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729 [705]

K. Henr. 7. Learning beginneth to spryng in the church. Weselus. Rodolp. Agricola.

cient as also of latter tymes, as namely Cuspinianus, Nauclerus, Conradus Peutingerus, Manlius, and other.

MarginaliaLearned mē begin to grow in Christendome. Here now it began right well to appeare, what great benefite was broched to the world, by the Arte and facultie of Printyng as is before mentioned. 

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Once again Foxe praises printing as an aid to the reform of the Church.This passage may have been inspired by a similar reflection by Peucer (see ChroniconCarionis [Wittenberg, 1580], p. 687) but the list of names of enlightened (and anti-papal) writers appears to have been culled from John Bale's Catalogus.

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Through the meanes of whiche Printyng, the Churche and common wealth of Christ began now to be replenished with learned men, as both may appeare by this Emperor beyng so indued hym selfe with such excellent knowledge of good letters, and also by diuers other famous and worthy wyttes, which began now in this age excedyngly to encrease & multiply, as Baptista Mantuanus, Ang. Politianus, Hermolaus Barbarus, Picus Mirandula, and Franciscus his cousin, Rodol. Agricola, Pontanus, Philippus, Beroaldus, Marsilius Ficinus, Volateranus, Georgius Valla, 
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This is a mistake; the celebrated humanist Lorenzo Valla is meant.

with infinite other.

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MarginaliaDoctour Weselus Groningensis. Among whom is also to be numbred Weselus Groningensis, otherwise named Basilius, who was not long after Iohn. de Wesalia aboue recited, 

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See C 174/1.

both much about one tyme, and both great frendes together. 
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The person whom Foxe refers to as 'Johannes Wesalia' is JohannesRuceruth von Wesel. 'Johannes Weselus' is Johannes of Wesel, better known asWesel Gansforth, a well-known humanist philosopher and theologian. Foxe's account of Wesel Gansforth is entiely - including the anecdotes about him attributed to Noviomagus and Philip Melancthon - derived from Matthias Flacius, Catalogus Testium Veritatis (Basel, 1562), pp. 561-3.

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This Weselus dyed the yeare of our Lord. 1490. After that Ioannes Doctour De Wesalia aforesayd was condemned this Weselus beyng familiar with him, thought that the Inquisitour would come and examine him also, as he himselfe in a certaine Epistle doth write. MarginaliaWeselus called Lux Mundi. He was so notable and so worthy a man that of the people he was called Lux mundi. That is: the light of the world.

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MarginaliaThe doctrine of Weselus Groningensis. Concernyng his doctrine, first he reprehended the opinion of the Papistes, as touchyng repentaunce, which they deuided in three partes, of the whiche three partes, satisfaction and confession he dyd disalow. Likewise Purgatory and supererogation of workes and pardones he did disproue, both at Rome and at Paris. He spake agaynst the Popes indulgences, by the occasion whereof diuers of the Popes court, perswaded by him, begā to speake more freely against the same matter, then he himselfe had done.

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The abuses of Masses and praying for the dead he dissalowed: and likewise the supremacie of the Pope he vtterly reiected (as appeareth in a booke of his De Sacramento pœnitentiæ) MarginaliaEx lib. D. WWeseli, De Sacramento pœnitētiæ. denying vtterly that any supreme head or gouernour ought to be in the world ouer all other: MarginaliaThe popes supremacie written agaynst. affirmyng also and saying many tymes, that the Pope had no authoritie to do any thyng by commaundement but by truth: that is, so farre as truth goeth with him, so farre his sentence to stand: neither that he ought to preuayle by commaundyng, but onely by teachyng, so as euery true Christian Byshop may preuayle ouer an other. Also in some place in hys writynges he denyeth not, but that Popes and their spirituall Prelates, procedyng agaynst Christes doctrine, be playne Antichristes: such as were infirme and not able to performe the bond of chastitie taken vpon them, he sayd they might well breake their vow.

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Also the sayd Weselus witnesseth, that the forefathers which were before Albert and Thomas, did resiste & withstand the Popes indulgences, callyng them in their writings plaine Idolatry, mere fraude & errour: addyng moreouer that vnles the seueritie of some good Diuines, had not withstand these pardons and indulgences of the Pope: innumerable errours had ouerflowen the Church.

