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891 [891]

K. Henry. 7. Maximilianus Emperour. Pope Alexander. 6.

¶ Here enseweth the Copy of a Letter writen vnto the Emperour Maximilian.

¶ To our most victorious Lorde Maximilian the Emperour, Iacobus Selestadiensis 
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This is the celebrated humanist Jacob Wimpheling.

, most humble commendations.

MOst victorious Emperour, when 

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This letter from Jacob Wimpheling to Maximilian is translated fromMatthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 326-7.

I had read your maiesties Epistle, and receyued instructiōs of your Secretary, I prepared my selfe with all my whole endeuour, to satisfye your maiesties desire: For euen from my yougth hetherto, I haue applyed all my care and study, fyrst for the honour of your maiesty, and consequētly for for the amplifying of the Germaine nation, and sacred Romaine Empire. Albeit I know my selfe farre vnable to satisfye your desire and purpose, and there are many whiche can fulfill this matter much better, whiche haue greater learnyng and experience of these common matters. There be also with other princes, and in the Senates of cōmon wealthes, many excellent learned men, whiche can exornate and beautifye Germanie, and perswade to reduce all the clergy vnto a Christiā discipline, and to an vnitie and peace of the vniuersall Churche. Wherein not onely your maiesty, but also your predecessours, as Charles the great, and his sonne Ludouicus Pius, the Othoes, Conrades, Friderickes, & Henrikes, and last of all, Sigismundus, haue with all labour and diligence trauailed, beyng stirred thereunto, vndoubtedly thorow the zeale and charitie whiche they bare vnto almighty God, & thankefulnes vnto Christ, for hys benefites which he hath bestowed vpon mankynd, & specially for the benefite of his most bitter passion. For Christ became not poore for vs, that we should liue in all riote & wantonnes vpon his patrimonie, and shew forth our ambition and couetousnes: neyther did he suffer hunger that we should glutte vp our selues: or suffred labours, chastitie, & greuous tormētes, that we should liue in idlenes, wantonnes, & all kynde of voluptuosnes. Neyther they which were cōtributers & benefactors to churches, induing the ministers therof wt their tēporal riches, had any such respect herein, þt the clergy should lyue onely in idlenes, hauing all thyngs at their will, wtout labour. Surely there was an other cause why þt they in tymes past, did empouerish thē selues & theirs, to endowe þe church: verely that they might the better attend vnto diuine seruice, without care of want of lyuing (which they myght easely get & gather out of the fieldes, wodes, medowes, & waters) & to the intent that they should liberally geue almes vnto the poore Christians, wydowes, orphanes, aged & sicke persons. For in the institutions of the canonical profession, which we suppose was writen by the cōmaundemēt of Ludouicus Pius the Emperour, and allowed by the coūcell of the bishops, thus it is read: The goodes of the Church (as it is alledged by the fathers, & conteyned in þe chapters before) are the vowes of þe faythfull, & patrimonie of the poore. For the faithful, thorow the feruentnes of their faith, & loue of Christ being inflamed, hauing an earnest desire of that heauēly kingdome, haue enriched the holy church with their owne goodes, that thereby the souldiours of Christ might be norished, the church adorned, the poore refreshed, & captiues, accordyng to the oportunitie of time, redemed. Wherefore suche as haue the administration of those goods, ought diligently to be looked vpon, that they do not conuerte them vnto their owne proper vse, but rather, accordyng to their substaunce & possibilitie, they do not neglect thē in whom Christ is fedde and clothed. Prosper is also of the same minde, affirmyng that holy men dyd not chalenge the church goods to theyr owne vse, as their own proper goodes, but as thyngs cōmended vnto the pore, to be deuided amōgest thē: For that is to contemne that which a mā possesseth, not to possesse a thing for him self, but for others, neyther to couet the Church goods with couetousnes, to haue thē him self, but to take thē with a godly zeale, to helpe other. That which the church hath, is cōmon to all thē whiche haue nothing, neyther ought they to gyue any thynge of that vnto them, (sayth hee) which haue of their owne: for to giue vnto them whiche haue inough, is but to cast thynges away. Ex Illyrico.

