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Losinga, Herbert de

Losinga, Herbert de (c.1054–1119). First bishop of Norwich (c.1094–1119). Possibly a Lotharingian by descent but English-born, Losinga was educated at Fécamp (Normandy), where he became prior, before moving to Ramsey (Hunts.) as abbot (c.1088) and buying the bishopric of Thetford (1091). Sensitivity forced him to Rome to resign on grounds of simony (1094), but Pope Urban reinstated him. Losinga moved the see to flourishing Norwich (1094), where he started building the impressive cathedral (1096) and monastery on the lines of Canterbury and Durham, but using the Fécamp custumary. Fatherly to his Norwich monks, an energetic, enterprising bishop and reputable scholar, he was superior to most contemporaries. Like his predecessors, he unsuccessfully tried to subvert the prestigious independence of Bury St Edmunds abbey. He contributed to the literature over lay investiture and Henry I sent him to Rome to back his case.

Revd Dr William M. Marshall

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