CHAPTER I - History of Christian Martyrs to

the First General Persecutions

Under Nero

Christ our Savior, in the Gospel of St. Matthew, hearing the confession of Simon Peter, who, first of all

other, openly acknowledged Him to be the Son of God, and perceiving the secret hand of His Father therein,

called him (alluding to his name) a rock, upon which rock He would build His Church so strong that the

gates of hell should not prevail against it. In which words three things are to be noted: First, that Christ will

have a Church in this world. Secondly, that the same Church should mightily be impugned, not only by the

world, but also by the uttermost strength and powers of all hell. And, thirdly, that the same Church,

notwithstanding the uttermost of the devil and all his malice, should continue.

Which prophecy of Christ we see wonderfully to be verified, insomuch that the whole course of the Church

to this day may seem nothing else but a verifying of the said prophecy. First, that Christ hath set up a

Church, needeth no declaration. Secondly, what force of princes, kings, monarchs, governors, and rulers of

this world, with their subjects, publicly and privately, with all their strength and cunning, have bent

themselves against this Church! And, thirdly, how the said Church, all this notwithstanding, hath yet endured

and holden its own! What storms and tempests it hath overpast, wondrous it is to behold: for the more

evident declaration whereof, I have addressed this present history, to the end, first, that the wonderful works

of God in His Church might appear to His glory; also that, the continuance and proceedings of the Church,

from time to time, being set forth, more knowledge and experience may redound thereby, to the profit of the

reader and edification of Christian faith.

As it is not our business to enlarge upon our Savior's history, either before or after His crucifixion, we shall

only find it necessary to remind our readers of the discomfiture of the Jews by His subsequent resurrection.

Although one apostle had betrayed Him; although another had denied Him, under the solemn sanction of an

oath; and although the rest had forsaken Him, unless we may except "the disciple who was known unto the

high-priest"; the history of His resurrection gave a new direction to all their hearts, and, after the mission of

the Holy Spirit, imparted new confidence to their minds. The powers with which they were endued

emboldened them to proclaim His name, to the confusion of the Jewish rulers, and the astonishment of

Gentile proselytes.

I. St. Stephen

St. Stephen suffered the next in order. His death was occasioned by the faithful manner in which he

preached the Gospel to the betrayers and murderers of Christ. To such a degree of madness were

they excited, that they cast him out of the city and stoned him to death. The time when he suffered

is generally supposed to have been at the passover which succeeded to that of our Lord's

crucifixion, and to the era of his ascension, in the following spring.

Upon this a great persecution was raised against all who professed their belief in Christ as the Messiah, or as

a prophet. We are immediately told by St. Luke, that "there was a great persecution against the church which

was at Jerusalem;" and that "they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria,

except the apostles."

About two thousand Christians, with Nicanor, one of the seven deacons, suffered martyrdom during the

"persecution that arose about Stephen."

II. James the Great

The next martyr we meet with, according to St. Luke, in the History of the Apsotles' Acts, was

James the son of Zebedee, the elder brother of John, and a relative of our Lord; for his mother

Salome was cousin-german to the Virgin Mary. It was not until ten years after the death of Stephen

that the second martyrdom took place; for no sooner had Herod Agrippa been appointed governor

of Judea, than, with a view to ingratiate himself with them, he raised a sharp persecution against the

Christians, and determined to make an effectual blow, by striking at their leaders. The account

given us by an eminent primitive writer, Clemens Alexandrinus, ought not to be overlooked; that, as

James was led to the place of martyrdom, his accuser was brought to repent of his conduct by the

apostle's extraordinary courage and undauntedness, and fell down at his feet to request his pardon,

professing himself a Christian, and resolving that James should not receive the crown of martyrdom

alone. Hence they were both beheaded at the same time. Thus did the first apostolic martyr

cheerfully and resolutely receive that cup, which he had told our Savior he was ready to drink.

Timon and Parmenas suffered martyrdom about the same time; the one at Philippi, and the other in

Macedonia. These events took place A.D. 44.

III. Philip

Was born at Bethsaida, in Galilee and was first called by the name of "disciple." He labored

diligently in Upper Asia, and suffered martyrdom at Heliopolis, in Phrygia. He was scourged,

thrown into prison, and afterwards crucified, A.D. 54.

IV. Matthew

Whose occupation was that of a toll-gatherer, was born at Nazareth. He wrote his gospel in Hebrew,

which was afterwards translated into Greek by James the Less. The scene of his labors was Parthia,

and Ethiopia, in which latter country he suffered martyrdom, being slain with a halberd in the city

of Nadabah, A.D. 60.

V. James the Less

Is supposed by some to have been the brother of our Lord, by a former wife of Joseph. This is very doubtful,

and accords too much with the Catholic superstition, that Mary never had any other children except our

Savior. He was elected to the oversight of the churches of Jerusalem; and was the author of the Epistle

ascribed to James in the sacred canon. At the age of ninety-four he was beat and stoned by the Jews; and

finally had his brains dashed out with a fuller's club.

VI. Matthias

Of whom less is known than of most of the other disciples, was elected to fill the vacant place of Judas. He

was stoned at Jerusalem and then beheaded.

VII. Andrew

Was the brother of Peter. He preached the gospel to many Asiatic nations; but on his arrival at Edessa he was

taken and crucified on a cross, the two ends of which were fixed transversely in the ground. Hence the

derivation of the term, St. Andrew's Cross.

VIII. St. Mark

Was born of Jewish parents of the tribe of Levi. He is supposed to have been converted to Christianity by

Peter, whom he served as an amanuensis, and under whose inspection he wrote his Gospel in the Greek

language. Mark was dragged to pieces by the people of Alexandria, at the great solemnity of Serapis their

idol, ending his life under their merciless hands.

IX. Peter

Among many other saints, the blessed apostle Peter was condemned to death, and crucified, as some do

write, at Rome; albeit some others, and not without cause, do doubt thereof. Hegesippus saith that Nero

sought matter against Peter to put him to death; which, when the people perceived, they entreated Peter with

much ado that he would fly the city. Peter, through their importunity at length persuaded, prepared himself to

avoid. But, coming to the gate, he saw the Lord Christ come to meet him, to whom he, worshipping, said,

"Lord, whither dost Thou go?" To whom He answered and said, "I am come again to be crucified." By this,

Peter, perceiving his suffering to be understood, returned into the city. Jerome saith that he was crucified, his

head being down and his feet upward, himself so requiring, because he was (he said) unworthy to be

crucified after the same form and manner as the Lord was.

X. Paul

Paul, the apostle, who before was called Saul, after his great travail and unspeakable labors in

promoting the Gospel of Christ, suffered also in this first persecution under Nero. Abdias, declareth

that under his execution Nero sent two of his esquires, Ferega and Parthemius, to bring him word of

his death. They, coming to Paul instructing the people, desired him to pray for them, that they might

believe; who told them that shortly after they should believe and be baptised at His sepulcher. This

done, the soldiers came and led him out of the city to the place of execution, where he, after his

prayers made, gave his neck to the sword.

XI. Jude

The brother of James, was commonly called Thaddeus. He was crucified at Edessa, A.D. 72.

XII. Bartholomew

Preached in several countries, and having translated the Gospel of Matthew into the language of

India, he propagated it in that country. He was at length cruelly beaten and then crucified by the

impatient idolaters.

XIII. Thomas

Called Didymus, preached the Gospel in Parthia and India, where exciting the rage of the pagan

priests, he was martyred by being thrust through with a spear.

XIV. Luke

The evangelist, was the author of the Gospel which goes under his name. He travelled with Paul through

various countries, and is supposed to have been hanged on an olive tree, by the idolatrous priests of Greece.

XV. Simon

Surnamed Zelotes, preached the Gospel in Mauritania, Africa, and even in Britain, in which latter

country he was crucified, A.D. 74.

XVI. John

The "beloved disciple," was brother to James the Great. The churches of Smyrna, Pergamos, Sardis,

Philadelphia, Laodicea, and Thyatira, were founded by him. From Ephesus he was ordered to be

sent to Rome, where it is affirmed he was cast into a cauldron of boiling oil. He escaped by miracle,

without injury. Domitian afterwards banished him to the Isle of Patmos, where he wrote the Book of

Revelation. Nerva, the successor of Domitian, recalled him. He was the only apostle who escaped a

violent death.

XVII. Barnabas

Was of Cyprus, but of Jewish descent, his death is supposed to have taken place about A.D. 73.

And yet, notwithstanding all these continual persecutions and horrible punishments, the Church daily

increased, deeply rooted in the doctrine of the apostles and of men apostolical, and watered plentously with

the blood of saints.

CHAPTER II - The Ten Primitive


The First Persecution, Under Nero, A.D. 67

The first persecution of the Church took place in the year 67, under Nero, the sixth emperor of Rome. This

monarch reigned for the space of five years, with tolerable credit to himself, but then gave way to the

greatest extravagancy of temper, and to the most atrocious barbarities. Among other diabolical whims, he

ordered that the city of Rome should be set on fire, which order was executed by his officers, guards, and

servants. While the imperial city was in flames, he went up to the tower of Macaenas, played upon his harp,

sung the song of the burning of Troy, and openly declared that 'he wished the ruin of all things before his

death.' Besides the noble pile, called the Circus, many other palaces and houses were consumed; several

thousands perished in the flames, were smothered in the smoke, or buried beneath the ruins.

This dreadful conflagration continued nine days; when Nero, finding that his conduct was greatly blamed,

and a severe odium cast upon him, determined to lay the whole upon the Christians, at once to excuse

himself, and have an opportunity of glutting his sight with new cruelties. This was the occasion of the first

persecution; and the barbarities exercised on the Christians were such as even excited the commiseration of

the Romans themselves. Nero even refined upon cruelty, and contrived all manner of punishments for the

Christians that the most infernal imagination could design. In particular, he had some sewed up in skins of

wild beasts, and then worried by dogs until they expired; and others dressed in shirts made stiff with wax,

fixed to axletrees, and set on fire in his gardens, in order to illuminate them. This persecution was general

throughout the whole Roman Empire; but it rather increased than diminished the spirit of Christianity. In the

course of it, St. Paul and St. Peter were martyred.

To their names may be added, Erastus, chamberlain of Corinth; Aristarchus, the Macedonian, and

Trophimus, an Ephesians, converted by St. Paul, and fellow-laborer with him, Joseph, commonly called

Barsabas, and Ananias, bishop of Damascus; each of the Seventy.

The Second Persecution, Under Domitian, A.D. 81

The emperor Domitian, who was naturally inclined to cruelty, first slew his brother, and then raised the

second persecution against the Christians. In his rage he put to death some of the Roman senators, some

through malice; and others to confiscate their estates. He then commanded all the lineage of David be put to


Among the numerous martyrs that suffered during this persecution was Simeon, bishop of Jerusalem, who

was crucified; and St. John, who was boiled in oil, and afterward banished to Patmos. Flavia, the daughter of

a Roman senator, was likewise banished to Pontus; and a law was made, "That no Christian, once brought

before the tribunal, should be exempted from punishment without renouncing his religion."

A variety of fabricated tales were, during this reign, composed in order to injure the Christians. Such was the

infatuation of the pagans, that, if famine, pestilence, or earthquakes afflicted any of the Roman provinces, it

was laid upon the Christians. These persecutions among the Christians increased the number of informers

and many, for the sake of gain, swore away the lives of the innocent.

Another hardship was, that, when any Christians were brought before the magistrates, a test oath was

proposed, when, if they refused to take it, death was pronounced against them; and if they confessed

themselves Christians, the sentence was the same.

The following were the most remarkable among the numerous martyrs who suffered during this persecution.

Dionysius, the Areopagite, was an Athenian by birth, and educated in all the useful and ornamental literature

of Greece. He then travelled to Egypt to study astronomy, and made very particular observations on the great

and supernatural eclipse, which happened at the time of our Savior's crucifixion.

The sanctity of his conversation and the purity of his manners recommended him so strongly to the

Christians in general, that he was appointed bishop of Athens.

Nicodemus, a benevolent Christian of some distinction, suffered at Rome during the rage of Domitian's


Protasius and Gervasius were martyred at Milan.

Timothy was the celebrated disciple of St. Paul, and bishop of Ephesus, where he zealously governed the

Church until A.D. 97. At this period, as the pagans were about to celebrate a feast called Catagogion,

Timothy, meeting the procession, severely reproved them for their ridiculous idolatry, which so exasperated

the people that they fell upon him with their clubs, and beat him in so dreadful a manner that he expired of

the bruises two days later.

The Third Persecution, Under Trajan, A.D. 108

In the third persecution Pliny the Second, a man learned and famous, seeing the lamentable slaughter of

Christians, and moved therewith to pity, wrote to Trajan, certifying him that there were many thousands of

them daily put to death, of which none did any thing contrary to the Roman laws worthy of persecution. "The

whole account they gave of their crime or error (whichever it is to be called) amounted only to this-viz. that

they were accustomed on a stated day to meet before daylight, and to repeat together a set form of prayer to

Christ as a God, and to bind themselves by an obligation-not indeed to commit wickedness; but, on the

contrary-never to commit theft, robbery, or adultery, never to falsify their word, never to defraud any man:

after which it was their custom to separate, and reassemble to partake in common of a harmless meal."

In this persecution suffered the blessed martyr, Ignatius, who is held in famous reverence among very many.

This Ignatius was appointed to the bishopric of Antioch next after Peter in succession. Some do say, that he,

being sent from Syria to Rome, because he professed Christ, was given to the wild beasts to be devoured. It

is also said of him, that when he passed through Asia, being under the most strict custody of his keepers, he

strengthened and confirmed the churches through all the cities as he went, both with his exhortations and

preaching of the Word of God. Accordingly, having come to Smyrna, he wrote to the Church at Rome,

exhorting them not to use means for his deliverance from martyrdom, lest they should deprive him of that

which he most longed and hoped for. "Now I begin to be a disciple. I care for nothing, of visible or invisible

things, so that I may but win Christ. Let fire and the cross, let the companies of wild beasts, let breaking of

bones and tearing of limbs, let the grinding of the whole body, and all the malice of the devil, come upon me;

be it so, only may I win Christ Jesus!" And even when he was sentenced to be thrown to the beasts, such as

the burning desire that he had to suffer, that he spake, what time he heard the lions roaring, saying: "I am the

wheat of Christ: I am going to be ground with the teeth of wild beasts, that I may be found pure bread."

Trajan being succeeded by Adrian, the latter continued this third persecution with as much severity as his

predecessor. About this time Alexander, bishop of Rome, with his two deacons, were martyred; as were

Quirinus and Hernes, with their families;

Zenon, a Roman nobleman, and about ten thousand other Christians.

In Mount Ararat many were crucified, crowned with thorns, and spears run into their sides, in imitation of

Christ's passion. Eustachius, a brave and successful Roman commander, was by the emperor ordered to join

in an idolatrous sacrifice to celebrate some of his own victories; but his faith (being a Christian in his heart)

was so much greater than his vanity, that he nobly refused it. Enraged at the denial, the ungrateful emperor

forgot the service of this skilful commander, and ordered him and his whole family to be martyred.

At the martyrdom of Faustines and Jovita, brothers and citizens of Brescia, their torments were so many, and

their patience so great, that Calocerius, a pagan, beholding them, was struck with admiration, and exclaimed

in a kind of ecstasy, "Great is the God of the Christians!" for which he was apprehended, and suffered a

similar fate.

Many other similar cruelties and rigors were exercised against the Christians, until Quadratus, bishop of

Athens, made a learned apology in their favor before the emperor, who happened to be there and Aristides, a

philosopher of the same city, wrote an elegant epistle, which caused Adrian to relax in his severities, and

relent in their favor.

Adrian dying A.D. 138, was succeeded by Antoninus Pius, one of the most amiable monarchs that ever

reigned, and who stayed the persecutions against the Christians.

The Fourth Persecution, Under Marcus Aurelius Antoninus,

A.D. 162

Marcus Aurelius, followed about the year of our Lord 161, a man of nature more stern and severe; and,

although in study of philosophy and in civil government no less commendable, yet, toward the Christians

sharp and fierce; by whom was moved the fourth persecution.

The cruelties used in this persecution were such that many of the spectators shuddered with horror at the

sight, and were astonished at the intrepidity of the sufferers. Some of the martyrs were obliged to pass, with

their already wounded feet, over thorns, nails, sharp shells, etc. upon their points, others were scourged until

their sinews and veins lay bare, and after suffering the most excruciating tortures that could be devised, they

were destroyed by the most terrible deaths.

Germanicus, a young man, but a true Christian, being delivered to the wild beasts on account of his faith,

behaved with such astonishing courage that several pagans became converts to a faith which inspired such


Polycarp, the venerable bishop of Smyrna, hearing that persons were seeking for him, escaped, but was

discovered by a child. After feasting the guards who apprehended him, he desired an hour in prayer, which

being allowed, he prayed with such fervency, that his guards repented that they had been instrumental in

taking him. He was, however, carried before the proconsul, condemned, and burnt in the market place.

The proconsul then urged him, saying, "Swear, and I will release thee;--reproach Christ."

Polycarp answered, "Eighty and six years have I served him, and he never once wronged me; how then shall

I blaspheme my King, Who hath saved me?" At the stake to which he was only tied, but not nailed as usual,

as he assured them he should stand immovable, the flames, on their kindling the fagots, encircled his body,

like an arch, without touching him; and the executioner, on seeing this, was ordered to pierce him with a

sword, when so great a quantity of blood flowed out as extinguished the fire. But his body, at the instigation

of the enemies of the Gospel, especially Jews, was ordered to be consumed in the pile, and the request of his

friends, who wished to give it Christian burial, rejected. They nevertheless collected his bones and as much

of his remains as possible, and caused them to be decently interred.

Metrodorus, a minister, who preached boldly, and Pionius, who made some excellent apologies for the

Christian faith, were likewise burnt. Carpus and Papilus, two worthy Christians, and Agatonica, a pious

woman, suffered martyrdom at Pergamopolis, in Asia.

Felicitatis, an illustrious Roman lady, of a considerable family, and the most shining virtues, was a devout

Christian. She had seven sons, whom she had educated with the most exemplary piety.

Januarius, the eldest, was scourged, and pressed to death with weights; Felix and Philip, the two next had

their brains dashed out with clubs; Silvanus, the fourth, was murdered by being thrown from a precipice; and

the three younger sons, Alexander, Vitalis, and Martial, were beheaded. The mother was beheaded with the

same sword as the three latter.

Justin, the celebrated philosopher, fell a martyr in this persecution. He was a native of Neapolis, in Samaria,

and was born A.D. 103. Justin was a great lover of truth, and a universal scholar; he investigated the Stoic

and Peripatetic philosophy, and attempted the Pythagorean; but the behavior of our of its professors

disgusting him, he applied himself to the Platonic, in which he took great delight. About the year 133, when

he was thirty years of age, he became a convert to Christianity, and then, for the first time, perceived the real

nature of truth.

He wrote an elegant epistle to the Gentiles, and employed his talents in convincing the Jews of the truth of

the Christian rites; spending a great deal of time in travelling, until he took up his abode in Rome, and fixed

his habitation upon the Viminal mount.

He kept a public school, taught many who afterward became great men, and wrote a treatise to confuse

heresies of all kinds. As the pagans began to treat the Christians with great severity, Justin wrote his first

apology in their favor. This piece displays great learning and genius, and occasioned the emperor to publish

an edict in favor of the Christians.

Soon after, he entered into frequent contests with Crescens, a person of a vicious life and conversation, but a

celebrated cynic philosopher; and his arguments appeared so powerful, yet disgusting to the cynic, that he

resolved on, and in the sequel accomplished, his destruction.

The second apology of Justin, upon certain severities, gave Crescens the cynic an opportunity of prejudicing

the emperor against the writer of it; upon which Justin, and six of his companions, were apprehended. Being

commanded to sacrifice to the pagan idols, they refused, and were condemned to be scourged, and then

beheaded; which sentence was executed with all imaginable severity.

Several were beheaded for refusing to sacrifice to the image of Jupiter; in particular Concordus, a deacon of

the city of Spolito.

Some of the restless northern nations having risen in arms against Rome, the emperor marched to encounter

them. He was, however, drawn into an ambuscade, and dreaded the loss of his whole army. Enveloped with

mountains, surrounded by enemies, and perishing with thirst, the pagan deities were invoked in vain; when

the men belonging to the militine, or thundering legion, who were all Christians, were commanded to call

upon their God for succor. A miraculous deliverance immediately ensued; a prodigious quantity of rain fell,

which, being caught by the men, and filling their dykes, afforded a sudden and astonishing relief. It appears

that the storm which miraculously flashed in the face of the enemy so intimidated them, that part deserted to

the Roman army; the rest were defeated, and the revolted provinces entirely recovered.

This affair occasioned the persecution to subside for some time, at least in those parts immediately under the

inspection of the emperor; but we find that it soon after raged in France, particularly at Lyons, where the

tortures to which many of the Christians were put, almost exceed the powers of description.

The principal of these martyrs were Vetius Agathus, a young man; Blandina, a Christian lady, of a weak

constitution; Sanctus, a deacon of Vienna; red hot plates of brass were placed upon the tenderest parts of his

body; Biblias, a weak woman, once an apostate. Attalus, of Pergamus; and Pothinus, the venerable bishop of

Lyons, who was ninety years of age. Blandina, on the day when she and the three other champions were first

brought into the amphitheater, she was suspended on a piece of wood fixed in the ground, and exposed as

food for the wild beasts; at which time, by her earnest prayers, she encouraged others. But none of the wild

beasts would touch her, so that she was remanded to prison. When she was again produced for the third and

last time, she was accompanied by Ponticus, a youth of fifteen, and the constancy of their faith so enraged

the multitude that neither the sex of the one nor the youth of the other were respected, being exposed to all

manner of punishments and tortures. Being strengthened by Blandina, he persevered unto death; and she,

after enduring all the torments heretofore mentioned, was at length slain with the sword.

When the Christians, upon these occasions, received martyrdom, they were ornamented, and crowned with

garlands of flowers; for which they, in heaven, received eternal crowns of glory.

It has been said that the lives of the early Christians consisted of "persecution above ground and prayer

below ground." Their lives are expressed by the Coliseum and the catacombs. Beneath Rome are the

excavations which we call the catacombs, whivch were at once temples and tombs. The early Church of

Rome might well be called the Church of the Catacombs. There are some sixty catacombs near Rome, in

which some six hundred miles of galleries have been traced, and these are not all. These galleries are about

eight feet high and from three to five feet wide, containing on either side several rows of long, low,

horizontal recesses, one above another like berths in a ship. In these the dead bodies were placed and the

front closed, either by a single marble slab or several great tiles laid in mortar. On these slabs or tiles,

epitaphs or symbols are graved or painted. Both pagans and Christians buried their dead in these catacombs.

When the Christian graves have been opened the skeletons tell their own terrible tale. Heads are found

severed from the body, ribs and shoulder blades are broken, bones are often calcined from fire. But despite

the awful story of persecution that we may read here, the inscriptions breathe forth peace and joy and

triumph. Here are a few:

"Here lies Marcia, put to rest in a dream of peace."

"Lawrence to his sweetest son, borne away of angels."

"Victorious in peace and in Christ."

"Being called away, he went in peace."

Remember when reading these inscriptions the story the skeletons tell of persecution, of torture, and of fire.

But the full force of these epitaphs is seen when we contrast them with the pagan epitaphs, such as:

"Live for the present hour, since we are sure of nothing else."

"I lift my hands against the gods who took me away at the age of twenty though I had done no harm."

"Once I was not. Now I am not. I know nothing about it, and it is no concern of mine."

"Traveler, curse me not as you pass, for I am in darkness and cannot answer."

The most frequent Christian symbols on the walls of the catacombs, are, the good shepherd with the lamb on

his shoulder, a ship under full sail, harps, anchors, crowns, vines, and above all the fish.

The Fifth Persecution, Commencing with Severus, A.D. 192

Severus, having been recovered from a severe fit of sickness by a Christian, became a great favorer of the

Christians in general; but the prejudice and fury of the ignorant multitude prevailing, obsolete laws were put

in execution against the Christians. The progress of Christianity alarmed the pagans, and they revived the

stale calumny of placing accidental misfortunes to the account of its professors, A.D. 192.

But, though persecuting malice raged, yet the Gospel shone with resplendent brightness; and, firm as an

impregnable rock, withstood the attacks of its boisterous enemies with success. Tertullian, who lived in this

age, informs us that if the Christians had collectively withdrawn themselves from the Roman territories, the

empire would have been greatly depopulated.

Victor, bishop of Rome, suffered martyrdom in the first year of the third century, A.D. 201. Leonidus, the

father of the celebrated Origen, was beheaded for being a Christian. Many of Origen's hearers likewise

suffered martyrdom; particularly two brothers, named Plutarchus and Serenus; another Serenus, Heron, and

Heraclides, were beheaded. Rhais had boiled pitch poured upon her head, and was then burnt, as was

Marcella her mother. Potainiena, the sister of Rhais, was executed in the same manner as Rhais had been; but

Basilides, an officer belonging to the army, and ordered to attend her execution, became her convert.

Basilides being, as an officer, required to take a certain oath, refused, saying, that he could not swear by the

Roman idols, as he was a Christian. Struck with surpsie, the people could not, at first, believe what they

heard; but he had no sooner confirmed the same, than he was dragged before the judge, committed to prison,

and speedily afterward beheaded.

Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons, was born in Greece, and received both a polite and a Christian education. It is

generally supposed that the account of the persecutions at Lyons was written by himself. He succeeded the

martyr Pothinus as bishop of Lyons, and ruled his diocese with great propriety; he was a zealous opposer of

heresies in general, and, about A.D. 187, he wrote a celebrated tract against heresy. Victor, the bishop of

Rome, wanting to impose the keeping of Easter there, in preference to other places, it occasioned some

disorders among the Christians. In particular, Irenaeus wrote him a synodical epistle, in the name of the

Gallic churches. This zeal, in favor of Christianity, pointed him out as an object of resentment to the

emperor; and in A.D. 202, he was beheaded.

The persecutions now extending to Africa, many were martyred in that quarter of the globe; the most

particular of whom we shall mention.

Perpetua, a married lady, of about twenty-two years. Those who suffered with her were, Felicitas, a married

lady, big with child at the time of her being apprehended, and Revocatus, catechumen of Carthage, and a

slave. The names of the other prisoners, destined to suffer upon this occasion, were Saturninus, Secundulus,

and Satur. On the day appointed for their execution, they were led to the amphitheater. Satur, Saturninus, and

Revocatus were ordered to run the gauntlet between the hunters, or such as had the care of the wild beasts.

The hunters being drawn up in two ranks, they ran between, and were severely lashed as they passed.

Felicitas and Perpetua were stripped, in order to be thrown to a mad bull, which made his first attack upon

Perpetua, and stunned her; he then darted at Felicitas, and gored her dreadfully; but not killing them, the

executioner did that office with a sword. Revocatus and Satur were destroyed by wild beasts; Saturninus was

beheaded; and Secundulus died in prison. These executions were in the 205, on the eighth day of March.

Speratus and twelve others were likewise beheaded; as was Andocles in France. Asclepiades, bishop of

Antioch, suffered many tortures, but his life was spared.

Cecilia, a young lady of good family in Rome, was married to a gentleman named Valerian. She converted

her husband and brother, who were beheaded; and the maximus, or officer, who led them to execution,

becoming their convert, suffered the same fate. The lady was placed naked in a scalding bath, and having

continued there a considerable time, her head was struck off with a sword, A.D. 222.

Calistus, bishop of Rome, was martyred, A.D. 224; but the manner of his death is not recorded; and Urban,

bishop of Rome, met the same fate A.D. 232.

The Sixth Persecution, Under Maximus, A.D. 235

A.D. 235, was in the time of Maximinus. In Cappadocia, the president, Seremianus, did all he could to

exterminate the Christians from that province.

The principal persons who perished under this reign were Pontianus, bishop of Rome; Anteros, a Grecian, his

successor, who gave offence to the government by collecting the acts of the martyrs, Pammachius and

Quiritus, Roman senators, with all their families, and many other Christians; Simplicius, senator;

Calepodius, a Christian minister, thrown into the Tyber; Martina, a noble and beautiful virgin; and

Hippolitus, a Christian prelate, tied to a wild horse, and dragged until he expired.

During this persecution, raised by Maximinus, numberless Christians were slain without trial, and buried

indiscriminately in heaps, sometimes fifty or sixty being cast into a pit together, without the least decency.

The tyrant Maximinus dying, A.D. 238, was succeeded by Gordian, during whose reign, and that of his

successor Philip, the Church was free from persecution for the space of more than ten years; but in A.D. 249,

a violent persecution broke out in Alexandria, at the instigation of a pagan priest, without the knowledge of

the emperor.

The Seventh Persecution, Under Decius, A.D. 249

This was occasioned partly by the hatred he bore to his predecessor Philip, who was deemed a Christian and

was partly by his jealousy concerning the amazing increase of Christianity; for the heathen temples began to

be forsaken, and the Christian churches thronged.

These reasons stimulated Decius to attempt the very extirpation of the name of Christian; and it was

unfortunate for the Gospel, that many errors had, about this time, crept into the Church: the Christians were

at variance with each other; self-interest divided those whom social love ought to have united; and the

virulence of pride occasioned a variety of factions.

The heathens in general were ambitious to enforce the imperial decrees upon this occasion, and looked upon

the murder of a Christian as a merit to themselves. The martyrs, upon this occasion, were innumerable; but

the principal we shall give some account of.

Fabian, the bishop of Rome, was the first person of eminence who felt the severity of this persecution. The

deceased emperor, Philip, had, on account of his integrity, committed his treasure to the care of this good

man. But Decius, not finding as much as his avarice made him expect, determined to wreak his vengeance on

the good prelate. He was accordingly seized; and on January 20, A.D. 250, he suffered decapitation.

Julian, a native of Cilicia, as we are informed by St.

Chrysostom, was seized upon for being a Christian. He was put into a leather bag, together with a number of

serpents and scorpions, and in that condition thrown into the sea.

Peter, a young man, amiable for the superior qualities of his body and mind, was beheaded for refusing to

sacrifice to Venus. He said, "I am astonished you should sacrifice to an infamous woman, whose

debaucheries even your own historians record, and whose life consisted of such actions as your laws would

punish. No, I shall offer the true God the acceptable sacrifice of praises and prayers." Optimus, the proconsul

of Asia, on hearing this, ordered the prisoner to be stretched upon a wheel, by which all his bones were

broken, and then he was sent to be beheaded.

Nichomachus, being brought before the proconsul as a Christian, was ordered to sacrifice to the pagan idols.

Nichomachus replied, "I cannot pay that respect to devils, which is only due to the Almighty." This speech

so much enraged the proconsul that Nichomachus was put to the rack. After enduring the torments for a time,

he recanted; but scarcely had he given this proof of his frailty, than he fell into the greatest agonies, dropped

down on the ground, and expired immediately.

Denisa, a young woman of only sixteen years of age, who beheld this terrible judgment, suddenly exclaimed,

"O unhappy wretch, why would you buy a moment's ease at the expense of a miserable eternity!" Optimus,

hearing this, called to her, and Denisa avowing herself to be a Christian, she was beheaded, by his order,

soon after.

Andrew and Paul, two companions of Nichomachus, the martyr, A.D. 251, suffered martyrdom by stoning,

and expired, calling on their blessed Redeemer.

Alexander and Epimachus, of Alexandria, were apprehended for being Christians: and, confessing the

accusation, were beat with staves, torn with hooks, and at length burnt in the fire; and we are informed, in a

fragment preserved by Eusebius, that four female martyrs suffered on the same day, and at the same place,

but not in the same manner; for these were beheaded.

Lucian and Marcian, two wicked pagans, though skilful magicians, becoming converts to Christianity, to

make amends for their former errors, lived the lives of hermits, and subsisted upon bread and water only.

After some time spent in this manner, they became zealous preachers, and made many converts. The

persecution, however, raging at this time, they were seized upon, and carried before Sabinus, the governor of

Bithynia. On being asked by what authority they took upon themselves to preach, Lucian answered, 'That the

laws of charity and humanity obliged all men to endeavor the conversion of their neighbors, and to do

everything in their power to rescue them from the snares of the devil.'

Lucian having answered in this manner, Marcian said, "Their conversion was by the same grace which was

given to St. Paul, who, from a zealous persecutor of the Church, became a preacher of the Gospel."

The proconsul, finding that he could not prevail with them to renounce their faith, condemned them to be

burnt alive, which sentence was soon after executed.

Trypho and Respicius, two eminent men, were seized as Christians, and imprisoned at Nice. Their feet were

pierced with nails; they were dragged through the streets, scourged, torn with iron hooks, scorched with

lighted torches, and at length beheaded, February 1, A.D. 251.

Agatha, a Sicilian lady, was not more remarkable for her personal and acquired endowments, than her piety;

her beauty was such, that Quintian, governor of Sicily, became enamored of her, and made many attempts

upon her chastity without success. In order to gratify his passions with the greater conveniency, he put the

virtuous lady into the hands of Aphrodica, a very infamous and licentious woman. This wretch tried every

artifice to win her to the desired prostitution; but found all her efforts were vain; for her chastity was

impregnable, and she well knew that virtue alone could procure true happiness. Aphrodica acquainted

Quintian with the inefficacy of her endeavors, who, enaged to be foiled in his designs, changed his lust into

resentment. On her confessing that she was a Christian, he determined to gratify his revenge, as he could not

his passion. Pursuant to his orders, she was scourged, burnt with red-hot irons, and torn with sharp hooks.

Having borne these torments with admirable fortitude, she was next laid naked upon live coals, intermingled

with glass, and then being carried back to prison, she there expired on February 5, 251.

Cyril, bishop of Gortyna, was seized by order of Lucius, the governor of that place, who, nevertheless,

exhorted him to obey the imperial mandate, perform the sacrifices, and save his venerable person from

destruction; for he was now eighty-four years of age. The good prelate replied that as he had long taught

others to save their souls, he should only think now of his own salvation. The worthy prelate heard his fiery

sentence without emotion, walked cheerfully to the place of execution, and underwent his martyrdom with

great fortitude.

The persecution raged in no place more than the Island of Crete; for the governor, being exceedingly active

in executing the imperial decrees, that place streamed with pious blood.

Babylas, a Christian of a liberal education, became bishop of Antioch, A.D. 237, on the demise of Zebinus.

He acted with inimitable zeal, and governed the Church with admirable prudence during the most

tempestuous times.

The first misfortune that happened to Antioch during his mission, was the siege of it by Sapor, king of

Persia; who, having overrun all Syria, took and plundered this city among others, and used the Christian

inhabitants with greater severity than the rest, but was soon totally defeated by Gordian.

After Gordian's death, in the reign of Decius, that emperor came to Antioch, where, having a desire to visit

an assembly of Christians, Babylas opposed him, and absolutely refused to let him come in. The emperor

dissembled his anger at that time; but soon sending for the bishop, he sharply reproved him for his insolence,

and then ordered him to sacrifice to the pagan deities as an expiation for his ofence. This being refused, he

was committed to prison, loaded with chains, treated with great severities, and then beheaded, together with

three young men who had been his pupils. A.D. 251.

Alexander, bishop of Jerusalem, about this time was cast into prison on account of his religion, where he

died through the severity of his confinement.

Julianus, an old man, lame with the gout, and Cronion, another Christian, were bound on the backs of

camels, severely scourged, and then thrown into a fire and consumed. Also forty virgins, at Antioch, after

being imprisoned, and scourged, were burnt.

In the year of our Lord 251, the emperor Decius having erected a pagan temple at Ephesus, he commanded

all who were in that city to sacrifice to the idols. This order was nobly refused by seven of his own soldiers,

viz. Maximianus, Martianus, Joannes, Malchus, Dionysius, Seraion, and Constantinus. The emperor wishing

to win these soldiers to renounce their faith by his entreaties and lenity, gave them a considerable respite

until he returned from an expedition. During the emperor's absence, they escaped, and hid themselves in a

cavern; which the emperor being informed of at his return, the mouth of the cave was closed up, and they all

perished with hunger.

Theodora, a beautiful young lady of Antioch, on refusing to sacrifice to the Roman idols, was condemned to

the stews, that her virtue might be sacrificed to the brutality of lust. Didymus, a Christian, disguised himself

in the habit of a Roman soldier, went to the house, informed Theodora who he was, and advised her to make

her escape in his clothes. This being effected, and a man found in the brothel instead of a beautiful lady,

Didymus was taken before the president, to whom confessing the truth, and owning that he was a Christian

the sentence of death was immediately pronounced against him. Theodora, hearing that her deliverer was

likely to suffer, came to the judge, threw herself at his feet, and begged that the sentence might fall on her as

the guilty person; but, deaf to the cries of the innocent, and insensible to the calls of justice, the inflexible

judge condemned both; when they were executed accordingly, being first beheaded, and their bodies

afterward burnt.

Secundianus, having been accused as a Christian, was conveyed to prison by some soldiers. On the way,

Verianus and Marcellinus said, "Where are you carrying the innocent?" This interrogatory occasioned them

to be seized, and all three, after having been tortured, were hanged and decapitated.

Origen, the celebrated presbyter and catechist of Alexandria, at the age of sixty-four, was seized, thrown into

a loathsome prison, laden with fetters, his feet placed in the stocks, and his legs extended to the utmost for

several successive days. He was threatened with fire, and tormented by every lingering means the most

infernal imaginations could suggest. During this cruel temporizing, the emperor Decius died, and Gallus,

who succeeded him, engaging in a war with the Goths, the Christians met with a respite. In this interim,

Origen obtained his enlargement, and, retiring to Tyre, he there remained until his death, which happened

when he was in the sixty-ninth year of his age.

Gallus, the emperor, having concluded his wars, a plague broke out in the empire: sacrifices to the pagan

deities were ordered by the emperor, and persecutions spread from the interior to the extreme parts of the

empire, and many fell martyrs to the impetuosity of the rabble, as well as the prejudice of the magistrates.

Among these were Cornelius, the Christian bishop of Rome, and Lucius, his successor, in 253.

Most of the errors which crept into the Church at this time arose from placing human reason in competition

with revelation; but the fallacy of such arguments being proved by the most able divines, the opinions they

had created vanished away like the stars before the sun.

The Eighth Persecution, Under Valerian, A.D. 257

Began under Valerian, in the month of April, 257, and continued for three years and six months. The martyrs

that fell in this persecution were innumerable, and their tortures and deaths as various and painful. The most

eminent martyrs were the following, though neither rank, sex, nor age were regarded.

Rufina and Secunda were two beautiful and accomplished ladies, daughters of Asterius, a gentleman of

eminence in Rome. Rufina, the elder, was designed in marriage for Armentarius, a young nobleman;

Secunda, the younger, for Verinus, a person of rank and opulence. The suitors, at the time of the

persecution's commencing, were both Christians; but when danger appeared, to save their fortunes, they

renounced their faith. They took great pains to persuade the ladies to do the same, but, disappointed in their

purpose, the lovers were base enough to inform against the ladies, who, being apprehended as Christians,

were brought before Junius Donatus, governor of Rome, where, A.D. 257, they sealed their martyrdom with

their blood.

Stephen, bishop of Rome, was beheaded in the same year, and about that time Saturninus, the pious orthodox

bishop of Toulouse, refusing to sacrifice to idols, was treated with all the barbarous indignities imaginable,

and fastened by the feet to the tail of a bull. Upon a signal given, the enraged animal was driven down the

steps of the temple, by which the worthy martyr's brains were dashed out.

Sextus succeeded Stephen as bishop of Rome. He is supposed to have been a Greek by birth or by extraction,

and had for some time served in the capacity of a deacon under Stephen. His great fidelity, singular wisdom,

and uncommon courage distinguished him upon many occasions; and the happy conclusion of a controversy

with some heretics is generally ascribed to his piety and prudence. In the year 258, Marcianus, who had the

management of the Roman government, procured an order from the emperor Valerian, to put to death all the

Christian clergy in Rome, and hence the bishop with six of his deacons, suffered martyrdom in 258.

Let us draw near to the fire of martyred Lawrence, that our cold hearts may be warmed thereby. The

merciless tyrant, understanding him to be not only a minister of the sacraments, but a distributor also of the

Church riches, promised to himself a double prey, by the apprehension of one soul. First, with the rake of

avarice to scrape to himself the treasure of poor Christians; then with the fiery fork of tyranny, so to toss and

turmoil them, that they should wax weary of their profession. With furious face and cruel countenance, the

greedy wolf demanded where this Lawrence had bestowed the substance of the Church: who, craving three

days' respite, promised to declare where the treasure might be had. In the meantime, he caused a good

number of poor Christians to be congregated. So, when the day of his answer was come, the persecutor

strictly charged him to stand to his promise. Then valiant Lawrence, stretching out his arms over the poor,

said: "These are the precious treasure of the Church; these are the treasure indeed, in whom the faith of

Christ reigneth, in whom Jesus Christ hath His mansion-place. What more precious jewels can Christ have,

than those in whom He hath promised to dwell? For so it is written, 'I was an hungered, and ye gave me

meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in.' And again, 'Inasmuch as ye

have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.' What greater riches can

Christ our Master possess, than the poor people in whom He loveth to be seen?"

O, what tongue is able to express the fury and madness of the tyrant's heart! Now he stamped, he stared, he

ramped, he fared as one out of his wits: his eyes like fire glowed, his mouth like a boar formed, his teeth like

a hellhound grinned. Now, not a reasonable man, but a roaring lion, he might be called.

"Kindle the fire (he cried)--of wood make no spare. Hath this villain deluded the emperor? Away with him,

away with him: whip him with scourges, jerk him with rods, buffet him with fists, brain him with clubs.

Jesteth the traitor with the emperor? Pinch him with fiery tongs, gird him with burning plates, bring out the

strongest chains, and the fire-forks, and the grated bed of iron: on the fire with it; bind the rebel hand and

foot; and when the bed is fire-hot, on with him: roast him, broil him, toss him, turn him: on pain of our high

displeasure do every man his office, O ye tormentors."

The word was no sooner spoken, but all was done. After many cruel handlings, this meek lamb was laid, I

will not say on his fiery bed of iron, but on his soft bed of down. So mightily God wrought with his martyr

Lawrence, so miraculously God tempered His element the fire; that it became not a bed of consuming pain,

but a pallet of nourishing rest.

In Africa the persecution raged with peculiar violence; many thousands received the crown of martyrdom,

among whom the following were the most distinguished characters:

Cyprian, bishop of Carthage, an eminent prelate, and a pious ornament of the Church. The brightness of his

genius was tempered by the solidity of his judgment; and with all the accomplishments of the gentleman, he

blended the virtues of a Christian. His doctrines were orthodox and pure; his language easy and elegant; and

his manners graceful and winning: in fine, he was both the pious and polite preacher. In his youth he was

educated in the principles of Gentilism, and having a considerable fortune, he lived in the very extravagance

of splendor, and all the dignity of pomp.

About the year 246, Coecilius, a Christian minister of Carthage, became the happy instrument of Cyprian's

conversion: on which account, and for the great love that he always afterward bore for the author of his

conversion, he was termed Coecilius Cyprian. Previous to his baptism, he studied the Scriptures with care

and being struck with the beauties of the truths they contained, he determined to practise the virtues therein

recommended. Subsequent to his baptism, he sold his estate, distributed the money among the poor, dressed

himself in plain attire, and commenced a life of austerity. He was soon after made a presbyter; and, being

greatly admired for his virtues and works, on the death of Donatus, in A.D. 248, he was almost unanimously

elected bishop of Carthage.

Cyprian's care not only extended over Carthage, but to Numidia and Mauritania. In all his transactions he

took great care to ask the advice of his clergy, knowing that unanimity alone could be of service to the

Church, this being one of his maxims, "That the bishop was in the church, and the church in the bishop; so

that unity can only be preserved by a close connexion between the pastor and his flock."

In A.D. 250, Cyprian was publicly proscribed by the emperor Decius, under the appellation of Coecilius

Cyprian, bishop of the Christrians; and the universal cry of the pagans was, "Cyprian to the lions, Cyprian to

the beasts." The bishop, however, withdrew from the rage of the populace, and his effects were immediately

confiscated. During his retirement, he wrote thirty pious and elegant letters to his flock; but several schisms

that then crept into the Church, gave him great uneasiness. The rigor of the persecution abating, he returned

to Carthage, and did everything in his power to expunge erroneous opinions. A terrible plague breaking out

in Carthage, it was as usual, laid to the charge of the Christians; and the magistrates began to persecute

accordingly, which occasioned an epistle from them to Cyprian, in answer to which he vindicates the cause

of Christianity. A.D. 257, Cyprian was brought before the proconsul Aspasius Paturnus, who exiled him to a

little city on the Lybian sea. On the death of this proconsul, he returned to Carthage, but was soon after

seized, and carried before the new governor, who condemned him to be beheaded; which sentence was

executed on the fourteenth of September, A.D. 258.

The disciples of Cyprian, martyred in this persecution, were Lucius, Flavian, Victoricus, Remus, Montanus,

Julian, Primelus, and Donatian.

At Utica, a most terrible tragedy was exhibited: three hundred Christians were, by the orders of the

proconsul, placed round a burning limekiln. A pan of coals and incense being prepared, they were

commanded either to sacrifice to Jupiter, or to be thrown into the kiln. Unanimously refusing, they bravely

jumped into the pit, and were immediately suffocated.

Fructuosus, bishop of Tarragon, in Spain, and his two deacons, Augurius and Eulogius, were burnt for being


Alexander, Malchus, and Priscus, three Christians of Palestine, with a woman of the same place, voluntarily

accused themselves of being Christians; on which account they were sentenced to be devoured by tigers,

which sentence was executed accordingly.

Maxima, Donatilla, and Secunda, three virgins of Tuburga, had gall and vinegar given them to drink, were

then severely scourged, tormented on a gibbet, rubbed with lime, scorched on a gridiron, worried by wild

beasts, and at length beheaded.

It is here proper to take notice of the singular but miserable fate of the emperor Valerian, who had so long

and so terribly persecuted the Christians. This tyrant, by a stretagem, was taken prisoner by Sapor, emperor

of Persia, who carried him into his own country, and there treated him with the most unexampled indignity,

making him kneel down as the meanest slave, and treading upon him as a footstool when he mounted his

horse. After having kept him for the space of seven years in this abject state of slavery, he caused his eyes to

be put out, though he was then eighty-three years of age. This not satiating his desire of revenge, he soon

after ordered his body to be flayed alive, and rubbed with salt, under which torments he expired; and thus fell

one of the most tyrannical emperors of Rome, and one of the greatest persecutors of the Christians.

A.D. 260, Gallienus, the son of Valerian, succeeded him, and during his reign (a few martyrs excepted) the

Church enjoyed peace for some years.

The Ninth Persecution Under Aurelian, A.D. 274

The principal sufferers were: Felix, bishop of Rome. This prelate was advanced to the Roman see in 274. He

was the first martyr to Aurelian's petulancy, being beheaded on the twenty-second of December, in the same


Agapetus, a young gentleman, who sold his estate, and gave the money to the poor, was seized as a

Christian, tortured, and then beheaded at Praeneste, a city within a day's journey of Rome.

These are the only martyrs left upon record during this reign, as it was soon put to a stop by the emperor's

being murdered by his own domestics, at Byzantium.

Aurelian was succeeded by Tacitus, who was followed by Probus, as the latter was by Carus: this emperor

being killed by a thunder storm, his sons, Carnious and Numerian, succeeded him, and during all these reigns

the Church had peace.

Diocletian mounted the imperial throne, A.D. 284; at first he showed great favor to the Christians. In the year

286, he associated Maximian with him in the empire; and some Christians were put to death before any

general persecution broke out. Among these were Felician and Primus, two brothers.

Marcus and Marcellianus were twins, natives of Rome, and of noble descent. Their parents were heathens,

but the tutors, to whom the education of the children was intrusted, brought them up as Christians. Their

constancy at length subdued those who wished them to become pagans, and their parents and whole family

became converts to a faith they had before reprobated. They were martyred by being tied to posts, and

having their feet pierced with nails. After remaining in this situation for a day and a night, their sufferings

were put an end to by thrusting lances through their bodies.

Zoe, the wife of the jailer, who had the care of the before-mentioned martyrs, was also converted by them,

and hung upon a tree, with a fire of straw lighted under her. When her body was taken down, it was thrown

into a river, with a large stone tied to it, in order to sink it.

In the year of Christ 286, a most remarkable affair occurred; a legion of soldiers, consisting of six thousand

six hundred and sixty-six men, contained none but Christians. This legion was called the Theban Legion,

because the men had been raised in Thebias: they were quartered in the east until the emperor Maximian

ordered them to march to Gaul, to assist him against the rebels of Burgundy. They passed the Alps into Gaul,

under the command of Mauritius, Candidus, and Exupernis, their worthy commanders, and at length joined

the emperor. Maximian, about this time, ordered a general sacrifice, at which the whole army was to assist;

and likewise he commanded that they should take the oath of allegiance and swear, at the saame time, to

assist in the extirpation of Christianity in Gaul. Alarmed at these orders, each individual of the Theban

Legion absolutely refused either to sacrifice or take the oaths prescribed. This so greatly enraged Maximian,

that he ordered the legion to be decimated, that is, every tenth man to be selected from the rest, and put to the

sword. This bloody order having been put in execution, those who remained alive were still inflexible, when

a second decimation took place, and every tenth man of those living was put to death. This second severity

made no more impression than the first had done; the soldiers preserved their fortitude and their principles,

but by the advice of their officers they drew up a loyal remonstrance to the emperor. This, it might have been

presumed, would have softened the emperor, but it had a contrary effect: for, enraged at their perseverance

and unanimity, he commanded that the whole legion should be put to death, which was accordingly executed

by the other troops, who cut them to pieces with their swords, September 22, 286.

Alban, from whom St. Alban's, in Hertfordshire, received its name, was the first British martyr. Great Britain

had received the Gospel of Christ from Lucius, the first Christian king, but did not suffer from the rage of

persecution for many years after. He was originally a pagan, but converted by a Christian ecclesiastic, named

Amphibalus, whom he sheltered on account of his religion. The enemies of Amphibalus, having intelligence

of the place where he was secreted, came to the house of Alban; in order to facilitate his escape, when the

soldiers came, he offered himself up as the person they were seeking for. The deceit being detected, the

governor ordered him to be scourged, and then he was sentenced to be beheaded, June 22, A.D. 287.

The venerable Bede assures us, that, upon this occasion, the executioner suddenly became a convert to

Christianity, and entreated permission to die for Alban, or with him. Obtaining the latter request, they were

beheaded by a soldier, who voluntarily undertook the task of executioner. This happened on the twentysecond

of June, A.D. 287, at Verulam, now St. Alban's, in Hertfordshire, where a magnificent church was

erected to his memory about the time of Constantine the Great. The edifice, being destroyed in the Saxon

wars, was rebuilt by Offa, king of Mercia, and a monastery erected adjoining to it, some remains of which

are still visible, and the church is a noble Gothic structure.

Faith, a Christian female, of Acquitain, in France, was ordered to be broiled upon a gridiron, and then

beheaded; A.D. 287.

Quintin was a Christian, and a native of Rome, but determined to attempt the propagation of the Gospel in

Gaul, with one Lucian, they preached together in Amiens; after which Lucian went to Beaumaris, where he

was martyred. Quintin remained in Picardy, and was very zealous in his ministry. Being seized upon as a

Christian, he was stretched with pullies until his joints were dislocated; his body was then torn with wire

scourges, and boiling oil and pitch poured on his naked flesh; lighted torches were applied to his sides and

armpits; and after he had been thus tortured, he was remanded back to prison, and died of the barbarities he

had suffered, October 31, A.D. 287. His body was sunk in the Somme.

The Tenth Persecution, Under Diocletian, A.D. 303

Under the Roman emperors, commonly called the Era of the Martyrs, was occasioned partly by the

increasing number and luxury of the Christians, and the hatred of Galerius, the adopted son of Diocletian,

who, being stimulated by his mother, a bigoted pagan, never ceased persuading the emperor to enter upon the

persecution, until he had accomplished his purpose.

The fatal day fixed upon to commence the bloody work, was the twenty-third of February, A.D. 303, that

being the day in which the Terminalia were celebrated, and on which, as the cruel pagans boasted, they

hoped to put a termination to Christianity. On the appointed day, the persecution began in Nicomedia, on the

morning of which the prefect of that city repaired, with a great number of officers and assistants, to the

church of the Christians, where, having forced open the doors, they seized upon all the sacred books, and

committed them to the flames.

The whole of this transaction was in the presence of Diocletian and Galerius, who, not contented with

burning the books, had the church levelled with the ground. This was followed by a severe edict,

commanding the destruction of all other Christian churches and books; and an order soon succeeded, to

render Christians of all denomination outlaws.

The publication of this edict occasioned an immediate martyrdom, for a bold Christian not only tore it down

from the place to which it was affixed, but execrated the name of the emperor for his injustice. A provocation

like this was sufficient to call down pagan vengeance upon his head; he was accordingly seized, severely

tortured, and then burned alive.

All the Christians were apprehended and imprisoned; and Galerius privately ordered the imperial palace to

be set on fire, that the Christians might be charged as the incendiaries, and a plausible pretence given for

carrying on the persecution with the greater severities. A general sacrifice was commenced, which

occasioned various martyrdoms. No distinction was made of age or sex; the name of Christian was so

obnoxious to the pagans that all indiscriminately fell sacrifices to their opinions. Many houses were set on

fire, and whole Christian families perished in the flames; and others had stones fastened about their necks,

and being tied together were driven into the sea. The persecution became general in all the Roman provinces,

but more particularly in the east; and as it lasted ten years, it is impossible to ascertain the numbers martyred,

or to enumerate the various modes of martyrdom.

Racks, scourges, swords, daggers, crosses, poison, and famine, were made use of in various parts to dispatch

the Christians; and invention was exhausted to devise tortures against such as had no crime, but thinking

differently from the votaries of superstition.

A city of Phrygia, consisting entirely of Christians, was burnt, and all the inhabitants perished in the flames.

Tired with slaughter, at length, several governors of provinces represented to the imperial court, the

impropriety of such conduct. Hence many were respited from execution, but, though they were not put to

death, as much as possible was done to render their lives miserable, many of them having their ears cut off,

their noses slit, their right eyes put out, their limbs rendered useless by dreadful dislocations, and their flesh

seared in conspicuous places with red-hot irons.

It is necessary now to particularize the most conspicious persons who laid down their lives in martyrdom in

this bloody persecution.

Sebastian, a celebrated martyr, was born at Narbonne, in Gaul, instructed in the principles of Christianity at

Milan, and afterward became an officer of the emperor's guard at Rome. He remained a true Christian in the

midst of idolatry; unallured by the splendors of a court, untained by evil examples, and uncontaminated by

the hopes of preferment. Refusing to be a pagan, the emperor ordered him to be taken to a field near the city,

termed the Campus Martius, and there to be shot to death with arrows; which sentence was executed

accordingly. Some pious Christians coming to the place of execution, in order to give his body burial,

perceived signs of life in him, and immediately moving him to a place of security, they, in a short time

effected his recovery, and prepared him for a second martyrdom; for, as soon as he was able to go out, he

placed himself intentionally in the emperor's way as he was going to the temple, and reprehended him for his

various cruelties and unreasonable prejudices against Christianity. As soon as Diocletian had overcome his

surprise, he ordered Sebastian to be seized, and carried to a place near the palace, and beaten to death; and,

that the Christians should not either use means again to recover or bury his body, he ordered that it should be

thrown into the common sewer. Nevertheless, a Christian lady named Lucina, found means to remove it from

the sewer, and bury it in the catacombs, or repositories of the dead.

The Christians, about this time, upon mature consideration, thought it unlawful to bear arms under a heathen

emperor. Maximilian, the son of Fabius Victor, was the first beheaded under this regulation.

Vitus, a Sicilian of considerable family, was brought up a Christian; when his virtues increased with his

years, his constancy supported him under all afflictions, and his faith was superior to the most dangerous

perils. His father, Hylas, who was a pagan, finding that he had been instructed in the principles of

Christianity by the nurse who brought him up, used all his endeavors to bring him back to paganism, and at

length sacrificed his son to the idols, June 14, A.D. 303.

Victor was a Christian of a good family at Marseilles, in France; he spent a great part of the night in visiting

the afflicted, and confirming the weak; which pious work he could not, consistently with his own safety,

perform in the daytime; and his fortune he spent in relieving the distresses of poor Christians. He was at

length, however, seized by the emperor Maximian's decree, who ordered him to be bound, and dragged

through the streets. During the execution of this order, he was treated with all manner of cruelties and

indignities by the enraged populace. Remaining still inflexible, his courage was deemed obstinacy. Being by

order stretched upon the rack, he turned his eyes toward heaven, and prayed to God to endue him with

patience, after which he underwent the tortures with most admirable fortitude. After the executioners were

tired with inflicting torments on him, he was conveyed to a dungeon. In his confinement, he converted his

jailers, named Alexander, Felician, and Longinus. This affair coming to the ears of the emperor, he ordered

them immediately to be put to death, and the jailers were accordingly beheaded. Victor was then again put to

the rack, unmercifully beaten with batoons, and again sent to prison. Being a third time examined concerning

his religion, he persevered in his principles; a small altar was then brought, and he was commanded to offer

incense upon it immediately. Fired with indignation at the request, he boldly stepped forward, and with his

foot overthrew both altar and idol. This so enraged the emperor Maximian, who was present, that he ordered

the foot with which he had kicked the altar to be immediately cut off; and Victor was thrown into a mill, and

crushed to pieces with the stones, A.D. 303.

Maximus, governor of Cilicia, being at Tarsus, three Christians were brought before him; their names were

Tarachus, an aged man, Probus, and Andronicus. After repeated tortures and exhortations to recant, they, at

length, were ordered for execution.

Being brought to the amphitheater, several beasts were let loose upon them; but none of the animals, though

hungry, would touch them. The keeper then brought out a large bear, that had that very day destroyed three

men; but this voracious creature and a fierce lioness both refused to touch the prisoners. Finding the design

of destroying them by the means of wild beasts ineffectual, Maximus ordered them to be slain by the sword,

on October 11, A.D. 303.

Romanus, a native of Palestine, was deacon of the church of Caesarea at the time of the commencement of

Diocletian's persecution. Being condemned for his faith at Antioch, he was scourged, put to the rack, his

body torn with hooks, his flesh cut with knives, his face scarified, his teeth beaten from their sockets, and his

hair plucked up by the roots. Soon after he was ordered to be strangled, November 17, A.D. 303.

Susanna, the niece of Caius, bishop of Rome, was pressed by the emperor Diocletian to marry a noble pagan,

who was nearly related to him. Refusing the honor intended her, she was beheaded by the emperor's order.

Dorotheus, the high chamberlain of the household to Diocletian, was a Christian, and took great pains to

make converts. In his religious labors, he was joined by Gorgonius, another Christian, and one belonging to

the palace. They were first tortured and then strangled.

Peter, a eunuch belonging to the emperor, was a Christian of singular modesty and humility. He was laid on

a gridiron, and broiled over a slow fire until he expired.

Cyprian, known by the title of the magician, to distinguish him from Cyprian, bishop of Carthage, was a

native of Natioch. He received a liberal education in his youth, and particularly applied himself to astrology;

after which he traveled for improvement through Greece, Egypt, India, etc. In the course of time he became

acquainted with Justina, a young lady of Antioch, whose birth, beauty, and accomplishments, rendered her

the admiration of all who knew her. A pagan gentleman applied to Cyprian, to promote his suit with the

beautiful Justina; this he undertook, but soon himself became converted, burnt his books of astrology and

magic, received baptism, and felt animated with a powerful spirit of grace. The conversion of Cyprian had a

great effect on the pagan gentleman who paid his addresses to Justina, and he in a short time embraced

Christianity. During the persecutions of Diocletian, Cyprian and Justina were seized upon as Chrisitans, the

former was torn with pincers, and the latter chastised; and, after suffering other torments, both were


Eulalia, a Spanish lady of a Christian family, was remarkable in her youth for sweetness of temper, and

solidity of understanding seldom found in the capriciousness of juvenile years. Being apprehended as a

Christian, the magistrate attempted by the mildest means, to bring her over to paganism, but she ridiculed the

pagan deities with such asperity, that the judge, incensed at her behavior, ordered her to be tortured. Her

sides were accordingly torn by hooks, and her breasts burnt in the most shocking manner, until she expired

by the violence of the flames, December, A.D. 303.

In the year 304, when the persecution reached Spain, Dacian, the governor of Terragona, ordered Valerius

the bishop, and Vincent the deacon, to be seized, loaded with irons, and imprisoned. The prisoners being

firm in their resolution, Valerius was banished, and Vincent was racked, his limbs dislocated, his flesh torn

with hooks, and he was laid on a gridiron, which had not only a fire placed under it, but spikes at the top,

which ran into his flesh. These torments neither destroying him, nor changing his resolutions, he was

remanded to prison, and confined ina small, loathsome, dark dungeon, strewed with sharp flints, and pieces

of broken glass, where he died, January 22, 304. His body was thrown into the river.

The persecution of Diocletian began particularly to rage in A.D. 304, when many Christians were put to

cruel tortures and the most painful and ignominious deaths; the most eminent and paritcular of whom we

shall enumerate.

Saturninus, a priest of Albitina, a town of Africa, after being tortured, was remanded to prison, and there

starved to death. His four children, after being variously tormented, shared the same fate with their father.

Dativas, a noble Roman senator; Thelico, a pious Christian;

Victoria, a young lady of considerable family and fortune, with some others of less consideration, all auditors

of Saturninus, were tortured in a similar manner, and perished by the same means.

Agrape, Chionia, and Irene, three sisters, were seized upon at Thessalonica, when Diocletian's persecution

reached Greece. They were burnt, and received the crown of martyrdom in the flames, March 25, A.D. 304.

The governor, finding that he could make no impression on Irene, ordered her to be exposed naked in the

streets, which shameful order having been executed, a fire was kindled near the city wall, amidst whose

flames her spirit ascended beyond the reach of man's cruelty.

Agatho, a man of a pious turn of mind, with Cassice, Philippa, and Eutychia, were martyred about the same

time; but the particulars have not been transmitted to us.

Marcellinus, bishop of Rome, who succeeded Caius in that see, having strongly opposed paying divine

honors to Diocletian, suffered martyrdom, by a variety of tortures, in the year 324, conforting his soul until

he expired with the prospect of these glorious rewards it would receive by the tortures suffered in the body.

Victorius, Carpophorus, Severus, and Severianus, were brothers, and all four employed in places of great

trust and honor in the city of Rome. Having exclaimed against the worship of idols, they were apprehended,

and scourged, with the plumbetae, or scourges, to the ends of which were fastened leaden balls. This

punishment was exercised with such excess of cruelty that the pious brothers fell martyrs to its severity.