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MarginaliaPope Alexander. vi.To returne now to the order of popes, where we left before speaking of Innocentius viij. pag. 842. after the sayd Innocentius, next succeded Pope Alexander the vi. In whiche Alexander, among other horrible thynges, thys is one to be noted, 

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Foxe has two, not entirely consistent accounts, of Alexander VI's holding the Turkish prince Djem hostage. One comes from John Bale's Catalogus(pp. 626-27). The other is from Sebastion Munster, Cosmographia (Basel, 1559),p. 965.

that when Gemes (Peucerus nameth hym Demes) brother to Baiazetes the great Turke, MarginaliaThe pope poysoneth Gemes the Turkes brother, being cōmitted to hys custodye.
Ex Paul. Iouio. lib. 2.
Ex Pencero. lib. 5.
Ex Hieronym. Mario.
was cōmitted by the Rhodians, to the safe custodie, first of pope Innocent, then of Alexander the 6. for whose keping þe pope receaued euery yere. 40. thousand crownes: yet notwithstanding, when pope Alexander afterward was compelled to send the sayd Gemes to Lewes xi. the French king, for a pledge: because the Frenche kyng should not procure þe great Turkes fauour, by sendyng his brother Gemes to hym to be slaine, he being hyred by the Turke, caused þe sayd Gemes to be poysoned, who in hys iourney going toward the French kyng, dyed at Terracina. Ex Hieronymo Mario.

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MarginaliaThe pope setteth the greate Turke agaynst the French kyng.Moreouer, in the sayd Hieronymus Marius it appeareth, that thys Alexander, takyng displeasure with the foresayd Levves the French kyng, aboute the wynning of Neaples, sent to Baiazetes the Turke, to fight agaynst the foresayd Lewes. Ex eodem.

Musterus lib. 4. Cosmog. MarginaliaEx Seb. Munstero lib . 4. Cosmog.Declaryng the foresayd historye of Gemes, somethyng otherwyse, fyrst calleth hym Zyzymus, and sayth, that he was first committed by þe Rhodians to þe French kyng: And when as Ioannes Huniades afore mentioned, did labour to þe French king to haue hym, thinkyng by that meanes to obtayne a noble victorye agaynst þe Turke, as it was not vnlike: thys Alexander the pope, through his fraudulent flattery, got him of the French kyng, into his own handes: by whose meanes the sayd Gemes afterwarde was poysoned, as is in maner before expressed.

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MarginaliaMācinellus wryting agaynst the wickednes of the pope, loste hys landes & tounge.Vnto these poysoned actes 

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This story of Alexander VI's mutilation of a writer who denounced him is taken from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus testium veritatis (Basel, 1562), p. 576.

of the Pope, let vs also adioyne hys malicious wickednes, with lyke furye exercised vpon Antonius Mancinellus: which Mancinellus being a mā of excellent learning, because he wrote an eloquent oration agaynst hys wicked maners and filthye life, with other vices, he therfore commaunded both his handes and hys tounge to be cut of, playing much lyke with hym, as Antonius the tyraunt once dyd with M. Cicero, for writing against hys horrible lyfe. 
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Mark Anthony ordered the Roman orator Cicero killed after Cicero had denounced him in a series of speeches.

MarginaliaPoyson requited with poyson.At length, as one poyson requireth an other, thys poysoned pope, as he was sitting with his Cardinalls, & other riche Senatours of Rome at dynner, hys seruauntes vnwares brought to hym a wronge bottell, wherby both he was poysoned, and hys Cardinalls about hym. 
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The stories of Alexander VI's death and of the statue of the angel struck by lightning are from Bale, Catalogus, p. 634.

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MarginaliaThe hygh Angell of the popes pallace throwne downe.In the tyme of thys Pope Alexander, also it happened (which is not to be pretermitted) how that þe Angell which stoode in the high toppe of the popes church, was beaten downe with a terrible thunder: which thing seemed then to declare the ruine and fall of the popedome. MarginaliaPope Pius 3.After thys Pope, next succeded Pius the thyrd, about the yeare of our Lorde. 1503. MarginaliaPope Iulius. 2.After whom came nexte Iulius the second,  

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The following account of Julius II, including the poems and epigraphs, is taken, word-for-word, from Bale, Catalogus, pp. 636 and 642-4.

a man so farre passing all other in iniquitie, that VVicelius & such other of hys own frendes writing of him, are compelled to say of him, Marti illum quam Christo deditiorem fuisse: that is, that he was more geuē to warre and battaile, then to Christ. Concerning the madnes of thys mā, this is most certaynly knowen, that at what tyme he was going to warre, he caste the keyes of S. Peter into the riuer of Tybris, saying, that for as much as the keyes of Peter, would not serue him to hys purpose, he would take hym selfe to the sworde of Paule. Wherupō Phillip Melancthon, amongest many other wryting vpon the same, maketh thys Epigrame.

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Cum contra Gallos bellu papa Iulius esset
Gesturus, sicut fama vetusta docet:
Ingentes martis turmas contraxit, et vrbem
Egressus sæuas edidit ore minas.
Iratusq; sacras claues in flumina iecit
Tibridis, hic vrbi pons vbi iungit aquas.
Inde manu strictum vagina diripit ensem,
Exclamansq̀; truci talia voce refert:
Hic gladius Pauli nos nunc defender ab hoste,
Quandoquidem clauis nil iuuat ista Petri.

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Wherupon also Gilbert Ducherius maketh this Epigram.

In Gallum
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