Councell, MarginaliaThis generall Councell was the first Coūcell of Constantinople. willyng all matters to bee determined where they first began, and that the whole body of our Realme hath for the wealth of the same, by a law established the determination of such causes? By reason whereof
The final decision in England was made by Archbishop Cranmer at his tribunal at The Priory of St Peter at Dunstable on 23 May 1533 [for which, see Andrew A Chibi, Henry VIII's Conservative Scholar (Bern, 1997), pp.82-4].
By these matters thus passed and discoursed to and fro betwene the Kyng and these forreine Princes aboue rehearsed, many thinges are to be vnderstanded of þe Reader, who so is disposed to behold and consider the state and procedyng of publike affaires, as well to the Church apperteinyng, as to the common wealth. MarginaliaThe kinges diuorce iust. First how the kyng cleareth hym selfe both iustly and reasonably for his diuorce made with the Lady Katherine the Emperours Aunte. MarginaliaThe kynges mariage with Q. Anne lawfull. Secondly, how he proueth and defendeth hys Mariage with Queene Anne, to be iust & lawfull, both by the authoritie of Gods word, and the comprobation of the best and most famous learned men and Vniuersities, and also by the assent of the whole Realme.[Back to Top]
MarginaliaThe Pope suppressed.
The kinges title of supremacie. Furthermore
This refers to the first 'Succession Act of 1534' (25 Henry VIII, c.22).
This is a quote from the second part of the 'Treasons Act of 1534' (26 Henry VIII, c.13). [See, G R Elton, The Tudor Constitution, Documents and Commentary (Cambridge, 1972), p.63].
If any person or persons after the first of February next, do maliciosly imagine, inuente, practise, or attempt to depriue the kyng of the dignitie, title, or name of his royall estate. &c. that then euery MarginaliaDenying of the kinges supremacie made treason. such person and persons so offendyng in any of the premisses, their ayders, counsellours, consenters, and abbettours beyng therof lawfully conuicte, accordyng to the lawes and customes of this Realme, shalbe reputed, accepted, and adiudged traytours, and that euery such offence in any the premisses committed or done after the sayd first day of February, shalbe reputed, accepted, and adiudged hygh treason: and the offenders, therin their ayders, consenters, counsellours and abbettours beyng lawfully conuict of any such offence, shal haue and suffer such paynes of death and other penalties, as is limited and accustomed in cases of high treason.[Back to Top]
This refers to Cardinal Reginald Pole's activities at the court of Charles V and elsewhere to stir up an anti-Henry VIII crusade.
Wherefore, to end now with these, and to go forward in our story, as the order and computation of yeares do giue, we haue now consequently to enter into the story of that good Martyr of GOD William Tyndall, beyng this present yeare falsely betrayed and put to death. Which William Tyndall, as he was a speciall organe of the Lord appoin ted, and as Gods mattocke to shake the inward rootes and foundation of the Popes proud prelacie: so the great Prince of darkenes, with his impious Impes, hauyng a speciall malice agaynst him, left no way vnsought, how craftly to entrappe hym, and falsely to betray him, and maliciously to spill his life: as by the proces of his story here folowyng may appeare.[Back to Top]
The Rerum contained a fairly substantial narrative on William Tyndale, which is about one-and-a half pages long (Rerum, pp. 138-9). Almost all of this narrative was taken from the account of Tyndale in Hall's chronicle, which Foxe followed very closely (cf. Edward Hall, The union of the two noble and illustre famelies of Lancastre and York [London, 1550], STC 12723a, fo. 2227r-v). Foxe also repeated Hall's story of Augustine Packington buying up all the copies of Tyndale's New Testament on behalf of Bishop Tunstall, who burned them, only to find out that Tyndale, now supplied with sorely needed capital from the sales of these copies, could easily print more (Hall, Union, fo. 186r-v). Foxe also added the story of a magician of Antwerp who was unable to practise his art when Tyndale was present. Foxe declared that he heard the story of a reliable merchant (Rerum, p. 139).[Back to Top]
In the 1563 edition, Foxe scrapped most of this material. He replaced it with two more detailed narratives. The first is of Tyndale's life in the Walsh household in Little Sodbury and it apparently came from someone associated with the household or at least in the area. The second narrative is a long account of Tyndale's arrest, betrayal and death supplied by Thomas Poyntz, Tyndale's host in Antwerp, or by someone close to him. (Foxe, however, retained two items from the Rerum account: praise of Tyndale's learning and character from the procurator who prosecuted him and the story of the magician. These items would be reprinted in every edition of the Acts and Monuments). In the 1563 edition, Foxe also added two letters from Tyndale to John Frith, although Foxe did not know that the letter addressed to 'Jacob' was actually sent to Frith, until after the 1563 edition was printed (see Luke 15:11-32).[Back to Top]
In the 1570 edition, Foxe added new information concerning Tyndale's early years, notably that Tyndale had attended Magdalen Hall, that he preached in Bristol and that he visited Germany (but there is actually no evidence that Tyndale visited Saxony. He did, however, visit Cologne in 1525, where his translation of the New Testament was partially printed, before the printing house was raided by the authorities. Tyndale then journeyed to the safe Lutheran city of Worms where his New Testament was printed in 1526. Exactly when Tyndale reached Antwerp is unknown, but it was in the years 1526-8). He gleaned additional information concerning Tyndale's time at Little Sodbury and of Tyndale's rebuff by Bishop Tunstall, from reading Tyndale's preface to his translation of the Pentateuch (William Tyndale, Doctrinal Treatises and Introductions to Different Portions of the Holy Scriptures, ed. Henry Walter, Parker Society (Cambridge 1848) pp.394-396). He also adds the story of Tyndale's shipwreck and his sojourn in Hamburg. To make room for these additons, Foxe had to cut the Poyntz narrative by almost half of its length. The account of Tyndale printed in the 1570 edition remained unchanged in subsequent editions.[Back to Top]
