Critical Apparatus for this Page
Commentary on the TextCommentary on the Woodcuts
Names and Places on this Page
Unavailable for this Edition
1450 [1450]

K. Henry. 8. Kerby and Roger Clarke of Mendelsham, Martyrs.

MarginaliaKerby brought to the stake at a stake was ready, wood, broome, and straw, and did of his clothes vnto his shirt, hauing a night cap vpō his head, and so was fastened to the stake with yrōs, there beyng in the galerye the Lord Wentworth with the most part of all the Iustices of those quarters, where they might see his execution, how euery thing should be done, and also might heare what Kerby did say: and a great nūber of people, about ij. thousand by estimation.

[Back to Top]

¶ The burning and Martyrdome of Kerby.
woodcut [View a larger version]
Commentary on the Woodcuts  *  Close
CUL copy: in this copy Kerby is depicted as having greying beard and brown hair. WREN copy: the same details are provided.

MarginaliaD. Rughā Monke of Bury preached at the burning of Kerby.There was also standyng in the galery by the Lord Wentworth, D. Rugham, whiche was before a Mōke of Bury and Sexten of the house, hauyng on a surplis and a stole about his necke. 

Commentary  *  Close

Edward Rougham had formerly been an evangelical sympathiser and a friend of Richard Bayfield and Robert Barnes (In 1545, now apparently more theologically conservative, Edmund Rougham would preach at the burning of John Kirby in Bury St. Edmunds).

Then silence was proclaimed, & the sayd Doctor began to disable hym selfe, as not meete to declare þe holy Scriptures (being vnprouided because the time was so short) but that hee hoped in Gods assistaunce it should come well to passe.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaThe charfull countenaunce & courage of Kerby.All this while was Kerby trimmyng with yrons and Fagottes, broome, and straw, as one that should be maryed with new garmentes, nothing chaungyng cheare nor countenaunce, but with most meke spirite glorified God: which was wonderfull to behold. Then master Doctor at last entred into the. 6. chap. of Saint Iohn. Who in handling that matter, so oft as he alledged the Scriptures, and applyed them rightly, Kerby told the people that he sayd true, and bad the people beleue him. But when he did otherwise, he told him agayne: you say not true: beleue him not good people. Whereupon, as the voice of the people was, they iudged Doct. Rugham a false Prophet. So when M. Doctor had ended his collation, he sayd vnto Kerby: Thou good man: doest not thou beleue that the blessed Sacrament of þe altar is the very fleshe and bloud of Christ and no bread, euen as he was borne of the virgin Mary? Kerby aunsweryng boldly sayd: I do not so beleue. How doest thou beleue sayd the Doctor? Kerby said, MarginaliaKerbyes confession of the Sacrament.I do beleue that in the Sacrament that Iesus Christ instituted at his last supper on Maundy Thursday to his Disciples (which ought of vs likewise to be done) is the death and Passion, and his bloude sheeding for the redemption of the worlde, to be remembred: and (as I sayd before) yet bread, & more then bread, for that it is consecrated to a holy vse.

[Back to Top]

Then was Maister Doctor in his dumps, and spake not one word more to Kerby after.

Then sayd the vnder Shrieffe to Kerby: hast thou any thing more to say? Yea Sir said he, if you wil geue leaue. Say on sayd the Shrieffe.

Then Kerby taking his night cap from his heade, putte it vnder his arme, as though it shoulde haue done him seruice againe: but remembring hym selfe, he cast it from him, & lifting vp hys handes, he said the hymne Te Deū, & the belief, with other prayers in the English tonge. MarginaliaThe Lorde Wentworth wepte at Kerbyes burnyng.The Lord Wentworth, whilest Kerby was thus doing, did shrowd him self behind one of the postes of the gallery and wept, and so did many other. Then sayd Kerby, I haue done: you may execute your office good Maister Shrieffe.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaThe constant Martyrdome of Kerby.Then was fire set to the wood, and with loud voyce he called vnto God, knocking on his brest and holding vp hys handes, so long as remembrance would serue, and so ended his lyfe, the people geuing shootes, and praysing God, with great admiration of his constancy, being so simple and vnlettered.

