Dictionary of National Biography, 1912 supplement/Stubbs, William
STUBBS, WILLIAM (1825–1901), historian and bishop successively of Chester and Oxford, was the eldest son of William Morley Stubbs, solicitor, of Knaresborough, and Mary Ann, daughter of William Henlock. He came of such solid yeoman stock that he could amuse himself in later life by working out his line of ancestors among the crown tenants of the forest of Knaresborough as far back as the fourteenth century. He was born on 21 June 1825 in High Street, Knaresborough. In 1832 he went to a school at Knaresborough kept by an old man named Cartwright, and thence in 1839 to Ripon grammar school, where he attracted the attention of Charles Thomas Longley [q. v.], afterwards archbishop of Canterbury, then bishop of Ripon, In 1842 his father died, leaving the widow (who survived till 1884) to face a severe struggle against poverty with her six young children. Shortly afterwards Longley's influence obtained from Dean Gaisford his nomination to a servitorship at Christ Church, Oxford, where he went into residence in April 1844, and took his degree in 1848 with a first in classics and a third in mathematics. At Christ Church he was 'kept at arms length as a servitor,' and is described as 'timid, grateful, feeling his isolation, and possessed of an amazing memory.' His father had taught him to read old charters and deeds, and he now laid the foundations of his historical learning in the college library, where he attracted 'the amused and approving surprise' of the dean by his devotion to such strange studies. Though official good-will refused to break through the tradition which forbade the election of a servitor as a student, he ever remained a 'loyal son of the House.' However, within a few weeks of his degree he was elected to a fellowship at Trinity College, where he resided till 1850. Stubbs had come to Oxford a tory and an evangelical, but tractarian influence soon made him a lifelong high churchman (Visitation Charges, pp. 347–8). In 1848 he was ordained deacon and in 1850 priest by Bishop Wilberforce, and on 27 May 1850 he was presented to the college living of Navestock, near Ongar, in Essex, thereby vacating his fellowship. He remained vicar of Navestock until 1866, performing diligently the work of a country parson, and winning the affection of his flock by his kindliness and geniality. 'I suppose,' he said in later years, ’I knew every toe on every baby in the parish' (Hutton, p. 259). In June 1859 he married Catherine, daughter of John Dellar of Navestock, who survived him. She had been mistress of the village school. He had a family of five sons and one daughter.
Stubbs utilised his leisure while a village parson in acquiring such a knowledge of the sources for mediaeval English history as made him the foremost scholar of his generation. He published nothing before 1858, when he issued his 'Registrum Sacrum Anglicanum,' which exhibited in a series of tables the course of episcopal succession in England. Its genesis is described in the autobiographical postscript (lx-xi) to the preface of the second edition (1897). Modest as was its scope, it had kept him busy for ten years. He now began to write more freely. In 1861 came his first edition of a mediæval document, 'De inventione Sanctse Crucis,' and in the same year began his contributions to the ’Archæological Journal' and other occasional papers. Increasing practical duties as a guardian of the poor and a diocesan inspector of schools did not drive him from study. He sometimes had private pupils, among them Henry Parry Liddon [q. v.] and Algernon Charles Swinburne [q. v. Suppl. II]. His appointment by Archbishop Longley in Oct. 1862 as Lambeth librarian gave him access to a great library, hampered by but few routine duties. His learning was known to a few discerning friends, such as Edward Augustus Freeman [q. v. Suppl. I] and later John Richard Green [q. v.]. Public recognition, however, came very slowly. He was anxious to be employed as an editor for the Rolls Series, which had been projected in 1857, but it was not until 1863 that official 'polite obstructiveness' was overcome and the new series obtained its most distinguished editor. In 1862 he was a candidate for the Chichele professorship of modern history at Oxford, but the electors preferred Montagu Burrows [q. v. Suppl. II]. In 1863 he was a candidate for the professorship of ecclesiastical history, when Walter Waddington Shirley [q. v.] was chosen. In 1866 he sought to become principal librarian of the British Museum, but the trustees appointed John Winter Jones [q. v.]. Though sometimes rather restive, he continued steadily at his work. In 1864-5 the two volumes of the 'Chronicles and Memorials of Richard I,' edited for the Master of the Rolls, showed that he was a consummate editor and a true historian. Yet when Goldwin Smith [q. v. Suppl. II] resigned the regius professorship of history at Oxford, he was too discouraged to avow himself a candidate. 'I am not,' he wrote to Freeman, 'going to stand for any more things. If I am not worth looking up, I am not ambitious enough to like to be beaten!' (Hutton, p. 102). However, Lord Derby ascertained from Longley that Stubbs would accept the post, and made him an offer on 2 Aug. 1866, which was joyfully accepted. Before the end of the year Stubbs left Navestock for Oxford, which remained his home until 1884. After 1870 he lived at Kettel Hall, a roomy and interesting old house in Broad Street, which belonged to Trinity College, and is now part of the college buildings. He was the first regius professor to be an ex-officio fellow of Oriel College.
