleated and established, and that some years before he began to raise the building, For he proceeded here in the same method which he took at Winchefter; as he began there with forming a private grammar school, furnished with proper masters, and maintained and supported in it the full number of scholars, which he afterwards

established in his college ; fo at Ox. ford, in the first place, he formed his fociety, appointed them a governor, allowed them a liberal maintenance, provided them with lodgings, and gave them rules and directions for their behaviour; not only that his beneficence might not seem to lie fruitless and ineffectual, while it was only employed in making his pur. chases of lands, and raising his building, which would take up a con fiderable time ; but that he might bestow his earliest attention, and his greatest care in forming and perfect ing the principal part of his deliga; and that the life and soul, as it were, might be ready to inform and ani. mate the body of his college as foon as it could be finished ; and so the whole fyftem be at once compleated in every part of it. This preparatory establishment, it is thought, took place about the same time with that of Winchester, that is, in the year 1373; which agrees with the account that some authors gave, that it was seven years before the foundation of the buildings was laid: but they are mistaken, in fuppofing that there were only fifty scholars maintained by him in this manner; for it appears by the rolls of account of New College, that in the year 1376, the society confifted of a warden and seventy fellows, called Pauperes Scholares Venerabilis Domini Domini Wilhelmi de Wykeham Wynton Episcopi; and that it had been established probably for the same number, at least as early as September 1375. Richard Toneworth, fel. low of Merton college, was appointed by him governor of this society, with the title of warden, and a salary of 2ol. per annum.

The fellows were lodged in Blakehall, Herthall, Shulehall, Meydenhall, and Hamerhall : the expence

of their lodging amounted to col. 135. 4d. per annom. They were allowed each of them is. 6d per week for their commons : and they had proper fervants to actend them who had suitable ftipends.

" In

* In the year 1379, the bishop compleated his several purchases of land for the site of his college, and immediately took his measures for erecting his building. In the first place, he obtained the king's patent, granting him licence to found his college ; it is dated June 30, 1379. He procured likewise the pope's bull to the fame effect. He published his charter of foundation November 26 following ; by which he intitled his college, Sainte Marie College Wynchestre in Oxenford. It was then vulgarly called the New College, which became in time a fort of proper name for it, and, in common use, continues to be so to this day. At the same time, upon the resignation of Toneworth, he conftituted his kinsman, Nicholas Wykeham, warden, with a falary of 40l. per annum. On the 5th of March following, at eight o'clock in the morning, the foundation stone was laid : the building was finished in fix years, and the society made their public entrance into it with much solemnity and devotion, singing litanies, and marching in procession, with the cross borne before them, at nine o'clock in the morning on the 14th of April, 1386. The society confits of a warden and seventy poor scholars, clerks, ftadents in theology, canon and civil law, and philosophy: twenty are appointedto the study of laws, ten of them to that of the canon, and ten to that of the civil law; the remaining fifty are to apply themselves to philosophy, (or arts) and theology; two of them, however, are permitted to apply themselves to the study of medicine; and two likewise to that of astronomy : all of whom are obliged to be in priest's crders within a certain time, except in case of lawful impediment. Besides these, there are ten priests, three clerks, aed fixteen boys or chorifters, to minister in the service of the chapel.

“ The body of statutes which VOL. II. No. 16,

Wykeham gave to his college, was a work upon which he bestowed much time and constant attention. It was the result of great meditation and study, aflitted, confirmed, and brought to maturity by long observation and experience. He began it with the first establishment of his society; and he was continually im. proving and perfe&ing it almost as long as he lived. . And accordingly it has been always considered as the most judicious and the most com: plete performance in its kind, and as the best model which the founders of colleges in succeeding times had to follow ; and which, indeed, most of them have copied, or closely imitated.

" While the bishop was engaged in building his college at Oxford, he established in proper form his society at Wincheiter. His charter of foundation bears date October 20, 1382, by which he nominates Thomas de Cranle warden, admits the scholars, and gives his college the same name of Sainte Marie College of Wincheftre. The next year, after he had finished his building at Oxford, he began that at Winchester, for which he had obtained both the pope's and the king's licence long before. A natural affection and prejudice for the very place which he had frequented in his early days, seems to have had its weight in the determining the situation of it: thé fehool which Wykeham went to when a boy, was where his college now stands. The first itone was laid on March 26, 1387, at nine o'clock in the morning it took up fix years likewise in building: and the warden and society made their


! lemn entrance into it, chanting in procession, at nine o'clock in the mornirg, on March 28, 1393. The school nad now subfifted near twenty years, having been opened ac Michaelmas 1373. It was compleatly eftablished from the firit to its full number of seventy scholars, and to all other intents and purposes; and K k


« AnteriorContinuar »