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546 [522]

K. Henry. 4. The cruel burning of I. Badby. The constancy of I. Badby at his death.

MarginaliaThe Bishops make sure work. The Archb. both Iudge and Iaylor.be put in a certaine chamber or safe house within the Mansion of the Frier preachers, and so he was: and then the archbishop of caunterbury sayd, that he himselfe would kepe the key therof, in the meane time. And when the foresayd Wednesday was expired, being the 15. day of March, and that the foresayd Archbishop of Canterbury, with hys fellow brethren and Suffraganes were assembled in the Church of S. Paule in London: MarginaliaAstiterunt reges terræ & conuenerunt in vnum aduersus. &.c. Psal. 2.The Archbish. of Canterbury taking the Episcopall seate, called vnto him the Archbishop of Yorke, Richard London, Henry Winchester, Robert Chichester, Alexander Norwich, & the noble Prince Edmond the Duke of York, Rafe Earle of Westmerland, Thomas Beaufort Kinght Lord Chancellour of England, and the Lord Beaumond with other noble men as well spirituall as temporall, that stood and sate by, whome to name it would be long: Before whome the said Iohn Badby was called personallie to answere vnto the Articles premised in the foresaid instrument. Who when he came personallie before them, the articles were read by the Officiall of the court of Cant. and by the Archb. (in the vulgare tong) expounded, publickely and expressly: and the same Articles, as he before had spoken and deposed, he still held and defended, and said, that whilest he liued, he would neuer retract the same. And furthermore he said specially to to be noted, that the Lord duke of Yorke personallie there present as is aforesaid, and euery man els for the time beeing: is of more estimation and reputation, then thte Sacrament of the aulter, by the priest in due forme consecrated. And whilest they were thus in his examination, the Archbishop considering and waying that he would in no wise be altered, and seing moreouer his countenance stout and hart confirmed, so that he began to persuade othe ras it appeared in the same: These things considered, the Archprelate whē he saw that by his allurements it was not in his power, neither by exhortations, reasons, nor arguments, to bring the said Iohn Badbye from his constant truth to his Catholique faith (executing and doing the office of his great maister) proceeded to confirme and ratifie the former sentence giuen before by the Bishop of Worcester against the said Iohn Badby, pronouncing him for an open and publique hereticke. And thus shifting their hands of him, they deliuered him to the secular power: and desired the sayd temporall Lords, then and there present verie instantlie, MarginaliaNote here murdring wolues in sheepes cloathing.thaty they would not put the same Iohn Badby to death for that his offence, nor deliuer him to be punished or put to death, in þe presence of all the Lords aboue recited.

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These things thus done and concluded by the Bishops in the forenoone: on the afternoone, the Kings writte was not far behind. By the force wherof, I. Badby still perseruering in his constancie vnto the death, was brought into Smithfield, and there being put in an emptie barrell, was bound with iron chaines fastened to a staue, bauing drie wood put about him.

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And as he was thus standing in the pipe or tonne (for as yet Cherillus Bull was not in vse among the bishops) it happened that the Prince the Kings eldest sonne, was there present. Who shewing some part of the good Samaritane, began to endeuour and assay how to saue the life of him, whome the hypocriticall Leuites and Phariseis sought to put to death. He admonished and counsailed him, that hauing respect vnto himselfe, he should spedelie withdraw himselfe out of these dangerous Laberinths of opinions, adding oftentimes threatnings, the which might haue daunted anie mans stomacke. MarginaliaThe prince laboureth to turne Badby. Also Courtney at that time Chancellor of Oxford, preached vnto him, and enformed him of the faith of holie Church.

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In this meane season, the Prior of S. Bartlemewes in Smithfield, brought with all solemnitie the Sacrament of Gods body, with twelue torches borne before, and so shewed the Sacrament to the poore man being at the stake. MarginaliaThe sacrament solemnely brought to Smithfield at the burning of Badbye.And then they demanded of him how he beleeued in it, he answering: that he knew well it was halowed bread, and not gods body. And then was the tunne put ouer him, and fire put vnto him. And when he felt fire, he cried, mercie (calling belike vpon the Lord) and so the Prince immediatelie commanded to take awaie the tunne, and quench the fire. The Prince his commandement being done, asked him if he would forsake heresie to take him to the faith of holie Church: which thing if he would doo, he should haue goods inough, promising also vnto him a yearelie stipend out of the kings treasurie, so much as should suffice his contentation.

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But this valiant champion of Christ, neglecting the Princes faire words, as also contemning all mens deuises: refused the offer of worldly promised, no doubt, but being more vehemently inflamed with þe spirit of God then with anie earthly desire. MarginaliaIoh. Badby constant to the end.Wherefore, whē as yet he continued vnmoueable in his former mind, the prince commanded him straight to be put again into the pipe or tunne, and that he should not afterward looke for any grace or fauour. But as he could be allured by no rewards, euē so was he nothing at all abashed at their torments, but as a valiant champion of Christ, he perseuered inuincible to þe end. Not without a great and most cruell battayle, but with much more greater triumph of victorie: the spirit of Christ hauing alwaies the vpper hand in his members, maugre the furie,

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¶ The description of the horrible burning of Iohn Badby, and how he was vsed at hys death.
woodcut [View a larger version]
Commentary on the Woodcuts  *  Close
This is another of the five burnings between Wyclif and Luther that were accorded large illustrations. In 1563 the woodcut has no heading, but three lines of small type carried over from the previous pages are set above it. Badby, unlike Sawtry, was a layman, described as scissor, taylor, in the trial record , and this standing affected both the proceedings against him and what Foxe made of them. The woodcut that portrays his 'horrible burning' represents vividly the two unusual features of his demise. The condemned stands in the fire in an open-ended barrel (the stake to which the text tells us this was bound with chains is not depicted), at unusually close quarters to the surrounding officials and spectators. If this arrangement was intended to intensify the fire and so shorten the suffering of the condemned, that might be connected with the other exceptional feature of this case: namely the efforts of the Prince of Wales to extract a last-minute recantation . Such high-powered secular intervention, itself unprecedented and extraordinary at this final phase, is shown in the outstretched hand of the mounted prince, who was ready to offer the condemned man a life pension as well as a pardon if he recanted and returned to the church. The Prince interpreted Badby's cry for mercy as a sign of his change of heart. He had the fire quenched and Badby removed from the barrel, but to no avail. Badby was returned to the barrel and died in the relit flames. Foxe's text points to the accuracy of this depiction; 'for the manifestation of which torment, we have here set forth the picture of his burning, in such manner as it was done'. CUL copy: thick, heavy orange paint used for flames, which is clumsily extended on the flames close to Badby's body, which lessens the effect of the original illustration, as the flames look thicker tipped than those at the base of the fire. Those flames at the base look much more realistic – their tips do rise into points. The sheriff is mounted on a white steed. Badby is dressed in white The scroll depicting his words is edged in purple (like that of Sawtry's final words) but it is not so distinct, since purple is used copiously for the clothes of the onlookers. WREN copy: the flames are depicted crudely in this copy also.

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