Untitled Document
Bio-Bibliographical Guide to Medieval and Early Modern Jurists

Ames Projects

Click on image for more information



Report No. a232

Gerardus Pucella



Alternative Names

Gérard Pucelle; Gerard la Pucelle; Girardus; Gherardus; Girardus Coventris Episcopis



Born c.1115–20 probably in England. Gérard studied and taught theology and possibly law in France. John of Salisbury said Gérard taught ‘leges et decreta’. His students included Lucas of Hungary, Walter Map, Ralph Niger, master Richard, and a certain Gervase who retired to Durham. Gérard was connected to the familia of Thomas Becket. He undertook a mission to the Empire in 1165/66 even though Frederick Barbarossa had been excommunicated. In 1168 Gérard returned to England and took the loyalty-oath to King Henry II which had been rejected by Becket. After that, Gérard got the permission of the pope and King Louis VII of France to reside in Cologne. Cologne was one of the most important centers of canon law learning in the 1160s and 1170s, producing works such as the Summa ‘Elegantius in iure diuino’. From c.1174–1183, Gérard served as a principal clerk to Becket’s successor, Archbishop Richard. In 1183, he was made Bishop of Coventry, but died only a few months later.

His glosses are marked with the siglum ‘Magister G. Coventris Episcopus’ in the Summa ‘Omnis qui iuste iudicat’. They occasionally appear in the Summa ‘Magister Gratianus in hoc opere, the Summa antiquitate et tempore, Ecce uicit leo, and the Summa ‘Quid sit symonia’. See those entries for manuscript listings.



No. 1

Glosses on the Decretum.


Text(s) – Manuscripts

No. 1

Glosses on the Decretum.


Durham, Cath. Libr. C.III.1 (marked with the siglum ‘Ger.’)



R. Weigand, ‘The Transmontane Decretists’, in The History of Medieval Canon Law in the Classical Period, 1140–1234: From Gratian to the Decretals of Pope Gregory IX, W. Hartmann and K. Pennington, ed. (History of Medieval Canon Law 6; Washington DC 2008) 182–84, 209.

C. Donahue, ‘Pucelle, Gerard (d. 1184)’, in ODNB (Oxford 2004) s.n.

C. Donahue, ‘Gerard Pucelle as a Canon Lawyer: Life and the Battle Abbey Case’, in Grundlagen des Rechts: Festschrift für Peter Landau zum 65. Geburtstag, R.H. Helmholz, P. Mikat, J. Müller, and M. Stolleis, ed. (Paderborn 2000) 333-48.

J. Fried, ‘Gerard Pucelle und Köln’, ZRG Kan. Abt., 68 (1982) 125–35.

C. Lefebvre, ‘Pucelle, Gerard’, in DDC (1965) 7.402–404.

S. Kuttner, ‘Anglo-Norman Canonists of the Twelfth century’, Traditio, 7 (1949/51) 296–303.

S. Kuttner, Repertorium 26.