John of Fountains

John of Fountains (died 6 May 1225) was a medieval Bishop of Ely.

John of Fountains
Bishop of Ely
Electedc. 24 January 1220
PredecessorRobert of York
SuccessorGeoffrey de Burgo
Other postsAbbot of Fountains
Consecration8 March 1220
by Stephen Langton
Personal details
Died6 May 1225
BuriedEly Cathedral


John was abbot of Fountains Abbey by 13 December 1211, when he was blessed at Melrose[1] by the bishop of Down. Nothing is known of his family or background before this event. While abbot, he continued the building of the abbey's church, and Pope Honorius III named him to a commission with Stephen Langton the Archbishop of Canterbury and William de Cornhill the Bishop of Coventry to investigate the possible canonization of Hugh of Lincoln.[2]

John was elected to the see of Ely about 24 January 1220. He was consecrated bishop on 8 March 1220[3] at London by Langton.[2] He was enthroned at Ely Cathedral on 25 March 1220.[4] He owed his election to the papal legate Pandulf Verraccio.[5] While bishop, the pope once more named him to a canonization commission, this time in 1223 for William of York. He was rarely involved in political matters, but did go to France on a diplomatic mission in 1223.[2]

John died on 6 May 1225.[1][3] He was buried in Ely Cathedral, at first near the altar of St. Andrew, but after a rebuilding effort by Hugh of Northwold he was reinterred near the high altar.[2] His tomb was described as "in the pavement".[6]


  1. ^ a b Smith, et al. Heads of Religious Houses II p. 279
  2. ^ a b c d Owen "Fountains, John of" Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
  3. ^ a b Fryde, et al. Handbook of British Chronology p. 244
  4. ^ Greenway Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066–1300: Volume 2: Monastic Cathedrals (Northern and Southern Provinces): Ely: Bishops Archived 14 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Vincent Peter des Roches p. 166
  6. ^ Sayers "Once 'Proud Prelate'" Journal of the British Archaeological Association p. 77


  • Fryde, E. B.; Greenway, D. E.; Porter, S.; Roy, I. (1996). Handbook of British Chronology (Third revised ed.). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-56350-X.
  • Greenway, Diana E. (1971). Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066–1300: Volume 2: Monastic Cathedrals (Northern and Southern Provinces): Ely: Bishops. Institute of Historical Research. Archived from the original on 14 February 2012. Retrieved 25 October 2007. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  • Owen, Dorothy M. (2004). "Fountains, John of (d. 1225)" ((subscription or UK public library membership required)). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/9802. Retrieved 1 April 2008. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  • Sayers, Jane (2009). "A Once Proud Prelate: An Unidentified Episcopal Monument in Ely Cathedral". Journal of the British Archaeological Association. 162: 67–87. doi:10.1179/006812809x12448232842376.
  • Smith, David M.; London, Vera C. M. (2001). The Heads of Religious Houses, England and Wales II. 1216–1377. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-80271-7.
  • Vincent, Nicholas (2002). Peter des Roches: An Alien in English Politics 1205–1238 (Reprint ed.). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-52215-3.
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Robert of York
Bishop of Ely
Succeeded by
Geoffrey de Burgo