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This inhibition is printed only i...William TaylorPaul Craw and Thomas of RennesEleanor CobhamInvention of PrintingReginald PecockJohn de Wesalia and Sixtus IVIn the 1563 edition, Foxe printed...Johann Ruceruth von Wesel should ...This narrative of Ruceruth's tria...I.e., Ruceruth believed that the ...The following quotation is from O...This entire quotation, regarding ...Foxe had an account of Savanorol...This is a prejorative term for pr...The first eight of these articles...The statement that Savanorola pro...The description of the learned me...This brief mention of Philip Nori...John Bale, Foxe's source for his ...This list of grievances is transl...Advowson is the English term - in...First fruits are an English term ...This list of remedies for the gri...I.e., Mainz....This 'advertisement' (or warning)...This decree asserted the sole rig...This exhortation to Maximilian fr...I.e., courtiers....This is the celebrated humanist J...Maximilian's edict is translated ...I.e., Innsbruck....This letter from Jacob Wimpheling...Richard HunA copy of the document (unknown t...The details and background to Hun...It is far more likely that Dryffe...This statement assumes that the c...Prophecies preceeding LutherThe following extracts from the w...The stories of Alexander VI's dea...The portents in 1505 and 1516 com...I.e., caps...These anticlerical proverbs and q...Foxe's meaning is obscured by his...See 1583, ...Foxe is quoting an anticlerical t...Martin LutherJohann von Staupitz (c. 1460-1525...In the 1570 edition Foxe amended ...Foxe (repeating Melanchthon) is d...Unquestionably Frederick the Wise...This whole account of Erasmus's o...In the 1570 edition, Foxe replace...Again, we can see here Melanchtho...This is an important statement of...This is an oblique rebuttal of th...I.e., Thomas Münzer (var: Müntz...This is a direct rebuttal of the ...This refers to epicure or epicure...John 14:15....St Albertus Magnus (c.1200-1280),...Johannes Duns Scotus (c. 1264-130...The first sentence, on Luther's l...I.e., Eisleben....All of the material from here dow...By 'sententiaries', Foxe is refer...Luther showed a marked preference...Adrian VIThis is a sharply abridged transl...Foxe drew this brief narrative of...Final years of LutherThis is taken fro...This is taken from This prayer is Foxe's own composi...1 Cor. 10: 31....Psalm 122:6; the verse actually r...Swiss ReformationGerman martyrsCrespin's account glosses these v...The narrative of the bookseller i...The ecclesiastical and political ...In this encounter, Jacques Reynau...This passage follows closely Cres...The lengthy and detailed confessi...Foxe follows closely here the nar...Here, Foxe refers to the arrival ...The execution of the letters pate...This notorious ...For the story of the Bishop's ban...Merindol and CabriersThis story first appeared in the ...For the Vaudois settlement in and...Patrick HamiltonHamilton was the illegitimate son...II Timothy 3:12....Thomas WolseyThis refers to the 'paralipomena'...Thomas BilneyWolsey's examination of Latimer, ...It had been illegal to preach or ...The date of any previous conversa...Bilney's attempt to persuade Bish...The actual number of letters that...The book Bilney was reading was t...The sentence that matters here is...Bilney's attempt to persuade Bish...The actual number of letters that...Thomas Bilney proceeded to the de...The book Bilney was reading was t...The sentence that matters here is...The famous preacher Bilney mentio...To write that Christ is our only ...For the practice of burying the d...The famous pilgrimage shrines to ...The interesting details of these ...Bilney was accused of preaching a...Details concerning the identity a...To `wrast' scripture: the past t...Foxe is our chief source of infor...4 December 1527. Cuthbert Tunstal...5 December 1527. It should be no...Among the thirty witnesses that B...Dr. Robert Foreman of Queen's Col...In after years, Latimer recommend...Although the London parish of St....For the association of the crucif...See also Guildhall Library, MS 95...Thomas Garrett or Garrard was ass...Latimer's First Sermon on the Lor...Hugh Latimer's famous account of ...Thomas Thirlby, the future bishop...Foxe here compares Bilney with Ch...The place where the Anchoress was...Foxe tells us here that Bilney ga...John Byrd was born in Coventry, a...Nicholas Shaxton was bishop of Sa...West Acre is in Norfolk and had a...Nicholas Shaxton had preached a u...The date of Shaxton's marriage is...The Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge ...Hugh Latimer became University Ch...For Dr. Nicholas Wilson's extensi...It had been illegal to preach or ...28 November 1527. Tunstall, West...2 December 1527. Despite `the sam...The records of Bilney's and Arthu...All traveling preachers, whether ...For Arthur to preach that `euerye...For the crosses on the walls of L...Luther argued in For Arthur to preach that 'euerye...Bilney and Thomas Arthur went pre...Among the other examiners whom Fo...The actual number of letters that...The records of Bilney's and Arthu...The target of the bishops' inquir...The reading of the Bible in the v...The reference here to wooden `bea...Translations of the Bible into En...Bilney was issued a license to pr...For Bilney's 'manner of qualifyin...Foxe was deliberately obscure her...Robert Barnes had shocked the uni...Bilney's opinion that the saints ...Translations of the Bible into En...The records of Bilney's and Arthu...Among the other examiners whom Fo...In the winter of 1527 Jack Roo ha...No doubt as a result of his treat...Fish had been arrested in London ...James Bainham was a lawyer of Mid...It is difficult to pin down preci...Supplication of BeggersThis refers to the great Mortmain is a legal condition in ...This is one of Fish's theological...Fish here rejects the sale of ind...Matthew 22.21....John Alen was very active in the ...The Supplicatio...A summoner was a minor church off...At the time (c.1526) under Henry ...These are parliamentary grants of...This refers to one of two possibl...Fish relates here the essential d...This is part and parcel of Fish's...At this point in the treatise, Fi...In October 1527, according to Le ...Foxe then continues with a select...Included in Foxe's list at this p...Here the list includes three Mart...The list continues with seven wor...The list continues with some of t...The list then includes some of th...The final treatises mentioned on ...Foxe inserted this passage in the...There was certainly no scarcity o...The works mentioned in this list ...There were a number of lists of i...Here Foxe lists further Luther pa...Foxe then lists a large selection...Foxe follows with a block of seve...This section is a number of treat...Mentioned here are two works of C...Tunstall's anti-heresy edictsLondon evangelical martyrsFoxe's account presents difficult...The coal house of the bishop of L...Thomas Patmore, of Much Hadham. ...The articles charged against Bayf...Richard Foxford was chancellor an...As a former monk, Bayfield was in...The statute referred to is 'De ha...I.e. a letter of requirement or c...This was part of the ceremony of ...This account of More torturing Te...This is one of the works of Willi...Tewkesbury was, in fact, tried at...Foxe's sudden desire for brevity ...This is an indication that More w...This is a work by William Tyndale...This document must have come from...According to English law, a heret...This material on Bayfield's backg...Foxe printed this account of John...Foxe's wife was Agnes Randall; Jo...Foxe has a terse report in the It appears that Foxe's account of...A. G. Dickens guessed that 'Bears...It appears that Foxe's account of...Unsurprisingly, there was probabl...Manchet was the finest kind of wh...In a letter Edward Freese sent to...Valentine Freese had been arreste...This is William Roy, the evangeli...Foxe's source for this letter is...I.e., More can be eloquent in Eng...I.e. 'Andabates' or heavily-armou...Foxe's first account of James Bai...Although Foxe does not say so, it...On Laurence Maxwell see This account of Bainham's executi...This story came from Edward Hall,...Edmund Rougham. In 1545, now app...Robert Barnes attended the Univer...I.e. in the abbey of Bury St. Edm...This must have taken place before...Dovercourt roodThis one of a number of indicatio...It is clear from Foxe's note that...John FrithFoxe does not go into the chain o...Frith had published two books in ...According to William Gordon (refe...Holt, seemingly a part of More's ...This refers to the earlier More t...Foxe refers here specifically to ...References are to I Corinthians 1...Foxe's examination of Frith's wor...For perhaps obvious reasons, Foxe...Foxe refers here to Frith's Foxe is too ready to place Frith ...Foxe here refers to Thomas Cranme...This refers to Frith's Rastell's book of 1530 had been i...Foxe is probably making a veiled ...Foxe here refers to a work of Rob...The treatise referred to here may...Foxe is here making an adiaphoric...Foxe is making another reference ...Foxe is here taking up the point ...Actually, John Rastel was married...This refers to the Abbey of St Fr...Foxe constricts the chronology of...Foxe here almost directly lifts t...This is largely a close paraphras...This is largely a close paraphras...This is largely a close paraphras...This is largely a close paraphras...This is largely a close paraphras...Foxe's description of Frith's tri...This is the judgement of Bishop S...The other men mentioned here are ...This is Foxe's description of Fri...The Latin text is omitted in subs...John Martin was a scribe in mayor...John Stokesley was provided to th...Foxe is suggesting here that Will...Huet must have been rather naïve...John Tibald (Tybal) was a Luthera...Stokesley's chancellor and vicar-...There were two prison-towers in L...Chapman was eventually freed thro...Clarke died in the custody of Bis...Huet's examination before Stokesl...Foxe provides here some details o...Foxe mentioned Dr John Coke here,...Frith was released from imprisonm...There may be more to the story he...The earliest translation of Homer...This would be October 1532. Frith...The account which follows is word...William Tracy was a prominent mem...Foxe (following Hall's chronicle)...I.e., Parker, the chancellor of t...Matthew Parker, the chancellor of...Job 19: 25....I.e., the health....It is this statement, declaring t...Mark 16: 16....Tracy's lack of concern over his ...Matthew 25: 35....Matthew 25: 45....This is a rather free reading of ...London abjurations in 1528James Bainham was later burned in...Margaret Bowgas had been forced t...The names on this list - from her...Interestingly, this is Foxe's onl...All of the names on this list, th...This is John Harrydance, a London...The following names were forced t...Peterson and Gosson were imprison...'housled and shriven'; i.e., havi...John Goodale had been imprisoned ...John Hacker was an extraordinaril...This is an exaggeration. When Fo...This is Robert Bates of Colcheste...William Blomefield. Almost certa...Henry Fasted of Colchester. This...Thomas Patmore of Much Hadham. S...This is a mistake. Thomas Eve wa...Henry VIII delivered this oration...More's speech and these related e...The faculty of decrees or the law...The law faculty of the university...This is the proclamation of 1531 ...This is the exact text of the pro...This is Simon Fish,Foxe is here discussing three rel...Foxe's analysis of the reception ...In the 1563 edition, Foxe replica...Foxe's analysis of events after J...Foxe was raising here a valid que...This is a truncated version of th...Foxe refers here to the famous, a...The pope was in Bologna at this t...Foxe is referring to the second s...Foxe seems to be exaggerating the...Henry VIII's divorceRoyal SupremacyFoxe notes this as Matthew 18 but...In his treatise Luke 22.32....The bishops argue this was meant ...John 21.17. The stress of the ver...With reference to 1 Peter 5.2-4 t...This refers to Acts 20.28. Where ...The two bishops find the key word...The implication of the statement ...This refers to Acts 10.11-15 &...Wilkins (Concil...The bishops are raising a controv...This refers to St Ambrose (c.340-...The quote is taken from 'De Spiri...This refers to St Cyprian (d.258)...This comes from Cyprian's treatis...This comes from Jerome's treatise...The bishops were making an argume...The bishops here refer to Eusebiu...More evidence from the treatise o...The bishops here refer to the fac...This may refer to Cyprian's epist...Cyprian's third epistle (Epistle ...The bishops are referring here to...An anti-Trinitarian sect condemne...The bishops refer here to Pope St...Matthew 28.19....The entire epistle is a vindicati...Isaiah 2.3....This begins a section devoted to ...In his Pro Eccl...I Samuel 15.17....The bishops are drawing a logical...Ezekiel 3.17. This carries on bot...This is a reference to St Augusti...Matthew 18.20....Matthew 28.20....The bishops are discussing the el...The bishops are referring to epis...This refers back to the events of...The quote is taken from 'Epistola...Pole was created cardinal-deacon ...Chrysostom had written extensivel...This refers to Tertullian, The bishops here refer to Tertull...The bishops are referring to Theo...Distillation of the message of Ro...These quotes are I Chronicles 28....I Chronicles 16.7....This refers to Jehoshaphat, king ...Commentary from the book of Ezeki...This refers to King Josias, who r...Foxe leaves a great deal out of t...This is the argument at The council of Chalcedon was summ...There appears to be some confusio...The sixth great general council o...This refers to the letter of Agat...I Peter 2.13-14....Romans 13.1....The letter can be found at This is very much a key statement...The parable of the prodigal son c...There is actually no evidence tha...This is a reference to Acts 19: 2...This a reference to William Tynda...I.e., the king of England.The English House at Antwerp enjo...A tangled series of events follow...I.e., Flemish...I.e., Hallowtide or All Hallows d...This is a hint that Thomas Poyntz...In other words, the Imperial auth...In the 1563 edition, Foxe declare...1 Peter 2: 20....1 John 3: 16....Matt. 5: 11-12....Romans 8: 13, Phil. 3: 21.Matt. 10: 22....This would be the New Testament o...9 May 1533....In other words, Frith's wife appr...This is, of course, Erasmus's cel...Tyndale, in this letter, is urgin...I.e., the Lutherans....In other words, if the French con...In other words, if George Joye re...In his marginal note to this pass...Events of 1536-8I.e., the Ten Articles: in the Co...I.e., the Lord's Prayer.This provision, mandating that ev...I.e., by 1 August 1537....These are the second Royal Injunc...I.e. Easter 1539....Diarmaid MacCulloch observes that...John ForrestDuring his trial, Forest admitted...It is interesting to compare this...Foxe is deriving this spelling, o...Peter Marshall notes that this pr...These verses are part of the 'Fan...What to modern readers was a perf...The accusation that Forest was a ...John LambertThe reference is to Thomas Becket...I.e., the shrine of St. James in ...The Venerable Bede was never a sa...This is a reference to an earlier...See the book of Philemon in the N...The text is not, in reality, from...I.e., Germany....I.e., Judgement Day....The Stocks was a market in centra...Lambert's trial before Henry VIII...This oration to Henry VIII was dr...It is highly unlikely that Cromwe...See Ephesians 5:2; this is a comm...Foxe does not mention that Lamber...This took place in 1532.Foxe is the only source for the a...In legend, Sardanopalus was the l...Lambert is having to quote author...Matthew 26: 15. On Simon Magus, ...There are several conflicting acc...In the RerumWilliam Cowbridge's father was na...There is a letter written in 1536...It was very unusual for the charg......Packington was murdered on 13 Nov...This account simply repeats what ...In the 1570 edition, Foxe removed...The details of Packington's murde...Hall stated that Packington went ...In the RerumThe evidence would point to Colli...Act of Six ArticlesThe text of the articles is taken...Foxe notes quite correctly that t...From here until p. 593 Foxe quote...The end of Foxe's quotation from ...1539. The parliament opened on 28...Thomas CromwellThis is St. Michael's Mount in Co...St. Osyth...John Shorne was rector of North M...The abbey of St Saviour in Bermon...The rood in the parish church of ...I.e., arms....I.e., the shrine of Our Lady of W...I.e., a wallet....On 22 May 1538, the rood in St. M...I.e., an idol....It was a great pity....This is another reference to the ...In the RerumSee 2 Kings 10....Marcus Furius Camillus was credit...Marcus Tullius Cicero, the most f...I.e., leopard....Matt. 15:13....This detailed account of a vice-g...This syllogism is Foxe's addition...This marks the end of Alexander A...This is a reference to the Rood o...Cromwell's commissioners found th...In 1563, F...Cromwell's scaffold speech and pr...This ballad was written by Willia...I.e., the Ten Commandments.I.e., to the shrine of the Virgin...I.e., to the shrine of St. Thomas...I.e., to Southampton....In 1540, Bishop Hugh Latimer of W...Leominster, in Berkshire, where r...Waltham Abbey, in Essex, where a ...This is St. Erth, a village in Co...Bishop Hugh Latimer denounced ven...The reference to the painted post...To be deceived or tricked.Willesden, in Suffolk, the site o...The springs at Buxton were dedica...Great BibleBarnes, Garrett and JeromeBarnes' escape took place in 1528...Barnes' Vitae R...There were two, sharply differing...This scurrilous and occasionally ...In fact this embassy took place i...This sweeping description of the ...This embassy took place in 1539.This is a typical example of how ...So covertly, in fact, that Foxe h...This sweeping account, found only...A typical example of Foxe's chron...This refers to the execution of B...This passage, found only in The main source for the account o...Garret became curate at All Hallo...This detail is dropped in 'Hermann Bodius' (ps.: possibly M...In 1528 the Wednesday before Shro...This lengthy digression on Dalabe...The detail that this was Erasmus'...This chapter consists of Jesus' c...Garret was in fact apprehended on...The source for this list of names...Which is to say, Foxe knew nothin...An undergraduate....24 December 1525....This text, known as Barnes' This peculiar phrase refers to an...This appears to be a conflation o...Psalm 143:2....Psalm 130:3....This barbed word of 'forgiveness'...Foxe's own informants appear to b...1540....Barnes' abjuration took place on ...Foxe's source for this episode is...A much fuller account of Porter i...A particularly egregious example ...This list of individuals who abju...This account is taken almost verb...Mekins was burned on 30 July 1541...On the notoriety of the Mekins ca...Fire in OxfordSee Job 40: 6....This sentence, informing readers ...Democritus (born c. 460 BC) was a...John White, in another account of...Foxe is alluding to the story of ...I.e., Cardinal Lorenzo Campeggio,...St Mary's was the University chur...I.e., the wafer. This derisive p...This interesting passage, compari...Testwood, Filmer, Marbeck and PersonThis is a careless error, only th...Anthony Pearson (or Parson, Parso...Very probably this was a translat...The argument below closely follow...Foxe got this wrong since Marbeck...Persecution in CalaisIn the passages above, Foxe is pr...I.e., the martyr Thomas Garrett. ...This account of Sir Nicholas Care...Although Cromwell may not have ap...This is Edward Hall, the chronicl...I.e., Thomas Broke's oration, not...Actually Lord Lisle was a religio...This was in May 1539....Ralph Hare was a soldier in the C...As an MP, Broke was normally exem...In order to provide a link with t...The following comments on Peyton'...The following comment on Poole's ...The following stridently anti-cle...This parenthetical phrase was dro...The following passages were repla...Foxe’s wording here is vague; b...By ‘them’ Foxe now means the ...I.e., the week before Easter 1540...This is John Curwen, a royal chap...Lisle was arrested on 10 May 1540...Clement Philpot and Edmund Brynde...I.e., 'Sheer Thursday' or Maundy ...I.e., 26 March 1540....I.e., 29 March 1540....Lord Lisle died on 3 March 1542, ...I.e., 3 April 1540....I.e., no man of Broke's status wa...I.e., the gullet or the windpipe....The following anecdote about the ...I.e., 28 July 1540, not 1541....This passage, with its gratuitous...The fact that Damplip was execute...This pious admonition only appear...This incident must have happened ...This account first appeared in This clause was added to the acco...This verbose denunciation of the ...This paragraph, drawing moral les...Foxe drew all of his information ...John Heywood had been condemned t...Lord Lisle was Lord Deputy of Cal...In other words, Damplip preached ...Foxe's fondness for a pun is a li...Persecution in 1545Thomas Wentworth, first baron Wen...Edward Rougham had formerly been ...The following details were added ...Psalm 82: 8....Heb. 10:31....See Matthew 27: 51....Luke 19: 40....Edward Crome was forced to recant...This is one of a number of favour...This is the Monday of the Minor R...Kirby and Clarke were tried befor...Foxe is explaining the elevated s...William Foster was a lawyer, mino...Askew actually misrepresents Paul...Foxe omits, here, most of Askew's...David Whitehead was a well known ...John Frith (1503-33) was a Cambri...As Bonner makes clear, Askew's us...Proverbs 19 (19: 14) does not rea...Askew is here again indicating he...Standish's reference is to 1 Cori...Little is known about Anne Askew ...Whether or not Bonner implies, he...This 'circumstance' (or confessio...Foxe's insertion of Askew's confe...This was illegal....This is the end of the text compr...Askew's summons to appear before ...In the first two editions of the ...The Lord Chancellor (whom Foxe ca...A 'quest' is a Grand Jury. The p...The Bishop of Winchester, Stephen...Both Lisle and Essex were known e...Askew's retort to Wriothesley, in...Askew's desire to see Hugh Latime...'Bell' is Ba'al....This is an error; as Bale's editi...Askew's denial of the Real Presen...Askew is visited by (solicitor-ge...Prior to putting Askew on the rac...Askew's reference to St Stephen (...It is clear that news of Askew's ...This is a reference to the Apostl...Foxe again adds to the informatio...John Lascelles's letter is not in...Askew's answer here implies that ...The King's Book...In refusing to speak to the pries...The issue of private masses (mass...The identity of the lord mayor in...Proclamation of 1546Matthew 16:18...John 1:42....Genesis 17:5....Matthew 27:69 and parallels.John 21:15-17...I Peter 5:2....Luke 17:10...Isaiah 64:6...Matthew 25:1-13....Colossians 1:24....Hebrews 13:4...I Corinthians 7:2....I Timothy 3:2, 12....I Timothy 4:3....John 2:1-10....I Corinthians 9:5....John 11:49-51....John 10:7....This account of the articles agai...John 4:23....Hebrews 10:12-14....John 19:30....I Corinthians 1:30....Numbers 18:20....Luke 9:46; 22:24-26....Luke 12:13-14....John 8:11....Daniel 14:22; I Kings 18:40.Joshua 23:6....In fact, Borthwick did not appear...Deuteronomy 12:32....Deuteronomy 30:15-16....Deuteronomy 17:11....Malachi 2:4, 6...Ezekiel 33:7....Jeremiah 23:28....Matthew 28:19-20...II Corinthians 1:24....Romans 10:17....John 7:16....John Winram was Foxe's likely inf...Acts 15:19-29...Acts 15:10....Matthew 23:2-3....Isaiah 5:20-1....II Kings 23....'Hermann Bodius' (ps.: possibly M...Acts 15:6-22...This account of George Wishart's ...The parable of the wheat and the ...Titus 1:7....That is, since his return from En...A statement reflecting the fact t...I Peter 5:1-2...Acts 5:29....Malachi 2:2....Psalm 32:5....James 5:16....Revelation 1:6; 5:10....I Peter 2:9....Romans 1:16....John 8:34, 36....Titus 1:15....A deliberate echo of Matthew 27:6...Likely a reference to Numbers 11:...John 10:7-10....Matthew 19:12....I Kings 8:27....Job 11:8-9....John 16:2....John Winram, who had preached ear...Acts 8:14....Death of Henry VIIINotice that in this conclusion, p...This section listing prominent ev...Sir Anthony Denny was the Chief G...Henry VIII died on 28 January 154...Egbert and his successorsUlrich of Augsberg letterThe Danish Invasions to Alfred the GreatWhen it came to enumerating the '...For this passage, relating Alfred...Foxe's account of King Alfred's g...Foxe's lengthiest passage on King...For the death of Alfred, Foxe use...The final epitaphs to the king we...Alfred the GreatPapal SchismsFoxe's use of his sources here wa...The introduction of the monastic ...Foxe's account of Dunstan comes i...Foxe's account of Odo, Archbishop...Foxe's account of the death of Ki...Foxe's sources for the reign of K...Foxe's description of the victory...Foxe is prepare to admit that man...Foxe had gained most of his detai...Foxe's brief evocation of how Eth...Foxe's account of the drowning of...Foxe used Matthew Paris' The source mentioned here is the ...Edward the Elder to EdgarThe description of King Edgar's c...Foxe's critical treatment of the ...Foxe's account of the rise of the...Foxe's preferred source for the m...Foxe's source for this increasing...Foxe's elaboration on the dream w...Foxe's sources for the early care...Foxe mentions an elaborate range ...Foxe takes the positive elements ...Foxe's assessment of King Edgar n...Foxe's narrative of the penance f...Foxe was anxious to demonstrate t...Foxe's account of the controversy...Edgar and Edward the MartyrFoxe's account of Ethelred's life...Foxe's narrative of the reign of ...Foxe constructs his favourable pi...For the coronation of Harold and ...Ethelred through HaroldPope Sylvester to the end of Book III
Commentary on the Text for Book 3

This inhibition is printed only in the 1563 edition, on p. 507.

1563 Edition, page 563[Back to Top]
William Taylor

In the Commentarii (fos. 81v-82r), there is a brief account of William Taylor, stating that he was an M.A. of Oxford and a follower of Wiclif, and that he recanted his beliefs, but returned to them and was burned as a relapsed heretic in Smithfield. This account was taken word-for-word from a note by Bale in the Fasciculus Zizanniorum (Bodley Library MS e Musaeo 86, fo. 97r-v). This note was repeated in the Rerum (p. 72) and in the 1563 edition. In the 1570 edition, Foxe replaced this account with a much more detailed narrative covering Taylor's examination by convocation in May 1421, his sentence of perpetual imprisonment, his re-examination as a relapse, a summary and citation from his offending treatise and a description of his degradation. All of this is a summary of The Register of Henry Chichele, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1414-1443, ed. E. F. Jacob, Canterbury and York Society, 3 vols (Oxford, 1945), III, pp. 157-73. The 1570 account of Taylor was reprinted without change in the 1576 and 1583 editions.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 399[Back to Top]
Paul Craw and Thomas of Rennes

Between his account of the persecution of Lollards in the diocese of Norwich in 1428-31 and his account of the council of Basel, Foxe gives the accounts of several diverse individuals punished for heresy during the second and third decades of the fifteenth century. All of Foxe's information on these martyrs came from John Bale in one form or another. Foxe first printed the accounts of Thomas Bagley, Paul Krǎvar (or Craw) and Thomas of Rennes in his Commentarii (fos. 83r-90r) and reprinted this material without change in the Rerum (pp. 72-5). Apart from a Latin poem praising Thomas of Rennes, which was dropped, this material was translated and reprinted in every edition of the Acts and Monuments. Each of these accounts was taken, virtually word-for-word, from John Bale's notes in Bodley MS e Musaeo, fos. 63r-v and 293r-v. The list of martyrs burned in German territories in the 1420s was added in the 1570 edition and it was taken entirely from John Bale's Catalogus (p. 564). The brief note on Eugenius IV was also added in 1570 and it was also taken from Bale's Catalogus (p. 548). These brief accounts were of use to Foxe in two respects. In the first place, they served to underline a point dear to Foxe's heart: that the faithful members of the True Church existed throughout Christendom. And, secondly, it allowed Foxe to picture the persecution of these faithful as continuing without let-up through the final centuries of the world.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 412[Back to Top]
Eleanor Cobham

In his Catalogus, Bale gave an account of a 'Roger Onley', a chaplain to Eleanor Cobham, the wife of Duke Humphrey of Gloucester. Bale described 'Onley' as an Oxford graduate, who became a Lollard. The clergy, because he was a Lollard, and because they hated Gloucester, falsely accused 'Onley' and the duchess of Gloucester of sorcery. 'Onley' and certain others were hanged, drawn and quartered. Eleanor Cobham was tried by an ecclesiastical tribunal and imprisoned for the rest of her life (Catalogus, pp. 584-5). The individual whom Bale identified as Roger Onley was, in fact, Roger Bolingbroke, the principal of St Andrew's Hall, Oxford. (One of Bale's sources, the chronicle of John Hardyng, misidentified Bolingbroke as Onley). Bale's account was, moreover, highly tendentious. Eleanor Cobham had, in fact, dabbled in astrology in an effort to find out when her husband (the heir to the childless Henry VI) might become king. Cobham also obtained love potions from one Margery Jourdemane, a reputed witch, whom Bale failed to mention. (For an account of the episode see R. A. Griffiths, 'The Trial of Eleanor Cobham', Bulletin of the John Rylands Library 51 [1968-9], pp. 381-99). Most importantly, no medieval source gives the slightest hint that Bolingbroke and Cobham were, as Bale claimed, Lollards. This is based solely on Bale's assumption, stemming from his desire to see proto-Protestants throughout the Middle Ages, that anyone condemned by an ecclesiastical tribunal was a Lollard or a Protestant avant la lettre. Bale simply ignored detailed descriptions of Cobham's sorcery and the inconvenient involvement of Jourdemane.

Foxe first printed an account of this incident, based solely on Bale, in the Rerum (p. 116). Foxe, however, added an important error of his own. He stated that Onley (or Bolingbroke), was a knight, while Bale (and Bale's sources) are clear that he was a cleric. Foxe repeated his brief account of Onley and Cobnam in the 1563 edition. The combination of Bale's and Foxe's errors provided Nicholas Harpsfield, Foxe's most important contemporary critic, with an invaluable opportunity to discredit Foxe. Harpsfield seized upon it with alacrity. Harpsfield pointed out that Onley was not a knight and that he was really Roger Bolingbroke. He also made something of Foxe's mention of a woman, the mother of Lady Young, whose account appeared in the 1563 edition (just after that of Cobham and 'Onley') and made his own mistaken assumption: that the mother of Lady Young was actually Margery Jourdemane. (The mother of Lady Young was actually Joan Boughton, who was executed in 1494; see The Great Chronicle of London, ed. A. H. Thomas and I. D. Thornley [London, 1938], p. 252. Boughton was the mother-in-law of Sir John Young, a mayor of London). Harpsfield also pointed out that no source claimed that Cobham, Bolingbroke and Jourdemane were heretics. Rather all were agreed that they were convicted of sorcery (Dialogi sex, pp. 830-1).

In the 1570 edition, Foxe responded to Harpsfield. He conceded that he was incorrect about Onley/Bolingbroke having been a knight, but that was his only concession. The 1570 account of Cobham, including Foxe's response to Harpsfield, was repeated, without change, in subsequent editions.

Thomas S. Freeman,
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 423[Back to Top]
Invention of Printing

Foxe's account of the invention of printing is one of the most famous and often-quoted sections of the Acts and Monuments. However, most citations of it and quotations from it, fail to appreciate a crucial dimension to these passages: Foxe saw the invention of printing as a milestone in the unfolding of the end times. In the 1563 edition (p. 362), Foxe printed a declaration that the invention of printing had been prophesied by the Sibyls. This declaration was never reprinted, but was replaced in a much longer and more detailed account in the 1570 edition. Although no mention was made of the Sibyls in the revised account, Foxe insisted on the providential timing of the invention, which he saw as a divine response to the burnings of Jan Hus and Jerome of Prague. Foxe never lost his belief in the apocalyptic significance of printing. In his commentary on Revelation, he maintained that the invention of printing had been prophesied by St. John (See John Foxe, Eicasmi seu meditationes in sacram Apocalypsim [London, 1587}, STC 11237, p. 107). Foxe's narrative of the invention of printing contains a great deal that was his own opinion and his own writing - including the well-known passage that printing-presses were blockhouses against the Castel St Angelo. He also provided the first account of Gutenberg and the invention of printing in English. Foxe drew this material from two sources. The first was a treatise, De typographiae inventione by the Lutheran reformer, Matthaeus Judex. This provided almost all of Foxe's narrative of Gutenberg, Schaeffer and Faust. (See Matthaeus Judex, De typographiae inventione [Copenhagen, 1566], pp. 14 and 29). The citations of Wimpheling and Ziegler came fom Caspar Hedio's continuation of the chronicle attributed to Conrad of Lichtenau, the abbot of Ursperg. Also from Hedio is the material on John Mentell, Ulrich Han and the Latin poems in this account. (See Abbatis Urspergensis Chronicum, ed. Caspar Hedio [Basel, 1569], pp. 403-4).

Thomas S. Freeman

1563 Edition, page 414[Back to Top]
Reginald Pecock

It is profoundly ironic that Bishop Reginald Pecock, who devoted a great deal of time and effort to combatting the Lollards in print, should have been enshrined by Foxe as a proto-Protestant. The reason for this, however, is clear: following Bale, Foxe assumed that anyone condemned for heresy during the Middle Ages must have been one of the numerous hidden members of the True Church that that existed before Luther. As a bishop and a university trained scholar, Pecock was a particularly valuable individual for Foxe to appropriate.

Foxe's first account of Pecock was printed in his Commentarii. It began with long passages of Foxean rhetoric on the tyranny of the Roman Church, the existence of a godly remnant who did not bow their knees to Baal and the theology of the Eucharist (fos. 157r-168v). This was followed by copy of a letter from Thomas Bourchier, the archbishop of Canterbury, forbidding discussion of Pecock's case while it was still sub judice (fos. 169r-171r). There is no other surviving copy of this document, and how Foxe obtained it is a matter for speculation, but it gives every appearance of being genuine. This followed by a version of a recantation that Pecock made at Paul's Cross on 4 December 1457 (fos. 171r-172r). With one important exception, Foxe's version of this conforms to the other known versions of this document. No other surviving copy of the recantation contains Pecock's denial that it was necessary to believe that Christ's body was materially in the sacrament and it is safe to assume that this was Foxe's invention. The Commentarii account of Pecock then concludes with Foxe's declaration that Pecock's recantation must have been coerced and insincere, since he was imprisoned (fos. 172r-173r). However, over 50 pages later, Foxe printed a 'Collectanea quaedam ex Reginaldi Pecocki Episcopi opusculis exustis conservata, ex antiquo psegmate transcripta'(fos. 199r-203v). This was a series of articles, apparently - from Foxe's description - copied out of an 'ancient' manuscript fragment. Foxe identified the first article as coming from Pecock's The Book of Signs, a work now lost. The remaining eleven articles are all drawn from Pecock's Book of Faith; although they are abridgements, they do reflect fairly accurately what Pecock does say in portions of his text (cf. Reginald Pecock, Reginald Pecock's Book of Faith, ed. J. L. Morison [Glasgow, 1909], pp. 264-66, 287-91, 302-3, 283-6, 112-14, 222-9, 234-5, 161-2, 147-8, 148-9 and 149-50).

In the Rerum, the account of Pecock was repeated (pp. 109-16), but the 'Collectanea' was dropped, never to be reprinted. In the 1563 edition, the Rerum account was faithfully translated and reprinted. In the 1570 edition Foxe retained Bourchier's letter and Pecock's recantation, but dropped the rest of his earlier account of Pecock. However, Foxe added a summary of the charges against Pecock which was entirely taken from Bale's Catalogus (p. 595), even the attack on Polydore Vergil at the conclusion. The 1570 account of Pecock was reprinted, without change, in the 1576 and 1583 editions.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 415[Back to Top]
John de Wesalia and Sixtus IV

Foxe first related the history of Johann Ruceruth of Wesel in the 1563 edition. This narrative was based on based on the documents of Ruceruth's trial, printed in Ortwin Gratius, Fasciculi rerum expetendarum et fugiendarum and the account of Ruceruth in Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis. In the 1563 edition, Foxe also had a brief account of Sixtus IV, which was based on John Bale's Catalogus, pp. 602-3 and 625-5. This account briefly mentioned Sixtus's sponsorship of the Rosary of the Psalter of Our Lady, but largely emphasized the pope's alleged liscensing of brothels and his granting of indulgences for sodomy to his intimates. The account of Ruceruth was expanded in the 1570, with further material from Ortwin Gratius, in response to criticisms from Nicholas Harpsfield. Foxe also added a brief relation of a Franconian cowherd who was burned as a heretic in 1479; this was taken from Bale's Catalogus (p. 625). The account of Sixtus IV was greatly expanded in the 1570 edition with Foxe's denunciation of the devotions to the Vurgin Mary, which the pope had sponsored. None of this material was altered in subsequent editions. This section of the Acts and Monuments contains a number of what Foxe believed were features of the late medieval Church: the existence of a small remnant of members of the True Church in every region and from every background, their persecution by the False Church and the 'idolatry', sexual depravity, and 'superstition' which characterized it.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 448[Back to Top]

In the 1563 edition, Foxe printed an account of Alan de Rupe's founding of a rosary and a confraternity in honour of the Virgin Mary and of the vision which inspired it. Foxe drew this account from Bale, but (interestingly) was openly sceptical about it. By 1570, Foxe had checked Bale's source and found that Bale's report was accurate. (See Thomas S. Freeman, 'Offending God: John Foxe and English Protestant Reactions to the Cult of the Virgin Mary' in The Church and Mary, ed. R. N. Swanson, Studies in Church History 39 [Woodbridge, 2004], pp. 232-5).

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Johann Ruceruth von Wesel should not be confused with his similarly named contemporary, Wesel Gansfort. This mistake is particularly easy to make when reading the 1563 edition (p. 396)., where Foxe - repeating Matthias Flacius - calls the former 'Doctor Weselianus' and the latter 'Doctor Weselus' respectively.

1563 Edition, page 448[Back to Top]

This narrative of Ruceruth's trial is derived from Ortwin Gratius, Fasciculi rerum expetendarum et fugiendarum (Cologne, 1535), fos. 163r-167r and Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Strasbourg, 1562), p. 560.

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I.e., Ruceruth believed that the Holy Spirit proceeded from God the Father, but not Jesus Christ. As Foxe observes, the Greek Orthodox church held (and holds) the same opinion, but in the late medieval Catholic church, this belief was heresy.

1563 Edition, page 450[Back to Top]

The following quotation is from Ortwin Gratius Fasciculi rerum expetendarum et fugiendarum (Cologne, 1535), fo. 166v. The 'Paralipomena' to which Foxe is referring is Casper Hedio's continuation of Burchard of Ursperg's chronicle. In this case, Hedio is merely repeating passages from Gratius.

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This entire quotation, regarding contemporary disapproval of Ruceruth's trial, is taken directly from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Strasbourg, 1562), p. 560.

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Foxe had an account of Savanorola in his Commentari (fo. 177r-v)but this account is conflated from two sources. The first is the admiring accountof Philippe de Commynes, whose praise of Savanorola as a prophet who foresawthe future and who was dedicated to the reform of the Church, helped establishSavanorola as a proto-Protestant to the Reformers (see Philippe de Commynes,De Carlo Octavo…et bello Neapolitano Commentarii [Paris, 1561], pp. 105-7). The other source was the account of Savanorola in Matthias Flacius,Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 565.

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This is a prejorative term for priest.

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The first eight of these articles come from Matthias Flacius, Catalogustestium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 565. The remaining six are culled from the accountof Savanorola in Philippe de Commynes, De Carlo Octavo…et bello Neapolitano Commentarii [Paris, 1561], pp. 105-7, where they are not, however, presented as articles objected against Savanorola.

1563 Edition, page 424[Back to Top]

The statement that Savanorola prophesied the destruction of Florence and Rome and also the renewal of the Church comes from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 565; the claim that he prophesied thatthe Turks would convert to Christianity and that Charles VIII would cross the Alpsand conquer Italy comes from Philippe de Commynes, De Carlo Octavo…et belloNeapolitano Commentarii {Paris, 1561], pp. 106-7.

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The description of the learned men who hailed Savanorola as a prophet, including Commynes, is translated word-for-word from Matthias Flacius,Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 565.

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This brief mention of Philip Norice is based either on Bale's mentionof Norrice in his Catalogus (p. 608) or Bale's note on Norice in Bodley library MS e Musaeo 86, fo. 63v.

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John Bale, Foxe's source for his account of Norice, did not say that Norice was a professor or even that he taught at Oxford.

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This list of grievances is translated from Matthias Flacius, Catalogustestium veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 321-22.

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Advowson is the English term - inserted by Foxe - for an expective grace, a lien or claim upon a particular benefice

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First fruits are an English term for an annate, which is a tax of the entire first year's income upon the incoming holder of a benefice. But in England, first fruits were paid to the Crown, in Germany annates were paid to the Papacy.

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This list of remedies for the grievances is translated from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 322-23.

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I.e., Mainz.

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This 'advertisement' (or warning) to Maximilian I from the Germanestates is translated from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562),pp. 323-4.

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This decree asserted the sole right of princes to the revenues from churches in their territories.

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This exhortation to Maximilian from the German estates is translatedfrom Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 324.

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I.e., courtiers.

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This is the celebrated humanist Jacob Wimpheling.

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Maximilian's edict is translated from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 324-5.

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I.e., Innsbruck.

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This letter from Jacob Wimpheling to Maximilian is translated fromMatthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 326-7.

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Richard Hun

The case of Richard Hunne was notorious long before Foxe set pen to paper. It was a controversey that rocked both London and the English Church and an enormous amount of ink has been spilled over it, from the sixteenth century to the present. In the process, scholars have unearthed a great deal of information about the case and its background that was unknown to Foxe.

In March 1511, Richard Hunne's five-week-old son Stephen died at the house of hisnurse in Whitechapel. The child was buried in St. Mary Matfelon, the local church.Afterwards, the rector, Thomas Dryffeld demanded, as was his customary right, thechristening gown in which the boy's body was wrapped, as the mortuary fee. (A mortuary fee was a clerical tax which entitled the clergy to claim the most valuableitem among the deceased's possessions in return for conducting his or her funeral. Usually a monetary fee, negotiated by both sides, was paid in lieu of the item). Although the the fee Dryffeld demanded was customary, and Hunne who was wealthy, could easily afford it, Hunne refused to pay it. We know now - but Foxe had only an inkling of this - that this was only one of a number of conflicts thatHunne had had with the London clergy (see Brigden, London, pp. 98-99 for details).

Hunne's wife was born Anne Vincent and it is possible - although there is no proof ofthis - that she was a daughter or other relative of Thomas Vincent, a leading LondonLollard (Brigden, Lollard, p. 103). Whatever the truth of this, Hunne had, at a minimum, Lollard sympathies. One of the articles charged against him at his posthumous heresy trial was that he had declared that Joan Baker - who was forced todo public pennance for her outspokenly heretical beliefs in 1511 - held correct viewsand that the bishop of London was more worthy of punishment than Baker. Witnesses would later testify that Hunne owned forbidden Lollard works (John Fines,'The Post-Mortem Condemnation of Richard Hunne', JEH 78 [1963], pp. 528-31).

Thomas Dryffeld took Hunne to the Archbishop of Canterbury's court for the mortuary fee and the court ruled in his favour on 12 May 1512. On 27 December1512, Hunne left his own parish of Bridge Street, and attended vespers at St MaryMatfelon. Henry Marshall, Dryffeld's chaplain, denounced Hunne as accursed andstopped the service. Hunne sued Marshall for slander on 25 January 1513. Then, in Hilary term 1513, Hunne (who had still not paid the mortuary fee) brought a praemunire action brought against Dryffeld, Archbishop Warham and other clergyinvolved his case (S.C. F. Milsom, 'Richard Hunne's Praemunire', EHR 76 [1961],pp. 80-82. The Statute of Praemunire, among other things, made it treasonable totry a case in a church court which should have been tried in a royal court). In October1514, while the slander and praemunire cases were pending in King's Bench, Hunne was charged with heresy and taken to Lollard's Tower. On 2 December Hunne was examined by Bishop Fitzjames on charges of heresy. On 4 December his body wasdiscovered hanging from a beam in his cell. The church maintained that Hunne committed suicide. Yet there was widespread suspicion that Hunne had been murder-ed, particularly because one of Hunne's gaolers, Charles Joseph, fled and went into hiding on 10 December. A day later - very possibly in reaction to Joseph's flight - a posthumous heresy trial of Hunne began. Hunne was found guilty on 16 December and his body was burned at Smithfield four days later.

Meanwhile, in February 1515, the coroner's jury determined that Hunne had been murdered, and named William Horsey, Fitzjames's chancellor as well as Charles Joseph and Charles Spalding, Hunne's gaolers (and summoners for Bishop Fitzjames)as suspects. By early January, Joseph, who had taken sanctuary in Essex, was arrested and imprisoned in the Tower, along with Spalding. In April, Fitzjames ignited a political firestorm by writing a letter to the London civic authorities, accusing them of being maliciously determined to condemn his chancellor out of hand and defending Horsey's innocence. Fitzjames also pleaded with Wolsey to persuade the king to intervene and save Horsey. In November 1517, Henry VIII issued orderedthe Crown attorney to find Hunne not guilty (W. R. Cooper, 'Richard Hunne', Reformation 1 [1996], pp. 221-51). According to Thomas More, the indictments against Joseph and Spalding were also quashed by royal command (More, DialogueConcerning Heresies, CWTM, VI, 1, p. 326).

As a suicide and a condemned heretic, Hunne's property was forfeit. Attempts weremade to remedy for this. In 1515, two bills were introduced in Parliament: one torestore the propert Hunne forfeited as a heretic to his children and the other to have his death declared a murder. Both bills were defeated by the Lords. In May, 1523,however, Parliament did pass a bill restoring Hunne's property to his children. HenryVIII commanded Horsey to pay for the compensation to Hunne's family. As Hunne'sestate had been substantial (Foxe estimates it at around £1500, not counting jewelery and plate), this imposed a crippling financial burden on Horsey;.

The best accounts of the Hunne affair are Brigden, London, pp. 98-103, Cooper, 'Richard Hunne', pp. 221-51 and Peter Gwyn, The King's Cardinal: The Rise and Fall of Thomas Wolsey (London, 2002), pp. 34-41. Cooper believes that Hunne was murdered and Gwyn argues that he was a suicide. Richard Marius has also forcefullyargued that Hunne was murdered, although his discussion contains some significant factual errors (Richard Marius, Thomas More [London, 1984], pp. 123-41).

Foxe's first account of the Hunne affair is in the Rerum. This is drawn from Hall's chronicle, although Foxe paraphrased and summarized it (cf. Rerum, pp. 119-21 withEdward Hall, The unyon of the twoo noble and illustre families of Lancastre and York[London, 1550], STC 12723a, fos. Lr-LVv). On the other hand, the account of Hunne in 1563 is a virtually word-for-word reprinting from Hall. (Hall's account, in turn, was a reprinting of a pro-evangelical tract, The enquirie and verdite of the quest paneld at at the death of R. Hune [Antwerp?, 1539?], STC 13970 There is no evidence, however, that Foxe even knew of this tract. Significantly, when pressed by Harpsfield on a factual detail, Foxe responded by citing Hall as his source [1570, p. 939]).

In 1566, Nicholas Harpsfield attacked Foxe's account of Hunne (Dialogi sex, pp. 847-849). Harpsfield's attacks and Foxe's defence will be discussed below but,for now, suffice it to say that Harpsfield's criticisms drove Foxe to investigate theaffair in more detail. In 1570, Foxe added more information, notably background onHunne's praemunire suit, Hunne's examination for heresy and his post-humous trial for heresy as well as mention of parliamentary and royalsecure compensation for Hunne's family. It is very likely that all of thisinformation came from Dunstan Whaplod, Hunne's grandson. Foxe declared thatthe material on the efforts to secure restitution for the Hunne family and 'all the braunches and particular evidences' of the Hunne case were 'taken out as well of thepublique actes, as of the Byshopes registers and speciall recordes, remainyng in thecustody of Dunstan Whapplot the sonne of the daughter of the sayd Richard Hunne'(1570, p. 936). From what Foxe declares, Whaplod had secured not only the materialregarding the compensation to his family, he also acquired some of the episcopalrecords regarding the Hunne case. These do not survive in Bishop Fitzjames's register and they were probably kept in a separate courtbook. Since Foxe states thatthey remained in Whaplod's hands, the martyrologist probably did not keep them. And in this edition Foxe also added a rebuttal to Harpsfield's attacks on his accountof Hunne.

But Foxe not only added to his original account of Hunne, he also subtracted from it.All of the depositions from the coroner's inquest, except that of Julian Littell, wasomitted from the 1570 edition, almost undoubtedly as part of the ongoing effort tosave on paper. Two of the depositions, those of Allen Cresswell and RichardHorsenail, were, however, restored in the 1583 edition.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 442[Back to Top]

A copy of the document (unknown to Foxe) survives as TNA 9/468, fo. 14r-v. This copy matches the version in STC 13970, reprinted by Hall and then by Foxe.

1563 Edition, page 443 | 1563 Edition, page 448[Back to Top]

The details and background to Hunne's praemunire suit were unknown to other sixteenth-century writers, yet they have been corroborated in the twentieth century by the discovery of the record of Hunne's suit (S. C. F. Milsom, 'Richard Hunne's Praemunire', EHR 86 [1961], pp. 80-2). Foxe probably learned the background to the praemunire suit from Dunstan Whaplod, Hunne's grandson.

1563 Edition, page 443[Back to Top]

It is far more likely that Dryffeld was forced, as a matter of principle, not to overlook Hunne's challenge to the custom of collecting mortuary fees.

1563 Edition, page 443[Back to Top]

This statement assumes that the clergy only charged Hunne with heresy because of the praemunire suit. The opposite could also be true: that Hunne initiated the suit, as pre-emptive strike, because he suspected that heresy charges might be brought against him.

1563 Edition, page 443[Back to Top]
Prophecies preceeding Luther

The purpose of this section is threefold. One is to underscore the importance of Martin Luther (and consequently his doctrine of justification by faith; notice how Foxe begins this section with a little lecture on the insufficiency of works to obtain salvation) in the history of the Church. (It is worth remarking that it is Luther, not Wiclif, whom Foxe sees as the central figure in initiating the reform of the Anti-Christian Church). Secondly, it is a way to invoke the miraculous to support the Protestant cause. If, as Foxe is claiming here, the advent of Luther was prophesied and, if it was heralded by portents, than who could doubt that his teachings were God's word? The drawback was that, as with Foxe's collection of prophecies of the rise of Islam and of the Ottoman Empire, these prophecies were extra-Biblical and, while some of them came from what, to Foxe and his readers were reliable sources, such as Jan Hus, other came from people, such as Bridget of Sweden and Catherine of Siena, whom even Foxe was wary of crediting with the spirit of prophecy. A third purpose of this section was to underscore the corruption of the medieval Church. This was a relatively easy task, since many of these prophecies were contained in writings denouncing the pope and the clergy.

Most of the material in this section came from the basic works which Foxe relied on for his interpretation of Church history: John Bale's Scriptorum Illustrium maioris Brytanniae…Catalogus (Basel, 1557) and Matthias Flacius's Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1556). Foxe also drew on another work of Flacius: his two volume edition of the writings of Jan Hus: Ioannis Hus et Hieronymi Pragensis confessorum Christi historia et monimenta (Nuremburg, 1558).

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 452[Back to Top]

The following extracts from the writings of Jan Hus are taken from the two volume compendium of Hus's works, edited by Mathias Flacius, Ioannis Hus et Hieronymi Pragensis confessorum Christi historia et monimenta (Nuremburg, 1558), I, fos. 71r-71v, 72v and 418.

1563 Edition, page 452[Back to Top]

The stories of Alexander VI's death and of the statue of the angel struck by lightning are from Bale, Catalogus, p. 634

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The portents in 1505 and 1516 come from John Bale, Scriptorum Illustrium maioris Brytanniae…Catalogus (Basel, 1557), pp. 645-6.

1563 Edition, page 452[Back to Top]

I.e., caps

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These anticlerical proverbs and quotations, down through the quotation from Becket, are all taken from Mathias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 564.

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Foxe's meaning is obscured by his tortured syntax. What he is saying is that an annotation in a register attributed the work to William Thorpe, not that the register was attributed to Thorpe. In fact, Foxe is probably referring to the marginal note in Bishop Tunstall's register (Guildhall Library MS 9531/10, fo. 143v).

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See 1583, pp. 527-43; 1576, pp. 511-27; 1570, pp. 629-49; 1563, pp. 143-72.

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Foxe is quoting an anticlerical tract, A proper dyaloque betweene a gentillman and a husbandman, printed c. 1529 (STC 1462.3). It takes its popular name, the A.B.C., from the acrostic verses printed on its title page. These verses are printed by Foxe.

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Martin Luther

Despite his occasional disagreements with Luther over theology, Foxe never lost sight of Luther's historical importance. And while Foxe insisted that there was a True Church before Luther and also that the way for Luther had been prepared by Erasmus and others, Foxe saw Luther's doctrine of justification by faith as a divinely inspired revelation. (The section introducing the life of Luther, describing prophecies of Luther's advent reveal Foxe's commitment to the concept of Luther as a divine agent). Far more than even Wiclif or Hus or Tyndale, Luther was, to Foxe, the most important figure in human history since the apostolic era.

Unsurprisingly then, Foxe devoted a great deal of space to Luther in every edition of the A&M. In 1563, the account of Luther's life through the Diet of Worms (1521) was taken from Henry Bennet's translation of Philip Melancthon's Historia de vita et actis…Martini Lutheri (cf. A famous and godly history, trans. H. Bennet [London, 1561], STC 1881, sigs. B5v-F8r with 1563, pp. 402-15). Foxe followed this translation closely, often on a word-for-word basis. The difficulty with Melanchthon's account is that it really was two separate histories, one of Luther's background and early life, and one of the Diet of Worms. The crucial years between, including the Liepzig disputation, were not covered in it.

