Holdings of the Society of Antiquaries

Trinity Chapel, Lincoln’s Inn. Rendering by Jack McManus.

Society of Antiquaries MS 201 No. 37: Account of the Consecration of the chapel of Lincoln’s Inn, by George Montaigne, Bp of London, Ascension Day, 1623.

Transcription by Dr Steven May, Emory University

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Assencion Day 1623        

Vppon Thursday beinge Assention Day was ye Chappel of Lincolnes Inne Consecrated, where there was such a Concourse & Confluence of people that Sr Francis Lee was soe thronged that hee fell downe deade in ye presse, And was Caryed away into a Gentlemans Chamber & wth much a doe Recouered, The Kings Councell vppon especiall Command sate that Day att white Hall, soe that only ye Bishop of London two Iudges & foure sergeants were ye men of <  > that were present att ye Consecration.

The manner of itt was in this Manner./

First ye Bishop himselfe alone wth Wilson his Chaplayne entredd ye Chauncell <  >[wher]e there was a Table decently furnished wth a greene Carpett, A lynnen Cloth two flaggons & two Cupps all double Guilt, The Bishopp kneelinge att ye Table sayd a longe prayer wch  Consisted of a thanckesguinge, for our peace & plentye, Liberty, ye Establishinge & Contynuance of Religion & ye true professi on of ye Gospell Amongst vs, And for moveinge ye Heartes of such as bee Able [to]<  > ye Aleanes to further & Contynue &  [A]d vance ye same, As allsoe of a prayer to blesse that place wch was Erected devoted & Consecrated to his Honour & service, [so] ye prayer Ended ye Bishop rose vppe, And there was presented vnto him by some of ye Auncient Benchers an Instrument or

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Facultye wch hee deliuered to his Chauncelor & hee to ye Register who reade itt, ye Effect whereof was this that whereas itt had pleased god to putt into ye Heartes of ye worshipfull Societye of ye students of ye Lawe of Lincolnes Inne to builde a Chappell wthin that Inne to ye Honour of God & his service, they Accordingly had fynished ye sayd worke Conteyninge in Length soe manye foote & in breadth soe manye, And now desyred ye Bishop that it might bee Consecrated to ye same and wherevnto it was builded, and herevppon ye Bishop yeelded to theire request, And then tooke ye faculty into his owne Hande, And Commendinge there holy Desyres & pious Act hee named ye Chappel by ye name of ye blessed indivisible Trinitye & se perated itt from all profane & secular vses, And Consecrated itt wholy to ye Honor & service of God, And ye pious & Religious vses of that societye only Exceptinge allwayes such Right as ye Parson Vicar Curate or [blank] of ye Parish Church of St Dunstons in ye West or St Andrewes in Holborne or all such Dutyes oblations obventions wch they or either of them Haue formerly had or Haue bin Held as Due or may lawfully bee Claymed out of that Societye before ye buildinge & Consecratignge of that Chappel/

This beeinge done ye Mynister beganne Devine service & reade ye 24.27 & 28 psalmes, And for ye Chapters ye i of Kinges 8. & Iohn ye 10th, And then ye Letanye & soe to ye Sermon, where Doctor Doonre preached & tooke or his Text a scrip ture out of Iohn ye tenth 22.23. & from ye

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 Iewes [blank] he prooued ye Instiution of Holy Dayes or festivall Dayes, As allsoe out of Leviticus Cap. 23. As well there festivall as there Sabbathes, were Called by the name of Sabbathes, And though there festivalls were Ceremoniall, yet they had there Morallity allsoe, And there was a Difference to bee made betweene ye festivalls of Gods Institution & mans Institution, yet those of Mans Institution were Duly to bee obser=ved because ye Church is gods  delegate Here vppon Earth & because they haue ye same Morality in them that Jewish festivalls had, And that those festivall Dayes were Gods Courte Dayes, wherein hee tooke a viewe of our order & obedience & rest, And from ye Dedication of ye Temple hee prooued ye Conse=cration of ye Churches showinge itt from ye Instinct of Nature because it was from before ye Lawe And this hee proued by Iacob Genesis 28:18: As allsoe by ye Examples of ye Patriarches vnder ye Lawe As by Moses Consecratinge ye Tabernacle, Dauid Consecratinge ye Sanctuary of Solomon Consecratinge ye Temple, Hee prooued itt likewise by the Heathen who Ministred oathes & made vowes in ye Temple from ye practise of ye Primitiue Church, likewise as by Basell who Consecrated two Churches in one Day, soe prooued itt allsoe out of Scripture Levitticus 19 & ye 30, Hee prooued itt by Resemblances allsoe as a Childe in ye Wombe Although it haue all ye Lyneaments of a Humane bodye, yet it was not a Humane Creature till ye soule was infused into it, noe more a Church

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though it had both all ye Materialls & forme wch Art Could devise, yett it was noe Church till it was Consecrated, Hee prooued itt allsoe by ye Cannon Lawe Nulla Ecclesia siue [sine?] missa con secretur, where hee showed that Missa was taken for λετυρ And therefore that Churches must be Consecrated by prayer preachinge Administration of ye Sacrament of ye Bodye & blood of Christ, And singinge of Hymnes & psalmes, And this was ye substance of ye Sermon wherein hee showed superficiem but not Medullam Theologiae haveinge Eloqentiae satis but sapientiae parum, And thus Haue you what I Could Collect out of ye Sermon./

After ye Sermon Ended there was a Generall voydance out of ye Chappel, And then ye Bishop began ye 10 Commandements, And Administred ye Sacrament to Certeyne Auncient Benchers of ye House, And then came downe into ye Cloysters of ye sayd Chapple, but what hee did there I did not stay to see for I was euen wearyed <  >inge & observinge ye former Ce[remony]/