Aldrich, Robert

, bishop of Carlisle in the reigns of Henry VIII. Edward VI. and queen Mary, was born at Burnham in Buckinghamshire; was educated at Eton, and elected a scholar of King’s college, Cambridge in 1507, where he took the degree of M. A. afterwards became proctor of the university, schoolmaster of Eton, fellow of the college, and at length provost. In 1529 he retired to Oxford, where he was incorporated B. D. About the same time he was made archdeacon of Colchester. In 1534 he was installed canon of Windsor, and the same year he was appointed register of the most noble order of the garter. July 18, 1537, he was consecrated bishop of Carlisle. He wrote several pieces, particularly 1. “Epistola ad Gulielmum Hormannum.” 2. “Epigrammata varia.” 3. “Several Resolutions concerning the Sacraments.” 4. “Answers to certain Queries concerning the Abuses of the Mass.” He wrote also resolutions of seme questions relating to bishops and priests, and other matters tending to the reformation of the church begun by king Henry VIII. Leland was his familiar acquaintance, and gives him a 'high character for parts and learning. The prelate died March 25, 1555, at Horncastle, in Lincolnshire, which was a house belonging to the bishops of Carlisle.

When he was senior proctor, he was employed by the university to write three letters to the king, and the following curious entry in the proctor’s book for 1527, proves this fac-LMagistro Aldryg pro tribus literis missis ad Dominum regem, IDs.” He was a correspondent of Erasmus, who termed him, when young, “blandae eloquentiae juvenis,” and appears to have associated with him during his residence at Cambridge. Fuller is of opinion that he belongs to the light rather than the dark side of the reformation; but Strype seems to doubt whether he was well affected to this great change. He was certainly, however, not a persecutor; and the mildness or timidity of his disposition may account for his retaining his offices during reigns of opposite principles. It yet remains to be noticed that in 1523, he was one of the Cambridge university-preachers, who were sent out by the university to preach in different parts of the nation, as the judges now go their circuits; there being at. that time very few men of ability in any county. 1


Biog. Brit. Tanner. Fuller’s Worthies. —Strype’s Cranmer, p. T7. Memorials. Jortin and Knight’i Erasmus, —Ath. Ox. vol. I. p. 96, 681. Cole’s Mss, in Brit. Mus.