O ye miserable & blind guides: will ye euer bee blind leaders of þe blind? wil ye neuer amende? wil ye neuer se the truth of gods woorde? wyll neyther gods threates, nor promises enter into your heartes? wil not the bloud of martyrs nothing mollify your stony stomackes? Oh indurate hard harted, peruerse & crooked generatiō. O damnable sort, whō nothing can do good vnto. These and like wordes spake he, in feruentnes of spirit against the Romish superstitions. wherfore person Newall caused him forwith to be attached, and set in the stockes in þe cage. So was he there kepte till sir Henry Doyle, a iustice, came to Hadley. Nowe when poore syr Richard was taken, the person called earnestly vpon sir Henry Doyle to send them both to prison. MarginaliaSir Hērye Doyle entreated for gods saints but coulde not be hard.Sir Henry Doyle earnestly laboured and entreated the person, to consider the age of the men, and their poore estate: they wer persōs of no reputatiō nor preachers. wherfore he wold desire him to let thē be punished a day or two, and so to let thē go, at the least Ihō Dale who was no priest, and therfore seyng he had so lōg sitten in the cage, he thought it punishment ynough for this time. When the person hearde this, he was exceding mad, and in a great rage called thē pestilent heretikes, vnfit to liue in þe common wealth of christians. wherefore I besech you sir, (quod he) according to your offyce defend holy churche, and help to suppresse these sects of heresies &c. which ar false to god, & thus boldly set themselues to the euil example of other, against the Quenes gracious procedings. Sir Henry Doyle seing he could do no good in the matter, & fearing also his peril if he should to much meddle in this matter, made oute the writ, and caused the Constables to carye them forth to Bury goale.
A rare portrayal in Foxe of Sir Henry Doyle as a reluctant persecutor; usually Doyle was described as a zealous persecutor of the godly.
Wherfore whatsoeuer theyr consciences wer yet (if they would escape daunger) they muste nedes be the popish Bishoppes slaues, and the Massemongers vnderlinges. So they tooke sir Richard, and Iohn Dale, pinioned and bound them like theues, set them on horsebacke, and bounde theyr legges vnder the horses bellies, and so caried them to the gaole at Bury. Wher they wer tyed in irons, and for that they contynually rebuked the Popery, they wer throwne in to the lowest dongeon, where Iohn Dale through sicknes of the prison and euyl keping, died in prison, whose body when he was deade, was throwne out and buryed in the fieldes. He was a man of. xlvi. yeares of age, a weauer by his occupation, wel learned in the holy scryp-[Back to Top]
tures, faithful and honest in al his conuersatiō, stedfast in confessiō of the true doctrine of christ set forth in kyng Edwards time. for the which he ioyfully suffred pryson and chaynes, & from this worldly dongeon he departed in Christ to eternall glory, and the blessed chamber of euerlasting felicitye. After that Iohn Dale was dead, syr Richard was remoued to Norwyche prisō, wher after streight & euil keping, he was examined of his faith & religiō. Then he boldly and constātly confessed himself to be of faith and confession þt was set forth by the late king, of blessed memory, holy king Edward and sixt, and from þt he would in no wise vary. Beyng required to submit himself to the holy father þe Pope, I defy him (quod he) and al his detestable abhominations. I wil in no wise haue to do wt him, nor any thing that appertayneth to hym. MarginaliaThe chiefe articles obiected to R. yeoman.The chief articles obiected to him wer his mariage, and the Masse sacrifice. Wherfore when he continued stedfast in confession of the truth, he was therfore condēned, disgraded, & not only burnt, but most cruelly tormēted in the fire. So ended he his poore and miserable lyfe, and entred into the blessed bosome of Abraham, enioying with Lazarus þe comfortable quietnes, þt God hath prepared for his elect sainctes.[Back to Top]
In the 1563 edition Foxe printed a confused account of John Alcock's life, which clearly came from different sources which Foxe, probably due to haste, imperfectly reconciled. The account included Alcock's letters (1563, pp. 1663-67). In the 1570 edition, Foxe removed the inconcistencies in this account, but he also removed the letters. This account remained unchanged in subsequent editions, but the letters were added in an appendix to the 1583 edition (pp. 2146-49). This entire account rests on the testimony of individual informants; interestingly, Foxe had access to official documents on Alcock (a copy of Alcock's examination by the privy council is among Foxe's papers -see BL, Lansdowne 389, fo. 212v), but Foxe did not use them.[Back to Top]
Wel (quod Rolf) he shalbe forth comming. procede you in your busines & be quiet. Haue him to the stocks (quod the parson.) I am Constable quod Rolfe, MarginaliaRolf an honest Cōstable of Hadley. and may bayle him, and wyl bayle hym. he shal not come in the stocks, but he shal be forth commyng. So went the good persone forth with his holy procession, and to Masse. At after noone Rolfe sayde to this yonge man: I am sory for thee. for truely the person wyll seke thy destruction, if thou take not good hede what thou answerest him. The yong mā answered. Syr, I am sory þt it is my luck to be a trouble to you. As for my self I am not sory, but I do commit my self into gods hands, & I truste he wyll geue me mouth & wisdom to answer according to right. Wel (quod Rolfe) yet beware of hym.[Back to Top]