In the 1570 edition, Foxe filled this gap with two additional sources. The most important of these, at least for the life of Luther, was an expanded version of Caspar Hedio's continuation of the chronicle attributed to Burchard of Ursburg (Caspar Hedio, Paralipomena rerum memorabilium [Basel, 1569]). This expanded edition contained not only Hedio's chronicle, but also his reprinting of Melanchthon's 'Epistola Lipsica disputatione', which supplied a detailed account of the Leipzig disputation. (Foxe's awareness of this text by 1570, is an indication of how closely he followed Continental scholarship. It is also important to note how much of Foxe's account of Luther came, directly or indirectly, from Melanchthon). For background, particularly the political situation, Foxe also relied on Sleidan's Commentaries and he drew slightly on Bale's Catalogus and Caspar Peucer's continuation of Carion's chronicle. The 1570 account of Luther was unaltered in subsequent editions.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]

Johann von Staupitz (c. 1460-1525) was the vicar-general of the Observant Augustinians (Luther's order) and he was indeed a spiritual mentor to the young Luther. Staupitz emphasized election and justification in his theology. When the dispute over Indulgences first broke out, Staupitz supported Luther and tried to act as a mediator. Later, Staupitz, deplored Luther's extremism although the personal ties between the two men remained close.

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]

In the 1570 edition Foxe amended these passages to remove the dangerous admissions (at least to sixteenth-century readers) that Luther was an innovator and that many of his mentors and colleagues deplored the schism that he created in the Church.

1563 Edition, page 455[Back to Top]

Foxe (repeating Melanchthon) is denying the charge that Luther attacked the selling of indulgences at the behest of Frederick the Wise, the duke of Saxony. In fact, Melanchthon and Foxe declare (correctly) that Frederick was alarmed by the controversy.

1563 Edition, page 456[Back to Top]

Unquestionably Frederick the Wise's staunch support for Luther saved Luther numerous times, particularly in the early stages of the Indulgence controversy, later when Luther was summoned to Rome and still later after the Diet of Worms. Frederick was a wealthy and powerful prince and (crucial to Luther's safety) the Habsburgs owed Frederick large sums of money.

1563 Edition, page 456[Back to Top]

This whole account of Erasmus's opinion of Luther is taken from Caspar Peucer, Chronicon Carionis (Wittenberg, 1580), p. 705 and Caspar Hedio, Paralipomena rerum memorabilium (Strausburg, 1569), pp. 447-8. Foxe is including this to emphasize Erasmus's support for the Reformation and to reduce the well-known disagreements between Luther and Erasmus to the level of personality clashes.

1563 Edition, page 456[Back to Top]

In the 1570 edition, Foxe replaced these passages (from A famous godly history, trans. Henry Bennet [London, 1561], STC 1881, sigs. C3r-D4v) with a more detailed account of the events between 1517 and the Diet of Worms drawn from the histories of Caspar Hedio and Johnnes Sleidan (See Caspar Hedio, Paralipomena rerum memorabilium [Strassburg, 1559], pp. 447-50 and Johannes Sleidan, A famouse cronicle of our time, called Sleidanes Commentaries [London, 1560], STC 19848, sigs. 1v-10r). Apart from the greater detail in Hedio and Sleidan, there were two fundamental reasons for doing this. The first is that this narrative is rather digressive. The second is that, in trying to defend Luther from charges of stirring up rebellion and commotion, Melanchthon raises issues that Foxe would have preferred not to have been brought into the open, such as the accusation that Luther was a radical innovator or that he incited the Peasants' War.

1563 Edition, page 456[Back to Top]

Again, we can see here Melanchthon's desire to defend Luther against the charge of being a radical innovator.

1563 Edition, page 457[Back to Top]

This is an important statement of Foxe's belief that Erasmus, Valla and others prepared the way for Luther, but also of Foxe's profound appreciation of the seminal importance of justification by faith alone.

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This is an oblique rebuttal of the charge that Luther incited the Peasants' War.

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I.e., Thomas Münzer (var: Müntzer: c. 1490-1525), theologian, preacher and leader of the rebels in the Peasants' War.

1563 Edition, page 457 | 1563 Edition, page 457[Back to Top]

This is a direct rebuttal of the charge that Luther incited the Peasants'War.

1563 Edition, page 457[Back to Top]

This refers to epicure or epicurean in its sixteenth-century sense - of someone who was an atheist or a sceptic rather than the modern sense of a refined hedonist.

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John 14:15.

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St Albertus Magnus (c.1200-1280), a leading Scholastic theologian.

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Johannes Duns Scotus (c. 1264-1308), a leading Scholastic theologian and champion of realism. Luther showed a marked preference for nominalist theologians, such as William of Ockham, over realist theologians such as Aquinas and Scotus.

1563 Edition, page 459[Back to Top]

The first sentence, on Luther's life before he attended the University of Erfurt, is based on A famous and godly history, trans. H. Bennet (London, 1561), sigs. B2r-B3r. Foxe's lack of interest in the details of Luther's childhood and his parents (of Melancthon provides a detailed account), is in marked contrast to modern scholars, particularly Eric Erikson.

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]

I.e., Eisleben.

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]

All of the material from here down to the accession of Leo X, is drawn from A famous and godly history, trans. H. Bennet (London, 1561), STC 1881, sigs. B5v-C1r.

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]

By 'sententiaries', Foxe is refering to scholastic theologians who wrote commentaries on Peter Lombard's Sentences. Gabriel Biel (c. 1420-95) and Pierre d'Ailly (1350-1420) were both strong influences on Luther and both nominalists. Pierre d'Ailly was bishop of Cambrai ('Cameracensis' in Latin).

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]

Luther showed a marked preference for nominalist theologians, such as William of Ockham, over realist theologians such as Aquinas and Scotus. The realists insisted on the actual existence of metaphysical universals, the nominalists were denied their existence. Nominalists tended to a certain scepticism about transubstantiation.

1563 Edition, page 454[Back to Top]
Adrian VI

In the 1563 edition, Foxe printed a selection of the 100 articles presented by the German princes at Nuremberg in 1522, listing their grievances against the papacy. These articles were culled from the full list of grievances printed in Ortwin Gratius, Fasciculus rerum expetendarum ac fugiendarum (Cologne, 1535), fos. 177v-187r. Ortwin Gratius (or van Graes) was a German humanist and he edited the Fasciculum, a collection of documents relating to later medieval church history. Gratius ardently sought reform of clerical abuses and he believed that this could not be done by a corrupt papacy but only through general Councils. His collection was intended to provide historical examples of conciliar authority and clerical corruption and was thus very useful to Foxe, despite Gratius's detestation of Protestantism.

In fact, the section of the Acts and Monuments devoted to the pontificate of Adrian VI, is based almost entirely on documents reprinted from the Fasciculus, with background detail excerpted from John Bale's Catalogus, Caspar Hedio's continuation of the chronicle attributed to Burchard of Ursburg and Johannes Sleidan's Commentaries. The purpose of this section is unmistakeable: to demonstrate the economic and moral abuses of the Catholic church.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 430[Back to Top]

This is a sharply abridged translation of the document printed in Ortwin Gratius, Fasciculus rerum expetendarum ac fugiendarum (Cologne, 1535), fos. 177v-187v. Foxe only retained the complaints which were relevant to the English situation or touched on core theological issues.

1563 Edition, page 430[Back to Top]

Foxe drew this brief narrative of what happened after the complaints were presented to the papal legate at the Diet of Nuremburg (1522) and of Cardinal Campeggio's legation to Germany from Johannes Sleidan, A famouse cronicle of our time, called Sleidanes Commentaries, trans. John Daus (London, 1560), STC 19848, fos. 45r-46v.

1563 Edition, page 435[Back to Top]
Final years of Luther

In the 1563 edition, the conclusion of Foxe's account of Luther can be divided into three parts. The first is an account of Luther's death, translated from Melanchthon's funeral sermon, as translated by Henry Bennet (see A famous and godly history contayning the lyves a[nd] actes of three renowned reformers…, trans. Henry Bennet (London, 1561), STC 1881, sigs. F8v-G1r). The second was a long account of the pontificate of Leo X translated from Bale's Catalogus. And the third part is a brief summary, of Foxe's composition, on the increasing papal corruption of the Church during the Middle Ages and praising Luther for bringing light into the depths of this darkness.In the 1570 edition, the second and third parts of this initial account were dropped. Material from Sleidan's Commentaries and Caspar Hedio's continuation of Burchard of Ursburg's chronicle was added to the account to provide a narrative of Luthers's dispute with Karlstadt on iconoclasm and Luther's dispute with Zwingli over the Eucharist. Since Foxe sided with Luther on neither issue, he distanced himself from the Reformer, warning readers that Luther's opinion and example were not to be slavishly followed, such as his opposition to iconoclasm (Foxe endorsed iconoclasm). But Foxe also made clear his very considerable admiration for Luther, based especially on his regard for Luther as a spiritual physician to troubled souls, on Luther's courage in defying the papacy and for being the first person to articulate a theology of justification by faith. By the end of the account, Foxe despite his theological differences with Luther, ends up crediting him with quasi-miraculous powers.

Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 467[Back to Top]

This is taken from A famous and godly history contayning the lyves a[nd] actes of three renowned reformers…, trans. Henry Bennet (London, 1561),STC 1881, sigs. F8v-G1r. For a modern translation of Melanchthon's life of Luther, see Elizabeth Vandiver, Ralph Keen and Thomas D. Frazel, Luther's Lives (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002), pp. 14-39.

1563 Edition, page 467[Back to Top]

This is taken from A famous and godly history contayning the lyves a[nd] actes of three renowned reformers…, trans. Henry Bennet (London, 1561), sigs. G1r-G2r.

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This prayer is Foxe's own composition as is the assessment of Luther which follows it.

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1 Cor. 10: 31.

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Psalm 122:6; the verse actually reads: 'Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, may those who love you prosper' (AV). Foxe, like many exegetes, interpreted Jerusalem as the Church.

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Swiss Reformation

Foxe begins his account of the Swiss Reformation with a brief history of the Swiss Confederation, emphasising how 'first they recouered their libertie, and after were ioyned in league together'. His principal source here was Sebastian Münster's Cosmographia universalis, book 3 (in the 1552 Basel edition, pp. 360 et seq). The cantons or 'pagi' ('pagus' in Latin = village) are enumerated. Foxe mentions the first confederation (Urani=Uri; Vntervaldij=Unterwalden; Suicenses=Schwyz), its subsequent enlargement ( including Lucernates=Lucerne; Tigurini=Zurich; Bernatus=Berne; Glareanti=Glarus; Apencellenses=Appenzell; Basilienses=Basel; Solodurij=Solothurn) and then those who joined later (Sangalli=St-Gall; Mullusiani=Mulhouse, etc). From this same source also came Foxe's passage on William Tell (p. 361), a myth which had already acquired iconic status through the verse drama, the Urner Tellspiel (c.1512; published 1530s) and Aegidius Tschudi's Chronicon Helveticum, which Foxe mentions in the margin. He may have become acquainted with its existence, or even have read it, whilst he was in Basel (for it was not published in the sixteenth century). For the myth, see R. C. Head, 'William Tell and his Comrades: Association and Fraternity in the Propaganda of Fifteenth- and Sixteenth-Century Switzerland' The Journal of Modern History 67, no. 3 (1995), 527-77. It was equally from the Cosmographia that Foxe recounts the history of the war between Frederick, duke of Austria and Ludovic, duke of Bavaria and the counsel of the fool, Kune de Stocken (p. 363).

This was scene-setting, however, for the important section to follow on 'The actes and life of Zwinglius'. Foxe accords almost ten pages to the Zwinglian reformation - a clear sign of how much significance he attached to it. The details of his early life were abstracted mainly from the biography, compiled by Oswald Myconius in 'De D. Hvldrichi Zwinglii […] vita et obitv', and composed the year after Zwingli's death in 1532. It had been published as a preface to the edition of Johann Oecolampadius' letters, Epistolarum libri quatuor (Basel [Basileae]: Thomas Platter and Balthasar Lasius, 1536), which provided Foxe with a considerable insight into the networks of scholarly communication that linked the Rhineland Biblicists in the upper Rhineland quadrant (Basel, Constance, Berne, Zurich, etc). For the evolution of the reformation in these cities, however, Foxe turned to the Commentaries of Johann Sleidan, the protestant historian whose work Foxe helped to promote in England through the martyrology (De Statv religionis et reipvblicae carolo qvinto Caesare Commentarii. Photographic reproduction of the edition of 1785-6, edited by J. Gottlieb ed 3 vols (Osnabrück: Otto Zeller, 1968). The material on the first Zurich Disputations of January 1523, the Constitutions of the Council of Lucerne in 1524, and the energetic defence of the progress of the reformation in Zurich by its magistrates in 1524 and early 1525 all came from Sleidan, books 3 and 4. Equally, for the early events surrounding the reformation in Berne, including the Disputations of December 1527 and January 1528, Foxe also drew on Sleidan, book 6. The same source served for his history of the reformations in Strasbourg and Basel. Towards the end of the account, Foxe indicated how he had supplemented his use of Sleidan with Oecolampadius' letters. For the background to the Second Kappel War, and Zwingli's reasons for personal engagement in it, Foxe felt he had to go beyond the impersonal history of Sleidan, returning to Zwingli's letter to the ministers at Ulm, Martinus Freschius and Cunhardus Somius, which he had found in the preface to J. Oecolampadius, Epistolarum libri quatuor (Basel [Basileae]: Thomas Platter and Balthasar Lasius, 1536), fol 211v-212, dated 8 November 1530, in which Zwingli vigorously defended himself against his critics, both inside the canton of Zurich and from without. On the fate of Zwingli's body after his death, Foxe cited a further letter from Oecolampadius, this time to Wolfgang Capiton of 22 October 1531 (fols 172v-173). We should note Foxe's lavish praise for Oecolampadius' Commentaries on the Prophets (J. Oecolampadius, In Iesaiam Prophetam hypomnematôn, hoc est commentariorum, Iannis Oecolampadii libri sex [...] ([Geneva]: Jean Crespin, 1568 [1567?]) which, 'with other worth workes, which he left behinde him, liue still, and shall never die'. They carried a laudatory preface from Heinrich Bullinger, and were remarkable as setting a new standard in the methodology and organization of Biblical commentaries. Towards the end of the section, Foxe translated a letter from Zwingli in which the reformer represented views on Christ's descent into Hell which he had already expounded in the mid 1520s in response to the interpretation of the 'catabaptists' concerning Christ's resurrection in the light of their arguments about the sleep of the soul and the final resurrection - see Huldrych Zwinglis Brief edited Oskar Farner. 2 vols (Zurich, 1918-20), 2, pp. 000-000.

Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 490[Back to Top]
German martyrs

In its first edition, Foxe's martyrology had been published alongside that of Heinrich Pantaleon, a second volume ('Pars Secunda') to which Foxe's was the first. Albeit published in London and Basel respectively, they appeared by what must have been by prior arrangement on the same day. Between them lay an implied division of labour, with Foxe concentrating on the 'Acts and Monuments' of the English martyrs, whilst Pantaleon offered a broader 'European' perspective ('per Europam persecvtionvm' ran his title) with the witnesses of the martyrs divided up by nationalities and political entities ('per Regna & Nationes distributarum'). The two parts of the martyrology had, however, overlapped even in 1563. Foxe took the opportunity even then to integrate some martyr narratives from continental Europe into the first edition, especially where their narratives were readily available to him, or had become particularly well-known. He did so for a particular and important reason. If, as Tertullian had famously said, 'in the blood of martyrs lay the seed of the true church', it was important to Foxe's purpose to demonstrate that martyrdoms had occurred in the immediate aftermath of Luther's reformation. So Foxe included five such stories relating to Germany in the 1520s in his 1563 edition. Rather than incorporate them into his table of German martyrs in 1570, he deliberately kept them apart from it in order to emphasise that important point:-

In the case of the 'account of 'Henry Voz & Iohn Esch frier Augustines' [Hendrich Voes; Jan van Essen] (1563, pp. 421-2) he based his account (indirectly) on an undated and anonymous short pamphlet, published shortly after their martyrdom and reissued in various different editions, one of which was ascribed to Martin Luther himself (F. van der Haeghen, T. J. I. Arnold, and R. Vanden Berghe, Bibliographie des martyrologes protestants néerlandais 2 vols (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1890), 1, p. 473 et seq.). Crespin had provided a short summary of it in the earliest edition of his martyrology, but Foxe did not use that as his source (Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 238-40). Pantaleon provided a further summary, basing his account, however, on the same source (Pantaleon, pp. 38-9). Both Foxe and Pantaleon give their source as 'Ex 6 tomo M. Lutheri, fol. 397'. This does not, however, correspond to the relevant volume of the collected works of Luther, edited by Philip Melanchthon (M. Luther, Tomus primus [-septimus] omnium operum Reverendi Domini Martini Lutheri [...] 7 vols (Wiitenberg: Iohannes Lufft, 1545, etc). It is possible that both Pantaleon and Foxe had used another edition of Luther's works, or that they had both copied the reference from somewhere else.

In the narrative of the martyrdom of Henry Zutphen [Heinrich Mullers van Zutphen], recounted in the 1563 edition (pp. 422-428), Foxe was once again relying on a martyr account which had been widely diffused in the form of a contemporary pamphlet, and published in Latin (1524) and German (1525) - see F. van der Haeghen, T. J. I. Arnold, and R. Vanden Berghe, Bibliographie des martyrologes protestants néerlandais 2 vols (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1890), 1, p. 541 et seq. As Foxe said, the story had already been told, at least in outline, in Sleidan (book 4) and the earliest edition of Crespin (1554) - see Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 245-247. He clearly knew, and had probably read, Luther's own account of it, partly through a consolatory letter to the faithful of Bremen, and which had appeared in the earliest published collection of Luther's letters in 1525 (M. Luther, Martini Lutheri Epistolarum farrago, pietatis et eruditionis plena [...] [Haganoae [Haganau]: Iohan Secer, 1525]) - see W. M. L. de Wette, ed. Martin Luther. Briefe, Sendschreiben und Bedenken 5 vols (Berlin, 1825-1828), 3, p. 65 etc. Although Foxe also referred the reader to Ludwig Rabus' martyrology (L. Rabus, Historien der Heyligen auserwölten Gottes Zeugen 3 vols [Strasbourg, 1554-1558], there is no sign that he ever consulted it himself, or had the language skills to read it directly. Pantaleon had provided a similar narrative of this martyrdom (Pantaleon, pp. 35-8).

The account of the martyrdom of 'Iohn Castellane' (Jean Chastelain), which Foxe published in the earliest edition of his martyrology (1563, pp. 428-431) seems to have come from that published in the earliest edition of Crespin (1554, fol. 175), which Foxe follows very closely here. Chastelain was a native of Tournai who went to Lorraine and actively proselytized at Bar-le-Duc ('Barleduc'), Vitry in Partois ('Vittery in Partoise'), Chalon and Vic ('Vike') before being arrested and imprisoned at Goze ('Gorze') and the castle at Nomény ('Nommeny'). Pantaleon provided a similar narrative in his edition too (Pantaleon, pp. 40-42), deriving it from the same source.

The 'history of a good pastoure, murthered for the preaching of the Gospel, wrytten by Ihon Oecolampadius' which followed in his earliest edition (1563, pp. 431-432) was also taken directly from the earliest edition of Crespin (Crespin [1554], fol. 154). Crespin ascribed it (and Foxe follows him) to a written narrative prepared by Johann Oecolampadius, the preacher in Basel. Pantaleon had also provided a version of the same narrative (Pantaleon, pp. 46-8). See Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 250-1.

The same is also true of the following 'history of the death of a certaine minister which was drowned in the yeare of our Lord 1525. collected by Oecolampadius', reproduced in the earliest edition of Crespin (Crespin [1554], fol 158) and repeated by Foxe in his earliest edition (1563, pp. 432-3). In 1563, Foxe knew only that he was a minister in the Breisgau ('Brisgois'). However, when he came to repeat the narrative in 1570, he added the pastor's name - Peter Spengler - which he had found in Pantaleon's account of the same narrative (Pantaleon, pp. 48-51). Living in Basel, Pantaleon doubtless had access to written and oral sources which were able to substantiate some of the details of the Oecolampadius narrative.

The following account of a 'history of a certen man of the Country wrongfully put to deathe Collected by the saide Ihon Oecolampadius' was also published by Foxe in his earliest edition (1563, pp. 433-5). It was the closest he came to engaging the attention of his readers in the link between the early protestant reformation and social conflict - the reference-point for the narrative being the Peasants' War in Germany, which had taken early and divisive root in south-west Germany, the region to which it relates. It had been published by Crespin in his earliest edition (Crespin [1554], fol. 166) and in Pantaleon (pp. 51-54).

The next account of Wolfgang Schuch, a protestant pastor from Alsace ('Lotharing.') had first appeared in Ludwig Rabus' Historien der Märtyrer (Strasbourg, 1554). It was repeated in Crespin (1560) and Pantaleon, pp. 54-57. Foxe's account here was closely based on the latter, which explains why it appeared for the first time in the 1570 edition of Foxe's martyrology.The following narrative of the death of Johann Hüglein in Merssburg (near Constance) in 1527 had already been widely circulated in the reformation. A contemporary narrative of his trial and death had been published in Nuremberg in c.1527. It is from that, either directly or indirectly, that Sleidan derived his account (Sleidan [book 6], 1, p. 331), and a brief account of his death had also been included in Rabus, vol 6, p. 599 and Pantaleon, p. 60. Foxe seems to have consulted both Sleidan and Pantaleon for his details of it and it appeared for the first time only in the 1570 edition of Foxe's martyrology.

The next account was also of an early martyrdom from Bavaria. Georg Carpenter was a native of Emmendingen ('Emeryng') in Bavaria. He was burnt at Munich ('Munchen') on 8 February 1527. The account, with its circumstantiated details of his trial (including the debate with Conrad Schritter ['Scheitter'], the vicar of the cathedral church in Munich), had appeared for the first time in Crespin [1556], but Foxe acquired all his details of it from Pantaleon, pp. 61-3, and it appeared for the first time only in the 1570 edition of Foxe's martyrology.

For the account of the martyrdom of Leonard Kayser, who may well have held Anabaptist beliefs, a contemporary pamphlet had provided the relevant details, published in Wittemberg in 1527. It was upon this account, either directly or indirectly, that the narrative of his martyrdom reached Pantaleon (pp. 63-4) which is where Foxe derived his own account. It appeared for the first time only in the 1570 edition of Foxe's martyrology.

For the subsequent history of the martyrdom of Wendelmoet Claes [var: Classen], Foxe followed Crespin, Haemstede, Rabus and Pantaleon, deriving his account from the latter (p. 65). She was a native of Monnitendam ('Munchendam'), a small town in Holland. It is now evident, although it was perhaps difficult to discern this at the time, that she was a convinced Anabaptist. It appeared for the first time only in the 1570 edition of Foxe's martyrology.

The final account from the first decade of the reformation concerned two martyrs from Cologne, Peter Fliested and Adolf Clarenbach, in September 1529. Foxe might have acquired the material here from Sleidan, but he more likely derived it from the account in Pantaleon, pp. 66-7. It appeared only for the first time in the 1570 edition of Foxe's martyrology.

Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 473[Back to Top]

Crespin's account glosses these various names: 'Vaudois' from 'Pierre Waldo', their presumed founder; 'Lollard' in England, Poland ('Sarmatia') and Livonia; 'Turelupins' ['Turrelupius'] in Artois and Flanders, Chaignars or Chienars ('Chagnardes') in Dauphiné and Piedmont. Foxe's explanation of the latter 'because they liued in places open to the Sunne, and without house or harborough' is not in the Crespin narrative.

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The narrative of the bookseller in Aix-en-Provence is related in Crespin [1560], 97A-B; and also in Pantaleon, fol 122. He was subsequently burnt at Avignon.

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The ecclesiastical and political significance of Cardinal François de Tournon (1489-1562), especially in south-east France, was considerable. He had founded the collège de Tournon in 1536 and increasingly devoted himself to the prosecution of heresy in the region, especially after 1547.

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In this encounter, Jacques Reynaud, sieur d'Aillens reminded Bartholomé Chassanée, premier president of the Parlement of Aix-en-Provence that the protestants were just as entitled to legal representation as the rats which Chassenée had stood counsel for in 1521. The affair was recounted by Chassanée in his famous, and beautifully-illustrated Catalogue gloriae mundi, printed at Lyon in 1528. It was a well-publicised case which somewhat made his legal reputation. The possibility for prosecuting animals had long existed in France, especially before ecclesiastical courts. The rats were accused of stealing the grain of the bishop of Autun ('Authun') and were likely to be excommunicated. Chassanée successfully defended them on the grounds that their failure to appear before the court was because the summons had only been issued to some of the rats of the diocese, whereas (in reality) all of them were implicated in the affair. The court decided that the summons had to be reformulated. When they failed to appear a second time, Chassanée argued that his clients could not attend the court because they were otherwise engaged in the preparation of a great migration. In the final hearing, he pleaded that the rats were in fear of their lives and the courtroom was not a safe place for them. They legitimately could not be expected to attend the hearing. The case was postponed sine die. Chassanée went on to produce a learned treatise dealing with all aspects of the legal prosecution and defence of animals (Consilium primum….de excommunicatione animalium, insectorum (1531). The bailliage ('bailiwyke') of 'Laussois' is 'l'Auxois', the country around Auxerre in Burgundy.

1563 Edition, page 693[Back to Top]

This passage follows closely Crespin (Crespin/Benoist, 1, p. 392-4 - i.e, Crespin [1560], fol 100A-101B and Pantaleon, fols 125-116. In December 1540, the French king François I ordered the arrêt of the Parlement of Aix-en-Provence to be carried out, rejecting a last-minute appeal for clemency. Shortly afterwards, Guillaume du Bellay, sieur de Langey ('Longeay'), lieutenant du roi in Piedmont, was despatched by the royal council to investigate the claims of the Vaudois and he reported favourably on their monarchical loyalties, leading to a conditional royal pardon for the Vaudois at Mérindol provided that they abjured within three months.

1563 Edition, page 694[Back to Top]

The lengthy and detailed confession, to which Foxe makes reference here is set out, as Foxe says in the gloss to this passage, in Crespin's Recueil of 1556 (p. 862-879), and then reprinted in Pantaleon (fols 130-137). It is summarized in later editions of Crespin's martyrology. Foxe chose to provide the even more succinct précis of it in Sleidan's Commentaries (Commentarii lib. 16, fol 218) which he then placed at the end of the narrative (p. 954) so as not to interrupt the flow of the text. The document was dated 6 April 1541 and carried the names of André and Martin Mainard as leading signatories, two of those cited in the original arrêt against the 19 Vaudois of Mérindol. It joined another confession, apparently submitted by Cabrières d'Avignon ('Cabriers') in the Comtat Venaissin, both of which were sent to the bishops of Cavaillon and Carpentras for their opinion. The documentm itself, at least in the form in which we have it, reflects the increasing influence of Geneva among the Vaudois. It, and the equivalent one from Cabrières, was presented to Jacopo ('Giacomo') Sadoleto, bishop of Carpentras and the vice-legate of Avignon, meeting at Cabrières ('Cabriers') which was part of his diocese. According to the later Histoire Ecclésiastique (1580), Sadoleto's reaction was that the confessions might be accepted as orthodox if some revisions were made to them. It is noticeable that this does not appear in the earlier narratives, upon which Foxe relies. He may have played some part in restraining the vice-legate in Avignon from executing the arrêt of Mérindol in the papal-controlled territories of the Comtat Venaissin in 1542 (as Foxe recounts), but his sympathis for the Vaudois should not be overestimated (see Marc Venard, 'Jacques Sadolet, évêque de Carpentras, et les Vaudois', Bolletino della società di studi valdesi 143 (1978), 44-49).

1563 Edition, page 696[Back to Top]

Foxe follows closely here the narrative in Pantaleon, fol 138 rather than Crespin (Crespin/Benoist, p. 402). The individuals concerned with the attempts to enforce the arrêt of 18 November 1541 against the Vaudois of Mérindol were Jean Durandi, conseiller au parlement d'Aix-en-Provence; with Pietro Ghinucci, bishop of Cavaillon from 1541 and Antoine Filhol, archbishop of Aix-en-Provence from 1541. Their efforts were without success until the death of Chassanée as premier president of the court, and his successor. The local figures involved in these deliberations included André Meynard, the bailli ('baylife') of Mérindol and others.

1563 Edition, page 699[Back to Top]

Here, Foxe refers to the arrival in post of Jehan Meynier, sieur d'Oppède in December 1543 as premier president of the Parlement of Aix-en-Provence. He held lands in the region between Cabrières d'Avignon and Mérindol and, as Foxe was only too keen to emphasise, had material interests (in addition to the fears of the apparently increasing dangers of heresy and division in the province). In addition, however (in a way that protestant accounts did not mention) he was concerned about rumours that the Vaudois were organizing themselves for self-defence, taking advantage of the natural strongholds I the Luberon. There were rumours that they intended to rebel and turn Provence into a canton after the Swiss fashion. Later in 1543, the Vaudois of Cabrières successded in fortifying their village, whilst those of Mérindol pillaged the abbey of Sinanque. The fears of a rebellion akin to the Great Peasants' War of 1524-6 in Germany were important in enabling Meynier to secure the letters-patent of 1 February 1545 by which the original arrêt of 18 November 1540 was to be enforced.

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The execution of the letters patent of 1 February 1545 were delayed until April 1545 to allow the military forces under Antoine Escalin des Aimars, baron de la Garde ( known as 'Poulin de la Garde') to be mustered. From 18 April 1545 the army moved along the southern edge of the Luberon ['Libron']. Mérindol and Cabrières were among the last to be devastated. La Motte, Lourmarin ('Lormarin'), Villelaure, Saint-Martin de Castillon and other villages were caught up in the operation. Its savagery became widely noted through Europe: 'Crudelitas plusquam Scythica' comments the marginal gloss in Pantaleon's account (fol. 144), which Foxe follows closely in his narrative. For details of the military operation, see P. Gaffarel, 'Les massacres de Cabrires et de Mérindol en 1545' Revue Historique 101 (1911), 241-64.

1563 Edition, page 702[Back to Top]

This notorious arrêt of the Parlement of Aix-en-Provence was pronounced on 18 November 1540. The text was included in extenso in the Recueil and in editions of Crespin from 1560 onwards (Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 383-4) condemning 19 Vaudois to be burned, their property confiscated and their village at Mérindol destroyed. The names of those mentioned in the arrêt are rendered by Foxe as best he could, and their orthography differs in the various sources (cf A.-L. Herminjard, Correspondance des réformateurs dans les pays de la langue française [Geneva, 1866-1867], 6, p. 228 and l'Histoire memorable). They included André Maynard, bailli of Mérindol, François Maynard, Martin Maynard, Iacques Maynard, Michel Maynard, Iean Pom and his wife, Facy le Tourneur and his wife, Martin Vian and his wife, Iean Pallenq and his wife, Peyron Roi, Philippon Maynard, Iaques de Sangre, Me Leon Barberoux, Claude Fauyer de Tourves, M. Pomery et Marthe Pomery, his wife, Thomas Pallenq, and Guillaume le Normand.

1563 Edition, page 686[Back to Top]

For the story of the Bishop's banquet ('splendissimum convivium') and the subsequent clerical meeting in Avignon, reported in Crespin [1560], fol 91A-B; Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 385-6 and also in Pantaleon, fols 114-5. Those in attendance included Barthélemi Chassené, premier president of the Parlement, the Archbishop (not bishop, as stated by Foxe) of Aix-en-Provence, the Archbishop of Arles ('Aries' - Jean IX de Ferrier), Jacques Reynaud, sieur d'Aillens ('L. of Alenc'), the seigneur de Beaujeu ('Beauieu') and the sieur de Senas, conseiller au Parlement.

1563 Edition, page 687[Back to Top]
Merindol and Cabriers

From the first edition of his martyrology in 1563, Foxe had included an extensive account of the Mérindol and Cabrières affair (1563, pp. 632-652). He had foreshadowed it much earlier in the book (p.46), providing a graphic preview of the affair. It would be his first attempt to deal with mass martyrdom. In that preview, he spoke of 800 people slain in the elimination of these two communities, 40 of them women. He reported that 25 people had died smoke inhalation and fire, locked in a barn that was set alight. He briefly alluded to the young man who was tied to an olive tree and tortured to death. When he returned to deal with the affair properly, it was to juxtapose the evidence for the 'cruelty' of the individual persecutors (on the one hand) with the determination and constancy of the persecuted. His insertion of this piece of text (more or less unchanged) after the narrative of the Calabrian Vaudois was undertaken for a specific purpose. He did not want to interrupt the formal table of French martyrs with too extensive a narrative excursion. Equally, he relished the opportunity to highlight material which demonstrated (as he saw it) 'the furious crueltie' of the French king in an incident which had reverberated widely around western Europe. By placing the narrative adjacent to that of the Waldensians in Calabria he intimated that there was continuity and an underlying pattern to the persecution of the (largely rural) Vaudois. By juxtaposing these two narratives, Foxe was also able somewhat to obscure the more difficult questions about Waldensian beliefs prior to the reformation, and the extent to which they accorded with magisterial Protestantism, as Foxe would have understood it.

Foxe was all too aware that there was a considerable literature available on the massacres of the Waldensians of Provence in 1545 and 1546. He explicitly notes that he cannot present all the primary material, or even recount the history at full length because of its bulk. That said, however, he devotes over 25 pages to it, treating it in a major and exemplary fashion. There were already other narratives available of the persecution of the Waldensians in Provence. Jean Crespin had included an abbreviated account of the affair in the initial edition of his martyrology in 1554 (Crespin [1554], pp. 656-666). Elements from this had been incorporated into Sleidan's Commentaries, first published in 1555, and translated into English in 1560 as A famouse cronicle of oure time… As Foxe said, much earlier in the 1563 edition (p.46) this was the account that he would rely on for his primary narrative of this affair. But Crespin already knew in 1554 that there was more to be said about the affair - as he said his account had been inserted then 'pour en toucher comme en passant ce qui est à present le plus necessaire pour l'instruction des fideles, jusqu'à ce que plus amplement toute l'histoire en soit redigee par escrit, comme elle en soit rédigée par escrit, comme elle est tres digne'. Geneva's contacts with the Vaudois communities in Provence had been somewhat strengthened in the aftermath of the persecution by exiles from the region, especially after 1550 - see G. Audisio, 'The first Provençal Refugees in Geneva (1545-1571)' French History 19 (2005), 385-400. It was no doubt on the basis of their information that Crespin was able to publish his extensively documented Histoire memorable de la persecution & saccagement du people de Mérindol et Cabrières in 1556. This was the account that became integrated into later editions of Crespin in extenso (Crespin [1560], fols 88A-117A; Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 381-419), and also into Pantaleon, lib. 5 (fols 111-145). It concentrates our attention on the persecution which began with the legal decision of 18 November 1540 pronouncing the destruction of the village of Mérindol, which reached its claim in 1545-6. In reality, however, the efforts of the ecclesiastical authorities to eliminate the Provençal Vaudois had begun at least a decade earlier. For background accounts to the Vaudois in Provence, see G. Audisio, Les Vaudois du Luberon. Une minorité en Provence (1460-1560) (Mérindol, 1984) ; G. Audisio, Procès-verbal d'un massacre. Les vaudois du Luberon (avril 1545) (Aix-en-Provence, 1992); G. Audisio, Les 'Vaudois': naissance, vie et mort d'une dissidence (xiie-xvie siècle) 2 vols (Turin: Albert Meynier Editore, 1989). Marc Venard, Réforme protestante, Réforme catholique dans la province d'Avignon au XVIe siècle (Paris, 1993). On the massacre itself, see P. Gaffarel, 'Les massacres de Cabrières et de Mérindol en 1545' Revue Historique 101 (1911), 241-64.

Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 684[Back to Top]

This story first appeared in the 1563 edition of Foxe's martyrology (1563, p. 440). We have not located it in any of the common sources that Foxe used, and its origin is something of a mystery, but it was commonly repeated in English martyrologies after Foxe as a striking example of persecution being attributable to the Turks.

1563 Edition, page 492[Back to Top]

For the Vaudois settlement in and around Mérindol (Vaucluse) in the diocese of Cavaillon, and Cabrières d'Avignon (Vaucluse) in the diocese of Carpentras, see G. Audisio, The Waldensian Dissent. Persecution and Survival, c.1170-c.1570 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), pp. 190-193.

1563 Edition, page 685[Back to Top]
Patrick Hamilton

The account of Patrick Hamilton is the first of two extended sections in the Acts and Monuments tackling Scottish affairs. Foxe's willingness to extend his scope to Scotland was partly a routine matter of Protestant internationalism, reflecting the cosmic scale of his enterprise. More importantly, it reflected a 'British' idealism common amongst English and Scottish Protestants in the second half of the sixteenth century, an idealism first forged in the shared Anglo-Scottish exile of the 1550s. The first edition of the Acts and Monuments proclaimed on its title page its focus on 'this Realme of England and Scotlande': strictly speaking, a meaningless statement before the union of the crowns in 1603, but an eloquent testimony to the aspiration to see a common British Protestant culture. (See Jane Dawson, 'Anglo-Scottish Protestant culture and integration in sixteenth-century Britain' in Steven G. Ellis and Sarah Barber (eds), Conquest and Union: fashioning a British state, 1485-1725 (New York, 1995).) Subsequent editions also retained Scotland on the title page, despite the relative paucity of Scottish material in the book.

For the problem - as Scotland's own martyrologist, Foxe's friend John Knox, acknowledged ruefully - was that Scotland had produced relatively few martyrs. There was a single medieval burning (that of Paul Craw, mentioned in Foxe: 1563, p. 360, and subsequent editions), and twenty-one further executions during the period 1528-58 (see Alec Ryrie, The Origins of the Scottish Reformation, p. 42). However, two at least of these were of internationally prominent figures, including the first Scottish martyr of the Reformation era, Patrick Hamilton. Hamilton's commonplaces on justification, which John Frith published as Patrick's Places, won him posthumous renown in England as well as in Scotland. The case also had a major impact in Scotland, and there are numerous independent accounts of his death. Foxe's account in 1570 and subsequent editions, however, is amongst the most detailed. On Hamilton, see Ryrie, Origins, pp. 31-3; ODNB; and Gotthelf Wiedermann, 'Martin Luther versus John Fisher: some ideas concerning the debate on Lutheran theology at the University of St. Andrews, 1525-30', in Records of the Scottish Church History Society vol. 22 (1984), 13-34

As with all his Scottish material, Foxe's account of Hamilton appeared in two distinct forms. In 1563 there was a short and imprecise account padded out with moralising but short on detail. This followed closely the account which he had earlier written in the 1559 Rerum in ecclesia gestarum, itself based on the account in John Bale's Scriptorum illustrium maioris Brytanniae ... Catalogus, vol. 2 (Basle, 1559), apparently derived principally from Francis Lambert's memorial of Hamilton. The account was almost completely rewritten, and greatly extended, in 1570, and remained unaltered in the two subsequent editions. This new material is detailed, circumstancial and strikingly accurate. It includes text which purports to be taken from the 'registers', presumably those of the archbishop of St. Andrews (which do not survive), as well as a letter from the university of Louvain to Archbishop Beaton. Foxe never went to Scotland in person, and he does not reveal the identity of his informant(s), beyond stating that this material was gathered in 1564. Thomas S. Freeman has argued persuasively that all of this material was provided to Foxe by John Winram, the superintendent of Fife who had (before his late but sincere conversion to Protestantism) been subprior of St. Andrews. See Thomas S. Freeman, '"The reik of Maister Patrik Hammyltoun": John Foxe, John Winram and the martyrs of the Scottish Reformation', in The Sixteenth Century Journal vol. 27 (1996), 43-60.Alec Ryrie

1563 Edition, page 512[Back to Top]

Hamilton was the illegitimate son of Sir James Hamilton of Cadzow; his mother was a granddaughter of King James II. He was legitimized in 1513, at the age of about nine years.

1563 Edition, page 512[Back to Top]

II Timothy 3:12.

1563 Edition, page 512[Back to Top]
Thomas Wolsey

The reason for Campeggio's mission in 1518 (not 1517, as Foxe states) was to persuade Henry VIII to support Pope Leo X's project for a crusade. Legates a latere were only exceptionally admitted to England (or to several other states), but this intention gave Cardinal Wolsey the opportunity to seek the same status for himself. Henry VIII therefore wrote on 11 April 1518, agreeing to the request on the condition that Wolsey was accorded the same rank. The Bull conferring this on the English cardinal was issued on 17 May, over a month before Campeggio reached Calais, so the sequence of events proposed by Foxe is in error. The real reason for the delay in the latter's proceeding to England was that Wolsey had another request. Cardinal Adriano Castelli, who held the English see of Bath and Wells, had been marginally involved in a plot against Leo, and Wolsey was anxious to secure his deprivation in order to possess the see himself. His campaign against Castelli was aided by another cardinal, Sylvestro Gigli, and it appears to have been Gigli's idea to keep Campeggio waiting until their demand was met. Campeggio reached Calais about 21 June and Wolsey sent an escort to bring him into England on around 10 July (Peter Gwyn, The King's Cardinal: the Rise and Fall of Thomas Wolsey [1990], pp. 102-3). An authentic account of Wolsey's pomp is contained in George Cavendish, The Life and Death of Cardinal Wolsey, ed. Richard S. Sylvester, Early English Text Society No. 243. (London: Oxford University Press, 1959). Cavendish wrote between 1556 and 1558, but his work remained in manuscript, and there is no reason to believe that Foxe ever saw it. This account is taken from Edward Hall, The Union of the two noble and illustre families of Lancastre and Yorke (London, 1550), 'The triumphant reign of K. Henrie the eight', p. 64r-v [STC (2nd ed.) 12723a]. An additional source may be found in BL Harley MS 433 fo. 293, calendared in the Letters and Papers…of the Reign of Henry VIII. ed. J. Gairdner et al. (London, 1862-1910), 2, No. 4333. This manuscript originally belonged to John Foxe.

The main source for Foxe's story of Campeggio's second visit in 1529 is Edward Hall's chronicle, referred to above, pp. 161-3, 170r-171v, and 184v. This is in the regnal year 21 Henry VIII, not, as stated, 19 Henry VIII. The pope in question was Clement VII, not Clement VIII. This appears to have been simply a mistake (if he had been counting the anti-popes, he should have been Clement IX, since 'Clement VII' reigned at Avignon from 1378 to 1394, and 'Clement VIII' from 1423 to 1429). The occasion for this second visit was, of course, the resolution of the 'King's Great Matter' - the annulment of his marriage to Catherine. The story of the sack of Rome, which helped to frustrate the king's efforts, is also taken from Hall's Chronicle (pp. 159-61). The story of Wolsey's malice against Richard Pace, dean of St Paul's (and dean of Exeter and dean of Salisbury), however, does not come from Hall, and although the fact of his collapse can be confirmed from letters calendared in the Letters and Papers, there is no likelihood that Foxe would have known about these. It no doubt derived from the letter of Erasmus to Thomas Lupsett of 4 October 1525, in which he hoped that 'our friend Pace has recovered by now' from 'the love disease' [syphilis] which afflicted him (Erasmus, Collected Works ed. Alexander Dalzell [1994], No. 1624 [p. 305]). This had already been published in the Opus epistolarum Des. Erasmi Roterodami (Basel: Froben, 1529). There is no reason to suppose that the cardinal was deliberately responsible for Pace's insanity, which caused him to be recalled from Rome in November 1525, although it is possible that the pressures put upon him may have been a contributory factor. Pace was relieved of his duties as king's secretary in 1526, and consigned to the care of the Brigittine monks at Syon. Pace was in and out of care for the rest of his life, pursuing his scholarly interests as best he could. For a while, he lived normally in London, but later he returned (apparently voluntarily) to Syon. On the whole, Wolsey's treatment of him was patient and considerate, and Foxe was taking at face value hostile stories that had become part of the cardinal's 'Black Legend'. The former diplomat never, however, completely recovered, and died eight years later. On Pace, see Jervis Wegg, Richard Pace, A Tudor Diplomat (London, 1932), pp. 273-288. The original of the 'ambitious letter', written by Wolsey to Gardiner, is to be found in BL Cotton MS B.XI, fo. 57, although how Foxe obtained a copy of it is not known. The source of the 'Instructions' is similarly unknown, but the stories about Barnes and the Legatine Congregation are to be found in Hall's Chronicle, pp. 146-7, 166, and 169. Wolsey's arrest, the summoning of Parliament, and More's appointment as chancellor, are similarly taken from Hall, as are the 'Greuvances against the Clergie' (p. 188) and the articles against Wolsey (p. 189). The petition of Humphrey Monmouth to Wolsey and the Council, dated 19 May 1528, from which most of the story his 'trouble' is taken, came from a manuscript in Foxe's possession (BL Harley MS 421). It was printed by Strype (Ecclesiastical Memorials, 1, ii, p. 89) and taken from Strype by the Letters and Papers (4, ii, No 4282). The proceedings against Arthur, Bilney, and others are taken from the registers of John Tunstal, bishop of Durham (not Stokesley), bishop of London (London Guildhall Library, Guildhall MS 9531/10 (fos.131r-36r)), whilst the story of Thomas Hytten probably comes from John Fisher's Rochester register, now missing. The substance of these blocks was repeated with very little alteration in 1583.

David Loades

1563 Edition, page 469[Back to Top]

This refers to the 'paralipomena' (Greek: 'supplement') of the Chronicon quo omnes fere veteres … a chronicle that ended in the thirteenth century, by Burchard, abbot of Uspergensis [Urspergensis = Ursperg, a monastery in Bavaria]), edited and published by the enthusiastic humanist and Augsburg antiquarian Conrad Peutinger in 1515. The first continuation was by Conrad of Lichtenau [Konrad von Lichtenau]. The second continuation, to which Foxe refers here, was that by Caspar Hedio, which took it to 1537, the year it was published.

1563 Edition, page 470[Back to Top]
Thomas Bilney

Unlike Robert Barnes or other Cambridge men who were among the earliest English evangelicals, Thomas Bilney left few written works at the time of his execution by burning on 19 August 1531. Posterity therefore has had to depend very largely on Foxe's martyrology for his portrait. When Patrick Collinson wrote that John Foxe's beautiful stories are `indispensable' for our understanding of the Reformation, because `we cannot and never shall be able to see the events' that he recounted `except through his spectacles' (Patrick Collinson, `Truth and legend: the veracity of John Foxe's Book of Martyrs', in Elizabethan Essays, (London, 1994), p. 177), we may appreciate that Foxe is also indispensable for what we can know about Bilney. In this section of his text it is particularly clear how Foxe and his printer John Day looked through the spectacles of the men who had actually known Bilney, and how they interwove the contradictory accounts of his life, examinations, retractions, and death into a memorable portrait of a man who was sacrificed at a delicate moment in the life of the Christian Church.

In the 1563 edition, their source material was drawn from the official records kept by Cuthbert Tunstall, then bishop of London, in his episcopal register; the sermons of Hugh Latimer; as well as the polemical denunciations of Sir Thomas More. In the second edition of 1570, Foxe and Day were assisted by those who had known Bilney, and were still alive at the time that they were writing, most notably their great patron the archbishop of Canterbury, Matthew Parker, who was a Norwich native, and as a young fellow of Corpus Christi College had accompanied Bilney when he went to the stake. The reason why Foxe consulted these sources about Bilney's death was that he was responding to charges made by Thomas More, and repeated later by Nicolas Harpsfield in 1566, that Bilney had died a penitent sinner, reconciled with the Catholic church.

Latimer's first printed references to Bilney appeared during the reign of King Edward VI, when Day (while he was working with William Seres in the late 1540s) began to disseminate his sermons with the backing of Katherine Brandon, the widowed duchess of Suffolk, whose arms appear at the beginning of Latimer's books. After Latimer was burnt in 1555, Foxe and Day continued to gather his sermons as they prepared their successive editions of the A&M. Day printed a fresh assemblage of Latimer's sermons in 1562, with previously-unprinted additions that contained further references to Bilney. Even at the end of Day's life, he discovered more sermons by Latimer to put into print.

To Latimer, we can attribute the evocative portrait of `Bilney, little Bilney' the vulnerable and harmless scholar, which he created in three sermons:1) 'Bilney, litle Bilnei, that blessed martyr of GOD', first appeared in Latimer's Seventh Sermon preached before King Edward VI: The seconde sermon of Maister Hughe Latimer, whych he preached before the Kynges Maiestie within his graces Palayce at Westminster, the xv. day of Marche M.ccccc.xlix. (London: John Day and William Seres [1549], STC 15274.7), sigs. Bb3A-Bb3B; (reprinted in the Parker Society edition of Latimer's Sermons, ed. George Elwes Corrie (Cambridge, 1844), p. 222.2) Bilney asked Latimer to hear his confession (1524): first printed in Latimer's First Sermon on the Lord's Prayer in 27 sermons preached by the ryght Reuerende father in God and constant matir [sic] of Iesus Christe, Maister Hugh Latimer, as well such as in tymes past haue bene printed, as certayne other commyng to our handes of late, whych were yet neuer set forth in print, (London: John Day, 1562, STC 15276) in the section known as Certayn Godly Sermons, made vppon the Lordes Prayer, at fol. 13B (reprinted in Latimer's Sermons, ed. pp. 334-5).3) Bilney's `anguishe and agonie' following his recantation of 1527 appeared in one of the final books Day printed, in Latimer's Lincolnshire Sermons for the Second Sunday in Advent Fruitfull sermons preached by the right reuerend Father, and constant martyr of Iesus Christ M. Hugh Latimer (London: John Day, 1584, STC 15280), fols. 247-247v; reprinted in Sermons and Remains, ed. George Elwes Corrie (Cambridge, 1844), p. 51.Latimer's reminiscences of Bilney's life and sufferings, as they were adapted in the A&M, have proved to be definitive over the centuries, or rather, the chief means by which Bilney has been understood, at least until recently.

In contrast to Latimer's portrait of Bilney as the noble victim, Sir Thomas More's characterization was polarized between Bilney's obvious reputation for goodness, contrasted against the harm that More believed Bilney inflicted when he preached and distributed books in London and East Anglia. So More wrote during Bilney's lifetime that he had heard that his reputation, was of 'a good honest vertuous man/ farre from ambycyon and desire of worldely worshyp/ chast/ humble/ and charytable/ free and lyberall in alm[h]ouse dede[s]/ and a very goodly prechoure' in A dyaloge of syr Thomas More knyghte . . . touchyng the pestylent secte of Luther [and] Tyndale (London: William Rastell, 1530, STC 18085), especially sig. B3B. B5A-C6B; reprinted in Sir Thomas More, A Dialogue Concerning Heresies, eds. Thomas M. C. Lawler et al., in The Complete Works of St. Thomas More, vol. 6, pt. 1 (New Haven, 1981), especially pp. 27-8, 35-51. As Lord Chancellor, More was asked to investigate some of the legal disarray that accompanied Bilney's execution, which he discussed in The confutacyon of Tyndales answere (London: William Rastell, 1532, STC 18079), sig. Cc3B-Dd1A, reprinted in The confutacyon of Tyndales answere, ed. L. A. Schuster et al., in The Complete Works of St. Thomas More, vol. 8, pt. 1 (New Haven, 1973), pp. 22-5. More's nuanced and complicated understanding of Bilney, which moved in turns from sympathy through to acidulation, has been especially influential in recent decades in the work of John F. Davis and Gregory Walker, among others.

What was Bilney's own religious complexion? The term `Protestant' began to emerge only from 1529, after the second Diet of Speyer and it did not gain any currency in English until long after Bilney's death. Probably it is not fair to call Bilney a Protestant, for he died before doctrinal lines and confessional identities had been sufficiently developed to make their meanings clear (this was also the view of the Jesuit Robert Parsons writing at the beginning of the seventeenth century). Bilney's opinions reveal a certain fluidity that was characteristic of the Cambridge men of his generation. Also, it may not be completely appropriate to refer to his conversion, as Foxe and Day did, nor to his converting of others, for they defined with the benefit of hindsight what has become known as `the conversion experience' in a manner that might not be said to match the type of profound religious and emotional engagements that Bilney or Latimer knew. Some profound transformations occurred in their devotional lives, but `conversion', as Foxe and Day labeled them, might be too limiting to express the complexity of what actually occurred. Elements of Lollardy have been identified in Bilney's thinking, but many of his ideas were also unexceptional in the broad currents of the Christian Church. It is hard to discern how much of Luther's ideas he accepted. In 1527 he agreed that Luther's opinions had been justly condemned, and that Luther and his followers were wicked and detestable heretics. Four years later, however, some of his ideas sound very much influenced by Luther indeed. But by the time of his death, Bilney may have already been surpassed in his thinking by other Cambridge men. This is apparent if we can believe a comment the A&M attributed to Richard Nix, bishop of Norwich, who exclaimed, `I feare I haue burnt Abell & let Cain go', after learning that Nicholas Shaxton had preached during a University Sermon on Ash Wednesday 1531 that it was wrong to say publicly that there was no purgatory, but not damnable to think so privately. John F. Davis, followed by P. R N. Carter, termed Bilney an `evangelical': one who believed that scripture defined faith, devotion, and practice. Evangelical is the term for Bilney that will be embraced here.

