sacrifice upon




con Veni

ence fol thing

that all



Henry fidence in Christ's death and passion, and his only merits and deservings are VII. extolled, and our own depressed ; where the sacrament is duly, without superA. D.

stition or idolatry, administered in remembrance of his blessed passion and only 1533.

the cross once for all, and where no superstition reigneth :-of that church will I be!'

• Doth not the pope,' said they, confess the true gospel ? do not we all the same ?' 'Yes,' said he,but ye deny the fruits thereof in every point. Ye build upon the sands, not upon the rock.' •And wilt thou not believe indeed,'

said they, that the pope is God's vicar?' 'No,' said he, “indeed.' • And not God's why ?' said they. . Because,' quoth he, he usurpeth a power not given to him why.

by Christ, no more than to other apostles; and also because, by force of that usurped supremacy, he doth blind the whole world, and doth contrary to all that ever Christ ordained or commanded.' What,' said they, if he do all things after God's ordinance and commandment: should he then be his vicar?' • Then,' said he, 'would I believe him to be a good bishop at Rome over his own diocese, and to have no further power. And if it pleased God, I would every bishop did this in his diocese : then should we live a peaceable life in the

church of Christ, and there should be no such seditions therein. If every What in- bishop would seek no further power than over his own diocese, it were a goodly

Now, because all are subject to one, all must do and consent to all loweth, wickedness as he doth, or be none of his. This is the cause of great superstition bishops

in every kingdom. And what bishop soever he be that preacheth the gospel, should be and maintaineth the truth, is a true bishop of the church.'

And doth not,' ruled by said they, our holy father the pope maintain the gospel ? Yea,' said he, 'I think he doth read it, and peradventure believe it

, and so do you also; but neither he nor you do fix the anchor of your salvation therein. Besides that, ye bear such a good will to it, that ye keep it close, that no man may read it but yourselves. And when you preach, God knoweth how you handle it;

insomuch, that the people of Christ know no gospel well-near, but the pope's pope's gospel

gospel ; and so the blind lead the blind, and both fall into the pit. In the true gospel of Christ, confidence is none; but only in your popish traditions and fantastical inventions.'

Then said a black friar unto him (God knoweth, a blockhead),' Do we not preach the gospel daily?' 'Yes,' said he,“ but what preaching of the gospel is that, when therewith ye extol superstitious things, and make us believe that we have redemption through pardons and bulls of Rome, a pena et culpa, as ye term it: and by the merits of your orders ye make many brethren and sisters; ye take yearly money of them, ye bury them in your coats, and in shrift ye beguile them; yea, and do a thousand superstitious things more: a man may be weary to speak of them.' I see,' said the friar, that thou art a damned wretch ; I will have no more talk with thee.'

Then stepped to him a grey friar, a doctor (God knoweth of small intelligence), and laid before him great and many dangers. 'I take God to record,' said Benet, “my life is not dear to me; I am content to depart from it, for I am weary of it, seeing your detestable doings, to the utter destruction of God's flock; and, for my part, I can no longer forbear. I had rather, by death (which I know is not far off), depart this life, that I may no longer be partaker of your detestable idolatries and superstitions, or be subject unto antichrist your pope.' * Our pope,' said the friar, “is the vicar of God, and our ways are the ways of God.' I pray you,' said Benet, depart from me, and tell not me of your ways. He is only my way, who saith, I am the way, the truth, and the {ife. In his way will I walk, his doings shall be my example; not yours, nor your false pope's. His truth will I embrace; not the lies and falsehood of you and your pope. His everlasting life will I seek, the true reward of all faitňful people. Away from me, I pray you. Vex my soul no longer; ye shall not prevail

. There is no good example in you, no truth in you, no life to be hoped for at your hands. Ye are all more vain than vanity itself. If I should hear and follow you this day, everlasting death should hang over me, a just reward for all them that love the life of this world. Away from me : your company liketh me not.'

Thus a whole week, night and day, was Benet plied by these and such other hypocrites. It were an infinite matter to declare all things

Renet weary

of the friar's talk.




done and said to him in the time of his imprisonment; and the hate Henry of the people that time, by means of ignorance, was hot against him : notwithstanding they could never move his patience; he answered to A. D. every matter soberly, and that, more by the aid of God's Spirit, than 1533. by any worldly study. I think he was at least fifty years old. Benet paBeing in prison, his wife provided sustenance for him; and when she constant. lamented, he comforted her, and gave her many good and godly exhortations, and prayed her to move him nothing to apply unto his adversaries.

Thus when these godly canons and priests, with the monks and friars, had done what they could, and perceived that he would by no means relent, then they, proceeding unto judgment, drew out their bloody sentence against him, condemning him, as the manner Sentence is, to be burned. This being done, and the writ which they had read procured de comburendo,' being brought from London, they Thomas delivered him on the 15th of January, 1531, unto sir Thomas Denis, knight, then sheriff of Devonshire, to be burned. The mild martyr, Benet derejoicing that his end was approaching so near, as the sheep before live seduto the shearer, yielded himself with all humbleness to abide and suffer lar power. the cross of persecution. And being brought to his execution, in a Brought place called Livery-dole, without Exeter, he made his most humble to the confession and prayer unto Almighty God, and requested all the execupeople to do the like for him; whom he exhorted with such gravity and sobriety, and with such a pithy oration, to seek the true honouring of God, and the true knowledge of him; as also to leave the devices, fantasies, and imaginations of man's inventions, that all the hearers and beholders of him were astonied and in great admiration ; insomuch that the most part of the people, as also the scribe who wrote the sentence of condemnation against him, did pronounce and confess that he was God's servant, and a good man.

