Peckham, John (DNB00)
|←Peckham, George||Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 44
PECKHAM, JOHN (d. 1292), archbishop of Canterbury, is stated by Bartholomew Cotton (De Archiepiscopis Cantuariæ, p. 371) to have been a native of Kent. Peckham, however, seems to have been connected with Sussex, and he himself says that he had been brought up in the neighbourhood of Lewes from a boy (Registrum, p. 902); from this it has been assumed that he was born at Lewes. But the connection may be merely due to the fact that the rectory of Peckham in Sussex belonged to Lewes priory (Dugdale, Monast. Angl. v. 16). Another suggestion connects the archbishop with the Sussex family of Peckham of Arches, and with Framfield in that county, where the family of Peckham survived till the eighteenth century (Sussex Archœological Collections, iv. 299). Peckham's parentage is unknown, but he had a brother Richard, whose son Walter received some patronage from the archbishop (Registrum, pp. 1010, 1048–50); several other persons of the name occur in the ‘Register,’ and one Simon de Peckham, who received orders by John's special command, may have been a relative (ib. pp. 1046, 1048). Hook, on the supposed authority of Archbishop Parker, gives the date of Peckham's birth as 1240, but the true date must clearly have been some years earlier. Peckham received his earliest instruction at Lewes priory (ib. p. 902). Afterwards he went to Oxford, but it is of course impossible that he was, as sometimes alleged, a member of Merton College; the statement to this effect appears to be due to a confusion with Gilbert Peckham (fl. 1324) (Little, Grey Friars at Oxford, p. 238; Registrum, Pref. i. p. lviii). The suggestion that Peckham was the ‘Johannes juvenis’ [see John, fl. 1267] whom Roger Bacon befriended is equally untenable. Peckham was perhaps a pupil of Adam Marsh, who, writing about 1250, speaks of him in favourable terms, and states that Peckham, having entered the Franciscan order, had resigned his post as tutor to the nephew of H. de Andegavia (Monumenta Franciscana, i. 256). In this letter Peckham is described as ‘dominus’ and ‘scholaris;’ he had therefore probably not graduated as master. He seems to have spent some time in the Franciscan convent at Oxford (Registrum, p. 977), but soon after 1250, if not before, he proceeded to Paris, where he studied under St. Bonaventure, took his doctor's degree, and ruled in theology (Monumenta Franciscana, i. 537, 550; Trivet, Annals, pp. 299–300). Peckham speaks of himself as educated in France from tender years; he must therefore have been quite young when he went to Paris. He mentions that he enjoyed the favour of Margaret, the wife of Louis IX, and that among his pupils at Paris was Thomas de Cantelupe [q. v.], the future bishop of Hereford (Registrum, pp. 315, 827, 874). At Paris also he met St. Thomas Aquinas, and was present when that doctor submitted his doctrine on the ‘Unity of Form’ to the judgment of the masters in theology. Peckham records that he alone stood by Thomas, and defended him to the best of his power (ib. pp. 866, 899). He also defended the mendicant orders against William of St. Amour, whose teaching caused so much disturbance at Paris between 1252 and 1262 (cf. Registrum, Preface, iii. p. xcvii). Peckham returned to Oxford about 1270, and there became eleventh lector of his order (Monumenta Franciscana, i. 550). On 2 May 1275 he was appointed, in conjunction with Oliver de Encourt, prior of the Dominicans, to decide a suit in the chancellor's court at Oxford (Close Roll 3 Edw. I, ap. Little, p. 155). A little later he was elected ninth provincial minister of the Franciscans in England, and during the first year of his office attended a general council of the order at Padua. A year or two afterwards he was summoned to Rome by the pope, and made ‘Lector sacri palatii,’ or theological lecturer in the schools in the papal palace, being the first to hold the office (Monumenta Franciscana, pp. 537, 552; Trivet, p. 300; Martin, i. p. lxi). The Lanercost chronicler (p. 100) states that Peckham lectured at Rome for two years; but he probably did not hold the office much over a year, for it is unlikely that he was summoned by John XXI; and Nicholas III, who favoured the friars, only became pope on 25 Nov. 1277. Peckham gained a great reputation by his lectures, which were attended by many bishops and cardinals. His audience are said to have always risen and uncovered as he entered, a mark of respect which the cardinals refused to continue after he was made archbishop, lest its meaning might be misconstrued (Rodolphius, Hist. Seraph. Religionis, p. 117 b).