Timothy, a deacon of Mauritania, and Maura his wife, had not been united together by the bands of wedlock

above three weeks, when they were separated from each other by the persecution. Timothy, being

apprehended, as a Christian, was carried before Arrianus, the governor of Thebais, who, knowing that he had

the keeping of the Holy Scriptures, commanded him to deliver them up to be burnt; to which he answered,

"Had I children, I would sooner deliver them up to be sacrificed, than part with the Word of God." The

governor being much incensed at this reply, ordered his eyes to be put out, with red-hot irons, saying, "The

books shall at least be useless to you, for you shall not see to read them." His patience under the operation

was so great that the governor grew more exasperated; he, therefore, in order, if possible, to overcome his

fortitude, ordered him to be hung up by the feet, with a weight tied about his neck, and a gag in his mouth. In

this state, Maura his wife, tenderly urged him for her sake to recant; but, when the gag was taken out of his

mouth, instead of consenting to his wife's entreaties, he greatly blamed her mistaken love, and declared his

resolution of dying for the faith. The consequence was, that Maura resolved to imitate his courage and

fidelity and either to accompany or follow him to glory. The governor, after trying in vain to alter her

resolution, ordered her to be tortured, which was executed with great severity. After this, Timothy and Maura

were crucified near each other, A.D. 304.

Sabinus, bishop of Assisium, refusing to sacrifice to Jupiter, and pushing the idol from him, had his hand cut

off by the order of the governor of Tuscany. While in prison, he converted the governor and his family, all of

whom suffered martyrdom for the faith. Soon after their execution, Sabinus himself was scourged to death,

December, A.D. 304.

Tired with the farce of state and public business, the emperor Diocletian resigned the imperial diadem, and

was succeeded by Constantius and Galerius; the former a prince of the most mild and humane disposition

and the latter equally remarkable for his cruelty and tyranny. These divided the empire into two equal

governments, Galerius ruling in the east, and Constantius in the west; and the people in the two governments

felt the effects of the dispositions of the two emperors; for those in the west were governed in the mildest

manner, but such as resided in the east felt all the miseries of oppression and lengthened tortures.

Among the many martyred by the order of Galerius, we shall enumerate the most eminent.

Amphianus was a gentleman of eminence in Lucia, and a scholar of Eusebius; Julitta, a Lycaonian of royal

descent, but more celebrated for her virtues than noble blood. While on the rack, her child was killed before

her face. Julitta, of Cappadocia, was a lady of distinguished capacity, great virtue, and uncommon courage.

To complete the execution, Julitta had boiling pitch poured on her feet, her sides torn with hooks, and

received the conclusion of her martyrdom, by being beheaded, April 16, A.D. 305.

Hermolaus, a venerable and pious Christian, or a great age, and an intimate acquaintance of Panteleon's,

suffered martyrdom for the faith on the same day, and in the same manner as Panteleon.

Eustratius, secretary to the governor of Armina, was thrown into a fiery furnace for exhorting some

Christians who had been apprehended, to persevere in their faith.

Nicander and Marcian, two eminent Roman military officers, were apprehended on account of their faith. As

they were both men of great abilities in their profession, the utmost means were used to induce them to

renounce Christianity; but these endeavors being found ineffectual, they were beheaded.

In the kingdom of Naples, several martyrdoms took place, in particular, Januaries, bishop of Beneventum;

Sosius, deacon of Misene; Proculus, another deacon; Eutyches and Acutius, two laymen; Festus, a deacon;

and Desiderius, a reader; all, on account of being Christians, were condemned by the governor of Campania

to be devoured by the wild beasts. The savage animals, however, would not touch them, and so they were


Quirinus, bishop of Siscia, being carried before Matenius, the governor, was ordered to sacrifice to the pagan

deities, agreeably to the edicts of various Roman emperors. The governor, perceiving his constancy, sent him

to jail, and ordered him to be heavily ironed; flattering himself, that the hardships of a jail, some occasional

tortures and the weight of chains, might overcome his resolution. Being decided in his principles, he was sent

to Amantius, the principal governor of Pannonia, now Hungary, who loaded him with chains, and carried

him through the principal towns of the Danube, exposing him to ridicule wherever he went. Arriving at

length at Sabaria, and finding that Quirinus would not renounce his faith, he ordered him to be cast into a

river, with a stone fastened about his neck. This sentence being put into execution, Quirinus floated about for

some time, and, exhorting the people in the most pious terms, concluded his admonitions with this prayer: "It

is no new thing, O all-powerful Jesus, for Thee to stop the course of rivers, or to cause a man to walk upon

the water, as Thou didst Thy servant Peter; the people have already seen the proof of Thy power in me; grant

me now to lay down my life for Thy sake, O my God." On pronouncing the last words he immediately sank,

and died, June 4, A.D. 308. His body was afterwards taken up, and buried by some pious Christians.

Pamphilus, a native of Phoenicia, of a considerable family, was a man of such extensive learning that he was

called a second Origen. He was received into the body of the clergy at Caesarea, where he established a

public library and spent his time in the practice of every Christian virtue. He copied the greatest part of the

works of Origen with his own hand, and, assisted by Eusebius, gave a correct copy of the Old Testament,

which had suffered greatly by the ignorance or negligence of former transcribers. In the year 307, he was

apprehended, and suffered torture and martyrdom.

Marcellus, bishop of Rome, being banished on account of his faith, fell a martyr to the miseries he suffered

in exile, January 16, A.D. 310.

Peter, the sixteenth bishop of Alexandria, was martyred November 25, A.D. 311, by order of Maximus

Caesar, who reigned in the east.

Agnes, a virgin of only thirteen years of age, was beheaded for being a Christian; as was Serene, the empress

of Diocletian. Valentine, a priest, suffered the same fate at Rome; and Erasmus, a bishop, was martyred in


Soon after this the persecution abated in the middle parts of the empire, as well as in the west; and

Providence at length began to manifest vengeance on the persecutors. Maximian endeavored to corrupt his

daughter Fausta to murder Constantine her husband; which she discovered, and Constantine forced him to

choose his own death, when he preferred the ignominious death of hanging after being an emperor near

twenty years.

Constantine was the good and virtuous child of a good and virtuous father, born in Britain. His mother was

named Helena, daughter of King Coilus. He was a most bountiful and gracious prince, having a desire to

nourish learning and good arts, and did oftentimes use to read, write, and study himself. He had marvellous

good success and prosperous achieving of all things he took in hand, which then was (and truly) supposed to

proceed of this, for that he was so great a favorer of the Christian faith. Which faith when he had once

embraced, he did ever after most devoutly and religiously reverence.

Thus Constantine, sufficiently appointed with strength of men but especially with strength of God, entered

his journey coming towards Italy, which was about the last year of the persecution, A.D. 313. Maxentius,

understanding of the coming of Constantine, and trusting more to his devilish art of magic than to the good

will of his subjects, which he little deserved, durst not show himself out of the city, nor encounter him in the

open field, but with privy garrisons laid wait for him by the way in sundry straits, as he should come; with

whom Constantine had divers skirmishes, and by the power of the Lord did ever vanquish them and put them

to flight.

Notwithstanding, Constantine yet was in no great comfort, but in great care and dread in his mind

(approaching now near unto Rome) for the magical charms and sorceries of Maxentius, wherewith he had

vanquished before Severus, sent by Galerius against him. Wherefore, being in great doubt and perplexity in

himself, and revolving many things in his mind, what help he might have against the operations of his

charming, Constantine, in his journey drawing toward the city, and casting up his eyes many times to heaven,

in the south part, about the going down of the sun, saw a great brightness in heaven, appearing in the

similitude of a cross, giving this inscription, In hoc vince, that is, "In this overcome."

Eusebius Pamphilus doth witness that he had heard the said Constantine himself oftentimes report, and also

to swear this to be true and certain, which he did see with his own eyes in heaven, and also his soldiers about

him. At the sight whereof when he was greatly astonished, and consulting with his men upon the meaning

thereof, behold, in the night season in his sleep, Christ appeared to him with the sign of the same cross which

he had seen before, bidding him to make the figuration thereof, and to carry it in his wars before him, and so

should we have the victory.

Constantine so established the peace of the Church that for the space of a thousand years we read of no set

persecution against the Christians, unto the time of John Wickliffe.

So happy, so glorious was this victory of Constantine, surnamed the Great! For the joy and gladness

whereof, the citizens who had sent for him before, with exceeding triumph brought him into the city of

Rome, where he was most honorably received, and celebrated the space of seven days together; having,

moreover, in the market place, his image set up, holding in his right hand the sign of the cross, with this


"With this wholesome sign, the true token of fortitude, I have rescued and delivered our city from the yoke

of the tyrant."

We shall conclude our account of the tenth and last general persecution with the death of St. George, the

titular saint and patron of England. St. George was born in Cappadocia, of Christian parents; and giving

proofs of his courage, was promoted in the army of the emperor Diocletian. During the persecution, St.

George threw up his command, went boldly to the senate house, and avowed his being a Christian, taking

occasion at the same time to remonstrate against paganism, and point out the absurdity of worshipping idols.

This freedom so greatly provoked the senate that St. George was ordered to be tortured, and by the emperor's

orders was dragged through the streets, and beheaded the next day.

The legend of the dragon, which is associated with this martyr, is usually illustrated by representing St.

George seated upon a charging horse and transfixing the monster with his spear. This fiery dragon

symbolizes the devil, who was vanquished by St. George's steadfast faith in Christ, which remained

unshaken in spite of torture and death.

CHAPTER III - Persecutions of the Christians

in Persia

The Gospel having spread itself into Persia, the pagan priests, who worshipped the sun, were greatly

alarmed, and dreaded the loss of that influence they had hitherto maintained over the people's minds and

properties. Hence they thought it expedient to complain to the emperor that the Christians were enemies to

the state, and held a treasonable correspondence with the Romans, the great enemies of Persia.

The emperor Sapores, being naturally averse to Christianity, easily believed what was said against the

Christians, and gave orders to persecute them in all parts of his empire. On account of this mandate, many

eminent persons in the church and state fell martyrs to the ignorance and ferocity of the pagans.

Constantine the Great being informed of the persecutions in Persia, wrote a long letter to the Persian

monarch, in which he recounts the vengeance that had fallen on persecutors, and the great success that had

attended those who had refrained from persecuting the Christians.

Speaking of his victories over rival emperors of his own time, he said, "I subdued these solely by faith in

Christ; for which God was my helper, who gave me victory in battle, and made me triumph over my

enemies. He hath likewise so enlarged to me the bounds of the Roman Empire, that it extends from the

Western Ocean almost to the uttermost parts of the East: for this domain I neither offered sacrifices to the

ancient deities, nor made use of charm or divination; but only offered up prayers to the Almighty God, and

followed the cross of Christ. Rejoiced should I be if the throne of Persia found glory also, by embracing the

Christians: that so you with me, and they with you, may enjoy all happiness.

In consequence of this appeal, the persecution ended for the time, but it was renewed in later years when

another king succeeded to the throne of Persia.

Persecutions Under the Arian Heretics

The author of the Arian heresy was Arius, a native of Lybia, and a priest of Alexandria, who, in A.D. 318,

began to publish his errors. He was condemned by a council of Lybian and Egyptian bishops, and that

sentence was confirmed by the Council of Nice, A.D. 325. After the death of Constantine the Great, the

Arians found means to ingratiate themselves into the favor of the emperor Constantinus, his son and

successor in the east; and hence a persecution was raised against the orthodox bishops and clergy. The

celebrated Athanasius, and other bishops, were banished, and their sees filled with Arians.

In Egypt and Lybia, thirty bishops were martyred, and many other Christians cruelly tormented; and, A.D.

386, George, the Arian bishop of Alexandria, under the authority of the emperor, began a persecution in that

city and its environs, and carried it on with the most infernal severity. He was assisted in his diabolical

malice by Catophonius, governor of Egypt; Sebastian, general of the Egyptian forces;

Faustinus, the treasurer; and Heraclius, a Roman officer.

The persecutions now raged in such a manner that the clergy were driven from Alexandria, their churches

were shut, and the severities practiced by the Arian heretics were as great as those that had been practiced by

the pagan idolaters. If a man, accused of being a Christian, made his escape, then his whole family were

massacred, and his effects confiscated.

Persecution Under Julian the Apostate

This emperor was the son of Julius Constantius, and the nephew of Constantine the Great. He studied the

rudiments of grammar under the inspection of Mardonius, a eunuch, and a heathen of Constantinople. His

father sent him some time after to Nicomedia, to be instructed in the Christian religion, by the bishop of

Eusebius, his kinsman, but his principles were corrupted by the pernicious doctrines of Ecebolius the

rhetorician, and Maximus the magician.

Constantius, dying the year 361, Julian succeeded him, and had no sooner attained the imperial dignity than

he renounced Christianity and embraced paganism, which had for some years fallen into great disrepute.

Though he restored the idolatrous worship, he made no public edicts against Christianity. He recalled all

banished pagans, allowed the free exercise of religion to every sect, but deprived all Christians of offices at

court, in the magistracy, or in the army. He was chaste, temperate, vigilant, laborious, and pious; yet he

prohibited any Christian from keeping a school or public seminary of learning, and deprived all the Christian

clergy of the privileges granted them by Constantine the Great.

Biship Basil made himself first famous by his opposition to Arianism, which brought upon him the

vengeance of the Arian bishop of Constantinople; he equally opposed paganism. The emperor's agents in

vain tampered with Basil by means of promises, threats, and racks, he was firm in the faith, and remained in

prison to undergo some other sufferings, when the emperor came accidentally to Ancyra. Julian determined

to examine Basil himself, when that holy man being brought before him, the emperor did every thing in his

power to dissuade him from persevering in the faith. Basil not only continued as firm as ever, but, with a

prophetic spirit foretold the death of the emperor, and that he should be tormented in the other life. Enraged

at what he heard, Julian commanded that the body of Basil should be torn every day in seven different parts,

until his skin and flesh were entirely mangled. This inhuman sentence was executed with rigor, and the

martyr expired under its severities, on June 28, A.D. 362.

Donatus, bishop of Arezzo, and Hilarinus, a hermit, suffered about the same time; also Gordian, a Roman

magistrate. Artemius, commander in chief of the Roman forces in Egypt, being a Christian, was deprived of

his commission, then of his estate, and lastly of his head.

The persecution raged dreadfully about the latter end of the year 363; but, as many of the particulars have not

been handed down to us, it is necessary to remark in general, that in Palestine many were burnt alive, others

were dragged by their feet through the streets naked until they expired; some were scalded to death, many

stoned, and great numbers had their brains beaten out with clubs. In Alexandria, innumerable were the

martyrs who suffered by the sword, burning, crucifixion and stoning. In Arethusa, several were ripped open,

and corn being put into their bellies, swine were brought to feed therein, which, in devouring the grain,

likewise devoured the entrails of the martyrs, and in Thrace, Emilianus was burnt at a stake; and Domitius

murdered in a cave, whither he had fled for refuge.

The emperor, Julian the apostate, died of a wound which he received in his Persian expedition, A.D. 363, and

even while expiring, uttered the most horrid blasphemies. He was succeeded by Jovian, who restored peace

to the Church.

After the decease of Jovian, Valentinian succeeded to the empire, and associated to himself Valens, who had

the command in the east, and was an Arian and of an unrelenting and persecuting disposition.

Persecution of the Christians by the Goths and Vandals.

Many Scythian Goths having embraced Christianity about the time of Constantine the Great, the light of the

Gospel spread itself considerably in Scythia, though the two kings who ruled that country, and the majority

of the people continued pagans. Fritegern, king of the West Goths, was an ally to the Romans, but

Athanarich, king of the East Goths, was at war with them. The Christians, in the dominions of the former,

lived unmolested, but the latter, having been defeated by the Romans, wreaked his vengeance on his

Christian subjects, commencing his pagan injunctions in the year 370.

In religion the Goths were Arians, and called themselves Christians; therefore they destroyed all the statues

and temples of the heathen gods, but did no harm to the orthodox Christian churches. Alaric had all the

qualities of a great general. To the wild bravery of the Gothic barbarian he added the courage and skill of the

Roman soldier. He led his forces across the Alps into Italy, and although driven back for the time, returned

afterward with an irresistible force.

The Last Roman "Triumph"

After this fortunate victory over the Goths a "triumph," as it was called, was celebrated at Rome. For

hundreds of years successful generals had been awarded this great honor on their return from a victorious

campaign. Upon such occasions the city was given up for days to the marching of troops laden with spoils,

and who dragged after them prisoners of war, among whom were often captive kings and conquered

generals. This was to be the last Roman triumph, for it celebrated the last Roman victory. Although it had

been won by Stilicho, the general, it was the boy emperor, Honorius, who took the credit, entering Rome in

the car of victory, and driving to the Capitol amid the shouts of the populace. Afterward, as was customary

on such occasions, there were bloody combats in the Colosseum, where gladiators, armed with swords and

spears, fought as furiously as if they were on the field of battle.

The first part of the bloody entertainment was finished; the bodies of the dead were dragged off with hooks,

and the reddened sand covered with a fresh, clean layer. After this had been done the gates in the wall of the

arena were thrown open, and a number of tall, well-formed men in the prime of youth and strength came

forward. Some carried swords, others three-pronged spears and nets. They marched once around the walls,

and stopping before the emperor, held up their weapons at arm's length, and with one voice sounded out their

greeting, Ave, Caesar, morituri te salutant! "Hail, Caesar, those about to die salute thee!"

The combats now began again; the glatiators with nets tried to entangle those with swords, and when they

succeeded mercilessly stabbed their antagonists to death with the three-pronged spear. When a glatiator had

wounded his adversary, and had him lying helpless at his feet, he looked up at the eager faces of the

spectators, and cried out, Hoc habet! "He has it!" and awaited the pleasure of the audience to kill or spare.

If the spectators held out their hands toward him, with thumbs upward, the defeated man was taken away, to

recover if possible from his wounds. But if the fatal signal of "thumbs down" was given, the conquered was

to be slain; and if he showed any reluctance to present his neck for the death blow, there was a scornful shout

from the galleries, Recipe ferrum! "Receive the steel!" Privileged persons among the audience would even

descend into the arena, to better witness the death agonies of some unusually brave victim, before his corpse

was dragged out at the death gate.

The show went on; many had been slain, and the people, madly excited by the desperate bravery of those

who continued to fight, shouted their applause. But suddenly there was an interruption. A rudely clad, robed

figure appeared for a moment among the audience, and then boldly leaped down into the arena. He was seen

to be a man of rough but imposing presence, bareheaded and with sun-browned face. Without hesitating an

instant he advanced upon two gladiators engaged in a life-and-death struggle, and laying his hand upon one

of them sternly reproved him for shedding innocent blood, and then, turning toward the thousands of angry

faces ranged around him, called upon them in a solemn, deep-toned voice which resounded through the deep

inclosure. These were his words: "Do not requite God's mercy in turning away the swords of your enemies

by murdering each other!"

Angry shouts and cries at once drowned his voice: "This is no place for preaching!--the old customs of Rome

must be observed!--On, gladiators!" Thrusting aside the stranger, the gladiators would have again attacked

each other, but the man stood between, holding them apart, and trying in vain to be heard. "Sedition!

sedition! down with him!" was then the cry; and the gladiators, enraged at the interference of an outsider

with their chosen vocation, at once stabbed him to death. Stones, or whatever missiles came to hand, also

rained down upon him from the furious people, and thus he perished, in the midst of the arena.

His dress showed him to be one of the hermits who vowed themselves to a holy life of prayer and self-denial,

and who were reverenced by even the thoughtless and combat-loving Romans. The few who knew him told

how he had come from the wilds of Asia on a pilgrimage, to visit the churches and keep his Christmas at

Rome; they knew he was a holy man, and that his name was Telemachus-no more. His spirit had been stirred

by the sight of thousands flocking to see men slaughter one another, and in his simple-hearted zeal he had

tried to convince them of the cruelty and wickedness of their conduct. He had died, but not in vain. His work

was accomplished at the moment he was struck down, for the shock of such a death before their eyes turned

the hearts of the people: they saw the hideous aspects of the favorite vice to which they had blindly

surrendered themselves; and from the day Telemachus fell dead in the Colosseum, no other fight of

gladiators was ever held there.

Persecutions from About the Middle of the Fifth, to the

Conclusion of the Seventh Century

Proterius was made a priest by Cyril, bishop of Alexandria, who was well acquainted with his virtues, before

he appointed him to preach. On the death of Cyril, the see of Alexandria was filled by Discorus, an inveterate

enemy to the memory and family of his predecessor. Being condemned by the council of Chalcedon for

having embraced the errors of Eutyches, he was deposed, and Proterius chosen to fill the vacant see, who

was approved of by the emperor. This occasioned a dangerous insurrection, for the city of Alexandria was

divided into two factions; the one to espouse the cause of the old, and the other of the new prelate. In one of

the commotions, the Eutychians determined to wreak their vengeance on Proterius, who fled to the church

for sanctuary: but on Good Friday, A.D. 457, a large body of them rushed into the church, and barbarously

murdered the prelate; after which they dragged the body through the streets, insulted it, cut it to pieces, burnt

it, and scattered the ashes in the air.

Hermenigildus, a Gothic prince, was the eldest son of Leovigildus, a king of the Goths, in Spain. This prince,

who was originally an Arian, became a convert to the orthodox faith, by means of his wife Ingonda. When

the king heard that his son had changed his religious sentiments, he stripped him of the command at Seville,

where he was governor, and threatened to put him to death unless he renounced the faith he had newly

embraced. The prince, in order to prevent the execution of his father's menaces, began to put himself into a

posture of defence; and many of the orthodox persuasion in Spain declared for him. The king, exasperated at

this act of rebellion, began to punish all the orthodox Christians who could be seized by his troops, and thus

a very severe persecution commenced: he likewise marched against his son at the head of a very powerful

army. The prince took refuge in Seville, from which he fled, and was at length besieged and taken at Asieta.

Loaded with chains, he was sent to Seville, and at the feast of Easter refusing to receive the Eucharist from

an Arian bishop, the enraged king ordered his guards to cut the prince to pieces, which they punctually

performed, April 13, A.D. 586.

Martin, bishop of Rome, was born at Todi, in Italy. He was naturally inclined to virtue, and his parents

bestowed on him an admirable education. He opposed the heretics called Monothelites, who were patronized

by the emperor Heraclius. Martin was condemned at Constantinople, where he was exposed in the most

public places to the ridicule of the people, divested of all episcopal marks of distinction, and treated with the

greatest scorn and severity. After lying some months in prison, Martin was sent to an island at some distance,

and there cut to pieces, A.D. 655.

John, bishop of Bergamo, in Lombardy, was a learned man, and a good Christian. He did his utmost

endeavors to clear the Church from the errors of Arianism, and joining in this holy work with John, bishop of

Milan, he was very successful against the heretics, on which account he was assassinated on July 11, A.D.


Killien was born in Ireland, and received from his parents a pious and Christian education. He obtained the

Roman pontiff's license to preach to the pagans in Franconia, in Germany. At Wurtzburg he converted

Gozbert, the governor, whose example was followed by the greater part of the people in two years after.

Persuading Gozbert that his marriage with his brother's widow was sinful, the latter had him beheaded, A.D.


Persecutions from the Early Part of the Eighth, to Near the


of the Tenth Century

Boniface, archbishop of Mentz, and father of the German church, was an Englishman, and is, in

ecclasiastical history, looked upon as one of the brightest ornaments of this nation. Originally his name was

Winfred, or Winfrith, and he was born at Kirton, in Devonshire, then part of the West-Saxon kingdom. When

he was only about six years of age, he began to discover a propensity to reflection, and seemed solicitous to

gain information on religious subjects. Wolfrad, the abbot, finding that he possessed a bright genius, as well

as a strong inclination to study, had him removed to Nutscelle, a seminary of learning in the diocese of

Winchester, where he would have a much greater opportunity of attaining improvements than at Exeter.

After due study, the abbot seeing him qualified for the priesthood, obliged him to receive that holy order

when he was about thirty years old. From which time he began to preach and labor for the salvation of his

fellow creatures; he was released to attend a synod of bishops in the kingdom of West-Saxons. He

afterwards, in 719, went to Rome, where Gregory II who then sat in Peter's chair, received him with great

friendship, and finding him full of all virtues that compose the character of an apostolic missionary,

dismissed him without commission at large to preach the Gospel to the pagans wherever he found them.

Passing through Lombardy and Bavaria, he came to Thuringia, which country had before received the light

of the Gospel, he next visited Utrecht, and then proceeded to Saxony, where he converted some thousands to


During the ministry of this meek prelate, Pepin was declared king of France. It was that prince's ambition to

be crowned by the most holy prelate he could find, and Boniface was pitched on to perform that ceremony,

which he did at Soissons, in 752. The next year, his great age and many infirmities lay so heavy on him, that,

with the consent of the new king, and the bishops of his diocese, he consecrated Lullus, his countryman, and

faithful disciple, and placed him in the see of Mentz. When he had thus eased himself of his charge, he

recommended the church of Mentz to the care of the new bishop in very strong terms, desired he would

finish the church at Fuld, and see him buried in it, for his end was near. Having left these orders, he took boat

to the Rhine, and went to Friesland, where he converted and baptized several thousands of barbarous natives,

demolished the temples, and raised churches on the ruins of those superstitious structures. A day being

appointed for confirming a great number of new converts, he ordered them to assemble in a new open plain,

near the river Bourde. Thither he repaired the day before; and, pitching a tent, determined to remain on the

spot all night, in order to be ready early in the morning. Some pagans, who were his inveterate enemies,

having intelligence of this, poured down upon him and the companions of his mission in the night, and killed

him and fifty-two of his companions and attendants on June 5, A.D. 755. Thus fell the great father of the

Germanic Church, the honor of England, and the glory of the age in which he lived.

Forty-two persons of Armorian in Upper Phyrgia, were martyred in the year 845, by the Saracens, the

circumstances of which transactions are as follows:

In the reign of Theophilus, the Saracens ravaged many parts of the eastern empire, gained several

considerable advantages over the Christians, took the city of Armorian, and numbers suffered martyrdom.

Flora and Mary, two ladies of distinction, suffered martyrdom at the same time.

Perfectus was born at Corduba, in Spain, and brought up in the Christian faith. Having a quick genius, he

made himself master of all the useful and polite literature of that age; and at the same time was not more

celebrated for his abilities than admired for his piety. At length he took priest's orders, and performed the

duties of his office with great assiduity and punctuality. Publicly declaring Mahomet an impostor, he was

sentenced to be beheaded, and was accordingly executed, A.D. 850; after which his body was honorably

interred by the Christians.

Adalbert, bishop of Prague, a Bohemian by birth, after being involved in many troubles, began to direct his

thoughts to the conversion of the infidels, to which end he repaired to Dantzic, where he converted and

baptized many, which so enraged the pagan priests, that they fell upon him, and despatched him with darts,

on April 23, A.D. 997.

Persecutions in the Eleventh Century

Alphage, archbishop of Canterbury, was descended from a considerable family in Gloucestershire, and

received an education suitable to his illustrious birth. His parents were worthy Christians, and Alphage

seemed to inherit their virtues.

The see of Winchester being vacant by the death of Ethelwold, Dunstan, archbishop of Canterbury, as

primate of all England, consecrated Alphage to the vacant bishopric, to the general satisfaction of all

concerned in the diocese.

Dustain had an extraordinary veneration for Alphage, and, when at the point of death, made it his ardent

request to God that he might succeed him in the see of Canterbury; which accordingly happened, though not

until about eighteen years after Dunstan's death in 1006.

After Alphage had governed the see of Canterbury about four years, with great reputation to himself, and

benefit to his people, the Danes made an incursion into England, and laid siege to Canterbury. When the

design of attacking this city was known, many of the principal people made a flight from it, and would have

persuaded Alphage to follow their example. But he, like a good pastor, would not listen to such a proposal.

While he was employed in assisting and encouraging the people, Canterbury was taken by storm; the enemy

poured into the town, and destroyed all that came in their way by fire and sword. He had the courage to

address the enemy, and offer himself to their swords, as more worthy of their rage than the people: he begged

they might be saved, and that they would discharge their whole fury upon him. They accordingly seized him,

tied his hands, insulted and abused him in a rude and barbarous manner, and obliged him to remain on the

spot until his church was burnt, and the monks massacred. They then decimated all the inhabitants, both

ecclesiastics and laymen, leaving only every tenth person alive; so that they put 7236 persons to death, and

left only four monks and 800 laymen alive, after which they confined the archbishop in a dungeon, where

they kept him close prisoner for several months.

During his confinement they proposed to him to redeem his liberty with the sum of 3000 pounds, and to

persuade the king to purchase their departure out of the kingdom, with a further sum of 10,000 pounds. As

Alphage's circumstances would not allow him to satisfy the exorbitant demand, they bound him, and put him

to severe torments, to oblige him to discover the treasure of the church; upon which they assured him of his

life and liberty, but the prelate piously persisted in refusing to give the pagans any account of it. They

remanded him to prison again, confined him six days longer, and then, taking him prisoner with them to

Greenwich, brought him to trial there. He still remained inflexible with respect to the church treasure; but

exhorted them to forsake their idolatry, and embrace Christianity. This so greatly incensed the Danes, that

the soldiers dragged him out of the camp and beat him unmercifully. One of the soldiers, who had been

converted by him, knowing that his pains would be lingering, as his death was determined on, actuated by a

kind of barbarous compassion, cut off his head, and thus put the finishing stroke to his martyrdom, April 19,

A.D. 1012. This transaction happened on the very spot where the church at Greenwich, which is dedicated to

him, now stands. After his death his body was thrown into the Thames, but being found the next day, it was

buried in the cathedral of St. Paul's by the bishops of London and Lincoln; from whence it was, in 1023,

removed to Canterbury by Ethelmoth, the archbishop of that province.

Gerard, a Venetian, devoted himself to the service of God from his tender years: entered into a religious

house for some time, and then determined to visit the Holy Land. Going into Hungary, he became acquainted

with Stephen, the king of that country, who made him bishop of Chonad.

Ouvo and Peter, successors of Stephen, being deposed, Andrew, son of Ladislaus, cousin-german to Stephen,

had then a tender of the crown made him upon condition that he would employ his authority in extirpating

the Christian religion out of Hungary. The ambitious prince came into the proposal, but Gerard being

informed of his impious bargain, thought it his duty to remonstrate against the enormity of Andrew's crime,

and persuade him to withdraw his promise. In this view he undertook to go to that prince, attended by three

prelates, full of like zeal for religion. The new king was at Alba Regalis, but, as the four bishops were going

to cross the Danube, they were stopped by a party of soldiers posted there. They bore an attack of a shower

of stones patiently, when the soldiers beat them unmercifully, and at length despatched them with lances.

Their martyrdoms happened in the year 1045.

Stanislaus, bishop of Cracow, was descended from an illustrious Polish family. The piety of his parents was

equal to their opulence, and the latter they rendered subservient to all the purposes of charity and

benevolence. Stanislaus remained for some time undetermined whether he should embrace a monastic life, or

engage among the secular clergy. He was at length persuaded to the latter by Lambert Zula, bishop of

Cracow, who gave him holy orders, and made him a canon of his cathedral. Lambert died on November 25,

1071, when all concerned in the choice of a successor declared for Stanislaus, and he succeeded to the


Bolislaus, the second king of Poland, had, by nature, many good qualities, but giving away to his passions,

he ran into many enormities, and at length had the appellation of Cruel bestowed upon him. Stanislaus alone

had the courage to tell him of his faults, when, taking a private opportunity, he freely displayed to him the

enormities of his crimes. The king, greatly exasperated at his repeated freedoms, at length determined, at any

rate, to get the better of a prelate who was so extremely faithful. Hearing one day that the bishop was by

himself, in the chapel of St. Michael, at a small distance from the town, he despatched some soldiers to

murder him. The soldiers readily undertook the bloody task; but, when they came into the presence of

Stanislaus, the venerable aspect of the prelate struck them with such awe that they could not perform what

they had promised. On their return, the king, finding that they had not obeyed his orders, stormed at them

violently, snatched a dagger from one of them, and ran furiously to the chapel, where, finding Stanislaus at

the altar, he plunged the weapon into his heart. The prelate immediately expired on May 8, A.D. 1079.

CHAPTER IV - Papal Persecutions

Thus far our history of persecution has been confined principally to the pagan world. We come now to a

period when persecution, under the guise of Christianity, committed more enormities than ever disgraced the

annals of paganism. Disregarding the maxims and the spirit of the Gospel, the papal Church, arming herself

with the power of the sword, vexed the Church of God and wasted it for several centuries, a period most

appropriately termed in history, the "dark ages." The kings of the earth, gave their power to the "Beast," and

submitted to be trodden on by the miserable vermin that often filled the papal chair, as in the case of Henry,

emperor of Germany. The storm of papal persecution first burst upon the Waldenses in France.

Persecution of the Waldenses in France

Popery having brought various innovations into the Church, and overspread the Christian world with

darkness and superstition, some few, who plainly perceived the pernicious tendency of such errors,

determined to show the light of the Gospel in its real purity, and to disperse those clouds which artful priests

had raised about it, in order to blind the people, and obscure its real brightness.

The principal among these was Berengarius, who, about the year 1000, boldly preached Gospel truths,

according to their primitive purity. Many, from conviction, assented to his doctrine, and were, on that

account, called Berengarians. To Berengarius succeeded Peer Bruis, who preached at Toulouse, under the

protection of an earl, named Hildephonsus; and the whole tenets of the reformers, with the reasons of their

separation from the Church of Rome, were published in a book written by Bruis, under the title of


By the year of Christ 1140, the number of the reformed was very great, and the probability of its increasing

alarmed the pope, who wrote to several princes to banish them from their dominions, and employed many

learned men to write against their doctrines.

In A.D. 1147, because of Henry of Toulouse, deemed their most eminent preacher, they were called

Henericians; and as they would not admit of any proofs relative to religion, but what could be deduced from

the Scriptures themselves, the popish party gave them the name of apostolics. At length, Peter Waldo, or

Valdo, a native of Lyons, eminent for his piety and learning, became a strenuous opposer of popery; and

from him the reformed, at that time, received the appellation of Waldenses or Waldoys.

Pope Alexander III being informed by the bishop of Lyons of these transactions, excommunicated Waldo

and his adherents, and commanded the bishop to exterminate them, if possible, from the face of the earth;

hence began the papal persecutions against the Waldenses.

The proceedings of Waldo and the reformed, occasioned the first rise of the inquisitors; for Pope Innocent III

authorized certain monks as inquisitors, to inquire for, and deliver over, the reformed to the secular power.

The process was short, as an accusation was deemed adequate to guilt, and a candid trial was never granted

to the accused.

The pope, finding that these cruel means had not the intended effect, sent several learned monks to preach

among the Waldenses, and to endeavor to argue them out of their opinions. Among these monks was one

Dominic, who appeared extremely zealous in the cause of popery. This Dominic instituted an order, which,

from him, was called the order of Dominican friars; and the members of this order have ever since been the

principal inquisitors in the various inquisitions in the world. The power of the inquisitors was unlimited; they

proceeded against whom they pleased, without any consideration of age, sex, or rank. Let the accusers be

ever so infamous, the accusation was deemed valid; and even anonymous informations, sent by letter, were

thought sufficient evidence. To be rich was a crime equal to heresy; therefore many who had money were

accused of heresy, or of being favorers of heretics, that they might be obliged to pay for their opinions. The

dearest friends or nearest kindred could not, without danger, serve any one who was imprisoned on account

of religion. To convey to those who were confined, a little straw, or give them a cup of water, was called

favoring of the heretics, and they were prosecuted accordingly. No lawyer dared to plead for his own brother,

and their malice even extended beyond the grave; hence the bones of many were dug up and burnt, as

examples to the living. If a man on his deathbed was accused of being a follower of Waldo, his estates were

confiscated, and the heir to them defrauded of his inheritance; and some were sent to the Holy Land, while

the Dominicans took possession of their houses and properties, and, when the owners returned, would often

pretend not to know them. These persecutions were continued for several centuries under different popes and

other great dignitaries of the Catholic Church.

Persecutions of the Albigenses

The Albigenses were a people of the reformed religion, who inhabited the country of Albi. They were

condemned on the score of religion in the Council of Lateran, by order of Pope Alexander III. Nevertheless,

they increased so prodigiously, that many cities were inhabited by persons only of their persuasion, and

several eminent noblemen embraced their doctrines. Among the latter were Raymond, earl of Toulouse,

Raymond, earl of Foix, the earl of Beziers, etc.

A friar, named Peter, having been murdered in the dominions of the earl of Toulouse, the pope made the

murder a pretense to persecute that nobleman and his subjects. To effect this, he sent persons throughout all

Europe, in order to raise forces to act coercively against the Albigenses, and promised paradise to all that

would come to this war, which he termed a Holy War, and bear arms for forty days. The same indulgences

were likewise held out to all who entered themselves for the purpose as to such as engaged in crusades to the

Holy Land. The brave earl defended Toulouse and other places with the most heroic bravery and various

success against the pope's legates and Simon, earl of Montfort, a bigoted Catholic nobleman. Unable to

subdue the earl of Toulouse openly, the king of France, and the queen mother, and three archbishops raised

another formidable army, and had the art to persuade the earl of Toulouse to come to a conference, when he

was treacherously seized upon, made a prisoner, forced to appear barefooted and bareheaded before his

enemies, and compelled to subscribe an abject recantation. This was followed by a severe persecution against

the Albigenses; and express orders that the laity should not be permitted to read the sacred Scriptures. In the

year 1620 also, the persecution against the Albigenses was very severe. In 1648 a heavy persecution raged

throughout Lithuania and Poland. The cruelty of the Cossacks was so excessive that the Tartars themselves

were ashamed of their barbarities. Among others who suffered was the Rev. Adrian Chalinski, who was

roasted alive by a slow fire, and whose sufferings and mode of death may depict the horrors which the

professors of Christianity have endured from the enemies of the Redeemer.

The reformation of papistical error very early was projected in France; for in the third century a learned man,

named Almericus, and six of his disciples, were ordered to be burnt at Paris for asserting that God was no

otherwise present in the sacramental bread than in any other bread; that it was idolatry to build altars or

shrines to saints and that it was ridiculous to offer incense to them.

The martyrdom of Almericus and his pupils did not, however, prevent many from acknowledging the

justness of his notions, and seeing the purity of the reformed religion, so that the faith of Christ continually

increased, and in time not only spread itself over many parts of France, but diffused the light of the Gospel

over various other countries.

In the year 1524, at a town in France, called Melden, one John Clark set up a bill on the church door,

wherein he called the pope Antichrist. For this offence he was repeatedly whipped, and then branded on the

forehead. Going afterward to Mentz, in Lorraine, he demolished some images, for which he had his right

hand and nose cut off, and his arms and breast torn with pincers. He sustained these cruelties with amazing

fortitude, and was even sufficiently cool to sing the One hundredth and fifteenth Psalm, which expressly

forbids idolatry; after which he was thrown into the fire, and burnt to ashes.

Many persons of the reformed persuasion were, about this time, beaten, racked, scourged, and burnt to death,

in several parts of France, but more particularly at Paris, Malda, and Limosin.

A native of Malda was burnt by a slow fire, for saying that Mass was a plain denial of the death and passion

of Christ. At Limosin, John de Cadurco, a clergyman of the reformed religion, was apprehended and ordered

to be burnt.

Francis Bribard, secretary to cardinal de Pellay, for speaking in favor of the reformed, had his tongue cut out,

and was then burnt, A.D. 1545. James Cobard, a schoolmaster in the city of St. Michael, was burnt, A.D.

1545, for saying 'That Mass was useless and absurd'; and about the same time, fourteen men were burnt at

Malda, their wives being compelled to stand by and behold the execution.

A.D. 1546, Peter Chapot brought a number of Bibles in the French tongue to France, and publicly sold them

there; for which he was brought to trial, sentenced, and executed a few days afterward. Soon after, a cripple

of Meaux, a schoolmaster of Fera, named Stephen Poliot, and a man named John English, were burnt for the


Monsieur Blondel, a rich jeweler, was, in A.D. 1548, apprehended at Lyons, and sent to Paris; there he was

burnt for the faith by order of the court, A.D. 1549. Herbert, a youth of nineteen years of age, was committed

to the flames at Dijon; as was also Florent Venote in the same year.

In the year 1554, two men of the reformed religion, with the son and daughter of one of them, were

apprehended and committed to the castle of Niverne. On examination, they confessed their faith, and were

ordered to execution; being smeared with grease, brimstone, and gunpowder, they cried, "Salt on, salt on this

sinful and rotten flesh." Their tongues were then cut out, and they were afterward committed to the flames,

which soon consumed them, by means of the combustible matter with which they were besmeared.

The Bartholomew Massacre at Paris, etc.

On the twenty second day of August, 1572, commenced this diabolical act of sanguinary brutality. It was

intended to destroy at one stroke the root of the Protestant tree, which had only before partially suffered in its

branches. The king of France had artfully proposed a marriage, between his sister and the prince of Navarre,

the captain and prince of the Protestants. This imprudent marriage was publicly celebrated at Paris, August

18, by the cardinal of Bourbon, upon a high stage erected for the purpose. They dined in great pomp with the

bishop, and supped with the king at Paris. Four days after this, the prince (Coligny), as he was coming from

the Council, was shot in both arms; he then said to Maure, his deceased mother's minister, "O my brother, I

do now perceive that I am indeed beloved of my God, since for His most holy sake I am wounded."

Although the Vidam advised him to fly, yet he abode in Paris, and was soon after slain by Bemjus; who

afterward declared he never saw a man meet death more valiantly than the admiral.

The soldiers were appointed at a certain signal to burst out instantly to the slaughter in all parts of the city.

When they had killed the admiral, they threw him out at a window into the street, where his head was cut off,

and sent to the pope. The savage papists, still raging against him, cut off his arms and private members, and,

after dragging him three days through the streets, hung him by the heels without the city. After him they slew

many great and honorable persons who were Protestants; as Count Rochfoucault, Telinius, the admiral's sonin-

law, Antonius, Clarimontus, marquis of Ravely, Lewes Bussius, Bandineus, Pluvialius, Burneius, etc., and

falling upon the common people, they continued the slaughter for many days; in the three first they slew of

all ranks and conditions to the number of ten thousand. The bodies were thrown into the rivers, and blood ran

through the streets with a strong current, and the river appeared presently like a stream of blood. So furious

was their hellish rage, that they slew all papists whom they suspected to be not very staunch to their

diabolical religion. From Paris the destruction spread to all quarters of the realm.

At Orleans, a thousand were slain of men, women, and children, and six thousand at Rouen.

At Meldith, two hundred were put into prison, and later brought out by units, and cruelly murdered.

At Lyons, eight hundred were massacred. Here children hanging about their parents, and parents

affectionately embracing their children, were pleasant food for the swords and bloodthirsty minds of those

who call themselves the Catholic Church. Here three hundred were slain in the bishop's house; and the

impious monks would suffer none to be buried.

At Augustobona, on the people hearing of the massacre at Paris, they shut their gates that no Protestants

might escape, and searching diligently for every individual of the reformed Church, imprisoned and then

barbarously murdered them. The same curelty they practiced at Avaricum, at Troys, at Toulouse, Rouen and

many other places, running from city to city, towns, and villages, through the kingdom.

As a corroboration of this horrid carnage, the following interesting narrative, written by a sensible and

learned Roman Catholic, appears in this place, with peculiar propriety.

"The nuptials (says he) of the young king of Navarre with the French king's sister, was solemnized with

pomp; and all the endearments, all the assurances of friendship, all the oaths sacred among men, were

profusely lavished by Catharine, the queen-mother, and by the king; during which, the rest of the court

thought of nothing but festivities, plays, and masquerades. At last, at twelve o'clock at night, on the eve of St.

Bartholomew, the signal was given. Immediately all the houses of the Protestants were forced open at once.

Admiral Coligny, alarmed by the uproar jumped out of bed, when a company of assassins rushed in his

chamber. They were headed by one Besme, who had been bred up as a domestic in the family of the Guises.

This wretch thrust his sword into the admiral's breast, and also cut him in the face. Besme was a German, and

being afterwards taken by the Protestants, the Rochellers would have brought him, in order to hang and

quarter him; but he was killed by one Bretanville. Henry, the young duke of Guise, who afterwards framed

the Catholic league, and was murdered at Blois, standing at the door until the horrid butchery should be

completed, called aloud, 'Besme! is it done?' Immediately after this, the ruffians threw the body out of the

window, and Coligny expired at Guise's feet.

"Count de Teligny also fell a sacrifice. He had married, about ten months before, Coligny's daughter. His

countenance was so engaging, that the ruffians, when they advanced in order to kill him, were struck with

compassion; but others, more barbarous, rushing forward, murdered him.

"In the meantime, all the friends of Coligny were assassinated throughout Paris; men, women, and children

were promiscuously slaughtered and every street was strewed with expiring bodies. Some priests, holding up

a crucifix in one hand, and a dagger in the other, ran to the chiefs of the murderers, and strongly exhorted

them to spare neither relations nor friends.

"Tavannes, marshal of France, an ignorant, superstitious soldier, who joined the fury of religion to the rage

of party, rode on horseback through the streets of Paris, crying to his men, 'Let blood! let blood! bleeding is

as wholesome in August as in May.' In the memories of the life of this enthusiastic, written by his son, we

are told that the father, being on his deathbed, and making a general confession of his actions, the priest said

to him, with surprise, 'What! no mention of St. Bartholomew's massacre?' to which Tavannes replied, 'I

consider it as a meritorious action, that will wash away all my sins.' Such horrid sentiments can a false spirit

of religion inspire!

"The king's palace was one of the chief scenes of the butchery; the king of Navarre had his lodgings in the

Louvre, and all his domestics were Protestants. Many of these were killed in bed with their wives; others,

running away naked, were pursued by the soldiers through the several rooms of the palace, even to the king's

antichamber. The young wife of Henry of Navarre, awaked by the dreadful uproar, being afraid for her

consort, and for her own life, seized with horror, and half dead, flew from her bed, in order to throw herself

at the feet of the king her brother. But scarce had she opened her chamber door, when some of her Protestant

domestics rushed in for refuge. The soldiers immediately followed, pursued them in sight of the princess, and

killed one who crept under her bed. Two others, being wounded with halberds, fell at the queen's feet, so that

she was covered with blood.

"Count de la Rochefoucault, a young nobleman, greatly in the king's favor for his comely air, his politeness,

and a certain peculiar happiness in the turn of his conversation, had spent the evening until eleven o'clock

with the monarch, in pleasant familiarity; and had given a loose, with the utmost mirth, to the sallies of his

imagination. The monarch felt some remorse, and being touched with a kind of compassion, bid him, two or

three times, not to go home, but lie in the Louvre. The count said he must go to his wife; upon which the

king pressed him no farther, but said, 'Let him go! I see God has decreed his death.' And in two hours after

he was murdered.

"Very few of the Protestants escaped the fury of their enthusiastic persecutors. Among these was young La

Force (afterwards the famous Marshal de la Force) a child about ten years of age, whose deliverance was

exceedingly remarkable. His father, his elder brother, and he himself were seized together by the Duke of

Anjou's soldier. These murderers flew at all three, and struck them at random, when they all fell, and lay one

upon another. The youngest did not receive a single blow, but appearing as if he was dead, escaped the next

day; and his life, thus wonderfully preserved, lasted four score and five years.

"Many of the wretched victims fled to the water side, and some swam over the Seine to the suburbs of St.

Germaine. The king saw them from his window, which looked upon the river, and fired upon them with a

carbine that had been loaded for that purpose by one of his pages; while the queen-mother, undisturbed and

serene in the midst of slaughter, looking down from a balcony, encouraged the murderers and laughed at the

dying groans of the slaughtered. This barbarous queen was fired with a restless ambition, and she perpetually

shifted her party in order to satiate it.

"Some days after this horrid transaction, the French court endeavored to palliate it by forms of law. They

pretended to justify the massacre by a calumny, and accused the admiral of a conspiracy, which no one

believed. The parliament was commended to proceed against the memory of Coligny; and his dead body was

hanged in chains on Montfaucon gallows. The king himself went to view this shocking spectacle. So one of

his courtiers advised him to retire, and complaining of the stench of the corpse, he replied, 'A dead enemuy

smells well.' The massacres on St. Bartholomew's day are painted in the royal saloon of the Vatican at Rome,

with the following inscription: Pontifex, Coligny necem probat, i.e., 'The pope approves of Coligny's death.'

"The young king of Navarre was spared through policy, rather than from the pity of the queen-mother, she

keeping him prisoner until the king's death, in order that he might be as a security and pledge for the

submission of such Protestants as might effect their escape.

"This horrid butchery was not confined merely to the city of Paris. The like orders were issued from court to

the governors of all the provinces in France; so that, in a week's time, about one hundred thousand

Protestants were cut to pieces in different parts of the kingdom! Two or three governors only refused to obey

the king's orders. One of these, named Montmorrin, governor of Auvergne, wrote the king the following

letter, which deserves to be transmitted to the latest posterity.

"SIRE: I have received an order, under your majesty's seal, to put to death all the Protestants in my province.

I have too much respect for your majesty, not to believe the letter a forgery; but if (which God forbid) the

order should be genuine, I have too much respect for your majesty to obey it."

At Rome the horrid joy was so great, that they appointed a day of high festival, and a jubilee, with great

indulgence to all who kept it and showed every expression of gladness they could devise! and the man who

first carried the news received 1000 crowns of the cardinal of Lorraine for his ungodly message. The king

also commanded the day to be kept with every demonstration of joy, concluding now that the whole race of

Huguenots was extinct.

Many who gave great sums of money for their ransom were immediately after slain; and several towns,

which were under the king's promise of protection and safety, were cut off as soon as they delivered

themselves up, on those promises, to his generals or captains.

At Bordeaux, at the instigation of a villainous monk, who used to urge the papists to slaughter in his

sermons, two hundred and sixty-four were cruelly murdered; some of them senators. Another of the same

pious fraternity produced a similar slaughter at Agendicum, in Maine, where the populace at the holy

inquisitors' satanical suggestion, ran upon the Protestants, slew them, plundered their houses, and pulled

down their church.

The duke of Guise, entering into Blois, suffered his soldiers to fly upon the spoil, and slay or drown all the

Protestants they could find. In this they spared neither age nor sex; defiling the women, and then murdering

them; from whence he went to Mere, and committed the same outrages for many days together. Here they

found a minister named Cassebonius, and threw him into the river.

At Anjou, they slew Albiacus, a minister; and many women were defiled and murdered there; among whom

were two sisters, abused before their father, whom the assassins bound to a wall to see them, and then slew

them and him.

The president of Turin, after giving a large sum for his life, was cruelly beaten with clubs, stripped of his

clothes, and hung feet upwards, with his head and breast in the river: before he was dead, they opened his

belly, plucked out his entrails, and threw them into the river; and then carried his heart about the city upon a


At Barre great cruelty was used, even to young children, whom they cut open, pulled out their entrails, which

through very rage they gnawed with their teeth. Those who had fled to the castle, when they yielded, were

almost hanged. Thus they did at the city of Matiscon; counting it sport to cut off their arms and legs and

afterward kill them; and for the entertainment of their visitors, they often threw the Protestants from a high

bridge into the river, saying, "Did you ever see men leap so well?"

At Penna, after promising them safety, three hundred were inhumanly butchered; and five and forty at Albia,

on the Lord's Day. At Nonne, though it yielded on conditions of safeguard, the most horrid spectacles were

exhibited. Persons of both sexes and conditions were indiscriminately murdered; the streets ringing with

doleful cries, and flowing with blood; and the houses flaming with fire, which the abandoned soldiers had

thrown in. One woman, being dragged from her hiding place with her husband, was first abused by the brutal

soldiers, and then with a sword which they commanded her to draw, they forced it while in her hands into the

bowels of her husband.

At Samarobridge, they murdered above one hundred Protestants, after promising them peace; and at

Antsidor, one hundred were killed, and cast part into a jakes, and part into a river. One hundred put into a

prison at Orleans, were destroyed by the furious multitude.

The Protestants at Rochelle, who were such as had miraculously escaped the rage of hell, and fled there,

seeing how ill they fared who submitted to those holy devils, stood for their lives; and some other cities,

encouraged thereby, did the like. Against Rochelle, the king sent almost the whole power of France, which

besieged it seven months; though by their assaults, they did very little execution on the inhabitants, yet by

famine, they destroyed eighteen thousand out of two and twenty. The dead, being too numerous for the living

to bury, became food for vermin and carnivorous birds. Many took their coffins into the church yard, laid

down in them, and breathed their last. Their diet had long been what the minds of those in plenty shudder at;

even human flesh, entrails, dung, and the most loathsome things, became at last the only food of those

champions for that truth and liberty, of which the world was not worthy. At every attack, the besiegers met

with such an intrepid reception, that they left one hundred and thirty-two captains, with a proportionate

number of men, dead in the field. The siege at last was broken up at the request of the duke of Anjou, the

king's brother, who was proclaimed king of Poland, and the king, being wearied out, easily complied,

whereupon honorable conditions were granted them.

It is a remarkable interference of Providence, that, in all this dreadful massacre, not more than two ministers

of the Gospel were involved in it.

The tragical sufferings of the Protestants are too numerous to detail; but the treatment of Philip de Deux will

give an idea of the rest. After the miscreants had slain this martyr in his bed, they went to his wife, who was

then attended by the midwife, expecting every moment to be delivered. The midwife entreated them to stay

the murder, at least till the child, which was the twentieth, should be born. Notwithstanding this, they thrust a

dagger up to the hilt into the poor woman. Anxious to be delivered, she ran into a corn loft; but hither they

pursued her, stabbed her in the belly, and then threw her into the street. By the fall, the child came from the

dying mother, and being caught up by one of the Catholic ruffians, he stabbed the infant, and then threw it

into the river.

From the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, to the French

Revolution, in 1789

The persecutions occasioned by the revocation of the edict of Nantes took place under Louis XIV. This edict

was made by Henry the Great of France in 1598, and secured to the Protestants an equal right in every

respect, whether civil or religious, with the other subjects of the realm. All those privileges Louis the XIV

confirmed to the Protestants by another statute, called the edict of Nismes, and kept them inviolably to the

end of his reign.

On the accession of Louis XIV the kingdom was almost ruined by civil wars.

At this critical juncture, the Protestants, heedless of our Lord's admonition, "They that take the sword shall

perish with the sword," took such an active part in favor of the king, that he was constrained to acknowledge

himself indebted to their arms for his establishment on the throne. Instead of cherishing and rewarding that

party who had fought for him, he reasoned that the same power which had protected could overturn him, and,

listening to the popish machinations, he began to issue out proscriptions and restrictions, indicative of his

final determination. Rochelle was presently fettered with an incredible number of denunciations. Montauban

and Millau were sacked by soldiers. Popish commissioners were appointed to preside over the affairs of the

Protestants, and there was no appeal from their ordinance, except to the king's council. This struck at the root

of their civil and religious exercises, and prevented them, being Protestants, from suing a Catholic in any

court of law. This was followed by another injunction, to make an inquiry in all parishes into whatever the

Protestants had said or done for twenty years past. This filled the prisons with innocent victims, and

condemned others to the galleys or banishment.

Protestants were expelled from all offices, trades, privileges, and employs; thereby depriving them of the

means of getting their bread: and they proceeded to such excess in this brutality, that they would not suffer

even the midwives to officiate, but compelled their women to submit themselves in that crisis of nature to

their enemies, the brutal Catholics. Their children were taken from them to be educated by the Catholics, and

at seven years of age, made to embrace popery. The reformed were prohibited from relieving their own sick

or poor, from all private worship, and divine service was to be performed in the presence of a popish priest.

To prevent the unfortunate victims from leaving the kingdom, all the passages on the frontiers were strictly

guarded; yet, by the good hand of God, about 150,000 escaped their vigilance, and emigrated to different

countries to relate the dismal narrative.

All that has been related hitherto were only infringements on their established charter, the edict of Nantes. At

length the diabolical revocation of that edict passed on the eighteenth of October, 1685, and was registered

the twenty-second, contrary to all form of law. Instantly the dragoons were quartered upon the Protestants

throughout the realm, and filled all France with the like news, that the king would no longer suffer any

Huguenots in his kingdom, and therefore they must resolve to change their religion. Hereupon the intendants

in every parish (which were popish governors and spies set over the Protestants) assembled the reformed

inhabitants, and told them they must, without delay, turn Catholics, either freely or by force. The Protestants

replied, that they 'were ready to sacrifice their lives and estates to the king, but their consciences being God's

they could not so dispose of them.'

Instantly the troops seized the gates and avenues of the cities, and placing guards in all the passages, entered

with sword in hand, crying, "Die, or be Catholics!" In short, they practiced every wickedness and horror they

could devise to force them to change their religion.

They hanged both men and women by their hair or their feet, and smoked them with hay until they were

nearly dead; and if they still refused to sign a recantation, they hung them up again and repeated their

barbarities, until, wearied out with torments without death, they forced many to yield to them.

Others, they plucked off all the hair of their heads and beards with pincers. Others they threw on great fires,

and pulled them out again, repeating it until they extorted a promise to recant.

Some they stripped naked, and after offering them the most infamous insults, they stuck them with pins from

head to foot, and lanced them with penknives; and sometimes with red-hot pincers they dragged them by the

nose until they promised to turn. Sometimes they tied fathers and husbands, while they ravished their wives

and daughters before their eyes. Multitudes they imprisoned in the most noisome dungeons, where they

practised all sorts of torments in secret. Their wives and children they shut up in monasteries.

Such as endeavored to escape by flight were pursued in the woods, and hunted in the fields, and shot at like

wild beasts; nor did any condition or quality screen them from the ferocity of these infernal dragoons: even

the members of parliament and military officers, though on actual service, were ordered to quit their posts,

and repair directly to their houses to suffer the like storm. Such as complained to the king were sent to the

Bastile, where they drank the same cup. The bishops and the intendants marched at the head of the dragoons,

with a troop of missionaries, monks, and other ecclesiastics to animate the soldiers to an execution so

agreeable to their Holy Church, and so glorious to their demon god and their tyrant king.

In forming the edict to repeal the edict of Nantes, the council were divided; some would have all the

ministers detained and forced into popery as well as the laity; others were for banishing them, because their

presence would strengthen the Protestants in perseverance: and if they were forced to turn, they would ever

be secret and powerful enemies in the bosom of the Church, by their great knowledge and experience in

controversial matters. This reason prevailing, they were sentenced to banishment, and only fifteen days

allowed them to depart the kingdom.

On the same day that the edict for revoking the Protestants' charter was published, they demolished their

churches and banished their ministers, whom they allowed but twenty-four hours to leave Paris. The papists

would not suffer them to dispose of their effects, and threw every obstacle in their way to delay their escape

until the limited time was expired which subjected them to condemnation for life to the galleys. The guards

were doubled at the seaports, and the prisons were filled with the victims, who endured torments and wants

at which human nature must shudder.

The sufferings of the ministers and others, who were sent to the galleys, seemed to exceed all. Chained to the

oar, they were exposed to the open air night and day, at all seasons, and in all weathers; and when through

weakness of body they fainted under the oar, instead of a cordial to revive them, or viands to refresh them,

they received only the lashes of a scourge, or the blows of a cane or rope's end. For the want of sufficient

clothing and necessary cleanliness, they were most grievously tormented with vermin, and cruelly pinched

with the cold, which removed by night the executioners who beat and tormented them by day. Instead of a

bed, they were allowed sick or well, only a hard board, eighteen inches broad, to sleep on, without any

covering but their wretched apparel; which was a shirt of the coarsest canvas, a little jerkin of red serge, slit

on each side up to the armholes, with open sleeves that reached not to the elbow; and once in three years they

had a coarse frock, and a little cap to cover their heads, which were always kept close shaved as a mark of

their infamy. The allowance of provision was as narrow as the sentiments of those who condemned them to

such miseries, and their treatment when sick is too shocking to relate; doomed to die upon the boards of a

dark hold, covered with vermin, and without the least convenience for the calls of nature. Nor was it among

the least of the horrors they endured, that, as ministers of Christ, and honest men, they were chained side by

side to felons and the most execrable villains, whose blasphemous tongues were never idle. If they refused to

hear Mass, they were sentenced to the bastinado, of which dreadful punishment the following is a

description. Preparatory to it, the chains are taken off, and the victims delivered into the hands of the Turks

that preside at the oars, who strip them quite naked, and stretching them upon a great gun, they are held so

that they cannot stir; during which there reigns an awful silence throughout the galley. The Turk who is

appointed the executioner, and who thinks the sacrifice acceptable to his prophet Mahomet, most cruelly

beats the wretched victim with a rough cudgel, or knotty rope's end, until the skin is flayed off his bones, and

he is near the point of expiring; then they apply a most tormenting mixture of vinegar and salt, and consign

him to that most intolerable hospital where thousands under their cruelties have expired.

Martyrdom of John Calas

We pass over many other individual maretyrdoms to insert that of John Calas, which took place as recently

as 1761, and is an indubitable proof of the bigotry of popery, and shows that neither experience nor

improvement can root out the inveterate prejudices of the Roman Catholics, or render them less cruel or

inexorable to Protestants.

John Calas was a merchant of the city of Toulouse, where he had been settled, and lived in good repute, and

had married an English woman of French extraction. Calas and his wife were Protestants, and had five sons,

whom they educated in the same religion; but Lewis, one of the sons, became a Roman Catholic, having

been converted by a maidservant, who had lived in the family about thirty years. The father, however, did

not express any resentment or ill-will upon the occasion, but kept the maid in the family and settled an

annuity upon the son. In October, 1761, the family consisted of John Calas and his wife, one woman servant,

Mark Antony Calas, the eldest son, and Peter Calas, the second son. Mark Antony was bred to the law, but

could not be admitted to practice, on account of his being a Protestant; hence he grew melancholy, read all

the books he could procure relative to suicide, and seemed determined to destroy himself. To this may be

added that he led a dissipated life, was greatly addicted to gaming, and did all which could constitute the

character of a libertine; on which account his father frequently reprehended him and sometimes in terms of

severity, which considerably added to the gloom that seemed to oppress him.

On the thirteenth of October, 1761, Mr. Gober la Vaisse, a young gentleman about 19 years of age, the son of

La Vaisse, a celebrated advocate of Toulouse, about five o'clock in the evening, was met by John Calas, the

father, and the eldest son Mark Antony, who was his friend. Calas, the father, invited him to supper, and the

family and their guest sat down in a room up one pair of stairs; the whole company, consisting of Calas the

father, and his wife, Antony and Peter Calas, the sons, and La Vaisse the guest, no other person being in the

house, except the maidservant who has been already mentioned.

