Historical development of Church of England dioceses

Last updated

Current dioceses of the Church of England. Dioceses of Church of England.svg
Current dioceses of the Church of England.

This article traces the historical development of the dioceses and cathedrals of the Church of England. It is customary in England to name each diocese after the city where its cathedral is located. Occasionally, when the bishop's seat has been moved from one city to another, the diocese may retain both names, for example Bath and Wells. More recently, where a cathedral is in a small or little-known city, the diocesan name has been changed to include the name of a nearby larger city: thus the cathedral in Southwell now serves the diocese of Southwell and Nottingham, and Ripon Cathedral was in Ripon and Leeds from 1999 until 2014. Cathedrals, like other churches, are dedicated to a particular saint or holy object, or Christ himself, but are commonly referred to by the name of the city where they stand. A cathedral is, simply, the church where the bishop has his chair or "cathedra".


The forty-two dioceses of the Church of England are administrative territorial units each governed by a bishop. Forty-one dioceses cover England, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands, the Isles of Scilly, and a small part of Wales. One diocese, the Diocese in Europe, is also a part of the Church of England (rather than a separate Anglican church such as the Church in Wales), and covers the whole of mainland Europe, the countries of Morocco and Turkey, and the territory of the former Soviet Union.

The structure of the dioceses within the Church of England was initially inherited from the Catholic Church as part of the English Reformation. During the Reformation, a number of new dioceses were founded. No new English or Welsh dioceses were then created until the middle of the 19th century, when dioceses were founded mainly in response to the growing population, especially in the northern industrial cities.

From 1787, the Anglican church also erected 41 dioceses outside these isles (see § colonial dioceses); these were part of the Church of England until they were separated from the home Church in 1863. From 1801 until 1871, the dioceses of Ireland were also part of the United Church of England and Ireland. In 1920 (by the Welsh Church Act 1914), the Welsh dioceses were separated to form the Church in Wales.

The last dioceses were created in 1927. The 42 dioceses are divided between two Provinces: the Province of Canterbury (with 30 dioceses) and the Province of York (with 12 dioceses). The archbishops of Canterbury and York have pastoral oversight over the bishops within their province, along with certain other rights and responsibilities.


Durham Cathedral was under Benedictine rule. Durham Kathedrale Nahaufnahme.jpg
Durham Cathedral was under Benedictine rule.

The history of the cathedrals in Great Britain differs somewhat from that of their European continental counterparts. British cathedrals have always been fewer in number than those of Italy, France, and other parts of Europe, while the buildings themselves have tended to be much larger. While France, at the time of the French Revolution, had 136 cathedrals, England had 27. Because of a ruling that no cathedral could be built in a village, any town in which a cathedral was located was elevated to city status, regardless of its size. To this day several large English cathedrals are located in small "cathedral cities", notably Wells and Ely Cathedrals, both of which rank among the greatest works of English Medieval architecture.

Early organisation

In earlier times, populations were sparsely spread and towns were few. The population of the kingdom of England in the 11th century is estimated at between one and two million, with Lincolnshire, East Anglia, and East Kent the most densely populated areas; in other parts of the country many villages had been razed by the conquest armies. [1] Instead of exercising jurisdiction over geographical areas, many of the bishops were linked to tribes or peoples, as the bishops of the South Saxons, the West Saxons, the Somersætas, etc. The cathedra of such a bishop was often migratory.

In 1075 a council was held in London, under the presidency of Archbishop Lanfranc, which, reciting the decrees of the council of Sardica held in 347 and that of Laodicea held in 360 on this matter, ordered the bishop of the South Saxons to remove his see from Selsey to Chichester; the Wiltshire and Dorset bishop to remove his cathedra from Sherborne to Old Sarum, and the Mercian bishop, whose cathedral was then at Lichfield, to transfer it to Chester. Traces of the tribal and migratory system may still be noted in the designations of the Irish see of Meath (where the result has been that there is now no cathedral church) and Ossory, the cathedral church of which is at Kilkenny. Some of the Scottish sees were also migratory.