On 7 Feb. 1867 Stubbs introduced himself in his inaugural lecture, 'not as a philosopher, nor as a politician, but as a worker at history,' and anticipated 'the prospect of being instrumental, and able to assist in the founding of an historical school in England.' He soon, however, found that there were great difficulties in his path in Oxford itself. He took immense pains in preparing his lectures. He not only set before his pupils a great deal of the best that he afterwards published in his books, but put together elaborate courses on mediaeval German history and foreign history from the Reformation to the Treaty of Westphalia. In later years he sometimes took his 'Select Charters' as a text-book, and made them the starting-point of illuminative, informal talks on mediæval constitutional history. He was compelled by statute to produce, as he said, 'something twice a year which might attract an idle audience without seeming to trifle with a deeply loved study.' This was the only side of his professorial work that he actively disliked, yet the only lectures which he himself thought fit to publish were some of these popular discourses contained in the 'Seventeen lectures on the study of mediæval and modern history and kindred subjects' which he issued in 1886 (3rd edit., with additions, 1900), soon after he resigned the professorship. After his death four volumes of his more formal lectures were published. These were 'Lectures on European History' (1904), 'Lectures on Early English History' (1906), 'Germany in the Early Middle Ages, 476–1250' (1908), 'Germany in the Later Middle Ages, 1250–1500' (1908). The editing of these volumes is perfunctory, and the attempt made in the English volume to weave together lectures delivered at various times and to various audiences is not successful.
Stubbs's lectures never attracted a large audience. During his professorship the number of undergraduates who read for honours in the school of modern history enormously increased, but his hearers, if anything, diminished in numbers. Between 1869 and 1874 arose an organised system of 'combined lectures,' largely the work of his friend Mandell Creighton [q. v. Suppl. I], which satisfied the wants of those who read history for examinations, and there were few who required what he had to give. Even Creighton 'convinced himself that the only real function which remains for professors to accomphsh is that of research' (Life of Mandell Creighton, i. 62). This doctrine Stubbs could not accept. In after years he described rather bitterly how he 'revolted against the treatment which he had to undergo,' and that after 1874 he had 'scarcely a good class or any of the better men,' and that 'the historical teaching of history has been practically left out in favour of the class-getting system of training' (Hutton, pp. 264, 270). In the end he renounced the idea, if he had ever entertained it, of organising a school of history such as had been set up by his colleagues in Germany. He refused to impose on others the fetters of an organisation which he himself resented. Closely associated with the strongest school of conservatism in all other matters, he had no fellow-workers in carrying out ideals that would have involved a radical recasting of the prevailing methods of historical teaching. He disliked controversy, and always remained friendly with the tutors.
Despite the limitations imposed upon him, there were few earnest students of history at Oxford who were not indebted to him for advice, encouragement, sympathy, and direction.