It was now about seven o'clock. The supper was not long; but before it was over, Antony left the table, and

went into the kitchen, which was on the same floor, as he was accustomed to do. The maid asked him if he

was cold? He answered, "Quite the contrary, I burn"; and then left her. In the meantime his friend and family

left the room they had supped in, and went into a bed-chamber; the father and La Vaisse sat down together

on a sofa; the younger son Peter in an elbow chair; and the mother in another chair; and, without making any

inquiry after Antony, continued in conversation together until between nine and ten o'clock, when La Vaisse

took his leave, and Peter, who had fallen asleep, was awakened to attend him with a light.

On the ground floor of Calas's house was a shop and a warehouse, the latter of which was divided from the

shop by a pair of folding doors. When Peter Calas and La Vaisse came downstairs into the shop, they were

extremely shocked to see Antony hanging in his shirt, from a bar which he had laid across the top of the two

folding doors, having half opened them for that purpose. On discovery of this horrid spectacle, they shrieked

out, which brought down Calas the father, the mother being seized with such terror as kept her trembling in

the passage above. When the maid discovered what had happened, she continued below, either because she

feared to carry an account of it to her mistress, or because she busied herself in doing some good office to

her master, who was embracing the body of his son, and bathing it in his tears. The mother, therefore, being

thus left alone, went down and mixed in the scene that has been already described, with such emotions as it

must naturally produce. In the meantime Peter had been sent for La Moire, a surgeon in the neighborhood.

La Moire was not at home, but his apprentice, Mr. Grosle, came instantly. Upon examination, he found the

body quite dead; and by this time a papistical crowd of people were gathered about the house, and, having by

some means heard that Antony Calas was suddenly dead, and that the surgeon who had examined the body,

declared that he had been strangled, they took it into their heads he had been murdered; and as the family

was Protestant, they presently supposed that the young man was about to change his religion, and had been

put to death for that reason.

The poor father, overwhelmed with grief for the loss of his child, was advised by his friends to send for the

officers of justice to prevent his being torn to pieces by the Catholic multitude, who supposed he had

murdered his son. This was accordingly done and David, the chief magistrate, or capitol, took the father,

Peter the son, the mother, La Vaisse, and the maid, all into custody, and set a guard over them. He sent for

M. de la Tour, a physician, and MM. la Marque and Perronet, surgeons, who examined the body for marks of

violence, but found none except the mark of the ligature on the neck; they found also the hair of the deceased

done up in the usual manner, perfectly smooth, and without the least disorder: his clothes were also regularly

folded up, and laid upon the counter, nor was his shirt either torn or unbuttoned.

Notwithstanding these innocent appearances, the capitol thought proper to agree with the opinion of the mob,

and took it into his head that old Calas had sent for La Vaisse, telling him that he had a son to be hanged; that

La Vaisse had come to perform the office of executioner; and that he had received assistance from the father

and brother.

As no proof of the supposed fact could be procured, the capitol had recourse to a monitory, or general

information, in which the crime was taken for granted, and persons were required to give such testimony

against it as they were able. This recites that La Vaisse was commissioned by the Protestants to be their

executioner in ordinary, when any of their children were to be hanged for changing their religion: it recites

also, that, when the Protestants thus hang their children, they compel them to kneel, and one of the

interrogatories was, whether any person had seen Antony Calas kneel before his father when he strangled

him: it recites likewise, that Antony died a Roman Catholic, and requires evidence of his catholicism.

But before this monitory was published, the mob had got a notion that Antony Calas was the next day to

have entered into the fraternity of the White Penitents. The capitol therefore caused his body to be buried in

the middle of St. Stephen's Church. A few days after the interment of the deceased, the White Penitents

performed a solemn service for him in their chapel; the church was hung with white, and a tomb was raised

in the middle of it, on the top of which was placed a human skeleton, holding in one hand a paper, on which

was written "Abjuration of heresy," and in the other a palm, the emblem of martyrdom. The next day the

Franciscans performed a service of the same kind for him.

The capitol continued the persecution with unrelenting severity, and, without the least proof coming in,

thought fit to condemn the unhappy father, mother, brother, friend, and servant, to the torture, and put them

all into irons on the eighteenth of November.

From these dreadful proceedings the sufferers appealed to the parliament, which immediately took

cognizance of the affair, and annulled the sentence of the capitol as irregular, but they continued the

prosecution, and, upon the hangman deposing it was impossible Antony should hang himself as was

pretended, the majority of the parliament were of the opinion, that the prisoners were guilty, and therefore

ordered them to be tried by the criminal court of Toulouse. One voted him innocent, but after long debates

the majority was for the torture and wheel, and probably condemned the father by way of experiment,

whether he was guilty or not, hoping he would, in the agony, confess the crime, and accuse the other

prisoners, whose fate, therefore, they suspended.

Poor Calas, however, an old man of sixty-eight, was condemned to this dreadful punishment alone. He

suffered the torture with great constancy, and was led to execution in a frame of mind which excited the

admiration of all that saw him, and particularly of the two Dominicans (Father Bourges and Father

Coldagues) who attended him in his last moments, and declared that they thought him not only innocent of

the crime laid to his charge, but also an exemplary instance of true Christian patience, fortitude, and charity.

When he saw the executioner prepared to give him the last stroke, he made a fresh declaration to Father

Bourges, but while the words were still in his mouth, the capitol, the author of this catastrophe, who came

upon the scaffold merely to gratify his desire of being a witness of his punishment and death, ran up to him,

and bawled out, "Wretch, there are fagots which are to reduce your body to ashes! speak the truth." M. Calas

made no reply, but turned his head a little aside; and that moment the executioner did his office.

The popular outcry against this family was so violent in Languedoc, that every body expected to see the

children of Calas broke upon the wheel, and the mother burnt alive.

Young Donat Calas was advised to fly into Switzerland: he went, and found a gentleman who, at first, could

only pity and relieve him, without daring to judge of the rigor exercised against the father, mother, and

brothers. Soon after, one of the brothers, who was only banished, likewise threw himself into the arms of the

same person, who, for more than a month, took every possible precaution to be assured of the innocence of

the family. Once convinced, he thought himself, obliged, in conscience, to employ his friends, his purse, his

pen, and his credit, to repair the fatal mistake of the seven judges of Toulouse, and to have the proceedings

revised by the king's council. This revision lasted three years, and it is well known what honor Messrs. de

Grosne and Bacquancourt acquired by investigating this memorable cause. Fifty masters of the Court of

Requests unanimously declared the whole family of Calas innocent, and recommended them to the

benevolent justice of his majesty. The Duke de Choiseul, who never let slip an opportunity of signalizing the

greatness of his character, not only assisted this unfortunate family with money, but obtained for them a

gratuity of 36,000 livres from the king.

On the ninth of March, 1765, the arret was signed which justified the family of Calas, and changed their fate.

The ninth of March, 1762, was the very day on which the innocent and virtuous father of that family had

been executed. All Paris ran in crowds to see them come out of prison, and clapped their hands for joy, while

the tears streamed from their eyes.

This dreadful example of bigotry employed the pen of Voltaire in deprecation of the horrors of superstition;

and though an infidel himself, his essay on toleration does honor to his pen, and has been a blessed means of

abating the rigor of persecution in most European states. Gospel purity will equally shun superstition and

cruelty, as the mildness of Christ's tenets teaches only to comfort in this world, and to procure salvation in

the next. To persecute for being of a different opinion is as absurd as to persecute for having a different

countenance: if we honor God, keep sacred the pure doctrines of Christ, put a full confidence in the promises

contained in the Holy Scriptures, and obey the political laws of the state in which we reside, we have an

undoubted right to protection instead of persecution, and to serve heaven as our consciences, regulated by the

Gospel rules, may direct.

CHAPTER V - An Account of the Inquisition

When the reformed religion began to diffuse the Gospel light throughout Europe, Pope Innocent III

entertained great fear for the Romish Church. He accordingly instituted a number of inquisitors, or persons

who were to make inquiry after, apprehend, and punish, heretics, as the reformed were called by the papists.

At the head of these inquisitors was one Dominic, who had been canonized by the pope, in order to render

his authority the more respectable. Dominic, and the other inquisitors, spread themselves into various Roman

Catholic countries, and treated the Protestants with the utmost severity. In process of time, the pope, not

finding these roving inquisitors so useful as he had imagined, resolved upon the establishment of fixed and

regular courts of Inquisition. After the order for these regular courts, the first office of Inquisition was

established in the city of Toulouse, and Dominic became the first regular inquisitor, as he had before been

the first roving inquisitor.

Courts of Inquisition were now erected in several countries; but the Spanish Inquisition became the most

powerful, and the most dreaded of any. Even the kings of Spain themselves, though arbitrary in all other

respects, were taught to dread the power of the lords of the Inquisition; and the horrid cruelties they

exercised compelled multitudes, who differed in opinion from the Roman Catholics, carefully to conceal

their sentiments.

The most zealous of all the popish monks, and those who most implicitly obeyed the Church of Rome, were

the Dominicans and Franciscans: these, therefore, the pope thought proper to invest with an exclusive right

of presiding over the different courts of Inquisition, and gave them the most unlimited powers, as judges

delegated by him, and immediately representing his person: they were permitted to excommunicate, or

sentence to death whom they thought proper, upon the most slight information of heresy. They were allowed

to publish crusades against all whom they deemed heretics, and enter into leagues with sovereign princes, to

join their crusades with their forces.

In 1244, their power was further increased by the emperor Frederic II, who declared himself the protector

and friend of all the inquisitors, and published the cruel edicts, viz., 1. That all heretics who continue

obstinate, should be burnt. 2. That all heretics who repented, should be imprisoned for life.

This zeal in the emperor, for the inquisitors of the Roman Catholic persuasion, arose from a report which had

been propagated throughout Europe, that he intended to renounce Christianity, and turn Mahometan; the

emperor therefore, attempted, by the height of bigotry, to contradict the report, and to show his attachment to

popery by cruelty.

The officers of the Inquisition are three inquisitors, or judges, a fiscal proctor, two secretaries, a magistrate, a

messenger, a receiver, a jailer, an agent of confiscated possessions; several assessors, counsellors,

executioners, physicians, surgeons, doorkeepers, familiars, and visitors, who are sworn to secrecy.

The principal accusation against those who are subject to this tribunal is heresy, which comprises all that is

spoken, or written, against any of the articles of the creed, or the traditions of the Roman Church. The

inquisition likewise takes cognizance of such as are accused of being magicians, and of such who read the

Bible in the common language, the Talmud of the Jews, or the Alcoran of the Mahometans.

Upon all occasions the inquisitors carry on their processes with the utmost severity, and punish those who

offend them with the most unparalleled cruelty. A Protestant has seldom any mercy shown him, and a Jew,

who turns Christian, is far from being secure.

A defence in the Inquisition is of little use to the prisoner, for a suspicion only is deemed sufficient cause of

condemnation, and the greater his wealth the greater his danger. The principal part of the inquisitors'

cruelties is owing to their rapacity: they destroy the life to possess the property; and, under the pretence of

zeal, plunder each obnoxious individual.

A prisoner in the Inquisition is never allowed to see the face of his accuser, or of the witnesses against him,

but every method is taken by threats and tortures, to oblige him to accuse himself, and by that means

corroborate their evidence. If the jurisdiction of the Inquisition is not fully allowed, vengeance is denounced

against such as call it in question for if any of its officers are opposed, those who oppose them are almost

certain to be sufferers for the temerity; the maxim of the Inquisition being to strike terror, and awe those who

are the objects of its power into obedience. High birth, distinguished rank, great dignity, or eminent

employments, are no protection from its severities; and the lowest officers of the Inquisition can make the

highest characters tremble.

When the person impeached is condemned, he is either severely whipped, violently tortured, sent to the

galleys, or sentenced to death; and in either case the effects are confiscated. After judgment, a procession is

performed to the place of execution, which ceremony is called an auto da fe, or act of faith.

The following is an account of an auto da fe, performed at Madrid in the year 1682.

The officers of the Inquisition, preceded by trumpets, kettledrums, and their banner, marched on the thirtieth

of May, in cavalcade, to the palace of the great square, where they declared by proclamation, that, on the

thirtieth of June, the sentence of the prisoners would be put in execution.

Of these prisoners, twenty men and women, with one renegade Mahometan, were ordered to be burned; fifty

Jews and Jewesses, having never before been imprisoned, and repenting of their crimes, were sentenced to a

long confinement, and to wear a yellow cap. The whole court of Spain was present on this occasion. The

grand inquisitor's chair was placed in a sort of tribunal far above that of the king.

Among those who were to suffer, was a young Jewess of exquisite beauty, and but seventeen years of age.

Being on the same side of the scaffold where the queen was seated, she addressed her, in hopes of obtaining

a pardon, in the following pathetic speech: "Great queen, will not your royal presence be of some service to

me in my miserable condition? Have regard to my youth; and, oh! consider, that I am about to die for

professing a religion imbibed from my earliest infancy!" Her majesty seemed greatly to pity her distress, but

turned away her eyes, as she did not dare to speak a word in behalf of a person who had been declared a


Now Mass began, in the midst of which the priest came from the altar, placed himself near the scaffold, and

seated himself in a chair prepared for that purpose.

The chief inquisitor then descended from the amphitheater, dressed in his cope, and having a miter on his

head. After having bowed to the altar, he advanced towards the king's balcony, and went up to it, attended by

some of his officers, carrying a cross and the Gospels, with a book containing the oath by which the kings of

Spain oblige themselves to protect the Catholic faith, to extirpate heretics, and to support with all their power

and force the prosecutions and decrees of the Inquisition: a like oath was administered to the counsellors and

whole assembly. The Mass was begun about twelve at noon, and did not end until nine in the evening, being

protracted by a proclamation of the sentence of the several criminals, which were already separately

rehearsed aloud one after the other.

After this followed the burnings of the twenty-one men and women, whose intrepidity in suffering that horrid

death was truly astonishing. The king's near situation to the criminals rendered their dying groans very

audible to him; he could not, however, be absent from this dreadful scene, as it is esteemed a religious one;

and his coronation oath obliged him to give a sanction by his presence to all the acts of the tribunal.

What we have already said may be applied to inquisitions in general, as well as to that of Spain in particular.

The Inquisition belonging to Portugal is exactly upon a similar plan to that of Spain, having been instituted

much about the same time, and put under the same regulations. The inquisitors allow the torture to be used

only three times, but during those times it is so severely inflicted, that the prisoner either dies under it, or

continues always after a cripple, and suffers the severest pains upon every change of weather. We shall give

an ample description of the severe torments occasioned by the torture, from the account of one who suffered

it the three respective times, but happily survived the cruelties he underwent.

At the first time of torturing, six executioners entered, stripped him naked to his drawers, and laid him upon

his back on a kind of stand, elevated a few feet from the floor. The operation commenced by putting an iron

collar round his neck, and a ring to each foot, which fastened him to the stand. His limbs being thus stretched

out, they wound two ropes round each thigh; which ropes being passed under the scaffold, through holes

made for that purpose, were all drawn tight at the same instant of time, by four of the men, on a given signal.

It is easy to conceive that the pains which immediately succeeded were intolerable; the ropes, which were of

a small size, cut through the prisoner's flesh to the bone, making the blood to gush out at eight different

places thus bound at a time. As the prisoner persisted in not making any confession of what the inquisitors

required, the ropes were drawn in this manner four times successively.

The manner of inflicting the second torture was as follows: they forced his arms backwards so that the palms

of his hands were turned outward behind him; when, by means of a rope that fastened them together at the

wrists, and which was turned by an engine, they drew them by degrees nearer each other, in such a manner

that the back of each hand touched, and stood exactly parallel to each other. In consequence of this violent

contortion, both his shoulders became dislocated, and a considerable quantity of blood issued from his

mouth. This torture was repeated thrice; after which he was again taken to the dungeon, and the surgeon set

the dislocated bones.

Two months after the second torture, the prisoner being a little recovered, was again ordered to the torture

room, and there, for the last time, made to undergo another kind of punishment, which was inflicted twice

without any intermission. The executioners fastened a thick iron chain round his body, which crossing at the

breast, terminated at the wrists. They then placed him with his back against a thick board, at each extremity

whereof was a pulley, through which there ran a rope that caught the end of the chain at his wrists. The

executioner then, stretching the end of his rope by means of a roller, placed at a distance behind him, pressed

or bruised his stomach in proportion as the ends of the chains were drawn tighter. They tortured him in this

manner to such a degree, that his wrists, as well as his shoulders, were quite dislocated. They were, however,

soon set by the surgeons; but the barbarians, not yet satisfied with this species of cruelty, made him

immediately undergo the like torture a second time, which he sustained (though, if possible, attended with

keener pains,) with equal constancy and resolution. After this, he was again remanded to the dungeon,

attended by the surgeon to dress his bruises and adjust the part dislocated, and here he continued until their

auto da fe, or jail delivery, when he was discharged, crippled and diseased for life.

An Account of the Cruel Handling and Burning of Nicholas Burton, an English

Merchant, in Spain

The fifth day of November, about the year of our Lord 1560, Mr. Nicholas Burton, citizen sometime of

London, and merchant, dwelling in the parish of Little St. Bartholomew, peaceably and quietly, following his

traffic in the trade of merchandise, and being in the city of Cadiz, in the party of Andalusia, in Spain, there

came into his lodging a Judas, or, as they term them, a familiar of the fathers of Inquisition; who asking for

the said Nicholas Burton, feigned that he had a letter to deliver into his own hands; by which means he spake

with him immediately. And having no letter to deliver to him, then the said promoter, or familiar, at the

motion of the devil his master, whose messenger he was, invented another lie, and said he would take lading

for London in such ships as the said Nicholas Burton had freighted to lade, if he would let any; which was

partly to know where he loaded his goods, that they might attach them, and chiefly to protract the time until

the sergeant of the Inquisition might come and apprehend the body of the said Nicholas Burton; which they

did incontinently.

He then well perceiving that they were not able to burden or charge him that he had written, spoken, or done

any thing there in that country against the ecclesiastical or temporal laws of the same realm, boldly asked

them what they had to lay to his charge that they did so arrest him, and bade them to declare the cause, and

he would answer them. Notwithstanding they answered nothing, but commanded him with threatening words

to hold his peace, and not speak one word to them.

And so they carried him to the filthy common prison of the town of Cadiz where he remained in irons

fourteen days amongst thieves.

All which time he so instructed the poor prisoners in the Word of God, according to the good talent which

God had given him in that behalf, and also in the Spanish tongue to utter the same, that in that short space he

had well reclaimed several of those superstitiuous and ignorant Spaniards to embrace the Word of God, and

to reject their popish traditions.

Which being known unto the officers of the Inquisition, they conveyed him laden with irons from thence to a

city called Seville, into a more cruel and straiter prison called Triana, where the said fathers of the

Inquisition proceeded against him secretly according to their accustomable cruel tyranny, that never after he

could be suffered to write or speak to any of his nation: so that to this day it is unknown who was his


Afterward, the twentieth of December, they brought the said Nicholas Burton, with a great number of other

prisoners, for professing the true Christian religion, into the city of Seville, to a place where the said

inquisitors sat in judgment which they called auto, with a canvas coat, whereupon in divers parts was painted

the figure of a huge devil, tormenting a soul in a flame of fire, and on his head a copping tank of the same


His tongue was forced out of his mouth with a cloven stick fastened upon it, that he should not utter his

conscience and faith to the people, and so he was set with another Englishman of Southampton, and divers

other condemned men for religion, as well Frenchmen as Spaniards, upon a scaffold over against the said

Inquisition, where their sentences and judgments were read and pronounced against them.

And immediately after the said sentences given, they were carried from there to the place of execution

without the city, where they most cruelly burned them, for whose constant faith, God is praised.

This Nicholas Burton by the way, and in the flames of fire, had so cheerful a countenance, embracing death

with all patience and gladness, that the tormentors and enemies which stood by, said, that the devil had his

soul before he came to the fire; and therefore they said his senses of feeling were past him.

It happened that after the arrest of Nicholas Burton aforesaid, immediately all the goods and merchandise

which he brought with him into Spain by the way of traffic, were (according to their common usage) seized,

and taken into the sequester; among which they also rolled up much that appertained to another English

merchant, wherewith he was credited as factor. Whereof as soon as news was brought to the merchant as

well of the imprisonment of his factor, as of the arrest made upon his goods, he sent his attorney into Spain,

with authority from him to make claim to his goods, and to demand them; whose name was John Fronton,

citizen of Bristol.

When his attorney was landed at Seville, and had shown all his letters and writings to the holy house,

requiring them that such goods might be delivered into his possession, answer was made to him that he must

sue by bill, and retain an advocate (but all was doubtless to delay him,) and they forsooth of courtesy

assigned him one to frame his supplication for him, and other such bills of petition, as he had to exhibit into

their holy court, demanding for each bill eight reals, albeit they stood him in no more stead than if he had put

up none at all. And for the space of three or four months this fellow missed not twice a day attending every

morning and afternoon at the inquisitors' palace, suing unto them upon his knees for his despatch, but

especially to the bishop of Tarracon, who was at that very time chief of the Inquisition at Seville, that he of

his absolute authority would command restitution to be made thereof; but the booty was so good and great

that it was very hard to come by it again.

At length, after he had spent four whole months in suits and requests, and also to no purpose, he received this

answer from them, that he must show better evidence, and bring more sufficient certificates out of England

for proof of this matter, than those which he had already presented to the court. Whereupon the party

forthwith posted to London, and with all speed returned to Seville again with more ample and large letters

testimonial, and certificates, according to their requests, and exhibited them to the court.

Notwithstanding, the inquisitors still shifted him off, excusing themselves by lack of leisure, and for that they

were occupied in more weighty affairs, and with such answers put him off, four months after.

At last, when the party had well nigh spent all his money, and therefore sued the more earnestly for his

despatch, they referred the matter wholly to the bishop, of whom, when he repaired unto him, he made

answer, 'That for himself, he knew what he had to do, howbeit he was but one man, and the determination

appertained to the other commissioners as well as unto him;' and thus by posting and passing it from one to

another, the party could obtain no end of his suit. Yet for his importunity's sake, they were resolved to

despatch him: it was on this sort: one of the inquisitors, called Gasco, a man very well experienced in these

practices, willed the party to resort unto him after dinner.

The fellow being glad to hear this news, and supposing that his goods should be restored unto him, and that

he was called in for that purpose to talk with the other that was in prison to confer with him about their

accounts, rather through a little misunderstanding, hearing the inquisitors cast out a word, that it should be

needful for him to talk with the prisoner, and being thereupon more than half persuaded, that at length they

meant good faith, did so, and repaired thither about the evening. Immediately upon his coming, the jailer was

forthwith charged with him, to shut him up close in such a prison where they appointed him.

The party, hoping at the first that he had been called for about some other matter, and seeing himself,

contrary to his expectation, cast into a dark dungeon, perceived at length that the world went with him far

otherwise than he supposed it would have done.

But within two or three days after, he was brought into the court, where he began to demand his goods: and

because it was a device that well served their turn without any more circumstance, they bid him say his Ave

Maria: Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum, benedicta tu in mulieribus, et benedictus fructus ventris tui

Jesus Amen.

The same was written word by word as he spake it, and without any more talk of claiming his goods, because

it was needless, they commanded him to prison again, and entered an action against him as a heretic,

forasmuch as he did not say his Ave Maria after the Romish fashion, but ended it very suspiciously, for he

should have added moreover; Sancta Maria mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus: by abbreviating whereof,

it was evident enough (said they) that he did not allow the mediation of saints.

Thus they picked a quarrel to detain him in prison a longer season, and afterward brought him forth upon

their stage disguised after their manner; where sentence was given, that he should lose all the goods which he

sued for, though they were not his own, and besides this, suffer a year's imprisonment.

Mark Brughes, an Englishman, master of an English ship called the Minion, was burned in a city in Portugal.

William Hoker, a young man about the age of sixteen years, being an Englishman, was stoned to death by

certain young men in the city of Seville, for the same righteous cause.

Some Private Enormities of the Inquisition Laid Open, by a Very Singular


When the crown of Spain was contested for in the beginning of the present century, by two princes, who

equally pretended to the sovereignty, France espoused the cause of one competitor, and England of the other.

The duke of Berwick, a natural son of James II who abdicated England, commanded the Spanish and French

forces, and defeated the English at the celebrated battle of Almanza. The army was then divided into two

parts; the one consisting of Spaniards and French, headed by the duke of Berwick, advanced towards

Catalonia; the other body, consisting of French troops only, commanded by the duke of Orleans, proceeded

to the conquest of Arragon.

As the troops drew near to the city of Arragon, the magistrates came to offer the keys to the duke of Orleans;

but he told them haughtily that they were rebels, and that he would not accept the keys, for he had orders to

enter the city through a breach.

He accordingly made a breach in the walls with his cannon, and then entered the city through it, together

with his whole army. When he had made every necessary regulation here, he departed to subdue other

places, leaving a strong garrison at once to overawe and defend, under the command of his lieutenant-general

M. de Legal. This gentleman, though brought up a Roman Catholic, was totally free from superstition; he

united great talents with great bravery; and was the skilful officer, and accomplished gentleman.

The duke, before his departure, had ordered that heavy contributions should be levied upon the city in the

following manner:

1. That the magistrates and principal inhabitants should pay a thousand crowns per month

for the duke's table.

2. That every house should pay one pistole, which would monthly amount to

18,000 pistoles.

3. That every convent and monastery should pay a donative, proportionable to its riches

and rents.

The two last contributions to be appropriated to the maintenance of the army.

The money levied upon the magistrates and principal inhabitants, and upon every house, was paid as soon as

demanded; but when the persons applied to the heads of convents and monasteries, they found that the

ecclesiastics were not so willing, as other people, to part with their cash.

Of the donatives to be raised by the clergy:

The College of Jesuits to pay - 2000 pistoles.

Carmelites, - 1000

Augustins, - 1000

Dominicans, - 1000

M. de Legal sent to the Jesuits a peremptory order to pay the money immediately. The superior of the Jesuits

returned for answer that for the clergy to pay money for the army was against all ecclesiastical immunities;

and that he knew of no argument which could authorize such a procedure. M. de Legal then sent four

companies of dragoons to quarter themselves in the college, with this sarcastic message. "To convince you of

the necessity of paying the money, I have sent four substantial arguments to your college, drawn from the

system of military logic; and, therefore, hope you will not need any further admonition to direct your


These proceedings greatly perplexed the Jesuits, who despatched an express to court to the king's confessor,

who was of their order; but the dragoons were much more expeditious in plundering and doing mischief,

than the courier in his journey: so that the Jesuits, seeing everything going to wreck and ruin, thought proper

to adjust the matter amicably, and paid the money before the return of their messenger. The Augustins and

Carmelites, taking warning by what had happened to the Jesuits, prudently went and paid the money, and by

that means escaped the study of military arguments, and of being taught logic by dragoons.

But the Dominicans, who were all familiars of, or agents dependent on, the Inquisition, imagined that that

very circumstance would be their protection; but they were mistaken, for M. de Legal neither feared nor

respected the Inquisition. The chief of the Dominicans sent word to the military commander that his order

was poor, and had not any money whatever to pay the donative; for, says he, "The whole wealth of the

Dominicans consists only in the silver images of the apostles and saints, as large as life, which are placed in

our church, and which it would be sacrilege to remove."

This insinuation was meant to terrify the French commander, whom the inquisitors imagined would not dare

to be so profane as to wish for the possession of the precious idols.

He, however, sent word that the silver images would make admirable substitutes for money, and would be

more in character in his possession, than in that of the Dominicans themselves, "For [said he] while you

possess them in the manner you do at present, they stand up in niches, useless and motionless, without being

of the least benefit to mankind in general, or even to yourselves; but, when they come into my possession,

they shall be useful; I will put them in motion; for I intend to have them coined, when they may travel like

the apostles, be beneficial in various places, and circulate for the universal service of mankind."

The inquisitors were astonished at this treatment, which they never expected to receive, even from crowned

heads; they therefore determined to deliver their precious images in a solemn procession, that they might

excite the people to an insurrection. The Dominican friars were accordingly ordered to march to de Legal's

house, with the silver apostles and saints, in a mournful manner, having lighted tapers with them and bitterly

crying all the way, "heresy, heresy."

M. de Legal, hearing these proceedings, ordered four companies of grenadiers to line the street which led to

his house; each grenadier was ordered to have his loaded fuzee in one hand, and a lighted taper in the other;

so that the troops might either repel force with force, or do honor to the farcical solemnity.

The friars did all they could to raise the tumult, but the common people were too much afraid of the troops

under arms to obey them; the silver images were, therefore, of necessity delivered up to M. de Legal, who

sent them to the mint, and ordered them to be coined immediately.

The project of raising an insurrection having failed, the inquisitors determined to excommunicate M. de

Legal, unless he would release their precious silver saints from imprisonment in the mint, before they were

melted down, or otherwise mutilated. The French commander absolutely refused to release the images, but

said they should certainly travel and do good; upon which the inquisitors drew up the form of

excommunication, and ordered their secretary to go and read it to M. de Legal.

The secretary punctually performed his commission, and read the excommunication deliberately and

distinctly. The French commander heard it with great patience, and politely told the secretary that he would

answer it the next day.

When the secretary of the Inquisition was gone, M. de Legal ordered his own secretary to prepare a form of

excommunication, exactly like that sent by the Inquisition; but to make this alteration, instead of his name to

put in those of the inquisitors.

The next morning he ordered four regiments under arms, and commanded them to accompany his secretary,

and act as he directed.

The secretary went to the Inquisition, and insisted upon admittance, which, after a great deal of altercation,

was granted. As soon as he entered, he read, in an audible voice, the excommunication sent by M. de Legal

against the inquisitors. The inquisitors were all present, and heard it with astonishment, never having before

met with any individual who dared to behave so boldly. They loudly cried out against de Legal, as a heretic;

and said, "This was a most daring insult against the Catholic faith." But to surprise them still more, the

French secretary told them that they must remove from their present lodgings; for the French commander

wanted to quarter the troops in the Inquisition, as it was the most commodious place in the whole city.

The inquisitors exclaimed loudly upon this occasion, when the secretary put them under a strong guard, and

sent them to a place appointed by M. de Legal to receive them. The inquisitors, finding how things went,

begged that they might be permitted to take their private property, which was granted; and they immediately

set out for Madrid, where they made the most bitter complaints to the king; but the monarch told them that he

could not grant them any redress, as the injuries they had received were from his grandfather, the king of

France's troops, by whose assistance alone he could be firmly established in his kingdom. "Had it been my

own troops, [said he] I would have punished them; but as it is, I cannot pretend to exert any authority."

In the mean time, M. de Legal's secretary set open all the doors of the Inquisition, and released the prisoners,

who amounted in the whole to four hundred; and among these were sixty beautiful young women, who

appeared to form a seraglio for the three principal inquisitors.

This discovery, which laid the enormity of the inquisitors so open, greatly alarmed the archbishop, who

desired M. de Legal to send the women to his palace, and he would take proper care of them; and at the same

time he published an ecclesiastical censure against all such as should ridicule, or blame, the holy office of the


The French commander sent word to the archbishop, that the prisoners had either run away, or were so

securely concealed by their friends, or even by his own officers, that it was impossible for him to send them

back again; and, therefore, the Inquisition having committed such atrocious actions, must now put up with

their exposure.

Some may suggest, that it is strange crowned heads and eminent nobles did not attempt to crush the power of

the Inquisition, and reduce the authority of those ecclesiastical tyrants, from whose merciless fangs neither

their families nor themselves were secure.

But astonishing as it is, superstition hath, in this case, always overcome common sense, and custom operated

against reason. One prince, indeed, intended to abolish the Inquisition, but he lost his life before he became

king, and consequently before he had the power so to do; for the very intimation of his design procured his


This was that amiable prince Don Carlos, son of Philip the Second, king of Spain, and grandson of the

celebrated emperor Charles V. Don Carlos possessed all the good qualities of his grandfather, without any of

the bad ones of his father; and was a prince of great vivacity, admirable learning, and the most amiable

disposition. He had sense enough to see into the errors of popery, and abhorred the very name of the

Inquisition. He inveighed publicly against the institution, ridiculed the affected piety of the inquisitors, did

all he could to expose their atrocious deeds, and even declared, that if he ever came to the crown, he would

abolish the Inquisition, and exterminate its agents.

These things were sufficient to irritate the inquisitors against the prince: they, accordingly, bent their minds

to vengeance, and determined on his destruction.

The inquisitors now employed all their agents and emissaries to spread abroad the most artful insinuations

against the prince; and, at length raised such a spirit of discontent among the people that the king was under

the necessity of removing Don Carlos from court. Not content with this, they pursued even his friends, and

obliged the king likewise to banish Don John, duke of Austria, his own brother, and consequently uncle to

the prince; together with the prince of Parma, nephew to the king, and cousin to the prince, because they well

knew that both the duke of Austria, and the prince of Parma, had a most sincere and inviolable attachment to

Don Carlos.

Some few years after, the prince having shown great lenity and favor to the Protestants in the Netherlands,

the Inquisition loudly exclaimed against him, declaring, that as the persons in question were heretics, the

prince himself must necessarily be one, since he gave them countenance. In short, they gained so great an

ascendency over the mind of the king, who was absolutely a slave to superstition, that, shocking to relate, he

sacrificed the feelings of nature to the force of bigotry, and, for fear of incurring the anger of the Inquisition,

gave up his only son, passing the sentence of death on him himself.

The prince, indeed, had what was termed an indulgence; that is, he was permitted to choose the manner of

his death. Roman-like, the unfortunate young hero chose bleeding and the hot bath; when the veins of his

arms and legs were opened, he expired gradually, falling a martyr to the malice of the inquisitors, and the

stupid bigotry of his father.

The Persecution of Dr. Aegidio

Dr. Aegidio was educated at the university of Alcala, where he took his several degrees, and particularly

applied himself to the study of the sacred Scriptures and school divinity. When the professor of theology

died, he was elected into his place, and acted so much to the satisfaction of every one that his reputation for

learning and piety was circulated throughout Europe.

Aegidio, however, had his enemies, and these laid a complaint against him to the inquisitors, who sent him a

citation, and when he appeared to it, cast him into a dungeon.

As the greatest part of those who belonged to the cathedral church at Seville, and many persons belonging to

the bishopric of Dortois highly approved of the doctrines of Aegidio, which they thought perfectly consonant

with true religion, they petitioned the emperor in his behalf. Though the monarch had been educated a

Roman Catholic, he had too much sense to be a bigot, and therefore sent an immediate order for his


He soon after visited the church of Valladolid, and did every thing he could to promote the cause of religion.

Returning home he soon after fell sick, and died in an extreme old age.

The inquisitors having been disappointed of gratifying their malice against him while living, determined (as

the emperor's whole thoughts were engrossed by a military expedition) to wreak their vengeance on him

when dead. Therefore, soon after he was buried, they ordered his remains to be dug out of the grave; and a

legal process being carried on, they were condemned to be burnt, which was executed accordingly.

The Persecution of Dr. Constantine

Dr. Constantine, an intimate acquaintance of the already mentioned Dr. Aegidio, was a man of uncommon

natural abilities and profound learning; exclusive of several modern tongues, he was acquainted with the

Latin, Greek, and Hebrew languages, and perfectly well knew not only the sciences called abstruse, but those

arts which come under the denomination of polite literature.

His eloquence rendered him pleasing, and the soundness of his doctrines a profitable preacher; and he was so

popular that he never preached but to a crowded audience. He had many opportunities of rising in the

Church, but never would take advantage of them; for if a living of greater value than his own was offered

him, he would refuse it, saying, "I am content with what I have"; and he frequently preached so forcibly

against simony, that many of his superiors, who were not so delicate upon the subject, took umbrage at his

doctrines upon that head.

Having been fully confirmed in Protestantism by Dr. Aegidio, he preached boldly such doctrines only as

were agreeable to Gospel purity, and uncontaminated by the errors which had at various times crept into the

Romish Church. For these reasons he had many enemies among the Roman Catholics, and some of them

were fully determined on his destruction.

A worthy gentleman named Scobaria, having erected a school for divinity lectures, appointed Dr.

Constantine to be reader therein. He immediately undertook the task, and read lectures, by portions, on the

Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Canticles; and was beginning to expound the Book of Job, when he was seized

by the inquisitors.

Being brought to examination, he answered with such precaution that they could not find any explicit charge

against him, but remained doubtful in what manner to proceed, when the following circumstances occurred

to determine them.

Dr. Constantine had deposited with a woman named Isabella Martin, several books, which to him were very

valuable, but which he knew, in the eyes of the Inquisition, were exceptionable.

This woman having been informed against as a Protestant, was apprehended, and, after a small process, her

goods were ordered to be confiscated. Previous, however, to the officers coming to her house, the woman's

son had removed away several chests full of the most valuable articles; among these were Dr. Constantine's


A treacherous servant gave intelligence of this to the inquisitors, and an officer was despatched to the son to

demand the chests. The son, supposing the officer only came for Constantine's books, said, "I know what you

come for, and I will fetch them to you immediately." He then fetched Dr. Constantine's books and papers,

when the officer was greatly surprised to find what he did not look for. He, however, told the young man that

he was glad these books and papers were produced, but nevertheless he must fulfill the end of his

commission, which was to carry him and the goods he had embezzled before the inquisitors, which he did

accordingly; for the young man knew it would be in vain to expostulate, or resist, and therefore quietly

submitted to his fate.

The inquisitors being thus possessed of Constantine's books and writings, now found matter sufficient to

form charges against him. When he was brought to a re-examination, they presented one of his papers, and

asked him if he knew the handwriting? Perceiving it was his own, he guessed the whole matter, confessed

the writing, and justified the doctrine it contained: saying, "In that, and all my other writings, I have never

departed from the truth of the Gospel, but have always kept in view the pure precepts of Christ, as He

delivered them to mankind."

After being detained upwards of two years in prison, Dr. Constantine was seized with a bloody flux, which

put an end to his miseries in this world. The process, however, was carried on against his body, which, at the

ensuing auto da fe, was publicly burnt.

The Life of William Gardiner

William Gardiner was born at Bristol, received a tolerable education, and was, at a proper age, placed under

the care of a merchant, named Paget.

At the age of twenty-six years, he was, by his master, sent to Lisbon to act as factor. Here he applied himself

to the study of the Portuguese language, executed his business with assiduity and despatch, and behaved with

the most engaging affability to all persons with whom he had the least concern. He conversed privately with

a few, whom he knew to be zealous Protestants; and, at the same time cautiously avoided giving the least

offence to any who were Roman Catholics; he had not, however, hitherto gone into any of the popish


A marriage being concluded between the king of Portugal's son, and the Infanta of Spain, upon the weddingday

the bridegroom, bride, and the whole court went to the cathedral church, attended by multitudes of all

ranks of people, and among the rest William Gardiner, who stayed during the whole ceremony, and was

greatly shocked at the superstitions he saw.

The erroneous worship which he had seen ran strongly in his mind; he was miserable to see a whole country

sunk into such idolatry, when the truth of the Gospel might be so easily obtained. He, therefore, took the

inconsiderate, though laudable design, into his head, of making a reform in Portugal, or perishing in the

attempt; and determined to sacrifice his prudence to his zeal, though he became a martyr upon the occasion.

To this end, he settled all his worldly affairs, paid his debts, closed his books, and consigned over his

merchandise. On the ensuing Sunday he went again to the cathedral church, with a New Testament in his

hand, and placed himself near the altar.

The king and the court soon appeared, and a cardinal began Mass, at that part of the ceremony in which the

people adore the wafer. Gardiner could hold out no longer, but springing towards the cardinal, he snatched

the host from him, and trampled it under his feet.

This action amazed the whole congregation, and one person, drawing a dagger, wounded Gardiner in the

shoulder, and would, by repeating the blow, have finished him, had not the king called to him to desist.

Gardiner, being carried before the king, the monarch asked him what countryman he was: to which he

replied, "I am an Englishman by birth, a Protestant by religion, and a merchant by occupation. What I have

done is not out of contempt to your royal person, God forbid it should, but out of an honest indignation, to

see the ridiculous superstitious and gross idolatries practiced here."

The king, thinking that he had been stimulated by some other person to act as he had done, demanded who

was his abetter, to which he replied, "My own conscience alone. I would not hazard what I have done for any

man living, but I owe that and all other services to God."

Gardiner was sent to prison, and a general order issued to apprehend all Englishmen in Lisbon. This order

was in a great measure put into execution, (some few escaping) and many innocent persons were tortured to

make them confess if they knew any thing of the matter; in particular, a person who resided in the same

house with Gardiner was treated with unparalleled barbarity to make him confess something which might

throw a light upon the affair.

Gardiner himself was then tormented in the most excruciating manner; but in the midst of all his torments he

gloried in the deed. Being ordered for death, a large fire was kindled near a gibbet, Gardiner was drawn up to

the gibbet by pulleys, and then let down near the fire, but not so close as to touch it; for they burnt or rather

roasted him by slow degrees. Yet he bore his sufferings patiently and resigned his soul to the Lord


It is observable that some of the sparks that were blown from the fire, (which consumed Gardiner) towards

the haven, burnt one of the king's ships of war, and did other considerable damage. The Englishmen who

were taken up on this occasion were, soon after Gardiner's death, all discharged, except the person who

resided in the same house with him, who was detained two years before he could procure his liberty.

An Account of the Life and Sufferings of Mr. William Lithgow, a Native of


This gentleman was descended from a good family, and having a natural propensity for travelling, he

rambled, when very young, over the northern and western islands; after which he visited France, Germany,

Switzerland, and Spain. He set out on his travels in the month of March, 1609, and the first place he went to

was Paris, where he stayed for some time. He then prosecuted his travels through Germany and other parts,

and at length arrived at Malaga, in Spain, the seat of all his misfortunes.

During his residence here, he contracted with the master of a French ship for his passage to Alexandria, but

was prevented from going by the following circumstances. In the evening of the seventeenth of October,

1620, the English fleet, at that time on a cruise against the Algerine rovers, came to anchor before Malaga,

which threw the people of the town into the greatest consternation, as they imagined them to be Turks. The

morning, however, discovered the mistake, and the governor of Malaga, perceiving the cross of England in

their colors, went on board Sir Robert Mansel's ship, who commanded on that expedition, and after staying

some time returned, and silenced the fears of the people.

The next day many persons from on board the fleet came ashore. Among these were several well known by

Mr. Lithgow, who, after reciprocal compliments, spent some days together in festivity and the amusements

of the town. They then invited Mr. Lithgow to go on board, and pay his respects to the admiral. He

accordingly accepted the invitation, was kindly received by him, and detained till the next day when the fleet

sailed. The admiral would willingly have taken Mr. Lithgow with him to Algiers; but having contracted for

his passage to Alexandria, and his baggage, etc., being in the town, he could not accept the offer.

As soon as Mr. Lithgow got on shore, he proceeded towards his lodgings by a private way, (being to embark

the same night for Alexandria) when, in passing through a narrow uninhabited street, he found himself

suddenly surrounded by nine sergeants, or officers, who threw a black cloak over him, and forcibly

conducted him to the governor's house. After some little time the governor appeared when Mr. Lithgow

earnestly begged he might be informed of the cause of such violent treatment. The governor only answered

by shaking his head, and gave orders that the prisoner should be strictly watched until he (the governor)

returned from his devotions; directing, at the same time, that the captain of the town, the alcade major, and

town notary, should be summoned to appear at his examination, and that all this should be done with the

greatest secrecy, to prevent the knowledge reaching the ears of the English merchants then residing in the


These orders were strictly discharged, and on the governor's return, he, with the officers, having seated

themselves, Mr. Lithgow was brought before them for examination. The governor began by asking several

questions, namely, of what country he was, whither bound, and how long he had been in Spain. The prisoner,

after answering these and other questions, was conducted to a closet, where, in a short space of time, he was

visited by the town captain, who inquired whether he had ever been at Seville, or was lately come from

thence; and patting his cheeks with an air of friendship, conjured him to tell the truth, "For (said he) your

very countenance shows there is some hidden matter in your mind, which prudence should direct you to

disclose." Finding himself, however, unable to extort any thing from the prisoner, he left him, and reported

the same to the governor and the other officers; on which Mr. Lithgow was again brought before them, a

general accusation was laid against him, and he was compelled to swear that he would give true answers to

such questions as should be asked him.

The governor proceeded to inquire the quality of the English commander, and the prisoner's opinion what

were the motives that prevented his accepting an invitation from him to come on shore. He demanded,

likewise, the names of the English captains in the squadron, and what knowledge he had of the embarkation,

or preparation for it before his departure from England. The answers given to the several questions asked

were set down in writing by the notary; but the junto seemed surprised at his denying any knowledge of the

fitting out of the fleet, particularly the governor, who said he lied; that he was a traitor and a spy, and came

directly from England to favor and assist the designs that were projected against Spain, and that he had been

for that purpose nine months in Seville, in order to procure intelligence of the time the Spanish navy was

expected from the Indies. They exclaimed against his familiarity with the officers of the fleet, and many

other English gentlemen, between whom, they said, unusual civilities had passed, but all these transactions

had been carefully noticed.

Besides to sum up the whole, and put the truth past all doubt, they said he came from a council of war, held

that morning on board the admiral's ship, in order to put in execution the orders assigned him. They

upbraided him with being accessory to the burning of the island of St. Thomas, in the West Indies.

"Wherefore (said they) these Lutherans, and sons of the devil, ought to have no credit given to what they say

or swear."

In vain did Mr. Lithgow endeavor to obviate every accusation laid against him, and to obtain belief from his

prejudiced judges. He begged permission to send for his cloak bag which contained his papers, and might

serve to show his innocence. This request they complied with, thinking it would discover some things of

which they were ignorant. The cloak bag was accordingly brought, and being opened, among other things,

was found a license from King James the First, under the sign manual, setting forth the bearer's intention to

travel into Egypt; which was treated by the haughty Spaniards with great contempt. The other papers

consisted of passports, testimonials, etc., of persons of quality. All these credentials, however, seemed rather

to confirm than abate the suspicions of these prejudiced judges, who, after seizing all the prisoner's papers,

ordered him again to withdraw.

In the meantime a consultation was held to fix the place where the prisoner should be confined. The alcade,

or chief judge, was for putting him into the town prison; but this was objected to, particularly by the

corregidor, who said, in Spanish, "In order to prevent the knowledge of his confinement from reaching his

countrymen, I will take the matter on myself, and be answerable for the consequences"; upon which it was

agreed that he should be confined in the governor's house with the greatest secrecy.

This matter being determined, one of the sergeants went to Mr. Lithgow, and begged his money, with liberty

to search him. As it was needless to make any resistance, the prisoner quietly complied, when the sergeant

(after rifling his pockets of eleven ducatoons) stripped him to his shirt; and searching his breeches he found,

inclosed in the waistland, two canvass bags, containing one hundred and thirty-seven pieces of gold. The

sergeant immediately took the money to the corregidor, who, after having told it over, ordered him to clothe

the prisoner, and shut him up close until after supper.

About midnight, the sergeant and two Turkish slaves released Mr. Lithgow from his then confinement, but it

was to introduce him to one much more horrible. They conducted him through several passages, to a

chamber in a remote part of the palace, towards the garden, where they loaded him with irons, and extended

his legs by means of an iron bar above a yard long, the weight of which was so great that he could neither

stand nor sit, but was obliged to lie continually on his back. They left him in this condition for some time,

when they returned with a refreshment of food, consisting of a pound of boiled mutton and a loaf, together

with a small quantity of wine; which was not only the first, but the best and last of the kind, during his

confinement in this place. After delivering these articles, the sergeant locked the door, and left Mr. Lithgow

to his own private contemplations.

The next day he received a visit from the governor, who promised him his liberty, with many other

advantages, if he would confess being a spy; but on his protesting that he was entirely innocent, the governor

left him in a rage, saying, 'He should see him no more until further torments constrained him to confess';

commanding the keeper, to whose care he was committed, that he should permit no person whatever to have

access to, or commune with him; that his sustenance should not exceed three ounces of musty bread, and a

pint of water every second day; that he shall be allowed neither bed, pillow, nor coverlid. "Close up (said he)

this window in his room with lime and stone, stop up the holes of the door with double mats: let him have

nothing that bears any likeness to comfort." These, and several orders of the like severity, were given to

render it impossible for his condition to be known to those of the English nation.

In this wretched and melancholy state did poor Lithgow continue without seeing any person for several days,

in which time the governor received an answer to a letter he had written, relative to the prisoner, from

Madrid; and, pursuant to the instructions given him, began to put in practice the cruelties devised, which

were hastened, because Christmas holy-days approached, it being then the forty-seventh day since his


About two o'clock in the morning, he heard the noise of a coach in the street, and sometime after heard the

opening of the prison doors, not having had any sleep for two nights; hunger, pain, and melancholy

reflections having prevented him from taking any repose.

Soon after the prison doors were opened, the nine sergeants, who had first seized him, entered the place

where he lay, and without uttering a word, conducted him in his irons through the house into the street,

where a coach waited, and into which they laid him at the bottom on his back, not being able to sit. Two of

the sergeants rode with him, and the rest walked by the coach side, but all observed the most profound

silence. They drove him to a vinepress house, about a league from the town, to which place a rack had been

privately conveyed before; and here they shut him up for that night.

At daybreak the next morning, arrived the governor and the alcade, into whose presence Mr. Lithgow was

immediately brought to undergo another examination. The prisoner desired he might have an interpreter,

which was allowed to strangers by the laws of that country, but this was refused, nor would they permit him

to appeal to Madrid, the superior court of judicature. After a long examination, which lasted from morning

until night, there appeared in all his answers so exact a conformity with what he had before said, that they

declared he had learned them by heart, there not being the least prevarication. They, however, pressed him

again to make a full discovery; that is, to accuse himself of crimes never committed, the governor adding,

"You are still in my power; I can set you free if you comply, if not, I must deliver you to the alcade." Mr.

Lithgow still persisting in his innocence, the governor ordered the notary to draw up a warrant for delivering

him to the alcade to be tortured.

In consequence of this he was conducted by the sergeants to the end of a stone gallery, where the rack was

placed. The encarouador, or executioner, immediately struck off his irons, which put him to very great pains,

the bolts being so closely riveted that the sledge hammer tore away half an inch of his heel, in forcing off the

bolt; the anguish of which, together with his weak condition, (not having the least sustenance for three days)

occasioned him to groan bitterly; upon which the merciless alcade said, "Villain, traitor, this is but the

earnest of what you shall endure."

When his irons were off, he fell on his knees, uttering a short prayer, that God would be pleased to enable

him to be steadfast, and undergo courageously the grievous trial he had to encounter. The alcade and notary

having placed themselves in chairs, he was stripped naked, and fixed upon the rack, the office of these

gentlemen being to be witness of, and set down the confessions and tortures endured by the delinquent.

It is impossible to describe all the various tortures inflicted upon him.

Suffice it to say that he lay on the rack for above five hours, during which time he received above sixty

different tortures of the most hellish nature; and had they continued them a few minutes longer, he must have

inevitably perished.

These cruel persecutors being satisfied for the present, the prisoner was taken from the rack, and his irons

being again put on, he was conducted to his former dungeon, having received no other nourishment than a

little warm wine, which was given him rather to prevent his dying, and reserve him for future punishments,

than from any principle of charity or compassion.

As a confirmation of this, orders were given for a coach to pass every morning before day by the prison, that

the noise made by it might give fresh terrors and alarms to the unhappy prisoner, and deprive him of all

possibility of obtaining the least repose.

He continued in this horrid situation, almost starved for want of the common necessaries to preserve his

wretched existence, until Christmas day, when he received some relief from Mariane, waiting-woman to the

governor's lady. This woman having obtained leave to visit him, carried with her some refreshments,

consisting of honey, sugar, raisins, and other articles; and so affected was she at beholding his situation that

she wept bitterly, and at her departure expressed the greatest concern at not being able to give him further


In this loathsome prison was poor Mr. Lithgow kept until he was almost devoured by vermin. They crawled

about his beard, lips, eyebrows, etc., so that he could scarce open his eyes; and his mortification was

increased by not having the use of his hands or legs to defend himself, from his being so miserably maimed

by the tortures. So cruel was the governor, that he even ordered the vermin to be swept on him twice in every

eight days. He, however, obtained some little mitigation of this part of his punishment, from the humanity of

a Turkish slave that attended him, who, when he could do it with safety, destroyed the vermin, and

contributed every refreshment to him that laid in his power.

From this slave Mr. Lithgow at length received information which gave him little hopes of ever being

released, but, on the contrary, that he should finish his life under new tortures. The substance of this

information was that an English seminary priest, and a Scotch cooper, had been for some time employed by

the governor to translate from the English into the Spanish language, all his books and observations; and that

it was commonly said in the governor's house, that he was an arch-heretic.

This information greatly alarmed him, and he began, not without reason, to fear that they would soon finish

him, more especially as they could neither by torture or any other means, bring him to vary from what he had

all along said at his different examinations.

Two days after he had received the above information, the governor, an inquisitor, and a canonical priest,

accompanied by two Jesuits, entered his dungeon, and being seated, after several idle questions, the

inquisitor asked Mr. Lithgow if he was a Roman Catholic, and acknowledged the pope's supremacy? He

answered that he neither was the one nor did the other, adding that he was surprised at being asked such

questions, since it was expressly stipulated by the articles of peace between England and Spain that none of

the English subjects should be liable to the Inquisition, or any way molested by them on account of diversity

in religion, etc. In the bitterness of his soul he made use of some warm expressions not suited to his

circumstances: "As you have almost murdered me (said he) for pretended treason, so now you intend to

make a martyr of me for my religion." He also expostulated with the governor on the ill return he made to the

king of England, (whose subject he was) for the princely humanity exercised towards the Spaniards in 1588,

when their armada was shipwrecked on the Scotch coast, and thousands of the Spaniards found relief, who

must otherwise have miserably perished.

The governor admitted the truth of what Mr. Lithgow said, but replied with a haughty air that the king, who

then only ruled Scotland, was actuated more by fear than love, and therefore did not deserve any thanks. One

of the Jesuits said there was no faith to be kept with heretics. The inquisitor then rising, addressed himself to

Mr. Lithgow in the following words: "You have been taken up as a spy, accused of treachery, and tortured,

as we acknowledge, innocently:

(which appears by the account lately received from Madrid of the intentions of the English) yet it was the

divine power that brought those judgments upon you, for presumptuously treating the blessed miracle of

Loretto with ridicule, and expressing yourself in your writings irreverently of his holiness, the great agent

and Christ's vicar upon earth; therefore you are justly fallen into our hands by their special appointment: thy

books and papers are miraculously translated by the assistance of Providence influencing thy own


This trumpery being ended, they gave the prisoner eight days to consider and resolve whether he would

become a convert to their religion; during which time the inquisitor told him he, with other religious orders,

would attend, to give him such assistance thereto as he might want. One of the Jesuits said, (first making the

sign of the cross upon his breast), "My son, behold, you deserve to be burnt alive; but by the grace of our

lady of Loretto, whom you have blasphemed we will both save your soul and body."

In the morning the inquisitor, with three other ecclesiastics, returned, when the former asked the prisoner

what difficulties he had on his conscience that retarded his conversion; to which he answered, 'he had not any

doubts in his mind, being confident in the promises of Christ, and assuredly believing his revealed will

signified in the Gospels, as professed in the reformed Catholic Church, being confirmed by grace, and having

infallible assurance thereby of the Christian faith.' To these words the inquisitor replied, "Thou art no

Christian, but an absurd heretic, and without conversion a member of perdition." The prisoner then told him

that it was not consistent with the nature and essence of religion and charity to convince by opprobrious

speeches, racks, and torments, but by arguments deduced from the Scriptures; and that all other methods

would with him be totally ineffectual.

The inquisitor was so enraged at the replies made by the prisoner, that he struck him on the face, used many

abusive speeches, and attempted to stab him, which he had certainly done had he not been prevented by the

Jesuits; and from this time he never again visited the prisoner.

The next day the two Jesuits returned, and putting on a very grave, supercilious air, the superior asked him

what resolution he had taken. To which Mr. Lithgow replied that he was already resolved, unless he could

show substantial reasons to make him alter his opinion. The superior, after a pedantic display of their seven

sacraments, the intercession of saints, transubstantiation, etc., boasted greatly of their Church, her antiquity,

universality, and uniformity; all of which Mr. Lithgow denied: "For (said he) the profession of the faith I

hold hath been ever since the first days of the apostles, and Christ had ever his own Church (however

obscure) in the greatest time of your darkness."

The Jesuits, finding their arguments had not the desired effect, that torments could not shake his constancy,

nor even the fear of the cruel sentence he had reason to expect would be pronounced and executed on him,

after severe menaces, left him. On the eighth day after, being the last of their Inquisition, when sentence is

pronounced, they returned again, but quite altered both in their words and behavior after repeating much of

the same kind of arguments as before, they with seeming tears in their eyes, pretended they were sorry from

their heart he must be obliged to undergo a terrible death, but above all, for the loss of his most precious

soul; and falling on their knees, cried out, "Convert, convert, O dear brother, for our blessed Lady's sake

convert!" To which he answered, "I fear neither death nor fire, being prepared for both."

The first effects Mr. Lithgow felt of the determination of this bloody tribunal was, a sentence to receive that

night eleven different tortures, and if he did not die in the execution of them, (which might be reasonably

expected from the maimed and disjointed condition he was in) he was, after Easter holy-days, to be carried to

Grenada, and there burnt to ashes. The first part of this sentence was executed with great barbarity that night;

and it pleased God to give him strength both of body and mind, to stand fast to the truth, and to survive the

horrid punishments inflicted on him.

After these barbarians had glutted themselves for the present, with exercising on the unhappy prisoner the

most distinguished cruelties, they again put irons on, and conveyed him to his former dungeon. The next

morning he received some little comfort from the Turkish slave before mentioned, who secretly brought him,

in his shirt sleeve, some raisins and figs, which he licked up in the best manner his strength would permit

with his tongue. It was to this slave Mr. Lithgow attributed his surviving so long in such a wretched

situation; for he found means to convey some of these fruits to him twice every week. It is very

extraordinary, and worthy of note, that this poor slave, bred up from his infancy, according to the maxims of

his prophet and parents, in the greatest detestation of Christians, should be so affected at the miserable

situation of Mr. Lithgow that he fell ill, and continued so for upwards of forty days. During this period Mr.

Lithgow was attended by a negro woman, a slave, who found means to furnish him with refreshments still

more amply than the Turk, being conversant in the house and family. She brought him every day some

victuals, and with it some wine in a bottle.

The time was now so far elapsed, and the horrid situation so truly loathsome, that Mr. Lithgow waited with

anxious expectation for the day, which, by putting an end to his life, would also end his torments. But his

melancholy expectations were, by the interposition of Providence, happily rendered abortive, and his

deliverance obtained from the following circumstances.

It happened that a Spanish gentleman of quality came from Grenada to Malaga, who being invited to an

entertainment by the governor, informed him of what had befallen Mr. Lithgow from the time of his being

apprehended as a spy, and described the various sufferings he had endured. He likewise told him that after it

was known the prisoner was innocent, it gave him great concern. That on this account he would gladly have

released him, restored his money and papers, and made some atonement for the injuries he had received, but

that, upon an inspection into his writings, several were found of a very blasphemous nature, highly reflecting

on their religion, that on his refusing to abjure these heretical opinions, he was turned over to the Inquisition,

by whom he was finally condemned.

While the governor was relating this tragical tale, a Flemish youth (servant to the Spanish gentleman) who

waited at the table, was struck with amazement and pity at the sufferings of the stranger described. On his

return to his master's lodgings he began to revolve in his mind what he had heard, which made such an

impression on him that he could not rest in his bed. In the short slumbers he had, his imagination pointed to

him the person described, on the rack, and burning in the fire. In this anxiety he passed the night; and when

the morning came, without disclosing his intentions to any person whatever, he went into the town, and

inquired for an English factor. He was directed to the house of a Mr. Wild, to whom he related the whole of

what he had heard pass the preceding evening, between his master and the governor, but could not tell Mr.

Lithgow's name. Mr. Wild, however, conjectured it was he, by the servant's remembering the circumstance

of his being a traveller, and his having had some acquaintance with him.

On the departure of the Flemish servant, Mr. Wild immeidately sent for the other English factors, to whom

he related all the paritculars relative to their unfortunate countryman. After a short consultation it was agreed

that an information of the whole affair should be sent, by express, to Sir Walter Aston, the English

ambassador to the king of Spain, then at Madrid. This was accordingly done, and the ambassador having

presented a memorial to the king and council of Spain, obtained an order for Mr. Lithgow's enlargement, and

his delivery to the English factor. This order was directed to the governor of Malaga; and was received with

great dislike and surprise by the whole assembly of the bloody Inquisition.

Mr. Lithgow was released from his confinement on the eve of Easter Sunday, when he was carried from his

dungeon on the back of the slave who had attended him, to the house of one Mr. Bosbich, where all proper

comforts were given him. It fortunately happened that there was at this time a squadron of English ships in

the road, commanded by Sir Richard Hawkins, who being informed of the past sufferings and present

situation of Mr. Lithgow, came the next day ashore, with a proper guard, and received him from the

merchants. He was instantly carried in blankets on board the Vanguard, and three days after was removed to

another ship, by direction of the general Sir Robert Mansel, who ordered that he should have proper care

taken of him. The factor presented him with clothes, and all necessary provisions, besides which they gave

him two hundred reals in silver; and Sir Richard Hawkins sent him two double pistoles.

Before his departure from the Spanish coast, Sir Richard Hawkins demanded the delivery of his papers,

money, books, etc., but could not obtain any satisfactory answer on that head.

We cannot help making a pause here to reflect how manifestly Providence interfered in behalf of this poor

man, when he was just on the brink of destruction; for by his sentence, from which there was no appeal, he

would have been taken, in a few days, to Grenada, and burnt to ashes; and that a poor ordinary servant, who

had not the least knowledge of him, nor was any ways interested in his preservation, should risk the

displeasure of his master, and hazard his own life, to disclose a thing of so momentous and perilous a nature,

to a strange gentleman, on whose secrecy depended his own existence. By such secondary means does

Providence frequently interfere in behalf of the virtuous and oppressed; of which this is a most distinguished


After lying twelve days in the road, the ship weighed anchor, and in about two months arrived safe at

Deptford. The next morning, Mr. Lithgow was carried on a feather bed to Theobalds, in Hertfordshire, where

at that time was the king and royal family. His majesty happened to be that day engaged in hunting, but on

his return in the evening, Mr. Lithgow was presented to him, and related the particulars of his sufferings, and

his happy delivery. The king was so affected at the narrative, that he expressed the deepest concern, and gave

orders that he should be sent to Bath, and his wants properly supplied from his royal munificence. By these

means, under God, after some time, Mr. Lithgow was restored from the most wretched spectacle, to a great

share of health and strength; but he lost the use of his left arm and several of the smaller bones were so

crushed and broken, as to be ever after rendered useless.

