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courage them, that they sticke not to offer theyr naked throtes, wyshing gloriously to dye for the name of their Christ. Seeke out that rebell (quod the capitayne) and bryng hym to me, that he maye aunswer for the whole secte. Apprehended he is, and bounde as a shepe appointed to the slaughter house, is presented to the Emperor: who wyth wrathfull countenaunce beholdyng hym, sayde: What? Art thou the author of thys sedicion? art thou the cause why so many shall loose theyr lyues? By the gods I sweare, thou shalt smart for it, and fyrste in the flesh shalte thou suffer the paynes, whereunto thou hast encouraged the hartes of thy fellowes. Romanus aunswered: MarginaliaThe christian boldnes of Romanus.Thy sentence O Emperour, I ioyfully embrace: I refuse not to be sacrificed for my brethren, and that by as cruell meanes as thou mayest inuente: and whereas thy souldiours were repelled from the christian congregation, that so happened, bicause it lay not in Idolaters and worshippers of Deuils to enter into the holy house of God, and to pollute the place of true prayer. Then Asclepiades wholy enflamed wyth thys stoute aunswer, commaunded hym to bee trussed vp, and hys bowels drawne out. The executioners themselues more pitifull in hart then the captayne, sayde: not so syr, thys man is of noble parentage: vnlawfull is it to put a noble man to so vnnoble a death: scourge hym then wyth whyppes (quod the capitayne) with knaps of lead at the endes. MarginaliaThe noble pacience of Romanus in hys sufferyng.In stede of teares, sighes and grones, Romanus song psalmes all the tyme of hys whippyng, requiryng them not to fauour him for Nobilities sake, not þe bloud of my progentiours (sayd he) but christian professiō maketh me noble. Then with great power of spirite he inueyed against the capitayne, laughyng to scorne þe false gods of the heathen, wyth the idolatrous worshippyng of them, affirmyng the God of the Christians to be the true God that created heauen and earthe, before whose iudiciall seat all nations shal appeare, but the wholsom woordes of the Martyr were as oyle to the fyre of the capitaynes fury. The more the Martyr spake, the madder was hee, in so much that he commaunded the Martyrs sydes to be launced wyth knyues, vntyl the bones appeare whyte againe. MarginaliaThe preachīg of Romanus to the captainSory am I, O Capitayn (quod the Martyr) not for that my flesh shal be thus cutte and mangled, but for thy cause am I sorrowfull, who being corrupted wyth dampnable errours, seducest others. The second tyme he preached at large, the liuyng God and the Lord Iesus Christ hys welbeloued sonne, eternall lyfe thorow fayth in hys bloud, expressing therwith the abhomination of Idolatry, wyth a vehement exhortation to worshippe and adore the lyuyng God. At these wordes Asclepiades commaunded the tormentours to stryke Romanus on the mouthe, that hys teethe beyng stryken out, hys pronunciation at least wyse might bee impeyred: The commaundement is obeyed, hys face is buffeted, his eye lyddes are torne with theyr nayles, his cheekes are scorched with knyues, the skin of his beard is plucked by little and little from the flesh, finallye hys seemely face is wholy defaced. The meke Martyr said: I thancke thee, O Capitaine, that thou hast opened vnto me many mouthes, wherby I may preache my Lord and sauiour Christ. Loke how many woundes I haue, so many mouthes I haue, laudyng and praysing God. The Capitayne astonished wyth this syngular constācie, commaunded them to cease from the tortures. He threatneth cruell fyre, he reuileth the noble Martyr, he blasphemeth God, saying: MarginaliaAntiquitye alledged of the PagansThy crucified Christe, is but an yesterdayes God, the gods of þe Gentiles are of most antiquitie.

