Critical Apparatus for this Page
Commentary on the Text
Names and Places on this Page
Unavailable for this Edition
1284 [1283]

K. Edw. 6. Reformation of Religion by king Edward.

MarginaliaAn 1547 MarginaliaPeter Martyr,
Mart. Bucer.
Paulus Phagius.
mong whom was Peter Martyr, Martine Bucer, and Paulus Phagius. Of whom the first taught at Oxford: the other two professed at Cambridge, and that wt no smale commendation of the whole vniuersitie. Of the old bishops some were cōmitted to one ward, some to an other. MarginaliaEdm. Boner B. of London committed to the Marshalsey. Boner Byshop of London was committed to the Marshalsey, and eftsoones for his contempt and misdemeanour deposed frō his bishopricke, as in further processe followeth to be seene. MarginaliaGardiner and Tonstall committed to the tower. Gardiner Bishop of Winchester, with Tonstall Bishop of Duresme was caste into the Tower for his disobedience, where he kept his Christmas three yeares together 

Commentary  *  Close

Stephen Gardiner was imprisoned in the Tower from 30 June 1548 until 3 August 1553.

, more worthy of some other place without the Tower, if it hadde pleased God otherwise not to haue ment a further plague to this Realme by that man.

[Back to Top]

But these meeke and gentle times of kyng Edward, vnder the gouernment of this noble Protector, haue this one commendation proper vnto them, for that among the whole nomber of the popishe sorte, of whō some priuely dyd steale out of the realme, many were crafty dissemblers, some were open and manifest aduersaries, yet of all þt multitude, there was not one man that lost his life 

Commentary  *  Close

Note that Foxe restricts this to 'papists'; two radical Protestants, Joan Bocher and George van Parris, were burned during Edward VI's reign.

. In summe, duryng the whole time of the. vj. yeares of this kyng much tranquilitye, and as it were a breathing time was graunted to the whole Church of England: So that the rage of persecution ceasing, and the swoorde taken out of the aduersaries hand, there was now no daunger to the godlye, vnlesse it were onely by wealth and prosperitie, whiche many times bringeth more dommage in corruptyng mēs myndes, than any time of persecution or affliction.

[Back to Top]

Briefly, duryng all this time, nether in Smithfield, nor any other quarter of this realme, any was heard to suffer for any matter of religion, either Papist or Protestant, either for one opinion or other 

Commentary  *  Close
Thomas Dobbe

This is one of the rare times when the account Foxe started with in the Rerum ended up being larger than what was printed in any of the editions of the Acts and Monuments. In the Rerum (on p. 201), Foxe gave the account of Thomas Dobbes, which was translated and reprinted in each edition of the Acts and Monuments. But Foxe also printed (on p. 202) brief accounts of the executions of two religious radicals, Joan Bocher and George van Parris, who were executed in 1550 and 1551. He also printed two stories condemning these executions. In the first story, John Rogers, who would become the first Marian martyr, was approached by an unnamed friend (generally assumed by scholars to be Foxe himself) and urged to intercede on behalf of Joan. When Rogers not only refused to intervene, but also defended burning as merciful, given the heinousness of heresy, his friend bitterly (and prophetically) told him that one day he might receive such gentle treatment himself (Rerum, p. 202). Foxe also included an account of Humphrey Middleton, another future Marian martyr, being accused of heresy by Cranmer during Edward VI's reign, and grimly prophesying that Cranmer would one day find himself in a similar position (Rerum, p. 202).

[Back to Top]

All of these stories are an indication of the strength of Foxe's aversion to punishing heretics with death. Yet only the account of Thomas Dobbes was reprinted in the Acts and Monuments. (The executions of Joan Bocher and George van Parris are merely mentioned in the Acts and Monuments, see later in Book 9). Foxe was unwilling the surrender the moral high ground by admitting that his martyrs were persecutors themselves. And an admission that Protestants persecuted each other, only served to support the validity of Catholic charges of Protestant disunity. However, Foxe did add one short account to this section, that of John Hume. This, however, did not end in an execution and was thus fairly innocuous.

[Back to Top]

Most of Foxe's sources for these persecutions drew on his own experiences or on accounts from informants. However, Foxe's limited knowledge of the case of John Hume, was entirely based on the sparse entry on the case in Cranmer's register.