Notwithstanding that every effort was used, Mr. Lithgow could never obtain any part of his money or effects,

although his majesty and the ministers of state interested themselves in his behalf. Gondamore, the Spanish

ambassador, indeed, promised that all his effects should be restored, with the addition of 1000 Pounds

English money, as some atonement for the tortures he had undergone, which last was to be paid him by the

governor of Malaga. These engagements, however, were but mere promises; and although the king was a

kind of guarantee for the well performance of them, the cunning Spaniard found means to elude the same. He

had, indeed, too great a share of influence in the English council during the time of that pacific reign, when

England suffered herself to be bullied into slavish compliance by most of the states and kings in Europe.

The Story of Galileo

The most eminent men of science and philosophy of the day did not escape the watchful eye of this cruel

despotism. Galileo, the chief astronomer and mathematician of his age, was the first who used the telescope

successfully in solving the movements of the heavenly bodies. He discovered that the sun is the center of

motion around which the earth and various planets revolve. For making this great discovery Galileo was

brought before the Inquisition, and for a while was in great danger of being put to death.

After a long and bitter review of Galileo's writings, in which many of his most important discoveries were

condemned as errors, the charge of the inquisitors went on to declare, "That you, Galileo, have upon account

of those things which you have written and confessed, subjected yourself to a strong suspicion of heresy in

this Holy Office, by believing, and holding to be true, a doctrine which is false, and contrary to the sacred

and divine Scripture- viz., that the sun is the center of the orb of the earth, and does not move from the east

to the west; and that the earth moves, and is not the center of the world."

In order to save his life. Galileo admitted that he was wrong in thinking that the earth revolved around the

sun, and swore that-"For the future, I will never more say, or assert, either by word or writing, anything that

shall give occasion for a like suspicion." But immediately after taking this forced oath he is said to have

whispered to a friend standing near, "The earth moves, for all that."

Summary of the Inquisition

Of the multitudes who perished by the Inquisoition throughout the world, no authentic record is now

discoverable. But wherever popery had power, there was the tribunal. It had been planted even in the east,

and the Portuguese Inquisition of Goa was, until within these few years, fed with many an agony. South

America was partitioned into provinces of the Inquisition; and with a ghastly mimickry of the crimes of the

mother state, the arrivals of viceroys, and the other popular celebrations were thought imperfect without an

auto da fe. The Netherlands were one scene of slaughter from the time of the decree which planted the

Inquisition among them. In Spain the calculation is more attainable. Each of the seventeen tribunals during a

long period burned annually, on an average, ten miserable beings! We are to recollect that this number was

in a country where persecution had for ages abolished all religious differences, and where the difficulty was

not to find the stake, but the offering. Yet, even in Spain, thus gleaned of all heresy, the Inquisition could still

swell its lists of murders to thirty-two thousand! The numbers burned in effigy, or condemned to penance,

punishments generally equivalent to exile, confiscation, and taint of blood, to all ruin but the mere loss of

worthless life, amounted to three hundred and nine thousand. But the crowds who perished in dungeons of

torture, of confinement, and of broken hearts, the millions of dependent lives made utterly helpless, or

hurried to the grave by the death of the victims, are beyond all register; or recorded only before HIM, who

has sworn that "He that leadeth into captivity, shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be

killed with the sword."

Such was the Inquisition, declared by the Spirit of God to be at once the offspring and the image of the

popedom. To feel the force of the parentage, we must look to the time. In the thirteenth century, the popedom

was at the summit of mortal dominion; it was independent of all kingdoms; it ruled with a rank of influence

never before or since possessed by a human scepter; it was the acknowledged sovereign of body and soul; to

all earthly intents its power was immeasurable for good or evil. It might have spread literature, peace,

freedom, and Christianity to the ends of Europe, or the world. But its nature was hostile; its fuller triumph

only disclosed its fuller evil; and, to the shame of human reason, and the terror and suffering of human

virtue, Rome, in the hour of its consummate grandeur, teemed with the monstrous and horrid birth of the


CHAPTER VI - An Account of the

Persecutions in Italy, Under the Papacy

We shall now enter on an account of the persecutions in Italy, a country

which has been, and still is,

1. The center of popery.

2. The seat of the pontiff.

3. The source of the various errors which have spread themselves over other countries,

deluded the minds of thousands, and diffused the clouds of superstition and bigotry over the

human understanding.

In pursuing our narrative we shall include the most remarkable

persecutions which have happened, and the cruelties which have been practised,

1. By the immediate power of the pope.

2. Through the power of the Inquisition.

3. By the bigotry of the Italian princes.

In the twelfth century, the first persecutions under the papacy began in Italy, at the time that Adrian, an

Englishman, was pope, being occasioned by the following circumstances:

A learned man, and an excellent orator of Brescia, named Arnold, came to Rome, and boldly preached

against the corruptions and innovations which had crept into the Church. His discourses were so clear,

consistent, and breathed forth such a pure spirit of piety, that the senators and many of the people highly

approved of, and admired his doctrines.

This so greatly enraged Adrian that he commanded Arnold instantly to leave the city, as a heretic. Arnold,

however, did not comply, for the senators and some of the principal people took his part, and resisted the

authority of the pope.

Adrian now laid the city of Rome under an interdict, which caused the whole body of clergy to interpose;

and, at length he persuaded the senators and people to give up the point, and suffer Arnold to be banished.

This being agreed to, he received the sentence of exile, and retired to Germany, where he continued to preach

against the pope, and to expose the gross errors of the Church of Rome.

Adrian, on this account, thirsted for his blood, and made several attempts to get him into his hands; but

Arnold, for a long time, avoided every snare laid for him. At length, Frederic Barbarossa arriving at the

imperial dignity, requested that the pope would crown him with his own hand. This Adrian complied with,

and at the same time asked a favor of the emperor, which was, to put Arnold into his hands. The emperor

very readily delivered up the unfortunate preacher, who soon fell a martyr to Adrian's vengeance, being

hanged, and his body burnt to ashes, at Apulia. The same fate attended several of his old friends and


Encenas, a Spaniard, was sent to Rome, to be brought up in the Roman Catholic faith; but having conversed

with some of the reformed, and having read several treatises which they put into his hands, he became a

Protestant. This, at length, being known, one of his own relations informed against him, when he was burnt

by order of the pope, and a conclave of cardinals. The brother of Encenas had been taken up much about the

same time, for having a New Testament in the Spanish language in his possession; but before the time

appointed for his execution, he found means to escape out of prison, and retired to Germany.

Faninus, a learned layman, by reading controversial books, became of the reformed religion. An information

being exhibited against him to the pope, he was apprehended, and cast into prison. His wife, children,

relations, and friends visited him in his confinement, and so far wrought upon his mind, that he renounced

his faith, and obtained his release. But he was no sooner free from confinement than his mind felt the

heaviest of chains; the weight of a guilty conscience. His horrors were so great that he found them

insupportable, until he had returned from his apostasy, and declared himself fully convinced of the errors of

the Church of Rome. To make amends for his falling off, he now openly and strenuously did all he could to

make converts to Protestantism, and was pretty successful in his endeavors. These proceedings occasioned

his second imprisonment, but he had his life offered him if he would recant again. This proposal he rejected

with disdain, saying that he scorned life upon such terms. Being asked why he would obstinately persist in

his opinions, and leave his wife and children in distress, he replied, "I shall not leave them in distress;

I have recommended them to the care of an excellent trustee." "What trustee?" said the person who had asked

the question, with some surprise: to which Faninus answered, "Jesus Christ is the trustee I mean, and I think I

could not commit them to the care of a better." On the day of execution he appeared remarkably cheerful,

which one observing, said, "It is strange you should appear so merry upon such an occasion, when Jesus

Christ himself, just before his death, was in such agonies, that he sweated blood and water." To which

Faninus replied: "Christ sustained all manner of pangs and conflicts, with hell and death, on our accounts;

and thus, by his sufferings, freed those who really believe in him from the fear of them." He was then

strangled, his body was burnt to ashes, and then scattered about by the wind.

Dominicus, a learned soldier, having read several controversial writings, became a zealous Protestant, and

retiring to Placentia, he preached the Gospel in its utmost purity, to a very considerable congregation. One

day, at the conclusion of his sermon, he said, "If the congregation will attend to-morrow, I will give them a

description of Antichrist, and paint him out in his proper colors."

A vast concourse of people attended the next day, but just as Dominicus was beginning his sermon, a civil

magistrate went up to the pulpit, and took him into custody. He readily submitted; but as he went along with

the magistrate, he made use of this expression: "I wonder the devil hath let me alone so long." When he was

brought to examination, this question was put to him: "Will you renounce your doctrines?" To which he

replied: "My doctrines! I maintain no doctrines of my own; what I preach are the doctrines of Christ, and for

those I will forfeit my blood, and even think myself happy to suffer for the sake of my Redeemer." Every

method was taken to make him recant for his faith, and embrace the errors of the Church of Rome; but when

persuasions and menaces were found ineffectual, he was sentenced to death, and hanged in the market place.

Galeacius, a Protestant gentleman, who resided near the castle of St.

Angelo, was apprehended on account of his faith. Great endeavors being used by his friends he recanted, and

subscribed to several of the superstitious doctrines propogated by the Church of Rome. Becoming, however,

sensible of his error, he publicly renounced his recantation. Being apprehended for this, he was condemned

to be burnt, and agreeable to the order was chained to a stake, where he was left several hours before the fire

was put to the fagots, in order that his wife, relations, and friends, who surrounded him, might induce him to

give up his opinions. Galeacius, however, retained his constancy of mind, and entreated the executioner to

put fire to the wood that was to burn him. This at length he did, and Galeacius was soon consumed in the

flames, which burnt with amazing rapidity and deprived him of sensation in a few minutes.

Soon after this gentleman's death, a great number of Protestants were put to death in various parts of Italy, on

account of their faith, giving a sure proof of their sincerity in their martyrdoms.

An Account of the Persecutions of Calabria

In the fourteenth century, many of the Waldenses of Pragela and Dauphiny, emigrated to Calabria, and

settling some waste lands, by the permission of the nobles of that country, they soon, by the most industrious

cultivation, made several wild and barren spots appear with all the beauties of verdure and fertility.

The Calabrian lords were highly pleased with their new subjects and

tenants, as they were honest, quiet, and industrious; but the priests of the

country exhibited several negative complaints against them; for not being able

to accuse them of anythying bad which they did do, they founded accusations on

what they did not do, and charged them,

With not being Roman Catholics.

With not making any of their boys priests.

With not making any of their girls nuns.

With not going to Mass.

With not giving wax tapers to their priests as offerings.

With not going on pilgrimages.

With not bowing to images.

The Calabrian lords, however, quieted the priests, by telling them that these people were extremely harmless;

that they gave no offence to the Roman Catholics, and cheerfully paid the tithes to the priests, whose

revenues were considerably increased by their coming into the country, and who, of consequence, ought to

be the last persons to complain of them.

Things went on tolerably well after this for a few years, during which the Waldenses formed themselves into

two corporate towns, annexing several villages to the jurisdiction of them. At length they sent to Geneva for

two clergymen; one to preach in each town, as they determined to make a public profession of their faith.

Intelligence of this affair being carried to the pope, Pius the Fourth, he determined to exterminate them from


To this end he sent Cardinal Alexandrino, a man of very violent temper and a furious bigot, together with

two monks, to Calabria, where they were to act as inquisitors. These authorized persons came to St. Xist, one

of the towns built by the Waldenses, and having assembled the people, told them that they should receive no

injury, if they would accept of preachers appointed by the pope; but if they would not, they should be

deprived both of their properties and lives; and that their intentions might be known, Mass should be publicly

said that afternoon, at which they were ordered to attend.

The people of St. Xist, instead of attending Mass, fled into the woods, with their families, and thus

disappointed the cardinal and his coadjutors. The cardinal then proceeded to La Garde, the other town

belonging to the Waldenses, where, not to be served as he had been at St. Xist, he ordered the gates to be

locked, and all avenues guarded. The same proposals were then made to the inhabitants of La Garde, as had

previously been offered to those of St. Xist, but with this additional piece of artifice: the cardinal assured

them that the inhabitants of St. Xist had immediately come into his proposals, and agreed that the pope

should appoint them preachers. This falsehood succeeded; for the people of La Garde, thinking what the

cardinal had told them to be the truth, said they would exactly follow the example of their brethren at St.


The cardinal, having gained his point by deluding the people of one town, sent for troops of soldiers, with a

view to murder those of the other. He, accordingly, despatched the soldiers into the woods, to hunt down the

inhabitants of St. Xist like wild beasts, and gave them strict orders to spare neither age nor sex, but to kill all

they came near. The troops entered the woods, and many fell a prey to their ferocity, before the Waldenses

were properly apprised of their design. At length, however, they determined to sell their lives as dear as

possible, when several conflicts happened, in which the half-armed Waldenses performed prodigies of valor,

and many were slain on both sides. The greatest part of the troops being killed in the different rencontres, the

rest were compelled to retreat, which so enraged the cardinal that he wrote to the viceroy of Naples for


The viceroy immediately ordered a proclamation to be made thorughout all the Neapolitan territories, that all

outlaws, deserters, and other proscribed persons should be surely pardoned for their respective offences, on

condition of making a campaign against the inhabitants of St. Xist, and continuing under arms until those

people were exterminated.

Many persons of desperate fortunes came in upon this proclamation, and being formed into light companies,

were sent to scour the woods, and put to death all they could meet with of the reformed religion. The viceroy

himself likewise joined the cardinal, at the head of a body of regular forces; and, in conjunction, they did all

they could to harass the poor people in the woods. Some they caught and hanged up upon trees, cut down

boughs and burnt them, or ripped them open and left their bodies to be devoured by wild beasts, or birds of

prey. Many they shot at a distance, but the greatest number they hunted down by way of sport. A few hid

themselves in caves, but famine destroyed them in their retreat; and thus all these poor people perished, by

various means, to glut the bigoted malice of their merciless persecutors.

The inhabitants of St. Xist were no sooner exterminated, than those of La Garde engaged the attention of the

cardinal and viceroy.

It was offered, that if they should embrace the Roman Catholic persuasion, themselves and families should

not be injured, but their houses and properties should be restored, and none would be permitted to molest

them; but, on the contrary, if they refused this mercy, (as it was termed) the utmost extremities would be

used, and the most cruel deaths the certain consequence of their noncompliance.

Notwithstanding the promises on one side, and menaces on the other, these worthy people unanimously

refused to renounce their religion, or embrace the errors of popery. This exasperated the cardinal and viceroy

so much, that thirty of them were ordered to be put immediately to the rack, as a terror to the rest.

Those who were put to the rack were treated with such severity that several died under the tortures; one

Charlin, in particular, was so cruelly used that his belly burst, his bowels came out, and he expired in the

greatest agonies. These barbarities, however, did not answer the purposes for which they were intended; for

those who remained alive after the rack, and those who had not felt the rack, remained equally constant in

their faith, and boldly declared that no tortures of body, or terrors of mind, should ever induce them to

renounce their God, or worship images.

Several were then, by the cardinal's order, stripped stark naked, and whipped to death iron rods; and some

were hacked to pieces with large knives; others were thrown down from the top of a large tower, and many

were covered over with pitch, and burnt alive.

One of the monks who attended the cardinal, being naturally of a savage and cruel disposition, requested of

him that he might shed some of the blood of these poor people with his own hands; when his request being

granted, the barbarous man took a large sharp knife, and cut the throats of fourscore men, women, and

children, with as little remorse as a butcher would have killed so many sheep. Every one of these bodies were

then ordered to be quartered, the quarters placed upon stakes, and then fixed in different parts of the country,

within a circuit of thirty miles.

The four principal men of La Garde were hanged, and the clergyman was thrown from the top of his church

steeple. He was terribly mangled, but not quite killed by the fall; at which time the viceroy passing by, said,

"Is the dog yet living? Take him up, and give him to the hogs," when, brutal as this sentence may appear, it

was executed accordingly.

Sixty women were racked so violently, that the cords pierced their arms and legs close to the bone; when,

being remanded to prison, their wounds mortified, and they died in the most miserable manner. Many others

were put to death by various cruel means; and if any Roman Catholic, more compassionate than the rest,

interceded for any of the reformed, he was immediately apprehended, and shared the same fate as a favorer

of heretics.

The viceroy being obliged to march back to Naples, on some affairs of moment which required his presence,

and the cardinal being recalled to Rome, the marquis of Butane was ordered to put the finishing stroke to

what they had begun; which he at length effected, by acting with such barbarous rigor, that there was not a

single person of the reformed religion left living in all Calabria.

Thus were a great number of inoffensive and harmless people deprived of their possessions, robbed of their

property, driven from their homes, and at length murdered by various means, only because they would not

sacrifice their consciences to the superstitions of others, embrace idolatrous doctrines which they abhorred,

and accept of teachers whom they could not believe.

Tyranny is of three kinds, viz., that which enslaves the person, that which seizes the property, and that which

prescribes and dictates to the mind. The two first sorts may be termed civil tyranny, and have been practiced

by arbitrary sovereigns in all ages, who have delighted in tormenting the persons, and stealing the properties

of their unhappy subjects. But the third sort, viz., prescribing and dictating to the mind, may be called

ecclesiastical tyranny: and this is the worst kind of tyranny, as it includes the other two sorts; for the Romish

clergy not only do torture the body and seize the effects of those they persecute, but take the lives, torment

the minds, and, if possible, would tyrannize over the souls of the unhappy victims.

Account of the Persecutions in the Valleys of Piedmont

Many of the Waldenses, to avoid the persecutions to which they were continually subjected in France, went

and settled in the valleys of Piedmont, where they increased exceedingly, and flourished very much for a

considerable time.

Though they were harmless in their behavior, inoffensive in their conversation, and paid tithes to the Roman

clergy, yet the latter could not be contented, but wished to give them some distrubance: they, accordingly,

complained to the archbishop of Turin that the Waldenses of the valleys of Piedmont were heretics, for these


1. That they did not believe in the doctrines of the Church of Rome.

2. That they made no offerings or prayers for the dead.

3. That they did not go to Mass.

4. That they did not confess, and receive absolution.

5. That they did not believe in purgatory, or pay money to get the souls of their friends out

of it.

Upon these charges the archbishop ordered a persecution to be commenced, and many fell martyrs to the

superstitious rage of the priests and monks.

At Turin, one of the reformed had his bowels torn out, and put in a basin before his face, where they

remained in his view until he expired. At Revel, Catelin Girard being at the stake, desired the executioner to

give him a stone; which he refused, thinking that he meant to throw it at somebody; but Girard assuring him

that he had no such design, the executioner complied, when Girard, looking earnestly at the stone, said,

"When it is in the power of a man to eat and digest this solid stone, the religion for which I am about to

suffer shall have an end, and not before." He then threw the stone on the ground, and submitted cheerfully to

the flames. A great many more of the reformed were oppressed, or put to death, by various means, until the

patience of the Waldenses being tired out, they flew to arms in their own defence, and formed themselves

into regular bodies.

Exasperated at this, the bishop of Turin procured a number of troops, and sent against them; but in most of

the skirmishes and engagements the Waldenses were successful, which partly arose from their being better

acquainted with the passes of the valleys of Piedmont than their adversaries, and partly from the desperation

with which they fought; for they well knew, if they were taken, they should not be considered as prisoners of

war, but tortured to death as heretics.

At length, Philip VII, duke of Savoy, and supreme lord of Piedmont, determined to interpose his authority,

and stop these bloody wars, which so greatly disturbed his dominions. He was not willing to disoblige the

pope, or affront the archbishop of Turin; nevertheless, he sent them both messages, importing that he could

not any longer tamely see his dominions overrun with troops, who were directed by priests instead of

officers, and commanded by prelates instead of generals; nor would he suffer his country to be depopulated,

while he himself had not been even consulted upon the occasion.

The priests, finding the resolution of the duke, did all they could to prejudice his mind against the

Waldenses; but the duke told them, that though he was unacquainted with the religious tenets of these

people, yet he had always found them quiet, faithful, and obedient, and therefore he determined they should

be no longer persecuted.

The priests now had recourse to the most palpable and absurd falsehoods:

they assured the duke that he was mistaken in the Waldenses for they were a wicked set of people, and

highly addicted to intemperance, uncleanness, blasphemy, adultery, incest, and many other abominable

crimes; and that they were even monsters in nature, for their children were born with black throats, with four

rows of teeth, and bodies all over hairy.

The duke was not so devoid of common sense as to give credit to what the priests said, though they affirmed

in the most solemn manner the truth of their assertions. He, however, sent twelve very learned and sensible

gentlemen into the Piedmontese valleys, to examine into the real character of the inhabitants.

These gentlemen, after travelling through all their towns and villages, and conversing with people of every

rank among the Waldenses returned to the duke, and gave him the most favorable account of these people;

affirming, before the faces of the priests who vilified them, that they were harmless, inoffensive, loyal,

friendly, industrious, and pious: that they abhorred the crimes of which they were accused; and that, should

an individual, through his depravity, fall into any of those crimes, he would, by their laws, be punished in the

most exemplary manner. "With respect to the children," the gentlemen said, "the priests had told the most

gross and ridiculous falsities, for they were neither born with black throats, teeth in their mouths, nor hair on

their bodies, but were as fine children as could be seen. And to convince your highness of what we have said,

(continued one of the gentlemen) we have brought twelve of the principal male inhabitants, who are come to

ask pardon in the name of the rest, for having taken up arms without your leave, though even in their own

defence, and to preserve their lives from their merciless enemies. And we have likewise brought several

women, with children of various ages, that your highness may have an opportunity of personally examining

them as much as you please."

The duke, after accepting the apology of the twelve delegates, conversing with the women, and examining

the children, graciously dismissed them. He then commanded the priests, who had attempted to mislead him,

immediately to leave the court; and gave strict orders, that the persecution should cease throughout his


The Waldenses had enjoyed peace many years, when Philip, the seventh duke of Savoy, died, and his

successor happened to be a very bigoted papist. About the same time, some of the principal Waldenses

proposed that their clergy should preach in public, that every one might know the purity of their doctrines:

for hitherto they had preached only in private, and to such congregations as they well knew to consist of

none but persons of the reformed religion.

On hearing these proceedings, the new duke was greatly exasperated, and sent a considerable body of troops

into the valleys, swearing that if the people would not change their religion, he would have them flayed alive.

The commander of the troops soon found the impracticability of conquering them with the number of men he

had with him, he, therefore, sent word to the duke that the idea of subjugating the Waldenses, with so small a

force, was ridiculous; that those people were better acquainted with the country than any that were with him;

that they had secured all the passes, were well armed, and resolutely determined to defend themselves; and,

with respect to flaying them alive, he said, that every skin belonging to those people would cost him the lives

of a dozen of his subjects.

Terrified at this information, the duke withdrew the troops, determining to act not by force, but by stratagem.

He therefore ordered rewards for the taking of any of the Waldenses, who might be found straying from their

places of security; and these, when taken, were either flayed alive, or burnt.

The Waldenses had hitherto only had the New Testament and a few books of the Old, in the Waldensian

tongue; but they determined now to have the sacred writings complete in their own language. They,

therefore, employed a Swiss printer to furnish them with a complete edition of the Old and New Testaments

in the Waldensian tongue, which he did for the consideration of fifteen hundred crowns of gold, paid him by

those pious people.

Pope Paul the third, a bigoted papist, ascending the pontifical chair, immediately solicited the parliament of

Turin to persecute the Waldenses, as the most pernicious of all heretics.

The parliament readily agreed, when several were suddenly apprehended and burnt by their order. Among

these was Bartholomew Hector, a bookseller and stationer of Turin, who was brought up a Roman Catholic,

but having read some treatises written by the reformed clergy, was fully convinced of the errors of the

Church of Rome; yet his mind was, for some time, wavering, and he hardly knew what persuasion to


At length, however, he fully embraced the reformed religion, and was apprehended, as we have already

mentioned, and burnt by order of the parliament of Turin.

A consultation was now held by the parliament of Turin, in which it was agreed to send deputies to the

valleys of Piedmont, with the following propositions:

1. That if the Waldenses would come to the bosom of the Church of Rome, and embrace

the Roman Catholic religion, they should enjoy their houses, properties, and lands, and live

with their families, without the least molestation.

2. That to prove their obedience, they should send twelve of their principal persons, with

all their ministers and schoolmasters, to Turin, to be dealt with at discretion.

3. That the pope, the king of France, and the duke of Savoy, approved of, and authorized

the proceedings of the parliament of Turin, upon this occasion.

4. That if the Waldenses of the valleys of Piedmont refused to comply with these

propositions, persecution should ensue, and certain death be their portion.

To each of these propositions the Waldenses nobly replied in the following manner, answering them


1. That no considerations whatever should make them renounce their religion.

2. That they would never consent to commit their best and most respectable friends, to the

custody and discretion of their worst and most inveterate enemies.

3. That they valued the approbation of the King of kings, who reigns in heaven, more than

any temporal authority.

4. That their souls were more precious than their bodies.

These pointed and spirited replies greatly exasperated the parliament of Turin; they continued, with more

avidity than ever, to kidnap such Waldenses as did not act with proper precaution, who were sure to suffer

the most cruel deaths. Among these, it unfortunately happened, that they got hold of Jeffery Varnagle,

minister of Angrogne, whom they committed to the flames as a heretic.

They then solicited a considerable body of troops of the king of France, in order to exterminate the reformed

entirely from the valleys of Piedmont; but just as the troops were going to march, the Protestant princes of

Germany interposed, and threatened to send troops to assist the Waldenses, if they should be attacked. The

king of France, not caring to enter into a war, remanded the troops, and sent word to the parliament of Turin

that he could not spare any troops at present to act in Piedmont. The members of the parliament were greatly

vexed at this disappointment, and the persecution gradually ceased, for as they could only put to death such

of the reformed as they caught by chance, and as the Waldenses daily grew more cautious, their cruelty was

obliged to subside, for want of objects on whom to exercise it.

After the Waldenses had enjoyed a few years tranquillity, they were again disturbed by the following means:

the pope's nuncio coming to Turin to the duke of Savoy upon business, told that prince he was astonished he

had not yet either rooted out the Waldenses from the valleys of Piedmont entirely, or compelled them to

enter into the bosom of the Church of Rome. That he could not help looking upon such conduct with a

suspicious eye, and that he really thought him a favorer of those heretics, and should report the affair

accordingly to his holiness the pope.

Stung by this reflection, and unwilling to be misrepresented to the pope, the duke determined to act with the

greatest severity, in order to show his zeal, and to make amends for former neglect by future cruelty. He,

accordingly, issued express orders for all the Waldenses to attend Mass regularly on pain of death. This they

absolutely refused to do, on which he entered the Piedmontese valleys, with a formidable body of troops, and

began a most furious persecution, in which great numbers were hanged, drowned, ripped open, tied to trees,

and pierced with prongs, thrown from precipices, burnt, stabbed, racked to death, crucified with their heads

downwards, worried by dogs, etc.

Those who fled had their goods plundered, and their houses burnt to the ground: they were particularly cruel

when they caught a minister or a schoolmaster, whom they put to such exquisite tortures, as are almost

incredible to conceive. If any whom they took seemed wavering in their faith, they did not put them to death,

but sent them to the galleys, to be made converts by dint of hardships.

The most cruel persecutors, upon this occasion, that attended the duke, were three in number, viz. 1. Thomas

Incomel, an apostate, for he was brought up in the reformed religion, but renounced his faith, embraced the

errors of popery, and turned monk. He was a great libertine, given to unnatural crimes, and sordidly

solicitous for plunder of the Waldenses. 2. Corbis, a man of a very ferocious and cruel nature, whose

business was to examine the prisoners. 3. The provost of justice, who was very anxious for the execution of

the Waldenses, as every execution put money in his pocket.

These three persons were unmerciful to the last degree; and wherever they came, the blood of the innocent

was sure to flow. Exclusive of the cruelties exercised by the duke, by these three persons, and the army, in

their different marches, many local barbarities were committed. At Pignerol, a town in the valleys, was a

monastery, the monks of which, finding they might injure the reformed with impunity, began to plunder the

houses and pull down the churches of the Waldenses. Not meeting with any opposition, they seized upon the

persons of those unhappy people, murdering the men, confining the women, and putting the children to

Roman Catholic nurses.

The Roman Catholic inhabitants of the valley of St. Martin, likewise, did all they could to torment the

neighboring Waldenses: they destroyed their churches, burnt their houses, seized their properties, stole their

cattle, converted their lands to their own use, committed their ministers to the flames, and drove the

Waldenses to the woods, where they had nothing to subsist on but wild fruits, roots, the bark of trees, etc.

Some Roman Catholic ruffians having seized a minister as he was going to preach, determined to take him to

a convenient place, and burn him. His parishioners having intelligence of this affair, the men armed

themselves, pursued the ruffians, and seemed determined to rescue their minister; which the ruffians no

sooner perceived than they stabbed the poor gentleman, and leaving him weltering in his blood, made a

precipitate retreat. The astonished parishioners did all they could to recover him, but in vain: for the weapon

had touched the vital parts, and he expired as they were carrying him home.

The monks of Pignerol having a great inclination to get the minister of a town in the valleys, called St.

Germain, into their power, hired a band of ruffians for the purpose of apprehending him. These fellows were

conducted by a treacherous person, who had formerly been a servant to the clergyman, and who perfectly

well knew a secret way to the house, by which he could lead them without alarming the neighborhood. The

guide knocked at the door, and being asked who was there, answered in his own name. The clergyman, not

expecting any injury from a person on whom he had heaped favors, immediately opened the door; but

perceiving the ruffians, he started back, and fled to a back door; but they rushed in, followed, and seized him.

Having murdered all his family, they made him proceed towards Pignerol, goading him all the way with

pikes, lances, swords, etc. He was kept a considerable time in prison, and then fastened to the stake to be

burnt; when two women of the Waldenses, who had renounced their religion to save their lives, were ordered

to carry fagots to the stake to burn him; and as they laid them down, to say, "Take these, thou wicked heretic,

in recompense for the pernicious doctrines thou hast taught us." These words they both repeated to him; to

which he calmly replied, "I formerly taught you well, but you have since learned ill." The fire was then put to

the fagots, and he was speedily consumed, calling upon the name of the Lord as long as his voice permitted.

As the troops of ruffians, belonging to the monks, did great mischief about the town of St. Germain,

murdering and plundering many of the inhabitants, the reformed of Lucerne and Angrogne, sent some bands

of armed men to the assistance of their brethren of St. Germain. These bodies of armed men frequently

attacked the ruffians, and often put them to the rout, which so terrified the monks, that they left the

monastery of Pignerol for some time, until they could procure a body of regular troops to guard them.

The duke not thinking himself so successful as he at first imagined he should be, greatly augmented his

forces; he ordered the bands of ruffians, belonging to the monks, to join him, and commanded that a general

jail-delivery should take place, provided the persons released would bear arms, and form themselves into

light companies, to assist in the extermination of the Waldenses.

The Waldenses, being informed of the proceedings, secured as much of their properties as they could, and

quitted the valleys, retired to the rocks and caves among the Alps; for it is to be understood that the valleys

of Piedmont are situated at the foot of those prodigious mountains called the Alps, or the Alpine hills.

The army now began to plunder and burn the towns and villages wherever they came; but the troops could

not force the passes to the Alps, which were gallantly defended by the Waldenses, who always repulsed their

enemies: but if any fell into the hands of the troops, they were sure to be treated with the most barbarous


A soldier having caught one of the Waldenses, bit his right ear off, saying, "I will carry this member of that

wicked heretic with me into my own country, and preserve it as a rarity." He then stabbed the man and threw

him into a ditch.

A party of the troops found a venerable man, upwards of a hundred years of age, together with his

granddaughter, a maiden, of about eighteen, in a cave. They butchered the poor old man in the most inhuman

manner, and then attempted to ravish the girl, when she started away and fled from them; but they pursuing

her, she threw herself from a precipice and perished.

The Waldenses, in order the more effectually to be able to repel force by force, entered into a league with the

Protestant powers of Germany, and with the reformed of Dauphiny and Pragela. These were respectively to

furnish bodies of troops; and the Waldenses determined, when thus reinforced, to quit the mountains of the

Alps, (where they must soon have perished, as the winter was coming on,) and to force the duke's army to

evacuate their native valleys.

The duke of Savoy was now tired of the war; it had cost him great fatigue and anxiety of mind, a vast

number of men, and very considerable sums of money. It had been much more tedious and bloody than he

expected, as well as more expensive than he could at first have imagined, for he thought the plunder would

have dischanged the expenses of the expedition; but in this he was mistaken, for the pope's nuncio, the

bishops, monks, and other ecclesiastics, who attended the army and encouraged the war, sunk the greatest

part of the wealth that was taken under various pretences. For these reasons, and the death of his duchess, of

which he had just received intelligence, and fearing that the Waldenses, by the treaties they had entered into,

would become more powerful than ever, he determined to return to Turin with his army, and to make peace

with the Waldenses.

This resolution he executed, though greatly against the will of the ecclesiastics, who were the chief gainers,

and the best pleased with revenge. Before the articles of peace could be ratified, the duke himself died, soon

after his return to Turin; but on his deathbed he strictly enjoined his son to perform what he intended, and to

be as favorable as possible to the Waldenses.

The duke's son, Charles Emmanuel, succeeded to the dominions of Savoy, and gave a full ratification of

peace to the Waldenses, according to the last injunctions of his father, though the ecclesiastics did all they

could to persuade him to the contrary.

An Account of the Persecutions in Venice

While the state of Venice was free from inquisitors, a great number of Protestants fixed their residence there,

and many converts were made by the purity of the doctrines they professed, and the inoffensiveness of the

conversation they used.

The pope being informed of the great increase of Protestantism, in the year 1542 sent inquisitors to Venice to

make an inquiry into the matter, and apprehend such as they might deem obnoxious persons. Hence a severe

persecution began, and many worthy persons were martyred for serving God with purity, and scorning the

trappings of idolatry.

Various were the modes by which the Protestants were deprived of life; but one particular method, which

was first invented upon this occasion, we shall describe; as soon as sentence was passed, the prisoner had an

iron chain which ran through a great stone fastened to his body. He was then laid flat upon a plank, with his

face upwards, and rowed between two boats to a certain distance at sea, when the two boats separated, and

he was sunk to the bottom by the weight of the stone.

If any denied the jurisdiction of the inquisitors at Venice, they were sent to Rome, where, being committed

purposely to damp prisons, and never called to a hearing, their flesh mortified, and they died miserably in


A citizen of Venice, Anthony Ricetti, being apprehended as a Protestant, was sentenced to be drowned in the

manner we have already described. A few days previous to the time appointed for his execution, his son went

to see him, and begged him to recant, that his life might be saved, and himself not left fatherless. To which

the father replied, "A good Christian is bound to relinquish not only goods and children, but life itself, for the

glory of his Redeemer: therefore I am resolved to sacrifice every thing in this transitory world, for the sake

of salvation in a world that will last to eternity."

The lords of Venice likewise sent him word, that if he would embrace the Roman Catholic religion, they

would not only give him his life, but redeem a considerable estate which he had mortgaged, and freely

present him with it. This, however, he absolutely refused to comply with, sending word to the nobles that he

valued his soul beyond all other considerations; and being told that a fellow-prisoner, named Francis Sega,

had recanted, he answered, "If he has forsaken God, I pity him; but I shall continue steadfast in my duty."

Finding all endeavors to persuade him to renounce his faith ineffectual, he was executed according to his

sentence, dying cheerfully, and recommending his soul fervently to the Almighty.

What Ricetti had been told concerning the apostasy of Francis Sega, was absolutely false, for he had never

offered to recant, but steadfastly persisted in his faith, and was executed, a few days after Ricetti, in the very

same manner.

Francis Spinola, a Protestant gentleman of very great learning, being apprehended by order of the inquisitors,

was carried before their tribunal. A treatise on the Lord's Supper was then put into his hands and he was

asked if he knew the author of it. To which he replied, "I confess myself to be the author of it, and at the

same time solemnly affirm, that there is not a line in it but what is authorized by, and consonant to, the holy

Scriptures." On this confession he was committed close prisoner to a dungeon for several days.

Being brought to a second examination, he charged the pope's legate, and the inquisitors, with being

merciless barbarians, and then represented the superstitions and idolatries practised by the Church of Rome

in so glaring a light, that not being able to refute his arguments, they sent him back to his dungeon, to make

him repent of what he had said.

On his third examination, they asked him if he would recant his error. To which he answered that the

doctrines he maintained were not erroneous, being purely the same as those which Christ and his apostles

had taught, and which were handed down to us in the sacred writings. The inquisitors then sentenced him to

be drowned, which was executed in the manner already described. He went to meet death with the utmost

serenity, seemed to wish for dissolution, and declaring that the prolongation of his life did but tend to retard

that real happiness which could only be expected in the world to come.

An Account of Several Remarkable Individuals, Who Were

Martyred in Different

Parts of Italy, on Account of Their Religion

John Mollius was born at Rome, of reputable parents. At twelve years of age they placed him in the

monastery of Gray Friars, where he made such a rapid progress in arts, sciences, and languages that at

eighteen years of age he was permitted to take priest's orders.

He was then sent to Ferrara, where, after pursuing his studies six years longer, he was made theological

reader in the university of that city. He now, unhappily, exerted his great talents to disguise the Gospel

truths, and to varnish over the error of the Church of Rome. After some years residence in Ferrara, he

removed to the university of Behonia, where he became a professor. Having read some treatises written by

ministers of the reformed religion, he grew fully sensible of the errors of popery, and soon became a zealous

Protestant in his heart.

He now determined to expound, accordingly to the purity of the Gospel, St.

Paul's Epistle to the Romans, in a regular course of sermons. The concourse of people that continually

attended his preaching was surprising, but when the priests found the tenor of his doctrines, they despatched

an account of the affair to Rome; when the pope sent a monk, named Cornelius, to Bononia, to expound the

same epistle, according to the tenets of the Church of Rome. The people, however, found such a disparity

between the two preachers that the audience of Mollius increased, and Cornelius was forced to preach to

empty benches.

Cornelius wrote an account of his bad success to the pope, who immediately sent an order to apprehend

Mollius, who was seized upon accordingly, and kept in close confinement. The bishop of Bononia sent him

word that he must recant, or be burnt; but he appealed to Rome, and was removed thither.

At Rome he begged to have a public trial, but that the pope absolutely denied him, and commanded him to

give an account of his opinions, in writing, which he did under the following heads:

Original sin. Free-will. The infallibility of the church of Rome. The infallibility of the pope. Justification by

faith. Purgatory. Transubstantiation. Mass. Auricular confession. Prayers for the dead. The host. Prayers for

saints. Going on pilgrimages. Extreme unction. Performing services in an unknown tongue, etc., etc.

All these he confirmed from Scripture authority. The pope, upon this occasion, for political reasons, spared

him for the present, but soon after had him apprehended, and put to death, he being first hanged, and his

body burnt to ashes, A.D. 1553.

The year after, Francis Gamba, a Lombard, of the Protestant persuasion, was apprehended, and condemned

to death by the senate of Milan. At the place of execution, a monk presented a cross to him, to whom he said,

"My mind is so full of the real merits and goodness of Christ that I want not a piece of senseless stick to put

me in mind of Him." For this expression his tongue was bored through, and he was afterward burnt.

A.D. 1555, Algerius, a student in the university of Padua, and a man of great learning, having embraced the

reformed religion, did all he could to convert others. For these proceedings he was accused of heresy to the

pope, and being apprehended, was committed to the prison at Venice.

The pope, being informed of Algerius's great learning, and surprising natural abilities, thought it would be of

infinite service to the Church of Rome if he could induce him to forsake the Protestant cause. He, therefore,

sent for him to Rome, and tried, by the most profane promises, to win him to his purpose. But finding his

endeavors ineffectual, he ordered him to be burnt, which sentence was executed accordingly.

A.D. 1559, John Alloysius, being sent from Geneva to preach in Calabria, was there apprehended as a

Protestant, carried to Rome, and burnt by order of the pope; and James Bovelius, for the same reason, was

burnt at Messina.

A.D. 1560, Pope Pius the Fourth, ordered all the Protestants to be severely persecuted throughout the Italian

states, when great numbers of every age, sex, and condition, suffered martyrdom. Concerning the cruelties

practiced upon this occasion, a learned and humane Roman Catholic thus spoke of them, in a letter to a noble


"I cannot, my lord, forbear disclosing my sentiments, with respect to the persecution now carrying on: I think

it cruel and unnecessary; I tremble at the manner of putting to death, as it resembles more the slaughter of

calves and sheep, than the execution of human beings. I will relate to your lordship a dreadful scene, of

which I was myself an eye witness: seventy Protestants were cooped up in one filthy dungeon together; the

executioner went in among them, picked out one from among the rest, blindfolded him, led him out to an

open place before the prison, and cut his throat with the greatest composure. He then calmly walked into the

prison again, bloody as he was, and with the knife in his hand selected another, and despatched him in the

same manner; and this, my lord, he repeated until the whole number were put to death. I leave it to your

lordship's feelings to judge of my sensations upon this occasion; my tears now wash the paper upon which I

give you the recital. Another thing I must mention-the patience with which they met death: they seemed all

resignation and piety, fervently praying to God, and cheerfully encountering their fate. I cannot reflect

without shuddering, how the executioner held the bloody knife between his teeth; what a dreadful figure he

appeared, all covered with blood, and with what unconcern he executed his barbarous office."

A young Englishman who happened to be at Rome, was one day passing by a church, when the procession of

the host was just coming out. A bishop carried the host, which the young man perceiving, he snatched it from

him, threw it upon the ground, and trampled it under his feet, crying out, "Ye wretched idolaters, who

neglect the true God, to adore a morsel of bread." This action so provoked the people that they would have

torn him to pieces on the spot; but the priests persuaded them to let him abide by the sentence of the pope.

When the affair was represented to the pope, he was so greatly exasperated that he ordered the prisoner to be

burnt immediately; but a cardinal dissuaded him from this hasty sentence, saying that it was better to punish

him by slow degrees, and to torture him, that they might find out if he had been instigated by any particular

person to commit so atrocious an act.

This being approved, he was tortured with the most exemplary severity, notwithstanding which they could

only get these words from him, "It was the will of God that I should do as I did."

The pope then passed this sentence upon him.

1. That he should be led by the executioner, naked to the middle, through the streets of


2. That he should wear the image of the devil upon his head.

3. That his breeches should be painted with the representation of flames.

4. That he should have his right hand cut off.

5. That after having been carried about thus in procession, he should be burnt.

When he heard this sentence pronounced, he implored God to give him strength and fortitude to go through

it. As he passed through the streets he was greatly derided by the people, to whom he said some severe things

respecting the Romish superstition. But a cardinal, who attended the procession, overhearing him, ordered

him to be gagged.

When he came to the church door, where he trampled on the host, the hangman cut off his right hand, and

fixed it on a pole. Then two tormentors, with flaming torches, scorched and burnt his flesh all the rest of the

way. At the place of execution he kissed the chains that were to bind him to the stake. A monk presenting the

figure of a saint to him, he struck it aside, and then being chained to the stake, fire was put to the fagots, and

he was soon burnt to ashes.

A little after the last-mentioned execution, a venerable old man, who had long been a prisoner in the

Inquisition, was condemned to be burnt, and brought out for execution. When he was fastened to the stake, a

priest held a crucifix to him, on which he said, "If you do not take that idol from my sight, you will constrain

me to spit upon it." The priest rebuked him for this with great severity; but he bade him remember the First

and Second Commandments, and refrain from idolatry, as God himself had commanded. He was then

gagged, that he should not speak any more, and fire being put to the fagots, he suffered martyrdom in the


An Account of the Persecutions in the Marquisate of Saluces

The Marquisate of Saluces, on the south side of the valleys of Piedmont, was in A.D. 1561, principally

inhabited by Protestants, when the marquis, who was proprietor of it, began a persecution against them at the

instigation of the pope. He began by banishing the ministers, and if any of them refused to leave their flocks,

they were sure to be imprisoned, and severely tortured; however, he did not proceed so far as to put any to


Soon after the marquisate fell into the possession of the duke of Savoy, who sent circular letters to all the

towns and villages, that he expected the people should all conform to go to Mass. The inhabitants of Saluces,

upon receiving this letter, returned a general epistle, in answer.

The duke, after reading the letter, did not interrupt the Protestants for some time; but, at length, he sent them

word that they must either conform to the Mass, or leave his dominions in fifteen days. The Protestants, upon

this unexpected edict, sent a deputy to the duke to obtain its revocation, or at least to have it moderated. But

their remonstrances were in vain, and they were given to understand that the edict was absolute.

Some were weak anough to go to Mass, in order to avoid banishment, and preserve their property; others

removed, with all their effects, to different countries; and many neglected the time so long that they were

obliged to abandon all they were worth, and leave the marquisate in haste. Those, who unhappily stayed

bheind, were seized, plundered, and put to death.

An Account of the Persecutions in the Valleys of Piedmont, in

the Seventeenth


Pope Clement the Eighth, sent missionaries into the valleys of Piedmont, to induce the Protestants to

renounce their religion; and these missionaries having erected monasteries in several parts of the valleys,

became exceedingly troublesome to those of the reformed, where the monasteries appeared, not only as

fortresses to curb, but as sanctuaries for all such to fly to, as had any ways injured them.

The Protestants petitioned the duke of Savoy against these missionaries, whose insolence and ill-usage were

become intolerable; but instead of getting any redress, the interest of the missionaries so far prevailed, that

the duke published a decree, in which he declared, that one witness should be sufficient in a court of law

against a Protestant, and that any witness, who convicted a Protestant of any crime whatever, should be

entitled to one hundred crowns.

It may be easily imagined, upon the publication of a decree of this nature, that many Protestants fell martyrs

to perjury and avarice; for several villainous papists would swear any thing against the Protestants for the

sake of the reward, and then fly to their own priests for absolution from their false oaths. If any Roman

Catholic, of more conscience than the rest, blamed these fellows for their atrocious crimes, they themselves

were in danger of being informed against and punished as favorers of heretics.

The missionaries did all they could to get the books of the Protestants into their hands, in order to burn them;

when the Protestants doing their utmost endeavors to conceal their books, the missionaries wrote to the duke

of Savoy, who, for the heinous crime of not surrendering their Bibles, prayer books, and religious treatises,

sent a number of troops to be quartered on them. These military gentry did great mischief in the houses of the

Protestants, and destroyed such quantities of provisions, that many families were thereby ruined.

To encourage, as much as possible, the apostasy of the Protestants, the duke of Savoy published a

proclamation wherein he said, "To encourage the heretics to turn Catholics, it is our will and pleasure, and

we do hereby expressly command, that all such as shall embrace the holy Roman Catholic faith, shall enjoy

an exemption, from all and every tax for the space of five years, commencing from the day of their

conversion." The duke of Savoy, likewise established a court, called the council for extirpating the heretics.

This court was to enter into inquiries concerning the ancient privileges of the Protestant churches, and the

decrees which had been, from time to time, made in favor of the Protestants. But the investigation of these

things was carried on with the most manifest partiality; old charters were wrested to a wrong sense, and

sophistry was used to pervert the meaning of everything, which tended to favor the reformed.

As if these severities were not sufficient, the duke, soon after, published another edict, in which he strictly

commanded, that no Protestant should act as a schoolmaster, or tutor, either in public or private, or dare to

teach any art, science, or language, directly or indirectly, to persons of any persuasion whatever.

This edict was immediately followed by another, which decreed that no Protestant should hold any place of

profit, trust, or honor; and to wind up the whole, the certain token of an approaching persecution came forth

in a final edict, by which it was positively ordered, that all Protestants should diligently attend Mass.

The publication of an edict, containing such an injunction, may be compared to unfurling the bloody flag; for

murder and rapine were sure to follow. One of the first objects that attracted the notice of the papists was Mr.

Sebastian Basan, a zealous Protestant, who was seized by the missionaries, confined, tormented for fifteen

months, and then burnt.

Previous to the persecution, the missionaries employed kidnappers to steal away the Protestants' children,

that they might privately be brought up Roman Catholics; but now they took away the children by open

force, and if they met with any resistance, they murdered the parents.

To give greater vigor to the persecution, the duke of Savoy called a general assembly of the Roman Catholic

nobility and gentry when a solemn edict was published against the reformed, containing many heads, and

including several reasons for extirpating the Protestants, among which were the following:

1. For the preservation of the papal authority.

2. That the church livings may be all under one mode of government.

3. To make a union among all parties.

4. In honor of all the saints, and of the ceremonies of the Church of


This severe edict was followed by a most cruel order, published on January 25, A.D. 1655, under the duke's

sanction, by Andrew Gastaldo, doctor of civil laws. This order set forth, "That every head of a family, with

the individuals of that family, of the reformed religion, of what rank, degree, or condition soever, none

excepted inhabiting and possessing estates in Lucerne, St. Giovanni, Bibiana, Campiglione, St. Secondo,

Lucernetta, La Torre, Fenile, and Bricherassio, should, within three days after the publication thereof,

withdraw and depart, and be withdrawn out of the said places, and translated into the places and limits

tolerated by his highness during his pleasure; particularly Bobbio, Angrogne, Vilario, Rorata, and the county

of Bonetti.

"And all this to be done on pain of death, and confiscation of house and goods, unless within the limited time

they turned Roman Catholics."

A flight with such speed, in the midst of winter, may be conceived as no agreeable task, especially in a

country almost surrounded by mountains. The sudden order affected all, and things, which would have been

scarcely noticed at another time, now appeared in the most conspicuous light. Women with child, or women

just lain-in, were not objects of pity on this order for sudden removal, for all were included in the command;

and it unfortunately happened, that the winter was remarkably severe and rigorous.

The papists, however, drove the people from their habitations at the time appointed, without even suffering

them to have sufficient clothes to cover them; and many perished in the mountains through the severity of

the weather, or for want of food. Some, however, who remained behind after the decree was published, met

with the severest treatment, being murdered by the popish inhabitants, or shot by the troops who were

quartered in the valleys. A particular description of these cruelties is given in a letter, written by a Protestant,

who was upon the spot, and who happily escaped the carnage. "The army (says he) having got footing,

became very numerous, by the addition of a multitude of the neighboring popish inhabitants, who finding we

were the destined prey of the plunderers, fell upon us with an impetuous fury. Exclusive of the duke of

Savoy's troops, and the popish inhabitants, there were several regiments of French auxiliaries, some

companies belonging to the Irish brigades, and several bands formed of outlaws, smugglers, and prisoners,

who had been promised pardon and liberty in this world, and absolution in the next, for assisting to

exterminate the Protestants from Piedmont.

"This armed multitude being encouraged by the Roman Catholic bishops and monks fell upon the Protestants

in a most furious manner. Nothing now was to be seen but the face of horror and despair, blood stained the

floors of the houses, dead bodies bestrewed the streets, groans and cries were heard from all parts. Some

armed themselves, and skirmished with the troops; and many, with their families, fled to the mountains. In

one village they cruelly tormented one hundred and fifty women and children after the men were fled,

beheading the women, and dashing out the brains of the children. In the towns of Vilario and Bobbio, most

of those who refused to go to Mass, who were upwards of fifteen years of age, they crucified with their heads

downwards; and the greatest number of those who were under that age were strangled."

Sarah Ratignole des Vignes, a woman of sixty years of age, being seized by some soldiers, they ordered her

to say a prayer to some saints, which she refusing, they thrust a sickle into her belly, ripped her up, and then

cut off her head.

Martha Constantine, a handsome young woman, was treated with great indecency and cruelty by several of

the troops, who first ravished, and then killed her by cutting off her breasts. These they fried, and set before

some of their comrades, who ate them without knowing what they were. When they had done eating, the

others told them what they had made a meal of, in consequence of which a quarrel ensued, swords were

drawn, and a battle took place. Several were killed in the fray, the greater part of whom were those

concerned in the horrid massacre of the woman, and who had practiced such an inhuman deception on their


Some of the soldiers seized a man of Thrassiniere, and ran the points of their swords through his ears, and

through his feet. They then tore off the nails of his fingers and toes with red-hot pincers, tied him to the tail

of an ass, and dragged him about the streets; they finally fastened a cord around his head, which they twisted

with a stick in so violent a manner as to wring it from his body.

Peter Symonds, a Protestant, of about eighty years of age, was tied neck and heels, and then thrown down a

precipice. In the fall the branch of a tree caught hold of the ropes that fastened him, and suspended him in the

midway, so that he languished for several days, and at length miserably perished of hunger.

Esay Garcino, refusing to renounce his religion, was cut into small pieces; the soldiers, in ridicule, saying,

they had minced him. A woman, named Armand, had every limb separated from each other, and then the

respective parts were hung upon a hedge. Two old women were ripped open, and then left in the fields upon

the snow, where they perished; and a very old woman, who was deformed, had her nose and hands cut off,

and was left, to bleed to death in that manner.

A great number of men, women, and children, were flung from the rocks, and dashed to pieces. Magdalen

Bertino, a Protestant woman of La Torre, was stripped stark naked, her head tied between her legs, and

thrown down one of the precipices; and Mary Raymondet, of the same town, had the flesh sliced from her

bones until she expired.

Magdalen Pilot, of Vilario, was cut to pieces in the cave of Castolus; Ann Charboniere had one end of a

stake thrust up her body; and the other being fixed in the ground, she was left in that manner to perish, and

Jacob Perrin the elder, of the church of Vilario, and David, his brother, were flayed alive.

An inhabitant of La Torre, named Giovanni Andrea Michialm, was apprehended, with four of his children,

three of them were hacked to pieces before him, the soldiers asking him, at the death of every child, if he

would renounce his religion; this he constantly refused. One of the soldiers then took up the last and

youngest by the legs, and putting the same question to the father, he replied as before, when the inhuman

brute dashed out the child's brains. The father, however, at the same moment started from them, and fled; the

soldiers fired after him, but missed him; and he, by the swiftness of his heels, escaped, and hid himself in the


Further Persecutions in the Valleys of Piedmont, in the

Seventeenth Century

Giovanni Pelanchion, for refusing to turn papist, was tied by one leg to the tail of a mule, and dragged

through the streets of Lucerne, amidst the acclamations of an inhuman mob, who kept stoning him, and

crying out, "He is possessed with the devil, so that, neither stoning, nor dragging him through the streets, will

kill him, for the devil keeps him alive." They then took him to the river side, chopped off his head, and left

that and his body unburied, upon the bank of the stream.

Magdalen, the daughter of Peter Fontaine, a beautiful child of ten years of age, was ravished and murdered

by the soldiers. Another girl of about the same age, they roasted alive at Villa Nova; and a poor woman,

hearing that the soldiers were coming toward her house, snatched up the cradle in which her infant son was

asleep, and fled toward the woods. The soldiers, however, saw and pursued her; when she lightened herself

by putting down the cradle and child, which the soldiers no sooner came to, than they murdered the infant,

and continuing the pursuit, found the mother in a cave, where they first ravished, and then cut her to pieces.

Jacob Michelino, chief elder of the church of Bobbio, and several other Protestants, were hung up by means

of hooks fixed in their bellies, and left to expire in the most excruciating tortures.

Giovanni Rostagnal, a venerable Protestant, upwards of fourscore years of age, had his nose and ears cut off,

and slices cut from the fleshy parts of his body, until he bled to death.

Seven persons, viz. Daniel Seleagio and his wife, Giovanni Durant, Lodwich Durant, Bartholomew Durant,

Daniel Revel, and Paul Reynaud, had their mouths stuffed with gunpowder, which being set fire to, their

heads were blown to pieces.

Jacob Birone, a schoolmaster of Rorata, for refusing to change his religion, was stripped quite naked; and

after having been very indecently exposed, had the nails of his toes and fingers torn off with red-hot pincers,

and holes bored through his hands with the point of a dagger. He then had a cord tied round his middle, and

was led through the streets with a soldier on each side of him. At every turning the soldier on his right hand

side cut a gash in his flesh, and the soldier on his left hand side struck him with a bludgeon, both saying, at

the same instant, "Will you go to Mass? will you go to Mass?" He still replied in the negative to these

interrogatories, and being at length taken to the bridge, they cut off his head on the balustrades, and threw

both that and his body into the river.

Paul Garnier, a very pious Protestant, had his eyes put out, was then flayed alive, and being divided into four

parts, his quarters were placed on four of the principal houses of Lucerne. He bore all his sufferings with the

most exemplary patience, praised God as long as he could speak, and plainly evinced, what confidence and

resignation a good conscience can inspire.

Daniel Cardon, of Rocappiata, being apprehended by some soldiers, they cut his head off, and having fried

his brains, ate them. Two poor old blind women, of St. Giovanni, were burnt alive; and a widow of La Torre,

with her daughter, were driven into the river, and there stoned to death.

Paul Giles, on attempting to run away from some soldiers, was shot in the neck: they then slit his nose, sliced

his chin, stabbed him, and gave his carcass to the dogs.

Some of the Irish troops having taken eleven men of Garcigliana prisoners, they made a furnace red hot, and

forced them to push each other in until they came to the last man, whom they pushed in themselves.

Michael Gonet, a man of ninety, was burnt to death; Baptista Oudri, another old man, was stabbed; and

Bartholomew Frasche had holes made in his heels, through which ropes were put; then he was dragged by

them to the jail, where his wounds mortified and killed him.

Magdalene de la Piere being pursued by some of the soldiers, and taken, was thrown down a precipice, and

dashed to pieces. Margaret Revella, and Mary Pravillerin, two very old women, were burnt alive; and

Michael Bellino, with Ann Bochardno, were beheaded.

The son and the daughter of a counsellor of Giovanni were rolled down a steep hill together, and suffered to

perish in a deep pit at the bottom. A tradesman's family, viz.: himself, his wife, and an infant in her arms,

were cast from a rock, and dashed to pieces; and Joseph Chairet and Paul Carniero were flayed alive.

Cypriania Bustia, being asked if he would renounce his religion and turn Roman Catholic, replied, "I would

rather renounce life, or turn dog"; to which a priest answered, "For that expression you shall both renounce

life, and be given to the dogs." They, accordingly, dragged him to prison, where he continued a considerable

time without food, until he was famished; after which they threw his corpse into the street before the prison,

and it was devoured by dogs in the most shocking manner.

Margaret Saretta was stoned to death, and then thrown into the river;

Antonio Bartina had his head cleft asunder; and Joseph Pont was cut through the middle of his body.

Daniel Maria, and his whole family, being ill of a fever, several papist ruffians broke into his house, telling

him they were practical physicians, and would give them all present ease, which they did by knocking the

whole family on the head.

Three infant children of a Protestant, named Peter Fine, were covered with snow, and stifled; an elderly

widow, named Judith, was beheaded, and a beautiful young woman was stripped naked, and had a stake

driven through her body, of which she expired.

Lucy, the wife of Peter Besson, a woman far gone in her pregnancy, who lived in one of the villages of the

Piedmontese valleys, determined, if possible, to escape from such dreadful scenes as everywhere surrounded

her: she, accordingly took two young children, one in each hand, and set off towards the Alps. But on the

third day of the journey she was taken in labor among the mountains, and delivered of an infant, who

perished through the extreme inclemency of the weather, as did the two other children; for all three were

found dead by her, and herself just expiring, by the person to whom she related the above particulars.

Francis Gros, the son of a clergyman, had his flesh slowly cut from his body into small pieces, and put into a

dish before him; two of his children were minced before his sight; and his wife was fastened to a post, that

she might behold all these cruelties practiced on her husband and offspring. The tormentors at length being

tired of exercising their cruelties, cut off the heads of both husband and wife, and then gave the flesh of the

whole family to the dogs.

The sieur Thomas Margher fled to a cave, when the soldiers shut up the mouth, and he perished with famine.

Judith Revelin, and seven children, were barbarously murdered in their beds; and a widow of near fourscore

years of age, was hewn to pieces by soldiers.

Jacob Roseno was ordered to pray to the saints, which he absolutely refused to do: some of the soldiers beat

him violently with bludgeons to make him comply, but he still refusing, several of them fired at him, and

lodged a great many balls in his body. As he was almost expiring, they cried to him, "Will you call upon the

saints? Will you pray to the saints?" To which he answered "No! No! No!" when one of the soldiers, with a

broadsword, clove his head asunder, and put an end to his sufferings in this world; for which undoubtedly, he

is gloriously rewarded in the next.

A soldier, attempting to ravish a young woman, named Susanna Gacquin, she made a stout resistance, and in

the struggle pushed him over a precipice, when he was dashed to pieces by the fall. His comrades, instead of

admiring the virtue of the young woman, and applauding her for so nobly defending her chastity, fell upon

her with their swords, and cut her to pieces.

Giovanni Pulhus, a poor peasant of La Torre, being apprehended as a Protestant by the soldiers, was ordered,

by the marquis of Pianesta, to be executed in a place near the convent. When he came to the gallows, several

monks attended, and did all they could to persuade him to renounce his religion. But he told them he never

would embrace idolatry, and that he was happy at being thought worthy to suffer for the name of Christ.

They then put him in mind of what his wife and children, who depended upon his labor, would suffer after

his decease; to which he replied, "I would have my wife and children, as well as myself, to consider their

souls more than their bodies, and the next world before this; and with respect to the distress I may leave them

in, God is merciful, and will provide for them while they are worthy of his protection." Finding the

inflexibility of this poor man, the monks cried, "Turn him off! turn him off!" which the executioner did

almost immediately, and the body being afterward cut down, was flung into the river.

Paul Clement, an elder of the church of Rossana, being apprehended by the monks of a neighboring

monastery, was carried to the market place of that town, where some Protestants had just been executed by

the soldiers. He was shown the dead bodies, in order that the sight might intimidate him. On beholding the

shocking subjects, he said, calmly, "You may kill the body, but you cannot prejudice the soul of a true

believer; but with respect to the dreadful spectacles which you have here shown me, you may rest assured,

that God's vengeance will overtake the murderers of those poor people, and punish them for the innocent

blood they have spilt." The monks were so exasperated at this reply that they ordered him to be hanged

directly; and while he was hanging, the soldiers amused themselves in standing at a distance, and shooting at

the body as at a mark.

Daniel Rambaut, of Vilario, the father of a numerous family, was apprehended, and, with several others,

committed to prison, in the jail of Paysana. Here he was visited by several priests, who with continual

importunities did all they could to persuade him to renounce the Protestant religion and turn papist; but this

he peremptorily refused, and the priests finding his resolution, pretended to pity his numerous family, and

told him that he might yet have his life, if he would subscribe to the belief of the following articles:

1. The real presence of the host.

2. Transubstantiation.

3. Purgatory.

4. The pope's infallibility.

5. That masses said for the dead will release souls from purgatory.

6. That praying to saints will procure the remission of sins.

M. Rambaut told the priests that neither his religion, his understanding, nor his conscience, would suffer him

to subscribe to any of the articles, for the following reasons:

1. That to believe the real presence in the host, is a shocking union of both blasphemy and


2. That to fancy the words of consecration perform what the papists call

transubstantiation, by converting the wafer and wine into the real and identical body and

blood of Christ, which was crucified, and which afterward ascended into heaven, is too

gross an absurdity for even a child to believe, who was come to the least glimmering of

reason; and that nothing but the most blind superstition could make the Roman Catholics put

a confidence in anything so completely ridiculous.

