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ConstantinopleGenoa [Genua; Ianua]
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(Byzantium, Istanbul) [Bizance]


Coordinates: 41° 0' 44" N, 28° 58' 34" E

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Genoa [Genua; Ianua]

Liguria, Italy

Historic city-state

Coordinates: 44° 24' 0" N, 8° 55' 0" E

732 [708]

K. Henry. 6. The benefite of Printing. The lamentable loosing of Contantinople.

and what is knowne in one nation, is opened to all.

The first and best were for the bishop of Rome, by the benefite of printing, to learne and know the trueth. MarginaliaGood counsaile to the Pope. If he will not, let him well vnderstand that printing is not set vp for naught. To striue against the streame, it auayleth not. What the pope hath lost, since printing and the presse began to preach, let hym cast hys counters. First when Erasmus wrote, and Frobenius Printed, what a blow ther by was geuen to all Fryers and monks in the world? And who seeth not, that the penne of Luther following after Erasmus and set forward by writing, hath set the triple crown so awry on the popes head, that it is like neuer to be set streight agayne.

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Brieflye, if there were no demonstration to leade, yet by this one argument of printing, the bishop of Rome might vnderstand the counsayl and purpose of the Lord to worke agaynst him: hauing prouided such a way in earth, that almost how many printing presses there be in þe world so many blockhouses there be agaynst the high castle of S. Angell. MarginaliaSo preached the vicar of Croydē in K. Henry the 8. dayes, at Paules crosse, saying that either we must roote out printing or else printing will roote out vs.So that eyther the pope must abolishe knowledge and Printing, or printing at length will roote him out. For if a man wisely consider the holde and standing of the pope, thus he may repute with himselfe, that as nothing made the pope strong in time past, but lacke of knowledge and ignoraunce of simple Christians: so contrariwise now nothing doth debilitate and shake the high spire of his Papacie so much as reading, preaching, knowledge & iudgement, that is to say, the fruit of printing: Whereof some experience we see already, and more is like (the Lord before) to follow. For although, through outward force and violēt cruelty, tonges dare not spake, yet the hartes of men dayly (no doubt) be instructed through this benefite of printing. And though the pope both nowe by cruelty, and in tymes past by ignoraunce, had all vnder hys possession: yet neyther must he thinke, that violence will alwayes continue, neyther must he hope for that now, which he had then: for so much as in those former dayes, bookes then were sacrse & also of such excessiue price, that few coulde attayne to the buying, fewer to þe reading & studying therof: which bookes now by þe meanes of this arte are made easie vnto al men. Ye heard before, pag. 665, how Nicholas Belward, bought a new testament in those dayes for foure markes and 40. pence, where as now the same price will serue well 40. persons with so many bookes.

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Moreouer in the pag. 411. col. 1. it was noted and declared by the testimony of Armachanus, how for defect of bookes and good authors, both vniuersities were decaied and good wits kept in ignoraunce, while begging Fryers scaping all the wealth from other priestes, heaped vp all bookes that coulde be gotten, into theyr owne Libraryes: where eyther they dyd not diligently applye them, or els did not rightly use them, or at least kept them from such as more fruitfully would haue perused them.

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In this then so great raritie, and also dearth of good books, when neither they which could haue bookes, would well vse them, nor they þt woulde, could haue them to vse, what maruell if the greedines of a few prelates did abuse the blindnes of those daies, to the aduauncement of themselues? Wherefore, almighty God of hys mercifull prouidence, seeing both what lacked in the church, and how also to remedy the same, for þe aduauncement of his glory, gaue the vnderstanding of this excellent arte or science of printing, whereby three singular cōmodities at one time came to the world. MarginaliaTripe commodity by printing.First, the price of all bookes diminished. Secondly, te speedy helpe of reading, more furthered. And thirdly, the plenty of all good authours enlarged: according as Aprutinus doth truely report.

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Imprimit ille die, quantum non scribitur anno. 1.

The presse in one day will do in printing,
That none in one yeare can do in writing.

By reason whereof, as printing of bookes ministred matter of readyng: so readyng brought learning: learning shewed light, by þe brightnes wherof blind ignorance was suppressed, errour detected, & finally Gods glory, wt trueth of hys worde, aduaunced. This facultie of Printing was after the inuention of Gunnes, MarginaliaWhen Gunnes were first inuented. the space of 130. yeares: which inuention was also found in Germany, an. 1380. And thus much for þe worthy commendation of printing.

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¶ The lamentable losing of Constantinople. 
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Fall of Constantinople

Foxe's account of the fall of Constantinople is taken from Caspar Peucer's continuation of the chronicle of Johann Carion. (See Chronicon Carionis, ed. Philip Melanchthon and Caspar Peucer [Wittenberg, 1580], pp. 581-3). Foxe follows this account closely, although he abridges it somewhat. The fall of Constantinople may seem a curious disgression for Foxe, but he uses it as an opportunity to remind his readers of the dangers of the Ottoman threat and to urge them to pray to God to avert it.

