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1099 [1098]

K. Henry. 8. The storye of Iohn Lambert. His Articles.

MarginaliaThe ruine & dissolutiō of Abbeyes & monasteries in England. he caught hold vpon the lader, and would not let it goe, but so vnpaciently toke his death, as neuer any man that put hys trust in God at any tyme, so vngodly or vnquietly ended his lyfe. 

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These verses are part of the 'Fantasie of Idolatrie', printed on 1563, pp. 590 [recte 599]-589 [recte 600]. The stanzas here were included in the account of Forest in Hall's chronicle.

In the month of October and Nouember the same yere, shortly after the ouerthrow of these images and pilgrimages, followed also the ruine of the Abbeys & religious houses, which by the speciall motion of the Lord Cromwell) or rather and principally, by the singular blessing of almighty God) were suppressed, beyng geuen a little before by acte Parliament, into the kings hand: Wherupon not onely the houses were rased, but theyr possessions also disparcled among the nobility, in such sort, as all friers, Monks, Chanons, Nunnes, and other sectes of religion, were then so rooted out of this realme from the very foundation, that there semeth by Gods grace, no possibilitie hereafter left for the generation of those straunge weedes to grow here any more, accordyng to the true verdict of our Lord and Sauiour Christ, in hys Gospell, saying: Euery plantation beyng not plāted of my father, shalbe pluckt vp by the rootes. &c. 

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Matt. 15: 13.

MarginaliaMath. 15.

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¶ The history of the worthy Martyr of God Iohn Lambert, otherwise named Nicolson, with hys troubles, examinations and aunswers, as well before the Archbishop of Canterbury Warham, and other Bishopeps: as also before kyng Henry 8. by whome at length he was condemned to death & burned in Smithfield. An. 1538. 
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John Lambert

In the Rerum, Foxe presented a rather lengthy account of the martyrdom of John Lambert (Rerum, pp. 146-54). It began with a verbose description of Satan's unceasing efforts to stir up discord and of how, thanks to the devil, Henry VIII , after the dissolution of the monasteries, began to turn against the evangelicals. Foxe then related how Lambert got into a discussion of the sacrament with John Taylor and how this led to Lambert's arrest for heresy. This is followed by a detailed account of Lambert's trial before Henry VIII. (Foxe would reveal in the 1570 edition that his source for this narrative was one 'A. G'. This was very probably Anthon Gilby, who shared Lambert's theological beliefs and who shared a residence with Foxe in Frankfurt in 1554-55). This in turn is followed by an 'apostrophe' to Henry VIII, warning him (and all princes) that they would face divine judgement if they murdered God's saints. In the Rerum, Foxe also mentioned that Lambert had written a treatise defending his beliefs. Foxe summarised this treatise. (The work referred to was A treatyse made by Johan Lambert, was edited by John Bale and almost certainly he had informed Foxe of the treatise and its contents). Foxe concluded with a story of Thomas Cromwell having Lambert brought to him before his execution and begging the martyr's forgiveness. In the first edition of the Acts and Monumnts, Foxe reprinted the account from the Rerum, but also added some new material. He added the details that Thomas Bilney converted Lambert, that Lambert know both Latin and Greek, and that he was chaplain to the Merchant Adventurers in Antwerp. Most importantly, Foxe added the 45 articles charged against Lambert in 1532 and Lambert's responses to them. Foxe's source for these does not survive, but it was almost certainly a separate court book of the proceedings. Where Foxe found it is harder to answer; the natural place for it have been kept would have been Lambeth, but there is no other indication that Foxe consulted the records there before 1563.

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In the Dialogi sex Harpsfield made a number of pointed objections to the claims of Henry VIII and Elizabeth to being Supreme Heads of the English Church (Dialogi sex, pp. 989-91). Among other things, Harpsfield observed that Foxe had denounced Henry for executing Lambert and had even warned the king of his possible damnation (Dialogi sex, p. 991). Although he did not state it explicitly, Harpsfield had made a telling point: If Henry VIII was truly the Supreme Head of the Church, how could his judgement that Lambert was a heretic be questioned? Foxe saw the problem and, in the account of Lambert, he quietly dropped his 'apostrophe' to Henry VIII, although he replaced it with a general warning that even princes would have to account to God for their actions (This oration was dropped from the 1570 edition because Harpsfield had used it to question the validity of the title of Supreme Head of the English Church which had been claimed by Henry and Elizabeth). Foxe also added, for the first time, a note identifying 'A. G.' as the source for the account of Lambert's trial; this verification may also have been a response to Harpsfield.

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Foxe made other changes to the account of Lambert in 1570. He re-arranged the account to place it in a more coherent order. He also added more precise detail on the circumstances of Warham's examination of Lambert (concerning Frith's arrest and examination in 1538). He also added detail on the protracted agony of Lambert's execution, which he must have obtained from an eyewitness. Most importantly, Foxe finally obtained Bale's edition of A treatyse made by Johan Lambert…(Wesel, 1548?), STC 15180 and reprinted it. The 1570 account of Lambert was itself reprinted without change in subsequent editions of the Acts and Monuments.

