Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden maonachi Cestrensis; together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century.
Higden, Ranulf, d. 1364., Trevisa, John, tr. d. 1402., Caxton, William, ca. 1422-1491., Malverne, John, d 1415?, Babington, Churchill, ed. 1821-1889,, Lumby, J. Rawson ed. (Joseph Rawson), 1831-1895.
Page  331, vol.7

Capitulum sextum.

LANFRANCUS archebischop of Cawnterbery diede in this yere, the vthe kalendes of Iunius, after his presidency by xviij. yere, whiche seete was vacante after his dethe by iiij. yere. Willelmus de Pontificibus, libro primo. This Lanfrancus, borne in Lumbardy, was noble, instructe in the vij. science, whiche hade exspende the tyme of his yowthe in studyes and artes liberalle. This noble clerke Lanfrancus chosede afore the monastery Bectense to oþer monasterys for poverte of the place, and for the observaunce of religion kepede þer, where he was made monke under Herlewinus, the firste abbotte; whiche, not usede to servile labors, tauȝhte gramer and logike, that he myȝhte helpe the poverte of the place by the doctrine of his scolers. But the glory of his lawde engendred hate and envye in his enemyes, in so moche that William duke of Normandy hade purposede to have putte hym from that cuntre. Willel|mus, libro secundo. For Herfastus, chapeleyne to the seide Page  333, vol.7 duke, was supposede and trawede to have bene an excellent clerke afore the commynge of Lanfrancus; whiche come with grete pride in a tyme to the scole of Lanfrancus, whiche, per|ceyvynge anoon that he was but of simple intellect, toke to hym an abscedary; whiche, havynge indignacion þerof, movede duke William to expelle hym from Normandy. But this Lan|francus havynge communicacion with the seide duke, his cown|tenaunce chere and eloquence was soe grete*. [Sic in MS.] commendede, that of the prior Bectense he was made abbote of Caane, and after metropolitan of Ynglonde. Willelmus de Pontificibus, libro primo. This noble man was so famose in doctrine that he commynge to Rome, and apperynge afore the pope, the pope wolde have aryse to do reverence to hym, makynge protestacion to hym that he did not that honoure to the archebischop, but to his connynge. Wherefore, that doen, the pope desirede, sithe he hade doen that longede to honoure, Lanffrancus scholde Page  335, vol.7 do that dewe obedience required, that he scholde falle downe to the feete of the vicare of blissede Petyr. This Lanfrancus inducede kynge William Conqueroure by laudable meanes to vertu, not by bostuous communicacion, but makynge as a com|mixtion [folio 342b] of sadde thynges with thynges of disporte. This kynge William Conqueror disposede thynges temporalle and spiritualle after his pleasure, suffrenge not eny cownsaile to be hade with his specialle licence; neither eny thynge to have bene diffinede withowte his commaundement; commaundynge also noo gentille longynge to hym to be punyschede or correcte with owte he hade ȝiffyn that iuggemente to hym. The dedes Page  337, vol.7 of whom be rehersede nowe in this tyme of magnanimite amonge kynges, and that tyme those dedes were callede of synne and of presumpcion. This hooly clerke Lanfrancus suffrede these thynges ageyne his wylle, spekynge to kynge William Conqueroure for his synnes in places and tymes con|gruent. Neverthelesse, this noble metropolitan Lanfrancus stablede in mony vertues, floryschede specially in almes, usynge this sentence: "Moche ȝiffe ye almes, and alle thynges be clene to yow;" usynge also to calle poore clerkes to disputa|cions; that doen thei wente furthe bothe with gladdenes, the victor of the triumphe of science, and the man overcomen thro the solace of his doctryne. Whiche restorede specially to monkes possessions taken from theyme; whom vivacite of Page  339, vol.7 mynde and favor of seynte Dunstan made bolde to do soe; and as hit is collecte of the lyfe of seynte Dunstan, he was so meke and affable in herynge of confessions that he wolde kysse the hondes of peple confessed to hym after the confession made, and wolde say, "These hondes have made me a blissede man in this day." The monkes of Cawnterbery, and allemoste alle other monkes in Ynglonde, ȝafe theyme to ryette, to hawkynge and huntynge in that tyme, semynge to be lyke to lordes, raþer then to monkes, by theire apparaile and cumpanye of men doynge servyce to theyme. Whiche insolence Lanfrancus me|tropolitan of Ynglonde suffrede for a season, and reducede theyme to vertuous life afterwarde, not hastily, but by certeyne space folowynge, for scharpe correccion and hasty movethe the Page  341, vol.7 paciente raþer to vice þen to vertu. Unto whiche tyme presente the memorialle of that noble clerke is hade moche in that monastery amonge the breþer, whiche have grete devocion to God, comforte and hospitalite to poore peple, and habundant charite amonge theyme selfe. The seide Lanfrancus wolde not suffre eny broþer to departe from hym with hevy chere, and if he percevyde a man to be hevy he wolde soone inquire the cause, ȝiffynge to the monkes thynges necessary, that thei scholde not have eny occasion to refuse the observaunce of [folio 343a] theire religion. The malice and envye of bischoppes encreasede moche in that tyme, insomoche that they thouȝhte to have ex|pellede or expulsed monkes from theire places, and to have put seculer clerkes into þeyme. The auctor of whiche labour was Walkelinus bischop of Wynchestre, goode to other thynges, but Page  343, vol.7 condescende to the intente of wyckede peple; insomoche that he hade movede the kynge into the same purpose. But Lan|francus, herynge that, dissolvede that labour, insomoche that he caused Alexander the pope to sende an inhibicion that the wickede purpose of those men scholde not procede. Also he instaurede the monastery of Rowchestre that tyme, but of a convente unto þe nowmbre of lti monkes, with sufficiaunce of thynges necessary to theym; hit is ascribede also to the discre|cion of Lanfrancus that he brouȝhte Gundulphus, abbot of Caane, to the seete of Rowchestre, as hit is supposede, by the eleccion of God. This Gundulphus, disciple to Lanfrancus, sittynge with Walter his felawe and an oþer, havynge a masse booke in his honde, seide: "Lete us prove an experimente by turnynge of levys, whiche of us schalle be an abbot and whiche a bischop." The seide Gundulphus founde this texte: "Fidelis servus et prudens;" and Walter founde, Page  345, vol.7 "Serue bone et fidelis intra in gaudium." That oþer founde an oþer sentence not pretendynge to eny happy ende. This doen thai laȝhede, insomoche that Lanfrancus herde theym, whiche commynge to theym, and knowynge the cause, seide that Gundulphus scholde be a bischop, Walterus scholde be an abbot, and that the thrydde scholde turne to the worlde. And so hit was provede, for Gundulphus was made bischop of Rowchestre, Walterus abbot of Evysham, and the thrydde monke diede miserably. The seide Lanfrancus havynge not convenience with William Rufus kynge, felle into a fever, and so confession made and the sacramente receyvid, and receyvynge a pocion, diede like as he desirede; for he preiede Allemyȝhty Godde oftetymes that either he myȝhte dye of the fever or of the flix, in that those infirmites trouble not þe mynde neiþer lette the speche of a man.