Richard Marsh (bishop)

Infobox bishopbiog
name =Richard Marsh

religion =Catholic
See =Diocese of Durham
Title = Bishop of Durham
Period = 1217–1226
Predecessor = Morgan
Successor =William Scot
ordination =
bishops =
post =Archdeacon of Northumberland
date of birth =
place of birth =
date of death =1 May 1226
place of death =

Richard Marsh, also called Richard de Marisco served as Lord Chancellor of England and Bishop of Durham.


He attended a university, as he was styled "magister", but which university it was is unknown. His ancestry and upbringing likewise are unknown.Stacey, Robert C. "Marsh, Richard (d. 1226)" "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography"] He was a royal clerk and canon of Exeter Cathedral before becoming Archdeacon of Northumberland by 1 November 1211. He was also Archdeacon of Richmond. [ British History Online Archdeacons of Northumberland] accessed on 25 October 2007] During that time he was also serving in the financial administration. In 1210 he earned a mention as one of the king's "evil councilors."

During 1212 he held the office of sheriff of Somerset and Dorset. Stephen Langton, the Archbishop of Canterbury, threatened Marsh with excommunication over Marsh's exactions from the Church during the interdict of John's reign. Marsh went to Rome in 1213, to negotiate on both his own behalf and on his king's behalf, and succeeded in getting much more lenient terms from the pope than had originally been given. He served as Chancellor from 29 October 1214 until his death.Powicke "Handbook of British Chronology" p. 82] However, his title was mostly honorary after his election as a bishop, for he no longer attended court all the time, and Ralph Neville, who had custody of the king's seal, did most of the actual work of the office of chancellor.

He was elected Bishop of Durham about 27 June 1217Powicke "Handbook of British Chronology" p. 220] and consecrated probably on 2 July 1217. [ British History Online Bishops of Durham] accessed on 25 October 2007] His election had been promoted by the papal legate, Guala Bicchieri, and his consecration was performed by Archbishop Walter de Gray of York at Gloucester.

In 1224, when Fawkes de Breaute kidnapped a royal justice and held him in Bedford Castle, Marsh voluntarily contributed to the carucage that had been voted by the clergy of the ecclesiastical province of Canterbury, even though he was a member of the province of York. This carucage was voted to help with the expenses of the siege and taking of Bedford Castle.Powell "House of Lords in the Middle Ages" p. 141] Marsh continued the quarrel between the cathedral chapter and the bishops over the revenues and rights of the monks.

He died on 1 May 1226, quite suddenly at Peterborough Abbey while on his way to London for a hearing in the lawsuit between the monks and himself. His nephew, Adam Marsh, was his heir, and received his large library as a bequest.



* [ British History Online Archdeacons of Northumberland] accessed on 25 October 2007
* [ British History Online Bishops of Durham] accessed on 25 October 2007
* Powell, J. Enoch and Keith Wallis "The House of Lords in the Middle Ages: A History of the English House of Lords to 1540" London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson 1968
* Powicke, F. Maurice and E. B. Fryde "Handbook of British Chronology" 2nd. ed. London: Royal Historical Society 1961
* Stacey, Robert C. "Marsh, Richard (d. 1226)" "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography" Oxford University Press, 2004 [ Online Edition] accessed 23 January 2008

NAME= Marsh, Richard
ALTERNATIVE NAMES= de Marisco, Richard
SHORT DESCRIPTION=Bishop of Durham, Lord Chancellor of England
DATE OF DEATH=1 May 1226

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