Thomas Yale

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Thomas Yale (1525/6–1577) was an English civil lawyer.


Early life

Thomas Yale was born in 1525 or 1526, [1] graduated B.A. at Cambridge University in 1542–3, and was elected a fellow of Queens' College, Cambridge about 1544. [2] He commenced M.A. in 1546, and filled the office of bursar to his college from 1549 to 1551. He was one of the proctors of the university for the year commencing Michaelmas 1552, but resigned before the expiration of his term of office. In 1554 he was appointed commissary of the diocese of Ely under the chancellor, John Fuller, and in 1555 he was keeper of the spiritualities of the diocese of Bangor during the vacancy after the death of Arthur Bulkeley. In that year he subscribed the Roman Catholic articles imposed upon all graduates of the university.

Queens College, Cambridge college of the University of Cambridge

Queens' College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge, England. Queens' is one of the oldest and the largest colleges of the university, founded in 1448 by Margaret of Anjou, and has some of the most recognisable buildings in Cambridge. The college spans the river Cam, colloquially referred to as the "light side" and the "dark side", with the Mathematical Bridge connecting the two.

Diocese of Ely

The Diocese of Ely is a Church of England diocese in the Province of Canterbury. It is headed by the Bishop of Ely, who sits at Ely Cathedral in Ely. There is one suffragan (subordinate) bishop, the Bishop of Huntingdon. The diocese now covers the modern ceremonial county of Cambridgeshire and western Norfolk. The diocese was created in 1109 out of part of the Diocese of Lincoln.

John Fuller was the master of Jesus College, Cambridge. As bishop's chancellor in Ely, Cambridgeshire, he was charged with suppressing Christian heresy, condemning several heretics to be burnt at the stake.

In November 1556 his name occurs in the commission for the suppression of heresy within the diocese of Ely, and he assisted in the search for heretical books during the visitation of the university by Cardinal Pole's delegates. [3] In January 1556–7 he was among those empowered by the senate to reform the composition for the election of proctors and to revise the university statutes. [4] He was created LL.D. in 1557, and admitted an advocate of the Court of Arches on 26 April 1559. In the same year he and four other leading civilians subscribed an opinion that the commission issued by the queen for the consecration of Matthew Parker, archbishop of Canterbury, was legally valid. [5]

Matthew Parker Died of ligma

Matthew Parker was an English bishop. He was the Archbishop of Canterbury in the Church of England from 1559 until his death in 1575. He was also an influential theologian and arguably the co-founder of a distinctive tradition of Anglican theological thought.

On 25 March 1560 he was admitted to the prebend of Offley in Lichfield Cathedral. In the same year he became rector of Leverington in the Isle of Ely, and was one of the archiepiscopal commissioners for visiting the churches and dioceses of Canterbury, Rochester, and Peterborough. On 24 April 1561 the archbishop commissioned him and Walter Wright to visit the church, city, and diocese of Oxford.

Lichfield Cathedral Church in Staffordshire, England

Lichfield Cathedral is situated in Lichfield, Staffordshire, England. It is the only medieval English cathedral with three spires. The Diocese of Lichfield covers all of Staffordshire, much of Shropshire and part of the Black Country and West Midlands. The 99th and current Bishop of Lichfield is Michael Ipgrave who was appointed on 10 June 2016.

Leverington village in the United Kingdom

Leverington is a village and civil parish in the Fenland District of Cambridgeshire, England. The settlement is to the north of Wisbech.

Isle of Ely former county in England

The Isle of Ely is an historic region around the city of Ely in Cambridgeshire, England. Between 1889 and 1965, it formed an administrative county.


On 28 June 1561 he was constituted for life judge of the court of audience, official principal, chancellor, and vicar-general to the archbishop of Canterbury, and in the same year obtained the rectory of Llantressant in Anglesey. In 1562 he became chancellor of the diocese of Bangor, and in May was commissioned by the archbishop to visit All Souls and Merton College at Oxford. In 1563 he was on a commission to visit the diocese of Ely.

