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192 [191]

Kyng Harold. K. Harold. William Conquerour.

the blessed reliques of Saintes, swearyng in þe presence of the whole state of hys realme (as well of the temporaltie as of the spiritualtie) before he be crowned of the Archbishops & Bishops. MarginaliaThere slaues and seruantes a king ought to haue vnder his subiection.Three seruantes the kyng ought to haue vnder hym as vassals: fleshly lust, auarice, and greedy desire. Whō if he kepe vnder as his seruanies and slaues, he shall raign well and honorably in his kingdome. All thynges are to be done wyth good aduisement and premeditation: and that properly belongeth to a kyng. For hastie rashnes bringeth all thynges to ruine, accordyng to the saying of the Gospell: Euery kingdome deuided in it selfe, shall bee desolate. &c.

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After the dutie and office of Princes thus described, consequently followeth the institution of subiectes declared in many good and necessary ordinances, very requisite and conuenient for publique gouernment. Of the which lawes William Cōquerour was compelled the thorough the clamour of the people to take some: but the most parte he omitted, contrary to his owne othe at hys coronation, insertyng and placyng the moste of hys owne lawes in hys language, to serue his purpose: and whiche as yet to this present day in the same Normande language do remayne. Nowe (the Lorde wylling) let vs procede in the storye, as in order followeth.

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¶ Kyng Harold. 
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For the coronation of Harold and his early contest with the king of Denmark and Tostig, Foxe could have utilized any of a number of sources, though his account most closely resembles that of Fabian's Chronicle (R. Fabyan, The Chronicle of Fabian [London, 1559], book 6, chs. 216-217). For the interesting list of the succession to the archbishopric of Canterbury from Elphegus to Lanfranc, which concludes this section, Foxe relied on William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N. E. S. A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Monachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [...] [London: Rolls Series, 1870], book 1, chs 21-24).

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MarginaliaAn. 1066
Harold last kyng of Saxons.
HArold the seconde sonne of earle Godwine, and last kyng of the Saxons: notwithstandyng that diuers of the nobles went with Edgar Adeling, the nexte heire after Edmūd Ironside: yet he through force & might, contemnyng the yong age of Edgar, and forgetting also his promise made to Duke William, toke vpon him to be kyng of England. an. 1066. When Harolde Harefager, sonne of Canutus, king of Norway and Dēmarke, heard of þe death of kyng Edward, he came into england with 300. ships or mo: who then ioyning with Tostius, brother to þe said Harold kyng of england, entred into the North partes, & claymed the land after the death of Edward. But the Lordes of the countrey arose and gaue them battaile: notwythstandyng, the Danes had the victory. And therfore Harold king of england prepared toward them in all haste, and gaue them an other strong battell and there had the victory, MarginaliaHarolde kyng of Denmarke and Tostius slayne.where also Harold the Dane was slaine, by the hand of Harold king of england. And Tostius was also slayne in the battell. After this victory, Harold waxed proud and couetous: and would not diuide the prayes to his knightes that had deserued it, but kept it to hymselfe: wherby he lost the fauour of many of his knights and people.

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In this meane tyme William Duke of Normandy sēt Ambassades to Harold kyng of England, admonishing him of the couenantes that were agreed betwene them: which was, to haue kept the land to hys vse after the death of Edward. But because that the daughter of Duke William (that was promised to Harold) was dead: Harold thought him therby discharged, & said, that such a nice foolish promise ought not to be holden (concernyng an others land) without the consent of the Lordes of the same: and especially for that he was therunto, for nede or for dread, compelled.

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Vpon these answeres receaued, Duke William, in the while that the messengers went and came: gathered hys knightes, and prepared his nauye, and had the assent of the Lordes of hys land to ayde and assist him in his iourney. And ouer that sending vnto Rome to Pope Alexander, concerning his title & viage into england: the Pope cōfirmeth hym in the same, MarginaliaThe pope sendeth a banner to Duke W. vpon bone viage into England.and sent vnto him a banner, willyng him to beare it in the ship, wherin hymselfe should saile. Thus Duke William, beyng purueyed of all thynges concernyng his iourney: sped him to the sea side, and tooke shipping at the hauen of S. Valery: where he taryed a long tyme, or he might haue a conuenient wynde. For the which his soldiours murmured (saying) it was a woodnes, and a thing displeasing God, to desire to haue an others mans kyngdome by strength, and namely when God was against it in sending contrary wynde. &c. MarginaliaDuke William landeth at HastingesAt the last, the wynde shortly after came about, and they tooke shipping wyth a great company, and landed at Hastinges in Sussex.

