Free Online Bible Library | William Courtenay

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William Courtenay

c.1342-1396. Archbishop of Canterbury from 1381. Son of the earl of Devon, he studied law at Oxford and in 1367 became university chancellor. In 1370 he became bishop of Hereford, in 1375 bishop of London, before becoming primate. He consistently opposed John of Gaunt's policies, proceeded against John Wycliffe* for heresy (1377), held a synod in 1382 to condemn Lollardy, and urged bishops to imprison heretics. During 1381 he was briefly chancellor of England, and one of the commissioners appointed to reform the kingdom and the royal household in 1386. He opposed the Statute of Provisors* (1390), and succeeded in slightly modifying the Statute of Praemunire* (1393).