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King's Lynn (Bishop's Lynn) [Lennam; Linne; Lynne]

Norfolk

OS grid ref: TF 615 205

 
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Kings Lynn, Lynn Regis
Linne, Lynn, Lynne
NGR: TF 615 200

A borough having exclusive jurisdiction, although locally in the Lynn division of the hundred of Freebridge, county of Norfolk. 44 miles west by north from Norwich. The town comprises the parishes of All Saints, Southgate, St. Edmund, North End, and St. Margaret's; all in the Archdeaconry and Diocese of Norwich. The living of All Saints is a vicarage; St. Edmund, North End is a sinecure rectory; and St. Margaret's is a perpetual curacy

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English information from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of England (S. Lewis & Co: London, 1831)

Scottish information from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (S. Lewis & Co: London, 1846)

Welsh information taken from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of Wales(Lewis & Co: London, 1840)

The reason for the use of these works of reference is that they present the jurisdictional and ecclesiastical position as it was before the major Victorian changes. The descriptions therefore approximate to those applying in the sixteenth century, after the major changes of 1535-42. Except for the physical locations, which have not changed, the reader should not therefore take these references as being accurate in the twenty-first century.

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York
NGR: SE 603 523

A city and county of itself, having exclusive jurisdiction; locally in the East Riding of the county of York, of which it is the capital. 198 miles north-north-west from London. The city is the seat of the Archbishop, and comprised originally 33 parishes, reduced by amalgamation to 22; of which 33, 17 were discharged rectories, 10 discharged vicarages, and 6 perpetual curacies; all within the diocese of York.

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English information from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of England (S. Lewis & Co: London, 1831)

Welsh information taken from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of Wales(Lewis & Co: London, 1840)

The reason for the use of these works of reference is that they present the jurisdictional and ecclesiastical position as it was before the major Victorian changes. The descriptions therefore approximate to those applying in the sixteenth century, after the major changes of 1535-42. Except for the physical locations, which have not changed, the reader should not therefore take these references as being accurate in the twenty-first century.

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469 [445]

K. Rich. 2. The history of I. Wickliffe. The Epistle of I. Wic. to P. Vrbane 6.

the keyes of the Church, to the great perill both of his soule, and to the pernitious example of other. For so much therefore, as the holy mother church hath not to do or to proceed any further in this matter: we humblye desire your kingly maiestye, to direct out your letters for the apprehending of the sayd excommunicat according to the custome of this realme of England, wholsomely obserued and kept hetherto: to the intent, that such whome the feare of God doth not restrayne from euill, the discipline of the secular arme may bridle and plucke backe from offending. MarginaliaThis is not to seeke againe that which is lost by the rule of Ezechiel. Your princely celsitude the Lord long continue. From Lamheth the 15. of Ianuary.

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To this letter of the Archb, might not the king (gentle reader) thus aunswere agayne, and aunswere well?

MarginaliaProsopopoia. What the kyng might haue aunswered agayne. YOur letters 

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This is not actual letter Richard II wrote. It is instead a fictional composition - and described as such - which Foxe wrote and presents what he feels Richard II should have said.

with your complaynt and requestes in the same conteyned, we haue receiued and well considered. For the accomplishing wherof, ye shall vnderstand that as we are readely bent to gratify and satisfy your minde in this behalfe on the one side: so we must beware agayne on the other, that our authoritye be not abused either to oppresse before we know, or to iudge before we haue tryed. Wherfore for so much as you in your letters do excite and sharpen the seuere discipline of our seculer sword, agaynst one Nich. Herford, for his not appearing before you: and yet shewing in the sayd your letters no certaine cause to vs what you haue to charge him withall: we therfore following the exāple of Alexander Magnus, or rather the rule of equity in opening both our eares indifferently, to heare as well the one part, as the other do assigne both to him, when as he may be found, & to you whē you shalbe called a terme to appeare before vs. To the intēt that the controuersy betwene you and him, stāding vpon points ofreligiō, being tried by the true touchstone of Gods holy word due correction indifferently may be ministred according as the offence shall be founde. In the meane time, this we cannot but something maruell at in your sayde Letters: First, to see you mē of the Church and Aungels of peace to be so desirous of bloud. Secondly, to consider you again so fierce in prosecuting the breach of your lawe: and yet so colde in pursuing the breache of the expresse law of God and his commaundementes. Thirdly, to behold the vnstable doublenesse in your proceedings, who pretending in your publick sentence, to become as intreaters for them to vs in the bowels of Iesus Christ, that we will withdraw from them the rigour of our seuerity, and yet in your letters you be they which most set vs on. If not appearing before you: be such a matter of contumacy in case of your lawe, that is in no case to bee spared: what shoulde then our Princely discipline haue done to men of your calling: Henry Spencer Bishop of Norwich, being at Cant. was sent by our speciall commaundement to come to our speach, denyed to come, and yet we spared him. Iohn Stratforde Archbyshop your predecessour, being required of our progenitour king Edward the third to come to him at Yorke, would not appeare: by the occasion whereof, Scotland the same time was lost, & yet was he suffered. The like might be sayd of Robert Winchelsey in the days of king Edwarde the first, and of Edmunde Archb. of Cant in the daies of K. Henry 3. Stephen Langhton was sent for by K. Iohn to come, he came not. MarginaliaBishops of Cant. appeared not before theyr kyngs, and yet they were not persecuted.The like cōtumacy was in Becket toward K. Henry. 2. Also in Anselme toward K. Henry . I All these for theyr not appearing before their princes, ye do excuse, who notwithstanding might haue appeared without daunger of life. This one man for not appearing before you, you think worthy of death: whose life you would haue cōdemned notwithstanding, if he had appeared. It is no reason if the Squirill climing to the tree from the Lyons clawes, would not appeare, being sēt for to be deuoured: that the Eagle therfore should seise vpon him without any iust cause, declared agaynst the party. Wherfore according to this, and to that aforesayde when he shall appeare, and you be called, and the cause iustly wayed, due execution shall be ministred.

