Navigate the 1563 Edition
PrefaceBook 1Book 2Book 3Book 4Book 5
Critical Apparatus for this Page
None
Names and Places on this Page
Unavailable for this Edition
186 [1722]

Actes and Monuments of Martirs.

in the woorlde by Christe and his Apostles: For nowe it is growen as it were to an Image and forme of a seculer Empire, and all most vnto a kyngly power & ryches, and in a maner vnto most extreme tiranny. But if our desire be so great to dissipate heresies, I see no spedier way or remedy, then if that the fathers of the church wold diligently take hede that þe churche of Christe be not ouerwhelmed wyth suche a nombre of articles, So should it soone be brought to passe, that not only the younge braunches of heresies should be easely cut of, whersoeuer they begin to spring, but also that in short time ther shuld no more spryng or rise vp. For if we shuld say the truth, whervppon commeth it, that the world is so ful of dissention, but only that al thinges are so intricate wt so many articles, so many censures cautions, & scole pleas, neither is there any Article which hath not his heresy annexed vnto him, as the shadow vnto a body, insomuch that the matter is now come vnto this poynt, that nothing cā nowe be spoken so circumspectlye, but that it shal tend to some snare of heresy, or at þe least suspition. There are so many snares of constitutions and decrees, so manye titles of reprehēcion and captions, specially wheras hetherto in stead of loue and charity, which nowe is banished, I know not into what straunge, and far distant place, the fury Erinnis is come in place, the deprauer of all thinges, filling all þe world with her reproches and slaunders, euen for a small occasion, and oftentimes for none at all. Wherfore since al thinges are at thys poynt nothinge in mine opinion is to be preferred to this, þt we being reconciled together with a mutuall coniunction of our minds, we do take away all occasion (as much as may be) of brotherly offēce. Whervpon especially this mischief dooth spring and growe. If we doo commit any herisy, whatsoeuer dooth resiste againste mennes decrees: it were better that there were fewer Articles in the world, & then the herisies would cease of their owne accord. For herevpon began the first sprynge of all mischief, and at this poynt again must the methode of remeady be sought for. What if that the Popes decrees did extend no further then Italy? What if there were nothinge receiued into our necessary faith, which is contained in very few wordes: but only the Articles of the Apostles Simbold, as they are set forthe by the mooste approued councels: What should the church, the spouse of Christ be hindred therby? Yet notwithstanding for these trifles we do se in euery place olde men, yonge men, and also wemen burned, neither do they spare kinred, stocke or age, in so much that it is almost lesse daunger to offend against the maiestye euen of the moste mighty Princes, then to violate the sanctions of any so meane a bishop. Wherof the storme and tempest of persecutyon hath bene so vehement in these our daies, that there is almost no parte of Europe, whyche is not embrued with the bloud of þe Martyrs, which hath bene shed.

[Back to Top]

And allbeit that these their decrees do moste consonantly agree vnto the scriptures (let vs also graunte them that) yet were it the part of deuines to teach, and of tirauntes to compell. Nowe what is this by violēce to be caried vnto the fire, for certaine doubtfull Articles of controuersye, some not greatlye sounde, or paraduenture disagreing vnto the scriptures: not only heritickes, but in stede of heretikes, the giltlesse and innocents. Oh what meruelous folly is this of menne, that whyles these tirauntes daily do exercise this tiranny in the cottages of Christe, engluttinge them selues with mennes bloud: they do triumphantly reioyce, as though they had done an high seruice vnto God, and wroughte a very good dede. Euen in like sort as in foren warres of princes it is counted great valiauntnes, who soeuer can kyll moste of his ennemies, so lykewise this is the only renoune and praise amongst the headdes of the churche: whiche of thē hath shed moste Heretikes bloud. MarginaliaThe beastly woordes of Iohn Stocksley byshop of London,As we haue heard report of Iohn Stocksley sometime byshop of London, that he did boste him self whē he was euen at the point of death, geuing thankes vnto God with a loude voice þt he had sent xxxi. Heretikes vnto the infernall fyer. Verelye these were wordes more fitter for a beaste then for a man.

[Back to Top]

But let these men take hede least that whyles they go about by their owne fantesies rather then by any iust iudgement, to put Heretikes vnto death, that the same thyng doo not happen vnto them which in times past happened vnto the Iewes, the whiche when they would haue entred vpon Christ as a seditious man, they stombled vpon the sonne of God.

[Back to Top]

The whiche for that it maye not come to passe, wysdome and learning chiefly in Byshoppes, diminutiō of Articles, iudgement, an Euangelical mynde, gentlenes, a zeale ioyned with knowledge, a care to saue rather then to distroy men, A mynde whiche attributeth nothing vnto affection, but submitteth him selfe wholy vnto the rule and gouernaunce of equitie, & the scriptures, shal principally performe.

[Back to Top]

But heresie is altogether to bee suppressed truly, neyther shall heresy fynde any mayntenaunce at my handes. This only do I require in these catholikes, that if they wil not vse the Apostolike moderatiō þt thei wold yet vse some ciuill modestie: and rather chuse to trie their matters by some reasonable meanes, then with suche clamors and seditious rashenes. I doo require some moderation the whiche will lawfully conuince those whome he will op-

[Back to Top]
presse.
Go To Modern Page No:  
Click on this link to switch between the Modern pagination for this edition and Foxe's original pagination when searching for a page number. Note that the pagination displayed in the transcription is the modern pagination with Foxe's original pagination in square brackets.
Find:
Type a keyword and then restrict it to a particular edition using the dropdown menu. You can search for single words or phrases. When searching for single words, the search engine automatically imposes a wildcard at the end of the keyword in order to retrieve both whole and part words. For example, a search for "queen" will retrieve "queen", "queene" and "queenes" etc.
in:  
Humanities Research Institute  *  HRI Online  *  Feedback
Version 2.0 © 2011 The University of Sheffield