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Amongest the workes of Weselus, there is a certaine Epistle of one written to him, MarginaliaEx Epist. cuiusdam in opere VVeseli. in which the authour of the Epistle cōfesseth, that in his time there was a certaine learned man at Paris called Maister Thomas de Curselis a Deane: who beyng in the Councell of Basill, where as diuers began to aduaunce the power of the Pope to farre, declared and affirmed, to be sayd to him of Christ: MarginaliaChristes answere to Tho. de Corselis touching this place Quicquid ligaueris. Not what so euer is said to be loosed in earth is loosed in heauen: but whatsoeuer is loosed in very deede in earth that is also loosed in deede in heauen. Quicquid ligaueris super terram erit ligatū & in cœlo. &c. Et non, quicquid dixeris esse ligatum. That is, What soeuer thou shalt bynde vpon earth, shalbe bound in heauen: but not, whatsoeuer thou sayest to be bounde. As who should say the Pope can not nor doth not bynde therfore, because he so sayth, except truth and righteousnes go also with him: then he doth so bynde in deede. There is a certaine booke of this man amongest diuers others, which he entituleth, De subditis & superioribus, in the whiche he disputeth greatly agaynst the Pope and his Prelates: affirmyng that the Pope, vnlesse his fayth and doctrine be sound, ought not to be obeyde. He affirmeth also that the Pope may erre, and when he erreth, mē ought by all maner of meanes to resiste him. MarginaliaAgaynst ryches in the church. Item, that great and superfluous riches in the Clergy do not profite, but hurt the Churche. That the Pope doth wickedly distribute the rentes of the Church, and the Church it selfe, to vnworthy Ministers by Simony for his owne profite & gayne: whereby it may appeare that he neither careth for God, nor the health of the Church. MarginaliaThe preceptes of the pope & prelates how they binde. Item, that the preceptes and commaundementes of the Pope and Prelates, be no otherwise, but as the Councels and preceptes of Phisitions, binding no further then they are founde to be holsome and standyng with the truth of the worde. Item, that the pope can commaunde no man vnder payne of deadly sinne, except God commaunde him before. MarginaliaThe popes keys. He saith that the keyes of the Pope and of the Prelates be not such, wherewith they open the kingdome of heauē, but rather shut it, as the Pharisies did. MarginaliaVowes. Concerning vowes, he disputeth that such as be foolishe and impossibile, ought to be broken: MarginaliaDoctrine not to be receaued without examinatiō. That the hearers ought to discerne and iudge of the doctrine of their prelates, and not to receiue euery thing that they say, without due examination.

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MarginaliaExcōmunicatiō. He sheweth moreouer that the sentence or excommunication is of more force, proceeding from a true godly honest, simple and learned man, then from the Pope, as in the Councell of Constance, Bernard was more estemed then Eugenius. Also if the Pope with his prelates, gouerne and rule naughtely, that the inferiours, be they neuer so base, ought to resist him.

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Writing moreouer of two Popes, Pius the second and Sixtus the fourth, he sayth, that Pius the second dyd vsurpe vnto himselfe all the kyngdomes of the whole world, and that Sixtus the pope did dispense with all maner of othes in causes temporall, not onely with such othes, as haue bene already, but also with all such, as shall be made hereafter: which was nothyng els but to giue liberty and licence for men to forsweare themselues and to deceiue one an other.

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MarginaliaEx Nouiomago This Weselus being a Phrisian borne, and now aged in yeares, vpon a certaine time, when a young man called maister Ioannes Ostendorpius, came to hym, sayd these wordes: MarginaliaA prophecie of Weselus.
This Ostendorpius was a man well lerned and Canon of the minster of Lubecke.
Well my childe, thou shalt liue to that day, when thou shalt see the doctrine of these new and contentious diuines, as Thomas and Bonauenture, with others of the same sort, shall be vtterly reiected and exploded from all true Christen diuines: And this which Ostendorpius then beyng young, heard Weselus to speake, he reported hymselfe. to Nouiomagus, which wrote this story. an. 1520. & heard it of the mouth of the sayd Weselus. an. 1490. Martij. 18.

