Hubert Walter

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Hubert Walter, d. 1205, English archbishop and statesman. He was clerk to his uncle, Ranulf de Glanvill, and in 1186 he was made dean of York. In 1189 he was appointed bishop of Salisbury, and he accompanied Richard I on crusade in 1190. He returned to England in 1193 to be made archbishop of Canterbury and justiciar of the realm at the instigation of the now captive Richard. He was responsible for raising Richard's ransom and forestalling a rebellion planned by John (later King John). After Richard again departed (1194), Hubert was virtual ruler of England. Despite his manifest avarice, he was responsible for tax reforms and important administrative reforms in town and county government. In 1196, Walter caused the Church of St. Mary-le-Bow to be set afire in order to drive out the leader of the revolting London artisans, William FitzOsbert, who had taken sanctuary there. This and other unclerical actions led the pope to demand Walter's resignation from secular office in 1198. However, upon the accession (1199) of John he became chancellor and continued to wield enormous influence. He died shortly after frustrating the king's plan for another French campaign.

See biography by C. R. Young (1968).

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Walter, Hubert (c.1140–1205). Viewed by many as one of the greatest royal ministers of all time. Introduced into Henry II's service by his uncle Ranulf Glanvill, his career blossomed under Richard I. Created bishop of Salisbury in 1189, he accompanied Richard as his chief of staff on crusade. His performance in such challenging conditions led to his being promoted in 1193 to take charge of both secular and ecclesiastical government as justiciar and archbishop of Canterbury. In 1195 he was made papal legate. While Richard stayed in his French dominions, Hubert administered England, supplying the king with the men and money he needed to fight Philip of France. On John's accession he was appointed chancellor; the chancery rolls, for centuries the principal records of English central government, date from his period in office. He still found time to summon and preside over reforming church councils.

Robert Holland

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Walter, Hubert (d.1205) (d.1205) English statesman. As Bishop of Salisbury, he joined Richard I on the Third Crusade and later negotiated his ransom. Appointed Archbishop of Canterbury and Chief Justiciar (1193), he was virtual ruler of England during Richard's absence.