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1229 [1229]

K. Hen. 8. A Table of persons abiured, with their articles.

that blessed Sacrament, in so much that I tooke it then but for the remēbraunce of Christes body. Thus haue I wretchedly wrapped my soule with sinne, for because I haue not bene stedfast in that holy order that God hath called me vnto by Baptisme, neither in the holy order that God and S. Augustine hath called me too by my religion. &c.

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Farthermore hee sayd and confessed, that in the Lent last past, as hee was walkyng in the field at Bumstede with Syr Myles Couerdale late Frier of the same order 

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Coverdale had been an Augustinian friar; in fact, he was at the house in Cambridge when Robert Barnes was prior.

, goyng in the habite of a secular Priest, whiche had preached the 4. Sōday in Lent at Bumstede, they did cōmune together of Erasmus workes, and also vpon confession: MarginaliaM. Couerdale.the which Syr Myles sayd & did hold, that it was sufficient for a man to be contrite for his sinnes betwixt God and his conscience, without confession made to a Priest: whiche opinion this respondent thought to be true, and did affirme and hold the same at that time. Also hee sayth þt at the said Sermon made by the said Syr Myles Couerdale at Bumstede, he heard him preach agaynst worshippyng of Images in the Churche, saying and preachyng that men in no wyse shoulde honor or worshyp them: whiche lykewise he thought to be true, because he had no learnyng to defend it.

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Wiiliam
Gardiner
Austē Frier
of Clare.

With this Topley I may also ioyne Wil
liam Gardiner one of the same order & house
of Clare, who likewise by the motion of the
sayd Richard Foxe Curate of Bumstede, and
by shewyng hym certeine bookes to read,
was brought lykewise to the like learnyng
and iudgement, and was for þe same abiured
by Cutbert Byshop, the same yeare. 1528.

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Richard
Iohnson
of Bocksted
and Alyce
hys vvife. 
Commentary  *  Close

In 1528, Richard Johnson was summoned before the ecclesiatical authorities in Colchester and did not appear (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 30r). Richard and Alice are the 'Johnson and wife' whom Foxe mentions as being imprisoned at Fulham in 1534 (1570, p. 1168; 1576, p. 999 and 1583, p. 1026). In 1535, Richard Johnson wrote to Thomas Cromwell, complaining that in the previous year he and his wife had been arrested, tajken to Fulham and held there for months. They were released on Henry VIII's orders, But Stokesley had them sent to St. John's abbey in Colchester, for an informal - and illegal - detention. Johnson and his wife escaped, but they asked Cromwell to intercede with Stokesley so that they did not have to fear being apprehended again (L&P IX, p. 383).

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1531.

This Richard and hys wife were fauo-
rers of Gods woorde, and had bene trou-
bled for the same of long tyme. They came
from Salesbury to Bockstede by reason of
persecution, where they continued a good
space. At length by resorte of good mē, they
began to bee suspected, and specially for a
booke of Wickleffes Wicket whiche was in
their house, they were conuented before
Stokesley bishop of Lōdon, & there abiured.

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MarginaliaPerliou dayes.So great was the trouble of those tymes, that it would ouercharge any storye to recite the names of all thē, which during those bitter daies before the cōming in of Queene Anne, either were driuen out of the realme, or were cast out from their goodes and houses, or brought to open shame by abiuratiō. Such decrees and iniunctions then were set foorth by the Byshops, such lawes & proclamations were prouided, such watche & narow searche was vsed, such wayes were taken by force of othe to make one detecte an other so subtelly, that vnneth any good man could or dyd escape theyr handes, but either hys name was knowen, or els hys person was taken. Yet neuerthelesse so mightely the power of Gods Gospel did worke in the hartes of good men, that the number of them dyd nothyng lessen for all this violence or policie of the aduersaries, but rather increased in such sort, as our story almost suffereth not to recite the particular names of all & singular such as then groned vnder þe same Crosse of affliction & persecution of those dayes as: of which nūber were these. 

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The records that follow for the remainder of this section were generated in 1527 when Geoffrey Wharton, the vicar-general of Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall of London, made a visitation of the diocese. He uncovered a network ofheretics in Colchester and its environs, particularly the viallges of Boxted, Witham and Steeple Bumpstead. Much of this visitation was recorded in a register whosepages - apparently torn out by Foxe or his associates - form a significant portionof BL, Harley MS 421. Some pages of this register that now longer survive, were transcribed by John Strype, when he had custody of Foxe's papers and printed inhis Ecclesiaiastical Memorials.

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MarginaliaPersons of Bumsted abiured.Arthur.
Geffray Lome. 
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These articles are taken from Bishop Cuthbert Tunstall's register (Guildhall MS 9531/10, fos. 136v-137r).


