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Amersham, Buckinghamshire
NGR: SU 955 975

Borough and parish in the Hundred of Burnham, Buckinghamshire. 26.75 miles west-north-west of London. A rectory in the archdeaconry of Buckingham, diocese of Lincoln.

Lewis, Samuel,A Topographical Dictionary of England (S. Lewis & Co: London, 1831

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Ashridge [Ashryge] Monastery

Berkhamsted, Herefordshire

OS grid ref: SP 970 131

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OS grid ref: SP 815 135

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OS grid ref: SP 695 335

Historic county town of Buckinghamshire

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Great Missenden


OS grid ref: SP 895 015

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[Wooburne; Woborne; Owborne]


OS grid ref: SP 945 335

798 [774]

K. Hen. 7. Certaine men bearing fagottes. Certaine godly men martyred for the Gospell.

for heretickes in Kent, MarginaliaDiuers kentishmen bearing fagots.and at Paules crosse they bare fagottes and were abiured, and shortly after the same yeare, there went 13. lolardes afore the procession in Paules, and there were of them 8. weemen and a yong lad, and the lads mother was one of the 8. and all the 13. bare faggottes on their neckes afore the procession.

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William Tilsworth Martyr.

FOr somuch as the world is come now to such a morosity and peuish insensibilitie in these contentious and cauilling daies of ours, that nothyng can be so circumspectly wrytten and storyed, but shall lie in daunger of one Sycophant or an other, whyche neuer will credite there, where they list not to like: neither will they euer lyke that, which seemeth preiudiciall to their faction, or not to serue the humor wherewith their phantasies bee infected: therefore to stop the mouthes of such carping cauillers with as muche possibilitie as I may, be it knowne to al and singular such persons, who by euidence of truth and witnes wil be satisfied, that in the towne of Amersham, be yet aliue both men and women, which can and do beare witnes of this that I shal declare. Also there is of the sayd company, one named Willliam Page, an aged father and yet aliue, witnes to the same. Also an other named Agnes Wetherley widdowe, being about the age of an hundreth yeares, yet lyuing and witnes heereof: That in the dayes of king Henry 7. Anno 1506. 

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The date is incorrect; the signification of Tilesworth's excommunica-tion and commitment to the secular authority survives and is dated 10 August 1511(TNA C 85/115/10). But this document - which lists Robert Cosin, William Scrivener, Nicholas Collins and Thomas Man as also being condemned - shows that,in this case, apart from the date, the information from Foxe's aged informants was essentially accurate.

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in the dioces of Lyncolne in Bukingham shire (William Smith being Byshop of the same diocesse) one MarginaliaWill Tilsworth, Martir.William Tylsworth was burned in Amersham, in a close called Standley about 60. yeares agoe. At which time one Ioane Clearke, being a marryed woman, whych was the onely daughter of the sayde W. Tylseworth and a faythfull woman, MarginaliaThe daughter compelled to set fire to her fatherwas compelled with her owne handes to set fyre to her deare father: and at the same time her husbād Iohn Clearke did penaunce at her fathers burning, and bare a fagot, as did also. 
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The family names of many of those listed below (Chase, Harding,Phipp and Scrivener) will recur in Foxe's account of the 1521investigations into heresy in the Chilterns. TNA C 85/ 115/10 lists a William Scrivener condemned todeath as a relapsed heretic on 10 August 1511; he may be the William Scrivener included in this list.

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Robert Barlet.
Richard Barlet.
Iohn Barllet.
Thomas Harding, and
his wife.
Henry Harding.
Richard Harding.
Robert Harding.
Iohn Milsent and hys
William Whyte.
Iohn Mumbe and hys
Richard Bennet.
Rog Bennet. Iohn Fip.
William Grinder.
Thomas Homes.
Yomaud Dorman.
William Scriuener.
Ihon Scriuener.
Thomas Chase.
Iohn Cracher.

MarginaliaAmersham men bearing fagots.Al these bare fagots, and afterward were compelled to weare certaine badges, & went abroad to certaine townes to doe penaunce, as to Buckingham, Aylesbury, and other townes mo: And also diuers of these men were afterward burned in the cheeke, as William Page, which at this pre-

The burning of Thomas Barnard, and Iames Mordon.
MarginaliaTho Barnard, Iames Mordon Martirs.

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The burning of Thomas Barnard, and Iames Mordon.
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Barnard was a husbandman and Mordon a labourer, burned together at Amersham. Foxe only mentions them briefly. However, James Morden (a book owner) was a member of a family with a significant Lollard record (eight members of whom feature in Bishop Longland's investigations). CUL copy: detail provided in the faces with flushes to the cheeks and features detailed in black ink; otherwise this is rather clumsily executed, with some bleed through from the red paint of the flames as a result. There appears also to be some damage to the right-hand side of the image caused by metallic paint. Note that the man on the left, presumably Barnard, is depicted with a greying beard, with some brown and predominantly grey hair. The man on the left is depicted as looking much younger and fresher-faced, with brown hair and beard. The image in the WREN copy is in particularly bad condition. The metallic base paint occurs on many parts of the image, obscuring detail. In this copy there is less grey in Barnard's beard and hair.

sent is aliue, and likewise did beare a fagot with the aforesaid. Furthermore the foresaid Agnes Wetherley testifieth that at the burning of thys William Tylsworth, were lx. and aboue that were put to beare fagots for their penance, of whom diuers were enioyned to beare and weare fagots at Lyncolne, the space of 7. yeres, some at one time, some at another. &c. In which nūber was also one Robert Bartlet a riche man, who for his profession sake was put out of his ferme and goods, and was condemned to be kept in the monastery of Ashryge, where he ware on his right sleeue a square peece of cloth, the space of 7. yeres together.

