Kedermyster, Richard

views updated


Abbot of the Benedictine monastery of Winchcombe and a man of some influence in the reign of Henry VIII; b. Worcestershire?, England, date unknown; d. Winch-combe, Gloucestershire, 1531. Kedermyster entered the abbey of Winchcombe as a novice at the age of 15 and at 19 went to study at the Benedictine House, Gloucester Hall, in Oxford. Four years later he was recalled to Winchcombe, and in 1487 he was elected abbot. He was an exact observer and reformer of the discipline of the house and was famous as a scholar and promoter of learning. He made frequent visits to Oxford and in 1500 took the degree of D.D. Kedermyster became well known as a preacher and often preached before Henry VIII. In 1512 he was sent with Bp. John fisher and others to the Lateran Council convened by Julius II. In 1514 he preached his famous sermon that attacked the Act of 1512 depriving minor clerks of "benefit of clergy" and thereby sparked off a controversy in which current anticlerical feeling played an important part. Kedermyster was a keen antiquarian, and in 1532 he compiled a register, since lost, of the early documents of his abbey. In 1521 he published his Tractatus contra M. Lutheri, and in 1525 he resigned the abbacy.

Bibliography: The Victoria History of the County of Gloucester, ed. w. page (London 1907). t. cooper, The Dictionary of National Biography from the Earliest Times to 1900, 63 v. (London 18851900 10: 1185.

[m. m. curtis]