In 1278 Robert Burnell [q. v.] was elected archbishop of Canterbury, in succession to Robert Kilwardby [q. v.] Nicholas III, however, quashed the election, and on 25 Jan. 1279 nominated Peckham to the vacant see, very much against his will (Ann. Mon. iv. 279–80; the date is confirmed by the dating of Peckham's letters from 1283 onward, cf. Registrum, pp. 508, 510; but the papal bull announcing the appointment is dated 28 Jan. cf. Bliss, Cal. Papal Registers, i. 456). According to Thomas Wikes (Ann. Mon. iv. 280), Peckham was consecrated on the Sunday in Mid-Lent, 12 March, but other authorities give the first Sunday in Lent, 19 Feb. (Wharton, Anglia Sacra, i. 116); the latter date is shown to be correct by entries in Peckham's ‘Register’ (pp. 96, 98, 177–8, 301, 305; cf. Stubbs, Reg. Sacr. Angl. p. 46). Peckham did not leave Rome till some time after his consecration, and passed through Paris in haste, reaching Amiens on 21 May, in order to be present at the meeting there between Edward I and Philip III of France two days later (Registrum, pp. 3, 4). Edward received him kindly, and at once ordered the temporalities of Canterbury to be restored to him (ib. p. 6). On 26 May Peckham proceeded to Abbeville, and on 4 June crossed to Dover from Witsand (ib. pp. 8, 9). The order for restitution of the temporalities had been issued on 30 May, and restitution was made immediately on the archbishop's arrival (Pat. Roll 7 Edw. I, ap. 48th Report of Dep.-Keeper, p. 37; Ann. Mon. ii. 391, iii. 280). Peckham was not enthroned at Canterbury till 8 Oct., when he celebrated his entry in Edward's presence (ib. ii. 391).
As a friar Peckham was naturally inclined to favour the pretensions of the papal see (cf. Registrum, p. 240), and his tenure of office was marked by several bold though ineffectual attempts to magnify ecclesiastical authority at the expense of the temporal power. Almost his first act on landing was to summon a council to meet at Reading on 29 July. Among other acts at this council Peckham ordered his clergy to explain the sentences of excommunication against the impugners of Magna Charta, against those who obtained royal writs to obstruct ecclesiastical suits, and against all, whether royal officers or not, who neglected to carry out the sentences of ecclesiastical courts (Wilkins, Concilia, ii. 40; Stubbs, Const. Hist. ii. 115–16). Edward took offence at Peckham's attitude, and in the Michaelmas parliament not only compelled him to withdraw the objectionable articles (Rolls of Parliament, i. 224), but also made the archbishop's action the occasion for passing Statute of Mortmain or De Religiosis. In the same parliament Edward demanded a grant of a fifteenth from the clergy. The northern province granted a fifteenth for three years; Peckham after some delay held a convocation, and granted a tenth for two years, ‘so as to be unlike York’ (Ann. Mon. iv. 286). During 1280 a further subject of dispute arose with the king, owing to Peckham's claim to visit Wolverhampton and other royal chapels in the diocese of Lichfield as a matter of right; Edward contested the archbishop's pretensions, and Peckham, after some demur, had to substantially yield the point (Registrum, pp. 109, 178–84). Peckham was not daunted by his failure, and in a council at Lambeth in 1281 the bishops proposed to exclude the royal courts from determining suits on patronage, and from intervention in causes touching the chattels of the spiritualty (Ann. Mon. iv. 285). Edward peremptorily forbade the proposal (Fœdera, i. 598), and Peckham had once more to yield. The archbishop's conduct ‘no doubt suggested the definite limitation of spiritual jurisdictions which was afterwards enforced in the writ circumspecte agatis’ (Stubbs, Const. Hist. ii. 117). This legislation was not passed—in 1285—without further opposition from Peckham (Ann. Mon. iii. 317). In other matters Peckham was on not unfriendly terms with the king, and he intervened with success on behalf of Almeric de Montfort in 1282 (ib. iv. 483; Registrum, p. 361). But the chief political question in which Peckham was concerned was the Welsh war. The archbishop was anxious to put down the abuses in the Welsh church, and to bring it into greater harmony with English customs. As early as 20 Oct. 1279 he wrote to Llywelyn, rebuking him for his infringements of the liberties of the church (ib. p. 77). In July 1280 he visited Wales, and made a friendly arrangement with Llywelyn as to the bishopric of Bangor, receiving a present of some hounds from the prince (ib. pp. 125–6). But a month later a letter of Peckham's, in which he asserted the reasonableness of Edward's claim to settle disputes on the marches by English customs, roused Llywelyn's wrath (ib'. p. 135; see more fully under Llywelyn ab ruffydd). The archbishop's ill-considered action led to the trouble which precipitated the end of Llywelyn's power. By the spring of 1282 the Welsh had broken out into open rebellion, and on 1 April Peckham ordered their excommunication (ib. p. 324). Towards the end of October Peckham joined the king at Rhuddlan, with the intention of endeavouring to mediate in person. On 31 Oct. he set out, against Edward's will, to meet Llywelyn, and spent three days with him at Snowdon. But prolonged discussion and negotiations between the archbishop and the Welsh prince failed to produce any terms to which Edward could give his consent (ib. pp. 435–78, cf. Pref. ii. pp. liii–lvi; Ann. Mon. iv. 289–90). After Llywelyn's death Peckham appealed to the king on behalf of the Welsh clergy (Registrum, pp. 489–91), and, after the completion of the conquest, took various measures intended to bring the church in Wales into conformity with English customs, and also induced the king to adopt some measures for remedying the damage which had been done to the Welsh churches through the war (ib. pp. 724–6, 729–35, 737, 773–82, cf. Pref. ii. pp. lvii–lx).