David Daniell has perceptively observed that, in the 1570 edition, Foxe recast his account of Tyndale to establish parallels between Tyndale and St. Paul. Daniell argues persausively that Foxe even included a fictitious account of Tyndale being shipwrecked (see David Daniell, 'Tyndale and Foxe' in John Foxe: Historical Perspectives, ed. David Loades (Aldershot, 1999), pp. 26-8.), to increase the analogy with the book of Acts (David Daniell, 'Tyndale and Foxe' in John and Foxe: An Historical Perspective, ed. David Loades [Ashgate, 1999], pp. 24-28). The account of Tyndale provides a good example of the strengths and weaknesses of Foxe's historical method. On the one hand, he preserved valuable narratives about Tyndale from those who knew him and he preserved two letters of Tyndale's which would otherwise have disappeared. On the other hand, he was not above including (and probably inventing) fictitous material to suit his didactic and moral purposes.[Back to Top]
The significance of these passages for the interpretation of Foxe's (or perhaps John Day's) picture of the significance of print culture for the reformation can be found in John N. King, '"The Light of Printing": William Tyndale, John Foxe, John Day, and Early Modern Print Culture', Renaissance Quarterly, 54 (2001), pp. 52-85, where David Daniell's analysis of Foxe's use of the Tyndale material is largely repeated.[Back to Top]
Thomas S. Freeman
This heading was added in the 1570 edition as part of the effort to compare Tyndale ('the Apostle of England') to St. Paul.
MarginaliaW. Tyndall Martyr.
1536. WIlliam Tyndall the faithfull Minister and constaunt Martyr of Christ, was borne about the borders of Wales, and brought vp from a child in the Vniuersitie of Oxford, where he by long continuaunce grew vp, and increased as well in the knowledge of tounges, and other liberall Artes, as especially in the knowledge of the Scriptures: whereunto his mynde was singularly addicted: MarginaliaThe fyist taste of gods truth in Madalen Colledge, by the meanes of Mayster Tyndall. In so much that he lying then in Magdalene Hall, read priuely to certaine studentes & felowes of Magdalene Colledge, some parcell of Diuinitie, instructyng them in the knowledge and truth of the Scriptures. Whose maners also and conuersation beyng correspondent to the same, were such that all they which knew hym, reputed and estemed hym to be a man of most vertuous disposition, and of lyfe vnspotted.
There is no solid evidence that Tyndale attended Cambridge but a tenuous link is suggested in Magnus Williamson, 'Evangelicalism at Boston, Oxford and Windsor under Henry VIII: John Foxe's Narratives Recontextualized' in John Foxe at Home and Abroad, ed. David Loades (Aldershot, 2004), pp. 31-45.
Sir John Walsh, lord of the manor of Little Sodbury, was later twice elected high sheriff of Gloucestershire. He had connections with the Tyndale family, having handed over his position as crown steward for the Berkeley estates to Edward Tyndale, William's elder brother.
MarginaliaTyndall disputing with the Doctors. Then Maister Tyndall, as he was learned and well practised in Gods matters, so he spared not to shew vnto them simply and playnely his iudgement in matters, as he thought: and when as they at any tyme did vary from Tyndall in opinions and iudgement, he would shew them in the booke, and lay playnly before them the open and manifest places of the Scriptures, to cōfute their errours, and to confirme his sayings. And thus continued they for a certaine season, reasonyng and contendyng together diuers and sondry tymes, till at length they waxed wery, and bare a secret grudge in their hartes agaynst him.[Back to Top]
Not long after this, it happened that certaine of these great Doctours had inuited M. Welche and his wife to a banket: where they had talke at will and pleasure, vttering their blindenes & ignoraunce wtout any resistaunce or gaynsaying. Then M. Welche and hys wife commyng home and callyng for M. Tyndall, began to reason with him about those matters, whereof the Priestes had talked before at their banket. MarginaliaTyndall instructeth M. Welch and his wyfe in the truth. M. Tyndall aūsweryng by Scriptures, maintained the truth, and reproued their false opinions. Then sayd the Lady Welche, a stoute and a wise woman (as Tyndall reported) Well (sayd she) there was such a Doctour which may dispend a C. li. and an other. ij. C. li. and an other. iij. C. li. and what? were it reason, thinke you, that we should beleue you before them? Maister Tyndall gaue her no aunswere at that tyme, nor also after that (because he sawe it would not auayle) he talked but litle in those matters. MarginaliaEnchiridion a booke of Erasmus, translated by Tyndall. At that tyme he was about the translation of a booke called Enchiridion militis Christiani, which beyng translated
This is, of course, Erasmus's celebrated Enchiridion. It is unlikely that Tyndale was the translator of the edition of this work printed by Wynkyn de Worde in 1533 and if Tyndale did translate Erasmus's spiritual handbook, then his translation is now lost.
MarginaliaThe priestes storme agaynst Tyndall. As this grewe on, the Priestes of the countrey clustryng together, began to grudge and storme against Tyndall, raylyng agaynst hym in Alehouses and other places. Of whom Tyndall him selfe in his Prologue before the first booke of Moses
The quotation is actually from Tyndale's preface to the Penteteuch, not his prologue to Genesis. See William Tyndale, Doctrinal Treatises and Introductions to Different Portions of the Holy Scriptures, ed. Henry Walter, Parker Society (Cambridge 1848), p. 394.