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Educational charters and documents 598 to 1909 online

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Ex Libri.s




Educational Charters
and Documents

598 to 1909



flFtomburflf) : 100, PRINCES STREET

fctrlin: A. ASHER AND CO.

lUtpjtfl: F. A. BROCKHAUS

cfogork: G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS

Bombag anU Calcutta: MACMILLAN AND CO., LTD.

Educational Charters
and Documents

598 to 1909


formerly Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford

Cambridge :

at the University Press


(Cambridge :






INTRODUCTION ......... ix

Dumvich(?) and Canterbury Schools. 631 ... 2

Teaching of Archbishop Theodore. 668 .... 2
Song Schools at Canterbury, York and Rochester. 633-

668 ........... 6

Some pupils of Theodore and Hadrian. 693-709 . . 6

Aldhelm's Studies, c. 680 ....... 8

Alcuin on York School. 732-786 ..... 10

Grammar, Song and Writing Schools separated. 796 . 1 8

Alcuin on Hexham School, c. 797 ..... 20

Canon Law orders bishops to provide Grammar Schools.

826 ........... 20

State of Education in England. 871-893 .... 22

Education of Alfred and his children according to Asser.

c. 1001 ........... 24

King Edgars Educational Canons, c. 960 ... 34

Educational Canons of 994 (?) ...... 36

Abbot Aelfric's Colloquy edited by Aelfric Bata . . 36

Aelfries English-Latin Grammar ..... 48

King Canute founds Public Schools and Exhibitions.

c. 1020 .......... 52

A Scholar's Rank. 1029-60 . . . . . . 52

Waltham Holy Cross School. 1060 1177 .... 54

Warwick School temp. Edward the Confessor ... 58

Dunwich School granted to Eye Priory. 1076-1083 . 58

Lanfranc's Constitutions, c. 1075 ..... 60

Pontefract School. 1075-1087 ...... 66

Hastings Grammar and Song Schools before 1090 . . 68

York School. 1075-1090 ....... 70

Salisbury School in the Institution of St Osmund. 1091 72

Christ Church (Hants) School, iioo ..... 74

Gloucester School, c. i 100 . . . . . . 76

Beverlev Grammar-Schoolmaster in love. c. i 100 76


iv Table of Contents


St Albans and Dunstable Schools, c. 1100 ... 78

St Paul's School, c. 1 1 1 1 80

Thetford School restored to secular government, c. 1114 82
London Schools in Thomas-a-Becket's boyhood. 1118 . 82
Appointment of Master of St Paul's School, c. 1125 . 86
Warwick School contested between two Collegiate Churches.

1123 86

Monopoly of St Paul's School enforced by excommunica-
tion, c. 1138 90

Huntingdon School granted to Huntingdon Priory. 1127 92
Dunstable School granted to Dunstable Priory. 1131 . 92
Reading School placed under Reading Abbey between 1125

and 1139

Gloucester School granted to Llanthony Abbey. 1137

Synod of Westminster forbids hiring out Schools. 1138 .

Endowment of Salisbury School. 1139

Bristol School under the Kalendars' Gild. c. 1141 .

The Origin of Oxford University, c. 1133-1150

Grant of Derby School to Darley Abbey confirmed, c. 1 155

Grant to Derby School of School and Boarding-house.

c. 1 160 . . . . . . . . . . 1 10

Winchester School dispute appealed to Pope. c. 1159 . 112
Bedford School transferred from secular to regular Canons.

c. 1 1 60 116

Alexander Neckham's education at St Albans School and

Paris University. 1167-1173 116

Pope Alexander III forbids fees for licences to teach.

