James Wayland Joyce.

England's sacred synods : a constitutional history of the convocations of the clergy, from the earliest records of Christianity in Britain to the date of the promulgation of the present Book of common prayer; including a list of all councils, ecclesiastical as well as civil, held in England, in whic online

. (page 17 of 83)
Online LibraryJames Wayland JoyceEngland's sacred synods : a constitutional history of the convocations of the clergy, from the earliest records of Christianity in Britain to the date of the promulgation of the present Book of common prayer; including a list of all councils, ecclesiastical as well as civil, held in England, in whic → online text (page 17 of 83)
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p. 3G.

Antiq. Brit.
151.



' S. John
xviii. 36.



synods being then held, affairs both spiritual and temporal
were transacted, as was the case at the " great Council "" of
Winchester", a.d. 1070, where Stigand was deposed — at the
" great Council " of Windsor i" in the same year, where Agelric
and many abbots were deprived — and at another at Glouces-
ter, where several bishops were appointed.

It is not unlikely that the disuse of such "great" or "mixed
councils" began towards the middle of K. Henry XL's reign,
when it was said of the clergy that " thei/ disjoined themselves i
from the laity in every respect^ and set up to he independent,'''' an
evil which arose from the shameful expulsion of the English
ecclesiastics, the introduction of Italians and foreigners of
every sort into their room, and the consequent extension of
papal influences in England. And an evil this certainly was
of enormous magnitude ; for though the clergy in matters
purely spiritual, from the very nature of Chrisfs kingdom,
which is " not ' of this world," must be independent on all
external power ; yet in matters purely or partly civil, or
where civil sanctions are necessary for enforcing spiritual
decisions, it is of unspeakable importance that clergy and laity
should act together in harmonious consent, and that both
orders, as tlie symmetrical piers of a fairly proportioned arch,
should unite their combined forces to sustain the solid fabric
of a Christian and well-ordered society.



155



CHAPTER YIl.

ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS.

'ROM IHE ACCESSION OF ARCHBISHOP WULFRID TO THE DEPRIVATION OF
ARCHBISHOP STIGAND, A. D. 804 1070.



SUMMARY.

I. Anglo-Saxon public assemblies become more defined. II. Principal Anglo-
Saxon assemblies : Circ-gemote (legislative) — Wittena-gemote (legislative) —
Folc-gemote (executive) — Hundred court (executive) — Burg-gemote (executive).
III. The Circ-gemote — National Circ-gemote — Provincial Circ-gemote — Dio-
cesan Circ-gemote. IV. Form of holding a Circ-gemote. V. Form of hold-
ing a Wittena-gemote. VI. The Folc-gemote. VII. The Hundred court.
VIII. The Burg-gemote. IX. Anglo-Saxon constitution the germ of the
English. X. Ecclesiastical and civil laws enacted on the same occasions.
XI. Presbyters in all synods. XII. Lower clergy in Mixed Councils and
Wittena-gemotes. XIII. English Church not yet entirely enthralled — Roman
jurisdiction disallowed. XIV. Anglo-Saxon doctrine opposed to modern
Roman doctrine — in appointment of fasts — in the use of Holy Scripture — on
the subject of Holy Communion — on the subject of synods. XV. The last
Anglo-Saxon council. Subversion of Anglo-Saxon nationality in ecclesiastical
matters.

'Ek /i£V roi ye Trjg airavrtav irpoq uWrfKa av(nr\oKi}Q Kai irapnB'iansjQ, tTi
S' b/JioiOTTiTO^ Kai Sia<popag, p.6vwQ civ tiq ((piicoiTO' Kai SvinjGtii], KaroTrrtvaag,
afia Kai to xprjaijjiov Kai to Tip-Kvbv Ik Trjg icTTopiag \a[3iiv. — Foi,YB, Hist.
lib. i. c. 4, § II.

"... veterum volvens monumenta worum,
Audite, o proceres, ait, et spes discite vestras."

ViRG. ^n. lib. iii. 102 3.

