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Becket, St. Thomas

Becket, St. Thomas (1118–1170)

Becket, Thomas a, archbishop of Canterbury, born in London, of Norman parentage; studied at Oxford and Bologna; entered the Church; was made Lord Chancellor; had a large and splendid retinue, but on becoming archbishop, cast all pomp aside and became an ascetic, and devoted himself to the vigorous discharge of the duties of his high office; declared for the independence of the Church, and refused to sign the Constitutions of Clarendon (q.v.); King Henry II. grew restive under his assumption of authority, and got rid of him by the hands of four knights who, to please the king, shed his blood on the steps of the altar of Canterbury Cathedral, for which outrage the king did penance four years afterwards at his tomb. The struggle was one affecting the relative rights of Church and king, and the chief combatants in the fray were both high-minded men, each inflexible in the assertion of his claims.

A beer made to a 300-year-old recipe by a brewery established in 1698 is being sold in the cathedral precincts, all proceeds to the cathedral fund. Beer was brewed in the abbey until the reformation, and Thomas Becket himself would probably approve.

Great Britain, 1984, Murder of Becket

Lesotho, 1999, Archbishop Thomas Beecket

Tristan da Cunha, 2010, Murder of Thomas Becket

© 2003-2018 Dmitry Karasyuk. Idea, preparation, drawing up
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