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Alexander Neville


Archbishop of York, bishop of Saint Andrews; b. c. 1332; d. May 16, 1392. Having studied at Oxford by 134849, he was a master of arts by 1357 and a scholar of civil law by 1361. He became master of the hospital of St. Thomas the Martyr at BolterinAllendale, Northumbria, that year, and he was made archbishop of york in 1374. A clerk of King Edward III by 1361, he was a royal curialist from 1386 when he became a member of Parliament's continual council under King Richard II. As such he was involved in the crisis of 138788 that issued in the Merciless Parliament of 1388. Neville supported the king; hence the chronicler Knighton described him as one of the nephandi seductores regis. A bitter opponent of the chief Lord Appellant, Thomas, Duke of Gloucester, he was four times appealed of high treason: at a preliminary meeting of the Appellants at Waltham Cross on Nov. 14, 1387; before Richard at Westminster on Nov. 17, 1387; before Richard in the Tower of London on Dec. 28 or 29, 1387; in Parliament on Feb. 3, 1388. He was found guilty of treason and his property and temporalities were declared forfeit. Neville's life was spared, but Pope Urban VI translated him from the archbishopric of York to the Diocese of Saint Andrews, Scotland, at the Appellants' request (bull of translation, April 30, 1388). But since Scotland did not recognize Pope Urban (see western schism), Neville sought refuge in Louvain. He is buried in the church of the Carmelites, Louvain, Belgium.

Bibliography: w. hunt, The Dictionary of National Biography From the Earliest Times to 1900, 63 v. (London 18851900) 14:243244. t. f. tout, Chapters in the Administrative History of Mediaeval England, 6 v. (New York 192033). a. b. steel, Richard II (Cambridge, Eng. 1941; repr. 1963). m. mckisack, The Fourteenth Century (Oxford 1959).

[v. mudroch]

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