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871 [871]

K. Edward. 4. Great mischiefe by deuilyshe prophecies.

MarginaliaThe prophesie of G.effect of this prophesie (as the fame goeth) was this, that after kyng Edward, should one reigne, whose name should begyn with G. 

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This prophecy was almost certainly invented after Richard III usurped the the throne. Richard had been the duke of Gloucester, so his name also began with a 'G'.

And because the name of þe Duke of Clarēce, beyng George, began with a G, therefore he began to be feared, and afterwarde priuely (as is aforesayd) was made away.

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MarginaliaPhophesies not rashlye to be beleued.¶ By these experimentes and mischieuous endes of such Prophecies, & also by the nature of thē, it is soone to be sene, from what fountaine or author they procede: that is (no doubt) from Sathan, the auncient enemye of mankynd, & prince of this world: against whose deceatful delusions, Christē mē must be wel instructed, neither to meruell greatly at them, though they seme straunge, nor yet to beleue thē, though they happē true. MarginaliaSathan can say truth for a wicked end.For Satā beyng the prince of this world, in such thynges worldly can foresee what will followe, & can say truth for a mischeuous end, and yet for all that is but a Satan. MarginaliaDeuilishe prophesies although they tell truth, yet are not to be followed.So the dreame of Astiages, seyng a vyne to growe out of his daughter, whiche should couer all Asia, & fearyng thereby that by his nephewe hee should lose hys kyngdome, proued true in the sequele thereof, and yet notwithstandyng of Satan it came, and caused cruell murder to folow, first of the shepheardes childe, then of the sonne of Harpagus, whom hee set before his owne father to eate. MarginaliaEx Iust. lib. 1.Ex Iust. lib. I. Likewise Cyrus was Prophetically admonished by his dreame, to take him for his guide, whom he first met the next morow. In that also his dreame fell true, & yet was not of God. In the same number are to be put all þe blynd oracles of þe idolatrous gentles, which although they procede of a lyeng spirite, yet sometyme they hyt the truth, to a mischieuous purpose. MarginaliaMarlynes prophecies.
1. Reg. 28.
The like iudgement also is to be geuen of Merlynes Prophecies. The Sorceresse, mētioned 1. Reg. 28 raysing vp Samuell, told Saul þe truth, yet was it not of God. MarginaliaAct. xvi.In the. xvi. cap. of the Actes, there was a Damosell hauyng the spirit of Marginalia* A spirit of diuinatiō which coulde gesse and foredeme thynges paste, present, and to come, which knowledge God many tymes permitteth to the deuill.* Pytho, who sayd truth of Paul & Silas, callyng thē the messengers of þe hygh God, & yet it was a wrong spirite. The vncleane spirites in geuing testimonie of Christ, sayd the truth, yet because their testimonie came not of God, Christ did not alow it.

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MarginaliaEx Paulo Diac.Paulus Diaconus recordeth of Valence the Emperor, þt he also had a blind Prophecy, not much vnlike to this of kyng Edwarde, which was, that one should succede him in the Empire, whose name should begyn with. xxx and. xxx. Wherupon one Theodorus, trusting vpō the Prophecy, began rebellously to hope for the crowne, and for his labour felt the paynes of a traytour. Notwithstandyng the effect of the Prophecy folowed: For after Valence suceeded Theodosius. MarginaliaThree thinges to be noted cōcerning false prophesies.Wherfore Christen princes, and noble men, and all Christes faithfull people must beware and learne, Marginalia1.first, that no man be inquisitiue or curious in searching to know what thinges be to come, or what shall happen, beside those thinges onely which are promised, & expressed in þe word. Marginalia2.Secondly, to vnderstād what a difference there is, and how to discerne the voyce of God, from the voyce of Sathan. Marginalia3.Thirdly, how to resiste and auoyde the daunger of false and deuilishe Prophecies. Many there be, whiche being not cōtented with thinges present, curiously occupy their wyttes to search what is to come, and not geuyng thankes to God for their life which they haue, wil also know, what shall bechaunce them, how and when theyr end will come, how long princes shall reigne, and who after shall succede them, and for the same, get vnto them southsayers, astrologers, sorcerers, coniurers, or familiars. And these are not somuch inquisitiue to searche or aske, but the deuill is as ready to aunswere them: who eyther falsly doubleth with them, to delude them: or els telleth thē truth, to worke them perpetuall care and sorowe. Thus was Pope Siluester, the sorcerer, circumuented by the deuill, who tolde him that he should be at Ierusalem, before hee dyed, and so it fell. MarginaliaVide supr. pag. 218.For as he was saying his Masse, ata Chappell in Rome, called Ierusalem, there he fell sicke, and within three dayes after, dyed. vide sup. pag. 218. To kyng Henry. 4. also it semeth it was Prophecied, that he should not dye, before he went to Ierusalem. MarginaliaVid. sup. pag. 603.Who beyng brought to the Abbotes chamber of Westminster, and hearyng the name of the chamber to bee called Ierusalem, knewe his tyme to bee come, and dyed. pag. 663. 