Iohn Tibolde, his mother, his
wife, his twoo sonnes, and his
two daughters. 
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John Tyball was a figure of more significance than this terse mention would indicate, He converted Richard Foxe (Richard Foxe was the parish minister of Steeple Bumstead, Essex. He was a leading proponent of evangelical views in his parish and later informed on other evangelicals as part of his abjuration (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 28r)), and was an avid collector of Lollard and evangelical works (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 35r). He would bear witness, as part of his abjuration, in Colchester and its environs (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 30r-v; Strype, EM, I, 1, p. 131 and I, 2, pp. 50-66)

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Edmond Tibold, and his wife. 
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Edmund Tyball was John's brother and a churchwarden in Richard Foxe's church (Richard Foxe was the parish minister of Steeple Bumstead, Essex. He was a leading proponent of evangelical views in his parish and later informed on other evangelicals as part of his abjuration (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 28r)). He would later abjure and denounce a number of Lollards in Colchester and its environs (Bl, Harley MS 421, fo. 28r-v; Strype, EM I, 1,p. 135 and I, 2, p. 56).

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Henry Butcher, and his wife.
William Butcher, and his wife. 
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Butcher was a plowright of Steeple Bumstead, who abjured on 11 May 1528 in Colchester. Reading of the New Testament in English were held in his house (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r; Strype, EM I, 1, p. 132 and I, 2, pp. 59-60).


George Preston, and his wife.
Ioane Smith widow. 
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These two Joan Smiths are apparently different people.


Robert Smith her sonne.

Richard Smith her sonne.
Margaret Smith her daughter.
Elisabeth Smith her daughter.
Rob. Hempstede, and his wife. 
Commentary  *  Close

They abjured in Colchester on 11 May 1528. The pair was from Steeple Bumpstead, Essex and Robert claimed that Richard Foxe (Richard Foxe was the parish minister of Steeple Bumstead, Essex. He was a leading proponent of evangelical views in his parish and later informed on other evangelicals as part of his abjuration (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 28r)) had worked to convert him to heresy. Robert was the brother of Thomas Hempstead. See BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r).

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Tho. Hemestede, and his wife. 
Commentary  *  Close

They abjured in Colchester on 11 May 1528. Thomas was one of Richard Foxe's churchwardens (Richard Foxe was the parish minister of Steeple Bumstead, Essex. He was a leading proponent of evangelical views in his parish and later informed on other evangelicals as part of his abjuration (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 28r)). He testified that his wife taught him the Lord's Prayer and Apostle's Creed in English (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r). Thomas was the brother of Robert Hempstead.

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Iohn Hemestede his sonne.
Robert fayre.
William Chatwals.
Ioane Smith widowe, otherwise
called Agnes widow.

Iohn her sonne.
Thomas her sonne.
Christofer her sonne.
Alyce her daughter.
Ioane her daughter.
Iohn Wiggen.
Nicolas Holdens wife.
Alyce Shypwright.
Henry Browne.
Iohn Craneford.

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¶ All these were of the towne of Bumstede, who beyng detected by Syr Richard Foxe their Curate, and partly by Tybolde 

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William was a husbandman of Braintree, Essex. He and his wife were associates of leading Lollards in Essex (Strype, EM, I, I, p. 117 and I, 2, p. 53).

, were brought vp to the Bishop of London, and all put together in one house, to the number of xxxv. to be examined and abiured by the sayd Byshop.

Moreouer in other townes about Suffolke & Essex, other also were detected, as in the towne of Byrbrooke, these following.


MarginaliaMen and wemen of Essex and Suffolke troubled for the gospell.Isabell Choote widowe.
Iohn Choote her sonne.
William Choote her sonne.
Christofer Choote her sonne.
Robert Choote her sonne.
Margarete Choote her daugh-
ter.
Katherine her mayd.
Thomas Choote, and his wife.

Haruy, and his wife.
Agnes his daughter.
Thomas his sonne.
Bateman, and his wife.
Iohn Smith, and his wife.
Thomas Butcher, and his wife.
Robert Catlyn, a spone maker.
Christmas, and his wife.
Williā Bechwith, his wife and 
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Of St. Nicholas parish, Colchester. He supplied other Lollards with books and owned an extensive collection of Lollard works (Strype, EM I,1, pp. 115, 118-23, 126-9, 132-3 and I, 2, p. 53; BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 19r).


his two sonnes.
Iohn Pickas, and his wife. 
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See Strype, EM I, I, pp. 124-31 and I, 2, p. 53; also see BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 19r.


William Pickas, his brother. 
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See BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 19r.


