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K. Hen. 8. The history of Merindoll. The Lord Beauieu. A bloudie harlot.

all right and reason, yea to all sense of humanitie: also contrary to the solemne othe, which all such as are receiued to office in Courtes of Parliament, are accustomed to make, that is to say, to iudge iustly & vprightly, according to the law of God, and the iust ordinances & lawes of the realm, so that God therby might be honoured, and euery mannes right regarded without respect of persons.

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Some of the aduocates or lawyers, defending the said Arrest to be iust and right, sayd: that in case of Lutheranisme, MarginaliaEuen so the Phariseis proceeded against Christ the sōne of God.the iudges are not boūd to obserue either right or reason, law either ordinance, and that the iudges can not faile or do amisse, whatsoeuer iudgement they do geue, so that it tend to the ruine and extirpation of all suche as are suspected to be Lutheranes.

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To this the other lawyers and learned men answered, that vppon theyr sayings it woulde insue, that the Iudges should now altogether folowe the same maner and forme, in proceeding against the Christians accused to be Lutheranes, which the gospell witnesseth that the Priests, Scribes, and Pharises followed, in pursuing and persecutyng, and finally condemning our Lord Iesus Christ.

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By these & such other like talkes 

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For the story of the Bishop's banquet ('splendissimum convivium') and the subsequent clerical meeting in Avignon, reported in Crespin [1560], fol 91A-B; Crespin/Benoit, 1, pp. 385-6 and also in Pantaleon, fols 114-5. Those in attendance included Barthélemi Chassené, premier president of the Parlement, the Archbishop (not bishop, as stated by Foxe) of Aix-en-Provence, the Archbishop of Arles ('Aries' - Jean IX de Ferrier), Jacques Reynaud, sieur d'Aillens ('L. of Alenc'), the seigneur de Beaujeu ('Beauieu') and the sieur de Senas, conseiller au Parlement.

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þe said arrest was published throughout the country, and there was no assemble or banket where it was not disputed or talked of: & namely within 12. dayes after the Arrest was geuen oute, MarginaliaThe Bishops bancket.there was a great banket in the towne of Aix, at the whych banket was present M. Barthelmew Chassanee, President, & many other Councellers and other noble personages and men of authority. There was also the Archb. of Aries and the bishop of Aix, with diuers ladies and gentlewomen, amongst whom was one which was commonly reported to be the bishop of Aix his concubine. They wer scarse wel set at the table, but she began thus to talke. MarginaliaThere is no cruelty to the cruelty of an harlot.My Lord President, will you not execute the arrest, which is geuen out of late, against the Lutheranes of Merindoll? The President aunswered nothing, faining that hee hearde her not. Then a certaine gentleman asked of her what Arrest that was. Shee recited it in maner and forme, as it was geuen out, forgetting nothing, as if she had a long time, studied to commit the same vnto memorye: Whereunto they whyche were at the banket gaue diligent eare without any woorde speaking, vntill she had ended her tale.

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MarginaliaThe Lord of Alenc, a good man.Then the lord of Alenc, a man fearing God, and of great vnderstanding, said vnto her: gentlewomā, you haue learned this tale, either of some that wold haue it so, or els it is geuen out by some parliament of women. Then the lord of Senas an ancient counsailor, said vnto him, no, no, my L. of Alenc, it is no tale which you haue hard this gentlewoman tell: for it is an arrest geuen out by a whole Senate, & you ought not thus to speake, except you woulde call the court of Prouince a parliament of women. Then the L. of Alenc began to excuse hymselfe, wyth protestation, that hee wold not speake any thing to blemish the authority of that soueraigne court, notwithstanding he could not beleue all that which the sayd gentlewoman had tolde, that is to say, that all the inhabitants of Merindoll were condemned to die by þe Arrest of the said court of parliament of Prouince, and specially the women & little children and infants: and the town to be rased, for the fault of 10. or 12. persons which did not appere before the saide court at the day appoynted. And the Lord Beauieu MarginaliaThe L. Beauieu. also answered, that he beleued not the sayde courte to haue geuen out any such Arrest, for that (said he) were a thing most vnreasonable, and suche as the very Turkes and the most tyrannes of the worlde would iudge to be a thing most detestable: and sayde further, that he had knowen a long time many of Merindol, which seemed vnto him to be men of great honesty: and my L. President (said he) can certify vs wel what is done in this mater, for we oughte not to geue credite vnto womens tales. Then the gentlewoman which had rehersed þe arrest, staied not to heare the Presidents answer, but sodenly loking vpon the B. of Aix, said: I should greatly haue marueiled, if there had bene none in all this company whyche woulde defend these wicked men, and lifting her eyes to heauen in a great womanly chafe and fume, sayd: MarginaliaA Catholicke wishe of a Priestes harlot.would to God that all the Lutheranes which are in Prouince, yea, and in all Fraunce, had hornes growing on theyr forheads, then we should see a goodly many of hornes. To whome the Lorde Beauieu sodenly answered, saying, would to God that all priests harlots should chatter like Pies. Then said the gētlewoman: ha my L. Beauieu, you ought not so to speake against our holy mother the church, for that there was neuer dogge þt barked against the crucifixe, but that he waxed madde. Whereat the Bishop of Aix laughed, and clapping the gentlewoman on the shoulder, sayd, by my holy orders my minion, wel said, I conne you thanke, She hath talked wel vnto you, my Lord Beauieu, remember wel the lessonthat shee hath geuen you. Heere the Lorde Beauieu being wholy moued wt anger, sayde, I care neyther for her schole nor yours, for it would be long before a man should learne of either of you both, any honesty or honour: For if I shuld say that the most part of the bishops and priests are abhominable adulterers, blind idolaters, deceiuers, theeues, seducers, I should not speake against the holy church, but against a heape and flocke of wolues, dogs, and filthy swine in speaking these thinges, I would thinke a man not to be mad at all, except he be mad for speaking of the truth.