1160-1172 118

Exhibitioner at Northampton School. 1176-8 . . .120
The Lateran Council orders Cathedral Schools to be free.

i 179 . . . . . . . . . .122

Exhibitions of Durham Schoolboys in the Cathedral Priory

Almonry. 1190 1230 . . . . . . .124

York School separately endowed. 1180 1191 . . . 126
Bury St Edmunds School endowed. 1180-1198 . . 128
St Albans and Dunstable Schools, c. 1183 . . . 132
Royal Exhibitioners at Oxford, c. 1200 . . . .134

Mathematics at Oxford, c. 1200 136

Table of Contents


Council of London forbids fees for licences to teach. 1200 138
Priests' Schools in Council of Westminster. 1200 . . 138
A Royal Exhibitioner at Winchester. 1205 . . . 140
Secession of Oxford scholars to Cambridge and Reading.

1209 140

All Cathedrals to keep Grammar and Theological schools.

1215 142

University students excused from residence on benefices.

1219 144

Beneficed clergy ordered to attend schools. 1219-1225 . 146
Cambridge University first mentioned. 1231 . . . 148
Marlborough Schoolmaster acts as judge in ecclesiastical

case. 1232 152

Northampton Vicar ordered to attend Northampton School.

1230 . . 154

University scholars at Northampton and Salisbury. 1238. 154
Newark Grammar School and Chancellor of Southwell

Minster. 1238 156

Grammar and Logic Schools connected with Southwell

Minster. 1248 158

Northampton University encouraged and suppressed. 1261-

1265 158

The earliest University College in England at Salisbury.

1262 164

Jurisdiction over University scholars at Salisbury. 1278 168
Foundation of Merton College at Maiden, Surrey. 1264. 170
Re-foundation of Merton College at Oxford. 1274 . . 180
Oxford Grammar School Statutes. I3th century . . 186

Oxford Curriculum for B.A. degree. 1267 ... r~ 190

Foundation of Gloucester College, Oxford, for Benedictine

monks. 1275-1287 ....... 196

Rights of Grammar-Schoolmaster, and Chancellor of Cam-
bridge, and Archdeacon of Ely. 1276 >. . . 202
Merton College Grammar School accounts. 1277-1310 . 210
Foundation of Peterhouse, the first Cambridge College.

1280-1285 222

Norwich Schoolmaster appointed by Archbishop of Canter-
bury. i?.88 232

L. b

vi Table of Contents

Canterbury Schoolmaster's power of excommunication.

1291 232

Holy-vvater-carrying, a form of school exhibition. 1295 2 3 2

Limited monopoly of Nottingham School. 1289 . . 234

Gilbertine College at Stamford. 1303 .... 236

Monopoly of Lincoln Song School. 1305 .... 236

Canterbury Schoolmaster appointed by Archbishop. 1306 238
St Mary-le-Bow Schoolmaster appointed by the Dean of

Arches. 1309 238

St Albans School Statutes. 1309 240

Canterbury Schoolmaster's jurisdiction exercised. 1311-

1323 252

Council of Vienne orders teaching of Hebrew, Greek, Arabic

and Chaldee. 1311 268

Manumission of an Oxford M.A. 1312 . . . . 270
Right of Beverley choristers to free admission to Grammar

School. 1312 270

Warwick Grammar and Song School Statutes. I3i6(?) . 272
Assertion of priority of Oxford to Paris University. 1317-

1322 276

Six Lincolnshire Grammar Schools. 1329 . . . 280

Secession from Oxford University to Stamford. 1334-5 . 282

Papal Statutes for education of Benedictine monks. 1335 288

Creation of Bachelors in Beverley Grammar School. 1338 294

St Albans Almonry School Statutes, c. 1330 . . . 296

Merton Grammar School accounts. 1347-1395 . 298

Westminster Almonry School accounts. 1335-1540 . . 306
Bishop of Exeter attacks the teaching of the classics.

1357 -3M

Kingston-on-Thames Public School. 1364 . . . 318

Winchester College Foundation Deed. 1382 . . . 320

A Lollard School or Conventicle. 1382 . . . . 328
Wotton-under-Edge Grammar School Foundation deed.

1384 330

English schoolboys begin to translate Latin into English

instead of French. 1327-1349 ..... 340
Grammar and Song Schools combined at Northallerton.