I. Anglo-Saxon It is Satisfactory to trace the original principles
public assemblies ^ ^ national Churcli in the earlier ages of

become more de- o

fined. lier history, and to point to periods (as in the

last two chapters) when she was either totally independent
of Rome, or at least bravely struggling for liberty. Indeed
the portion of her history previous to the Norman Conquest



A.D. 804—
1070.



156



ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS.



[CIIAP.



A.D. 80
1070.



» Collier, i.
345.



(the effects of which event finally threw us helpless at the feet
of the Roman Pontiff) is well worthy of careful investigation,
in order that the true principles of this national Church may
be understood, her essential elements be brought to light ; and
that now by God"'s blessing having recovered and still enjoy-
ing our original independence of all foreign interference, we
may be wise in the improvement of our advantages, build up
the walls of our city of God on their pristine model, and
discovering the traces of her former glory, lay upon them the
foundations for future hopes.

The period now before us embraces the time which elapsed
between the years 804 and 1070. Beginning from the death
of Archbishop Athelard, and the accession^ of Archbishop
Wulfrid to the see of Canterbury (a.d, 80 1), the tabular
list ^ will shew the synods and councils held in this country



'


LIST OF ANGLO-SAXON


SYNODS AND COUNCILS, a.d.


804-1070.


Date.

A.D.


Place.


Archbishop or
Bi>hop.


King.


Reference.


Nature of
Assembly.


81)


Winchelcomb .


Wulfrid


Kenulf, Cuthred,
and Sired


Cone. M. B. i. 169 . .


Mixed Council*.


aiu


Challock or


Wulf.id


Kenulf of Mer-


Spelm. Cone. i. 327-


Provincial Synod.




Chalk




cia


Cone. M. B. i. 1G9.
Hody,53. Johnson's
Can. 1. 300




R2r)




Wulfrid


Bcornulf of Mer-


Spelm. Cone. i. 331.
Cone. M. B. i. 171










cia




821


Oshlaveshle ..


Wulfrid


Beornulf


Spelm. Cone. i.'332.


Uncertain.










Cone. M. B. i. 171




822


Cliff at Hoo ..


Wulfrid


Bcornulf


Spelm. Cone. i. 332.


MLxed Council.










Hody, 54. Cone.












M. B. i. 172




824


Cliff at Hoo . .


Wulfrid


Beornulf


Spelm. Cone. i. 334.
Cone. M. B. i. 175.
Hody, 55


Mixed Council.


825


Cliff at Hoo ..


Wulfrid


Beornulf


Cone. M. B. i. 173. Mi.xed Council.
Hody, 55-G. Yid.|
note.


833


London


Ceolnoth of


Egbert & With-ISpelm. Cone. i. 336. Mixed Council.






Cant. & En-


lasius


Cone. M. B. i. 176.






bald of York




Spelm. Cone. i. .339,!
note. 1


838


Kingston ....


Ceolnoth ....


Egbert










Hody, 56. Cone.










M. B. i. 178


850


Benninffdon . .




Bertulph


Spelm. Cone. i. 344. Mixed Council.
Cone. M. B. i. 181.1
















Hody, 57





[851 Kingsbury

* Where the " sapientes," or " wites," are present, the assembly is called a '• tciltcna-
gemote;" where, in addition to the clergy, only the " duces," or " optimates," or " principes,"
a " inixed council."



VII.]



ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS,



157



down to the time of the deprivation of Stigand, the last of our
Anglo-Saxon archbishops (a.d. 1070). K. Egbert suc-
ceeded to the crown of the West Saxons, in the year 800 *>,
and William of Normandy was crowned on Christmas day,
1066: the present period, therefore, extends from the fourth
year of Egbert to the fourth of William the Conqueror ;
and it may be termed for the convenience of division the
second Anglo-Saxon period.

The state of society became more tranquil during the period
now before us, and political arrangements were consequently
more defined. The great civil councils of the Anglo-Saxons
having obtained the name of " wittena-gemotes;" perhaps many
of those in the tabular list should rightly be so described,
which are designated as "mixed councils." But it has been
thought better to apply the term " wittena-gemote "" only



A. D. 804-
1070.



*^ Collier,
3-18.



