Langeais, Raoul De

Langeais, Raoul De, a French prelate, was born in the beginning of the 11th century. He was brother of Fulchredus, abbot of Charroux. Raoul became successively dean of the Church of Tours and bishop of that diocese in 1072. His election, however, caused great disturbances. His enemies having accused him of incest before Alexander II, the latter deposed and excommunicated him. Raoul immediately set out for Rome, justified himself, and was restored to his bishopric. When Gregory VII succeeded Alexander II the accusation was taken up again, but with like result. Still the whole Church of France was at the time in a state of complete anarchy, and the bishop of Tours was treated with the utmost disrespect by his clergy, and especially by the monks, in spite of the evident favor of the pope. In 1078 he was accused of simony before the Council of Poitiers, and unable, it is said, to clear himself otherwise, he broke up the council by main force (compare Labbe, Concil. 10:366; Landon, Manual of Councils, page 497). Still Gregory VII merely appointed a committee to inquire into the case. How this committee decided is not known, but all trouble was at an end in 1079, for we then find Gregory writing to Raoul inviting him to recognize Gebuin, archbishop of Lyons, whom he had appointed primate of Gaul, and about the same time Raoul was invited to the Council of Badeaux by the legate Amat, who calls him "religionis ecclesiastics caput honorabilius." Shortly afterwards he excommunicated Foulques Rechin, count of Anjou, and Gebuin approved his proceedings; but king Philip, angered at Langeais for siding with Gregory VII on the question of investiture, took the part of the count. Langeais was driven from his see, and excommunicated by the canons of St. Martin; the pope, in return, excommunicated the count of Anjou and all his partisans, while Hughes and Amat, legates of the council of Poitiers, excommunicated the canons of St. Martin. It is difficult to form a correct judgment of these events. It is likely, however, that all the trouble resulted from the fact that Langeais had entered zealously into the plans of reformation of Gregory VII, and therefore, while praised by this pope and his adherents, became necessarily, as a leader of his party in France, an object of hatred to the opposite faction. Documents show that he was governing his diocese again in 1084 and 1086. The exact time of his death is not ascertained, but he must have died previous to the year 1093. See J. Maan, Sacr. et Metr. eccl. Turon.; Gallia Christ. volume 14, col. 63; Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Genesis 29:394 sq.

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