Thematic Divisions in Book 11
1. The Martyrdom of Rogers 2. The Martyrdom of Saunders 3. Saunders' Letters 4. Hooper's Martyrdom 5. Hooper's Letters 6. Rowland Taylor's Martyrdom 7. Becket's Image and other events 8. Miles Coverdale and the Denmark Letters 9. Bonner and Reconciliation 10. Judge Hales 11. The Martyrdom of Thomas Tomkins 12. The Martyrdom of William Hunter 13. The Martyrdom of Higbed and Causton 14. The Martyrdom of Pigot, Knight and Laurence 15. Robert Farrar's Martyrdom 16. The Martyrdom of Rawlins/Rowland White17. The Restoration of Abbey Lands and other events in Spring 155518. The Providential Death of the Parson of Arundel 19. The Martyrdom of John Awcocke 20. The Martyrdom of George Marsh 21. The Letters of George Marsh 22. The Martyrdom of William Flower 23. The Martyrdom of Cardmaker and Warne 24. Letters of Warne and Cardmaker 25. The Martyrdom of Ardley and Simpson 26. John Tooly 27. The Examination of Robert Bromley [nb This is part of the Tooly affair]28. The Martyrdom of Thomas Haukes 29. Letters of Haukes 30. The Martyrdom of Thomas Watts 31. Mary's False Pregnancy32. Censorship Proclamation 33. Our Lady' Psalter 34. Martyrdom of Osmund, Bamford, Osborne and Chamberlain35. The Martyrdom of John Bradford 36. Bradford's Letters 37. William Minge 38. James Trevisam 39. The Martyrdom of John Bland 40. The Martyrdom of Frankesh, Middleton and Sheterden 41. Sheterden's Letters 42. Examinations of Hall, Wade and Polley 43. Martyrdom of Christopher Wade 44. Nicholas Hall45. Margery Polley46. Martyrdom of Carver and Launder 47. Martyrdom of Thomas Iveson 48. John Aleworth 49. Martyrdom of James Abbes 50. Martyrdom of Denley, Newman and Pacingham 51. Martyrdom of John Newman52. Richard Hooke 53. Martyrdom of William Coker, et al 54. Martyrdom of George Tankerfield, et al 55. Martyrdom and Letters of Robert Smith 56. Martyrdom of Harwood and Fust 57. Martyrdom of William Haile 58. George King, Thomas Leyes and John Wade 59. William Andrew 60. Martyrdom of Robert Samuel 61. Samuel's Letters 62. William Allen 63. Martyrdom of Thomas Cobb 64. Martyrdom of Catmer, Streater, Burwood, Brodbridge, Tutty 65. Martyrdom of Hayward and Goreway 66. Martyrdom and Letters of Robert Glover 67. Cornelius Bungey 68. John and William Glover 69. Martyrdom of Wolsey and Pigot 70. Life and Character of Nicholas Ridley 71. Ridley and Latimer's Conference 72. Ridley's Letters 73. Life of Hugh Latimer 74. Latimer's Letters 75. Ridley and Latimer Re-examined and Executed76. More Letters of Ridley 77. Life and Death of Stephen Gardiner 78. Martyrdom of Webb, Roper and Park 79. William Wiseman 80. James Gore 81. Examinations and Martyrdom of John Philpot 82. Philpot's Letters 83. Martyrdom of Thomas Whittle, Barlett Green, et al 84. Letters of Thomas Wittle 85. Life of Bartlett Green 86. Letters of Bartlett Green 87. Thomas Browne 88. John Tudson 89. John Went 90. Isobel Foster 91. Joan Lashford 92. Five Canterbury Martyrs 93. Life and Martyrdom of Cranmer 94. Letters of Cranmer 95. Martyrdom of Agnes Potten and Joan Trunchfield 96. Persecution in Salisbury Maundrell, Coberly and Spicer 97. William Tyms, et al 98. Letters of Tyms 99. The Norfolk Supplication 100. Martyrdom of John Harpole and Joan Beach 101. John Hullier 102. Hullier's Letters 103. Christopher Lister and five other martyrs 104. Hugh Lauerocke and John Apprice 105. Katherine Hut, Elizabeth Thacknell, et al 106. Thomas Drury and Thomas Croker 107. Thomas Spicer, John Deny and Edmund Poole 108. Persecution of Winson and Mendlesam 109. Gregory Crow 110. William Slech 111. Avington Read, et al 112. Wood and Miles 113. Adherall and Clement 114. A Merchant's Servant Executed at Leicester 115. Thirteen Burnt at Stratford-le-Bow116. Persecution in Lichfield 117. Hunt, Norrice, Parret 118. Martyrdom of Bernard, Lawson and Foster 119. Examinations of John Fortune120. John Careless 121. Letters of John Careless 122. Martyrdom of Julius Palmer 123. Agnes Wardall 124. Peter Moone and his wife 125. Guernsey Martyrdoms 126. Dungate, Foreman and Tree 127. Martyrdom of Thomas More128. Examination of John Jackson129. Examination of John Newman 130. Martyrdom of Joan Waste 131. Martyrdom of Edward Sharpe 132. Four Burnt at Mayfield at Sussex 133. John Horne and a woman 134. William Dangerfield 135. Northampton Shoemaker 136. Prisoners Starved at Canterbury 137. More Persecution at Lichfield
Critical Apparatus for this Page
View an Image of this PageCattley Pratt ReferencesCommentary on the TextCommentary on the Woodcuts
Names and Places on this Page
Person and Place Index  *  Close