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Phillippus Melanchton writing of the life of Rodolphus Agricola, sayth: MarginaliaHere it appereth that this R. Agricola was of a good iudgement, though the Friers afterward buryed hym in a Friers weede. that Iosquinus Gron:ngensis, an auncient and a godly man, reported that when as he was young, he was oftentimes present at the sermons of Rodolphus and Weselus, wherein they many times lamented the darckenes of the Church, and reprehended the abuses of the Masse, and of the single lyfe of priestes. Item, when they disputed oftentimes of the rightuousnesse of MarginaliaRodol. Agricola.
Weselus lamenteth the darcknes of the church.
fayth, why S. Paule so oftentimes did inculcate, that men be iustified by faith and not by workes, the same Iosquine also reported, that they did openly reiecte and disproue the opinion of Monkes, which say that men be iustified be their workes. Item, concerning mens traditons their opinion was, that all such were deceaued, who soeuer attributed vnto those traditions any opinion of Gods worship, or that they could not be broken. And thus much for the story of doctour Wesellianus and Weselus.

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By this it may be seene and noted, how by the grace of God and his gift of printing, first came forth learning: 

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Once again, Foxe takes the opportunity to associate the invention ofprinting with the advent of Protestantism.

by learning came light to iudge and discerne the errours of the pope from the truth of Gods word, as partly by these aboue said may appeare: partly by other that folow after, (by the grace of Christ) shall better be seene.

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About the very same tyme and season, when as the gospell began thus to braunch & spring in Germanie: the hoste of Christes Church began also to muster and to multiplye likewise here in England, as by these histories here consequent may appeare. 

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These histories of English martyrs are all derived from London Guildhall MS 3313 (now printed as The Great Chronicle of London), which belongedto John Stow and possibly was loaned by him to Foxe (certainly Foxe consulted the work at some point). Foxe attributes this work (probably correctly) to the chronicler Robert Fabyan.

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For not long after the death of this Weselus, MarginaliaAn. 1494.
Ioane Boughtō mother to the lady Young martir
in the yeare of our Lord 1494. and in 9. yeare of the reigne of K. Henry 7. the 28. of Aprill, was burned a very olde woman named Ioane Boughton widow, and mother to the Lady Young, which Lady was also suspected to be of that opinion which her mother was. 
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There is actually no evidence that Lady Jane Young, the wife of Sir John Young, a wealthy draper and Lord Mayor of London, was ever burned.Andrew Hope has argued that Joan Baker confused Jane Young with her motherJoan Boughton, who was burned at Smithfield on on 28 April 1494. It is true,however, that Jane Young was herself suspected of heresy. (See Andrew Hope,'The lady and the baliff: Lollardy among the gentry in Yorkist and early TudorEngland' in Lollardy and the Gentry in the Middle Ages, ed. Margaret Aston and Colin Richmond [Stroud, 1997], p. 260 and J. A. F. Thomson, The Later Lollards,1414-1520 [Oxford, 1965}, pp. 156-7).

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Her mother was of foure score yeare of age or more and helde viij. of Wickliffes opinions (which opinions my authour doth not shew) for the which she was burnt in Smithfielde the day abouesayd. My authour sayth, shee was a Disciple of Wicklieffe, whom she accompted for a Saint, and helde so fast and firmely viij. of hys xij. opinions, that all the Doctours of London could not turne her from one of them: and when it was told her that she should be brent for her obstinacie & false beliefe, she set nothing by their manacing wordes, but defied them, for she sayd she was so beloued of god, and his holy aungels, that she passed not for the fire, and in the midst thereof she cryed vpon God to take her soule into his holy handes. 
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See The Great Chronicle of London, ed. A. H. Thomas and I. D. Thornley (London, 1938), pp. 252-3. It should be noted that Foxe is putting apositive spin on the account in The Great Chronicle, whose author regarded Joan Boughton as a deluded heretic.

The night folowing that she was burnte, the most part of her ashes were had away of such as had a loue vnto the doctrine that she dyed for. 
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The Great Chronicle records that Boughton's ashes were removed'and kepyd ffor a precious Relyk, In an erthyn pott' (The Great Chronicle of London,ed. A. H. Thomas and I. D. Thornley [London, 1938], p. 253). Foxe is careful todisguise the suggestion that her remains were regarded as relics.

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