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1378 [1378]

K. Henry. 8. Allegations agaynst the vj. Articles. Auricular confeßion.

A. B. de N. ad Ecclesiam de N. prædictam vestræ dioc. modo per mortem T. D. vltimi incumbentis ibidem vacantem, & ad meam præsentationē pleno iure spectantem, dilectum mihi in Christo Iacobum P. Clericum vestræ paternitati præsento, humiliter rogans quatenus præfatum I. ad dictam ecclesiā admittere, ipsumq; in Rectorē eiusdē ecclesiæ institui & induci facere velitis cū suis Iuribus & pertinentijs vniuersis. &c. As in þe said boke is more at large to be sene or perused.

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Thus I doubt not, louyng reader, but by these so playne euidences aboue prefixed, thou hast sufficiently to vnderstand, that this violent restrainte of Priestes lawfull Mariage within this realme of England, is of no such lōge reach and antiquitie, as hath bene thought of many, and all by reason of ignoraunce of hystories, and course of tymes. So that briefly as in a Summary Table to comprehende that whole effect hereof:

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Marginalia¶ 946.
Priestes mariage, how and when it beganne first to be excluded out of Churches.
First about the yeare of our Lord. 946. the professiō of single lyfe, and displacyng of Mariage began to come into example here in England, by reason of S. Benetes Monkes, whiche then beganne to encrease here about the tyme of king Ædgar, and especially by the meanes of Oswald Bishop of Yorke, Odo & Dūstane, Archbishops of Canterbury, & Æthelwold Byshop of Wint. so that in diuers Cathedrall Churches, and Byshops seas, Monkes with theyr professed singlenes of life, crept in, and maryed ministers (whiche were then called secular Priestes) with their wyues out of sondry Churches were dispossessed not from wyues, but only from their places: and yet not in all Churches, but onely in certeine, MarginaliaRead afore pag. 198. col. 2.wherof we read before pag. 198 

Commentary  *  Close

See 1570, p. 202, 1576, p. 154 and 1583, p. 195.

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Marginalia¶ 1067.Not long after that, about the tyme of Pope Nicolas 2. an. 1060. of Alexander, and Hildebrand, came into the sea of Cāterbury an other Monke called Lancfranc, who also beyng a promoter of this professed chastitie, made the Decree more generall, that all Prebendaries being maried in any Churches, should be displaced: yet þe priests in townes & villages should not be cōpelled to leaue their maried wiues, vnles they would.

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Marginalia¶ 1106.Last of all folowed Monkishe Anselme, an. 1106. by whom was made this law of Winchester aforesaid, MarginaliaRead afore pag. 1334.that Priestes, Archdeacons, Deacons, and Subdeacons, whiche had wyues and spirituall lyuyng, should be put from them both, and also that none after should be admitted to their orders but should first professe single lyfe, that is, to lyue without wyues. And thus much concernyng Priestes Mariage forbydden.

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Let vs adde moreouer to these euidences aboue rehearsed, for more confirmation of the aunciēt vse and libertie of Priestes Mariage an other testimonie or ij. out of lyke aunciēt, recordes with lyke playnes wordes declaryng vnto vs, how the matrimory of Priestes, before the tyme of Lācfrancke aforesayd was no straūge example in the Churche, and first we will inferre the woordes, of an olde Martyrologe pertaynyng to the of Caunterbury. The wordes of whiche Martyrologe bee these 

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Almost certainly, Foxe learned of this Canterbury martyrology through Matthew Parker and/or John Joscelyn.

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¶ Ex antiq. Martyrilogio Ecclesiæ Cant.

LAnfrancus Archiepiscopus reddidit Ecclesiæ Sancti Andreæ, quia de iurè ipsius Ecclesiæ antiquitus fuerunt, in Suthrege, Mutelac, Londoniæ, monasterium Sanctæ Mariæ, cū terris & domibus, MarginaliaLiuingus Præsbyter cū vxore.quas Liuingus Præsbyter & vxor illius Londoniæ habuerunt. 