Peckham's ecclesiastical policy, like his political action, was marked by good intentions, but marred by blundering zeal and an inclination to lay undue stress on the rights and duties of his office. His position at the start was rendered more difficult by financial embarrassments. His predecessor, Robert Kilwardby, had sold the last year's revenues of the see, and had taken away much valuable property (ib. pp. 18, 277, 550). Peckham was consequently without means to discharge the debts which he had incurred for the expenses of his appointment, and, owing to this and the dilapidations of the archiepiscopal property, was much hampered by need of money. He endeavoured without success to recover the property taken away by Kilwardby (cf. ib. pp. 17, 21, 105–7, 120, 172, 1058–60). In his ecclesiastical administration Peckham applied himself with much zeal to the correction of abuses in the church. At the council of Reading in July–August 1279, statutes were passed accepting the constitutions of Ottobon, and forbidding the holding of livings in plurality or in commendam. At the council of Lambeth in October 1281 further statutes were passed to check the growth of plurality, and both councils dealt with minor ecclesiastical matters (Wilkins, Concilia, ii. 33, 51). Much of Peckham's episcopate was taken up with systematic and searching visitations of various dioceses of his province, for the most part conducted by himself in person. Lichfield and Norwich were visited in 1280 (Ann. Mon. iii. 282, iv. 284), the Welsh dioceses and Lincoln in 1284, and Worcester in 1285 (ib. iii. 351, iv. 491; Registrum, Pref. iii. pp. xxvii–xxxv). His insistence on his visitatorial rights had involved him in 1280 in a dispute with the king, and two years later the suffragans of Canterbury presented him with twenty-one articles complaining of his procedure and of the conduct of his officials. Peckham denied some of the allegations, and justified himself in regard to others, but at the same time found it necessary to appoint a commission of lawyers, who drew up regulations intended to obviate some of the complaints (Registrum, pp. 328–39). Nor were Peckham's relations with individual bishops always satisfactory. When William of Wickwaine, the recently consecrated archbishop of York, arrived in England late in 1279, Peckham at once resisted his claim to bear his cross in the southern province (Ann. Mon. iv. 281), even though the pope had expressly commanded him to abstain from a dispute on this matter (Bliss, Cal. Papal Registers, i. 459). When the question occurred again in 1284 and 1285, Peckham maintained the rights of his see with equal tenacity (Reg. pp. 869, 906–8). A more serious dispute was with Thomas de Cantelupe, bishop of Hereford, who complained of the removal of a matrimonial suit to the archbishop's court, and, failing to obtain redress, appealed to Rome (ib. p. 1057). In 1282 a fresh quarrel arose through the excommunication of Cantelupe's official by Peckham. Cantelupe refused to confirm the sentence, and, after an ineffectual meeting at Lambeth on 7 Feb., the archbishop excommunicated him. The bishop appealed to Rome, and on 25 Aug. died at Orvieto; even then Peckham's hostility did not cease, and he attempted to prevent the christian burial of Cantelupe's remains (Reg. pp. 299, 308, 315, 318–22, 382, 393; Ann. Mon. ii. 405). Peckham's visitation of the Welsh dioceses in 1284 involved him in a dispute with Thomas Bek, bishop of St. David's, who set up a claim to metropolitan jurisdiction, and refused to receive the archbishop except as primate (Reg. Pref. iii. pp. xxvii–xxxiii).
Peckham was especially anxious to check the abuses of plurality, and his zeal involved him in several sharp disputes. In 1280 he compelled Antony Bek, the king's secretary, and afterwards bishop of Durham, to surrender five benefices; it was even reported that Peckham had obtained papal letters forbidding Bek to receive any ecclesiastical preferment, but this the archbishop denied (ib. pp. 112, 140, 144, 244). A more serious case was that of Richard de la More, whose election as bishop of Winchester in 1281 Peckham refused to confirm, on the ground that he held two benefices with cure of souls without dispensation. The bishop-elect appealed to Rome, but, despite the opposition of some cardinals, including Hugh of Evesham [q. v.], Peckham won his case (ib. pp. 206, 219, 277, 281, 1004, 1065–6; Ann. Mon. ii. 394–5, iv. 283). A somewhat similar case occurred at Rochester in 1283, when Peckham refused for a like reason to confirm John Kirkby (d. 1290) [q. v.], and compelled him to resign (Reg. pp. 575, 1032). Another long dispute was with Tedisio de Camilla (dean of Wolverhampton, and afterwards bishop of Turin from 1300 to 1318), an Italian ecclesiastic whom Peckham deprived of several benefices; but Tedisio could exert such powerful influence in the Roman curia that in this case Peckham, much to his chagrin, did not obtain complete success (ib. pp. 131, 384–7, 598–604, 822; Wadding, Ann. Ord. Min. v. 82).
