Becket was the best friend of Henry II who was king
of England. Thomas and Henry did everything together,
they went hunting, riding and feasting.
had a problem. He wanted to change the law. At the
time any ordinary person
who committed a crime such as murder would
go on trial and could be sentenced to death. But if
you were a priest all you had to say was, 'I am innocent',
and you would go free. Henry wanted the priests to
go on trial but the Pope would not let this happen.
made his friend Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury,
hoping that Thomas would change the law, but Thomas
wouldn't . Henry and Thomas had a big argument
and Becket ran away to France.
Henry went to France to make peace because
he still wanted to be friends with Thomas.
came back to England but he still would not allow
the priests to be put on trial. He also excommunicated
some of the priests who supported the King. This made
Henry very angry and he shouted, 'Who will rid me
of this priest ?'
knights had been listening at the door they thought
the king wanted Thomas Becket killed so they went
to Canterbury Cathedral where Thomas was praying.
There in the Cathedral on 29th December 1170 they
murdered Thomas Becket.
was very sad when he heard what had happened he did
not blame the knights he blamed himself. To show how
sad he was , he walked barefoot though Canterbury
while some monks whipped his back.
Thomas Becket was made a saint and the priests
were still not
put on trial.