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(Disambiguation: you may be looking for Arthur Henry Knighton-Hammond, the English artist).

Henry Knighton or Knyghton (died England circa 1396) was an Augustinian canon at the abbey of St. Mary of the Meadows, Leicester, England. He was a canon at the Abbey since at least 1363, when he was recorded as being present during a visit from the King.

He wrote a four-volume chronicle, first published in 1652, giving the history of England from 959 to 1366. A fellow canon completed the work in a fifth book, covering the years 1377 to 1395, probably due to Knighton's growing blindness. The earlier books (to 1337) are simply re-workings of earlier histories. But the latter two books are vital to the contemporary study of the period, since they were written by informed scholars who actually lived through the times they write about. The latter two books give us an exemplary and detailed first-hand insight into the 14th century - such as the effects of the Black Death and the consequent breakdown of the feudal system, and precise details of the systems of wages and prices in England. He also reflects the prejudices common among the clergy at the time; notably being against the translation of the Bible into the common tongue, lamenting the low standards of scholarship among young religious clerks, and being strongly against the rising of the Lollards.

"This Master John Wyclif translated into the Anglic (English) -not Angelic-tongue, the Gospel that Christ gave to the clergy and the doctors of the Church, that they might minister it gently to laymen and weaker persons, according to the exigence of their time, their personal wants, and the hunger of their minds; whence it is made vulgar by him, and more open to the reading of laymen and women than it usually is to the knowledge of lettered and intelligent clergy; and thus the pearl of the Gospel is cast forth and trodden under the feet of swine."[1]


  1. ^ "The Translation of Scripture". Victory Christian Center. Retrieved October 11, 2005.   Includes Knighton quote in article (2001 at the latest, according to

Further reading

  • Joseph Rawson Lumby (ed.), Chronicon of Henry Knighton. (1895).
  • G. H. Martin (ed.), Knighton's Chronicle 1337-1396 (1996).

External links



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