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856 [832]

K. Henry. 8. M. Luther. The aunswere of the Princes, to the Pope.

greuances & hinderances this natiō of Germanie hath ben so wasted & cōsumed in money, that vneth it is able to sustein it self in priuate affaires, and necessary vpholding of Iustice within it self: much lesse thē to minister aid & succor to the kingdome of Hūgary, & to the Croatiās, against the Turk. And wheras al the states of the sacred Romane Empire do not doubt, but the popes holynes doth right wel vnderstād, MarginaliaAnnates falsely pretended of the Pope, to maintaine warre agaynst the Turke how the Germane princes dyd graunt & cōdescend for the mony of Annates to be leaued to the see of Rome for term of certaine yeres, vpō cōditiō that the said money should be cōuerted to maintein war against the turkish infidels, & for defense of the catholike faith: & wheras the terme of these yeares is now expired long since, when as the said Annates should be gathered, & yet that money hath not bene so bestowed to that vse, wherto it was first graūted: therefore if any such necessity should now cōe, that any publike helpes or cōtributiōs against the Turk, should be demaūded of the German people, they would answer againe, why is not that money of Annates reserued many yeares before to that vse, now to be bestowed & aplied, & so would they refuse to receiue any more such burdēs for that cause to by laid vpō thē.

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Wherfore the said lord Lieutenant, & other princes & degrees of the Empire make earnest petition, that the Popes holines wil with a fatherly cōsideratiō expēd the premisses & surcease hereafter to require such Annates, MarginaliaAnnates is a certaine portion of money wont to bee payd to the court of Rome, out of the one yeares fruites, at the vacation of any ecclesiasticall lyuing. which are accustomed after the decease of bishops & other prelates, or ecclesiastical persō, to be paid to the court of Rome, & suffer thē to remaine to the chāber of the Empire, wherby iustice & peace may be more cōmodiously administred, the trāquillitie of the publike state of Germany mainteyned, & also by the same, due helpes may be ordeyned & disposed to other Christen potentates in Germanie, against the Turke, which otherwise without the same, is not to be hoped for.

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Itē, wheras the Popes holynes desireth to be informed what way were best to take, in resisting these errors of the Lutherians: to this the lord Lieutenāt with other princes & nobles do answer, that what soeuer helpe or coūsel they cā deuise, with willing hartes they wyll be ready thereunto. Seing therfore the state as wel ecclesiastical, as temporal, is farre out of frame, & haue so much corrupted their waies, & seing not onely of Luthers part, & of his secte, but also by diuers other occasions besides, so many errours, abuses, & corruptions haue crept in: muche requisite and necessary it is, that some effectual remedy be prouided, as well for redresse of the church, as also for repressing of the Turkes tyrannie. MarginaliaRemedye of reformation. Nowe what more present or effectual remedye can be had , the lord Lieutenāt, with other estates & princes do not see, thē this, MarginaliaA general Councell in Germany required. that the Popes holynes, by the consent of the emperours maiestie doo summon a free Christian Councel in some cōuenient place of Germanie, as at Strasburgh, or at Mentz, or at Colen, or at Metz, & that with as much speed as cōueniently may be, so that the congregating of the said Councell be not defferred aboue one yeare: in the whiche Councel it may be lawful for euery person that there shall haue interest, either tēporal or ecclesiastical frely to speake and consult, to the glory of God, and health of soules, and the publique wealth of Christendome, without impeachment or restraint, what soeuer oth, or other bond to the cōtrary notwithstanding: yea and it shalbe euery good mans part there to speak, not onely freely, but to speake that which is true, to the purpose, and to edifying, & not to pleasing or flattring, but simply and vprightly to declare his iudgemēt, without al fraude or guile.

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MarginaliaAn interim before the councell. And as touching by what waies these errors & tumults of the Germane people may best be stayed and pacified in the meane tyme, vntyl the Councel be set: the foresaide L. Lieutenant, with the other princes, therupon haue consulted & deliberated, that for as much as Luther & certaine of his felowes be within the territory & dominion of the noble duke Fridericke, 

Commentary  *  Close

The information on the dispute in Strausburg and Luther's reactions to the laws enacted by the princes at the Diet of Nuremburg are taken from Johannes Sleidan, A famiuse cronicle of our time, called Sleidanes Commentaries, trans. John Daus (London, 1560), STC 19848, fos. 39v-45r.

the sayd L. Lieutenant & other states of the Empire shal so labour the matter with the aforenamed Prince duk of Saxonie, MarginaliaWryting and Printing for a tyme suspended. that Luther & his followers shal not write, set foorth, or print any thing during the saide meane space: neither do they doubt, but that the said noble prince of Saxonie, for his Christian pietie, & obedience to the Romane Empire, as becommeth a Prince of suche excellent vertue, wyl effectually condescend to the same.

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Itē, the said L. Lieutenant and princes shal labor so with the preachers of Germanie, that they shal not in their sermons teache or blowe into the peoples eares such matters, wherby the multitude may be moued to rebelliō or vprore, or be induced into error: MarginaliaThe office of preaching tempered. and that they shal preach & teache nothyng, but the true, pure, sīncere, & holy gospel, and approued Scripture, godly, mildely, and christianly, accordyng to the doctrine and exposition of the Scripture, beyng approued & receiued of Christes church, absteyning frō al suche thynges, which are better vnknowen, then learned of the people, and which to be subtily searched, or deepely discussed, it is not expedient. Also that they shal moue no cōtention of disputation among the vulgare sorte, but what soeuer hāgeth in cōtrouersie, the same they shal reserue to the determination of the Councel to come.

