Stapledon, Walter

Stapledon, Walter, an English prelate, was born (according to Prince) at Annery, in the parish of Monklegh, near Great Torrington, Devonshire. Our knowledge of his history begins with his advancement to the bishopric in 1307, his installation to which was accompanied by ceremonies of magnificent solemnity. He was chosen one of the privy council to Edward II, appointed lord-treasurer, and employed in embassies and other weighty affairs of State. In 1325 he accompanied the queen to France, in order to negotiate a peace but her intention to depose her husband did not meet his approval, and he fell an early sacrifice to popular fury. He was appointed, in 1326, guardian of the city of London during the king's absence in the West; and while he was taking measures to preserve the loyalty of the metropolis the populace attacked him, Oct. 15, and beheaded him, together with his brother Sir Richard Stapledon, near the north door of St. Paul's. By the order of the queen the body was afterwards removed, and interred in Exeter Cathedral. Exeter House was founded by him as a town residence for the bishops of the diocese. He also founded, in 1315, Exeter College, which was called by his name until 1404, when it was called Exeter Hall.

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