The restrictions under which he chafed allowed Stubbs to concentrate himself upon his personal work. Society and academic business did not appeal to him. He disliked dinner-parties, smoking, late hours, and committees. He conscientiously discharged every duty that lay straight before him, but he did not spend too much time in doing so. His real life, however, was in his study, and in the libraries where he sought material. His literary output was prodigious. The history of scholarship would have to be ransacked to afford parallels of a work so distinguished both in quantity and quality within the seventeen years of his professorship. He worked with extraordinary rapidity, accuracy, and sureness. Of many large literary schemes, perhaps the only one which he did not complete was his projected reproduction 'in accordance with the present state of our knowledge and materials' of all that part of Wilkins's 'Concilia' antecedent to the Reformation. Leaving the Welsh, Scottish, and Irish sections to his colleague, Arthur West Haddan [q. v.], Stubbs undertook the Anglo-Saxon period, and published in 1878 vol. iii. of 'Councils and Ecclesiastical Documents covering the History of the Anglo-Saxon Church,' but the plan never went any further. A byproduct of this was the long series of lives of Anglo-Saxon bishops, saints, kings, and writers, from Stubbs's pen, whiMch were published in the four volumes of the 'Dictionary of Christian Biography' between 1877 and 1887. He also contributed to the two volumes of the 'Dictionary of Christian Antiquities' (1875-80), and had a share in the editing of that work (Preface to vol. i. p. xi).
The most characteristic work done by Stubbs in these fruitful years is to be found in the editions of chronicles which he contributed to the Rolls Series. The two volumes of the 'Chronicles and Memorials of Richard I,' issued in 1864-5, were followed by the two volumes of the 'Gesta regis Henrici II ' attributed to Benedict of Peterborough (1867), the four volumes of Roger Howden or Hoveden's 'Chronica' (1868-71), the two volumes of the 'Memoriale or historical collections of Walter of Coventry' (1872-3), the one volume of the 'Memorials of Saint Dunstan' (1874), the two volumes of The Historical Works of Ralph Diceto' (1878), the two volumes of 'The Historical Works of Gervase of Canterbury' (1879-80), and the two volumes of the 'Chronicles of the Reigns of Edward I and Edward II' (1882-3). While professor Stubbs published for the Rolls Series fifteen large volumes. There were also the two published before, and the two volumes of William of Malmesbury issued later. This monumental series won a very high reputation for a collection which, apart from Stubbs's contributions to it, contains some bad and more indifferent work. They are in every respect models of what the 'editio princeps' of an original authority should be. The text is impeccable, and based upon the careful collation of the available manuscripts. Every help is given in the way of introductions, notes, and elaborate indexes to lighten the labours of those using the texts. They are much more than ideal examples of editorial workmanship. A liberal construction of the directions given to the Rolls editors allowed Stubbs to write 'excellent history on a large scale' in every one of his introductions which revealed him as an historical narrator of the first order, equally at home in painting a large gallery of historical portraits, and in working out the subtlest of problems. The shy student, who had been thought a mere antiquary, proved to be a constructive historian of real power and eloquence. The range of his historical vision was enormous. Here he vindicated the claims of Dunstan to be a pioneer of English political unity and of mediæval intellectual life. There he threw new light on the reign of Edward I, and for the first time analysed fully the causes of the fall of Edward II. Yet while all periods were treated with wonderful grasp, a special mastery was shown of the age of Henry II. It was unfortunate for Stubbs's wider fame that the form in which the historical part of these introductions appeared made them inaccessible to general readers. An attempt to collect them in a detached form, made after his death (Historical Introductions to the Rolls Series, 1902), was too carelessly performed to be entirely successful.