Late Middle Ages

Dioceses of England and Wales prior to the Dissolution of the Monasteries (1536-41) A short history of England and the British Empire (1915) (14580591399).jpg
Dioceses of England and Wales prior to the Dissolution of the Monasteries (1536–41)
The ruins of the medieval Bishop's Palace at Lincoln, which was ruled by secular canons Lincoln cathedral 07 fromBishopspalace.jpg
The ruins of the medieval Bishop's Palace at Lincoln, which was ruled by secular canons

Between 1075 and the 15th century, the cathedrals of England were almost evenly divided between those ruled by secular canons headed by a dean and those ruled by monastic orders headed by a prior, all of which were Benedictine, except Carlisle, which was Augustinian. Two cathedrals, Bath and Coventry, shared their sees with Wells and Lichfield, respectively.


The entire structure of the monastic and cathedral system was overthrown and reconstituted during the Reformation. Cathedrals which were once Roman Catholic came under the governance of the Church of England.

All the English monastic cathedral chapters were dissolved by Henry VIII and, with the exceptions of Bath and Coventry, were re-founded by him as churches of secular chapters, with a dean as the head, and a certain number of canons ranging from twelve at Canterbury and Durham to four at Carlisle, and with certain subordinate officers as minor canons, gospellers, epistolers, etc. The precentorship in these churches of the "New Foundation", as they are called, is not, as in the secular churches of the "Old Foundation", a dignity, but is merely an office held by one of the minor canons.

Henry VIII also created six new cathedrals from old monastic establishments, in each case governed by secular canons. Of these, Westminster did not retain its cathedral status. Four more of England's large historic churches were later to become cathedrals: Southwell, Southwark, Ripon, and St Albans Abbey.

Roles within the Cathedral

Details of cathedrals and their foundation

Ancient cathedrals

The medieval Church of England was organised into 17 dioceses. About half of the diocesan cathedrals were also monasteries, with the prior serving double duty as dean of the cathedral. The rest were served by a college of "secular" canons – non-monastic priests living under no fixed rule of life. Both types often had Saxon foundations. Dioceses which exist in the Church of England today are indicated in bold type.


DioceseFoundedMonastic or secular?Notes
Canterbury 597 Monastic Also called archbishop of Kent in Anglo-Saxon times. [2]
Rochester 604 Monastic Also called bishop of the West Kentish in Anglo-Saxon times. [3]
London 604 Secular Archbishops of London had existed previously; also called bishop of the East Saxons [4] or of Essex [5] in Anglo-Saxon times.
York 626 Secular In Anglo-Saxon times also called bishop of Northumbria [6] or of the Northumbrians, [7] or of Deira. [8]
East Anglia/Dunwich 631 (Dunwich or possibly Soham) Monastic Lapsed to Elmham in 950; also called bishop of the East Angles. [9]
Dorchester/ Winchester 634 (Dorchester, Oxon)
660 (Winchester)
Monastic Also called bishop of Wessex in Anglo-Saxon times. [10]
Lindisfarne/ Durham 635 (Lindisfarne)
995 (Durham)
Monastic Transferred to Durham in 995 from Chester-le-Street, itself a transfer from Lindisfarne; earlier called bishop of Bernicia [11] or of the Bernicians. [12]
Mercia/ Lichfield 656 (Repton)
669 (Lichfield)
Monastic/Secular After 1075, the see was occasionally Coventry or Chester; in Anglo-Saxon times called bishop of Mercia or of the Mercians. [13]
Elmham/Thetford/ Norwich 672 (Elmham)
1072 (Thetford)
1091 (Norwich)
Hereford 676 Secular Also called bishop of the Magonsæte in Anglo-Saxon times. [14]
Lindsey (Sidnacester)678 Secular Merged with Dorchester, c.1010; also called bishop of the Lindisfaras. [15]
Ripon 678 Secular One bishop only; merged to York before 700.
Worcester 680 Monastic In Anglo-Saxon times also called bishop of the Hwicce. [16]
Leicester/Dorchester/ Lincoln 681 (Leicester)
878 (Dorchester)
1072 (Lincoln)
Selsey/ Chichester 681 & 706 (Selsey)
1075 (Chichester)
Originally Monastic, from 1075 Secular Selsey Abbey was founded in 681 and was the cathedra for the Kingdom of Sussex. That see lasted until 685, and from 686 to 705 was merged in the Diocese of Winchester, but was reasserted in 706. The bishopric was moved to Chichester by order of the Council of London in 1075; the bishops had previously also been known as bishop of Sussex [17] or of the South Saxons. [18]
Hexham 685 Monastic Absorbed into Lindisfarne by 854.
Sherborne/ Salisbury 705 (Sherborne)
1078 (Salisbury)
Originally Monastic, from 1078 Secular
Cornish see (St Germans)Mid-9th century Monastic United into Exeter, 1050.
Tawton/Crediton/ Exeter 905 (Tawton)
909 (Crediton)
1050 (Exeter)
Bath and Wells 909 Monastic/Secular Bath was monastical and Wells a college of secular canons; from 909 to 1090 the seat was Wells, then from 1090 to 1245 Bath was usually the seat, and from 1245 the two places became joint seats albeit with Wells gaining pre-eminence; also called bishop of Somerset [19] or bishop of the Somersaetas [20] in Anglo-Saxon times.
Ramsbury 909 ? Reabsorbed into Sherborne, 1058.
(St) Teilo/Llandaff Under English jurisdiction from c.982 (Teilo)
1115 (Llandaff)
Monastic Now a Church in Wales diocese.


