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Canterbury
Cant., Canterb., Canterbury, Caunterbury, Caunterburye,
NGR: TR 150 580

An ancient city and county of itself, having separate jurisdiction. Locally in the hundred of Bridge and Petham, lathe of St. Augustine, eastern division of the county of Kent. 26 miles south-east by east from Rochester. The city comprises the parishes of All Saints, St. Alphege, St. Andrew, St. George, The Holy Cross, St. Margaret, St. Martin, St. Mary Bredman, St. Mary Bredin, St. Mary Magdalene, St. Mary Northgate, St. Mildred, St. Peter and St. Paul, all in the Diocese of Canterbury, and with the exception of St. Alphege and St. Martin within the Archdeaconry of Canterbury. The living of All Saints is a rectory with St. Mary in the Castle and St. Mildred attached; St. Alphege is a rectory exempt, united with the vicarage of St. Mary Northgate; St. Andrew is a rectory with St. Mary Bredman annexed; St. George is a rectory with St. Mary Magdalene annexed; St. Martin's is a rectory exempt with St. Paul's annexed; St. Peter's is a rectory with Holy Cross annexed; St. Mary Bredin is a vicarage; and St. Margaret's is a donative in the patronage of the Archdeacon

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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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Shrewsbury [Shrowesbury; Shrosbery; Shreusbury]

County town of Shropshire

OS grid ref: SJ 495 125

551 [527]

K. Hen. 4. Godly articles abiured. The preface of M. W. Thorpe to his examination.

and neuer could haue stand. And yet such be the works of the lord, passing all mēs admiratiō, all this notwithstanding so far was it of, that the number and courage of these good men was vanquished, that rather they multiplied dayly & encreased. For so I finde in Registers recorded, that these foresayd persons, whome the king and the Catholique fathers, did so greatly deteste for heretickes, were in diuers countries of this realme dispersed and increased: especially at London, in Lincolnshire in Northfolk, in Herefordshyre, in Shreusbury, in Callice, and diuers other quarters mo, with whom the Archb. of Caunterbury Thomas Arundell, the same time had much ado, as by hys own registers doth appeare. Albeit some there were, that dyd shrinke, many did reuolt and renounce, for daunger of the law. MarginaliaIohn Puruey. Iohn Edward. Iohn Becket. Iohn Seynons abiured.Among whom was Iohn Puruey, whiche recanted at Paules Crosse, of whom more foloweth (the Lord willing) to be said in the yeare 1421. Also Iohn Edward priest of the dioces of Lincolne, who reuoked in the greene yard at Norwich, Richard Herbert, and Emmot Willy of Lōdon, also Iohn Becket, who recanted at London. Item, Iohn Seynons of Lincolneshyre, who was caused to reuoke at Caunterbury. The articles of whom which commonly they did hold, and which they were constrayned to abiure, most specially were these as follow:

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Their Articles.

MarginaliaThe articles.First, that the office of the holy Crosse (ordayned by the whole Church) celebrated, doth contayne idolatry.

Item, they sayd and affirmed, that all they which doe reuerence and worship the signe of the crosse, do commit idolatry, and are reputed as Idolaters.

Item, they sayd and affirmed, that the true fleshe and bloud of our Lord Iesus Christ, is not in the sacrament of the aulter, after the words spoken by the priest truely pronounced.

Item, they sayd and affirmed, the sacrament of the aultar to be sacramentall bread, not hauing life, but onely instituted for a memoriall of Christes passion.

Item, they sayd and affirmed, that the body of Christe which is taken on the aulter, is a figure of þe body of christ as long as we see the bread and wyne.

Item: they sayd and affirmed, that the decree of the prelates and clergie in the prouince of Caunterbury, in theyr last conuocation, with the consent of the king and the nobles in the last Parliament agaynst him that was brent lately in the citty of London: was not sufficient to chaunge the purpose of the sayd Iohn, when the substance of materiall breade is euen as before in the sacrament of the aultar, it was no change being made in the nature of bread.

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Marginalia* Their arcle cōmonly was thus, that who so taketh vpon him the office of a Prieste though he haue no cure of soules, nor licence of his ordinary, is bounde to preach the Gospel.* Item, that any lay man may preach the Gospel in euery place, and may teach it by his owne authoritie, without the licence of his Ordinary.

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Itē, that it is sinne: to geue any thing to the preaching friers: to the Minorites, to the Augustines, to the Carmelites.

Item, that we ought not to offer at the funerals of the dead.

Item, that the confession of sins to the people, is vnneedefull.

Item, that euery good man (though he be vnlearned) is a priest.

Item, that the infant (though he dye vnbaptised) shalbe saued.

Item, that neither the pope, nor the prelate, neither any ordinary can compell any man to sweare by anye creature of God, or by the bible booke.

Item, that aswell the Bishop, the simple man, the priest, and the lay man, be of like authoritie (as lōg as they liue well.)

Item, that no man is bound to geue bodily reuerence to any prelate.

¶ William Thorpe. 
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William Thorpe

William Thorpe's account of his informal examination by Archbishop Thomas Arundel, on 7 August 1407, is one of the very few accounts by a Lollard of their persecution. As such it was of considerable interest to evangelicals anxious to demonstrate that there were 'true' Christians before Luther. Thorpe's account appeared in print, from the Antwerp press of Hans Luft around 1530. It was probably edited by William Tyndale, George Constantine or both. This version of Thorpe's examination formed the core of Foxe's account of Thorpe.

