Lord Habgood, who was Archbishop of York and second in the Church of England hierarchy for 12 years until 1995, was the most outspoken and effective ecclesiastical figure of his age.
Dr John Sentamu said: "His towering presence, physical, intellectual, and spiritual, was a gift to all who knew him.
"My prayers are with his family at this time. May he rest in peace, and rise in glory."
He went on: "As a hugely distinguished scientist, theologian and philosopher, Archbishop Habgood's faith in Christ gave him a particular perspective and a persuasive witness both to church and nation for his time. His many books simplified big and complex questions, revealing an incredibly perceptive intellect.
"I'm very glad to have confirmed his grandchildren and dedicated a room in his honour at Bishopthorpe Palace."
Lord Habgood (pictured above, right, inside York Minster with Her Majesty the Queen) was a key exponent of Christian faith and morals in a secular age.
A statement following the death of the former Archbishop of York, John Habgood can be read at https://t.co/EbWi5FMYMR— John Sentamu (@JohnSentamu) March 7, 2019
With his scientific background, he regarded many of the stories on which Christian doctrines are based as being true allegorically rather than literally.
As a scientist he had difficulty in asserting the literal truth of supernatural events said to have occurred long ago, in times even more credulous than today.
Dr John Sentamu
And his sensitive handling of the situation created by the ordination of women - in which he believed - won him the admiration even of former critics.
Stay up to date with the latest news stories from a Christian perspective. Sign up to our daily newsletter and receive more stories like this straight to your inbox every morning.
Tell us what you think about our news service, what you want and how Premier fits into your news landscape. Take our quick survey!