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RICH, BARON — RICHARD OF CANTERBURY
RICH-RICHARD, 1st BARON RICH (1490?-1567), lord chancellor, was born of a Hampshire family about 1490, in the parish of St Laurence ]ewry, London. His great-grandfather, Richard Rich, was a wealthy mercer and sheriii of the city of London in 1441. Probably Lord Rich's father was also a mercer, but, he'sent his son to the Middle Temple, where Sir Thomas More was among his acquaintances. More told him at the time of his trial that he was reputed light of his tongue, a great dicer and gamester, and not of any commendable fame;' but he was a commissioner of the peace in Hertfordshire in 1528, and in the next autumn became reader at the Middle Temple. Other preferment's followed, and in 1533 he was knighted and became solicitor-general, in which capacity he was to act under Thomas Cromwell as a “lesser hammer ” for the demolition of the monasteries, and to secure the operation of Henry VIII.'s act of supremacy. He had an odious Share in the trials of Sir Thomas More and Bishop Fisher. In both cases he made use in his evidence against . the prisoner of admissions made in a professedly friendly conversation, and in More's case the words he had used'were misreportedfand received a misconstruction that could hardly be other than wilful. More expressed his opinion of the witness in open court with a candour that might well have dismayed Rich. Rich became the first chancellor (April 19, 1536) of the Court of Augmentations established for the disposal of the monastic revenues. His own share of the spoil, acquired either by grant or purchase, included Leez (Leighs) Priory and about a hundred manors in Essex. He was Speaker of the House of Commons in the same year, and advocated the king's policy. In spite of the share he had taken in the suppression of the monasteries, and of the part he was to play under Edward VI., his religious convictions remained Roman Catholic. His testimony helped the conviction of Thomas Cromwell, and he was a willing agent in the Catholic reaction which followed. Anne Askew stated that the Chancellor Wriothesley and Rich screwed the rack at her torture with their own hands.
Rich was one of the executors of the will of Henry VIII., on which so much suspicion has been thrown, and on the,26th of February 1548 he became Baron Rich of Leez. In the next month he succeeded Wriothesley as chancellor, an office in which he found full scope for the business and legal ability he undoubtedly possessed. He supported Protector Somerset in his subversive reforms in church matters, in the prosecution of his brother Lord Seymour of Sudeley, and in the rest of his policy until the crisis of his fortunes in October 1549, when he deserted to Warwick (afterwards Northumberland), and presided over the trial of his former chief. His daughter had married Warwick's son, and both men were at heart no friends to the reformed religion. Nevertheless, Rich took part in the prosecution of bishops Gardiner and Bonner, and in the harsh treatment accorded to the Princess Mary. Possibly this harshness was exaggerated, for Mary on her accession showed no ill-will to Rich. He retired from the chancellorship on the ground of ill-health in the close of 1 5 51, at the time of the hnal breach between Northumberland and Somerset. He was now sixty years old, anddthere is no reason to suspect the sincerity of his plea. There is an improbable story, however, to the effect that Rich warned Somerset of his danger in the Tower, and that the letter was delivered by mistake to the duke of Norfolk, who handed it to Northumberland.
Lord Rich took an active part in the restoration of the old religion in Essex under the new reign, and was one of the most active of persecutors. His reappearances in the privy council wererare during Mary's reign; but under Elizabeth he served on a commission to inquire into the grants of land made under Mary, and in 1566 was sent for to advise on the question of the queen's marriage. He died at Rochford, Essex, on the 12th of June IS61, and was buried in Felsted church. In Mary's reign he had founded a chaplaincy with provision for the singing of masses and dirges, and the ringing of bells in Felsted church. To, this was added a Lenten allowance of herrings to the inhabitants of three parishes. These donations were transferred in 1564 to the foundation of a grammar-school at Felsted for instruction, primarily for children born on the founder's manols, in Latin, Greek and divinity. The patronage of the school remained in the family of the founder until 1851. By his wife Elizabeth Ienks, or Gynkes, he had fifteen children. The eldest son Robert (1537?-1581), second Baron Rich, supported the Reformation, and his grandson Robert, third lord, -was created earl of Warwick in 1618.
The chief authorities are the official records of the period covered by his official life, calendared in the Rolls Series. See also A. F. Pollard, England under Protector Somerset (1900); P. Morant, History of Essex (2 vols., 1768); R. W. Dixon, History of the Church of England (6 vols., 1878-1902); and lives in ]. Sargeaunt's History of Felsted School (1889), Lord Campbell's Lives of the Lord Chancellors (1845-69), and C. H. & T. Cooper's Athenae Cantabrigienses (2 vols., 1858-61).
RICHARD, ST, of Wyche (c. 1197-1253), English saint and bishop, was named after his birthplace, Droitwich in Worcestershire. Educated at Oxford, he soon began to teach in the university, of which he became chancellor, probably after he had studied in Paris and in Bologna. About 1235 he became chancellor of the diocese of Canterbury under Archbishop Edmund Rich, and he was with the archbishop during his exile in France. Having returned to England some time after Edmund's death in 1240 hevbecame vicar of Deal and chancellor of Canterbury for the second time. In 1244 he was elected bishop of Chichester, being consecrated at Lyons by Pope Innocent IV. in March 1245, although Henry III. refused to give him the temporalities of the see, the king favouring. the candidature of Robert Passelewe (d. 1252). In 1246, however, Richard obtained the temporalities. The new bishop showed much eagerness to reform the manners and morals of his clergy, and also to introduce greater order and reverence into the services of the church. His term' of office was also marked by the favour which he showed, to the Dominicans, a house of this order at Orleans having sheltered him during his stay in France, and by his earnestness in preaching a crusade. He died at Dover in April 12 53. It was generally believed that miracles were wrought at his tomb in Chichester cathedral, which was long a popular place of pilgrimage, and in 1262 he was canonized at Viterbo by Pope Urban IV. Richard furnished the chronicler, Matthew Paris, with material for the life of Edmund Rich, and instituted the offerings, for the cathedral at Chichester which were known later as “ St Richard's pence.” His life by his confessor, Ralph Bocking, is published in the Acta Sanctorum of the Bollandists, where a later and shorter life by John Capgrave is also to be found.
RICHARD (d. 1184), archbishop of Canterbury, was a Norman, who became a monk at Canterbury, where he acted as chaplain to Archbishop Theobald and was a colleague of Thomas Becket. In 1173, more than two years after the murder of Becket, it was decided to fill the vacant archbishopric of Canterbury; there were two candidates, Richard, at that time prior of St Martin's, Dover, and Odo, prior of Canterbury, and in June Richard was chosen, although Odo was the nominee of the monks. Objections were raised against this election both in England and in Rome, but in April 1 174 the new archbishop was consecrated at Anagui by Pope Alexander III., and he returned to England towards the close of the year. The ten years during which Richard was archbishop were disturbed by disputes with Roger, archbishop of York, over the respective rights of the two sees, and in 1175, at a council held in London, there was a free fight between their partisans. Henry II. arranged a truce for five years between the rival prelates, but Richard was soon involved in another quarrel, this being with Roger, abbot of St Augustine's, Canterbury, whose action also trenched upon the privileges of the archbishop. Richard was more acceptable to Henry II. than Becket had been; he attended the royal councils, and more than once he was with the king in Normandy. Henry probably preferred him because he insisted less on the rights of the clergy than his great predecessor had done; but the monastic writers and the followers of Becket regarded this attitude as a sign of weakness.Richard died at Rochester on the 16th of February 1184 and was