Why was Bilney burned in 1531? The circumstances of his execution go back to his defiant to return to Norwich and preach publicly. His adversaries held the advantage once he decided to repudiate his abjuration and 'go to Ierusalem'), and see his friends no more (like Christ on his way to Golgotha). As a relapsed heretic, he could expect little mercy. More importantly, his execution came about as one element in the larger struggle that was taking place in England between the clergy and Henry VIII for control over the English Church. Cardinal Thomas Wolsey (who examined Bilney in 1527) was discarded as the king's chief advisor in 1529 after he failed to obtain an annulment of Henry's marriage to Catherine of Aragon from Pope Clement VII. From mid-1530, the king became emboldened to assert his own authority against the jurisdiction of the pope. Henry began to press forward the understanding that he was the supreme head of the Church in England, and that English kings had always held spiritual sovereignty in their realm. Under this line of reasoning the papacy was a mere usurper in England, and the pope was only the bishop of Rome. In 1527, Bilney made the daring suggestion that kings and princes should assume the role of an Ezechias and destroy any religious images that detracted worshippers from the sacrifice that Christ had made on the cross. In essence, Bilney attempted to push Henry into the role of acting like an Old Testament ruler like Hezekiah, or Josiah, which was a trend that gained greater success late in his reign, and became the standard attribute for the young King Edward VI. During his trial in Norwich in 1531, Bilney appealed to have the king hear his case as the supreme head of the English Church (a strategy that saved his colleague Edward Crome when he was accused of preaching heresies). But Bishop Richard Nix and his chancellor Thomas Pelles refused to allow Bilney to appeal to the king, and they moved swiftly to have him condemned and executed. He was burnt in a place outside Norwich known as the Lollards Pit. It may have seemed singularly appropriate to burn Bilney on the feast day of St. Magnus as a means to repair the insult that he had inflicted four years earlier by preaching against idolatry in a church dedicated to the saint.

Bilney's execution (like Archbishop Thomas Cranmer's in 1556) was marked by vexing irregularities that fed contentious controversies for decades to come, and they informed the narrative that Foxe created in the A&M. At the last moment, just before the fire was lit, a written recantation was thrust into Bilney's hands to give him a final chance to submit. But he did not take advantage of the opportunity, even though he might have saved his life had he read the document loud enough for the people standing by to hear him. His execution was vastly disturbing. Bilney was a Norfolk native. He had many friends in Norwich, and a number of his colleagues from Cambridge University attended him in his last hours. The fact that his appeal was not brought before the king worried many, and Sir Thomas More, as Lord Chancellor, was asked to investigate. More decided that Bilney had indeed `redde hys reuocacyon hym selfe' as he stood at the stake, but `so softely' that those standing by could not hear him. Had Bilney then revoked at the last moment? If so, was it correct to burn him? In The confutacyon of Tyndales answere More continued to associate Bilney with the teachings of Martin Luther and William Tyndale, but he concluded that Bilney had revoked. As God had given Bilney grace to cast all of his errors to the devil, then Bilney `with glad herte was content to suffer the fyre' as a punishment for his offences. Then, More hoped, God had 'forthwith from the fyre taken hys blessed soule to heuen', where Bilney now could pray for all of those still alive whom he had deluded.

What Bilney wanted to achieve, at least in terms of dismantling shrines, was done later in Henry's reign, and under King Edward. Bilney was audacious, and he pushed the pace too early. In 1531 he became the victim, but as matters developed, his enemies also failed, for the reaction to his death was extreme. The English clergy was forced to submit to Henry VIII's supremacy over the Church. More's pursuit of Bilney and other heretics in his defense of the papacy and tradition was among the factors that led to his surrender of the office of Chancellor in 1532. Latimer and other evangelicals played a part in bringing him to his execution in 1535. Latimer of course read every word that More had printed against Bilney. He took his own opportunity avenge his friend when he preached before King Edward. 'Wo, wil be to that byshoppe that had the examynacyon of hym,' he warned (Nix had died in 1535, hounded to the end by Cranmer for killing Bilney), 'if he repented not.' (Hugh Latimer, The seconde sermon of Maister Hughe Latimer, whych he preached before the Kynges Maiestie within his graces Palayce at Westminster, the xv. day of Marche M.ccccc.xlix. (London: John Day and William Seres [1549], STC 15274.7), Bb3v).More's writings remained influential long after his death, and were newly relevant after Queen Mary Tudor (1553-1555) brought about a rapprochement with the Roman Catholic Church. Foxe and Day used their account of Bilney in successive editions of the A&M as a means to discredit Catholic politics and theology, and to prevent any possible backsliding toward Rome under Queen Elizabeth. They reconciled the conflicting and divergent interpretations of Bilney's actions largely following Latimer's lead. Bilney was a good man who was overcome by the enemies of the true Church. The heightened competition between Protestant and Catholic traditions had solidified by the beginning of Elizabeth's reign. Foxe and Day reinterpreted the confusing 1520s and 1530s in light of their own present-day circumstances. Thus they smudged some aspects of Bilney's career. They made some of the details of his 1527 submission harder to understand, and cloaked the fact that Bilney had agreed that Luther was a heretic. They also stressed the word 'conuersio' or 'conversion' when they referred to the astonishing and elusive life-altering interviews that passed between Bilney and his friends.

Was Foxe and Day's account of Bilney's life mainly the literal truth, or was it art? We may never know, and here we suggest some approaches to this difficult issue. At the beginning of the seventeenth century, the Jesuit Robert Parsons criticized Foxe for his 'bragg & glory' (N. D. [Robert Parsons], A Treatise of Three Conversions of England from Paganisme to Christian Religion (St. Omer, 1603- [1604], STC 19416), 547), and he dismissed the story of Latimer hearing Bilney's confession as a vain thing. Parsons maintained that Bilney had held but few Protestant opinions and that he died in his adjuration. Recently, Bilney could seem (Gregory Walker has argued) more the 'scheming lawyer than the persecuted saint' in 1527 (Walker, 'Heresy Trial', p. 163). If Foxe and Day drifted in their stories, then perhaps they learned some of their strategies from what they called the 'Poeticall fictions' (1563, p. 1009) of Sir Thomas More. Beyond all doubt, however, is the fact that Foxe and Day's portrait of the life and martyrdom of Thomas Bilney is among the elements that make the A&M one of the supreme religious and literary masterpieces of sixteenth-century England.

Susan Wabuda
Fordham University

1563 Edition, page 513[Back to Top]

Wolsey's examination of Latimer, as related by Ralph Morice in British Library Harley MS 422, fols. 84-8, 90, should be compared with his examination of Arthur and Bilney.

1563 Edition, page 513[Back to Top]

It had been illegal to preach or teach any of Martin Luther's doctrine any where in western Europe since mid 1520, when his books and sermons were banned by Pope Leo X in his Bull 'Exsurge Domine'. When Luther continued to defy the pope by burning the Bull publicly in late 1520 with books of Canon Law, Leo excommunicated him at the beginning of 1521.

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The date of any previous conversation between Arthur and Sir Thomas More is not known.

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Bilney's attempt to persuade Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall to favour him may be compared with William Tyndale's efforts to gain Tunstall's patronage in the early 1520s.

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The actual number of letters that passed between Thomas Bilney and Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall is confused. What is clear is that Tunstall carefully saved Bilney's letters, and used them here in examining him in 1527.

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The book Bilney was reading was the Novum Instrumentum, the first version of the New Testament that Erasmus issued in 1516, and which printed the original Greek of scripture in parallel columns with the Latin Vulgate.

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The sentence that matters here is; 'Sed tandem de Iesu audiebam, nimirum tum, cum nouum Testamentum primum ad Erasmo aederetur'.

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Bilney's attempt to persuade Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall to favour him may be compared with William Tyndale's efforts to gain Tunstall's patronage in the early 1520s.

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The actual number of letters that passed between Thomas Bilney and Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall is confused. What is clear is that Tunstall carefully saved Bilney's letters, and used them here in examining him in 1527.

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Thomas Bilney proceeded to the degree of bachelor in Canon Law at Cambridge in 1521. Grace Book B, Part II: Containing the Accounts of the Proctors of the University of Cambridge, 1511-44, ed. Mary Bateson (Cambridge, 1905), p. 95.

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The book Bilney was reading was the Novum Instrumentum, the first version of the New Testament that Erasmus issued in 1516 that printed the original Greek of scripture in parallel columns with the Latin Vulgate.

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The sentence that matters here is read in Latin: 'Sed tandem de Iesu audiebam, nimirum tum, cum nouum Testamentum primum ad Erasmo aederetur'.

1563 Edition, page 520[Back to Top]

The famous preacher Bilney mentioned here cannot be identified.

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To write that Christ is our only mediator, as Foxe does here, is meant to dismiss the role that any of the saints had in salvation, and most particularly was a criticism of the cult of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

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For the practice of burying the dead in the cowls of Franciscan friars, see Susan Wabuda, Preaching during the English Reformation (Cambridge, 2002), pp. 108, 122-139.

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The famous pilgrimage shrines to the Blessed Virgin Mary at Walsingham in Norfolk (which was established soon after the Norman Conquest in the eleventh century); St. Thomas Becket in Canterbury (Becket was murdered in the Cathedral in 1170), and the shrine to Our Lady of Grace in Ipswich (dating from the 1100s). Willesden also had an important pilgrimage site in its shrine to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

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The interesting details of these episodes remain obscure.

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Bilney was accused of preaching at Willesden in the week of Pentecost in 1527.

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Details concerning the identity and career of Friar John Brusierd continue to be sparse. Craig W. D'Alton, 'The Suppression of Lutheran Heretics in England, 1526-1529', Journal of Ecclesiastical History, vol. 54 (2003), pp. 228-53.

1563 Edition, page 526[Back to Top]

To `wrast' scripture: the past tense of `to wrest' or twist. It means to misinterpret deliberately.

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Foxe is our chief source of information that Bilney `conuerted' Thomas Arthur. The best account of Arthur's life has been written by Andrew Hope for the ODNB. Arthur was a fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, which had been built by the chancellor of the university, Bishop John Fisher of Rochester, using a legacy from Lady Margaret Beaufort, mother of King Henry VII. Fisher maintained a strong influence over St. John's in the 1520s. The word was Day's and Foxe's anachronistic term for Bilney's influence on his contemporaries. 'Conversion' was not a term that the early evangelicals often used (see Peter Marshall, 'Evangelical conversion in the reign of Henry VIII', in The Beginnings of English Protestantism, eds. Peter Marshall and Alec Ryrie [Cambridge, 2002], 14-37). 'Conuerted' also appeared as a gloss in 1562, when Day printed Latimer's story of how Bilney had come to his chambers and asked him to hear his confession in 1524 (about the same time that he was proceeding to his bachelor's degree in theology) when he preached his first sermon on the Lord's Prayer in Lincolnshire before the Duchess of Suffolk and her household in 1553. 27 sermons preached by the ryght Reuerende father in God and constant matir [sic] of Iesus Christe, Maister Hugh Latimer, as well such as in tymes past haue bene printed, as certayne other commyng to our handes of late, whych were yet neuer set forth in print, (STC 15276) in the section known as Certayn Godly Sermons, made vppon the Lordes Prayer, at fol. 13B (reprinted in the Parker Society edition of Latimer's Sermons, ed. George Elwes Corrie (Cambridge, 1844), pp. 334-5. In the marginal comments Day wrote in 1562: 'Bilney was gods instrument to conuert Latymer.' Also, 'Latymer is conuerted by hearing Bilneys confession.' In contrast, Latimer said that he 'learned' more from Bilney than he had for many previous years, and that he from thenceforth relinquished his studies in the scholastic doctors, as well as `began to smell the word of god' in increasing his interest in Biblical studies. What actually occurred seems to have been more subtle and less cataclysmic, at least at first, than Day and Foxe would have their readers believe.

1563 Edition, page 513[Back to Top]

4 December 1527. Cuthbert Tunstall, bishop of London; John Fisher, bishop of Rochester; Nicholas West, bishop of Ely; John Vesey, bishop of Exeter; John Longland, bishop of Lincoln; John Clerk of Bath and Wells; and Henry Standish of St. Asaph. Among the other examiners whom Foxe did not name was the bishop of Carlisle. They met in the octagonal chapter house of Westminster Abbey, which has remained relatively unchanged in the intervening centuries. It is reached from the Cloister and it retains its original tile floor and wall paintings.

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5 December 1527. It should be noted that Bishop Tunstall was deliberately slow in passing an irrevocable sentence of death over Bilney, and may be taken as an indication that Tunstall would have preferred that Bilney submit and be spared.

1563 Edition, page 531[Back to Top]

Among the thirty witnesses that Bilney now claimed that he could bring to support his case, we must number Dr. Robert Foreman of Queen's College, Cambridge, and rector of All Hallows, Honey Lane in London, who warned some thirty persons in Cambridge in 1526 that a search was about to be made for Luther's books at the university by Cardinal Thomas Wolsey and Cambridge Chancellor John Fisher, bishop of Rochester.

1563 Edition, page 531[Back to Top]

Dr. Robert Foreman of Queen's College, Cambridge, and rector of All Hallows, Honey Lane in London, warned some thirty persons in Cambridge in 1526 that a search was about to be made for Luther's books at the university by Cardinal Thomas Wolsey and Cambridge Chancellor John Fisher, bishop of Rochester.

1563 Edition, page 531[Back to Top]

In after years, Latimer recommended that those accused should 'Abiure al your fryends' rather than listen to them and abjure as Bilney did in 1527. The seconde sermon of Maister Hughe Latimer, whych he preached before the Kynges Maiestie within his graces Palayce at Westminster, the xv. day of Marche M.ccccc.xlix (London: John Day and William Seres [1549], STC 15274.7), sigs. Bb3A-Bb3B; (reprinted in the Parker Society edition of Latimer's Sermons, ed. George Elwes Corrie (Cambridge, 1844), p. 222.

1563 Edition, page 532[Back to Top]

Although the London parish of St. Magnus in the present day wishes to be identified with St. Magnus the Martyr, there has, through the centuries, been some understandable confusion about which particular St. Magnus enjoys the church's dedication.

1563 Edition, page 532[Back to Top]

For the association of the crucified Christ with the brazen serpent of Moses (from Numbers 21:4-9 and John 3:14-15), see Diarmaid MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer: a Life (New Haven, 1996), pp. 118-120. Bilney's essential dependence upon the sacrifice of Christ in his theology may help to explain his attack on idolatry at the church of St Magnus (which was always an important City church, as it stood on the north end of London Bridge), where the parishioners were gilding their new rood. Bilney argued there that just as Ezechias destroyed the brazen serpent that Moses had made, so too should kings and princes in the present day destroy and burn the images of saints that were set up in churches and other places. See Gregory Walker, 'Saint or schemer?: the 1527 heresy trial of Thomas Bilney reconsidered', Journal of Ecclesiastical History, vol. 40 (1989), pp. 219-38.

1563 Edition, page 532[Back to Top]

See also Guildhall Library, MS 9531/10, fols. 130B-136A.

1563 Edition, page 532[Back to Top]

Thomas Garrett or Garrard was associated with Robert Foreman at Honey Lane and was a crucial figure in the dissemination of heretical books between London and the universities. He was briefly chancellor of the diocese of Worcester when Hugh Latimer was bishop there. In 1540 he was burnt with Robert Barnes and William Jerome.

1563 Edition, page 533[Back to Top]

Latimer's First Sermon on the Lord's Prayer in 27 sermons preached by the ryght Reuerende father in God and constant matir [sic] of Iesus Christe, Maister Hugh Latimer, as well such as in tymes past haue bene printed, as certayne other commyng to our handes of late, whych were yet neuer set forth in print, (London: John Day, 1562, STC 15276) in the section known as Certayn Godly Sermons, made vppon the Lordes Prayer, at fol. 13B (reprinted in Latimer's Sermons, ed. pp. 334-5).

1563 Edition, page 533[Back to Top]

Hugh Latimer's famous account of what passed between him and Bilney when Bilney 'conuerted' him in 1524. 27 sermons preached by the ryght Reuerende father in God and constant matir [sic] of Iesus Christe, Maister Hugh Latimer, as well such as in tymes past haue bene printed, as certayne other commyng to our handes of late, whych were yet neuer set forth in print, (STC 15276) in the section known as Certayn Godly Sermons, made vppon the Lordes Prayer, at fol. 13B (reprinted in the Parker Society edition of Latimer's Sermons, ed. George Elwes Corrie (Cambridge, 1844), pp. 334-5. The word 'conuersion' was Day's and Foxe's anachronistic term for Bilney's influence on his contemporaries. 'Conversion' was not a term that the early evangelicals often used (see Peter Marshall, `Evangelical conversion in the reign of Henry VIII', in The Beginnings of English Protestantism, eds. Peter Marshall and Alec Ryrie [Cambridge, 2002], pp. 14-37).

1563 Edition, page 513[Back to Top]

Thomas Thirlby, the future bishop of Westminster, was also a fellow of Trinity Hall.

1563 Edition, page 534[Back to Top]

Foxe here compares Bilney with Christ on the way to the cross.

1563 Edition, page 534[Back to Top]

The place where the Anchoress was walled up was near the convent of the Dominican Friars in Norwich (now known as St. Andrew's and Blackfriars Halls). Sir Thomas More wrote that Bilney was 'secretely kepte' for a time in Norwich, and he was seized while he was delivering to her 'dyuers of Tyndales bokes'. The books afterward were conveyed away by another man, who was found with them, and the double discovery of Bilney and the books 'came to lyght by the very prouysyon of god.' Sir Thomas More, The confutacyon of Tyndales answere, ed. L. A. Schuster et al., in The Complete Works of St. Thomas More, vol. 8, pt. 1 (New Haven, 1973), p. 23 from The confutacyon of Tyndales answere (London: William Rastell, 1532, STC 18079), sig. Cc3B.

1563 Edition, page 534[Back to Top]

Foxe tells us here that Bilney gave her only two books (rather than the 'dyuers' that More mentioned) by William Tyndale: his translation of the New Testament, and The obedience of a Christen man. Tyndale's New Testament began to reach England from its first edition of 1525 (printed in Cologne, STC 2823) and from the Worms edition of 1526. Other expositions of scripture followed when Tyndale was living in Antwerp. The obedience of a Christen man appeared in 1528. The obedience of a Christen man and how Christen rulers ought to governe (Marlborow in the land of Hessen: Hans Luft [Antwerp: J. Hoochstraten], 1528, STC 24446).

1563 Edition, page 534[Back to Top]

John Byrd was born in Coventry, and he became a suffragan bishop in 1537. In 1541 he was made bishop of the newly-created diocese of Chester. At the time of Bilney's examinations, Byrd was still a Carmelite friar. See Richard Copsey's account of him in ODNB. Dr John Stokes was the prior of the convent of Augustinian friars in Norwich.

1563 Edition, page 534[Back to Top]

Nicholas Shaxton was bishop of Salisbury before his resignation in 1539, not Gloucester.

1563 Edition, page 535[Back to Top]

West Acre is in Norfolk and had an Augustinian priory before the Dissolution.

1563 Edition, page 535[Back to Top]

Nicholas Shaxton had preached a university sermon to the clergy in Cambridge on Ash Wednesday 1531 that it was wrong to say publicly that there was no purgatory, but not damnable to think so privately.

1563 Edition, page 535[Back to Top]

The date of Shaxton's marriage is not know, but there was at least one son from his union before he repudiated his wife in 1546. See his profile in the ODNB.

1563 Edition, page 535[Back to Top]

The Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge then was Dr. John Watson, who had studied Greek with Erasmus. See the Grace Book B, Part II: Containing the Accounts of the Proctors of the University of Cambridge, 1511-44, ed. Mary Bateson (Cambridge, 1905), p. 162.

1563 Edition, page 535[Back to Top]

Hugh Latimer became University Chaplain in 1522. Although one of his duties was the custody of Cambridge's elaborate silver processional cross, which was brought out at several important occasions during the academic year, Latimer was more correctly known as Chaplain of the University rather than as its `croskeper'. Foxe's source for his information here was from Ralph Morice in British Library, Harley MS 422, fols. 84-8, 90.

1563 Edition, page 513[Back to Top]

For Dr. Nicholas Wilson's extensive record of opposing heresy, see his profile by Kenneth Carleton in the ODNB.

1563 Edition, page 535[Back to Top]

It had been illegal to preach or teach any of Martin Luther's doctrine any where in western Europe since mid 1520, when his books and sermons were banned by Pope Leo X in his Bull Exsurge Domine. When Luther continued to defy the pope by burning the Bull with books of canon law publicly in late 1520, Leo excommunicated him at the beginning of 1521. Heresy was illegal in England under the terms of both canon law and statute: the 1408 Constitutions of Archbishop Thomas Arundel, printed in William Lyndwood, Provinciale, (seu Constitvtiones Angliae) (Oxford, 1679; rpt. 1968), p. 286; 5 Ric. II, st. 2, c. 5 (1382); 2 Hen. IV, c. 15 (1401); 2 Hen. V., st. 1, c. 7 (1414). See also J. A. Guy, 'The Legal context of the controversy: the law of heresy', in The Debellation of Salem and Bizance in The Complete Works of St. Thomas More, vol. 10 (1987), pp. xlvii-lxvii.

1563 Edition, page 514[Back to Top]

28 November 1527. Tunstall, West and Fisher came to the house of Richard Nix, near Charing Cross, perhaps out of consideration for Nix's partial blindness. Nix was a member of Bilney's college, Trinity Hall.

1563 Edition, page 514[Back to Top]

2 December 1527. Despite `the same place', this part of the proceedings resumed at the Chapter House of Westminster Abbey.

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The records of Bilney's and Arthur's examinations are preserved in the Register of Cuthbert Tunstall, bishop of London, in Guildhall Library, MS 9531/10, fols. 130B-136A. Arthur's and Bilney's examinations have also been discussed by Susan Brigden, London and the Reformation, (Oxford, 1989), pp. 71, 111-113, 116, 119, 122-3, 127, 161, 195, 204, 260.

1563 Edition, page 514[Back to Top]

All traveling preachers, whether friars, monks, or learned secular clergymen, were required under the terms of English statute (2 Henry IV, c. 15, printed in Statutes of the Realm, vol. 2, pp. 125-8) and canon law (William Lyndwood, Provinciale, (seu Constitvtiones Angliae) (Oxford, 1679; rpt. 1968), Lib. V, tit. 5, pp. 288-9) to hold a license, usually from the bishop in whose diocese they wanted to preach. John Fisher, bishop of Rochester and chancellor of Cambridge obtained new licensing powers for the university under the terms of a Bull issued by Pope Alexander VI in 1503. A Cambridge University preaching license permitted its holder to preach anywhere in England, Scotland, and Ireland. Damian Riehl Leader, A History of the University of Cambridge, vol. 1, The University to 1546 (Cambridge, 1988), pp. 246-7, 278-9; Susan Wabuda, Preaching during the English Reformation (Cambridge, 2002), pp. 117-119. Arthur was licensed to preach by Cambridge University in 1519-20 in the same group that included Nicholas Shaxton and Thomas Cranmer. Grace Book B, Part II: Containing the Accounts of the Proctors of the University of Cambridge, 1511-44, ed. Mary Bateson (Cambridge, 1905), p. 77. Bilney was issued a license to preach in the diocese of Ely in 1525, which Bishop West retracted after he was convicted of heresy. Cambridge University Library, MS EDR, G/1/7, fol. 33A.

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For Arthur to preach that `euerye man may preach' was unusual, and against canon law and statute. Here he may have been influenced by some of the writings of Erasmus, or the idea of the priesthood of all believers, found in Martin Luther's [Of the Babylonian Captivity of the Church] - De Captivitate Babylonica Ecclesiae (Basle: Adam Petri, 1520).

1563 Edition, page 514[Back to Top]

For the crosses on the walls of London, see also Patrick Collinson, 'Truth and Legend: the Veracity of John Foxe's Book of Martyrs', in Elizabethan Essays (London, 1994), pp. 151-77 at p. 175, n. 88.

1563 Edition, page 514[Back to Top]

Luther argued in Of the Babylonian Captivity of the Church that every Christian, in some senses, can be a priest in the exercise of ministry. De Captivitate Babylonica Ecclesiae (Basle: Adam Petri, 1520).

1563 Edition, page 514[Back to Top]

For Arthur to preach that 'euerye man may preach' was unusual, and against canon law and statute. Here he may have been influenced by some of the writings of Erasmus, or the idea of the priesthood of all believers, found in Martin Luther's De Captivitate Babylonica Ecclesiae (Basle: Adam Petri, 1520).

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Bilney and Thomas Arthur went preaching together from the university to Ipswich and Norwich and onward to London during the summer of 1527. Theirs was an aggressive preaching itinerary, and they were followed at every step by Dominican friars. At Ipswich, Bilney was heard to say that Christ was the only mediator between us and the Father. To petition the saints was to injure the blood of Christ. Bilney was accused of preaching in the churches of St Helen's Bishopsgate, St Magnus, and also in the churches of Willesden (in the week of Pentecost), Newington (in the week of Pentecost), Kensington, and Chelsea outside the city, as well as Ipswich on 28 May. At Willesden, Bilney spoke against going on pilgrimages and offerings to saints. He recommended that worshippers stay at home. At the church of St Magnus (which was always an important City church, as it stood on the north end of London Bridge), the parishioners were gilding their new rood, and here Bilney denounced idolatry. Chelsea is particularly noteworthy, as Sir Thomas More's residence was next to what is now known as Chelsea Old Church, where he intended to be buried next to the chantry chapel he built there. Arthur preached at Cambridge on Whitsunday; and also at Walden; and St Mary Woolchurch in London at the feast of the Trinity. Susan Wabuda, Preaching during the English Reformation (Cambridge, 2002), pp. 119-120; Gregory Walker, 'Saint or schemer?: the 1527 heresy trial of Thomas Bilney reconsidered', Journal of Ecclesiastical History, vol. 40 (1989), pp. 219-38; Patrick Zutshi and Robert Ombres, `The Dominicans in Cambridge 1238-1538', Archivum Fratrum Praedicatorum, vol. 60 (1990), pp. 313-73.

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Among the other examiners whom Foxe did not name was the bishop of Carlisle. They met in the octagonal chapter house of Westminster Abbey, which has remained relatively unchanged in the intervening centuries. It is reached from the Cloister and it retains its original tile floor and wall paintings.

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The actual number of letters that passed between Thomas Bilney and Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall is confused here. What is clear is that Tunstall carefully saved Bilney's letters, and used them here in examining him in 1527.

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The records of Bilney's and Arthur's examinations are preserved in the Register of Cuthbert Tunstall, bishop of London, in Guildhall Library, MS 9531/10, fols. 130B-136A. The bishop of Rochester was John Fisher, chancellor of Cambridge University, who was among the most implacable of Luther's adversaries, and he enjoyed an international reputation for learning and orthodoxy. Luther's 1520 book De Captivitate Babylonica Ecclesiae created a sensation because he attacked the doctrine of the seven sacraments and the hierarchy of the Catholic Church by calling into question the theology of the Mass. Fisher responded against him in Defensio Regie assertionis contra Babylonicam captiuitatem and Sacri sacerdotij defensiones contra Lutherum, (Cologne: Peter Quentell, June 1525).

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The target of the bishops' inquiry here was the Lutheran tenet of justification by faith alone, without the necessity of good works (including pilgrimages, the invocation of the saints, or almsdeeds).

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The reading of the Bible in the vernacular by the laity had been illegal in England ever since the medieval heresy laws against Lollardy had been passed by Parliament in 5 Ric. II, st. 2, c. 5 (1382); 2 Hen. IV, c. 15 (1401); 2 Hen. V., st. 1, c. 7 (1414), and also in the 1408 Constitutions of Archbishop Thomas Arundel, printed in William Lyndwood, Provinciale, (seu Constitvtiones Angliae) (Oxford, 1679; rpt. 1968), p. 286. Vernacular prayers and lessons were at issue once more since 1516 when Erasmus first issued his powerful call for everyone to read scripture in the Paraclesis.

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The reference here to wooden `beades' may not be simply to rosary beads, but to the `pardon beads' that were offered by some religious houses to reassure worried lay people. See J. T. Rhodes, `Syon Abbey and its Religious Publications in the Sixteenth Century', Journal of Ecclesiastical History, vol. 44 (1993), pp. 11-25.

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Translations of the Bible into English had been illegal ever since the Wycliffite heresies of the late fourteenth century. See 5 Ric. II, st. 2, c. 5 (1382); 2 Hen. IV, c. 15 (1401); 2 Hen. V., st. 1, c. 7 (1414), and also the 1408 Constitutions of Archbishop Thomas Arundel, printed in William Lyndwood, Provinciale, (seu Constitvtiones Angliae) (Oxford, 1679; rpt. 1968), p. 286. The call of the humanists, including Erasmus, to return ad fontes, and to understand sacred scripture as it had been written, was highly controversial in the late 1520s. Susan Wabuda, 'The Woman with the Rock: the Controversy on Women and Bible Reading', in Belief and Practice in Reformation England: A Tribute to Patrick Collinson from His Students, eds. Susan Wabuda and Caroline Litzenberger (Aldershot, 1998), pp. 40-59.

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Bilney was issued a license to preach in the diocese of Ely in 1525, which Bishop West retracted. Cambridge University Library, MS EDR, G/1/7, fol. 33A.

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For Bilney's 'manner of qualifying' see J. Y. Batley, On a Reformer's Latin Bible: being an Essay on the `Adversaria' in the Vulgate of Thomas Bilney (Cambridge, 1940), pp. 47-8; John F. Davis, `The Trials of Thomas Bylney and the English Reformation', Historical Journal, vol. 24 (1981), pp. 775-790; Susan Wabuda, 'Equivocation and Recantation During the English Reformation: the "Subtle Shadows" of Dr Edward Crome', The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, vol. 44 (1993), pp. 224-242; Gregory Walker, 'Saint or schemer?: the 1527 heresy trial of Thomas Bilney reconsidered', Journal of Ecclesiastical History, vol. 40 (1989), 219-38.

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Foxe was deliberately obscure here to conceal the fact that Bilney (with Arthur) believed that Luther's opinions had been justly condemned, even under the terms of Holy Scripture, and that Luther was 'a wicked and detestable hereticke'. Bilney and Arthur agreed that John Fisher, bishop of Rochester and chancellor of Cambridge University, had been correct in impugning Luther's assertions in his books Defensio Regie assertionis contra Babylonicam captiuitatem and Sacri sacerdotij defensiones contra Lutherum (Cologne: Peter Quentell, June 1525).

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Robert Barnes had shocked the university and the hierarchy of the English Church when he was the first of the Cambridge evangelicals to openly criticize Thomas Cardinal Wolsey in a sermon he delivered at St. Edward's Church in Cambridge on Christmas Eve in 1525.

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Bilney's opinion that the saints were not in heaven was highly unusual. See John F. Davis, 'The Trials of Thomas Bylney and the English Reformation', Historical Journal, vol. 24 (1981), pp. 775-790.

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Translations of the Bible into English had been illegal ever since the Wycliffite heresies of the late fourteenth century. See 5 Ric. II, st. 2, c. 5 (1382); 2 Hen. IV, c. 15 (1401); 2 Hen. V., st. 1, c. 7 (1414), and also the 1408 Constitutions of Archbishop Thomas Arundel, printed in William Lyndwood, Provinciale, (seu Constitvtiones Angliae) (Oxford, 1679; rpt. 1968), p. 286. The call of the humanists, including Erasmus, to return ad fontes, and to understand sacred scripture as it had been written, was highly controversial in the late 1520s. Susan Wabuda, 'The Woman with the Rock: the Controversy on Women and Bible Reading', in Belief and Practice in Reformation England: A Tribute to Patrick Collinson from His Students, eds. Susan Wabuda and Caroline Litzenberger (Aldershot, 1998), pp. 40-59.

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The records of Bilney's and Arthur's examinations are preserved in the Register of Cuthbert Tunstall, bishop of London, in Guildhall Library, MS 9531/10 fols. 130B-136A.

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Among the other examiners whom Foxe did not name was the bishop of Carlisle. The octagonal chapter house of Westminster Abbey has remained relatively unchanged in the intervening centuries. It is reached from the Cloister and it retains its original tile floor and wall paintings.

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In the winter of 1527 Jack Roo had produced a masque (written twenty years earlier) which Wolsey took to be aimed at himself. Foxe has Fish playing the offending role. Roo spent time in the Fleet prison as a result of the play, and Fish escaped to Antwerp. However, Foxe may have placed Fish into the play without any real justification as Edward Hall, a barrister of Gray's Inn and eye-witness to the events, does not mention Fish, although one Thomas Moyle was also imprisoned (for which, see Edward Hall, The Union of the Two Noble and Illustre Families of Lancastre & York [London, 1547], fol. 154v). These events are examined closely in Rodney M Fisher, 'Simon Fishe, Cardinal Wolsey and John Roo's Play at Gray's Inn, Christmas 1526', in Archiv für Reformationsgeschichte, 69 (1978), pp. 293-8 and in Peter Gwyn, The King's Cardinal: The rise and fall of Thomas Wolsey (London, 1990), pp. 136-7.

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No doubt as a result of his treatise, A supplication for the beggars (1529).

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Fish had been arrested in London on heresy charges, but died of plague before he could stand trial in 1531.

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James Bainham was a lawyer of Middle Temple and member of the Christian Brethren. He was burned as a relapsed heretic (tried on 19 April 1531) for denying purgatory and auricular confession. See John F Davis, Heresy and reformation in the south east of England, 1520-1559 (London, 1983), pp. 55-6.

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It is difficult to pin down precisely which index of forbidden books Foxe is referring to here as there were many at the time. See Susan Brigden, London and the Reformation (Oxford, 1989), p. 179. If the list was produced after Fish's death, which seems to the tenor of Foxe's argument, than it could not have been Tunstal's list, but one of Stokesley's, of 3 December 1531 - see Andrew A Chibi, Henry VIII's Conservative Scholar (Berne, 1997), p. 122.

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Supplication of Beggers

This is a complete copy of Simon Fish, A supplication for the beggars (1529). For references I have used the copy in The English Scholar's Library of Old and Modern Works, ed. by Edward Arber (London, 1878), pp. 1-13.

Andrew ChibiUniversity of Leicester

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This refers to the great cause célèbre of the 1510s, the so-called Hunne case. In essence, Hunne refused to pay a fee to the parish priest (the rector of St Mary Matfelon in Whitechapel) for the burial of his child (March 1511). The priest sued Hunne in the ecclesiastical court of Audience (April 1512) - which found in the priest's favour - and Hunne counter-sued in the civil courts (January 1513) accusing the priest of slander and praemunire (acting upon the orders of a foreign power without the king's license). The London clergy rallied and charged Hunne with heresy as a result, and he was imprisoned in the Lollards' Tower of St Paul's Cathedral (October 1514). He committed suicide (4 December 1514) and his body was burned for heresy (20 December). A coroner's jury concluded (February 1515) that Hunne had been murdered while in prison. See E Jeffries Davis, 'The Authorities for the Case of Richard Hunne (1514-15)' in The English Historical Review 30 (July 1915), pp. 477-88.

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Mortmain is a legal condition in which land or property is possessed not by a person but by a non-personal legal entity (or corporation) like the church. The land or property, thereby, is not subject to inheritance fines. The two statutes (of 1279 and 1290) were attempts by Edward I to prevent too much land falling into the possession of the church (which limited the crown's revenues).

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This is one of Fish's theological arguments, this one against the doctrine of purgatory very much along sola scriptura lines.

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Fish here rejects the sale of indulgences, very much after the tenor of Luther's Ninety-five theses. The doctrine of purgatory was nonsensical in terms of scripture and, according to Fish, the sacrament of penance was more a financial expedient than anything else. Fish seems to (consciously?) misunderstand the doctrine of penance, however, insofar as it relates to indulgences. The indulgence derives from the donation of the penitent (considered to be his act of remorse or his necessary penalty for sin) and not from the action of the pope (who could not simply pardon all the souls without some evidence of genuine remorse).

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Matthew 22.21.

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John Alen was very active in the cardinal's suppression of monasteries in the late 1520s.

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The Supplication makes three important arguments (economic, theological and anti-clerical). That the clergy control so much land is one of his economic complaints. The economic argument is probably the key aspect of the treatise given that the 1520s witnessed a Europe wide inflation crisis.

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A summoner was a minor church official whose duty was to summon offenders to appear in ecclesiastical courts to stand trial for their offences against the church. Already, by Fish's period, holders were highly suspect of corruption and accepting bribes. See R Wunderli, 'Pre-Reformation London Summoners and the Murder of Richard Hunne', in Journal of Ecclesiastical History 33 (1982), pp. 209-24.

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At the time (c.1526) under Henry VIII, an Angel was valued at 7s and 6d. Fish's point is that just one of the existing five orders of mendicant friars in England took some ₤43.333 6s.8d each year out of the English economy.

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These are parliamentary grants of taxation calculated based on one-fifteen of a person's annual income (there was another valuation based on a tenth) as well as customs duties paid annual to the king in the form of tonnage (on wine) and poundage (on all other goods).

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This refers to one of two possible sources. Either the Historia Regum Britanniae of Geoffrey of Monmouth or a fourteenth century poem known as Alliterative Morte Arthure. Both tell the same tale, that of the (fictional) emperor's attempt to regain Gaul from Arthur. Arthur and his army defeat the emperor, thereby adding Italy to his extensive continental holdings.

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Fish relates here the essential details of the origins of the Magna Carta. John was in dispute with the king of France (Philip Augustus) over his succession to the English throne, and with the pope (Innocent III) over the election of Stephen Langton as archbishop of Canterbury. John refused to recognize the election and Innocent issued an interdict against England in 1208, an excommunication order against John in 1209, and encouraged Philip to invade in 1212. John backed down and went so far as to give England and Ireland over to the pope (renting them back as a fiefdom for a yearly tribute of 1000 marks). It is this to which Fish refers.

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This is part and parcel of Fish's various anti-clerical arguments. Here, clerical celibacy and sexual incontinence are said to have created the appearance of no less than 100,000 whores.

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At this point in the treatise, Fish has basically claimed that the clergy are a separate state within the state, subject to their own rules and regulations, indeed, taking power away from the temporal authority all the time. His point here is that temporal law is ineffective.

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In October 1527, according to Le Neve's Fasti Ecclesiae, the archdeacons referred to here are Richard Rawson (Essex, collated on 24 January 1503, died c.29 October 1543), Richard Eden (Middlesex, collated on 11 August 1516, died c.9 April 1551) and Edward Lee (Colchester, collated on 19 November 1523, created archbishop of York in 1531). (See, Joyce M Horn [ed.], Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1300-1541: volume 5: St Pau's, London [1963], pp.9-14).

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Foxe then continues with a selection of more disparate protestant works. The Evangelistrum enarrationes nuncupata. De hebdomadis quae apud Danielem sunt opusculum, in quo tractatur de sacrificio missae abolendo appears to refer to a treatise published by Heinrich Bullinger of Zürich in 1530, which Bucer subsequently and partially adopted as a defence against an earlier treatise of 1526, entitled De sacrificio missae libri tres, which had been assembled by Johannes Eck, Irwin Iserloh, Vinzenz Pfnur and Peter Fabisch (for which, see the review by John L Farthing, in Church History 53:4 (December, 1984), pp. 552-553). There then follows Urbanus Rhegius, Novas Doctrinae ad veterem collatio per Urbanum Regium, in quo tractat de sacris Ecclesiae. The work referred to in the list as 'Collectanea communium…' is discussed in George J. Engelhardt, 'The Relation of Sherry's Treatise of Schemes and Tropes to Wilson's Arte of Rhetorique', in PMLA, 62 [1947], pp.76-82). In Epistolam ad Romanos, Andreas Knopken Costerinensis interpretatio, Adjecta est ipsa Pauli epistola, a Philippo Melanchthone, passim notis quibusdam illustrata, quibus & disputationis ordo & sermonis compositio indicatur (1525) refers to a work by the Lutheran reformer of Riga, Andreas Knopken (cvar: Knop or Knoppe), a student of Johannes Bugenhagen (see David G Selwyn, The library of Thomas Cranmer [Oxford 1996], pp.50-1). There then follows a reference to Johannes Agricola, Epistola Pauli ad Titum (1530) and Cellarius (i.e. 'Martin Borrhaus'), De operibus dei (1527); then Wolfgang Capito, In Hoseam prophetam (quinque sermons) commentarius (1527).

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Included in Foxe's list at this point are several treatises by Philip Melanchthon. The first is his Dispositio orationis in Epistolam Pauli ad Romanos of which two editions were available, an earlier edition of 1529 (Hagenau) and a 1530 edition (Wittenberg). The second is his Sancti Pauli ad Colossenses Epistola, cum commentariis Phil. Melancthonis (1527) and the third his Solomonis sententiae (1525). The De authoritate, officio et potestate Pastorum Ecclesiasticorum, ex Phil. Melanct. editione may be a selection of quotation taken out of Melanchthon's works on the issue of pastoral authority (but I can find no specific reference to this title). The second is his Annotationes in Johannem (1523) and the third is his Annotationes in Evangelium Matthaei. On this last, two possibilities exist as there was a 1519 edition and a 1523 Strasbourg edition.

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Here the list includes three Martin Bucer treatises and then ones by Johannes Brenz. The first is his Enarrationes perpetuae in sacra quatuor Evangelia (1530) which was a later edition of the treatise Enarrationum in evangelii Matthaei, Marci & Lucae, libra duo (published in Strasbourg in 1527). The second is Bucer's Epistola D. Pauli Epistolam ad Ephesios (1527). Now, according to the study of Peter Stephens, this refers to the much neglected publication of Bucer's Strasbourg lectures of the 1520s (see Peter Stephens, 'The church in Bucer's commentaries on the Epistle to the Ephesians', in D F Wright (ed.), Martin Bucer, Reforming church and community (Cambridge, 1994), pp.45-60). The third work is Bucer's In Theophaniam quem Sophoniam vulgo vocant, Epitomographus ad Hebraicam veritatem versus (n.d.). Then it mentions Johannes Brenz (var: Brentz or Brentius), Job cum piis et eruditis Joannis Brentii commentariis (1528), Ecclesiastes Salomonis cum Commentariis Johannis Brentii (1525) and In Divi Joannis Evangelium Johannis Brentii exegeses (n.d.).

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The list continues with seven works by François Lambert of Avignon. These treatises are In divi Luce Evangelium Commentarii (1524) of which there is a 1525 edition from Strasbourg, Commentarii de Prophetia, Eruditione et Linguis, deque Litera et Spiritu (1526), Commentarii in Regulam Minoritarum, et contra universas perditionis Sectas (1525), Eiusdem libellus de differentia Stimuli carnis Satanae nuncii et ustionis (1526), Commentarii in Cantica Canticorum Salomonis, libellum quidem sensibus altissimis, in quo sublimia sacri conjugii mysteria, quae in Christo, et Ecclesia sunt, pertractantur (1524), Commentarii in Amos, Abdiam, Et Ionam Prophetas (1525), and Commentarii in IV ultimos Prophetas, nempe Sophoniam, Aggeum, Zachariam et Malachiam (1526).

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The list continues with some of the works of Johan Wessel (more accurately Wessel Harmensz Gansfort), a nominalist theologian of the fifteenth-century (1419-89), born in Groningen and often called 'lux mundi' or 'light of the world' by later protestant commentators due to his so-called pseudo- or proto-humanism and interest in the three biblical languages. Foxe had already mentioned him earlier in the martyrology approvingly. In 1521 Martin Luther paid tribute to Wessel with the publication of a collection of his works - Praefatio in Iohannis Wesseli et aliorum ad ipsum epistolas. The tracts mentioned here are: De Sacramento Eucharistiae et audienda missa, De certissima et benignissima Dei providential, De dignitate et potestate Ecclesiastica, De Sacramento Poenitentiae, & quae sint claves Ecclesiæ, de potestate ligandi De Purgatorio, Epistola adversus M. Engelbertum Leidensem, in qua tractatur quid sit tenendum de spirituum et mortuorum apparitionibus, ac de suffragiis et celebration bus, De oratione et modo orandi, De Christi Incarnatione, de magnitudine, et amaritudine dominicae passionis, libri duo, and De Causis Incarnationis or (from Luther's edition) De causis, mysteriis et effectibus Dominicæ incarnationis et passionis.

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The list then includes some of the works of John Pupper of Goch, a monk of Mechlin, works which were never published in his lifetime but which were later prohibited by the Council of Trent. According to a biography by David C Steinmetz, little is known of Pupper besides his founding of an Augustianian convent at Thabor. He was the author in the late fifteenth-century of four theological treatise against scholastic theology and traditional monastic theory (the value of vows). His works were edited into a publishable edition in 1521, which led Luther and others to consider him a forerunner of the reformation due to his stance in support of sola scriptura (see David C Steinmetz, '"Libertas Christiana": Studies in the Theology of John Pupper of Goch (d. 1475)', The Harvard Theological Review 65 [1972], pp. 191-230) The tracts mentioned here are In Dei gratiae et Christianae Fidel commendationem, contra falsam et Pharisaicam multorum, de justitiis et meritis operum doctrinam et gloriationem, fragmenta aliquot D. Joannis Gocchii, nunquam ante hac excusa and Dialogus de quatuor erroribus circa Evangelicam legem exortis.

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The final treatises mentioned on the list are Johannes Oecolampadius, Quod non sit onerosa Christianis confessio paradoxon (1521), written in support of the psychological benefits of confession to a priest or monk. This work was briefly discussed by Amy Nelson Burnett in her article 'Church Discipline and Moral Reformation in the Thought of Martin Bucer' Sixteenth Century Journal 22 (1991), pp. 438-456. Then comes Andreas Bodenstein von Karlstadt, Super coelibatu monachatu et viduitate axiomatic (1521). The final book on the list is François Lambert of Avignon, Commentarii de causis excaecationis multorum seculorum, ac veritate denuo et novissime Dei misericordia revelata, etc. (1525). [This work is briefly mentioned in Susan Brigden, London and the Reformation (Oxford, 1989), p.116.

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Foxe inserted this passage in the 1563 edition for the reason that he states ('how that we ought to haue the scripture in Englishe'); it was then, however, dropped from later editions. The text was in fact the work of the Wyclif disciple, secretary and editor (or 'glossator') John Purvey (c.1354-c.1428), and can be found as STC3021, published at Marburg by Martin de Keyser and influential on Tyndale (see J Forshall and F. Madden (eds.), The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments, with the Apocryphal Books, in the Earliest English Versions Made from the Latin Vulgate by John Wycliffe and his Followers, 2 vols. [Oxford, 1850]; and W R Cooper, 'A newly identified fragment in the handwriting of William Tyndale', Reformation 3 [1998], pp.323-47). The reference in it to King Antioch IV, 'the Assyrian' or sometimes 'Little horn' (as in the book of Daniel 7,8 & 11.28) is to an archetypal antichrist figure in Scripture, alluded to in I Maccabees 1.10ff and II Maccabees 5.9 from the Apocrypha. The text also includes a reference to the treatise of Boetius, entitled De disciplina Schotium cum notabili commento which was published in 1496 at the Deventer press of Jacobus de Breda. The true authorship of the work is in dispute, however, as another edition is extant, published in 1495 from the Strasbourg press of Georg Husner (see Victor Scholderer, 'Conradus, Boetius and psuedo-Boetius', in Speculum 22 [1947], pp.257-9 and Arpad Steiner, 'The authorship of De disciplina scholarium', in Speculum 12 [1937], pp.31ff).

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There was certainly no scarcity of indexes of forbidden or condemned works at this time. Bishops Fitzjames, Tunstal and Clerk (twice) had issued lists of heretical books, as had the Chancellor's office (twice in 1530) - see, Susan Brigden, London and the Reformation (Oxford, 1989), p.179.] None of these list was comprehensive enough for Stokesley, who released another on 3 December 1531(see, Andrew A Chibi, Henry VIII's Conservative Scholar [Berne, 1997], p.122). Sometimes these lists are mixed up or wrongly credited. Foxe here describes two lists, of which the first is probably an official proclamation from the archbishop's office (a Clerk list) while the second is probably Stokesley's [However, cf. Tudor and Stuart Proclamations 1485-1714. 2 vols [Oxford, 1910], i, p.13 [no.114 of 6 March 1528] and p.14 [no.122 of June 1530] and L&P, v, Appendix no.768 (xviii)].

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The works mentioned in this list include Simon Fish, The Supplicacyon for the Beggars (1529); a 1521 English publication, The Pope confounded and his kingdom exposed of Revelation of Antichrist (a work of Martin Luther which featured a number of woodcuts on the proposition that Rome is the new Babylon and the pope is now the Antichrist), or (alternatively) John Frith, Revelation of Antichrist published at Antwerp in 1529. There were, of course, numerous treatises on the subject of Antichrist available. The 1521 treatise is mentioned in William A Clebsch's article, 'The Earliest Translations of Luther into English', The Harvard Theological Review 56:1 (January 1963), pp. 75-86. The three other treatises mentioned here are Tyndale's The Parable of the Wicked Mammon (1528) - which is an 'elaboration and translation of Luther's exposition of the parable of the unjust steward' (William A. Clebsch, op.cit., p.75)]; The Obedience of a Christian man (1528) and Compendious introduction un to the pistle off Paul to the Romayns, which is sometimes known as Prologue to the Epistle to the Romans (1526) - and generally regarded as a direct translation of Martin Luther's Preface to St Paul's Epistle to the Romans (1522). (Leonard J Trinterud, 'A reappraisal of William Tyndale's debt to Martin Luther,' Church History 31 [1962], pp. 24-43 provides a comprehensive and comparative examination of the two treatises). For the 'Dialogue between the father and the son', There are several possible identifications. The most likely is William Roye's translation from the Latin of an anonymous German tract A Brefe Dialoge bitwene a Christen father and his stubborn Sonne (1526-7) (see William A. Clebsch, op.cit., p. 79) The next treatise in the list is Justus Menius, Economica christiana (1529). Menius, also known as Jost or Just Menig, was a Lutheran theologian, a student of Melanchthon's at Wittenberg, and had been heavily influenced in his opinions by Luther. He was variously a teacher, preacher and official church visitor for Duke John of Electoral Saxony. The following work is Unio dissidentium; Libellus ex praecipuis ecclesiae Christianae doctoribus selectus, per venerabilem petrum Herman. Bodium, an anthology of patristic works addressing a number of reformation related topics (e.g., the Eucharist, good works, etc.) Tyndale, in his disputations with Thomas More, made reference to a book entitled The Union of Doctors, which Foxe also seems to have appreciated. It is quite likely that this is the work to which he was referring. The Precationes Piae variis usibus, temporibus, et person is accommodatae was an anthology of prayers taken out of scripture, devotional poems and hymns. This had been recently translated in English by Geoffrey Lome, the porter of St Anthony's School and friend of soon to be executed heretics Thomas Bilney and Thomas Garrard (see John F Davis, 'The Trials of Thomas Bylney and the English Reformation', The Historical Journal 24 [1981], pp.775-90). The following treatise in the list is Martin Luther's famous Babylonian captivity of the church (1520). There follows Johannes Hus in Oseam (mentioned in Craig D'Alton, 'William Warham and English Heresy Policy after the Fall of Wolsey', Historical Research 77 [2004], pp.337-357). Then comes Huldrich Zwingli's notorious In catabaptistarum strophes elenchus (1527). The following work in the list probably refers to Wolfgang Capito, De pueris instituendis ecclesiae Argentinensis Isagoge (1527) which was translated into the English vernacular by William Roye in the same year. The next work is Johann Brenz (var: Brentz or Brentius) De administranda pie republica ac subditorum erga Magistratus justa obedientia libellus. Then comes a series of published works of Martin Luther, which include his famous Commentary on St Paul's Epistle to Galatians (1519); On the freedom of a Christian (1520) and A brief and sound explanation of the Lord's Prayer (1519).

