monastery at Newminster. Thence he went to live as a hermit in a cell at Knaresborough, where King John is said to have visited him (cf. Cal. Pat. Rolls, 1201–16, p. 156). He is erroneously credited with founding the Trinitarian order, which really originated in France about 1197. He may, however, have introduced the order into England in 1224, when he organised the first settlement of that order at Knaresborough from among the number of pilgrims who resorted to him there. He died about 1235. According to Matthew Paris, his fame spread abroad in 1238; numerous miracles were wrought at his tomb at Knaresborough, which was said to exude a medicinal oil. There can be little doubt that he was canonised. In May 1252 Innocent IV proclaimed a relaxation of a year and forty days' penance to all who would help in completing the monastery of St. Robert of Knaresborough. The actual foundation of the monastery is attributed to Richard, earl of Cornwall [q. v.], in 1256, the date of the charter given in Dugdale's ‘Monasticon.’
[Several lives of Robert of Newminster are extant; the chief is contained in Lansdowne MS. 449, ff. 116–21, beginning ‘Beatus Robertus ex provincia Eboracensi quæ Craven dicitur;’ it dates from the fourteenth century, and mentions that an account of Robert's miracles is given in the second book of his life, which is now wanting. An abridgment of this life, dating from the fifteenth century, is contained in Cotton. MS. Tiberius E. i. ff. 177–9. This abridgment has been printed in Capgrave's Nova Legenda Angliæ, 1516, ff. cclxxiii–iv, and also in the Bollandists' Acta Sanctorum, xxii. 46–9. Another life of Robert by John of Tinmouth [q. v.] is extant in Bodleian MS. 240, f. 614. Four lives of Saint Robert of Knaresborough are extant. Three belonged to Henry Joseph Thomas Drury [q. v.], in a manuscript believed to be unique; the first is in Latin rhyming triplets, the second in Latin prose, while the third, in English verse, entitled The Metrical Life of Saint Robert of Knaresborough, was edited by Joseph Haslewood [q. v.] and Francis Douce [q. v.], and published by the Roxburghe Club in 1824. The fourth life, by Richard Stodley, is extant in Harleian MS. 3775. Drake, in his Eboracum, pp. 372–3, quotes a long account of Robert from ‘an ancient manuscript’ which he does not specify, but which was probably one of those belonging to Drury. Another printed life of Robert is contained in British Piety Displayed, York, 1733, 8vo, by Thomas Gent [q. v.] This last was kept on sale at Robert's cell at Knaresborough, which was extant to the beginning of last century. See also Matt. Paris (Rolls Ser.), iii. 521, iv. 378, v. 195; Bliss's Cal. Papal Registers, i. 277; L. Surius, Vitæ Sanctorum, 1618, vi. 131–2; Henriquez's Fascic. Sanct. Cisterc. 1631, pp. 251–4; Lenain's Hist. de Cîteaux, 1696, ii. 397–412; Introd. to Metrical Chron. (Roxburghe Club); Dugdale's Monasticon, ed. Caley, Ellis, and Bandinel, v. 398, vi. 1565; Tanner's Notitia Monastica; Newminster Chartulary (Surtees Soc.); Burton's Monasticon Eboracense; Drake's Eboracum, pp. 359, 372, 373; Whittaker's Craven, ed. Morant, pp. 56, 69; Leland's Itinerary, i. 98; Camden's Britannia, ed. Gibson, s.v. ‘Knaresborough;’ Gough's Topography, ii. 450; Hardy's Descr. Cat. ii. 282–3; Lowndes's Bibl. Man. ed. Bohn.]
ROBERT the Englishman, Robert de Kettene, or Robert de Retines (fl. 1143), first translator of the Koran, is called in most of the manuscripts either ‘Ketenensis’ or ‘Retenensis,’ but there are met with wilder orthographies, such as ‘Cataneus’ and ‘Robertus Cuccator seu Kethenensis Anglus.’ It is not known what English place-name lurks under these Latin forms. Wright doubts whether ‘Retinensis’ is to be interpreted as ‘of Reading.’ In the fourteenth century there was a ‘John de Ketene,’ bishop of Ely (Cat. of Cotton. MSS. p. 205 A). Robert is said by Leland to have travelled through France, Italy, Dalmatia, and Greece into Asia, where he learnt Arabic; but for these wanderings Leland offers no authority. He was probably settled in Barcelona by July 1136, under the auspices of the great Italian scholar and translator from the Arabic, Plato of Tivoli (Cotton. MS. App. vi. ff. 109 a, 195–6). By 1141–1143 he was living in Spain ‘near the Ebro’ with a friend ‘Hermann the Dalmatian,’ for the purpose of studying astrology. He doubtless sojourned at Leon, where Hermann was established about this time. Subsequently Robert became archdeacon of Pampeluna. In 1141 Peter the Venerable, abbot of Cluni (d. 1156), and the greatest controversialist of his age, hired the services of ‘Rober Retinensis’ of England and his comrade, Hermann of Dalmatia, to translate certain Arabic works into Latin (Migne, pp. 649–50, cf. p. 671). Four translations prepared by Robert and Hermann were given to the world in one volume, with a preface from the pen of Peter the Venerable. Of the four works in this volume, which afterwards formed materials for Peter the Venerable's ‘Treatise against Mohammedanism,’ Robert translated a ‘Chronica mendosa et ridiculosa Saracenorum,’ i.e. an account of Mahomet's ancestry and life, together with a history of the early caliphs down to the death of Yazid I and the murder of Hosein, 10 April 680 A.D. (Seld. MS. fol. 4 b; Melanchthon, p. 7; Migne, pp. 657–61), and a translation of the Koran, with a preface by the translator addressed to Peter the Venerable (Seld. MS.