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1453 [1453]

K. Henry. 8. Anne Askew, Ioh. Lacelles, Ioh. Adams, Nich. Belenian, Martyrs.

MarginaliaIll conditions of ministers hurt not the fayth of the receauers.not hurt my fayth, but in spirite I receyued neuerthelesse, the body and bloud of Christ 

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Askew's answer here implies that her responsibility for properly 'receiving' the blood and body of Christ is her own - the efficacy of the sacrament, or rather her receipt of it - has nothing to do with the condition of the priest ministering to her, as she will reiterate later before Bonner. This was controversial, since according to orthodox doctrine the transformation of the bread and wine into Christ's body and blood depended not on the condition of the recipient of the elements, nor on the moral condition of the priest, but on the priest's ordination. Askew implies a view essentially undermining the position of the Church in standing as mediator between her and God.

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MarginaliaThe fifte Article.He asked me what I sayd concernyng confession? I aunswered hym my meanyng, whiche was as Sainte Iames sayth, that euery man ought to knowledge hys faultes to other, and the one to pray for the other.

MarginaliaThe sixte Article.Sixtly, he asked me what I sayd to the kings booke? And I aunswered him, that I could say nothing to it, because I neuer saw it 

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The King's Book, or A Necessary Doctrine and Erudition for Any Christian Man, published in 1543, is a comprehensive statement of English Church doctrine, called the King's Book due to Henry VIII's apparent enthusiasm for its contents. It is often considered part of a conservative "backlash" characterizing the Henrician 1540s, working hand in glove with the Act of the Six Articles (1539) and the Act for the Advancement of True Religion (1543) in this respect, and can be seen as an expression of Henrician religious conservatism. The notable exception to this is the King's Book's dismissive treatment of purgatory, although it nevertheless confirms the efficacy of Private Masses said for the dead. Despite Askew's claim never to have read the King's Book, that does not necessarily mean that she was unaware of its contents (see Megan L. Hickerson, 'Negotiating Heresy in Tudor England: Anne Askew and the Bishop of London', JBS 46 [October 2007], 784-86).

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MarginaliaThe seuenth Article.Seuenthly, he asked me if I had the spirite of God in me? I aunswered, if I had not, I was but a reprobate or cast away. Thē he sayd he had sent for a Priest to examine me, which was there at hand.

MarginaliaA Priest brought to examine A. Askew.The Priest asked me what I sayd to the sacrament of the aulter, and required much to know therein my meaning. But I desired him againe, to hold me excused concerning that matter. None other aunswere would I make him, because I perceiued him to be a Papist 

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In refusing to speak to the priest sent to Askew by Christopher Dare, Askew's means of discrediting him is interesting. According to recent scholarship on the negotiation of the reformation between Henry VIII and his subjects, the appropriation of anti-papal language was at the heart of the complicity of the people of England in the break with Rome (including those both doctrinally orthodox and evangelical); indeed, anti-papism served as a conduit for the movement from Henrician Catholicism to acquiescence in the Edwardian reformation project (see Ethan Shagan, Popular Politics and the English Reformation [Cambridge, 2003]). In this instance, by calling the priest a papist, Askew was essentially drawing attention to herself as an obedient subject while refusing to speak with one of the king's priests, in the process both rhetorically aligning herself with the royal supremacy and casting doctrinal orthodoxy as itself subversive in being 'papist'.

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MarginaliaThe eyght Article.Eightly he asked me, if I did not thinke that priuate Masses did helpe soules departed? MarginaliaPriuate Masses Idolatrye.I sayd, it was great idolatry to beleue more in them, thē in the death which Christ dyed for vs 

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The issue of private masses (masses sung for the dead in Purgatory) was a fraught one in the 1540s. The fifth article of the Act of the Six Articles (1539) directs that private masses 'be contynued and admytted', and while the King's Book of 1543 all but dismisses the existence of Purgatory, it also advocates for the efficacy of Private Masses. However, Askew's answer to Dare's question here is of particular interest, because she addresses an issue not actually raised by her interrogator - the sacrificial nature of the mass itself. Dare asks Askew about the effect of private masses on the dead, but in her answer, Askew moves beyond his question, by contrasting private masses in efficacy to the 'deathe whych Christe dyed'. Thus she brings into question the dangerous issue of the nature of the Mass as an efficacious performance of Christ's propitiatory sacrifice on the Cross.

