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Henry of Blois

(d. 1171)


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Was the son of Stephen, count of Blois, and younger brother of king Stephen. Entering the church, he became abbot of Glastonbury in 1126 and bishop of Winchester in 1129; he retained both offices for forty years and became the wealthiest prelate of the age. His assistance in 1135 was critical in helping Stephen to gain the throne, but in 1138, when the civil war was about to begin, he was on bad terms with his brother, who had passed him over for the archbishopric of Canterbury. His appointment as papal legate was not a full compensation. After Stephen's death in 1154 he withdrew to Cluny but returned to serve under Henry II as a senior adviser until his death in 1171.

Subjects: Christianity — British History.


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