Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Becket Canonized by Pope Alexander III Hot

Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Becket Canonized by Pope Alexander III

Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury
Source: Wikipedia

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Pope Alexander III canonizes Thomas Becket. Archbishop of Canterbury, Becket had been martyred less than three years earlier.

Thomas Becket had only reluctantly allowed King Henry II to install him as Archbishop of Canterbury. He came into conflict with the king because he insisted that the church be independent of all civil control and authority. Once Henry fully understood where Becket was going with this, he demanded an end to any efforts to separate the church from state control.

Thomas Becket and many clergy remained firm, though, so he was charged with treason. Becket had to flee to France for sanctuary, but Henry offered a compromise that would allow him to return. After he returned, though, four knights (Reginald Fitzurse, Hugh de Moreville, William de Tracey, and Richard le Breton) came to the conclusion that King Henry II wanted that Becket killed.

So the four knights proceeded to kill him right near the altar of Canterbury Cathedral. Henry didn't arrest them or impose any punishment on them whatsoever, but he also didn't help them either - he left them to their own devices while benefitting from their actions.

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St. Thomas Becket

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