LIST OF ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS, A.D.



■IO7O — continued.



Date.

A.D.



Archbishop or
Bishop.



King.



Reference.



Nature of
Assembly.



851



855



887



Kingsbury . . . .



Winchester



Ceoluoth



Ceolnoth and
Abp. of York



Bertulph



Ethel wolf, Beor-
redus, Edmund



Intermission of councils on account of Danish

irruptions.
Alfred's laws, where made and when uncertain.
Gurgan, 10th
bishop



LlandafF
Llandaff



LlandafF .

LlandafF .

LlandafF .

Llandaff ,
LlandafF .



Berthguin, 14th
bishop

Berthguin, 14th
bishop

Cerenhir, 18th
bishop

Cerenhir, 18th
bishop

Gulfrid, 20th

bishop
Civeillac, 22nd

bishop

Civeillac, 22nd
bishop



Clotri



Howell.



Brochvail ,
Brochvail .



Spelm. Cone. i. 314

and note ad fin

Cone. M. B, i. 181

Hody, 57
Spelm. Cone. i. 348

Cone. M. B. i. 183

Hody, 59
Spelm. Cone. i. 353

note. Hody, 60.
Spelm. Cone. i. 378.
Spelm. Cone. i. 381

Cone. M. B. i. 19C

Hody, 62
Spelm. Cone. i. 382

Cone. M. B.

Hody, 62
Spelm. Cone.

Cone. M. B,

Hody, 62
Spelm. Cone. i. 383-4

Cone. M. B. i. 197

Hody, 62
Spelm. Cone,

Cone. M. I

Hody, 62
Spelm. Cone. i. 385

Cone. M. B. i. 198
Spelm. Cone. i. 385 6

Cone M. B, i. 199

Hody, (.2
Cone. M. B. i. 199

Hody, 63



196



383.
197.



384-5.
i. 198.



Mixed Council.
Mixed Council.

Diocesan Synod.

Diocesan Synod.

Diocesan Synod.

Diocesan Synod,

Diocesan Synod.

Mixed Council.
Diocesan.

Diocesan Synod.

Wittena- gemote.

[904



158 ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS, [cHAP. 1


A.D. 804—


when the " wites," or " sapientes," are found on perusal of the




records to have been certainly present ; and this rule has been




followed.




The remarks made in the previous chapter with regard to




the assembling of ecclesiastical synods at the same times and


= Vid. Cone.
yEnham ad
an. 1009. &


places with the civil councils, apply " even with greater force
to this period of our history than to the last: the clergy


Cone. vol. i.


being always consulted about secular matters ; as well as in


p. 529, note.


purely spiritual affairs, the laity being called in to ratify and to


LIST OF ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS, A.D. 804 — 1070 — Continued.


Date.

A.D.


Place.


Archbishop or
Bishop.


King.


Reference.


Nature of
Assembly.


904




Edgmund ....


Edward theElderSpelm. Cone. i. 387 et
seq. and note. Cone.














M. B. i. 199


1


905-6 Ttinirfnrrl




Edward the El- Spelm. Cone. i. 390-5.
der,Ang.-Saxon, Cone. M. B. i. 202.










agreement upon








and Guthurn, Hody, (J7


laws between








Dane


Anglo-Saxons &
Danes.








Edward the Elder Hody, G7


Wittena- gemote.
Wittena- gemote.


928


Grateley, near Wulfelm


Athelstan Spelm. Cone. i. 39C,




Andover




and note, 407- Cone.
M. B. i. 205






Exeter


Wulfelm


Athelstan Hcdy, 68, quoting


Wittena- gemote.










Bromton






Feversham . . . ,


Wulfelm


Athelstan


Hody, 68-9, quoting' Wittena- gemote.
Bromton 1




Thunderfield ..


Wulfelm


Athelstan


Hody, 69, quoting, Wittena- gemote.

Bromton
Hody, 69, quoting Wittena- gemote.




London


Wulfelm


Athelstan






1


Bromton '




Thidanbyrig . .


