Monastic Wales.

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Robert Béthune , prior of Llanthony; bishop of Hereford

Died: 1148   

Robert, a former student of Anselm of Laon and William of Champeaux, entered Llanthony when Ernisius, the founding prior, presided over the house. Robert succeeded Ernisius as prior but shortly thereafter, in 1131, he was elevated to the see of Hereford and remained in office until his death in 1148.

Llanthony prospered under Robert as prior. The foundation history of the house praised him, describing Robert as 'noble by birth but more noble in virtue'.
Robert did not forget his canons when he was bishop of Hereford and invited them to take refuge with him when they faced problems from the Welsh uprisings; he later organised their withdrawal to Gloucester.
While Robert wrote a number of works none of these now survives.

Sites associated with this person

Llanthony Prima Priory, Monmouthshire (prior)

Bibliographical sources

Printed sources

'The life of Robert de Bethune by William de Wycombe: translation with introduction and notes' (BLitt dissertation: University of Oxford, 1951)

A Handlist of the Latin Writers of Great Britain and Ireland before 1540, Publications of the Journal of Medieval Latin, 1, ed. Richard Sharpe (Brepols: Turnhout, 1997) p. 525

The Ancient and Present State of Gloucestershire, ed. Robert Atkyns (London, 1712; repr. 1974) vol. 1, p. 507

Cowley, F. G., The Monastic Order in South Wales 1066-1349 (Cardiff, 1977) pp. 150-151

Crampin, C. M., 'Llanthony Prima : An Assessment of Medieval Library Culture at Augustinian Houses in Wales' (M.Sc. (Econ.) thesis: University of Wales, Aberystwyth, 2003)

Williams, David H., 'Llanthony Prima Priory', The Monmouthshire Antiquary, 25-26 (2009-2010) pp. 16, 17

Web links (open in new window)

Barrow, Julia, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography online - Robert of Bethune (View website) (Subscription reqd.)