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Thomas A Becket Essay

651 words - 3 pages

A Saracen princess followed a wealthy crusader from the Holy Land to London. In 1118 Thomas Becket was born on St. Thomas day. Thomas Becket came from a loving family and was very educated. Thomas Becket attended the canons regular a Merton Priority in Sussex, and then attended the University of Paris. When Becket returned home from college his parents had passed away. Thomas Becket was then urged to make his way through life with no aid from anyone and a better future. Anyone that knows Thomas Becket knows him as a strongly built and very spirited young man. Becket also loved to play field sports which he spent most of his spare time hawking and hunting.
At the age of twenty- four Thomas Becket was given a post in the house hold Theobald, archbishop of Canterbury. While working there Thomas took minor orders he resolved on a career in the church. For further learning Becket received permission to ...view middle of the document...

The two men hit it off immediately as the two of them formed a strong bond, Henry II then granted Thomas Becket as his Chancellor. When years pass in 1161 the Archbishop Theobold dies and Henry II immediately saw an opportunity to increase his influence and power over the church. Henry then named his loyal advisor to the highest religious post. The only problem with that was that Becket was never ordained, so later in the day Becket was first invested as a priest. The following day June 21, 1162, Thomas Becket was ordained as bishop and later in the afternoon he was made Archbishop of Canterbury. King Henry thought he had this all planed out when he made his closest friend the Archbishop of Canterbury, Henry thought could then easily persuade the powerful will of the church. King Henry was dead wrong because Beckets allegiance went from the courts to the church. Becket then was inspired to stand up against Henry for he wanted to stripe the power the church had against him. A canon that was accused of murder the king himself decided that the man be found guilty of serious crimes and be handed over to his courts. First, the Archbishop agreed, but after talking to other church leaders Becket changed his mind. Henry was furious when Becket appointed that the church should still have and retain control of punishing its own clergy. Henry then believed his good friend Becket had betrayed him and was determined to have revenge.
Becket went back to England to flee from the courts that where led by Henry. Henry wanted to be rid of his Archbishop and four of King Henry’s knights over heard him and went to England to find Thomas Becket. The knights arrived at the Canterbury Cathedral on December 29, 1170, the knights demanded him to excommunicate the men that he did not pardon before he left. When Becket refused the knights took their swords out and the sword slaying of Thomas Becket became until they killed him at the altar they found him at. In 1173 Thomas Becket was made a Saint and his shrine in Canterbury Cathedral became a important focus for the pilgrimage.

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