13^5 342

Table of Contents vii


Chaucer's Oxford Scholar and Song School. 1388 . . 344

Higham Ferrers Schoolmaster also Mayor. 1391 . . 348

New College, Oxford, Statutes. 1400 .... 348

Higham Ferrers Schoolmaster appointed by King. 1400 372
Lollard keepers of Schools or Conventicles to be burnt.

Mo 374

Stratford-on-Avon Gild Grammar School. 1402-1482 . 376

Statute of Apprentices not to apply to school. 1405-6 . 386
Lincoln City or Cathedral Grammar School and new

Choristers' Grammar School. 1407-9 . . . 386

Schoolmasters not to teach Sacraments. 1408 . . . 394
Supporters of Lollard Schools or Conventicles to be arrested.

1414 . 394

Cornhill Grammar School royal exhibitioner. 1419 . . 396
Teaching of English law, French and Letter-writing at

Oxford. 1432 396

Sevenoaks Grammar School foundation. 1432 . . . 398
God's House, Cambridge, for training Grammar School-
masters. 1439 ........ 402

Eton College Foundation Charter. 1440 .... 404

Eton College Monopoly for 10 miles round. 1446 . . 412
Cambridge Grammar School absorbed in King's College.

1440 . . .414

Farthinghoc Free School under Mercers' Company. 1443 414

London Schools increased. 1446-7 416

Appeal to Lords and Commons for Oxford University

Library. 1447-50 420

Ipswich Grammar School fees. 1477-1482 . . . 422
Rotherham Free Schools of Grammar, Song and Writing.

1483 . . 422

Aldwincle Spelling and Reading School. 1489 . . 434

King's Hall, Cambridge, Free Lectures. 1492 . . . 436
Macclesfield Free Grammar School founded by ex-Lord

Mayor. 1503 436

Priests forbidden to teach at Bridgenorth. 1503 . . 439

Westminster Monks' lack of learning. 1504 . . . 439
Giggleswick Grammar School founded with Building Lease.

1507 441

I' 2

viii Table of Contents


Canterbury Monks' ignorance of grammar. 1511 . . 444

Educational Canons of Convocation. 1529 . . . 444

Winchester and Eton Time-tables. 1530 .... 448

Canterbury Cathedral Grammar School re-founded. 1541 452

Educational Injunctions of Edward VI. 1547 . . . 472

School provisions of the Chantries Act. 1547 472

Continuance of Chantry Schools in Cornwall. 1548 . 475
Sherborne School re-founded as Free Grammar School of

King Edward VI. 1550 478

Cardinal Pole's Educational Articles. 1558 . . . 494

Queen Elizabeth's Educational Injunctions. 1559 . . 494

Westminster School Statutes on re-foundation. 1560 . 496

Recusant Schoolmasters. 1580 ...... 524

Bury St Edmunds Schoolmaster dismissed. 1581 . . 526

Penalties for unlicensed schools. 1603-4 .... 528

Exeter Cathedral Grammar School monopoly defended by

Bishop. 1624-5 5 2 8

Hoole's Grammar School Curriculum. 1637-1660 . . 530
Advancement of Education during Commonwealth and

Protectorate. 1643-1660 . . . . . -534

Charity School Movement. 1699-1718 .... 539
Act to prevent Dissenters and Non-jurors from teaching.

1713 . . .542

National Schools Trust Deed. 1870-1902 . . . 544

British Schools Trust Deed. 1870-1902 .... 547
Bradford Grammar School Scheme made by Commissioners

under the Endowed Schools Act 1869. 1871 . . 548
Andover Grammar School. Amending Scheme made by

Board of Education under the Charitable Trusts Acts

1853 to 1894. 1909 560



THIS book aims at doing, so far as the scantier space allows,
for the educational history of England what Bishop Stubbs'
Select Charters did for its constitutional history. It sets out
the text of the salient documents relating to the origin and
development of educational institutions.