Peckham's visitations naturally included the monastic houses, and his ‘Register’ contains a considerable number of injunctions and ordinances for the correction of abuses (cf. Reg. Pref. i. p. lxxiv, ii. pp. lxi–lxxiii, iii. pp. xxxix–xlvi); but none of them were of any special importance, though the archbishop's strictness lends some colour to the charge that he was actuated by enmity to the Benedictines. At Abingdon he interfered to prevent the use of a shortened form of devotions, and with the abbeys of Christchurch and St. Augustine's, Canterbury, and of Westminster he had some dispute as to his rights of entry (ib. pp. 72–3, 161, 341, 970; Thorn, Chron. ap. Scriptores Decem. 1951–4). In 1281 Peckham had summoned all the abbots, whether exempt or not exempt, to attend the Lambeth council. The Cistercians, together with the abbots of Westminster, St. Edmund's, St. Albans, and Waltham, appealed, claiming to have special privileges; the last three abbots made their submission in April 1282 (Reg. pp. 237, 280, 307, 1069). The abbot of Westminster seems to have held out, and the relations of that abbey with the archbishop were never friendly. In 1282 Peckham rebuked the abbot for extortion at his ferry at Lambeth, and in 1283 interfered on behalf of the priory of Malvern, which was a cell of Westminster (ib. Pref. ii. pp. lxxvii–lxxxii). In 1290 Peckham supported the Franciscans in a quarrel with the monks of Westminster, and laid the abbey under an interdict, in consequence of which he took no part in the funeral of Queen Eleanor on 17 Dec. (Monumenta Franciscana, ii. 33, 35, 40, 47, 56; Ann. Mon. iv. 326). On the other hand, Peckham interfered on behalf of the Benedictines of Rochester against their bishop in 1283 (Flores Historiarum, iii. 59–60). The charge that he was actuated by enmity to the monks had perhaps no better ground than the fact that he was a friar.
Certainly Peckham lost no opportunity of advancing the interests of the two great orders of mendicants, and especially those of his own order. He had been appointed by the pope ‘protector of the privileges of the order of Minors in England’ (cf. Reg. p. 246). In 1281 he interposed in their behalf against the Cistercians of Scarborough (ib. pp. 215–16, 246–8). In 1282 we find him seeking advantages for his order at Reading, in 1289 at Worcester, and in 1291 at Oxford and Exeter (ib. pp. 414, 977, 983; Ann. Mon. iv. 501). In 1283 he granted the house belonging to his see at Lyons to the Franciscans of that city (Reg. p. 615). While he sometimes associated the Dominicans in advantages sought for his own order (ib. pp. 724, 744), he denied their claim to superiority, and asserted that the Franciscans, following the example of the apostles in their poverty, led a holier life than any other order in the church (ib. Pref. iii. p. xcix; Little, pp. 75–76). While again he asserted the right of the Franciscans to hear confessions and grant absolution (Reg. pp. 877, 952, 956), he denied the like right to the Carmelites and Austin friars at Oxford. On another occasion the latter order were compelled to surrender a Franciscan whom they had received into their own body, and the Carmelites of Coventry were prohibited from settling within the prescribed distance of the Franciscans (ib. pp. 838–40, 952, 956, 977).
Peckham's visitation of Lincoln diocese brought him to Oxford on 30 Oct. 1284, when he condemned certain erroneous opinions in grammar, logic, and natural philosophy, which, though censured by his Dominican predecessor, Kilwardby, had now revived (Ann. Mon. iv. 297–8; Wood, Colleges and Halls, i. 318–25). The gram- matical errors, which included such absurdities as that ‘ego currit’ was good Latin, were of no importance; but the logical and philosophical questions were more serious. Chief among them was the vexed question of the ‘form’ of the body of Christ, which involved the received doctrine of the Eucharist. The doctrines in question were maintained by the Dominican rivals of Peckham's own order, and their condemnation appeared to impugn the reputation of the Dominican doctor St. Thomas Aquinas. The archbishop's action consequently raised a storm of opposition. In his letter to the chancellor on 7 Nov., forbidding the assertion of the condemned opinions, Peckham was at some pains to declare that he intended no hostility to the Dominicans. But a month later he had to complain that his orders had been disregarded, and that the provincial prior of the Dominicans had made an attack on him in the congregation of the university. The prior, he said, had misrepresented him; he was actuated by no hostility to the Dominicans, nor to the honoured memory of St. Thomas; he had no intention to unduly favour his own order, and his censure was supported by the action of his predecessor. On 1 Jan. 1285 Peckham wrote to certain cardinals in defence of his proceedings (Reg. pp. 840, 852, 862, 864, 870). The enmity of the Dominicans, however, still continued, and on 1 June 1285 Peckham complained in warm terms of an attack made on him in an anonymous pamphlet, written apparently by a Cambridge Dominican (ib. pp. 896–901). On 28 March 1287 he ordered the archdeacon of Ely to inquire into certain slanders against him at Cambridge (ib. p. 943). It was the same heresy as to the ‘form’ of the body of Christ that led to the trial and condemnation of the Dominican Richard Clapwell [q. v.] by Peckham in April 1286 (ib. pp. 921–3; Ann. Mon. iii. 323–5).