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In some ways, the most surprising thing about Foxe's account of Lambert is that he included it in the Acts and Monuments at all. In several respects, it presented Foxe with severe embarassments. For one thing, as we have seen, Henry VIII's direct, and enthusiastic, involvement in Lambert's trial created problems for Foxe. Worse yet was the role of the future martyr Thomas Cranmer and of Foxe's ideal godly magistrate Thomas Cromwell, in condemning Lambert. Foxe did try to alleviate these embarrassments by unconvincingly attempting to blame Lambert's prosecution on Stephen Gardiner and other Henrician bishops (See A treatyse made by Johan Lambert…, ed. John Bale (Wesel, 1548?), STC 15180). Foxe also related an implausible tale of Cromwell asking Lambert for his forgiveness (It is highly unlikely that Cromwell would have had someone condemned by the king brought to his and that he would have sought the condemned man's forgiveness. This anecdote has to regarded as another attempt by Foxe to alleviate the embarrassment caused by Lambert's having been denounced by other evangelicals). Nevertheless the account of Lambert was of considerable use to Foxe for one basic reason: apart from John Frith, Lambert was the only Henrician martyr who articulated a Eucharistic theology with which Foxe was largely in agreement. Lambert, and his writings, were invaluable to Foxe in providing a Reformed ancestry for the theology of the Elizabethan church.

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Thomas S. Freeman

Marginalia1538. IMmediatly vpon the ruine and destruction of the monasteries, the same yere, and in the month of Nouember followed the trouble and condemnation of Iohn Lambert the faythfull seruaunt of Iesus Christ, and Martyr of blessed memory 

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Lambert's trial before Henry VIII began on 16 November 1538; he was executed on 22 November 1538.

. This Lambert beyng borne and brought vp in Northfolke, was first conuerted by Bilney, and studied in the Vniuersitie of Cambridge. Where, after that he had sufficiently profited both in Latine and Greeke, and had translated out of both tonges sondry thinges into the English tongue, beyng forced at last by violence of the tyme, he departed from thence to the partes beyond the seas, to Tyndall and Frith, MarginaliaLambert preacher to the Englishe house at Antwerpe. and there remayned the space of a yeare and more 
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Foxe does not mention that Lambert was summoned before Convocation on 27 March 1531 and then he returned to Antwerp.

, beyng preacher and Chaplein to the English house at Antwerpe, tyll he was disturbed by sir Thom. More, and by the accusation of one Barlow MarginaliaLambert brought frō Antwerpe to London.
Lambert accused by one Barlow.
was caried frō Antwerpe to London 
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This took place in 1532.

: where he was brought to examination, first at Lambeth, then at the Bishops house at Otford, before Warham the Archb. of Cant. and other aduersaries 
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The preceeding details about Frith's arrest and examination in 1538 were added in the 1570 edition.

, hauyng 45. articles ministred against hym, wherunto he rendred aunswer agayne by writyng. The which answers for as much as they conteyne great learnyng, & may geue some light to the better vnderstandyng of the common causes of religion now in controuersie, I thought here to exemplifie the same, as they came ryght happely to our hands. The copy both of the articles, and also of hys answers, here in order followeth. 
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Foxe is the only source for the articles, which follow, and for Lambert's responses to them. By Foxe's account, Lambert's replies were not only a very impressive performance, but also very advanced in their theology. In fact, Lambert's views, as presented by Foxe, are quite close to Foxe's views. And this underscores a problem: as the originals of the articles and the replies have not survived, there is no way to determine if Foxe revised either the articles or Lambert's answers.

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¶ Articles to the number of 45. layd to Lambert.

MarginaliaArticles agaynst Ioh. Lambert. IN primis, whether thou wast suspect or infamed of heresie?

2. Whether euer thou hadst any of Luthers bookes, and namely sith they were condemned, & how long thou kepst them, and whether thou hast spent any study on them.

3. Whether thou wast constitute priest, and in what dioces, and of what bishop?

4. Whether it be lawfull for a Priest to mary a wyfe, and whether a priest in some case be bound by the law of god to mary a wyfe?

5. Whether thou beleuest that whatsoeuer is done of man whether it be good or ill, commeth of necessitie.

6. Whether the sacrament of the alter be a sacrament necessary vnto saluation, and whether after the consecration of the bread and wyne done by the priest, as by the minister of God, there is the very body and bloud of Christ, in likenes of bread and wine?

7. Item, what opinion thou holdest touching the Sacrament of Baptisme, whether thou doest beleue that it is a sacrament of the Church, and a necessary sacrament vnto saluation and that a priest may baptise, and that the order of baptising ordeyned by the church, is necessary and wholesome?