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Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

MarginaliaAnno. 1458.ANno. 1453. Constantinus Palœlogus, beyng Emperour of Constātinople, the 29. day of the month of May, the great Cittye of Constantinople was taken by the TurkeMahometes, after the siege of 54. dayes, which siege began in the beginning of Aprill. MarginaliaThe losing of Constantinople. Within the city, besdie the Citizens were but onely 6000. rescuers of the Greekes. And 3000. of the Venetians & Genuues. Against these, Mahometes brought an army of 400. thousand, collected out of the countryes and place adioyning nere about, as out of Grecia, Illirico, Wallachia, Dardanis, Triballis, Bulganis, out of Bithynia, Galatia, Lydia, Cecilia, and suche other: which places had the name yet of Christians. Thus one neighbour for lucre sake, helped to destroy an other.

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The Cittie was compassed of the Turkes, both by the sea & land. Mahometes the Turke deuided his armye in 3. sondry partes, which in 3. partes of the citty, so bette the walles and brake them downe, that they attempted by the breaches therof to enter the cittye. But the valiauntnes of the Christians therein wanne much cōmendation, whose Duke was called Iohn Iustinianus, of Genua. But for so much as the assaultes were great, and the number of the Christian souldiours dayly decreased, fighting both at the walles and at the Hauen, agaynst such a multitude of the Turkes, they were not able long to hold out. Beside the armyes which lay battering at the walles, the Turke had vpon the sea his nauy of 200. and 50. sayle, lying vpon the hauen of the City, reaching from the one side of the hauens mouth vnto the other, as if a bridge should be made frō the one banke to the other. Which hauen by the cittizens was barred with yron chaines, whereby the Turks were kept out a certayne space. Agaynst whiche nauy 7. ships there were of Genua, within the hauen, and 3. of Creta, and certayne of Chio, which stoode agaynst them. Also the souldiours issuing out of the Cittie, as occasion would serue, did manfully gaynstand them, and wt wild fire, set their ships on fire, that a certayn space they could serue to no vse. At length the cheynes being brast, & a way made, the Turkes nauy entred the hauen, and assaulted the Cittie, whereby þe Turke began to conceiue great hope, and was in forwardnes to obtain the Citie. MarginaliaThe tirannie of the Turke toward his owne men.The assault and skirmish thē waxing more hoate, Mahometes the tyraunt stode by vppon an hill, with hys warriours about him, crying & houling out vnto them to skale the walles and enter the towne, otherwise, if any reculed, he threatned to kill them, and so he did. Wherefore a great number of his souldiours in theyr repulse and retire, were slaine by the turkes men, being sēt by his commandement to slay them: and so they were iustly serued, and well payd theyr hyer.

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Although this was some comfort, to the Christians, to see and behold out of the Cittie, the Turkes retinue so consumed, yet that hope lasted not long. Shortly after by rage of warre, it happened Iustinian the Duke aboue named, to be hurt, who notwithstanding that he was earnestly desired by Palœlogus the Emperour, not to leaue his Tower which he had to keepe, seeing hys wound was not deadly daungerous, MarginaliaThe cowardnes of Duke Iustinian.yet could he not be intreated to tary, but lefte his standing, and his fort diffurnished, setting none in his place to award the same. And so this doughty Duke, hurte more with hys false hart, then with force of weapon, gaue ouer and fled to Chius, where shortly after for sorrow, rather then for sorenes of wound, he died. Many of his souldiours seeing their captayne flee, followed after, leauing their fort vtterly destitute without defence. The Turkes vnderstanding þe vantage, soone brast into the cittie. MarginaliaThe Emperour of Cōstantinople slaine.The Emperour Palœlogus seeing no other way but to flee, making toward the gate, eyther was slayne, or els troden down wt the multitude. In the which gate 800. dead mēs bodies were found and taken vp.

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MarginaliaCōstātinople wonne of the Turkes.The Cittie of Constantinople thus being gotte, MarginaliaThe bloudy victory of the Turkes.the Turkes sacking and raunging about the streetes houses, and corners, did put to the sword most vnmercifully, whō soeuer they found, both aged and young: matrones, virgins, children, and infants: sparing none, the noble matrones and virgins were horriblye rauished, the goods of þe cittie, the treasurers in houses, the ornaments in churches were all sackt and spoyled, the pictures of Christ approbriously handled, in hatred of Christ. The spoyle and hauocke of the citie lasted three dayes together, while þe barbarous souldiours murdered and rifeled what them listed.

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These thinges thus being done, and the tumult ceased, after three dayes, Mahometes the Turke, entreth into the Citie, and first calling for the heades and auncientes of thē Citie: such as he found to be left aliue, he commaunded the to be mangled and cut in peeces. MarginaliaThe horrible tirāny of the Turkes.It is also (sayth my author) reported, that in the feastes of the Turks, honest matrones and virgins, and such as were of the kinges stocke, after other contumelies, were hewne and cut in peeces for their disport.

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And this was the end of that princely and famous city of Constantinople, beginuing first by Constantinus, and

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