Educational charters, being largely both legal and ecclesi-
astical, tend to combine the prolixity of the preacher with the
verbosity of the conveyancer. Hence, few of them can be
presented at full length. As the chief object of the work is to
show the origins of educational institutions, which are in many
cases centuries earlier than hitherto supposed, the earlier bulk
much more largely than the later documents.

In nothing, not even in religion, has the innate conservatism
of the human race been more marked than in education. It is
hardly an exaggeration to say that the subjects and the methods'
of education remained the same from the days of Quintilian to
the days of Arnold, from the first century to the mid-nineteenth
century of the Christian era.

The history of English education begins with the coming of
Christianity. But the education introduced by Augustine of
Canterbury was identical in means and methods with that of
Augustine of Hippo. The conversion of the English caused
the establishment in Canterbury of a school on the model of
the Grammar and Rhetoric Schools of Rome, themselves the
reproduction of the Grammar and Rhetoric Schools of Alex-
andria and of Athens.

This is brought home to us by the first document in the
text, an extract from Bede's Ecclesiastical History. It relates
how in a year, fixed to 631, Sigebert, king of the East
English, with the assistance of bishop Eelix, who came from

Grammar Schools spread

Canterbury, provided masters and ushers after the Canterbury
(or Kentish) fashion, and set up a school in which boys might be
taught grammar. For so the word litteris, commonly translated
letters, a translation which gives an erroneous impression either
of a mere ABC school, or of a school of belles-lettres, is
properly and accurately translated. The term ludus literarius,
a translation of the Greek grammar school, first appears in
Plautus c. 210 B.C. Suetonius, c. 120 A.D., specifically states
in his book, On Famous Schoolmasters, that the grammar
masters were at first called literati, a translation of the Greek
gramma tici, a term which by his time had superseded it. At
all epochs the term Indus literarius or schola literarum, or
literae simply, was used as a literary equivalent to the usual
grammar school or grammar, and at all epochs too, grammar
meant and included, not merely grammatical learning, but the
learning to speak and write Latin and the study of the matter
as well as the language of classical authors, especially the poets.
Grammar Schools and Rhetoric Schools were spread all
over the Roman Empire. For centuries after the introduction
of Christianity, eminent Christians like St Jerome and St
Augustine, the latter himself a schoolmaster, were bred in
pagan literature, and under heathen teachers. When these
schools, which from the days of the Antonines were public
schools, gave place to church schools is not, probably cannot
be, precisely ascertained. Gregory of Tours is perhaps the
earliest celebrity who, though he was a master of the classical
learning of the age, is said to have been brought up, not in a
public school, but by two bishops, c. 520. Though in France
the bishops appear to have obtained long before the control
of the schools, a letter of Pope Gregory (Ep. xi. 54), addressed
to Desiderius, bishop of Yienne in 595. is probably the first
actual evidence of a bishop himself teaching school. 'As we
cannot relate without shame it has come to our knowledge that
your brotherhood teaches grammar to certain persons, which we
take all the worse as it converts what we formerly said in your
praise to lamentation and woe, since the praise of Christ cannot

front Alexandria and Rome xi

lie in one mouth with the praise of Jupiter. Consider yourself
what a crime it is for bishops to recite what would be improper
in a religiously-minded layman.' These words are an adapta-
tion of a phrase of St Jerome. They refer to the fact that the
Grammar Schools still brought up their pupils on the classical
authors, and especially to the famous line in Virgil's Eclogues,
which always remained one of the chief of school books,
Ab Jove principium Musae,Jovis omnia plena. This letter brings V
us close to Canterbury School, for it was a letter of intro-
duction of Lawrence the priest and Mellitus the monk, who
were returning from Rome to Canterbury with a new batch of
clerks and monks.

As Sigebert was assisted by bishop Felix, the first bishop of
East Anglia, and his see was at Dunwich, his school has been
rightly inferred to have been in the same place ; and Dunwich
has been often dubbed in consequence the cradle of English
learning. It is strange that the fact was overlooked that, as
Dunwich took its masters from Canterbury, the earliest English
school must be sought, not in Dunwich, but in Canterbury.