DioceseFoundedMonastic or secular?Notes
Bangor Under English jurisdiction from c.1081 Monastic Now a Church in Wales diocese.
Ely 21 November 1108 Monastic
St David's Under English jurisdiction from c.1115 Secular Now a Church in Wales diocese.
Carlisle 1133 Monastic
St Asaph Under English jurisdiction from 1141 Monastic Now a Church in Wales diocese.
Sodor and Man Under English jurisdiction from c.1400 ?

The Henrican Reorganisation

After Henry VIII's break with the Pope and the dissolution of the monasteries, the formerly monastic cathedrals were "re-founded" with secular canons. Furthermore, a number of new dioceses were formed, using some of the largest and finest of the other dissolved monasteries as cathedrals. Together, these two groups the old monastic cathedrals and the new sees were known as cathedrals of the New Foundation; the old cathedrals which had always been served by secular canons were known as those of the Old Foundation. Dioceses which exist in the Church of England today are indicated in bold type.

Westminster 17 December 1540Its cathedral was Westminster Abbey; but the diocese only existed 1540–50. From 1550–56, Westminster Abbey was a second cathedral, along with St Paul's, for the diocese of London. Since then the Abbey has not been a cathedral, but (since 1560) a Royal Peculiar, in which capacity (as a "neutral" non-diocesan Greater Church) the Archbishop of Canterbury (who lives on the other side of the Thames) still uses it for consecrations of bishops.
Chester 4 August 1541 St Werburgh's Abbey, an 11th-century Benedictine abbey was dissolved and made the new diocese's cathedral.
Gloucester 3 September 1541 St Peter's Abbey (another newly dissolved abbey) became the new diocese's cathedral. It had been in Benedictine hands since the 11th century. See dissolved and reunited to Worcester, 1552; and re-erected, 1554. [21]
Peterborough 4 September 1541The new cathedral had been a Benedictine abbey since the 10th century (St Peter's Abbey).
Bristol 4 June 1542The 12th century Augustinian abbey (St Augustine's Abbey) was dissolved and became the new diocese's cathedral.
Oxford 1 September 1542The cathedral was initially (and briefly) at Osney Abbey, a 12th-century Augustinian abbey. In 1545, the see was transferred to the chapel of Christ Church, Oxford University (which had formerly been part of the Augustinian St Frideswide's Priory)

Colonial dioceses

During the British colonial era, the Anglican religion was exported to the colonies. From 1787 onwards, Church of England dioceses were founded in the colonies. A structure of provinces and metropolitans developed until, in 1863, the imperial Privy Council ruled that the English church hierarchy had no legal status in the colonies. Immediately prior to that point, the United Church of England and Ireland had a total of 82 dioceses worldwide.

