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K. Hen. 6. Coniectures that Eleanor the Duches and R. Oneley, were not guiltie of treason.

certayne yeares after, & in the end of that chapter, do name also the yeare of her burning to be. 1490. whiche was 50. yeares after the death of Onely, and Margaret Iourdeman: by the computatiō of which yeares it is playne, that no other woman could be noted in that place, but only the Lady Younges mother.

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But M, Cope continuing still in his wrangling mood obiecteth agayne, for that in my Callendar, the sayd Ladye Younges mother hath the next day in the Catalogue next after the death of Roger Onley, whiche day pertayneth properly to Margaret Iourdeman which was burned the same day in Smithfield, & not to the Ladyes mother. &c.

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What order was taken in placing the names & dayes, what is that to me? If he whiche had the disposing of the Catologue, did place them so in months, as he sawe them ioyned in chapiters, not perusing peraduenture nor aduising the chapters, that doth nothing preiudice the truth of my story, which sufficiently doth clare it selfe in distincting thē rightly in names & also in yeares, as is afore declared.

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MarginaliaThe 5. obiection.Fiftly and lastly, hauing thus sufficiently aunswered to your circumstaunces of persons, names, and times (M. Cope) I will nowe enter to encounter with you concerning the fact: and crime obiected to the Lady Duches, and to the rest: MarginaliaThe story of the Ladie Eleanor and Rog. Onley here pretermitted.with this protestation before premised vnto the reader, that if the fact be true and so done is reported in þe histories of Fabian, Halle and harding, I desire the reader then so to take me, as though I do not here deale withall, nor speake of the matter, but vtterly to haue pretermitted, and dispuncted the same. But for somuch as the deed and offence layd and geuen forth agaynst these parties, may be a matter made, & of euil wil compacted, rather then true in deede: MarginaliaA question whether Eleanor the Duches was culpable in treason agaynst the king.therefore I doe but onely moue a question by way of history, not as defending, nor commending nor commemorating the thing, if it be true, but onely mouing the question, whether it is to be iudged true, or suspected rather to be false and forged, and so hauing briefly, MarginaliaCertaine coniectures of the crime not to bee true.propounded certayne coniectural suspicions or supposals concerning that matter, to passe it ouer, neither medling on the one side nor on the other.

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Marginalia1. Coniecture.The first cōiecture, why it may be possible that this act of treason layd to the charge of the Duches, & Roger Oneley, agaynst the king, may be vntrue is this: that the sayde Oneley (otherwise named Bolingbroke) tooke it vppon hys death, that they neuer intended any such thing as they were condemned for.

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Marginalia2. Coniecture.The second coniecture: for that the Lady Eleanor, and Onely seemed then to fauour and sauour of that religion set forth by wickleffe, and therefore like enough, that they were hated of the clergy. Furthermore what hatred & practise of Papistes can do, it is not vnknowne.

Marginalia3. Coniecture.The third coniecture: for that the sayd mayster Roger Onely falsly noted and accused of Nicromancie, wrote a booke in purgation of himselfe, intituled: de Innocentia sua. Also an other booke intituled. Contra vulgi superstitiones, recorded in Centu 8. Bale. cap. 4. Whereupon it is not credible, that he which wrote proffesedly agaynst the superstitions of the people, was ouertaken with that filth of Nicromancie himselfe.

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Marginalia4. Coniecture.The fourth coniecture: because this accusation against the Duches of Glocester, Duke Humfries wife began not before, but after the grudge kindled betweene the Cardinall of Wint. and Duke Humfrey, her Husband.

Marginalia5. Coniecture.An other coniecture may be hereof, for that, if the Duches had entended any suche haynous treason against the kings life, as by burning of a waxe candle to consume him it is not like (neyther was there anye such neede) that she would haue made so many priuy to such a pernicious coūcell, as the Witch of Eye, M. Rog. Bolingbroke, M. Tho. Southwell and Iohn Hume.

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Marginalia6. Coniecture.Sixtly, it is not to be supposed, if anye such hie treason had bene wrought or pretended agaynst the kinges person by these that eyther the Duches should so escape with bearing a taper and banishment, or that Iohn Hume shoulde be pardoned hys life, the fact being so haynous, that neyther any durst aske hys pardon, nor if it had bene asked, it had not bene like to be graunted.