3. That the doctrine of purgatory was more inconsistent and absurd than a fairy tale.

4. That the pope's being infallible was an impossibility, and the pope arrogantly laid claim

to what could belong to God only, as a perfect being.

5. That saying Masses for the dead was ridiculous, and only meant to keep up a belief in

the fable of purgatory, as the fate of all is finally decided, on the departure of the soul from

the body.

6. That praying to saints for the remission of sins is misplacing adoration; as the saints

themselves have occasion for an intercessor in Christ. Therefore, as God only can pardon

our errors, we ought to sue to him alone for pardon.

The priests were so highly offended at M. Rambaut's answers to the articles to which they would have had

him subscribe, that they determined to shake his resolution by the most cruel method imaginable: they

ordered one joint of his finger to be cut off every day until all his fingers were gone: they then proceeded in

the same manner with his toes; afterward they alternately cut off, daily, a hand and a foot; but finding that he

bore his sufferings with the most admirable patience, increased both in fortitude and resignation, and

maintained his faith with steadfast resolution and unshaken constancy they stabbed him to the heart, and then

gave his body to be devoured by the dogs.

Peter Gabriola, a Protestant gentleman of considerable eminence, being seized by a troop of soldiers, and

refusing to renounce his religion, they hung a great number of little bags of gunpowder about his body, and

then setting fire to them, blew him up.

Anthony, the son of Samuel Catieris, a poor dumb lad who was extremely inoffensive, was cut to pieces by a

party of the troops; and soon after the same ruffians entered the house of Peter Moniriat, and cut off the legs

of the whole family, leaving them to bleed to death, as they were unable to assist themselves, or to help each


Daniel Benech being apprehended, had his nose slit, his ears cut off, and was then divided into quarters, each

quarter being hung upon a tree, and Mary Monino had her jaw bones broke and was then left to anguish till

she was famished.

Mary Pelanchion, a handsome widow, belonging to the town of Vilario, was seized by a party of the Irish

brigades, who having beat her cruelly, and ravished her, dragged her to a high bridge which crossed the river,

and stripped her naked in a most indecent manner, hung her by the legs to the bridge, with her head

downwards towards the water, and then going into boats, they fired at her until she expired.

Mary Nigrino, and her daughter who was an idiot, were cut to pieces in the woods, and their bodies left to be

devoured by wild beasts: Susanna Bales, a widow of Vilario, was immured until she perished through

hunger; and Susanna Calvio running away from some soldiers and hiding herself in a barn, they set fire to

the straw and burnt her.

Paul Armand was hacked to pieces; a child named Daniel Bertino was burnt;

Daniel Michialino had his tongue plucked out, and was left to perish in that condition; and Andreo Bertino, a

very old man, who was lame, was mangled in a most shocking manner, and at length had his belly ripped

open, and his bowels carried about on the point of a halbert.

Constantia Bellione, a Protestant lady, being apprehended on account of her faith, was asked by a priest if

she would renounce the devil and go to Mass; to which she replied, "I was brought up in a religion by which

I was always taught to renounce the devil; but should I comply with your desire, and go to Mass, I should be

sure to meet him there in a variety of shapes." The priest was highly incensed at what she said, and told her

to recant, or she would suffer cruelly. The lady, however, boldly answered that she valued not any sufferings

he could inflict, and in spite of all the torments he could invent, she would keep her conscience pure and her

faith inviolate. The priest then ordered slices of her flesh to be cut off from several parts of her body, which

cruelty she bore with the most singular patience, only saying to the priest, "What horrid and lasting torments

will you suffer in hell, for the trifling and temporary pains which I now endure." Exasperated at this

expression, and willing to stop her tongue, the priest ordered a file of musqueteers to draw up and fire upon

her, by which she was soon despatched, and sealed her martyrdom with her blood.

A young woman named Judith Mandon, for refusing to change her religion and embrace popery, was

fastened to a stake, and sticks thrown at her from a distance, in the very same manner as that barbarous

custom which was formerly practiced on Shrove-Tuesday, of shying at rocks, as it was termed. By this

inhuman proceeding, the poor creature's limbs were beat and mangled in a terrible manner, and her brains

were at last dashed out by one of the bludgeons.

David Paglia and Paul Genre, attempting to escape to the Alps, with each his son, were pursued and

overtaken by the soldiers in a large plain. Here they hunted them for their diversion, goading them with their

swords, and making them run about until they dropped down with fatigue. When they found that their spirits

were quite exhausted, and that they could not afford them any more barbarous sport by running, the soldiers

hacked them to pieces, and left their mangled bodies on the spot.

A young man of Bobbio, named Michael Greve, was apprehended in the town of La Torre, and being led to

the bridge, was thrown over into the river. As he could swim very well, he swam down the stream, thinking

to escape, but the soldiers and the mob followed on both sides of the river, and kept stoning him, until

receiving a blow on one of his temples, he was stunned, and consequently sunk and was drowned.

David Armand was ordered to lay his head down on a block, when a soldier, with a large hammer, beat out

his brains. David Baridona being apprehended at Vilario, was carried to La Torre, where, refusing to

renounce his religion, he was tormented by means of brimstone matches being tied between his fingers and

toes, and set fire to; and afterward, by having his flesh plucked off with red-hot pincers, until he expired; and

Giovanni Barolina, with his wife, were thrown into a pool of stagnant water, and compelled, by means of

pitchforks and stones, to duck down their heads until they were suffocated.

A number of soldiers went to the house of Joseph Garniero, and before they entered, fired in at the window,

to give notice of their approach. A musket ball entered one of Mrs. Garniero's breasts, as she was suckling an

infant with the other. On finding their intentions, she begged hard that they would spare the life of the infant,

which they promised to do, and sent it immediately to a Roman Catholic nurse. They then took the husband

and hanged him at his own door, and having shot the wife through the head, they left her body weltering in

its blood, and her husband hanging on the gallows.

Isaiah Mondon, an elderly man, and a pious Protestant, fled from the merciless persecutors to a cleft in a

rock, where he suffered the most dreadful hardships; for, in the midst of the winter he was forced to lie on

the bare stone, without any covering; his food was the roots he could scratch up near his miserable

habitation; and the only way by which he could procure drink, was to put snow in his mouth until it melted.

Here, however, some of the inhuman soldiers found him, and after having beaten him unmercifully, they

drove him towards Lucerne, goading him with the points of their swords. Being exceedingly weakened by

his manner of living, and his spirits exhausted by the blows he had received, he fell down in the road. They

again beat him to make him proceed: when on his knees, he implored them to put him out of his misery, by

despatching him. This they at last agreed to do; and one of them stepping up to him shot him through the

head with a pistol, saying, "There, heretic, take thy request."

Mary Revol, a worthy Protestant, received a shot in her back, as she was walking along the street. She

dropped down with the wound, but recovering sufficient strength, she raised herself upon her knees, and

lifting her hands towards heaven, prayed in a most fervent manner to the Almighty, when a number of

soldiers, who were near at hand, fired a whole volley of shot at her, many of which took effect, and put an

end to her miseries in an instant.

Several men, women, and children secreted themselves in a large cave, where they continued for some weeks

in safety. It was the custom for two of the men to go when it was necessary, and by stealth, procure

provisions. These were, however, one day watched, by which the cave was discovered, and soon after, a

troop of Roman Catholics appeared before it. The papists that assembled upon this occasion were neighbors

and intimate acquaintances of the Protestants in the cave; and some were even related to each other. The

Protestants, therefore, came out, and implored them, by the ties of hospitality, by the ties of blood, and as old

acquaintances and neighbors, not to murder them. But superstition overcomes every sensation of nature and

humanity; so that the papists, blinded by bigotry, told them they could not show any mercy to heretics, and,

therefore, bade them prepare to die. Hearing this, and knowing the fatal obstinacy of the Roman Catholics,

the Protestants all fell prostate, lifted their hands and hearts to heaven, prayed with great sincerity and

fervency, and then bowing down, put their faces close to the ground, and patiently waited their fate, which

was soon decided, for the papists fell upon them with unremitting fury, and having cut them to pieces, left

the mangled bodies and limbs in the cave.

Giovanni Salvagiot, passing by a Roman Catholic church, and not taking off his hat, was followed by some

of the congregation, who fell upon and murdered him; and Jacob Barrel and his wife, having been taken

prisoners by the earl of St. Secondo, one of the duke of Savoy's officers, he delivered them up to the soldiery,

who cut off the woman's breasts, and the man's nose, and then shot them both through the head.

Anthony Guigo, a Protestant, of a wavering disposition, went to Periero, with an intent to renounce his

religion and embrace popery. This design he communicated to some priests, who highly commended it, and a

day was fixed upon for his public recantation. In the meantime, Anthony grew fully sensible of his perfidy,

and his conscience tormented him so much night and day that he determined not to recant, but to make his

escape. This he effected, but being soon missed and pursued, he was taken. The troops on the way did all

they could to bring him back to his design of recantation; but finding their endeavors ineffectual, they beat

him violently on the road. When coming near a precipice, he took an opportunity of leaping down it and was

dashed to pieces.

A Protestant gentleman, of considerable fortune, at Bobbio, being nightly provoked by the insolence of a

priest, retorted with great severity; and among other things, said, that the pope was Antichrist, Mass idolatry,

purgatory a farce, and absolution a cheat. To be revenged, the priest hired five desperate ruffians, who, the

same evening, broke into the gentleman's house, and seized upon him in a violent manner. The gentleman

was terribly frightened, fell on his knees, and implored mercy; but the desperate ruffians despatched him

without the least hesitation.

A Narrative of the Piedmontese War

The massacres and murders already mentioned to have been committed in the valleys of Piedmont, nearly

depopulated most of the towns and villages. One place only had not been assaulted, and that was owing to

the difficulty of approaching it; this was the little commonalty of Roras, which was situated upon a rock.

As the work of blood grew slack in other places, the earl of Christople, one of the duke of Savoy's officers,

determined, if possible, to make himself master of it; and, with that view, detached three hundred men to

surprise it secretly.

The inhabitants of Roras, however, had intelligence of the approach of these troops, when captain Joshua

Gianavel, a brave Protestant officer, put himself at the head of a small body of the citizens, and waited in

ambush to attack the enemy in a small defile.

When the troops appeared, and had entered the defile, which was the only place by which the town could be

approached, the Protestants kept up a smart and well-directed fire against them, and still kept themselves

concealed behind bushes from the sight of the enemy. A great number of the soldiers were killed, and the

remainder receiving a continued fire, and not seeing any to whom they might return it, thought proper to


The members of this little community then sent a memorial to the marquis of Pianessa, one of the duke's

general officers, setting forth, 'That they were sorry, upon any occasion, to be under the necessity of taking

up arms; but that the secret approach of a body of troops, without any reason assigned, or any previous notice

sent of the purpose of their coming, had greatly alarmed them; that as it was their custom never to suffer any

of the military to enter their little community, they had repelled force by force, and should do so again; but in

all other respects, they professed themselves dutiful, obedient, and loyal subjects to their sovereign, the duke

of Savoy.'

The marquis of Pianessa, that he might have the better opportunity of deluding and surprising the Protestants

of Roras, sent them word in answer, 'That he was perfectly satisfied with their behavior, for they had done

right, and even rendered a service to their country, as the men who had attempted to pass the defile were not

his troops, or sent by him, but a band of desperate robbers, who had, for some time, infested those parts, and

been a terror to the neighboring country.' To give a greater color to his treachery, he then published an

ambiguous proclamation seemingly favorable to the inhabitants.

Yet, the very day after this plausible proclamation, and specious conduct, the marquis sent five hundred men

to possess themselves of Roras, while the people as he thought, were lulled into perfect security by his

specious behavior.

Captain Gianavel, however, was not to be deceived so easily: he, therefore, laid an ambuscade for this body

of troops, as he had for the former, and compelled them to retire with very considerable loss.

Though foiled in these two attempts, the marquis of Pianessa determined on a third, which should be still

more formidable; but first he imprudently published another proclamation, disowning any knowledge of the

second attempt.

Soon after, seven hundred chosen men were sent upon the expedition, who, in spite of the fire from the

Protestants, forced the defile, entered Roras, and began to murder every person they met with, without

distinction of age or sex. The Protestant captain Gianavel, at the head of a small body, though he had lost the

defile, determined to dispute their passage through a fortified pass that led to the richest and best part of the

town. Here he was successful, by keeping up a continual fire, and by means of his men being all complete

marksmen. The Roman Catholic commander was greatly staggered at this opposition, as he imagined that he

had surmounted all difficulties. He, however, did his endeavors to force the pass, but being able to bring up

only twelve men in front at a time, and the Protestants being secured by a breastwork, he found he should be

baffled by the handful of men who opposed him.

Enraged at the loss of so many of his troops, and fearful of disgrace if he persisted in attempting what

appeared so impracticable, he thought it the wisest thing to retreat. Unwilling, however, to withdraw his men

by the defile at which he had entered, on account of the difficulty and danger of the enterprise, he determined

to retreat towards Vilario, by another pass called Piampra, which though hard of access, was easy of descent.

But in this he met with disappointment, for Captain Gianavel having posted his little band here, greatly

annoyed the troops as they passed, and even pursued their rear until they entered the open country.

The marquis of Pianessa, finding that all his attempts were frustrated, and that every artifice he used was

only an alarm signal to the inhabitants of Roras, determined to act openly, and therefore proclaimed that

ample rewards should be given to any one who would bear arms against the obstinate heretics of Roras, as he

called them; and that any officer who would exterminate them should be rewarded in a princely manner.

This engaged Captain Mario, a bigoted Roman Catholic, and a desperate ruffian, to undertake the enterprise.

He, therefore, obtained leave to raise a regiment in the following six towns: Lucerne, Borges, Famolas,

Bobbio, Begnal, and Cavos.

Having completed his regiment, which consisted of one thousand men, he laid his plan not to go by the

defiles or the passes, but to attempt gaining the summit of a rock, whence he imagined he could pour his

troops into the town without much difficulty or opposition.

The Protestants suffered the Roman Catholic troops to gain almost the summit of the rock, without giving

them any opposition, or ever appearing in their sight: but when they had almost reached the top they made a

most furious attack upon them; one party keeping up a well-directed and constant fire, and another party

rolling down huge stones.

This stopped the career of the papist troops: many were killed by the musketry, and more by the stones,

which beat them down the precipices. Several fell sacrifices to their hurry, for by attempting a precipitate

retreat they fell down, and were dashed to pieces; and Captain Mario himself narrowly escaped with his life,

for he fell from a craggy place into a river which washed the foot of the rock. He was taken up senseless, but

afterwards recovered, though he was ill of the bruises for a long time; and, at length he fell into a decline at

Lucerne, where he died.

Another body of troops was ordered from the camp at Vilario, to make an attempt upon Roras; but these

were likewise defeated, by means of the Protestants' ambush fighting, and compelled to retreat again to the

camp at Vilario.

After each of these signal victories, Captain Gianavel made a suitable discourse to his men, causing them to

kneel down, and return thanks to the Almighty for his providential protection; and usually concluded with

the Eleventh Psalm, where the subject is placing confidence in God.

The marquis of Pianessa was greatly enraged at being so much baffled by the few inhabitants of Roras: he,

therefore, determined to attempt their expulsion in such a manner as could hardly fail of success.

With this view he ordered all the Roman Catholic militia of Piedmont to be raised and disciplined. When

these orders were completed, he joined to the militia eight thousand regular troops, and dividing the whole

into three distinct bodies, he designed that three formidable attacks should be made at the same time, unless

the people of Roras, to whom he sent an account of his great preparations, would comply with the following


1. To ask pardon for taking up arms. 2. To pay the expenses of all the expeditions sent

against them. 3. To acknowledge the infallibility of the pope.

4. To go to Mass. 5. To pray to the saints. 6. To wear beards. 7. To deliver up their

ministers. 8. To deliver up their schoolmasters. 9. To go to confession. 10. To pay loans for

the delivery of souls from purgatory. 11. To give up Captain Gianavel at discretion. 12. To

give up the elders of their church at discretion.

The inhabitants of Roras, on being acquainted with these conditions, were filled with an honest indignation,

and, in answer, sent word to the marquis that sooner than comply with them they would suffer three things,

which, of all others, were the most obnoxious to mankind, viz.

1. Their estates to be seized. 2. Their houses to be burned. 3. Themselves to be murdered.

Exasperated at this message, the marquis sent them this laconic epistle:

To the Obstinate Heretics Inhabiting Roras

You shall have your request, for the troops sent against you have strict injunctions to plunder, burn, and kill.


The three armies were then put in motion, and the attacks ordered to be made thus: the first by the rocks of

Vilario; the second by the pass of Bagnol; and the third by the defile of Lucerne.

The troops forced their way by the superiority of numbers, and having gained the rocks, pass, and defile,

began to make the most horrid depradations, and exercise the greatest cruelties. Men they hanged, burned,

racked to death, or cut to pieces; women they ripped open, crucified, drowned, or threw from the precipices;

and children they tossed upon spears, minced, cut their throats, or dashed out their brains. One hundred and

twenty-six suffered in this manner on the first day of their gaining the town.

Agreeable to the marquis of Pianessa's orders, they likewise plundered the estates, and burned the houses of

the people. Several Protestants, however, made their escape, under the conduct of Captain Gianavel, whose

wife and children were unfortunately made prisoners and sent under a strong guard to Turin.

The marquis of Pianessa wrote a letter to Captain Gianavel, and released a Protestant prisoner that he might

carry it him. The contents were, that if the captain would embrace the Roman Catholic religion, he should be

indemnified for all his losses since the commencement of the war; his wife and children should be

immediately released, and himself honorably promoted in the duke of Savoy's army; but if he refused to

accede to the proposals made him, his wife and children should be put to death; and so large a reward should

be given to take him, dead or alive, that even some of his own confidential friends should be tempted to

betray him, from the greatness of the sum.

To this epistle, the brave Gianavel sent the following answer.

My Lord Marquis,

There is no torment so great or death so cruel, but what I would prefer to

the abjuration of my religion: so that promises lose their effects, and menaces

only strengthen me in my faith.

With respect to my wife and children, my lord, nothing can be more afflicting to me than the thought of their

confinement, or more dreadful to my imagination, than their suffering a violent and cruel death. I keenly feel

all the tender sensations of husband and parent; my heart is replete with every sentiment of humanity; I

would suffer any torment to rescue them from danger; I would die to preserve them.

But having said thus much, my lord, I assure you that the purchase of their lives must not be the price of my

salvation. You have them in your power it is true; but my consolation is that your power is only a temporary

authority over their bodies: you may destroy the mortal part, but their immortal souls are out of your reach,

and will live hereafter to bear testimony against you for your cruelties. I therefore recommend them and

myself to God, and pray for a reformation in your heart. -- JOSHUA GIANAVEL.

This brave Protestant officer, after writing the above letter, retired to the Alps, with his followers; and being

joined by a great number of other fugitive Protestants, he harassed the enemy by continual skirmishes.

Meeting one day with a body of papist troops near Bibiana, he, though inferior in numbers, attacked them

with great fury, and put them to the rout without the loss of a man, though himself was shot through the leg

in the engagement, by a soldier who had hid himself behind a tree; but Gianavel perceiving whence the shot

came, pointed his gun to the place, and despatched the person who had wounded him.

Captain Gianavel hearing that a Captain Jahier had collected together a considerable body of Protestants,

wrote him a letter, proposing a junction of their forces. Captain Jahier immediately agreed to the proposal,

and marched directly to meet Gianavel.

The junction being formed, it was proposed to attack a town, (inhabited by Roman Catholics) called

Garcigliana. The assault was given with great spirit, but a reinforcement of horse and foot having lately

entered the town, which the Protestants knew nothing of, they were repulsed; yet made a masterly retreat,

and only lost one man in the action.

The next attempt of the Protestant forces was upon St. Secondo, which they attacked with great vigor, but

met with a strong resistance from the Roman Catholic troops, who had fortified the streets and planted

themselves in the houses, from whence they poured musket balls in prodigious numbers. The Protestants,

however, advanced, under cover of a great number of planks, which some held over their heads, to secure

them from the shots of the enemy from the houses, while others kept up a well-directed fire; so that the

houses and entrenchments were soon forced, and the town taken.

In the town they found a prodigious quantity of plunder, which had been taken from Protestants at various

times, and different places, and which were stored up in the warehouses, churches, dwelling houses, etc. This

they removed to a place of safety, to be distributed, with as much justice as possible, among the sufferers.

This successful attack was made with such skill and spirit that it cost very little to the conquering party, the

Protestants having only seventeen killed, and twenty-six wounded; while the papists suffered a loss of no less

than four hundred and fifty killed, and five hundred and eleven wounded.

Five Protestant officers, viz., Gianavel, Jahier, Laurentio, Genolet and Benet, laid a plan to surprise Biqueras.

To this end they marched in five respective bodies, and by agreement were to make the attack at the same

time. The captains, Jahier and Laurentio, passed through two defiles in the woods, and came to the place in

safety, under covert; but the other three bodies made their approaches through an open country, and,

consequently, were more exposed to an attack.

The Roman Catholics taking the alarm, a great number of troops were sent to relieve Biqueras from Cavors,

Bibiana, Feline, Campiglione, and some other neighboring places. When these were united, they determined

to attack the three Protestant parties, that were marching through the open country.

The Protestant officers perceiving the intent of the enemy, and not being at a great distance from each other,

joined forces with the utmost expedition, and formed themselves in order of battle.

In the meantime, the captains, Jahier and Laurentio, had assaulted the town of Biqueras, and burnt all the out

houses, to make their approaches with the greater ease; but not being supported as they expected by the other

three Protestant captains, they sent a messenger, on a swift horse, towards the open country, to inquire the


The messenger soon returned and informed them that it was not in the power of the three Protestant captains

to support their proceedings, as they were themselves attacked by a very superior force in the plain, and

could scarce sustain the unequal conflict.

The captains, Jahier and Laurentio, on receiving this intelligence, determined to discontinue the assault on

Biqueras, and to proceed, with all possible expedition, to the relief of their friends on the plain. This design

proved to be of the most essential service, for just as they arrived at the spot where the two armies were

engaged, the papist troops began to prevail, and were on the point of flanking the left wing, commanded by

Captain Gianavel. The arrival of these troops turned the scale in favor of the Protestants: and the papist

forces, though they fought with the most obstinate intrepidity, were totally defeated. A great number were

killed and wounded, on both sides, and the baggage, military stores, etc., taken by the Protestants were very


Captain Gianavel, having information that three hundred of the enemy were to convoy a great quantity of

stores, provisions, etc., from La Torre to the castle of Mirabac, determined to attack them on the way. He,

accordingly, began the assault at Malbec, though with a very inadequate force. The contest was long and

bloody, but the Protestants at length were obliged to yield to the superiority of numbers, and compelled to

make a retreat, which they did with great regularity, and but little loss.

Captain Gianavel advanced to an advantageous post, situated near the town of Vilario, and then sent the

following information and commands to the inhabitants.

1. That he should attack the town in twenty-four hours.

2. That with respect to the Roman Catholics who had borne arms, whether they belonged

to the army or not, he should act by the law of retaliation, and put them to death, for the

numerous depredations and many cruel murders they had committed.

3. That all women and children, whatever their religion might be, should be safe.

4. That he commanded all male Protestants to leave the town and join him.

5. That all apostates, who had, through weakness, abjured their religion, should be

deemed enemies, unless they renounced their abjuration.

6. That all who returned to their duty to God, and themselves, should be received as


The Protestants, in general immediately left the town, and joined Captain Gianavel with great satisfaction,

and the few, who through weakness or fear, had abjured their faith, recanted their abjuration and were

received into the bosom of the Church. As the marquis of Pianessa had removed the army, and encamped in

quite a different part of the country, the Roman Catholics of Vilario thought it would be folly to attempt to

defend the place with the small force they had. They, therefore, fled with the utmost precipitation, leaving

the town and most of their property to the discretion of the Protestants.

The Protestant commanders having called a council of war, resolved to make an attempt upon the town of La


The papists being apprised of the design, detached some troops to defend a defile, through which the

Protestants must make their approach; but these were defeated, compelled to abandon the pass, and forced to

retreat to La Torre.

The Protestants proceeded on their march, and the troops of La Torre, on their approach, made a furious

sally, but were repulsed with great loss, and compelled to seek shelter in the town. The governor now only

thought of defending the place, which the Protestants began to attack in form; but after many brave attempts,

and furious assaults, the commanders determined to abandon the enterprise for several reasons, particularly,

because they found the place itself too strong, their own number too weak, and their cannon not adequate to

the task of battering down the walls.

This resolution taken, the Protestant commanders began a masterly retreat, and conducted it with such

regularity that the enemy did not choose to pursue them, or molest their rear, which they might have done, as

they passed the defiles.

The next day they mustered, reviewed the army, and found the whole to amount to four hundred and ninetyfive

men. They then held a council of war, and planned an easier enterprise: this was to make an attack on

the commonalty of Crusol, a place inhabited by a number of the most bigoted Roman Catholics, and who had

exercised, during the persecutions, the most unheard-of cruelties on the Protestants.

The people of Crusol, hearing of the design against them, fled to a neighboring fortress, situated on a rock,

where the Protestants could not come to them, for a very few men could render it inaccessible to a numerous

army. Thus they secured their persons, but were in too much hurry to secure their property, the principal part

of which, indeed, had been plundered from the Protestants, and now luckily fell again to the possession of

the right owners. It consisted of many rich and valuable articles, and what, at that time, was of much more

consequence, viz., a great quantity of military stores.

The day after the Protestants were gone with their booty, eight hundred troops arrived to the assistance of the

people of Crusol, having been despatched from Lucerne, Biqueras, Cavors, etc. But finding themselves too

late, and that pursuit would be vain, not to return empty handed, they began to plunder the neighboring

villages, though what they took was from their friends. After collecting a tolerable booty, they began to

divide it, but disagreeing about the different shares, they fell from words to blows, did a great deal of

mischief, and then plundered each other.

On the very same day in which the Protestants were so successful at Crusol, some papists marched with a

design to plunder and burn the little Protestant village of Rocappiatta, but by the way they met with the

Protestant forces belonging to the captains, Jahier and Laurentio, who were posted on the hill of Angrogne.

A trivial engagement ensued, for the Roman Catholics, on the very first attack, retreated in great confusion,

and were pursued with much slaughter. After the pursuit was over, some straggling papist troops meeting

with a poor peasant, who was a Protestant, tied a cord round his head, and strained it until his skull was quite


Captain Gianavel and Captain Jahier concerted a design together to make an attack upon Lucerne; but

Captain Jahier, not bringing up his forces at the time appointed, Captain Gianavel determined to attempt the

enterprise himself.

He, therefore, by a forced march, proceeded towards that place during the whole, and was close to it by break

of day. His first care was to cut the pipes that conveyed water into the town, and then to break down the

bridge, by which alone provisions from the country could enter.

He then assaulted the place, and speedily possessed himself of two of the outposts; but finding he could not

make himself master of the place, he prudently retreated with very little loss, blaming, however, Captain

Jahier, for the failure of the enterprise.

The papists being informed that Captain Gianavel was at Angrogne with only his own company, determined

if possible to surprise him. With this view, a great number of troops were detached from La Torre and other

places: one party of these got on top of a mountain, beneath which he was posted; and the other party

intended to possess themselves of the gate of St. Bartholomew.

The papists thought themselves sure of taking Captain Gianavel and every one of his men, as they consisted

but of three hundred, and their own force was two thousand five hundred. Their design, however, was

providentially frustrated, for one of the popish soldiers imprudently blowing a trumpet before the signal for

attack was given, Captain Gianavel took the alarm, and posted his little company so advantageously at the

gate of St. Bartholomew and at the defile by which the enemy must descend from the mountains, that the

Roman Catholic troops failed in both attacks, and were repulsed with very considerable loss.

Soon after, Captain Jahier came to Angrogne, and joined his forces to those of Captain Gianavel, giving

sufficient reasons to excuse his before-mentioned failure. Captain Jahier now made several secret excursions

with great success, always selecting the most active troops, belonging both to Gianavel and himself. One day

he had put himself at the head of forty-four men, to proceed upon an expedition, when entering a plain near

Ossac, he was suddenly surrounded by a large body of horse. Captain Jahier and his men fought desperately,

though oppressed by odds, and killed the commander-in-chief, three captains, and fifty-seven private men, of

the enemy. But Captain Jahier himself being killed, with thirty-five of his men, the rest surrendered. One of

the soldiers cut off Captain Jahier's head, and carrying it to Turin, presented it to the duke of Savoy, who

rewarded him with six hundred ducatoons.

The death of this gentleman was a signal loss to the Protestants, as he was a real friend to, and companion of,

the reformed Church. He possessed a most undaunted spirit, so that no difficulties could deter him from

undertaking an enterprise, or dangers terrify him in its execution. He was pious without affectation, and

humane without weakness; bold in a field, meek in a domestic life, of a penetrating genius, active in spirit,

and resolute in all his undertakings.

To add to the affliction of the Protestants, Captain Gianavel was, soon after, wounded in such a manner that

he was obliged to keep his bed. They, however, took new courage from misfortunes, and determining not to

let their spirits droop attacked a body of popish troops with great intrepidity; the Protestants were much

inferior in numbers, but fought with more resolution than the papists, and at length routed them with

considerable slaughter. During the action, a sergeant named Michael Bertino was killed; when his son, who

was close behind him, leaped into his place, and said, "I have lost my father; but courage, fellow soldiers,

God is a father to us all."

Several skirmishes likewise happened between the troops of La Torre and Tagliaretto, and the Protestant

forces, which in general terminated in favor of the latter.

A Protestant gentleman, named Andrion, raised a regiment of horse, and took the command of it himself.

The sieur John Leger persuaded a great number of Protestants to form themselves into volunteer companies;

and an excellent officer, named Michelin, instituted several bands of light troops. These being all joined to

the remains of the veteran Protestant troops, (for great numbers had been lost in the various battles,

skirmishes, sieges, etc.) composed a respectable army, which the officers thought proper to encamp near St.


The Roman Catholic commanders, alarmed at the formidable appearance and increased strength of the

Protestant forces, determined, if possible, to dislodge them from their encampment. With this view they

collected together a large force, consisting of the principal part of the garrisons of the Roman Catholic towns,

the draft from the Irish brigades, a great number of regulars sent by the marquis of Pianessa, the auxiliary

troops, and the independent companies.

These, having formed a junction, encamped near the Protestants, and spent several days in calling councils of

war, and disputing on the most proper mode of proceeding. Some were for plundering the country, in order

to draw the Protestants from their camp; others were for patiently waiting till they were attacked; and a third

party were for assaulting the Protestant camp, and trying to make themselves master of everything in it.

The last of them prevailed, and the morning after the resolution had been taken was appointed to put it into

execution. The Roman Catholic troops were accordingly separated into four divisions, three of which were to

make an attack in different places; and the fourth to remain as a body of reserve to act as occasion might


One of the Roman Catholic officers, previous to the attack, thus haranged his men:

"Fellow-soldiers, you are now going to enter upon a great action, which will bring you fame and riches. The

motives of your acting with spirit are likewise of the most important nature; namely, the honor of showing

your loyalty to your sovereign, the pleasure of spilling heretic blood, and the prospect of plundering the

Protestant camp. So, my brave fellows, fall on, give no quarter, kill all you meet, and take all you come


After this inhuman speech the engagement began, and the Protestant camp was attacked in three places with

inconceivable fury. The fight was maintained with great obstinacy and perseverance on both sides,

continuing without intermission for the space of four hours: for the several companies on both sides relieved

each other alternately, and by that means kept up a continual fire during the whole action.

During the engagement of the main armies, a detachment was sent from the body of reserve to attack the post

of Castelas, which, if the papists had carried, it would have given them the command of the valleys of

Perosa, St. Martino, and Lucerne; but they were repulsed with great loss, and compelled to return to the body

of reserve, from whence they had been detached.

Soon after the return of this detachment, the Roman Catholic troops, being hard pressed in the main battle,

sent for the body of reserve to come to their support. These immediately marched to their assistance, and for

some time longer held the event doubtful, but at length the valor of the Protestants prevailed, and the papists

were totally defeated, with the loss of upwards of three hundred men killed, and many more wounded.

When the Syndic of Lucerne, who was indeed a papist, but not a bigoted one, saw the great number of

wounded men brought into that city, he exclaimed, "Ah! I thought the wolves used to devour the heretics, but

now I see the heretics eat the wolves." This expression being reported to M. Marolles, the Roman Catholic

commander-in-chief at Lucerne, he sent a very severe and threatening letter to the Syndic, who was so

terrified, that the fright threw him into a fever, and he died in a few days.

This great battle was fought just before the harvest was got in, when the papists, exasperated at their

disgrace, and resolved on any kind of revenge, spread themselves by night in detached parties over the finest

corn fields of the Protestants, and set them on fire in sundry places. Some of these straggling parties,

however, suffered for their conduct; for the Protestants, being alarmed in the night by the blazing of the fire

among the corn, pursued the fugitives early in the morning, and overtaking many, put them to death. The

Protestant captain Bellin, likewise, by way of retaliation, went with a body of light troops, and burnt the

suburbs of La Torre, making his retreat afterward with very little loss.

A few days later, Captain Bellin, with a much stronger body of troops, attacked the town of La Torre itself,

and making a breach in the wall of the convent, his men entered, driving the garrison into the citadel and

burning both town and convent. After having effected this, they made a regular retreat, as they could not

reduce the citadel for want of cannon.

An Account of the Persecutions of Michael de Molinos, a

Native of Spain

Michael de Molinos, a Spaniard of a rich and honorable family, entered, when young, into priest's orders, but

would not accept of any preferment in the Church. He possessed great natural abilities, which he dedicated to

the service of his fellow creatures, without any view of emolument to himself. His course of life was pious

and uniform; nor did he exercise those austerities which are common among the religious orders of the

Church of Rome.

Being of a contemplative turn of mind, he pursued the track of the mystical divines, and having acquired

great reputation in Spain, and being desirous of propagating his sublime mode of devotion, he left his own

country, and settled at Rome. Here he soon connected himself with some of the most distinguished among

the literati, who so approved of his religious maxims, that they concurred in assisting him to propagate them;

and, in a short time, he obtained a great number of followers, who, from the sublime mode of their religion,

were distinguished by the name of Quietists.

In 1675, Molinos published a book entitled "Il Guida Spirituale," to which were subjoined recommendatory

letters from several great personages. One of these was by the archbishop of Reggio; a second by the general

of the Franciscans; and a third by Father Martin de Esparsa, a Jesuit, who had been divinity-professor both at

Salamanca and Rome.

No sooner was the book published than it was greatly read, and highly esteemed, both in Italy and Spain; and

this so raised the reputation of the author that his acquaintance was coveted by the most respectable

characters. Letters were written to him from numbers of people, so that a correspondence was settled

between him, and those who approved of his method in different parts of Europe. Some secular priests, both

at Rome and Naples, declared themselves openly for it, and consulted him, as a sort of oracle, on many

occasions. But those who attached themselves to him with the greatest sincerity were some of the fathers of

the Oratory; in particular three of the most eminent, namely, Caloredi, Ciceri, and Petrucci. Many of the

cardinals also courted his acquaintance, and thought themselves happy in being reckoned among the number

of his friends. The most distinguished of them was the Cardinal d'Estrees, a man of very great learmning,

who so highly approved of Molinos' maxims that he entered into a close connection with him. They

conversed together daily, and notwithstanding the distrust a Spaniard has naturally of a Frenchman, yet

Molinos, who was sincere in his principles, opened his mind without reserve to the cardinal; and by this

means a correspondence was settled between Molinos and some distinguished characters in France.

Whilst Molinos was thus laboring to propagate his religious mode, Father Petrucci wrote several treatises

relative to a contemplative life; but he mixed in them so many rules for the devotions of the Romish Church,

as mitigated that censure he might have otherwise incurred. They were written chiefly for the use of the

nuns, and therefore the sense was expressed in the most easy and familiar style.

Molinos had now acquired such reputation, that the Jesuits and Dominicans began to be greatly alarmed, and

determined to put a stop to the progress of this method. To do this, it was necessary to decry the author of it;

and as heresy is an imputation that makes the strongest impression at Rome, Molinos and his followers were

given out to be heretics. Books were also written by some of the Jesuits against Molinos and his method; but

they were all answered with spirit by Molinos.

These disputes occasioned such disturbance in Rome that the whole affair was taken notice of by the

Inquisition. Molinos and his book, and Father Petrucci, with his treatises and letters, were brought under a

severe examination; and the Jesuits were considered as the accusers. One of the society had, indeed,

approved of Molinos' book, but the rest took care he should not be again seen at Rome. In the course of the

examination both Molinos and Petrucci acquitted themselves so well, that their books were again approved,

and the answers which the Jesuits had written were censured as scandalous.

Petrucci's conduct on this occasion was so highly approved that it not only raised the credit of the cause, but

his own emolument; for he was soon after made bishop of Jesis, which was a new declaration made by the

pope in their favor. Their books were now esteemed more than ever, their method was more followed, and

the novelty of it, with the new approbation given after so vigorous an accusation by the Jesuits, all

contributed to raise the credit, and increase the number of the party.

The behavior of Father Petrucci in his new dignity greatly contributed to increase his reputation, so that his

enemies were unwilling to give him any further disturbance; and, indeed, there was less occasion given for

censure by his writings than those of Molinos. Some passages in the latter were not so cautiously expressed,

but there was room to make exceptions to them; while, on the other hand Petrucci so fully explained himself,

as easily to remove the objections made to some parts of his letter.

The great reputation acquired by Molinos and Petrucci occasioned a daily increase of the Quietists. All who

were thought sincerely devout, or at least affected the reputation of it, were reckoned among the number. If

these persons were observed to become more strict in their lives and mental devotions, yet there appeared

less zeal in their whole deportment at the exterior parts of the Church ceremonies. They were not so

assiduous at Mass, nor so earnest to procure Masses to be said for their friends; nor were they so frequently

either at confession, or in processions.

Though the new approbation given to Molinos' book by the Inquisition had checked the proceedings of his

enemies; yet they were still inveterate against him in their hearts, and determined if possible to ruin him.

They insinuated that he had ill designs, and was, in his heart, an enemy to the Christian religion: that under

pretence of raising men to a sublime strain of devotion, he intended to erase from their minds a sense of the

mysteries of Christianity. And because he was a Spaniard, they gave out that he was descended from a

Jewish or Mahometan race, and that he might carry in his blood, or in his first education, some seeds of those

religions which he had since cultivated with no less art than zeal. This last calumny gained but little credit at

Rome, though it was said an order was sent to examine the registers of the place where Molinos was


Molinos finding himself attacked with great vigor, and the most unrelenting malice, took every necessary

precaution to prevent these imputations being credited. He wrote a treatise, entitled "Frequent and Daily

Communion," which was likewise approved by some of the most learned of the Romish clergy. This was

printed with his Spiritual Guide, in the year 1675; and in the preface to it he declared that he had not written

it with any design to engage himself in matters of controversy, but that it was drawn from him by the earnest

solicitations of many pious people.

The Jesuits, failing in their attempts of crushing Molinos' power in Rome, applied to the court of France,

when, in a short time, they so far succeeded that an order was sent to Cardinal d'Estrees, commanding him to

prosecute Molinos with all possible rigor. The cardinal, though so strongly attached to Molinos, resolved to

sacrifice all that is sacred in friendship to the will of his master. Finding, however, there was not sufficient

matter for an accusation against him, he determined to supply that defect himself. He therefore went to the

inquisitors, and informed them of several particulars, not only relative to Molinos, but also Petrucci, both of

whom, together with several of their friends, were put into the Inquisition.

When they were brought before the inquisitors, (which was the beginning of the year 1684) Petrucci

answered the respective questions put to him with so much judgment and temper that he was soon dismissed;

and though Molinos' examination was much longer, it was generally expected he would have been likewise

discharged: but this was not the case. Though the inquisitors had not any just accusation against him, yet

they strained every nerve to find him guilty of heresy. They first objected to his holding a correspondence in

different parts of Europe; but of this he was acquitted, as the matter of that correspondence could not be

made criminal. They then directed their attention to some suspicious papers found in his chamber; but

Molinos so clearly explained their meaning that nothing could be made of them to his prejudice. At length,

Cardinal d'Estrees, after producing the order sent him by the king of France for prosecuting Molinos, said he

could prove against him more than was necessary to convince them he was guilty of heresy. To do this he

perverted the meaning of some passages in Molinos' books and papers, and related many false and

aggravating circumstances relative to the prisoner. He acknowledged he had lived with him under the

appearance of friendship, but that it was only to discover his principles and intentions: that he had found

them to be of a bad nature, and that dangerous consequences werre likely to ensue; but in order to make a

full discovery, he had assented to several things, which, in his heart, he detested; and that, by these means, he

saw into the secrets of Molinos, but determined not to take any notice, until a proper opportunity should offer

of crushing him and his followers.

In consequence of d'Estree's evidence, Molinos was closely confined by the Inquisition, where he continued

for some time, during which period all was quiet, and his followers prosecuted their mode without

interruption. But on a sudden the Jesuits determined to extirpate them, and the storm broke out with the most

inveterate vehemence.

The Count Vespiniani and his lady, Don Paulo Rocchi, confessor to the prince Borghese, and some of his

family, with several others, (in all seventy persons) were put into the Inquisition, among whom many were

highly esteemed for their learning and piety. The accusation laid against the clergy was their neglecting to

say the breviary; and the rest were accused of going to the Communion without first attending confession. In

a word, it was said, they neglected all the exterior parts of religion, and gave themselves up wholly to

solitude and inward prayer.

The Countess Vespiniani exerted herself in a very particular manner on her examination before the

inquisitors. She said she had never revealed her method of devotion to any mortal but her confessor, and that

it was impossible they should know it without his discovering the secret; that, therefore it was time to give

over going to confession, if priests made this use of it, to discover the most secret thoughts intrusted to them;

and that, for the future, she would only make her confession to God.

From this spirited speech, and the great noise made in consequence of the countess's situation, the inquisitors

thought it most prudent to dismiss both her and her husband, lest the people might be incensed, and what she

said might lessen the credit of confession. They were, therefore, both discharged, but bound to appear

whenever they should be called upon.

Besides those already mentioned, such was the inveteracy of the Jesuits against the Quietists, that, within the

space of a month, upwards of two hundred persons were put into the Inquisition; and that method of devotion

which had passed in Italy as the most elevated to which mortals could aspire, was deemed heretical, and the

chief promoters of it confined in a wretched dungeon.

In order, if possible, to extirpate Quietism, the inquisitors sent a circular letter to Cardinal Cibo, as the chief

minister, to disperse it through Italy. It was addressed to all prelates, informed them, that whereas many

schools and fraternities were established in several parts of Italy, in which some persons, under the pretence

of leading people into the ways of the Spirit, and to the prayer of quietness, instilled into them many

abominable heresies, therefore a strict charge was given to dissolve all those societies, and to oblige the

spiritual guide to tread in the known paths; and, in particular, to take care that none of that sort should be

suffered to have the direction of the nunneries. Orders were likewise given to proceed, in the way of justice,

against those who should be found guilty of these abominable errors.

After this a strict inquiry was made into all the nunneries of Rome, when most of their directors and

confessors were discovered to be engaged in this new method. It was found that the Carmelites, the nuns of

the Conception, and those of several other convents, were wholly given up to prayer and contemplation, and

that, instead of their beads, and the other devotions to saints, or images, they were much alone, and often in

the exercise of mental prayer; that when they were asked why they had laid aside the use of their beads and

their ancient forms, their answer was that their directors had advised them so to do. Information of this being

given to the Inquisition, they sent orders that all books written in the same strain with those of Molinos and

Petrucci should be taken from them, and that they should be compelled to return to their original form of


The circular letter sent to Cardinal Cibo, produced but little effect, for most of the Italian bishops were

inclined to Molinos' method. It was intended that this, as well as all other orders from the inquisitors, should

be kept secret; but notwithstanding all their care, copies of it were printed, and dispersed in most of the

principal towns in Italy. This gave great uneasiness to the inquisitors, who used every method they could to

conceal their proceedings from the knowledge of the world. They blamed the cardinal, and accused him of

being the cause of it; but he retorted on them, and his secretary laid the fault on both.

During these transactions, Molinos suffered great indignities from the officers of the Inquisition; and the

only comfort he received was from being sometimes visited by Father Petrucci.

Though he had lived in the highest reputation in Rome for some years, he was now as much despised as he

had been admired, being generally considered as one of the worst of heretics.

The greater part of Molinos' followers, who had been placed in the Inquisition, having abjured his mode,

were dismissed; but a harder fate awaited Molinos, their leader.

After lying a considerable time in prison, he was at length brought again before the inquisitors to answer to a

number of articles exhibited against him from his writings. As soon as he appeared in court, a chain was put

round his body, and a wax light in his hand, when two friars read aloud the articles of accusation. Molinos

answered each with great steadiness and resolution; and notwithstanding his arguments totally defeated the

force of all, yet he was found guilty of heresy, and condemned to imprisonment for life.

When he left the court he was attended by a priest, who had borne him the greatest respect. On his arrival at

the prison he entered the cell allotted for his confinement with great tranquillity; and on taking leave of the

priest, thus addressed him: "Adieu, father, we shall meet again at the Day of Judgment, and then it will

appear on which side the truth is, whether on my side, or on yours."

During his confinement, he was several times tortured in the most cruel manner, until, at length, the severity

of the punishments overpowered his strength, and finished his existence.

The death of Molinos struck such an impression on his followers that the greater part of them soon abjured

his mode; and by the assiduity of the Jesuits, Quietism was totally extirpated throughout the country.

CHAPTER VII - An Account of the Life and

Persecutions of John Wickliffe

It will not be inappropriate to devote a few pages of this work to a brief detail of the lives of some of those

men who first stepped forward, regardless of the bigoted power which opposed all reformation, to stem the

time of papal corruption, and to seal the pure doctrines of the Gospel with their blood.

Among these, Great Britain has the honor of taking the lead, and first maintaining that freedom in religious

controversy which astonished Europe, and demonstrated that political and religious liberty are equally the

growth of that favored island. Among the earliest of these eminent persons was

John Wickliffe

This celebrated reformer, denominated the "Morning Star of the Reformation," was born about the year

1324, in the reign of Edward II. Of his extraction we have no certain account. His parents designing him for

the Church, sent him to Queen's College, Oxford, about that period founded by Robert Eaglesfield, confessor

to Queen Philippi. But not meeting with the advantages for study in that newly established house which he

expected, he removed to Merton College, which was then esteemed one of the most learned societies in


The first thing which drew him into public notice, was his defence of the university against the begging

friars, who about this time, from their settlement in Oxford in 1230, had been troublesome neighbors to the

university. Feuds were continually fomented; the friars appealing to the pope, the scholars to the civil power;

and sometimes one party, and sometimes, the other, prevailed. The friars became very fond of a notion that

Christ was a common beggar; that his disciples were beggars also; and that begging was of Gospel

institution. This doctrine they urged from the pulpit and wherever they had access.

Wickliffe had long held these religious friars in contempt for the laziness of their lives, and had now a fair

opportunity of exposing them. He published a treatise against able beggary, in which he lashed the friars, and

proved that they were not only a reproach to religion, but also to human society. The university began to

consider him one of their first champions, and he was soon promoted to the mastership of Baliol College.

About this time, Archbishop Islip founded Canterbury Hall, in Oxford, where he established a warden and

eleven scholars. To this wardenship Wickliffe was elected by the archbishop, but upon his demise, he was

displaced by his successor, Stephen Langham, bishop of Ely. As there was a degree of flagrant injustice in

the affair, Wickliffe appealed to the pope, who subsequently gave it against him from the following cause:

Edward III, then king of England, had withdrawn the tribune, which from the time of King John had been

paid to the pope. The pope menaced; Edward called a parliament. The parliament resolved that King John

had done an illegal thing, and given up the rights of the nation, and advised the king not to submit, whatever

consequences might follow.

The clergy now began to write in favor of the pope, and a learned monk published a spirited and plausible

treatise, which had many advocates. Wickliffe, irritated at seeing so bad a cause so well defended, opposed

the monk, and did it in so masterly a way that he was considered no longer as unanswerable. His suit at

Rome was immediately determined against him; and nobody doubted but his opposition to the pope, at so

critical a period, was the true cause of his being non-suited at Rome.

Wickliffe was afterward elected to the chair of the divinity professor:

and now fully convinced of the errors of the Romish Church, and the vileness of its monastic agents, he

determined to expose them. In public lectures he lashed their vices and opposed their follies. He unfolded a

variety of abuses covered by the darkness of superstition. At first he began to loosen the prejudices of the

vulgar, and proceeded by slow advances; with the metaphysical disquisitions of the age, he mingled opinions

in divinity apparently novel. The usurpations of the court of Rome was a favorite topic. On these he

expatiated with all the keenness of argument, joined to logical reasoning. This soon procured him the clamor

of the clergy, who, with the archbishop of Canterbury, deprived him of his office.

At this time the administration of affairs was in the hands of the duke of Lancaster, well known by the name

of John of Gaunt. This prince had very free notions of religion, and was at enmity with the clergy. The

exactions of the court of Rome having become very burdensome, he determined to send the bishop of

Bangor and Wickliffe to remonstrate against these abuses, and it was agreed that the pope should no longer

dispose of any benefices belonging to the Church of England. In this embassy, Wickliffe's observant mind

penetrated into the constitution and policy of Rome, and he returned more strongly than ever determined to

expose its avarice and ambition.

Having recovered his former situation, he inveighed, in his lectures, against the pope-his usurpation-his

infallibility-his pride-his avarice- and his tyranny. He was the first who termed the pope Antichrist. From the

pope, he would turn to the pomp, the luxury, and trappings of the bishops, and compared them with the

simplicity of primitive bishops. Their superstitions and deceptions were topics that he urged with energy of

mind and logical precision.

From the patronage of the duke of Lancaster, Wickliffe received a good benefice; but he was no sooner

settled in his parish, than his enemies and the bishops began to persecute him with renewed vigor. The duke

of Lancaster was his friend in this persecution, and by his presence and that of Lord Percy, earl marshal of

England, he so overawed the trial, that the whole ended in disorder.

After the death of Edward III his grandson Richard II succeeded, in the eleventh year of his age. The duke of

Lancaster not obtaining to be the sole regent, as he expected, his power began to decline, and the enemies of

Wickliffe, taking advantage of the circumstance, renewed their articles of accusation against him. Five bulls

were despatched in consequence by the pope to the king and certain bishops, but the regency and the people

manifested a spirit of contempt at the haughty proceedings of the pontiff, and the former at that time wanting

money to oppose an expected invasion of the French, proposed to apply a large sum, collected for the use of

the pope, to that purpose. The question was submitted to the decision of Wickliffe. The bishops, however,

supported by the papal authority, insisted upon bringing Wickliffe to trial, and he was actually undergoing

examination at Lambeth, when, from the riotous behavior of the populace without, and awed by the

command of Sir Lewis Clifford, a gentleman of the court, that they should not proceed to any definitive

sentence, they terminated the whole affair in a prohibition to Wickliffe, not to preach those doctrines which

were obnoxious to the pope; but this was laughed at by our reformer, who, going about barefoot, and in a

long frieze gown, preached more vehemently than before.

In the year 1378, a contest arose between two popes, Urban VI and Clement VII which was the lawful pope,

and true vicegerent of God. This was a favorable period for the exertion of Wicliffe's talents: he soon

produced a tract against popery, which was eagerly read by all sorts of people.

About the end of the year, Wickliffe was seized with a violent disorder, which it was feared might prove

fatal. The begging friars, accompanied by four of the most eminent citizens of Oxford, gained admittance to

his bed chamber, and begged of him to retract, for his soul's sake, the unjust things he had asserted of their

order. Wickliffe, surprised at the solemn message, raised himself in his bed, and with a stern countenance

replied, "I shall not die, but live to declare the evil deeds of the friars."

When Wickliffe recovered, he set about a most important work, the translation of the Bible into English.

Before this work appeared, he published a tract, wherein he showed the necessity of it. The zeal of the

bishops to suppress the Scriptures greatly promoted its sale, and they who were not able to purchase copies,

procured transcripts of particular Gospels or Epistles. Afterward, when Lollardy increased, and the flames

kindled, it was a common practice to fasten about the neck of the condemned heretic such of these scraps of

Scripture as were found in his possession, which generally shared his fate.

Immediately after this transaction, Wickliffe ventured a step further, and affected the doctrine of

transubstantiation. This strange opinion was invented by Paschade Radbert, and asserted with amazing

boldness. Wickliffe, in his lecture before the University of Oxford, 1381, attacked this doctrine, and

published a treatise on the subject. Dr. Barton, at this time vice-chancellor of Oxford, calling together the

heads of the university, condemned Wickliffe's doctrines as heretical, and threatened their author with

excommunication. Wickliffe could now derive no support from the duke of Lancaster, and being cited to

appear before his former adversary, William Courteney, now made archbishop of Canterbury, he sheltered

himself under the plea, that, as a member of the university, he was exempt from episcopal jurisdiction. This

plea was admitted, as the university were determined to support their member.

The court met at the appointed time, determined, at least to sit in judgment upon his opinions, and some they

condemned as erroneous, others as heretical. The publication on this subject was immediately answered by

Wickliffe, who had become a subject of the archbishop's determined malice. The king, solicited by the

archbishop, granted a license to imprison the teacher of heresy, but the commons made the king revoke this

act as illegal. The primate, however, obtained letters from the king, directing the head of the University of

Oxford to search for all heresies and books published by Wickliffe; in consequence of which order, the

university became a scene of tumult. Wickliffe is supposed to have retired from the storm, into an obscure

part of the kingdom. The seeds, however, were scattered, and Wickliffe's opinions were so prevalent that it

was said if you met two persons upon the road, you might be sure that one was a Lollard. At this period, the

disputes between the two popes continued. Urban published a bull, in which he earnestly called upon all who

had any regard for religion, to exert themselves in its cause; and to take up arms against Clement and his

adherents in defence of the holy see.

A war, in which the name of religion was so vilely prostituted, roused Wickliffe's inclination, even in his

declining years. He took up his pen once more, and wrote against it with the greatest acrimony. He

expostulated with the pope in a very free manner, and asks him boldly: 'How he durst make the token of

Christ on the cross (which is the token of peace, mercy and charity) a banner to lead us to slay Christian men,

for the love of two false priests, and to oppress Christiandom worse than Christ and his apostles were

oppressed by the Jews? 'When,' said he, 'will the proud priest of Rome grant indulgences to mankind to live

in peace and charity, as he now does to fight and slay one another?'

This severe piece drew upon him the resentment of Urban, and was likely to have involved him in greater

troubles than he had before experienced, but providentially he was delivered out of their hands. He was

struck with the palsy, and though he lived some time, yet it was in such a way that his enemies considered

him as a person below their resentment.

Wickliffe returning within short space, either from his banishment, or from some other place where he was

secretly kept, repaired to his parish of Lutterworth, where he was parson; and there, quietly departing this

mortal life, slept in peace in the Lord, in the end of the year 1384, upon Silvester's day. It appeared that he

was well aged before he departed, "and that the same thing pleased him in his old age, which did please him

being young."

Wickliffe had some cause to give them thanks, that they would at least spare him until he was dead, and also

give him so long respite after his death, forty-one years to rest in his sepulchre before they ungraved him,

and turned him from earth to ashes; which ashes they also took and threw into the river. And so was he

resolved into three elements, earth, fire, and water, thinking thereby utterly to extinguish and abolish both the

name and doctrine of Wickliffe forever. Not much unlike the example of the old Pharisees and sepulchre

knights, who, when they had brought the Lord unto the grave, thought to make him sure never to rise again.

But these and all others must know that, as there is no counsel against the Lord, so there is no keeping down

of verity, but it will spring up and come out of dust and ashes, as appeared right well in this man; for though

they dug up his body, burned his bones, and drowned his ashes, yet the Word of God and the truth of his

doctrine, with the fruit and success thereof, they could not burn.

CHAPTER VIII - An Account of the

Persecutions in Bohemia Under the Papacy

The Roman pontiffs having usurped a power over several churches were particularly severe on the

Bohemians, which occasioned them to send two ministers and four lay-brothers to Rome, in the year 977, to

obtain redress of the pope. After some delay, their request was granted, and their grievances redressed. Two

things in particular they were permitted to do, viz., to have divine service performed in their own language,

and to give the cup to the laity in the Sacrament.

The disputes, however, soon broke out again, the succeeding popes exerting their whole power to impose on

the minds of the Bohemians; and the latter, with great spirit, aiming to preserve their religious liberties.

In A.D. 1375, some zealous friends of the Gospel applied to Charles, king of Bohemia, to call an ecumenical

Council, for an inquiry into the abuses that had crept into the Church, and to make a full and thorough

reformation. The king, not knowing how to proceed, sent to the pope for directions how to act; but the

pontiff was so incensed at this affair that his only reply was, "Severely punish those rash and profane

heretics." The monarch, accordingly banished every one who had been concerned in the application, and, to

oblige the pope, laid a great number of additional restraints upon the religious liberties of the people.

The victims of persecution, however, were not so numerous in Bohemia, until after the burning of John Huss

and Jerome of Prague. These two eminent reformers were condemned and executed at the instigation of the

pope and his emissaries, as the reader will perceive by the following short sketches of their lives.

Persecution of John Huss

John Huss was born at Hussenitz, a village in Bohemia, about the year 1380. His parents gave him the best

education their circumstances would admit; and having acquired a tolerable knowledge of the classics at a

private school, he was removed to the university of Prague, where he soon gave strong proofs of his mental

powers, and was remarkable for his diligence and application to study.

In 1398, Huss commenced bachelor of divinity, and was after successively chosen pastor of the Church of

Bethlehem, in Prague, and dean and rector of the university. In these stations he discharged his duties with

great fidelity; and became, at length, so conspicuous for his preaching, which was in conformity with the

doctrines of Wickliffe, that it was not likely he could long escape the notice of the pope and his adherents,

against whom he inveighed with no small degree of asperity.

The English reformist, Wickliffe, had so kindled the light of reformation, that it began to illumine the darkest

corners of popery and ignorance. His doctrines spread into Bohemia, and were well received by great

numbers of people, but by none so particularly as John Huss, and his zealous friend and fellow martyr,

Jerome of Prague.

The archbishop of Prague, finding the reformists daily increasing, issued a decree to suppress the further

spreading of Wickliffe's writings: but this had an effect quite different to what he expected, for it stimulated

the friends of those doctrines to greater zeal, and almost the whole university united to propagate them.

Being strongly attached to the doctrines of Wickliffe, Huss opposed the decree of the archbishop, who,

however, at length, obtained a bull from the pope, giving him commission to prevent the publishing of

Wickliffe's doctrines in his province. By virtue of this bull, the archbishop condemned the writings of

Wickliffe: he also proceeded against four doctors, who had not delivered up the copies of that divine, and

prohibited them, notwithstanding their privileges, to preach to any congregation. Dr. Huss, with some other

members of the university, protested against these proceedings, and entered an appeal from the sentence of

the archbishop.

The affair being made known to the pope, he granted a commission to Cardinal Colonna, to cite John Huss to

appear personally at the court of Rome, to answer the accusations laid against him, of preaching both errors

and heresies. Dr. Huss desired to be excused from a personal appearance, and was so greatly favored in

Bohemia, that King Winceslaus, the queen, the nobility, and the university, desired the pope to dispense with

such an appearance; as also that he would not suffer the kingdom of Bohemia to lie under the accusation of

heresy, but permit them to preach the Gospel with freedom in their places of worship.

Three proctors appeared for Dr. Huss before Cardinal Colonna. They endeavored to excuse his absence, and

said they were ready to answer in his behalf. But the cardinal declared Huss contumacious, and

excommunicated him accordingly. The proctors appealed to the pope, and appointed four cardinals to

examine the process: these commissioners confirmed the former sentence, and extended the

excommunication not only to Huss but to all his friends and followers.

From this unjust sentence Huss appealed to a future Council, but without success; and, notwithstanding so

severe a decree, and an expulsion in consequence from his church in Prague, he retired to Hussenitz, his

native place, where he continued to promulgate his new doctrine, both from the pulpit and with the pen.

The letters which he wrote at this time were very numerous; and he compiled a treatise in which he

maintained, that reading the books of Protestants could not be absolutely forbidden. He wrote in defence of

Wickliffe's book on the Trinity; and boldly declared against the vices of the pope, the cardinals, and clergy,

of those corrupt times. He wrote also many other books, all of which were penned with a strength of

argument that greatly facilitated the spreading of his doctrines.

In the month of November, 1414, a general Council was assembled at Constance, in Germany, in order, as

was pretended, for the sole purpose of determining a dispute then pending between three persons who

contended for the papacy; but the real motive was to crush the progress of the Reformation.

John Huss was summoned to appear at this Council; and, to encourage him, the emperor sent him a safeconduct:

the civilities, and even reverence, which Huss met with on his journey were beyond imagination.

The streets, and sometimes the very roads, were lined with people, whom respect, rather than curiosity, had

brought together.

He was ushered into the town with great acclamations, and it may be said that he passed through Germany in

a kind of triumph. He could not help expressing his surprise at the treatment he received: "I thought (said he)

I had been an outcast. I now see my worst friends are in Bohemia."

As soon as Huss arrived at Constance, he immediately took logdings in a remote part of the city. A short

time after his arrival, came one Stephen Paletz, who was employed by the clergy at Prague to manage the

intended prosecution against him. Paletz was afterwards joined by Michael de Cassis, on the part of the court

of Rome. These two declared themselves his accusers, and drew up a set of articles against him, which they

presented to the pope and the prelates of the Council.

When it was known that he was in the city he was immediately arrested, and committed prisoner to a

chamber in the palace. This violation of common law and justice was particularly noticed by one of Huss's

friends, who urged the imperial safe-conduct; but the pope replied he never granted any safe-conduct, nor

was he bound by that of the emperor.

While Huss was in confinement, the Council acted the part of inquisitors.

They condemned the doctrines of Wickliffe, and even ordered his remains to be dug up and burned to ashes;

which orders were strictly complied with. In the meantime, the nobility of Bohemia and Poland strongly

interceded for Huss; and so far prevailed as to prevent his being condemned unheard, which had been

resolved on by the commissioners appointed to try him.

When he was brought before the Council, the articles exhibited against him were read: they were upwards of

forty in number, and chiefly extracted from his writings.

John Huss's answer was this: "I did appeal unto the pope; who being dead, and the cause of my matter

remaining undetermined, I appealed likewise unto his successor John XXIII: before whom when, by the

space of two years, I could not be admitted by my advocates to defend my cause, I appealed unto the high

judge Christ."

