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1130 [1129]

K. Hen. 8. The martyrdome of Cowbridge, Puttedew, Leyton, and Peke.

be burned 

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Here Foxe is trying to turn Harpsfield's demonstration of the unorthodox nature of Cowbridge's beliefs to his polemical advantage. Since Cowbridge held outrageous religious beliefs, he therefore must have been insane. And the burning of a madman simply confirmed the cruelty of the Catholic prelates.

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. For what reason is it to require reason of a creature mad or vnreasonable, or to make heresie of the words of a senselesse man not knowing what he affirmeth?

But this is the manner and propertie of this holy mother Church of Rome, that what soeuer commeth in their handes and Inquisition to the fire it muste. There is no other way: neither pitie that wyl moue, nor excuse that wyl serue, nor age that they wyll spare, nor any respect almoste that they consider: as by these two miserable examples both of Collins and Cowbridge, it may appeare. Who rather shoulde haue bene pitied, and all wayes conuenient sought, howe to reduce the seely wretches into their right myndes againe, according as the true Pastours of Israel be commaunded by the spirite of God, to seeke againe the thinges that be lost, to bynd vp the thynges that be broken. &c. and not so extremely to brust the thinges that be bruised before. But to ende with this matter of Cowbridge, what soeuer his madnes was before, or howe so euer erroneous his articles were (which for the fonde fantasies of them, I do not expresse) yet as touching his end, MarginaliaThe right confession of Cowbridge at his departing. this is certain, that in the myddest of the flame, he liftyng vp his head to heauē, soberly and discretly called vpon the name of the Lord Iesus Christ, and so departed.

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William Leyton and Puttedew martyrs.

MarginaliaPuttedew Martyred. ABout the same tyme, and yeare, or not much before, whē Iohn Lambert suffered at Londõ, there was one Puttedew 

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This account essentially related about Puttedew in the Rerum (p. 165). Foxe apparently never learned anything more about this obscure figure.

also condemned to the fire, about the partes of Suffolke, who comming into the church, and meryly telling the Prieste, that after he had drunke vp all the wyne alone, he afterward blessed the hungry people with the emptie Chalice, was for the same immediately apprehended, and shortly after burned, leauyng to vs an experiment, MarginaliaProuer. Non est bonum sudere cum impijs. Quam parum sit tutum ludere cum sanctis, as the olde saying was then: but rather as we may see now, Quam male tutum sit ludere cum impijs. 
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MarginaliaW. Leyton, Martyr. The other, William Leyton, was a Monke 

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This account simply repeats what Foxe said about Leiton in the Rerum (p. 165). Foxe apparently learned nothing new about this obscure individual.

of Aye, in the Countie of Suffolke and was burned at Norwich, for speaking against a certayne Idole, which was accustomed to be carried about the Processions at Aye: and also for holdyng that the Sacramentall supper ought to be administred in both kindes, aboute the yeare and tyme aforsayd.

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The burnyng of one Peke at Ipswich.

MarginaliaN. Peke burned at Ipswich, Martyr. IN the burnyng of an other Suffolke man, named N. Peke dwellyng sometyme at Earlestonham, and burnt at

woodcut [View a larger version]

Ipswich somwhat before the burning of these aforesaide 
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Thanks to a local informant, in the 1570 edition, Foxe was able to replace his meagre account of Peke, with this detailed, and probably accurate of Peke's execution. This is a reminder of the importance of local informants to Foxe's work.

, thus I finde it recorded and testified: That when as he being fast bound to a stake, and Furse set on fire rounde about hym, was so scorched, that he was as blacke as soote, one Doctour Redyng there standing before him, with Doctour Heyre and doctour Springwell, hauyng a long white wande in his hande, dyd knocke him vpon the right shoulder, and saide, Peke, recant, and beleue that the Sacrament of the aultar is the very body of Christe, fleshe, bloud, and bone, after that the Priest hath spoken the wordes of consecration ouer it, and here haue I in my hande to absolue thee for thy misbeliefe that hath ben in thee, hauing a scrole of paper in his hande. When he had spoken these woordes, Peke answeared, and sayde, I defie it and thee also, & with a great violence he spyt from hym very bloud, whiche came by reason that his vaines brake in his body for extreme anguishe. MarginaliaFortie dayes of pardon proclaymed for casting styckes into Pekes fyer. And when the saide Peke had so spoken, then D. Redyng saide: To as many as shal cast a sticke to the burning of this heretique, is graunted fourty dayes of pardon by my Lord Bishop of Norwich 
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I.e., forty days indulgence from the punishments of Purgatory.

. Then Barne Curson, Syr Iohn Audely knyght, with many others of estimation beyng there present, dyd rise from their seates, and with their swordes dyd cut downe boughes, and throw them into the fire, and so dyd al the multitude of the people.

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Witnes Iohn Ramsy and others,
who dyd see this acte. 

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Foxe is supplying these names to counter any criticisms that he that he had invented this account.