From 1863 onwards, Anglican (former) colonial dioceses have been separate from and independent of the English church. Exceptionally, the Archbishop of Canterbury has retained (and retains to this day) some metropolitan jurisdictions outside England. Dioceses are listed by their name at creation and their present country, with only their cathedral(s) between creation and independence.

Nova Scotia, Canada1787First colonial diocese (founded 11 August 1787) – originally covered all British North America. Diocese of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island since 1999. St Luke's Pro-Cathedral, Halifax
Quebec , Canada1793Created from Nova Scotia diocese. Holy Trinity, Quebec City
Calcutta , India1814Jurisdiction originally included all of the Indian subcontinent and Australasia. St. Paul's, Kolkata
Barbados 1824Originally one of two Caribbean dioceses. St Michael and All Angels, Bridgetown
Jamaica 1824Originally one of two Caribbean dioceses. Now the West Indies Diocese of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. St. Jago de la Vega, Spanish Town
Madras , India1835Created from Calcutta diocese. At its creation, Calcutta gained metropolitan authority over all its former jurisdiction. St. George's, Chennai
Australia 1836Created from Calcutta diocese. Originally covered all of Australia and New Zealand, etc. Now the metropolitan Diocese of Sydney. St Andrew's, Sydney
Bombay , India1837Created from Calcutta diocese. Now the CNI Diocese of Mumbai. St. Thomas, Mumbai
Newfoundland , Canada1839Created from Nova Scotia diocese (Split in 1975/6 into Eastern Newfoundland and Labrador, Central Newfoundland and Western Newfoundland. St. John the Baptist, St. John's
Toronto , Canada1839Split off from Nova Scotia diocese. Also called the Diocese of Upper Canada. St. James, Toronto
Jerusalem [N 1] 1841Originally covered all of the area of the current Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East, of which it is now a diocese; and the Episcopal Church of Sudan.
New Zealand 1841Originally covered the whole country. Now Auckland diocese. old St Mary's, Parnell
Antigua 1842Also called the diocese of Antigua and the Leeward Islands. Now the West Indies Diocese of the North East Caribbean and Aruba. St. John the Divine, St. John's
Guyana 1842Also called British Guiana. old St. George's, Georgetown
Georgetown Pro-Cathedral
Tasmania 1842Extraprovincial (subject to no metropolitan) from its creation to the present day.
Colombo , Ceylon1845Created from Madras diocese and originally subject to the metropolitan bishop of Calcutta. Now extraprovincial to the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Fredericton , Canada1845Created from Nova Scotia diocese. Christ Church, Fredericton
Adelaide , Australia1847Created from the first split of the Diocese of Australia. Adelaide and Melbourne are now metropolitan archiepiscopal sees. Holy Trinity Pro-Cathedral, Adelaide
Melbourne , Australia St James Old Cathedral, Melbourne
Newcastle, Australia old Christ Church, Newcastle
Cape Town , South Africa1847Now primate, metropolitan and sole archbishop of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa. old St. George's, Cape Town
Rupert's Land , Canada1849Originally covered the area of the current Ecclesiastical Province of Rupert's Land. St. John (II), Winnipeg
Victoria, Hong Kong 1849Originally covered all South China and Hong Kong. First in Canterbury province, then in China, split in 1998 into the three dioceses of Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui. St. John's, Hong Kong
Montreal , Canada1850Created from Quebec diocese. old Christ Church, Montreal
Grahamstown , South Africa1853Split from Cape Town diocese. Cape Town became the metropolitan see. SS Michael & George, Grahamstown
Natal , South Africa St Peter's, Pietermaritzburg
Mauritius 1854Created from Colombo diocese. St James's, Port Louis
Labuan , Malaysia1855Created from Calcutta diocese. old St. Thomas, Kuching
Christchurch , New Zealand1856Created from the first split of the New Zealand diocese. That diocese became Auckland diocese and its bishop metropolitan over all New Zealand.
Perth , Australia1856Created from Adelaide diocese. Metropolitan archbishop over North West Australia since 1914. old St George's, Perth
Huron , Canada1857Created from Toronto diocese. St Paul's, London (Ontario)
Brisbane , Australia1858Created from the Australian Newcastle diocese. Metropolitan archbishop over Queensland since 1905. old St John's Pro-Cathedral, Brisbane
Nelson , New Zealand1858Created from the New Zealand diocese. old Christ Church, Nelson
Waiapu , New Zealand
Wellington , New Zealand
British Columbia , Canada1859Created from Rupert's Land diocese.
St Helena 1859Created from Cape Town diocese. Now in the Anglican Church of Southern Africa. St Paul's, Saint Helena
Nassau , Bahamas1861Created from the Diocese of Jamaica. Christ Church, Nassau
Ontario , Canada1862Created from Toronto diocese. St. George's, Kingston
Goulburn , Australia1863Created by letters patent from Queen Victoria on 14 March 1863, from Sydney diocese. Now the Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn.
Grafton & Armidale , Australia1863Created by letters patent from Queen Victoria in March 1863, from the Australian Newcastle diocese. Now the two dioceses of Armidale and of Grafton.