When John Huss had spoken these words, it was demanded of him whether he had received absolution of the

pope or no? He answered, "No." Then again, whether it was lawful for him to appeal unto Christ or no?

Whereunto John Huss answered: "Verily I do affirm here before you all, that there is no more just or

effectual appeal, than that appeal which is made unto Christ, forasmuch as the law doth determine, that to

appeal is no other thing than in a cause of grief or wrong done by an inferior judge, to implore and require

aid at a higher Judge's hand. Who is then a higher Judge than Christ? Who, I say, can know or judge the

matter more justly, or with more equity? when in Him there is found no deceit, neither can He be deceived;

or, who can better help the miserable and oppressed than He?" While John Huss, with a devout and sober

countenance, was speaking and pronouncing those words, he was derided and mocked by all the whole


These excellent sentences were esteemed as so many expressions of treason, and tended to inflame his

adversaries. Accordingly, the bishops appointed by the Council stripped him of his priestly garments,

degraded him, put a paper miter on his head, on which was painted devils, with this inscription, "A

ringleader of heretics." Which when he saw, he said: "My Lord Jesus Christ, for my sake, did wear a crown

of thorns; why should not I then, for His sake, again wear this light crown, be it ever so ignominious? Truly I

will do it, and that willingly." When it was set upon his head, the bishop said: "Now we commit thy soul

unto the devil." "But I," said John Huss, lifting his eyes towards the heaven, "do commend into Thy hands, O

Lord Jesus Christ! my spirit which Thou has redeemed."

When the chain was put about him at the stake, he said, with a smiling countenance, "My Lord Jesus Christ

was bound with a harder chain than this for my sake, and why then should I be ashamed of this rusty one?"

When the fagots were piled up to his very neck, the duke of Bavaria was so officious as to desire him to

abjure. "No, (said Huss;) I never preached any doctrine of an evil tendency; and what I taught with my lips I

now seal with my blood." He then said to the executioner, "You are now going to burn a goose, (Huss

signifying goose in the Bohemian language:) but in a century you will have a swan which you can neither

roast nor boil." If he were prophetic, he must have meant Martin Luther, who shone about a hundred years

after, and who had a swan for his arms.

The flames were now applied to the fagots, when our martyr sung a hymn with so loud and cheerful a voice

that he was heard through all the cracklings of the combustibles, and the noise of the multitude. At length his

voice was interrupted by the severity of the flames, which soon closed his existence.

Then, with great diligence, gathering the ashes together, they cast them into the river Rhine, that the least

remnant of that man should not be left upon the earth, whose memory, notwithstanding, cannot be abolished

out of the minds of the godly, neither by fire, neither by water, neither by any kind oof torment.

Persecution of Jerome of Prague

This reformer, who was the companion of Dr. Huss, and may be said to be a co-martyr with him, was born at

Prague, and educated in that university, where he particularly distinguished himself for his great abilities and

learning. He likewise visited several other learned seminaries in Europe, particularly the universities of Paris,

Heidelburg, Cologne and Oxford. At the latter place he became acquainted with the works of Wickliffe, and

being a person of uncommon application, he translated many of them into his native language, having, with

great pains, made himself master of the English tongue.

On his return to Prague, he professed himself an open favorer of Wickliffe, and finding that his doctrines had

made considerable progress in Bohemia, and that Huss was the principal promoter of them, he became an

assistant to him in the great work of reformation.

On the fourth of April, 1415, Jerome arrived at Constance, about three months before the death of Huss. He

entered the town privately, and consulting with some of the leaders of his party, whom he found there, was

easily convinced he could not be of any service to his friends.

Finding that his arrival in Constance was publicly known, and that the Council intended to seize him, he

thought it most prudent to retire. Accordingly, the next day he went to Iberling, an imperial town, about a

mile from Constance. From this place he wrote to the emperor, and proposed his readiness to appear before

the Council, if he would give him a safe-conduct; but this was refused. He then applied to the Council, but

met with an answer no less unfavorable than that from the emperor.

After this, he set out on his return to Bohemia. He had the precaution to take with him a certificate, signed by

several of the Bohemian nobility, then at Constance, testifying that he had used all prudent means in his

power to procure a hearing.

Jerome, however, did not thus escape. He was seized at Hirsaw by an officer belonging to the duke of

Sultsbach, who, though unauthorized so to act, made little doubt of obtaining thanks from the Council for so

acceptable a service.

The duke of Sultsbach, having Jerome now in his power, wrote to the Council for directions how to proceed.

The Council, after expressing their obligations to the duke, desired him to send the prisoner immediately to

Constance. The elector palatine met him on the way, and conducted him into the city, himself riding on

horseback, with a numerous retinue, who led Jerome in fetters by a long chain; and immediately on his

arrival he was committed to a loathsome dungeon.

Jerome was treated nearly in the same manner as Huss had been, only that he was much longer confined, and

shifted from one prison to another. At length, being brought before the Council, he desired that he might

plead his own cause, and exculpate himself: which being refused him, he broke out into the following


"What barbarity is this! For three hundred and forty days have I been confined in a variety of prisons. There

is not a misery, there is not a want, that I have not experienced. To my enemies you have allowed the fullest

scope of accusation: to me you deny the least opportunity of defence. Not an hour will you now indulge me

in preparing for my trial. You have swallowed the blackest calumnies against me. You have represented me

as a heretic, without knowing my doctrine; as an enemy of the faith, before you knew what faith I professed:

as a persecutor of priests before you could have an opportunity of understanding my sentiments on that head.

You are a General Council: in you center all this world can communicate of gravity, wisdom, and sanctity:

but still you are men, and men are seducible by appearances. The higher your character is for wisdom, the

greater ought your care to be not to deviate into folly. The cause I now plead is not my own cause: it is the

cause of men, it is the cause of Christians; it is a cause which is to affect the rights of posterity, however the

experiment is to be made in my person."

This speech had not the least effect; Jerome was obliged to hear the charge read, which was reduced under

the following heads: 1. That he was a derider of the papal dignity. 2. An opposer of the pope. 3. An enemy to

the cardinals. 4. A persecutor of the prelates. 5. A hater of the Christian religion.

The trial of Jerome was brought on the third day after his accusation and witnesses were examined in support

of the charge. The prisoner was prepared for his defence, which appears almost incredible, when we consider

he had been three hundred and forty days shut up in loathsome prisons, deprived of daylight, and almost

starved for want of common necessaries. But his spirit soared above these disadvantages, under which a man

less animated would have sunk; nor was he more at a loss of quotations from the fathers and ancient authors

than if he had been furnished with the finest library.

The most bigoted of the assembly were unwilling he should be heard, knowing what effect eloquence is apt

to have on the minds of the most prejudiced. At length, however, it was carried by the majority that he

should have liberty to proceed in his defence, which he began in such an exalted strain of moving elocution

that the heart of obdurate zeal was seen to melt, and the mind of superstition seemed to admit a ray of

conviction. He made an admirable distinction between evidence as resting upon facts, and as supported by

malice and calumny. He laid before the assembly the whole tenor of his life and conduct. He observed that

the greatest and most holy men had been known to differ in points of speculation, with a view to distinguish

truth, not to keep it concealed. He expressed a noble contempt of all his enemies, who would have induced

him to retract the cause of virtue and truth. He entered upon a high encomium of Huss; and declared he was

ready to follow him in the glorious task of martyrdom. He then touched upon the most defensible doctrines

of Wickliffe; and concluded with observing that it was far from his intention to advance anything against the

state of the Church of God; that it was only against the abuse of the clergy he complained; and that he could

not help saying, it was certainly impious that the patrimony of the Church, which was originally intended for

the purpose of charity and universal benevolence, should be prostituted to the pride of the eye, in feasts,

foppish vestments, and other reproaches to the name and profession of Christianity.

The trial being over, Jerome received the same sentence that had been passed upon his martyred countryman.

In consequence of this, he was, in the usual style of popish affectation, delivered over to the civil power: but

as he was a layman, he had not to undergo the ceremony of degradation. They had prepared a cap of paper

painted with red devils, which being put upon his head, he said, "Our Lord Jesus Christ, when He suffered

death for me a most miserable sinner, did wear a crown of thorns upon His head, and for His sake will I wear

this cap."

Two days were allowed him in hopes that he would recant; in which time the cardinal of Florence used his

utmost endeavors to bring him over. But they all proved ineffectual. Jerome was resolved to seal the doctrine

with his blood; and he suffered death with the most distinguished magnanimity.

In going to the place of execution he sang several hymns, and when he came to the spot, which was the same

where Huss had been burnt, he knelt down, and prayed fervently. He embraced the stake with great

cheerfulness, and when they went behind him to set fire to the fagots, he said, "Come here, and kindle it

before my eyes; for if I had been afraid of it, I had not come to this place." The fire being kindled, he sang a

hymn, but was soon interrupted by the flames; and the last words he was heard to say these, "This soul in

flames I offer Christ, to Thee."

The elegant Pogge, a learned gentleman of Florence, secretary to two popes, and a zealous but liberal

Catholic, in a letter to Leonard Arotin, bore ample testimony of the extraordinary powers and virtues of

Jerome whom he emphatically styles, A prodigious man!

Persecution of Zisca

The real name of this zealous servant of Christ was John de Trocznow, that of Zisca is a Bohemian word,

signifying one-eyed, as he had lost an eye. He was a native of Bohemia, of a good family and left the court of

Winceslaus, to enter into the service of the king of Poland against the Teutonic knights. Having obtained a

badge of honor and a purse of ducats for his gallantry, at the close of the war, he returned to the court of

Winceslaus, to whom he boldly avowed the deep interest he took in the bloody affront offered to his

majesty's subjects at Constance in the affair of Huss. Winceslaus lamented it was not in his power to revenge

it; and from this moment Zisca is said to have formed the idea of asserting the religious liberties of his

country. In the year 1418, the Council was dissolved, having done more mischief than good, and in the

summer of that year a general meeting was held of the friends of religious reformation, at the castle of

Wisgrade, who, conducted by Zisca, repaired to the emperor with arms in their hands, and offered to defend

him against his enemies. The king bid them use their arms properly, and this stroke of policy first insured to

Zisca the confidence of his party.

Winceslaus was succeeded by Sigismond, his brother, who rendered himself odious to the reformers; and

removed all such as were obnoxious to his government. Zisca and his friends, upon this, immediately flew to

arms, declared war against the emperor and the pope, and laid siege to Pilsen with 40,000 men. They soon

became masters of the fortress, and in a short time all the southwest part of Bohemia submitted, which

greatly increased the army of the reformers. The latter having taken the pass of Muldaw, after a severe

conflict of five days and nights, the emperor became alarmed, and withdrew his troops from the confines of

Turkey, to march them into Bohemia. At Berne in Moravia, he halted, and sent despatches to treat of peace,

as a preliminary to which Zisca gave up Pilsen and all the fortresses he had taken. Sigismond proceeding in a

manner that clearly manifested he acted on the Roman doctrine, that no faith was to be kept with heretics,

and treating some of the authors of the late disturbances with severity, the alarm-bell of revolt was sounded

from one end of Bohemia to the other. Zisca took the castle of Prague by the power of money, and on August

19, 1420, defeated the small army the emperor had hastily got together to oppose him. He next took Ausea

by assault, and destroyed the town with a barbarity that disgraced the cause in which he fought.

Winter approaching, Zisca fortified his camp on a strong hill about forty miles from Prague, which he called

Mount Tabor, whence he surprised a body of horse at midnight, and made a thousand men prisoners. Shortly

after, the emperor obtained possession of the strong fortress of Prague, by the same means Zisca had before

done: it was blockaded by the latter, and want began to threaten the emperor, who saw the necessity of a


Determined to make a desperate effort, Sigismond attacked the fortified camp of Zisca on Mount Tabor, and

carried it with great slaughter. Many other fortresses also fell, and Zisca withdrew to a craggy hill, which he

strongly fortified, and whence he so annoyed the emperor in his approaches against the town of Prague, that

he found he must either abandon the siege or defeat his enemy. The marquis of Misnia was deputed to effect

this with a large body of troops, but the event was fatal to the imperialists; they were defeated, and the

emperor having lost nearly one third of his army, retreated from the siege of Prague, harassed in his rear by

the enemy.

In the spring of 1421, Zisca commenced the campaign, as before, by destroying all the monasteries in his

way. He laid siege to the castle of Wisgrade, and the emperor coming to relieve it, fell into a snare, was

defeated with dreadful slaughter, and this important fortress was taken. Our general had now leisure to attend

to the work of reformation, but he was much disgusted with the gross ignorance and superstition of the

Bohemian clergy, who rendered themselves contemptible in the eyes of the whole army. When he saw any

symptoms of uneasiness in the camp, he would spread alarm in order to divert them, and draw his men into

action. In one of these expeditions, he encamped before the town of Rubi, and while pointing out the place

for an assault, an arrow shot from the wall struck him in the eye. At Prague it was extracted, but, being

barbed, it tore the eye out with it. A fever succeeded, and his life was with difficulty preserved. He was now

totally blind, but still desirous of attending the army. The emperor, having summoned the states of the

empire to assist him, resolved, with their assistance, to attack Zisca in the winter, when many of his troops

departed until the return of spring.

The confederate princes undertook the siege of Soisin, but at the approach merely of the Bohemian general,

they retreated. Sigismond nevertheless advanced with his formidable army, consisting of 15,000 Hungarian

horse and 25,000 infantry, well equipped for a winter campaign. This army spread terror through all the east

of Bohemia. Wherever Sigismond marched, the magistrates laid their keys at his feet, and were treated with

severity or favor, according to their merits in his cause. Zisca, however, with speedy marches, approached,

and the emperor resolved to try his fortune once more with that invincible chief. On the thirteenth of January,

1422, the two armies met on a spacious plain near Kremnitz. Zisca appeared in the center of his front line,

guarded, or rather conducted, by a horseman on each side, armed with a pole-axe. His troops having sung a

hymn, with a determined coolness drew their swords, and waited for a signal. When his officers had

informed him that the ranks were all well closed, he waved his sabre round his head, which was the sign of


This battle is described as a most awful sight. The extent of the plain was one continued scene of disorder.

The imperial army fled towards the confines of Moravia, the Taborites, without intermission, galling their

rear. The river Igla, then frozen opposed their flight. The enemy pressing furiously, many of the infantry and

in a manner the whole body of the cavalry, attempted the river. The ice gave way, and not fewer than two

thousand were swallowed up in the water. Zisca now returned to Tabor, laden with all the spoils and trophies

which the most complete victory could give.

Zisca now began again to pay attention to the Reformation; he forbid all the prayers for the dead, images,

sacerdotal vestments, fasts, and festivals. Priests were to be preferred according to their merits, and no one to

be persecuted for religious opinions. In everything Zisca consulted the liberal minded, and did nothing

without general concurrence. An alarming disagreement now arose at Prague between the magistrates who

were Calixtans, or receivers of the Sacraments in both kinds, and the Taborites, nine of the chiefs of whom

were privately arraigned, and put to death. The populace, enraged, sacrificed the magistrates, and the affair

terminated without any particular consequence. The Calixtans having sunk into contempt, Zisca was solicited

to assume the crown of Bohemia; but this he nobly refused, and prepared for the next campaign, in which

Sigismond resolved to make his last effort. While the marquis of Misnia penetrated into Upper Saxony, the

emperor proposed to enter Moravia, on the side of Hungary. Before the marquis had taken the field, Zisca sat

down before the strong town of Aussig, situated on the Elbe. The marquis flew to its relief with a superior

army, and, after an obstinate engagement, was totally defeated and Aussig capitulated. Zisca then went to the

assistance of Procop, a young general whom he had appointed to keep Sigismond in check, and whom he

compelled to abandon the siege of Pernitz, after laying eight weeks before it.

Zisca, willing to give his troops some respite from fatigue, now entered Prague, hoping his presence would

quell any uneasiness that might remain after the late disturbance: but he was suddenly attacked by the

people; and he and his troop having beaten off the citizens, effected a retreat to his army, whom he

acquainted with the treacherous conduct of the Calixtans. Every effort of address was necessary to appease

their vengeful animosity, and at night, in a private interview between Roquesan, an ecclesiastic of great

eminence in Prague, and Zisca, the latter became reconciled, and the intended hostilities were done away.

Mutually tired of the war, Sigismond sent to Zisca, requesting him to sheath his sword, and name his

conditions. A place of congress being appointed, Zisca, with his chief officers, set out to meet the emperor.

Compelled to pass through a part of the country where the plague raged, he was seized with it at the castle of

Briscaw, and departed this life, October 6, 1424. Like Moses, he died in view of the completion of his labors,

and was buried in the great Church of Czaslow, in Bohemia, where a monument is erected to his memory,

with this inscription on it-"Here lies John Zisca, who, having defended his country against the

encroachments of papal tyranny, rests in this hallowed place, in despite of the pope."

After the death of Zisca, Procop was defeated, and fell with the liberties of his country.

After the death of Huss and Jerome, the pope, in conjunction with the Council of Constance, ordered the

Roman clergy everywhere to excommunicate such as adopted their opinions, or commiserated their fate.

These orders occasioned great contentions between the papists and reformed Bohemians, which was the

cause of a violent persecution against the latter. At Prague, the persecution was extremely severe, until, at

length, the reformed being driven to desperation, armed themselves, attacked the senate-house, and threw

twelve senators, with the speaker, out of the senate-house windows, whose bodies fell upon spears, which

were held up by others of the reformed in the street, to receive them.

Being informed of these proceedings, the pope came to Florence, and publicly excommunicated the reformed

Bohemians, exciting the emperor of Germany, and all kings, princes, dukes, etc., to take up arms, in order to

extirpate the whole race; and promising, by way of encouragement, full remission of all sins whatever, to the

most wicked person, if he did but kill one Bohemian Protestant.

This occasioned a bloody war; for several popish princes undertook the extirpation, or at least expulsion, of

the proscribed people; and the Bohemians, arming themselves, prepared to repel force by force, in the most

vigorous and effectual manner. The popish army prevailing against the Protestant forces at the battle of

Cuttenburgh, the prisoners of the reformed were taken to three deep mines near that town, and several

hundreds were cruelly thrown into each, where they miserably perished.

A merchant of Prague, going to Breslau, in Silesia, happened to lodge in the same inn with several priests.

Entering into conversation upon the subject of religious controversy, he passed many encomiums upon the

martyred John Huss, and his doctrines. The priests taking umbrage at this, laid an information against him

the next morning, and he was committed to prison as a heretic. Many endeavors were used to persuade him

to embrace the Roman Catholic faith, but he remained steadfast to the pure doctrines of the reformed Church.

Soon after his imprisonment, a student of the university was committed to the same jail; when, being

permitted to converse with the merchant, they mutually comforted each other. On the day appointed for

execution, when the jailer began to fasten ropes to their feet, by which they were to be dragged through the

streets, the student appeared quite terrified, and offered to abjure his faith, and turn Roman Catholic if he

might be saved. The offer was accepted, his abjuration was taken by a priest, and he was set at liberty. A

priest applying to the merchant to follow the example of the student, he nobly said, "Lose no time in hopes of

my recantation, your expectations will be vain; I sincerely pity that poor wretch, who has miserably

sacrificed his soul for a few more uncertain years of a troublesome life; and, so far from having the least idea

of following his example, I glory in the very thoughts of dying for the sake of Christ." On hearing these

words, the priest ordered the executioner to proceed, and the merchant being drawn through the city was

brought to the place of execution, and there burnt.

Pichel, a bigoted popish magistrate, apprehended twenty-four Protestants, among whom was his daughter's

husband. As they all owned they were of the reformed religion, he indiscriminately condemned them to be

drowned in the river Abbis. On the day appointed for the execution, a great concourse of people attended,

among whom was Pichel's daughter. This worthy wife threw herself at her father's feet, bedewed them with

tears, and in the most pathetic manner, implored him to commisserate her sorrow, and pardon her husband.

The obdurate magistrate sternly replied, "Intercede not for him, child, he is a heretic, a vile heretic." To

which she nobly answered, "Whatever his faults may be, or however his opinions may differ from yours, he

is still my husband, a name which, at a time like this, should alone employ my whole consideration." Pichel

flew into a violent passion and said, "You are mad! cannot you, after the death of this, have a much worthier

husband?" "No, sir, (replied she) my affections are fixed upon this, and death itself shall not dissolve my

marriage vow." Pichel, however, continued inflexible, and ordered the prisoners to be tied with their hands

and feet behind them, and in that manner be thrown into the river. As soon as this was put into execution, the

young lady watched her opportunity, leaped into the waves, and embracing the body of her husband, both

sank together into one watery grave. An uncommon instance of conjugal love in a wife, and of an inviolable

attachment to, and personal affection for, her husband.

The emperor Ferdinand, whose hatred to the Bohemian Protestants was without bounds, not thinking he had

sufficiently oppressed them, instituted a high court of reformers, upon the plan of the Inquisition, with this

difference, that the reformers were to remove from place to place, and always to be attended by a body of


These reformers consisted chiefly of Jesuits, and from their decision, there was no appeal, by which it may

be easily conjectured, that it was a dreadful tribunal indeed.

This bloody court, attended by a body of troops, made the tour of Bohemia, in which they seldom examined

or saw a prisoner, suffering the soldiers to murder the Protestants as they pleased, and then to make a report

of the matter to them afterward.

The first victim of their cruelty was an aged minister, whom they killed as he lay sick in his bed; the next day

they robbed and murdered another, and soon after shot a third, as he was preaching in his pulpit.

A nobleman and clergyman, who resided in a Protestant village, hearing of the approach of the high court of

reformers and the troops, fled from the place, and secreted themselves. The soldiers, however, on their

arrival, seized upon a schoolmaster, asked him where the lord of that place and the minister were concealed,

and where they had hidden their treasures. The schoolmaster replied that he could not answer either of the

questions. They then stripped him naked, bound him with cords, and beat him most unmercifully with

cudgels. This cruelty not extorting any confession from him, they scorched him in various parts of his body;

when, to gain a respite from his torments, he promised to show them where the treasures were hid. The

soldiers gave ear to this with pleasure, and the schoolmaster led them to a ditch full of stones, saying,

"Beneath these stones are the treasures ye seek for." Eager after money, they went to work, and soon

removed those stones, but not finding what they sought after, they beat the schoolmaster to death, buried him

in the ditch, and covered him with the very stones he had made them remove.

Some of the soldiers ravished the daughters of a worthy Protestant before his face, and then tortured him to

death. A minister and his wife they tied back to back and burnt. Another minister they hung upon a cross

beam, and making a fire under him, broiled him to death. A gentleman they hacked into small pieces, and

they filled a young man's mouth with gunpowder, and setting fire to it, blew his head to pieces.

As their principal rage was directed against the clergy, they took a pious Protestant minister, and tormenting

him daily for a month together, in the following manner, making their cruelty regular, systematic, and


They placed him amidst them, and made him the subject of their derision and mockery, during a whole day's

entertainment, trying to exhaust his patience, but in vain, for he bore the whole with true Christian fortitude.

They spit in his face, pulled his nose, and pinched him in most parts of his body. He was hunted like a wild

beast, until ready to expire with fatigue. They made him run the gauntlet between two ranks of them, each

striking him with a twig. He was beat with their fists. He was beat with ropes. They scourged him with wires.

He was beat with cudgels. They tied him up by the heels with his head downwards, until the blood started

out of his nose, mouth, etc. They hung him by the right arm until it was dislocated, and then had it set again.

The same was repeated with his left arm. Burning papers dipped in oil were placed between his fingers and

toes. His flesh was torn with red-hot pincers. He was put to the rack. They pulled off the nails of his right

hand. The same repeated with his left hand. He was bastinadoed on his feet. A slit was made in his right ear.

The same repeated on his left ear. His nose was slit. They whipped him through the town upon an ass. They

made several incisions in his flesh. They pulled off the toe nails of his right foot. The same they repeated

with his left foot. He was tied up by the loins, and suspended for a considerable time. The teeth of his upper

jaw were pulled out. The same was repeated with his lower jaw. Boiling lead was poured upon his fingers.

The same was repeated with his toes. A knotted cord was twisted about his forehead in such a manner as to

force out his eyes.

During the whole of these horrid cruelties, particular care was taken that his wounds should not mortify, and

not to injure him mortally until the last day, when the forcing out of his eyes proved his death.

Innumerable were the other murders and depredations committed by those unfeeling brutes, and shocking to

humanity were the cruelties which they inflicted on the poor Bohemian Protestants. The winter being far

advanced, however, the high court of reformers, with their infernal band of military ruffians, thought proper

to return to Prague; but on their way, meeting with a Protestant pastor, they could not resist the temptation of

feasting their barbarous eyes with a new kind of cruelty, which had just suggested itself to the diabolical

imagination of one of the soldiers. This was to strip the minister naked, and alternately to cover him with ice

and burning coals. This novel mode of tormenting a fellow creature was immediately put into practice, and

the unhappy victim expired beneath the torments, which seemed to delight his inhuman persecutors.

A secret order was soon after issued by the emperor, for apprehending all noblemen and gentlemen, who had

been principally concerned in supporting the Protestant cause, and in nominating Frederic elector Palatine of

the Rhine, to be king of Bohemia. These, to the number of fifty, were apprehended in one night, and at one

hour, and brought from the places where they were taken, to the castle of Prague, and the estates of those

who were absent from the kingdom were confiscated, themselves were made outlaws, and their names fixed

upon a gallows, as marks of public ignominy.

The high court of reformers then proceeded to try the fifty, who had been apprehended, and two apostate

Protestants were appointed to examine them. These examinants asked a great number of unnecessary and

impertinent questions, which so exasperated one of the noblemen, who was naturally of a warm temper, that

he exclaimed, opening his breast at the same time, "Cut here, search my heart, you shall find nothing but the

love of religion and liberty; those were the motives for which I drew my sword, and for those I am willing to

suffer death."

As none of the prisoners would change their religion, or acknowledge they had been in error, they were all

pronounced guilty; but the sentence was referred to the emperor. When that monarch had read their names,

and an account of the respective accusations against them, he passed judgment on all, but in a different

manner, as his sentences were of four kinds, viz. death, banishment, imprisonment for life, and imprisonment

during pleasure.

Twenty being ordered for execution, were informed they might send for Jesuits, monks, or friars, to prepare

for the awful change they were to undergo; but that no Protestants should be permitted to come near them.

This proposal they rejected, and strove all they could to comfort and cheer each other upon the solemn


On the morning of the day appointed for the execution, a cannon was fired as a signal to bring the prisoners

from the castle to the principal market place, in which scaffolds were erected, and a body of troops were

drawn up to attend the tragic scene.

The prisoners left the castle with as much cheerfulness as if they had been going to an agreeable

entertainment, instead of a violent death.

Exclusive of soldiers, Jesuits, priests, executioners, attendants, etc., a prodigious concourse of people

attended, to see the exit of these devoted martyrs, who were executed in the following order.

Lord Schilik was about fifty years of age, and was possessed of great natural and acquired abilities. When he

was told he was to be quartered, and his parts scattered in different places, he smiled with great serenity,

saying, "The loss of a sepulchre is but a trifling consideration." A gentleman who stood by, crying,

"Courage, my lord!" he replied, "I have God's favor, which is sufficient to inspire any one with courage: the

fear of death does not trouble me; formerly I have faced him in fields of battle to oppose Antichrist; and now

dare face him on a scaffold, for the sake of Christ." Having said a short prayer, he told the executioner he

was ready. He cut off his right hand and his head, and then quartered him. His hand and his head were placed

upon the high tower of Prague, and his quarters distributed in different parts of the city.

Lord Viscount Winceslaus, who had attained the age of seventy years, was equally respectable for learning,

piety, and hospitality. His temper was so remarkably patient that when his house was broken open, his

property seized, and his estates confiscated, he only said, with great composure, "The Lord hath given, and

the Lord hath taken away." Being asked why he could engage in so dangerous a cause as that of attempting

to support the elector Palatine Frederic against the power of the emperor, he replied, "I acted strictly

according to the dictates of my conscience, and, to this day, deem him my king. I am now full of years, and

wish to lay down life, that I may not be a witness of the further evils which are to attend my country. You

have long thirsted for my blood, take it, for God will be my avenger." Then approaching the block, he

stroked his long, grey beard, and said, "Venerable hairs, the greater honor now attends ye, a crown of

martyrdom is your portion." Then laying down his head, it was severed from his body at one stroke, and

placed upon a pole in a conspicuous part of the city.

Lord Harant was a man of good sense, great piety, and much experience gained by travel, as he had visited

the principal places in Europe, Asia, and Africa. Hence he was free from national prejudices and had

collected much knowledge.

The accusations against this nobleman, were, his being a Protestant, and having taken an oath of allegiance

to Frederic, elector Palatine of the Rhine, as king of Bohemia. When he came upon the scaffold he said, "I

have travelled through many countries, and traversed various barbarous nations, yet never found so much

cruelty as at home. I have escaped innumerable perils both by sea and land, and surmounted inconceivable

difficulties, to suffer innocently in my native place. My blood is likewise sought by those for whom I, and

my forefathers, have hazarded our estates; but, Almighty God! forgive them, for they know not what they

do." He then went to the block, kneeled down, and exclaimed with great energy, "Into Thy hands, O Lord! I

commend my spirit; in Thee have I always trusted; receive me, therefore, my blessed Redeemer." The fatal

stroke was then given, and a period put to the temporary pains of this life.

Lord Frederic de Bile suffered as a Protestant, and a promoter of the late war; he met his fate with serenity,

and only said he wished well to the friends whom he left behind, forgave the enemies who caused his death,

denied the authority of the emperor in that country, acknowledged Frederic to be the only true king of

Bohemia, and hoped for salvation in the merits of his blessed Redeemer.

Lord Henry Otto, when he first came upon the scaffold, seemed greatly confounded, and said, with some

asperity, as if addressing himself to the emperor, "Thou tyrant Ferdinand, your throne is established in blood;

but if you will kill my body, and disperse my members, they shall still rise up in judgment against you." He

then was silent, and having walked about for some time, seemed to recover his fortitude, and growing calm,

said to a gentleman who stood near, "I was, a few minutes since, greatly discomposed, but now I feel my

spirits revive; God be praised for affording me such comfort; death no longer appears as the king of terrors,

but seems to invite me to participate of some unknown joys." Kneeling before the block, he said, "Almighty

God! to Thee I commend my soul, receive it for the sake of Christ, and admit it to the glory of Thy

presence." The executioner put this nobleman to considerable pain, by making several strokes before he

severed the head from the body.

The earl of Rugenia was distinguished for his superior abilities, and unaffected piety. On the scaffold he said,

"We who drew our swords fought only to preserve the liberties of the people, and to keep our consciences

sacred: as we were overcome, I am better pleased at the sentence of death, than if the emperor had given me

life; for I find that it pleases God to have his truth defended, not by our swords, but by our blood." He then

went boldly to the block, saying, "I shall now be speedily with Christ," and received the crown of martyrdom

with great courage.

Sir Gaspar Kaplitz was eighty-six years of age. When he came to the place of execution, he addressed the

principal officer thus: "Behold a miserable ancient man, who hath often entreated God to take him out of this

wicked world, but could not until now obtain his desire, for God reserved me until these years to be a

spectacle to the world, and a sacrifice to himself; therefore God's will be done." One of the officers told him,

in consideration of his great age, that if he would only ask pardon, he would immediately receive it. "Ask

pardon, (exclaimed he) I will ask pardon of God, whom I have frequently offended; but not of the emperor,

to whom I never gave any offence; should I sue for pardon, it might be justly suspected I had committed

some crime for which I deserved this condemnation. No, no, as I die innocent, and with a clear conscience, I

would not be separated from this noble company of martyrs:" so saying, he cheerfully resigned his neck to

the block.

Procopius Dorzecki on the scaffold said, "We are now under the emperor's judgment; but in time he shall be

judged, and we shall appear as witnesses against him." Then taking a gold medal from his neck, which was

struck when the elector Frederic was crowned king of Bohemia, he presented it to one of the officers, at the

same time uttering these words, "As a dying man, I request, if ever King Frederic is restored to the throne of

Bohemia, that you will give him this medal. Tell him, for his sake, I wore it until death, and that now I

willingly lay down my life for God and my king." He then cheerfully laid down his head and submitted to

the fatal blow.

Dionysius Servius was brought up a Roman Catholic, but had embraced the reformed religion for some

years. When upon the scaffold the Jesuits used their utmost endeavors to make him recant, and return to his

former faith, but he paid not the least attention to their exhortations. Kneeling down he said, "They may

destroy my body, but cannot injure my soul, that I commend to my Redeemer"; and then patiently submitted

to martyrdom, being at that time fifty-six years of age.

Valentine Cockan, was a person of considerable fortune and eminence, perfectly pious and honest, but of

trifling abilities; yet his imagination seemed to grow bright, and his faculties to improve on death's approach,

as if the impending danger refined the understanding. Just before he was beheaded, he expressed himself

with such eloquence, energy, and precision as greatly amazed those who knew his former deficiency in point

of capacity.

Tobias Steffick was remarkable for his affability and serenity of temper.

He was perfectly resigned to his fate, and a few minutes before his death spoke in this singular manner, "I

have received, during the whole course of my life, many favors from God; ought I not therefore cheerfully to

take one bitter cup, when He thinks proper to present it? Or rather, ought I not to rejoice that it is his will I

should give up a corrupted life for that of immortality!"

Dr. Jessenius, an able student of physic, was accused of having spoken disrespectful words of the emperor,

of treason in swearing allegiance to the elector Frederic, and of heresy in being a Protestant. For the first

accusation he had his tongue cut out; for the second he was beheaded; and for the third, and last, he was

quartered, and the respective parts exposed on poles.

Christopher Chober, as soon as he stepped upon the scaffold said, "I come in the name of God, to die for His

glory; I have fought the good fight, and finished my course; so, executioner, do your office." The executioner

obeyed, and he instantly received the crown of martyrdom.

No person ever lived more respected or died more lamented than John Shultis. The only words he spoke,

before receiving the fatal stroke, were, "The righteous seem to die in the eyes of fools, but they only go to

rest. Lord Jesus! Thou hast promised that those who come to Thee shall not be cast off. Behold, I am come;

look on me, pity me, pardon my sins, and receive my soul."

Maximilian Hostialick was famed for his learning, piety, and humanity.

When he first came on the scaffold, he seemed exceedingly terrified at the approach of death. The officer

taking notice of his agitation, Hostialick said, "Ah! sir, now the sins of my youth crowd upon my mind, but I

hope God will enlighten me, lest I sleep the sleep of death and lest mine enemies say we have prevailed."

Soon after he said, "I hope my repentance is sincere, and will be accepted, in which case the blood of Christ

will wash me from my crimes." He then told the officer he should repeat the Song of Simeon; at the

conclusion of which the executioner might do his duty. He accordingly, said, "Lord, now lettest Thou Thy

servant depart in peace, according to Thy word: For mine eyes have seen Thy salvation;" at which words his

head was struck off at one blow.

When John Kutnaur came to the place of execution, a Jesuit said to him, "Embrace the Roman Catholic faith,

which alone can save and arm you against the terrors of death." To which he replied, "Your superstitious

faith I abhor, it leads to perdition, and I wish for no other arms against the terrors of death than a good

conscience." The Jesuit turned away, saying, sarcastically, "The Protestants are impenetrable rocks." "You

are mistaken," said Kutnaur, "it is Christ that is the Rock, and we are firmly fixed upon Him."

This person not being born independent, but having acquired a fortune by a mechanical employment, was

ordered to be hanged. Just before he was turned off, he said, "I die, not for having committed any crime, but

for following the dictates of my own conscience, and defending my country and religion."

Simeon Sussickey was father-in-law to Kutnaur, and like him, was ordered to be executed on a gallows. He

went cheerfully to death, and appeared impatient to be executed, saying, "Every moment delays me from

entering into the Kingdom of Christ."

Nathaniel Wodnianskey was hanged for having supported the Protestant cause, and the election of Frederic

to the crown of Bohemia. At the gallows, the Jesuits did all in their power to induce him to renounce his

faith. Finding their endeavors ineffectual, one of them said, "If you will not adjure your heresy, at least

repent of your rebellion?" To which Wodnianskey replied, "You take away our lives under a pretended

charge of rebellion; and, not content with that, seek to destroy our souls; glut yourselves with blood, and be

satisfied; but tamper not with our consciences."

Wodnianskey's own son then approached the gallows, and said to his father, "Sir, if life should be offered to

you on condition of apostasy, I entreat you to remember Christ, and reject such pernicious overtures." To this

the father replied, "It is very acceptable, my son, to be exhorted to constancy by you; but suspect me not;

rather endeavor to confirm in their faith your brothers, sisters, and children, and teach them to imitate that

constancy of which I shall leave them an example." He had so sooner concluded these words than he was

turned off, receiving the crown of martyrdom with great fortitude.

Winceslaus Gisbitzkey, during his whole confinement, had great hopes of life given him, which made his

friends fear for the safety of his soul. He, however, continued steadfast in his faith, prayed fervently at the

gallows, and met his fate with singular resignation.

Martin Foster was an ancient cripple; the accusations against whom were, being charitable to heretics, and

lending money to the elector Frederic. His great wealth, however, seemed to have been his principal crime;

and that he might be plundered of his treasures was the occasion of his being ranked in this illustrious list of


CHAPTER IX - An Account of the Life and

Persecutions of Martin Luther

This illustrious German divine and reformer of the Church was the son of John Luther and Margaret Ziegler,

and born at Isleben, a town of Saxony, in the county of Mansfield, November 10, 1483. His father's

extraction and condition were originally but mean, and his occupation that of a miner; it is probable,

however, that by his application and industry he improved the fortunes of his family, as he afterward became

a magistrate of rank and dignity. Luther was early initiated into letters, and at the age of thirteen was sent to

school at Magdeburg, and thence to Eisenach, in Thuringia, where he remained four years, producing the

early indications of his future eminence.

In 1501 he was sent to the University of Erfurt, where he went through the usual courses of logic and

philosophy. When twenty, he took a master's degree, and then lectured on Aristotle's physics, ethics, and

other parts of philosophy. Afterward, at the instigation of his parents, he turned himself to the civil law, with

a view of advancing himself to the bar, but was diverted from this pursuit by the following accident. Walking

out into the fields one day, he was struck by lightning so as to fall to the ground, while a companion was

killed by his side; and this affected him so sensibly, that, without communicating his purpose to any of his

friends, he withdrew himself from the world, and retired into the order of the hermits of St. Augustine.

Here he employed himself in reading St. Augustine and the schoolmen; but in turning over the leaves of the

library, he accidentally found a copy of the Latin Bible, which he had never seen before. This raised his

curiosity to a high degree: he read it over very greedily, and was amazed to find what a small portion of the

Scriptures was rehearsed to the people.

He made his profession in the monastery of Erfurt, after he had been a novice one year; and he took priest's

orders, and celebrated his first Mass in 1507. The year after, he was removed from the convent of Erfurt to

the University of Wittenberg; for this university being just founded, nothing was thought more likely to bring

it into immediate repute and credit, than the authority and presence of a man so celebrated, for his great parts

and learning, as Luther.

In this University of Erfurt, there was a certain aged man in the convent of the Augustines with whom

Luther, being then of the same order, a friar Augustine, had conference upon divers things, especially

touching remission of sins; which article the said aged father opened unto Luther; declaring that God's

express commandment is that every man should particularly believe his sins to be forgiven him in Christ: and

further said that this interpretation was confirmed by St. Bernard: "This is the testimony that the Holy Ghost

giveth thee in thy heart, saying, thy sins are forgiven thee. For this is the opinion of the apostle, that man is

freely justified by faith."

By these words Luther was not only strengthened, but was also instructed of the full meaning of St. Paul,

who repeateth so many times this sentence, "We are justified by faith." And having read the expositions of

many upon this place, he then perceived, as well by the discourse of the old man, as by the comfort he

received in his spirit, the vanity of those interpretations, which he had read before, of the schoolmen. And so,

by little and little, reading and comparing the sayings and examples of the prophets and apostles, with

continual invocation of God, and the excitation of faith by force of prayer, he perceived that doctrine most

evidently. Thus continued he his study at Erfurt the space of four years in the convent of the Augustines.

In 1512, seven convents of his order having a quarrel with their vicar-general, Luther was chosen to go to

Rome to maintain their cause. At Rome he saw the pope and the court, and had an opportunity of observing

also the manners of the clergy, whose hasty, superficial, and impious way of celebrating Mass, he has

severely noted. As soon as he had adjusted the dispute which was the business of his journey, he returned to

Wittenberg, and was created doctor of divinity, at the expense of Frederic, elector of Saxony; who had often

heard him preach, was perfectly acquainted with his merit, and reverenced him highly.

He continued in the University of Wittenberg, where, as professor of divinity, he employed himself in the

business of his calling. Here then he began in the most earnest manner to read lectures upon the sacred

books: he explained the Epistle to the Romans, and the Psalms, which he cleared up and illustrated in a

manner so entirely new, and so different from what had been pursued by former commentators, that "there

seemed, after a long and dark night, a new day to arise, in the judgment of all pious and prudent men."

Luther diligently reduced the minds of men to the Son of God: as John the Baptist demonstrated the Lamb of

God that took away the sins of the world, even so Luther, shining in the Church as the bright daylight after a

long and dark night, expressly showed that sins are freely remitted for the love of the Son of God, and that

we ought faithfully to embrace this bountiful gift.

His life was correspondent to his profession; and it plainly appeared that his words were no lip-labor, but

proceeded from the very heart. This admiration of his holy life much allured the hearts of his auditors.

The better to qualify himself for the task he had undertaken, he had applied himself attentively to the Greek

and Hebrew languages; and in this manner was he employed, when the general indulgences were published

in 1517.

Leo X who succeeded Julius II in March, 1513, formed a design of building the magnificent Church of St.

Peter's at Rome, which was, indeed, begun by Julius, but still required very large sums to be finished. Leo,

therefore, in 1517 published general indulgences throughout all Europe, in favor of those who contribute any

sum to the building of St. Peter's; and appointed persons in different countries to preach up these

indulgences, and to receive money for them. These strange proceedings gave vast offence at Wittenberg, and

particularly inflamed the pious zeal of Luther; who, being naturally warm and active, and in the present case

unable to contain himself, was determined to declare against them at all adventures.

Upon the eve of All-saints, therefore, in 1517, he publicly fixed up, at the church next to the castle of that

town, a thesis upon indulgences; in the beginning of which he challenged any one to oppose it either by

writing or disputation. Luther's propositions about indulgences were no sooner published, than Tetzel, the

Dominican friar, and commissioner for selling them, maintained and published at Frankfort, a thesis,

containing a set of propositions directly contrary to them. He did more; he stirred up the clergy of his order

against Luther; anathematized him from the pulpit, as a most damnable heretic; and burnt his thesis publicly

at Frankfort. Tetzel's thesis was also burnt, in return, by the Lutherans at Wittenberg; but Luther himself

disowned having had any hand in that procedure.

In 1518, Luther, though dissuaded from it by his friends, yet, to show obedience to authority, went to the

monastery of St. Augustine, at Heidelberg, while the chapter was held; and here maintained, April 26, a

dispute concerning "justification by faith"; which Bucer, who was present at, took down in writing, and

afterward communicated to Beatus Rhenanus, not without the highest commendations.

In the meantime, the zeal of his adversaries grew every day more and more active against him; and he was at

length accused to Leo X as a heretic. As soon as he returned therefore from Heidelberg, he wrote a letter to

that pope, in the most submissive terms; and sent him, at the same time, an explication of his propositions

about indulgences. This letter is dated on Trinity Sunday, 1518, and was accompanied with a protestation,

wherein he declared, that he did not pretend to advance or defend anything contrary to the Holy Scriptures,

or to the doctrine of the fathers, received and observed by the Church of Rome, or to the canons and

decretals of the popes: nevertheless, he thought he had the liberty either to approve or disapprove the

opinions of St. Thomas, Bonaventure, and other schoolmen and canonists, which are not grounded upon any


The emperor Maximilian was equally solicitous, with the pope about putting a stop to the propagation of

Luther's opinions in Saxony; troublesome both to the Church and empire. Maximilian, therefore, applied to

Leo, in a letter dated August 5, 1518, and begged him to forbid, by his authority, these useless, rash, and

dangerous disputes; assuring him also that he would strictly execute in the empire whatever his holiness

should enjoin.

In the meantime Luther, as soon as he understood what was transacting about him at Rome, used all

imaginable means to prevent his being carried thither, and to obtain a hearing of his cause in Germany. The

elector was also against Luther's going to Rome, and desired of Cardinal Cajetan, that he might be heard

before him, as the pope's legate in Germany. Upon these addresses, the pope consented that the cause should

be tried before Cardinal Cajetan, to whom he had given power to decide it.

Luther, therefore, set off immediately for Augsburg, and carried with him letters from the elector. He arrived

here in October, 1518, and, upon an assurance of his safety, was admitted into the cardinal's presence. But

Luther was soon convinced that he had more to fear from the cardinal's power than from disputations of any

kind; and, therefore, apprehensive of being seized if he did not submit, withdrew from Augsburg upon the

twentieth. But, before his departure, he published a formal appeal to the pope, and finding himself protected

by the elector, continued to teach the same doctrines at Wittenberg, and sent a challenge to all the inquisitors

to come and dispute with him.

As to Luther, Miltitius, the pope's chamberlain, had orders to require the elector to oblige him to retract, or to

deny him his protection: but things were not now to be carried with so high a hand, Luther's credit being too

firmly established. Besides, the emperor Maximilian happened to die upon the twelfth of this month, whose

death greatly altered the face of affairs, and made the elector more able to determine Luther's fate. Miltitius

thought it best, therefore, to try what could be done by fair and gentle means, and to that end came to some

conference with Luther.

During all these treaties, the doctrine of Luther spread, and prevailed greatly; and he himself received great

encouragement at home and abroad. The Bohemians about this time sent him a book of the celebrated John

Huss, who had fallen a martyr in the work of reformation; and also letters, in which they exhorted him to

constancy and perseverance, owning that the divinity which he taught was the pure, sound, and orthodox

divinity. Many great and learned men had joined themselves to him.

In 1519, he had a famous dispute at Leipsic with John Eccius. But this dispute ended at length like all others,

the parties not the least nearer in opinion, but more at enmity with each other's persons.

About the end of this year, Luther published a book, in which he contended for the Communion being

celebrated in both kinds; which was condemned by the bishop of Misnia, January 24, 1520.

While Luther was laboring to excuse himself to the new emperor and the bishops of Germany, Eccius had

gone to Rome, to solicit his condemnation; which, it may easily be conceived, was now become not difficult

to be attained. Indeed the continual importunities of Luther's adversaries with Leo, caused him at length to

publish a formal condemnation of him, and he did so accordingly, in a bull, dated June 15, 1520. This was

carried into Germany, and published there by Eccius, who had solicited it at Rome; and who, together with

Jerome Alexander, a person eminent for his learning and eloquence, was intrusted by the pope with the

execution of it. In the meantime, Charles V of Spain, after he had set things to rights in the Low Countries,

went into Germany, and was crowned emperor, October the twenty-first at Aix-la-Chapelle.

Martin Luther, after he had been first accused at Rome upon Maunday Thursday by the pope's censure,

shortly after Easter speedeth his journey toward Worms, where the said Luther, appearing before the emperor

and all the states of Germany, constantly stuck to the truth, defended himself, and answered his adversaries.

Luther was lodged, well entertained, and visited by many earls, barons, knights of the order, gentlemen,

priests, and the commonalty, who frequented his lodging until night.

He came, contrary to the expectation of many, as well adversaries as others. His friends deliberated together,

and many persuaded him not to adventure himself to such a present danger, considering how these

beginnings answered not the faith of promise made. Who, when he had heard their whole persuasion and

advice, answered in this wise: "As touching me, since I am sent for, I am resolved and certainly determined

to enter Worms, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; yea, although I knew there were as many devils to

resist me as there are tiles to cover the houses in Worms."

The next day, the herald brought him from his lodging to the emperor's court, where he abode until six

o'clock, for that the princes were occupied in grave consultations; abiding there, and being environed with a

great number of people, and almost smothered for the press that was there. Then after, when the princes were

set, and Luther entered, Eccius, the official, spake in this manner: "Answer now to the Emperor's demand.

Wilt thout maintain all thy books which thou hast acknowledged, or revoke any part of them, and submit


Martin Luther answered modestly and lowly, and yet not without some stoutness of stomach, and Christian

constancy. "Considering your sovereign majesty, and your honors, require a plain answer; this I say and

profess as resolutely as I may, without doubting or sophistication, that if I be not convinced by testimonies of

the Scriptures (for I believe not the pope, neither his general Councils, which have erred many times, and

have been contrary to themselves), my conscience is so bound and captivated in these Scriptures and the

Word of God, that I will not, nor may not revoke any manner of thing; considering it is not godly or lawful to

do anything against conscience. Hereupon I stand and rest: I have not what else to say. God have mercy upon


The princes consulted together upon this answer given by Luther; and when they had diligently examined the

same, the prolucutor began to repel him thus:

"The Emperor's majesty requireth of thee a simple answer, either negative or affirmative, whether thou

mindest to defend all thy works as Christian, or no?"

Then Luther, turning to the emperor and the nobles, besought them not to force or compel him to yield

against his conscience, confirmed with the Holy Scriptures, without manifest arguments alleged to the

contrary by his adversaries. "I am tied by the Scriptures."

Before the Diet of Worms was dissolved, Charves V caused an edict to be drawn up, which was dated the

eighth of May, and decreed that Martin Luther be, agreeably to the sentence of the pope, henceforward

looked upon as a member separated from the Church, a schismatic, and an obstinate and notorious heretic.

While the bull of Leo X executed by Charles V was thundering throughout the empire, Luther was safely

shut up in the castle of Wittenberg; but weary at length of his retirement, he appeared publicly again at

Wittenberg, March 6, 1522, after he had been absent about ten months.

Luther now made open war with the pope and bishops; and, that he might make the people despise their

authority as much as possible, he wrote one book against the pope's bull, and another against the order

falsely called "The Order of Bishops." He published also a translation of the New Testament in the German

tongue, which was afterward corrected by himself and Melancthon.

Affairs were now in great confusion in Germany; and they were not less so in Italy, for a quarrel arose

between the pope and the emperor, during which Rome was twice taken, and the pope imprisoned. While the

princes were thus employed in quarrelling with each other, Luther persisted in carrying on the work of the

Reformation, as well by opposing the papists, as by combating the Anabaptists and other fanatical sects;

which, having taken the advantage of his contest with the Church of Rome, had sprung up and established

themselves in several places.

In 1527, Luther was suddenly seized with a coagulation of the blood about the heart, which had like to have

put an end to his life. The troubles of Germany being not likely to have any end, the emperor was forced to

call a diet at Spires, in 1529, to require the assistance of the princes of the empire against the Turks. Fourteen

cities, viz., Strassburg, Nuremberg, Ulm, Constance, Retlingen, Windsheim, Memmingen, Lindow,

Kempten, Hailbron, Isny, Weissemburg, Nortlingen, S. Gal, joined against the decree of the Diet

protestation, which was put into writing, and published April, 1529. This was the famous protestation, which

gave the name of "Protestants" to the reformers in Germany.

After this, the Protestant princes labored to make a firm league and enjoined the elector of Saxony and his

allies to approve of what the Diet had done; but the deputies drew up an appeal, and the Protestants

afterwards presented an apology for their "Confession"-that famous confession which was drawn up by the

temperate Melancthon, as also the apology. These were signed by a variety of princes, and Luther had now

nothing else to do, but to sit down and contemplate the mighty work he had finished: for that a single monk

should be able to give the Church of Rome so rude a shock, that there needed but such another entirely to

overthrow it, may be well esteemed a mighty work.

In 1533, Luther wrote a consolatory epistle to the citizens of Oschatz, who had suffered some hardships for

adhering to the Augsburg confession of faith: and in 1534, the Bible translated by him into German was first

printed, as the old privilege, dated at Bibliopolis, under the elector's own hand, shows; and it was published

in the year after. He also published this year a book, "Against Masses and the Consecration of Priests."

In February, 1537, an assembly was held at Smalkald about matters of religion, to which Luther and

Melancthon were called. At this meeting Luther was seized with so grievous an illness that there was no

hope of his recovery. As he was carried along he made his will, in which he bequeathed his detestation of

popery to his friends and brethren. In this manner was he employed until his death, which happened in 1546.

That year, accompanied by Melancthon, he paid a visit to his own country, which he had not seen for many

years, and returned again in safety. But soon after, he was called thither again by the earls of Manfelt, to

compose some differences which had arisen about their boundaries, where he was received by one hundred

horsemen, or more, and conducted in a very honorable manner; but was at the same time so very ill that it

was feared he would die. He said that these fits of sickness often came upon him, when he had any great

business to undertake. Of this, however, he did not recover, but died in February 18, in his sixty-third year. A

little before he expired, he admonished those that were about him to pray to God for the propagation of the

Gospel, "Because," said he, "the Council of Trent, which had set once or twice, and the pope, will devise

strange things against it." Feeling his fatal hour to approach, before nine o'clock in the morning, he

commended himself to God with this devout prayer:

"My heavenly Father, eternal and merciful God! Thou hast manifested unto me Thy dear Son, our Lord Jesus

Christ. I have taught Him, I have known Him; I love Him as my life, my health and my redemption; Whom

the wicked have persecuted, maligned, and with injury afflicted. Draw my soul to Thee."

After this he said as ensueth, thrice: "I commend my spirit into Thy hands, Thou hast redeemed me, O God

of Truth! 'God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him

should not perish, but have life everlasting.'" Having repeated oftentimes his prayers, he was called to God.

So praying, his innocent ghost peaceably was separated from the earthly body.

CHAPTER X - General Persecutions in


The general persecutions in Germany were principally occasioned by the doctrines and ministry of Martin

Luther. Indeed, the pope was so terrified at the success of that courageous reformer, that he determined to

engage the emperor, Charles V, at any rate, in the scheme to attempt their extirpation.

To this end

1. He gave the emperor two hundred thousand crowns in ready money.

2. He promised to maintain twelve thousand foot, and five thousand horse, for the space

of six months, or during a campaign.

3. He allowed the emperor to receive one half the revenues of the clergy of the empire

during the war.

4. He permitted the emperor to pledge the abbey lands for five hundred thousand crowns,

to assist in carrying on hostilities against the Protestants.

Thus prompted and supported, the emperor undertook the extirpation of the Protestants, against whom,

indeed, he was particularly enraged himself; and, for this purpose, a formidable army was raised in Germany,

Spain, and Italy.

The Protestant princes, in the meantime, formed a powerful confederacy, in order to repel the impending

blow. A great army was raised, and the command given to the elector of Saxony, and the landgrave of Hesse.

The imperial forces were commanded by the emperor of Germany in person, and the eyes of all Europe were

turned on the event of the war.

At length the armies met, and a desperate engagement ensued, in which the Protestants were defeated, and

the elector of Saxony and the landgrave of Hesse both taken prisoners. This fatal blow was succeeded by a

horrid persecution, the severities of which were such that exile might be deemed a mild fate, and

concealment in a dismal wood pass for happiness. In such times a cave is a palace, a rock a bed of down, and

wild roots delicacies.

Those who were taken experienced the most cruel tortures that infernal imaginations could invent; and by

their constancy evinced that a real Christian can surmount every difficulty, and despite every danger acquire

a crown of martyrdom.

Henry Voes and John Esch, being apprehended as Protestants, were brought to examination. Voes,

answering for himself and the other, gave the following answers to some questions asked by a priest, who

examined them by order of the magistracy.

Priest. Were you not both, some years ago, Augustine friars?

Voes. Yes.

Priest. How came you to quit the bosom of the Church at Rome?

Voes. On account of her abominations.

Priest. In what do you believe?

Voes. In the Old and New Testaments.

Priest. Do you believe in the writings of the fathers, and the decrees of the Councils?

Voes. Yes, if they agree with Scripture.

Priest. Did not Martin Luther seduce you both?

Voes. He seduced us even in the very same manner as Christ seduced the apostles; that is, he made us

sensible of the frailty of our bodies, and the value of our souls.

This examination was sufficient. They were both condemned to the flames, and soon after suffered with that

manly fortitude which becomes Christians when they receive a crown of martyrdom.

Henry Sutphen, an eloquent and pious preacher, was taken out of his bed in the middle of the night, and

compelled to walk barefoot a considerable way, so that his feet were terribly cut. He desired a horse, but his

conductors said, in derision, "A horse for a heretic! no no, heretics may go barefoot." When he arrived at the

place of his destination, he was condemned to be burnt; but, during the execution, many indignities were

offered him, as those who attended not content with what he suffered in the flames, cut and slashed him in a

most terrible manner.

Many were murdered at Halle; Middleburg being taken by storm all the Protestants were put to the sword,

and great numbers were burned at Vienna.

An officer being sent to put a minister to death, pretended, when he came to the clergyman's house, that his

intentions were only to pay him a visit. The minister, not suspecting the intended cruelty, entertained his

supposed guest in a very cordial manner. As soon as dinner was over, the officer said to some of his

attendants, "Take this clergyman, and hang him." The attendants themselves were so shocked after the

civility they had seen, that they hesitated to perform the commands of their master; and the minister said,

"Think what a sting will remain on your conscience, for thus violating the laws of hospitality." The officer,

however, insisted upon being obeyed, and the attendants, with reluctance, performed the execrable office of


Peter Spengler, a pious divine, of the town of Schalet, was thrown into the river, and drowned. Before he was

taken to the banks of the stream which was to become his grave, they led him to the market place that his

crimes might be proclaimed; which were, not going to Mass, not making confession, and not believing in

transubstantiation. After this ceremony was over, he made a most excellent discourse to the people, and

concluded with a kind hymn, of a very edifying nature.

A Protestant gentleman being ordered to lose his head for not renouncing his religion, went cheerfully to the

place of execution. A friar came to him, and said these words in a low tone of voice, "As you have a great

reluctance publicly to abjure your faith, whisper your confession in my ear, and I will absolve your sins." To

this the gentleman loudly replied, "Trouble me not, friar, I have confessed my sins to God, and obtained

absolution through the merits of Jesus Christ." Then turning to the executioner, he said, "Let me not be

pestered with these men, but perform your duty," on which his head was struck off at a single blow.

Wolfgang Scuch, and John Huglin, two worthy ministers, were burned, as was Leonard Keyser, a student of

the University of Wertembergh; and George Carpenter, a Bavarian, was hanged for refusing to recant


The persecutions in Germany having subsided many years, again broke out in 1630, on account of the war

between the emperor and the king of Sweden, for the latter was a Protestant prince, and consequently the

Protestants of Germany espoused his cause, which greatly exasperated the emperor against them.

The imperialists having laid siege to the town of Passewalk, (which was defended by the Swedes) took it by

storm, and committed the most horrid cruelties on the occasion. They pulled down the churches, burnt the

houses, pillaged the properties, massacred the ministers, put the garrison to the sword, hanged the townsmen,

ravished the women, smothered the children, etc., etc.

A most bloody tragedy was transacted at Magdeburg, in the year 1631. The generals Tilly and Pappenheim,

having taken that Protestant city by storm, upwards of twenty thousand persons, without distinction of rank,

sex, or age, were slain during the carnage, and six thousand were drowned in attempting to escape over the

river Elbe. After this fury had subsided, the remaining inhabitants were stripped naked, severely scourged,

had their ears cropped, and being yoked together like oxen were turned adrift.

The town of Hoxter was taken by the popish army, and all the inhabitants as well as the garrison were put to

the sword; the houses even were set on fire, the bodies being consumed in the flames.

At Griphenberg, when the imperial forces prevailed, they shut up the senators in the senate chamber, and

surrounding it by lighted straw suffocated them.

Franhendal surrendered upon articles of capitulation, yet the inhabitants were as cruelly used as at other

places; and at Heidelberg many were shut up in prison and starved.

The cruelties used by the imperial troops, under Count Tilly in Saxony, are thus enumerated.

Half strangling, and recovering the persons again repeatedly. Rolling sharp wheels over the fingers and toes.

Pinching the thumbs in a vice. Forcing the most filthy things down the throat, by which many were choked.

Tying cords round the head so tightly that the blood gushed out of the eyes, nose, ears, and mouth. Fastening

burning matches to the fingers, toes, ears, arms, legs, and even the tongue. Putting powder in the mouth and

setting fire to it, by which the head was shattered to pieces. Tying bags of powder to all parts of the body, by

which the person was blown up. Drawing cords backwards and forwards through the fleshy parts. Making

incisions with bodkins and knives in the skin. Running wires through the nose, ears, lips, etc. Hanging

Protestants up by the legs, with their heads over a fire, by which they were smoke dried. Hanging up by one

arm until it was dislocated. Hanging upon hooks by the ribs. Forcing people to drink until they burst. Baking

many in hot ovens. Fixing weights to the feet, and drawing up several with pulleys. Hanging, stifling,

roasting, stabbing, frying, racking, ravishing, ripping open, breaking the bones, rasping off the flesh, tearing

with wild horses, drowning, strangling, burning, broiling, crucifying, immuring, poisoning, cutting off

tongues, noses, ears, etc., sawing off the limbs, hacking to pieces, and drawing by the heels through the


The enormous cruelties will be a perpetual stain on the memory of Count Tilly, who not only committed, but

even commanded the troops to put them in practice. Wherever he came, the most horrid barbarities and cruel

depredations ensued: famine and conflagration marked his progress: for he destroyed all the provisions he

could not take with him, and burnt all the towns before he left them; so that the full result of his conquests

were murder, poverty, and desolation.

An aged and pious divine they stripped naked, tied him on his back upon a table, and fastened a large, fierce

cat upon his belly. They then pricked and tormented the cat in such a manner that the creature with rage tore

his belly open, and gnawed his bowels.

Another minister and his family were seized by these inhuman monsters; they ravished his wife and daughter

before his face; stuck his infant son upon the point of a lance, and then surrounding him with his whole

library of books, they set fire to them, and he was consumed in the midst of the flames.

In Hesse-Cassel some of the troops entered an hospital, in which were principally mad women, when

stripping all the poor wretches naked, they made them run about the streets for their diversion, and then put

them all to death.

In Pomerania, some of the imperial troops entering a small town, seized upon all the young women, and girls

of upwards of ten years, and then placing their parents in a circle, they ordered them to sing Psalms, while

they ravished their children, or else they swore they would cut them to pieces afterward. They then took all

the married women who had young children, and threatened, if they did not consent to the gratification of

their lusts, to burn their children before their faces in a large fire, which they had kindled for that purpose.

A band of Count Tilly's soldiers meeting a company of merchants belonging to Basel, who were returning

from the great market of Strassburg, attempted to surround them; all escaped, however, but ten, leaving their

properties behind. The ten who were taken begged hard for their lives: but the soldiers murdered them

saying, "You must die because you are heretics, and have got no money."

