suffer came down in the name of the king and Quene a Proclamation, being twise pronoūced openly to the people, first at Newgat, then at the stake where they should suffer, straightlye charging and commaunding, that no man should either pray for them, or speake to them, or once say God helpe them. It was appoynted before of the godlye, there standing together, whyche was a great multitude, that so sone as the prisoners should be brought, they should go to them to embrace and to comforte them. And so they dyd: for as the sayd martirs were comming towarde the place in the peoples sight, being broughte with bylles & glayues, as the custome is, the godly multitude and Congregation with a general swaye made to ward the prisoners, in such maner of sort, that the bylmen and the other officers beinge all thrust backe, could nothing do, nor any thynge come nigh. So the godly people meeting & embracing and kyssing them, broughte them in their armes (which might as easely haue conueyed them cleane away) vnto the place where they should suffer. This done, and the people geuing place to the officers, the Proclamation with a loude voyce was redde to the people, contayning as is before said, in the Kynge and Quenes name, that no man shoulde praye for them, or once speake a woorde vnto them. &c. Maister Bentham,
Foxe is drawing this account from a letter Bentham sent to Thomas Lever describing the incident. The letter is in Foxe's papers: BL, Harley MS 416, fo. 63r-v.
MarginaliaM. BentāThe sayd Maister Bentham an other tyme as he passed through S. Katherins, intending to walke & take the ayre abroad, was enforced by twoo or three men there approching vpon hym, needes to go with them, where as they would leade hym. Maister Bentham astonied at the soddainnes of the thing, and marueling what the matter shoulde bee, required what their purpose was, or whether they woulde haue him. They aunswered and declared vnto him, that by the occasion that a man ther was found drowned, þe Crowners quest was called and charged to sytte vpon him, of the whiche quest he must of necessity be one. &c. He agayn loath to meddle in the matter, excused him self,[Back to Top]
alledging that in such kinde of matters he had no skil, and lesse experience: if it would please them to let him go, they should meete with other more meete for their purpose. But when with this they would not be satisifed, he alledged further, he was a scholer of Oxforde, and therby priuiledged from being of any inquest. The Crowner demaunded the sight of his priuiledge. He said, if he would geue him leaue, he would fetch it. Then sayde the Crowner: the Quene must be serued without al delay, and so constrained him notwithstanding to be wyth them, in hearing the matter. Being brought to the house where the Crowner and the rest of the quest were syttinge, as the maner is, a booke was offered him to sweare vpon. Maister Bentham opening the boke, & seing it was a papistical primer, refused to swear therupon, and declared more ouer what superstition in that booke was contayned. What sayde the Crowner, I thinke we shal haue here an hereticke among vs. And vpon that after much reasoning amongest them, he was committed to the custody of an Officer, tyl further examination, by occasion whereof, to all mens reason, hard it hadde bene and ineuitable for mayster Bentham to haue escaped, hadde not the Lord helped, where man was not able. What followed? Incontinent as they were thus contending and debating aboute matters of heresy, sodeinlye commeth the Crowner of the Admiralty, disanulling and repealing the order & calling of that inquest, for that it was, as he saide, pertaining to his office, and therefore the other Crowner and his companye in that place had nothing to do. And so the fyrst crowner was discharged and displaced, by reason whereof Maister Bentham escaped their handes, hauing no more sayd vnto hym.[Back to Top]
An account of Robert Cole's near arrest by Cyriac Petit appeared here in the 1563 edition. It was dropped from the 1570 edition as were other mentions of Cole's heroic resistance in Mary's reign. The reason for this purge was Robert Cole's public support for Matthew Parker's campaign to force clergy to wear the vestments, a campaign which Foxe vigorously opposed. (Cole's actions are described in John Strype, The Life and Acts of the Most Reverend Father in God, Edmund Grindal [Oxford, 1821], pp. 144-45).[Back to Top]
The worthy woorkes of the Lordes mercye towarde his people be manifolde, and cannot be comprehended, so that who is hee lyuing in the earth almost, who hath not experienced the healping hande of the Lord, at some time or other vpon hym? Amongest manye other, what a peece of Gods tender prouidence was shewed of late vpon our English brethren and coūtry men, what tyme Calys was taken by the Tirant Guyse, a cruell enemy to Gods truth, and to our English nation. And yet by the gra[Back to Top]