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MarginaliaA. Askew brought to the Lord Maior.Then they had me thence vnto my Lord Maior, and hee examined me, as they had before, and I aunswered him directlye in all thinges, as I aunswered the Quest afore.

Besides this, my Lord Maior layde one thing vnto my charge, whych was neuer spoken of me, but of thē: and that was, whether a Mouse eating the host, receyued God, or no? Thys question did I neuer aske, but in dede they asked it of me. Whereunto I made them no aunswere, but smiled 

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The identity of the lord mayor interviewing Askew is unclear. Archdeacon John Louth, in a letter to John Foxe written many years after Askew's death (British Library MS Harleian 425, 142r-143r), identified him as Martin Bowes, Lord Mayor from October 1545 to October 1546, but this identification brings into question the dating of Askew's first examination, which she states is March 1545. If Askew was using old-style dating (with the calendar year ending on March 25), then Louth's identification could be considered sound; however, as Elaine Beilin points out in her introduction to The Examinations of Anne Askew, Louth seems to confuse the events of the first and second examinations in other ways - by placing Askew's interview with Bowes in Tower of London rather than in the Guildhall, and by placing Bowes with the Privy Council. Thus, Beilin concludes, Bowes might have actually participated in the events of the Lattre Examination, rather than the First (Elaine Beilin (ed.), The Examinations of Anne Askew [Oxford, 1996], xxi-xxii).

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Then the bishops Chauncellour rebuked me, and sayd, that I was much to blame for vttering the scriptures. MarginaliaWomen forbidden to speake in the congregation, and how?For S. Paule (he sayd) forbode women to speake or to talke of the word of God. I aunswered him that I knew Paules meaning as well as he, which is in the 1. Corinthians. 14. that a woman ought not to speake in the Congregation, by the way of teaching. And thē I asked him, how manye women he had seene go into the pulpit and preach? He sayde he neuer sawe none. Then I sayd, he ought to finde no fault in poore women, except they had offended the law 

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Askew actually misrepresents Paul in this passage. In 1 Corinthians 14, Paul enjoins women to complete silence in the congregation; his prohibition on female speech is not limited to preaching.

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MarginaliaA. Askew commaunded to the Counter by the Lord Maior.Then my Lord Maior commaunded me to warde. I asked him if sureties would not serue me. And hee made me short aunswer, that he would take none. Thē was I had to the Counter, and there remayned a. xj. dayes, no friend admitted to speake with me. MarginaliaTalke betwen A. Askew and a Priest sent to her in prison.But in þe meane time there was a Priest sent to me, which said that he was cōmaunded of þe bishop to examine me, & to geue me good coūsell, which he did not. But first he asked me for what cause I was put in þe Counter? And I told him, I could not tell. Then he sayd, it was great pitie that I should be there without cause, and concluded that he was very sory for me.

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Secondly he sayd, it was told him, that I should denye the Sacrament of the aulter. And I aunswered him agyne, that that I had sayd, I had sayd.

Thirdly he asked me, if I were shriuen? I told him, so that I might haue one of these three, that is to saye, Doctor Crome, Sir Gillam, or Huntington, I was contented, because I knew them to be men of wisdom. As for you or any other, I will not dispraise, because I know you not 

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Foxe omits, here, most of Askew's answer to the priest's question of whether she had been shriven. As Thomas Freeman and Sarah Wall have noted, the passage in Foxe's base-text, Bale's 1550 (Copland) edition, reads: 'I tolde him no. Then he said, he wold bring one to me, for to shryve me. And I told him so that I myght have one of these.iii.that is to saye, Doctor Crome sir, Gillam, or Huntington, I was contented'. Freeman and Wall have argued convincingly that the omission of much of Askew's answer was due to a case of 'eye skip' - an error on the part of the compositor copying from his base text (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], 1173-74).

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When agreeing to being shriven, Askew names some prominent evangelicals as "men of wisedome," and it is likely that she knew them personally. It is clear that she knew Crome and that she was considered a great supporter of his (Susan Wabuda, 'Equivocation and Recantation During the English Reformation: The "Subtle Shadows" of Dr Edward Crome', Journal of Ecclesiastical History 44 [April 1993], 236). John Guy suggests that Crome was Askew's teacher (John Guy, Tudor England [Oxford, 1988], 196). John Huntington was an evangelical preacher in London. Sir Gillam is an unidentified London evangelical cleric.

