Godfrey Goodman - Encyclopedia

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GODFREY GOODMAN (1583-1656), bishop of Gloucester, was born at Ruthin, Denbighshire, and educated at Westminster and Cambridge. He took orders in 1603, and in 1606 obtained the living of Stapleford Abbots, Essex, which he held together with several other livings. He was canon of Windsor from 1617 and dean of Rochester 1620-1621, and became bishop of Gloucester in 1625. From this time his tendencies towards Roman Catholicism constantly got him into trouble. He preached an unsatisfactory sermon at court in 1626, and in 1628 incurred charges of introducing popery at Windsor. In 1633 he secured the see of Hereford by bribery, but Archbishop Laud persuaded the king to refuse his consent. In 1638 he was said to be converted to Rome, and two years later he was imprisoned for refusing to sign the new canons denouncing popery and affirming the divine right of kings. He afterwards signed and was released on bail, but next year the bishops who had signed were all imprisoned in the Tower, by order of parliament, on the charge of treason. After eighteen weeks' imprisonment Goodman was allowed to return to his diocese. About 1650 he settled in London, where he died a confessed Roman Catholic. His best known book is The Fall of Man (London, 1616).

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