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There were a number of lists of indexed books around this point in the early 1530s and D'Alton has done some interesting research into the problem of separating them (see Craig D'Alton, 'William Warham and English Heresy Policy after the Fall of Wolsey', Historical Research 77 [2004], pp.337-357. According to D'Alton, Bishop John Clerk (of Bath and Wells) had assembled a list for Archbishop William Warham's anti-Luther initiative of 1529. Clerk's list of 29 November, although no longer extant, may well have been the basis of subsequent lists, as preserved in David Wilkins, Concilia Magnae Britanniae et Hiberniae. 4 vols. (London, 1737), 3, p.706 and L&P, iv, no.2607. From this, it is possible to reassemble the Clerk list. Bishop Tunstal (of London) is often credited with another booklist of 1531/2, but this was actually the much more comprehensive Bishop Stokesley list, which was made with the cooperation of the Lord Chancellor Thomas More (see, Andrew A Chibi, Henry VIII's Conservative Scholar (Berne, 1997), p.122). A great many Lutheran works, treatises and letters, seemed to have been in circulation in London at this time and several of these are listed here, along with an edition of John Wyclif's four treatises on church doctrine (which had been collected together into a single volume). The Wyclif work is Johannis Wiclevi Trialogus (1525) which had been published in Basel (and in the same year at Worms as Dialogorum Libri quattuor). The many Luther works mentioned are A treatise on good works (1520), Letter to Pope Leo X (30 May 1518) - which includes his Resolutions to the Ninety-five thesis - and De quatuodecim spectris (1520) - which was also known by the more formal title Tessaradecas Consolatoria pro laborantibus et oneratis (and which was translated into German by Georg Spalatin). This last was a pastoral work written as a comfort to the sick and was much praised by Erasmus, and translated into English (STC 10868). The list also includes Luther, On the freedom of a Christian (1520), Sermons on the First Epistle of St Peter (1523), and Ad Librum eximii magistri nostri Mag. Ambrosii Catharini defensoris Silv. Prieratis acerrimi, responsio M. Lutheri (1521). In 1520 Ambrosius Catharinus Politus had been commission by Giulio de' Medici (future Pope Clement VII) to write a defense of the church against Luther (which was eventually published as the Apologia of 1520, in which Politus listed eleven ways in which Luther - identified as Antichrist - deceived the people). The treatise mentioned here is Luther's rather angry response (See Patrick Preston, 'Catharinus versus Luther, 1521', History, 88 [2003], 364-78. Also listed here is Luther's Deuteronomium Mosi cum annotationibus (1523) translated as The Deuteronomy of Moses with notes, Large Catechism (1530), his Commentary of the book of Jonah (1526) and his Commentary on St Paul's Epistle to Galatians (1519). This last may refer to the published edition of Luther's lectures of the 1518-19 period which was subsequently reprinted in a second edition of 1523. The final Luther work mentioned at this point is Operationes in Psalmos (1519-1521). The problem with the many mentions made of Luther's commentaries in Foxe is that the works were spread out over a number of volumes (see Richard Marius, Martin Luther: the Christian between God and death [London, 1999], p.192) making it difficult to pin-point exact publishing details. At all events, one other work mentioned on this list is list is Martin Borrhaus (Cellarius), De operibus dei (1527). This treatise was published in Strasbourg and featured a preface written by Capito. Cellarius was a friend of Melanchthon and Luther who had been influenced into a more spiritual doctrine by the Zwickau prophet Marcus Stübner, after which he moved to Zürich and joined the Swiss Brethren, only to subsequently make peace with Luther in 1525. His book acknowledged the various justifications for temporal government, repudiated free will and spelled out a doctrine of election similar to Zwingli's.

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Here Foxe lists further Luther pamphlets placed on the lists of prohibited books in London in the early 1530s. Besides the circulation of pamphlets created out of Luther's works and letters on such topics as feast days, good works, ceremonies, inner peace and other popular issues, treatises listed here are Luther's Church Postils (1522) - a collection of his sermons assembled as a guide to other preachers; his Commentary on Jonah (1526), De votes monasticis M Lutheri iudicium (1521), and a Latin translation of his Prayer-booklet of 1521. Also on this list here is Philip Melanchthon's Didymi Faventini versus Thomam Placentinum pro M. Luthero oratio. These and the following lists were dropped from the 1576 edition.

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Foxe then lists a large selection of works by the Basel reformer Johannes Oecolampadius. The treatises mentioned are his Commentaries on the Prophet Isaiah (1525) and Commentariorum in Danielem, Libri Duo (or On the Prophet Daniel) of 1530. Oecolampadius wrote two Apologies in 1526; the one on the list at this point is to Theobald Billican (who had sided with Luther against Karlstadt on the doctrine of the Eucharist but later changed his mind in a letter addressed to Oecolampadius on 16 January 1526). Next comes his De non habendo pauperum delectu, Io. Oecolampadii Epistola utilisssime (1523) [or A most useful epistle of J Oecolampadius on not holding collection for the poor]. The other Apology of 1526 was addressed to Urbanus Rhegius. Also on the list are Oecolampadius' commentaries In postremos tres prophetas, nempe Haggaeum, Zachariam, et Malachiam (1527) and De genuine verborum Domini, "hoc est corpus meum" juxta vetustissimos autores expositione (1525). Oecolampadius had later reinforced this later piece (around the time of the Marburg colloquy) with a number of citations taken out of the Greek and Roman fathers, work which so impressed Melanchthon that he began to distance himself from Luther's Eucharistic doctrine (thus creating the schism in the Lutheran ranks which would explode in the 1560s). The last Oecolampadius work mentioned by Foxe is his Annotations on the Epistles of St Paul (published in 1526).

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Foxe follows with a block of several works by Huldrich Zwingli, the reformer of Zürich. Included on the list are his Friendly exegesis (or Exposition of the matter of the Eucharist to Martin Luther which was published in 1527), Commentary on Isaiah (1529) - which may have appeared in London appended to Zwingli's Apology on the Canon of the Mass (1523). Next mentioned is his Farrago Annotationum in Genesim, ex ore Huldrychi Zuinglii per Leonem Iudae & Casparem Megandrum except arum (of 1527). This seems to have been an edition to which were attached a number of Zwinglian commentaries on St Paul's Epistle to the Corinthians (which are found in his Epistola of c.1527). Then comes Zwingli's Ad Philippenses annotatiunculae per Leonem Judam, ex ore Huldrici Zuinglii exceptae. Leo Juda was a friend and co-worker with Zwingli in Zürich and was responsible for a number of translations into German of Zwingli's Latin works. His scripture translations also formed a basis for Calvin's own works. The work mentioned here probably therefore refers to a collection of Juda's annotations on the text of St Paul's Epistle to the Philippians along with some excerpts of Zwingli's own studies. This is followed by Zwingli's Ad Carolum Rom. Imperatorem, Fidei Huldrychi Zvinglii ratio; Illvstrissimis Germaniae Principibus in comitijs Augustanis congregates (which is also known as The Letter to the Princes of Germany, published in 1530), Concerning an Anabaptist book (1527/8), A Commentary on true and false religion (1525), Reproduction from memory of a sermon on the providence of God dedicated to His Highness, Philip of Hesse (1530) and Commentary on Jeremiah (of 1530, and which may have appeared appended to Zwingli's Apology on the Canon of the Mass (1523). The final two works are Zwingli's Responsio to the letters of Theobald Billican and Urbanus Rhegius and his Certeyne precepts declaring howe the ingenious youth ought to be instructed and brought unto Christ (1523). (For further details on these treatises, see W P Stephens, The Theology of Huldrych Zwingli [Oxford, 1988]).

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This section is a number of treatises by Johannes Bugenhagen, the Lutheran reformer of a number of towns in Northern Germany and Scandinavia. Those listed are Annotations upon the ten Epistles of Paul (1524) - or here as Annotationes Johannis Bugenhagii Pomerani in Epistolas Pauli ad Galatas, Ephesios, Philippenses, Colossenses, Thessalonicenses, primam et secundam which may be referring to the second edition of 1525. There then follows In Regum duos ultimos libros annotationes Johannis Bugenhagii Pomerani post Samuelem, jam primum emissae; Annotationes In Deuteronomium, In Samuelem prophetam, id est, duos libros Regum. Ab eodem praeterea conciliata ex Euangelistis histori passi Christi & glorificati, cu[m] annotation bus (1524), De coniugio episcoporum et diaconorum.

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Mentioned here are two works of Conrad Pelikan, a humanist and scholar of biblical languages and Judaic scholarship. The two treatises are his Explicatio brevis, simplex, et canonica libelli. Ruth, ea forma qua totius veteris test. Canonici Libri expositi sunt and Psalterium Davidis, Conradi Pellicani opera elaboratum: non esse ferendas in templis Christianorum imagines et statuas coli solira, authoribus Ecclesiasticis Argentoraten .

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Tunstall's anti-heresy edicts

In concentrating upon the prohibition of the circulation of the scriptures in English, issued by Cuhbert Tunstall on 23 October 1527 (not 24 October 1527, as Foxe states) were crystal-clear. It was a golden opportunity to emphasise the opposition to the spread of evangelical truth among the English ecclesiastical hierarchy on the eve of the events that Foxe will shortly describe, and which led to the reformation. Cuthbert Tunstal, bishop of London, had been consecrated there on 19 October 1522 (provided on 10 September and the temporalities assigned 7 October). He would be translated to the see of Durham on 21 February 1530. The archdeacon, to whom the prohibition was addressed, was Geoffrey Wharton, collated 29 March 1526 (see Tunstal's register at London Guildhall MS, 9531/10: Episcopal Register Tunstal: 1522-29/30, fol.14b). Wharton died two years later on c.30 October 1529 (fol.28). His vicar-general, also mentioned in the prohibition, was Richard Foxford. The translated and printed New Testament, whose circulation it sought to prevent was Tyndale's New Testament, completed by February 1526 at the Peter Schoeffer printer in Worms, the first to be printed in the English vernacular. It is interesting that, for all the trouble Chancellor Thomas More and Bishop Stokesley would put him through, the major influence upon Tyndale's translation had been Erasmus' own Greek New Testament, which was available to him in its third edition of 1524 (with its Latin translation and notes). Stokesley had defended an earlier edition of Erasmus before Henry VIII in 1521 (Collected Works of Erasmus, 67 vols. (Toronto, 1974-91), vi, p.63 (no.855), viii, pp.8ff, 19; L&P, ii/ii, 4340) while More's relationship with Erasmus is well known. Tyndale had also used Luther's 1521 September Testament (see, Brian Moynahan, William Tyndale [London, 2002], p.6). Tyndale would make much of the fact that Erasmus had been his major influence.

Andrew ChibiUniversity of Leicester

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London evangelical martyrs

This sentence is largely to recounting the ordeals of a number of evangelicals, who suffered during an extensive crackdown on heresy conducted in 1531-2 while Thomas More was Lord Chancellor. More was clearly acting in an unofficial partnership with John Stokesley, bishop of London, and he played a major role in the persecution of three of these martyrs: Richard Bayfield, John Tewkesbury and James Bainham. There are also a few other individuals whose sufferings are described here: an obscure and unnamed old man in Buckinghamshire; John Randall, a Cambridge student and evangelical who was allegedly murdered around 1531, and Edward Freese, who was arrested for heresy in 1534.

Foxe's major source for these accounts, particularly those of Bayfield, Tewkesbury and Bainham, was now lost court books of Bishop Stokesley and Tunstall.. In one case, Foxe drew on Tunstall's register (Guildhall MS 9531/10, fo. 123r-v). He also drew on works by John Bale and Thomas More (see especially Bale, Catalogus; Bale, The epistle exhortatorye of an English Christiane [Antwerp, 1544?], STC 1291.5, fo. 13v; The Confutation of Tyndale's Answer, ed. L. A. Schuster, Richard C. Marius, James P. Lusardi and Richard J. Schoeck, CWTM 8[3 vols., New Haven, CT, 1973], I, p. 8). Foxe, however, also drew on information supplied by individual informants, particularly for the accounts of Tewkesbury, Randall, Freese and Bainham. One of these sources was Joan Fish, the widow of James Bainham (For Joan Bainham as a source for other accounts in Foxe see Thomas S. Freeman, 'The importance of dying earnestly: the metamorphosis of the account of James Bainham in "Foxe's Book of Martyrs" in The Church Retrospective, ed. R. N. Swanson, Studies in Church History 33 (Woodbridge, 1997), pp. 272-3). In the case of John Randall, Foxe's source was clearly his wife or his wife's family.

These sources presented several problems for Foxe. The first was that of confusion, because Foxe was getting different information on the same people for different sources at different times. As a result, the material on Bayfield and Bainham, in particular, is badly organised. In fact, the description of a recantation, which is attributed to John Tewkesbury in the first edition, is attributed to James Bainham in subsequent editions. The second problem is that the material coming from individual informants was, occasionally, unreliable. The account of Randall's murder is almost certainly an exaggeration of a family tragedy (for instance, Nicholas Harpsfield questioned how a murderer could have killed Randall, place him in a noose, and then leave the room, with the door bolted from the inside?), while the account of Bainham's last words is probably a pious invention (Thomas S. Freeman, 'The importance of dying earnestly: the metamorphosis of the account of James Bainham in "Foxe's Book of Martyrs"' in The Church Retrospective, ed. R. N. Swanson, Sudies in Church History 33 (Woodbridge, 1997), pp. 278-81).

Thomas S. Freeman

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Foxe's account presents difficulties here. Bayfield apparently left Cambridge and went to London before Robert Barnes was convicted of heresy early in 1526. In 1528, he was tried for heresy by Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall of London. Bayfield abjured and various penances were imposed upon him: most notably, that he was to resume wearing his monastic habit, to return to the abbey of Bury St. Edmunds and never to re-enter the diocese of London without episcopal permission. After his abjuration, Bayfield definitely fled overseas. He then began importing heretical works into England, on a large scale. In 1531, Bayfield was again arrested (as Foxe describes) visiting a bookbinder. Either Bayfield went abroad twice, once before and once after, his first arrest for heresy or (more likely) Foxe was confused in dating Bayfield's flight.

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The coal house of the bishop of London's palace in the capital was frequently used as an ad-hoc detention centre for prisoners whom the bishop was examining.

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Thomas Patmore, of Much Hadham. Susan Brigden has persuasively argued that the two Thomas Patmores mentioned by Foxe were, in fact, the same person and that Patmore while still vicar of Much Hadham, became free of the Drapers's Company (Susan Brigden, London and the Reformation [Oxford, 1989], p. 206). She suggests that the purpose of this was to remain incognito and that the Drapers were chosen because of a significant evangelical presence in their membership. But Patmore's purpose may simply have been to acquire London citizenship. And the Drapers's Company may have been chosen beecause his father had been a member of the company. He was arrested but released due to petitions from his supporters to Anne Boleyn and Thomas Cromwell (L&P VII, p. 348).

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The articles charged against Bayfield, his answers to them, the sentence of degradation imposed on him and the letter to the mayor and sheriffs of London, are taken from a now lost court book of Bishop John Stokesley. Because Foxe does not mention Bayfield's first trial for heresy, the reader is likely to be confused by the references below to punishments already imposed on Bayfield. This was Bayfield's second trial for heresy.

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Richard Foxford was chancellor and vicar general of the diocese of London.

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As a former monk, Bayfield was in clerical orders and had to be formally degraded from them before he could be executed.

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The statute referred to is 'De haeretico comburendo', which mandated the punishment for heresy and the process for trying and punishing heretics. It wasenacted under Henry IV in 1401.

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I.e. a letter of requirement or command.

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This was part of the ceremony of degradation and not simply gratuitous violence.

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This account of More torturing Tewkesbury is only printed in the first edition. Almost certainly this was because Foxe found the account fundamentally unreliable. It is, in fact, clearly part of the same account which confused Tewkesbury with Bainham. Both Tewkesbury and Bainham were detained and examined at More's house in Chelsea. This was unusual, even if More was Lord Chancellor at the time, and it provided fuel for lurid rumours that More tortured accused heretics at his house.

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This is one of the works of William Tyndale.

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Tewkesbury was, in fact, tried at More's house at Chelsea, which was unusual, but not illegal. This provided fuel for lurid rumours that More tortured accused heretics at his house.

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Foxe's sudden desire for brevity is a little suspicious, especially since it contrasts with his diligence in printing documents from Tewkesbury's first heresy trial. Foxe clearly had access to the records of Tewkesbury's second trial, so why didn't he print those? Thomas More, who was present, claimed that Tewkesbury, at his second trial, denied that he had ever held the opinions that he had abjured at his first trial (Thomas More, The Confutation of Tyndale's Answer, ed. Louis A. Schuster, Richard C. Marius, James P. Lusardi and Richard J. Schoeck, CWTM 8 (3 vols, New Haven, CT, 1973), I, p. 21). If Tewkesbury had appeared to be disingenuous, evasive or even deceptive at his trial, then Foxe would have wanted to conceal this.

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This is an indication that More was correct and that Tewkesbury had attempted to deny that he had held the beliefs he abjured at his first trial (see preceding comment). Tewkesbury's answer to this article, had Foxe printed it, would have been interesting.

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This is a work by William Tyndale.

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This document must have come from a now lost court book of Bishop John Stokesley of London.

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According to English law, a heretic could only be burned after Chancery sent a writ authorizing the execution. Foxe claims that this did not happen in this case and, as a matter of fact, there is no surviving copy of the signification of excommunication for Tewkesbury. This is hardly conclusive. If, however, the dates Foxe gives for Tewkesbury's trial and execution are correct, then the authorities were certainly in a hurry to execute Tewkesbury; he was burned four days after he was condemned.

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This material on Bayfield's background comes from a knowledgeable informant (Robert Barnes attended the University of Louvain in the years 1517-21 (ODNB). Edmund Rougham matriculated there in 1520 (Emden A, p. 243). The knowledge of the activities of Maxwell and Stacy (see comment after next) and the account's greater detail on what happened to Bayfield in London suggest that this informant was based in the capital.

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Foxe printed this account of John Randall in the Rerum (p. 121). The account printed in 1563 is a direct translation of the account in the Rerum, except for two changes: in the earlier account Randall died in 1526, not 1531, and he attended Trinity College, not Christ's College. (Trinity was not founded until 1546). Nicholas Harpsfield incisively questioned the details of Foxe's story, asking how a murderer could have killed Randall, place him in a noose, and then leave the room, with the door bolted from the inside? (Dialogi sex, pp. 747-48). After these criticisms, Foxe dropped his account of Randall's 'murder' from all subsequent editions.

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Foxe's wife was Agnes Randall; John Randall was presumably his relation through marriage. Agnes Randall was very probably Foxe's source for this story.

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Foxe has a terse report in the Rerum of an old man of Buckingham- shire being executed in 1531 for eating pork during Lent (Rerum, p. 126). Foxe's source for this episode is unknown; Bale does not mention this old man in any of his works. Perhaps Laurence Humphrey, who was Foxe's friend, a native of Buckinghamshire, and who was with Foxe in Basel, was the source for this story. In any case, the Rerum account was translated word-for-word in the 1563 edition. The story was dropped from all subsequent editions, possibly because Foxe grew unsure of this individual's existence or at least of his ability to prove it.

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It appears that Foxe's account of Edward Freeze and 'father' Bate is based on material sent to Foxe by an informant; very probably an informant in Colchester (this account contains quite a bit of detail on people from Essex and Colchester). But there is quite a bit of corroboration for Foxe's account. First of all, A. G. Dickens uncovered information on Edward Freese's family. Edward's father Frederick was a Dutch immigrant (the family name was probably Vries or de Vries), who settled in York and made a living as a bookbinder and stationer (A. G. Dickens, Lollards and Protestants in the diocese of York 1509-1558 [Oxford, 1959], p. 30). This Dutch background may explain the pronounced evangelical convictions of Valentine and Edward Freese. Another major piece of corroboration is a letter, almost certainly sent to Thomas Cromwell, which is now in the TNA. Although the signature has been cut off of the letter, the biographical details related in it fit Edward Freese so closely that is virtually certain that he wrote it. The author of the letter, detained in London for religious offences, admits that he had been a monk since the age of 13, but claims that he was 'sold' by his master to the abbot of Jervaulx (see next comment). The author of the letter declared that he attempted to flee the abbey several times but was recaptured. Finally he fled to Colchester and he got married (TNA SP 1/73, fos. 175r-176r).

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A. G. Dickens guessed that 'Bearsie Abbey' was Bermondsey (A.G. Dickens, Lollards and Protestants in the diocese of York 1509-1558 [Oxford, 1959], p, 30). But a letter, almost certainly by Edward Freese, refers to himself as having been 'sold' to Jervaulx Abbey by his master, when he was an apprentice. And on 30 July 1532, the abbot of Jervaulx wrote to Cromwell, regarding an 'Edw. Payntter' (remember that Freese was a painter) who had been arrested for heresy and was in the custody of London. In this letter, the abbot said that 'Edw. Payntter' had fled the abbey of Jervaulx but that Jervaulx did not him returned (L&P V, p. 527).

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It appears that Foxe's account of Edward Freeze and 'father' Bate is based on material sent to Foxe by an informant; very probably an informant in Colchester (this account contains quite a bit of detail on people from Essex and Colchester). But there is quite a bit of corroboration for Foxe's account.

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Unsurprisingly, there was probably more behind Freese's arrest than this. In a letter that he sent to Cromwell, he admitted having previously arrested for heresy, but released upon receipt of a royal pardon. Freese also denied the charge the he had led conventicles that met secretly at night (TNA SP 1/73, fo. 175r-v).

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Manchet was the finest kind of wheat bread [OED].

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In a letter Edward Freese sent to Cromwell, he complained of the cruelty of being held in irons (TNA SP 1/37, fo. 176r).

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Valentine Freese had been arrested (we do not know the reason, but the offence was clearly related to his evangelical convictions) in the Marches of Wales in 1534. He was apparently released through Thomas Cromwell's intervention. In 1540, Freese and his wife were burned on a charge of sacramentarian heresy in York (A. G. Dickens, Lollards and Protestants in the Diocese of York 1509-1538 [Oxford, 1959], pp. 31-32). Foxe also records that in 1533, Valentine Freese had smuggled a file into the bishop of London's palace, enabling Andrew Hewet, a Protestant martyr, to attempt an escape (1563, p. 506; 1570, p. 1179; 1576, p. 1008 and 1583, p. 1036).

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This is William Roy, the evangelical and anti-clerical satirist [ODNB]. Foxe is almost certanly repeating Thomas More on Roy's death (see The Confutation of Tyndale's Answer, ed. L. A. Schuster, Richard C. Marius, James P. Lusardi and Richard J. Schoeck, CWTM 8[3 vols., New Haven, CT, 1973], I, p. 8).

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Foxe's source for this letter is Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall's register (Guildhall MS 9531/10, fo. 123r-v).

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I.e., More can be eloquent in English and Latin. Demosthenes (384-322 BC) was the most renowned orator of ancient Greece.

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I.e. 'Andabates' or heavily-armoured gladiator.

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Foxe's first account of James Bainham was in the Rerum (pp. 126-7). Foxe stated that George [sic] Bainham was in 1532 for denying the existence of Purgatory and denying that Thomas Becket was a saint. Foxe's source for this was clearly John Bale, who had written that 'George' Bainham was burned for denying the existence of Purgatory and denying that Thomas Becket was a saint (Bale, Catalogus, p. 763 and John Bale, The epistle exhortatorye of an English Christiane [Antwerp, 1544?], STC 1291.5, fo. 13v).

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Although Foxe does not say so, it is pretty clear that Joan Bainham was the source for this story of More's treatment of James Bainham. Notice that the account ends with a description of her imprisonment. For Joan Bainham as a source for other accounts in Foxe see Thomas S. Freeman, 'The importance of dying earnestly: the metamorphosis of the account of James Bainham in "Foxe's Book of Martyrs" in The Church Retrospective, ed. R. N. Swanson, Studies in Church History 33 (Woodbridge, 1997), pp. 272-3. Given the source, and her understandable animus against More, the stories his torturing her husband should be treated with caution. More vehemently denied contemporary allegations that accused heretics were beaten in his garden (Thomas More, The Apology, ed. J. B. Trapp, CWTM 9 [New Haven , CT, 1974] pp. 117-20).

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On Laurence Maxwell see 1563, p. 418. On James Stacy also see 1563, p. 418 as well as 1570, p. 1161 and p.1185; 1576, p. 993 and 1014; 1583, p.1021 and pp. 1041-1042

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This account of Bainham's execution probably came from Joan Bainham (see Thomas S. Freeman, 'The importance of dying earnestly: the metamorphosis of the account of James Bainham in "Foxe's Book of Martyrs" in The Church Retrospective, ed. R. N. Swanson, Studies in Church History 33 (Woodbridge, 1997), pp. 272-3). It was replaced in the second, and subsequent, editions of the Acts and Monuments with a different account of Bainham's death. Almost certainly, this second account was fictitious but it was more inspiring and eloquent, and so it became the version Foxe preferred.

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This story came from Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre families of Lancastre and Yorke (London, 1548), STC 12721, fo. 202r.

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Edmund Rougham. In 1545, now apparently more theologically conservative, Rougham would preach at the burning of John Kirby in Bury St. Edmunds. Edward Rougham had formerly been an evangelical sympathiser and a friend of Richard Bayfield and Robert Barnes.

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Robert Barnes attended the University of Louvain in the years 1517-21 (ODNB). Edmund Rougham matriculated there in 1520 (Emden A, p. 243). This accurate detail helps to establish the general accuracy of this account.

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I.e. in the abbey of Bury St. Edmunds.

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This must have taken place before Christmas Day 1525, when Robert Barnes would preach a sermon that embroiled him in heresy charges (ODNB).

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Dovercourt rood

In the Rerum, Foxe briefly notes that three 'iuvenes', Robert King, Nicholas Marsh and John 'Debnammus' were hung in 1532 for destroying an 'idolum' at Dovercourt Essex. Foxe also mentioned that a 'Robertus Gayrnerus' was burned for the same offence (Rerum, p. 126). Foxe's source for this was undoubtedly John Bale who had written that Robert King, Nicholas Marsh and John 'Debynsham' were executed for 'destroying the fowle ydoll of Dovercourt' (John Bale, The epistle exhortatorye of an English Christiane [Antwerp, 1544?], STC 1291.5, fo. 13r). Bale didn't mention Robert Gardner, though, and Foxe must have learned of him from Bale or another exile.

But while Foxe's early information about Gardner was garbled - Gardner was clearly not burned - it seems to have provided an important lead for future research into what happened at Dovercourt. The account of the destruction of the Dovercourt rood comes - as Foxe states - from a letter Robert Gardner wrote a Londoner, describing the incident. Foxe cites Gardner as his source for other acts of iconoclasm in Essex and Sussex in 1532 (It is clear from Foxe's note that his source for the following incidents was Robert Gardner. But it is not apparent whether these details came from the original letter Gardner sent to Chapman or from subsequent communications between Foxe and Gardner). It seems clear that Foxe's recovering this evidence is the product of directed research and not serendipity.

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This one of a number of indications scattered throughout the Acts and Monuments of Foxe's whole-hearted approval of iconoclasm. It is perhaps worth remembering that he destroyed an image of the Virgin Mary at Ouldsworth, Surrey, during Edward VI's reign [ODNB].

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It is clear from Foxe's note that his source for the following incidents was Robert Gardner. But it is not apparent whether these details came from the original letter Gardner sent to Chapman or from subsequent communications between Foxe and Gardner.

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John Frith

Foxe's treatment of the John Frith martyrdom provided him with the material (Frith's own writings, and those of his critics) to provide an exposition of protestant doctrines on purgatory and transubstantiation, supported by relevant patristic material, within the overall context of a narrative that emphasised his valiant steadfastness, intellectually and physically. The story was somewhat elaborated in the 1570 editions and subsequently, with Frith's beliefs examined in greater detail and the letter 'to his friends' printed in extenso. The story of the martyrdom of Andrew Huet ('Hewet'), who accompanied Frith to the scaffold, provided much less possibility for doctrinal elaboration, but he served to make the point that Frith's doctrines and steadfastness had been persuasive.

Andrew ChibiUniversity of Leicester

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Foxe does not go into the chain of events very deeply at this point which is unfortunate as the events are quite interesting. Simon Fish, in exile in Antwerp in 1529, had written a vehemently anti-clerical short pamphlet entitled Supplication of the Beggars in which he disputed the existence of purgatory (from a 'sola scriptura' perspective) and, consequently, the validity of papal indulgences as he construes them to be. He also made the argument that the clergy had usurped certain temporal powers. Such an argument as this was, of course, calculated to appeal to a king who was, at the time, vying with papal obstructionism over his effort to annul his marriage to Catherine of Aragon. In October 1529, Thomas More responded to the pamphlet with his The Supplycatyon of Soulys (in two books) defending the doctrine of purgatory with all the wit and logic at his command. It was on this point of purgatorial doctrine that Frith comes into the picture, determined to undertake an answer to More's book on Fish's behalf and in defence of his anti-purgatorial theology.

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Frith had published two books in 1529. One of these was entitled Patrick's Places - the translation of a short treatise of the Scottish reformer, Patrick Hamilton, covering such issues as law, gospel, charity and good works. The other work of that year was the much more important The Revelation of Antichrist written under the pseudonym Richard Brightwell. This treatise consists of an introductory letter and three sections dedicated to doctrine, of which only the first section - 'An Epistle unto the Christian Reader' - is original. The other two sections - 'The Revelation of Antichrist' and 'Antithesis between Christ and the Pope' - are respectively translations of Luther's Concerning Antichrist (1521) and Melanchthon's Suffering of Christ and Antichrist (1521). Frith, in this way, presented the doctrine of 'sola fide' to the English reading public. In 1531, while still in exile, Frith wrote two considerable more original treatises. The lesser of the two is a commentary on the last will of the executed heretic William Tracy, entitled Tracy's Testament. The greater work - entitled A disputation of Purgatory - is an attack on the traditional Catholic orthodoxy as presented in three other recent English works. These are John Rastell's rationalist account New Book of Purgatory (1530), Thomas More's scriptural account The Supplycatyon of Soulys (1529) and Bishop John Fisher's patristic account Confutation of Lutheran Assertions (1523). These are discussed in Carl R Trueman, Luther's Legacy: Salvation and English Reformers, 1525-1556 (Oxford, 1994), pp.121-56.

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According to William Gordon (referencing the work of Germain Marc'hadour) there was another Frith work, a short, preliminary draft to his larger Tower work (Quid veteres senserint de sacramento eucharistiae (A Book Answering More's Letter) on the doctrine of the Eucharist, entitled A christen sentenceand true iudgement of the moste honorable Sacrament of Christes body and bloude declared both by the auctorite of the ho1y Scriptures and the auncient Doctores (STC-5190) - subsequently used by Tyndale. See, Germain Marc'hadour, Thomas More et la Bible (Paris, 1969), p.298 and Walter M Gordon, 'A Scholastic Problem in Thomas More's Controversy with John Frith', in The Harvard Theological Review 69:1/2 (January - April, 1976), pp.131-149. The influence of Oecolampadius and the figurative interpretation of the key biblical texts on the real presence in the Eucharist is clear from this treatise. Here Foxe extracts the four main points of Frith's doctrine. In essence, Frith wrote that interpretation of the presence was adiaphoric with regards to salvation, that the ubiquity theory of many medieval thinkers (and Luther) was unreasonable, that the text of Matthew 26.36 should be given an analogical rather than literal reading, and that the Mass ceremonial itself also needs to be brought more in line with Christ's own words. Frith made use of two works of Oecolampadius, De genuine verborum Domini, "hoc est corpus meum" juxta vetustissimos autores expositione (1525) and Dialogus quo patrum sententiam de coena Domini bonafide explanat (1530). [For discussion of these works see, William A Clebsch, England's Earliest Protestants (New Haven, 1964), p.126]. That Frith had been influenced by Oecolampadius was no secret to Thomas Cranmer who, after his interrogation of Frith in the Tower, wrote that Frith's doctrine was 'most after the opinion of Oecolampadius' - see Thomas Cranmer, Miscellaneous Writings and Letters, ed. J E Cox (Cambridge, 1846), letter no.xiv, p.246. It was against this shorter tract that More wrote his Letter Against Frith (which can be found in volume seven of the Yale edition of More's works), which Frith answered in his larger treatise which was not answered before his execution. More's The answere to the first parte of the poysened booke whych a namelesse heretyke hath named the souper of the lorde was published in 1534 (which can be found in volume eleven of the Yale edition). Frith became the first English theologian to address the Eucharist related issues of presence and efficacy of the Mass (and which Cranmer later incorporated into 1552 edition of the Book of Common Prayer).

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Holt, seemingly a part of More's spy network, was the foreman of the shop of one Mr Malte, tailor to the king.

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This refers to the earlier More treatise Letter Against Frith.

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Foxe refers here specifically to Augustine's The Presence of God, to Dardenus (or De praesentia Dei ad Dardanum) of 417AD - see Augustine of Hippo, Selected Writings, trans. by Mary T Clarke, ed. by Goulven Madec (New York, 1984), letter no.187, pp.403ff, in which Augustine distinguished between the Christ's humanity (limited to one place) and His divinity (which has no such limitation), but generally to the fact that medieval Catholic tradition on the specifics of the Eucharist incorporated some remarkably disparate opinion. In 1503, Erasmus would recommend in his Handbook that theologians refrain from further arguments over such unimportant technicalities as the precise mechanics of how Christ appears in the sacrament and just accept he does, somehow, appear. Foxe goes on to discuss the issue at some length.

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References are to I Corinthians 10:1-4; Genesis 3:15 and Genesis 26:4.

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Foxe's examination of Frith's work reveals a great many debts to the writings of Zwingli and Oecolampadius. For example, the discussion of circumcision (as the foundation of the covenant) and manna (patristic opinion of it as an early manifestation of the Eucharist eating) can be traced to Zwingli's On the Lord's Supper (1526). Discussions of the sacraments as made up of signs and things signified, and the relation between these issues, was a great part of the controversy between Lutherans and Zwinglians. Frith clearly belonged to the Zwinglian camp (which held an analogical connection).

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For perhaps obvious reasons, Foxe here makes more of More's reluctance to publish his refutation or answer than what was probably the case. More sent copies of the response to his friends for commentary (e.g. to Stephen Gardiner) rather than risk too much public/scholastic exposure for Frith's Zwinglianism. Of course, More also faces the very real task of trying to refute Frith's theology and scholastic arguments to a potential audience of literate men who were not, however, theologians. Too in-depth a theological or scriptural argument would have gone over their heads; too little evidence from scripture or from the traditional Catholic theologians would have merely provided ammunition to his enemies (Frith, Tyndale, etc.). More was under the additional pressure of being Henry VIII's voice of orthodoxy even though he had retired as chancellor over the divorce and supremacy issues.

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Foxe refers here to Frith's Quid veteres senserint de sacramento eucharistiae (A Book Answering More's Letter).

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Foxe is too ready to place Frith at Oxford. In fact, Frith's education is somewhat of a difficult prospect to uncover with any certainty at all. According to Richard Rex, the traditional orthodoxy (Sevenoaks Grammar - where his tutor was Stephen Gardiner - to Eton to King's College around 1524/5) is problematic. At the very least Frith appears to have been first at Queen's College (c.1523) at least according to J A Venn, before moving on to King's and, subsequently, to Cardinal College (c.1525). All sources placing Frith at King's, however, trace back to the work of the contemporary Tudor chronicler John Bale. Unfortunately, Bale's information (written twenty years after the fact) is not backed up by any contemporary record from King's. Rex's conclusion is that Frith moved directly from Queen's to Cardinal's without ever having studied at King's. It is said that Frith had an aptitude for mathematics but, once in Oxford, his interests in the so-called 'new learning' was inspired by Thomas Bilney, who had founded the so-called 'Little Germany' group at the White Horse Inn (where Frith also encountered Tyndale). It was only following his graduation in 1525 that Frith transferred to Oxford, having been recruited (as a junior or 'petty' canon) as part of Wolsey's efforts to attract new scholars for his own collegiate foundation - Cardinal College. See Herbert Samworth, John Frith: Forging the English Reformation, found on-line at http://www.solagroup.org/articles/historyofthebible/hotb_0011.html.]

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Foxe here refers to Thomas Cranmer's work of 1551, An Answer to a crafty and sophistical cavillation devised by Stephen Gardiner (which was a response to Gardiner's An explication and assertion of the true Catholique fayth).

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This refers to Frith's A Disputation of Purgatory (1531). As noted earlier, this short treatise was a response to three earlier pro-purgatory treatises written by More, his brother-on-law, Rastell and the bishop of Rochester, each of which takes a separate foundation for their argument - scripture, reason and natural philosophy, and the patristic fathers.

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Rastell's book of 1530 had been in dialogue form between a German Christian and a Turk and he responded to Frith's book with An apology against John Frith which Frith may also have been responded to. Frith's theology on this point seems to reflect Luther's discussions of two kinds of righteousness, before God and before man. Because the sinner is already forgiven his sins, purgatory becomes a redundant theology - for which, see Martin Luther, 'Two kinds of righteousness', in Martin Luther's Basic Theological Writings, ed. by Timothy F Lull (Minneapolis, 2005), pp.134-40. Although More and Fisher were not convinced, Rastell was convinced, converted, and died a Protestant (imprisoned in the Tower in 1536). For a brief discussion of the Frith/Rastell relationship see Herbert Samworth, 'John Frith: Forging the English Reformation', at http://www.solagroup.org/articles/historyofthebible/ hotb_0011.html.

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Foxe is probably making a veiled reference to the Colloquy of Marburg (1-4 October 1529). Zwingli and Luther managed to agree to a wide range of issues but contended heatedly over the issue of the real presence. Luther eventually concluded that Zwingli was no better than a sacramentarian while Zwingli concluded that Luther was a secret favourer of the papal doctrine. The meeting had been arranged by Philip of Hesse in an attempt to unite Protestant Germany against resurgent Catholic power, only to result in permanent schism.

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Foxe here refers to a work of Robert Barnes, a Lutheran theologian, entitled Sentientae ex doctoribus collectae, quas papistae valde impudenter hodie damnant (1530) which featured a preface by Bugenhagen. Whether consciously or not, Barnes here discussed, using scripture and patristic sources, what would amount to the main points of the Augsburg Confession (also of 1530), including nineteen chapters on such key reformation doctrines as faith, justification, free will, ecclesiastical authority and the sacrament. For a discussion of Barnes, see Neelak S Tjernagel, Henry VIII and the Lutherans (St Louis, 1965), pp.60ff.

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The treatise referred to here may be part of Frith's The Mind and Exposition of the old doctors upon the words of Christ's Maundy [for which, see The works of the English Reformers: William Tyndale and John Frith, ed. by Thomas Russell, 3 vols. (London, 1831), 3, pp.360-424. There are several divisions in the text, one of which is 'D. Barnes did graciously escape M. More's Hands' (pp.420-23 of the Russell edition).

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Foxe is here making an adiaphoric argument, in common with Erasmus and others, that the exact determination of the presence in the sacrament has no value in terms of salvation.

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Foxe is making another reference to the Colloquy of Marburg and the resulting schism in the ranks of the Protestants.

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Foxe is here taking up the point made by Erasmus once again and this is worth additional comment. In his The Handbook of the Christian Soldier (1503) (The Enchiridion militis christiani), Erasmus placed an emphasis on the individual and on the development of a personal, inward spirituality dependent on nothing but a genuine pursuit of faith, eschewing those ceremonies with a heavy material emphasis - the Mass, pilgrimages, veneration of saints, images, indulgences - which had largely replaced and overwhelmed the actual central message, just as rigid dogma and doctrine has replaced the ideas they were originally meant to explain. To address this disorder Erasmus wanted to switch the emphasis for Christians back to the words, teachings, actions and example of the Christ himself. The Handbook was, therefore, a step-by-step plan for self-improvement, divided into two parts, a series of essays on the nature of man and on the importance of reading scripture, thematically connected through the imagery of a warrior arming himself with all the spiritual, non-material weapons and shields he will ever need for the constant spiritual battles ahead, followed up twenty-two rules of genuine Christianity. Erasmus is preaching a basic sola scriptura method of fulfilling one's own spiritual needs supplemented by a pursuit of edifying moral literature. His was an anti-materialistic message which, by necessity, drew attention away from the material elements of the sacrament and toward the spiritual elements. Zwingli could adopt this Erasmian doctrine as his own, repeating the emphasis on the spiritual, while Luther could not accept it, as he placed emphasis on the physical presence of the Christ in the elements. A good discussion of Erasmus' doctrine can be found in Cornelis Augustijn, Erasmus: His life, works and influence, trans. by J C Grayson (Toronto, 1991)].

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Actually, John Rastel was married to More's younger sister Elizabeth. See Peter Ackroyd, The Life of Thomas More (London, 1998), p.9.

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This refers to the Abbey of St Frideswide which, along with Wallingford Priory, was suppressed in 1525 to provide the necessary building funds. It is interesting to note that the college was subsequently suppressed in 1531 following the fall from grace of Wolsey and re-founded in 1532 as King Henry VIII's College and re-founded again in 1546 as Christ Church (the seat of the new diocese of Oxford).

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Foxe constricts the chronology of Frith's trials to a certain extent and leaves out some interesting details. Frith was burned as a heretic on 4 July 1533, having first faced trial before Cranmer, sitting in court at Lambeth palace, with Stokesley, Longland, the duke of Suffolk, the Lord Chancellor (Sir Thomas Audley) and the earl of Wiltshire assisting. Cranmer, in a letter of 17 June 1533, noted that he had tried to persuade Frith to recant 'three or four times' previously - for which see Thomas Cranmer, Miscellaneous Writings and Letters, ed. by J E Cox (Cambridge, 1846), letter no.xiv, p.246. Prior to leaving Frith to the tender mercies of Stokesley, he was sent to appear before Gardiner, at his court in Croyden (22 December 1532). Frith would have been a useful addition to Cromwell's propaganda machine, if he could have been persuaded away from what Henry VIII considered sacramentarianism (one of only two heresies - with Anabaptism) for which the penalty throughout the reign was death. Gardiner could not talk Frith around, so he was brought before Stokesley's court at St Paul's on 20 June 1533 (Longland and Gardiner assisting). See BL Lansdowne MS 979, fol.92v; London Guildhall MS 9531/11: Episcopal Register Stokesley 1530-39, fol.71r. Frith dispatched a letter from prison to his friends on 23 June 1533. This is known as The Articles wherefore John Frith died which he wrote in Newgate the 23rd day of June … - for which, see The works of the English Reformers: William Tyndale and John Frith, ed. By Thomas Russell, 3 vols. (London, 1831), 3, pp.450-5.

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Foxe here almost directly lifts the text of the Frith letter. According to Frith (and substantiated by Stokesley's register) there were two counts against him with regard to the doctrine of purgatory (which he denied) and the doctrine of the real presence in the Eucharist. Purgatory was dealt with first (pages 450-1 in the Russell edition). With regard to his purgatorial doctrine, Frith had not moved far from his earlier treatises. For example, he held that St Augustine interpreted 'fire' in 1 Corinthians 3 not with purging but with temptations and tribulations in life. Thus, if he did make a concession it was only that if purgatory existed it would have to exist in this life (pertaining as it does to the body and physical matters) and not after death (pertaining as that does to the spiritual and the mind). Frith used the texts of 1 John 1:7-9 to explain himself, adopting a basic Zwinglian approach (justification and sanctification), nonetheless maintaining an adiaphoric stance with regard to salvation itself - see Raynor, p.110.

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This is largely a close paraphrasing of page 451 of the Russell edition. Frith's examination of St Paul's Epistle to the Corinthians was inspired (or lifted directly) from Zwingli's Exposition and basis of the conclusions or articles (of 1523). The reference to sacramental eating ('Finally when … mouth and teth'] is taken from Zwingli's Fidei confessio (or Account of the faith) of 1530. After which Frith expresses his adiaphora theory on the sacrament. The quote is altered slightly in the 1583 edition.

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This is largely a close paraphrasing of page 452 of the Russell edition. Frith refers here to the letter of St Augustine to Boniface (of 408AD). This is letter no.98 of Augustine's collected letters and can be found on-line at http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1102098.htm, which discusses the relationship between the physical elements of the eucharist and the spiritual elements these represent. Luther held that the physical and spiritual elements partake of each other in such a close fashion that the bread and the body of Christ cannot be distinguished in the elements whereas Zwingli (who Frith follows here) held that the relationship between the physical and spiritual elements was symbolic only, but that the physical elements still had some deep meaning (see the references to sacramental eating made earlier). Frith then went on to discuss the opinions of St John Chrysostom, which the bishops interrogating him took to prove a physical presence. Frith is here referring to Chrysostom's homily 82 (an exposition of Matthew 26:26-9), which can be found on-line at http://www.newadvent. org/fathers/240182.htm. Chrysostom actually discusses the eucharist throughout several homilies (on Matthew and on John 6) and it is understandable why the bishops would take him as a source in favour of a real physical presence doctrine. Chrysostom often made a comparative argument in his homilies (here and elsewhere) between God's power and human senses so, for example, where Jesus says 'this is my body', Chrysostom seemed willing to take Him at his word, even if human senses failed to discern a difference between the bread and the body.

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This is largely a close paraphrasing of page 452 of the Russell edition. Frith carries on the discussion of Chrysostom's doctrine.

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This is largely a close paraphrase of pages 452-3 of the Russell edition. Frith carries on the discussion of Chrysostom's doctrine, in which Frith has taken up Zwingli's spiritual doctrine in explanation of his own opinions.

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This is largely a close paraphrase of page 454 of the Russell edition. Frith here reiterates his adiaphora opinion with regard to the interpretation of the sacrament as having salvation value.

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Foxe's description of Frith's trial where he refused to recant his opinions on the two articles charged against him.

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This is the judgement of Bishop Stokesley made against Frith, prior to turning him over to the temporal authorities for execution. Stokesley was a rather doctrinaire conservative and Foxe probably rightly suspected that where the bishop speaks of charity he was rather quite pleased to see another 'heretic' removed.

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The other men mentioned here are John Taverner and John Clarke. Taverner was recruited (as early as 1524 but declined the offer until 1526) and became the 'Informator Choristarum' (or director of music and instructor of the choristers) - a prestigious position. He is now recognized as one of the most influential musicians of the period and, although later arrested for holding heretical views, his talent saved him from death. For more details on his music, see the biography at http://www.classical.net/ music/comp.lst/taverner.html or the listing in David M Greene, Greene's Biographical Encyclopedia of Composers (London, 1985), pp.30-1. John Clarke is a rather more obscure figure, later captured by Bishop Longland and died in prison prior to his scheduled execution for heresy. According to the research of Brian Raynor, several other scholars were recruited at this time, including such men as Richard Cox, John Fryer, Godfrey Harman, William Betts, Henry Sumner, William Baily, Michael Drumm and Thomas Lawney - for which, see Brian Raynor, John Frith: Scholar and Martyr (Peterborough, 2000), p.60].

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This is Foxe's description of Frith's burning.

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The Latin text is omitted in subsequent editions.

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John Martin was a scribe in mayor Peacock's office. The English translation of the bishop's certification is also omitted in subsequent editions.

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John Stokesley was provided to the see of London on 28 March 1530 and the temporalities assigned on 14 July. As he was out of the country at the time of his promotion, he was not actually consecrated bishop until 27 November 1530.

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Foxe is suggesting here that William Holt, one of the chancellor's spies, set up Andrew Huet (or Hewet) as part of a seemingly wider scheme to uncover a brethren cell. The story of the Freez family is an interesting side bar to Huet's release. Valentine Freez was the brother of Edward (an apprentice painter), the two sons of Frederick (a book printer of York). Foxe relates the story of Edward's arrest for heresy (c.1529) and his going insane while imprisoned in Lollard's Tower. Valentine evaded capture in London, but was taken by bishop Rowland Lee of Coventry and Lichfield after 1534 (L & P, vii, p.514) later to be executed as a sacramentarian in York, condemned not by the church courts but by the council in the North under the terms of the recent 'Act of Six Articles' - see 'Tudor York: Religion and the Reformation', in A History of the County of York: the City of York (London 1961), pp.142-155, which can be found on-line at http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=36342.

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Huet must have been rather naïve and Holt and his accomplice played him skilfully. John Chapman was a 'known man' (a member of the Christian Brethren or Lollards) and provided a safe-house/cell near Smithfield. 'Wythers' could be another tailor, Christopher Ravyns of Witham who had previously abjured his radical beliefs.

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John Tibald (Tybal) was a Lutheran sympathizer of Steeple Bumpstead in Essex, who had abjured his beliefs before Tunstal in 1528, had been in London since c.1526 when he and his Thomas Hills had come to purchase an English New Testament from Robert Barnes - see J E Oxley, The Reformation in Essex (Manchester, 1965), pp.10-14; Davis, pp.61-2.]. Tybal was not allowed to return to his home by virtue of injunction.

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Stokesley's chancellor and vicar-general was Richard Foxford 'the persecutor and common butcher of good families of God' (BL Lansdowne MS. 979, fols.90,92v & 98). Chapman, Huet and Tibald were captured in possession of heretical books but taken to separate locations.

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There were two prison-towers in London at this time, each known as Lollard's Tower. The old water tower at Lambeth Palace had been converted and was often used to hold accused heretics, often in stocks, and the bishop of London's prison within the precincts of St Paul's. Huet was probably taken to the latter.

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Chapman was eventually freed through the intervention of Sir Thomas Audley, More's successor as Lord Chancellor. Why he would put pressure on London's ecclesiastical machine is unknown, although Susan Brigden supplies a hint that Chapman and others had found favour with the new queen, Anne Boleyn (see, S. Brigden, London and the Reformation (Oxford, 1989), p.197). Huet had found no such favour, which suggests that he was a disciple of Frith and considered a sacramentarian (which condemned him in the eyes of the king).

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Clarke died in the custody of Bishop Longland of Lincoln.

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Huet's examination before Stokesley, Longland and Gardiner is very similar to Frith's, and his beliefs on the eucharist seem to feature heavily.

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Foxe provides here some details of the Huet examination. It seems that he was being manoeuvred into admitting more than sacramentarian beliefs. There were many ancient heresies, like monophysitism, which denied one or the other aspect of Christ's dual nature and these accusations were often thrown around in controversial writings. It seems Huet fell into this trap, much to the bishops' amusement.

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Foxe mentioned Dr John Coke here, the rector of All Hallow's Honey Lane, who had been imprisoned with Frith for a time. Coke was not a heretic, however, but a reactionary Catholic who opposed the royal supremacy and the divorce. He was probably well aware of Frith and Huet's opinions and considered them dangerous subversives.

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Frith was released from imprisonment in 1528 and spent the next four years travelling Europe, sometimes in the company of William Tyndale. He was, for instance, with Tyndale at Marburg and Antwerp, but Frith also travelled around the centres of Reformed Protestantism (e.g., Basel and Zurich). The influence of Oecolampadius is obvious in his later doctrine.

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There may be more to the story here than Foxe relates. Although not mentioned in S F Ryle's biography of Cox in the ODNB (but according to Frederic Carpenter), Cox (Coxes or Cockes) was a friend of both Erasmus and Melanchthon. In 1524, he was the schoolmaster of Reading Grammar School and was much noted for his The Arte or Crafte of Rhethoryck which was the first such book published in England in the vernacular. Much of it is a translation of Melanchthon's Institutiones Rhetoricae (1521). While Ryle notes its publication in 1530, Carpenter notes that this was a second edition. See Frederic Ives Carpenter, 'Leonard Cox and the First English Rhetoric', in Modern Language Notes 13:5 (May 1898), pp.146-7 and S F Ryle, 'Cox, Leonard', in ODNB, 13, pp.854-6].

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The earliest translation of Homer's Iliad into English was in 1598 by the dramatist George Chapman.

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This would be October 1532. Frith appears to have been preaching at Bow Lane.

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The account which follows is word-for-word from Edward Hall'schronicle. (See Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies ofLancastre and York [London, 1548], STC 12721, fo. 211r-v).

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William Tracy was a prominent member of a leading Gloucestershire family and he was a former sheriff of the county. His will aroused considerablecontroversy because of its outspoken declaration of justification nby faith without theassistance of works. Manuscript copies of the will circulated extensively. (See John Craig and Caroline Litzenberger, 'Wills as Religious Propaganda: The Testament of William Tracy', Journal of Ecclesiastical History 44 [1993], pp. 415-31). In 1535, a copy of the will, with commentaries by William Tyndale and John Frith, was printedin Antwerp: the testament of master William Tracie esquier (Antwerp, 1535), STC 24167.

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Foxe (following Hall's chronicle) is condensing extemely complex and protracted proceedings. Convocation debated Tracy's will in different sessions for fifteen months before Tracy was finally condemned (posthumously) as a heretic and the exhumation of his body ordered. (See John T. Day, 'William Tracy's Posthumous Legal Problems' in William Tyndale and the Law, ed. John A. R. Dick and Anne Richardson [Kirksville, MO, 1994], pp. 108-10).

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I.e., Parker, the chancellor of the diocese, claimed that he was acting on the orders of the archbishop of Canterbury.