Girlyng, his wife and his daugh-
ter.
Mathewes wife.
Iohnson, his wife, and his sonne.
Thomas Hilles. 
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He was a servant to Christopher Ravin of Witham, Essex. Heattended Lollard meetings, bought and sold heretical books, and had extensive ties to Lollards and evangelicals in Steeple Bumpstead (Strype, EM, I, 1, p. 114 and I, 2, p. 54; BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 19r and James Oxley, The Reformation in Essex[Manchester, 1965], pp. 13-14).

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Roger Tanner. 
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This is a mistake. This was Roger, a tanner of Bowers Gifford, not a man named Roger Tanner. He bought and sold an English New Testament (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r).

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Christopher Rauen, and his 
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Of Witham, Essex. Ravin had already abjured back in 1511. His household was apparently a center of Lollard activity and a number of his servants were also Lollards (Roger, a tanner of Bowers Gifford, bought and sold an English New Testament (BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r), the Chapman brothers, servants to Christopher Ravin, also were Lollards: see BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r and Strype, EM, I, I, p. 114 and I, 2, p. 54). He was apparently survived long enough to relate a story about this visitation to Foxe or one of Foxe's associates (since he seems to be the source for stories about the harsh treatment of his servants).

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wife.
MarginaliaIoh. Chapmā.Iohn Chapman, his seruaunt
Who 
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I.e., Christopher Ravin, who seems to be the source for this story about the harsh treatment of his servant.

remayneth yet alyue, and hath bene of a long
time a great harberour of many good men and we-
men that were in trouble and distresse, and receaued
them to hys house, as Thomas Bate 
Commentary  *  Close

Robert Bate is meant; Foxe's account of Edward Freeze and 'father' Bate is based on material sent to Foxe by an informant; very probably an informant in Colchester (this account contains quite a bit of detail on people from Essex and Colchester). But there is quite a bit of corroboration for Foxe's account. First of all, A. G. Dickens uncovered information on Edward Freese's family. Edward's father Frederick was a Dutch immigrant (the family name was probably Vries or de Vries), who settled in York and made a living as a bookbinder and stationer (A. G. Dickens, Lollards and Protestants in the diocese of York 1509-1558 [Oxford, 1959], p. 30). This Dutch background may explain the pronounced evangelical convictions of Valentine and Edward Freese. Another major piece of corroboration is a letter, almost certainly sent to Thomas Cromwell, which is now in the TNA. Although the signature has been cut off of the letter, the biographical details related in it fit Edward Freese so closely that is virtually certain that he wrote it. The author of the letter, detained in London for religious offences, admits that he had been a monk since the age of 13, but claims that he was 'sold' by his master to the abbot of Jervaulx. The author of the letter declared that he attempted to flee the abbey several times but was recaptured. Finally he fled to Colchester and he got married (TNA SP 1/73, fos. 175r-176r).

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, Symon Smyth the
Priestes wife 
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I.e., Simon Smith, the curate of Much Hadham and his wife (Smith was Patmore's curate and Benmore his maidservant. Patmore's activesupport, if not outright instigation, of this marriage was necessary.).

, Roger Tanner, with a number moe, whiche
ye may see and read in our former edition 
Commentary  *  Close

Foxe's unwillingness to describe the abjurations of Henrician evangelicals (and, earlier in his work, the Lollards) contrasts starkly with his desire to conceal such submissions in the case of the Marian martyrs. This an indication of the extent to which an earlier tolerance of recantations had eroded among Protestants, and also of Foxe's conviction that those born before the full onset of the Reformation had both lesser spiritual knowledge and lesser obligations to God.

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, pag. 419.

Richard Chapman, his ser-
uaunt and brother to Iohn
Chapman. 
Commentary  *  Close

On the Chapman brothers, servants to Christopher Ravin, see BL, Harley MS 421, fo. 34r and Strype, EM, I, I, p. 114 and I, 2, p. 54.

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MarginaliaRich. Chapman.¶ Touchyng this Richard Chapman, this by the waye is to bee noted, that as hee was in his coate and shyrte enioyned bare head, bare foote, and bare legge to go before the procession, and to knele vppon the colde steppes in the Churche all the Sermon tyme, MarginaliaCruelty shewed for mercy.a litle ladde seyng hym knele vppon the colde stone with his bare knees, and hauyng pytie on hym, came to hym, and hauyng nothyng els to gyue hym, brought him his

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cappe to knele vppon. For the whiche the boy immediatly was take into the Vestry and there vnmercifully beaten for his mercy shewed to the poore penitent.

Besides these, diuers other were about London, Colchester and other places also partakers of the same Crosse and affliction for the lyke cause of the Gospell, in whiche number commeth in these which hereafter followe.

Peter
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