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. Then he sayd I woulde not haue you thinke, but that I or an other that shal be brought you, shall be as honest as they. For if we were not, you may be sure the king woulde not suffer vs to preache. Then I aunswered by the saying of Salomon: By communing with the wyse, I may learne wysdome. But by talking wyth a foole, I shall take scath. MarginaliaProuerb. 1.Prouerb. i.

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MarginaliaWhether a mouse may eat body in the Sacrament, or no.Fourthly, he asked me, if the host should fall, and a beast did eate it, whether the beast did receiue God, or no? I aunswered: Seing you haue taken the paynes to aske this questiō, I desyre you also to assoyle it your selfe: for I will not doo it, because I perceiue you come to tempt me. And he sayd, it was against the order of schooles, that he which asked the question, should answer it. I told him, I was but a woman, and knew not the course of schooles.

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Fiftly, he asked me if I intended to receiue the Sacramēt at Easter, or no? I aūswered, that els I were no Christen woman, and therat I did reioyce, þt the tyme was so neare at hande: and then hee departed thence wyth many fayre woordes.

MarginaliaMaister Britaine seeketh to baile Anne Askew hys cosin.The. xxiij. day of March my cousin Britaine came into the Counter to me, and asked there whether I might be put to bayle, or no? Then went he immediately vnto my Lord Maior, desiring of hym to bee so good vnto me, that I might be bayled. My Lore aunswered him, and sayd that he would be glad to doo the best that in him lay. How be it he coulde not baile me, without the consent of a spirituall Officer: requiring him to go and speake with the Chauncelour of London. For, he sayd, like as he coulde not commit me to pryson without the consent of a spirituall Officer, no more could he bayle me without consent of the same.

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MarginaliaMaister Britaine for the baylyng of Anne Askew, sent frō the Maior to the Chaūcellour, frō the Chaūcellour, to the byshop.So vpon that he went to the Chauncellour, requiring of him as he did before of my Lord Maior. He aūswered him, that the matter was so haynous, that hee durst not of him selfe do it, without my Lorde of London were made priuy therunto. But he sayd he would speake vnto my Lord in it, and bad him repaire vnto him the next morrow, and hee shoulde well knowe my Lordes pleasure: And vpon the morow after, he came thither, & spake both with the Chauncellour, & with the bishop of London. The bishop declared vnto him, that he was very well contented that I should come foorth to a communciation, and appointed me to appeare before him the next daye after, at three of the clocke at after noone.

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Moreouer, he sayd vnto him, that hee woulde there should be at the examination, suche learned men as I was affectioned to, that they might see, and also make reporte, that I was handled with no rigour. He aunswered him, that he knew no man that I had more affection to, than to other. Then sayde the Bsshop: yes as I vnderstand, shee is affectioned to Doctor Crome, Sir Gillam, Whiteheade, and Huntington, that they might heare the matter: for she did know them to be learned, and of a godlye iudgement 

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David Whitehead was a well known evangelical, and was involved, with Archbishop Cranmer and other 'luminaries of the evangelical establishment', as Diarmaid MacCulloch describes them, in attempting the conversion of Joan Boucher during Edward VI's reign (See Diarmaid MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer [Yale, 1996], p. 474).

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. MarginaliaBoners promise to Maister Britaine.Also he required my cousyn Britaine, that he should earnestly perswade me to vtter euen þe very bottom of my hart: & he sware by his fidelitie, that no man shoulde take any aduauntage of my wordes: neither yet woulde he laye ought to my charge for any thing that I shoulde there speake: but if I sayd any maner of thing amisse, he with other more, would be glad to reforme me therein, with most godly counsell.

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MarginaliaAnne Askew brought forth to cōmunication before Boner.On the morow after, the bishop of London sent for me, at one of the clocke, his houre being appointed at three, and as I came before him, he said he was very sory of my trouble, and desired to knowe my opinion in such matters as were laid against me. He required me also in any wyse boldly to vtter the secretes of my hart, bydding me not to feare in any poynt, for what soeuer I did say in his house, no man should hurt me for it. I aunswered: for so much as your Lordship appoynted three of the clocke, and my friendes shall not come tyll that houre, I desire you to pardon me of geuing aunswer tyll they come. Then sayd hee, that he thought it meete to sende for those. iiij. men which were afore named and appointed. Then I desired him not to put them to the paine, for it shoulde not neede, because the two gentlemen, which were my friendes, were able enough to testifie that I should say.

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Anone after, he went into his galery with M. Spilman, & willed him in any wise, that he should exhort me to vtter all that I thought. In the meane while he commaunded his Archdeacon to common with me. Who

sayd
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