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It foloweth moreouer in þe testimonie of the forenamed, that about the same time of the burning of William Tilsworth (as the Amersham men do say) or the next day after, as recordeth the foresayd Agnes) was one father Roberts MarginaliaFather Roberts Martir burned at Buckingham. 

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This must be Robert Cosin, of Little Missenden, who is recorded on TNA C 85/115/10 as being condemned to death for heresy. Foxe will laterdescribe the execution of Thomas Man, but he says nothing about the executionsof William Scrivener or Nicholas Collins.

He was a miller, and dwelled at Missenden: and at hys burning were there aboue 20. persons that were compelled to beare fagots, and to do suche penaunce as the wicked Pharises did compell them. After that by the space of 2. or 3. yeeres, was burned at Amershā, Thomas Barnard a husbandman, and Iames Mordon a labourer 
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A James Marden was handed over to the secular arm for burning in1522 (TNA C 85/115/13).

, they two were burned both at one fire, and there was William Litlepage (who is yet aliue) compelled to be burned in the right cheeke, and father Rogers, and MarginaliaFather Reuer Martir.father Reuer alias Reiue, whych after was burned. Thys Father Rogers was in the byshops prisone 14. weekes together, night and day, where he was so cruelly handled with cold, hunger, and yrones, that after his comming out of the said pryson, he was so lame in his backe that he could neuer go vpright as long as hee liued, as can testifie diuers honest men that be now liuing. MarginaliaMen of Amersham burnt in the cheeke for Gods wordAlso there was 30. mo burned in the right cheke, and bare fagottes the same time. The cause was that they would talke against superstition and idolatry, and were desirous to hear & read the holy Scriptures. The maner of their burning in the cheeke was this: theyr neckes were tied fast to a poaste or stay, wyth towels, and theyr handes holden that they might not stirre, and so the iron being hotte, was put to their cheekes, and thus bare they the prints and marks of the Lord Iesus about them.

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The cruell handling of Thomas Chase of Amersham, wickedly strangled and martyred in the bishops prison at Wooburne, vnder W. Smith Bishop of Lincolne.

MarginaliaAnno. 1506.AMong these aforesayd, which were so cruelly persecuted for the Gospell and worde of Christe, one MarginaliaTho. Chase Martir.Thomas Chase of Amersham, was one of them that was thus cruelly handled, 

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There is no surviving information on Thomas Chase apart from theaccount in Foxe. This account - as Foxe makes clear - is based on testimony from contemporaries to the events and the cruelty with which Chase was treated undoubtedly lost nothing in the telling. It seems reasonable to accept that Thomas Chase was arrested for heresy and committed suicide in prison. There is no way of telling what happened beyond that but claims that he was murdered seem far-fetched.

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Which Thomas Chase by the report of suche as did knowe him, was a man of a godly, sober and honest behauior (whose vertuous doings doe yet remaine in memorie) and could not abide Idolatrie and superstition, but many times woulde speake against it: Wherefore the vngodly and wicked did the more hate & despise him, MarginaliaTho. Chase brought before the B.and toke hym, and brought him before the blinde Byshop, beyng at that time at Wooburne, in the Countie of Buckingham, and as it is wrytten. Act.12. 
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Acts 12:1-3.

that wicked Herode dyd vexe certaine of the congregation, and killed Iames the brother of Iohn with the sword, and because he saw that it pleased þe Iewes. &c. he proceded farther, and had thys same Thomas Chase before him, asking him many questions touching the Romish religion, wt many tauntes, checkes, and rebukes, but what answere this godly man Thom. Chase made them, it is vnknowen. Howbeit it is to be supposed, that hys aunswere was most zealous and godly in professing Christes true religion and Gospel, and to the extirpation of idolatry and superstition and hypocrisie, MarginaliaTho. Chase condēned to the Bishops prison at Wooburne called little ease.for that the sayde Thomas Chase was commaunded to be put in the bishops prison called litleease, in the bishops house at Woo burne, which prison had not bene minstred vnto him, had not his answers bene sound and vpright. There Thomas Chase lay bound most painfully with chaines, gyues, manicles and yrons oft times sore pined with hunger, where the Bishopes almes was daily brought vnto hym by hys chapleines: MarginaliaA worthy almes of a Bishop.Whych almes was nothing els put checkes, tauntes, rebukes and threatninges, floutinges and mockings. Al which cruelty the godly Martyr tooke most quietly & paciently, MarginaliaThe perfect patience & constancy of Tho. Chase.remembring and hauing respect to Christes promises. Math. 5. 
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Matthew 5:7.

Blessed are they which suffer persecution for righteousnesse sake: for theirs is the kingdome of heauen, and as foloweth: Blessed are yee when men reuile you and persecute you. &c. When the Bishop wyth his bonde of shauelings, perceiued that by their daily practises of crueltie they coulde not preuaile against him, but rather þt he was the more feruent & earnest in professing Christes true Religion: and that he did tolerate and beare most paciētly al their wickednes and cruelty ministred vnto hym:

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