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In 1216, the castle fell to Louis, Dauphin of France and Hildebrand's Hospital was founded, followed ten years later by the Franciscan Friary and Dominican Friary. It has the distinction of being the only English city ever to be excommunicated, following a riot between citizens and monks in 1274. Wool made England rich, and the staple port of Norwich "in her state doth stand With towns of high'st regard the fourth of all the land", as Michael Drayton noted in Poly-Olbion (1612).The Great Hospital dates from 1249 and the College of St Mary in the Field from 1250. As a penance, St Ethelbert's Gate, one of the entrances to the cathedral priory, was constructed by Norwich citizens. The wealth generated by the wool trade throughout the Middle Ages financed the construction of many fine churches, so that Norwich still has more medieval churches than any other city in Western Europe north of the Alps.At the time of the Norman Conquest the city was one of the largest in England.
Between 924 and 939, Norwich became fully established as a town, with its own mint.Herbert de Losinga then moved his See there to what became the cathedral church for the Diocese of Norwich. Norwich received a royal charter from Henry II in 1158, and another one from Richard the Lionheart in 1194.Following a riot in the city in 1274, Norwich has the distinction of being the only complete English city to be excommunicated by the Pope.At the site of a medieval well, the bones of 17 individuals, including 11 children, were found in 2004 by workers preparing the ground for construction of a Norwich shopping centre.The remains were determined by forensic scientists to be most probably the remains of such murdered Jews, and a DNA expert determined that the victims were all related, so that they most probably came from one Ashkenazi Jewish family. The engine of trade was wool from Norfolk's sheepwalks.