8. Item, whether you beleue that matrimony be a sacrament of the church necessary to be obserued in the church, & that the order appoynted by the Church for the solemnising therof, is allowable and to be holden.

MarginaliaSacrament of orders. 9. Item, whether thou doest beleue orders to be a sacrament of the church, and that saying of masse ordeyned by the church, is to be obserued of Priestes: whether it be deadly sinne or not if it be omitted or contemned, and whether the order of Priesthode were inuented by mans imagination or ordeyned by God?

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MarginaliaSacrament of penance. 10. Item, whether penaunce be a sacrament of the church and necessary vnto saluation: and whether auricular confessiō is to be made vnto the priest, or is necessary vnto saluation: and whether thou beleuest that a christiā is bound, besides contrition of hart, hauyng the free vse of an apte or meete priest, vnder necessity of saluation, to be confessed vnto a Priest and not vnto any lay man, be he neuer so good and deuout, and whether thou beleuest that a priest in cases permitted vnto hym, may absolue a sinner (beyng contrite and confessed) from his sinnes, and inioyne hym wholsome penaunce?

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MarginaliaSacrament of confession. 11. Item, whether thou doest beleue and hold that the sacrament of confirmation and extreme vnction, be sacramēts of the church, and whether that they doe profite the soules of them which receiue them, and whether thou beleuest the foresayd seuen sacramentes, to geue grace vnto them that do duly receyue them?

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MarginaliaVnwritten verities. 12. Whether all thinges necessary vnto saluation, are put in holy Scripture, and whether thinges onely there put be sufficient, and whether some thinges vpon necessitie of saluation, are to be beleued and obserued, which are not expressed in scripture?

MarginaliaPurgatory. 13. Whether thou beleuest that Purgatory is, and whether that soules departed be therin tormented and purged?

MarginaliaPraying to saintes. 14. Whether holy martyrs, apostles, and confessours, departed from this world, ought to be honoured and called vpon, and prayed vnto?

15. Whether Saintes in heauen, as mediatours, praye for vs?

MarginaliaPilgrimage. 16. Whether thou beleuest that oblations and pilgrimages, may be deuoutely and meritoriously done to the sepulcres & reliques of sainctes?

MarginaliaLent fast. 27. Whether the fast in Lent and other appoynted by the Canon lawe, and receiued in common vsage of Christian people (vnlesse necessitie otherwyse requireth) are to bee obserued?

MarginaliaWorshipping of Images. 18. Whether it be laudable and profitable, that worshipfull images be set in churches for the remembraunce of Christ and hys saintes?

MarginaliaPraying for soules departed. 19. Whether thou beleuest that prayers of men liuyng, doe profite soules departed and beyng in Purgatory?

MarginaliaMerites. 20. Whether men may merite and deserue both by their fastings and also by other dedes of deuotion?

MarginaliaPreaching without lycense. 21. Whether thou doest beleue, that men prohibited of Byshops to preache, as suspect of heresie, ought to cease from preaching and teaching, vntil they haue purged themselues of suspition afore an higher iudge?

22. Whether thou beleuest, that it is lawfull for al priests freelye to preach the worde of God, or no?

MarginaliaLay men to preach. 23. Whether thou beleuest, that it is lawfull for laye men of both kyndes, that is to wit, both men and women to sacrifice and preach the word of God?

MarginaliaThe popes excōmunication. 24. Whether excommunication donounced by the Pope agaynst all heretikes, do oblige and bynd them before God?

MarginaliaSaying of Mattens. 25. Whether euery priest is bound to say daily his mattins and euensong, according as it is ordeyned by the Church, or whether he may leaue them vnsayd without offēce or deadly sinne?

MarginaliaScripture in the mother tounge. 26. Whether thou beleuest that the heds or rulers, by necessitie of saluatiō, are bound to geue vnto the people, holy scripture in theyr mother language?

27. Whether it is lawfull for the rulers for some cause, vpon their reasonable aduisement, to ordeyne that the scripture should not be deliuered vnto the people in the vulgare language?

28. Whether thou beleuest that consecrations, hallowyngs and blessings vsed in the Church, are to be praysed?

MarginaliaMaking of lawes in the Church. 29. Whether thou beleuest that the pope may make lawes, and statutes, to bynd all christen men to the obseruaunce of the same, vnder payne of deadly sinne, so that such lawes & statutes be not contrary to the law of God?

30. Whether thou beleuest, that the pope and other prelates and their deputies in spirituall things, haue power to excōmunicate Priestes, and lay people that are inobedient and sturdy, from entring in to the church, and to suspend or let them from ministration of the sacraments of the same?

MarginaliaIustification. 31. Whether fayth only without good workes, may suffice vnto a man fallen into sinne after hys baptisme for his saluation and iustifying?

32. Whether a Priest marying a wyfe, and that without

the
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