[Back to Top]

MarginaliaRoger Clarke of Mendelsham brought to the stake at Burye.On the Gang Mondaye, 

Commentary  *  Close

This is the Monday of the Minor Rogations, i.e., the Monday before Ascension Day.

an. 1546. about. x. of the clocke, Roger Clarke of Mēdlesham was brought out of prison, and went on foote to the gate, called Southgate in Bury, and by the way the procession met with them, MarginaliaRoger Clarke geueth no reuerence to the procession.but he wēt on, and would not bow cap nor knee, but with most vehement woordes rebuked that idolatry and superstition, the officers being much offended. And without the gate, where as was the place of execution, the stake being ready, & the woode lying by, he came & kneeled downe, & sayd Magnificat in the English toung, making as it were a paraphrase vppon the same: Wherein hee declared how that the blessed virgine Mary, who might as well reioyse in purenes, as any other: yet humbled her selfe to her Sauiour. And what sayest thou Iohn Baptist, sayd he, the greatest of all mens children? Behold the Lambe of God, which taketh away the sinnes of the world. 
Commentary  *  Close

John 1:29.

MarginaliaIohn. 2.And thus with loude voyce, hee cryed vnto the people while he was in fastnyng to the stake, & then þe fire was set to hym: MarginaliaThe painfull burning and Martyrdome of Rog. Clarke of Mendelsham.where as he suffred paynes vnmercifully, for the woode was greene & would not burne, so that he was choked with smoke 
Commentary  *  Close

The following details were added in the second edition, the first edition merely states that Clarke died in torment after a prolonged period in the fire (1563, 655).

: and moreouer beyng set in a pitch barrell, with some pitch stickyng still by the sides, was therwith sore payned, till he had got his feete out of the barell. And at length one standyng by tooke a Fagot sticke, and strikyng at the ryng of yron about hys necke, so passhed hym, and strocke him belyke vppon the head, that hee shronke downe on the one side into the fire, and so was dissolued.

[Back to Top]

In the begynnyng of this story of Kerby and Roger, mention was made of a certeine bill put vp vpon the townehouse doore, and brought the next day to the Lord Wentworth: the woordes of the whiche Bill were these.

¶ The Bill set vpon the Townehouse doore in Ipswiche.

MarginaliaThe wordes of the bill set vp on the Townehouse doore.IVstè iudicate filij hominum. 

Commentary  *  Close

Psalm 82: 8.

Yet whē ye shall iudge, minister your Iustice with mercy.

A fearefull thing it is to fall into þe handes of þe liuyng God: 

Commentary  *  Close

Heb. 10:31.

be ye learned therefore in true knowledge, ye that iudge the earth, lest the Lorde be angry with you.

The bloud of the righteous shalbe required at your handes. What though the veile hanged before Moses face? yet at Christes death it fell downe. 

Commentary  *  Close

See Matthew 27: 51.

The stones will speake if these should holde their peace: 

Commentary  *  Close

Luke 19: 40.

therefore harden not your hartes agaynste the veritie.

For fearefully shall the Lord appeare in the day of vēgeance to the troubled in consciēce. No excuse shall there be of ignorance, but euery fat shall stand on his own bottome. Therefore haue remorse to your conscience: feare him that may kill both body and soule.

Beware of innocent bloud shedyng: take hede of Iustice ignorantly ministred: worke discretly as the Scripture doth cōmaund: loke to it, that ye make not the truth to be forsaken.

We beseche God to saue our kyng, kyng Henry the eight, that he be not lead into temptation. So be it.

Go To Modern Page No:  
Click on this link to switch between the Modern pagination for this edition and Foxe's original pagination when searching for a page number. Note that the pagination displayed in the transcription is the modern pagination with Foxe's original pagination in square brackets.
Type a keyword and then restrict it to a particular edition using the dropdown menu. You can search for single words or phrases. When searching for single words, the search engine automatically imposes a wildcard at the end of the keyword in order to retrieve both whole and part words. For example, a search for "queen" will retrieve "queen", "queene" and "queenes" etc.
Humanities Research Institute  *  HRI Online  *  Feedback
Version 2.0 © 2011 The University of Sheffield