Pole, David (DNB00)

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POLE, DAVID (d. 1568), bishop of Peterborough, appears as a fellow of All Souls' College, Oxford, in 1520. He devoted himself to civil law, and graduated B.Can.L. on 2 July 1526 and D.Can.L. on 17 Feb. 1527-1528. In 1529 he became an advocate in Doctors' Commons. He was connected with the diocese of Lichfield, where he held many preferments, first under Bishop Geoffrey Blyth, and then under Bishop Rowland Lee. He was made prebendary of Tachbrook in Lichfield Cathedral on 11 April 1531, archdeacon of Salop in April 1536, and arch- deacon of Derby on 8 Jan. 1542-3. He had previously received the high appointment of dean of the arches and vicar-general of the archbishop of Canterbury on 14 Nov. 1540. A conscientious adherent of the Roman catholic faith, he occupied several positions of importance during Mary's reign. In her first year he acted as vicar-general of the bishop of Lichfield (Richard Sampson) and commissioner for the deprivation of married priests (Strype, Memorials, vol. iii. pt. i. p. 168), and in his capacity of archdeacon he sat on the commission for the deprivation of Cranmer, Ridley, and Latimer, and the restoration of Bonner and other deprived bishops (ib. p. 36). He stood high in the favour of Cardinal Pole, said to be a relative, who appointed him his vicar-general (ib. p. 476). During the vacancy of the see of Lichfield on Bishop Sampson's death in 1554, he was appointed commissary for the diocese. In the early part of the same year he took part in the condemnation of Hooper and Taylor (ib. pp. 288, 290). On 25 April 1556 he was appointed on the commission to inquire after heretics, and to proceed against them. On the death of John Chambers, the first bishop of the newly formed diocese of Peterborough, the queen sent letters commendatory to Paul IV in Pole's favour. He was consecrated at Chiswick on 15 Aug. 1557 by Nicholas Heath [q. v.], archbishop of York. Hardly a month elapsed before he proved his zeal against heresy by sanctioning the martyrdom of John Kurde, a protestant shoemaker of Syston, who was burnt at Northampton on 20 Sept. 1557 (Foxe, Acts and Monuments, iii. 71). The death of Mary caused a complete change in his position. He was regarded with well-deserved respect by Elizabeth, who put him in the first abortive commission for the consecration of Parker as archbishop, 9 Sept. 1559 (Strype, Parker, i. 106). In the same year he, with Bonner and two other prelates, signed Archbishop Heath's letter of remonstrance to Elizabeth, begging her to return to the catholic faith (Strype, Annals, vol. i. pt. i. p. 217). His refusal, in common with his brother bishops, to take the oath under the act of supremacy was followed by his deprivation; but he was treated with great leniency by the queen as 'an ancient and grave person and very quiet subject,'and was allowed to live on parole in London or the suburbs, having no 'other gaoler than his own promise' (Fuller, Church Hist. iv. 281). He was 'courteously treated by all persons among whom he lived, and at last' died 'on one of his farms in a good old age,' in May or June 1568 (Heylyn, Hist. of Reformation, anno 1559; Strype, Annals, vol. i. pt. i. pp. 214, 411). His property he left to his friends, with the exception of his books on law and theology, which he bequeathed to his college, All Souls'.

[Wood's Athenae, ii. 801, Fasti, i. 74, 77, 78; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500-1714; Strype, Memorials, vol. iii. pt. i. pp. 36, 168, 288, 290, 473, 476-7, pt. ii. p. 26, Annals, vol. i. pt. i. pp. 206, 21 4, 217, 411, pt. ii. p. 26, Cranmer, i. 459, Parker, i. 106; Lansdowne MS. 980 f.283; Guston's History of Peterborough, pp. 69, 70; Coote's Civilians, p. 26; Dixon's Church History, iv. 48, 593, 796.]

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