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Matthew Parker, the chancellor of the diocese of Worcester (not to be confused with the Elizabethan archbishop of Canterbury of the same name) burned Tracy's body in addition to exhuming it. This burning - but not the exhumation - was a violation of the statute De heretico comburendo, which mandated the punishments for heresy. Under this statute, it was illegal to burn a heretic, livingor dead, without receipt of a writ from Chancery and, in any case, the burning wasto be managed by secular officials. Whether Tracy's body was burned on the orders of the Archbishop Warham or not (Parker, the chancellor of the diocese, claimed that he was acting on the orders of the archbishop of Canterbury), Parker did not have a writ and he conducted the burning himself. Richard Tracy, William's son, petitioned the king, asking that Parker be punished for this violation of the law. Ultimately Parker was fined £100. (See John T. Day, 'William Tracy's Posthumous Legal Problems' in William Tyndale and the Law, ed. John A. R. Dick and Anne Richardson [Kirksville, MO, 1994], pp. 110-11).

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Job 19: 25.

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I.e., the health.

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It is this statement, declaring that faith, without works, was allthat was necessary salvation, which made this will hertetical.

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Mark 16: 16.

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Tracy's lack of concern over his burial arrangements was not heretical, but it was very unconventional.

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Matthew 25: 35.

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Matthew 25: 45.

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This is a rather free reading of Romans 14: 17-23.

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London abjurations in 1528

This block is a listing of names of people forced to abjure their beliefs during the drives against heresy conducted in the diocese of London in 1528-32 and also 1537-8 and c.1540 (including Hugh Morris, John Harrydance, Herman Peterson, James Gosson John Goodale, Anthony Pearson, Robert Bennet, Henry Filmer, Robert Testwood and John Marbeck). It was taken from court books of the diocese which are no longer extant. Foxe provided a more detailed and accurate description of these individuals and their offences in subsequent editions of his book (1570, pp. 1184-92, 1576, pp. 1013-21 and 1583, pp. 1040-49). The reason for the chronological confusion of this list, its lack of detail and for the not infrequent garbling of names in it (William Blomefield, Henry Fasted of Colchester, Thomas Patmore of Much Hadham, Margaret Bowgas and John Harrydance) is that it was clearly compiled in haste as the 1563 edition was being printed. Foxe (and probably people assisting him) went through the court-books that they had not yet had time to transcribe (Foxe appears to have worked backwards in the London records, starting with the records for 1558) and hastily compiled this list from them. More detailed material on these people would have to wait for the 1570 edition. Thomas S. Freeman

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James Bainham was later burned in 1532. This is a reference to his abjuration, which he later recanted (James Bainham was the youngest son of Sir Alexander Bainham, who was the head of the most prominent family in the Forest of Dean and who had been sheriff of Gloucestershire five times. James Bainham's mother was the sister of William Tracy. On the Bainham family, see Caroline Litzenberger, The English Reformation and the Laity: Gloucestershire, 1540-1580 (Cambridge, 1997), pp. 30-31.).

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Margaret Bowgas had been forced to find six compurgators to clear her of charges of heresy in Colchester in July 1528 (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 30v). Her husband Thomas had been forced to abjure his heretical beliefs and do pennance in Colchester in 1528 (Fines).

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The names on this list - from here through the name of Hugh Morris - are never mentioned again by Foxe and we have no record of them. When and where they abjured, if indeed they abjured, is unknown. (It is possible that these names were not mentioned because they might have been forced to abjure by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer; as was John Harrydance). If Hugh Morris was cited to appear at Windsor, it was probably in 1543, in connection with the heresy investigation there (In March 1543, William Simons, a Windsor lawyer and Dr. John London, the warden of New College, Oxford, and a prebendary of Windsor, accused five people of heresy: Anthony Pearson, a preacher and outspoken sacramentarian, Robert Bennet, a lawyer, Henry Filmer, a tailor, Robert Testwood, a chorister of St. George's Chapel and John Marbeck, the organist at the chapel. There were high stakes involved; these accusations were an attempt to eradicate heresy at the royal court).

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Interestingly, this is Foxe's only mention of John Petit, a prominent London grocer and MP, who was a friend and supporter of William Tyndale, Thomas Bilney, John Firth and Robert Barnes. Petyt was arrested by Thomas More and died in 1532 (BL, Harley MS 425, fos. 138r-139r and Bindoff, HOC).

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All of the names on this list, through to that of John Cole, are never mentioned again by Foxe and, except for John Harrydance, we have no other record of them. It is possible that these names were not mentioned again by Foxe because they might have been forced to abjure by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer. John Harrydance was a London bricklayer and an illiterate, itinerant preacher. He was imprisoned for his activities and forced to do penance at Paul's Cross in 1538 (TNA E 36/129, fos. 133r-135r and SP 1/124, fo. 155r). Foxe probably did not mention Harrydance again, because, embarrassingly, it was Archbishop Thomas Cranmer who forced him to recant and do penance.

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This is John Harrydance, a London bricklayer and an illiterate, itinerant preacher. He was imprisoned for his activities and forced to do penance at Paul's Cross in 1538 (TNA E 36/129, fos. 133r-135r and SP 1/124, fo. 155r. Also see Charles Wriothesley, A Chronicle of England during the reigns of the Tudors, 1485-1559, ed. W. D. Hamilton. Camden Society, new series xi and xx (2 vols., London, 1875-7), pp. 82-3 and Two London Chronicles from the Collections of John Stow, ed. C. L. Kingsford. Camden Society, miscellany, xii (London, 1910), p. 15). Foxe pronbably did not mention Harrydance again, because, embarrassingly, it was Archbishop Thomas Cranmer who forced him to recant and do penance.

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The following names were forced to abjure around 1540. Except for Herman Peterson, James Gosson and John Goodale (Peterson and Gosson were imprisoned in one of the Compter prisons in London in March 1540 (L&P, Add. II, no. 1463). Their fate is unknown. John Goodale had been imprisoned in the Fleet back in 1528 for distributing heretical literature, but this abjuration probably stemmed from his arrest as a 'sacramentary' in 1539 (Fines)) they are discussed in more detail by Foxe in later editions (1570, pp. 1375-82; 1576, pp. 1173-9 and 1583, pp. 1201-7).

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Peterson and Gosson were imprisoned in one of the Compter prisons in London in March 1540 (L&P, Add. II, no. 1463). Their fate is unknown.

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'housled and shriven'; i.e., having received the eucharist and been absolved.

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John Goodale had been imprisoned in the Fleet back in 1528 for distributing heretical literature, but this abjuration probably stemmed from his arrest as a 'sacramentary' in 1539 (Fines).

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John Hacker was an extraordinarily influential Lollard with a long career; see J. A. F. Thomson, The Later Lollards, 1414-1520 for details. Hacker will be arrested in London in 1527 and in 1528, he would abjure and give the names of over 40 other Lollards to the authorities (1563, p. 418 and BL, Harley 421, fos. 11r-14r).

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This is an exaggeration. When Foxe eventually printed these cases in detail, he generally did not bother to mention the punishments imposed on those who abjured. This in itself suggests that they were fairly light. However, it should be remembered that the accused heretics were imprisoned awaiting trial.

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This is Robert Bates of Colchester. It appears that Foxe's account of Edward Freeze and 'father' Bate is based on material sent to Foxe by an informant; very probably an informant in Colchester (this account contains quite a bit of detail on people from Essex and Colchester). But there is quite a bit of corroboration for Foxe's account. First of all, A. G. Dickens uncovered information on Edward Freese's family. Edward's father Frederick was a Dutch immigrant (the family name was probably Vries or de Vries), who settled in York and made a living as a bookbinder and stationer (A. G. Dickens, Lollards and Protestants in the diocese of York 1509-1558 [Oxford, 1959], p. 30). This Dutch background may explain the pronounced evangelical convictions of Valentine and Edward Freese. Another major piece of corroboration is a letter, almost certainly sent to Thomas Cromwell, which is now in the TNA. Although the signature has been cut off of the letter, the biographical details related in it fit Edward Freese so closely that is virtually certain that he wrote it. The author of the letter, detained in London for religious offences, admits that he had been a monk since the age of 13, but claims that he was 'sold' by his master to the abbot of Jervaulx (see C 214/34). The author of the letter declared that he attempted to flee the abbey several times but was recaptured. Finally he fled to Colchester and he got married (TNA SP 1/73, fos. 175r-176r).

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William Blomefield. Almost certainly this the same William Blomefield, a Benedictine monk, who publicly denounced evgeryone in religious orders and who was imprisoned in Norwich (Thomas More, The Apology, ed. J. B. Trapp, CWTM 9 [New Haven, CT, 1979], p. 113).

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Henry Fasted of Colchester. This is very probably the Henry Fasted who, in 1534, tried to disseminate evangelical books in Colchester and who reported his efforts, as well those who resisted them, to Thomas Cromwell (L&P VII, p. 170).

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Thomas Patmore of Much Hadham. Susan Brigden has persuasively argued that the two Thomas Patmores mentioned by Foxer were, in fact, the same person and that Patmore while still vicar of Much Hadham, became free of the Drapers's Company (Susan Brigden, London and the Reformation [Oxford, 1989], p. 206). She suggests that the purpose of this was to remain incognito and that the Drapers were chosen because of a significant evangelical presence in their membership. But Patmore's purpose may simply have been to acquire London citizenship. And the Drapers's Company may have been chosen beecause his father had been a member of the company.

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This is a mistake. Thomas Eve was a weaver, probably of London, and not clerk of the parish of Much Hadham.

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Henry VIII delivered this oration at Bridewell on 8 November 1529 (see Edward Hall, The Union of the Two Noble and Illustre Families of Lancastre & York (London, 1547) and it remained in all four editions. Henry VIII's sense of dynastic insecurity, more clearly expressed here than perhaps at any other moment of the reign, he was clearly referring to the 'Wars of the Roses', still within living memory. He refers to his own grandfather, Edward IV (of York), who had contested the throne with Henry VI (of Lancaster) between 1461 and 1471, and who ruled unopposed to 1483. Famously, his successor, Edward V was usurped (or perhaps legitimately replaced) by Richard III, who was himself removed by the successful rebellion of Henry Tudor (a distant Lancastrian candidate). Henry VII had married Elizabeth York and their heirs - Arthur, Henry, Mary and Margaret - had united the Plantagenet family. The 'fayre daughter' is, of course, Princess Mary (later Mary I), born 18 February 1516, the only child of Catherine and Henry to survive early childhood. The king emphasised the seriousness of the situation in which he might find himself, having 'so long lyued in adultery to Gods great displeasure, and haue no true heyre of my body to inherit this realme'. The king promised that 'I seke a remedy'. Already, two ecclesiastical tribunals had been assembled to hear the case, one at Westminster in 1527 and another at Blackfriars monastery in 1529. Moreover, Henry had also canvassed widely among the English theologians (e.g., John Fisher, John Stokesley) and canonists (e.g., Stephen Gardiner, William Warham) and assembled a group of scholars to examine the evidence from every conceivable angle (including such men as Richard Croke and Nicholas de Burgo). Henry's case revolved around the fact that Arthur and Catherine had consummated their marriage which had created insurmountable impediments between Catherine and himself. In essence he had married his genuine sister; his daughter was the product of an incestuous union, was illegitimate and, thereby, could not inherit. Henry's sincerity has been called into question by historians and chroniclers from the time of the speech itself, but there is no real reason to doubt his claims. One of the key characteristics of the Tudors, and Henry in particular, was their devotion to the veneer of legality for their acts. The question of legitimacy hung over the Tudors, and Henry was obsessed by the idea of a legitimate male heir and of avoiding a return to the bloodshed of the civil wars. By this point, of course, Henry had also been convinced that his marriage to Catherine was entirely illegitimate, so he has no real reason to dissemble with regard to Catherine's merits and his feelings toward her.

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More's speech and these related events were recorded by Edward Hall. [See, Edward Hall, The Union of the Two Noble and Illustre Families of Lancastre & York, 2 vols., ed. by Henry Ellis (London, 1809), ii, pp.774-80.

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The faculty of decrees or the law faculty of Paris.

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The law faculty of the university of Angers.

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This is the proclamation of 1531 'in the behalfe of the kings prerogative roiall against the pope'. Foxe's text can also be found in Raphael Holinshed's The Chronicles of England, Scotland and Ireland (London, 1587), pp.914-5. Holinshed reported that two possible causes underlay this proclamation. Either Catherine had purchased a new papal bull of ratification for her marriage or that Wolsey had purchased a papal bull restoring him to his offices (recently removed by the king) (see Tudor and Stuart Proclamations 1485-1714, 2 vols. [Oxford, 1910], 1, p.14 (no.124 of 12 September 1530); David Wilkins, Concilia, 3, 755; Calendar of State Papers, Venetian, 4, 6615)

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This is the exact text of the proclamation as recorded in Holinshed as well - see Raphael Holinshed, The Chronicles of England, Scotland and Ireland (London, 1587), pp.914-5].

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This is Simon Fish, The Supplicacyon for the Beggars (1529).

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Foxe is here discussing three related events - the Commons supplication against the ordinaries, the submission of the clergy (which included a new title for the king) and the purchasing of a royal pardon by the two convocations of the English church and the event is much more interesting than Foxe here reports. Henry VIII's aim was to apply judicial and legislative pressure on the papacy with regard to the annulment issue subsequent to the fall of the cardinal and parliament had been drafted in to strengthen the effort. The royal proclamation Foxe mentioned resulted from the appeal to Rome of bishops Fisher, Nix and Clerk against the 'Pluralities Act' of 1529 (21 Henr.VIII, c.13) which nullified all papal dispensations while allowing the purchase of royal dispensations - see The Statutes of the Realm, 11 vols. (London, 1810-28), 3, p.293. The bishops' appeal justified prosecutions - see Calendar of State Papers, Milan, 1, p.831; Calendar of State Papers, Venice, 4, pp.629, 634 - which were subsequently dropped in favour of a blanket praemunire suit of 11 July 1530 against fourteen clerics (including eight bishops) for having aided and abetted Wolsey's legatine authority (for which, see J A Guy, 'Henry VIII and the Praemunire Manoeuvres of 1530-31', English Historical Review 97 [1982], pp.481-503). This was subsequently expanded to include the entire clerical estate. Famously, the king allowed southern and northern convocations to purchase pardons (£100,000 and £18,840 respectively) provided they also agreed to his new title of 'sole protector and supreme head of the Church in England'. Southern convocation agreed on 22 January and northern convocation on 4 May - for which, see David Wilkins, Concilia, 3, p.744; L&P, iv/iii, no.6047 (iii); TNA, State Papers 1/56, fols.84-7B]. The payment schedules raised complications and Warham used the opportunity to argue for certain guarantees of the church's ancient liberties, privileges, a comprehensive definition of praemunire and certain modifications to previous parliamentary legislation - for which, see Calendar of State Papers, iv, p.619. Henry agreed to a five-year schedule and he presented parliament with a bill ratifying the subsidy and pardoning the clergy - for which, see Wilkins, 3, p.725; L&P, 5, p.928. Bishop Fisher vehemently opposed the king, and Henry agreed to have '… as far as the word of God allows' appended to his new title [for which, see TNA, State Papers 6/2, fols.94-6. This was agreed, eleven bishops subscribed the supplication and the pardon was granted. (For detailed discussion of the issues, cf G R Elton, 'The Commons' Supplication of 1532: Parliamentary Manoeuvres in the Reign of Henry VIII', in English Historical Review 65 [1951], pp.216-32; G W Bernard, 'The Pardon of the Clergy Reconsidered', in Journal of Ecclesiastical History 37 [1986], pp.258-71; J A Guy, 'The Pardon of the Clergy: a Reply', in Journal of Ecclesiastical History 37 (1986), pp.283-4; J J Scarisbrick, 'The Pardon of the Clergy, 1531', in Cambridge Historical Journal 12 (1956), pp.22-39; M Kelly, 'The Submission of the Clergy', in Transactions of the Royal Historical Society 15 (1965), pp.97-120].

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Foxe's analysis of the reception of the oration, and the events that followed it was substantially changed in between the 1563 and the 1570 and later editions. In 1563, Foxe placed the emphasis on the Queen's reaction. As Foxe says in 1563, 'herepon word was sent not longer after to the Quene, by the cardinal, & certen other messengers'. In reality, delegations of the great and the good were sent to Queen Catherine a number of times over the course of the marriage trial, with the objective of ending her obstructionism. The latest delegation (for which, see L&P, iv:iii, no.739), perhaps that one referred to here, consisted of Thomas Howard (Duke of Norfolk), Edward Lee and Richard Sampson, Longland and Stokesley, and they addressed theology, canon law and civil political issues. The cardinal referred to here is Cardinal Lorenzo (var: 'Lawrence') Campeggio (who was also for a time Cardinal Protector of England and bishop of Salisbury). The legatine trial at Blackfriars (31 May - 23 July 1529) over which Campeggio presided with Wolsey, was actually his second legatine appearance in England, having been sent in 1518 as Leo X's nuncio (to secure men and funding for a projected crusade). Campeggio was deprived of Salisbury via act of parliament (11 March 1535) (see Edward V Cardinal, Cardinal Lorenzo Campeggio, Legate to the Courts of Henry VIII and Charles V (Boston, 1935)].

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In the 1563 edition, Foxe replicated in extenso the speech supposedly given in reply by Queen Catherine, which had appeared in Edward Hall's chronicle, The Union of the Two Noble and Illustre Families of Lancastre & York (London, 1547), fols.180B-81A. There is some question over whether she actually made it at all. Catherine claims that she was unaware of the king's doubts; either she had been kept in the dark about young Henry's protest or his doubts and confessions of 1518, or her Spanish servants had not been paying attention. She makes the valid point that some theologians who were now raising objections to the marriage had accepted it at the time. One such was William Warham; another was Richard Fox, the aged bishop of Winchester. Former servants and courtiers had been trotted out at the tribunals to speak on events of twenty years' earlier and pick over the bones of ill or half-remembered statements. She refers tellingly to the dispensation of Julius II (dated 26 December 1503). She reserved her strongest statements, however, for Cardinal Wolsey, convinced that he was behind the divorce issue. In 1515 Leo X had created Wolsey a cardinal and he hoped to negotiate this, and English diplomatic ties with the empire after 1519, into his own election as pope. Charles V, however, supported his tutor (Adrian Dedel or Adrian Florenszoon Boeyens) as Pope Adrian VI and later, Giulio di Giuliano de'Medici (as Clement VII), for which Wolsey never forgave him. Later, in the aftermath of the imperial troops sacking of Rome (6 May 1527), Wolsey had conceived a scheme by which he would be appointed (by the French cardinals) as vice-pope for the duration of the pope's captivity. Charles V once again foiled his efforts by allowing Clement to escape captivity. Catherine was convinced that Wolsey was pursuing his grudge against her (as the aunt of the emperor he could not touch), which may indeed have been a fair assessment of Wolsey's ways of behaving.

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Foxe's analysis of events after July1529 is congested and somewhat changed between the 1563 and 1570 editions. In 1563, Foxe mentions that Catherine appealed the projected decision of the legatine court to the pope on 16 June 1529 ('and her appeale made to the Pope'). Again, in the 1563 edition, he briefly alludes to the legatine trial at Blackfriars, which sat between 31 May and 23 July 1529 (about fourteen sessions) under the dual-authorities of cardinals Wolsey and Campeggio ('Fyrst the pope sendeth his two legates, Wolsey and Campeius, to here and decise the case…') noting the involvement of the king's proctor (chief legal advisor) John Bell (later bishop of Worcester), sometimes acting with Richard Sampson (later bishop of Chichester). The queen's proctor was John Clerk (bishop of Bath and Wells). He also refers to the preliminary meeting of 28 May 1529, at which the king and queen were to, officially, learn the reasons they were being summoned to appear before an ecclesiastical court. The other 'counsailors…learned men' assisting the queen mentioned by Foxe were William Warham, Nicholas West, John Fisher and Henry Standish. The queen had other supporters, including her chaplain Thomas Abel, Richard Featherstone, Peter Ligham, Edward Powell, Richard Gwent, her almoner Robert Shorton, her Spanish confessor George de Athequa (bishop of Llandaff) and John Talcarne, not all of whom were entirely to be trusted. Much of the actual chronology is skipped over. The court met in fourteen sessions - 31 May, 18, 21, 22, 25, and 28 June, 5, 9, 12, 14, 16, 19, 21, and 23 July. Foxe makes a reference to testimony on behalf of Prince Arthur (given on 19 July) meant to prove consummation of his marriage. This is rumour and hearsay evidence, of course. For example, when gentlemen of the prince's household joked with him over his need for a drink, Arthur reportedly replied: 'Marry, if thou haddest been as often in Spain this night as I have been, I think verily thou wouldest have been much drier.' (For a discussion of these reports, see Henry A Kelly, The Matrimonial Trials of Henry VIII [Stanford, 1976], pp.122ff) There is also reference made here to the Spanish brief (which had been secured for the dying Isabella on 26 December 1503 (and sent to Spain in autumn 1504) - common knowledge in England at the time [see, L&P, i, p.243] - although this fact seems to be often denied or conveniently forgotten by 1529.

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Foxe was raising here a valid question. As legates a'latere both Wolsey and Campeggio had full competence to decide the issue finally at Blackfriars priory. Why they did not has been a source of speculation since, the most likely explanation being the pope's fear of Charles V (whose troops could far more easily threaten Rome - again - than could Henry's). Foxe leaves out the matter of the so-called secret decretal bull that Campeggio had the authority to use (but which he burned instead), but refers to the pressure applied by Thomas Howard and Charles Brandon on the legates for a decision. The court was abruptly adjourned during the latter part of the so-called 'dog days' (early July to early September) - when the dog star (Sirius) is most visible - which in Italy since imperial times was considered a time of evil and disaster and during which period courts went into recess. Campeggio was following the Roman court calendar, adjourning the tribunal to sometime in October.

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This is a truncated version of the oration Henry gave on 21 June 1539, wherein he essentially repeats the earlier Bridewell speech. For discussion of it, see Henry A. Kelly, The Matrimonial Trials of Henry VIII (Stanford, 1976), pp. 80ff. which follos the chronicle of George Cavendish, The Life and Death of Cardinal Wolsey,. Ed. R.S. Sylvester (London, 1958).

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Foxe refers here to the famous, albeit possible apocryphal, outburst of Henry VIII's brother-in-law. Immediately after the adjournment, it is said that Suffolk banged the table and swore; 'It was never merry in England whilst we had cardinals among us'. The irony is that Suffolk had Wolsey to thank for his life after he had married the king's sister, Mary, without the king's permission or knowledge. The outburst is often taken as the signal that Wolsey had lost the trust and protection of the king.

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The pope was in Bologna at this time attending to the crowning of Charles V as Holy Roman Emperor. Thomas Boleyn (now Earl of Wiltshire) was the king's ambassador to the emperor and the pope, and he travelled in a party with John Stokesley, Edward Lee and William Benet from 1 January 1530. [Calendar of State Papers, vii:v, cclxviii (at p.230); BL, Cott. MSS. Vit. B, XIII, fol.11].

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Foxe is referring to the second session of the so-called Reformation Parliament, 16 January to 31 March 1531.

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Foxe seems to be exaggerating the number of officials. The Lords were addressed by More, Stokesley, Longland, Sir Brian Tuke (the king's French secretary) and Thomas Howard. Later, More, Tuke, Stokesley and a Jewish scholar named Marco Raffaello addressed the Commons. [See, L&P, v, no.658; Stanford E Lehmberg, The Reformation Parliament 1529-1536 (Cambridge, 1970), pp.128-9].

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Henry VIII's divorce

Foxe's treatment of Henry VIII's divorce from Queen Catherine of Aragon was clearly central to how he explained the coming of the protestant reformation to England. In the 1563 edition, his explanatory structure was clear and unadorned. He sought to provide 'the whole summe and matter' and to prove that it was a 'maruelous and moost gracious worke', a direct intervention of the 'holy prouidence of God', an event which would have been unthinkable for 'anye Prince within this realme' on his own, let alone any subject of it. That providence worked through the conscience of the king, by which God 'did kepe al princes and kinges so vnder him'. The problem for Foxe was that, if he were to provide the comprehensive account of the affair that he promised, it necessarily involved a complex narrative that concentrated more upon the secret and public affairs of men (and women) rather than the inner workings of divine providence. At all events, by 1570, this explicit explanatory structure, with its ringing introductory claims, was abandoned by Foxe in favour of a denser, but more circumstantiated account of the divorce, in which the point about God's providence became buried in the narrative. By concentrating on the events post-1529, Foxe conveniently ignores, of course, the longer history of the early fourteenth-century praemunire and provisor acts of the English parliament which were essential background to the parliamentary intervention in the 'King's Great Matter' in due course.

In the 1563 edition, Foxe quickly asserts his view that the marriage of King Henry VIII to Catherine of Aragon in 1509 had been unlawful ab initio. His view was shared by many contemporaries, who thought that it contravened both divine law and human legal custom (so-called 'impediments'). It contravened divine law in that Catherine had been married to Henry's elder brother Arthur. When he died, it was considered imperative by all parties (Henry VII, Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile) that the marriage tie between England and Spain continue, but a papal dispensation was necessary as the subsequent marriage contravened divine law as spelled out in Leviticus (18.16 and 20.21). In other words, there was both an impediment of affinity and of a consanguinity relationship (within forbidden degrees) between Catherine and Henry. Affinity was understood in one of two ways, however, in either 'biblical' or 'canonical' forms. The former (as outlined in Leviticus) arose out of the 'sponsalia' only, that is the 'matrimonium ratum', for which consummation was irrelevant (unlike in the case of the latter and out of which consanguinity or the blood relationship developed). There was a contemporary opinion (e.g. that of William Warham) that even with a papal dispensation the subsequent marriage would be unlawful (see BL, Cott. MSS, Vit. B, xii, fol.123v; L&P, iv:iii, 5774) and certain complications over the dispensation itself, when it was granted by Pope Julius II, were raised. In the event, while the full dispensation was being considered, Queen Isabella of Castile, near death, demanded action and was sent a rather hastily written papal brief (subsequently known as the 'Spanish Brief') dated 26 December 1503 (actually despatched in the autumn of 1504). This was known in England [see, L&P, i, p.243] and the brief was believed to be an inexact version of the bull. Later legal difficulties arose over the Latin word 'forsan' ('perhaps') which appears in the bull but not in the brief with regard to the consummation of the earlier marriage. (For a view of the bull and the brief that reflects some of these contemporary perceptions, see Edward Lord Herbert of Cherbury, The Life and Raigne of King Henry the Eighth (London, 1649), pp. 264ff.) While the brief acknowledged consummation, the bull merely stated that it was probable. This question mark over the consummation, despite the definition of affinity, was a matter for heated opinions for which no definitive theological evidence existed, and over which opinion (among the divines, ancient Fathers and canonists) was divided well into the sixteenth-century (see Andrew A Chibi, Henry VIII's Conservative Scholar (Bern, 1997), pp.23ff; J. J. Scarisbrick, Henry VIII [Berkeley, 1968], pp.163ff). In 1504 there were also certain financial matters to be faced. King Henry VII had been slow in making treaty-related payments to King Ferdinand of Aragon as he and Queen Isabella had not completed their 'dowry' obligations. Henry VIII stalled the new marriage to put pressure on his ally, which raised rumours that Catherine was actually pregnant, rumours exacerbated by the delay in created prince Henry as 'Prince of Wales'. The king also had the prince record a formal protest against the marriage (he was fourteen, considered of age, while the marriage had been negotiated without his prior consent). When Henry became king in 1509, he married Catherine nine weeks after his accession, despite theological opinion. These other legalities and political tactics would be brought up again in due course. Human legal custom (not obligatory) had been contravened in that the impediment of 'public honesty', which arose from the apparent non-fulfilment of the original marriage contract (non-consummation), had not been officially addressed in any contemporary documents. For a difference of opinion, cf. Scarisbrick, Henry VIII, pp.184-97 and Jasper Ridley, Thomas Cranmer (London, 1962), pp.37ff. These were all delicate issues. In a quite remarkable revision of his presentation, Foxe is much less strident about the 'unlawfulness' of the marriage in 1570 and later editions. It was 'very straunge and hard, for one bother to mary the wife of an other'. This enabled him to place the emphasis elsewhere - on the advice that Henry VIII received from learned theologians on the matter in Europe's universities; and to heap blame on the papacy for its role in the affair.

To make the point that the marriage had been 'unlawful', Foxe somewhat exaggerates the point by saying that 'all universities' in the 1563 edition had found it to be so. He nuances the point in the editions after 1570. No university in Germany was found to give a positive determination, and many of the positive determinations were predicated upon the belief that Catherine's first marriage was consummated (over which there is a question mark). However, twelve positive determinations were sent, several of which were published as a preface to a book detailing the theological conclusions of the king's scholars, written by Stokesley, Fox and de Burgo and translated into English by Thomas Cranmer. The twelve positive determinations of 1530 come from Oxford (8 April) - gained by Fox, Longland and Bell; Cambridge (9 March) - gained by Fox and Gardiner; the canon law faculty of Paris (25 May) - gained by Stokesley, Fox and Reginald Pole; the divinity faculty of Paris (2 July) - gained by Stokesley, Fox and Pole; Angers (7 May); Bourges (10 June); Bologna (10 June); Orléans (5 April); Toulouse (1 October); Padua (1 July), Ferrara and Pavia (no dates mentioned). The text of some of these can be found in The Divorce Tracts of Henry VIII, ed. by Edward Surtz and Virginia Murphy (Angers, 1988), pp.5-27. There was a related problem of determining how valuable these university opinions were. Many modern scholars (e.g., Rex, Scarisbrick) have said that they had limited value in that they were bought and paid for (see, Rex Fisher, p. 163; Scarisbrick, Henry VIII, p. 256). Others (e.g., Chibi, Farge) have examined in more detail how the royal scholars solicited and interpreted the advice they received (see Andrew A Chibi, Henry VIII's Bishops [Cambridge, 2003], pp.110-2; James K Farge, 'The Divorce Consultation of Henry VIII', in Orthodoxy and Reform in Early Reformation France: The Faculty of Theology of Paris, 1500-1543 [Leiden, 1985], pp.135-43).

Foxe was convinced in the 1563 that the pope's dispensation in respect of the marriage was unlawful - an early indication to those who had eyes to see of the fundamental flaws in the papal claims to authority in such matters. The question of whether the pope had sufficient authority to dispense with divine law in certain cases (that one the various faculties and doctors determined on) assumed that the previous marriage had been consummated. While it is interesting to go through the various evidences put forward one way or another, the fact of the matter is that the three central figures to the events, Catherine, Henry and Arthur, all had agendas to pursue, so anything they say is questionable in hindsight. For instance, when Henry first married Catherine, he said she was a virgin, a claim which assured the legitimacy of any premature births. Later, when he claimed she had not been a virgin, it suited the king's need for it to be nullified.

Foxe was aware that a full account of the 'Great Matter' had to account for where the royal doubts about the validity of his marriage had come from. In 1563, Foxe formulates what still remain the three main avenues of scholarly investigation. Either Wolsey first suggested there was a problem, or the Spanish ambassador, or the king himself developed a scruple. In the 1570 edition and beyond, Foxe nuances his account, suggesting that it was a royal doubt, nurtured by the discussions over the possible marriage of Princess Mary, firstly to the Emperor Charles V (arranged through the so-called Treaty of Windsor, 1522) and then, when that fell through (the Infanta Isabel, or Isabella of Portugal being eventually married to Charles V, at Seville, 10 March 1526) by another potential marriage proposal to the French duke of Orléans, where there was a parallel problem, pointed out to him in the negotiations by a président of the Parlement of Paris. That said, Foxe is equally clear that Wolsey had a role in fomenting the king's doubts. In fact, we now know that Wolsey had already expressed them guardedly as early as 1518 (Calendar of State Papers, i (i & ii), i, p.1). What is undeniable is the issue that Foxe does not comment on, allowing the king's oration to do so for him (it would perhaps have been imprudent to dwell on it too much in 1570, or in subsequent editions): that after nine years of marriage, Henry did not have a male heir and this placed the Tudor dynasty on unsteady ground.

Andrew ChibiUniversity of Leicester

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Royal Supremacy

Foxe's account of the monumental acts of the Reformation Parliament necessarily focused on the 'aboliyshing of the vsurped power and iurisdiction of the bishop of Rome' rather than the establishment of the royal supremacy. The marginal gloss to the 1563 edition, however, provides the key to later historians' interpretations of these events: 'The kinge proclaimed Supreme head by act of parliament'. By the 1570 edition, however, Foxe's marginal glosses subtly altered the message to meet an anticipated objection about the status of a proclamation: 'The stile of supreme head annexed to the crowne of England' adding, for good measure: 'The popes name and memory abolished'. There were other, even more substantial changes wrought by Foxe in this passage as between the 1563 edition and its successors. In 1563, he had said almost nothing about the other, more detailed but substantial measures that accompanied the famous proclamation and which had been turned into statutes by the Reformation Parliament. In 1570, Foxe was anxious to furnish much more substantive detail on the acts in restraint of appeals, payments to Rome, the forbidden degrees, etc. Wherever possible, Foxe also substantially increased the discussion of the ecclesiastical authorities which had supported these political changes, and their scriptural and other grounds for doing so. In the process, Foxe strengthened the impression in his text that these were changes which overthrew a usurpation, justified by law and scripture.

Andrew ChibiUniversity of Leicester

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Foxe notes this as Matthew 18 but the quote comes from Matthew 16.18. It is one of the most common foundations of papal authority.

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In his treatise Pro Ecclesiasticae Unitatis Defensione, Pole had used the Matthew text to stress the pastoral responsibility of the papacy for the faith of all Christians. In essence, taking a literal view, he had assigned a universal potestas ordinis to Peter and, through him, to his successors, the popes at Rome [see, sigs.xlviirv]. Stokesley and Tunstal focussed instead on the underlying principle of the building of the church upon the rock of strong faith, repeating St Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians (3.11) recognizing faith in Christ as the true and only foundation. They are not denying that Peter is a key figure, even first among equals, but reflect mediaeval disputes over both his leadership role and whether his authority was to descend to any successor at all.

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Luke 22.32.

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The bishops argue this was meant to comfort Peter, and only Peter, after his fall from faith, letting him know that he would return and be a fervent in faith as he usually had been.

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John 21.17. The stress of the verse is actually Christ's knowledge, not Peter's.

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With reference to 1 Peter 5.2-4 the shepherd analogy is considered further and applied to all priests which more fully fits the characteristics of the priesthood the two bishops would like to establish.

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This refers to Acts 20.28. Where Paul writes 'overseers' this is generally interpreted as 'bishops'. Indeed, with regard to the supposed supremacy of Peter, Acts makes it clear that the activities of Paul have taken on a more central role.

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The two bishops find the key words regere (oversee) and pasce (feed) to have identical implications.

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The implication of the statement goes a long way toward underpinning the bishops' point equating Peter with papal power. Peter (although not a Judaizer) tended to preach the gospel message only to Jews, while it remained to Paul to preach to Gentiles.

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This refers to Acts 10.11-15 & 11.5-11 and is taken as a sign that God wants all men to be saved, not just Jews or Gentiles. The bishops' point being that, while fervent in his faith, Peter had been wrong in his approach until this truth was explained to him. Indeed, Peter does not figure very heavily from this point on, attention has switched to the evangelising efforts of Paul.

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Wilkins (Concilia, iii, pp.772-3) dates this proclamation to 1534 whereas Foxe dates it to 1535. Henry refers to the act of supremacy and other related acts in the proclamation, so Foxe's date is correct.

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The bishops are raising a controversial issue. In the Apocryphal Acts of Peter (said to have been written by John's companion Leucius Charinus), Peter is seen fleeing Rome to avoid execution until he is confronted by a vision of Christ heading into Rome. This is the source of the famous 'Quo Vadis?' phrase. Peter turns back and accepts his martyrdom. Should he really, in his willingness to flee, be considered as Pole and tradition often consider him?

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This refers to St Ambrose (c.340-97), one of the four great doctors of the church, and his work on the Holy Spirit entitled 'De Spiritu sancto libri tres ad Gratianum Augustum' (which can be found in Patrologiae cursus completus: series Latina, 221 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1844-1903), xvi, pp.731-850).

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The quote is taken from 'De Spiritu sancto', book ii, p.808. The bishops draw out the equity argument for Paul and Peter. The Henrician apologist often referred to Ambrose, as his writings could be interpreted against the theory of the church's foundation on one human figure.

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This refers to St Cyprian (d.258), who was converted to Christianity late in life, and to St Jerome (c.347-420), who is best known as the translator of the out of its original languages into the Latin edition known as the Vulgate. These church fathers were useful for the parity argument as both recognized Peter and Paul as sectarian leaders (Jews and Gentiles respectively).

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This comes from Cyprian's treatise entitled 'On the unity of the church' (which can be found in The Writings of Cyprian, 2 vols., ed. by A Roberts and J Donaldson (Edinburgh, 1882), i, pp.377-98). The quote comes early in the work (pp.380-1).

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This comes from Jerome's treatise 'Contra Jovinianum' (which can be found in Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, second series, 14 vols., ed. by Henry R Percival (New York, 1890-1900), vi, pp.346-416. The quote comes early in the work (pp.350-1).

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The bishops were making an argument that the primacy of Rome was a human institution without scriptural foundation [see, Public Records Office, State Papers 1/113, fols.5rv]. The references to the treatise of Jerome is to his 'Commentariorum In Epistolam ad Titum (Liber Unus)' (which can be found in Patrologiae cursus completus: series Latina, 221 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1844-1903), vii, pp.555-600). The quote comes early in the work (at p.566). The bishops also refer here to a letter of Jerome to Evagrius. This is probably Evagrius of Antioch (an early friend and patron of Jerome) although no specific letter to be found in the edited collections of Jerome epistles. As Evagrius' selection as bishop of Antioch was disputed as unlawful at the time, a letter to his friend on the authority and role of a bishop makes some sense.

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The bishops here refer to Eusebius, Church History (which can be found in Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, second series, 14 vols., ed. by Henry R Percival (New York, 1890-1900), i, pp.73-405 (lib.ii). James the Just is considered either the half-brother or step-brother of Jesus and was the first bishop of Jerusalem.

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More evidence from the treatise of Eusebius.

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The bishops here refer to the fact that, while bishop of Carthage Cyprian had submitted a number of his decrees and statutes to bishops of Rome - although this should not be read as submission to a higher authority but merely as evidence of his desire to keep other authorities abreast of his opinions, maintaining that all bishops have liberty within their sees.

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This may refer to Cyprian's epistle 71 (to Stephen with regard to decisions of a recent council on the issue of baptism) and epistle 72 (to Jubaianus on the same subject). Stephen I was pope between 12 May 254 and 2 August 257. There is no epistle to a Julianus. [See, 'The Epistles of Cyprian', in Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, second series, 14 vols., ed. by Henry R Percival (New York, 1890-1900), v; or The Writings of Cyprian, 2 vols., ed. by A Roberts and J Donaldson (Edinburgh, 1882)].

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Cyprian's third epistle (Epistle 42) written to Pope Cornelius (pope between 251-3) was written in 251 and addresses the issue of Cyprian's excommunication of Felicissimus and the rejection of any appeals to Rome over his jurisdiction in the matter.

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The bishops are referring here to Pope Julius I (pope from 6 February 337 to 12 April 352) who, during the Arian crisis, made the earliest reference to Roman primacy.

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An anti-Trinitarian sect condemned at Nicaea. Arians believed that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit were not of the same substance.

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The bishops refer here to Pope St Agatho of the late seventh century and to his epistles to emperors Constantine, Heraclius and Tiberius, wherein Roman supremacy was supposedly denied. These letters can be found in Agatho, 'S Agathonis Papae Epistolae', in Patrologiae cursus completus: series Latina, 221 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1844-1903), lxxxvii, pp.1161-1260.

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Matthew 28.19.

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The entire epistle is a vindication of Paul's apostolic authority, but especially 1.11-2.21.

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Isaiah 2.3.

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This begins a section devoted to rational thinking.

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In his Pro Ecclesiasticae Unitatis Defensione, Pole had made the argument that he could never accept any argument of supreme authority invested in a temporal ruler (or sacerdotal monarchy) making the familiar argument that; 'If the soul is superior to the body, then faith is superior to reason, thus spiritual to temporal, and church over state', and used this as evidence that popes are superior to kings [for which, see Pro Ecclesiasticae Unitatis Defensione (Rome, c.1537), sigs. xxiv-xxiirv]. The bishops respond [at Public Records Office, State Papers 1/113, fol.8v] with Plato's famous body analogy [found in Timaeus]. In essence, the 'body politic' is examined through a series of logical connections between society and the human body - society (due to the organic nature of the state) should function is a manner similar to a body.

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I Samuel 15.17.

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The bishops are drawing a logical conclusion.

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Ezekiel 3.17. This carries on both the natural/political body analogy and the commonality of the authority of spiritual officers (priests/bishops) arguments. The bishops flesh this out below with comparisons between the authority of a king with that of an admiral at sea and a captain on the field of battle.

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This is a reference to St Augustine's City of God (book 22, chapter 18). The allusion is to the church as body and Christ as head of that body. This is to counter any argument of papal supremacy.

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Matthew 18.20.

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Matthew 28.20.

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The bishops are discussing the election of Novatian (elected as antipope) during the papacy of Cornelius (c.251). St Cyprian secured support for Cornelius' rightful election as bishop of Rome (not as supreme head of the church - as Pole interpreted the epistles).

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The bishops are referring to epistles 41-3 [for which, see the on-line edition at http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0506.htm].

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This refers back to the events of 1532-3 in which Henry VIII's supreme headship was recognized. The entire point of the letter was that this, and the subsequent act of royal supremacy (1534) was not innovative but merely acknowledged the existing, natural status quo.

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The quote is taken from 'Epistolarum Classis III, Epistolae Quas Scripsit Reliquo Vitae Tempore (ab anno 411 ad 450)' [see Patrologiae cursus completus: series Latina, 221 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1844-1903), xxxiii, pp.471-1024 (at pp.704-8 (Ep. clxii))]. Augustine speaks of the imperial office as a kind of divine deputy position.

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Pole was created cardinal-deacon (22 December 1536) of St Mary in Cosmedin. There are three official ranks of cardinal and Pole's rank of deacon indicates that he was considered a member of the pope's political household, working full-time in the curia. The other ranks are cardinal-bishop (who holds an actual Episcopal position in Rome) and cardinal-priest (who works in a diocese outside of Rome).

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Chrysostom had written extensively on imperial authority. [For a discussion, see I Barrow, A Treatise of the Pope's Supremacy (Cambridge, 1859), pp.66-8.]

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This refers to Tertullian, Liber Ad Scapulam. [See, Patrologiae cursus completus: series Latina, 221 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1844-1903), i, pp.697-706 (at p.700)]. The argument being that all due honour and reverence is due to an emperor (whose authority is inferior only to God's).

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The bishops here refer to Tertullian's treatise entitled Apologeticus (which can be found in Patrologiae cursus completus: series Latina, 221 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1844-1903), i, pp.257-536]. The argument comes in the middle of the treatise [see, p.441 (ca.30)].

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The bishops are referring to Theophylactus Lecapenus, who was Patriarch of Constantinople in the mid-10th century. The quote is taken from his treatise, Chronographia. [For which, see Patrologiae cursus completus: series Graeca, 161 vols., ed. by J P Migne (Paris, 1857-1866). cviii, pp.1038-1164]. The quote, which carries on below, can be found late in the treatise at pp.1134-5.

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Distillation of the message of Romans 13.1-7.

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These quotes are I Chronicles 28.11-13; II Chronicles 19.8, 31.2, 34.3-7. Foxe refers to these under their Greek title, Paralipomenon.

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I Chronicles 16.7.

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This refers to Jehoshaphat, king of Judah (873-49BC), who is mentioned at II Chronicles 17.7-9.

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Commentary from the book of Ezekiel.

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This refers to King Josias, who reigned in Judah between 639-08BC. His reign is discussed in largely parallel accounts found in II Kings 22-3 and II Chronicles 34-5.

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Foxe leaves a great deal out of the chronology and makes it sound as if the Stokesley-Tunstal letter was the first (rather than last) official treatise in the exchanges between Pole and Henry VIII's scholars regarding the royal supremacy issue. Pole had served the king's interests in Paris with regard to the annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon but, sometime after 1531 he'd changed his mind on the issue and decided instead to carry on his scholastic pursuits at Padua (at the king's expense) [for which, see The Works of Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, Martyr, 1556, 2 vols., ed. by J E Cox (Cambridge, 1844-46), ii, pp.229-31]. Henry left him in peace to about 1535 when enforcement of the royal supremacy necessitated his recall. As the king's cousin and an important man in his own right, Pole could not be allowed to remain silent on the issues (particularly given the recent executions of More and Fisher). To this end, his former student Thomas Starkey (a royal chaplain and propagandist) was to make contact and pursued Pole to return to England with a letter, the writing of which was very much under the direction of Stokesley and Thomas Cromwell [for which, see BL, Cott. MSS. Cleo. E, vi, fols.367rv ]. The full range of divorce and supremacy arguments are spelled out. Pole replied to this on 4 September 1535, in the form of a treatise entitled Pro Ecclesiasticae Unitatis Defensione which arrived in England at the worst possible time - during the Pilgrimage of Grace and Lincolnshire uprisings of 1536. The king established a four man committee to deal with Pole and his treatise - Stokesley, Cromwell, Tunstal and Starkey. Pole's treatise addressed four issues: Richard Sampson's supremacy polemic entitled Oratio quae docet hortatur admonet omnes potissimum Anglos Regiae dignitati cum primis ut obediant (1534), papal supremacy, Anne Boleyn, and Henry's need to perform penance. In the second and most important section, Pole denied Sampson's natural reason arguments as well as the humanist exegesis of the other royal apologists. Although Starkey was to have made the official response, he appealed to Stokesley and Tunstal for drafting and editing advice. His letter was sent on 13 July 1536 [see, BL, Cott. MSS. Cleo. E, vi, fols.379-83v] but proved only a prelude to the Stokesley/Tunstal letter.

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This is the argument at Public Records Office, State Papers 1/113, fol.10r] which begins the final sections of the bishops arguments, looking at the temporal and spiritual spheres as distinct but interconnected societies.

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The council of Chalcedon was summoned in 451.

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There appears to be some confusion here. Although there were a series of epistles exchanged between Leo and Marcianus (and Pulcheria), these are numbers 77, 78, 83, 89 and 94 (to Marcianus) and numbers 45 and 84 (to Pulcheria) and not the numbers assigned by the bishops. Leo finds the summoning inconvenient in letter 83. [For the epistles, see 'Leo the Great: Letters, Sermons; Gregory the Great: Pastoral Rule, etc.', in Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, second series, 14 vols., ed. by Henry R Percival (New York, 1890-1900), xii.

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The sixth great general council of the Church was the 3rd Council of Constantinople (680-1), under Pope Agatho and Emperor Constantine Pogonatus (wherein the two distinct natures of Christ was agreed).

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This refers to the letter of Agatha 'To the Emperor', the full text of which can be found on line at http://www.monachos.net/library/Agatho_the_Wonderworker_Pope_of_Rome%2C_Letter_to_the_Emperor.

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I Peter 2.13-14.

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Romans 13.1.

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The letter can be found at Public Records Office, State Papers 1/113, fols.4-10r and was published as Letter to Cardinal Pole (London, 1575).

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This is very much a key statement of the treatise-letter as it signalled the bishops' intension to preserve basic Catholic principles along with royal supremacy. It also solves the problem that had plagued loyal Henrician Catholics with the notion that a church could be uniquely particular and local with yet remaining within the wider corps of Christendom through the supra-national nature of priesthood.

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The parable of the prodigal son can be found at Luke 15.11-32. The allusion, of course, is that Pole is wasting his inheritance among the swine of Rome and, should he return the king would welcome him back with open arms and great celebration.

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There is actually no evidence that Tyndale visited Saxony. He did, however, visit Cologne in 1525, where his translation of the New Testament was partially printed, before the printing house was raided by the authorities. Tyndale then journeyed to the safe Lutheran city of Worms where his New Testament was printed in 1526. Exactly when Tyndale reached Antwerp is unknown, but it was in the years 1526-8.

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This is a reference to Acts 19: 24-41.

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This a reference to William Tyndale, A brief declaration of the sacraments, STC 24445, which was not published until around 1548. In this work, Tyndale denied the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, arguing instead that it is the inner faith of the communicants that makes the Lord's Supper a Sacrament. This view was not only objectionable to Catholics, but also to Henry VIII and (at this time) Thomas Cranmer.

1563 Edition, page 571[Back to Top]

I.e., the king of England.

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The English House at Antwerp enjoyed what amounted to diplomatic immunity. Tyndale had to be arrested outside of the house.

1563 Edition, page 572[Back to Top]

A tangled series of events followed Tyndale's arrest. The English merchants at Antwerp were outraged at what they regarded as a violation of their exemption from arrest by the Imperial authorities and protested to the Imperial court at Brussels and to Thomas Cromwell back in England. After initial hesitation, Cromwell succeeded in getting a promise from the Imperial authorities to release Tyndale. At this point, Phillips, fearful for his reward and possibly his safety as well, denounced Thomas Poyntz as a heretic to the Imperial authorities.

1563 Edition, page 573[Back to Top]

I.e., Flemish

1563 Edition, page 573[Back to Top]

I.e., Hallowtide or All Hallows day (1 November).

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This is a hint that Thomas Poyntz himself may have been Foxe's source. Poyntz died in 1562.

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In other words, the Imperial authorities refused to release Poyntz until he paid the expenses of his stay in prison as well as his bond )or sureties).

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In the 1563 edition, Foxe declared that Phillips was burned at the stake; in later editions this was changed to his being devoured by lice. In fact, Phillips died of natural causes in 1542.

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1 Peter 2: 20.

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1 John 3: 16.

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Matt. 5: 11-12.

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Romans 8: 13, Phil. 3: 21.

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Matt. 10: 22.

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This would be the New Testament of 1534.

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9 May 1533.

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In other words, Frith's wife approves of his imminent martyrdom.

1563 Edition, page 577[Back to Top]

This is, of course, Erasmus's celebrated Enchiridion. It is unlikely that Tyndale was the translator of the edition of this work printed by Wynkyn de Worde in 1533 and if Tyndale did translate Erasmus's spiritual handbook, then his translation is now lost.

1563 Edition, page 570[Back to Top]

Tyndale, in this letter, is urging Frith not to write on or debate issues on the theology of the Eucharist, for fear of opening divisions anong Protestants.

1563 Edition, page 577[Back to Top]

I.e., the Lutherans.

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In other words, if the French converted to Protestantism, the Lutherans would see that they still accepted the Real Presence of Chrst in the Sacrament.

1563 Edition, page 577[Back to Top]

In other words, if George Joye received enough money to print a treatise on the Eucharist, he would do so.

1563 Edition, page 577[Back to Top]

In his marginal note to this passage, Foxe is trying to emphasize that Tyndale's reluctance to discuss the Eucharist was only temporary.

1563 Edition, page 578[Back to Top]
Events of 1536-8

This section was added to, and changed significantly, between the 1563 and 1570 editions. The story of the 24 martyrs burned in Paris is attributed to a letter sent to Erasmus by Bartholomew Lani. However no such correspondent is mentioned by .S. Allen, Erasmi Epistolae and it does not appear in the later editions of Erasmus' correspondence either.

The text of Henry's proclamation 'abolishing the usurped power' of the pope is replaced with the king's protestation against the proposed General Council. The proclamation had been printed in 1535 (A proclamation concerninge heresie (London: Thomas Berthelet - STC 7785) and would have been available to Foxe.

Foxe's sources for the history of the early reformation in Scotland, which had already appeared in the Rerum (p. 121), are treated in Thomas S. Freeman, 'Fox, Winram and the Martyrs of the Scottish Reformation', Sixteenth Century Journal 27 (1996), pp. 23-46). Here, Freeman explains that Foxe had drawn on Bale's Catalogus and Boece's Scottorum Historia as his main sources. The latter had been translated into English by John Bellenden and published in Edinburgh around 1540. The stories of Queen Anne's last words and of the murder of Robert Packington are taken from Hall (fols 228 and 231).

David Loades,Honorary Research Fellow,
University of Sheffield

1563 Edition, page 581[Back to Top]

I.e., the Ten Articles: in the Convocation of 1536 there was a sharply abridged version of the Ten Articles and the first attempt at defining the doctrines of the newly established Church of England. This is published by Foxe earlier in this chapter. The total document is rather more traditional in its orientation that Foxe's version: notably it defended the real presence of Christ's body and blood in the Sacrament and it gave (an admittedly qualified) approval of prayers for the souls of the dead.

1563 Edition, page 579[Back to Top]

I.e., the Lord's Prayer.