Side by side with his other tasks, Stubbs devoted himself to writing on a large scale the constitutional history of mediæval England. As a forerunner to this great work, he issued in 1870 the most widely used of all his publications. This was 'Select Charters, and other Illustrations of English Constitutional History from the Earliest Times to the Reign of Edward I,' with a luminous tightly packed 'introductory sketch.' No single book has done so much to put the higher study of English mediaeval history on the sound basis of the study of original texts. 'Select Charters' was followed in 1873 by the first volume of the 'Constitutional History of England,' which covers the ground from the origins to the Great Charter. Next came in 1875 vol. ii;, which went to 1399, and in 1878 vol. iii., which took the story down to 1485, and completed the work. It is by this massive work of historic synthesis that Stubbs's position among historians has generally been estimated, and not unjustly, if we recognise that the immense ground covered made pioneer work such as illuminated his contributions to the Rolls Series impossible, and that his limitation to the history of institutions gave few opportunities for the remarkable narrative and pictorial gifts there displayed. Rapidly as the book was executed, it shows extraordinary mastery of the mass of material which had to be dealt with. Stubbs evenly distributes his attention over the whole corpus of printed chronicles, printed charters, laws, rolls, and documents ; he has at his fingers' ends the monumental compilations of the great seventeenth-century scholars, and he uses to the full (perhaps too fully) the modern investigations of his German masters such as Maurer and Waitz. He moves easily under all this mass of learning and uses it with accuracy, precision, and insight. By the happy device of dividing his book into analytic and descriptive chapters alternating with annalistic narratives, he furnished the best skeleton of our mediæval political history that has been written, and gave width and human interest to his pages. Though necessarily dealing with great masses of detail, general principles are wisely and impressively emphasised ; though constantly concerned with abstractions and tendencies, it has rightly been pronounced to be ’marvellously concrete.' Self-suppression, impartiality, accuracy, sympathy, sobriety of judgment, and sense of proportion stand out in every part of the great book.
No work of erudition can altogether stand the test of time, but 'Stubbs's Constitutional History' still remains unsuperseded nearly forty years after its publication. It gave a new direction to the study of mediæval English history, and its influence for good is as lively now as when it first issued from the press. The austerity which sometimes repels the beginner has been mitigated by a whole literature of easy introductions to its doctrines, some good, more indifferent, none original, nearly all useful. By-ways which Stubbs was not able to explore have been pursued by critical disciples, among whom we may place Frederic William Maitland [q. v. Suppl. II], Mary Bateson [q. v. Suppl. II], Prof. Vinogradoff, and Dr. J. Horace Round. It is inevitable, under such circumstances, that many of Stubbs's conclusions have to be reviewed. This is especially the case since absorbing occupations and, perhaps, an increasingly conservative temper of mind prevented Stubbs from adequately revising what he had written. The 'Germanist' school of which he was the soberest and most reasonable exponent ia England is no longer in imiversal favour, and it is plain that large portions of the 'Constitutional History,' notably the Anglo-Saxon and Norman parts, will have, to some extent, to be re-written. Problems of 'origins' did not appeal to him, and he only moved easily when texts were abundant. As regards Anglo-Saxon history Stubbs confessed himself an 'agnostic' as compared with his friends Freeman and Green. Yet the passages in which his conclusions least meet the views of modern scholars are those in which he looked into the facts with the eyes of his German guides. In later parts of the book there is little to alter, though there is much to supplement. After the Norman reigns he seldom goes astray save when unconsciously influenced by general theories of tendency, or when dealing with subjects like the royal revenue in the fourteenth century, which could not be blocked out even in outline in the light of the printed materials then available. In 1907 the first volume of a French translation, 'Histoire constitutionnelle de l'Angleterre par W. Stubbs. Traduction de G. Lefebvre,' was published with notes and elucidations by Professor C. Petit-Dutaillis, wherein an effort was made to summarise the more generally accepted criticisms and amplifications of the early part of Stubbs's history. These criticisms have been translated by Mr. W. E. Rhodes in 1908 as 'Studies and Notes supplementary to Stubbs's "Constitutional History," down to the Great Charter.'
