John of Salisbury

John of Salisbury

biographical name


1115(or 1120)–1180 Eng. ecclesiastic

John of Salisbury

biographical name    (Concise Encyclopedia)

(born 1115/20, Salisbury, Wiltshire, Eng.—died Oct. 25, 1180, Chartres, France) English prelate and scholar. A noted Latinist who studied with Peter Abelard and other important theologians in Paris, John was a leading figure in the renaissance of the 12th century. He served as secretary to Theobald and St. Thomas Becket, archbishops of Canterbury. He wrote Historia pontificalis (c. 1163) and the Policraticus and the Metalogicon (both 1159) His defense of Becket and of ecclesiastical liberties led Henry II to exile him to France (1163). He returned to England after the reconciliation of Henry and Becket and was in Canterbury Cathedral when Becket was assassinated. He later wrote a hagiography of Becket and promoted the cult of the murdered archbishop. As bishop of Chartres (from 1176), he was active in the third Lateran Council.


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