Peckham's other relations with Oxford were friendly. On 31 July 1279 he wrote to the chancellor confirming the privileges of the university (Reg. p. 30). On 24 Nov. 1284 he remonstrated with the bishop of Lincoln on his interference with the privileges of the university (ib. pp. 857–8); but he was unable to support the masters entirely, and on 27 Jan. 1281 advised them to submit (ib. p. 887, cf. Pref. iii. pp. xxxvii–xxxviii). As archbishop, Peckham was patron of Merton College, and on several occasions intervened in matters concerning its government (ib. pp. 123, 811–18, 836).
Peckham's health, both bodily and mental, began to fail some time before his death (cf. Flores Hist. iii. 82). On 20 March 1292 the bishop of Hereford had license to confer orders in his place (Reg. p. 1055). Peckham died at Mortlake, after a long illness, on 8 Dec. 1292 (Ann. Mon. iv. 511; Anglia Sacra, i. 793; the date is variously given, but see Registrum, Pref. iii. p. liii). In the previous September Henry of Eastry had written to the archbishop (Wilkins, Concilia, ii. 184–5), reminding him of his promise to be buried in the cathedral, and Peckham was buried accordingly on 19 Dec. in the north cross aisle near the place of Becket's martyrdom (Cont. Gervase, ii. 300). His tomb is of grey Sussex marble, with an oak recumbent effigy under a canopy. There are engravings of the monument in Parker's ‘De Antiquitate Britannicæ Ecclesiæ,’ and Dart's ‘Antiquities of the Cathedral Church of Canterbury,’ both apparently from the same plate; there are other engravings in Blore's ‘Monumental Remains of Noble and Eminent Persons,’ and in Britton's ‘Cathedral Antiquities,’ vol. i. pl. xviii (Registrum, Pref. iii. pp. liii–lv). Peckham's heart was buried in the choir behind the high altar at the Grey Friars of London (Cotton MS. Vit. F xii. f. 274). He is stated to have left 5,305l. 17s. 2¼d., though the Dunstable annalist (Ann. Mon. iii. 373) says he left little treasure. In his will he named as his executors the Friars Minors of Paris (cf. Fœdera, i. 800). Peckham completed the foundation in 1287 for a provost and six canons at Wingham, Kent, which had been designed by Kilwardby (Dugdale, Monast. Angl. vi. 1341–2; Registrum, iii. 1080; cf. Bliss, Cal. Papal Registers, i. 548). Some of the buildings of the archiepiscopal palace at Mayfield, Sussex, may date from his time (Sussex Arch. Coll. ii. 235).
Peckham was learned and devout, and in his conduct as archbishop was clearly actuated by a sincere love of justice and hatred of oppression. His defects were due to an exaggerated sense of the importance of his office, and of the superiority of the ecclesiastical power. Trivet well describes him as ‘a zealous promoter of the interests of his order, an excellent writer of poetry, pompous in manner and speech, but kind and thoroughly liberal at heart.’ The Lanercost chronicler (pp. 101, 144) speaks of his humility, sincerity, and constancy in the duties of his office, and of his strict observance of the Franciscan rule. Even when archbishop, he contined to style himself ‘frater Johannes humilis,’ was assiduous in prayer and fasting, and wore only the poorest clothing. When, as provincial prior, he attended a general council at Padua, he travelled all the way on foot rather than break the rule which forbade friars to ride (Rodulphius, Hist. Seraph. Rel. p. 117; Wadding, Ann. Ord. Min. v. 53). When, on 29 June 1282, he visited Lewes priory, he showed his affection for the monks and his own humility by sharing their simple fare in the refectory (Chron. de Lewes, ap. Sussex Arch. Coll. ii. 33). The Franciscans styled him the moon of their order, Pope Nicholas IV being the sun (Flores Hist. iii. 81); both died in the same year, and the Worcester chronicler commemorates the event in two verses:
Sol obscuratur, sub terra luna moratur,
Ordo turbatur, stellarum lux hebetatur.
Another though prejudiced view is given by the writer of the ‘Flores Historiarum’ (iii. 82), who says that in his prosperity Peckham scorned and despised many, and especially the Benedictines.