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Ex antiq. Martyrilogio Ecclesiæ Cant.
Foxe text Latin

LAnfrancus Archiepiscopus ... Londoniæ habuarunt.

Translation

J. Barrie Hall

Archbishop Lanfranc gave to the church of St Andrew, because they anciently belonged as of right to that church, in Southwark, Mortlake, London, the monastery of St Mary with its lands and houses which Livingus the priest and his wife had in London.

To this also may be adioyned an other lyke antiquitie out of an olde written hystorye belongyng to the Church of S. Assaph, after the tyme of Lanfrancke, as foloweth. 

Commentary  *  Close

Almost certainly Foxe learned of this manuscript from the cathedral of St. Asaph, from Matthew Parker and/or John Joscelyn.

¶ Anno domini. 1261. ex antiq. libro Assaphensi manu scripto.

MarginaliaOut of an olde monument of the Church of S. Assaphe.
¶ 1261.
DE Clerico vxorato receptante publicè forbonizatum sciēter, & possit contra ipsum probari, nobis videntur quòd tenetur respondere in foro Ecclesiastico. Si verò facit residentiam in terra principis, & cōtingat ipsum mulctari, tota mulcta sua principi debetur. Si verò residentiam in terra Episcopi facit, mulcta diuidatur inter Episcopū & Principem. Si verò vxor alicuius talis scienter vel nolēter in ei9 absentia receptauerit, Mulier in foro Ecclesiastico respondeat, & Clericus ratione sui facti, non puniatur, nec pro ea (nisi velit) respondere cogatur. 

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Anno domini. 1261. ex antiq. libro Assaphensi manu scripto.
Foxe text Latin

De Clerico vxorato ... respondere cogatur.

Translation

J. Barrie Hall

In the year of our Lord 1261 from an old book written in the hand of Assaph.

Concerning a married cleric who knowingly takes in a man publicly banished, so that it can be proved against him, it seems to us that he is obliged to make reply in the ecclesiastical jurisdiction. But if he makes his residence in the land of a lord, and it should happen that he be mulcted, his entire mulct is owed to the lord. But if he makes his residence in the land of a bishop, the mulct is to be divided between the bishop and the lord. But if the wife of some such cleric knowingly or willingly in his absence takes in [a man publicly banished], the woman is to make reply in the ecclesiastical jurisdiction and the cleric is not to be punished by reason of her act nor is he to be compelled to make reply on her behalf unless he wish to.

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Neither is the testimonie of Mantuanus vnworthy also hereunto to be added, writyng in the lyfe of Hilarius Byshop of Pictauium, as foloweth. 

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This poem is copied from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 569.

¶ Ex Mantuano. 
Latin/Greek Translations  *  Close
Ex Mantuano.
Foxe text Latin

Integritas vitæ ... coniugis usu.

Translation

J. Barrie Hall

From Mantuanus.

Integrity of life, knowledge of the laws, worship of the dwellers in heaven, and protecting the poor, brought you amid popular applause the mitre and crook of Poitiers, while you show no care for mortal things, while you live to yourself, content with your lot, far from all ambition. Your offspring did you no harm, and the wife conjoined to you in lawful marriage did not stand in your way: at that time God did not shudder at the marriage chamber, the cradle, and the marriage torches. All that was prized was virtue, which now is unknown and of no account, but dwells among the ordinary folk with worn cowl. Therefore some people say that laws against matrimony are bad laws. The wisdom of the fathers, they say, did not pay particular attention to what nature refuses to endure and what she is able to tolerate. Christ, they say, did not wish to place on our shoulders this unpleasant yoke; that burden which up to now has created very many monsters was devised, they say, by audacious piety. They wish it to be safer to travel along the road where the divine law permitted and to follow the steps of the ancient fathers, whose life with a wife was better than ours is now when marriage and recourse to a wife are excluded.