Stubbs never forgot that he was a clergyman. Pusey was his 'master,' and he was intimate with Liddon and the other high church leaders in Oxford, and strenuously supported their ecclesiastical and academic programme. In 1868 he would gladly have changed his professorship for that of ecclesiastical history. In 1869 he spent much labour in preparing for the press Cardinal J. de Torquemada's treatise on the 'Immaculate Conception,' a fifteenth-century treatise reissued at Pusey's instigation to influence the Vatican council. Between 1875 and 1879 he was rector of the Oriel living of Cholderton on Salisbury Plain, and spent his summers there until his resignation in 1879. After 1876 he acted as chaplain to Balliol College, and in 1878 he was sorely tempted by the offer of the living of the university church of St. Mary's. In April 1879 he accepted a canonry at St. Paul's Cathedral, London, vacated by the promotion of Joseph Barber Lightfoot [q. v.] to the bishopric of Durham. He appreciated this preferment very much ; it was the first tangible recognition in his own country of his great work ; it gave him an ecclesiastical position in which he could urge his opinions with authority, a residence in London which was helpful to his historical work, and emoluments which put him in easy circumstances. His friendship with the dean, Richard William Church [q. v. Suppl. I], and other members of the chapter made his personal relations pleasant. During his periods of residence he worked on the muniments and chronicles of St. Paul's, and took immense pains with his Sunday afternoon sermons, though he humorously quoted the newspapers which said 'the sermons in the morning and evening were preached by Mr. A. and Mr. B., in the afternoon the pulpit was occupied by the canon in residence' (Hutton, p. 131). In fact his sermons became exceedingly weighty, valuable, and strong, though he made too great demands on the attention of his hearers ever to attract the immense congregations which flocked to hear Liddon.
In 1881 Stubbs was appointed a member of the royal commission on ecclesiastical courts, and was present at every one of the seventy-five sessions which that body held between May 1881 and July 1883. Church called him 'the hero of the commission' (Church's Life, p. 312). He took a leading part in its debates, waged fierce war against 'lawyers' and the 'Erastians' among his colleagues, and presented suggestions for a final court of appeal which left to ecclesiastical tribunals the sole determination of points of ritual and doctrine. He drew up five historical appendices to the report in which he discussed the nature of the courts which exercised ecclesiastical jurisdiction in England at various times, the trials for heresy up to 1533, the acts by which the clergy recognised the royal supremacy, and some aspects of the power and functions of convocation. There can be no doubt of the permanent value of the great bulk of the very careful and detailed research contained in these appendices. Nevertheless some of the main positions maintained by Stubbs were subjected to damaging criticism from Professor Frederic William Maitland [q. v. Suppl. II], in articles published in the 'English Historical Review' of 1896 and 1897, and soon afterwards in book form as 'Roman Canon Law in the Church of England' (1898). It may be recognised that Stubbs minimised unduly the authority of the Pope as 'universal ordinary' and suggested the unhistorical view that the English church might, and did, accept or reject canonical legislation emanating from the Papacy, and that without such acceptance Roman canon law was not held to be binding in the English ecclesiastical courts. Stubbs himself never dealt with Maitland's arguments, but contented himself with affirming that his appendices contained 'true history and the result of hard work' (preface to third edit, of Seventeen Lectures).
In Feb. 1884 Stubbs was offered by Gladstone the bishopric of Chester. Accepting the post he was consecrated on 25 April in York Minster by Archbishop Thomson. Bidding adieu to the university on 8 May in the characteristic last statutory public lecture (published in his ' Seventeen Lectures,' 1886), he was enthroned in Chester Cathedral on 24 June. For a time he cherished the hope of carrying on his historical work, but his edition for the Rolls Series of the 'Gesta regum Anglorum' and the 'Historia novella' of William of Malmesbury, published in two volumes in 1887 and 1889, mark the practical conclusion of his historical labours. He maintained to the last his interest in his subject, and was never weary in aiding his friends and disciples with advice and substantial assistance. He kept up with the best work done in his subject in England and Germany, though somewhat blind to the new school of mediæval historians growing up in France. He had, however, little sympathy now for historical novelties. The conservative note sounded in the new preface to the last edition of the 'Select Charters' published in his life-time is characteristic of his later attitude (preface to eighth edit. 1895).