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Marginalia7. Coniecture.To these we may also adde an other supposall, rising vpon the wordes and forme of theyr accusation, as it standeth in Harding: Polychronicon, and other moe, wherein they were accused for working sorcery, and inchantmentes agaynst the church and the king. Now what sorcery can be wrought agaynst the church, that is, the whole multitude of Christians, let the reader iudge, and by the truth of this consider also the truth of the other, which was agaynst the king. Furthermore, if by this Church is ment the Cardinall of Wint. as like it is: then it may be coniecturall, that all this matter rose of that Cardinall, who was then amortall enemy to the house of Gloucester. &c.

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Marginalia8. Coniecture.Eightly: And that all this was done and wrought by the sayd Cardinall of Wint. the witch concerning Eye maketh the matter the more suspitious, seeing that towne of Eye as Fabian witnesseth, was neare beside Wintchester, and sea of that Byshop.

Marginalia9. Coniecture.Moreouer, for somuch as Polydore Virgill, among other story authors, being a mā as may be supposed, rather fauouring the Cardinalls parte then the Dukes, made no mention at all touching this treason, hys licence therof may minister matter not also to muse, but onely to coniecture, that he had found something whiche made hym to miststrust the matter. Otherwise it is vnlike that he wold haue so mewed vp the matter, and passed it ouer without some mention.

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Marginalia10. Coniecture.Finally and briefly: The frequent practises and examples of other times, may make this also more doubtfull, cōsidering howe many subtile pretences, after like sorte haue bene sought, and wrongfull accusations brought agaynst many innocent persons For (not to repeate the like forgeries agaynst the Lord Cobham and syr Roger Acton. &c.) why may not this accusation of the Duches and Onley, be as false as that in the time of king Edward the 5. whiche was layd to the charge of the Queene, and Shores wife by the Protectours, for inchaunting & bewitching of his withered arme? whiche to be false, all the world doth know, and but a quarell made, only to oppresse the life of the L. Hastings & þe L. standley. &c. And thus mayest thou see, gentle reader, according to þe wise mans saying: Nihil nouū esse sub sole: Nihilque dictum, quod non sit dictum prius. xc.

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Although these wt many mo coniectures, may be alledged in some part of Defence of this Duches, and of her Chaplaines and Priestes: yet because it may be not vnpossible againe, the matter laide against them, to be true, I leaue it therfore at large as I finde it: saying as I saide before, that if it be true which the stories say in this matter, thinke I beseech thee gentle Reader, that I haue saide nothing hereof. Onely, because the matter may be disputable, and not vnpossible to be false, I haue but moued thereof a questiō, and brought my coniectures, leauing the determi,natiō and iudgement hereof, to thy indifferent and free arbitrement. MarginaliaA briefe aunswer to Maister Copes cauillations, concerning Duke Humfreyes wyfe.And if M. Cope, be so highly offended with me, because in my first edition of Actes and Monumentes I durst name þe Lady Eleanor Cobham, and Roger Onely: let him take this for a short aūswer, because my leisure serueth not to make long braules wt him: þt if I had thought no imperfectiōs to haue passed in my former editiō before, I would neuer haue taken in hand the recognition thereof now þe second time, wherby to sponge away such motes, as I thought would seeme great stombling blockes in suche mens walkes, which walke with no charitie to edefie: but with malice to carpe and reprehend, neither admonishing what they see amisse in others, neither tarying while other men reforme themselues, & finally finding quarels where no great cause is iustly geuen. And here an end with M. Cope for this time.

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Marginalia

The contention betwene the Cardinall of Wint. & Duke Humfrey, Lorde protectour.

Anno. 1440.