Irish dioceses

Between the 1801 Union and 1871 disestablishment, the Anglican dioceses of England and Ireland were united in one United Church of England and Ireland. As such, the Irish dioceses were, for a time, Church of England dioceses. Each diocese is listed with its cathedral(s) only during the United Church period.

Armagh ArmaghMetropolitan archbishop and Primate of All Ireland. St Patrick's, Armagh
Meath Senior bishop after the archbishops. St Patrick, Trim
Derry Derry and Raphoe since 1834. St Columb's, Derry
St. Eunan, Raphoe
Down & Connor Down, Connor & Dromore 1842–1945, then split into Down & Dromore and Connor in 1945. Holy and Undivided Trinity, Downpatrick
St Saviour, Connor & Christ Church, Lisburn
Christ the Redeemer, Dromore
Raphoe United to Derry since 1834. St. Eunan, Raphoe
Kilmore Kilmore & Ardagh, 1839–1841; Kilmore, Elphin & Ardagh since 1841. St Fethlimidh, Kilmore
St Mary's, Elphin
Dromore United to Down & Connor (1842–1945) then Down (since 1945). Christ the Redeemer, Dromore
Dublin and Glendalough DublinMetropolitan archbishop and Primate of Ireland; united with Kildare as Dublin, Kildare and Glendalough (1846–1976). Christ Church & St Patrick's, Dublin
St Brigid, Kildare
Kildare Second most senior bishop after the archbishops. United with Dublin (1846–1976) and with Meath since. St Brigid, Kildare
Ferns & Leighlin United since 1597; united to Ossory since 1835. St Edan's, Ferns
St Laserian's, Old Leighlin
Ossory Ossory, Ferns & Leighlin (1835–1977); united to Cashel since. St Canice's, Kilkenny
St Edan's, Ferns
St Laserian's, Old Leighlin
Tuam and Ardagh Tuam (until 1839)
Armagh (since 1839)
Metropolitan archbishop over Tuam province until its union to Armagh province in 1839. Diocese included Ardagh (nonetheless regarded as remaining in Armagh province) 1742–1839 and Killala & Achonry 1834–1839; Diocese of Tuam, Killala & Achonry since 1839. St Mary's, Tuam
St Patrick's, Killala
St Crumnathy's, Achonry
Clogher United to the metropolitan diocese of Armagh (1850–1886). St Macartan's, Clogher
Elphin United to Kilmore since 1841.St Mary's, Elphin
Killala & Achonry United since 1622; united to Tuam since 1834. St Patrick's, Killala
St Crumnathy's, Achonry
Clonfert & Kilmacduagh Tuam (until 1834)
Cashel (1834–1838)
Dublin (since 1838)
United since 1627; united to Killaloe (since 1834) and to Limerick (since 1976). St Brendan's, Clonfert
St Colman's, Kilmacduagh
Cashel and Emly Cashel (until 1838)
Dublin (since 1838)
Metropolitan archbishop of the province until its union to Dublin province in 1838. United with Waterford (since 1838) and with Ossory (since 1977). St. John's, Cashel
St. Alibeus, Emly
Christ Church, Waterford
St Carthage's, Lismore
Cloyne United to Cork since 1835. St Coleman's, Cloyne
Cork & Ross United since 1583; Cork, Cloyne & Ross since 1835. old St Fin Barre's, Cork
St Coleman's, Cloyne
St. Fachtna, Rosscarbery
Killaloe & Kilfenora United since 1752; Killaloe & Clonfert (1834–1976); united to Limerick since 1976. St Flannan's, Killaloe
St Brendan, Clonfert
Limerick, Ardfert & Aghadoe United since 1661; Limerick & Killaloe since 1976. St Mary's, Limerick
Waterford & Lismore United since 1363; united to Cashel since 1838. Christ Church Cathedral, Waterford
St Carthage's Cathedral, Lismore