Thomas S. Freeman

, except onely two, one an Englishe womā called Ioan of Kent, and the other a Dutch man, named George, who dyed for certaine Articles not much necessary here to be rehearsed. 
Commentary  *  Close

These articles included beliefs that Foxe himself regarded as heretical, such as denial of Christ's human nature and denial of the Trinity. Foxe was reluctant to even rehearse such deviant theology.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaTho. Dobbe imprisoned and in prison dyed. Besides these two, there was none els in all kynge Edwardes raigne, that dyed in any maner cause of religion, but that one Thomas Dobbe, who in the beginning of this kynges raigne, was apprehended for speakyng agaynst the idolatrie of the Masse and in the same prison dyed: as in storie here ensueth to be seene. 

Commentary  *  Close

Foxe first printed this account of Thomas Dobbe in the Rerum (p. 201), which means that he obtained this account during his exile. The account, which must have been received from a informant, is rather puzzling. Two of the individuals named (John Taylor and Roger Hutchinson) were prominent evangelicals and are very unlikely to have objected to Dobbe's wishing to marry. Perhaps there were other, more personal reasons, for Dobbe's bad relations with the other fellows. Perhaps Dobbe's religious beliefs were more radical than Foxe describes. In any case, it would seem there is more to this story.

[Back to Top]

[Back to Top]

This Thomas Dobbe beyng a student and a maister of Arte in Cambridge, was brought vp in the Colledge, called S. Iohns Colledge, and fellowe of the same, where he increased in the study of good letters, among his equales very forward of nature and disposition simple and modest, of zeale toward God feruēt pacient in iniuries, iniurious to no man, of much lyke sorte and condition, MarginaliaDoues as Philosophers naturally doe write, haue no gall. as is in Doues whiche without all bitternes of gall, are more apt to receiue iniury then then to worke wrong to any. At length this godly man intendyng with him selfe, and addictyng his mynde to the Christian state of Matrimony, resorted to a certayne mayden not farre of where hee dwelt. For the whiche cause hee was greatly molested, and wickedly abused by iij. of that Colledge, whose names were Hutchinson, Pindare, and Tailer, who with their malicious handelyng, scornfull dealyng, obprobries, rebukes, and contumelies, so much vexed the vertuous simplicitie of the mā, that they neuer left hym, tyll at length they weryed hym out of the Colledge. Who their hauyng no rest nor quietens by reason of the vnreasonable and virulent handlyng of his aduersaries, was compelled to seke some other place wherin to settle himselfe. Vpon the occasion wherof commyng, vp to Lōdon, it chaunced him to passe through Paules Church, wheras it happened that at the Southside of the Churche, as the same tyme there was a Priest at Masse, more busy then well occupied beyng at the eleuation as hee passed by. The young man repleat with godly zeale, pitying the ignorance and Idolatry of the people, in honoryng that so deuoutly which the priest lifted vp, was not able to forbeare, but openyng his mouth and turnyng to the people, hee exhorted thē not to honor þt visible bread as god, whiche neither was god, nor yet ordeined of God to be honored. &c. with such other wordes moe of Christian information. For which cause strayght way he was apprehēded by the Maior, and after accused to the bishop of Canterbury, was committed to the Counter then in Breadstreete, where, hee not long continued, but fallyng into a sicknes, how, or wherupon I can not tell, shortly vpō the same chaūged this mortall life. Whose pardon notwithstandyng was obteyned of the Lord Protector, and shoulde haue bene brought him, if he had continued. And thus much concernyng Thomas Dobbe and other.

[Back to Top]

Ouer and besides, I finde, that in the first yeare of the raynge of Kyng Edward, whiche was an 1547. there was one Iohn Hume, seruaunt to Maister Lewnax of Wresell apprehended, accused, and sent vp to the Archbyshop of Cāterbury 

Commentary  *  Close

Foxe probably obtained this brief account of John Hume from Archbishop Cranmer's register. It reads very much like an official account and Foxe makes it clear that his only source was some sort of document. Unfortunately, no such account survives in Cranmer's register. However, in the section of the register containing heresy trials (LPL, Cranmer Register, fos. 67r-79r), there are two missing folios (76r-77v). It is quite possible that the information on Hume was on one of these missing folios; in fact, the folios may have been sent to Foxe and never returned. No one (including Foxe), knows how this case turned out, but presumably no action was taken against Hume.

[Back to Top]
, by the sayd M. Lewnax his Maister, and Margaret Lewnax his mistres, for these Arctcles.