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Then the Archbishop in a great furie answered, my L. Beauieu, you speake very euil, and you must geue account when time and place serueth, of this your talke, which you haue here vttered against the Church men. I would, sayde the Lord Beauieu that it were to do euen this present day, and I wold binde my selfe to prooue more abuses & naughtinesse in Priestes then I haue yet spoken. Then sayde the President Chassinee, my Lorde Beauieu, lette vs leaue of this talke and liue as our fathers haue done, and maintain theyr honour. Then sayde hee in a greate anger, I am no Priestes sonne to maintaine their wickednesse and abuse. And afterward he sayde, I am well content to honour all true pastors of the church, and will not blame them which shew good example in their doctrine and liuing: but I demaund of you my Lord of Arles, and you my Lord of Aix, when as our Lord Iesus Christ called the Priestes deceiuing hypocrites, blind seducers, robbers and theeues, did he them any outrage or wrong? and they answered no, for the most part of them were such men. MarginaliaThe Popes churchmen worse then the olde Pharisies.Then sayd the Lord Beauieu, euen so is it with the bishops and priests which I haue spoken of, for they are suche kinde of men, or rather worse: and I so abhorre their filthy and abhominable life, that I dare not speake the one halfe of that which I know, and therfore in speaking the truth, to coole the babling of a harlot, I do them no iniurie.

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Then monsieur de Senas an auncient counsailor, sayd, let vs leaue of this contentious talke, for we are here assēbled & come together to make good chere. And afterwarde he said, monsieur de Beauieu, for the loue and amity which I beare vnto you, I will aduertise you of 3. things, which if you will do, you shall finde great ease therein.

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The first is, that you neither by worde nor deede, aide or assist those which you heare to be Lutheranes.

Secondly, þt you do not entermeddle, openly to reproue ladies and gentlewomen for their pastime and pleasures.

Thirdly, that you doe neuer speake against the life and liuing of * Marginalia* Churchmē be they neuer so euill, must not be spoken against. 1. Par.16. Priests, howe wicked so euer it be, according to this saying: Do not touch mine annoynted.

To whom monsieur Beauien answered, as touching þe first poynt, I know no Lutherans, neither what is meant by this word Lutheranisme, except you do call them Lutherans, which professe the doctrine of the gospel. Neither yet will I euer allowe any Arrest which shall be geuen out to death against men whose cause hath not bene heard, especially, against women and yong infantes: and I am assured that there is no Court of parliament in all Fraunce which will approoue or allowe any such arrest. And where as you say that I shuld not meddle to reproue ladies or gētlewomen, if I knewe any kinswoman of mine, which would abandone her selfe vnto a priest or clerk, yea albeit he were a cardinal or bishop, MarginaliaHow priests harlots should be handled.I would not do her so much honor as to rebuke her therfore, but at the least I would cutte of her nose. And as touching priestes, as I am contented not to meddle with their busines, so likewise I will not that they meddle with mine heereafter, or come from henceforth wtin my house: For as many as I shall finde or take there, I wil set their crownes so nere their sholders, that they shal nede no more to weare any hoodes about their necks. The like also said the President Chassanee.

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Then the byshop of Aix his sweete heart, which had begon the quarell, said, MarginaliaWell spokē and like an harlot.I shal not be in quiet, except I speake yet one word more vnto monsieur Beauieu. Do you think sayd she vnto hym, that all the Cardinals, Byshops, Abbots, Priestes, and all those holy religious men which goe oftentimes to gentlemens houses, and haunte the Castels and palaces of Princes and noblemen, that they go thither to commit wickednesse? Also you must not thinke euil of al those ladies and gentlewemen, that go to Bishops houses of deuotion, and for to reueale those whome they know to be Lutherans, as it was commaunded in the pulpitte vppon payne of Excommunication: If so be you will maintaine those wordes, I will not cease to accuse you of crime, and also of Treason both to God and to man: for heere be those in this companie, which shall make you geue an accompt thereof. Shee had not so soone ended her talke, but Monsieur Beauieu sayde vnto her, auaunte O Herodias, thou filthy and impudent harlot: MarginaliaAs Herodias wrought the death of Iohn Baptist, so this strumpet seeke the death of the Merindolians, two strumpets well compared togeather. is it thy part to open thy

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