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575 [575]

K. Richard. 2. The aunswer of W. Swinderby to the proces. Actes and Mon. of the church.

and degrees, and the determination of the same holye church, haue wickedly presumed and doo presume from day to day to speake, to teache, to mayntayne (and that which is more horrible to be vttered) to preache openlye many thinges hereticall, blasphemies, schismes, & sclaūderous diffaminges, euen quite contrarye to the sacred Canons & decrees of the holy fathers: so that they know not to direct their pathes in the waies of rightuousnes & truth, in that, MarginaliaThey counterfaict in the prophets wordes, as apes do in princes apparelthat they expound to the people the holye scripture, as the letter soundeth, after a Iudaicall sorte, otherwyse then the holy ghost wyll needes haue it: wheras the wordes wander from their proper significations, and appeare to bring in by gessing new meanings: MarginaliaWho expoūdeth the scripture more after the leter, let the reader iudge by Hoc est carpus meum.wheras the wordes must not be iudged by the sense that they make, but by the sense whereby they be made, where as the construction is not bound to Donates rules: wher as fayth is farre placed from the capacitye of reason: But they labour by their pernicious doctrines and teachings publike and priuy, to boyle out the poyson of schismes betwene the Clergy and the people. We to encounter against such kinde of preachers, nay rather deceiuers, & horrible seducers amongst the people, aduauncing and rowzing vp our selues in Gods behalfe, and holye mother church, with the spirituall sword, which may strike them wysely, and wound them medicinably, for theyr health & welfare: MarginaliaIf such medicines should be ministred to you, ye would can your Phisition litle thankand namely W. Swinderby priest (so pretending himselfe to be) as a teacher of suche kynde of pernicious doctrine, and an horrible seducer amongest the people: MarginaliaAn. 1391to whom personally appearing before vs on the Wedensday, to wyt, the. xiiij. of the moneth of Iune, in the parishe churche of Kington of our diocesse, in the yeare of our Lord. 1391. he being vehemently disfamed to vs of heresy, schisme, and his peruerse doctrines, both manifest and priuy: We therefore haue caused manye cases and articles concerning the catholike fayth to be ministred vnto him, that he shoulde answer to the same at a day and place for him meete and conuenient, of his own choyce and freewill: that is to say, on the Fridaye being the last of the same moneth of Iune, next following assigned to him, at the Church of Bodenham of the same our diocesse. Of which cases and articles exhibited vnto vs, by many of Christs faithful people, Marginalia* Such as wer in Queene Maries dayes, as Iohn Beard, Iohn Auales, Robin Papist, and other like murtherers* zelous followers of the catholicke fayth to make information to our office (which cases and articles also were by vs administed, as is before sayd, to the same Williā Swinderby) the tenor thereof foloweth and is thus.

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¶ Reuerēd 

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These are the charges made against Swinderby in June 1391. They are taken from Trefnant's register; see Registrum Johannis Trefnant Episcopi Herefordensis, ed. W. W. Capes, Canterbury and York Society 20 (London, 1916), pp. 233-6.

father and high Lord, Lord MarginaliaLord lord, a latine stile of their own makyng. Iohn by Gods sufferaunce Byshop of Herford: It is lamentably declared to your reuerēd fatherhood on the behalfe of Christs faithfull people your deuoute children of your dioces of Herford: MarginaliaThe denunciation of the promoters to the B. of Hereford.that notwithstanding the misbeliefe of very many lollardes, whiche hath to long a tyme sprong vp here in your dioces, there is newly come a certeine childe of wickednes, named Williā Swinderby: Who by his horrible persuasions, and mischeuous endeuours, and also by his open preachyngs, & priuate teachyngs, doth peruert, as much as in him is, the whole ecclesiasticall state, and sturreth vp withall hys possible power, schisme betwene the clergy and the people. And that your reuerend fatherhode may be the more fully informed, who & what maner of man, the same William Swinderby is: there be proposed and exhibited hereafter to the same your fatherhode on the behalfe of the same faythfull people of Christ agaynst the same Williā Swynderby, cases and articles. Which if the same William shall deny, then shal the same cases and articles most euidently be proued agaynst hym by credible witnesse worthy of belief, and by other lawfull proofe and euidēcies to the end that those being proued, the same fatherhoode of yours, may do and ordeyne therin, as to your pastorall office belongeth.

