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Lawrence of Durham


Prior, writer; b. Waltham, England, before 1100; d. France, March 17, 1154. Sometime before 1128, Lawrence became a Benedictine monk at Durham, where he taught Aelred of Rievaulx (see aelred, st.; durham, ancient see of). His learning and holiness won him the office of precentor and, under Bp. Geoffrey Rufus (112941), that of chaplain palatine. The controversy following the death of Rufus in which Lawrence was exiled by William Cumin, usurper of the see, is described in his Dialogi. Having been recalled, Lawrence succeeded as prior of Durham in 1149. When the monks elected Hugh Pudsey as bishop in 1153, the choice was contested by henry murdac of york, bernard of clairvaux, and others, whereupon Lawrence and several other delegates went to Rome to petition the consecration of Pudsey. anastasius iv recognized Hugh, granting at the same time Lawrence's request for an indulgence for pilgrims to the shrine of St. cuthbert of lindisfarne.

Bibliography: Works. Acta sanctorum Feb. 1:172185; Dialogi Laurentii Dunelmensis, ed. j. raine (Durham 1880). m. l. mistretta, ed., The Hypognosticon of Lawrence of Durham (New York 1941). a. hoste, "A Survey of the Unedited Work of Lawrence of Durham " Sacris erudiri (1960) 249265. Literature. c. l. kingsford, The Dictionary of National Biography from the Earliest Times to 1900 11:689691. m. manitius, Geschichte der lateinischen Literatur des Mittelalters 3:816820. j. de ghellinck, L'Essor de la littérature latine au XII e siècle 2:214, 220.

[m. l. mistretta]

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