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This provision, mandating that every parish priest should provide a copy of the Bible in Latin and English by 1 August 1537, does not appear in certain manuscript copies of the Injunctions or in STC 10084.7. As a result it has often been denied that Cromwell's 1536 Injunctions contained this order, but this belief has been refuted; see Richard Rex, Henry VIII and the English Reformation (Basingstoke, 1993), pp. 185-6 and Margaret Bowker, 'The Henrician Reformation and the Parish Clergy' in The English Reformation Revised, ed. Christopher Haigh (Cambridge, 1987), p. 76 n. 8. The idea was somewhat impractical; at the time the only complete printed English language Bible was that produced by Matthew Coverdale and it did not have official approval.

1563 Edition, page 580[Back to Top]

I.e., by 1 August 1537.

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These are the second Royal Injunctions of Henry VIII and they establish the programme set forth in Cromwell's Injunctions of 1536. They were a triumph for the evangelical cause and Foxe prints them in full, without amendment.

1563 Edition, page 582[Back to Top]

I.e. Easter 1539.

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Diarmaid MacCulloch observes that this provision is a late insertion into the text of these injunctions and included to justify the forthcoming destruction of Thomas Becket's shrine at Canterbury (Diarmaid MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer (New Haven, 1996), pp. 226-7).

1563 Edition, page 583[Back to Top]
John Forrest

John Forest has the unenviable distinction of the only Catholic executed for heresy in England during the Reformation. Forest was arrested in March or April 1538 for denying the Royal Supremacy when hearing confession. However, the authorities charged him with heresy instead of treason. Peter Marshall, who has analysed Forest's arrest and martyrdom, and the circumstances behind them, has argued that Forest's conviction for heresy was partly due to the recent papal summoning of a council at Mantua, which had heightened Henry VIII's sensitivity to denials of his supremacy over the Church. It was also partly due to anxiety that confessionals were being used to hatch treasonable plots. Marshall also argues that the decision to try Forest as a heretic was made by Cromwell in the expectation that the friar would recant and perform a humiliating recantation. At first, all went according to plan and Forest, after being convicted of heresy, agreed to abjure at Paul's Cross. However, in prison, Forest changed his mind. When Cromwell's original plan foundered on Forest's refusal to submit, the Vicegerent turned Forest's execution into a piece of political theatre. Forest was burned, on 22 May 1538, along with Dderfel Gadern, a great wooden statue that had been an object of pilgrimage at Llandderfel in North Wales. (For a detailed analysis of Forest's trial and martyrdom see Peter Marshall, 'Papist as Heretic: The Burning of John Forest, 1538', Historical Journal 41 [1998], pp. 354-74).

Foxe's first account of Forest was a brief note in the Rerum (p. 148) stating that friar Forest was executed for denying the Royal Supremacy in 1538. The account notes that Forest was burned along with an idol transported from Wales. This material was abridged from Hall's chronicle. In the 1563 edition, Foxe simply reprinted Hall's account word-for-word (cf. 1563, pp. 571-2 with Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre families of Lancastre and York [London, 1550], STC 12723a, fos. 232v-233r). In the 1570 edition, Foxe made some changes to this account, deleting verses describing the burning of Forest and the statue and adding a brief account of the dissolution of the monasteries.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

During his trial, Forest admitted that he had told a penitent that when he [Forest] denyed papal supremacy, it was with an oath sworn by his outward man, but not the inward man [L&P XIII (1), no. 1043 (1)].

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

It is interesting to compare this denigrating account of Forest's submission, and then withdrawal of his submission, with the numerous admiring accounts, by Foxe, of Protestant martyrs - e.g. John Cardmaker and Thomas Whittle - doing exactly the same thing.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

Foxe is deriving this spelling, or rather misspelling, from Hall. The statue was named 'Dderfel Gadern' and it was from Llanderfel, a pilgrimage site in North Wales.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

Peter Marshall notes that this prophecy was first recorded in Hall's chronicle, a decade after the burning and the proceedings against Forest had begun before the authorities in London had heard of 'Dderfel Gadern' (Peter Marshall, 'Papist as Heretic: The Burning of John Forest, 1538' in Historical Journal 41 [1998], p. 356). It is most likely that the 'prophecy' was an invention made following Forest's execution.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

These verses are part of the 'Fantasie of Idolatrie', printed on 1563, pp. 590 [recte 599]-589 [recte 600]. The stanzas here were included in the account of Forest in Hall's chronicle.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

What to modern readers was a perfectly natural physical reaction, almost a reflex, was to hostile commentators such as Foxe, a sign that Forest was dying without the calm stoicism that was a hallmark of the true martyr of God.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

The accusation that Forest was a liar is a reference is to his admission that he swore the oath of Supremacy with mental reservations (During his trial, Forest admitted that he had told a penitent that when he [Forest] denyed papal supremacy, it was with an oath sworn by his outward man, but not the inward man [L&P XIII (1), no. 1043 (1)].).

1563 Edition, page 628[Back to Top]
John Lambert

In the Rerum, Foxe presented a rather lengthy account of the martyrdom of John Lambert (Rerum, pp. 146-54). It began with a verbose description of Satan's unceasing efforts to stir up discord and of how, thanks to the devil, Henry VIII , after the dissolution of the monasteries, began to turn against the evangelicals. Foxe then related how Lambert got into a discussion of the sacrament with John Taylor and how this led to Lambert's arrest for heresy. This is followed by a detailed account of Lambert's trial before Henry VIII. (Foxe would reveal in the 1570 edition that his source for this narrative was one 'A. G'. This was very probably Anthon Gilby, who shared Lambert's theological beliefs and who shared a residence with Foxe in Frankfurt in 1554-55). This in turn is followed by an 'apostrophe' to Henry VIII, warning him (and all princes) that they would face divine judgement if they murdered God's saints. In the Rerum, Foxe also mentioned that Lambert had written a treatise defending his beliefs. Foxe summarised this treatise. (The work referred to was A treatyse made by Johan Lambert, was edited by John Bale and almost certainly he had informed Foxe of the treatise and its contents). Foxe concluded with a story of Thomas Cromwell having Lambert brought to him before his execution and begging the martyr's forgiveness. In the first edition of the Acts and Monumnts, Foxe reprinted the account from the Rerum, but also added some new material. He added the details that Thomas Bilney converted Lambert, that Lambert know both Latin and Greek, and that he was chaplain to the Merchant Adventurers in Antwerp. Most importantly, Foxe added the 45 articles charged against Lambert in 1532 and Lambert's responses to them. Foxe's source for these does not survive, but it was almost certainly a separate court book of the proceedings. Where Foxe found it is harder to answer; the natural place for it have been kept would have been Lambeth, but there is no other indication that Foxe consulted the records there before 1563.

In the Dialogi sex Harpsfield made a number of pointed objections to the claims of Henry VIII and Elizabeth to being Supreme Heads of the English Church (Dialogi sex, pp. 989-91). Among other things, Harpsfield observed that Foxe had denounced Henry for executing Lambert and had even warned the king of his possible damnation (Dialogi sex, p. 991). Although he did not state it explicitly, Harpsfield had made a telling point: If Henry VIII was truly the Supreme Head of the Church, how could his judgement that Lambert was a heretic be questioned? Foxe saw the problem and, in the account of Lambert, he quietly dropped his 'apostrophe' to Henry VIII, although he replaced it with a general warning that even princes would have to account to God for their actions (This oration was dropped from the 1570 edition because Harpsfield had used it to question the validity of the title of Supreme Head of the English Church which had been claimed by Henry and Elizabeth). Foxe also added, for the first time, a note identifying 'A. G.' as the source for the account of Lambert's trial; this verification may also have been a response to Harpsfield.

Foxe made other changes to the account of Lambert in 1570. He re-arranged the account to place it in a more coherent order. He also added more precise detail on the circumstances of Warham's examination of Lambert (concerning Frith's arrest and examination in 1538). He also added detail on the protracted agony of Lambert's execution, which he must have obtained from an eyewitness. Most importantly, Foxe finally obtained Bale's edition of A treatyse made by Johan Lambert…(Wesel, 1548?), STC 15180 and reprinted it. The 1570 account of Lambert was itself reprinted without change in subsequent editions of the Acts and Monuments.

In some ways, the most surprising thing about Foxe's account of Lambert is that he included it in the Acts and Monuments at all. In several respects, it presented Foxe with severe embarassments. For one thing, as we have seen, Henry VIII's direct, and enthusiastic, involvement in Lambert's trial created problems for Foxe. Worse yet was the role of the future martyr Thomas Cranmer and of Foxe's ideal godly magistrate Thomas Cromwell, in condemning Lambert. Foxe did try to alleviate these embarrassments by unconvincingly attempting to blame Lambert's prosecution on Stephen Gardiner and other Henrician bishops (See A treatyse made by Johan Lambert…, ed. John Bale (Wesel, 1548?), STC 15180). Foxe also related an implausible tale of Cromwell asking Lambert for his forgiveness (It is highly unlikely that Cromwell would have had someone condemned by the king brought to his and that he would have sought the condemned man's forgiveness. This anecdote has to regarded as another attempt by Foxe to alleviate the embarrassment caused by Lambert's having been denounced by other evangelicals). Nevertheless the account of Lambert was of considerable use to Foxe for one basic reason: apart from John Frith, Lambert was the only Henrician martyr who articulated a Eucharistic theology with which Foxe was largely in agreement. Lambert, and his writings, were invaluable to Foxe in providing a Reformed ancestry for the theology of the Elizabethan church.

Thomas S. Freeman

1563 Edition, page 583[Back to Top]

The reference is to Thomas Becket and John Schorne, who were venerated at popular shrines in Canterbury and Windsor respectively. John Schorne was a fourteenth-century rector of North Marston, who was popularly venerated as a saint. His body was moved to Windsor in 1478, where it was an extremely popular pilgrimage site. Schorne was credited with trapping the devil in a boot during an exorcism and his boots were credited with the power to heal gout.

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I.e., the shrine of St. James in Compostella, a major European pilgrimage site.

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The Venerable Bede was never a saint.

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This is a reference to an earlier examination of Lambert before Convocation in 1531.

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See the book of Philemon in the New Testament.

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The text is not, in reality, from Horace, but from St Augustine, De vera religione (Aurelii Augustini Opera. [Pars 4.2 De vera religione] (ed. K.-D Daur). Corpus Christianorum Seria Latina, vol 33. (Turnhout: Brepols, 1972), 55.108).

1563 Edition, page 606[Back to Top]

I.e., Germany.

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I.e., Judgement Day.

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The Stocks was a market in central London.

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Lambert's trial before Henry VIII began on 16 November 1538; he was executed on 22 November 1538.

1563 Edition, page 583[Back to Top]

This oration to Henry VIII was dropped from the 1570 edition because Harpsfield had used it to question the validity of the title of Supreme Head of the English Church which had been claimed by Henry and Elizabeth.

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It is highly unlikely that Cromwell would have had someone condemned by the king brought to his and that he would have sought the condemned man's forgiveness. This anecdote has to regarded as another attempt by Foxe to alleviate the embarrassment caused by Lambert's having been denounced by other evangelicals.

1563 Edition, page 625[Back to Top]

See Ephesians 5:2; this is a common martyrological trope.

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Foxe does not mention that Lambert was summoned before Convocation on 27 March 1531 and then he returned to Antwerp.

1563 Edition, page 583[Back to Top]

This took place in 1532.

1563 Edition, page 584[Back to Top]

Foxe is the only source for the articles, which follow, and for Lambert's responses to them. By Foxe's account, Lambert's replies were not only a very impressive performance, but also very advanced in their theology. In fact, Lambert's views, as presented by Foxe, are quite close to Foxe's views. And this underscores a problem: as the originals of the articles and the replies have not survived, there is no way to determine if Foxe revised either the articles or Lambert's answers.

1563 Edition, page 590[Back to Top]

In legend, Sardanopalus was the last Assyrian emperor.

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Lambert is having to quote authors from memory in his replies. He is referring to Eusebius' ecclesiastical history and the Historia tripartita, which is a Latin translation of three continuations of Eusebius.

1563 Edition, page 594[Back to Top]

Matthew 26: 15. On Simon Magus, see Acts 8: 9-24.

1563 Edition, page 597[Back to Top]

There are several conflicting accounts of why William Collins was executed. Writing in 1529, Thomas More claimed that 'mad Collins…lasheth out Scripture in bedlam' (Dialogue Concerning Heresies, ed. Thomas Lawler, Germain Marc'hadour and Richard Marius, CWTM, 6 [2 vols., New Haven, CT, 1981], I, p. 433). This suggests at the very least that Collins's mental instability and engagement with evangelicalism were of longer duration than Foxe implies. Collins, however, was almost certainly in prison when More wrote. Later William Collins wrote to Sir Nicholas Hare and declared that he had been in prison for thirteen years, although he had never been convicted or charged with a crime. He denied that he was insane, thanked Hare for trying to free him and begged him to show the letter to the king (TNA SP 1/242, fo. 229r). Probably around the same time, Collins wrote to Cromwell, begging that he be released from the Marshalsea (TNA SP 1/144, fos. 154r-155r). These petitions must have been successful, because William Collins was a free man in 1536, when he was hauled before the Common Council and charged with shooting an arrow at the rood in St Margaret Pattens and for despising and railing against the sacraments (Corporation of London Record Office, Journal 13, fo. 476r). Richard Hilles, a London merchant and evangelical, reported to Heinrich Bullinger that sometime after 16 May (Whitsuntide) 1540 a 'crazed man' named Collins was burned and that his offence was purportedly shooting an arrow at a crucifix, declaring that the cross should be able to defend itself. (Hilles did not doubt that Collins committed this action, but his suspicion was that Hilles's real crime was denouncing certain nobles for exploiting their dependents). Hilles also reported that Collins seemed perfectly rational when he was imprisoned with the sacramentarian John Lambert and that he supplied Lambert with texts to use in his defence (Original Letters Relative to the English Reformation, ed. Hastings Robinson, Parker Society [2 vols., Cambridge, 1846-7], I, pp. 200-201). Finally Charles Wriothesley noted Collins, a 'sacramentary', was burned at Southwark on 7 July 1540 (A chronicle of England during the reigns of the Tudors, ed. W. D. Hamilton. Camden Society, new series 11 and 20 [2 vols., London, 1875 and 1877], I, p. 119).

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

In the Rerum, Foxe gave the date of Cowbridge's burning as 1536 (Rerum, p. 129); in 1563, he gave it as 1539. Harpsfield criticised Foxe for giving the incorrect dates and accurately observed that Cowbridge was burned in 1538 (Dialogi sex, p. 855). It appears from a letter that Bishop John Longland wrote to Thomas Cromwell that William Cowbridge was burned at Oxford after - probably shortly after - 22 July 1538 (L&P 13 (1), pp. 529-30).

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

William Cowbridge's father was named Robert, not William, but he had indeed been twice elected bailiff of Colchester (this was the city's highest municipal office) and he died in 1510 (Andrew Hope, 'Lollardy: the stone the builders rejected?' in Protestantism and the National Church in the Sixteenth-Century England, ed.Peter Lake and Maria Dowling. (Beckenham, Kent, 1987), pp. 5-6). Margaret Cowbridge, William's mother, was charged with heresy on 15 July 1528 and purged herself on 17 July (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 30v. Purging oneself was a means of gaining acquittal by having people of good status and reputation swear on oath to one's innocence of the charges). The fact that Margaret Cowbridge could provide such witnesses so quickly is an indication of her own status.

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

There is a letter written in 1536, from a man named Cowbridge, complaining that a cathedral chapter was applying money he had donated for the celebration of masses for other purposes (L&P 10, pp. 522-23). The editors of the L&P ascribed this letter to William Cowbridge, but this doubtful. Given Cowbridge's theological views, it is highly unlikely that he would have purchased masses.

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

It was very unusual for the charges against a heretic to be listed when notification was sent to Chancery of the heretic's condemnation. Harpsfield reports that Thomas Cromwell, the vicegerent of spiritual affairs, received complaints that Bishop Longland had acted improperly in trying and condemning Cowbridge. Cromwell demanded that the bishop sent the records of the case be sent to him (Dialogi sex, p. 858). Harpsfield's account is corroborated by Longland's letter to Cromwell on 22 July 1538, justifying his condemnation of Cowbridge (L&P 13(1), pp. 529-30). The documents Foxe saw where probably sent to Audley as a result of Cromwell's intervention in the case.

1563 Edition, page 627[Back to Top]

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

Packington was murdered on 13 November 1536. Foxe gives the correct year for Packington's death in the Rerum (p. 146), but misdates it to 1537 in his first edition and to 1538 in subsequent editions.

1563 Edition, page 581[Back to Top]

This account simply repeats what Foxe said about Leiton in the Rerum (p. 165). Foxe apparently learned nothing new about this obscure individual.

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

In the 1570 edition, Foxe removed the date of 1537 that he had given for the execution and grouped this execution with others in 1538.

1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]

The details of Packington's murder was reported, mostly verbatim, from Hall's chronicle (Edward Hall, The unyon of twoo noble and illustre families of Lancastre and York [London, 1550], STC 12723a, fo. 231v). Foxe went further than Hall, however, in identifying the mastermind behind the murder. Where Hall simply blamed the clergy, Foxe accused first Bishop John Stokesley and subsequently Dean Incent of responsibility for the crime.

1563 Edition, page 581[Back to Top]

Hall stated that Packington went daily to Mass (Edward Hall, The unyon of twoo noble and illustre families of Lancastre and York [London, 1550], STC 12723a, fo. 231v); Foxe here rewrites this inconvenient passage.

1563 Edition, page 581[Back to Top]

In the Rerum (p. 146), Foxe claimed that John Stokesley, the bishop of London, ordered the murder of Packington. In 1563, Foxe amended this to claim that John Incent, the dean of St. Paul's, ordered the murder, adding the detail that the killer was an Italian. In neither case, should it be assumed that Foxe was inventing these details; instead he was almost certainly relating hot gossip about the murder. (Note Foxe's claim that he could produce witnesses in support of his story; see next comment). Yet the fact that there were rumours implicating Stokesley and Incent in Packington's murder does not, of course, make them true. (For the background to the murder see Peter Marshall, 'The Shooting of Robert Packington' in Religious Identities in Henry VIII's England (Aldershot, 2006), pp. 61-79).

1563 Edition, page 581[Back to Top]

The evidence would point to Collins being burned in July 1540 (A chronicle of England during the reigns of the Tudors, ed. W. D. Hamilton. Camden Society, new series 11 and 20 [2 vols., London, 1875 and 1877], I, p. 119).

1563 Edition, page 626 | 1563 Edition, page 626[Back to Top]
Act of Six Articles

In this section Foxe turns to what had become, in restrospect, a defining event of the Henrician Reformation: the 1539 Act Abolishing Diversity in Opinions (31 Henry VIII c. 14), universally known then and since as the Act of Six Articles. This is a critical part of Foxe's narrative of Henry's reign; it is also thick with factual errors and dubious interpretation.Foxe was heir to twin Protestant and Catholic traditions which had decided that the Act was a mainstay of religious conservatism. For Catholic opponents of religious change under Edward VI, the Act became a touchstone of orthodoxy, with the southwestern rebels of 1549 demanding that the 'Lawes … concernynge the syxe articles' should be restored. (A Copye of a letter (RSTC 15109.3: London, 1549), sig. B6r.) Protestants had long concluded that the Act was a bloody instrument of persecution. Richard Grafton, in his continuation of Edward Hall's chronicle - which provides the narrative core for Foxe's account of this episode, and to which many of the problems with Foxe's account can be traced - claimed that 'of some [the Act] was named the whip withe sixe strynges' (Edward Hall and Richard Grafton, The vnion of the two noble and illustrate famelies of Lancastre & Yorke (STC 12721: London, 1548), part II, fo. 234v). A pamphlet of 1548 described it as 'their whip of correction ... hanged [with] .vi. stringes' (Peter Moone, A short treatise of certayne thinges abused (STC 18056: London, 1548), sig. A3v).This view of the Act as the brutal centrepiece of a popish backlash determined Foxe's view, not only of the Six Articles, but of the period 1539-47 as a whole. Recent scholarship has taken a less apocalyptic view of the Act and of that period. Alec Ryrie, The Gospel and Henry VIII (Cambridge, 2002), pp. 15-39, discusses the Act, its reputation and its genesis, arguing that it was the outcome of a particular diplomatic moment, that it had little immediate impact, and that many reformers were content with much of it. Rory McEntegart, Henry VIII, the League of Schmalkalden and the English Reformation (Woodbridge, Suffolk, 2002), pp. 150-63, gives the critical diplomatic context. Glyn Redworth, 'A study in the formulation of policy: the genesis and evolution of the Act of Six Articles' in Journal of Ecclesiastical History vol. 37 (1986), pp. 42-67, reconstructs the process by which the Act came into being. The main factual errors of Foxe's account are chronological. The Hall and Grafton chronicle (his principle source for this section, alongside the text of the Act itself) used London mayoral years, which run from October to October: this led him to date the Act to 1540, rather than 1539. This is significant for Foxe's account of Thomas Cromwell's fall, for in 1570 and subsequent editions of the Acts and Monuments, Foxe redated Cromwell's fall, correctly, to 1540 - thus making it appear that Cromwell's arrest followed immediately on the passage of the Six Articles, whereas in fact more than a year separated the two events. His main account of the persecution under the Six Articles also suffers from serious chronological confusion.More significant, perhaps, is the vagueness of much of this account, for aside from Grafton's assertions and the text of the Act, Foxe had little hard evidence to back up his view that 'religion began to goe backward' from 1539-40 onwards. As a result, here as elsewhere Foxe is driven to embrace conspiracy theory. Behind every setback for the evangelical cause he detects the manipulating evil genius of Stephen Gardiner, bishop of Winchester: a view only loosely related to reality but, like the reputation of the Six Articles, already firmly established in English Protestant mythology by the time Foxe wrote. See Michael Riordan and Alec Ryrie, 'Stephen Gardiner and the making of a Protestant villain' in Sixteenth Century Journal vol. 34 (2003), 1039-63.Alec Ryrie

1563 Edition, page 642[Back to Top]

The text of the articles is taken verbatim from the statute 31 Henry VIII c. 14 (Statutes of the Realm, vol. 3 (London 1817), pp. 739-40).

1563 Edition, page 642[Back to Top]

Foxe notes quite correctly that this first article defends the full doctrine of transubstantiation. However, although the word itself had appeared in early drafts of the bill, it was deliberately omitted from the final Act. See Ryrie, The Gospel and Henry VIII, p. 36.

1563 Edition, page 642[Back to Top]

From here until p. 593 Foxe quotes verbatim and at length from the text of the statute. However, he omits entirely a number of clauses. These include clauses declaring priests who keep company with their former wives to be felons; declaring lay people who refuse to confess or receive the sacrament to be felons; detailing powers of the commissions, including to compel suspects to appear and to imprison them; detailing the process should commissioners themselves violate the Act, or refuse the oath; invalidating foreign pleas; requiring mayors, sheriffs and bailiffs to assist commissioners; requiring the seizure and burning of all books opposed to the Act; and requiring the Act to be read quarterly in every parish church during divine service. He also omits the penalties for priests keeping concubines, which became notorious, on the grounds that concubinage (at least for a first offence) was treated less severely than marriage.

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The end of Foxe's quotation from the text of the Act.

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1539. The parliament opened on 28 April 1539.

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Thomas Cromwell

In the Rerum, Foxe has a rather large account of Cromwell consisting of praise of Cromwell, a comparison of Cromwell and Stephen Gardiner (greatly to the detriment of the latter), and a long diatribe on persecution as a hallmark of the Catholic Church (Rerum, pp. 154-8). This was followed by a denciation of the evils of monasticism and further praise of Cromwell for dissolving them (Rerum, pp. 158-9). This was followed by a lengthy extract from Alexander Alesius, Of the Auctoritie of the Word of God, recounting a debate between Alesius and Bishop John Stokesley of London, held in a synod in London in 1537 and of Cromwell's oration to the bishops assembled on this occasion. (Cf. Alexander Alesius, Of the auctoritie of the word of God ['Strausburg', 1548?], STC 292, sigs. A5r-B7v with Rerum, pp. 159-64). The Rerum account of Cromwell ends with a brief statement that Cromwell fell from royal favour because he arranged Henry VIII's marriage to Anne of Cleves and also because of the intrigues of Stephen Gardiner (Rerum, p. 164).

All of the material was reprinted in the 1563 edition. Some additional material was added in this edition. One item was an account of Cromwell's execution and last words, which was reprinted word-for-word from Hall's chronicle (cf. Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and Yorke [London, 1560], STC 12723a, fo. 242r-v with 1563, p. 598). Another was a contemporary ballad, 'The Fantasie of Idolatry', which attacked the 'superstition' and 'idolatry' in the monasteries (1563, pp. 590 [recte 599]-598 [recte 600]).

Except for the material reprinted from Alesius and from Hall, the entire 1563 account of Cromwell was deleted from the 1570 edition. This material was replaced with stories of Cromwell drawn from individual informants. The most important of these was Ralph Morice, formerly Archbishop Cranmer's private secretary, who contributed an account of how Cromwell saved him when he lost an important document. The story of Lord Russell aiding Cromwell may very well have come from Francis Russell, the second earl of Bedford, who had close ties to Foxe. Foxe also derived a story of Cromwell's gratitude to an early benefactor from Matteo Bandello's famous Novelle; this was an account that Foxe had to have translated from Italian. Foxe's zeal in tracking these stories down, is an indication of how deeply he was committed to portraying Cromwell as an exemplar of the godly magistrate constantly prodding his king into further reformation of church and state. Foxe's account of Cromwell as printed in the 1570 edition remain unchanged in subsequent editions.

Thomas S. Freeman

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This is St. Michael's Mount in Cornwall.

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St. Osyth

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John Shorne was rector of North Marston, Buckinghamshire, from 1290-1314. He was renowned for for his sanctity and as a miracleworker. Although he was never canonised, his posthumous shrine at Windsor became the centre of a flourishing cult. This ballad refers to Shorne's supposed feat of imprisoning the devil in his boot.

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The abbey of St Saviour in Bermondsey was geographically close to an area of Southwark notorious for its brothels.

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The rood in the parish church of Ramsbury, in Wiltshire, was supposed to have miraculously required 16 oxen and seven horses to remove it, when Cromwell ordered it taken down. Gray is correcting this, saying one man dismantled the rood and three men carried it away.

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I.e., arms.

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I.e., the shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, the richest in Norfolk.

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I.e., a wallet.

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On 22 May 1538, the rood in St. Mararet Paten in London was broken into pieces - not taken down - by a gang of iconoclasts (Charles Wriothesley, A Chronicle of England during the Reigns of the Tudors, 1485-1539, ed. W. D. Hamilton, 2 vols., Camden Society, new series 11 and 20 (1875-77), I, p. 81.

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I.e., an idol.

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It was a great pity.

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This is another reference to the shrine of Thomas Becket, who was declared a traitor in 1538.

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In the Rerum, Cromwell is described as 'vir obscuro loco natus' (Rerum, p. 154). In the 1563 edition this was rendered as 'a man but of base stock' (1563, p. 598). Apparently this was too depracatory and it was changed to 'borne of a simple parentage and house obscure' (1570, p. 1346).

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See 2 Kings 10.

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Marcus Furius Camillus was credited with leading Rome to recovery after the city was dacked by Gauls in 387-6 BC. He was also credited with numerous other military victories and with crushing seditious attempts to overthrow the Roman Republic.

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Marcus Tullius Cicero, the most famous orator of ancient Rome, crushed a conspiracy, led by Lucius Sergius Catiline (more properly Catalina), to overthrow the Roman Republic in 62 BC.

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I.e., leopard.

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Matt. 15:13.

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This detailed account of a vice-gerential synod, including Cromwell's oration and the other sppeeches, summoned by Cromwell in February 1537 (not 1536 as Foxe claims) is taken by Foxe from Alexander Alesius, Of the auctoritie of the word of God (Strausburg, 1548?), STC 292, sigs. A5r-B7v. As Cromwell's speech will make clear the object of the synod was to determine the number of sacraments. Bishop Stokesley of London led the defence of retaining the seven sacraments, basing his arguments on unwritten tradition.

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This syllogism is Foxe's addition to the account.

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This marks the end of Alexander Alesius's account of the synod. Ostensibly, Alesius was asked to withdraw because the bishops were offended by the presence of an outsider speaking in their assembly, but it was probably because Alesius's outspoken defence of retaining only two sacraments - clearly supported by Cromwell - was too radical for most of them.

1563 Edition, page 654[Back to Top]

This is a reference to the Rood of Grace at the Cistercian monastery at Boxley, Kent. In February 1538, Cromwell's commissioners discovered mechanical devices in the rood which permitted the eyes of the Christ figure move. Later that month, the rood was displayed at Paul's Cross. The Boxley Rood became a virtual synonym for a fraudulent miracle.

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Cromwell's commissioners found that the relic of the blood of Christ at Hailes Abbey in Gloucestershire was fraudulent. It was denounced and exhibited at Paul's Cross in 1538.

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In 1563, Foxe blamed Cromwell's fall on Henry's dissatisfaction with his marriage to Anne of Cleves, which Cromwell had arranged. Contrast this account with the more'factional' interpretation of Cromwell's fall introduced in 1570, whereby Foxe presents a more sophisticated analysis of Cromwell's fall, emphasizing the role of opposing factions.

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Cromwell's scaffold speech and prayer are taken from Edward Hall, The union of two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and Yorke (London, 1560), STC 12723a, fo. 242r-v.

1563 Edition, page 654[Back to Top]

This ballad was written by William Gray, a client of Thomas Cromwell. (On Gray's life and career, see E. W. Dormer, Gray of Reading: A Sixteenth-century Controversialist and Ballad Writer [Reading, 1923], pp.17-55). The ballad described cases of 'idolatry' and fraudulent miracles uncovered by Cromwell's commissioners. Verses from the poem were placed on Friar Forest's scaffold. This confirms the official origins and inception.

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I.e., the Ten Commandments.

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I.e., to the shrine of the Virgin Mary at Walsingham, one of the great pilgrimage sites in pre-Reformation England.

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I.e., to the shrine of St. Thomas Becket at Canterbury.

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I.e., to Southampton.

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In 1540, Bishop Hugh Latimer of Worcester had sent an image of the Virgin, long venerated at the cathedral, to London.

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Leominster, in Berkshire, where relics of King Edward the Martyr were displayed.

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Waltham Abbey, in Essex, where a piece of the True Cross was venerated.

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This is St. Erth, a village in Cornwall.

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Bishop Hugh Latimer denounced veneration of the relics of St. Algar, in a sermon to Convocation in June 1537.

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The reference to the painted post is obscure, but the general reference is to the chapel of the Guild of the Holy Ghost in Basingstoke.

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To be deceived or tricked.

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Willesden, in Suffolk, the site of a famous shrine to the Virgin Mary.

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The springs at Buxton were dedicated to St. Anne.

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Great Bible

This lengthy, convoluted, and chronologically-confused passage relates the history of Miles Coverdale's revision of the vernacular "Thomas Matthew Bible" in Paris in 1538; the failure of that foreign printing venture; and the eventual production of a new version - Henry VIII's "Great Bible," licensed and authorized - by Richard Grafton and Edmund Whitchurch in 1539. This is, however, no triumphant tale of the political successes of the Bible in English; it instead forms the unhappy prologue to the government's subsequent decisions, between 1542 and 1546, to withdraw nearly all support for the lay reading of scripture.

The act of violence against the faith that characterizes this tale is the burning of books, then, not bodies. Here Foxe's sights are most firmly fixed on Bishop Edmund Bonner: his diplomatic work at the French court; his role in promoting and supporting the printing of a revision of the Matthew Bible at Paris; his translation while still in France from the Hereford see to London; and his subsequent defection from the ranks of Cromwell's supporters to an alliance with the Bishop of Winchester, Stephen Gardiner, after the newly-created earl of Essex's execution. Ultimately Foxe rewrites Bonner's championship of the English Bible at Paris (an enterprise that the bishop had in fact partially underwritten with 600 pounds of his own) into an act of cunning provocation aimed at ferreting out and punishing lay readers of scripture in England.

This account first appeared in 1570 and was reprinted virtually word for word in the edition of 1583. The 1563 edition contains, however, a relevant section entitled "The kyngs brief for the setting up the Byble of the greater volume in Englyshe" (fols 624-5), which consists of two short texts: Henry VIII's 1540 command for "the Bible of the greater volume" to be placed in "every Cathedrall, collegiate, and other parish churches and chappells"; and the text of a 1541 letter by Bonner to the archdeacon of London, Richard Gwent, which gave directives in support of the royal mandate.

This letter, contrasted with Bonner's far more qualified position by 1542, and indeed his subsequent enthusiasm for presiding over "heretical" book burnings at Paul's Cross (especially if those books issued from the pens of William Tyndale or Miles Coverdale), allows Foxe to take a literary turn in the direction of political paradox, perhaps the only way to deal with the unpredictable twists of later Henrician religious policy. Foxe follows this section in the 1563 edition with the account of Bonner's imprisonment of John Porter for reading the Bible unlawfully in St. Paul's.

In 1563, Foxe's purpose had been "to show how [he, i.e., Bonner] that…was once a setter forth of…afterward became the chief putter down again of the same, and made the reading of the Bible to be a trap or snare to entangle many good men, and to bring them to ruin and destruction." He enlarges on this intention in the 1570 and 1583 editions with the assistance of anecdotal evidence provided by informants like Ralph Morice, who had been principal secretary to Archbishop Thomas Cranmer and was thus responsible for the politically sensitive communications passing between the archbishop and Cromwell.

Lori Anne FerrellClaremont Graduate University

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Barnes, Garrett and Jerome

This lengthy section narrates the lives and deaths of the three most prominent evangelicals executed for heresy by Henry VIII after the break with Rome, on each of whom see the ODNB. It is also a section which was extensively rewritten by Foxe between the 1563 and 1570 editions, although after 1570 only one, very minor change was made to the text. The account of Barnes in the 1563 edition drew principally on three sources. First was Barnes' autobiographical account in his A supplicacion vnto the most gracyous prynce H. the .viij. (STC 1471: London, 1534), sigs. F1r-I3r. This was extended, and slightly altered, from the account given in the 1531 edition of the Supplication, a text which Foxe apparently did not know. Alongside this was Edward Hall and Richard Grafton, The vnion of the two noble and illustrate famelies of Lancastre & Yorke (STC 12721: London, 1548), part II, fos. 241v-243r; and Barnes' protestation from the stake, found in John Standish, A lytle treatise composyd by Johan Standysshe, against the protestacion of R. Barnes (STC 23209: London, 1540) and reproduced in full by Foxe. In the 1570 rewriting, a new section was added, based on the detailed narrative in Stephen Gardiner, A declaration of such true articles as George Ioye hath gone about to confute as false (STC 11588: London, 1546).The main source for the account of Thomas Garret is a lengthy testimony of events in 1528 written by Anthony Dalaber, apparently specifically for Foxe's use. As Foxe tells us (1583, p. 1197), Dalaber died in Salisbury diocese in 1562, leaving his account unfinished. His text is reproduced apparently in full in 1563. There are some minor abridgements of Dalaber's account in 1570 and subsequent editions, mostly to omit digressions, lists of names or personal details apparently irrelevant to Garret's case. The remainder of Foxe's account of Garret is far sketchier and is assembled from the accounts of unnamed 'auncient and credible persones'.The source for the short account of William Jerome, which only appears in 1570 and subsequent editions, is unclear. Almost all of the information here can be substantiated from three documents in the State Papers (National Archives, SP 1 / 158 fos. 50-2, 120, 124-5 (LP XV 354.1, 411.2, 414), but these do not appear to be Foxe's sources, not least because none of them refer to Dr. Wilson's role, which is otherwise unrecorded. The account appears to be based entirely on a summary of Jerome's recantation sermon, given at St. Mary Spital on 29 March 1540, the Monday of Easter week.Alec Ryrie

1563 Edition, page 656[Back to Top]

Barnes' escape took place in 1528. The deception involved in this episode was subsequently criticised by Catholic polemicists: see Robert Persons, A treatise of three conversions of England (STC 19416: St. Omer, 1604), vol. III p.181.

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Barnes' Vitae Romanorum pontificorum was actually first published in 1536, in two editions, one in Wittenberg, the other in Basel.

1563 Edition, page 659[Back to Top]

There were two, sharply differing editions of this text: A supplicatyon made by Robert Barnes doctour in diuinite, vnto the most excellent and redoubted prince kinge henrye the eyght (STC 1470: Antwerp, 1531), and a more politic revision, A supplicacion vnto the most gracyous prynce H. the .viij. (STC 1471: London, 1534).

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This scurrilous and occasionally repeated libel, for which of course Foxe had no evidence, was dropped from all subsequent editions of the Acts and Monuments.

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In fact this embassy took place in the summer of 1534. Foxe is here referring to Barnes' visit to England in 1531-32, as an envoy from the Wittenberg theologians.

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This sweeping description of the 1530s omits the significant amount of time Barnes spent on the Continent, including a lengthy trip to Wittenberg in 1535-6.

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This embassy took place in 1539.

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This is a typical example of how conspiracy theories clustered around Gardiner in Foxe's work and in the wider English Protestant imagination. See Alec Ryrie, '"A Saynt in the Devyls Name": Heroes and Villains in the Martyrdom of Robert Barnes' in Thomas S. Freeman and Thomas F. Mayer (eds), Martyrs and Martyrdom in England, c.1400-1700 (Woodbridge, 2007), 144-65.

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So covertly, in fact, that Foxe had no evidence for this insinuation at all. In 1570 and subsequent editions, this claim that Gardiner lay behind the requirement to preach the Spital sermons was dropped.

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This sweeping account, found only in 1563, conflates the impact of the Act of Six Articles following its passage in 1539 (which compelled most married clergy to separate from their wives or to go into exile) and the persecution surrounding Thomas Cromwell's fall in 1540.

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A typical example of Foxe's chronological confusion in the 1563 edition. Barnes, Garrett and Jerome were in fact executed only two days after Cromwell, as the 1570 rewrite noted.

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This refers to the execution of Barnes, Garrett and Jerome, together with the papal loyalists Thomas Abell, Richard Featherstone and Edward Powell, on 30 July 1540. There is, again, no evidence at all for Foxe's claim (made only in 1563) that Gardiner masterminded this gruesome display.

1563 Edition, page 660[Back to Top]

This passage, found only in 1563, summarises Barnes' protestation from the stake, which is also given in full below.

1563 Edition, page 660[Back to Top]

The main source for the account of Thomas Garret is a lengthy testimony of events in 1528 written by Anthony Dalaber, apparently specifically for Foxe's use. As Foxe tells us (1583, p. 1197), Dalaber died in Salisbury diocese in 1562, leaving his account unfinished. His text is reproduced apparently in full in 1563. There are some minor abridgements of Dalaber's account in 1570 and subsequent editions, mostly to omit digressions, lists of names or personal details apparently irrelevant to Garret's case. The remainder of Foxe's account of Garret is far sketchier and is assembled from the accounts of unnamed 'auncient and credible persones'.

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Garret became curate at All Hallows in or shortly before 1526. He made bookselling trips to Oxford in 1527 and again over the winter of 1527-28. His detection and flight took place in February 1528.

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This detail is dropped in 1570 and subsequent editions.

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'Hermann Bodius' (ps.: possibly Martin Bucer or Johannes Oecolampadius), Unio Dissidentium (Cologne, 1522) was a collection of patristic sentences intended to demonstrate the Church Fathers' congruence with evangelical thought. It went through over a dozen editions in several languages by the mid-1530s and was widely influential. An English translation was prepared by William Turner, but not until the 1530s. It strongly influenced Robert Barnes' 1530 Sententiae ex doctoribus collectae, which itself shaped Barnes' 1531 Supplication.

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In 1528 the Wednesday before Shrovetide fell on 18 February.

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This lengthy digression on Dalaber's relocation from Alborn Hall to Gloucester College is omitted in 1570 and subsequent editions, where the text is paraphrased for clarity.

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The detail that this was Erasmus' Latin New Testament is omitted from 1570 and subsequent editions, in which the reader might be led to assume that Dalaber was consulting a Tyndale New Testament such as Garret had been smuggling.

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This chapter consists of Jesus' commission to his disciples to go forth and preach like sheep among wolves, and to trust in divine protection: its resonance in this situation is plain.

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Garret was in fact apprehended on 29 February 1528 at Bedminster, on the outskirts of Bristol.

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The source for this list of names is not clear, although most of them are also names which appear in Dalaber's unabridged account. Foxe's statement that 'diuers other there were, whose names I cannot remember', suggests either that he is here reproducing another document, or, possibly, that he is drawing on his own first-hand knowledge of Oxford heresy. Foxe first went up to Oxford in 1534.

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Which is to say, Foxe knew nothing of Garret's activities between 1528 and 1540. On these, see ODNB.

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An undergraduate.

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24 December 1525.

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This text, known as Barnes' Protestation, rapidly circulated in manuscript amongst London evangelicals, but the earliest witness to it surviving comes from the Catholic John Standish, whose printed rebuttal of it later in 1540 includes the full text: John Standish, A lytle treatise composyd by Johan Standysshe, against the protestacion of R. Barnes (STC 23209: London, 1540). On the tangled history of this text, see Ryrie, '"A Saynt in the Devyls Name"', p. 152.

1563 Edition, page 666[Back to Top]

This peculiar phrase refers to an image used by English radicals, often from the Lollard tradition as well as Anabaptists, to denigrate the Virgin Mary. Such radicals argued that, like a bag of saffron, she had no merits of her own, was merely a vessel or container, and - once she was no longer carrying her precious cargo - was of no more importance than another woman. The image strongly implies, but does not necessarily require, the belief that Christ did not take flesh from the Virgin, which was anathema to Catholics and mainstream magisterial Protestants alike: hence Barnes' vigorous denial. For contemporary examples of the phrase, see Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, MS 128 p. 13 (LP XVIII (ii) 546 p. 294); British Library, Cotton MS Cleopatra E.v fo. 397r (LP IX 230, where misdated).

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This appears to be a conflation of two separate verses of the letter to the Hebrews, not any work attributed to St. Peter: Hebrews 2:17, 4:15.

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Psalm 143:2.

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Psalm 130:3.

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This barbed word of 'forgiveness' to Gardiner appears to have laid the foundation of the claim that Gardiner was the mastermind behind the executions.

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Foxe's own informants appear to be the source for this detail, which - despite the lack of any corroboration - has become a hoary myth of the early English Reformation. The myth, and the state of early Protestantism in Cambridge generally, is soberly assessed in Richard Rex, 'The early impact of Reformation theology at Cambridge University, 1521-1547' in Reformation and Renaissance Review vol. 2 (1999), 38-71.

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1540.

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Barnes' abjuration took place on 11 February 1526.

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Foxe's source for this episode is unknown. However, Foxe's mentor John Bale had heard independently of the case, mentioning it briefly in his The Epistle exhortatorye of an Englyshe Christiane (STC 1291: Antwerp, 1544), fo. 13v and in his Scriptorum illustrium maioris Brytanniae ... Catalogus (Basel, 1557), vol. I p. 666. In Bale's account, Spenser was a player in interludes; the companion who died with him was named John Ramsey; and the execution took place in 1542. In 1570 and subsequent editions Foxe amalgamated this information with his own. He changed 1563's generic claim that Spenser was 'getting his liuing with þe sweate of hys browes and labours of hys handes' to the more specific statement that he 'became a player in interludes', and he added Ramsey to the list of those executed, although for some reason omitting his first name. He did not adopt Bale's dating, merely claiming with characteristic imprecision that the deaths took place 'about the same tyme' as Mekins' case (ie., 1541). The real confusion arose from the second figure mentioned in 1563, Andrew Hewyt. This appears to be a confusion with the Andrew Hewet burned in 1533, but Foxe, instead of correcting the name to Ramsey, instead declared from 1570 onwards that there were three individuals executed - although both his and Bale's sources agree that there were two. Cf. 1570, p. 1376, et seq.

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A much fuller account of Porter is given in 1570 and subsequent editions. The sources for this brief account of a notorious case are not clear, but all the information given here could be sourced from John Bale's discussion of the case in Yet a course at the romyshe foxe. A dysclosynge or openynge of the Manne of synne (STC 1309: Antwerp, 1543), fo. 41r-v.

1563 Edition, page 677[Back to Top]

A particularly egregious example of Foxe's chronological confusion. This misplacing of this case is obvious - English texts of the Lord's Prayer and of the Bible were entirely legal in the latter part of Henry VIII's reign. To compound the confusion, in 1570 and subsequent editions, Thomas Barnard, husbandman, and James Mordon, labourer, are described (and, in 1576 and 1583, depicted) as being burned in one fire at Amersham, 'two or thre yeres' after the burning of William Tilsworth (aka Tylseley) in 1506 (1570, p. 117 recte 917). Yet a few pages later, they are described (1570 pp. 949-54) as Lollards arrested in 1521, with some details given of their offences and networks, and it is said that both were burned in the same year as relapsed heretics (1570, p. 964). In any event, they did not survive to be burned in the 1540s.

1563 Edition, page 677[Back to Top]

This list of individuals who abjured or recanted under Henry VIII is miscellaneous and covers the whole period from the 1520s to the 1540s. Many of their stories are told in more detail elsewhere in 1563. They were 'collect[ed] and gather[ed] out of the registers' and it is plain that list itself was assembled by Foxe or his team.

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This account is taken almost verbatim from that in Edward Hall and Richard Grafton, The vnion of the two noble and illustrate famelies of Lancastre & Yorke (STC 12721: London, 1548), part II, fo. 244r. Foxe, however, omits a phrase claiming that Mekins' fear was such that 'he had not cared of whom he had named'.

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Mekins was burned on 30 July 1541.

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On the notoriety of the Mekins case, see Alec Ryrie, The Gospel and Henry VIII (Cambridge, 2003), p. 24.

1563 Edition, page 669[Back to Top]
Fire in Oxford

Foxe based his initial version of the panic - due to a false alarm of fire - at the penance of John Mallory, on his memory. (Foxe states in the Rerum that he witnessed the incident). There is, however, independent corroboration of Foxe's account, in a poem by John White, written in honour of John Claymund, who played a conspicuous - and according to White, heroic - role in the affair. (See John White, Diacosio-Martyrion {Louvain, 1553], STC 25388, fos 82r-83r). White also supplies a detail that Foxe omits, the date of the incident: the third Sunday of Advent, 1536. Foxe's first account of the panic appeared in the Rerum (pp. 139-44). This section was translated word-for-word in 1563. In 1570, Foxe added new details (the name of the person doing penance and the name of the person who started calling 'fire') which must have come, directly or indirectly, from others present at the incident. In the second edition, Foxe also deleted passages - originally in the Rerum - that explained to non-English readers how the English dealt with fires and that they roofed their churches with lead (this interesting passage, comparing methods of dealing with fire alarms in England and Germany first appears in the Rerum (p. 140) and was directly translated from that into the 1563 edition. It was dropped thereafter as Foxe no longer expected a large non-English audience for his martyrology). The version of the incident printed in 1570 was unchanged in subsequent editions. Foxe's purpose in printing this anecdote is not obvious. The story involves neither a martyrdom nor an important episode in the history of the Reformation. Foxe probably included the story precisely because it was not a martyrdom. As he descibes it, it is a 'merry and pleasant Interlude'which breaks up a grim narrative of persecutions following the Act of Six Articles. At the same time, it allowed Foxe to expostulate on the horror of burning people to death for heresy.

Thomas S. Freeman.

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See Job 40: 6.

1563 Edition, page 679[Back to Top]

This sentence, informing readers that churches in England were covered with lead, instead of tiles, first appeared in the Rerum (p. 141). It was directly translated into the 1563 edition. It was dropped thereafter, as Foxe no longer expected a large non-English audience for his work.

1563 Edition, page 679[Back to Top]

Democritus (born c. 460 BC) was an ancient philosopher who was known as the 'laughing philosopher' because he held that a cheerful disposition should be cultivated by the wise. For reasons that are less clear, Heraclitus (fl. 500 BC) came to be associated with melancholy and pessimism.

1563 Edition, page 678[Back to Top]

John White, in another account of the same incident, claims that Claymund cast himself down before the altar and committed himself to the mercy of God, rather than escape through a broken window (John White, Diacosio-Martyrion[Louvain, 1553], STC 25388, fo. 83r).

1563 Edition, page 679 | 1563 Edition, page 680[Back to Top]

Foxe is alluding to the story of Pope Joan, a woman who allegedly disguised herself as a priest and became pope. See 1570, p. 182; 1576, p. 138 and 1583, p. 137 for Foxe's version of the story.

1563 Edition, page 677[Back to Top]

I.e., Cardinal Lorenzo Campeggio, legate to England. Foxe is referring to his account on 1563 pp. 417-18; 1570, pp. 1120-21; 1576, pp. 959-60 and 1583, pp. 986-7.

1563 Edition, page 677[Back to Top]

St Mary's was the University church at Oxford. In 1563, Foxe's wording for this passage is significant: 'upon a Sunday as I remember'. This is an indication that Foxe was present at the event.

1563 Edition, page 677[Back to Top]

I.e., the wafer. This derisive phrase was added in the 1570 edition.

1563 Edition, page 677[Back to Top]

This interesting passage, comparing methods of dealing with fire alarms in England and Germany (to the detriment of the former) first appears in the Rerum (p. 140) and was directly translated from that into the 1563 edition. It was dropped thereafter as Foxe no longer expected a large non-English audience for his martyrology.

1563 Edition, page 678[Back to Top]
Testwood, Filmer, Marbeck and Person

In March 1543, William Simons, a Windsor lawyer and Dr. John London, the warden of New College, Oxford, and a prebendary of Windsor, accused five people of heresy: Anthony Pearson, a preacher and outspoken sacramentarian, Robert Bennet, a lawyer, Henry Filmer, a tailor, Robert Testwood, a chorister of St. George's Chapel and John Marbeck, the organist at the chapel. There were high stakes involved; these accusations were an attempt to eradicate heresy at the royal court (Philip (not William) Hoby and Sir Thomas Carden were gentlemen ushers of the Privy Chamber, with constant access to the king. Thomas Weldon was a master of the Royal Household and Snowball had the delicate and trusted position of yeoman chef for the king's mouth). As Foxe's account makes it clear, the five accused were pressured to reveal heretics at court. Simon Haynes, the dean of Windsor, and an evangelical sympathiser, was also arrested, as were other figures on the fringes of the court, notably Thomas Sternhold, the future co-author of the metrical psalms. At virtually the same time, a series of investigations into heresy in Kent were initiated, which targeted Archbishop Cranmer himself. (For the background to the troubles at Windsor, see Diarmaid MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer [New Haven, 1996], pp. 297-322 and Glyn Redworth, In Defence of the Church Catholic: The Life of Stephen Gardiner [Oxford, 1990], pp. 184-207). In July, Pearson, Filmer, Testwood and Marbeck were brought to trial before a jury and justices at Windsor. (Bennet was too ill to be tried). All four sentenced to death under the Act of Six Articles. Marbeck, however, was pardoned and Bennet was released through the intervention of the Bishop of Salisbury on his behalf. Filmer, Pearson and Testwood were burned at Windsor on 28 July 1543.

The evolution of Foxe's account of this episode was complicated and at times his narrative was confused. In the Rerum, Foxe had an account of five men who were burned at Windsor in 1544 (Rerum, pp. 182-3). Foxe drew much of the material for this episode from Hall's chronicle. (See Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and York [London, 1560?], STC 12723a, fo. 256r-v). But Foxe had information that Hall did not: some of the articles alleged against Marbeck and the charges against Bennet. (In fact, Hall does not mention Bennet). Moreover, as Foxe, in his second edition, made it clear that he also consulted original documents from the case; including the writ authorizing the execution of the martyrs (Foxe probably based his account of the Windsor martyrs partly on documents that must have been sent to him during his exile). But in doing so, he got confused on an essential point: he stated that Marbeck, Testwood and Pearson were burned and that Filmer was pardoned.

Foxe translated the account in the Rerum, word-for-word, in the 1563 edition (pp. 626-7). However, as the printing of this edition progressed, Foxe learned of his mastake. On p. 1742 of the edition, Foxe included a list of errata, and this included a mention - in the middle of a column of errors listed in small type - that he had confused Marbeck with Filmer and that he had failed to mention that Bennet was never tried or condemned.

Nicholas Harpsfield noticed Foxe's mistake and either failed to notice, or disregarded, his correction. In a few caustic passages Harpsfield used Foxe's error as the platform for a pointed attack on the overall credibility of the Acts and Monuments. After quoting Foxe's assertion that Marbeck was burned, Harpsfield sarcastically observed that Marbeck 'still lives, singing and playing the organ most beautifully at Windsor, as he had been accustomed to do' (DS, pp. 962-3). Harpsfield's criticisms of Foxe's mistake were taken up by other Catholic writers and repeated as a 'proof' of Foxe's inaccuracy for centuries.

