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439 [415]

K. Edward 3. The law of premunire. Bridget. Katherine Senensis.

were brought to a godly lyfe. Which harlots beyng so conuerted, he vsed to say were to be preferred before all the holy religious virgins. And therfore commaunded the Archbishop to excommunicate and persecute the sayd Militzius, which in foretyme had been a religious man of Prage, and after forsoke his order, and gaue hymselfe to preaching, and at length was by the foresayd Archb. imprisoned.

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Iacobus Misnensis a learned man and a writer in þe time of I. Hus, maketh mention of this Militzius, and calleth hym a woorthy and a famous preacher. Also citeth many things out of hys writings: In the which writynge this good Militzius thus declareth of himself how he was mooued and vrged by the holy Ghost to search out by the sacred Scriptures, concernyng the commyng of Antichrist. MarginaliaThe cōmyng of Antichrist prophesied. And that he was compelled by the same holy spirite at Rome publikely to preach, and also before the Inquisitor there to protest plainly, that the same great Antichrist which is prophesied of in the holy Scriptures, was already come. Moreouer hys saying was, that the church through negligence of the pastors was desolate, dyd abounde in temporall riches, but in spirituall riches to be empty. Also that in þe Church of Christ, were certayne Idoles which destroyed Ierusalem, & defaced the Temple, but hypocrisie caused that those Idols could not be sene. Also that many there were which denyed Christ, because that knowing the truth, yet for feare of men they durst not confesse their conscience. &c. And thus much of good Militzius, liuyng in þe time of Gregory xj. and kyng Edward, the third. an. 1370.

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The which kyng of England holdyng 

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This material on the the efforts by Edward III and his parliaments to limit papal jurisdiction in England, culminating in the statutes of Provisors and Praemunire, comes from the Parliament Rolls. See Rotuli Parliamentorum, ed. J. Strachey et al., 6 vols. (London, 1783), II, pp. 228, 283-5 and 377.

a Parliament in the 3. yere of thys Pope, sent hys Embassadours to hym, desiryng hym: that he from thenceforth would abstayn frō hys reseruatiōs of benefices vsed in the court of England. And that spirituall men within hys realme promoted vnto bishoprikes, might freely enioy theyr elections within the realme, and be confirmed by their Metropolitanes, accordyng to the auncient custome of the realme. MarginaliaK. Edward complaineth of the popes reseruatiō of benefices. Wherfore, vpon these and such other lyke wherin the kyng and the realme thought themselues greued, he desired of the Pope some remedy to be prouided. &c. Wherunto the Pope returned a certayne aunswer agayne vnto the kyng, requiryng by his messengers to be certified agayne of the kyngs mynd cōcernyng the same. But what answer it was, it is not in þe story expressed, saue that the yere followyng, which was 1374. there was a tractation at Burges vpon certain of the said articles betwene the kyng & the Pope, which did hang two yeares in suspence, so at length it was thus agreed betwen them: MarginaliaThe Pope put from his reseruing of benefices in England.
Quare impedit.
that the pope should no more vse his reseruations of benefices in England, and lykewise the kyng shoulde no more conferre or geue benefices vpon the writ, Quare impedit. &c. But as touching the freedome of elections to be confirmed by the Metropolitane, mentioned in the yere before, therof was nothing touched.

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As touching these reseruations, prouisions, and collations, with the elections of Archbishops, Byshops, beneficed men and other, wherwith the Pope vexed this realme of England, as before you haue heard. The kyng by þe consent of the Lordes and commons, in the xxv. yeare of hys raigne enacted: that according to a statute made in the 30. yeare of hys graundfather Edward the first, wherin was made an acte 

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This is the first statute of Provisors (1351), which barred any foreigner, particularly the pope, from appointing clergy to English benefices.

agaynst the rauenous pillage of the pope, thorough the same prouisions, reseruations, and collations. &c. but not put in execution. By the which prouisions, þe state of the realme decreased more and more, the kinges royaltie and prerogatiue greatly obscured and diminished, innumerable treasure of the realme transported, Aliens & straungers placed in the best and fattest byshoprikes, Abbeyes, and benefices within the realme. And such, as eyther for their offices in Rome, as Cardinalships and such like could not be here resident, or if resident, yet better away for causes infinitie, as partly haue bene touched before: MarginaliaThe law of premunire with the penalty therof. Not onely reuiued the sayd statute made by Edward the first hys graundfather, but also inlarged the same. 
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This is the first statute of Praemunire (1353), which forbade appeals from English courts to Rome.