Peckham was a voluminous writer of treatises on science and theology, as well as of poetry. His extant works are: 1. ‘Perspectiva Communis;’ this treatise deals not with what is now called perspective, but with elementary propositions of optics. Printed as ‘Perspectiva communis domini Johannis,’ &c. (Petrus Cornenus, Milan, 1482), fol.; other editions appeared at Leipzig, 1504, fol.; Venice, 1504, fol., and 1505? fol.; Nuremberg, 1542, 4to; Cologne, 1508, and 1542, 4to, and 1627; an Italian translation appeared at Venice in 1593, as ‘I tre Libri della Perspettiva commune.’ There are two manuscripts in the British Museum, viz., Add. MSS. 15108 and 17368, both of the fifteenth century. In the Bodleian Library there are Digby 218 (sec. xiv.; apparently not seen by the editors of the printed text), Digby 28 and 98, and Bodleian 300. 2. ‘Theorica planetarum;’ this may be the treatise in British Museum Add. MSS. 15107, ff. 65–71 b, and 15108, ff. 139–49 b. 3. ‘De Sphæra;’ inc. ‘Principalium corporum mundanorum,’ Arundel MS. 83, f. 123 b (sec. xiii.), in the British Museum; MSS. Laurentianæ Plut. xxix. Cod. xv. (written in 1302), and ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. xxii. Dext. Cod. xii. p. 125. 4. ‘Collectanea Bibliorum.’ Printed as ‘Divinarū Sententiarū Librorū Biblie ad certos titulos redacte Collectariū. Ingenio Joannis de Peccano … compilatū,’ Paris, 1513, 8vo. Printed by Wolfgang Hopilius, at the suggestion of John Fisher (1459?–1535) [q. v.] Other editions are Paris, 1514, ap. J. Frelon, and Cologne, 1541, 8vo. 5. ‘Postilla in Cantica Canticorum;’ inc. ‘Dissolueris filia vaga proverb.’ Manuscript in the ‘Bibliotheca Ambrosiana’ at Milan (Montfaucon, Bibliotheca Bibliothecarum, i. 518). 6. ‘Tractatus de misteriatione numerorum in Sacra Scriptura.’ MS. Lincoln College, Oxford, 81, ff. 40–8 (sec. xv.), and Arundel MS. 200, ff. 1–14 b, in the British Museum. 7. ‘Quæstiones Quodlibeticæ.’ MS. Merton College, 96, ff. 262–70, contains twenty-six theological questions, under the title, ‘Quodlibet a fratre Johannis de Pech.’ Sbaralea says that in the library of S. Croce at Florence there was ‘Quodlibet. Queritur utrum corpus hominis corruptibile possit induere incorruptionem.’ The Lanercost chronicler (p. 100) says Peckham was the first to dispute at Oxford ‘in facultate Theologie de Quolibet.’ 8. ‘Quæstiones Ordinariæ;’ inc. ‘Utrum Theologia ex duobus.’ MS. 3183 (sec. xiv.) in the ‘Bibliothèque Nationale’ contains two questions, ‘Utrum theologia sit præ ceteris scientiis necessaria prælatis Ecclesiæ,’ and ‘Utrum theologia ex duobus componi debuerit Testamentis.’ MS. 15805, in the ‘Bibliothèque Nationale,’ contains ‘Quodlibeta S. Thome, J. de Pecham et Gul. de Hozun,’ and MS. 15986, f. 238 (sec. xiii.), ‘Responsio ad questionem J. de Peschant.’ 9. ‘Collationes de omnibus Dominicis per annum.’ Rawlinson MS. C. 116, ff. 30–9 b (sec. xiv. imperfect), and Laud. MS. 85, ff. 1–31, both in the Bodleian Library. 10. ‘De Trinitate.’ MS. Reg. 10 B. ix. f. 61 b in the British Museum, followed by the office for Trinity Sunday, ascribed to Peckham, and containing the antiphon, ‘Sedenti super solium.’ Printed as ‘De Summa Trinitate et Fide Catholica,’ R. Pynson, London, 1510, and ‘Liber de Sacrosancta … Trinitate in quo ecclesiasticū officium explanatur,’ Antwerp, 1530, 8vo. The office was printed in the ‘Breviarium Romanum’ at Cremona, 1499. It was disused after the changes made in the ‘Breviary’ by Pius V, on account of its obscure and old-fashioned style (Barth. Gavanti., Comment. in Rubricis Breviarii Romani, ii. 89). 11. ‘Diffinicio theologie;’ inc. ‘Pauca theologica rudimenta.’ MS. Cambr. Univ. Libr. Gg. iv. 32, f. 10. 12. ‘Super Magistrum Sententiarum.’ ‘Pecham super quartum sententiarum’ is contained in Bodleian MS. 859, ff. 332–79 b (sec. xiv.). Sbaralea says there were manuscripts at Assisi and Santa Croce. This work was cited by John Peter Olivi in 1285. 13. ‘Tractatus pauperis contra insipientem novellarum hæresum confictorem circa Evangelicam perfectionem;’ inc. ‘Quis dabit capiti.’ MSS. Laurentianæ ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. xxxvi. Dext. Cod. xii. p. 32, and Plut. xxxi. Sin. Cod. iii., MS. C. C. C. Oxon. 182, ff. 1–36, and in the library of S. Victor, Paris, as ‘Apologia contra obloquentes mendicitati de perfectione evangelica’ (Montfaucon, Bibl. Bibl. ii. 1872; see also Denifle, Chart. Univ. Paris. i. 415). It was written by Peckham against the threefold work of William of St. Amour (‘De Pharisæo et Publicano;’ ‘De periculis novissimorum temporum;’ ‘Collectiones Scripturæ Sacræ’), which appeared about 1256. The tenth chapter of this work is substantially identical with 14. ‘Declaratio regule ordinis Fratrum minorum domini Johannis de Pechamo,’ which is printed in the ‘Firmamentum trium ordinum beatissimi … Francisci,’ Venice, 1513. This exposition of the Rule was written before 1279; it is contained in MS. Laurentiana ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. xv. Dext. Cod. xii. f. 116b. 15. ‘Canticum pauperis … de introitu ad religionem;’ inc. ‘Confitebor tibi.’ Cotton MS. Vesp. D. xiii. ff. 144–55b, in Brit. Mus., Trinity Coll. Dublin MS. C. 4, 22, MSS. Laurentianæ ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. xxxi. Sin. Cod. iii. and Plut. xv. Dext. Cod. xii. p. 108. 16. ‘Tractatus contra Fratrem Rogerium (Kilwardby) obloquentem contra suum ordinem’ (edited for Brit. Soc. of Franciscan Studies). MSS. Laurentianæ ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. xv. Dext. Cod. xii. p. 146, and Plut. xxxvi. Dext. Cod. xii. p. 25. Tanner styles this ‘Contra priorem Cisterciensium.’ 17. ‘Formula confessionum;’ inc. ‘Sicut dicit b. Joannes.’ MS. Laurentiana ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. iv. Sin. Cod. xi. 18. ‘Super libros Ethicorum Aristotelis.’ MS. Laurentiana ex Bibl. S. Crucis Plut. xii. Sin. Cod. xi. 19. ‘Vita S. Antonii Patavensis.’ Nicholas Glasberger (Annal. Franc. ii. 91; cf. Brieger, Zeitschrift für Kirchengeschichte, xi. 211) states that Peckham wrote a life of St. Anthony of Padua, ‘mero stilo,’ at the bidding of Jerome of Ascoli; Peckham's life has been identified in a manuscript in the library of the Capuchins at Lucerne, and forms the basis of the ‘Vie de S. Antoine de Padoue,’ Paris, 1894, by Père L. de Chersnée. Sbaralea wrongly identified it with one by Bernard de Besse. A life of St. Anthony was published at Paris in 1890 by J. R. P. Hilaire, under the names of St. Bonaventure and Peckham, ‘Saint Antoine de Padoue, sa legende primitive.’
Poetry: 20. ‘Philomela:’ inc. ‘Philomela prævia temporis amœni.’ This graceful religious poem has been wrongly ascribed to St. Bonaventure, among whose works it is printed; Mayence edition, 1609, vi. 424–7, Venice edition, vi. 445, also Paris, 1503, with Bonaventure's ‘Centiloquium,’ and Quaracchi, 1898, viii. 669–74, with notes. A German translation appeared at Munich, 1612, ‘Nachtigall dess Heiligen Bonaventura,’ and a Spanish translation in the works of Ludovicus Granatensis, viii. 438, Madrid, 1788; Lydgate's ‘Nightingale’ is an English imitation (Early English Text Soc. 1902). There are numerous MSS.—e.g. Cott. Cleop. A. xii., Harleian 3766, Royal 8 G. vi. in the British Museum, and Laud. 402 in the Bodleian Library, besides seven others noticed by Mr. C. T. Martin. This poem has also been attributed to John Hoveden [q. v.], but is more probably by Peckham. 21. ‘Defensio Fratrum Mendicantium;’ inc. ‘O Christi Vicarie, Monarcha terrarum.’ Ascribed to Peckham in a modern hand in MS. Dd. xiv. 20, ff. 294b–297, in Cambr. Univ. Libr., and in a fourteenth-century hand in Digby MS. 166, f. 68, in the Bodleian Library. 22. ‘Meditacio de Sacramento Altaris et ejus utilitatibus;’ inc. ‘Ave, vivens hostia, veritas et vita.’ Arundel MS. 374, f. 76b, Royal MS. 2 A. ii. f. 88b, and Harleian MS. 913, f. 57b (imperfect), all in the British Museum. 23. ‘Versus de Sacramento Altaris;’ inc. ‘Hostia viva, vale, fidei fons gloria matris,’ Rawlinson MS. C. 558, f. 157 (Bodleian). These two poems are printed in ‘Registrum,’ ed. Martin, iii. pref. cxiv–cxviii. 24. ‘A Poem on Confession.’ MS. Ee. vi. 6 ff. 42–53 b, in Cambr. Univ. Libr. This is mutilated at the beginning. 25. ‘Psalterium Beate Marie de Psalmis sacris sumptum;’ inc. ‘Mente concipio laudes conscribere.’ MSS. Dd. xv. 21 ff. 1–15, Ff. vi. 14, ff. 8–22, Mm. v. 36, in the Cambr. Univ. Libr., and Sidney-Sussex D. 2, 14. 26. ‘A Poem on Age;’ inc. ‘Dum juvenis crevi, ludens nunquam requievi.’ MS. Ee. vi. 6, ff. 40–41b, where it is stated to be ‘most probably by John Peckham.’