Elderly chantry priest at Windsor

At dinner at Windsor, Master Ely complained of laymen who meddled with the scriptures and was challenged by Robert Testwood. When Testwood supported the king's supremacy over the church, Ely called him a heretic, refused to have anything more to do with him and reported him to the dean's deputy. A few days later, the act of supremacy was passed and the dean returned, attacking papal supremacy. 1570, p. 1386; 1576, p. 1182; 1583, p. 1211.

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Person and Place Index  *  Close
NGR: TL 540 800

A city in the Isle of Ely, county of Cambridge. 16 miles north-north-east from Cambridge. The city is exclusively of the liberty of the College, which is extra-parochial, and comprises the parishes of St. Mary and Holy Trinity, in the peculiar jurisdiction and patronage of the Dean and Chapter, within the Diocese of Ely, of which it is the seat

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English information from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of England (S. Lewis & Co: London, 1831)

Scottish information from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (S. Lewis & Co: London, 1846)

Welsh information taken from Samuel Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of Wales(Lewis & Co: London, 1840)

The reason for the use of these works of reference is that they present the jurisdictional and ecclesiastical position as it was before the major Victorian changes. The descriptions therefore approximate to those applying in the sixteenth century, after the major changes of 1535-42. Except for the physical locations, which have not changed, the reader should not therefore take these references as being accurate in the twenty-first century.

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1912 [1888]

Queene Mary. The martyrdome of D. Cranmer Archb. and Martyr.
MarginaliaAnno 1556. March. The burnyng of the Archbishop of Caunterbury Doctor Thomas Cranmer, in the Towneditch at Oxforde, with his hand first thrust into the fire, wherewith he subscribed before.

woodcut [View a larger version]

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The famous scene of Cranmer sacrificing as first oblation to the flames the right hand that had betrayed his heart became one of the best known passages in Foxe's book. The place where 'the holy bishops' Latimer and Ridley had burned is shown much as it was in the woodcut of that earlier event (1583, pp. 1769-70), with the tower over the north gate of Oxford's city wall, from which Cranmer had looked down. His 'long and thick' beard which gave his face 'marvellous gravity' is intact, as is his raised left hand, crumpling in the flames on his stiff horizontal arm. Everything is focused on this guilty index finger, exactly centred in the mid-point of the block - the gesture crudely paralleled by the outstretched left arm of the ugly Spanish friar John, still testing Cranmer's steadfast purpose. Cranmer's burning was one of the four woodcuts of English martyrs illustrated in Foxe's 1559 Latin book, but very differently. There the archbishop, bearded and erect, is still untouched by the roaring fire (tended, as in the Acts and Monuments by a solitary attendant) in which he holds his hand. In 1559 the assembled viewers are in the background, mainly officials. There is no crush of awed spectators filling the space as in the English book, and no banderole for the final words, 'Lord receive my spirit'. As in other cases, the chief persecutor is drawn to the viewer's attention by a label (in roman letters in both 1563 and 1570 - redone - and then in italic in 1576 and 1583. The archbishop's last words were naturally treated with care, the roman lettering of 1563 changing to italic in 1570 and then altered again respectively to roman and italic in 1576 and 1583

MarginaliaThe Archb. brought to the place of execution.But when he came to the place where the holye Bishops and Martyrs of God, Hugh Latymer and Ridley were burnt before hym for the confession of the truth, kneelyng downe, he prayed to God, and not long tarying in hys prayers, putting of hys garments to hys shirt, he prepared hymselfe to death. His shirt was made long down to hys feete. His feete were bare. Likewyse his head, when both his caps were of, was so bare,  

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Cattley/Pratt, VIII, Appendix: ref page 89, middle

The first Edition, p. 1502, for "so bare" has "shewed bare."

that one haire coulde not be seene vpon it. His beard was long and thicke, couering hys face with meruailous grauitie. Such a countenance of grauitie mooued the hearts both of his friends and of his enemies.

