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OS grid ref: TR 155 355

567 [543]

K. Henry. 4. The examination of M. Will. Thorpe. Iohn Puruey recanted and imprisoned.

preaching Gods word truely, freely and continually, taking theyr liuelihood at the free will of the people of their pure almes, where and when they suffice not for theyr true and busy preaching to get their sustenaunce with their handes. To this true sentence grounded on Christes owne liuing and teaching of his Apostles, these foresaid worldly & fleshly Priests wil not consent effectually. But as theyr workes and also their wordes shew: boldly and vnshamefastly these forenamed Priestes and Prelates, couet, and enforce them mightely and busily, Marginalia They hunt after this with tooth and nayle. that all holy scripture were expounded and drawne accordingly to their maners, and to theyr vngrounded vsages and findinges. For they will not (since they hold it but folly and madnesse) conforme their maners to the pure and simple liuing of Christ and his Apostles, nor they will not followe freely their learning. Marginalia An exhortation to all degrees, to see priesthood amended. Wherefore, all the Emperours and Kinges, and all other Lordes and Ladyes, and all the common people in euery degree and state, which haue before time knowne or might haue knowne, and also all they that now yet know or might know this foresayde witnes of Priesthood, and would not nor yet will, enforce them after theyr cunning and power, to withstand charitably the foresayd enemies and traytors of Christ, and of his churche: all these striue with Antichrist agaynst Iesu. And they shall heare the indignation of God almighty without end, if in conuenient time they amend them not, and repent them verelye, doing therefore due mourning and sorow, after their cunning & power. Marginalia Prelates & priestes negligent in their duties. For through presumtuousnesse and negligence of Priestes & Prelates (not of the Churche of Christ, but occupying theyr prelacye vnduely in the Church) and also flattering and false couetousnes of other diuers named Priestes: Lousengers and lounderers, are wrōgfully made and named Heremites, and haue to defraud poore and needy creatures of their liuelode, and to liue by theyr false winning and begging, in slouth and in other diuers vices. And also of these Prelates, these coker noses, are suffered to liue in pride and hipocrisy, and to defoule themselues both bodelye and ghostly. Also by the suffering and counsell of these foresayd Prelates and of other Priestes, are made both vayne brotherhoodes and sisterhoodes, full of pride and enuye, which are full contrary to the brotherhood of Christ, since they are cause of mickle dissētion, and they multiply and susteyne it vncharitably: for in lustye eating and drinking, vnmeasurably and out of time, they exercise themselues. Also this vaine confederacy of brotherhoodes, is permitted to be of one clothing, and to hold together.

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And in all these vngrounded and vnlefull doinges, priests are parteners and great medlers and counsellers. And ouer this viciousnesse, Heremites and Pardoners, Ankers, and straūge beggers, are licensed and admitted of Prelates and Priestes, for to beguile the people with flatteringes and leasinges slaunderously agaynst all good reason and true beleue, and so to encrease diuers vyces in themslues, and also among all them that accept them or consent to them.

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And thus, the viciousnesse of these foresayd named Priestes & Prelates, haue bene long time, and yet is, and shal be cause of wars both within the Realme and without. And in the same wise, these vnable Priestes haue bene, and yet are, and shalbe chiefe cause of pestilence of men, and morein of beastes, and of barrennesse of the earth, and of all other mischiefes, to the tyme that Lordes and cōmons able them through grace, for to know and to keepe the cōmaundements of God, inforcing them than faythfully and charitably by one assent, for to redresse and make one this foresayde Priesthood, to the wilfull, poore, meeke, and innocent liuing and teaching, specially of Christ and his Apostles.

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Therefore, all they that know or might know, the viciousnes that raigneth now cursedly in these Priests and in theyr learning, if they suffice not to vnderstand this contagious viciousnesse: let them pray to the Lord hartily for the health of his Church, absteining them prudently from these indurate enemyes of Christ and of his people, and from all their Sacraments, since to them all that know them or may know, they are but fleshly deedes and false: as S. Cyprian witnesseth in the first question of decrees, and in the first cause. Ca. Si quis inquit. Marginalia Cipr. 1. q. 1. cap. Si quis inquit. For as this Saynt and great Doctour witnesseth there, that not onely vicious Priestes, but also all they that fauour them or consent to them in their viciousnesse: shall together perish with them, if they amend them not duely, as all they perished that cōsented to Dathan and Abiron. For nothing were more confusion to those foresayd vicious Priestes, than to eschew them prudently in all theyr vnlefull Sacramentes, while they cōtinue in their sinnefull liuing slaunderously, as they haue lōg time done and yet do. And no body need to be afrayde (though death did folow by one wise or other) for to dye out of this world without taking of any Sacrament of these foresayd Christes enemyes: since Christ will not fayle, for to minister himselfe all lefull & healfull Sacramentes and necessary at all time (and specially at end) to all them that are in true fayth, in stedfast hope, and in perfect charity.

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But yet some mad fooles say (for to eschew slaunder) they wil be shriuen once in the yeare, and communed of theyr proper Priestes, though they knowe them defouled with slaunderous vyces. No doubt, but all they that thus do or consent priuely or apertlyto such doing, are culpable of great sinne: since S. Paul witnesseth, that not onely they that do euill, are worthy of death and damnation, but also they that consent to euill doers. Also (as their slaūderous workes witnesse) these aforesayd vicious Priestes, despise and cast from them heauenly cunning, that is geuen of the holye ghost Wherefore, the Lord throweth all such despisers from him, that they vse nor do any Priesthood to him.

