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1020 [1019]

K. Henry. 8. Rich. Bayfilde, Iohn Tewkesbery, Martyrs.

The foresayd sentence beyng so read by the Byshop of London, he proceeded immediatly to the actuall and solemne disgradyng of the sayd Richard Bayfild, aliâs Somersam, and there solemnely and actually disgraded hym before the people, the which thyng beyng done, he dismissed hym by the sentence aforesayd, from the Ecclesiasticall Court. Wherupon the secular power beyng there present, receiued hym vnto their iurisdiction, without any writte in that behalfe obtayned, but onely by vertue of the Byshops letters by the statute of kyng Henry the 4. in that behalfe prouided and directed vnto them vnder the Byshops seale. The tenour of which letters here after folow.

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¶ The Letters of requirie 
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I.e. a letter of requirement or command.

directed to the Maior and Shiriffes of the Citie of London, that they should be present that day, when the sentence should be geuen, to receiue the hereticke (as they called hym) that was condemned.

MarginaliaThe letters of requiry to the Maior & Shriffes of Londō. IHon by the permission of God, Byshop of London, vnto our dearely beloued in Christ, the right honourable Lord Maior of the Citie of London, and the Shriffes of the same, health, grace, and benediction. Where as we haue already by our Vicare generall proceded in a certaine cause of heresie and relaps into the same, agaynst one Richard Bayfilde, alias Somersam, and intend vpon Monday next beyng the xx. day of this present moneth of Nouember, to geue a sentence definitiue agaynst the sayd Richard Bayfild, aliâs Somersam, and to leaue and deliuer him ouer vnto the secular power: We require you the Lord Mayor and Shriffes aforsayd, the Kynges Maiesties Vicegerentes, euen in the bowels of Iesu Christ, that accordyng to the forme and effect of the statute of our most noble and famous prince in Christ our Lord, the Lord Henry the fourth by the grace of God, late Kyng of England, that you will be personally present in the Queere of the Cathedrall Churche of Saint Paule, with your fauourable ayde and assistaunce in this behalfe, the day that the sentence shall be geuen, and to receiue the sayd Richard Bayfild, aliâs Somersam, after his sentence so giuen, to discharge vs and our Officers, and to do further according to the tenour and effect of the sayd statute, as farre as shall be required of you accordyng to the Canonicall Sāctions, and the laudable customes of the famous kyngdome of England, in this behalfe accustomed.

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In witnes whereof we haue set our seale vnto this present, Dated the 19. day of Nouember. An. 1531. and in the first yeare of our consecration.

On Monday the xx. day of Nouember in the yeare aforesayd, in the Queere of the Cathedrall Church of S. Paule, the Bishop of London callyng vnto him Iohn Abbot of Westminster, Robert Abbot of Waltam, Nicholas Prior of Christes Church of the Citie of London, maister Iohn Coxe Auditor and Vicare general to the Archbyshop of Canterbury, Peter Ligham Officiall of the Court of Caunterbury, Thomas Baghe Chauncellour of the Church of S. Paules, William Clief, Archdeacon of London, Iohn Incent Chanon residentary of the same, William Brytton, Robert Birche, and Hugh Aprice, Doctours of both lawes, in the presence of vs Mathew Grefton Register, Antony Hussy, Richard Martin and Thomas Shadwall publike Notaries and Scribes appoynted in this behalfe, briefly rehearsed the aunsweres of the same Bayfild in effect, and his abiuration, and other his demerites by him done beside his abiuration. The which religious persons and other Ecclesiasticall men aboue sayd, thought it good and agreed that the sayd Byshop shoulde proceede agaynst hym in this case of relaps, and shoulde pronounce and geue forth the sentence agaynst him, in case aforesayd, MarginaliaRich. Bayfilde geuen to the secular power. and so he was deliuered to the Shriffes to cary to Newgate, beyng commaunded to bryng him agayne vpon Monday folowing, into Paules vpper Queere, there to geue attendaunce vppon the Byshop of London with the residue, till they had done with him, and by and by the Sheriffes were commaunded to haue him into the Vestry, and then to bryng hym forth agayne in Antichristes apparell to be disgraded afore them. MarginaliaRich. Bayfilde disgraded. When he had disgraded hym kneeling vpon the highest steppe of the aultar, MarginaliaBayfilde throwē downe wyth the byshops staffe. he tooke his Crosier staffe, and smote hym on the breast, that he threw hym downe backewardes, and brake his head that hee sounded 

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This was part of the ceremony of degradation and not simply gratuitous violence.

