Benjamin Lany

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Benjamin Lany

Bishop of Ely
Bp Benjamin Laney.png
Diocese Diocese of Ely
In office1667–1675
Predecessor Peter Gunning
Successor Matthew Wren
Other post(s) Bishop of Peterborough (1660–1663)
Bishop of Lincoln (1663–1667)
Personal details
Born1591 (1591)
Died24 January 1675(1675-01-24) (aged 84)
Buried Ely Cathedral
Nationality British
Denomination Anglican
Alma mater Christ's College, Cambridge
Monument to Bishop Benjamin Laney in Ely Cathedral Ely Cathedral 30.jpg
Monument to Bishop Benjamin Laney in Ely Cathedral

Benjamin Lany FRS (or Laney; 1 January 1591 – 24 January 1675) was an English academic and bishop. [1]


Early life

The son of John Laney, [2] Benjamin Lany was born in Ipswich. [3] He entered Christ's College, Cambridge in 1608, graduating B.A. 1612, M.A. 1615, B.D. 1622, D.D. 1630. He became a Fellow of Pembroke Hall, Cambridge in 1616. [4]

Career (pre Civil War)

He was ordained on 21 February 1619. After a curacy at Madingley he held livings at Hambledon, Hampshire, Bishops Waltham and Buriton. [5] He was also Chaplain to the Bishop of Winchester from 1628. [6] He became Master of Pembroke in 1630.

By Richard Neile he was appointed to the rectory of Buriton with Petersfield, Hampshire, and on 31 July 1631. [7]

He became Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge in 1632.

Civil War years

Lany was appointed on 19 June 1639 to a prebendal stall in Westminster, on the king's nomination. As a devoted royalist and high churchman, Lany on the outbreak of the civil wars become the subject of fierce hostility to the puritan party. He was denounced by Prynne as "one of the professed Arminians, Laud's creatures to prosecute his designs in the university of Cambridge", who, when one Adams was brought before the authorities for preaching in favour of confession to a "priest, had united with the majority of the doctors in acquitting him". When the parliament exercised supreme power he was deprived of all his preferments, his rectory of Buriton being sequestered "to the use of one Robert Harris, a godly and orthodox divine, and member of the Assembly of Ministers" [7]

In 1643 Edward Montagu, 2nd Earl of Manchester and Simeon Ashe led a visitation to the University on behalf of Parliament. This saw Lany deprived of his position. He went into exile with the future Charles II of England. [8]

Career (post Civil War)

After the Restoration of 1660, he became Dean of Rochester — he was instituted on 8 August. [9] He became Bishop of Peterborough the same year [10] — he was elected to the See on 20 October 1660, confirmed 17 November, and consecrated a bishop on 2 December 1660. [11] He then served as Bishop of Lincoln from 1663 — elected 10 March and confirmed 2 April [12] — and Bishop of Ely from 1667. [8] He was elected to that See on 24 May and confirmed 12 June. [13]

He became a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1666. [4]

Notes and references


  1. Pepys Diary
  2. J.J.C. (1981). "Laney, John (d.1633), of Cratfield and Ipswich, Suff.". In Hasler, P. W. (ed.). The House of Commons 1558-1603. The History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 31 March 2019.
  3. Soham Town Forum
  4. 1 2 "Laney, Benjamin (LNY608B)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  5. A History of Christianity in Petersfield, Leaton, E. (ed.) (2001, Petersfield, Petersfield Area Historical Society: Monograph Number 4 p17) ISSN 0262-5970
  6. "English Historical Facts, 1603-1688" Cook,C./ Wroughton,J. p139: London, Macmillan, 1980 ISBN   978-1-349-02676-0
  7. 1 2 Venables 1885.
  8. 1 2 Concise Dictionary of National Biography
  9. Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1541–1857, vol. 3, 1974, pp. 54–57
  10. Peterborough Cathedral: History of the See
  11. Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1541–1857, vol. 8, 1996, pp. 115–118
  12. Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1541–1857, vol. 9, 1999, pp. 1–5
  13. Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1541–1857, vol. 7, 1992, pp. 7–10


Academic offices
Preceded by Master of Pembroke College, Cambridge
Succeeded by
Preceded by Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge
Succeeded by
Preceded by Master of Pembroke College, Cambridge
Succeeded by
Church of England titles
Preceded by
Thomas Turner
vacant from 1644
Dean of Rochester
July 1660December 1660
Succeeded by
Preceded by
John Towers
vacant from 1649
Bishop of Peterborough
Succeeded by
Preceded by Bishop of Lincoln
Succeeded by
Preceded by Bishop of Ely
Succeeded by

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