Waynflete, William wān´flēt [key], 1395?–1486, English prelate and lord chancellor. He was master of Winchester College before 1429, and in 1443 he became provost of the newly founded Eton College. In 1447 he became bishop of Winchester. Soon afterward he received patents to found a hall at Oxford for the study of theology and philosophy. The buildings, which incorporated the earlier Magdalen Hall, were completed in 1480, largely through Waynflete's own generosity, and Magdalen College still bears his arms. The bishop's political career was largely devoted to matters of personal aid to Henry VI. Waynflete negotiated for peace with Jack Cade and with Richard, duke of York. He was a privy councilor, in which capacity he tried to obtain (1454) Henry's consent to a regency by York; in 1456 he was made lord chancellor. Waynflete presided at the Parliament (1459) at Coventry that attainted the Yorkists, but after the Yorkist victory in 1460, he was well treated, although deprived of the chancellorship.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: British and Irish History: Biographies