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No doubt than, all they that wittingly or wilfully, take or cōsent that any other body should take any Sacrament of any suche named Priest, sinneth openly and damnably agaynst all the Trinity, and are vnable to any Sacrament of health.

And that this foresayd sentēce is altogether true, into remission of all my sinnefull liuing, trusting stedfastly in the mercye of God, I offer to him my soule.

And to proue also the foresayde sentence true with the helpe of God, I purpose fully for to suffer meekely and gladly my most wretched bodye to bee tormented, where God will, of whom he will, and when he will, and as long as he will, and what temporall payne he will and death, to the praysing of his name, and to the edification of his Church.

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And I that am most vnworthy and wretched caytife, shall now through the special grace of God, make to him pleasaunt sacrifice, with my most sinnefull and vnworthy body. Beseechyng hartely all folke that read or heare this end of my purposed Testament, that through the grace of GOD, they dispose verely and vertuonsly all their wittes, and able in lyke maner all their members for to vnderstand truely, and to keepe faythfully, charitably, and continually all the commaundementes of God, and so than to pray deuoutly to all the blessed Trinitie, that I may haue grace with wisedome and prudence from aboue, to end my lyfe here in this foresayd truth and for this cause, in true fayth and stedfast hope, and perfect charitie. Amen.

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Marginalia The ende of W. Thorpe vncertayne. What was the ende of this good man and blessed seruant of God Williā Thorpe, I finde as yet in no story spe cified. By all coniectures it is to be thought, that the archbishop Thomas Arundull being so hard an aduersarye agaynst those men, would not let him goe. Much lesse it is to be supposed, that he would euer retract his sentence and opinion, which he so valiantly mayntayned before the byshop, neither doth it seeme that he had any such recanting spirite. Agayne, neyther is it founde, that he was burned. Wherfore it remayneth most like to be true, that he beyng committed to some straight prison (according as the Archbyshop in his examination before, dyd threaten him) there (as Thorpe confesseth himselfe) was so straightly kept, that eyther he was secretly made away, or els there he dyed by sicknesse.

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The like end also I finde to happen to Iohn Aston, an other good folower of Wickliffe, who for the same doctrine of the sacrament was condemned by the Bishops. And because he would not recant, he was committed to perpetuall prison, wherein the good man continued till his death. An. 1382.

¶ Iohn Puruey. 
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John Purvey

In the Commentarii (fo. 43r-v), Foxe wrote a brief account of John Purvey, describing his persecution by the authorities, and summarised his writings. This was based on a brief biography of Purvey written by John Bale in Bodley Library MS e Musaeo 86, fo. 62v and notes on Purvey's wrings on fo. 91v. This material was reprinted in the Rerum (p. 20). In the 1563 edition, Foxe translated this material and added the articles that Purvey recanted (these were taken from e Musaeo 86. fos. 91v-95r). In the 1570 edition, Foxe reprinted all of the earlier material and added a fuller list of 'heretical' statements compiled from Purvey's writings by the Carmelite Richard Lavingham. This new material was taken from e Musaeo 86, fos.95r-96v. For the most part, Foxe reprinted this material accurately, although he surreptitiously omitted passages in which Lavingham maintained that Purvey had declared that lay people could legimately administer the sacraments. The 1570 account of Purvey was reprinted without change in subsequent editions of the Acts and Monuments. A note of caution should be added, however: Anne Hudson has pointed out how little is known of Purvey and has been persuasively sceptical about the attributions of anonymous Lollard writings to him (see Anne Hudson, 'John Purvey: A Reconsideration of the Evidence for his life and Writings' in Lollards and their Books [London, 1985], pp. 85-110).

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Thomas S. Freeman
University of Sheffield

Marginalia Iohn Puruey. FVrthermore, in the sayd examinatiō of Williā Thorpe, mention was made (as ye heard) of Iohn Puruey, of whom also something we touched before: promising of the sayd Iohn Puruey, more particularly to entreate in order and processe of time. Of this Puruey, Tho. Walden writeth thus in his second tome, Iohn Puruey sayth he, was the Library of Lollordes, and gloser vpon Wickliffe. He sayde, that the worshipping of Abrahā was but a salutatiō. And in his third Tome, he sayth: this Iohn Puruey with Harford a doctour of diuinity, were greuously tormented, and punished in the prison of Saltwood, and at þe length recanted at Paules crosse at London (Tho. Arundel being then Archb. of Canterbury.) Afterward agayne, Marginalia Iohn Puruey prisoned after his recantation. he was emprisoned vnder Henry Chicheley Archb. of Canterbury, in the yeare of our Lord 1421. Thus muche writeth Walden. The workes of this man which he wrote, were gathered by Richard Lauingame his aduersarye, whiche I thinke worthy to be remēbred. First, as touching the Sacrament of the last supper, the Sacrament of penaunce, the Sacrament of orders, the power of the keyes, the preaching of þe Gospell, of Mariages, of Vowes, of possessiōs, of the punishing and correcting of the Clergy, of the lawes and decrees of the Church, of the state and condition of the Pope and the clergy: Of all these generally, he left diuers monuments grauely and exactly written, part whereof, here in the end of his story we thought to exhibite, being translated out of Latine into English.

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Marginalia Articles of Iohn Puruey recāted. The articles which he taught, and afterward was forced to recant at Paules crosse, were these hereafter folowing.

1. That in the Sacrament of the aultar after the consecration, there is not, neither can be, any accident without the subiect: But there verely remaineth the same substaūce

and
BB.ij.
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