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 Henry was brought to England

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PostSubject: Henry was brought to England   Thu Jun 30, 2011 4:44 am

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Henry was brought to England by King Henry I, to be Abbot of Glastonbury. On 4 October 1129, he was given the bishopric of Winchester[3] and allowed to keep his beloved Glastonbury Abbey. He was consecrated bishop on 17 November 1129.[3] He had ambitions to become Archbishop of Canterbury, but refused to abandon his work and obligations to Glastonbury. Soon after his appointment to the see of Winchester, Henry came to resent his subservience to Canterbury. He therefore set about building a power-base to persuade the king to create a third, West Country archdiocese with himself at the head.[4] This scheme was unsuccessful. However, on 1 March 1139, during the reign of his brother Stephen, Henry obtained a commission as papal legate, which gave him higher rank than Theobald of Bec, Archbishop of Canterbury, making him the most powerful figure in the English Church during the troubled times of the so-called "Anarchy". Thus, when his brother was unavailable, Henry of Blois was the most powerful, and possibly the wealthiest, man in England.

Stephen of Blois was crowned King of England in 1135, but the relations between the two brothers were not always peaceful. After the Battle of Lincoln in 1141, Henry found it more advantageous to support Empress Matilda; but later found her arrogant and greedy. Later that year, Henry rejoined his brother's side and, with the help of Queen Matilda and an army commanded by William of Ypres, his successful defence of Winchester against the Empress was the turning point of the civil war. As Abbot of Glastonbury, Henry remained in contact with Peter the Venerable at Cluny and was made aware of most of the controversies on the continent, specifically the persecution of Peter Abelard (whom Peter the Venerable defended) and the translation of the Koran from Arabic to Latin (which Peter the Venerable commissioned).
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