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Matthew Parker
(1504-1575)

Archbishop of Canterbury
Born: 6th August 1504 in Norwich, Norfolk
Died: 17th May 1575


Matthew Parker was born in Norwich, in 1504, and educated at St. Mary's Hostel and at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. He was ordained in 1527 and was appointed Dean of the College of St. John the Baptist at Stoke-by-Clare and Chaplain to Anne Boleyn and to the King. In 1544, he was elected Master of his College at Cambridge and Vice-Chancellor of the University; and, upon the accession of Queen Elizabeth, he took part in the revision of the Prayer Book. He was consecrated Archbishop of Canterbury in Lambeth Palace Chapel in 1559. The Anglican Church owes much to the wisdom and judgement with which Parker guided her course through a time of great difficulty, when she was in peril, from the Roman party, on the one hand, and the Puritans on the other. His devotion to the cause of learning was shown by the magnificent collection of books which he made and bequeathed to his College, and by the publication of the "Bishop's Bible". He was, himself, the author of various works, chiefly on the history and the government of the Anglican Church. He died in 1575.

Edited from G.M. Bevan's "Portraits of the Archbishops of Canterbury" (1908).

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