Now if Canterbury had a school which was a model in 631,
who is likely to have founded it but its first missionary and
archbishop, Augustine ? We know that in the next century
when the English Winfrid became, under the name of Boniface,
the first missionary and archbishop of the Germans, he set up
schools as an essential part of a missionary establishment, just
as missionaries everywhere do to-day. We cannot therefore be
wrong in asserting that the Canterbury School was founded at
or about the same time as the church of Canterbury, namely,
in 598, when king Ethelbert was baptized and 'did not defer '
giving his teachers a settled residence in his metropolis of
Canterbury with such possessions as were necessary for their
subsistence.' Here Augustine lived according to the express
directions of Pope Gregory not like a monk in a cloister, but as
a bishop with his clerks, preaching, that is, and teaching, as well
as praying and singing the services.

This brings us to one of the fundamental facts which receives

xii Education in England

continuous illustration in our documents, that in England from
the first, education was the creature of religion, the school was
an adjunct of the church, and the schoolmaster was an
ecclesiastical officer. For close on eleven hundred years, from
598 to 1670, all educational institutions were under exclusively
ecclesiastical control. The law of education was a branch of
the canon law. The church courts had exclusive jurisdiction
over schools and universities and colleges, and until 1540 all
, schoolmasters and scholars were clerks, or clerics or clergy,
and in orders, though not necessarily holy orders.

Our next document shows us this very plainly. Bede's
account of the coming of the Greek archbishop, Theodore, and
his colleague, the abbot Hadrian, in 668 and of the archbishop's
visitation of all England and his acceptance as Primate by all
the kingdoms of the Heptarchy, round which he went preaching
and teaching, has been misinterpreted into an account of the
foundation of Canterbury School and of schools elsewhere.
What it does show is that the introduction of Greek in addition
to Latin gave an impetus to English learning which made
English scholars the first in the world, and conduced to the
production of Bede, himself the sanest of historians for 800
years. Bede, in his account of Paulinus, the apostle of the
North, shows us also that side by side with the Grammar
School arose the Song School, which has been often confused
with it, but was from the beginning quite distinct, and though
it sometimes encroached on the sphere of the Grammar School,
and in smaller places was combined with it, always had a
different function. Canterbury supplied York with its Song
School on the Roman, i.e. Gregorian, model, as it did Dunwich
with its Grammar school model. Bede vaunts the learning of
the pupils of Theodore and Hadrian, who knew Greek and
Latin as well as English.

In the next generation, Aldhelm appears to have owed his
learning to Winchester, not to Canterbury, and to Irish rather
than Roman sources. The dates and facts of the life of this
scion of the West Saxon royal house make it impossible for him

under Church Control xiii

to have been a pupil, as sometimes claimed, of abbot Hadrian,
while his Brito-Irish teacher Maidulf seems to be evolved from
Bede's place-name for Malmesbury. In a letter to his former
chief, Haeddi, bishop of Winchester, excusing himself from a
visit to join in the Christmas dances, Aldhelm sets out a mar-
vellous programme of studies. It includes Roman law, prosody,
even to the niceties of brachy- and hypercatalectics, astronomy,
and the most laborious of all studies, arithmetic, in which, ' by
the special grace of God,' he has at last understood ' the most
difficult of all things, fractions.' Leaping a generation and
passing from Wessex to Northumbria, we come to Alcuin's poem
' On the Bishops and Saints of the Church of York,' one of the
most illuminating documents in the history of education. A
false monastic educational genealogy has been concocted,
making Bede the pupil of archbishop Theodore, archbishop
Egbert of York of Bede, Alcuin of Egbert, and Rabanus
Maurus and a host of Franco-German monks of Alcuin.
Alcuin's own poem snaps the chain at the second link. Egbert
was not a pupil of Bede, of whom he was the superior and
patron, and was a secular, not a monk. Nor was Egbert the
master of Alcuin, but of Ethelbert or Albert, who succeeded
him in the archbishopric. Albert was also emphatically a
secular and no monk, and a teacher so famous that foreign
potentates tried in vain to lure him away from England as
Alcuin was afterwards lured by Charlemagne. He it was who
was Alcuin's master.

