Langton, Archbishop (via memorial stones index)

(c.1150-1228) Archbishop of Canterbury (1207-1228)

Stephen Langton was a notable theologian with many writings and he played an important role in the story of the Magna Carta.

On 7th July 1228 he took part in the Feast of St Thomas à Becket in Canterbury. In poor health, he was subsequently taken to his manor at Slindon, near Chichester where he died a couple of days later. His body was taken back to Canterbury for burial in an uncomplicated stone coffin before the altar in the apse of St Michael’s Chapel. Here he laid at peace until 1440 when his coffin was displaced to allow for the eastern apse to be replaced by a flat wall during the remodelling of the chapel to accommodate the tomb of Lady Holland and her two husbands. To allow the coffin to remain in its original location it was placed beneath the altar (the medieval altar was removed shortly after the Dissolution) and a masonry gabled extension was added allowing the coffin to lie half within and half without the chapel proper. By 1952 Langton’s coffin had been further concealed beneath the altar of The Buffs. The coffin is made from blocks of Caen Stone and the lid is a large carved slab of Purbeck Marble bearing a long cross.

stone coffin of Stephen Langton – not visible from Warriors’ Chapel gates