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MarginaliaThree causes why Duke William entred England.For three causes Duke William entred this land, to subdue Harald. One was for that it was to hym geuen by king Edward his nephew. The secōd was to take wreake for the cruell murther of his nephew Alfrede, kyng Edwardes brother, and of the Normandes, which deede he ascribed chiefly to Harald. The third was, to reuenge the wrong done to Robert Archbishop of Canterbury, which was exiled by the meanes and labour of Harald, in the time of kyng Edward.

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Thus, while Harald was in the North: Duke William made so great speede that he came to London before the kyng: out of which he was holden, till he had made good surety, that he and his people should passe through the citie wythout tarying: which promise he well obseruing passed the bridge, and went ouer vnto Sussex. From whence he sent a Monke vnto Harold, and profered to hym three maner of wayes. MarginaliaThree conditions offered to Harold by Duke William.1. Eyther to render to hym the possession of the land & so to take it agayne of hym, vnder tribute raignyng vnder hym. 2. or els to abyde and stand to the Popes arbitrement betwixt them both: or thirdly to defende hys quarell in his owne person agaynst the Duke, and they two onely to try the matter by dinte of sword, without any other bloudshedyng.

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But Harald refused all these offers, saying: it should be tryed by dinte of swordes, and not by one sword. And so gathered his people, and ioyned battaile with the Normandes in the place where afterward was builded the Abbey of Battayle in Sussex. MarginaliaThe fyight betwene Harold, & Duke William.In the beginning of which fight the englishmen kept them in good array, like to vanquishe the Normandes. Wherfore Duke William caused hys men to geue backe, as though they fled: wherby the englishmen followed fast and brake their array. Then the Normaines fiercely geuing a charge vpon them, in conclusion obtained the victory, through the iust prouidence of God. Where kyng Harald, who before had murdred Alfrede the true heire of the crowne, wyth his company of Normandes so cruelly: MarginaliaK. Harold slayne.was now wounded of the Normandes, in the left eye wyth an arrow, and therof incontinent dyed: although Gerardus sayth, he fled away to Chester, and liued after that a Monke in the monastery of S. Iames. Which is not like, but rather that he was there slayne after that he had raigned ix. monethes, and was buryed at Waltham (which proueth that he dyed not at Chester) and so was he the last that raigned in england of the bloud of the Saxons: the which cōtinued (to recken frō Hengistus his first raigne in Kent) by the space of fiue hundred & 91. yeares. And if it be reckened from the yeares of the Westsaxons, then it endured, the space of. 565. yeres.

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MarginaliaThe consanguinitie betweene kyng Edward, and William Conqueror.Thys William Duke, and kyng Edward: were by the fathers side, cosin germaines remoued. For Richard the first of that name, which was the third Duke of Normandy after Rollo: was father to Duke Richard the second of that name: & brother of Emma mother to kyng Edward. Which Duke Richard the second, was father to Duke Robert, this Duke Williams father.

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Albeit in this matter, other some may gather otherwise, and better, perchaunce, yet if I may say what I think, verely I suppose, that there is no consanguinitie so much here the cause, why God of his vnknowen iudgementes suffred the Normandes here to preuayle: MarginaliaMurther iustly recompensed.as was rather the cruell murder of Alfred, and of the innocēt Normādes, wrought by the cruell despight of Harald and the englishmen, as is before declared. The which merciles murther, God hath here iustly in thys conquest recompensed.

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Now remayneth also to these forein affayres of kyngs & princes, to adde somethyng likewise, concerning the continuation of the Archbyshops of Caunterbury begynning there where we last left: MarginaliaArchbishops of Canterb.that is wyth Elphegus, whom we declared a litle before to be stoned by the Danes at Grenewiche. After which Elphegus next succededed MarginaliaLiuingus.
Egelnothus.
Robertus.
Stigandus.
Liningus, after hym Egelnothus also aboue mentioned. Then Robertus a Normand, a great doer (as is declared) about kyng Edward, and a faithfull counsailer vnto hym: but he abode not long. After whom, Stigandus inuaded the sea (as they report) by simony: beyng both Archbishop of Cāt. Byshop of Winchester, and also Abbot in an other place. Wherin he continued a great space, gatheryng and heapyng goodes together, till at length duke William clapt him in prison, and there kept hym: placing in his rowme, Lancfrācus a Lombard borne, of whom more shall follow (Christ willyng) hereafter to be declared.