Harpsfield's criticisms also goaded into a massive response. The two pages devoted to the Windsor martyrs in the 1563 edition expanded to thirteen pages in the 1570 edition. Moreover, the account was completely rewritten as the material in the 1563 edition was discarded and replaced with a detailed narrative obtained from John Marbeck himself (This is an important indication that Marbeck himself was the source of this narrative). A manuscript copy of Marbeck's narrative, partially annotated by Foxe in preperation for printing, survives as BL, Lansdowne MS 389, fos. 240r-276r). After the Marbeck narrative, Foxe appended a heated riposte to Harpsfield (this was Foxe's response to the charge made by Nicholas Harpsfield that Foxe had erroneously identified Marbeck as a martyr, and to the implication, rapidly taken up by other Catholic writers, that this demonstrated Foxe's inaccuracy). Foxe's treatment of this incident provides an excellent example of the impact of Harpsfield's criticisms and the ways in which they forced Foxe to expand his text and improve his research.

Thomas S. Freeman

1563 Edition, page 681[Back to Top]

This is a careless error, only three people were burned at Windsor. Foxe was repeating the number four from the heading of this account in the Rerum (p. 182); however, both the Rerum and 1563 accounts make it clear that only three people were burned.

1563 Edition, page 681[Back to Top]

Anthony Pearson (or Parson, Parsons or Peerson) was vicar of All Hallows, Canterbury and his radical activities there had stirred up controversy (L&P 18 (2), pp. 310 and 318).

1563 Edition, page 681[Back to Top]

Very probably this was a translation of Calvin's De fugiendis impiorum illicitis sacris (1537).

1563 Edition, page 682[Back to Top]

The argument below closely follows one of Calvin's arguments in De fugiendis impiorum illicitis sacris (1537), which suggest that this was the work of Calvin's that Marbeck transcribed.

1563 Edition, page 682[Back to Top]

Foxe got this wrong since Marbeck was not burned and was, in fact, probably an informant about his own examinations. Foxe acknowledged this in later editions.

1563 Edition, page 682[Back to Top]
Persecution in Calais

Calais was the last English outpost left from the Hundred Year's War. It was governed by the King's Deputy, directly answerable to the King. Since 1533, this had been Arthur, Viscount Lisle, whose religious inclinations were conservative and who sponsored, to the best of his ability, conservative clerics and officials in Calais. Spiritual jurisdiction, however, was held by Thomas Cranmer, the evangelical archbishop of Canterbury, who used his patronage to place evangelical preachers in livings in the town. Moreover, Cranmer's commissary for Calais, John Butler, was aggressively evangelical. Supporting Cranmer, was Thomas Cromwell, the vice-gerent for Spiritual affairs and, effectively, Henry VIII's chief minister. The tensions that developed from this division of authority and confessional allegiance were exacerbated by the conservative efforts in the years 1538-43, to oust Cromwell and Cranmer from power and the energetic responses of both minister and prelate to these threats. (On the situation in Calais see A. J. Slavin, 'Cromwell, Cranmer and Lord Lisle, a study in the politics of reform', Albion 9 [1977], pp. 316-36; Philip Ward, 'The politics of religion: Thomas Cromwell and the Reformation in Calais, 1534-40', Journal of Religious Religious History 17 [1992-3], pp. 152-71 and The Lisle Letters, ed. Muriel St. Clair Byrne, 6 vols. [Chicago, 1981]). Also of significance was Henry's open enmity towards Reginald Pole, his kinsman and, since 1535, the major spokesman against the king. Henry's wrath and paranoia towards Pole would be exploited by both conservatives and evangelicals.

Foxe's sources for the complicated, intertwined, narratives which follow were varied. The story of William Callaway and Dr. London first appeared in the Rerum, as did the account of the execution of Germain Gardiner (Rerum, pp. 143-4). The first came from Edward Hall, The union of two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and Yorke (London, 1550) STC 12734a, fo. 257r, the second probably was related to Foxe by John Bale. Both of these stories were repeated in all editions of the A&M. In the 1563 edition, Foxe added accounts of Adam Damplip (from unknown informants), Thomas Broke's speech against the Six Articles, accounts of the 1539 persecution of heresy in Calais, which came from informants, and accounts of the 1540 persecution of heresy in Calais, also obtained from informants, almost certainly including Thomas Broke's wife, who supplied the detailed narrative of her husband's ordeals. The 1563 edition also contained an account of an earlier heretic, William Button, who was forced to do penance in Calais sometime before 1532; Foxe states that this account was derived from informants in the town. And Foxe also added the recantations of John Athee and John Heywood, which he obtained from Bishop Bonner's register (Guildhall MS 9531/12, fos. 61r and 254v).

In the second edition, Foxe eliminated much of the material he had printed in the 1563 edition, including Thomas Broke's oration against the Six Articles, much of the interrogations of Broke and the recantation of John Heywood. But he also added material on Adam Damplip's 1541 arrest, imprisonment and death, obtained, as Foxe declares from John Marbeck. Foxe also added material on the persecution of William Smith and also on the 1540 persecution in Calais, which was obtained, as Foxe notes, from informants in Calais, including some of those who had been persecuted. They were also the source for the account Foxe added on the persecution of an unnamed labourer and a man named Dodd. There was no change to any of this material in subsequent editions, except that John Heywood's recantation was restored in the 1583 edition.

Thomas S. Freeman

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

In the passages above, Foxe is presenting a simplified view of a complex series of events. John Butler, Cranmer's commissary, attempted to rescue Damplip by having summoned back to Lambeth for examination by Cranmer. In the meantime, Thomas Cromwell weighed in on Damplip's side. Dove was grilled thoroughly about his actions and Cromwell sent Lisle a blistering reprimand. However, the accusations of sacramentarian heresy clearly alarmed the king. Cromwell had to open an investigation of sacramentarians in Calais and Lisle was able to force a second hearing for Damplip. It was this second hearing that Damplip fled. (For the outline of these events see A. J. Slavin, 'Cromwell, Cranmer and Lord Lisle, a study in the politics of reform', Albion 9 [1977], pp. 325-33 and Diarmaid MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer [New Haven and London, 1996], pp. 218-19).

1563 Edition, page 713[Back to Top]

I.e., the martyr Thomas Garrett. This, however, was not a commission; Champion and Garrett were sent to preach in Calais and, in fact, Garrett was appointed to the living of St. Peter's just outside the town.

1563 Edition, page 714[Back to Top]

This account of Sir Nicholas Carew's repentance at his death was dropped from the second edition; almost certainly because Foxe learned that it was demonstrably untrue. Carew apparently died a staunch Catholic. Foxe took this account, word-for-word, from Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and Yorke, (London, 1550), STC 12734a, fo.233r.

1563 Edition, page 714[Back to Top]

Although Cromwell may not have approved of the Six Articles, he had been entrusted by Henry VIIII with their passage through Commons and he was determined to ensure their passage. The fact that Cromwell was acting in support of the Six Articles, in this instance, may be one reason why Foxe had these passages deleted from the second edition of the A&M.

1563 Edition, page 714[Back to Top]

This is Edward Hall, the chronicler.

1563 Edition, page 716[Back to Top]

I.e., Thomas Broke's oration, not Kingston's.

1563 Edition, page 716[Back to Top]

Actually Lord Lisle was a religious conservative and needed no goading from his wife or anyone else to move against Damplip, Broke, Butler and the others.

1563 Edition, page 716[Back to Top]

This was in May 1539.

1563 Edition, page 717[Back to Top]

Ralph Hare was a soldier in the Calais garrison.

1563 Edition, page 717 | 1563 Edition, page 718[Back to Top]

As an MP, Broke was normally exempt from punishment for any remarks that he made in debate in Commons.

1563 Edition, page 718[Back to Top]

In order to provide a link with the preceding narrative (on the three martyrs at Windsor in 1543), Foxe is beginning this account out of chronological order. Foxe is beginning, in 1543 (not 1544), with Damplip's execution.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

The following comments on Peyton's motives were dropped from the second edition of the A&M; cf. 1563, p. pp. 663-4. During Broke's disgrace and imprisonment, Peyton temporarily succeeded him in his office as a customs deputy at Calais.

1563 Edition, page 719[Back to Top]

The following comment on Poole's ingratitude was dropped from the second edition of the A&M; cf. 1563, p. 664.

1563 Edition, page 720[Back to Top]

The following stridently anti-clerical passages were dropped from the second edition of the A&M; cf. 1563, p. 664.

1563 Edition, page 720[Back to Top]

This parenthetical phrase was dropped from the second edition of the A&M; cf. 1563, p. 664.

1563 Edition, page 720[Back to Top]

The following passages were replaced in the second edition with a terser account of the same events.

1563 Edition, page 719[Back to Top]

Foxe’s wording here is vague; by ‘them’ he here means the heresy commission being held at Bath House.

1563 Edition, page 719[Back to Top]

By ‘them’ Foxe now means the Privy Council. These passages are out of chronological order. Butler had been summoned to appear before the Privy Council in late July of 1539.

1563 Edition, page 719[Back to Top]

I.e., the week before Easter 1540. (Easter was 28 March in 1540). Although this commission was composed of notable conservatives such as Sir John Baker, Sir John Gage and Sir William Paulet (newly created Lord St John), it was sent to investigate charges that Lord Lisle had conspired with Reginald Pole. Fighting for his life, and using Henry VIII’s paranoia concerning Pole, Cromwell was striking back at Lord Lisle.

1563 Edition, page 720[Back to Top]

This is John Curwen, a royal chaplain and archdeacon of both Colchester and Oxford.

1563 Edition, page 720[Back to Top]

Lisle was arrested on 10 May 1540 and hours later the staunchly conservative bishop Richard Sampson of Chichester was sent to the Tower. But Cromwell himself was arrested on 10 June.

1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

Clement Philpot and Edmund Bryndeholme were executed, in London, on 4 August 1540.

1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

I.e., 'Sheer Thursday' or Maundy Thursday; that is the day preceding Good Friday. In 1540, this was 25 March.

1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

I.e., 26 March 1540.

1563 Edition, page 721 | 1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

I.e., 29 March 1540.

1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

Lord Lisle died on 3 March 1542, upon hearing the news that he was to be released from the Tower. Lady Lisle died in 1566.

1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

I.e., 3 April 1540.

1563 Edition, page 722[Back to Top]

I.e., no man of Broke's status was kept in such a prison, unless he was under sentence of death. This passage appears only in the 1563 edition.

1563 Edition, page 722[Back to Top]

I.e., the gullet or the windpipe.

1563 Edition, page 722[Back to Top]

The following anecdote about the scalding beef-broth only appears in the 1563 edition.

1563 Edition, page 723[Back to Top]

I.e., 28 July 1540, not 1541.

1563 Edition, page 724[Back to Top]

This passage, with its gratuitous abuse of Gardiner, was dropped from the second edition of the A&M.

1563 Edition, page 721[Back to Top]

The fact that Damplip was executed for treason, instead of heresy, is revealing. It may have been an early indication that the 'Prebendaries' Plot would fail and also that Butler would be released. It is also ironic that Damplip was executed on the same charge that brought down Lord Lisle and Germain Gardiner (although Foxe is unclear about this, the men were executed for alledgedly conspiring with Reginold Pole. In reality, their executions were part of the factional struggles at Court in 1543-44.).

1563 Edition, page 722[Back to Top]

This pious admonition only appears in the first edition of the A&M.

1563 Edition, page 722[Back to Top]

This incident must have happened before William Warham's death in August 1532.

1563 Edition, page 725[Back to Top]

This account first appeared in Rerum, p. 143. It is taken from Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and Yorke (London, 1550), STC 1234a, fo. 257r.

1563 Edition, page 682[Back to Top]

This clause was added to the account by Foxe.

1563 Edition, page 683[Back to Top]

This verbose denunciation of the papacy was omitted after the first edition of the A&M.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

This paragraph, drawing moral lessons from the episode, was added by Foxe.

1563 Edition, page 683[Back to Top]

Foxe drew all of his information on John Athee from Bishop Bonner’s register (Guildhall MS 9531/12, fo. 254v).

1563 Edition, page 683[Back to Top]

John Heywood had been condemned to death along with Germain Gardiner and John Lark, but he recanted on the way to the scaffold and was reprieved (he was More’s brother-in-law). He did public penance in July. Foxe obtained his material, including Heywood’s public recantation from Bishop Bonner’s register (Guildhall MS 9531/12, fol. 61r).

1563 Edition, page 683[Back to Top]

Lord Lisle was Lord Deputy of Calais, the governor of the city and representative of Henry VIII. John Butler was Thomas Cranmer's commissary for Calais and represented the archbishop.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

In other words, Damplip preached against the Real Presence of Christ in the Sacrament. Henry VIII would have regarded such sermons as heresy.

1563 Edition, page 713[Back to Top]

Foxe's fondness for a pun is a little confusing here; John Dove, was the prior of the Carmelites (Whitefriars) in Calais. Dove was a religious conservative and an ally of Lord Lisle.

1563 Edition, page 713[Back to Top]
Persecution in 1545

The Rerum contains a brief narrative that might be a garbled account of the burning of Roger Clarke. In a few sentences, Foxe related that a layman of Norfolk (not Suffolk) named Roger was burned for sacramentarian heresy (Rerum, p. 144). By the time the 1563 edition was printed, Foxe had learned a great deal more about the burnings of John Kerby and Roger Clarke; most of his detailed account of their trials and executions first appeared in this edition. This material was contributed by unnamed eyewitnesses. In the 1570 edition, Foxe added details to the account of the martyrdoms of Kerby and Clarke, which were also obtained from informants, probably including the Ipswich gaoler John Bird (Richard Bird, also an Ipswich gaoler, would be denounced by Catholics in Mary's reign for encouraging prisoners in their heresy (1576, p. 1981 and 1583, p. 2089). Were the Birds a family of evangelical gaolers? In any case, John Bird was probably the source the interview between Kerby and Robert Wingfield). In the 1570 edition, Foxe also added an account of Henry VIII's oration to Parliament on Christmas Eve 1545. Foxe printed this speech from Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illuste famelies of Lancastre and Yorke (London, 1560), STC 12734a, fos.260r-262r. His purpose in including the speech was to criticize appeal for compromise for the sake of concord and religious unity. In 'notes' upon the speech, Foxe argued instead - in passages clearly intend to goad Elizabeth and her magistrates into further reformation of the Church - that correct doctrine and religious purity were more important than peace or unity.

Thomas S. Freeman

1563 Edition, page 710[Back to Top]

Thomas Wentworth, first baron Wentworth, had been a prominent and enthusiastic Sufflok evangelical; John bale credited Wentworth with having converted him. (See the biography of Wentworth in the ODNB). Clearly, from Foxe's account, Wentworth was acting with considerable reluctance in prosecuting Kerby and Rogers.

1563 Edition, page 711[Back to Top]

Edward Rougham had formerly been an evangelical sympathiser and a friend of Richard Bayfield and Robert Barnes (In 1545, now apparently more theologically conservative, Edmund Rougham would preach at the burning of John Kirby in Bury St. Edmunds).

1563 Edition, page 711[Back to Top]

The following details were added in the second edition, the first edition merely states that Clarke died in torment after a prolonged period in the fire (1563, 655).

1563 Edition, page 711[Back to Top]

Psalm 82: 8.

1563 Edition, page 711[Back to Top]

Heb. 10:31.

1563 Edition, page 711[Back to Top]

See Matthew 27: 51.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

Luke 19: 40.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

Edward Crome was forced to recant in 1546, not 1545.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

This is one of a number of favourable references to Edward Crome that only appeared in the 1563 edition. For discussion of Foxe's silent removal of positive references to Crome from the second edition of the Acts and Monuments see Susan Wabuda, 'Equivocation and Recantation during the English Reformation: The "Subtle Shadows" of Dr. Edward Crome', Journal of Ecclesiastical History 44 (1983), pp. 238-41.

1563 Edition, page 712[Back to Top]

This is the Monday of the Minor Rogations, i.e., the Monday before Ascension Day.

1563 Edition, page 710 | 1563 Edition, page 711[Back to Top]

Kirby and Clarke were tried before a commission, headed by Lord Wentworth, to enforce the Six Articles.

1563 Edition, page 710[Back to Top]

Foxe is explaining the elevated status of the bishop's commissary, of near equality to Lord Wingfield, the head of the commission, in what was essentially a lay tribunal.

1563 Edition, page 710[Back to Top]

William Foster was a lawyer, minor magistrate, staunch Catholic and zealous persecutor who appears several times in the pages of Foxe. His name is first mentioned in the narrative of the Kerby and Clarke martyrdoms, in the 1570 edition.

1563 Edition, page 710[Back to Top]

Askew actually misrepresents Paul in this passage. In 1 Corinthians 14, Paul enjoins women to complete silence in the congregation; his prohibition on female speech is not limited to preaching.

1563 Edition, page 726[Back to Top]

Foxe omits, here, most of Askew's answer to the priest's question of whether she had been shriven. As Thomas Freeman and Sarah Wall have noted, the passage in Foxe's base-text, Bale's 1550 (Copland) edition, reads: 'I tolde him no. Then he said, he wold bring one to me, for to shryve me. And I told him so that I myght have one of these.iii.that is to saye, Doctor Crome sir, Gillam, or Huntington, I was contented'. Freeman and Wall have argued convincingly that the omission of much of Askew's answer was due to a case of 'eye skip' - an error on the part of the compositor copying from his base text (see Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1173-74).

When agreeing to being shriven, Askew names some prominent evangelicals as "men of wisedome," and it is likely that she knew them personally. It is clear that she knew Crome and that she was considered a great supporter of his (Susan Wabuda, 'Equivocation and Recantation During the English Reformation: The "Subtle Shadows" of Dr Edward Crome', Journal of Ecclesiastical History 44 [April 1993], 236). John Guy suggests that Crome was Askew's teacher (John Guy, Tudor England [Oxford, 1988], 196). John Huntington was an evangelical preacher in London. Sir Gillam is an unidentified London evangelical cleric.

1563 Edition, page 726[Back to Top]

David Whitehead was a well known evangelical, and was involved, with Archbishop Cranmer and other 'luminaries of the evangelical establishment', as Diarmaid MacCulloch describes them, in attempting the conversion of Joan Boucher during Edward VI's reign (See Diarmaid MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer [Yale, 1996], p. 474).

1563 Edition, page 726[Back to Top]

John Frith (1503-33) was a Cambridge fellow who went into exile in 1528 but unwisely returned to England in 1533 and was burnt for heresy. He was notorious for his reformed polemic, and famously engaged in printed disputation with Thomas More over purgatory and the nature of the Sacrament. The book referred to in this passage is most likely Frith's book against Thomas More, written from prison, A Boke Made by J. Frith (1533). Nevertheless, Askew clearly did not have Frith's book with her.

1563 Edition, page 727[Back to Top]

As Bonner makes clear, Askew's use of the term 'in spirit and faith' to describe her receipt of the body and blood of Christ is provocative in implying an absence of Christ's corporeal presence in the bread and wine.

1563 Edition, page 727[Back to Top]

Proverbs 19 (19: 14) does not read as Askew renders it, that a woman of 'few wordes is a gift of God," but rather, that "a discrete woman is the gyfte of the Lord' (The Byble in Englyshe [London, 1539], xxxiii[r]). This is so in both the 1537 Thomas Matthew's Bible, and the 1539 'Great' Bible, placed in every parish church by order of Parliament. In a popular contemporary edition of Proverbs, the text reads 'House & goodes come from the fathers by heritage: but a wyse wife is given of the lorde' (The p[ro]uerbes of Solomon newly translated into Englyshe [London,1534], n.p.).

1563 Edition, page 727[Back to Top]

Askew is here again indicating her rejection of the idea of the mass as a propitiatory sacrifice. Bonner understands this, as he shows in his reaction: 'What an aunswer is that?' (See Megan L. Hickerson, 'Negotiating Heresy in Tudor England: Anne Askew and the Bishop of London', Journal of British Studies 46 [October 2007], 788-89.)

1563 Edition, page 728[Back to Top]

Standish's reference is to 1 Corinthians 14. Foxe omits, here, Askew's answer to Standish. As Thomas Freeman and Sarah Wall have noted, the passage in Foxe's base-text, Bale's 1550 (Copland) edition, reads: 'doctor Standish desired my lord, to byd me say my mind, concerning the same text of. S. Paule. I answered that it was against saynt Paules lerning, that I being a woman, shuld interprete the scriptures, specially where so many wise lerned men were'. Freeman and Wall have argued convincingly that this was a case of 'eye skip' - an error on the part of the compositor copying from Bale's 1550 (Copland) edition (See Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1175-76).

1563 Edition, page 728[Back to Top]

Little is known about Anne Askew (c. 1521-46) prior to her examination before a London Grand Jury (quest) in March, 1545. She was the daughter of a Lincolnshire knight, Sir William Askew (or Ayscough), and was married at a young age to another knight, Sir Thomas Kyme, apparently against her will. According to John Bale, the first editor of Askew's Examinations (John Bale, The Lattre Examinacyon of the worthye servaunt of God mastres Anne Askewe [Marburg, 1547]), Kyme had been previously betrothed to Askew's older sister, Martha, but she died before their wedding took place and Anne was offered as a substitute bride. Askew and Kyme had two children, but the couple became estranged due to her conversion to and proselytizing of the evangelical heresy and his subsequent decision to expel her from their marital home, seemingly in response to pressure from local priests whom she had antagonized (Bale, Lattre Examination [1547], 15r-v). After fruitlessly petitioning for a divorce in the ecclesiastical court in Lincoln, Askew travelled to London, where her sister Jane and brother Edward served at court. There she continued her unsuccessful pursuit of a divorce, this time in the Court of Chancery.

In London, Askew came into contact with prominent evangelicals like Edward Crome, Nicholas Shaxton, Hugh Latimer, David Whitehead, and John Lascelles (with whom she was burned), and it seems she had some sort of contact with either Catherine Parr (Henry VIII's sixth queen) or some of the ladies of her court. It is also possible that she was in contact with the sometime Lollard executed for Anabaptism during Edward VI's reign, Joan Boucher (John Davis, 'Joan of Kent, Lollardy and the English Reformation', Journal of Ecclesiastical History 33 [1982], 231). She was arrested on suspicion of heresy in March 1545 (confirmed by the City of London Record Office Repertory 11, fol. 174v), but then released on bail without indictment after a preliminary hearing before a quest (Grand Jury) and a series of interrogations by the Lord Mayor of London and Edmund Bonner, Bishop of London. According to the Windsor Herald, Charles Wriothesley, she was arraigned in June of 1545, but this arrest and arraignment are not mentioned in the Examinations (Charles Wriothesley, A Chronicle of England during the Reigns of the Tudors: from AD 1485 to 1559, ed. William Douglas Hamilton, 2 vols [London, 1875], 1: 155-56). In June 1546, Askew was summoned before the king's Privy Council at Greenwich (Acts of the Privy Council of England, ed. John Roche Dasent, 46 vols (London, 1890), 1, p. 462), who condemned her under the Act of the Six Articles for denying the real presence of the body and blood of Christ in the bread and wine of the Sacrament of the Altar (article one in the Act of the Six Articles condemned any interpretation of the nature of the sacramental elements other than transubstantiation, and mandated death by burning for a first offense).

Following her condemnation, Askew was illegally tortured in the Tower of London at the hands of two members of King Henry's Privy Council, in an apparent attempt by conservative members of the council to gain information to implicate, as supporters of evangelical reform, female members of Catherine Parr's circle, with whom Askew was thought to be acquainted. According to the description of her torture in the Examinations, Askew was asked, on the rack, about her connections to the Countesses of Suffolk and Hertford, and Ladies Denny and Fitzwilliam; she confessed that two men who had brought her money in prison had told her they were sent by Lady Denny and Lady Hertford, but would say nothing more than that. Crippled from the rack, Askew was burned at Smithfield in London on 16 July 1546, along with three male Protestants, including John Lascelles. Nicholas Shaxton, who had been arrested for his part in counseling Crome against recantation, and who had been arraigned with Askew in June, preached his sermon of recantation at her execution.

The story of Anne Askew is told through two sets of documents, first published by John Bale (along with his own lengthy 'elucidation') as the First Examinacyon and the Lattre Examinacyon of… Mastres Anne Askewe (in 1546 and 1547 respectively). Following the appearance of these first editions of these two texts, the popularity of Askew's story soon led to a demand for more editions. The two Examinations subsequently appeared bound together in three further editions, once with Bale's commentary, in 1547, and twice without it, in 1548 and 1550. Foxe reproduced the Examinations (translated into Latin and without Bale's commentary) in his 1559 Rerum in Ecclesia Gestarum. Another English edition of the two texts, again omitting Bale's elucidation, was produced early in Queen Elizabeth's reign (1560), and the Examinations appear again, shaped by Foxe's editing, in the several editions of the English Acts and Monuments.

The original authorship of these documents is a thorny question. Bale claims that the texts describing Askew's series of examinations, along with various letters and statements of faith included in the Lattre Examination, were written by the woman herself and smuggled out of her prison to him in his exile on the continent, where he received them from merchants (both Examinations were first published from Marburg). But even if this is so, there is no reason to think that anyone but Bale ever saw the original manuscripts used by him, and this includes John Foxe. It has been convincingly argued that Foxe's base text for his Askew account is the 1550 edition of Bale's Examinations (published by William Copland), with both First and Lattre accounts bound into one book without Bale's commentary (See Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah Elizabeth Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1165-96).

Foxe's use of the Askew account has been neglected in modern scholarship in favor of Bale's editing of it, primarily because Bale so explicitly imposed much of his agenda on the account, by virtue of his elucidation. But recently, Foxe's shaping of the account has also come under scrutiny, most significantly by Freeman and Wall. Taking careful note of the fact that it is impossible to determine to what extent Bale wrote or edited the actual text of the Askew Examinations prior to publishing them - and no autographed manuscript has been found of any of the texts attributed to Askew - Freeman and Wall argue that both Bale and Foxe must be considered collaborators in the production of the Askew narrative. They were both its mediators and shapers.

In this respect, Foxe's Examinations of Anne Askew tell the reader as much about his agenda as they do about her experiences. Again, the base text used by Foxe is a 1550 edition of the Examinations in which the two sets of examinations and other texts appear together, without Bale's commentary. But Foxe does not simply reproduce his base text: he makes stylistic and substantive alterations to it (Freeman and Wall, 1176), in the process altering both rhythm and emphases, with a skilled eye to dramatic effect. But Foxe's own editing of the Examinations also changes from edition to edition of his martyrology, first between the Latin Rerum (1559) and his first English edition of the Acts and Monuments (1563), and then, significantly, between first and second (1570) editions of the English work. Perhaps most significant in terms of Foxe's broad framing of the Askew account is the shift of his placement of her account between the first (1563) and second (1570) editions of the English Acts and Monuments, which Freeman and Wall suggest reflect his growing impatience with the progress of the Elizabethan religious reform (Freeman and Wall, 1186-89). Whereas in the 1563 edition of his work Foxe places the Askew account as merely one of a number of stories relevant to the last years of Henry VIII's reign - arranged with 'no apparent order…at all' (Freeman and Wall, 1186) - the 1570 edition sees the development of Askew's account as a 'keystone' for a number of related incidents, reflecting linked themes: resistance to reform by some of Henry VIII's councilors; the responsibility of the monarch to pursue reform regardless of opposition; and the 'disastrous consequences' if the monarch fails to do so, as had Henry (1188). Thus, Askew's story in the 1570 edition, which also sees expanded accounts of her torture and execution, stands as a reminder to Queen Elizabeth of her responsibility to pursue further religious reform - to complete the reformation she had begun - in a context in which it seemed increasingly unlikely that she would do so.

Megan L. HickersonHenderson State University

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Whether or not Bonner implies, here, immoral living on Askew's part, this is how she interprets it, as she shows in her answer. In context, a woman's 'honesty' is her chastity, and her 'conversation' is her moral behavior. In his gloss ('Anne askew standeth upon her honesty') Foxe also suggests that this exchange is about Askew's sexual morality.

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This 'circumstance' (or confession of faith) appears in Bonner's Bishop's Register (Guildhall Library MS 9531/12, 109r) as Foxe reproduces it. Askew's addendum to her signature, as she describes it - 'I Anne Askew do beleve all maner of things conteined in the faith of the catholike church' - is intended to relieve her of any commitment to ideas contained within the confession that actually conflict with her own beliefs. Her use of the word 'catholike' implies 'universal' - or rather, Christ's true universal church, rather than the orthodox church associated with Roman or Henrician 'Catholic' orthodoxy.

It is impossible to ascertain whether or not Askew did sign the confession prepared for her by Bonner in the manner she describes. However, if she wrote the First Examination as part of an exercise also including her authorship of the Lattre - in effect, after the publication of this confession of faith in June 1546 (following her condemnation) - it is likely that she had an interest in denying that she had been apostate in 1545. (See Megan L. Hickerson, '"Ways of Lying": Anne Askew and the Examinations', Gender & History 18 [April 2006], 50-65.)

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Foxe's insertion of Askew's confession as reproduced in Bonner's register (Guildhall Library MS 9531/12, 109r) is intended to serve as proof that Askew did not betray her evangelical faith in 1545. According to Foxe, the preamble to the confession as it appears in the register proves it to be a forgery: it states both that the confession was made in March 1544 (new-style 1545), and that Askew had been arraigned and condemned in open court, which she had not until July 1546. Thus, Foxe argues, the confession was a fraud (see Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1181-82).

However, this is unlikely. Not only does Askew herself (according to the Examinations) twice admit to signing the confession, it is likely that the confession was only copied into Bonner's register a year after it was signed because that is when Askew was condemned to die: in other words, until that point the confession remained a largely private affair, as Bonner had promised Askew, in 1545, that their interaction would remain, but now it was useful to make it public as evidence of Askew's obduracy. The fact of its being publicized in 1546 very likely contributed to Askew's decision to write her self-consciously exculpatory account. (See Megan L. Hickerson, '"Ways of Lying': Anne Askew and the Examinations', Gender & History 18 [April 2006], 50-65.)

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This was illegal.

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This is the end of the text comprising Askew's First Examination in Foxe's base text (Bale's 1550 edition of the Examinations).

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Askew's summons to appear before the Privy Council with her husband Sir Thomas Kyme is recorded in Privy Council records. See Acts of the Privy Council of England, ed. John Roche Dasent, 46 vols (London, 1890), 1: 424, 1: 462).

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In the first two editions of the Lattre Examinations edited by John Bale(both published in 1547), Bale elucidates on this question from the Privy Council by informing his reader of the circumstances of Askew's marriage, as well as offering justification for her pursuit of a divorce. He first explains that Askew was married against her will (following the death of her sister who had been betrothed to Sir Thomas Kyme, Anne's husband). He then argues that she yet 'demeaned her selfe lyke a Christen wyfe', having two children with her husband. However, 'by oft readynge of the sacred Bible', she converted from 'all olde superstycyons of papystrye, to a perfyght beleve in Jhesus Christ'. Having been driven for her faith from her husband's house, he claims, Askew considered herself 'free from that uncomelye kynde of coacted marryage, by thys doctryne of S. Paul 1 Cor. 7. If a faytfull woman have an unbelevynge husbande, whych wyll not tarrye with her, she may leave hym. For a brother or syster is not in subjeccyon to soch, specyallye where as the marryage afore is unlawfull'. Askew sought a divorce for this reason and, 'above all', because of her husband's cruel expulsion of her from their home, 'in despyght of Christes veryte'. She could not, supposes Bale, have considered Kyme 'worthye of her marryage' when he so 'spyghtfullye hated God the chefe autor [sic] of marriage' (Bale, Lattre Examination [1547], 15r-v).

Despite Bale's ability energetically to defend Askew's pursuit of a divorce from Kyme, Foxe's decision to withhold comment himself on Askew's marital problems has been interpreted as reflecting discomfort on his part with this aspect of her story (Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1180).

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The Lord Chancellor (whom Foxe calls Wrisley) will later be identified as one of Askew's torturers.

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A 'quest' is a Grand Jury. The parliamentary act, De Haeretico Comburendo (1401), giving bishops the ability to condemn heretics on their own authority and turn them over to the secular power for burning, had been repealed in 1534 (25 Henry VIII, c. 14). But in 1544 (35 Henry VIII, c. 5) Parliament had further undermined ecclesiastical power (possibly in reaction to the harsh penal code attached to the Act of the Six Articles of 1539, which denied those falling foul of the first article on the Real Presence of the opportunity to recant), by requiring that bishops' proceedings against suspected heretics be preceded by Grand Jury indictment. For this reason Askew's imprisonment following her appearance before the Grand Jury (or 'quest') was technically illegal.

Nevertheless, Common Law and Ecclesiastical courts were still in contention at the time of Askew's arrest over jurisdiction of heresy cases (see Paula McQuade, '"Except that they had offended the Lawe": Gender and Jurisprudence in the Examinations of Anne Askew', Literature & History 3 [1994], 4-6). Bonner, by continuing to hold and interrogate Askew following her appearance before the quest, showed a certain willingness to flout the letter of parliamentary law, but he could certainly have returned her to a second jury had he been so inclined.

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The Bishop of Winchester, Stephen Gardiner, and the Lord Chancellor Thomas Wriothesley will be the main players in the supposed plot against Catherine Parr.

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Both Lisle and Essex were known evangelicals; thus Askew's comment that it was 'great shame for them to counsayle contrary to their knowledge'.

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Askew's retort to Wriothesley, in which she asked 'how long he woulde halt on both sides', does not indicate suspicion of evangelical tendencies on his part. Rather, halting on 'both sides' is a reference to the state of the English Church, which has rid itself of popery, and yet maintains idolatry; is no longer papist, and yet (in the evangelical view) retains the practices and priesthood of Baal. As Bale adds in his elucidation of Askew's words against Wriothesley, 'For all our newe Gospell, yet wyll we styll beare the straungers yoke with the unbelevers, and so become neyther whote nor colde, that God may spewe us out of hys mouth' (Bale, Lattre Examination [1547], 19r-v). For further discussion of this sort of evangelical critique of the Henrician Church, see Alec Ryrie, The Gospel and Henry VIII: Evangelicals in the Early English Reformation (Cambridge, 2003), pp. 132-33.

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Askew's desire to see Hugh Latimer is another indication of her clear familiarity with the prominent evangelicals of her day. When she requested this audience, Latimer had himself recently survived interrogation for counseling Crome against recantation (See Letters & Papers Foreign and Domestic, of the reign of Henry VIII, ed. James Gairdner and R.H. Brodie [London, 1862 1932], I: 823 [14 May 1546].

Askew's illness and request for Latimer's counsel, at this point in her Lattre Examination, has been interpreted as a moment of self-described epiphany modelled on that of Saul of Tarsus (marked by physical suffering), in which she realized her fate and stopped attempting to save herself from condemnation. Her request for Latimer and illness is immediately followed, in the Lattre Examination, by her 'first' confession of her sacramentarian belief denying the Real Presence before the Privy Council, after which she is formally condemned as a heretic. (See Paula McQuade, '"Except that they had offended the Lawe": Gender and Jurisprudence in the Examinations of Anne Askew', Literature & History 3 [1994], 9.) However, Kimberly Coles has contested this view, pointing out that Askew had already, when she asked for Latimer, revealed her heresy to William Paget (Kimberly Anne Coles, 'The Death of the Author [and the Appropriation of her Text]: the Case of Anne Askew's Examinations', Modern Philology 99 [May 2002], 535). (The relevant discussion between Paget and Askew does not appear in Foxe's version of the Examinations. This is possibly because Paget, having survived Henry's reign to retain his office of principal secretary to the king during Edward's, was still too important a man, early in Elizabeth's reign, deliberately to antagonize, but it is more likely that the discussion with Paget was omitted from Foxe's base text. The pages with the Paget discussion on them are glued together in many surviving copies of Bale's 1547 Lattre Examination (p. 21), and it is excised in later editions. As Freeman and Wall point out, Paget was dead by 1570 (he died in 1563), and in the second edition of the Acts and Monuments (1570), Foxe identifies him as having advised Philip and Mary to execute Elizabeth (Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1172-3).

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'Bell' is Ba'al.

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This is an error; as Bale's editions make clear, Askew was condemned without a quest. This is an unfortunate copying error of the part of Foxe's compositor, for in pointing out the illegality of her condemnation according to 35 Henry VIII. c 5, Askew was making an important point. Askew's attention to the relevance of her own case to ongoing jurisdictional disputes between common law and ecclesiastical courts was, as Paula McQuade argues, a 'brilliant strategic move' (see Paula McQuade, '"Except that they had offended the Lawe": Gender and Jurisprudence in the Examinations of Anne Askew', Literature & History 3 [1994], 8).

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Askew's denial of the Real Presence (and thus her heresy according to the Act of the Six Articles) is clear here, but expressed in the context of her denial of the sacrificial nature of the Catholic Mass. For Lutheran-leaning evangelicals and (reformed) sacramentaries alike (who denied the Real Presence altogether), this question of the Mass as a sacrifice was a non-starter: the only propitiatory sacrifice was the one performed by Christ himself at Calvary. Faith alone in that belief provided salvation. In expressing her opinion of the Mass, Askew echoes Crome (as he preached in his infamous 'false' recantation in May 1546): 'a sacrifice it is of thanks gevinng to the only shepherde for his ones afferd offering which hath made a full satisfaccion of all the synnes of them which beleve and cleave to hym by faythe…and it is to us a comemoracion of Chrysts deathe and passion' (British Library MS Harleian 425, 65r-66r; for Crome's 'false' recantations, see Susan Wabuda, 'Equivocation and Recantation during the English Reformation: The "Subtle Shadows" of Dr Edward Crome', Journal of Ecclesiastical History 44 [1993], 224-42).

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Askew is visited by (solicitor-general) Sir Richard Rich of the king's Privy Council and Bonner, the Bishop of London, both of whom try to persuade her to save herself through recantation, as does Nicholas Shaxton, former Bishop of Salisbury, who will preach a sermon of recantation at Askew's execution. Having failed in this effort, Rich sends Askew to the Tower of London, and the story of her infamous and illegal torture begins.

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Prior to putting Askew on the rack, Rich and 'one of the Counsell' - Thomas Wriothesley, Lord Chancellor of England - questioned Askew about the identity of fellow evangelicals, specifically a number of noblewomen of the queen's court. When Askew fails to provide them with incriminating information about 'Ladies or Gentlewomen' of her 'opinion', she is put on the rack, with Wriothesley and Rich eventually racking her with their own hands until, as she put it, she was 'nigh dead'. Following this ordeal, and more discussion with the Lord Chancellor, Askew confirms her faith and accepts death, concluding this part of her account with a farewell to her reader.

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Askew's reference to St Stephen (Acts 7 and 17) - which she will repeat later under examination by Bonner - is a veiled criticism of the doctrine of the Real Presence of Christ's body and blood in the bread and wine of the Sacrament of the Altar. Stephen was stoned to death in part for claiming that God would not be found in temples made with human hands, and Askew interprets this as precluding the possibility that a man (even a priest) could make any vessel or substance 'containing' God. In refusing to explain her position further (or 'throw pealres among swine'), she then draws on Matthew 7, both insulting her questioner but also showing her awareness of the danger she would be in if she answered directly to her belief regarding the Real Presence: according to Matthew 7, Christ teaches, 'Geve not that which is holy/ to doggs/ nether cast ye youre pearles before swyne/ lest they treade them under their fete/ and the other tourne agayne and all to rent you' (William Tyndale, The newe Testament [Antwerp, 1534], ix[v]).

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It is clear that news of Askew's torture was 'reported abroad', as she claims. Otwell Johnson of London wrote, in a letter to his brother, that Askew had received her judgment of the Lord Chancellor, 'to be burned… the gentlewoman and the other man remain steadfast; and yet', he continues, 'she hath been racked since her condemnation (as men say), which is a strange thing in my understanding. The Lord be merciful to us all' (Otwell Johnson to his Brother John Johnson [London, 2 July 1546], Letters & Papers Foreign and Domestic, of the reign of Henry VIII, ed. James Gairdner and R.H. Brodie [London, 1862 1932], XXI, i, 1180).

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This is a reference to the Apostles' Creed.

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Foxe again adds to the information provided by his base text in providing details of Askew's execution. In the 1563 edition (681-82) he describes Askew's crippled state which made it necessary to bring her to the stake in a chair, and portrays her both 'stoutly' resisting Shaxton's attempt to 'make her turn' in the sermon of recantation that he gave at her execution, and refusing even to look at the royal pardon offered to her on condition of her own recantation. Foxe adds to these details in the 1570 edition; it is here that the reader learns the names of those notables in attendance and of Askew's interjections into Shaxton's sermon ('where he sayde well, confirmed the same: where he sayd amysse, there sayd she, he misseth, and speaketh without the book' (1570, p. 1420). It is also in this edition that the reader learns of Askew's response to the offer of a royal pardon - that 'shee came not thither to deny her Lord and Mayster' - and that, as she was offered her pardon first, the men burnt with her followed 'the constancie of the woman' in refusing theirs. Like Askew in the 1563 edition, they 'denyed not onely to receive them, but also to looke upon them'.

Foxe's source for this additional information remains uncertain, but it is likely that this material came from eyewitnesses to her death, and Freeman and Wall suggest, as a source, Francis Russell, the second Earl of Bedford. As they note, Russell had provided Foxe with other information and documents for the 1570 edition of the Acts and Monuments, and John Russell, his father, was seated at the execution with Wriothelsey and other notables. It is possible that Francis, a young man at the time, was with his father at the execution. (See Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1185).

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John Lascelles's letter is not included in the Bale editions of the Examinations.

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Askew's answer here implies that her responsibility for properly 'receiving' the blood and body of Christ is her own - the efficacy of the sacrament, or rather her receipt of it - has nothing to do with the condition of the priest ministering to her, as she will reiterate later before Bonner. This was controversial, since according to orthodox doctrine the transformation of the bread and wine into Christ's body and blood depended not on the condition of the recipient of the elements, nor on the moral condition of the priest, but on the priest's ordination. Askew implies a view essentially undermining the position of the Church in standing as mediator between her and God.

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The King's Book, or A Necessary Doctrine and Erudition for Any Christian Man, published in 1543, is a comprehensive statement of English Church doctrine, called the King's Book due to Henry VIII's apparent enthusiasm for its contents. It is often considered part of a conservative "backlash" characterizing the Henrician 1540s, working hand in glove with the Act of the Six Articles (1539) and the Act for the Advancement of True Religion (1543) in this respect, and can be seen as an expression of Henrician religious conservatism. The notable exception to this is the King's Book's dismissive treatment of purgatory, although it nevertheless confirms the efficacy of Private Masses said for the dead. Despite Askew's claim never to have read the King's Book, that does not necessarily mean that she was unaware of its contents (see Megan L. Hickerson, 'Negotiating Heresy in Tudor England: Anne Askew and the Bishop of London', JBS 46 [October 2007], 784-86).

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In refusing to speak to the priest sent to Askew by Christopher Dare, Askew's means of discrediting him is interesting. According to recent scholarship on the negotiation of the reformation between Henry VIII and his subjects, the appropriation of anti-papal language was at the heart of the complicity of the people of England in the break with Rome (including those both doctrinally orthodox and evangelical); indeed, anti-papism served as a conduit for the movement from Henrician Catholicism to acquiescence in the Edwardian reformation project (see Ethan Shagan, Popular Politics and the English Reformation [Cambridge, 2003]). In this instance, by calling the priest a papist, Askew was essentially drawing attention to herself as an obedient subject while refusing to speak with one of the king's priests, in the process both rhetorically aligning herself with the royal supremacy and casting doctrinal orthodoxy as itself subversive in being 'papist'.

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The issue of private masses (masses sung for the dead in Purgatory) was a fraught one in the 1540s. The fifth article of the Act of the Six Articles (1539) directs that private masses 'be contynued and admytted', and while the King's Book of 1543 all but dismisses the existence of Purgatory, it also advocates for the efficacy of Private Masses. However, Askew's answer to Dare's question here is of particular interest, because she addresses an issue not actually raised by her interrogator - the sacrificial nature of the mass itself. Dare asks Askew about the effect of private masses on the dead, but in her answer, Askew moves beyond his question, by contrasting private masses in efficacy to the 'deathe whych Christe dyed'. Thus she brings into question the dangerous issue of the nature of the Mass as an efficacious performance of Christ's propitiatory sacrifice on the Cross.

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The identity of the lord mayor interviewing Askew is unclear. Archdeacon John Louth, in a letter to John Foxe written many years after Askew's death (British Library MS Harleian 425, 142r-143r), identified him as Martin Bowes, Lord Mayor from October 1545 to October 1546, but this identification brings into question the dating of Askew's first examination, which she states is March 1545. If Askew was using old-style dating (with the calendar year ending on March 25), then Louth's identification could be considered sound; however, as Elaine Beilin points out in her introduction to The Examinations of Anne Askew, Louth seems to confuse the events of the first and second examinations in other ways - by placing Askew's interview with Bowes in Tower of London rather than in the Guildhall, and by placing Bowes with the Privy Council. Thus, Beilin concludes, Bowes might have actually participated in the events of the Lattre Examination, rather than the First (Elaine Beilin (ed.), The Examinations of Anne Askew [Oxford, 1996], xxi-xxii).

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Proclamation of 1546

Henry VIII's 'streight & cruell proclamation…' had been issued on 8 July 1546 and printed by Berthelet as A proclamation deuised by the kinges hyghnes, with thaduise of his most honorable counsell, to auoide and abolish suche englishe bookes, as conteine pernicious and detestable errours and heresies made the .viii. daye of Iuly, the .xxxviii. yere of the kynges maiesties most gracious reigne (London, 1546) - STC 7809). The circular letter abolishing holy days was not notices by the editors of the Letters and Papers, and may well have been taken from one or other of the bishop's registers to which Foxe had access. Anne Askew's story is taken mainly from John Bale, The lattre examinacyon of Anne Askewe latelye martyred in Smythfelde, by the wycked Synagoge of Antichrist, with the Elucydacyon of Iohan Bale. ('Imprented at Marpurg in the lande of Hessen' - i.e. Wesel, n.d. [1546]) - STC 850. The source of the 'publicke instrument' issued in the name of William Warham is Warham's register (full publication details….p. 188 et seq), from whence it was printed by David Wilkins (Concilia Magnæ Britanniæ et Hiberniæ : a synodo verolamiensi A.D. CCCC XLVI. ad londinensem A.D. M DCCXVII. Accedunt constitutiones et alia [London, 1737], p. 727). The list of heresies gathered out of Tyndale's works appears to be Foxe's own composition from a variety of sources. William Tyndale, The parable of the wycked mammon Compiled in the yere of our lorde .M.d.xxxvi (London: John Daye, 1547) - STC 24457 had been published by the publisher of the Acts and Monuments itself. William Tyndale's The obedie[n]ce of a Christen man and how Christe[n] rulers ought to governe, where in also (if thou marke diligently) thou shalt fynde eyes to perceave the crafty conveyance of all iugglers ('At Marlborow in the la[n]de of Hesse' [i.e. Antwerp], n.d. [1528]) - STC 24446 is also readily identifiable. John Frith's A pistle to the Christen reader The revelation of Antichrist. Antithesis, wherin are compared to geder Christes actes and oure holye father the Popes ('At Marlborow in the lande of Hesse' [i.e. Antwerp]: 'Hans Luft' [i.e. Johannes Hoochstraten], n.d. [1529]) - STC 11394 was a literal and unsophisticated translation by John Frith of Martin Luther's tract Ad Librum Magistri Nostri Magistri Ambrosii Catharine…..Responsio…cum exposita Visione Danielis viii. De Antichristo of 1521, omitting Luther's address and valediction but introducing a commentary on Daniel 8 in the preface by Frith in which theantithesis of the ways of Antichrist and Christ (as indicated in the title) is a summary of the exegesis. Foxe's marginal note 'Ex Gil Genebrardo' is something of a mystery. For Foxe's sources for the history of the early reformation in Scotland, see Thomas S. Freeman, 'Foxe, Winram and the Martyrs of the Scottish Reformation' in Sixteenth Century Journal 27 (1996), pp. 23-46. King Henry VIII's brief to Bonner appears to be taken from his register, although there is also a copy of it in BL Add MS 38656 at fol 3b.

David LoadesHonorary Research Fellow,
University of Sheffield

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Matthew 16:18

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John 1:42.

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Genesis 17:5.

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Matthew 27:69 and parallels.

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John 21:15-17

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I Peter 5:2.

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Luke 17:10

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Isaiah 64:6

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Matthew 25:1-13.

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Colossians 1:24.

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Hebrews 13:4

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I Corinthians 7:2.

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I Timothy 3:2, 12.

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I Timothy 4:3.

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John 2:1-10.

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I Corinthians 9:5.

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John 11:49-51.

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John 10:7.

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This account of the articles against Sir John Borthwick (on whom see ODNB), and his replies to them, first appeared in the 1559 Rerum in ecclesia gestarum, then in 1563, was dropped in 1570 and 1576 and reinstated in 1583. This odd history in part speaks to Foxe's enthusiasm for Scottish material. Borthwick was scarcely an obvious candidate for inclusion in the Acts and Monument - he was not only not a martyr, but had not even been interrogated or imprisoned, merely tried in absentia - but with a dearth of Scottish evidence, he provided one of the few substantive accounts available to Foxe. The articles themselves he may have taken from one of his main sources - Edward Hall and Richard Grafton, The vnion of the two noble and illustrate famelies of Lancastre & Yorke (STC 12721: London, 1548), part II, fos. 245v-247r - but Borthwick's reply is otherwise unattested. The interleaving of the reply with the articles is slightly misleading, for Borthwick was tried in absentia and his comments on the articles were written at leisure, from a safe distance and - as his answer to the fourth article makes plain - some years after the event. All Foxe tells us is that this material was provided for him 'by the help of a certayne frend of mine'. Borthwick himself was in exile in Geneva from 1554-58, and it is perfectly possible that he provided this material to Foxe directly: if not, they certainly shared many acquaintances in the Anglo-Scottish exile community.

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John 4:23.

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Hebrews 10:12-14.

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John 19:30.

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I Corinthians 1:30.

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Numbers 18:20.

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Luke 9:46; 22:24-26.

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Luke 12:13-14.

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John 8:11.

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Daniel 14:22; I Kings 18:40.

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Joshua 23:6.

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In fact, Borthwick did not appear to answer this summons. Having been forewarned, he fled to England.

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Deuteronomy 12:32.

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Deuteronomy 30:15-16.

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Deuteronomy 17:11.

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Malachi 2:4, 6

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Ezekiel 33:7.

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Jeremiah 23:28.

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Matthew 28:19-20

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II Corinthians 1:24.

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Romans 10:17.

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John 7:16.

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John Winram was Foxe's likely informant for much of his Scottish material in 1570 and subsequent editions.

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Acts 15:19-29

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Acts 15:10.

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Matthew 23:2-3.

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Isaiah 5:20-1.

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II Kings 23.

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'Hermann Bodius' (ps.: possibly Martin Bucer or Johannes Oecolampadius), Unio Dissidentium (Cologne, 1522) was a collection of patristic sentences intended to demonstrate the Church Fathers' congruence with evangelical thought. It went through over a dozen editions in several languages by the mid-1530s and was widely influential. An English translation was prepared by William Turner, probably in the 1530s.

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Acts 15:6-22

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This account of George Wishart's trial, which is the only text relating to Scotland to appear unchanged in all four early editions of the Acts and Monuments, is taken verbatim and in its entirety from David Lindsay, The tragical death of Dauid Beaton Bishoppe of sainct Andrewes in Scotland. Whereunto is ioyned the martyrdom of maister George Wyseharte gentleman (STC 15683: London, 1548?), sigs. C7v-F6r. Foxe was presumably introduced to this tract by John Day, who printed both it and the Acts and Monuments. Freeman, '"The reik of Maister Patrik Hammyltoun"', p. 46.

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The parable of the wheat and the tares: Matthew 13:24-30.

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Titus 1:7.

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That is, since his return from England in 1543 or 1544.

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A statement reflecting the fact that, while the earl of Arran remained governor in name, Cardinal Beaton dominated Scotland's government in fact. Arran was suspected to be a friend of evangelicals, if not actually one himself: hence Wishart's appeal.

1563 Edition, page 705[Back to Top]

I Peter 5:1-2

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Acts 5:29.

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Malachi 2:2.

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Psalm 32:5.

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James 5:16.

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Revelation 1:6; 5:10.

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I Peter 2:9.

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Romans 1:16.

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John 8:34, 36.

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Titus 1:15.

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A deliberate echo of Matthew 27:65 and parallels.

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Likely a reference to Numbers 11:28-9.

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John 10:7-10.

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Matthew 19:12.

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I Kings 8:27.

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Job 11:8-9.

