King Henry II and Thomas Bennett were very close friends . Henry was the king of England and he had a great opportunity . The Theobald archbishop of Canterbury was the head of church of england and he saw potential in Thomas. He put him under his church tree and through that Thomas gained experiences and had great success and was the archbishop’s servant and trustworthy. King Henry II appointed Thomas as a position of chancellor of england. Now the chancellor is an important job because it was second in command to the king. This man was given great power. Becket had done amazing performances and he revolutionized england’s government.
He had the reputation of being a loyal worker to Henry. Along the way Henry and Thomas had become friends. Now the archbishop of canterbury had died and Henry now had the decision to chose the next archbishop. So he made his close friend Thomas into a archbishop of Canterbury. Now if the king made one of his friends the archbishop then he could have authority over the church. He could have authority of the state over the England’s courts . Thomas was his close friend and someone who was loyal to Henry. Now Henry felt that he was gonna get the power of the church .
But what Henry did not realized is that Thomas would change into a man of god . He was a man living by his religion and was strict about it. When Henry found out about how his close friend had changed he was devastated . Becket had authority over every church court in England personally. He judged cases as a judge official . Now what cause these to fight you ask? Thomas excommunicated a noble person becasue he disobeyed a church order. Now each were representing two differnt things the church and the state. Now Henry knew Becket was holding 2 advantageous postions in the church so Henry had raised the awareness of the plural appoinment.
In which was illegal to hold more than one church position and so because of this becket had to discard the archdeaconry of canterbury . Along with that he appointed a norman monk clerambault (abbot of st augustine’s monastery and the monk was known for being corrupted). During the Council of Westminster Henry and Thomas gave each other a speech on how each court system was to be upheld and Thomas had proofed his point and the church had won this argument. The council of clarendon resulted in the constitutions of clarendon. Now this was a very important document of laws that defeated Thomas.
This contains an important article about how the constitution regulates the laws in england in a new perspective. The king would decide whether to send a case to church or royal country and if it went to the church court there would be a royal officer to address that nothing wrong is being done . Now there wouldn’t be immunity from punishment from church officers and they couldn’t escaped the sentence handed from the royal officers. No noble person could be excommunicated without the approval of the king and church officer can’t leave the country. All these things help Henry dramatically. This change the playing field of the game .
Thomas was against the laws proposed and was not in agreement to this. He would not sign the document to agree . Thomas then left the conference but the people had agreed to these documents and after all this Henry went for revenge and had him on trial at Northampton Castle. After this trial they demanded Thomas to pay 300 pounds, pay the amount of money he spent in france while he was a chancellor and lastly pay the income he received as a chancellor from vacant posts. With Henry’s authority he sent his people to sentence him to death and Thomas escaped and was in france with Henry’s enemy King Louis of France.
King Louis protested Thomas . Now Thomas had spoken to the pope and encouraged him to nullify the Constitutions of Clarendon. Then Becket threatened an interdict on england in which would stop the country from practice their religious rites and this would make Henry a horrible reputation as a king. Now to heal this relationship they set up a meeting at frzteval and the two could talk and they both agreed the archbishop of Canterbury would return to England and crown his son properly as the archbishop of Canterbury . Now Henry 4 kinghts murdered Thomas in the cathedral .
Later King Henry II suffered the consequences of ending Thomas’ life and repented by walking barefoot through the streets of Canterbury and was whipped by the priest of the cathedral and this was such an embarrassment to the king. The position of the church versus the state was such a controversy during the middle ages. The church had their ways and the state had theirs . They fought over the judicial system in England. Henry II wanted to have common law in his country. Now common law is when a jury accuses a suspect and the royal judges determine the sentence of that criminal.
But the church wants to keep there system of canon law and the church was not willing to back down the state. Now in the church court ststem they could grand immunity to a church official and those who sought sanctuary. Now this is a major problem if you were to think about it people could get away with crimes and not be punished was this a righteous thing? Any person could hide from their crime into a church and not be arrested . This is a huge problem because they are being freed from their crime as long as they stayed in the church.
Henry wanted to end this and bring common law and bring common law to govern all criminals. Along with that excommunication was done by the church . That person is no longer connected to the church and is condemned to hell. Now later on Henry get the Constitutions of Clarendon and was a way of justice in which the king could decide to send a case to a church/royal court and if it went to a church court that a royal officer would make sure no wrong is done and no immunity from punishment would be granted.
No person could escape their sentence.. No excommunication could be allowed unless approval of the king and later the pope had nullified this. Now anyone who questioned the church would be burnt alive or excommunicated. The church is wat approves changes in the society. For there time the church was not out of control they simply had religion to use as there morals/guideline in life. They felt that they should abide by this and do things how the church wanted it so everyone is on the same page .
Now King Henry wanted to make changes but the thing is he was very rude and just wanted power. Thomas was a man of god he wanted to bring good to the church. He was no longer King Henry’s servant but now the archbishop of Canterbury. Thomas was a saxon who worked his way up to the archbishop. He had lots of potential. The church and the king had a lot of power. But the church wasn’t out of hand . I feel like King Henry was more out of control because he wanted power . He was disrespectful vs the church who are welcoming like Thomas.