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Here agayne Romanus takyng good occasiō, made a long Oration of the eternitie of Christ, of his humain nature, of the death and satisfaction of Christ for al mākynde. Which done, he sayde: geue me a childe (O Captayne) but seuen yeres of age, which age is free frommalice and other vices, wherwyth riper age is commōly infected, and thou shalt heare what he will say: his request was graunted. A prety boye was called out of the multitude, and set before hym. Tell me my babe (quod the Martyr) whether thou thinke it reason that we worship one Christ, and in Christ one father, or els that we worship infinite gods? MarginaliaThe confession of a chylde agaynst idolatryVnto whō the babe answered: That certainly, whatsoeuer it bee, that men affirme to be God, must needes be one: which with one, is one and the same: & inasmuch as this one is Christ, of necessitie Christ must be þe true god, for, that there be many gods, we children cannot beleue. The Capitayn hereat clean amased, sayd: thou yong villayne and traytour, where and of whom learnedst thou this lessō? Of my mother, (quod the childe) with whose milke I sucked in this lesson, that I must beleue in Christ. The mother was called, and she gladly appeared, MarginaliaA chylde martyred for the testimonye of Christ.the Capitaine commaunded the child to be horsed vp, and scourged. The pitifull beholders of this pitiles acte, coulde not temper themselues from teares: the ioyfull and glad mother alone, stoode by wyth dry chekes: yea, she rebuked her sweete babe for crauing a draught of colde water, MarginaliaAn example of vertuous education.she charged him to thirst after the cup, that þe infantes of Bethleem once dranke of, forgetting their mothers mylke and pappes, she wylled hym to remember little Isaac, who beholding the sword wherwyth, and the altar wheron, he should bee sacrificed, willinglye profered hys tender necke to þe dent of hys fathers sword. Whilest this coūsell was in geuing, the boucherlye tortoure pluckte the skynne from the crowne of hys head, heare and al. MarginaliaA godlye mother of a godly chylde.The mother cryed, suffer, my childe, anone thou shalte passe to hym that wyll adorne thy naked head, with a crown of eternall glorye. The mother counseleth, the childe is councelled: the mother encourageth, the babe is encouraged: he receyueth the strypes and the sores wyth smylyng countenance. The capitayne perceyuing the child inuincible, and himself vanquished, cōmitteth the selye soule, the blessed babe, the child vncherished, to the stynkyng prison, commaunding þe tormentes of Romanus to be renued and encreased, as chief author of this euil.

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Thus was Romanus brought forth agayne to new strypes and punishmentes, to be renued and receyued vpon his old sores, in so much the bare bones appeared, the flesh all torne away: wherein no pitye was shewed, but the ragyng tyrant puffing out of his blasphemous mouth, lyke a mad man these wordes, cryed out to the tormentors, saying:

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MarginaliaThe cruel wordes of the tyraunt.
Where is quod the Captaine, where is your myght?
What? are yet not able one body to spill?
Scant may it, so weake is it, stand vpright:
And yet in spyte of vs shall it lyue styll?
The Grype wyth talaunt, the dog wyth his tooth,
Could soone, ye dastardes, this corps rent and teare,
He scorneth our gods in all that he dooth:
Cut, pricke, and pounce hym, no longer forebeare.

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Yea, no longer could the tyraunt forebeare, but needes he must draw nearer to the sentence of death: is it painfull to thee (sayde he) to tarye so long alyue? a flamynge fyre doubte thou not, shall bee prepared for thee, by and by, wherin thou and that boye, thy fellowe of rebellion shalte be consumed into ashes. Romanus and the babe are led to the place of execution. As they lay handes on Romanus, he looked backe saying: I appeale from this thy tyranny, O iudge vniust, to the righteous throne of Christ that vpright iudge: not because I feare thy cruel tormentes and merciles handlings, but that thy iudgementes may be knowne to be cruel and bloudy. Nowe when they wer come to the place, þe tormētour required þechild of þe mother, for she had takē it vp in her armes: And she onely kyssyng it, deliuered the babe. MarginaliaThe Christian chyld beheaded for confessyng of Christ.Farewel she said my swete child, and as the hangmā applied his sword to the babes necke, she sang on this maner.

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