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692 [636]

Actes and Monnments Of the Churche.

nounce my part of Paradise if he be not a Lutherian, go to, go to, saide he, let him be tryed what he is, & incontinently the booke binder was caried vnto pryson: And for to shewe the prelates pleasure, a company of knaues and ruffians which waited vpon them, beganne to cry out a Lutherian, a Lutherian, to the fier with him, to the fier with hym, and one gaue him a blow with his fist, a nother pulled him by the heare, and other by the bearde, in such sort þt the pore man was al inbrued with blood before that he came vnto the prison. The morow after, he was brought before the iudges in the presence of the bishops, wheras he was demaunded and questioned with al in this sort as followeth, hast not thou set forth to sale the bibles, & the new testamēt in french? the poore prysoner answered, that he had so don, and beinge demaunded whether he vnderstoode or knew not that it was forbidden thorow out al christendome to printe or sell the bible in any other language then in latin, hee aunswered, that the knew the contrary and that he had sold many bibles in the french tounge with themperors priueledg and many other printed at lions, also new testamēts, imprinted bi þe kings priueledge. furthermore he said, that he knew no nation thorow out all christendome, which had not the holy scripturs in their vulgar tōg And afterward with a bold courage he saied, are you the inhabitantes of Auinion those mē alone, thorow out all christendome, which do abhorre and dispise the testament of the holye father? why wil you not suffer that the instrumente and the autenticke, letters of the alians betwene god and you, should be published and vnderstande thorow out your hole city? Will you forbid & hide that which Iesus christ hath commaunded to be reueled and published doo you nat knowe that oure lorde Iesus Christe gaue power vnto his apostles to speake al maner of tounges, to this ende and purpose, that his holy gospell should be taught vnto euery creature in euery language? And why do you not forbid those bookes and paintinges which are full of dishonesty, and blasphemy, to moue and stur vp the people to wickednes, and whordome, and to dishonor god? what greater ouer sight can theire be, then for to forbidde Godes most holy bookes, which are proper and ordeyned to instruct the ignorant, and to reduce and bringe againe into the way such as are gonn astray? What cruelty is this to take a way the nourishment and sustinances from the power silly soules? But my Lordes the bishopes you shall geue accompt hereof, whyche call swete sower, and sower swete, which maintein abhominable and detestable bookes and pictures and reiect that which is holy. Then the bishop of Aix and the other bishoppes were very angry against him in their harts & gnashed withtheir teeth against thys pore prysoner. Then begann they all to cry out vpon him and sayd, what nede you any more examinatiō? let him be sēt strait vnto þe fier wtout any moo words but the iudge Laber and certaine others were not of that mind, neither founde they sufficiēt cause why to put this poore booke binder to deathe, but they wente aboute to haue him putte vnto his fine, and to make him confes and acknowledge the bishop of Aix and other his companions to be true pastoures of þe church of Iesus Christ, but the booke binder answered that he could not do it with a good cōscience for so much that he did see befor his eies that these bishoppes did mainteyn and vphold abominable bookes and dishonest pictures reiectinge and refusinge the holy bookes of god and therfore he iudge them rather þe priestes of bacchus and Venus, then the true pastors of the churche of Christ. imediatly after these wordes he was condemned to be bourned and the sentence was executed the very same day and for a signe or token of þe cause of his condēnation he caried ii. bibles hanginge about his neck the one before and the other be hinde him but this poore booke binder had the worde of god grauen in his hart and in his mouth and ceased not continewally by the way vntil that he came to the place of execution to exhort and monish the people to rede the holy scriptures insomuch that diuers weare therby moued to seke after the truth. The prelates seing a gret dissention amongst the people of Auinion and that many murmered and grudged against þt the deth of the booke binder as being vniustly condemned and so much the more for the dishonor and disdaine which they had don vnto the holy bokes the testamēts of god, they minding to put the people in a feare, proceded the next day to make a cry by the sounde of a Trompet thorow out the hole toune and coūty of venis that all such as had any bookes in the french tongue intreatinge vpon the holye scriptures that they should bring them forth and deliuer them into the handes of the commissioners apointed for that purpose, contrary wyse they which had any such bookes founde aboute thē shuld be put to death. After that these prelates had takē order for to rayse great persecutiō in Auinion and in the coūty of venise, the bishop of Aix retourned to prosecute execution of the arest of Merendoll. when hee was come vnto Aix, he went to seeke out imediatly the presydent Chassane, vnto whome he did communicat þe hole enterprise which they had wrought at auinion he also declared vnto him the good will of the Prelates of Auinion, and of Prouince, and of the great affection that they bear both vnto him and his, if he wil put the arest of Merendoll in execution. And after many faire and greate promises made vnto hym by

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