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Then the Spanish Friers Iohn & Richard, of whom mention was made before, began to exhort him and playe their partes with him a freshe, but with vayne and lost labour, Cranmer with stedfast purpose abidyng in the profession of his doctrine, gaue his hand to certaine old men, and other that stood by, biddyng them farewell.

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MarginaliaM. Ely refuseth to giue his hand to the Archbishop.And when he had thought to haue done so likewyse to Ely, 

Commentary  *  Close

Foxe took the name of Ely and the fact that he was a fellow of Brasenose from 'J. A.' (cf. BL, Harley 422, fo. 51r).

the sayd Ely drewe backe his hande and refused, saying: it was not lawfull to salute heretickes, and specially such a one as falsly returned vnto the opinions that he had forsworne. And if he had knowen before that hee would haue done so, he would neuer haue vsed his company so familiarly, and chid those sergeants and Citizens, whiche had not refused to geue hym their hands. This Ely was a priest lately made, and student in Diuinitie, being thē one of the fellowes of Brasennose.

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MarginaliaThe Archbishop tyed to the stake.Then was an iron chaine tied about Cranmer, whom when they perceyued to be more stedfast then that he could be mooued from hys sentence, they commaunded they fire to be set vnto hym.

MarginaliaCranmer putteth his right hand which subscribed first into the fire.And when the woode was kindled, and the fire began to burne neere hym, stretching out his arme, he put hys right hand into the flame: which he held so stedfast & immoueable (sauing that once with the same hand he wiped his face) that all men might see hys hande burned before his body was touched. His body did so abide the burning of the flame with such constancy and stedfastnes, that standyng alwayes in one place without moouyng of his body, he seemed to mooue no more then the stake to which hee was bound: his eyes were lifted vp into heauen, and oftentymes he repeated hys vnworthy right hand, so long as his voyce would suffer hym: and vsing oftē the words of Steuen, MarginaliaThe last wordes of Cranmer at his death.Lord Iesus receiue my spirite, in the greatnesse of

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the flame, he gaue vp the Ghost.

This fortitude of mynd which perchaunce is rare and not found among the Spaniards, when Frier Ioh. saw, thinkyng it came not of fortitude, but of desperation (although such maner of examples which are of the like constancy, haue bene common here in England) ranne to the L. Williams of Tame, MarginaliaThe Fryers lying report of Cranmer.crying that the Archb. was vexed in mind, and died in great desperation. But he which was not ignorant of the Archbishoppes constancy, beyng vnknowen to the Spaniards, smiled only, and (as it were) by silence rebuked the Friers folly. And this was the ende of this learned Archb. whom, least by euill subscribyng he should haue perished, by well recantyng God preserued: and least he should haue lyued longer with shame and reproofe, it pleased God rather to take him away, to the glory of his name and profit of his Church. So good was the Lord both to hys Church, in fortifieng the same wyth the testimony and bloud of such a Martyr: and so good also to the man with this crosse of tribulation, to purge his offences in this world, not onely of his recantation, but also of his standyng agaynst Iohn Lambert and M. Allen, or if there were any other, with whose burnyng and bloude, hys hands had bene before any thyng polluted. But especially he had to reioyce, that dying in such a cause, he was to be numbred amongst Christes Martyrs, muche more worthy the name of S. Thomas of Caunterbury, then he whom the Pope falsly before did Canonise.

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And thus haue you the full story concernyng the lyfe and death of this reuerend Archbish. and Martyr of God, Thomas Cranmer, and also of diuers other the learned sort of Christs Martyrs burned in Queene Maries time, of whom this Archb. was the last, beyng burnt about the very middle tyme of the raign of that Queene, and almost the very middle man of all the Martyrs which were burned in all her raigne besides. MarginaliaArchb. Cranmer the middle Martyr of all the Martyrs burnt in Q. Maryes tyme.

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Now after the lyfe and story of this foresayde Archbishop discoursed, let vs adioyne withall his letters, beginning first with his famous letter to Quene Mary, which he wrote vnto her incontinent after he was cited vp to Rome by bishop Brookes and his fellowes, the tenour whereof here followeth.


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