Forsomuch as in the processe before, mentiō was touched concerning the grudge between þe Cardinall, called the rich Cardinal of wintchester, and the good duke Humfrey duke of Glocester, the kings vncle, and protector of þe realme: order of story now requireth to open some parte of þt matter more at large. 
Commentary  *  Close
Humphrey of Gloucester and Cardinal Beaufort

Foxe's account of Humphrey, duke of Gloucester, was drawn from an impressive range of print and manuscript sources. The most important of these was Edward Hall's chronicle. The background to the feud between Gloucester and Cardinal Beaufort, the articles Gloucester objected against Beaufort, the hostility of the earl of Suffolk and Margaret of Anjou to Gloucester, the death of Gloucester, the death of Beaufort and the murder of the earl of Suffolk are all taken from Hall, in some instances, on a word-for-word basis. (Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and York [London, 1560], STC 12723a, fos.142v-148r, 151v-152v and156v-158v). Foxe supplemented Hall with the Great Chronicle for Beaufort trying to ambush Gloucester and for the intervention of the archbishop of Canterbury and the the duke of Coimbra to mediate the quarrel (The Great Chronicle of London, ed. A. H. Thomas and I. D. Thornley [London, 1938], pp. 136-7). Foxe also drew on Polydore Vergil's history for small points of detail: Henry Chichele's death and college foundations, the observation that the title 'duke of Gloucester' was unlucky, and William Wainfleet's foundation of Magdalen college (Polydore Vergil, Anglica historia [Isengrim, 1555], pp. 491-3). And while the burning of St. Paul's steeple could have come from a number of sources, Foxe's wording is quite close to the account of the event in Robert Fabian, Fabyans cronycle (London, 1559), STC 10664, p. 441.

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Foxe took the story of Gloucester's exposing the fraudulent miracle from Thomas More's Dialogue Concerning Heresies (2 parts., vol. 6 The Complete works of St. Thomas More [New Haven, CT, 1981], I, pp. 86-7). Foxe also cites William Tyndale as a source for this story, but Tyndale simply referred to More's account. But Foxe did draw on Tyndale's The Practice of Prelates for the summoning of the Parliament at Bury St. Edmund's in 1447. (See William Tyndale, Expositions and Notes…with the Practice of Prelates, ed. Henry Walter, Parker Society [Cambridge, 1849], p. 297). The quotations from dedications to Gloucester by Piero del Monte and Lapo are from Bodley MS Auct. F.5.26, pp. pp. 1-2 and 117. And Foxe drew the writ forbidding Cardinal Henry Beaufort from entering England in his capacity as papal legate from Bodley Tanner MS 165, fos. 81r-82v. (Foxe notes that he borrowed the manuscript he used as a source for this writ from William Bowyer and Bowyer owned Tanner MS 165).

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Although modern historians have questioned Gloucester's character and political judgement, he enjoyed a universally good press from his contemporaries. This was partly because Gloucester was an aggressive proponent of a popular, albeit unsuccessful, war with France and partly because he was the foe of those, like Beaufort and Suffolk, who were seen as evil, but influential, councillors to the king. Contemporary praise of Gloucester shaped sixteenth-century perceptions of him; Tyndale and More agreed on little but they agreed on Gloucester's virtues. Writers such as More and Foxe were also influenced in their assessments by Gloucester's undeniable prominence as a patron of humanist writers. This allowed Foxe to present Humphrey as an ideal lay magistrate opposed to evil worldy clerics led by Cardinal Beaufort.

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Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

Wherein this first is to be vnderstand, that long before, great flames of grudge and discorde did burst out betweene these two. For as the noble hart of the Duke could not abide the proud doinges of the Cardinall: so much againe the Cardinall in like maner sore enuied & disdayned at the rule of the Duke of Glocester. Notwithstanding by the meanes of the Duke of Bedford, the brasting out betweene them was before appeased & cured: yet not so, but that vnder imperfect amitie, priuy hatred, as sparcles vnder the imbers, did still remaine: So that the Cardinal, ioyning with the Archbishop of Yorke, attempted many thinges of their owne presumption, contrary to the consent, not onely of the king (being then vnder age) but also of the protectour & gouernor of the realme. Wherwith the Duke (like a true harted prince) being not without iust cause offended, declared in writing to the king certaine complaintes contained in 21. Articles, MarginaliaEx Polychro. wherein the Cardinall and Archbishop had transgressed, both against the king & his lawes. The tenour whereof, more at large is in other stories expressed, þe brief abstract therof followeth in a short summarie here to be seene.

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¶ Certaine pointes or articles obiected by the Duke Humfrey, against the Cardinall of Winchester.
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