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And thus farre concerning Nicholas Herforde, & the other aforesayd, but all this meane while 

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Wiclif and Urban VI

In the Commentarii, Foxe wrote that Wiclif was banished (this is an error Foxe derived from John Bale), but that he returned to Lutterworth where he died.Forty years later, at the pope's command, Wiclif's bones were exhumed and burned and their ashes cast into a river (Commentarii, fos. 32r-v). This was based on information gleaned from Bale's writings (see Bale, Summarium, fos. 155r and 157v as well as Select Works of John Bale, ed. Henry Christmas, Parker Society (Cambridge, 1849), p. 394). In the Commentarii, Foxe also wrote praising Bale for his work in recovering Lollard documents and he produced Wiclif's letter to Urban VI which was copied from the Fasciculi Zizaniorum (cf. Bodley Library, Musaeo e 86, fo. 83r-v with Commentarii, fos. 33r-34v). Foxe also printed another document, copied from the Fasciculi Zizaniorum, Wiclif's public response to questions put to him by Richard II and the Privy Council (cf. Bodley Library, Musaeo e 86, fos. 66v-67v with Commentarii, fos. 34v-37r).

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This material was reprinted without change in the Rerum (pp. 15-17) except that Foxe added a reference to the archbishop of Prague burning Wiclif's books; this came from Bale, Summarium fo. 157v (cf. Rerum, p. 15). This material was translated into the 1563 edition without any change. In 1570, Foxe, however, made some corrections, conceding that Wiclif may not have gone into exile and correcting the date of his death. Foxe also added an account of the disastrous 'crusade' Henry Despenser, the bishop of Norwich, led against the French; this account was taken from College of Arms MS Arundel 7, a version of Thomas of Walsingham's Chronica majora. The version of all of these documents and events in the 1570 edition was reprinted without change in 1576 and 1583.

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Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

what became of Iohn Wickliffe it is not certaynly known. Albeit so farre as may be gathered out of Waldē, it appereth that he was banished, and driuen to exile 
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In the Commentarii (fo. 32r-v) and the Rerum (p. 15) Foxe wrote that Wiclif had probably been exiled, that he returned home and died in Lutterworth in 1387. Foxe repeated this in the 1563 edition (p. 98). Foxe was basing this on Bale - although significantly, Foxe was more tentative about the exile than Bale had been (See Bale, Summarium, fos. 155r and 157v). In fact, Wiclif had not been exiled and Foxe replaced this with an even more tentative passage in the 1570 edition. In the second edition, Foxe also corrected the date of Wiclif's death to 1384.

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. In the meane time it is not to be doubted, but he was aliue during all this whyle, wheresoeuer he was as hy his letter may appeare, which he about this time wrote to Pope Vrbane the 6. In the which letter he doth purge himselfe, that being commaūded to appeare before the Pope at Rome, he came not: declaring also in the same a briefe confessiō of his fayth. The copy of which Epistle here followeth 
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This letter is Wiclif's response to Urban VI's demand that he appear before the pope. Wisely, Wiclif decined to appear. The letter is reprinted from Bodley Library, Musaeo e 86, fo. 83r-v.

.

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¶ The Epistle of Iohn Wickliffe sent vnto Pope Vrbane the 6. An. 1382.

MarginaliaThe Epistle of I. Wickliffe to pope Vrbane. VErely I do reioyce to open and declare the fayth which I do holde vnto euery man. And specially vnto the Bish. of Rome,the which for so much I doe suppose to be sound and true, he will most willingly confirme my sayd fayth, or if it be erroneous amend the same.

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First I suppose, that the Gospell of Christ, is the whole bodye of Gods law, and that Christ which did geue that same law hymselfe, I beleue him to be a very man, and in that poynt, to exceed the law of the Gospell, and all other partes of the Scripture. Agayne I do geue and holde, the Bishop of Rome, for so much as he is the Vicare of Christ here in earth, to be bound most of all other men vnto that law of the Gospell. For the greatnesse amongest Christes Disciples, did not consist in worldly dignity or honours but in the neare and exact following of Christ, in his life and maners: wherupon I do gather out of the hart of the law of the Lord, that Christ for the time of his pilgrimage here, was a most poore man, abiecting and casting of all worldly rule and honour, as appeareth by the Gospell of Math. the 8. and the 2.. Corinthians. 8. chapter.