Late modern foundations

No further cathedrals were founded until, in the mid 19th century, the huge population growth of north-central England meant that redistricting could no longer be ignored. Since then twenty new dioceses have been founded, each with a cathedral some are great medieval monasteries or collegiate churches which were not elevated by Henry VIII but might well have been; others are glorified parish churches; and others are totally new constructions. In the following table, bold type indicates the creation of a new diocese, whilst plain type is used to indicate changes to existing dioceses.

DioceseDateFromCathedral History
Ripon 5 October 1836Created from part of York and Chester; dissolved in creation of Leeds dioceseGreat medieval collegiate church
Oxford 5 October 1836took in Berkshire, from SalisburyCollege chapel of Christ Church, Oxford
Bristol 5 October 1836suppressed: Bristol went to Gloucester, Dorset went to Salisbury
Lichfield 24 January 1837Lichfield and Coventry became Lichfield; Coventry went to Worcester; Lichfield left with Derbyshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire
Ely May 1837took in Bedfordshire and Huntingdonshire from Lincoln; part of Suffolk from Norwich
Peterborough 1 May 1839 [22] took in Leicestershire from Lincoln
Lincoln 1 May 1839 &
8 June 1841 [22]
took in Nottinghamshire from York
Oxford12 November 1845 [22] took in Buckinghamshire from Lincoln
Rochester 1 January 1846 [22] took in part of Hertfordshire from Lincoln and London
Rochester1 January 1846 [22] took in Essex from London
Manchester 1 November 1847created from part of ChesterGreat medieval collegiate church
Carlisle1856 [22] took in rest of Westmorland, Cumberland, Furness and Cartmel from Chester
Truro 15 December 1876created from part of Exeter New cathedral (completed 1910), incorporating part of a parish church
St Albans 4 May 1877created from part of RochesterGreat medieval monastery
Liverpool 9 April 1880created from part of Chester Parish church, initially; later a huge wholly new cathedral was built
Newcastle 23 May 1882created from part of Durham Parish church
Southwell 5 February 1884created from part of Lincoln (Nottinghamshire) and Lichfield (Derbyshire) Southwell Minster: a great medieval collegiate church
Wakefield 18 May 1888created from part of Ripon; dissolved in creation of Leeds diocese Parish church
Bristol 9 July 1897reconstituted previous cathedral
Birmingham 13 January 1905created from part of Worcester18th century parish church
Southwark 1 May 1905created from parts of Rochester (and Winchester transferred in 1877 to Rochester)Southwark Priory: Great medieval monastery
Chelmsford 23 January 1914created from part of St Albans Parish church
St Edmundsbury and Ipswich 23 January 1914created from part of Ely and Norwich Parish church, with remnants of adjoining medieval monastery visible
Sheffield 23 January 1914created from part of York, small part of Southwell Parish church
Coventry 6 September 1918created from part of WorcesterVery large parish church (and sometime cathedral); after destruction in the second world war, a wholly new cathedral was built, adjoining and overlooking the ruins.
Bradford 25 November 1919created from part of Ripon; dissolved in creation of Leeds diocese Parish church
Blackburn 12 November 1926created from part of Manchester Parish church
Leicester 12 November 1926created from part of Peterborough Parish church
Guildford 1 May 1927created from part of Winchester New cathedral
Portsmouth 1 May 1927created from part of Winchester Parish church
Derby 7 July 1927created from part of Southwell (Derbyshire) Parish church
Leeds 20 April 2014created following dissolution of Bradford, Ripon and Leeds and WakefieldThree existing cathedrals

Line of descent since St Augustine

There were archbishops in London, York and Caerleon and bishops in Lincoln before the 4th century. The following is a simplified breakdown of the creation of dioceses since St Augustine's 6th/7th century dioceses. It is simplified in that not every new diocese is formed from only one predecessor – they have often taken territory from two or more neighbouring dioceses. Today's dioceses are highlighted in bold type.

