Matthew Parker

Second Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury; born Norwich, England, 1504; died London, England, 1575. Having studied at Cambridge, he was ordained and elected to a fellowship. In 1535 he was appointed chaplain to Anne Boleyn. Vice-chancellor of Cambridge, at the accession of Mary Tudor he resigned. Deprived of his preferments he retired until he was recalled by Queen Elizabeth, to be consecrated Archbishop of Canterbury in 1559. Elizabeth decided to retain an episcopacy; hence it became necessary to devise some means of finding a bishop to consecrate the newly selected prelates. The circumstances of Parker's consecration, shrouded in secrecy, were unknown to the Catholic party who believed a rumor, since proved false, called "The Nag's Head Story". The "Register" at Lambeth, thought by some a forgery, has been proved a regal document testifying that Parker was consecrated according to the ordinal of Edward VI by Bishop Barlow. The Elizabethians were reticent about the consecration of their metropolitan, probably because of the reputation of the consecrators. Archbishop Parker strove, during fifteen years primacy, to define the limits of the doctrines of the Reformers. He revised the Edwardian Articles in convocation, 1562. In 1566 he drew up a series of enactments concerning ecclesiastical matters, known as the "Advertisements." He also made a revised translation of the Scriptures called the "Bishop's Bible."

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