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In the Commentarii, Foxe printed an abridged version of the 1530 version of Thorpe's examination (fos. 116r- 156v). This abridged version was copied from Bale's translation written in Bodley Library MS e Musaeo 86, fos. 108v-110v). The Commentarii account was reprinted almost exactly in the Rerum (pp. 79-96). In the 1563 edition, Foxe had obtained a copy of the 1530 version of Thorpe's examinations. Foxe stated that he was printing Thorpe's examination as it had been printed by William Tyndale. Foxe then reprinted The examinacion of Naster William Thorpe, ed William Tyndale? or George Constantine?, (Antwerp, 1530?), STC 24045, in its entirety. In the 1570 edition, Foxe declared that he would rather have printed an original version of Thorpe's examinations, but all he could obtain was Tyndale's version. Foxe also stated that David Whitehead, a prominent Protestant preacher, had seen a copy of an MS copy of the work in George Constantine's hands before it was printed. Apart from these changes, the account of Thorpe in the 1570 edition repeated that in the 1563 edition. The 1570 account of Thorpe was reprinted, without alteration, in subsequent editions.

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Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

MarginaliaThe examination of the constant seruaunt of God Williā Thorpe.THus much briefly being signified by the way, touching these which haue bene forced in time of this king, to open abiuration: Next commeth to our handes the worthy history of maister William Thorpe, a warriour valiaunt, vnder the triumphant banner of Christ, with the processe of his examinations, before the foresayd Thomas Arundell Archbishop of Caunterb. written by the sayd Thorpe and storyed by his owne pen, at the request of hys frendes as by hys own words in the processe hereof may appeare. In whose examination (whiche seemeth first to begin. an. 1407.) thou shalt haue, good reader, both to learne andto merueile. To learne, in that thou shalt heare truth discoursed and discussed, with the contrary reasons of the aduersary dissolued. To marueile, for that thou shalt beholde here in this man, the merueilous force and strength of the Lordes might, spirite and grace, working and fighting in his souldiors, & also speaking in theyr mouthes, according to the word of hys promise. Luke xxi. To the tert of the story we haue neither added nor diminished: MarginaliaThis history first set forth & corrected by M. W. Tyndall. but as we haue receiued it, copied out, & corrected by maister Williā Tindall (who had his own handwriting) so we haue here sent it, and set it out abroad. Althoughe for the more credite of the matter, I rather wished it in his own naturall speach wherein it was first written. Notwithstanding, to put away all doubt and scrouple herein, this I thought before to premonishe and testifie to the Reader, touching the certaintie hereof, that they be yet aliue whiche haue seene the selfe same copy in his own old English, resembliug þe true antiquitie both of the speach, and of the time: The name of whom as for recorde of the same to auouche, is M. Whithead, who as he hath seene the true ancient copy in the hādes of George Constantine, so hath he geuen credible relation of þe same, both to the printer, & to me. Furthermore the sayd maister Tindall (albeit he did somewhat alter & amend the English therof, and frame it after our manner) yet not fully in al words: but that something doth remain, sauouring of the old speach of that time. What the causes were why this good man & seruaunt of Christ, W. Thorp did write it: and pen it out himselfe, it is sufficiently declared in hys owne preface, set before his booke, whiche here is prefixed in maner as followeth.

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¶ The preface of William Thorpe.

MarginaliaThe preface.THe Lord God that knoweth all thinges, woteth well that I am right sorrowful for to write to make known this sentence beneath written: whereby of mine euē christē set in high state & dignitie, so great blindnes & malice may be knowne: that they which doe presume of themselues to destroy vices, and to plant in men vertues, neither dreade to offend God, nor lust to please him as their workes doe shew. MarginaliaGods lawes must be knowen and folowed.For certes the bidding of God and hys law, whiche in the praysing of his most holy name he commaundeth to be known & kept of all men and women, yong and old, after the cunning & power that he hath geuen to them: The Prelates of this lande and their ministers, wt the couent of priests chiefely consenting to them, enforce them most busily to withstand and destroy the holy ordinaunce of God. And there through, God is greatly wroth and moued to take hard vengeance, not onely vpon them that do the euil but also on them that consent to these Antichristes limmes: which know or might know, their malice and falshoode, & dresse them not to withstand their mallice and theyr great pride. Neuertheles, 4. things moueth me to write this sētence beneath. MarginaliaFoure causes of setting forth his examination.

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The first thing that moueth me hereto is this, þt where as it was knowne to certayn frendes, that I came from þe prison of Shrewsbury, and as it befell in deed that I shold to the prison of Caunterbury: thē diuers friends in diuers places, spake to me full hartily and full tenderly: and commaunded me then, if it so were that I should be examined before the Archb. of Cant. that if I might in any wise, I should write mine apposing, and mine aunswering. And I promised to my special frendes, that if I might, I wold gladly doe their bidding as I might.

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MarginaliaThe 2. cause.The second thing that moueth me to write this sentēce is this: diuers frendes whiche haue heard that I haue bene examined before the Archbyshop, haue come to me in prison, and counsayled me busily, and coueted greatly that I should doe the same thing. And other brethren haue sent to me, and required on Gods behalfe, that I should write out and make knowne, both mine apposing & mine aunswering, for the profite that (as they say) vppon my knowledging, may come thereof. But this they bad me, that I should be busie in all my wits, to go as neare the sentence and the wordes as I could, both that were spoken to me & that I spake: Vpauēture this writing may come an other time, before the archbishop and hys counsaile. And of thys counselling I was right glad: for in my conscience I was moued to doe this thing, & to aske hitherto the speciall help of God. And so then I considering the great desire of dyuers frendes of sondry places, according all in one: I occupyed all my minde & my wits so busily, that through gods grace I perceaued by theyr meaning and their charitable desire, some profite might come there through. For southfastnes and trueth hath these conditions: where euer it is impugned, it hath a sweete smell, and thereof commeth a sweet sauour. MarginaliaTruth leaueth alwayes a sweet smel behinde it. And the more violently the enemies dresse themselues to oppresse and to withstand the trueth, the

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