See also


  1. Jerusalem's status is disputed and highly controversial. It is presently generally considered to be (wholly or partially) in the State of Israel (disputed with the State of Palestine), but has also been in the Ottoman Empire, the OETA, and Mandatory Palestine during the diocese's lifetime.

Related Research Articles

Wilfrid was an English bishop and saint. Born a Northumbrian noble, he entered religious life as a teenager and studied at Lindisfarne, at Canterbury, in Francia, and at Rome; he returned to Northumbria in about 660, and became the abbot of a newly founded monastery at Ripon. In 664 Wilfrid acted as spokesman for the Roman position at the Synod of Whitby, and became famous for his speech advocating that the Roman method for calculating the date of Easter should be adopted. His success prompted the king's son, Alhfrith, to appoint him Bishop of Northumbria. Wilfrid chose to be consecrated in Gaul because of the lack of what he considered to be validly consecrated bishops in England at that time. During Wilfrid's absence Alhfrith seems to have led an unsuccessful revolt against his father, Oswiu, leaving a question mark over Wilfrid's appointment as bishop. Before Wilfrid's return Oswiu had appointed Ceadda in his place, resulting in Wilfrid's retirement to Ripon for a few years following his arrival back in Northumbria.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wulfstan (died 1095)</span> 11th-century Bishop of Worcester and saint

Wulfstan was Bishop of Worcester from 1062 to 1095. He was the last surviving pre-Conquest bishop. Wulfstan is a saint in the Western Christian churches.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bishop of Coventry</span> Diocesan bishop in the Church of England

The Bishop of Coventry is the ordinary of the Church of England Diocese of Coventry in the Province of Canterbury. In the Middle Ages, the Bishop of Coventry was a title used by the bishops known today as the Bishop of Lichfield.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bishop of Norwich</span> Diocesan bishop in the Church of England

The Bishop of Norwich is the ordinary of the Church of England Diocese of Norwich in the Province of Canterbury. The diocese covers most of the county of Norfolk and part of Suffolk. The bishop of Norwich is Graham Usher.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Diocese of Lichfield</span> Diocese of the Church of England

The Diocese of Lichfield is a Church of England diocese in the Province of Canterbury, England. The bishop's seat is located in the Cathedral Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Chad in the city of Lichfield. The diocese covers 4,516 km2 (1,744 sq mi) of several counties: almost all of Staffordshire, northern Shropshire, a significant portion of the West Midlands, and very small portions of Warwickshire and Powys (Wales).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Anglican Diocese of Worcester</span> Diocese of the Church of England

The Diocese of Worcester forms part of the Church of England (Anglican) Province of Canterbury in England.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Diocese of Bath and Wells</span> Diocese of the Church of England

The Diocese of Bath and Wells is a diocese in the Church of England Province of Canterbury in England.

A provincial episcopal visitor (PEV), popularly known as a flying bishop, is a Church of England bishop assigned to minister to many of the clergy, laity and parishes who on grounds of theological conviction, "are unable to receive the ministry of women bishops or priests". The system by which such bishops oversee certain churches is referred to as alternative episcopal oversight (AEO).

Thomas II was a medieval archbishop of York.

