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Cardinal Simon Langham

Birth
Langham, Rutland Unitary Authority, Rutland, England
Death 22 Jul 1376 (aged 60–61)
Avignon, Departement du Vaucluse, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
Burial Westminster, City of Westminster, Greater London, England
Plot Chapel of St. Benedict.
Memorial ID 122438478 · View Source
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Roman Catholic Cardinal. Born into a poor family, Simon Langham, known as the "Cardinal of Canterbury", remains to this day the only Westminster abbot to become a cardinal. Entering the Benedictine Order, he was elected prior and successively abbot of Westminster, completing the abbey's cloisters during his tenure. Serving for three years as treasurer of King Edward III of England, in 1360 he was appointed bishop of London by refused the promotion. The following year, he was named bishop of Ely and lord chancellor of England in 1363. Promoted to the metropolitan and primatial see of Canterbury on July 24, 1366, Pope Urban V created him cardinal priest with the title of San Sisto in 1368. Having accepted the latter appointment without asking the royal permission, Langham lost the king's favor. In order to solve the position peacefully, he resigned the archbishopric of Canterbury and moved to the papal curia in Avignon. Eventually the king reconciled with the cardinal but did not restore the primatial see to him. For years, Langham longed to return to Westminster Abbey to complete its building. Finally, Pope Gregory XI gave him permission to leave the papal court, but, on the eve of his departure, died of a paralytic stroke and was buried Carthusian monastery of Bon Pass, near Avignon. Thirty years later, his remains were transferred to England and re-buried in Westminster Abbey in a splendid alabaster altar tomb. Having left some £200,000 to the abbey, with his finances the nave, the abbot's house, and part of the abbey cloisters were completed. Cardinal Langham is thus remembered as the second founder of Westminster abbey.

Bio by: Eman Bonnici


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  • Created by: Eman Bonnici
  • Added: 30 Dec 2013
  • Find A Grave Memorial 122438478
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Cardinal Simon Langham (1315–22 Jul 1376), Find A Grave Memorial no. 122438478, citing Westminster Abbey, Westminster, City of Westminster, Greater London, England ; Maintained by Eman Bonnici (contributor 46572312) .