The truth is that, except for perhaps a century and a half
in Ireland and such scattered parts of England and France
as in the yth and 8th centuries fell under Irish influence,
the monasteries were never schools nor the monks educators,
except of their own younger brethren. Their own rules forbade
them to be so. Bede particularly mentions that when, c. 648,
the little English boys and some older were taught by Scots
(i.e. Irish) it was the regular, i.e. monkish, discipline they learnt.
The Cathedral and Collegiate churches, in which schools were
an essential and important part of the foundation, were the

xiv York School under Alcuin

centres of education. The clerks, later called canons, who
taught the schools, were the educators and promoters of
education. Alcuin's poem shows us that at York the curriculum
was encyclopaedic. Grammar and rhetoric came first, but
were followed by law, music, mathematics comprising astronomy,
arithmetic and geometry; the science of the calendar; and finally
theology. It was a boarding school. ' Whatever youths he saw of
conspicuous intelligence he joined to himself, he taught, he fed,
he loved.' Architecture also seems to have been included, as,
with his two favourite pupils, of whom Alcuin was one, Albert
built a new cathedral with 30 side-altars and chapels round it.
When Albert died the mastership of the school was separated
from the archbishopric, Eanbald taking the latter, while Alcuin
succeeded to the 'school, the master's chair and the books,' a
catalogue of which is given. In it the grammarians vie with
the theologians in number, while the classical authors, Virgil,
Lucan, Statius, Cicero, Pliny, Aristotle, are rivalled by the
Christian poets Sedulius and Juvencus, and others. It is
pleasing to note that Bede and Aldhelm were already numbered
among the classics. When Alcuin went over to teach the
Palace School of Charlemagne, his letters show him still inter-
ested in the promotion of English education at Lichfield under
Offa, at Canterbury, and at Hexham, as well as in his own old
school at York. In the last he recommends a division of
labour, the separation of the Song and Writing School from
the Grammar School, under different masters. We last see
him about the year 804 when retired to become abbot of Tours
sending for some of his books at York to scatter the perfumes
of English learning on the banks of the Loire.

A canon of Pope Eugenius made in 826 enforced as law
what was already established by custom, the duty of bishops to
act as inspectors of schools with the Pope as President of a
European Board of Education.

Our next document, if it is to be taken literally, shows a sad
falling off in England since the days of Alcuin. In the preface
to his translation of Pope Gregory the Great's Pastoral Care,

Alfred the Great xv

Alfred the Great draws a depressing contrast between ' the
good old days ' when foreigners came to England in search of
education and learning, and his own day when England had to
get learning from abroad. We cannot but think that he is
guilty of rhetorical exaggeration when he says that he could
not recall anyone south of the Thames who could understand
the services in English. However, he ends his preface with
the hope that if peace is preserved, every English freeman's
son will learn to read English, while those who wish to con-
tinue in learning, and go to the higher ranks or orders, will
also learn Latin. If the canons of Edgar imputed to the year
960 are to be trusted as to date and to being a true represen-
tation of the state of England at the time and are not merely
repetition of old canons, this hope had been more than

Not only suspect but self-convicted as to its real date and au-
thenticity is the Life of Alfred purporting to be by Asser. In
it two miracles are recorded in regard to the education of Alfred.
The first enabled him to read Saxon as a little boy at his
mother's knee, pleased at a pretty picture-book, by the simple
process of taking the book out of the room to a master, getting
him to read it aloud, and coming back able to read it to his

Online LibraryArthur Francis LeachEducational charters and documents 598 to 1909 → online text (page 1 of 47)