Baldock, Ralph De

, bishop of London in the reigns of Edward I. and II. was educated at Merton college in Oxford, became archdeacon of Middlesex, and, in 1294, dean of St. Paul’s. The see of London being vacant by the death of Richard de Gravesend, Baldock was unanimously chosen, Sept. 20, 1304. But, his election being controverted, he was obliged to repair to Rome and, having obtained the pope’s confirmation, was consecrated at Lyons by Peter Hispanus, cardinal of Alba, Jan. 30, 1306. Being returned into England, he made profession of canonical obedience to the archbishop in the church of Canterbury, March 22, 1306. The same year he was appointed by the pope one of the commissioners for the examination of the articles alleged against the knights templars, and in that year also he was made lord high chancellor of England but Edward I. dying soon after, he held that post little more than a year. Dec. 2, 1308, this prelate, with the approbation of the chapter, settled a stipend on the chancellor of St. Paul’s for reading lectures in divinity in that church, according to a constitution of his predecessor, Richard de Gravesend. He contributed 200 marks towards building the chapel of St. Mary, on the east side of St. Paul’s. He founded also a chantry of two priests in the said church, | near the altar of St. Erkenwald. He was a person of a very amiable character, both for morals and learning, and deserved well of his country by his writings, which were, 1. “Historia Anglica, or a history of the British affairs down to his own time.” It is not now extant, though Leland says he saw it at London. 2. “A collection of the statutes and constitutions of the church of St. Paul’s,” extant in the library of that cathedral in 1559. Bishop Balclock died at Stepney, July 24, 1313, having sat from his consecration a little more than seven years, and was buried under a marble monument in the chapel of St. Mary. 1


Biog. Brit.