Thematic Divisions in Book 12
1. Exhumations of Bucer and Phagius along with Peter Martyr's Wife2. Pole's Visitation Articles for Kent3. Ten Martyrs Burnt at Canterbury4. The 'Bloody Commission'5. Twenty-two Prisoners from Colchester6. Five Burnt at Smithfield7. Stephen Gratwick and others8. Edmund Allen and other martyrs9. Alice Benden and other martyrs10. Examinations of Matthew Plaise11. Richard Woodman and nine other martyrs12. Ambrose13. Richard Lush14. Edmund Allen15. The Martyrdom of Simon Miller and Elizabeth Cooper16. Rose Allin and nine other Colchester Martyrs17. John Thurston18. George Eagles19. Richard Crashfield20. Fryer and George Eagles' sister21. Joyce Lewes22. Rafe Allerton and others23. Agnes Bongeor and Margaret Thurston24. John Kurde25. John Noyes26. Cicelye Ormes27. Persecution at Lichfield28. Persecution at Chichester29. Thomas Spurdance30. Hallingdale, Sparrow and Gibson31. John Rough and Margaret Mearing32. Cuthbert Simson33. William Nicholl34. Seaman, Carman and Hudson35. Three at Colchester36. A Royal Proclamation37. Roger Holland and other Islington martyrs38. Stephen Cotton and other martyrs39. Scourging of Thomas Hinshaw40. Scourging of John Milles41. Richard Yeoman42. John Alcocke43. Thomas Benbridge44. Four at St Edmondsbury45. Alexander Gouch and Alice Driver46. Three at Bury47. A Poor Woman of Exeter48. Priest's Wife of Exeter49. The Final Five Martyrs50. John Hunt and Richard White51. John Fetty52. Nicholas Burton53. John Fronton54. Another Martyrdom in Spain55. Baker and Burgate56. Burges and Hoker57. The Scourged: Introduction58. Richard Wilmot and Thomas Fairfax59. Thomas Greene60. Bartlett Greene and Cotton61. Steven Cotton's Letter62. James Harris63. Robert Williams64. Bonner's Beating of Boys65. A Beggar of Salisbury66. Providences: Introduction67. The Miraculously Preserved68. William Living69. Edward Grew70. William Browne71. Elizabeth Young72. Elizabeth Lawson73. Christenmas and Wattes74. John Glover75. Dabney76. Alexander Wimshurst77. Bosom's wife78. Lady Knevet79. Mistress Roberts80. Anne Lacy81. Crosman's wife82. Congregation at Stoke in Suffolk83. Congregation of London84. Edward Benet85. Jeffrey Hurst86. William Wood87. Simon Grinaeus88. The Duchess of Suffolk89. Thomas Horton 90. Thomas Sprat91. John Cornet92. Thomas Bryce93. Gertrude Crockhey94. William Mauldon95. Robert Horneby96. Mistress Sandes97. John Kempe98. Thomas Rose99. Complaint against the Ipswich Gospellers100. Tome 6 Life and Preservation of the Lady Elizabeth101. The Unprosperous Queen Mary102. Punishments of Persecutors103. Foreign Examples104. A Letter to Henry II of France105. The Death of Henry II and others106. Justice Nine-Holes107. John Whiteman108. Admonition to the Reader109. Hales' Oration110. Cautions to the Reader111. Snel112. Laremouth113. William Hunter's Letter
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1952 [1925]

Q. Mary. The cruell racking of Cutbert Simson, Martyr.

MarginaliaAnno. 1558. March.¶ A true description of the racking and cruell handelyng of Cutbert Simson in the Tower.
woodcut [View a larger version]
Commentary on the Woodcuts  *  Close
The very explicit detail of Cuthbert Simpson's 'cruel handling' in the Tower, shows conventional torture being used to test the accused. The woodcut, with its inset captions, is anxious to emphasise the veracity of what is presented. In the foreground two men are straining the ropes of the instrument which could dislocate joints, the rack, which had been used in the Tower over a century earlier (and which enjoyed various nicknames). The labelled insets of other kinds of torture make this illustration comparable to the huge woodcut the Ten Persecutions of the Primitive Church, whose varied annotated sufferings of early church martyrs were seen by Foxe as patterns for the martyrs of his own day. Foxe's text, putting praise for Simpson's endurance of his racking into the mouth of Bonner himself, indicates that the bishop had witnessed this 'patience' in person, through the 'sorrow' inflicted in his episcopal residence.

people by force of their othe, to complain of their innocent and harmelesse neighbors, as here they doe by tormentes, let hym resort to our first booke, page. 1632.

¶ A note for Cutbert Simsons pacience.