Anglesey Island in Wales

Anglesey is an island off the north-west coast of Wales forming the mainland of a principal area and historic county of the same name, which includes Holy Island to the west and some islets and skerries. Anglesey island, with an area of 260 square miles (673 km2), is by far the largest island in Wales, seventh largest in the British Isles, largest by area in the Irish Sea and second most populous after the Isle of Man. The local government area of Isle of Anglesey County Council measures 276 square miles (715 km2), with a population at the 2011 census of 69,751, of whom 13,659 live on Holy Island. The Menai Strait between Anglesey and mainland Wales is spanned by the Menai Suspension Bridge, designed by Thomas Telford in 1826, and by the Britannia Bridge, built in 1850 and replaced in 1980. The largest town is Holyhead on Holy Island, where the port handles over 2 million passengers a year to the Republic of Ireland. The next largest town is Llangefni, seat of the county council. From 1974 to 1996 Anglesey was administered as part of Gwynedd. Most of Anglesey's inhabitants are Welsh speakers. Ynys Môn, the Welsh name for the island, is used for the UK Parliament and National Assembly constituencies. The island is in the LL postcode area (LL58–LL78).

All Souls College, Oxford college of the University of Oxford

All Souls College is a constituent college of the University of Oxford in England.

Merton College, Oxford college of the University of Oxford

Merton College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. Its foundation can be traced back to the 1260s when Walter de Merton, chancellor to Henry III and later to Edward I, first drew up statutes for an independent academic community and established endowments to support it. An important feature of Walter's foundation was that this "college" was to be self-governing and the endowments were directly vested in the Warden and Fellows.

On 7 July 1564 he was instituted to the prebend of Vaynoll in the diocese of St Asaph. In 1566 he was one of the masters in ordinary of the court of chancery, and was placed on a commission to visit the diocese of Bangor. In 1567 he was appointed dean of the arches, a post which he resigned in 1573, and was one of the commissioners for the visitation of the church and diocese of Norwich. By a patent confirmed on 15 July 1571 he was constituted joint-keeper of the prerogative court of Canterbury.

Diocese of St Asaph diocese of the Church in Wales

The Diocese of Saint Asaph is a diocese of the Church in Wales in north-east Wales, named after Saint Asaph, its second bishop.

Later life

On Parker's death in 1575 he acted as one of his executors, and Parker's successor, Edmund Grindal, appointed him his vicar-general. On 23 April 1576 he was placed on a commission for repressing religious malcontents . On 2 May he and Nicholas Robinson, bishop of Bangor, were empowered by Grindal to visit on his behalf the diocese of Bangor, and on 17 August he and Gilbert Berkeley, bishop of Bath and Wells, were similarly commissioned to visit the church at Wells. In the same year Yale represented to Grindal the need of reforms in the court of audience. On Grindal's suspension in June 1577, Yale discharged his judicial duties for him, continuing to act until November, when he fell ill. He died in November or December 1577. He married Joanna (died 12 September 1587), daughter of Nicholas Waleron.

Edmund Grindal Archbishop of Canterbury

Edmund Grindal was an English bishop of the Church of England who successively held the posts of Bishop of London, Archbishop of York and Archbishop of Canterbury during the reign of Elizabeth I. Although born far away from the centres of political and religious power, he had risen rapidly in the church during the reign of Edward VI. He was nominated as Bishop of London, but the death of the King prevented him taking up the post and along with other Marian exiles he fled to the continent during the reign of Mary I. On the accession of Elizabeth I he returned and resumed his rise in the church, culminating in his appointment to the highest office.

Nicholas Robinson was a Welsh bishop of Bangor.

Bishop of Bangor Ordinary of the Church in Wales Diocese of Bangor

The Bishop of Bangor is the ordinary of the Church in Wales Diocese of Bangor. The see is based in the city of Bangor where the bishop's seat (cathedra) is at Cathedral Church of Saint Deiniol.


For many years Yale was an ecclesiastical high commissioner. Some manuscript extracts by him entitled ‘Collecta ex Registro Archiepiscoporum Cantuar.’ are preserved among the Cottonian manuscripts (Cleopatra F. i. 267), and were printed in John Strype's Life of Parker, iii. 177–82. A statement of his case in a controversy for precedency with Bartholomew Clerke is among the Petyt manuscripts in the library of the Inner Temple. An elegy on Yale by Peter Leigh is preserved in the British Museum (Addit. MS. 26737, f. 43).

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  1. Strype, Life of Parker, ii. 186
  2. "Yale, Thomas (YL543T)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  3. C. H. Cooper, Annals of Cambridge, 1843, ii. 110
  4. Cooper, ii. 129
  5. Strype, Life of Parker, i. 109

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