, and when he came to himselfe agayne, he thanked God that hee was delyuered from the malignaunt Church of Antichrist, and that he was come into the true sincere Church of Iesus Christ militaunt here in earth, and I trust anone (sayd he) to be in heauen with Iesus Christ, & the Church triumphaunt for euer, and so was he lead forth through the Queere to Newgate, and there rested about an houre in prayer, and so went to the fire in his apparell manfully and ioyfully, and there for lacke of a speedy fire, was two quarters of an houre alyue. And when the left arme was on MarginaliaThe Martyrdome and suffering of Richard Bayfilde, Martyr.

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Richard Bayfield, sometime monk of Bary St Edmunds, who learned the new learning from Robert Barnes (which took him into the abbey prison), migrated to Cambridge and made further advances in 'good letters' -- as Foxe called the work of Tyndale and others. He became a major colporteur of prohibited reformation books, going abroad to send into England consignments of works by Luther, Zwingli and others , imported in multiple copies. Bayfield was finally arrested at a London bookbinder's in October 1531, and interrogated by Sir Thomas More. He was tried by Bishop Stokesley of London and burned as a relapsed heretic on 27 November. CUL copy: there is considerable additional pen detail in this image.

fire and burned, he rubbed it with his right hand, & it fel from his body, and he continued in prayer to the end, without mouyng.

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MarginaliaSyr Tho. More against Bayfilde. Syr Thomas More, after he had brought this good man to his end, ceased not after his death, to raue in hys ashes, to prye and spie out what sparkes he could finde of reproche and contumely, whereby to rase out all good memory of hys name and fame. In searching whereof, he hath found out two thynges to lay against him. The one is, that he sayth, he went about to sure himselfe to two wiues at once, one in Brabant, an other in England. The second, that after his taking, all the while that he was not in vtter dispayre of his pardon, he was cōtent to forsweare his doctrine, and letted not to disclose his brethren. 

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More made these charges in his Confutation. (See The Confutation of Tyndale's Answer, ed. Louis A. Schuster, Richard A. Marius, James P. Lusardi and Richard J. Schoeck, CWTM 8, [3 vols., New Haven, CT, 1978], I, pp. 17-18). The accusation of bigamy is probably unfounded, but the claim that Bayfield informed on another evangelicals is convincing.

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For the aunswere wherof, although there were no more to be sayd, yet this were enough to say, MarginaliaM. More a partiall iudge in matters of heresie. that M. More thus sayth of him, a mā so blynded in the zeale of Popery, so deadly set against the one side, and so partially affectionate vnto the other, that in them whom he fauoureth, he can see nothing but all fayre roses and sweete vertue: in the other which he hateth, there is neuer a thyng can please his phantasie, but all is blacke as pitche, vice, abhomination, heresie, and foly, what soeuer they do, or entend to do. But as touchyng the defence of this Bayfild, as also of other moe, I will deferre the defence of them, to a seuerall Apologie by it selfe, hereafter (God willyng) to be adioyned.

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¶ Iohn Teukesbery Leatherseller of London Martyr.

MarginaliaIoh. Tewkesbery Leatherseller of London, Martyr. IOhn Tewkesbery was cōuerted by the readyng of Tyndals Testament, and the wicked Mammon. He had the Bible written. In all pointes of religion he openly did dispute in the Bishops Chappell in his palace. Who in the doctrine of iustification and all other Articles of his faith, was very expert, and prompt in his aunsweres, in such sort as Tonstall and all his learned men were ashamed, that a Leatherseller should so dispute with them, with such power of the Scriptures and heauenly wisedome, that they were not able to resiste him. This disputation continued a seuennight. The processe of whose examinations, Articles, and aunsweres, here folow as they are out of the Byshops Register extracted. 

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These materials are taken from a court book of Cuthbert Tunstall that is now lost. These documents are from Tewkesbury's first trial for heresy; not the second - and lethal - trial.

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MarginaliaEx Regist. London. On Wensday the xxi. day of Aprill, in the yeare of our Lord. 1529. Iohn Tewkesbery was brought into the Cōsistory at London before Cutbert Byshop of London and his assistaunces, Henry Byshop of S. Asse, and Iohn Abbot of Westminster. Vnto whom the Byshop of London declared that he had at diuers tymes exhorted hym to recant the errours and heresies. Which he held and defended, euen as he did then agayne exhort him, not to trust to much to his owne wyt and learnyng, but vnto the doctrine of the holy mother the Church. Who made aōswere that in his iudgement, he dyd not erre from the doctrine of the holy mother

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