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John 16:2.

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John Winram, who had preached earlier in the day and who was later to be Foxe's informant for much of his other Scottish material.

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Acts 8:14.

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Death of Henry VIII

Foxe completely rewrote his conclusion of Henry VIII's reign between his 1563 and 1570 editions. (Interestingly, Foxe said nothing about the death of the king, nor did he offer final thoughts on his reign, in the Rerum). In 1563, Foxe began with thoughts on the futility of persecution and then procceeded to remark on the importance of good councillors to guide a monarch. He claimed that Anne Boleyn, Thomas Cromwell, Archbishop Cranmer, Sir Anthony Denny (the Chief Gentleman of the Privy Chamber) and Dr. William Butts, Henry's physician, were able to often guide Henry into serving the True Church. (Although only Cromwell and Cranmer could qualify as royal councillors in the strictest sense of the word, most scholars are agreed in seeing Anne Boleyn, Butts and Denny as both staunch evangelicals and individuals with considerable personal access to Henry which these used to further evangelical causes). Foxe then bewailed the increasing loss of influence that these good councillors had on Henry, and opined that Henry, goaded on by his bishops, would have continued persecuting the True Church, had his reign not been cut short by his death (1563, pp. 681-2). Foxe then described how the persecutions of Henry VIII's reign led many prominent evangelicals to recant, even though they later served God and even, in some cases, suffered martyrdom.

In 1570, Foxe dropped all of this material. There were three basic reasons for this. The first is that Foxe had acquired important new information about the death of Henry VIII and the monarch's attitudes toward religion in general, and Stephen Gardiner in particular, at the time of his death. Even a cursory glance through this material indicates that - unless Foxe invented these anecdotes - the source for this was Cranmer. Since we know that Ralph Morrice, Cranmer's secretary supplied Foxe with material for the 1570 edition, it would seem reasonable to infer that he was Foxe's source for these narratives as well. Moreover, Morrice is cited by Foxe as his informant (Morrice having heard Sir Anthony Denny relate it to Cranmer) for the famous anecdote of Henry declaring that he eliminated Stephen Gardiner from the list of executors to his will, because the king believed that the other executors would not be able to control Gardiner as he had done.

But Foxe also eliminated the previous account because his views on Elizabeth I had changed and this affected his treatment of Henry. As Foxe grew impatient with the failure of Elizabeth to reform the English Church, he omitted his strictures on the need for good counsel and also the relatively benign portrait of Henry with which he had closed Book 8 in his first edition (in the 1563 edition, Foxe claims that only death prevented Henry from launching a more severe persecution of evangelicals. In the 1570 edition, he dropped this material and replaced it with an account of how Henry VIII was on the brink of sweeping evangelical reforms when he died.). This was replaced by an account which was much more critical of Henry for failing to complete the Reformation he had begun and which also implicitly suggested that it was Elizabeth's duty to finish the final uprooting of Catholicism begun by her father and brother.

Thomas S. Freeman

1563 Edition, page 738[Back to Top]

Notice that in this conclusion, printed in the 1563 edition, Foxe claims that only death prevented Henry from launching a more severe persecution of evangelicals. In the 1570 edition, he dropped this material and replaced it with an account of how Henry VIII was on the brink of sweeping evangelical reforms when he died.

1563 Edition, page 738[Back to Top]

This section listing prominent evangelicals who recanted during the reign of Henry VIII was dropped from the 1570 edition. This change reflects an increasing determination by Foxe, in reaction to Catholic attacks on Protestant 'pseudo-martyrs' to conceal details which presented evangelical and Protestant martyrs as less than irreproachable paragons of virtue.

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Sir Anthony Denny was the Chief Gentleman of the Privy Chamber and thus in charge of the attendants who waited on the king.

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Henry VIII died on 28 January 1547.

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Egbert and his successors

In the 1563 edition of the martyrology, Foxe's periodisation had been presented with stark clarity. The period before 1033 corresponded to 'the third age of the Church' 'where vpon cometh the latter age of the church. Here nowe beginneth the fresh flouring blud of the churche to fainte and strength to defaile, opprest with cold humors of worldly pompe, auarice, & tiranny. Here nowe commeth in blinde superstityon with cloked hipocrisye, armed with rigorous lawes, and cruell murderinge of sainctes' (1563, p. 10). By the 1570 edition, however, the 'third age of the church' had become a whole book - 'the thirde booke conteynyng the next 300 yeares, from the reigne of K. Egbertus to the time of W. Conquerour'. Foxe's preferred form of structuring his material was the 'compendium', or 'table'. He put it to good use in this passage, placing in sequence a 'table of the Saxone kinges', defined as those who 'ruled alone', and then later (albeit not in tabular form) a list of the holders of the papal see. His table of the Saxon rulers was one which he appears to have compiled himself, albeit drawing material from Fabian's Chronicle (which has a different table), Henry of Huntingdon's Chronicle, lib. 5, ch. 3 and lib. 6, ch. 4 (which has the same list, but with different lengths of the reigns), and the Polychronicon, lib 5 (cap. 333).

His subsequent material on King Egbert was drawn from Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 152-8), with likely additions from Roger of Howden's Chronicle (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 2 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, pp. 26-33). The material on King Ethelwolf came from Fabian's Chronicle, book 6, ch. 152) with the addition of the Charter ('The priuileges and donations geuen by king Ethelwulfus to the clergie') which Foxe abstracted from the Flores Historiarum. The latter was, of course, even more readily available to Foxe by the time of the 1570 edition because it had been published under the auspices of Matthew Parker (Elegans, illustris et facilis rerum, præsertim Britannicarum et aliarum obiter, notatu dignarum, a mundi exordio ad annum Domini, 1307 narratio, quam Matthæus Westmonasteriensis ... Flores Historiarum scripsit, [London, 1567]) - see H. R. Luard, ed. Flores Historiarum 3 vols (London: Rolls Series, 1890), 1, p. 423-6. Foxe emphasised the point of included this text in his own interpolation: 'Hereby may it appeare, how & when the churches of England, begamn first to be indued with temporalities & landes: also with priuilegies and exemptions enlarged'. The passage on Louis the Pius, tucked in the middle of the history of King Ethelwulf, comes from Ranulph Higden's 'Polychronicon' (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], lib 5, cap. 29), Fabyan's Chronicle, lib. 6, ch. 160-161. R. A. B. Mynors, ed. William of Malmesbury. Gesta Regum Anglorum Vol. 1 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998), lib. 2, cap. 108; D. Prest, ed. William of Malmesbury: The Deeds of the Bishops of England (Gesta Pontifiicum Anglorum) (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002), lib 2, pp. 160-1.

The pontifical list that closes the section comes exclusively from John Bale's Catalogus (J. Bale, Illustrium Maioris Britanniæ scriptorum, hoc est, Angliæ, Cambriæ, ac Scotiæ summarium in quasdam centurias diuisum, cum diuersitate doctrinarum atque [...] 2 vols (Basel: Oporinus, 1557-9), pp. 114-8. Bale's - and Foxe's - interest in the mythical Pope Joan has been further explored by this project in T. S. Freeman, 'Joan of Contention. The myth of the Female Pope in Early-Modern England.' In Religious Politics in Post-Reformation England: essays in honour of Nicholas Tyacke, ed. by Kenneth Kincham and Peter Lake (Woodbridge: Boydell and Brewer, 2006), ch. 4.

As presented in the 1570 edition, Foxe's text did not substantially change in the subsequent editions.

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

1570 Edition, page 193 | 1576 Edition, page 160 | 1583 Edition, page 158[Back to Top]
Ulrich of Augsberg letter

This letter is reprinted from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 101-9. During the eleventh century, letters were composed under the name of the revered and relatively recently deceased St. Ulric, a tenth-century bishop of Augsburg. The purpose of these was to provide a historical (or pseudo-historical) justification for the marriage of priests. These letters were widely disseminated throughout Europe and accepted as genuine writings of St. Ulric. (See 'Pseudo-Udalrici epistola de continentia clericorum', ed. L von Heineman in Libelli de lite Imperatorum et Pontificum Saeculis 11-12, I, pp. 255-60 (Monumenta Germaniae Historia) and E. Frauenknecht, Die Verteidigung der Priesterehe in der Reformzeit (Hanover, 1997), pp. 70, 176-80 and 303-15). In the fifteenth century, the humanist scholar Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini (later Pope Pius II) came across one of these letters and described it as denunciation of clerical celibacy written by St. Ulric. Piccolomini's description of the letter brought it back into prominence and it was seized upon by Protestants. The letter was printed both by Luther and Robert Barnes. (See Catherine Hall, 'The One-Way Trail: Some Observations on CCC MS 101 and G&CC MS 427', Transactions of the Cambridge Bibliographic Society 11 [1998], p. 276). In 1556, Matthias Flacius printed the letter and identified Ulric as the author and Pope Nicholas I as the recipient (Catalogus testium veritatis [Basel, 1556], pp. 101-9).

Bale, following Flacius, referred to the letter as the work of St. Ulric in his Scriptorum Illustrium maioris Brytanniae…Catalogus (Basel, 1557), p. 118. Yet in a letter to Matthew Parker of 30 July 1560, Bale stated that he, Barnes and other scholars had been 'foully deceyved' by Picclomini's attribution of the letter to Ulric. Now Bale postulated that the letter had been written by a Bishop Gulderic of Utrecht. (CUL MS Add 7489, fo. 4r - NB the Latin for Ulric is Uldericus or Huldericus). What had changed Bale's mind? Almost certainly it was the Catholic polemicist Frederic Staphylus, who pointed out in 1559, that Nicholas I and St. Ulric were not contemporaries. (Ulric was bishop of Augsburg from 924-73 while Nicholas I was pope from 858-67). On this basis, Staphylus denounced the letter as a forgery (Fredericus Staphylus, Defensio pro trimembri theologica M. Lutheri contra aedificationes Babylonicae turris [Augsburg, 1559], sigs. b4r-C1r). Apparently Staphylus's uncomfortably accurate observation inspired Bale to come up with his identification of Bishop Guldericus of Utrecht as the real author of the letter. Unfortunately there was no bishop named Guldericus in Utrecht in the relevant time period. However, sometime between his letter to Parker and his death, Bale discovered a manuscript which had belonged to the monastery of St. Augustine's, Canterbury and is now Gonville and Caius MS 427 (Hall, 'One-way trail', p. 274). This manuscript contained copies of two letters, both supporting clerical marriage and both attributed to the fictitious Bishop Volusianus of Carthage. The first of these letters was the one that Picclomini had discovered and Flacius had printed, and which both scholars had attributed to Ulric. Bale triumphantly concluded that the letters that he had found were both authentic and both written by Volusianus. Bale also, as Foxe declared, gave the manuscript to Matthew Parker (1570, p. 1320). Parker, however, did not do anything with Bale's discovrery for a number of years and Foxe apparently did not know of it. Instead, Foxe reprinted Flacius's version of the letter, with a translation, in the 1563 edition, attributing it to Ulric (1563, pp. 385-88). Unfortunately, in subsequent editions of the A&M, the Flacius version of the letter continued to be reprinted and atrtributed to Ulric (C 42/1), creating considerable confusion. In 1566, Nicholas Harpsfield repeated Staphylus's criticisms (Nicholas Harpsfield, Dialogi sex [Antwerp, 1566], pp. 146-52). Apparently in response to this, Parker had the pseudo-Volusianus letters printed from the manuscript Bale had given him (Epistolae duae D. Volusiani…[London, 1569], STC 24872). At first Foxe seems to have been unaware of the letters attributed to Volusianus when he began the 1570 edition, since he reprinted the letter attributed to Ulric from Flacius. But Parker eventually loaned Foxe Bale's manuscript of the two letters (C 233/132) and Foxe included them in the A&M. He also referred the reader back to his earlier translation of the first letter and supplied his own translation of the second letter. And, where Bale and Parker maintained that the letters were sent to Nicolas I, Foxe argued that they were sent to Nicholas II.

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The Danish Invasions to Alfred the Great

This section of Foxe's narrative was added in the 1570 edition, and then not subsequently altered in succeeding editions. It was a compendium from various sources, piecing together the history of the early invasions of the Danes from 852 onwards, through the reigns of the Saxon kings Ethelbald, Ethelbright and Ethelred I, to that of King Alfred. Foxe's brief excursion into the narrative of the early Danish invasions is evident from the lengthy quotation from a 'certain old written story, which hath no name', which the marginal gloss cites as 'ex vetusto exemplo histoiae Carianae W.C. 1', and which Foxe almost certainly gleaned from the Flores Historiarum, which had recently been published under the auspices of Matthew Parker (Elegans, illustris et facilis rerum, præsertim Britannicarum et aliarum obiter, notatu dignarum, a mundi exordio ad annum Domini, 1307 narratio, quam Matthæus Westmonasteriensis ... Flores Historiarum scripsit, [London, 1567]) - see H. R. Luard, ed. Matthew Paris. Flores Historiarum 3 vols (London: Rolls Series, 1890), 1, pp. 416-7. Foxe added a gloss of his own to the passage in order to make the point clear, emphasizing that the Danish invasions were God's vengeance for the 'wickedness' of the Britons in originally resisting Christianity, 'wherefore Gods just recompense falling vpon them, from that time neuer suffered them to be quiet from foreign enemies, till the commyng of William the Normand conqueror'. Thereafter, Foxe's account of Danish barbarity come 'ex histories Iornalens', i.e. from the chronicle attributed to John Brompton, abbot of Jervaulx (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], pp. 802-4. The account of the reign of Kinh Ethelbald comes largely from Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, chapters 169-70). Foxe elaborated somewhat on the persecution and martyrdom of St Edmund, 'underking' of the East Angles, an avatar of things to come in his narrative. Here, besides Fabian (lib. 6, cap. 169) he also used Roger of Howden (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 2 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, p. 39), John Brompton (op.cit., p. 805) and William of Malmesbury (R. A. B. Mynors, ed. William of Malmesbury. Gesta Regum Anglorum Vol. 1 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998), lib. 2, cap. 112).

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

1570 Edition, page 198 | 1576 Edition, page 164 | 1583 Edition, page 162[Back to Top]

When it came to enumerating the 'vertues & godly lyfe' of King Alfred in this passage, Foxe expanded on his sources to include Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 171) and Ranulph Higden's 'Polychronicon' (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 1).

1570 Edition, page 202 | 1576 Edition, page 168 | 1583 Edition, page 166[Back to Top]

For this passage, relating Alfred's struggle with, and eventual cure of the 'ficus' (hemorrhoids), Foxe relied on the account in Ranulph Higden's 'Polychronicon' (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 1, p. 357). In Asser's 'Life of Alfred', the affliction was presented as a divine reward to the king to help him to resist carnal desire

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Foxe's account of King Alfred's generous, but carefully distributed patronage, his use of his time, and his role as a legislator relied mainly on the Ranulph Higden's 'Polychronicon' (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 1, pp. 361-3), supplemented by William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin 2 vols. (London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880), 1, book 2, ch. 123, pp. 194-5), with some addition from John of Brompton's Chronicle ('Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden (London, 1652), pp. 814.

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Foxe's lengthiest passage on King Alfred was, not surprisingly, devoted to his patronage of letters. It reflected his own commitment to the humanist project to associate political virtue with an educational and literary renaissance. This is the context in which one must read the passage: 'But this we may see, what it is to haue a prince learned him selfe, who feling and tasting the price & value of science and knowledge: is theby not only the more apte to rule, but also to enstructe and frame his subiectes, from a rude barbaritie, to a more ciuile congruencie of life, and to a better vnderstanding of thinges'. Foxe's sources here expanded appropriately to include his base-text, which was William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum ((J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin 2 vols. (London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880), 1, book 2, chs. 122-3 (esp. p. 194), elaborated with reference to John of Brompton's Chronicle ('Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden (London, 1652), p. 814). The latter had mentioned Bede as his source, and Foxe confirms that account with a full and accurate reference (Bede, book 3, ch. 18). In addition, there were additions from Ranulph Higden's 'Polychronicon' (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 1, p. 358) and a longer passage from Roger of Howden (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, p. 41; 50). Fabian's Chronicle is used to provide the reference to Alfred's foundation of the school at Oxford (book 6, ch. 171). The brief material on Johannes Scotus comes largely from Howden (1, pp. 46-7) but with Scotus' character and epitaph taken from Malmesbury's 'Gesta Regum' (book 2, ch. 122).

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For the death of Alfred, Foxe used as his main source John Brompton's 'Chronicle' (p. 818) and Roger Howden (p. 41; 50), supplemented (perhaps) by Matthew Paris' Flores (1, pp. 446; 477).

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The final epitaphs to the king were 'left in auncient writing' as part of Foxe's (perhaps unconscious) strategy of laying claims to truth by presenting the reader with the evidence in its most 'raw', and therefore 'pristine' state. The source for the first epitaph, with its interesting stoic overtones, was taken from the Parker manuscript of the Life of Asser. Foxe's citation differs somewhat from that in the printed edition, though it must have come from the same manuscript, suggesting he had not advance sight of any transcript copy of that publication. It is not to be found elsewhere. The second epitaph, Foxe had found in Henry of Huntington's Chronicle ((T. Arnold, ed. Henry of Huntingdon. Henrici Huntendunensis Historia Anglorum, the History of the English, by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 5, ch. 13). It had also appeared in the 'Polychronicon' (book 6, ch. 3) but Foxe clearly took it from Huntingdon. It had originated in Asser's 'Life', and the Parker/Joscelyn publication of the latter in 1574 noted the cross-reference to Huntingdon (p. 35).

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Alfred the Great

Foxe's expansion of the 'third age of the church' in the 1563 edition into book three of the 1570 edition had provided a summary regnal list of Saxon kings. But he could hardly let King Alfred be consigned just to a table. His decision to provide a lengthy account of the heroic royal virtues of King Alfred stands in the contemporary tradition of the literature of the 'mirror for princes'. His 'notable knowledge of good letters' joined to his 'feruent loue & princely desire to set forth the same through all his realme', joined with his 'heroical properties' offered a moral example that was, says Foxe somewhat tartly, 'seldome seene in Princes now adaies'. Behind the good example, however, Foxe also wanted to emphasise how it was the secular power of the Saxon rulers which had most stood out against the barbarities of the Danes on the one hand, and the increasingly pervasive and corrupting influence of the Roman church on the other.

He constructed his appreciation of Alfred the Great without, however, making anything but a solitary, passing reference to Asser's 'Life'. The earliest manuscript of this source (BL Cotton MS Otho A xii) was unfortunately destroyed in the Cotton fire of 1731 and now only survives in the form of a few partial copies, and a transcript, made by someone in Matthew Parker's service, probably John Joscelyn, (Corpus Christ College, Cambridge MS 100), which was probably the basis for the publication of the text under his aegis in 1574 (Aelfredi Regis res Gestæ). The text had only recently been discovered when Foxe was writing in 1570, and he may have been uncertain of its worth. There has certainly been a debate among modern Anglo-Saxon historians as to its authenticity (see Alfred Smyth, The Medieval life of King Alfred the Great […] [Basingstoke, 2002]). The only element in Foxe's narrative which comes unambiguously from Asser is an oration, but which may have been abstracted for him by someone in Parker's service. Asser's 'Life' certainly does not impinge on his narrative in a significant fashion.

If he did not make much use of Asser's 'Life', Foxe certainly seems to have attempted to cast his net widely and critically for sources. In these first paragraphs, he followed his familiar practice of taking one source and working outwards from it. In this instance, it was Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, chs 171-3). Fabian had already mentioned that he had used Geoffrey of Monmouth, William of Malmesbury's 'Gesta Regum' and Ranulph Higden's 'Polychronicon'. Foxe perhaps checked up on that. But he apparently went further, too, adding: 'the lattyne histories of Reger Hoveden and Huntingdon: whom Fabian also semeth in this part somwat to folow'. Certainly in the case of the story of the taking of Alfred's crown to Pope Leo, Foxe must have taken the lead from Fabian and followed his source back to the 'Polychronicon', from which he would have found the specific mention of Pope Leo and a reference to Henry Huntingdon (T. Arnold, ed. Henry of Huntingdon. Henrici Huntendunensis Historia Anglorum, the History of the English, by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], from which Foxe picked up other material as well at this point. We would also have been sent on to William of Malmesbury's 'Gesta Regum' at this point, from which Foxe fillets in some other details (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin (London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880), book 2, ch. 121). There was also a brief, but significant addition directly from Roger Howden's 'Chronicle' on the slaying of Iguar and Hubba (independent of any of his other sources for this passage). In sum, this passage is one upon which Foxe expended a good deal of careful attention.

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

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Papal Schisms

The purpose of this passage, articulated first by Foxe in the 1570 edition and headed 'sedition among popes' is not difficult to discern. Through the murky and brutal politics of the ninth and tenth-century papacy ('these monstruous matters of Rome'), Foxe sought to provide a historically incontrovertible case against the 'character indelebilis' or 'indelible mark' of priestly ordination, in the case of the papacy sometimes elevated by high Papal theorists of the central Middle Ages into a charism of infallibility, reinforced by the unbroken succession to the see of St Peter (Brian Tierney, Origins of Papal Infallibility 1150-1350 [Leiden, 1972]). Already in the 1563 edition (1563, p. 1) Foxe had singled out the exceptional and extraordinary nature of what occurred in the pontificate of Pope Stephen VI, who (in the so-called 'Cadaver Synod') declared all the actions of his predecessor, Pope Formosus I to be null and void, including the priests which he ordained. In the 1570 edition, he followed the papal succession as laid out in Bale's Catalogus (pp. 119-122) but (in the case of Formosus and Stephen VI) supplemented it with material from the 'Chronologia' of Sigbert of Gembloux (Sibebertus Gemblacensis, Chronicon sive Chronologia) which was a widely-known and cited source for the history of the central Middle Ages, and which had been first published in Paris in 1513. Foxe may have known it, however, from the edition published in 1566 (Germanicarum rerum quatuor celebriores vetustioresque chronographi […] [Frankfurt, 1566]). He appears also to have confirmed the information by consulting Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879]. For further information on Foxe's treatment of the history of the papacy, see the important prefatory essay to this edition by Thomas S. Freeman, ['"St Peter Did not Do Thus": Papal History in the Acts and Monuments'].

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

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Foxe's use of his sources here was quite rich. In addition to Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], p. 831), the first few sentences come directly from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin (London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880), book 2, ch. 125). He also may have cross-referenced to Matthew Paris' Flores (H. R. Luard, ed. Matthew Paris. Flores Historiarum 3 vols [London: Rolls Series, 1890], 1, p. 478) and Henry Huntingdon's Chronicle (T. Arnold, ed. Henry of Huntingdon. Henrici Huntendunensis Historia Anglorum, the History of the English, by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 5, ch. 14).

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The introduction of the monastic rule of St Benedict into England could have come from a variety of sources, including the manuscript formerly belonging to William Carye. At least part of it comes from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 3, chs. 114-5. But the polemical element in Foxe's account no doubt was drawn from Bale's Catalogus (p. 131) or the English Votaries (pp. 77-8).

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Foxe's account of Dunstan comes initially from Bale's Catalogus, p. 137, but it was supplemented with additional details from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], book 2, ch. 145.

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Foxe's account of Odo, Archbishop of Canterbury (including his epistle to the clergy), comes from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 1, ch. 14, p. 27). However, Foxe varied it with some alternative phrases on the battle from the Polychronicon (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 6).

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Foxe's account of the death of King Edmund and the summary of the reign of King Edwin comes mainly from John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], pp. 858; 862-3, with additions from Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, chs 189; 192).

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Foxe's sources for the reign of King Ethelstan were less plentiful. He used John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden (London, 1652), p. 837) and supplemented it with William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], book 2, ch. 131). The Latin charter relating the death of Duke Elfred as God's punishment for perjury comes from the same source (ch. 137).

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Foxe's description of the victory of King Ethelstan over Constantine, King of the Scots, with the narrative of the former arriving in York and slicing a stone with his source, comes initially from Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 184) which itself cites the Polychronicon (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 6. Foxe had apparently checked his other sources for this story, finding it in Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], p. 838). Bale's Catalogus (pp. 126-7) had mentioned it but here is an example of where Foxe delves deeper, and examines the sources more closely.by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 5, ch. 14).

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Foxe is prepare to admit that many of his sources narrate the story of how Bristanus becomes Bishop of Wonchester and hears souls praying 'amen'. He had found it in Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], p. 838); William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 2, ch. 24; and the Polychronicon (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 6). It had been mentioned in Bale's Catalogus (p. 127) but Foxe gives more detail, if only to denounce the story as a 'fable'.

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Foxe had gained most of his details on the Battle of Brimanbruch from Roger Howden's Chronicle (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series (London, 1868), 6, p. 54) or from Fabyan's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 184) or Matthew Paris' Flores (H. R. Luard, ed. Matthew Paris. Flores Historiarum 3 vols [London: Rolls Series, 1890], book 6, ch. 185). This verse, however, he took from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], mbook 2, ch. 135).

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Foxe's brief evocation of how Ethelstan gained control of North and South Britain came from Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 185).

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Foxe's account of the drowning of Ethelstan's brother Edwin comes from Matthew Paris' Flores (H. R. Luard, ed. Matthew Paris. Flores Historiarum. 3 vols. (London: Rolls Series, 1890), 1, pp. 493-4, it not being mentioned in the other sources that he used to construct this section.

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Foxe used Matthew Paris' Flores (H. R. Luard, ed. Matthew Paris. Flores Historiarum. 3 vols. (London: Rolls Series, 1890], 1, p. 396) for his account of the king's monastic construction; the marriage of his children is recounted from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], book 2, ch. 134-5; 140). That same source is also used to describe the dowry gifts to King Athelstan.

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The source mentioned here is the manuscript which Foxe borrowed from William Carye, and which was presumably by the time he was preparing the Acts and Monuments in 1570 in Archbishop Matthew Parker's hands.

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Edward the Elder to Edgar

Foxe's sources for the history of Anglo-Saxon England after the death of Alfred the Great remained something of the same mix as they had for the earlier sections of book 3 in the 1570 edition (which is the first edition in which he treats these matters in detail). He continued to rely on Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559]) and John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden (London, 1652)) as his baseline source-textsm, supplementing them with other chronicles in a way that suggests a continuing diligence in comparing the various extant accounts open to him. In one respect, however, his diligence was less than complete. Foxe continued to use John Brompton as his source for the Anglo-Saxon law-codes, even though his own printer, John Day had published in 1568 the edition of them prepared in translations directly from Old English by William Lambarde (William Lambarde, Archaionomia [London: 1568]). Foxe certainly used this source for his argument against the Six Articles later on, but he does not seem to have had access to it whilst he was revising the earlier parts of the Acts and Monuments (books 1-2) and here he seems only to have used it in respect of the Epistle to King Lucius, which may have been abstracted for him by someone in Archbishop Matthew Parker's household, or passed on by Nowell or Lambarde himself.

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

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The description of King Edgar's coronation and the election of Dunstan as Archbishop of Canterbury, were taken by Foxe from Roger Howden's Chronicle (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, pp. 61-2). His general approach, however, to the reign of King Edgar reflects the point of view taken by Bale in the Catalogus (pp. 137-41) and the English Votaryes (pp. 61-66) though Foxe does not directly borrow from either of these sources.

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Foxe's critical treatment of the succession of King Edgar is taken from Bale's English Votaryes, pp. 60-65, supplemented with some signs of his independent confirmation of what Bale had said. So, although Bale cited William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium, Foxe seems to have preferred his Gesta Regum for some of the details in this passage. For the small (but telling) detail that Edith refused to steal the crown, making her more wise than her brother Edward, Foxe must have referred directly back to John Capgrave's Nova Legenda Angliae, either in its printed edition or in the manuscript that belonged to Matthew Parker.

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Foxe's account of the rise of the monks comes from John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 870, and his emphasis (understandable in the reformation context) on the fact that there was evidence for bishops having wives and children in Anglo-Saxon times also comes from the same source (p. 768). In addition, however, Foxe's marginal note very specifically singles out the Crowland Abbey chronicle ('Ex Chronico Ingulphi Abbatis de Crowland') as an additional source for the marriage of priests. Where had Foxe obtained this material, if this was indeed his source? Although Archbishop Matthew Parker did not own a copy of the Crowland Chronicle, the Earl of Arundel did. We know that Parker and Arundel not only shared a passion for collecting manuscripts, but also shared some of their collections for study and for the making of copies, it is possible that this is how Foxe had derived this information.

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Foxe's preferred source for the miracle of Dunstan's rood and the Council of Calne, and the murder of Edward by his step-mother, was John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden (London, 1652), cols. 870-873 although there is evidence for his having cross-checked his source with William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum, Henry Huntingdon's Chronicle, Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon, and Fabian's Chronicle. At the end of the passage, Foxe adds a note about the 'three Edwards' who had been king before William the Conqueror, a radical rewriting of the English regnal succession commonly accepted by his day. We should keep in mind, however, Foxe's concern to discern some continuities between the reigns of earlier Edwards in English history, and that of Edward VI, so critical to the fortunes of English protestantism.

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Foxe's source for this increasingly and cumulatively negative account of 'the rages & tumults of the Romish church' is taken from Bale's Catalogus, pp. 131-139, with some signs of additional confirmation filleted in from other sources, possibly from Matthew Parker's library.

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Foxe's elaboration on the dream which led King Edgar to patronize the new monasticism come from a variety of sources. The interesting reference to Emperor Charles V's dream, and 'how he was led by a thred to see the tormentes of hell' has not been identified. That of Furse comes from Bede, Book 3, ch. 19; The dream of Astyages, king of the Medes, came (directly or indirectly), from Herodotus' Histories, book 1 (second part). Ethelwold's dream sequence itself is taken from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 2, ch. 75, p. 263). The remaining material on the monastic foundations of King Edgar ('Burga by Stanford' = Peterborough; 'Ramsey' might be Rumsey in Hampshire, which was founded by King Edgar, although it could equally be Ramsey Abbey in Huntingdonshire, which was refounded by him) is taken from Roger of Howden's Chronicle with a direct quotation (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series (London, 1868), 1, p. 62); Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 867) and William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (Ibid., book 1, ch. 18.4, p. 34).

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Foxe's sources for the early career of Oswald, bishop of Worcester and then archbishop of York, typify Foxe's counterpoint of monastic and secular chronicle sources. He uses Roger of Howden's Chronicle (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, pp. 62-3; William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 3, ch. 115); John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 868) and Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 194).

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Foxe mentions an elaborate range of source here. These almost certainly were drawn indirectly from the Magdeburg Centuries, [Century V], p. 81; 1327-1334 (Cassianus); 702 (Augustine); and Cluniac monasticism (732-3).

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Foxe takes the positive elements in his assessment of King Edgar from a limited range of sources. His portrayal of the king's personality and rule, and the fact that wolves were hunted to extinction, all comes - as Foxe discreetly notes - from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], book 2, chs 148 and 155). For the numbers of ships in King Edgar's fleet, his progresses round the kingdom, and his repression of alcoholism, Foxe drew on Roger Howden's Chronicle (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, p. 64. For the important passage on the homage to King Edgar from other rulers in the British Isles, Foxe furnishes a direct translation from John Brompton's Chronicle (although it had also been mentioned in Henry of Huntingdon and Fabian's Chronicle too) - J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 869.

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Foxe's assessment of King Edgar neatly balanced the positive elements which he had described with this equally weighted enumeration of his 'vices'. These had, at least in general terms, already been identified in Bale's Catalogus (p. 138) but Foxe identifies and elaborates on each of them in turn. His first vice was his support for the new monasticism, which Foxe doubtless could have picked up from Fabian's Chronicle (book 6, ch. 193), William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (book 2, ch. 149) or Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon (book 6, ch. 9). He very precisely, however, mentions that the king patroned 48 foundations, a number that he would only have found in one source - Eadmer's Vita Sancti Dunstani (Eadmer, 'Vita Sancti Dunstani.' In Memorials of St Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury, ed. by William Stubbs [London: Rolls Series, 1874], p. 138. Manuscripts of Eadmer's works had been collected by Matthew Parker (now Corpus Christ College, Cambridge, MS 371). The likelihood is that John Joscelyn had provided Foxe with this material, or assisted Foxe in accessing it. After highlighting Edgar's cruelty, Foxe picked out the 'danger' attached to his welcoming of foreigners into England - material which came directly from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Register of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], p. 240) although it is also mentioned in Fabian's Chronicle as well. The issue would have resonated with Foxe's contemporaries because of the contested status in Elizabethan England of religious migrants. The further vice, the deflowering of maidens, Foxe came from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (book 2, ch. 159). The vice of Edgar's encouragement of blind superstition came, in addition to William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium and Roger of Howden's Chronicle, from Osbern's Vita Sancti Dunstani (chs 35-36) - pp. 113-115 and p. 251 of Memorials of St Dunstan, op. cit. A copy of Osbern's hagiography (BL Arundel MS 16) is heavily annotated by John Joscelyn and our presupposition is currently that he may have been Foxe's source for this component of the narrative.

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Foxe's narrative of the penance forced upon King Edgar by Dunstan, and his subsequent elaboration upon the errors in the monastic chronicle records ('Monkysh story writers') relating to King Edgar seems to have been based on more extensive research than Foxe undertook for the rest of book 3. The citation from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle could have come from John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 868, but Foxe's reference is quite precise: 'Ex chronico Saxonico Ecclesiae Wigornensis (i.e. Worcester). This is the Worcester version of the Chronicle, now BL MS Cotton Tib. B IV, fols 3-86; 88-90, which had belonged to Archbishop Matthew Parker (listed as J1.14 in T. Graham, and A. G. Watson, The recovery of the past in early Elizabethan England. Documernts by John Bale and John Joscelyn from the Circle of Matthew Parker, Cambridge Bibliographical Society Monograph, No. 13 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), p. 58). We suppose that access to the manuscript, or information about it, had been furnished by John Joscelyn to Foxe. Other materials for this section come from Osbern's Life of Dunstan (Eadmer, 'Vita Sancti Dunstani.' In Memorials of St Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury, ed. by William Stubbs [London: Rolls Series, 1874], ch. 35, pp. 111-112 and William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (book 2, chs 157-8). Some indications as to this material may have come from Bale's Catalogus, pp. 131-6 or the English Votaryes, pp. 64-5.

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Foxe was anxious to demonstrate that the 'lying miracles' attributed to Elfleda, Dunstan and Edith were just that: 'idolatrous', 'idle phantasies' and 'forged miracles', 'falsely forged…by superstitious Monkes'. His approach was no doubt shaped, at least in part, by Bale's English Votaryes, pp. 64-5. Bale cited William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium and John Capgrave's Nova Legenda Angliae. At first glance, Foxe simply repeated what Bale had to say, but closer inspection reveals that Foxe cites quite precisely that Capgrave reports that Dunstan's vision was first recorded thirteen years after his death. The detail does not appear in Bale. Foxe had therefore either consulted Capgrave independently (either in Wynkyn de Warde's printed edition of the work, published in 1516, or in Bale's manuscript of the Nova Legenda Angliae. The epitaph to King Edgar comes directly from Henry Huntingdon's Chronicle (T. Arnold, ed. Henry of Huntingdon. Henrici Huntendunensis Historia Anglorum, the History of the English, by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 5, ch. 26. Foxe's telling detail about King Edgar's enforcement of Sabbath observance, an issue which protestant opinion in 1570 was beginning to focus upon, comes from John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden (London, 1652), col. 871. It cannot come from Lambarde's Archanomia since this edition of Anglo-Saxon laws stipulates quite precisely that King Edgar's law had the Sabbath beginning on 3pm on Saturday afternoon, whereas Foxe follows Brompton in saying that it was 'ix of the clocke'.

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Foxe's account of the controversy over the royal succession following King Edgar's death is taken, Foxe's marginal note tells us, 'Ex Simeon Durham'. This source is not cited by any of Foxe's regular chronicle sources at this point, and it is therefore a matter of note that Foxe has chosen to highlight the source here. Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, owned several copies of Simon of Durham's Historia Regum (T. Arnold, ed. Simeon of Durham. Symeonis Monarchi Opera Omnia 2 vols [London: The Rolls Series, 1882-1885], 2, pp. 94-5 and that is perhaps how Foxe acquired the material. Foxe's summary of the near contemporaries who wrote about Dunstan followed Bale's Catalogus, pp. 139-141 although it seems to have been additionally researched as well, using the resources of Matthew Parker's collection. 'Ioan Paris', for example, may well have been the manuscript now in Corpus College, Cambridge MS 60.

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Edgar and Edward the Martyr

Foxe had scarcely done more in the 1563 edition of his martyrology than point to the period after the death of King Athelstan as the one in which 'shepheardes and watchmen became wicked Wolues, Christes frendes chaunged into ennemies. To be shorte here came in the time,that the reuelation speaketh of, whan Sathanas, the old serpent, beyng tied vp for a thousand yere, was losed for a certaine space' (1563, pp. 10-11). Foxe thus linked this, the 'third age' of the church, with the accomplishment of the first millennium of Christian history and the prediction contained in Revelation, 20: 6-8. By the 1570 edition, the history of Kings Edgar and Edward the Martyr were completely reworked in a lengthy passage which makes no mention of any underlying millennial interpretation. Instead, it concentrates on the coming of a new form of monasticism to England, associated in general terms with the 'middle age' of the church (Foxe had already used the term in the 1563 edition, although here he ascribes it to a broader period). He elaborates the development in ways that explicitly and intentionally reveal his protestant colours. Foxe was careful to distinguish between the Celtic and Augustinian monasticism of the 'second age' of the church - godly men (Foxe rarely mentions female monasticism at all) who were lay people, often married, who accepted monastic discipline - and the 'prodigious superstition' that accompanied the 'monkes of the middle & latter age of the church' - Cluniac monasticism and its successors. Foxe consciously restrained his urge to elaborate on that theme at greater length, not least because he was anxious to emphasize other, more insidious, elements in the development. These included the much greater social weight and presence of the new monasticism, its urban setting and competitive variety (Foxe makes a good deal of the latter, gently mocking the different colours and rituals of the monastic orders), and its growing political weight. The latter is emphasised in Foxe's narrative explicitly - in his account of the role of Dunstan, in his nuanced assessment of the achievements of King Edgar, and his interpretation of the the reaction of the Anglo-Saxon nobility to the growing power of the new monasticism after the death of King Edgar and the resulting turmoil of that of his successor, King Edward. The latter, 'called the Martyr' is treated by Foxe in a particularly negative fashion in order, at least by implication, to indicate that one of the Satanic elements of the new monasticism was to manufacture martyrdom to its own purposes, manipulating the historical record to further its own cause. Foxe is consistently aware, throughout this passage, of the potential bias of the monastic sources that he is often compelled to rely upon for his narrative, consciously revealing to his audience the critique that he is subjecting them to. This is particularly evident in the passage where he proves, at least to his satisfaction, that King Edward was, in reality, an illegitimate child of King Edgar, a secret consciously withheld in the 'Monkish stories' to sustain the credit of Dunstan and 'the reputation of the Churche of Rome'.

Foxe's use of his sources in this passage is particularly wide-ranging and penetrating. As in previous passages of the 1570 edition of book 3, he consciously plays off the lay chronicles (particularly Roger of Howden (Hoveden) and Fabian's Chronicle against his monastic sources (William of Malmesbury, John of Brompton's Chronicle, Osbern's Life of Dunstan…). Some of his anti-monastic material comes from Bale's Catalogus and the Lives of the English Votaries. But, more interestingly, Foxe also in this passage cites (albeit probably indirectly) from the Church Fathers - the only time he does so outside Book One in the 1570 edition. This section seems to have come from various parts of the Magdeburg Centuries (Century V). As in the case of the other sources which Foxe cites (Eadmer's Life of Dunstan; Osbern of Canterbury's Life of Dunstan; Simeon of Durham's Chronicle; John Capgrave's Life of Saint Edith) there are strong indications that this section had been produced with the active collaboration of members of Archbishop Matthew Parker's household, particularly John Joscelyn. Dunstan's role in the archiepiscopal lineage at Canterbury made this section particularly sensitive from both Foxe's and Parker's point of view.

Once presented in the 1570 edition, this section did not undergo further changes in the later editions during Foxe's lifetime.

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

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Foxe's account of Ethelred's life begins in a straightforward way with material taken from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (J. S. Brewer, and C. T. Martin, 'William of Malmesbury: Gesta Regum.' In Reigistrum Malmesburiense. The Registor of Malmesbury Abbey, ed. by J.S. Brewer and C.T. Martin [London: Rolls Series, 1869-1880], book 2, ch. 164). For the death of Dunstan and his successors, Foxe pieced together as best he could the differing accounts of John Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 879), William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (book 1, ch. 26) and Polydore Vergil's Historia Anglia (Basel, 1534), p. 263. For the translation of St Cuthbert's relics from Chester to Durham, his source is Roger Howden (W. Stubbs, ed. Chronica magistri Rogeri de Houdene 4 vols, Rolls Series [London, 1868], 1, p. 68), confirmed by Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century (London: Rolls Series, 1879), book 6, ch. 14). For the Danish incursions and their impact, Foxe took his account verbatim from Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian (London, 1559), book 6, ch. 197-8 or Brompton (cols. 879; 885). For Ethelred's marriage to Richard Duke of Normandy, he followed Fabian, or possibly Henry Huntingdon (T. Arnold, ed. Henry of Huntingdon. Henrici Huntendunensis Historia Anglorum, the History of the English, by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 1). For the king's retreat, foundation of the abbey at Bury St Edmunds, and his eventual death, Foxe followed Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon (book 6, chs 16-17). The long Latin citation concerning judges and the dispensation of right justice was taken verbatim from Brompton's Chronicle (p. 903).

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Foxe's narrative of the reign of Edmund Ironside and the conflict with Cnut, Foxe used his preferred sources of Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian (London, 1559), book 6, ch. 204) and Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], col. 908). The latter is his exclusive source for the death of Edmund and the family's exile, and Cnut's establishment of control in England. Fabyan is used to identify the children of Earl Godwin. At the crucial point when the Anglo-Saxon aristocracy tried to prevent any further Danes being crowned kings of England, Foxe took pains to support his narrative with a passage 'taken out of the English story or chronicle copyied of certayne English clerkes' - almost certainly a further example of his further use of the Worcester manuscript version of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, now BL MS Cotton Tib. B IV, fols 3-86; 88-90, which had belonged to Archbishop Matthew Parker (listed as J1.14 in T. Graham, and A. G. Watson, The recovery of the past in early Elizabethan England. Documents by John Bale and John Joscelyn from the Circle of Matthew Parker, Cambridge Bibliographical Society Monograph, No. 13 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), p. 58). We suppose that access to the manuscript, or information about it, had been furnished by John Joscelyn to Foxe. For the passage in question, see Michael Swanton (ed. and trans.) The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle [London, 1996], pp. 175; 187-8). For the attempted invasion of Alfred from Normandy, and the story claiming that Harold banished him to the Isle of Ely and had been blinded, Foxe's marginal note intriguingly refers to a 'Historia ignoti Iutoris [leg: Autoris']' (i.e. 'history by an unknown author'). The work in question has not been identified. Fabian (book 6, ch. 209) is again used as his source for Cnut's daughters, perhaps confirmed by William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (book 2, ch. 189). The famous story of Cnut trying to repel the sea was too vivid for Foxe to ignore - his sources here were Henry Huntingdon's Chronicle (T. Arnold, ed. Henry of Huntingdon. Henrici Huntendunensis Historia Anglorum, the History of the English, by Henry, Archdeacon of Huntingdon, from B. C. 55 to A. D. 1154 [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 17, with confirmation and emendation from Polydore Vergil (pp. 276-7) and Fabian. The laws of Cnut were probably taken from Brompton's Chronicle (cols. 918-932) though there is no way of knowing whether Foxe had also consulted Lambarde's Archainomia ([London, 1568], fols 94-124) at this juncture.

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Foxe constructs his favourable picture of Edward the Confessor's character from a bricolage of Brompton's Chronicle (J. Brompton, 'Chronicon Johannis Brompton Abbatis Jornalensis.' In Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores X. [....], ed. by Roger Twysden [London, 1652], cols 936-7, Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, ch. 210, and Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon (J. R. Lumby, ed. Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis: together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century [London: Rolls Series, 1879], book 6, ch. 23). For the early events of Edward's reign, Foxe relies heavily on Fabian, noting (without being able completely to resolve) the varying accounts of the death of Earl Godwin that he found in Fabian, William of Malmesbury, Brompton and Polydore Vergil. Thereafter, he tended to follow John Brompton's Chronicle (col. 945-9) through to the end of the reign. For the final prophecy and death of Edward, he took up the leads suggested in Bale's Catalogus, p. 64, also consulting John Brompton (col 954) and William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum (book 2, ch. 228). We should note the marginal claim by Foxe also to have used the 'Historia Richardi 2', a fourteenth-century compilation also known as the 'Evesham Chronicle', a manuscript version of which (now BL Cotton Tiberius C ix) may possibly have been in Archbishop Matthew Parker's collection (for an edition of the work, collating the two surviving manuscript version of it, see George B. Stow (ed.), Historia Vitae et Regni Ricardi Secundi [Pennsylvania, 1977]). The laws of Edward the Confessor are taken largely from Brompton (col. 957), with the post-Conquest repudiation of most of them taken from Matthew Paris' Chronica Majora (H. R. Luard, ed. Matthaei Parisiensis, monachi Sancti Albani. Chronica majora. 7 vols [London: The Rolls Series, 1872-1884], 2, p. 43). For the fascinating passage on the 'office of a king', redolent of the duties of kingship under law, Foxe interestingly notes in the margin his use of a manuscript from the Guildhall, London ('Ex libro Reg. antiquorum in praetorio Londiniensis'). It is possible that this was a source that had been found by William Lambarde in the course of his research for his collection of Anglo-Saxon laws, published by John Day in 1568 (William Lambarde, Archaionomia). If so, Foxe presumably had access to the research that Lambarde had carried out in preparation for its publication.

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For the coronation of Harold and his early contest with the king of Denmark and Tostig, Foxe could have utilized any of a number of sources, though his account most closely resembles that of Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, chs. 216-217). For the interesting list of the succession to the archbishopric of Canterbury from Elphegus to Lanfranc, which concludes this section, Foxe relied on William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 1, chs 21-24).

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Ethelred through Harold

Foxe had scarcely done more in the 1563 edition of his martyrology than point to the significance of this period as one in which 'shepheardes and watchmen became wicked Wolues, Christes frendes chaunged into ennemies. To be shorte here came in the time,that the reuelation speaketh of, whan Sathanas, the old serpent, beyng tied vp for a thousand yere, was losed for a certaine space' (1563, pp. 10-11). Foxe thus linked this, the 'third age' of the church, with the accomplishment of the first millennium of Christian history and the prediction contained in Revelation, 20: 6-8. By the 1570 edition, the turn of the first Christian millennium was treated in a more historicised and implicit fashion. Beneath Foxe's narrative there still lay the implication that there was a deeper significance to be attached to the 'greate miseries vpon this English nation' around the year 1000AD, exemplified by the successful Danish invasions, weak and ill-advised kings, and the divisions among the Anglo-Saxon nobility. Foxe was prepared, albeit with caution, to include in his narrative the ominous prophecy of Dunstan at the coronation of King Ethelred ('They should not be without bloudsheding & sword, til there came a people of an vnknown tongue, and should bring them into thraldome: Neither should that trespass be clensed without long vengeance, &c') and the sinister dream of Edward the Confessor ('God would geue this realme to the hande of others'). The reign of Edward the Confessor was treated as God's granting of brief respite to the kingdom before 'God of his vnknowen iudgementes suffred the Normandes thus to preuail' in the Norman Conquest'. Foxe no doubt wanted the reader to appreciate some of the implied parallels between the pious rule of Edward the Confessor, and the godly laws which he enacted, and that of Edward VI.

Foxe's treatment of his sources at this point continued his practice, already well-established for Book Three in the 1570 edition of a scholarly bricolage from a relatively limited range of sources. It is often difficult to determine from which of the latter he chose to take his material although, where it is possible to do so, it is evident that he preferred the chronicles from lay, rather than from clerical, sources (Roger Howden; Fabian). Where expedient, he used his clerical sources (Henry Huntingdon; Ranulph Higden's Polychronicon; William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum). More occasionally, but critically and with circumspection, he drew on Polydore Vergil's Historia Anglica. Foxe seems, however, to have struggled somewhat with the complexity of the narrative at this point, with his sources giving conflicting accounts in matters of detail which he found difficult to resolve with the resources at this disposal.

Matthew Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

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Pope Sylvester to the end of Book III

Having introduced so much additional, detailed and substantial material on the history of the Anglo-Saxon state and church in the 1570 edition of the martyrology, Foxe chose to use the end of the new 'book three' to offer a reinforcement of the implicit periodisation which had begun to emerge. Rather than the 'third age of the church' (or 'the latter age of the church') in which, with the accomplishment of the first millennium of Christian history, 'the fresh flowering blood of the church' began to 'faint, and strength to fail, oppressed with cold humours of worldly pomp, avarice, and tyranny; here now cometh in blind superstition, with cloaked hypocrisy, armed with rigorous laws, and cruel murdering of saints', Foxe now offered a more nuanced picture, in which the affairs of the world 'began from better to worse, to decrease & decline into much superstition & incōuenience: partly through the comming in of Mahumet, partly through the increase of wealth and riches, partly through the decrease of knowledge & diligence in such as should be the guides of Christes flocke: yet the infection & corruption of that time (though it were great) did not so abounde in such excessiue measure, as afterwarde in the other latter times nowe following, about the thousand yeares expired after Christ'. Having nuanced and historicised the more explicitly presented millennial determinism of the 1563 text, Foxe was all the more concerned, however, to let the overwhelming evidence that he presented do the work for him. Few stories relating to the history of the medieval papacy did it better than that of Pope Sylvester II, who became pope in succession to Gregory V in 999, the first French pope. The surviving chronicles were rich in apparently documented rumours of his being in league with the devil, and speculation concerning his Jewish ancestry. The subject is explored at greater length in [hyperlink here:] Thomas Freeman, '"St Peter Did not Do Thus": Papal History in the Acts and Monuments', the prefatory essay to this edition. As we demonstrate there, despite the impressive range of sources that Foxe appears to display, the material had essentially come from Matthias Flacius' Catalogus testium veritatis (1556) (pp. 230; 200) and from Bale's Catalogus, pp. 143; 145-159; 156-7.

Interestingly, however, Foxe did not close the book at this point. As a last-minute addition to the book, he added to the 1570 edition the 'Oration of K. Edgar to the Cleargie'. Foxe strongly implies that the material had arrived in his hands just as his volume was going through the press ('…chaunced in the meane time to come to my handes…'). Foxe highlights what he saw as the particular significance of the text. It indicated the 'religious zeale and deuotion of kynges' (Foxe wanted, wherever possible, to lay the groundwork historical justifications for the English monarchy's determining role in the reformation). It documented the 'dissolute behauiour and wantonness of the clergie'. And it revealed the 'blynd ignoraunce and superstition of that tyme in both states: as wel ecclesiastical, as temporal' (thereby strengthening points which had emerged, albeit tangentially, in the preceding narrative). There is a clear indication, therefore, here that Foxe continued right up to the last moment to work on the early books of the martyrology in 1570. Where had the text come from? Our hypothesis currently is that the manuscript had been discovered, probably by someone in Archbishop Matthew Parker's household, and passed to Foxe, who placed it in the book where he could. The manuscript in question might well be Corpus Christ College, Cambridge MS 56. This is a compilation of statutes, charters and miscellanea, among which (at fol. 253) a manuscript described as 'Monitio Regis Edgari prelates et abbatibus' is listed, a text which lacks the end passage (in the way that Foxe's does). In John Joscelyn's list, this part of the manuscript is described as 'Edgarus Anglorum Rex habuit orationem', and it appears to have come into the archbishop's possession from John Twyne. T. Graham, and A. G. Watson, The recovery of the past in early Elizabethan England. Documernts by John Bale and John Joscelyn from the Circle of Matthew Parker, Cambridge Bibliographical Society Monograph, No. 13 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998) believe that the text had originally come from Ailred of Rievaulx, De genealogia regum Anglorum (Ælfred of Rievaulx: The Historical Works (Kalamazoo, 2005), ch. 17, pp. 98-102., ch. 17, pp. 98-102). It had been printed in the first edition of Matthew Parker's De Antiquitate Britannicae Ecclesiae (1569), pp. 57-8. Historians now incline to the view that its ascription to Edgar is false.

Foxe ended the book with a continuation of the ordo successionis of the archbishopric of Canterbury from the time of King Edgar through to the Norman Conquest. The table complements earlier ordines in book 3. It was possibly derived from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N.E.S.A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Momnachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [,,,] [London: Rolls Series, 1870]., book 1, chs 12-24) although it is likely that this was also connected to research undertaken in Parker's household for the publication of the De Antiquitate.

Matt Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

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