Pits and Tanner ascribe a number of other works to Peckham; some are clearly confusions with one or another of the foregoing, others may be parts of his constitutions. In addition to the works given by these writers, Sbaralea gives: (1) ‘Expositio in Ecclesiastem;’ inc. ‘Hoc nomen Ecclesiastes,’ of which there was a manuscript at Assisi; and (2) ‘Postilla in Ezechielem’ manuscript at Clairvaux (Le Long, Bibl. Sacra, p. 896). There are manuscripts of many of Peckham's works at Assisi. Peckham's name appears in the manuscripts and printed copies of his works, under a variety of forms—e.g. Peccanus, Pisanus.
Peckham is erroneously credited with the following works: 1. ‘Speculum disciplinæ,’ ascribed to Peckham by Sbaralea, but really by Bernard de Besse. 2. ‘Speculum Ecclesiæ,’ ascribed to Peckham in a modern hand in MS. C. C. C. Oxon. 155, but it really belongs to Hugh of St. Cher, the Dominican. 3. ‘De Oculo Morali.’ Printed at Augsburg about 1475, as a work of ‘Joannis Pithsani Archiepiscopi Canthuariensis.’ Mr. Martin has examined nineteen manuscripts, in none of which it is ascribed to Peckham (Registrum, Pref. iii. pp. lxxxi–xcvii; but cf. Cooper, Appendix A. to Report on Fœdera, p. 17, for a manuscript at Bamberg). In some manuscripts it is ascribed to Robert Grosseteste, but it really belongs to Pierre de Limoges (Hauréau, Notices et Extraits, vi. 134).
Peckham's provincial constitutions at Reading and Lambeth are printed in Wilkins's ‘Concilia,’ ii. 33–6, 51–61; other statutes not assigned to either of these councils are given by Wilkins, ii. 48. Wilkins did not use the best copies; Mr. Martin gives a detailed account of the chief manuscripts on pp. cxxiii–cxliii of his preface to the third volume of the ‘Registrum.’ A selection from Peckham's ‘Constitutions’ was printed by Richard Pynson in 1520?; other editions were printed by Julian Notary, 1519, Wynkyn de Worde, and H. Pepwell. Many of Peckham's ‘Constitutions’ are comprised in the ‘Provinciale’ of William Lyndwood [q. v.] Peckham's ‘Register’ is the oldest of the Canterbury Registers now preserved at Lambeth. The earlier records of the see were removed by Archbishop Kilwardby. The most important contents of the ‘Register,’ with an epitome of the formal documents not printed in full, has been edited by Mr. C. T. Martin for the Rolls Series, in three volumes, 1882–85. Mr. Martin has also included some letters not enrolled in the ‘Register,’ but extant in other collections. A large number of documents from the ‘Register’ are printed in Wilkins's ‘Concilia,’ vol. ii.[The main facts of Peckham's archiepiscopate are to be drawn from his Register; an account of his life is given in Mr. Martin's three valuable prefaces; a detailed account of most of his writings is given on pp. lvi–cxliv of the preface to the third volume. Other authorities are: Monumenta Franciscana, Annales Monastici, Flores Historiarum, Cotton's and Oxenedes' Chronicles, all in the Rolls Ser.; Lanercost Chronicle, pp. 100, 101, 144 (Bannatyne Club); Trivet's Annals, pp. 299–300 (Engl. Hist. Soc.); Wharton's Anglia Sacra, i. 11, 58, 116–17; Wilkins's Concilia, ii. 33–185; Rodulphius' Historia Seraphicæ Religionis ff. 116–17; Wadding's Ann. Ord. Min. v. 52–4, 78–85, and Script. Ord. Min. 148–9; Sbaralea's Suppl. ad Script. Ord. Min. pp. 447–50; Leland's Comment. de Script. Brit.; Tanner's Bibl. Brit.-Hib. pp. 584–5; Wood's Colleges and Halls, i. 318–25, ed. Gutch, and City of Oxford, ii. 369 (Oxford Hist. Soc.); Little's Grey Friars at Oxford (Oxford Hist. Soc.); Sussex Archæological Collections, espec. ii. 33, 224, 235, iv. 299; Zeitschrift für Katholische Theologie, xiii. 1 (Innsbrück), a reprint of some of Peckham's letters on Aristotelianism and Augustinianism, with notes by F. Ehrle; Hook's Lives of the Archbishops of Canterbury, iii. 327–367; Hauréau's Notices et Extraits de Quelques Manuscrits Latins de la Bibl. Nat. vi. 134, 150–154, 273–4; Catalogue of Printed Books at British Museum; Catalogues of Manuscripts at Brit. Mus., Bodl. Libr. and Cambr. Univ. Libr.; Græsse's Trésor de Livres, iii. 463; Hain's Repertorium, iii. 9425–7; Bandini's Bibliotheca Leopoldina Laurentiana, and Catalogus Codicum Latinorum Bibliothecæ Mediceæ Laurentianæ, ii. 35, iv. 263, 478–9, 620, 717–18; Montfaucon's Bibliotheca Bibliothecarum; Denis Cat. MSS. Bibl. Pal. Vindobonensis, ii. 2108, 2320, 2322, 2596; Denifle's Chartularium Universitatis Parisiensis; Cooper's Appendix A. to Report on Fœdera, pp. 17, 23, 25, 69, 224.]