[Back to Top]

1 First, for denying the Sacrament (as it was then called of the altar) to be the reall flesh and bloud of Christ.

2 For saying that he woulde neuer vale his bonet vnto it, to be burned therfore.

3 For saying that if hee shoulde heare Masse, he should be damned.

For this was he sent vp by his maister and mistres aforesayd, with speciall letters vnto the Archbyshop, requiryng hm seuerally to be punished by the lawe for the same. But because I finde no execution followyng thereupon, I therfore passe ouer this story of him.

These thinges premissed, when this vertuous and godly yong prince (endued as you haue heard with special graces from God) was now peaceably stablished in his kyngdome, and had a counsail 

Commentary  *  Close
Edward VI's injunctions

Henry VIII's will established a council of regency in order to govern during the minority of Edward VI. It excluded leaders of the conservative opposition: Stephen Gardiner, Edmund Bonner, and Thomas Howard II, 3rd Duke of Norfolk. On 31 January 1547, only three days following the death of King Henry, the council of regency elected Edward Seymour, Earl of Hertford, Lord Protector, a traditional assignment for the eldest uncle of a minor king. Seymour was created Duke of Somerset on 17 February at the same time that John Dudley became Earl of Warwick. Seymour had effected a coup d'état that enabled him to govern effectively as king and, in violation of the royal will, to replace the legitimate council of regency with a Privy council that he selected personally. Contrary to the tradition, this council did not unite in support of ensuing religious reforms. Protector Somerset acted without consulting councilors, sometimes falsifying records to suit his purposes. His overbearing circumvention of the Privy council contributed to the eventual alienation of almost all of his original supporters. Hoak, King's Council, pp. 167, 177-79, 189-90, and passim.

[Back to Top]

John King

about hym graue, wyse, and zelous in gods cause, especially hys vncle the duke of Somerset, he then most earnestly likewyse desired, as wel the aduauncement of the true honour of almighty God, and the plantyng of hys sincere religion: as also the vtter suppression and extirpation of all idolatry, superstition, hypocrisie, and other enormities and abuses, throughout hys realmes and dominions, and therfore followyng, as is afore expressed, the good example of kyng Iosias 
Commentary  *  Close

Supporters of Edward VI praised him as a New Josiah on the ground that the boy king who purged Israel of idolatrous images and shrines (2 Kings 22-23) provided a precedent for pursuing a legally dubious policy of religious reform during the minority of King Edward. King, Tudor Royal Iconography, pp. 93-94, 160; Aston, King's Bedpost, pp. 26-36.

[Back to Top]
, he determined forthwyth to enter into some reformation of Religion in the Churche of England.

[Back to Top]

And forasmuch as at hys first entry (notwithstāding hys fathers good beginning in abolishing the vsurped power of Antichrist) he yet found most of hys lawes greatly repugnyng against this his zelous enterprise, he therfore purposed by the aduise of his sayd wyse and honorable Counsail, of his owne regall power and authoritie 

Commentary  *  Close

Stephen Gardiner disputed the legality of pursuing ecclesiastical reformation during a royal minority. Alford, Kingship and Politics, pp. 57-58.

, somewhat to presecute hys godly purpose, vntill such tyme as by consent of the whole estate of parliament, he might establish a more free, perfect, and vniforme order therin.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaOrder taken by K Edw. for reforming of religion. Wherupon intendyng first a generall visitation 

Commentary  *  Close

Beginning in May 1547, the royal visitation of all English bishoprics represented the opening move toward the introduction of changes in religion. It was the first action of this kind since Thomas Cromwell's vice-gerency over the Church of England. The six parties of commissioners were packed with evangelical sympathizers. MacCulloch, Thomas Cranmer, pp. 369-70.

[Back to Top]
ouer all the bishoprikes within hys realme (therby as wel to vnderstand, as also to redresse the abuses in the same) he chose out certayne wise learned, discrete, and worshipfull personages to be hys Commissioners in that behalfe: and so diuidyng them into seuerall companies, assigned vnto them seuerall Diocesses to be visited: MarginaliaLearned preachers appointed by K. Edward. appointyng likewyse vnto euerye company, one or two godly learned Preachers, which at euery Session should in their preachyng, both instruct the people in the true doctrine of the Gospell of Christ, and in all loue and obedience to the same, and also earnestly dehort 
Commentary  *  Close

Dehort: to exhort against taking action.

them from theyr olde superstition and wonted Idolatry. And that they might be more orderly directed in this theyr Commission, there were deliuered vnto them certayne Iniunctions and ecclesiasticall orders 
Commentary  *  Close

Foxe paraphrases the Royal Injunctions of Edward VI. The King's Printer, Richard Grafton, published Iniunccions geuen by the Kynges Maiestie in seven separate editions on 31 July 1547 (STC 10087.5-10091). In addition to reaffirming the Royal Injunctions of 1538, these injunctions advance in a firmly Protestant direction.