Nevertheless two esquires, namely, Thomas Carew and John Barnehouse, standing at the stake by him, first with fair promises and goodly words, but at length through rough threatenings, willed him to revoke his errors, and to call to Our Lady and the saints, and “Precor sanctam Mariam, et omnes sanctos Dei,” &c.

To Benet whom, with all meekness, he answered, saying, “ No, no; it is God

whose name we must call; and we have no other advocate our Lady. unto him, but only Jesus Christ, who died for us, and now sitteth at the right hand of his Father, to be an advocate for us; and by him One Admust we offer and make our prayers to God, if we will have them to take place and to be heard.' With this answer the aforesaid Barne- A furzehouse was so enkindled, that he took a furze-bush upon a pike, and thrust in having set it on fire, he thrust it unto his face, saying, “Ah! hore- his face, son heretic ! pray to our Lady, and say, Sancta Maria, ora pro nobis, he would or, by God's wounds, I will make thee do it.” To whom the said to our Thomas Benet, with an humble and a meek spirit, most patiently answered, “ Alas, sir ! trouble me not.” And holding up his hands, he said, “ Pater! ignosce illis.” Whereupon the gentlemen caused the wood and furzes to be set on fire, and therewith this godly man lifted up


eyes and hands to heaven, saying, “O Domine! recipe spiritum meum." And so, continuing in his prayers, he did never and marstir nor strive, but most patiently abode the cruelty of the fire, until Benet.

to say,

refuseth to

pray to

only upon

vocate, Christ.


The constant end


Henry his life was ended. For this the Lord God be praised, and send us

his grace and blessing, that at the latter day we may with him enjoy A.D. the bliss and joy provided and prepared for the elect children of

This Benet was burned in a jerkin of neat's leather ; at whose burning, such was the devilish rage of the blind people, that well was he or she that could catch a stick or furze to cast into the fire.

1528 God.

to 1533.

The king's

tion. Vide supra.

Hitherto we have run over, good reader, the names, and the acts and doings of those, who have sustained death, and the torment of

burning, for Christ's cause, through the rigorous proclamation above proclama- specified, set out, as is said, in the name of king Henry, but indeed

procured by the bishops. That proclamation was so straitly looked upon, and executed so to the uttermost in every point, by the said popish prelates, that no good man,“ habens spiramentum,” whereof Esdras speaketh, could peep out with his head ever so little, but he was caught by the back, and brought either to the fire, as were these above mentioned; or else compelled to abjure. Whereof there was a great multitude, as well men as women; whose names, if they were sought out through all registers in England, no doubt it would make too long a discourse. Nevertheless, omitting the rest, it shall content us at this present, briefly, as in a short table, to insinuate the names, with the special articles, of such as, in the diocese of London, under Bishop Stokesley, were molested and vexed, and, at last, compelled to abjure, as here may appear.


Articles objected against Jeffery Lome, sometime porter to St. An-
thony's School; and for which articles he was abjured.? A.D. 1528.

Imprimis, for having and dispersing abroad sundry books of Martin Luther's, and others; as also for translating into the English tongue, certain chapters of the work of Luther, ' De Bonis Operibus :' as also, certain chapters of a certain book called “Piæ Predicationes,' wherein divers works of Luther be comprehended.

Item, For affirming and believing that faith only, without good works, will bring a man to heaven.

Item, That men be not bound to observe the constitutions made by the

Item, That we should pray to God only, and to no saints.
Item, That christian men ought to worship God only, and no saints.

Item, That pilgrimages be not profitable for man's soul, and should not be used.

Item, That we should not offer to images in the church, nor set any lights before them.

Item, That no man is bound to keep any manner of fasting-days, instituted at the church.

Item, That pardons granted by the pope or the bishop do not profit a man.

For these articles Jeffery Lome was abjured before the bishops of London, Bath, and Lincoln ; no mention being made of any penance enjoined him. (1) 4 Esd. 7.

(2) The articles for which Lome was abjured being less fully given in recent editions, they are introduced from the first edition, (1563,) pp. 477, 478,- ED.


Sigar Nicholson, Stationer, of Cambridge, A.D. 1528. His articles were like; and moreover for having in his house certain books of Luther, and others prohibited, and not presenting them to the ordinary. The handling of this man was too, too cruel, if the report be true, that he should be hanged up in such a manner as well suffereth not to be named.

A.D. 1528

to 1533.

John Raimund, a Dutchman, A.D. 1528.
For causing fifteen hundred of Tyndale's New Testaments to be printed at
Antwerp, and for bringing five hundred into England.

