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733 [680]

lique church. Then the byshop, beyng in great displeasure with me, because I made doubtes in my writing, cōmaunded me to pryson, wher I was a whyle. But afterwardes by the meanes of frendes, I came out againe. Here is the truth of that matter. And as concernynge the thyng that ye couet moste to knowe, resorte to the vi. of Iohn, and be ruled alwayes therby. Thus fare ye well. Quod Anne Askewe.

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The confession of the faith whiche Anne Askewe made in Newgate, before she suffred.

J Anne Askewe, of good memory, although my mercifull father hath geuē me the bread of aduersytie, and the water of trouble: yet not so muche as my synnes haue deserued: confesse my selfe here a synner before the throne of hys heauenly maiestie, desyryng his forgeuenes & mercy. And for so muche as I am by the lawe vnrightuously condēpned for an euyl doer, cōcerning opinions, I take the same moste mercifull God of myne, whiche hathe made bothe heauen and earth, to recorde, that I holde no opynions contrarie to his mooste holye worde. And I trust in my mercyfull Lorde, whiche is the geuer of all grace, that he wyll graciously assiste me against all euyll opinions, whiche are contrary to his blessed veritie. For I take hym to wytnesse, that I haue done and wyll doo vnto my lyues ende, vtterly abhorre them, to the vttermoste of my power. But this is the heresye whiche they reporte me to holde, MarginaliaThe matter and cause why Anne Askew suffered death.that after the priest hath spoken the wordes of consecration, there remayneth bread styll.

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But they both saye, and also teache it for a necessarye artycle of faythe, that after those wordes be once spoken, there remayneth noo bread, but euen the selfe same body, that hong vpō the crosse on good fryday, both flesh, bloud and bone. To this belefe of theirs saye I naye: For then were our cōmon Crede false, which sayeth that he sytteth on the ryghte hande of God the father almyghtie: And from thence shall come to iudge the quicke and dead 

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This is a reference to the Apostles' Creed.

. Lo, this is the heresie that I holde. And for it must suffer the death. But as touchyng the holy and blessed supper of the Lorde, I beleue it to be a moste necessary remembraūce of his glorious sufferynges and death. Moreouer, I beleue as muche therin, as my eternall and onely redemer, Iesus Christe would I should beleue. Finally I beleue all those scriptures to be true, whome he hath confyrmed with his moste precious bloud. Yea, and as S. Paule sayth, MarginaliaScripture sufficient to our saluatiōthose scriptures are sufficient for our learning and saluation, that Christe hath left here with vs. So that I beleue, we nede no vnwrytten verities to rule his churche with. Therfore looke what he hathe sayde vnto me with his owne mouthe, in his holy Gospell, that haue I with Gods grace closed vp in my harte. And my full trust is (as Dauid sayth) that it shalbe a lan-terne to my footesteppes. Psalm. xxviii. Ther be some do saye, that I denie the Euchariste or sacrament of thankes geuing. But those people do vntruely reporte of me. For I both saye and beleue it, that if it were ordered, lyke as Christe instituted it, and lefte it, a moste syngular comfort it were vnto vs all. MarginaliaThe masse abhominable Idol.But as concerning your masse, as it is nowe vsed in our dayes, I do saye and beleue it, to be the mooste abhominable ydoll that is in the worlde. For my God wyll not bee eaten with teeth, neither yet dyeth he agayne. And vpon these wordes, that I haue nowe spoken, wyll I suffer death. O Lorde, I haue mo enemies nowe then there be heares on my head. MarginaliaThe praier of Anne Askewe.Yet Lorde, let thē neuer ouercome me with vayn words, but fyght thou Lorde in my stede, for on the cast I my care with all the spight they can imagine, they fall vpon me, whiche am thy poore creature. Yet swete Lorde, lett me not sett by them whiche are against thee. For in thee is my whole delyght. And Lord I hartely desyre of thee, that thou wylt of thy moste mercifull goodness forgeue them that violence, whiche they doo and haue done vnto me. Open also thou ther blynde hartes, that they may hereafter do that thyng in thy syght, whiche is only acceptable before thee. And to set fourth thy veritie aryght, without al vayne phantasies of synfull men. So be it. O Lorde so be it.

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By me Anne Askewe.

HEtherto we haue intreated of this good womā, now it remaineth þt we touch somwhat as touhing her end & martyrdom 

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Foxe again adds to the information provided by his base text in providing details of Askew's execution. In the 1563 edition (681-82) he describes Askew's crippled state which made it necessary to bring her to the stake in a chair, and portrays her both 'stoutly' resisting Shaxton's attempt to 'make her turn' in the sermon of recantation that he gave at her execution, and refusing even to look at the royal pardon offered to her on condition of her own recantation. Foxe adds to these details in the 1570 edition; it is here that the reader learns the names of those notables in attendance and of Askew's interjections into Shaxton's sermon ('where he sayde well, confirmed the same: where he sayd amysse, there sayd she, he misseth, and speaketh without the book' (1570, p. 1420). It is also in this edition that the reader learns of Askew's response to the offer of a royal pardon - that 'shee came not thither to deny her Lord and Mayster' - and that, as she was offered her pardon first, the men burnt with her followed 'the constancie of the woman' in refusing theirs. Like Askew in the 1563 edition, they 'denyed not onely to receive them, but also to looke upon them'.

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Foxe's source for this additional information remains uncertain, but it is likely that this material came from eyewitnesses to her death, and Freeman and Wall suggest, as a source, Francis Russell, the second Earl of Bedford. As they note, Russell had provided Foxe with other information and documents for the 1570 edition of the Acts and Monuments, and John Russell, his father, was seated at the execution with Wriothelsey and other notables. It is possible that Francis, a young man at the time, was with his father at the execution. (See Thomas F. Freeman and Sarah E. Wall, 'Racking the Body, Shaping the Text: The Account of Anne Askew in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', Renaissance Quarterly 54 [2001], 1185).

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. She beynge borne of such stock & kynred, þt she might haue lyued in great wealth & prosperitie, if she wold rather haue folowed the world thē Christ, but now she was so tormented, þt she could neither liue long in so great distres, neither yet by the aduersaries be suffred to die in secret. wherfor the daie of her execution was appointed, & she brought into Smithfielde in a chayre, because she could not go on her feete, by meanes of her great tormentes, when she was brought vnto þe stake, she was tied by þe middle with a chaine, that helde vp her body, when all thinges were thus prepared to the fire, MarginaliaAnne Askewe refused tht kinges pardon.the kinges letters of pardon were brought, wherby to offer her safe garde of her life if she would recant, which she would neither receaue, neither yet vouchsafe once to loke vpō. Shaxton also was there present who openly þt day recanting his opiniōs, went about with a long oration to cause her also to turne, against whome she stoutly resisted. Thus she being troubled so many maner of waies, & hauing passed through so many tormēts, hauing now ended the lōg course of her agonies, being cōpassed in with flames of fire, as a blessed sacrifice vnto God, she slept in the Lorde, in An. 1546. leauing behind her a singular example of Christen constancie for all men to folowe.

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