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Langton, Stephen ( - d.1228)
Although the monks of Canterbury wanted their own sub-prior for the post of Archbishop and King John wanted John de Gray, Pope Innocent III chose Stephen Langton. Langton was originally from Lincolnshire but after teaching in Paris had moved to Rome where he had become a Cardinal. The monks of Canterbury accepted the Pope's decision and voted Langton in as the new Archbishop. King John did not agree.
Stephen Langton was chosen as Archbishop of Canterbury by Pope Innocent III.
The Pope threatened King John with the sentence of Interdict unless he accepted Stephen Langton as Archbishop of Canterbury. An Interdict meant that church services would be banned in England except for baptisms and confessions.
With King John still refusing to accept Langton as Archbishop the Pope served the sentence of Interdict on England. In response King John confiscated church property. Many of the bishops of the great churches in the country fled abroad to the Continent.
Stephen Langton landed in England from France to see King John and take the position of Archbishop of Canterbury. John refused to meet with him although John did meet Stephen's brother Simon.
Taking the advice of William Marshal John accepted the demands of the Pope and that Stephen Langton should become Archbishop. A peace mission was also sent to the Pope.
When King John agreed to meet Stephen Langton at Winchester he was absolved from excommunication.
Stephen Langton and William Marshall attempted to get the Barons and John to meet and find a settlement to the civil war.
A large number of barons, led by Stephen Langton the archbishop of Canterbury, meet King John on an island in the Thames at Runnymede. They forced the king to sign the 'Great Charter' or Magna Carta that would limit the power of the monarchy. The barons insisted that the old feudal contract should be reinstated and that the king should abide by the laws that the rest of the population did. The feudal contract allowed the barons to run their own lands, renting it from the king but paying rent by supplying knights rather than money. This feudal system had been set up by William the Conqueror.
Stephen Langton, Archbishop of Canterbury, travelled to Rome and left Hubert de Burgh in charge of affairs of the country.
All those castles that had been taken from King John were claimed back by Henry. Henry did not want to have untrustworthy Barons in control of strong castles. Fawkes de Breaute, one of the castle occupiers refused to relinquish his castle(s) and started a short rebellion. Stephen Langton and Hubert de Burgh dealt with Fawkes and the castles were handed over. (Need to find out which castles)
On the death of Stephen Langton, the archbishop of Canterbury, the Pope, attempting to raise as much money from the clergy in England filled senior posts in the clergy with anyone who bidded the highest.