The same soldiers met with two countesses, who, together with some young ladies, the daughters of one of

them, were taking an airing in a landau. The soldiers spared their lives, but treated them with the greatest

indecency, and having stripped them all stark naked, bade the coachman drive on.

By means and mediation of Great Britain, peace was at length restored to Germany, and the Protestants

remained unmolested for several years, until some new disturbances broke out in the Palatinate, which were

thus occasioned:

The great Church of the Holy Ghost, at Heidelberg, had, for many years, been shared equally by the

Protestants and Roman Catholics in this manner: the Protestants performed divine service in the nave or

body of the church; and the Roman Catholics celebrated Mass in the choir. Though this had been the custom

from time immemorial, the elector of the Palatinate, at length, took it into his head not to suffer it any longer,

declaring, that as Heidelberg was the place of his residence, and the Church of the Holy Ghost the cathedral

of his principal city, divine service ought to be performed only according to the rites of the Church of which

he was a member. He then forbade the Protestants to enter the church, and put the papists in possession of

the whole.

The aggrieved people applied to the Protestant powers for redress, which so much exasperated the elector,

that he suppressed the Heidelberg catechism. The Protestant powers, however, unanimously agreed to

demand satisfaction, as the elector, by this conduct, had broken an article of the treaty of Westphalia; and the

courts of Great Britain, Prussia, Holland, etc., sent deputies to the elector, to represent the injustice of his

proceedings, and to threaten, unless he changed his behavior to the Protestants in the Palatinate, that they

would treat their Roman Catholic subjects with the greatest severity. Many violent disputes took place

between the Protestant powers and those of the elector, and these were greatly augmented by the following

incident: the coach of the Dutch minister standing before the door of the resident sent by the prince of Hesse,

the host was by chance being carried to a sick person; the coachman took not the least notice, which those

who attended the host observing, pulled him from his box, and compelled him to kneel; this violence to the

domestic of a public minister was highly resented by all the Protestant deputies; and still more to heighten

these differences, the Protestants presented to the deputies three additional articles of complaint.

1. That military executions were ordered against all Protestant shoemakers who should

refuse to contribute to the Masses of St. Crispin.

2. that the Protestants were forbid to work on popish holy days, even in harvest time,

under very heavy penalties, which occasioned great inconveniences, and considerably

prejudiced public business.

3. That several Protestant ministers had been dispossessed of their churches, under

pretence of their having been originally founded and built by Roman Catholics.

The Protestant deputies at length became so serious as to intimate to the elector, that force of arms should

compel him to do the justice he denied to their representations. This menace brought him to reason, as he

well knew the impossibility of carrying on a war against the powerful states who threatened him. He

therefore agreed that the body of the Church of the Holy Ghost should be restored to the Protestants. He

restored the Heidelberg catechism, put the Protestant ministers again in possession of the churches of which

they had been dispossessed, allowed the Protestants to work on popish holy days, and, ordered, that no

person should be molested for not kneeling when the host passed by.

These things he did through fear; but to show his resentment to his Protestant subjects, in other

circumstances where Protestant states had no right to interfere, he totally abandoned Heidelberg, removing

all the courts of justice to Mannheim, which was entirely inhabited by Roman Catholics. He likewise built a

new palace there, making it his place of residence; and, being followed by the Roman Catholics of

Heidelberg, Mannheim became a flourishing place.

In the meantime the Protestants of Heidelberg sunk into poverty and many of them became so distressed as

to quit their native country, and seek an asylum in Protestant states. A great number of these coming into

England, in the time of Queen Anne, were cordially received there, and met with a most humane assistance,

both by public and private donations.

In 1732, above thirty thousand Protestants were, contrary to the treaty of Westphalia, driven from the

archbishopric of Salzburg. They went away in the depth of winter, with scarcely enough clothes to cover

them, and without provisions, not having permission to take anything with them. The cause of these poor

people not being publicly espoused by such states as could obtain them redress, they emigrated to various

Protestant countries, and settled in places where they could enjoy the free exercise of their religion, without

hurting their consciences, and live free from the trammels of popish superstition, and the chains of papal


CHAPTER XI - An Account of the

Persecutions in the Netherlands

The light of the Gospel having successfully spread over the Netherlands, the pope instigated the emperor to

commence a persecution against the Protestants; when many thousand fell martyrs to superstitious malice

and barbarous bigotry, among whom the most remarkable were the following:

Wendelinuta, a pious Protestant widow, was apprehended on account of her religion, when several monks,

unsuccessfully, endeavored to persuade her to recant. As they could not prevail, a Roman Catholic lady of

her acquaintance desired to be admitted to the dungeon in which she was confined, and promised to exert

herself strenuously towards inducing the prisoner to abjure the reformed religion. When she was admitted to

the dungeon, she did her utmost to perform the task she had undertaken; but finding her endeavors

ineffectual, she said, "Dear Wendelinuta, if you will not embrace our faith, at least keep the things which you

profess secret within your own bosom, and strive to prolong your life." To which the widow replied,

"Madam, you know not what you say; for with the heart we believe to righteousness, but with the tongue

confession is made unto salvation." As she positively refused to recant, her goods were confiscated, and she

was condemned to be burnt. At the place of execution a monk held a cross to her, and bade her kiss and

worship God. To which she answered, "I worship no wooden god, but the eternal God who is in heaven."

She was then executed, but through the before-mentioned Roman Catholic lady, the favor was granted that

she should be strangeled before fire was put to the fagots.

Two Protestant clergymen were burnt at Colen; a tradesman of Antwerp, named Nicholas, was tied up in a

sack, thrown into the river, and drowned; and Pistorius, a learned student, was carried to the market of a

Dutch village in a fool's coat, and committed to the flames.

Sixteen Protestants, having receive sentence to be beheaded, a Protestant minister was ordered to attend the

execution. This gentleman performed the function of his office with great propriety, exhorted them to

repentance, and gave them comfort in the mercies of their Redeemer. As soon as the sixteen were beheaded,

the magistrate cried out to the executioner, "There is another stroke remaining yet; you must behead the

minister; he can never die at a better time than with such excellent precepts in his mouth, and such laudable

examples before him." He was accordingly beheaded, though even many of the Roman Catholics themselves

reprobated this piece of treacherous and unnecessary cruelty.

George Scherter, a minister of Salzburg, was apprehended and committed to prison for instructing his flock

in the knowledge of the Gospel. While he was in confinement he wrote a confession of his faith; soon after

which he was condemned, first to be beheaded, and afterward to be burnt to ashes. On his way to the place of

execution he said to the spectators, "That you may know I die a true Christian, I will give you a sign." This

was indeed verified in a most singular manner; for after his head was cut off, the body lying a short space of

time with the belly to the ground, it suddenly turned upon the back, when the right foot crossed over t he left,

as did also the right arm over the left: and in this manner it remained until it was committed to the flames.

In Louviana, a learned man, named Percinal, was murdered in prison; and Justus Insparg was beheaded, for

having Luther's sermons in his possession.

Giles Tilleman, a cutler of Brussels, was a man of great humanity and piety. Among others he was

apprehended as a Protestant, and many endeavors were made by the monks to persuade him to recant. He

had once, by accident, a fair opportunity of escaping from prison and being asked why he did not avail

himself of it, he replied, "I would not do the keepers so much injury, as they must have answered for my

absence, had I gone away." When he was sentenced to be burnt, he fervently thanked God for granting him

an opportunity, by martyrdom, to glorify His name. Perceiving, at the place of execution, a great quanity of

fagots, he desired the principal part of them might be given to the poor, saying, "A small quantity will suffice

to consume me." The executioner offered to strangle him before the fire was lighted, but he would not

consent, telling him that he defied the flames; and, indeed, he gave up the ghost with such composure amidst

them, that he hardly seemed sensible of their effects.

In the year 1543 and 1544, the persecution was carried on throughout all Flanders in a most violent and cruel

manner. Some were condemned to perpetual imprisonment, others to perpetual banishment; but most were

put to death either by hanging, drowning, immuring, burning, the rack, or burying alive.

John de Boscane, a zealous Protestant, was apprehended on account of his faith, in the city of Antwerp. On

his trial, he steadfastly professed himself to be of the reformed religion, which occasioned his immediate

condemnation. The magistrate, however, was afraid to put him to death publicly, as he was popular through

his great generosity, and almost universally beloved for his inoffensive life, and exemplary piety. A private

execution being determined on, an order was given to drown him in prison. The executioner, accordinly, put

him in a large tub; but Boscane struggling, and getting his head above the water, the executioner stabbed him

with a dagger in several places, until he expired.

John de Buisons, another Protestant, was, about the same time, secretly apprehended, and privately executed

at Antwerp. The numbers of Protestants being great in that city, and the prisoner much respected, the

magistrates feared an insurrection, and for that reason ordered him to be beheaded in prison.

A.D. 1568, three persons were apprehended in Antwerp, named Scoblant, Hues, and Coomans. During their

confinement they behaved with great fortitude and cheerfulness, confessing that the hand of God appeared in

what had befallen them, and bowing down before the throne of his providence. In an epistle to some worthy

Protestants, they expressed themselves in the following words: "Since it is the will of the Almighty that we

should suffer for His name, and be persecuted for the sake of His Gospel, we patiently submit, and are joyful

upon the occasion; though the flesh may febel against the spirit, and hearken to the council of the old serpent,

yet the truths of the Gospel shall prevent such advice from being taken, and Christ shall bruise the serpent's

head. We are not comfortless in confinement, for we have faith; we fear not affliction, for we have hope; and

we forgive our enemies, for we have charity. Be not under apprehensions for us, we are happy in

confinement through the promises of God, glory in our bonds, and exult in being thought worthy to suffer for

the sake of Christ. We desire not to be released, but to be blessed with fortitude; we ask not liberty, but the

power of perseverance; and wish for no change in our condition, but that which places a crown of martyrdom

upon our heads."

Scoblant was first brought to his trial; when, persisting in the profession of his faith, he received sentence of

death. On his return to prison, he earnestly requested the jailer not to permit any friar to come near him;

saying, "They can do me no good, but may greatly disturb me. I hope my salvation is already sealed in

heaven, and that the blood of Christ, in which I firmly put my trust, hath washed me from my iniquities. I am

not going to throw off this mantle of clay, to be clad in robes of eternal glory, by whose celestial brightness I

shall be freed from all errors. I hope I may be the last martyr to papal tyranny, and the blood already spilt

found sufficient to quench the thirst of popish cruelty; that the Church of Christ may have rest here, as his

servants will hereafter." On the day of execution, he to0ok a pathetic leave of his fellow prisoners. At the

stake he fervently said the Lord's Prayer, and sung the Fortieth Psalm; then commending his soul to God, he

was burnt alive.

Hues, soon after died in prison; upon which occasion Coomans wrote thus to his friends: "I am now deprived

of my friends and companions; Scoblant is martyred, and Hues dead, by the visitation of the Lord; yet I am

not alone, I have with me the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob; He is my comfort, and shall be my

reward. Pray unto God to strengthen me to the end, as I expect every hour to be freed from this tenement of


On his trial he freely confessed himself of the reformed religion, answered with a manly fortitude to every

charge against him, and proved the Scriptural part of his answers from the Gospel. The judge told him the

only alternatives were recantation or death; and concluded by saying, "Will you die for the faith you

profess?" To which Coomans replied, "I am not only willing to die, but to suffer the most excruciating

torments for it; after which my soul shall receive its confirmation from God Himself, in the midst of eternal

glory." Being condemned, he went cheerfully to the place of execution, and died with the most manly

fortitude, and Christian resignation.

William of Nassau fell a sacrifice to treachery, being assassinated in the fifty-first year of his age, by

Beltazar Gerard, a native of Ranche Compte, in the province of Burgundy. This murderer, in hopes of a

reward here and hereafter, for killing an enemy to the king of Spain and an enemy to the Catholic religion,

undertook to destroy the prince of Orange. Having procured firearms, he watched him as he passed through

the great hall of his palace to dinner, and demanded a passport. The princess of Orange, observing that the

assassin spoke with a hollow and confused voice, asked who he was, saying that she did not like his

countenance. The prince answered that it was one that demanded a passport, which he should presently have.

Nothing further passed before dinner, but on the return of the prince and princness through the same hall,

after dinner was over, the assassin, standing concealed as much as possible by one of the pillars, fired at the

prince, the balls entering at the left side, and passing through the right, wounding in their passage the

stomach and vital parts. On receiving the wounds, the prince only said, "Lord, have mercy upon my soul, and

upon these poor people," and then expired immediately.

The lamentations throughout the United Provinces were general, on account of the death of the prince of

Orange; and the assassin, who was immediately taken, received sentence to be put to death in the most

exemplary manner, yet such was his enthusiasm, or folly, that when his flesh was torn by red-hot pincers, he

coolly said, "If I was at liberty, I would commit such an action over again."

The prince of Orange's funeral was the grandest ever seen in the Low Countries, and perhaps the sorrow for

his death the most sincere, as he left behind him the character he honestly deserved, viz., that of father of his


To conclude, multitudes were murdered in different parts of Flanders; in the city of Valence, in particular,

fifty-seven of the principal inhabitants were butchered in one day, for refusing to embrace the Romish

superstition; and great numbers were suffered to languish in confinement, until they perished through the

inclemency of their dungeons.

CHAPTER XII - The Life and Story of the

True Servant and Martyr of God,

William Tyndale

We have now to enter into the story of the good martyr of God, William Tyndale; which William Tyndale, as

he was a special organ of the Lord appointed, and as God's mattock to shake the inward roots and foundation

of the pope's proud prelacy, so the great prince of darkness, with his impious imps, having a special malice

against him, left no way unsought how craftily to entrap him, and falsely to betray him, and maliciously to

spill his life, as by the process of his story here following may appear.

William Tyndale, the faithful minister of Christ, was born about the borders of Wales, and brought up from a

child in the University of Oxford, where he, by long continuance, increased as well in the knowledge of

tongues, and other liberal arts, as especially in the knowledge of the Scriptures, whereunto his mind was

singularly addicted; insomuch that he, lying then in Magdalen Hall, read privily to certain students and

fellows of Magdalen College some parcel of divinity; instructing them in the knowledge and truth of the

Scriptures. His manners and conversation being correspondent to the same, were such that all they that knew

him reputed him to be a man of most virtuous disposition, and of life unspotted.

Thus he, in the University of Oxford, increasing more and more in learning, and proceeding in degrees of the

schools, spying his time, removed from thence to the University of Cambridge, where he likewise made his

abode a certain space. Being now further ripened in the knowledge of God's Word, leaving that university, he

resorted to one Master Welch, a knight of Gloucestershire, and was there schoolmaster to his children, and in

good favor with his master. As this gentleman kept a good ordinary commonly at his table, there resorted to

him many times sundry abbots, deans, archdeacons, with divers other doctors, and great beneficed men; who

there, together with Master Tyndale siting at the same table, did use many times to enter communication, and

talk of learned men, as of Luther and of Erasmus; also of divers other controversies and questions upon the


Then Master Tyndale, as he was learned and well practiced in God's matters, spared not to show unto them

simply and plainly his judgment, and when they at any time did vary from Tyndale in opinions, he would

show them in the Book, and lay plainly before them the open and manifest places of the Scriptures, to

confute their errors, and confirm his sayings. And thus continued they for a certain season, reasoning and

contending together divers times, until at length they waxed weary, and bare a secret grudge in their hearts

against him.

As this grew on, the priests of the country, clustering together, began to grudge and storm against Tyndale,

railing against him in alehouses and other places, affirming that his sayings were heresy; and accused him

secretly to the chancellor, and others of the bishop's officers.

It followed not long after this that there was a sitting of the bishop's chancellor appointed, and warning was

given to the priests to appear, amongst whom Master Tyndale was also warned to be there. And whether he

had any misdoubt by their threatenings, or knowledge given him that they would lay some things to his

charge, it is uncertain; but certain this is (as he himself declared), that he doubted their privy accusations; so

that he by the way, in going thitherwards, cried in his mind heartily to God, to give him strength fast to stand

in the truth of His Word.

When the time came for his appearance before the chancellor, he threatened him grievously, reviling and

rating him as though he had been a dog, and laid to his charge many things whereof no accuser could be

brought forth, notwithstanding that the priests of the country were there present. Thus Master Tyndale,

escaping out of their hands, departed home, and returned to his master again.

There dwelt not far off a certain doctor, that he been chancellor to a bishop, who had been of old, familiar

acquaintance with Master Tyndale, and favored him well; unto whom Master Tyndale went and opened his

mind upon divers questions of the Scripture: for to him he durst be bold to disclose his heart. Unto whom the

doctor said, "Do you not know that the pope is very Antichrist, whom the Scripture speaketh of? But beware

what you say; for if you shall be perceived to be of that opinion, it will cost you your life."

Not long after, Master Tyndale happened to be in the company of a certain divine, recounted for a learned

man, and, in communing and disputing with him, he drove him to that issue, that the said great doctor burst

out into these blasphemous words, "We were better to be without God's laws than the pope's." Master

Tyndale, hearing this, full of godly zeal, and not bearing that blasphemous saying, replied, "I defy the pope,

and all his laws;" and added, "If God spared him life, ere many years he would cause a boy that driveth the

plough to know more of the Scripture than he did."

The grudge of the priests increasing still more and more against Tyndale, they never ceased barking and

rating at him, and laid many things sorely to his charge, saying that he was a heretic. Being so molested and

vexed, he was constrained to leave that country, and to seek another place; and so coming to Master Welch,

he desired him, of his good will, that he might depart from him, saying: "Sir, I perceive that I shall not be

suffered to tarry long here in this country, neither shall you be able, though you would, to keep me out of the

hands of the spirituality; what displeasure might grow to you by keeping me, God knoweth; for the which I

should be right sorry."

So that in fine, Master Tyndale, with the good will of his master, departed, and eftsoons came up to London,

and there preached a while, as he had done in the country.

Bethinking himself of Cuthbert Tonstal, then bishop of London, and especially of the great commendation of

Erasmus, who, in his annotations, so extolleth the said Tonstal for his learning, Tyndale thus cast with

himself, that if he might attain unto his service, he were a happy man. Coming to Sir Henry Guilford, the

king's comptroller, and bringing with him an oration of Isocrates, which he had translated out of Greek into

English, he desired him to speak to the said bishop of London for him; which he also did; and willed him

moreover to write an epistle to the bishop, and to go himself with him. This he did, and delivered his epistle

to a servant of his, named William Hebilthwait, a man of his old acquaintance. But God, who secretly

disposeth the course of things, saw that was not best for Tyndale's purpose, nor for the profit of His Church,

and therefore gave him to find little favor in the bishop's sight; the answer of whom was this: his house was

full; he had more than he could well find: and he advised him to seek in London abroad, where, he said, he

could lack no service.

Being refused of the bishop he came to Humphrey Mummuth, alderman of London, and besought him to

help him: who the same time took him into his house, where the said Tyndale lived (as Mummuth said) like a

good priest, studying both night and day. He would eat but sodden meat by his good will, nor drink but small

single beer. He was never seen in the house to wear linen about him, all the space of his being there.

And so remained Master Tyndale in London almost a year, marking with himself the course of the world,

and especially the demeanor of the preachers, how they boasted themselves, and set up their authority;

beholding also the pomp of the prelates, with other things more, which greatly misliked him; insomuch that

he understood not only that there was no room in the bishop's house for him to translate the New Testament,

but also that there was no place to do it in all England.

Therefore, having by God's providence some aid ministered unto him by Humphrey Mummuth, and certain

other good men, he took his leave of the realm, and departed into Germany, where the good man, being

inflamed with a tender care and zeal of his country, refused no travail nor diligence, how, by all means

possible, to reduce his brethren and countrymen of England to the same taste and understanding of God's

holy Word and verity, which the Lord had endued him withal. Whereupon, considering in his mind, and

conferring also with John Frith, Tyndale thought with himself no way more to conduce thereunto, than if the

Scripture were turned into the vulgar speech, that the poor people might read and see the simple plain Word

of God. He perceived that it was not possible to establish the lay people in any truth, except the Scriptures

were so plainly laid before their eyes in their mother tongue that they might see the meaning of the text; for

else, whatsoever truth should be taught them, the enemies of the truth would quench it, either with reasons of

sophistry, and traditions of their own making, founded without all ground of Scripture; or else juggling with

the text, expounding it in such a sense as it were impossible to gather of the text, if the right meaning thereof

were seen.

Master Tyndale considered this only, or most chiefly, to be the cause of all mischief in the Church, that the

Scriptures of God were hidden from the people's eyes; for so long the abominable doings and idolatries

maintained by the pharisaical clergy could not be espied; and therefore all their labor was with might and

main to keep it down, so that either it should not be read at all, or if it were, they would darken the right

sense with the mist of their sophistry, and so entangle those who reguked or despised their abominations;

wresting the Scripture unto their own purpose, contrary unto the meaning of the text, they would so delude

the unlearned lay people, that though thou felt in thy heart, and wert sure that all were false that they said, yet

couldst thou not solve their subtle riddles.

For these and such other considerations this good man was stirred up of God to translate the Scripture into

his mother tongue, for the profit of the simple people of his country; first setting in hand with the New

Testament, which came forth in print about A.D. 1525. Cuthbert Tonstal, bishop of London, with Sir Thomas

More, being sore aggrieved, despised how to destroy that false erroneous translation, as they called it.

It happened that one Augustine Packington, a mercer, was then at Antwerp, where the bishop was. This man

favored Tyndale, but showed the contrary unto the bishop. The bishop, being desirous to bring his purpose to

pass, communed how that he would gladly buy the New Testaments. Packington hearing him say so, said,

"My lord! I can do more in this matter than most merchants that be here, if it be your pleasure; for I know the

Dutchmen and strangers that have brought them of Tyndale, and have them here to sell; so that if it be your

lordship's pleasure, I must disburse money to pay for them, or else I cannot have them: and so I will assure

you to have every book of them that is printed and unsold." The bishop, thinking he had God "by the toe,"

said, "Do your diligence, gentle Master Packington! get them for me, and I will pay whatsoever they cost; for

I intend to burn and destroy them all at Paul's Cross." This Augustine Packington went unto William

Tyndale, and declared the whole matter, and so, upon compact made between them, the bishop of London

had the books, Packington had the thanks, and Tyndale had the money.

After this, Tyndale corrected the same New Testaments again, and caused them to be newly imprinted, so

that they came thick and threefold over into England. When the bishop perceived that, he sent for

Packington, and said to him, "How cometh this, that there are so many New Testaments abroad? You

promised me that you would buy them all." Then answered Packington, "Surely, I bought all that were to be

had, but I perceive they have printed more since. I see it will never be better so long as they have letters and

stamps: wherefore you were best to buy the stamps too, and so you shall be sure," at which answer the

bishop smiled, and so the matter ended.

In short space after, it fortuned that George Constantine was apprehended by Sir Thomas More, who was

then chancellor of England, as suspected of certain heresies. Master More asked of him, saying,

"Constantine! I would have thee be plain with me in one thing that I will ask; and I promise thee I will show

thee favor in all other things whereof thou art accused. There is beyond the sea, Tyndale, Joye, and a great

many of you: I know they cannot live without help. There are some that succor them with money; and thou,

being one of them, hadst thy part thereof, and therefore knowest whence it came. I pray thee, tell me, who be

they that help them thus?" "My lord," quoth Constantine, "I will tell you truly: it is the bishop of London that

hath holpen us, for he hath bestowed among us a great deal of money upon New Testaments to burn them;

and that hath been, and yet is, our only succor and comfort." "Now by my troth," quoth More, "I think even

the same; for so much I told the bishop before he went about it."

After that, Master Tyndale took in hand to translate the Old Testament, finishing the five books of Moses,

with sundry most learned and godly prologues most worthy to be read and read again by all good Christians.

These books being sent over into England, it cannot be spoken what a door of light they opened to the eyes

of the whole English nation, which before were shut up in darkness.

At his first departing out of the realm he took his journey into Germany, where he had conference with

Luther and other learned men; after he had continued there a certain season he came down into the

Netherlands, and had his most abiding in the town of Antwerp.

The godly books of Tyndale, and especially the New Testament of his translation, after that they began to

come into men's hands, and to spread abroad, wrought great and singular profit to the godly; but the ungodly

(envying and disdaining that the people should be anything wiser than they and, fearing lest by the shining

beams of truth, their works of darkness should be discerned) began to sir with no small ado.

At what time Tyndale had translated Deuteronomy, minding to print the same at Hamburg, he sailed

thitherward; upon the coast of Holland he suffered shipwreck, by which he lost all his books, writings, and

copies, his money and his time, and so was compelled to begin all again. He came in another ship to

Hamburg, where, at his appointment, Master Coverdale tarried for him, and helped him in the translating of

the whole five books of Moses, from Easter until December, in the house of a worshipful widow, Mistress

Margaret Van Emmerson, A.D. 1529; a great sweating sickness being at the same time in the town. So,

having dispatched his business at Hamburg, he returned to Antwerp.

When God's will was, that the New Testament in the common tongue should come abroad, Tyndale, the

translator thereof, added to the latter end a certain epistle, wherein he desired them that were learned to

amend, if ought were found amiss. Wherefore if there had been any such default deserving correction, it had

been the part of courtesy and gentleness, for men of knowledge and judgment to have showed their learning

therein, and to have redressed what was to be amended. But the clergy, not willing to have that book prosper,

cried out upon it, that there were a thousand heresies in it, and that it was not to be corrected, but utterly to be

suppressed. Some said it was not possible to translate the Scriptures into English; some that it was not lawful

for the lay people to have it in their mother tongue; some, that it would make them all heretics. And to the

intent to induce the temporal rulers unto their purpose, they said it would make the people to rebel against

the king.

All this Tyndale himself, in his prologue before the first book of Moses, declareth; showing further what

great pains were taken in examining that translation, and comparing it with their own imaginations, that with

less labor, he supposeth, they might have translated a great part of the Bible; showing moreover that they

scanned and examined every title and point in such sort, and so narrowly, that there was not one i therein, but

if it lacked a prick over his head, they did note it, and numbered it unto the ignorant people for a heresy.

So great were then the froward devices of the English clergy (who should have been the guides of light unto

the people), to drive the people from the knowledge of the Scripture, which neither they would translate

themselves, nor yet abide it to be translated of others; to the intent (as Tyndale saith) that the world being

kept still in darkness, they might sit in the consciences of the people through vain superstition and false

doctrine, to satisfy their ambition, and insatiable covetousness, and to exalt their own honor above king and


The bishops and prelates never rested before they had brought the king to their consent; by reason whereof, a

proclamation in all haste was devised and set forth under public authority, that the Testament of Tyndale's

translation was inhibited-which was about A.D. 1537. And not content herewith, they proceeded further, how

to entangle him in their nets, and to bereave him of his life; which how they brought to pass, now it

remaineth to be declared.

In the registers of London it appeareth manifest how that the bishops and Sir Thomas More having before

them such as had been at Antwerp, most studiously would search and examine all things belonging to

Tyndale, where and with whom he hosted, whereabouts stood the house, what was his stature, in what

apparel he went, what resort he had; all which things when they had diligently learned then began they to

work their feats.

William Tyndale, being in the town of Antwerp, had been lodged about one whole year in the house of

Thomas Pointz, an Englishman, who kept a house of English merchants. Came thither one out of England,

whose name was Henry Philips, his father being customer of Poole, a comely fellow, like as he had been a

gentleman having a servant with him: but wherefore he came, or for what purpose he was sent thither, no

man could tell.

Master Tyndale divers times was desired forth to dinner and support amongst merchants; by means whereof

this Henry Philips became acquainted with him, so that within short space Master Tyndale had a great

confidence in him, and brought him to his lodging, to the house of Thomas Pointz; and had him also once or

twice with him to dinner and supper, and further entered such friendship with him, that through his

procurement he lay in the same house of the sait Pointz; to whom he showed moreover his books,a nd other

secrets of his study, so little did Tyndale then mistrust this traitor.

But Pointz, having no great confidence in the fellow, asked Master Tyndale how he came acquainted with

this Philips. Master Tyndale answered, that he was an honest man, handsomely learned, and very

conformable. Pointz, perceiving that he bare such favor to him, said no more, thinking that he was brought

acquainted with him by some friend of his. The said Philips, being in the town three or four days, upon a

time desired Pointz to walk with him forth of the town to show him the commodities thereof, and in walking

together without the town, had communication of divers things, and some of the king's affairs; by which talk

Pointz as yet suspected nothing. But after, when the time was past, Pointz perceived this to be the mind of

Philips, to feel whether the said Pointz might, for lucre of money, help him to his purpose, for he perceived

before that Philips was monied, and would that Pointz should think no less. For he had desired Pointz before

to help him to divers things; and such things as he named, he required might be of the best, "for," said he, "I

have money enough."

Philips went from Antwerp to the court of Brussels, which is from thence twenty-four English miles, whence

he brought with him to Antwerp, the procurator-general, who is the emperor's attorney, with certain other


Within three or four days, Pointz went forth to the town of Barois, being eighteen English miles from

Antwerp, where he had business to do for the space of a month or six weeks; and in the time of his absence

Henry Philips came again to Antwerp, to the house of Pointz, and coming in, spake with his wife, asking

whether Master Tyndale were within. Then went he forth again and set the officers whom he had brought

with him from Brussels, in the street, and about the door. About noon he came again, and went to Master

Tyndale, and desired him to lend him forty shillings; "for," said he, "I lost my purse this morning, coming

over at the passage between this and Mechlin." So Master Tyndale took him forty shillings, which was easy

to be had of him, if he had it; for in the wily subtleties of this world he was simple and inexpert. Then said

Philips, "Master Tyndale! you shall be my guest here this day." "No," said Master Tyndale, "I go forth this

day to dinner, and you shall go with me, and be my guest, where you shall be welcome."

So when it was dinner time, Master Tyndale went forth with Philips, and at the going forth of Pointz's house,

was a long narrow entry, so that two could not go in front. Master Tyndale would have put Philips before

him, but Philips would in no wise, but put Master Tyndale before, for that he pretended to show great

humanity. So Master Tyndale, being a man of no great stature, went before, and Philips, a tall, comely

person, followed behind him; who had set officers on either side of the door upon two seats, who might see

who came in the entry. Philips pointed with his finger over Master Tyndale's head down to him, that the

officers might see that it was he whom they should take. The officers afterwards told Pointz, when they had

laid him in prison, that they pitied to see his simplicity. They brought him to the emperor's attorney, where

he dined. Then came the procurator-general to the house of Pointz, and sent away all that was there of Master

Tyndale's, as well his books as other things; and from thence Tyndale was had to the castle of Vilvorde,

eighteen English miles from Antwerp.

Master Tyndale, remaining in prison, was proffered an advocate and a procurator; the which he refused,

saying that he would make answer for himself. He had so preached to them who had him in charge, and such

as was there conversant with him in the Castle that they reported of him, that if he were not a good Christian

man, they knew not whom they might take to be one.

At last, after much reasoning, when no reason would serve, although he deserved no death, he was

condemned by virtue of the emperor's decree, made in the assembly at Augsburg. Brought forth to the place

of execution, he was tied to the stake, strangled by the hangman, and afterwards consumed with fire, at the

town of Vilvorde, A.D. 1536; crying at the stake with a fervent zeal, and a loud voice, "Lord! open the king

of England's eyes."

Such was the power of his doctrine, and the sincerity of his life, that during the time of his imprisonment

(which endured a year and a half), he converted, it is said, his keeper, the keeper's daughter, and others of his


As touching his translation of the New Testament, because his enemies did so much carp at it, pretending it

to be full of heresies, he wrote to John Frith, as followeth, "I call God to record against the day we shall

appear before our Lord Jesus, that I never altered one syllable of God's Word against my conscience, nor

would do this day, if all that is in earth, whether it be honor, pleasure, or riches, might be given me."

CHAPTER XIII - An Account of the Life of

John Calvin

This reformer was born at Noyon in Picardy, July 10, 1509. He was instructed in grammar, learning at Paris

under Maturinus Corderius, and studied philosophy in the College of Montaign under a Spanish professor.

His father, who discovered many marks of his early piety, particularly in his reprehensions of the vices of his

companions, designed him at first for the Church, and got him presented, May 21, 1521, to the chapel of

Notre Dame de la Gesine, in the Church of Noyon. In 1527 he was presented to the rectory of Marseville,

which he exchanged in 1529 for the rectory of Point l'Eveque, near Noyon. His father afterward changed his

resolution, and would have him study law; to which Calvin, who, by reading the Scriptures, had conceived a

dislike to the superstitions of popery, readily consented, and resigned the chapel of Gesine and the rectory of

Pont l'Eveque, in 1534. He made a great progress in that science, and improved no less in the knowledge of

divinity by his private studies. At Bourges he applied to the Greek tongue, under the direction of Professor


His father's death having called him back to Noyon, he stayed there a short time, and then went to Paris,

where a speech of Nicholas Cop, rector of the University of Paris, of which Calvin furnished the materials,

having greatly displeased the Sorbonne and the parliament, gave rise to a persecution against the Protestants,

and Calvin, who narrowly escaped being taken in the College of Forteret, was forced to retire to Xaintonge,

after having had the honor to be introduced to the queen of Navarre, who had raised this first storm against

the Protestants.

Calvin returned to Paris in 1534. This year the reformed met with severe treatment, which determined him to

leave France, after publishing a treatise against those who believed that departed souls are in a kind of sleep.

He retired to Basel, where he studied Hebrew: at this time he published his Institutions of the Christian

Religion; a work well adapted to spread his fame, though he himself was desirous of living in obscurity. It is

dedicated to the French king, Francis I. Calvin next wrote an apology for the Protestants who were burnt for

their religion in France. After the publication of this work, Calvin went to Italy to pay a visit to the duchess

of Ferrara, a lady of eminent piety, by whom he was very kindly received.

From Italy he came back to France, and having settled his private affairs, he proposed to go to Strassburg or

Basel, in company with his sole surviving brother, Antony Calvin; but as the roads were not safe on account

of the war, except through the duke of Savoy's territories, he chose that road. "This was a particular direction

of Providence," says Bayle; "it was his destiny that he should settle at Geneva, and when he was wholly

intent upon going farther, he found himself detained by an order from heaven, if I may so speak."

At Geneva, Calvin therefore was obliged to comply with the choice which the consistory and magistrates

made of him, with the consent of the people, to be one of their ministers, and professor of divinity. He

wanted to ujndertake only this last office, and not the other; but in the end he was obliged to take both upon

him, in August, 1536. The year following, he made all the people declare, upon oath, their assent to the

confession of faith, which contained a renunciation of popery. He next intimated that he could not submit to

a regulation which the canton of Berne had lately made. WShereupon the syndics of Geneva summoned an

assembly of the people; and it was ordered that Calvin, Farel, and another minister should leave the town in a

few days, for refusing to administer the Sacrament.

Calvin retired to Strassburg, and established a French church in that city, of which he was the first minister:

he was also appointed to be professor of divinity there. Meanwhile the people of Geneva entreated him so

earnestly to return to them that at last he consented, and arrived September 13, 1541, to the great satisfaction

both of the people and the magistrates; and the first thing he did, after his arrival, was to establish a form of

church discipline, and a consistorial jurisdiction, invested with power of inflicting censures and canonical

punishments, as far as excommunication, inclusively.

It has long been the delight of both infidels and some professed Christians, when they wish to bring odium

upon the opinions of Calvin, to refer to his agency in the death of Michael Servetus. This action is used on all

occasions by those who have been unable to overthrow his opinions, as a conclusive argument against his

whole system. "Calvin burnt Servetus!--Calvin burnt Servetus!" is a good proof with a certain class of

reasoners, that the doctrine of the Trinity is not true-that divine sovereignty is Antiscriptural,--and

Christianity a cheat.

We have no wish to palliate any act of Calvin's which is manifestly wrong. All his proceedings, in relation to

the unhappy affair of Servetus, we think, cannot be defended. Still it should be remembered that the true

principles of religious toleration were very little understood in the time of Calvin. All the other reformers

then living approved of Calvin's conduct. Even the gentle and amiable Melancthon expressed himself in

relation to this affair, in the following manner. In a letter addressed to Bullinger, he says, "I have read your

statement respecting the blasphemy of Servetus, and praise your piety and judgment; and am persuaded that

the Council of Geneva has done right in putting to death this obstinate man, who would never have ceased

his blasphemies. I am astonished that any one can be found to disapprove of this proceeding." Farel

expressly says, that "Servetus deserved a capital punishment." Bucer did not hesitate to declare, that

"Servetus deserved something worse than death."

The truth is, although Calvin had some hand in the arrest and imprisonment of Servetus, he was unwilling

that he should be burnt at all. "I desire," says he, "that the severity of the punishment should be remitted."

"We wndeavored to commute the kind of death, but in vain." "By wishing to mitigate the severity of the

punishment," says Farel to Calvin, "you discharge the office of a friend towards your greatest enemy." "That

Calvin was the instigator of the magistrates that Servetus might be burned," says Turritine, "historians

neither anywhere affirm, nor does it appear from any considerations. Nay, it is certain, that he, with the

college of pastors, dissuaded from that kind of punishment."

It has been often asserted, that Calvin possessed so much influence with the magistrates of Geneva that he

might have obtained the release of Servetus, had he not been desirous of his destruction. This however, is not

true. So far from it, that Calvin was himself once banished from Geneva, by these very magistrates, and often

opposed their arbitrary measures in vain. So little desirous was Calvin of procuring the death of Servetus that

he warned him of his danger, and suffered him to remain several weeks at Geneva, before he was arrested.

But his language, which was then accounted blasphemous, was the cause of his imprisonment. When in

prison, Calvin visited him, and used every argument to persuade him to retract his horrible blasphemies,

without reference to his peculiar sentiments. This was the extent of Calvin's agency in this unhappy affair.

It cannot, however, be denied, that in this instance, Calvin acted contrary to the benignant spirit of the

Gospel. It is better to drop a tear over the inconsistency of human nature, and to bewail those infirmities

which cannot be justified. He declared he acted conscientiously, and publicly justified the act.

It was the opinion, that erroneous religious principles are punishable by the civil magistrate, that did the

mischief, whether at Geneva, in Transylvania, or in Britain; and to this, rather than to Trinitarianism, or

Unitarianism, it ought to be imputed.

After the death of Luther, Calvin exerted great sway over the men of that notable period. He was influential

in France, Italy, Germany, Holland, England, and Scotland. Two thousand one hundred and fifty reformed

congregations were organized, receiving from him their preachers.

Calvin, triumphant over all his enemies, felt his death drawing near. Yet he continued to exert himself in

every way with youthful energy. When about to lie down in rest, he drew up his will, saying: "I do testify

that I live and purpose to die in this faith which God has given me through His Gospel, and that I have no

other dependence for salvation than the free choice which is made of me by Him. With my whole heart I

embrace His mercy, through which all my sins are covered, for Christ's sake, and for the sake of His death

and sufferings. According to the measure of grace granted unto me, I have taught this pure, simple Word, by

sermons, by deeds, and by expositions of this Scripture. In all my battles with the enemies of the truth I have

not used sophistry, but have fought the good fight squarely and directly."

May 27, 1564, was the day of his release and blessed journey home. He was in his fifty-fifth year.

That a man who had acquired so great a reputation and such an authority, should have had but a salary of one

hundred crowns, and refuse to accept more; and after living fifty-five years with the utmost frugality should

leave but three hundred crowns to his heirs, including the value of his library, which sold very dear, is

something so heroical, that one must have lost all feeling not to admire. When Calvin took his leave of

Strassburg, to return to Geneva, they wanted to continue to him the privileges of a freeman of their town, and

the revenues of a prebend, which had been assigned to him; the former he accepted, but absolutely refused

the other. He carried one of the brothers with him to Geneva, but he never took any pains to get him

preferred to an honorable post, as any other possessed of his credit would have done. He took care indeed of

the honor of his brother's family, by getting him freed from an adultress, and obtaining leave to him to marry

again; but even his enemies relate that he made him learn the trade of a bookbinder, which he followed all

his life after.

Calvin as a Friend of Civil Liberty

The Rev. Dr. Wisner, in his late discourse at Plymouth, on the anniversary of the landing of the Pilgrims,

made the following assertion: "Much as the name of Calvin has been scoffed at and loaded with reproach by

many sons of freedom, there is not an historical proposition more susceptible of complete demonstration than

this, that no man has lived to whom the world is under greater obligations for the freedom it now enjoys,

than John Calvin."

CHAPTER XIV - An Account of the

Persecutions in Great Britain and Ireland,

Prior to the Reign of Queen Mary I

Gildas, the most ancient British writer extant, who lived about the time that the Saxons left the island of

Great Britain, has drawn a most shocking instance of the barbarity of those people.

The Saxons, on their arrival, being heathens like the Scots and Picts, destroyed the churches and murdered

the clergy wherever they came: but they could not destroy Christianity, for those who would not submit to

the Saxon yoke, went and resided beyond the Severn. Neither have we the names of those Christian sufferers

transmitted to us, especially those of the clergy.

The most dreadful instance of barbarity under the Saxon government, was the massacre of the monks of

Bangor, A.D. 586. These monks were in all respects different from those men who bear the same name at


In the eighth century, the Danes, a roving crew of barbarians, landed in different parts of Britain, both in

England and Scotland.

At first they were repulsed, but in A.D. 857, a party of them landed somewhere near Southampton, and not

only robbed the people but burned down the churches, and murdered the clergy.

In A.D. 868, these barbarians penetrated into the center of England, and took up their quarters at

Nottingham; but the English, under their king, Ethelred, drove them from their posts, and obligted them to

retire to Northumberland.

In 870, another body of these barbarians landed at Norfolk, and engaged in battle with the English at

Hertford. Victory declared in favor of the pagans, who took Edmund, king of the East Angles, prisoner, and

after treating him with a thousand indignities, transfixed his body with arrows, and then beheaded him.

In Fifeshire, in Scotland, they burned many of the churches, and among the rest that belonging to the

Culdees, at St. Andrews. The piety of these men made them objects of abhorrence to the Danes, who,

wherever they went singled out the Christian priests for destruction, of whom no less than two hundred were

massacred in Scotland.

It was much the same in that part of Ireland now called Leinster, there the Danes murdered and burned the

priests alive in their own churches; they carried destruction along with them wherever they went, sparing

neither age nor sex, but the clergy were the most obnoxious to them, because they ridiculed their idolatry,

and persuaded their people to have nothing to do with them.

In the reign of Edward III the Church of England was extremely corrupted with errors and superstition; and

the light of the Gospel of Christ was greatly eclipsed and darkened with human inventions, burthensome

ceremonies and gross idolatry.

The followers of Wickliffe, then called Lollards, were become extremely numerous, and the clergy were so

vexed to see them increase; whatever power or influence they might have to molest them in an underhand

manner, they had no authority by law to put them to death. However, the clergy embraced the favorable

opportunity, and prevailed upon the king to suffer a bill to be brought into parliament, by which all Lollards

who remained obstinate, should be delivered over to the secular power, and burnt as heretics. This act was

the first in Britain for the burning of people for their religious sentiments; it passed in the year 1401, and was

soon after put into execution.

The first person who suffered in consequence of this cruel act was William Santree, or Sawtree, a priest, who

was burnt to death in Smithfield.

Soon after this, Sir John Oldcastle, Lord Cobham, in consequence of his attachment to the doctrines of

Wickliffe, was accused of heresy, and being condemned to be hanged and burnt, was accordingly executed in

Lincoln's Inn Fields, A.D. 1419. In his written defense Lord Cobham said:

"As for images, I understand that they be not of belief, but that they were ordained since the belief of Christ

was given by sufferance of the Church, to represent and bring to mind the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ,

and martyrdom and good living of other saints: and that whoso it be, that doth the worship to dead images

that is due to God, or putteth such hope or trust in help of them, as he should do to God, or hath affection in

one more than in another, he doth in that, the greatest sin of idol worship.

"Also I suppose this fully, that every man in this earth is a pilgrim toward bliss, or toward pain; and that he

that knoweth not, we will not know, we keep the holy commandments of God in his living here (albeit that

he go on pilgrimages to all the world, and he die so), he shall be damned: he that knoweth the holy

commandments of God, and keepeth them to his end, he shall be saved, though he never in his life go on

pilgrimage, as men now use, to Canterbury, or to Rome, or to any other place."

Upon the day appointed, Lord Cobham was brought out of the Tower with his arms bound behind him,

having a very cheerful countenance. Then was he laid upon a hurdle, as though he had been a most heinous

traitor to the crown, and so drawn forth into St. Giles's field. As he was come to the place of execution, and

was taken from the hurdle, he fell down devoutly upon his knees, desiring Almighty God to forgive his

enemies. Then stood he up and beheld the multitude, exhorting them in most godly manner to follow the

laws of God written in the Scriptures, and to beware of such teachers as they see contrary to Christ in their

conversation and living. Then was he hanged up by the middle in chains of iron, and so consumed alive in

the fire, praising the name of God, so long as his life lasted; the people, there present, showing great dolor.

And this was done A.D. 1418.

How the priests that time fared, blasphemed, and accursed, requiring the people not to pray for him, but to

judge him damned in hell, for that he departed not in the obedience of their pope, it were too long to write.

Thus resteth this valiant Christian knight, Sir John Oldcastle, under the altar of God, which is Jesus Christ,

among that godly company, who, in the kingdom of patience, suffered great tribulation with the death of

their bodies, for His faithful word and testimony.

In August, 1473, one Thomas Granter was apprehended in London; he was accused of professing the

doctrines of Wickliffe, for which he was condemned as an obstinate heretic. This pious man, being brought

to the sheriff's house, on the morning of the day appointed for his execution, desired a little refreshment, and

having ate some, he said to the people present, "I eat now a very good meal, for I have a strange conflict to

engage with before I go to supper"; and having eaten, he returned thanks to God for the bounties of His allgracious

providence, requesting that he might be instantly led to the place of execution, to bear testimony to

the truth of those principles which he had professed. Accordingly he was chained to a stake on Tower-hill,

where he was burnt alive, professing the truth with his last breath.

In the year 1499, one Badram, a pious man, was brought before the bishop of Norwich, having been accused

by some of the priests, with holding the doctrines of Wickliffe. He confessed he did believe everything that

was objected against him. For this, he was condemned as an obstinate heretic, and a warrant was granted for

his execution; accordingly he was brought to the stake at Norwich, where he suffered with great constancy.

In 1506, one William Tilfrey, a pious man, was burnt alive at Amersham, in a close called Stoneyprat, and at

the same time, his daughter, Joan Clarke, a married women, was obliged to light the fagots that were to burn

her father.

This year also one Father Roberts, a priest, was convicted of being a Lollard before the bishop of Lincoln,

and burnt alive at Buckingham.

In 1507 one Thomas Norris was burnt alive for the testimony of the truth of the Gospel, at Norwich. This

man was a poor, inoffensive, harmless person, but his parish priest conversing with him one day, conjectured

he was a Lollard. In consequence of this supposition he gave information to the bishop, and Norris was


In 1508, one Lawrence Guale, who had been kept in prison two years, was burnt alive at Salisbury, for

denying the real presence in the Sacrament. It appeared that this man kept a shop in Salisbury, and

entertained some Lollards in his house; for which he was informed against to the bishop; but he abode by his

first testimony, and was condemned to suffer as a heretic.

A pious woman was burnt at Chippen Sudburne, by order of the chancellor, Dr. Whittenham. After she had

been consumed in the flames, and the people were returning home, a bull broke loose from a butcher and

singling out the chancellor from all the rest of the company, he gored him through the body, and on his horns

carried his entrails. This was seen by all the people, and it is remarkable that the animal did not meddle with

any other person whatever.

October 18, 1511, William Succling and John Bannister, who had formerly recanted, returned again to the

profession of the faith, and were burnt alive in Smithfield.

In the year 1517, one John Brown (who had recanted before in the reign of Henry VII and borne a fagot

round St. Paul's,) was condemned by Dr. Wonhaman, archbishop of Canterbury, and burnt alive at Ashford.

Before he was chained to the stake, the archbishop Wonhaman, and Yester, bishop of Rochester, caused his

feet to be burnt in a fire until all the flesh came off, even to the bones. This was done in order to make him

again recant, but he persisted in his attachment to the truth to the last.

Much about this time one Richard Hunn, a merchant tailor of the city of London, was apprehended, having

refused to pay the priest his fees for the funeral of a child; and being conveyed to the Lollards' Tower, in the

palace of Lambeth, was there privately murdered by some of the servants of the archbishop.

September 24, 1518, John Stilincen, who had before recanted, was apprehended, brought before Richard

Fitz-James, bishop of London, and on the twenty-fifth of October was condemned as a heretic. He was

chained to the stake in Smithfield amidst a vast crowd of spectators, and sealed his testimony to the truth

with his blood. He declared that he was a Lollard, and that he had always believed the opinions of Wickliffe;

and although he had been weak enough to recant his opinions, yet he was now willing to convince the world

that he was ready to die for the truth.

In the year 1519, Thomas Mann was burnt in London, as was one Robert Celin, a plain, honest man for

speaking against image worship and pilgrimages.

Much about this time, was executed in Smithfield, in London, James Brewster, a native of Colchester. His

sentiments were the same as the rest of the Lollards, or those who followed the doctrines of Wickliffe; but

notwithstanding the innocence of his life, and the regularity of his manners, he was obliged to submit to

papal revenge.

During this year, one Christopher, a shoemaker, was burnt alive at Newbury, in Berkshire, for denying those

popish articles which we have already mentioned. This man had gotten some books in English, which were

sufficient to render him obnoxious to the Romish clergy.

Robert Silks, who had been condemned in the bishop's court as a heretic, made his escape out of prison, but

was taken two years afterward, and brought back to Coventry, where he was burnt alive. The sheriffs always

seized the goods of the martyrs for their own use, so that their wives and children were left to starve.

In 1532, Thomas Harding, who with his wife, had been accused of heresy, was brought before the bishop of

Lincoln, and condemned for denying the real presence in the Sacrament. He was then chained to a stake,

erected for the purpose, at Chesham in the Pell, near Botely; and when they had set fire to the fagots, one of

the spectators dashed out his brains with a billet. The priests told the people that whoever brought fagots to

burn heretics would have an indulgence to commit sins for forty days.

During the latter end of this year, Worham, archbishop of Canterbury, apprehended one Hitten, a priest at

Maidstone; and after he had been long tortured in prison, and several times examined by the archbishop, and

Fisher, bishop of Rochester, he was condemned as a heretic, and burnt alive before the door of his own

parish church.

Thomas Bilney, professor of civil law at Cambridge, was brought before the bishop of London, and several

other bishops, in the Chapter house, Westminster, and being several times threatened with the stake and

flames, he was weak enough to recant; but he repented severely afterward.

For this he was brought before the bishop a second time, and condemned to death. Before he went to the

stake he confessed his adherence to those opinions which Luther held; and, when at it, he smiled, and said, "I

have had many storms in this world, but now my vessel will soon be on shore in heaven." He stood unmoved

in the flames, crying out, "Jesus, I believe"; and these were the last words he was heard to utter.

A few weeks after Bilney had suffered, Richard Byfield was cast into prison, and endured some whipping,

for his adherence to the doctrines of Luther: this Mr. Byfield had been some time a monk, at Barnes, in

Surrey, but was converted by reading Tyndale's version of the New Testament. The sufferings this man

underwent for the truth were so great that it would require a volume to contain them. Sometimes he was shut

up in a dungeon, where he was almost suffocated by the offensive and horrid smell of filth and stagnant

water. At other times he was tied up by the arms, until almost all his joints were dislocated. He was whipped

at the post several times, until scarcely any flesh was left on his back; and all this was done to make him

recant. He was then taken to the Lollard's Tower in Lambeth palace, where he was chained by the neck to the

wall, and once every day beaten in the most cruel manner by the archbishop's servants. At last he was

condemned, degraded, and burnt in Smithfield.

The next person that suffered was John Tewkesbury. This was a plain, simple man, who had been guilty of

no other offence against what was called the holy Mother Church, than that of reading Tyndale's translation

of the New Testament. At first he was weak enough to adjure, but afterward repented, and acknowledged the

truth. For this he was brought before the bishop of London, who condemned him as an obstinate heretic. He

suffered greatly during the time of his imprisonment, so that when they brought him out to execution, he was

almost dead. He was conducted to the stake in Smithfield, where he was burned, declaring his utter

abhorrence of popery, and professing a firm belief that his cause was just in the sight of God.

The next person that suffered in this reign was James Baynham, a reputable citizen in London, who had

married the widow of a gentleman in the Temple. When chained to the stake he embraced the fagots, and

said, "Oh, ye papists, behold! ye look for miracles; here now may you see a miracle; for in this fire I feel no

more pain than if I were in bed; for it is as sweet to me as a bed of roses." Thus he resigned his soul into the

hands of his Redeemer.

Soon after the death of this martyr, one Traxnal, an inoffensive countryman, was burned alive at Bradford in

Wiltshire, because he would not acknowledge the real presence in the Sacrament, nor own the papal

supremacy over the consciences of men.

In the year 1533, John Frith, a noted martyr, died for the truth. When brought to the stake in Smithfield, he

embraced the fagots, and exhorted a young man named Andrew Hewit, who suffered with him, to trust his

soul to that God who had redeemed it. Both these sufferers endured much torment, for the wind blew the

flames away from them, so that they were above two hours in agony before they expired.

In the year 1538, one Collins, a madman, suffered death with his dog in Smithfield. The circumstances were

as follows: Collins happened to be in church when the priest elevated the host; and Collins, in derision of the

sacrifice of the Mass, lifted up his dog above his head. For this crime Collins, who ought to have been sent to

a madhouse, or whipped at the cart's tail, was brought before the bishop of London; and although he was

really mad, yet such was the force of popish power, such the corruption in Church and state, that the poor

madman, and his dog, were both carried to the stake in Smithfield, where they were burned to ashes, amidst a

vast crowd of spectators.

There were some other persons who suffered the same year, of whom we shall take notice in the order they

lie before us.

One Cowbridge suffered at Oxford; and although he was reputed to be a madman, yet he showed great signs

of piety when he was fastened to the stake, and after the flames were kindled around him.

About the same time one Purderve was put to death for saying privately to a priest, after he had drunk the

wine, "He blessed the hungry people with the empty chalice."

At the same time was condemned William Letton, a monk of great age, in the county of Suffolk, who was

burned at Norwich for speaking against an idol that was carried in procession; and for asserting, that the

Sacrament should be administered in both kinds.

Sometime before the burning of these men, Nicholas Peke was executed at Norwich; and when the fire was

lighted, he was so scorched that he was as black as pitch. Dr. Reading standing before him, with Dr. Hearne

and Dr. Spragwell, having a long white want in his hand, struck him upon the right shoulder, and said, "Peke,

recant, and believe in the Sacrament." To this he answered, "I despise thee and it also;" and with great

violence he spit blood, occasioned by the anguish of his sufferings. Dr. Reading granted forty days'

indulgence for the sufferer, in order that he might recant his opinions. But he persisted in his adherence to the

truth, without paying any regard to the malice of his enemies; and he was burned alive, rejoicing that Christ

had counted him worthy to suffer for His name's sake.

On July 28, 1540, or 1541, (for the chronology differs) Thomas Cromwell, earl of Essex, was brought to a

scaffold on Tower-hill, where he was executed with some striking instances of cruelty. He made a short

speech to the people, and then meekly resigned himself to the axe.

It is, we think, with great propriety, that this nobleman is ranked among the martyrs; for although the

accusations preferred against him, did not relate to anything in religion, yet had it not been for his zeal to

demolish popery, he might have to the last retained the king's favor. To this may be added, that the papists

plotted his destruction, for he did more towards promoting the Reformation, than any man in that age, except

the good Dr. Cranmer.

Soon after the execution of Cromwell, Dr. Cuthbert Barnes, Thomas Garnet, and William Jerome, were

brought before the ecclesiastical court of the bishop of London, and accused of heresy.

Being before the bishop of London, Dr. Barnes was asked whether the saints prayed for us? To this he

answered, that "he would leave that to God; but (said he) I will pray for you."

On the thirteenth of July, 1541, these men were brought from the Tower to Smithfield, where they were all

chained to one stake; and there suffered death with a constancy that nothing less than a firm faith in Jesus

Christ could inspire.

One Thomas Sommers, an honest merchant, with three others, was thrown into prison, for reading some of

Luther's books, and they were condemned to carry those books to a fire in Cheapside; there they were to

throw them in the flames; but Sommers threw his over, for which he was sent back to the Tower, where he

was stoned to death.

Dreadful persecutions were at this time carried on at Lincoln, under Dr. Longland, the bishop of that diocese.

At Buckingham, Thomas Bainard, and James Moreton, the one for reading the Lord's Prayer in English, and

the other for reading St. James' Epistles ion English, were both condemned and burnt alive.

Anthony Parsons, a priest, together with two others, was sent to Windsor, to be examined concerning heresy;

and several articles were tendered to them to subscribe, which they refused. This was carried on by the

bishop of Salisbury, who was the most violent persecutor of any in that age, except Bonner. When they were

brought to the stake, Parsons asked for some drink, which being brought him, he drank to his fellowsufferers,

saying, "Be merry, my brethren, and lift up your hearts to God; for after this sharp breakfast I trust

we shall have a good dinner in the Kingdom of Christ, our Lord and Redeemer." At these words Eastwood,

one of the sufferers, lifteed up his eyes and hands to heaven, desiring the Lord above to receive his spirit.

Parsons pulled the straw near to him, and then said to the spectators, "This is God's armor, and now I am a

Christian soldier prepared for battle: I look for no mercy but through the merits of Christ;

He is my only Savior, in Him do I trust for salvation;" and soon after the fires were lighted, which burned

their bodies, but could not hurt their precious and immortal souls. Their constancy triumphed over cruelty,

and their sufferings will be held in everlasting remembrance.

Thus were Christ's people betrayed every way, and their lives bought and sold. For, in the said parliament,

the king made this most blasphemous and cruel act, to be a law forever: that whatsoever they were that

should read the Scriptures in the mother-tongue (which was then called "Wickliffe's learning"), they should

forfeit land, cattle, body, life, and goods, from their heirs for ever, and so be condemned for heretics to God,

enemies to the crown, and most arrant traitors to the land.

CHAPTER XV - An Account of the

Persecutions in Scotland During the Reign of

King Henry VIII

Like as there was no place, either of Germany, Italy, or France, wherein there were not some branches

sprung out of that most fruitful root of Luther; so likewise was not this isle of Britain without his fruit and

branches. Amongst whom was Patrick Hamilton, a Scotchman born of high and noble stock, and of the

king's blood, of excellent towardness, twenty-three years of age, called abbot of Ferne. Coming out of his

country with three companions to seek godly learning, he went to the University of Marburg in Germany,

which university was then newly erected by Philip, Landgrave of Hesse.

During his residence here, he became intimately acquainted with those eminent lights of the Gospel, Martin

Luther and Philip Melancthon; from whose writings and doctrines he strongly attached himself to the

Protestant religion.

The archbishop of St. Andrews (who was a rigid papist) learning of Mr. Hamilton's proceedings, caused him

to be seized, and being brought before him, after a short examination relative to his religious principles, he

committed him a prisoner to the castle, at the same time ordering him to be confined in the most loathsome

part of the prison.

The next morning Mr. Hamilton was brought before the bishop, and several others, for examination, when

the principal articles exhibited against him were, his publicly disapproving of pilgrimages, purgatory, prayers

to saints, for the dead, etc.

These articles Mr. Hamilton acknowledged to be true, in consequence of which he was immediately

condemned to be burnt; and that his condemnation might have the greater authority, they caused it to be

subscribed by all those of any note who were present, and to make the number as considerable as possible,

even admitted the subscription of boys who were sons of the nobility.

So anxious was this bigoted and persecuting prelate for the destruction of Mr. Hamilton, that he ordered his

sentence to be put in execution on the afternoon of the very day it was pronounced. He was accordingly led

to the place appointed for the horrid tragedy, and was attended by a prodigious number of spectators. The

greatest part of the multitude would not believe it was intended he should be put to death, but that it was only

done to frighten him, and thereby bring him over to embrace the principles of the Romish religion.

When he arrived at the stake, he kneeled down, and, for some time prayed with great fervency. After this he

was fastened to the stake, and the fagots placed round him. A quantity of gunpowder having been placed

under his arms was first set on fire which scorched his left hand and one side of his face, but did no material

injury, neither did it communicate with the fagots. In consequence of this, more powder and combustible

matter were brought, which being set on fire took effect, and the fagots being kindled, he called out, with an

audible voice: "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit! How long shall darkness overwhelm this realm? And how long

wilt Thou suffer the tyranny of these men?"

The fire burning slow put him to great torment; but he bore it with Christian magnanimity. What gave him

the greatest pain was, the clamor of some wicked men set on by the friars, who frequently cried, "Turn, thou

heretic; call upon our Lady; say, Salve Regina, etc." To whom he replied, "Depart from me, and trouble me

not, ye messengers of Satan." One Campbell, a friar, who was the ringleader, still continuing to interrupt him

by opprobrious language; he said to him, "Wicked man, God forgive thee." After which, being prevented

from further speech by the violence of the smoke, and the rapidity of the flames, he resigned up his soul into

the hands of Him who gave it.

This steadfast believer in Christ suffered martyrdom in the year 1527.

One Henry Forest, a young inoffensive Benedictine, being charged with speaking respectfully of the above

Patrick Hamilton, was thrown into prison; and, in confessing himself to a friar, owned that he thought

Hamilton a good man; and that the articles for which he was sentenced to die, might be defended. This being

revealed by the friar, it was received as evidence; and the poor Benedictine was sentenced to be burnt.

Whilst consultation was held, with regard to the manner of his execution, John Lindsay, one of the

archbishop's gentlemen, offered his advice, to burn Friar Forest in some cellar; "for," said he, "the smoke of

Patrick Hamilton hath infected all those on whom it blew."

This advice was taken, and the poor victim was rather suffocated, than burnt.

The next who fell victims for professing the truth of the Gospel, were David Stratton and Norman Gourlay.

When they arrived at the fatal spot, they both kneeled down, and prayed for some time with great fervency.

They then arose, when Stratton, addressing himself to the spectators, exhorted them to lay aside their

superstitious and idolatrous notions, and employ their time in seeking the true light of the Gospel. He would

have said more, but was prevented by the officers who attended.

Their sentence was then put into execution, and they cheerfully resigned up their souls to that God who gave

them, hoping, through the merits of the great Redeemer, for a glorious resurrection to life immortal. They

suffered in the year 1534.

The martyrdoms of the two before-mentioned persons, were soon followed by that of Mr. Thomas Forret,

who, for a considerable time, had been dean of the Romish Church; Killor and Beverage, two blacksmiths;

Duncan Simson, a priest; and Robert Forrester, a gentleman. They were all burnt together, on the Castle-hill

at Edinburgh, the last day of February, 1538.