Paul Luther, Grey Friar, and Warden of the House at Ware,

A.D. 1529. His articles were for preaching and saying that it is pity that there be so many images suffered in so many places, where indiscreet and unlearned people be; for they make their prayers and oblations so entirely and heartily before the image, that they believe it to be the very self saint in heaven.

Item, That if he knew his father and mother were in heaven, he would count them as good as St. Peter and Paul, but for the pain they suffered for Christ's sake.

Item, That there is no need to go on pilgrimage.

Item, That if a man were at the point of drowning, or any other danger, he should call only upon God, and no saint; for saints in heaven cannot help us, neither know any more what men do here in this world, than a man in the north country knoweth what is done in the south country.

Roger Whaplod, Merchant Tailor, sent, by one Thomas Norfolk, unto Dr. Goderidge, this bill following, to be read at his sermon in the Spital. A.D. 1529.

A Bill read by the Preacher at the Spital. If there be any well-disposed person willing to do any cost upon the reparation of the conduit in Fleet-street, let him or them resort unto the administrators of the goods and cattle of one Richard Hun, late merchant tailor of London, which died intestate, or else to me, and they shall have toward the same six pounds thirteen shillings and fourpence, and a better penny, of the goods of the said Richard Hun; upon whose soul, and all christian souls, Jesus have mercy !

For this bill, both Whaplod and Norfolk were brought and troubled before the bishop; and also Dr. Goderidge, who took a groat for reading the said bill," was suspended for a time from saying mass, and also was forced to revoke the same at Paul's cross ; reading this bill as followeth.

The Revocation of Dr. William Goderidge, read at Paul's Cross.

Masters ! so it is, that where in my late sermon at St. Mary Spital, the Tuesday in Easter-week last past, I did pray specially for the soul of Richard Hun, late of London, merchant-tailor, a heretic, by the laws of holy church Dr. Godejustly condemned: by reason whereof I greatly offended God and his church, ridge reand the laws of the same, for which I have submitted me to my ordinary, and his praydone penance there-for: forasmuch as, peradventure, the audience that was ing for there offended by my said words, might take any occasion thereby to think that I did favour the said heretic, or any other, I desire you, at the instance of Hun.

(1) It was the manner at this time to take money for reading of bills at sermons. Ex Regist.

the soul of Richard


Henry Almighty God, to forgive me, and not so to think of me, for I did it unadVII. visedly. Therefore, here before God and you, I declare myself that I have not A.D.

favoured him or any other heretic, nor hereafter intend to do, but at all times 1529

shall defend the Catholic faith of holy church, according to my profession, to

the best of my power. 1533.

Robert West, Priest, A. D. 1529.
Abjured for books and opinions contrary to the proclamation.


Nicholas White of Rye, A.D. 1529. His articles :-For speaking against the priests' saying of matins; against praying for them that be dead : against praying to God for small trifles, as for the cow calving, the hen hatching, &c. : for speaking against the relic of St. Peter's finger: against oblations to images : against vowing of pilgrimage : against priesthood : against holy bread and holy water, &c.

Richard Kitchen, Priest, A.D. 1529. His articles :—That pardons granted by the pope are naught, and that men should put no trust in thein, but only in the passion of Christ : that he, being led by the words of the gospel, Mat. vii

. De via lata, et angusta,' and also by the epistle of the mass, beginning, Vir fortissimus Judas,' had erred in the way of the pope, and thought, that there were but two ways, and no purgatory: that men ought to worship no images, nor set up lights before them : that pilgrimage doth nothing avail: that the gospel was not truly preached for the space of three hundred years past, &c.

William Wegen, Priest at St. Mary Hill, A.D. 1529. His articles :—That he was not bound to say his Matins nor other service, but to sing with the choir till they came to 'prime;' and then, saying no more service, thought he might well go to mass : that he had said mass oftentimes, and had not said his matins and his divine service before: that he had gone to mass without confession made to a priest: that it was sufficient for a man, being in deadly sin, to ask only God mercy for his sin, without further confession made to a priest: that he held against pilgrimages, and called images, stocks, stones, and witches.

Item, That he being sick, went to the Rood of St. Margaret Patens; and said before him twenty Paternosters; and when he saw himself never the better, then he said, ' A foul evil take him, and all other images.'

Item, That if a man keep a good tongue in his head, he fasteth well.

Item, For commending Luther to be a good man, for preaching twice a day, &c.

Item, For saying that the mass was but a ceremony, and made to the intent that men should pray only.

Item, For saying, that if a man had a pair of beads or a book in his hand at the church, and were not disposed to pray, it was naught, &c.

William Hale, Holy Water Clerk of Tolenham, A.D. 1529. His articles :That offering of money and candles to images did not avail, since we are justified by the blood of Christ.

Item, For speaking against worshipping of saints, and against the pope's pardons. For saying, that since the sacraments that the priest doth minister, be as good as those which the pope doth minister, he did not see but the priest hath as good authority as the pope.

Item, That a man should confess himself to God only, and not to a priest, &c.

William Blomfield, Monk of Bury.
Abjured for the like causes.

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