Thomas Turner (Dean of Canterbury)

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Thomas Turner (1591 – 8 October 1672) was an English royalist churchman and Dean of Canterbury.

Dean of Canterbury

The Dean of Canterbury is the head of the Chapter of the Cathedral of Christ Church, Canterbury, England. The current office of dean originated after the English Reformation, although Deans had also existed before this time; its immediate precursor office was the prior of the cathedral-monastery. The current Dean is Robert Willis, who was appointed in 2001 and is the 39th Dean since the Reformation, though the position of Dean and Prior as the religious head of the community is almost identical so the line is unbroken back to the time of the foundation of the community by Saint Augustine in AD 597.



Turner was born at Reading, Berkshire in 1591, the son of Thomas Turner of Heckfield in Hampshire, mayor of Reading. He matriculated at St. John's College, Oxford, on 26 June 1610, graduating B.A. on 6 June 1614 and M.A. on 9 May 1618. He was elected a fellow, took the degree of B.D. on 20 July 1624, and was created D.D. on 1 April 1633. In 1623 he was presented by his college to the vicarage of St Giles' Church, Oxford, which he held with his fellowship, but relinquished in 1629. William Laud, when Bishop of London, made him his chaplain.

Reading, Berkshire Place in England

Reading is a large, historic university and minster town in Berkshire, England, of which it is now the county town. It is in the Thames Valley at the confluence of the River Thames and River Kennet, and on both the Great Western Main Line railway and the M4 motorway. Reading is 70 miles (110 km) east of Bristol, 24 miles (39 km) south of Oxford, 40 miles (64 km) west of London, 14 miles (23 km) north of Basingstoke, 12 miles (19 km) south-west of Maidenhead and 15 miles (24 km) east of Newbury as the crow flies.

Heckfield village in United Kingdom

Heckfield is a village in Hampshire, England. It lies between Reading and Hook.

Hampshire County of England

Hampshire is a county on the southern coast of England. The county town is the city of Winchester. Its two largest cities, Southampton and Portsmouth, are administered separately as unitary authorities; the rest of the county is governed by Hampshire County Council.

On 7 January 1628 Turner was appointed a member of the commission for ecclesiastical causes; and on 14 April 1629 Laud collated him to the prebend of Newington in St. Paul's Cathedral. On 29 October following he was collated chancellor of London, and soon after was appointed chaplain in ordinary to the king. He was briefly rector of St Mary's, Ashwell. [1] In May 1631 he obtained the rectory of St. Augustine-in-the-Gate, but exchanged it on 10 November for that of Southwark. In 1633 he accompanied Charles I in his Scottish coronation progress, and on 17 December of the same year his name appears in the commission for exercising ecclesiastical jurisdiction in England and Wales. On 11 November 1634 he was instituted rector of Fecham in Surrey; on 31 December 1638 he and John Juxon received from the king the lease of the prebend and rectory of Aylesbury for five years; and 16 February 1642 he was nominated Dean of Rochester. On 3 January 1644 he was constituted Dean of Canterbury, in name only since Kent was in the hands of Parliament. He adhered to the king with great devotion, and attended him at Hampton Court and during his imprisonment in the Isle of Wight. During the parliamentary ascendency and in the time of the Commonwealth he was harassed and deprived of his benefices. Three of his houses were plundered, his books seized, and he himself arrested at Fecham by a party of horse for having sent money to the king. He was dragged away while holding divine service and carried to the White Lion Prison in Southwark.

Ashwell, Hertfordshire village and civil parish in North Hertfordshire, United Kingdom

Ashwell is a village and civil parish situated about four miles north of Baldock in Hertfordshire.

Southwark District of Central London, England

Southwark is a district of Central London and is the north-west of the London Borough of Southwark. Centred 1 12 miles (2.4 km) east of Charing Cross, it fronts the River Thames and the City of London to the north. It was at the lowest bridging point of the Thames in Roman Britain, providing a crossing from Londinium, and for centuries had the only Thames bridge in the area, until a bridge was built upstream more than 10 miles (16 km) to the west. It was a 1295-enfranchised borough in the county of Surrey, apparently created a burh in 886, containing various parishes by the high medieval period, lightly succumbing to City attempts to constrain its free trade and entertainment. Its entertainment district, in its heyday at the time of Shakespare's Globe Theatre has revived in the form of the Southbank which overspills imperceptibly into the ancient boundaries of Lambeth and commences at the post-1997 reinvention of the original theatre, Shakespeare's Globe, incorporating other smaller theatre spaces, an exhibition about Shakespeare's life and work and which neighbours Vinopolis and the London Dungeon. After the 18th-century decline of Southwark's small wharves, the borough rapidly grew in population and saw the growth of great docks, printing/paper, railways, goods yards, small artisan and other often low-wage industries and Southwark was among many such inner districts to see slum clearance and replacement largely with social housing during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It is now at an advanced stage of regeneration and has the City Hall offices of the Greater London Authority. At its heart is the area known as Borough, which has an eclectic covered and semi-covered market and numerous food and drink venues as well as the skyscraper The Shard. Another landmark is Southwark Cathedral, a priory then parish church, created a cathedral in 1905, noted for its Merbecke Choir.

Aylesbury town and civil parish in Buckinghamshire, England

Aylesbury is the county town of Buckinghamshire, England. It is an ancient market town with several historic pubs, is home to the Roald Dahl Children's Gallery and, since 2010, the 1,200 seat Waterside Theatre. The predecessor to the paralympic games started in the town.

At the Restoration he regained his Surrey rectories, and entered into possession of the deanery of Canterbury. Shortly after he resigned the rectory of Fecham. Dying on 8 October 1672, he was buried in the Dean's Chapel in Canterbury Cathedral, where a mural monument was erected to his memory.

Canterbury Cathedral Church in Kent, England

Canterbury Cathedral in Canterbury, Kent, is one of the oldest and most famous Christian structures in England. It forms part of a World Heritage Site. It is the cathedral of the Archbishop of Canterbury, currently Justin Welby, leader of the Church of England and symbolic leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion. Its formal title is the Cathedral and Metropolitical Church of Christ at Canterbury.


He married Margaret, daughter of Sir Francis Windebank. By her he had three sons: Francis Turner; Thomas Turner (1645–1714), president of Corpus Christi College, Oxford; and William Turner (1647–1685), Archdeacon of Northumberland.

Francis Turner (bishop) British bishop

Francis Turner D.D. was Bishop of Ely, one of the seven bishops who petitioned against the Declaration of Indulgence and one of the nine bishops who refused to take the oath of allegiance to William III.

Corpus Christi College, Oxford college of the University of Oxford

Corpus Christi College, is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1517, it is the 12th oldest college in Oxford.

The Archdeacon of Northumberland is a senior ecclesiastical officer within the Diocese of Newcastle. As such she or he is responsible for the disciplinary supervision of the clergy within the geographical area of the archdeaconry.

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  1. "St Mary's Ashwell - Rectors & Vicars" . Retrieved 3 May 2016.

Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : "Turner, Thomas (1591-1672)". Dictionary of National Biography . London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.

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<i>Dictionary of National Biography</i> Multi-volume reference work

The Dictionary of National Biography (DNB) is a standard work of reference on notable figures from British history, published since 1885. The updated Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (ODNB) was published on 23 September 2004 in 60 volumes and online, with 50,113 biographical articles covering 54,922 lives.

Church of England titles
Preceded by
George Aglionby
Dean of Canterbury
Succeeded by
John Tillotson