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Itē, the Archbishops, Bishops, and other prelates within MarginaliaPreachers limited within certaine bōdes. their dioces shal assigne godly & learned mē, hauyng good iudgemēt in the scripture, which shal diligently & faithfully attend vpō such preachers: & if they shal perceyue the sayd preachers eyther to haue erred, or to haue vttred any thyng vncōueniently, they shal godly, myldly, & modestly aduertise, & informe thē therof, in such sort as no man shal iustly cōplaine the truth of the gospel to be impeached. But if the preachers cōtinuyng styl in their stubbernes shal refuse to be admonished, and wyl not desist frō their lewdnes, then shal they be restrayned and punished by the Ordynaries of the places, with punishment for the same conuenient. MarginaliaAgaynst selling and printing of famous libells. Furthermore the sayd Princes & nobles shal prouide and vndertake, so much as shalbe possible, that from henceforth duryng the foresaid tyme, no new booke shalbe imprinted, especially none of these famose libels, MarginaliaFamous libels be such bookes as rayle against the fame of any person, shewing no name of the author therof. neither shal thei priuyly or apertly be sold. Also order shalbe taken amongst all potestates, that if any shal set out, sell, or imprint any newe worke, it shal first be seene & perused of certain godly learned, & discret mē appoynted for the same: so that if it be not admitted & approued by thē, it shal not be permitted to be published in prit, or to come abrode. Thus by these meanes, they hope wel, that the tumults, errors, & offensions among the people, shal cease, especially if the Popes holynes hym self shal begyn with au orderly and due reformatiō, in the foresaid greuāces aboue mētioned, & wyl procure such a free & Christiā Coūcel as hath ben said, & so shal the people be wel cōtēted and satisfied. Or if the tumult shal not so fully be calmed, as they desire, yet the greater parte thus wyl be quieted, for all such as be honest and good men, no doubt, wyl be in great expectatiō of that general coūcel, so shortly and now ready at hand to come.

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MarginaliaFor priestes or religious men that marry. Finally, as cōcernyng priestes which cōtract matrimonie, & religious men leauyng their cloysters, whereof intimatiō was also made by the apostolical Legate, the foresaid princes do cōsider, that for so much as in the ciuile law there is no penaltie for them ordeyned, they shalbe referred to the Canonical cōstitutions, to be punished therafter accordingly: that is, by the losse of their benefices, and priuileges, or other condigne censures: and that the sayd Ordinaries shall in no case be stopped or inhibited by the seculer powers, from the correction of such: but that they shal ad their help and fauour to the maintenance of the ecclesiastical iurisdiction, and shal direct out their publike edictes and preceptes, that none shal impeache or prohibite the sayd ordinaries in their ecclesiastical castigation, vpon such transgressours to be administred.

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To cōclude, the redoubted prince L. Lieutenāt and other princes, estates, & orders of the publike Empire, vehemētly and most hartyly do pray and beseech, that the Popes holynes, and the reuerend lord his Legate wyll accept and take al the premisses to be no otherwise spoken and ment, thē of a good, free, sincere, and a Christian mynde. Neyther is there any thyng, that al the aforesayd princes, estates, and nobles do more wish and desire, then the furtheraunce and prosperous estate of the holy Catholique churcheof Rome, and of his holynes. To whose, wishes, desires, and obedience they offer and commende them selues most ready, and obsequious, as faythful children. Ex Orth. Grat.

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Thus hast thou (louyng reader) the full discourse both of the popes letter, and of his Legates instructions, with þe answeare also of the states of Germanie to the sayde letter and instructions, to them exhibited in the diete of Norenberge. In the which diet, what was concluded, and what order and consultation was taken, first touching the greeuances of Germanie, which they exhibited to the Pope, thē concernyng a general Councel to be called in Germanie, also for printing and preachyng, and for priestes mariage, hath bene likewise declared. &c. MarginaliaEx Ioan. Sledano.

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MarginaliaMinisters of Strausbrough troubled for their wiues. The occasion  

Commentary  *  Close

The information on the dispute in Strausburg and Luther's reactions to the laws enacted by the princes at the Diet of Nuremburg are taken from Johannes Sleidan, A famiuse cronicle of our time, called Sleidanes Commentaries, trans. John Daus (London, 1560), STC 19848, fos. 39v-45r.

of this matter moued against priests mariage, came first by þe ministers of Strausburgh, whiche about this tyme began to take wyues, and therfore were cited by the Bishop of Strausburgh to appeare before hym at a certaine day, as violators of the lawes of holy Church, the holy fathers, the Bishop of Rome, and of the Emperours maiestie, to the preiudice both of their owne order of priesthood, and maiestie of almighty God: But they referred their cause to the hearyng of þe magistrates of þe same citie, who beyng suiters for them vnto þe bishops, labored to haue the matter either released, or at least to be delayed for a tyme.

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Long it were to recite all the circumstaunces folowyng vpon this diete or assemble of Norenberge, howe their de-

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