Baconthorp, John

, surnamed the Resolute Doctor, and one of the most learned men of his time, was born about the end of the 13th century, at Baconthorp, an obscure village in Norfolk, from which he took his name. In his youth, he was a monk in the convent of Blackney, a small town in Norfolk, about five miles from Walsingham. After some years dedicated to learning and piety, he removed to Oxford, and from thence to Paris, where he was honoured with the degrees in divinity and laws, and acquired a great reputation for learning, being esteemed the head of the followers of the philosopher Averroes. Upon his return into England, he was unanimously chosen the twelfth provincial of the English Carmelites, in a general assembly of that order held at London, in the year 1329. Four years after he was invited by letters to Rome where, in several disputations on the subject of marriage, he gave no little offence, by carrying the papal authority too high in the case of divorces; but he thought fit afterwards to retract his opinion, and was held in great esteem at Rome, and other parts of Italy. His biographers report that he was of small stature, but of a great and lofty genius, and besides the encomiums bestowed upon him by his own countrymen, he has had the praises, not less high, of Baptista Mantuanus, and Paulus Panza. Bale seems to think that he anticipated the better opinions of more enlightened times. Of his works, which are numerous, the following have been published “Commentaria, seu Questiones | per quatuor libros sententiarum,” which has undergone six editions; “Compendium iegis Chris ti,- et Quodlibeta,Venice, 1527. Leiand, Bale, and Pitts give a catalogue of his manuscripts. He died at London in 1346. 1


Biog. Britaninca. Tanner Bibl. Fuller’s Worthies.