[Back to Top]
drawen out by the kings learned counsayle, the which they should both enquire of, & also commaund in hys maiesties behalfe, to be thencefoorth obserued of euery person, to whom they did seuerally appertayne within their sondry circuites.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaEcclesiastical persōs must preach against the popes vsurped power. In the which, amongst other thyngs, it was first enioyned that all Ecclesiasticall persons should themselues obserue, and cause to be obserued of others, all such Statutes as were made for the abolishyng of the Bishop of Romes vsurped power, and establishyng of the kynges supreme authority 

Commentary  *  Close

The Act for Submission of the Clergy (1534), Act of Supremacy (1534), and related legislation.

, and that they should euery one foure tymes in the yeare at the least, in theyr publike sermons declare vnto the people, that the one beyng most arrogantly vsurped against the word of God, was now iustly taken away, and the other (accordyng to the very true meanyng of the same worde) was of most loyall duety onely to be obeyed of all hys graces subiectes 
Commentary  *  Close

Injunction 1.

.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaSermons quarterly to be made. And agayne, that euery the aforesayd ecclesiasticall person (hauing cure) should preach, or cause to be preached wþtin their seuerall cures, one sermon euery quarter of the yere. MarginaliaDifference betwene workes cōmaunded of God and workes deuised of mē. In the which they shoulde sincerely set forth the worde of God, and exhort the people vnto the works of fayth and mercy prescribed in the same woord, and not vnto workes deuised by mans fantasy, as goyng on pilgrimages and other lyke idolatrous superstitions: the whiche they should also to þe vttermost of their powers reproue and speake agaynst, declaryng that all grace and goodnes ought onely to be sought for at gods hād (as the alone geuer therof) and not at any other creature 

Commentary  *  Close

I.e., 'creature'. Injunction 2 orders clerics at least on a quarterly basis preach in favor of the Protestant doctrine of justification by faith alone and against superstitious works including veneration of religious images and relics or pilgrimages to shrines containing them. The sermons on faith and good works in the Book of Homilies (see Injunction 32), almost certainly composed by Archbishop Cranmer, reinforce the forthright Protestant provisions of this article.

[Back to Top]
: MarginaliaImages abused wyth pilgrimage to be destroyed. And that they shoulde not onely foorthwith take downe and destroy all such Images as had bene thertofore abused by pilgrimages or offeringes 
Commentary  *  Close

Injunction 3 cautiously endorses iconoclastic destruction of images 'abused' by pilgrimages, offerings, or censings. It permits employment of images as objects of 'remembraunce, whereby, men may be admonished, of the holy liues and conuersacion of theim, that the saide Images do represent: whiche Images, if thei do abuse for any other intent, thei commit Ydolatrye in the same, to the great daungier of their soules' (a3v). Taken in conjunction with Injunction 28, this provision renders apparent the iconoclastic thrust of official policy.

[Back to Top]
within their said cures: but also should not thenceforth suffer any lightes or other idolatrous oblation to be made or set vp before any other image, then was yet suffered in the Church 
Commentary  *  Close

Injunction 3 forbids the burning of candles except for two on the high altar. This apparently simple alteration resulted in a radical change in the appearance of churches where, in accordance with the 1538 Royal Injunctions, candles had continued to flicker before roods (oversize crucifixes above chancel screens) and sepulchers. Duffy, Stripping of the Altars, p. 451.

[Back to Top]
.

[Back to Top]

Also that euery holy day (hauyng no Sermon in theyr Church) they should immediatly after the Gospell distinctly read in the Pulpit the Lordes prayer, the beliefe and the

x.
Go To Modern Page No:  
Click on this link to switch between the Modern pagination for this edition and Foxe's original pagination when searching for a page number. Note that the pagination displayed in the transcription is the modern pagination with Foxe's original pagination in square brackets.
Find:
Type a keyword and then restrict it to a particular edition using the dropdown menu. You can search for single words or phrases. When searching for single words, the search engine automatically imposes a wildcard at the end of the keyword in order to retrieve both whole and part words. For example, a search for "queen" will retrieve "queen", "queene" and "queenes" etc.
in:  
Humanities Research Institute  *  HRI Online  *  Feedback
Version 2.0 © 2011 The University of Sheffield