Patrington, Stephen (DNB00)

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PATRINGTON, STEPHEN (d. 1417), bishop of Chichester, was a native of Yorkshire, and was educated at Oxford, where he entered the Carmelite order. The letter which the Oxford friars addressed to John of Gaunt on 18 Feb. 1382 against the followers of Wiclif was sent by Patrington's hands. Patrington was one of the leading opponents of the lollards at Oxford, and, as a bachelor of divinity, signed the decrees of ‘the earthquake council’ held at London in May 1382. He was one of those whom the chancellor, Robert Rigge [q. v.], was forbidden to molest on account of their activity against the lollards. On 14 Jan. 1389 Patrington, who was now doctor of divinity, had license to read and preach at Lincoln Cathedral in the absence of the chancellor. About this time he appears to have removed from Oxford to London, where he acquired a great reputation as a preacher. In 1399 he was chosen twenty-second provincial of the Carmelites in England at an assembly held at Sutton (Harl. MS. 3838, f. 90). According to Lezana, however (ap. Villiers de St. Etienne), he was declared provincial of Lombardy in a general chapter held at Bologna in 1405, and named provincial of England in another chapter in 1411. Patrington enjoyed the favour of Henry IV, and also of Henry V, who shortly after his accession made him his confessor, and on 24 Nov. 1413 granted him an annuity of 69l. 10s. 6d. In 1414 Patrington was employed as a commissary at Oxford against the lollards. On 1 Feb. 1415 he was provided to the bishopric of St. David's. On 6 April he received a grant of the temporalities of that see during the vacancy (Fœdera, ix. 217). On 9 June he was consecrated by Archbishop Chichele at Maidstone, and on 16 June the temporalities were formally restored. Patrington is said to have afterwards gone to the council of Constance. In 1416 he was offered the bishopric of Chichester, but was at first reluctant to leave St. David's because it was poor. However, on 27 Aug. 1416 he received the custody of the temporalities of Chichester (ib. ix. 384). On 8 Nov. 1417 he had letters of protection, as he was going abroad with the king (ib. ix. 509). On 15 Dec. 1417 he was papally provided to Chichester. But he must have died very shortly after, or even before this, for his will, dated 16 Nov. 1417, was proved on 29 Dec., and application was made for leave to elect a successor at Chichester on 3 Jan. 1418 (ib. ix. 537). Bale and Weever, however, give the date of his death as 22 Sept. 1417. He is said to have been buried in the choir of the Whitefriars Church at London. Weever quotes his epitaph, beginning:

Hic frater Stephanus de Patrington requiescit;
Nomine reque fuit norma, corona, pater.

Walsingham describes him as a man learned in the Trivium and Quadrivium (Hist. Angl. ii. 300). Thomas Netter [q. v.] owed his early advancement to Patrington.

Patrington is credited with the usual lectures on the sentences, determinations, and quæstiones, besides sermons and a commentary on the Epistle to Titus. He is also said to have written against the lollards, and especially against Nicholas of Hereford [see Nicholas]. Other writings ascribed to him are: 1. ‘De Sacerdotali functione.’ 2. ‘Contra statutum parliamenti,’ in opposition to the law against the admission of any one under twenty-one years of age to the mendicant orders. 3. ‘In Fabulas Æsopi.’ 4. ‘Commentarii in Theodulum,’ i.e. a gloss on the pastoral poem ‘Ecloga’ of Theodulus Italus. Dr. Shirley has suggested that Patrington may have been the original author of the narrative which formed the basis of the ‘Fasciculi Zizaniorum’ [see under Netter, Thomas]. With this possible exception, none of his writings appear to have survived.

[Bale's Heliades in Harl. MS. 3838, ff. 33b, 90, 193–4; Tanner's Bibl. Brit.-Hib. p. 581; Le Neve's Fasti Eccl. Angl. i. 244, 296; Weever's Funerall Monuments, pp. 437–8; Villiers de St. Etienne's Bibl. Carmel. ii. 764–6; Godwin, De Præsulibus Angliæ, pp. 509, 582, ed. Richardson; Rymer's Fœdera, orig. ed.; Fasciculi Zizaniorum, pp. 289, 295, 316, and Preface, p. lxvii.]

C. L. K.