In the yeare last before this, which was of the Lorde. 1537. it was declared how Pope Paule the third indicted a general Councel to be holden at Mantua. MarginaliaOf this Councell of Mantua, read before 1056. Whereunto the kyng of England among other Princes beyng called, refused either to come or to sende at the Popes call, and for defence of hym selfe, directed out a publique Apologie or Protestation, rendryng iust and sufficient matter, why neyther he would, nor was bound to obey the Popes commaundement. Which Protestation is before to be read. pag. 1056. This Councel appoynted to begyn the. 23. day of Maye, the yeare aforesayde, was then stopped by the Duke of Mantua, pretending that he woulde suffer no Councell there, vnlesse the Pope would fortifie the citie with a sufficient armye. &c. For whiche cause the Pope proroged the sayde Councel, to be celebrate in the moneth of Nouember folowing, appoynting at þe first no certaine place. At length named and determined the citie of Vincence (lyeng within the dominion of the Venetians) to be the place for the Councel. Whereunto when the kyng (the yeare next folowyng, whiche is this present yeare of the Lorde. 1538) was requested by the Emperour and other states, to resort eyther hym selfe, or els to sende: he agayne refusing (as he dyd before) sendeth this Protestation in way of defence and aunsweare for hym selfe, to the Emperour and other Christen princes: the copie and effect whereof here vnder foloweth, and is this. 

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Henry VIII's letter to Charles V

The burning of Cowbridge at Oxford may well have been witnessed by Foxe himself, because he was in Oxford at the time. It also appears in the Rerum (p. 139). The 'Cope….his Dialogues' is a reference to Nicolas Harpsfield, Dialogi Sex, written over the name of Alan Cope, and published at Louvain in 1566. The stories of Leyton, Puttedew and Peke appear to be taken from the Norwich diocese visitation records, which are no longer extant. Henry's letter to the Emperor had been published, both in Latin and in English, by Thomas Berthelet in 1538 - see Henrici octaui regis Angliae et Franciae, fidei defensoris, supremiq[ue] post Christum Anglicae Ecclesiae capitis, ad Carolum Caesarem Augustum, caeterosq[ue] orbis Christiani monarchas, populumq[ue] Christianum, epistola, qua rex facile causas ostendit & curis Vincentiam, ad concilium falso nomine generale appellatum non sit uenturus, & quám periculorum sit aliis, qui ueram Christi doctrinam profitentur, eo sese conferre additus est et libellus ille, quem superiori anno, rex sereniss. vniuersiq[ue] Brytanniae proceres, de mantuanensi concilio aediderunt [ - STC 13080] and An epistle of the moste myghty [and] redouted Prince Henry the .viii. by the grace of God Kyng of England and of Fraunce, lorde of Irelande, defender of the faithe, and supreme heed of the churche of England, nexte vnder Christe, writen to the Emperours maiestie, to all Christen princes, and to all those that trewly and syncerely professe Christes religion [ - STC 13081].

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David LoadesHonorary Research Fellow,
University of Sheffield

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Henrye the eight by the grace of God, kyng of Englande and Fraunce. &c. saluteth the Emperour, Christen princes, and al true Christen men, desiryng peace and concorde amongest them.

The kinges letter to the Emperour.
WHereas not long sithens, a booke came forth in our and al our Counsailes names, MarginaliaOf this boke reade before 1056. which conteyned many causes why we refused the Councell, then by the Byshop of Romes vsurped power first indicted at Mantua, to be kept the. xxiij. day of May, after proroged to Nouember, no place appoynted where it should be kept, and whereas the same booke doth sufficiently proue, that our cause coulde take no hurt, neither with any thing done or decreed in such a company of addict men to one sect, nor in any other Coūcel called by his vsurped power: MarginaliaOf this read before pag. 1058. col. 2. we thinke it nothing necessary so oft to make newe protestations, MarginaliaThe Pope doth but mocke the world with his pretensed Councels. as the bishop of Rome and his Courtes by subtletie and craft, do inuente wayes to mocke the world, by new pretensed general Councels. Yet notwithstanding, because that some thyngs haue nowe occurred, eyther vpon occasion geuē vs by change of the place, or els through other cõsiderations, which now being knowē to the world, may do much good, we thought we should doo but euen as that loue enforceth vs, which we owe vnto Christes fayth and religion, to adde this Epistle. And yet we protest, that we neither put forth that booke, neither yet we woulde this Epistle to be set afore it, that thereby we should seeme lesse to desire a general Coūcell, thē any other Prince or potentate, MarginaliaGenerall Councels are to be wished so they might be free vniuersally for all parts. but rather to be more desirous of it, so it were free for al partes, and vniuersal. And further we desire al good Princes, potentates, and people, to esteeme and thinke that no Prince would more wyllyngly be present at suche a Councel then we: suche a one we meane, as we speake of in our Protestation made concernyng the Councel of Mantua.

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