As bishop, Stubbs was at his best when dealing with big issues, and somewhat less successful when tackling the petty details of administration and correspondence. His friend Liddon warned him to be on his guard against 'looking at persons and events from the critical and humorous side,' and of the danger of killing zeal. Though no man approached the episcopal office in a more earnest spirit, it cannot be said that he was always mindful of his friend's advice. As he became known his clergy better understood the seriousness that underlay his humorous modes of expression, and appreciated his simplicity of life, his unostentatious friendliness, his liberality, shrewd insight into men, and wise counsels. He made an energetic and successful attempt to build new churches, and increase the number of the clergy in the densely peopled district that ranges from Stockport to Stalybridge. He was unwearied in visiting the parishes of his diocese, and in preaching in them. 'I am engaged,' he wrote, 'in a regularly organised attempt to prove to the clergy of the diocese that I am not a good preacher. I think I shall succeed' (Hutton, p. 262). He urged on his clergy the necessity of 'constructive not controversial ' teaching in church history. He interested himself in educational and historical work in his neighbourhood ; he welcomed the Archaeological Institute to Chester in 1886; he became vice-president, and ultimately president, of the Chetham Society ; he was a member of the court of the newly founded Victoria University, and championed, unsuccessfully for the moment, the establishment of a theological faculty in it. He was much consulted on matters of general ecclesiastical policy. His brother prelates heard his opinions with extreme respect. In 1886 he drew up at the request of E. W. Benson, archbishop of Canterbury, an historical paper on the possibility of establishing a national synod in England ; he took a prominent part ia the Lambeth conference of 1888, and a large part of the encyclical letter drawn up by it was written out in his own clear hand. It was composed by Stubbs and two other bishops, who sat up all night in the Lollards' tower at Lambeth Palace.
In July 1888 Stubbs accepted from Lord Salisbury an offer of translation from Chester to the bishopric of Oxford. But the resignation of his predecessor, John Fielder Mackarness [q. v.], did not take legal effect till November, and it was not until 24 Dec. 1888 that he was elected bishop. He began his work in the spring of 1889. A strong reason which weighed with Stubbs in accepting translation was the prospect of returning to his old suroundings. However, he disliked a large and remote country house like Cuddesdon. He strongly urged the ecclesiastical commissioners to sell Cuddesdon, and buy for the see a house in Oxford. Though the prime minister supported him, the ecclesiastical commissioners refused his request, perhaps through the influence of Archbishop Benson, who beheved that bishops should maintain high state. Stubbs never reconciled himself to Cuddesdon, and vented his spleen in humorous verses, wherein lurks just a trace of bitterness. He found it very difficult to work a diocese of three counties from a village remote from railway stations. Age soon began to tell upon him, and he found his routine work increasingly irksome and laborious, and his clergy did not appreciate his attempts to distinguish between his strictly episcopal functions, which he rigidly discharged, and the conventional duties which modern bishops are expected to fulfil, and for which he did not conceal his distaste. He was greatly helped by his chaplain. Canon E. E. Holmes, and before the end of 1889 the consecration of J. L. Randall as a suffragan bishop of Reading lessened the travelling and administrative work. In all essential matters, however, he remained to the end the model of the careful, judicious, and sympathetic diocesan, and the wise and courageous advocate of the older high church tradition. Perhaps the most permanent records of his episcopate are to be found in his public utterances, the most important of which were published by Canon Holmes after his death. These were : (1 ) 'Ordination Addresses by William Stubbs, late bishop of Oxford' (1901), and (2) 'Visitation Charges delivered to the Clergy and Churchwardens of the Dioceses of Chester and Oxford' (1904). In all these addresses can be seen his ardent faith, his strong sense of personal religion, his kindly tolerance, his strenuous maintenance of the ancient ways in all matters of dogma and church usage, and his increasing dislike of all ecclesiastical innovations. Very noteworthy are the luminous surveys of the history and actual position of the English church, which give permanent value to his visitation charges.