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MarginaliaThe decay of the church.¶ Although the Church of Christ, and state of religion first founded and grounded by Christ and his Apostles, did not continually altogether remayne in his primatiue prunatiue perfection, wherin it was first instituted: 

Commentary  *  Close
Pope Sylvester to the end of Book III

Having introduced so much additional, detailed and substantial material on the history of the Anglo-Saxon state and church in the 1570 edition of the martyrology, Foxe chose to use the end of the new 'book three' to offer a reinforcement of the implicit periodisation which had begun to emerge. Rather than the 'third age of the church' (or 'the latter age of the church') in which, with the accomplishment of the first millennium of Christian history, 'the fresh flowering blood of the church' began to 'faint, and strength to fail, oppressed with cold humours of worldly pomp, avarice, and tyranny; here now cometh in blind superstition, with cloaked hypocrisy, armed with rigorous laws, and cruel murdering of saints', Foxe now offered a more nuanced picture, in which the affairs of the world 'began from better to worse, to decrease & decline into much superstition & incōuenience: partly through the comming in of Mahumet, partly through the increase of wealth and riches, partly through the decrease of knowledge & diligence in such as should be the guides of Christes flocke: yet the infection & corruption of that time (though it were great) did not so abounde in such excessiue measure, as afterwarde in the other latter times nowe following, about the thousand yeares expired after Christ'. Having nuanced and historicised the more explicitly presented millennial determinism of the 1563 text, Foxe was all the more concerned, however, to let the overwhelming evidence that he presented do the work for him. Few stories relating to the history of the medieval papacy did it better than that of Pope Sylvester II, who became pope in succession to Gregory V in 999, the first French pope. The surviving chronicles were rich in apparently documented rumours of his being in league with the devil, and speculation concerning his Jewish ancestry. The subject is explored at greater length in [hyperlink here:] Thomas Freeman, '"St Peter Did not Do Thus": Papal History in the Acts and Monuments', the prefatory essay to this edition. As we demonstrate there, despite the impressive range of sources that Foxe appears to display, the material had essentially come from Matthias Flacius' Catalogus testium veritatis (1556) (pp. 230; 200) and from Bale's Catalogus, pp. 143; 145-159; 156-7.

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Interestingly, however, Foxe did not close the book at this point. As a last-minute addition to the book, he added to the 1570 edition the 'Oration of K. Edgar to the Cleargie'. Foxe strongly implies that the material had arrived in his hands just as his volume was going through the press ('…chaunced in the meane time to come to my handes…'). Foxe highlights what he saw as the particular significance of the text. It indicated the 'religious zeale and deuotion of kynges' (Foxe wanted, wherever possible, to lay the groundwork historical justifications for the English monarchy's determining role in the reformation). It documented the 'dissolute behauiour and wantonness of the clergie'. And it revealed the 'blynd ignoraunce and superstition of that tyme in both states: as wel ecclesiastical, as temporal' (thereby strengthening points which had emerged, albeit tangentially, in the preceding narrative). There is a clear indication, therefore, here that Foxe continued right up to the last moment to work on the early books of the martyrology in 1570. Where had the text come from? Our hypothesis currently is that the manuscript had been discovered, probably by someone in Archbishop Matthew Parker's household, and passed to Foxe, who placed it in the book where he could. The manuscript in question might well be Corpus Christ College, Cambridge MS 56. This is a compilation of statutes, charters and miscellanea, among which (at fol. 253) a manuscript described as 'Monitio Regis Edgari prelates et abbatibus' is listed, a text which lacks the end passage (in the way that Foxe's does). In John Joscelyn's list, this part of the manuscript is described as 'Edgarus Anglorum Rex habuit orationem', and it appears to have come into the archbishop's possession from John Twyne. T. Graham, and A. G. Watson, The recovery of the past in early Elizabethan England. Documernts by John Bale and John Joscelyn from the Circle of Matthew Parker, Cambridge Bibliographical Society Monograph, No. 13 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998) believe that the text had originally come from Ailred of Rievaulx, De genealogia regum Anglorum (Ælfred of Rievaulx: The Historical Works (Kalamazoo, 2005), ch. 17, pp. 98-102., ch. 17, pp. 98-102). It had been printed in the first edition of Matthew Parker's De Antiquitate Britannicae Ecclesiae (1569), pp. 57-8. Historians now incline to the view that its ascription to Edgar is false.

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Foxe ended the book with a continuation of the ordo successionis of the archbishopric of Canterbury from the time of King Edgar through to the Norman Conquest. The table complements earlier ordines in book 3. It was possibly derived from William of Malmesbury's Gesta Pontificium (N.E.S.A. Hamilton, ed. William of Malmesbury. Willemesbiriensis Momnachi De Gestis pontificium Anglorum [,,,] [London: Rolls Series, 1870]., book 1, chs 12-24) although it is likely that this was also connected to research undertaken in Parker's household for the publication of the De Antiquitate.

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Matt Phillpott and Mark Greengrass
University of Sheffield

But in processe of tyme, began from better to worse, to decrease and decline into much superstition & incōuenience: partly through the cōming in of Mahumet, partly through þe increase of welth and riches, partly through the decrease of knowledge and diligence in such as should be the guides of christes flocke: yet the infection and corruption of that tyme (though it were great) did not so abounde in such excessiue measure as afterward in the other latter tymes now followyng a

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