Adding therunto very strait and sharpe penalties agaynst the offenders therin, or in any part therof, as exemption out of the kyngs protection, losse of all their landes, goodes, and other possessions, and their bodies to be imprisoned at þe kings pleasure: And farther, who so euer was lawfully conuict, or otherwise for want of apperance by proses directed forth, were within the lappes of thys statute or premunire (for so bare the name therof) should suffer all and euery such molestation and iniuries, as men exempted the protection of þe kyng. In so much, that who so euer had killed such men, had bene in no more daunger of law therefore, then for the killyng of an outlaw, or one not worthy to lyue in a commō weale. Lyke vnprofitable members were they then in that tyme yea of ignoraunce estemed in thys common weale of England, as would offer themselues to the wilfull slauery and seruile obedience of the Pope: which thyng in these dayes, yea and that amōgest no small fooles, is coūted more then Euangelicall holynes. He that list to peruse the statute, and would see euery braunch and article therof at large discussed and handled, wyth the penalties therfore due: MarginaliaThe popes primacie here in England bridled. Let hym read the statute of prouision and premunire, made in the 25. yeare of thys kynges dayes. And let hym read in the statutes made in the parliamentes holden the 27. yeare, and 38. yeare of hys raigne: And vnder the same title of prouision and premunire shall finde, the popes primacie and iurisdiction wythin thys Realm more nearely touched, and much of hys papall power restrayned: In so much, that who soeuer for any cause or controuersie in law, either spirituall or temporal, the same being determinable in any of þe kyngs courtes (as all matters were) whether they were personall or reall, citations or other: or should eyther appeale or consent to any appellation, to be made out of the realme to the pope or see of Rome: should incurre the sayd penaltie and daunger of premunire. Diuers other matters wherin the Pope is restrained of hys vsurped power, authoritie, and iurisdiction, within this realme of England: are in the sayd titles and statutes expressed, þe at large set forth, who euer list to peruse the same, which for breuities sake I omitte, hastening to other matters.

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MarginaliaS. Bridget. About thys tyme 

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Foxe's account of St. Bridget of Sweden is taken from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Strausburg, 1562), p. 528.

, beyng the yeare of our Lord. 1370. lyued holy Brigit, whom the Church of Rome hath canonised not onely for a saint, but also for a Prophetesse: MarginaliaEx lib. reuelationum Diua Bridgitta. who notwithstanding in her booke of reuelations, which hath bene oft times imprinted, was a great rebuker of the pope, and of the filth of hys clergie, callyng hym a murtherer of soules, a spiller, and pyller of the flocke of Christ: more abhominable then Iewes, more crueller then Iudas: more vniust then Pilate, worse then Lucifer hymselfe. The see of the Pope she prophesieth, shalbe throwne downe into the deepe, lyke a mylstone. And that hys assister shall burne wt brimstone: Affirmyng, that the prelates, byshops, & priests are the cause, why the doctrine of Christ is neglected, and almost extincted. MarginaliaDa pecuniam. And that the clergie haue turned the ten commaondements of God into two wordes, to wyt, Da pecuniam, that is, Geue money. It were long and tedious to declare all that she agaynst them writeth. MarginaliaRome a fertile grounde of weedes and cockle. Among the rest which: I omit, let thys suffice for all, where as the sayde Brigit affirmeth in her reuelations, that when the holye Virgine should say to her sonne, how Rome was a fruitfull and fertile field: yea, sayd he, but of weedes onely and cockle. &c.

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MarginaliaCatherina Senensis. To thys Bridget I will ioyne also Catherina Senensis, an holy virgin 

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Foxe's account of St. Catherine of Siena is taken from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Strausburg, 1562), p. 523.

, which lyued much about the same tyme, an. 1379. Of whom writeth Antoninus. part. historiæ 3. Thys Katherine hauyng the spirite of prophesie, was wot much to complaine of the corrupt state of the church, namely of the prelates of the court of Rome, and of the pope: prophesiyng before of the great schisme, which then folowed in the Church of Rome, and dured to the Councell of Constance, the space of xxxix. yeares. MarginaliaEx Antonino. part. 3. histor. Also of the great warres and tribulation, which ensued vpon the same. And moreouer declared before and foretold, of this so excellent reformation of religion in the Church now present. The words of Antoninus be these. MarginaliaThe reformatiō of religion prophecied of before After this Virgin in her going to Rome, had told her brother of the warres and tumultes that should rise in þe countries about Rome, after þe schisme of the two popes. I then curious to know of thynges to come, and knowing that she vnderstoode by reuelatiō what should happen, demaunded of her: I pray you (good mother) sayd I, and what shall befall after these troubles in the Church of God? And she sayd: MarginaliaThe prophecie of Katherine. By these tribulations and afflictions, after a secret maner vnknowen vnto man, God shall purge hys holy Church, and styrre vp the spirit of hys elect. MarginaliaNote. And after these thynges shall follow such a reformation of the holy Churche of God, and such a renouation of holy Pastors, that the onely cogitation and remēbraunce therof maketh my spirite to reioyce in the Lord. And as I haue ofttymes tolde you heretofore, the spouse which now is all deformed and ragged, shall be adorned and deckt wyth most rich and precious ouches and brouches. And all the faythfull shall be glad and reioyce to see themselues so beutified wyth so holy shepheards. Yea, and also the Infidels then allured by the sweete sauour of Christ, shall returne to the catholique folde, and be conuerted to the true Byshop and shepheard of their soules. Geue thankes therfore to God, for after thys storme, he wyll geue to hys a great calme. And after she had thus spoken, shee stayed, and sayd no more. &c.

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Beside these aforenamed, the Lord which neuer ceaseth to worke in hys Church 

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Anti-papal writers

This section describing various late medieval anti-papal writers isdrawn entirely from Matthais Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis and John Bale's Catalogus. Listing these writers not only underlined putative papal corruption, it also suggested that there were members of the True Church before Luther. Foxe often garbles the names or details of this figures, sometimes beyond recognition, because he knew nothing about them beyond what he read in Flacius. Yet, by including these figures, Foxe not only showed - to his own satisfaction at least - that there was a church before Luther, but that it included prominent and educated figures from all countries.

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Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

: styrred vp agaynst the mali-

gnant
Nn.iiij.
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