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For Foxe's sources for the prophecies of Sylvester II's and Henry IV's deaths, see 1570, p. 663; 1576, p. 535; 1583, p. 557.

MarginaliaFalse trust by deuilishe prophesies.By such deceatfull prophecies, it can not be lamēted enough to see what inconuenience both publickely and priuatly groweth to the lyfe of men, either causing them falsly to trust where they should not, or els wickedly to perpetrate that they would not: as may appeare both by this kyng, and also diuers moe. So was Pompeus, Ciassus, and Cæsar (as writeth Cicero) deceaued by the false Chaldeis, in declaryng to them, that they should not dye but in their bedds and with worshyp, & in theyr olde age. Of such false trust, rysing vpon false Prophecies, S. Ambrose in his booke of Exameron writeth, speakyng of rayne, which beyng in those parties greatly desired, was promised and Prophecied of one certeinly to fall vpon such a daye, whiche was at the chaungyng of the new Moone: but (sayth S. Ambrose) MarginaliaAmbrosius in Exameron.there fell no such rayne at all, till at the prayers of the Church, the same was obteyned: geuyng vs to vnderstand, that rayne cōmeth not by the worde of mā, nor by the begynnyngs of the Moone, but by the prouidence and mercy of our creatour. MarginaliaIoan. Pic. Mirandul. contra Astrolog. lib. 2. ca. 9.Ex Ambros. in Examer. Ioan. Picus Earle of Mirandula, in hys excellent bookes writen agaynste these vayne startellers and Astrologers, Lib. 2. writeth of one Ordelaplius a prince, to whom it was prognosticate by a famous connyng man in that science, called Hieronimus Manfredus, that he should enioy long continaunce of health, and prosperous lyfe. MarginaliaExperience of false prophesies.Who notwithstandyng, the self same yeare, and in þe first yeare of his mariage, deceassed: and after diuers other examples added more ouer vpon the same, hee inferreth also mencion, and the name of a certeine riche matrone in Rome, named Cōstantia, who in lyke maner departed the same yeare, in which she receaued great promises, by these southsayers & astrologers, of a long & happye lyfe, saying to her husband these wordes: behold (sayth she) how true be the prognosticatiōs of these southtellers? If it were not for notyng of them, which now are gone, & whose names I would in no case to bee blemished wt any spot, otherwise I could recite þe names of certeine, especially one 
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Foxe is referring to Sir John Cheke. Foxe is being this circumspect because Cheke was the mentor of William Cecil, Foxe's patron.

, which taking his iourney, in a certeine place, after diligent calculation and forecastyng of the successe and good speade of his iourney, was notwithstanding in the same iourney, apprehended and brought where he would not, after þt neuer enioyng good day, in short tyme he departed 
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By 'departed' Foxe means that Cheke died. Foxe is being so guarded in his description of what happened, that a word of explanation is desirable. Cheke, who had been Edward VI's principal secretary, was in exile in Strasbourg in 1556. He journeyed to Antwerp to meet his wife and was kidnapped enroute and brought to England. There he was forced to publicly recant and affirm his belief in the real presence. Cheke died on 13 September 1557.

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. MarginaliaThys man by false dissemblers, was taken, betrayed and brought into Englād.In Basill this I me selfe heard of one, which knew & was conuersaunt with þe partie, who hauyng a curious delight in these speculations of chaunces and euētes to come, by his calculation noted a certeine day, which he mistrusted should bee fatall vnto hym, by some thyng whiche at that day should fall vpon hym. Whervpon he determined with him selfe, all that day to kepe him sure and safe within his chamber. Where he reaching vp his hand to take downe a booke, the booke fallyng downe vpō his head, gaue him his deathes woūde, & shortly after he dyed vpon the same. MarginaliaA perilous matter for a man to curious, of tymes and thynges to come.Of these & such lyke exāples, the world is full, and yet the curiousnesse of mans head will not refraine, still to plucke the aple of this vnluckey & forbydden tree. Beside all this, what murder & parricide commeth by the feare of these Prophecies, in great bloudes & noble houses, I referre it vnto them, which read and well aduise the storyes, as well of our kynges here in England, as in other kyngdomes moe, both christened, and Turkish. Wherof an other place shall serue as well (Christ willing) more largely to entreat, and particularly to discourse. To this perteineth also the great inconueniēce & hynderaunce that groweth by the feare

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