Wingham, Henry de (DNB00)

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WINGHAM or WENGHAM, HENRY de (d. 1262), bishop of London, was born at Wingham in Kent. He was probably at first a clerk in the exchequer, as 200l. was entrusted to him in 1241–2 to be expended in the king's service, and in 1245–6 he and John de Grey, justice of Chester, were assigned to assess the tallage of that city. He was then one of the king's escheators (Excerpt. e Rot. Fin. i. 458–64, ii. 4–36). He was appointed chamberlain of Gascony, and in 1252 he was sent to inquire into the complaints of the Gascons against the government of Simon de Montfort. The king seems to have suspected him of being too favourable to the Gascons, for he sent another commission to make renewed inquiry (Matt. Paris, v. 277, 288–9; Bémont, Simon de Montfort, p. 339). Wingham was also employed on two embassies into France. As early as 2 July 1253 he was probably connected with the chancery, and on 5 Jan. 1255 the great seal was delivered into his custody (Madox, i. 68–9; Matt. Paris, v. 485).

When, on 10 May 1256, the election of Hugh de Belisale to the bishopric of Ely was quashed by the efforts of the king and the archbishop of Canterbury, Wingham was recommended by Henry without his consent. He dissuaded the king from pressing the matter (Matt. Paris, v. 589, 635). He received, however, in 1257 the chancellorship of Exeter, and soon after wards was promoted to the deanery of St. Martin's. He was one of the twelve nominated on the king's side to draw up the provisions of Oxford in June 1258, and was continued in his office on swearing not to put the seal to any writ which had not the approbation of the council as well as the king.

On the flight of Ethelmar de Lusignan, bishop of Winchester, the king's half-brother, in 1259, the monks elected Wingham his successor. Anxious not to offend the king, he at first refused the honour, but afterwards prevailed on the king to accept him if Ethelmar did not succeed in obtaining consecration from the pope (Matt. Paris, v. 731). He soon afterwards, however, accepted the bishopric of London. He was elected on 29 June 1259, received back the temporalities on 11 July, was consecrated on 15 Feb. 1260, and on 18 Oct. retired from the chancery. The king allowed him to keep his deanery and ten valuable prebends and rectories. He died on 13 July 1262, and was buried in his own cathedral. Another Henry de Wingham was prebendary of Newington and archdeacon of Middlesex in 1267, when he died (Le Neve, ii. 327, 417).

[Godwin, De Præsulibus Angliæ (1616), p. 241; Hennessy's Nov. Rep. Eccl. Londin.; Le Neve's Fasti, ed. Hardy; Bémont's Rôles Gascons; Devon's Issues from the Exchequer; Madox's Hist. of the Exchequer; Foss's Judges of England, and authorities cited in text.]

W. E. R.