MarginaliaA note of Cutbert Simson.NOw as touchyng this Cutbert Simson, this further is to be noted, that Boner in his Consistorie speakyng of Cutbert Simson, gaue this testimonie of him there to þe people, saiyng: ye see this man (saieth he) what a personable man he is: and after he had thus commended his persone, added moreouer: MarginaliaThe pacience of Cutbert Simson.And furthermore concernyng his pacience, I saie vnto you, that if he were not an hereticke, he is a man of the greatest paciēce that yet euer came before me. For I tell you, he hath been thrise racked vpō one daie in the Tower: Also in my house he hath felt some sorowe, and yet I neuer see his pacience broken. &c.

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It is thought and saied of some, that that arrowe, whiche was grated betwixte his fingers, beyng tide together, was not in the tower, but in the bishops house.

The daie before the blessed Deacon and martyr of GOD Cutbert Simson, after his painefull rackyng should goe to his condemnation before Boner, to bee burned, being in the bishops colehouse there in the stockes, MarginaliaA visiō of Cutbert Simson.he had a certain vision or apparition very straūge, whiche he hymself with his owne mouth declared to the Godly learned man M. Austen, to his owne wife, and Thomas Simson, 

Commentary  *  Close

'Master Austen' is the ubiquitous Augustine Bernher, who, among other things, was de facto head of the underground London congregation. Thomas Simpson - apparently no relation to Cuthbert Simpson - was another of the congregation's deacons. On the important roles of Bernher and Thomas Simpson in the underground London congregation see Brett Usher, '"In a Time of Persecution": New Light on the Protestant Congregation in Marian London' in John Foxe and the English Reformation, ed., David Loades (Aldershot, 1997), pp. 233-51.

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and to other besides, in the prison of Newgate a little before his death. The relation wherof I stande in no little doubt, whether to report abrode or not, consideryng with my self, the greate diuersitie of mennes iudgementes in the readyng of histories, and varietie of affections.  
Commentary  *  Close

Note Foxe's unease about the reliability of the story about Cuthbert Simpson's dream and Foxe's anticipating criticism of it (anticipations which proved correct). Foxe probably decided to include the account because it was verified by Augustine Bernher and Thomas Simpson.

Some, I see, will not beleue it, some will deride the same, some also will bee offended with settyng forth thynges of that sort incertaine, estemyng all thynges to be incertain and incredible, whatsoeuer is straunge from the common order of Nature. Other wil be perchaunce agreued, thinkyng with them selues, or els thus reasoning with me, that although the matter were as is reported, yet for so muche as the cōmon error of beleuyng rashe miracles, phantasied vi-

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sions, dreames, and apparitions thereby maie be cōfirmed, more expedient it were the same to be vnsetforthe.

These and suche like will be, I knowe, the saiynges of many. Whereunto briefly I aunswere, grauntyng firste, and admittyng with the woordes of Basill, οὐ πᾶν ὀνείαρ ἐστὶ πρωφητία. . 

Latin/Greek Translations  *  Close
St. Basil
Foxe text Greek

οὐ πᾶν ὀνείαρ ἐστὶ πρωφητία.

Foxe text translation

Not every dreame is straight waie a Prophecie.

Actual text of St. Basil

That is, not euery dreame is straight waie a Prophecie. Againe, neither am I ignoraunt that the Papistes in their bookes and legēdes of sainctes haue their prodigious visions, and apparitions of Angels, of our ladie, of Christ, & other sainctes: whiche as I will not admit to bee beleued for true, so wil they aske me again, why should I thē more require these to be credited of them, then theirs of vs.

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Firste I write not this, bindyng any man precisely to beleue the same, so as they doe theirs, but onely reporte it as it hath been heard of persones knowen, namyng also the parties, who were the hearers thereof, leauyng the iudgemente thereof notwithstandyng free vnto the arbitremēt of the reader. MarginaliaWhat credite is to be giuen to visions, and how farre.Albeit, it is no good argument procedyng from the singular or particular, to be vniuersal, to saie that visiōs be not true in some, ergo, they be true in none. And if any shall muse, or obiecte againe, why should suche visions be giuen to him, or a fewe other singular persones, more then to all the rest, seyng the other were in the same cause and quarell, and died also Martyrs as well as he? To this I saie, concernyng the Lordes tymes and doynges, I haue not to meddle nor make, who maie woorke where, and when it pleaseth hym. And what if the Lorde thought chiefly aboue the other, with some singular consolation to respecte hym, who chiefly aboue the other, and singularly did suffer moste exquisite tormentes for his sake? What greate maruell herein? but as I saied, of the Lordes secrete tymes I haue not to reason. This onely whiche hath out of the mannes owne mouth been receiued, so as I receiued it of the parties, I thoughte here to communicate to the Reader, for hym to iudge therof as God shal rule his mynde. The matter is this.

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The daie before this Simson was condemned, he beyng in the stockes, Cloney his keper cōmeth in with the keies, about 9. of the clocke at night (after his vsual

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