Wulfelm Athelstan


Hody, 69, quoting Wittena- gemote.
Bromton


940


Tygwin


iirchbishop of Howel the Good


Spelm. Cone. i. 408. Welsh Mi.xed


or




S. David's.




Cone. M. B. i. 208. Council.


943




Spelm.Conc. i.




Hody, 70. See also'






414




Spelm. Cone. i. 414,
note. Cone. M. B.
i. 208, note




944


London


Odo of Cant.


Edmund


Spelm. Cone. i. 419. Mi.xed Council*.






and Wulstan


Cone. M. B. i. 214.,






of York 1


Hodv, 71 1






Edmund ... .


Hody, 72 Wittena- gemote.

Spelm. Cone. i. 428. Mixed Council*.


948


London


Odo and Wul- Edred






Stan


Cone. M. B. i. 217.
Hody, 72 1


950










of Mainuon,


Llandaff




Cone. M. B. i'. 222!




Llandaflf






Hodv, 72


955


Urbs Guentonia


Pater, Bishop of


Nougui


Spelm. Cone. i. 430. Mixed Council on




or Gwent


T.landaff




Cone. M. B. i. 222.
Hody, 72


the subject of
violated sanc-
tuary.


[959 Bradanford,


* Junrtion of Canterbury and York.



ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS.



159



establish ^ as law, such decisions as had been arrived at by
the clergy deliberating^ apart by themselves. The reasons
which caused the Anglo-Saxon assemblies during this period
to assume a more definite form arose partly from the con-
solidation of the heptarchy, partly from those extensive and
wise improvements ascribed to K. Alfred the Great in the
middle of the ninth century. Those improvements were
perhaps more specially directed to strengthen the executive
power, and secure a due obedience to the law. Still however



A.D. 804—
1070.

d Kennetfs
Eccl. Syn.
p 215. _
e kennett s
Eccl. Syn.
p. 249.
Wake's
Auth. pp.
158 et seq.
Cone.
Cloveslioo,
Cone. Mag.
Brit. i. 94.



LIST OF ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS, A.D. BOi — WiO —continued.



Archbishop or
Bishop.



King.



Nature of
Assembly.



967
969

970
971

973

974

975

977
977-t
977-f



991
994. J

999
1002
1003



Bradanford,
.' Brentford or
Bradford



[jondon
London



Bath



London . . .
Kirtlington



Calne

Amesbury



In the North ,



LlandafF.



Dunstan .
Dunstan .



Edgar

Edgar
Edgar



Dunstan Edgar

Dunstan & Os- Edgar
wald of York
Dunstan Edgar



483.



Dunstan & Os- Edgar
wald of York
Dunstan ,



Dunstan .
Dunstan .



Uncertain . . . .

Amesbuiy ....

Uncertain . . . .

Uncertain . . . .

Uncertain . . . .



Edward the Mar-
tyr

Edward the Mar

tyr

Edward the Mar
tyr



Gucan, Bishop
of Llandaff






Siricius


Ethelred


Elfric chosen


Ethelred


Archbishop
Elfric


Ethelred


Elii-ic


Ethelred


ElMc


Ethelred



Spelm. Cone. i. 431.
Hody, 73

Spelm. Cone. i. 443.

Cone. M. B. i. 245
Spelm. Cone. i. 479.

Cone. M. B. i. 247,

248 ad imum. Hody,

73
Cone. M. B. i. 256
Spelm. Cone.

Cone. M. B. i. 258
Cone. M. B. i. 259.

Hody, 75
Spelm. Cone. i. 489.

Cone. M. B. i. 260
Spelm. Cone. i. 490.

Cone. M. B. i. 261.

Hody, 74

iHody, 78

• Spelm. Cone. i. 493.

Cone. M. B. i. 262.
I Hody, 76-7
- Spelm. Cone. i. 494.
I Cone. M. B. i. 263.
I Hody, 77
-Spelm. Cone. i. 494.

Cone. M. B. i. 263.

j Hody,78. Coll. i. 470

Spelm. Cone. i. 495.

I Hody, 78

|Spelm. Cone. i. 502-3.

Cone. M. B. i. 264.