Stubbs's intellectual interests remained unabated, though he constantly complained that he had no time for study. He managed, however, to bring out a new edition of the 'Registrum Sacrum Anglicanum' in 1897, and revised editions of 'Select Charters,' 'Constitutional History,' and the ’Seventeen Lectures.’ To the last he amused himself with pedigrees, writing prefaces, reading proof sheets, and helping his historical friends. He renewed his interest in the University of Oxford, and again became a curator of the Bodleian, a delegate of the university press, and a member of the board of modern history. Even more than at Chester he was constantly consulted on general matters of ecclesiastical politics. In 1889 he unwillingly yielded to the strong pressure of Archbishop Benson to act as one of his assessors in the trial of Edward Bang [q. v. Suppl. II], bishop of Lincoln, for ritualistic practices. His personal affection for the archbishop was his main reason for Tindertaking this unwelcome task. He was convinced that the archbishop was no 'Canterbury pope,' with a right to sit alone in judgment on his suffragans. Stubbs, too, was little interested in questions of vestments and ceremonies, though he strongly shared Bishop King's theological convictions, and regarded him as the victim of persecution. Between 12 Feb. 1889 and 21 Nov. 1890 Stubbs regularly attended the archbishop's court in the Lambeth library. He felt compromised by being there, and was bored by the lengthy arguments. He vented his displeasure in jest and verse. 'It is a sheer waste of time,' he cried, 'and the court has not a shadow of real authority.' 'We are discussing forms and ceremonies. Oh! the wearing weariness of it all!' (Hutton, pp. 326-8). He expressed, however, his hearty approval 'of all and every part' of the primate's judgment. (Visitation Charges, pp. 154-166, expounds in full his point of view. Benson's is seen in A. C. Benson's Life of E. W. Benson, ii, 348-81.) For the rest of his life he scrupulously adhered to it, and forbade his clergy to practise any of the ceremonies which Benson had declared illegal.
Early in 1898 Stubbs's health began to fail. Though he rallied somewhat he was again ill in 1900. Early in 1901 he wrote 'I can do all my hand and head work, but am weak in moving about.' He felt deeply the deaths of Bishop Creighton and Queen Victoria. Ordered by King Edward VII to preach the sermon in St. George's chapel the day after Queen Victoria's funeral, he disobeyed his physicians, and went. For the next two months he struggled against increasing weakness, but at the end of March he was told that he must resign his bishopric. He began his preparations to move from Cuddesdon, when he had a serious relapse, and died on 22 April 1901. He was buried in Cuddesdon churchyard. A portrait in oils by Sir Hubert von Herkomer (1885) is in the picture gallery of the Bodleian Library; another, by Charles Wellington Furse (1892), is at Cuddesdon.
Among the public honours Stubbs received may be mentioned membership of the Berlin, Munich, and Copenhagen academies, corresponding membership of the Academie des sciences morales et politiques of the French Institut, honorary doctorates of Heidelberg, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Dublin, and Oxford, and the rarely conferred Prussian order pour le mérite (1897). Perhaps no recognition pleased Stubbs better than that of his old Oxford contemporaries and brother historians, the friendship of such German scholars as Pauli, Maurer, Waitz, and Liebermann, and his honorary studentship of Christ Church.
Stubbs's more important writings have already been enumerated. He seldom contributed to periodical writings after the early years of his literary activity, and he boasted that he wrote only one review, which apparently has not been identified. Yet besides those mentioned above there were many books which he edited and prefaces which he wrote. The list of these occasional and minor writings can be found in the bibliography of his historical works, edited for the Royal Historical Society by Dr. W. A. Shaw (pp. 17-23, 1903), and in the bibhography in Arch-deacon Hutton's 'Letters of William Stubbs' (pp. 409-15, 1904).