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Bishops in the Isle of Man

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 January 2024

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Summary

The origins of Christianity in the Isle of Man are extremely obscure, though it appears that in earliest times the church there was closely linked to, and dependent on Ireland. In the eleventh century the island had bishops who were theoretically suffragans of York, though part of the Scottish hierarchy. But about 1134 the king of Norway created a new diocese, consisting of his possessions in the western isles of Scotland ('Sudre 0yar', the ‘southern isles'; anglicized as Sodor), and of the Isle of Man. The diocese was a suffragan see of Nidaros (Trondheim) from 1153, but after the isles passed to the kingdom of Scotland in 1266 this link became increasingly formal and was last mentioned in 1441. In 1387 Scottish support for the Avignon pope during the great schism (13 78-1417) led to the deprivation of the bishop of Sodor and Man, who supported Rome, but the latter retained the Isle of Man and was subsequently recognized as a suffragan of Canterbury. In 1541 the English parliament passed a statute (33 Henry VIII, c. 31) attaching the diocese of Sodor and Man (effectively only Man) to the province of York. N.B. Names in square brackets are of bishops who were appointed but either not consecrated or not installed in possession of the see.

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Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
First published in: 2024

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