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Born in Brittany, died at Marmoutiers, 23 May, 1124. For a time he was Archdeacon of Nantes, but renounced this dignity and became a monk at the Benedictine monastery of Marmoutiers. In 1105 he was elected successor to the deceased Abbot Hilgotus. Archbishop Rudolph II of Tours, who on various occasions had violated the privileges of Marmoutiers, refused to acknowledge William as abbot or to give him the abbatial benediction unless he would not only swear allegiance to him but also confirm his oath by placing his right hand in that of the archbishop. William was willing to do the former but would not yield to the latter. St. Ivo, Bishop of Chartres, in a letter to Paschal II (P.L., CLXII, 126-7), sided with the abbot. William went to Rome and received abbatial benediction from Paschal himself. It seems that, through the intervention of St. Ivo and a few other bishops, the abbot and the Archbishop of Tours were reconciled about 1115 (see Ivo's epistle to William, in P.L., CLXII, 236-7), and to Rudolph, 237-8). In 1106 William took part in the synod of Poitiers, and in 1107 he received the Abbey of Cellen-Brie from the Bishop of Meaux.

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