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MarginaliaThe true disciples of Christ seeke no honor. Hereby I do fully gather, that no faythfull man ought to follow, neither the Pope himselfe, neither any of the holy men, but in such poynts, as he hath folowed the Lord Iesus Christ. For Peter and the sonnes of Zebede by desiring worldly honour, contrary to the folowing of Christes steppes did offend; and therfore in those errors, they are not to be folowed.

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Hereof I do gather, as a Coūcell, that the Pope ought to leaue vnto the secular power, all temporall dominion and rule, & therunto effectually to moue and exhort his whole Clergy: for so did Christ, and specially by his Apostles. Wherfore, if I haue erred in any of these poyntes, I will most humbly submitte my selfe vnto correction euen by death if necessitye so require: and if I coulde labor according to my will or desire in my owne person, I would surely present my selfe before the Bishop of Rome: but the Lorde hath otherwise visited me to the cōtrary, and hath taught me rather to obey God then men. Fot so much then, as God hath geuē vnto our Pope, iust and true Euangelicall instinctions, we ought to pray, that those motions be not extinguished by any subtle or crafty deuise.

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And that the Pope and Cardinals, be not moued to doe anye thing, contrary vnto the law of the Lord. Wherefore let vs praye vnto our God, that he will so stirre vp our Pope Vrbane the sixt as he began, that he with his Clergye may folow the Lorde Iesus Christ, in life and maners: and that they may teach the people effectually, and that they likewise may faithfully folow them in the same. And let vs specially pray, that our Pope may bee preserued from all maligne and euill counsell, as which do know that euill and enuious men of his householde would geue him. And seing the Lord will not suffer vs to be tempted aboue our power, much lesse then will he require of any creature to do that thing which they are not able; forsomuch, as that is the playne condition and maner of Antichrist.

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MarginaliaThe Pope occupied so in schismaticall warres that he had not leysure to other matters. Thus muche wrote Iohn Wickliffe vnto Pope Vrbane: but this pope Vrbane otherwise termed Turbanus was so hote in his warres against Clement the Frenche Pope his aduersary, that he had no leasure, and lesse lyst, to attend vnto Wickliffes matters. By the occasion of which schisme, God so prouided for poore Wickliffe, that he was in some more rest & quietnes. Cōcerning which schismaticall wars of these popes, for as much as we haue here entred into þe mention therof, it shall not be impertinent frō the order of our story, disgressyng a litle from the matter of Iohn Wickliffe, to touch something of the tragical doings of these two holy popes striuing for the triple crowne: to the intent that the Christian reader (iudging by their fruits and proceedings) may see and vnderstand what difference is betweene these popes, and Christ and his Apostles. MarginaliaDifference betweene the Apostles and the Popes in striuing for preeminence.For though in the story of the Gosepl it is read, that certaine of the disciples did striue which shuld be the greater, yet neither do we read that one of them tooke euer weapō against the other: and moreouer in the sayd story of the Gospell it doeth appeare, that they in so striuing as they did, were therefore sharpely rebuked of our Sauiour Christ, & were taught by him an other lesson.

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MarginaliaAnn. 1383. The Pope set to warre. About the beginning of the next yeare folowing 

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Henry Despenser, the bishop of Norwich, had proposed - possibly at the instigation of Urban VI, to lead a military expedition into Flanders. To the English, this was simply another campaign in the Hundred Years War, with the strategic objective of harassing the French from the north. However, since the French were the chief supporters of the anti-pope Clement VII the expedition was also declared to be a crusade by Urban VI, who granted Despenser sweeping privileges to facilitate his raising and maintaining the expedition. (And since it was a crusade, most of the costs were shifted onto the clergy, thus pleasing both the Crown and the Commons who were delighted at thought of an inexpensive war). Foxe drew his account of the 'crusade from the version of Thomas Walsingham's Chronica majora in College of Arms MS Arundel 7 (cf the printed version in Historia Anglicana, ed. H. T. Riley, Rolls Series 28, 2 vols. [London, 1863-4], II, pp. 76-80 and 88-100. Foxe is interested in the episode largely to demonstrate the bloodthirsty nature of the Papacy and its devotion to political, rather than spiritual, objectives. As a result, Foxe dramatically compresses Walsingham's narrative, rendering the account of military operations somewhat unclear.

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, which was an. 1383. Pope Vrbane settyng all his study howe to represse and cōquere the contrary Pope his aduersary, being then at Auinion (seing al his other means to fayle, and that his crosse keyes could doe no good) tooke to hym the sword of Romulus, & set vpō him with open warre. And first deuising wt himselfe whom he might best chuse for hys chief champion: thought none meeter for such affaires thē Henry Spenser beyng then Bishop of Norwich, a young and a stout Prelate, more fitter for the camping cure, then for the peaceable church of Christ, as partly also might appeare before his acts done at Lēnam in striuing for the Mayres Mace, mētioned before, pag. 428. Vnto this byshop of Norwich, the Pope had sent his bulles about this

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tyme,
Qq. 1.
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