English Episcopal Acta 31, Ely 1109-1197

Karn, Nicholas
Date published: 
November 2005

The 170 acta published in this volume provide one of the best records of the structuring of a new diocese and the establishment of a cathedral chapter. The diocese of Ely (comprising historic Cambridgeshire) was founded in 1109, and its first four bishops oversaw the elaboration of a system of local ecclesiastical government, and also the formulation of a settlement between themselves and the Benedictine monks of Ely, whose church became the cathedral. Two of the bishops also held high secular office - William de Longchamp was effective regent of England while King Richard I was on Crusade - and the acta issued in connection with these duties shed light on the delegation of royal power.