Hody, 79
Cone. M. B. i. 264 . .
Hody, 79. CoU.i.48]



Mi.xed Council.

Wittena- gemote.
National Synod.

Mixed Council.
Mixed Council*.

Wittena- gemote.

Wittena- gemote.

Mixed Council.



Wittena- gemote.
Mixed Council.



Mixed Council.

Uncertain.

Provincial Synod.
Diocesan Synod.



Uncertain.
Mixed Council.



* Junction of Canterbury and York.



Hody, 79. Coll. i. 481 Mixed f Council.

Hody, 80 Mixed Council.

Spelm. Cone. i. 504-8. Mixed Council.

Cone. M. B. i. 282.

Hody, 89

[1006 Uncertain
t See Hody, p. 80.



160



AKGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUXCILS.



[CHAI



A.D. 804-
1070.



they were not without effect in giving a more definite form to our
pubHc assembhes generally ; and to the constitution of those
assemblies, and their modes of proceeding, the present subject
peculiarly draws our attention. And though perhaps in point
of strict chronology some of the matters here detailed should
be reserved to a later part of this chapter, yet it is more con-
venient to take a general survey of the several Anglo-Saxon
assemblies in this place, even if some of them did not assume,
until the middle of this period, so definite a form as that in
which we shall view them. Notwithstanding the difficulty of
positively defining between a " synod " and a " council " in
every particular instance on account of the carelessness
with which those terms have been respectively employed in
some quarters, and on account of the doubtful character



LIST OF ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS, A.D. 804 — 1070 — COJltiuUed.



1006 Uncertain
1009 Enshara..



1015
1017
1017

1017

1018



Brandon . . .
Woodstock



Archbishop or
Bishop.



Wantage



iElphage of
Cant, and Wul-
stan of York

^Iphage . .

^Iphage . .



yElpbage . .
yElphage . .



llabam or Ba- Archbishopric
dam vacant



Oxford

Southampton .
London



Deerhurst - on
Severn
London ,



1020 tCire icester
1020 Uncertain .



Livingus
Livingus
Livingus

Livingus

Livingus

Agelnoth
Agelnoth



King.



Ethelred
Ethelred



Ethelred
Ethelred



Ethelred



Ethelred



Ethelred



Nature of
Assembly.



... iCanute ,



Canute .
Canute ,



* Canute proclaimed king. t Edniu

X Gualterus Mapes, published by Camden Sociit
§ Division of kingdom ratified. || Canut



JHody, 80 Mixed CouncQ.

Spelm. Cone. i. 510. Wittena-gemote.
I Cone. M. B. i. 285.!

Hody, 80 I

JHody, 91 Mixed Council.

Spelm. Cone. i. 532, Wittena- gemote.
I note. Hody, 90.j
I Cone. M. B. i. 29G,'

note.
Spelm. Cone. i. 532. Wittena-gemote.

Cone. M. B. i. 29G,
I note. Hody, 90. i
Spelm. Cone. i. 532. Wittena-gemote.

Cone. M. B. i. 290.

Hody, 90-1 I

Spelm. Cone. i. 530. Wittena-gemote.

Cone. M. B. i. 295.1

Johnson, i. 494. Coll.]

i. 496. Hody, 90 |

Hody, 91 Mixed Council.

Hody, 92 Mixed Council •.

Hody, 92. Johnson, Mixed Councilf.

i. 501 I

Hody, 93. Gualterus Mixed Council §.

M apes, dist. V. c.4J.!
Hody,93. Cone. M.B. Mixed Council ||.

i. 296

Hody, 93 iMixcd Council.

Hody, 93. Coll. i. MLxed Council.

502 i

[1021 Winchester

11(1 proclaimc'd king.

y, 1850.

e proclaimed king unanimously.



ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS.



16J



of some of the records, yet in the words of Bishop Ken-
nett*^, "The chastest Latin writers in or near the Saxon
times have sufficiently distinguislied between the ecclesias-
tical and civil assemblies ;" and thus we are enabled gene-
rally to trace the proper lines of demarcation between those
meetings respectively.

