Event: Abdication, Accusation, Appointment/consecration/elevation/ordination of bishop, Confiscation, Conspiracy/intent to murder, Correspondence, Council-meeting, ecclesiastical, Death/dying, Disobedience, Episcopal see, acquisition/institution/division/merge, Hostility, Journey, Monastic life, converting to/joining/oblation, Papal advice/audience/decision/privilege, Restoration to bishopricAldfrith 1-Wilfrid 2.conflict

Scholarly Info
Description Under the influence of venomous counsels, King Aldfrith 1 stripped the monastery of Ripon of its possessions, and began to think of setting up a bishopric there, following the plans of the middle years of Archbishop Theodore 1, that had so notoriously caused trouble [between Wilfrid 2 and Ecgfrith 4]. Wilfrid 2 took offence, and went off to his friend Æthelred 2 king of the Mercians. When Seaxwulf 1 bishop of Lichfield died he governed that see. But King Aldfrith 1 and Beorhtwald 6, Theodore 1’s successor, thought up many schemes against Wilfrid 2. They lured him to a council, trying to make him renounce his property and bishopric. Wilfrid 2, that time already 70, decided to appeal to Rome and soon made his entrance to the great city. There he wrote a letter to Pope John 17, outlining the essence of the conflict. The accusers sent by Beorhtwald 6 maintained that Wilfrid 2 had refused to obey the decisions of the archbishop. Wilfrid 2 responded that he would only obey the decisions which did not conflict with canon law. This reply satisfied the Romans, and matter was decided in favour of Wilfrid 2, who, being an old man, wanted to stay in Rome and die on the holy city, but Pope John 17 insisted that he was needed in England. So back he went, bringing letters from the pope to Æthelred 2, who was now a monk. Æthelred 2 had no difficulty in obtaining the fulfilment of their instructions from Cenred 2, son of his brother Wulfhere 1, whom he had appointed as his successor. With equal promptness Archbishop Beorhtwald 6, genuinely desiring peace, hastened to be reconciled with Wilfrid 2. Only Aldfrith 1 king of the Northumbrians persevered in obstinacy, but he had not much longer to live, before his death regretting his disregard for the pope’s letter. The letter, addressed to Æthelred 2, cleared Wilfrid 2 before all those persons of great holiness on record who assailed Wilfrid 2 with such deadly hatred: Theodore 1, Beorhtwald 6, John 17, Bosa 1, and abbess Hild 1.
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