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MarginaliaMatter articulated against W. Swinderby.In primis, The same William Swynderby pretendyng him selfe priest, was openly and publicquely conuicted of certeine Articles and conclusions beyng erroneous, schismaticall, and hereticall, preached by him at diuers places and tymes before a multitude of faithfullchristian people. And the same articles and conclusions did he by force of law reuoke and abiure, some as hereticall, and some as erroneous and false. Aduouchyng and beleuing them for such, as that frō thenceforth he would neuer preach, teache, or affirme openly or priuily any of þe same conclusions. And if by preachyng or aduouching he should presume to bo the cōtrary: that then he should be subiect to the seueritie of the Canons, accordyngly as hee dyd take a corporall othe, iudicially vpon the holy Gospels.

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Marginalia2Also the conclusions, whiche by the same William were first openly taught and preached, and afterward abiured, and reuoked as is aforesayd: are conteined before in the processe of the B. of Lincolne, euen as they be there written worde by worde 

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Trefnant apparently had obtained a transcript of Swinderby's trial and condemnation in Lincoln.

. And as for the cases and articles, they were consequently exhibited by the forenamed faithfull christian people against the sayd William Swynderby together, with the conclusions beforesayd and hereafter written: of whiche cases and Articles the tenour hereafter ensueth.

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Marginalia3Item, the sayd William, contrary to the former reuocation and abiuratiō, not conuerting to repentance, but peruerted from ill to worse, and geuen vp into a reprobate sense: came into your dioces, where, he runnyng about in sondrye places hath presumed to preach or rather to peruert and to teach of his owne rashnes many hereticall, erroneous, blasphemous, and other slaunderous thinges contrary and repugnant to the sacred Canons & the determination of the holy catholique church. What those thinges were, at what place and at what tyme, it shall hereafter more perticularly be declared.

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Marginalia4Item, the same William, notwithstanding your cōmaundementes & admonitions sealed with your seale, and to all the Curates of your dioces directed: conteyning amongst other thinges, þt no person of what state, degree, or condition soeuer he were, shoulde presume to preach or to teach, or ells to expound the holy Scripture to the people either in hallowed or prophane places within your dioces, without sufficient autoritie, by any maner of pretense that coulde be soughte, as in the same your letters monitorie & of inhibition (the tenor wherof hereafter ensueth) is more largely conteyned: which letters, the same William did receiue into hys hands, and dyd read thē word by word in the towne of Monemouth of your dioces, in the yeare of our Lord. 1390. so that these your letters, and the contentes therof came to the true and vndoubted knowledge of the same William: yet notwithstanding hath the same William presumed in diuerse places and tymes, to preach within the same your dioces, after and against your commaundements aforesayd. The tenour of the same letters before mentioned followeth and is thys.

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MarginaliaThe letter monitory of the B. of Herford inhibiting to prech without hys lycence,IOhn by the sufferance of God bishop of Hereford, to the Deane and Chapter of our church of Hereford, and to all and singulare Abbots, Pryours, Prouostes, Deanes rurall, Persons, and vicars of Monasteries, Pryories, Churches, Colledges & parishes, and to other hauing cure of soules within the citie and dioces of Hereford, and to all and euery other being within the same citie and dioces, Greting, grace, and blessing. Forasmuch as the golden laurell of teaching doctoral, is not from aboue indifferently euery mans gift, neyther is the office of preaching graunted, saue to such as are called, and specially by the church admitted therunto: we do admonishe and requyre you all and singulare clerkes aforesaid, and do straightlye enioyne you all in the vertue of holy obedience, that you nor any of you do admitte any man to preach or to teach the catholique fayth, sauing such as the same office of preaching shall by the authoritie apostolicall or ells your byshop be specially cōmitted vnto: but that as much as in you shall lye, you do by word and dede labour to let those þt would attempt the contrary. MarginaliaWould god both they and al men did beware of that leauen.And you Lordes, Ladyes, Knightes, Barons, Esquiers, and all & singular persons, of what estate, degre, preheminence, or condition soeuer he be, remayning within the citie and dioces of Hereford, we do besech and exhorte in our Lorde, that following the wordes of our Sauiour, you beware of the leauen of the Pharisies. Item, according to the saying of the Apostle, be not ye caryed away with diuers & straūge doctrines: and that in the meane while, as sayth the Apostle, you be not remoued frō the sense of the holy auncient fathers, least that any man by any meanes should seduce you, but you agreing together in one minde see that you honour God with one mouth. But if any

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