Upon a collation of the various authorities

II. Principal , . . i i i

Anglo-Saxon as- ou the subject, it may be gathered that the
principal Anglo-Saxon public assemblies were
as follow. Short accounts of each will be appended ; they may
not prove uninteresting, and do not appear foreign to our
purpose.

The Circ-gemote ^ Haly-gemote, or Synoth ;



1. Circ-gemote.



a pure ecclesiastical



ibly (legislative).



A.D. 804

1070.



f Eccl. Svn.
p. 216. ■



LIST OF ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS, A.D. 804 — 1070 — Continued.



Date.

A.D.


Place.


Archbishop or
Bi.hop.


King.


Reference.


Nature of
Assembly.


1021


Winchester . .


Agelnoth of


Canute


Spelm. Cone. i. 534.


Wittena- gemote,
called a parlia-






Cant.andWul-




Hody,94. Conc.M B.






stan of York




i. 297. See also
Spelm. Cone. i. 539.
Ibid. i. 560adimum.


ment.


1033


Winchester ..


Agelnoth


Canute


Cone. M. B. i. 2ti9 . .


Wittena- gemote.


1034


Llandaff


Joseph, 28th


Mouric, K. of


Spelm. Cone. i. 570.


Diocesan Synod.






bishop


Glamorganshire


Cone. M. B. i. 310


1035


Oxford






Hody,96. Coll. i. 507
Spelm. Cone. i. 570,
and note, Spelm.




1041









Synod.






terbury, and








Alfric of York




Cone. i. 534




1044


London ......


Eadsius


Edward the Con-
fessor


Hody, 96


Mixed Council.


1017


London


Eadsius


Edward the Con-
fessor


Hody, 96




Midi.






1047


Gloucester ....


Eadsius


Edward the Con-
fessor


Hody, 98










1047


London


Eadsius


Edward the Con-


Hody, 98


Mixed Council.


Michs.






fessor






1052


OntheOutskirts
of London


Eadsius


Edward the Con-
fessor


Hody, 96 and 98 ... .


Mixed Council.


1055


London


Stigand


Edward the Con-
fessor


Hody, 98


Mixed Council.


1056


Llandaff


Herguald, 29th


Catgucaunus, K.


Spelm. Cone. i. 625.


Diocesan Synod.


or




bishop


of Glamorgan


Cone. M. B. i. 314,




1059








and note.




1065*


Westminster . .


Stigand and El-


Edward the Con-


Spelm. Cone. i. 627.


MLxed Council.


Xmas.




dred of York


fessor


Cone, M. B. i. 316





* Spelman and Wilkins place this council in the year 1066, which confuses all the historical
dates (Spelm. Cone. i. 627, and Cone. Mag. Brit. vol. i. 316). It has escaped their observation
that 5 cal. Jan. mlxvi. (the date of the charter to Westminster) does not mean the 5th Jan.,
1066, but 28th of December, i. e. Innocents' day, 1065.— J. W. J.

2 Kennett's Eccl. Syn. 212—214. Hody, 124. Pref. Cone. Mag. Brit.

M



162



ANGLO-SAXON" SYNODS AND COUNCILS.



[chap.



A.D. 80-
1070.



g Kennctt's
Eccl. Svn.
p. 214. '



•> Palgravc's
Anglo-Sax.
pref. p. 18.



' Present
State, prcf.



i Kennctt's
Eccl. Svn.
p. 216."
Vid. Provin
Svnod of
Challock,
A.n. 810".



2. Wittena-ge
mote.



3. Folc-gemote.



The Wittena-gemote^ or Micel-getheaht, «.^.
the meeting of the wise," " the great thought,"
the " mixed council," called in more modern phraseology the
" great council," or " parliament," This was a mixed as-
sembly of clergy and laity (legislative).

The Folc-gcmote\ Shire-mote, or Gerefe-mote,
i. e. the county court, or shire-reeve's (sheriffs)
turn ; the sheriff being deputy of the earl, as some say, but
rather perhaps being associated with him in order to guard
the royal interest (executive).

