Page:Dictionary of National Biography, Second Supplement, volume 3.djvu/460

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Stubbs
Stubbs
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in 1897, and revised editions of 'Select Charters,' 'Constitutional History,' and the ’Seventeen Lectures.’ To the last he amused himself with pedigrees, writing prefaces, reading proof sheets, and helping his historical friends. He renewed his interest in the University of Oxford, and again became a curator of the Bodleian, a delegate of the university press, and a member of the board of modern history. Even more than at Chester he was constantly consulted on general matters of ecclesiastical politics. In 1889 he unwillingly yielded to the strong pressure of Archbishop Benson to act as one of his assessors in the trial of Edward Bang [q. v. Suppl. II], bishop of Lincoln, for ritualistic practices. His personal affection for the archbishop was his main reason for Tindertaking this unwelcome task. He was convinced that the archbishop was no 'Canterbury pope,' with a right to sit alone in judgment on his suffragans. Stubbs, too, was little interested in questions of vestments and ceremonies, though he strongly shared Bishop King's theological convictions, and regarded him as the victim of persecution. Between 12 Feb. 1889 and 21 Nov. 1890 Stubbs regularly attended the archbishop's court in the Lambeth library. He felt compromised by being there, and was bored by the lengthy arguments. He vented his displeasure in jest and verse. 'It is a sheer waste of time,' he cried, 'and the court has not a shadow of real authority.' 'We are discussing forms and ceremonies. Oh! the wearing weariness of it all!' (Hutton, pp. 326-8). He expressed, however, his hearty approval 'of all and every part' of the primate's judgment. (Visitation Charges, pp. 154-166, expounds in full his point of view. Benson's is seen in A. C. Benson's Life of E. W. Benson, ii, 348-81.) For the rest of his life he scrupulously adhered to it, and forbade his clergy to practise any of the ceremonies which Benson had declared illegal.

Early in 1898 Stubbs's health began to fail. Though he rallied somewhat he was again ill in 1900. Early in 1901 he wrote 'I can do all my hand and head work, but am weak in moving about.' He felt deeply the deaths of Bishop Creighton and Queen Victoria. Ordered by King Edward VII to preach the sermon in St. George's chapel the day after Queen Victoria's funeral, he disobeyed his physicians, and went. For the next two months he struggled against increasing weakness, but at the end of March he was told that he must resign his bishopric. He began his preparations to move from Cuddesdon, when he had a serious relapse, and died on 22 April 1901. He was buried in Cuddesdon churchyard. A portrait in oils by Sir Hubert von Herkomer (1885) is in the picture gallery of the Bodleian Library; another, by Charles Wellington Furse (1892), is at Cuddesdon.

Among the public honours Stubbs received may be mentioned membership of the Berlin, Munich, and Copenhagen academies, corresponding membership of the Academie des sciences morales et politiques of the French Institut, honorary doctorates of Heidelberg, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Dublin, and Oxford, and the rarely conferred Prussian order pour le mérite (1897). Perhaps no recognition pleased Stubbs better than that of his old Oxford contemporaries and brother historians, the friendship of such German scholars as Pauli, Maurer, Waitz, and Liebermann, and his honorary studentship of Christ Church.

Stubbs's more important writings have already been enumerated. He seldom contributed to periodical writings after the early years of his literary activity, and he boasted that he wrote only one review, which apparently has not been identified. Yet besides those mentioned above there were many books which he edited and prefaces which he wrote. The list of these occasional and minor writings can be found in the bibliography of his historical works, edited for the Royal Historical Society by Dr. W. A. Shaw (pp. 17-23, 1903), and in the bibhography in Arch-deacon Hutton's 'Letters of William Stubbs' (pp. 409-15, 1904).

[The most copious materials for Stubbs's biography are to be found in The Letters of William Stubbs, Bishop of Oxford, edited by W. H. Mutton, 1904. Of special value are the autobiographical fragments that Stubbs was fond of inserting in some of his later utterances, as for instance Seventeen Lectures, 3rd edit., pp. vi-xii, 432-3, 474-8; Visitation Charges, pp. 347-8; postscript to preface to Registrum Sacrum Anglicanum, 1897. Some further details can be gleamed from Mrs. Creighton' s Life and Letters of Mandell Creighton (1904), W. R. W. Stephens's Life and Letters of E. A. Freeman (1895), and Leslie Stephen's Letters of J. R. Green (1901). To these may be added particulars derived from the various obituary notices, and from personal knowledge and private information. Among the most noteworthy appreciation of Stubbs's historical work may be mentioned that by F. W. Maitland in the English Historical Review, xvi. 417-26 (1901), reprinted in The Collected Papers of F. W. Maitland, iii. 495-511 (1911). Others appear in Quarterly}}