1500-1558. Cardinal; archbishop of Canterbury from 1556. Son of the countess of Salisbury, niece of Edward IV, Pole studied at Oxford under Thomas Linacre and William Latimer, and received ecclesiastical advancement from [[Henry VIII]]* without being ordained. From 1521 he studied in Europe, corresponding with Thomas More* and Erasmus.* Made dean of Exeter in 1527, he refused the sees of both York and Winchester in 1530, and in order to avoid taking sides over the king's divorce went abroad in 1532. He was a friend of [[Gaspar Contarini]]* and knew Gian Pietro Caraffa (later Paul IV*). In 1536 Pole published Pro Ecclesiasticae Unitatis Defensione against Henry VIII's assumption of supremacy, and was appointed by Paul III* to a committee for the reform of church discipline.