4. Hundred court. The Hundred court' (executive).

5. Burg-gemote. The Burg-gemoto ° (executive).

Ill Circ-ge- ^^^^ Circ-gemote, Haly-gemote, or Synoth,
mote. '^vas a pure ecclesiastical assembly, in which "the

clergy^ were alone and by themselves, as the peculiar officers
and administrators of religion : for" though " the clergy were
thought capable of consulting in political affairs, the laity were
not thought equal judges in pure spiritual matters." " In all
matters ^ of general legislation they voted with the laymen ;
but if business more particularly connected w'ith the Church
was discussed, they retired, and settled the affairs amongst
themselves." " In those times," says Archbishop Wake \
" the proper conciliary affairs of the Church were transacted
in proper Church synods, not in mixed councils — by the bishops
and prelates alone, not by a conjunction of the laity with
them." The circ-gemotes, haly-gemotes, or synoths, were
national, provincial, or diocesan, of which we have sundry in-
stances in this and the preceding period, and which may
readily be referred to in the tables prefixed to each : and
when kings were present at such meetings, as was sometimes
the case, "it^ was to- keep the peace, and protect the clergy,
and give solemnity to the occasion ; it was not that they or

s Eccl. Syn. 217—225. Ibid. 214. Wake's Pros. State, 128. Hume, 787-
Palgrave's Anglo-Saxons, pref. 26. Hody, 124. Johns. Can. vol. i. p. 282. Sharon
Turner's Hist. Anglo-Saxons, vol. ii. p. 457.

< Hume, 21. Eccl. Syn. 220— 223. 2H2-237. Hume, 787, note, and 789.
Blackstone's Com. iv. 411. Palgrave's Anglo-Sax. pref. 23. Sharon Turner's
Hist. Anglo-Saxons, vol. ii. pp. 457 8.

* Hume, 21. Blackst. Com. iii. .34; iv. 411. Hume, Appendix, No. 1, p. 789.

" Hume, 21, and Ajipcndix, No. 1. See also Edgar's Laws, can. 7, a. d. 958.
Johns. Can. vol. i. p. 41 1.



VII.]



ANGLO-SAXON SYNODS AND COUNCILS.



163



their retinue, as laymen, could define in matters of faith or
worship'^." Thus we find that at the provincial Synod of
Challock or Chalk, a.d. 816, Kenulf, king of Mercia, with
some of his nobility, was present. But Wulfrid, archbishop
of Canterbury, presided ; and he, together with certain eccle-
siastics, are alone represented as treating upon' spiritual
matters. It is in reference to this provincial synod that
Collier uses the following language, which strongly confirms
the view of the subject previously stated : " Unless some
charters of lands or privileges are granted by the crown, or
some other temporal affairs transacted in the council, we
seldom or never find a prince upon the subscription-list. And
if there are any instances to be found, it is possible the prince
might subscribe as a witness, or to give the Church a security
that the canons should be taken into his protection, and the
execution of them enforced with the civil authority. J3ut let
this be as it will, it is plain that the kings did not vote in
synods where nothing but ecclesiastical matters were treated ^"
Though these Church assemblies were sometimes convened
at the command, and very frequently under the sanction of
the king, yet they might be at any time called together by
the ecclesiastical power ; nor was the royal sanction "" con-
sidered necessary : and this inherent power in the Church, by
which the metropolitans convened their suffi-agan bishops and
clergy, was recognized uninterruptedly from the earliest re-
cords of Bi'itain until March 1534, when the Clei-gy Sub-
mission Act " was made law ; an instance of tyranny on the
part of K. Henry VI IT., and of subserviency on the part of
his parliament, which, if exhibited by any other besides him
and them, might supply plentiful matter for surprise. On
looking back to a time, however, when it was enacted" that
royal proclamations should take the place of the laws of the



Online LibraryJames Wayland JoyceEngland's sacred synods : a constitutional history of the convocations of the clergy, from the earliest records of Christianity in Britain to the date of the promulgation of the present Book of common prayer; including a list of all councils, ecclesiastical as well as civil, held in England, in whic → online text (page 17 of 83)