The Bishop of Lichfield is the ordinary of the Church of England Diocese of Lichfield in the Province of Canterbury. The diocese covers 4,516 km2 of the counties of Powys, Staffordshire, Shropshire, Warwickshire and West Midlands. The bishop's seat is located in the Cathedral Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Chad in the city of Lichfield. The Bishop's residence is the Bishop's House, Lichfield, in the cathedral close. In the past, the title has had various forms. The current bishop is Michael Ipgrave, following the confirmation of his election on 10 June 2016.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Diocese of Chester</span> Diocese of the Church of England

The Diocese of Chester is a Church of England diocese in the Province of York covering the pre-1974 county of Cheshire and therefore including the Wirral and parts of Stockport, Trafford and Tameside.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bishop of Durham</span> Diocesan bishop in the Church of England

The Bishop of Durham is the Anglican bishop responsible for the Diocese of Durham in the Province of York. The diocese is one of the oldest in England and its bishop is a member of the House of Lords. Paul Butler has been the Bishop of Durham since his election was confirmed at York Minster on 20 January 2014. The previous bishop was Justin Welby, now Archbishop of Canterbury. The bishop is one of two who escort the sovereign at the coronation.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Remigius de Fécamp</span> 11th-century Bishop of Lincoln

Remigius de Fécamp was a Benedictine monk who was a supporter of William the Conqueror.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Architecture of the medieval cathedrals of England</span> Architectural style of cathedrals in England during the middle ages, 1040 to 1540

The medieval cathedrals of England, which date from between approximately 1040 and 1540, are a group of twenty-six buildings that constitute a major aspect of the country's artistic heritage and are among the most significant material symbols of Christianity. Though diverse in style, they are united by a common function. As cathedrals, each of these buildings serves as central church for an administrative region and houses the throne of a bishop. Each cathedral also serves as a regional centre and a focus of regional pride and affection.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bishop of Bristol</span> Diocesan bishop in the Church of England

The Bishop of Bristol heads the Church of England Diocese of Bristol in the Province of Canterbury, in England.

The Bishop of Chester is the Ordinary of the Church of England Diocese of Chester in the Province of York.

The Bishop of Oswestry is a suffragan bishop of the Diocese of Lichfield who fulfils the role of a provincial episcopal visitor in the Church of England.


  1. http://www.domesdaybook.co.uk/life.html#6 The Domesday Book
  2. Bede; Giles, J. A. (ed.). Ecclesiastical History of England, also the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle (p. 316) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  3. Thackeray, William Makepeace. The Cornhill Magazine, Vol. 45 (p. 426) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  4. Cedd, Abbot of Lastingham, Bishop of the East Saxons (Exciting Holiness; accessed 29 November 2013)
  5. Caine, A. Nuclear Ransom (p. 10) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  6. Hawkins, John. History of the Science and Practice of Music, Vol. 1 (p. 372) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  7. de Rapin, Paul & Tindal, Nicholas. The History of England: As Well Ecclesiastical as Civil, Vol. 15 (p. 29) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  8. Godfrey, C. J. The Church in Anglo-Saxon England (p. 133) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  9. Tyrrell, James. The General History of England, Both Ecclesiastical and Civil..., Vol. 1 (p. 265) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  10. Gurney, A. (trans.) A Literal Translation of the Saxon Chronicle (p. 76) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  11. Young, George. A history of Whitby, and Streoneshalh abbey... (p. 193) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  12. Fell, Charles & Challoner, Richard. The Lives of Saints: Collected from Authentick Records of Church History. (p. 59) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  13. Butler, Alban. The Lives of the Primitive Fathers, Martyrs, and other Principal Saints (p. 11) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  14. Lapidge, Michael; Blair, John; Keynes, Simon; Scragg, Donald. The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England (p. 428) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  15. Perry, George Gresley. A History of the English Church: First Period... (p. 49) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  16. Douglas, David C. English Historical Documents, Vol. 1 (pp. 290, 464 (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  17. Hay, Alexander. The History of Chichester (p. 51) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  18. Tyrrell. General History, Vol. 1 (p. 65) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  19. Dearmer, Percy. Bell's Cathedrals: The Cathedral Church of Wells (p. 205) (Google Books; accessed 29 November 2013)
  20. Wade, G. W. & Wade, J. H. Somerset, VI. History (Project Gutenberg; accessed 29 November 2013)
  21. 1 2 "Hooper, John". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/13706.(Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  22. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Dioceses Commission – The Dioceses of England: An Outline History
  23. Hadcock, R.Neville; Knowles, David (1971). Medieval Religious Houses England & Wales. Longman. p. 482. ISBN   0-582-11230-3.

Further reading