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MarginaliaBaptista Mātuanus in vita Hilarij.IN tegras vitæ, legum prudentia, cultus
Cœlicolum, tutela inopum, diadema, pedumq;
Pictauiense tibi, dum nil mortælia curas,
Dum viuis tibi, sorte tua contentus, ab omni
Ambitione procul, populo applaudente, tulerunt.
Non nocuit tibi progenies, non obstitit vxor
Legitimo coniuncta toro, non horruit illa
Tempestate Deus thalamos, cunuabiila, tædæs.
Sola erat in pretio, quæ nunc incognita virtus
Sordet, & attrito viuit cum plebe cucullo.
Propterea leges, quæ sunt connubia contra.
Esse malas quidam perhibent. Prudentia patrum
Non satis aduertit, dicunt, quid ferre recuset.
Quid valeat natura pati. Ceruicibus, aiunt.
Hoc insuaue iugum nostris imponere Christus
Noluit, istud onus quod adhuc quàmplurima monstra
Fecit, ab audaci, dicunt, pietate repertum.
Tutius eße volunt, qua lex diuina sinebat
Iße via, veterumq; sequi vestigia patrum:
Quorum vita fuit melior cum coniuge, quàm nunc
Nostra sit exclusis thalamis & coniugis vsu.

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¶ The sixt Article touchyng Auricular Confession. 
Commentary  *  Close

For his 'allegation' against the last of the Six Articles, on auricular confession, Foxe relies not on historical evidence, but on arguments based on Biblical or patristic citations. He also prints a letter the great Lutheran Reformer Philip Melanchthon sent to Henry VIII.

MarginaliaThree kindes of confession.OF confession 3. kyndes we finde in the Scriptures expressed and approued. MarginaliaConfession to God.The first is our confession priuatly or publickely made vnto God alone: and this confession is necessary for all men at all tymes. Wherof S. Iohn speaketh 

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1 John 1: 9.

: If we confesse our sinnes, he is faythfull to forgiue vs. &c. Marginalia1. Iohn. 1.

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MarginaliaConfession to the publicke congregation.The second is þe confession which is openly made in the face of the congregation. And this confession also hath place when any such thyng is committed, wherof riseth a publicke offence and sclaūder to the Church of God: As appeareth by þe incestuous Corinthians, and other sondry examples of penitentiaries in þe primitiue Church, as of Melciades and other. &c.

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MarginaliaPriuat confession to our brother.The third kind of cōfession is that, which we make priuately to our brother. And this confession is requisite, when either we haue iniuried of by any way dānified our neighbour, whether he be rich or poore. Wherof speaketh the Gospell 

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Matt. 5: 24.

: Go & recōcile thee self first vnto thy neighbour. &c. MarginaliaMath. 5.Also S. Iames 
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James 5: 16.

: Confesse your selues one to an other. &c. MarginaliaIacob. 5.Or els this confession may also haue place, when any such thyng lyeth in our conscience, in the openyng wherof we stande in nede of þe coūsell and cōforte of some faythfull brother. MarginaliaCertayne poyntes of superstitiō to be auoyded in priuate confession.But herein must we vse discretion in auoiding these pointes of blind superstition. First, þt we put therin no necessitie for remission for our sinnes, but to vse therin our owne volūtary discretion, accordyng as we see it expedient for the better satisfiyng of our troubled mynde. The secōd is, that we be not bound to any ennumeration of our sinnes. The third, þt we tie not our selues to any one person, more thē to an other, but to vse therin our free choise, whō we thinke cā giue vs þe best spirituall counsel in the Lord.

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But as there is nothyng in the Church so good and ghostlye, which through peuishe superstition either hath not, or may not be peruerted: so this cōfessiō also hath not lacked hys abuses. First þe secret confessiō to God alone, as it hath ben coūted insufficient, so hath it bene but lyghtly estemed of many. The publicke confession to the congregation hath bene turned to a standyng in a sheete, or els hath bene bought out for money. Furthermore, the secret breakyng of a mans mynde to

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