Adam Marsh

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English theologian (also known as de Marisco); b. in Diocese of Bath and Wells, late 12th century; d. Nov. 18, 1258. He studied arts under robert grosseteste at Oxford, where he had become master by 1226. He became a Franciscan at Worcester in 1232 or 1233. He returned to Oxford to study theology under Grosseteste until the latter became bishop of Lincoln in 1235. As intimate friend and adviser of Grosseteste, he accompanied the bishop to the Council of Lyons (124446). Around 1247, he became the first Franciscan master in theology at Oxford, where he taught until 1250. He was constantly summoned by King Henry III for official business; by boniface of savoy, Archbishop of Canterbury, for counsel; and by the pope for settling local disputes. In 1256, the king and the archbishop tried unsuccessfully to secure his appointment to the See of Ely. He explored the possibilities of making peace with France in 1257. In his lifetime he had the title of "Doctor illustris." roger bacon spoke of Adam and Grosseteste as "the greatest clerics in the world," (Opus Tertium, 22, 23, 25). His 247 letters, published by J. S. Brewer [Monumenta Franciscana (Rerum Britannicarum medii aevi scriptores 1858) 1:77489], are of unusual historical interest, but the theological and exegetical works ascribed to him have not yet been studied or edited.

Bibliography: a. g. little, The Gray Friars in Oxford (Oxford 1892) 13439; "The Franciscan School at Oxford in the 13th Century," Archivum Franciscanum historicum 19 (1926) 83138. d. douie, "A. de Marisco," Durham University Journal 32 (1940) 8197. g. cantini, "Adam de Marisco," Antonianum 23 (1948) 44174. m. creighton, The Dictionary of National Biography from the Earliest Times to 1900 1:79. a. de serÉnt, Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques 1:48284. a. b. emden A Biographical Register of the University of Oxford to a.d. 1500 2:122526.

[j. a. weisheipl]