The year following the martyrdoms of the before-mentioned persons, viz. 1539, two others were

apprehended on a suspicion of herresy; namely, Jerome Russell and Alexander Kennedy, a youth about

eighteen years of age.

These two persons, after being some time confined in prison, were brought before the archbishop for

examination. In the course of which Russell, being a very sensible man, reasoned learnedly against his

accusers; while they in return made use of very opprobrious language.

The examination being over, and both of them deemed heretics, the archbishop pronounced the dreadful

sentence of death, and they were immediately delivered over to the secular power in order for execution.

The next day they were led to the place appointed for them to suffer; in their way to which, Russell, seeing

his fellow-sufferer have the appearance of timidity in his countenance, thus addressed him: "Brother, fear

not; greater is He that is in us, than He that is in the world. The pain that we are to suffer is short, and shall

be light; but our joy and consolation shall never have an end. Let us, therefore, strive to enter into our Master

and Savior's joy, by the same straight way which He hath taken before us. Death cannot hurt us, for it is

already destroyed by Him, for whose sake we are now going to suffer."

When they arrived at the fatal spot, they both kneeled down and prayed for some time; after which being

fastened to the stake, and the fagots lighted, they cheerfully resigned their souls into the hands of Him who

gave them, in full hopes of an everlasting reward in the heavenly mansions.

An Account of the Life, Sufferings, and Death of Mr. George

Wishart, Who Was Strangled and Afterward Burned, in

Scotland, for

Professing the Truth of the Gospel

About the year of our Lord 1543, there was, in the University of Cambridge, one Master George Wishart,

commonly called Master George of Benet's College, a man of tall stature, polled-headed, and on the same a

round French cap of the best; judged to be of melancholy complexion by his physiognomy, black-haired,

long-bearded, comely of personage, well spoken after his country of Scotland, courteous, lowly, lovely, glad

to teach, desirous to learn, and well travelled; having on him for his clothing a frieze gown to the shoes, a

black millian fustian doublet, and plain black hosen, coarse new canvas for his shirts, and white falling bands

and cuffs at his hands.

He was a man modest, temperate, fearing God, hating covetousness; for his charity had never end, night,

noon, nor day; he forbare one meal in three, one day in four for the most part, except something to comfort

nature. He lay hard upon a puff of straw and coarse, new canvas sheets, which, when he changed, he gave

away. He had commonly by his bedside a tub of water, in the which (his people being in bed, the candle put

out and all quiet) he used to bathe himself. He loved me tenderly, and I him. He taught with great modesty

and gravity, so that some of his people thought him severe, and would have slain him; but the Lord was his

defence. And he, after due correction for their malice, by good exhortation amended them and went his way.

Oh, that the Lord had left him to me, his poor boy, that he might have finished what he had begun! for he

went into scotland with divers of the nobility, that came for a treaty to King Henry.

In 1543, the archbishop of St. Andrews made a visitation into various parts of his diocese, where several

persons were informed against at Perth for heresy. Among those the following were condemned to die, viz.

William Anderson, Robert Lamb, James Finlayson, James Hunter, James Raveleson, and Helen Stark.

The accusations laid against these respective persons were as follow: The four first were accused of having

hung up the image of St. Francis, nailing ram's horns on his head, and fastening a cow's tail to his rump; but

the principal matter on which they were condemned was having regaled themselves with a goose on fast day.

James Reveleson was accused of having ornamented his house with the three crowned diadem of Peter,

carved in wood, which the archbishop conceived to be done in mockery to his cardinal's cap.

Helen Stark was accused of not having accustomed herself to pray to the Virgin Mary, more especially

during the time she was in childbed.

On these respective accusations they were all found guilty, and immediately received sentence of death; the

four men, for eating the goose, to be hanged; James Raveleson to be burnt; and the woman, with her sucking

infant, to be put into a sack and drowned.

The four men, with the woman and the child, suffered at the same time, but James Raveleson was not

executed until some days after.

The martyrs were carried by a great band of armed men (for they feared rebellion in the town except they

had their men of war) to the place of execution, which was common to all thieves, and that to make their

cause appear more odious to the people. Every one comforting another, and assuring themselves that they

should sup together in the Kingdom of Heaven that night, they commended themselves to God, and died

constantly in the Lord.

The woman desired earnestly to die with her husband, but she was not suffered; yet, following him to the

place of execution, she gave him comfort, exhorting him to perseverance and patience for Christ's sake, and,

parting from him with a kiss, said, "Husband, rejoice, for we have lived together many joyful days; but this

day, in which we must die, ought to be most joyful unto us both, because we must have joy forever; therefore

I will not bid you good night, for we shall suddenly meet with joy in the Kingdom of Heaven." The woman,

after that, was taken to a place to be drowned, and albeit she had a child sucking on her breast, yet this

moved nothing in the unmerciful hearts of the enemies. So, after she had commended her children to the

neighbors of the town for God's sake, and the sucking bairn was given to the nurse, she sealed up the truth by

her death.

Being desirous of propagating the true Gospel in his own country George Wishart left Cambridge in 1544,

and on his arrival in Scotland he first preached at Montrose, and afterwards at Dundee. In this last place he

made a public exposition of the Epistle to the Romans, which he went through with such grace and freedom,

as greatly alarmed the papists.

In consequence of this, (at the instigation of Cardinal Beaton, the archbishop of St. Andrews) one Robert

Miln, a principal man at Dundee, went to the church where Wishart preached, and in the middle of his

discourse publicly told him not to trouble the town any more, for he was determined not to suffer it.

This sudden rebuff greatly surprised Wishart, who, after a short pause, looking sorrowfully on the speaker

and the audience, said: "God is my witness, that I never minded your trouble but your comfort; yea, your

trouble is more grievous to me than it is to yourselves: but I am assured to refuse God's Word, and to chase

from you His messenger, shall not preserve you from trouble, but shall bring you into it: for God shall send

you ministers that shall fear neither burning nor banishment. I have offered you the Word of salvation. With

the hazard of my life I have remained among you; now you yourselves refuse me; and I must leave my

innocence to be declared by my God. If it be long prosperous with you, I am not lede by the Spirit of truth;

but if unlooked-for troubles come upon you, acknowledge the cause and turn to God, who is gracious and

merciful. But if you turn not at the first warning, He will visit you with fire and sword." At the close of this

speech he left the pulpit, and retired.

After this he went into the west of Scotland, where he preached God's Word, which was gladly received by


A short time after this Mr. Wishart received intelligence that the plague had broken out in Dundee. It began

four days after he was prohibited from preaching there, and raged so extremely that it was almost beyond

credit how many died in the space of twenty-four hours. This being related to him, he, notwithstanding the

importunity of his friends to detain him, determined to go there, saying: "They are now in troubles, and need

comfort. Perhaps this hand of God will make them now to magnify and reverence the Word of God, which

before they lightly esteemed."

Here he was with joy received by the godly. He chose the east gate for the place of his preaching; so that the

healthy were within, and the sick without the gate. He took his text from these words, "He sent His word and

healed them," etc. In this sermon he chiefly dwelt upon the advantage and comfort of God's Word, the

judgments that ensue upon the contempt or rejection of it, the freedom of God's grace to all His people, and

the happiness of those of His elect, whom He takes to Himself out of this miserable world. The hearts of his

hearers were so raised by the divine force of this discourse, as not to regard death, but to judge them the

more happy who should then be called, not knowing whether he should have such comfort again with them.

After this the plague abated; though, in the midst of it, Wishart constantly visited those that lay in the

greatest extremity, and comforted them by his exhortations.

When he took his leave of the people of Dundee, he said that God had almost put an end to that plague, and

that he was now called to another place. He went from thence to Montrose; where he sometimes preached,

but he spent most of his time in private meditation and prayer.

It is said that before he left Dundee, and while he was engaged in the labors of love to the bodies as well as

to the souls of those poor afflicted people, Cardinal Beaton engaged a desperate popish priest, called John

Weighton, to kill him; the attempt to execute which was as follows: one day, after Wishart had finished his

sermon, and the people departed, a priest stood waiting at the bottom of the stairs, with a naked dagger in his

hand under his gown. But Mr. Wishart, having a sharp, piercing eye, and seeing the priest as he came from

the pulpit, said to him, "My friend, what would you have?" and immediately clapping his hand upon the

dagger, took it from him. The priest being terrified, fell to his knees, confessed his intention, and craved

pardon. A noise was hereupon raised, and it coming to the ears of those who were sick, they cried, "Deliver

the traitor to us, we will take him by force"; and they burst in at the gate. But Wishart, taking the priest in his

arms, said, "Whatsoever hurts him shall hurt me; for he hath done me no mischief, but much good, by

teaching more heedfulness for the time to come." By this conduct he appeased the people and saved the life

of the wicked priest.

Soon after his return to Montrose, the cardinal again conspired his death, causing a letter to be sent him as if

it had been from his familiar friend, the laird of Kennier, in which it was desired with all possible speed to

come to him, as he was taken with a sudden sickness. In the meantime the cardinal had provided sixty men

armed to lie in wait within a mile and a half of Montrose, in order to murder him as he passed that way.

The letter came to Wishart's hand by a boy, who also brought him a horse for the journey. Wishart,

accompanied by some honest men, his friends, set forward; but something particular striking his mind by the

way, he returned, which they wondering at, asked him the cause; to whom he said, "I will not go; I am

forbidden of God; I am assured there is treason. Let some of you go to yonder place, and tell me what you

find." Which doing, they made the discovery; and hastily returning, they told Mr. Wishart; whereupon he

said, "I know I shall end my life by that bloodthirsty man's hands, but it will not be in this manner."

A short time after this he left Montrose, and proceeded to Edinburgh, in order to propagate the Gospel in that

city. By the way he lodged with a faithful brother, called James Watson of Inner-Goury. In the middle of the

night he got up, and went into the yard, which two men hearing they privately followed him. While in the

yard, he fell on his knees, and prayed for some time with the greatest fervency, after which he arose, and

returned to his bed. Those who attended him, appearing as though they were ignorant of all, came and asked

him where he had been. But he would not answer them. The next day they importuned him to tell them,

saying "Be plain with us, for we heard your mourning, and saw your gestures."

On this he with a dejected countenance, said, "I had rather you had been in your beds." But they still pressing

upon him to know something, he said, "I will tell you; I am assured that my warfare is near at an end, and

therefore pray to God with me, that I shrink not when the battle waxeth most hot."

Soon after, Cardinal Beaton, archbishop of St. Andrews, being informed that Mr. Wishart was at the house of

Mr. Cockburn, of Ormistohn, in East Lothian, applied to the regent to cause him to be apprehended; with

which, after great persuasion, and much against his will, he complied.

In consequence of this the cardinal immediately proceeded to the trial of Wishart, against whom no less than

eighteen articles were exhibited. Mr. Wishart answered the respective articles with great composure of mind,

and in so learned and clear a manner as greatly surprised most of those who were present.

After the examination was finished, the archbishop endeavored to prevail on Mr. Wishart to recant; but he

was too firmly fixed in his religious principles and too much enlightened with the truth of the Gospel, to be

in the least moved.

On the morning of his execution there came to him two friars from the cardinal; one of whom put on him a

black linen coat, and the other brought several bags of gunpowder, which they tied about different parts of

his body.

As soon as he arrived at the stake, the executioner put a rope round his neck and a chain about his middle,

upon which he fell on his knees and thus exclaimed:

"O thou Savior of the world, have mercy upon me! Father of heaven, I commend my spirit into Thy holy


After this he prayed for his accusers, saying, "I beseech thee, Father of heaven, forgive them that have, from

ignorance or an evil mind, forged lies of me: I forgive them with all my heart. I beseech Christ to forgive

them that have ignorantly condemned me."

He was then fastened to the stake, and the fagots being lighted immediately set fire to the powder that was

tied about him, which blew into a flame and smoke.

The governor of the castle, who stood so near that he was singed with the flame, exhorted the martyr, in a

few words, to be of good cheer, and to ask the pardon of God for his offences. To which he replied, "This

flame occasions trouble to my body, indeed, but it hath in nowise broken my spirit. But he who now so

proudly looks down upon me from yonder lofty place (pointing to the cardinal) shall, ere long, be

ignominiously thrown down, as now he proudly lolls at his ease." Which prediction was soon after fulfilled.

The hangman, that was his tormentor, sat down upon his knees, and said, "Sir, I pray you to forgive me, for I

am not guilty of your death." To whom he answered, "Come hither to me." When that he was come to him,

he kissed his cheek, and said: "Lo, here is a token that I forgive thee. My heart, do thine office." And then he

was put upon the gibbet and hanged, and burned to powder. When that the people beheld the great

tormenting, they might not withhold from piteous mourning and complaining of this innocent lamb's


It was not long after the martyrdom of this blessed man of God, Master George Wishart, who was put to

death by David Beaton, the bloody archbishop and cardinal of Scotland, A.D. 1546, the first day of March,

that the said David Beaton, by the just revenge of God's mighty judgment, was slain within his own castle of

St. Andrews, by the hands of one Leslie and other gentlemen, who, by the Lord stirred up, brake in suddenly

upon him, and in his bed murdered him the said year, the last day of May, crying out, "Alas! alas! slay me

not! I am a priest!" And so, like a butcher he lived, and like a butcher he died, and lay seven months and

more unburied, and at last like a carrion was buried in a dunghill.

The last who suffered martyrdom in Scotland, for the cause of Christ, was one Walter Mill, who was burnt at

Edinburgh in the year 1558.

This person, in his younger years, had travelled in Germany, and on his return was installed a priest of the

Church of Lunan in Angus, but, on an information of heresy, in the time of Cardinal Beaton, he was forced

to abandon his charge and abscond. But he was soon apprehended, and committed to prison.

Being interrogated by Sir Andrew Oliphant, whether he would recant his opinions, he answered in the

negative, saying that he would 'sooner forfeit ten thousand lives, than relinquish a particle of those heavenly

principles he had received from the suffrages of his blessed Redeemer.'

In consequence of this, sentence of condemnation was immediately passed on him, and he was conducted to

prison in order for execution the following day.

This steadfast believe in Christ was eighty-two years of age, and exceedingly infirm; whence it was supposed

that he could scarcely be heard. However, when he was taken to the place of execution, he expressed his

religious sentiments with such courage, and at the same time composure of mind, as astonished even his

enemies. As soon as he was fastened to the stake and the fagots lighted, he addressed the spectators as

follows: "The cause why I suffer this day is not for any crime, (though I acknowledge myself a miserable

sinner) but only for the defence of the truth as it is in Jesus Christ; and I praise God who hath called me, by

His mercy, to seal the truth with my life; which, as I received it from Him, so I willingly and joyfully offer it

up to His glory. Therefore, as you would escape eternal death, be no longer seduced by the lies of the seat of

Antichrist: but depend solely on Jesus Christ, and His mercy, that you may be delivered from

condemnation." And then added that he trusted he should be the last who would suffer death in Scotland

upon a religious account.

Thus did this pious Christian cheerfully give up his life in defence of the truth of Christ's Gospel, not

doubting but he should be made partaker of his heavenly Kingdom.


CHAPTER XVI - Persecutions in England

During the Reign of Queen Mary

The premature death of that celebrated young monarch, Edward VI, occasioned the most extraordinary and

wonderful occurrences, which had ever existed from the times of our blessed Lord and Savior's incarnation

in human shape. This melancholy event became speedily a subject of general regret. The succession to the

British throne was soon made a matter of contention; and the scenes which ensued were a demonstration of

the serious affliction in which the kingdom was involved. As his loss to the nation was more and more

unfolded, the remembrance of his government was more and more the basis of grateful recollection. The

very awful prospect, which was soon presented to the friends of Edward's administration, under the direction

of his counsellors and servants, was a contemplation which the reflecting mind was compelled to regard with

most alarming apprehensions. The rapid approaches which were made towards a total reversion of the

proceedings of the young king's reign, denoted the advances which were thereby represented to an entire

resolution in the management of public affairs both in Church and state.

Alarmed for the condition in which the kingdom was likely to be involved by the king's death, an endeavor

to prevent the consequences, which were but too plainly foreseen, was productive of the most serious and

fatal effects. The king, in his long and lingering affliction, was induced to make a will, by which he

bequeathed the English crown to Lady Jane, the daughter of the duke of Suffolk, who had been married to

Lord Guilford, the son of the duke of Northumberland, and was the granddaughter of the second sister of

King Henry, by Charles, duke of Suffolk. By this will, the succession of Mary and Elizabeth, his two sisters,

was entirely superseded, from an apprehension of the returning system of popery; and the king's council,

with the chief of the nobility, the lord-mayor of the city of London, and almost all the judges and the

principal lawyers of the realm, subscribed their names to this regulation, as a sanction to the measure. Lord

Chief Justice Hale, though a true Protestant and an upright judge, alone declined to unite his name in favor of

the Lady Jane, because he had already signified his opinion that Mary was entitled to assume the reins of

government. Others objected to Mary's being placed on the throne, on account of their fears that she might

marry a foreigner, and thereby bring the crown into considerable danger. Her partiality to popery also left

little doubt on the minds of any, that she would be induced to revive the dormant interests of the pope, and

change the religion which had been used both in the days of her father, King Henry, and in those of her

brother Edward: for in all his time she had manifested the greatest stubbornness and inflexibility of temper,

as must be obvious from her letter to the lords of the council, whereby she put in her claim to the crown, on

her brother's decease.

When this happened, the nobles, who had associated to prevent Mary's succession, and had been

instrumental in promoting, and, perhaps, advising the measures of Edward, speedily proceeded to proclaim

Lady Jane Gray, to be queen of England, in the city of London and various other populous cities of the

realm. Though young, she possessed talents of a very superior nature, and her improvements under a most

excellent tutor had given her many very great advantages.

Her reign was of only five days' continuance, for Mary, having succeeded by false promises in obtaining the

crown, speedily commenced the execution of her avowed intention of extirpating and burning every

Protestant. She was crowned at Westminster in the usual form, and her elevation was the signal for the

commencement of the bloody persecution which followed.

Having obtained the sword of authority, she was not sparing in its exercise. The supporters of Lady Jane

Gray were destined to feel its force. The duke of Northumberland was the first who experienced her savage

resentment. Within a month after his confinement in the Tower, he was condemned, and brought to the

scaffold, to suffer as a traitor. From his varied crimes, resulting out of a sordid and inordinate ambition, he

died unpitied and unlamented.

The changes, which followed with rapidity, unequivocally declared that the queen was disaffected to the

present state of religion. Dr. Poynet was displaced to make room for Gardiner to be bishop of Winchester, to

whom she also gave the important office of lord-chancellor. Dr. Ridley was dismissed from the see of

London, and Bonne introduced. J. Story was put out of the bishopric of Chichester, to admit Dr. Day. J.

Hooper was sent prisoner to the Fleet, and Dr. Heath put into the see of Worcestor. Miles Coverdale was also

excluded from Exeter, and Dr. Vesie placed in that diocese. Dr. Tonstall was also promoted to the see of

Durham. These things being marked and perceived, great heaviness and discomfort grew more and more to

all good men's hearts; but to the wicked great rejoicing. They that could dissemble took no great care how

the matter went; but such, whose consciences were joined with the truth, perceived already coals to be

kindled, which after should be the destruction of many a true Christian.

The Words and Behavior of the Lady Jane upon the Scaffold

The next victim was the amiable Lady Jane Gray, who, by her acceptance of the crown at the earnest

solicitations of her friends, incurred the implacable resentment of the bloody Mary. When she first mounted

the scaffold, she spoke to the specators in this manner: "Good people, I am come hither to die, and by a law I

am condemned to the same. The fact against the queen's highness was unlawful, and the consenting

thereunto by me: but, touching the procurement and desire thereof by me, or on my behalf, I do wash my

hands thereof in innocency before God, and the face of you, good Christian people, this day:" and therewith

she wrung her hands, wherein she had her book. Then said she, "I pray you all, good Christian people, to

bear me witness, that I die a good Christian woman, and that I do look to be saved by no other mean, but

only by the mercy of God in the blood of His only Son Jesus Christ: and I confess that when I did know the

Word of God, I neglected the same, loved myself and the world, and therefore this plague and punishment is

happily and worthily happened unto me for my sins; and yet I thank God, that of His goodness He hath thus

given me a time and a respite to repent. And now, good people, while I am alive, I pray you assist me with

your prayers." And then, kneeling down, she turned to Feckenham, saying, "Shall I say this Psalm?" and he

said, "Yea." Then she said the Psalm of Miserere mei Deus, in English, in a most devout manner throughout

to the end; and then she stood up, and gave her maid, Mrs. Ellen, her gloves and handkerchief, and her book

to Mr. Bruges; and then she untied he gown, and the executioner pressed upon her to help her off with it: but

she, desiring him to let her alone, turned towards her two gentlewomen, who helped her off therewith, and

also with her frowes, paaft, and neckerchief, giving to her a fair handkerchief to put about her eyes.

Then the executioner kneeled down, and asked her forgiveness, whom she forgave most willingly. Then he

desired her to stand upon the straw, which doing, she saw the block. Then she said, "I pray you, despatch me

quickly." Then she kneeled down, saying, "Will you take it off before I lay me down?" And the executioner

said, "No, madam." Then she tied a handkerchief about her eyes, and feeling for the block, she said, "What

shall I do? Where is it? Where is it?" One of the standers-by guiding her therunto, she laid her head upon the

block, and then stretched forth her body, and said, "Lord, into Thy hands I commend my spirit;" and so

finished her life, in the year of our Lord 1554, the twelfth day of February, about the seventeenth year of her


Thus died Lady Jane; and on the same day Lord Guilford, her husband, one of the duke of Northumberland's

sons, was likewise beheaded, two innocents in comparison with them that sat upon them. For they were both

very young, and ignorantly accepted that which others had contrived, and by open proclamation consented to

take from others, and give to them.

Touching the condemnation of this pious lady, it is to be noted that Judge Morgan, who gave sentence

against her, soon after he had condemned her, fell mad, and in his raving cried out continually to have the

Lady Jane taken away from him, and so he ended his life.

On the twenty-first day of the same month, Henry, duke of Suffolk, was beheaded on Tower-hill, the fourth

day after his condemnation: about which time many gentlemen and yeomen were condemned, whereof some

were executed at London, and some in the country. In the number of whom was Lord Thomas Gray, brother

to the said duke, being apprehended not long after in North Wales, and executed for the same. Sir Nicholas

Throgmorton, also, very narrowly escaped.

John Rogers, Vicar of St. Sepulchre's, and Reader of St.

Paul's, London

John Rogers was educated at Cambridge, and was afterward many years chaplain to the merchant

adventurers at Antwerp in Brabant. Here he met with the celebrated martyr William Tyndale, and Miles

Coverdale, both voluntary exiles from their country for their aversion to popish superstition and idolatry.

They were the instruments of his conversion; and he united with them in that translation of the Bible into

English, entitled "The Translation of Thomas Matthew." From the Scriptures he knew that unlawful vows

may be lawfully broken; hence he married, and removed to Wittenberg in Saxony, for the improvement of

learning; and he there learned the Dutch language, and received the charge of a congregation, which he

faithfully executed for many years. On King Edward's accession, he left Saxony to promote the work of

reformation in England; and, after some time, Nicholas Ridley, then bishop of London, gave him a prebend

in St. Paul's Cathedral, and the dean and chapter appointed him reader of the divinity lesson there. Here he

continued until Queen Mary's succession to the throne, when the Gospel and true religion were banished, and

the Antichrist of Rome, with his superstition and idolatry, introduced.

The circumstance of Mr. Rogers having preached at Paul's cross, after Queen Mary arrived at the Tower, has

been already stated. He confirmed in his sermon the true doctrine taught in King Edward's time, and exhorted

the people to beware of the pestilence of popery, idolatry, and superstition. For this he was called to account,

but so ably defended himself that, for that time, he was dismissed. The proclamation of the queen, however,

to prohibit true preaching, gave his enemies a new handle against him. Hence he was again summoned

before the council, and commanded to keep his house. He did so, though he might have escaped; and though

he perceived the state of the true religion to be desperate. Heknew he could not want a living in Germany;

and he could not forget a wife and ten children, and to seek means to succor them. But all these things were

insufficient to induce him to depart, and, when once called to answer in Christ's cause, he stoutly defended it,

and hazarded his life for that purpose.

After long imprisonment in his own house, the restless Bonner, bishop of London, caused him to be

committed to Newgate, there to be lodged among thieves and murderers.

After Mr. Rogers had been long and straitly imprisoned, and lodged in Newgate among thieves, often

examined, and very uncharitably entreated, and at length unjustly and most cruelly condemned by Stephen

Gardiner, bishop of Winchester, the fourth day of February, in the year of our Lord 1555, being Monday in

the morning, he was suddenly warned by the keeper of Newgate's wife, to prepare himself for the fire; who,

being then sound asleep, could scarce be awaked. At length being raised and awaked, and bid to make haste,

then said he, "IKf it be so, I need not tie my points." And so was had down, first to bishop Bonner to be

degraded: which being done, he craved of Bonner but one petition; and Bonner asked what that should be.

Mr. Rogers replied that he might speak a few words with his wife before his burning, but that could not be

obtained of him.

When the time came that he should be brought out of Newgate to Smithfield, the place of his execution, Mr.

Woodroofe, one of the sheriffs, first came to Mr. Rogers, and asked him if he would revoke his abominable

doctrine, and the evil opinion of the Sacrament of the altar. Mr. Rogers answered, "That which I have

preached I will seal with my blood." Then Mr. Woodroofe said, "Thou art an heretic." "That shall be

known," quoth Mr. Rogers, "at the Day of Judgment." "Well," said Mr. Woodroofe, "I will never pray for

thee." "But I will pray for you," said Mr. Rogers; and so was brought the same day, the fourth of February,

by the sheriffs, towards Smithfield, saying the Psalm Miserere by the way, all the people wonderfully

rejoicing at his constancy; with great praises and thanks to God for the same. And there in the presence of

Mr. Rochester, comptroller of the queen's household, Sir Richard Southwell, both the sheriffs, and a great

number of people, he was burnt to ashes, washing his hands in the flame as he was burning. A little before

his burning, his pardon was brought, if he would have recanted; but he utterly refused it. He was the first

martyr of all the blessed company that suffered in Queen Mary's time that gave the first adventure upon the

fire. His wife and children, being eleven in number, ten able to go, and one sucking at her breast, met him by

the way, as he went towards Smithfield. TGhis sorrowful sight of his own flesh and blood could nothing

move him, but that he constantly and cheerfully took his death with wonderful patience, in the defence and

quarrel of the Gospel of Christ."

The Rev. Lawrence Saunders

Mr. Saunders, after passing some time in the school of Eaton, was chosen to go to King's College in

Cambridge, where he continued three years, and profited in knowledge and learning very much for that time.

Shortly after he quitted the university, and went to his parents, but soon returned to Cambridge again to his

study, where he began to add to the knowledge of the Latin, the study of the Greek and Hebrew tongues, and

gave himself up to the study of the Holy Scriptures, the better to qualify himself for the office of preacher.

In the beginning of King Edward's reign, when God's true religion was introduced, after license obtained, he

began to preach, and was so well liked of them who then had authority that they appointed him to read a

divinity lecture in the College of Forthringham. The College of Fothringham being dissolved he was placed

to be a reader in the minster at Litchfield. After a certain space, he departed from Litchfield to a benefice in

Leicestershire, called Church-langton, where he held a residence, taught diligently, and kept a liberal house.

Thence he was orderly called to take a benefice in the city of London, namely, All-hallows in Bread-street.

After this he preached at Northhampton, nothing meddling with the state, but boldly uttering his conscience

against the popish doctrines which were likely to spring up again in England, as a just plague for the little

love which the English nation then bore to the blessed Word of God, which had been so plentifully offered

unto them.

The queen's party who were there, and heard him, were highly displeased with him for his sermon, and for it

kept him among them as a prisoner. But partly for love of his brethren and friends, who were chief actors for

the queen among them, and partly because there was no law broken by hbis preaching, they dismissed him.

Some of his friends, perceiving such fearful menacing, counselled him to fly out of the realm, which he

refused to do. But seeing he was with violence kept from doing good in that place, he returned towards

London, to visit his flock.

In the afternoon of Sunday, October 15, 1554, as he was reading in his church to exhort his people, the

bishop of London interrupted him, by sending an officer for him.

His treason and sedition the bishop's charity was content to let slip until another time, but a heretic he meant

to prove him, and all those, he said, who taught and believed that the administration of the Sacraments, and

all orders of the Church, are the most pure, which come the nearest to the order of the primitive Church.

After much talk concerning this matter, the bishop desired him to write what he believed of

transubstantiation. Lawrence Saunders did so, saying, "My Lord, you seek my blood, and you shall have it: I

pray God that you may be so baptized in it that you may ever after loathe blood-sucking, and become a better

man." Upon being closely charged with contumacy, the severe replies of Mr. Saunders to the bishop, (who

had before, to get the favor of Henry VIII written and set forth in print, a book of true obedience, wherein he

had openly declared Queen Mary to be a bastard) so irritated him that he exclaimed, "Carry away this

frenzied fool to prison."

After this good and faithful martyr had been kept in prison one year and a quarter, the bishops at length

called him, as they did his fellow-prisoners, openly to be examined before the queen's council.

His examination being ended, the officers led him out of the place, and stayed until the rest of his fellowprisoners

were likewise examined, that they might lead them all together to prison.

After his excommunication and delivery over to the secular power, he was brought by the sheriff of London

to the Compter, a prison in his own parish of Bread-street, at which he rejoiced greatly, both because he

found there a fellow-prisoner, Mr. Cardmaker, with whom he had much Christian and comfortable discourse;

and because out of prison, as before in his pulpit, he might have an opportunity of preaching to his

parishioners. On the fourth of February, Bonner, bishop of London, came to the prison to degrade him; the

day following, in the morning the sheriff of London delivered him to certain of the queen's guard, who were

appointed to carry him to the city of Coventry, there to be burnt.

When they had arrived at Coventry, a poor shoemaker, who used to serve him with shoes, came to him, and

said, "O my good master, God strengthen and comfort you." "Good shoemaker," Mr. Saunders replied, "I

desire thee to pray for me, for I am the most unfit man for this high office, that ever was appointed to it; but

my gracious God and dear Father is able to make me strong enough." The next day, being the eighth of

February, 1555, he was led to the place of execution, in the park, without the city. He went in an old gown

and a shirt, barefooted, and oftentimes fell flat on the ground, and prayed. When he was come to nigh the

place, the officer, appointed to see the execution done, said to Mr. Saunders that he was one of them who

marred the queen's realm, but if he would recant, there was pardon for him. "Not I," replied the holy martyr,

"but such as you have injured the realm. The blessed Gospel of Christ is what I hold; that do I believe, that

have I taught, and that will I never revoke!" Mr. Saunders then slowly moved towards the fire, sank to the

earth and prayed; he then rose up, embraced the stake, and frequently said, "Welcome, thou cross of Christ!

welcome everlasting life!" Fire was then put to the fagots, and, he was overwhelmed by the dreadful flames,

and sweetly slept in the Lord Jesus.

The History, Imprisonment, and Examination of Mr. John


Bishop of Worcester and Gloucester

John Hooper, student and graduate in the University of Oxford, was stirred with such fervent desire to the

love and knowledge of the Scriptures that he was compelled to move from thence, and was retained in the

house of Sir Thomas Arundel, as his steward, until Sir Thomas had intelligence of his opinions and religion,

which he in no case did favor, though he exceedingly favored his person and condition and wished to be his

friend. Mr. Hooper now prudently left Sir Thomas' house and arrived at Paris, but in a short time returned to

England, and was retained by Mr. Sentlow, until the time that he was again molested and sought for, when he

passed through France to the higher parts of Germany; where, commencing acquaintance with learned men,

he was by them free and lovingly entertained, both at Basel, and especially at Zurich, by Mr. Bullinger, who

was his singular friend; here also he married his wife, who was a Burgonian, and applied very studiously to

the Hebrew tongue.

At length, when God saw it good to stay the bloody time of the six articles, and to give us King Edward to

reign over this realm, with some peace and rest unto the Church, amongst many other English exiles, who

then repaired homeward, Mr. Hooper also, moved in conscience, thought not to absent himself, but seeing

such a time and occasion, offered to help forward the Lord's work, to the uttermost of his ability.

When Mr. Hooper had taken his farewell of Mr. Bullinger, and his friends in Zurich, he repaired again to

England in the reign of King Edward VI, and coming to London, used continually to preach, most times

twice, or at least once a day.

In his sermons, according to his accustomed manner, he corrected sin, and sharply inveighed against the

iniquity of the world and the corrupt abuses of the Church. The people in great flocks and companies daily

came to hear his voice, as the most melodious sound and tune of Orpheus' harp, insomuch, that oftentimes

when he was preaching, the church would be so full that none could enter farther than the doors thereof. In

his doctrine he was earnest, in tongue eloquent, in the Scriptures perfect, in pains indefatigable, in his life


Having preached before the king's majesty, he was soon after made bishop of Gloucester. In that office he

continued two years, and behaved himself so well that his very enemies could find no fault with him, and

after that he was made bishop of Worcester.

Dr. Hooper executed the office of a most careful and vigilant pastor, for the space of two years and more, as

long as the state of religion in King Edward's time was sound and flourishing.

After he had been cited to appear before Bonner and Dr. Heath, he was led to the Council, accused falsely of

owing the queen money, and in the next year, 1554, he wrote an account of his severe treatment during near

eighteen months' confinement in the Fleet, and after his third examination, January 28, 1555, at St. Mary

Overy's, he, with the Rev. Mr. Rogers, was conducted to the Compter in Southwark, there to remain until the

next day at nine o'clock, to see whether they would recant. "Come, Brother Rogers," said Dr. Hooper, "must

we two take this matter first in hand, and begin to fry in these fagots?" "Yes, Doctor," said Mr. Rogers, "by

God's grace." "Doubt not," said Dr. Hooper, "but God will give us strength;" and the people so applauded

their constancy that they had much ado to pass.

January 29, Bishop Hooper was degraded and condemned, and the Rev. Mr. Rogers was treated in like

manner. At dark, Dr. Hooper was led through the city to Newgate; notwithstanding this secrecy, many

people came forth to their doors with lights, and saluted him, praising God for his constancy.

During the few days he was in Newgate, he was frequently visited by Bonner and others, but without avail.

As Christ was tempted, so they tempted him, and then maliciously reported that he had recanted. The place

of his martyrdom being fixed at Gloucester, he rejoiced very much, lifting up his eyes and hands to heaven,

and praising God that he saw it good to send him among the people over whom he was pastor, there to

confirm with his death the truth which he had before taught them.

On February 7, he came to Gloucester, about five o'clock, and lodged at one Ingram's house. After his first

sleep, he continued in prayer ujntil morning; and all the day, except a little time at his meals, and when

conversing such as the guard kindly permitted to speak to him, he spent in prayer.

Sir Anthony Kingston, at one time Dr. Hooper's good friend, was appointed by the queen's letters to attend at

his execution. As soon as he saw the bishop he burst into tears. WIth tender entreaties he exhorted him to

live. "True it is," said the bishop, "that death is bitter, and life is sweet; but alas! consider that the death to

come is more bitter, and the life to come is more sweet."

The same day a blind boy obtained leave to be brought into Dr.

Hooper's presence. The same boy, not long before, had suffered imprisonment at Gloucester for confessing

the truth. "Ah! poor boy," said the bishop, "though God hath taken from thee thy outward sight, for what

reason He best knoweth, yet He hath endued thy soul with the eye of knowledge and of faith. God give thee

grace continually to pray unto Him, that thou lose not that sight, for then wouldst thou indeed be blind both

in body and soul."

When the mayor waited upon him preparatory to his execution, he expressed his perfect obedience, and only

requested that a quick fire might terminate his torments. After he had got up in the morning, he desired that

no man should be suffered to come into the chamber, that he might be solitary until the hour of execution.

About eight o'clock, on February 9, 1555, he was led forth, and many thousand persons were collected, as it

was market-day. All the way, being straitly charged not to speak, and beholding the people, who mourned

bitterly for him, he would sometimes lift up his eyes towards heaven, and look very cheerfully upon such as

he knew: and he was never known, during the time of his being among them, to look with so cheerful and

ruddy a countenance as he did at that time. When he came to the place appointed where he should die, he

smilingly beheld the stake and preparation made for him, which was near unto the great elm tree over against

the college of priests, where he used to preach.

Now, after he had entered into prayer, a box was brought and laid before him upon a stool, with his pardon

from the queen, if he would turn. At the sight whereof he cried, "If you love my soul, away with it!" The box

being taken away, Lord Chandois said, "Seeing there is no remedy; despatch him quickly."

Command was now given that the fire should be kindled. But because there were not more green fagots than

two horses could carry, it kindled not speedily, and was a pretty while also before it took the reeds upon the

fagots. At length it burned about him, but the wind having full strength at that place, and being a lowering

cold morning, it blew the flame from him, so that he was in a manner little more than touched by the fire.

Within a space after, a few dry fagots were brought, and a new fire kindled with fagots, (for there were no

more reeds) and those burned at the nether parts, but had small power above, because of the wind, saving

that it burnt his hair and scorched his skin a little. In the time of which fire, even as at the first flame, he

prayed, saying mildly, and not very loud, but as one without pain, "O Jesus, Son of David, have mercy upon

me, and receive my soul!" After the second fire was spent, he wiped both his eyes with his hands, and

beholding the people, he said with an indifferent, loud voice, "For God's love, good people, let me have more

fire!" and all this while his nether parts did burn; but the fagots were so few that the flame only singed his

upper parts.

The third fire was kindled within a while after, which was more extreme than the other two. In this fire he

prayed with a loud voice, "Lord Jesus, have mercy upon me! Lord Jesus receive my spirit!" And these were

the last words he was heard to utter. But when he was black in the mouth, and his tongue so swollen that he

could not speak, yet his lips went until they were shrunk to the gums: and he knocked his breast with his

hands until one of his arms fell off, and then knocked still with the other, while the fat, water, and blood

dropped out at his fingers' ends, until by renewing the fire, his strength was gone, and his hand clave fast in

knocking to the iron upon his breast. Then immediately bowing forwards, he yielded up his spirit.

Thus was he three quarters of an hour or more in the fire.

Even as a lamb, patiently he abode the extremity thereof, neither moving forwards, backwards, nor to any

side; but he died as quietly as a child in his bed. And he now reigneth, I doubt not, as a blessed martyr in the

joys of heaven, prepared for the faithful in Christ before the foundations of the world; for whose constancy

all Christians are bound to praise God.

The Life and Conduct of Dr. Rowland Taylor of Hadley

Dr. Rowland Taylor, vicar of Hadley, in Suffolk, was a man of eminent learning, and had been admitted to

the degree of doctor of the civil and canon law.

His attachment to the pure and uncorrupted principles of Christianity recommended him to the favor and

friendship of Dr. Cranmer, archbishop of Canterbury, with whom he lived a considerable time, until through

his interest he obtained the living at Hadley.

Not only was his word a preaching unto them, but all his life and conversation was an example of unfeigned

Christian life and true holiness. He was void of all pride, humble and meek as any child; so that none were so

poor but they might boldly, as unto their father, resort unto him; neither was his lowliness childish or fearful,

but, as occasion, time, and place required, he would be stout in rebuking the sinful and evildoers; so that

none was so rich but he would tell them plainly his fault, with such earnest and grave rebukes as became a

good curate and pastor. He was a man very mild, void of all rancor, grudge or evil will; ready to do good to

all men; readily forgiving his enemies; and never sought to do evil to any.

To the poor that were blind, lame, sick, bedrid, or that had many children, he was a very father, a careful

patron, and diligent provider, insomuch that he caused the parishioners to make a general provision for them;

and he himself (beside the continual relief that they always found at his house) gave an honest portion yearly

to the common almsbox. His wife also was an honest, discreet, and sober matron, and his children well

nurtured, brought up in the fear of God and good learning.

He was a good salt of the earth, savorly biting the corrupt manners of evil men; a light in God's house, set

upon a candlestick for all good men to imitate and follow.

Thus continued this good shepherd among his flock, governing and leadning them through the wilderness of

this wicked world, all the days of the most innocent and holy king of blessed memory, Edward VI. But on his

demise, and the succession of Queen Mary to the throne, he escaped not the cloud that burst on so many

besdie; for two of his parishioners, Foster, an attorney, and Clark, a tradesman, out of blind zeal, resolved

that Mass should be celebrated, in all its superstitious forms, in the parish church of Hadley, on Monday

before Easter. This Dr. Taylor, entering the church, strictly forbade; but Clark forced the Doctor out of the

church, celebrated Mass, and immediately informed the lord-chancellor, bishop of Winchester of his

behavior, who summoned him to appear, and answer the complaints that were alleged against him.

The doctor upon the receipt of the summons, cheerfully prepared to obey the same; and rejected the advice of

his friends to fly beyond sea. When Gardiner saw Dr. Taylor, he, according to his common custom, reviled

him. Dr. Taylor heard his abuse patiently, and when the bishop said, "How darest thou look me in the face!

knowest thou not who I am?" Dr. Taylor replied, "You are Dr. Stephen Gardiner, bishop of Winchester, and

lord-chancellor, and yet but a mortal man. But if I should be afraid of your lordly looks, why fear ye not

God, the Lord of us all? With what countenance will you appear before the judgment seat of Christ, and

answer to your oath made first unto King Henry VIII, and afterward unto King Edward VI, his son?"

A long conversation ensued, in which Dr. Taylor was so piously collected and severe upon his antagonist,

that he exclaimed:

"Thou art a blasphemous heretic! Thou indeed blasphemist the blessed Sacrament, (here he put off his cap)

and speakest against the holy Mass, which is made a sacrifice for the quick and the dead." The bishop

afterward committed him into the king's bench.

When Dr. Taylor came there, he found the virtuous and vigilant preacher of God's Word, Mr. Bradford; who

equally thanked God that He had provided him with such a comfortable fellow-prisoner; and they both

together praised God, and continued in prayer, reading and exhorting one another.

After Dr. Taylor had lain some time in prison, he was cited to appear in the arches of Bow-church.

Dr. Taylor being condemned, was committed to the Clink, and the keepers were charged to treat him

roughly; at night he was removed to the Poultry Compter.

When Dr. Taylor had lain in the Compter about a week on the fourth of February, Bonner came to degrade

him, bringing with him such ornaments as appertained to the massing mummery; but the Doctor refused

these trappings until they were forced upon him.

The night after he was degraded his wife came with John Hull, his servant, and his son Thomas, and were by

the gentleness of the keepers permitted to sup with him.

After supper, walking up and down, he gave God thanks for His grace, that had given him strength to abide

by His holy Word. With tears they prayed together, and kissed one another. Unto his son Thomas he gave a

Latin book, containing the notable sayings of the old martyrs, and in the end of that he wrote his testament:

"I say to my wife, and to my children, The Lord gave you unto me, and the Lord hath taken me from you,

and you from me: blessed be the name of the Lord! I believe that they are blessed which die in the Lord. God

careth for sparrows, and for the hairs of our heads. I have ever found Him more faithful and favorable, than

is any father or husband. Trust ye therefore in Him by the means of our dear Savior Christ's merits: believe,

love, fear, and obey Him: pray to Him, for He hath promised to help. Count me not dead, for I shall certainly

live, and never die. I go before, and you shall follow after, to our long home."

On the morrow the sheriff of London with his officers came to the Compter by two o'clock in the morning,

and brought forth Dr. Taylor; and without any light led him to the Woolsack, an inn without Aldgate. Dr.

Taylor's wife, suspecting that her husband should that night be carried away, watched all night in St.

Botolph's church-porch beside Aldgate, having her two children, the one named Elizabeth, of thirteen years

of age (whom, being left without father or mother, Dr. Taylor had brought up of alms from three years old),

the other named Mary, Dr. Taylor's own daughter.

Now, when the sheriff and his company came against St.

Botolph's church, Elizabeth cried, saying, "O my dear father! mother, mother, here is my father led away."

Then his wife cried, "Rowland, Rowland, where art thou?"-for it was a very dark morning, that the one could

not well see the other. Dr. Taylor answered, "Dear wife, I am here"; and stayed. The sheriff's men would

have led him forth, but the sheriff said, "Stay a little, masters, I pray you; and let him speak to his wife"; and

so they stayed.

Then came she to him, and he took his daughter Mary in his arms; and he, his wife, and Elizabeth kneeled

down and said the Lord's Prayer, at which sight the sheriff wept apace, and so did divers others of the

company. After they had prayed, he rose up and kissed his wife, and shook her by the hand, and said,

"Farewell, my dear wife; be of good comfort, for I am quiet in my conscience. God shall stir up a father for

my children."

All the way Dr. Taylor was joyful and merry, as one that ccounted himself going to a most pleasant banquet

or bridal. He spake many notable things to the sheriff and yeomen of the guard that conducted him, and often

moved them to weep, through his much earnest calling upon them to repent, and to amend their evil and

wicked living. Oftentimes also he caused them to wonder and rejoice, to see him so constant and steadfast,

void of all fear, joyful in heart, and glad to die.

When Dr. Taylor had arrived at Aldham Common, the place where he should suffer, seeing a great multitude

of people, he asked, "What place is this, and what meaneth it that so much people are gathered hither?" It

was answered, "It is Aldham Common, the place where you must suffer; and the people have come to look

upon you." Then he said, "Thanked be God, I am even at home"; and he alighted from his horse and with

both hands rent the hood from his head.

His head had been notched and clipped like as a man would clip a fool's; which cost the good bishop Bonner

had bestowed upon him. But when the people saw his reverend and ancient face, with a long white beard,

they burst out with weeping tears, and cried, saying: "God save thee, good Dr. Taylor! Jesus Christ

strengthen thee, and help thee! the Holy Ghost comfort thee!" with such other like good wishes.

When he had prayed, he went to the stake and kissed it, and set himself into a pitch barrel, which they had

put for him to stand in, and stood with his back upright against the stake, with his hands folded together, and

his eyes towards heaven, and continually prayed.

They then bound him with the chains, and having set up the fagots, one Warwick cruelly cast a fagot at him,

which struck him on his head, and cut his face, sot hat the blood ran down. Then said Dr. Taylor, "O friend, I

have harm enough; what needed that?"

Sir John Shelton standing by, as Dr. Taylor was speaking, and saying the Psalm Miserere in English, struck

him on the lips:

"You knave," he said, "speak Latin: I will make thee." At last they kindled the fire; and Dr. Taylor holding

up both his hands, calling upon God, and said, "Merciful Father of heaven! for Jesus Christ, my Savior's

sake, receive my soul into Thy hands!" So he stood still without either crying or moving, with his hands

folded together, until Soyce, with a halberd struck him on the head until his brains fell out, and the corpse

fell down into the fire.

Thus rendered up this man of God his blessed soul into the hands of his merciful Father, and to his most dear

Savior Jesus Christ, whom he most entirely loved, faithfully and earnestly preached, obediently followed in

living, and constantly glorified in death.

Martyrdom of William Hunter

William Hunter had been trained to the doctrines of the Reformation from his earliest youth, being

descended from religious parents, who carefully instructed him in the principles of true religion.

Hunter, then nineteen years of age, refusing to receive the communion at Mass, was threatened to be brought

before the bishop; to whom this valiant young martyr was conducted by a constable.

Bonner caused William to be brought into a chamber, where he began to reason with him, proimising him

security and pardon if he would recant. Nay, he would have been content if he would have gone only to

receive and to confession, but William would not do so for all the world.

Upon this the bishop commanded his men to put William in the stocks in his gate house, where he sat two

days and nights, with a crust of brown bread and a cup of water only, which he did not touch.

At the two days' end, the bishop came to him, and finding him steadfast in the faith, sent him to the convict

prison, and commanded the keeper to lay irons upon him as many as he could bear. He continued in prison

three quarters of a year, during which time he had been before the bishop five times, besides the time when

he was condemned in the consistory in St. Paul's, February 9, at which time his brother, Robert Hunter, was


Then the bishop, calling William, asked him if he would recant, and finding he was unchangeable,

pronounced sentence upon him, that he should go from that place to Newgate for a time, and thence to

Brentwood, there to be burned.

About a month afterward, William was sent down to Brentwood, where he was to be executed. On coming to

the stake, he knelt down and read the Fifty-first Psalm, until he came to these words, "The sacrifices of God

are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise." Steadfast in refusing the

queen's pardon, if he would become an apostate, at length one Richard Ponde, a bailiff, came, and made the

chain fast about him.

William now cast his psalter into his brother's hand, who said, "William, think on the holy passion of Christ,

and be not afraid of death." "Behold," answered William, "I am not afraid." Then he lifted up his hands to

heaven, and said, "Lord, Lord, Lord, receive my spirit;" and casting down he head again into the smothering

smoke, he yielded up his life for the truth, sealing it with his blood to the praise of God.

Dr. Robert Farrar

This worthy and learned prelate, the bishop of St. David's in Wales, having in the former reign, as well as

since the accession of Mary, been remarkably zealous in promoting the reformed doctrines, and exploding

the rrors of popish idolatry, was summoned, among others, before the persecuting bishop of Winchester, and

other commissioners set apart for the abominable work of devastation and massacre.

His principal accusers and persecutors, on a charge of praemunire in the reign of Edward VI were George

Constantine Walter, his servant; Thomas Young, chanter of the cathedral, afterward bishop of Bangor, etc.

Dr. Farrar ably replied to the copies of information laid against him, consisting of fifty-six articles. The

whole process of this trial was long and tedious. Delay succeeded delay, and after that Dr. Farrar had been

long unjustly detained in custody under sureties, in the reign of King Edward, because he had been promoted

by the duke of Somerset, whence after his fall he found fewer friends to support him against such as wanted

his bishopric by the coming in of Queen Mary, he was accused and examined not for any matter of

praemunire, but for his faith and doctrine; for which he was called before the bishop of Winchester with

Bishop Hooper, Mr. Rogers, Mr. Bradford, Mr. Saunders, and others, February 4, 1555; on which day he

would also with them have been condemned, but his condemnation was deferred, and he sent to prison again,

where he continued until February 14, and then was sent into Wales to receive sentence. He was six times

brought up before Henry Morgan, bishop of St. David's, who demanded if he would abjure; from which he

zealously dissented, and appealed to Cardinal Pole; notwithstanding which, the bishop, proceeding in his

rage, pronounced him a heretic excommunicate, and surrendered him to the secular power.

Dr. Farrar, being condemned and degraded, was not long after brought to the place of execution in the town

of Carmathen, in the market-place of which, on the south side of the market-cross, March 30, 1555, being

Saturday next before Passion Sunday, he most constantly sustained the torments of the fire.

Concerning his constancy, it is said that one Richard Jones, a knight's son, coming to Dr. Farrar a little

before his death, seemed to lament the painfulness of the death he had to suffer; to whom the bishop

answered that if he saw him once stir in the pains of his burning, he might then give no credit to his doctrine;

and as he said, so did he maintain his promise, patiently standing without emotion, until one Richard Gravell

with a staff struck him down.

Martyrdom of Rawlins White

Rawlins White was by his calling and occupation a fisherman, living and continuing in the said trade for the

space of twenty years at least, in the town of Cardiff, where he bore a very good name amongst his


Though the good man was altogether unlearned, and withal very simple, yet it pleased God to remove him

from error and idolatry to a knowledge of the truth, through the blessed Reformation in Edward's reign. He

had his son taught to read English, and after the little boy could read pretty well, his father every night after

supper, summer and winter, made the boy read a portion of the Holy Scriptures, and now and then a part of

some other good book.

When he had continued in his profession the space of five years, King Edward died, upon whose decease

Queen Mary succeeded and with her all kinds of superstition crept in. White was taken by the officers of the

town, as a man suspected of heresy, brought before the Bishop Llandaff, and committed to prison in

Chepstow, and at last removed to the castle of Cardiff, where he continued for the space of one whole year.

Being brought before the bishop in his chapel, he counselled him by threats and promises. But as Rawlins

would in no wise recant his opinions, the bishop told him plainly that he must proceed against him by law,

and condemn him as a heretic.

Before they proceeded to this extremity, the bishop proposed that prayer should be said for his conversion.

"This," said White, "is like a godly bishop, and if your request be godly and right, and you pray as you ought,

no doubt God will hear you; pray you, therefore, to your God, and I will pray to my God." After the bishop

and his party had done praying, he asked Rawlins if he would now revoke. "You find," said the latter, "your

prayer is not granted, for I remain the same; and God will strengthen me in support of this truth." After this,

the bishop tried what saying Mass would do; but Rawlins called all the people to witness that he did not bow

down to the host. Mass being ended, Rawlins was called for again; to whom the bishop used many

persuasions; but the blessed man continued so steadfast in his former profession that the bishop's discourse

was to no purpose. The bishop now caused the definitive sentence to be read, which being ended, Rawlins

was carried again to Cardiff, to a loathsome prison in the town, called Cockmarel, where he passed his time

in prayer, and in the singing of Psalms. In about three weeks the order came from town for his execution.

When he came to the place, where his poor wife and children stood weeping, the sudden sight of them so

pierced his heart, that the tears trickled down his face. Being come to the altar of his sacrifice, in going

toward the stake, he fell down upon his knees, and kissed the ground; and in rising again, a little earth

sticking on his face, he said these words. "Earth unto earth, and dust unto dust; thou art my mother, and unto

thee I shall return."

When all things were ready, directly over against the stake, in the face of Rawlins White, there was a stand

erected, whereon stepped up a priest, addressing himself to the people, but, as he spoke of the Romish

doctrines of the Sacraments, Rawlins cried out, "Ah! thou wicked hypocrite, dost thou presume to prove thy

false doctrine by Scripture? Look in the text that followeth; did not Christ say, 'Do this in remembrance of


Then some that stood by cried out, "Put fire! set on fire!" which being done, the straw and reeds cast up a

great and sudden flame. In which flame this good man bathed his hands so long, until such time as the

sinews shrank, and the fat dropped away, saving that once he did, as it were, wipe his face with one of them.

All this while, which was somewhat long, he cried with a loud voice, "O Lord, receive my spirit!" until he

could not open his mouth. At last the extremity of the fire was so vehement against his legs that they were

consumed almost before the rest of his body was hurt, which made the whole body fall over the chains into

the fire sooner than it would have done. Thus died this good old man for his testimony of God's truth, and is

now rewarded, no doubt, with the crown of eternal life.

The Rev. George Marsh

George Marsh, born in the parish of Deane, in the county of Lancaster, received a good education and trade

from his parents; about his twenty-fifth year he married, and lived, blessed with several children, on his farm

until his wife died. He then went to study at Cambridge, and became the curate of Rev. Lawrence Saunders,

in which duty he constantly and zealously set forth the truth of God's Word, and the false doctrines of the

modern Antichrist.

Being confined by Dr. Coles, the bishop of Chester, within the precincts of his own house, he was dept from

any intercourse with his friends during four months; his friends and mother, earnestly wished him to have

flown from "the wrath to come;" but Mr. Marsh thought that such a step would ill agree with that profession

he had during nine years openly made. He, however, secreted himself, but he had much struggling, and in

secret prayer begged that God would direct him, through the advice of his best friends, for his own glory and

to what was best. At length, determined by a letter he received, boldly to confess the faith of Christ, he took

leave of his mother-in-law and other friends, recommending his children to their care and departed for

Smethehills, whence he was, with others, conducted to Lathum, to undergo examination before the earl of

Derby, Sir William Nores, Mr. Sherburn, the parson of Garpnal, and others. The various questions put to him

he answered with a good conscience, but when Mr. Sherburn interrogated him upon his belief of the

Sacrament of the altar, Mr. Marsh answered like a true Protestant that the essence of the bread and wine was

not at all changed, hence, after receiving dreadful threats from some, and fair words from others, for his

opinions, he was remanded to ward, where he lay two nights without any bed.

On Palm Sunday he underwent a second examination, and Mr.

Marsh much lamented that his fear should at all have induced him to prevaricate, and to seek his safety, as

long as he did not openly deny Christ; and he again cried more earnestly to God for strength that he might

not be overcome by the subtleties of those who strove to overrule the purity of his faith. He underwent three

examinations before Dr. Coles, who, finding him steadfast in the Protestant faith, began to read his sentence;

but he was interrupted by the chancellor, who prayed the bishop to stay before it was too late. The priest then

prayed for Mr. Marsh, but the latter, upon being again solicited to recant, said he durst not deny his Savior

Christ, lest he lose His everlasting mercy, and so obtain eternal death. The bishop then proceeded in the

sentence. He was committed to a dark dungeon, and lay deprived of the consolation of any one (for all were

afraid to relieve or communicate with him) until the day appointed came that he should suffer. The sheriffs

of the city, Amry and Couper, with their officers, went to the north gate, and took out Mr. George Marsh,

who walked all the way with the Book in his hand, looking upon the same, whence the people said, "This

man does not go to his death as a thief, nor as one that deserveth to die."

When he came to the place of execution without the city, near Spittal=Boughton, Mr. Cawdry, deputy

chamberlain of Chester, showed Mr. Marsh a writing under a great seal, saying that it was a pardon for him if

he would recant. He answered that he would gladly accept the same did it not tend to pluck him from God.

After that, he began to speak to the people showing the cause of his death, and would have exhorted them to

stick unto Christ, but one of the sheriffs prevented him. Kneeling down, he then said his prayers, put off his

clothes unto his shirt, and was chained to the post, having a number of fagots under him, and a thing made

like a firkin, with pitch and tar in it, over his head. The fire being unskilfully made, and the wind driving it in

eddies, he suffered great extremity, which notwithstanding he bore with Christian fortitude.

When he had been a long time tormented in the fire without moving, having his flesh so broiled and puffed

up that they who stood before him could not see the chain wherewith he was fastened, and therefore

supposed that he had been dead, suddenly he spread abroad his arms, saying, "Father of heaven have mercy

upon me!" and so yielded his spirit into the hands of the Lord. Upon this, many of the people said he was a

martyr, and died gloriously patient. This caused the bishop shortly after to make a sermon in the cathedral

church, and therein he affirmed, that the said 'Marsh was a heretic, burnt as such, and is a firebrand in hell.'

Mr. Marsh suffered April 24, 1555.

William Flower

William Flower, otherwise Branch, was born at Snow-hill, in the county of Cambridge, where he went to

school some years, and then came to the abby of Ely. After he had remained a while he became a professed

monk, was made a priest in the same house, and there celebrated and sang Mass. After that, by reason of a

visitation, and certain injunctions by the authority of Henry VIII he took upon him the habit of a secular

priest, and returned to Snow-hill, where he was born, and taught children about half a year.

He then went to Ludgate, in Suffolk, and served as a secular priest about a quarter of a year; from thence to

Stoniland; at length to Tewksbury, where he married a wife, with whom he ever after faithfully and honestly

continued. After marriage he resided at Tewksbury about two years, and thence went to Brosley, where he

practiced physic and surgery; but departing from those parts he came to London, and finally settled at

Lambeth, where he and his wife dwelt together. However, he was generally abroad, excepting once or twice

in a month, to visit and see his wife. Being at home upon Easter Sunday morning, he came over the water

from lambeth into St. Margaret's Church at Westminster; when seeing a priest, named John Celtham,

administering and giving the Sacrament of the alter to the people, and being greatly offended in his

conscience with the priest for the same, he struck and wounded him upon the head, and also upon the arm

and hand, with his wood knife, the priest having at the same time in his hand a chalice with the consecrated

host therein, which became sprinkled with blood.

Mr. Flower, for this injudicious zeal, was heavily ironed, and put into the gatehouse at Westminster; and

afterward summoned before bishop Bonner and his ordinary, where the bishop, after he had sworn him upon

a Book, ministered articles and interrogatories to him.

After examination, the bishop began to exhort him again to return to the unity of his mother the Catholic

Church, with many fair promises. These Mr. Flower steadfastly rejecting, the bishop ordered him to appear

in the same place in the afternoon, and in the meantime to consider well his former answer; but he, neither

apologizing for having struck the priest, nor swerving from his faith, the bishop assigned him the next day,

April 20, to receive sentence if he would not recant. The next morning, the bishop accordingly proceeded to

the sentence, condemning and excommunicating him for a heretic, and after pronouncing him to be

degraded, committed him to the secular power.

On April 24, St. Mark's eve, he was brought to the place of martyrdom, in St. Margaret's churchyard,

Westminster, where the fact was committed: and there coming to the stake, he prayed to Almighty God,

made a confession of his faith, and forgave all the world.

This done, his hand was held up against the stake, and struck off, his left hand being fastened behind him.

Fire was then set to him, and he burning therein, cried with a loud voice, "O Thou Son of God receive my

soul!" three times. His speech being now taken from him, he spoke no more, but notwithstanding he lifted up

the stump with his other arm as long as he could.

Thus he endured the extremity of the fire, and was cruelly tortured, for the few fagots that were brought

being insufficient to burn him they were compelled to strike him down into the fire, where lying along upon

the ground, his lower part was consumed in the fire, whilst his upper part was little injured, his tongue

moving in his mouth for a considerable time.

The Rev. John Cardmaker and John Warne

May 30, 1555, the Rev. John Cardmaker, otherwise called Taylor, prebendary of the Church of Wells, and

John Warne, upholsterer, of St. John's, Walbrook, suffered together in Smithfield. Mr. Cardmaker, who first

was an observant friar before the dissolution of the abbeys, afterward was a married minister, and in King

Edward's time appointed to be a reader in St. Paul's; being apprehended in the beginning of Queen Mary's

reign, with Dr. Barlow, bishop of Bath, he was brought to London, and put in the Fleet prison, King

Edward's laws being yet in force. In Mary's reign, when brought before the bishop of Winchester, the latter

offered them the queen's mercy, if they would recant.

Articles having been preferred against Mr. John Warne, he was examined upon them by Bonner, who

earnestly exhorted him to recant his opinions, to whom he answered, "I am persuaded that I am in the right

opinion, and I see no cause to recant; for all the filthiness and idolatry lies in the Church of Rome."

The bishop then, seeing that all his fair promises and terrible threatenings could not prevail, pronounced the

definitive sentence of condemnation, and ordered May 30, 1555, for the execution of John Cardmaker and

John Warne, who were brought by the sheriffs to Smithfield. Being come to the stake, the sheriffs called Mr.

Cardmaker aside, and talked with him secretly, during which Mr. Warne prayed, was chained to the stake,

and had wood and reeds set about him.

The people were greatly afflicted, thinking that Mr. Cardmaker would recant at the burning of Mr. Warne. At

length Mr. Cardmaker departed from the sheriffs, and came towards the stake, knelt down, and made a long

prayer in silence to himself. He then rose up, put off his clothes to his shirt, and went with a bold courage

unto the stake and kissed it; and taking Mr. Warne by the hand, he heartily comforted him, and was bound to

the stake, rejoicing. The people seeing this so suddenly done, contrary to their previous expectation, cried

out, "God be praised! the Lord strengthen thee, Cardmaker! the Lord Jesus receive thy spirit!" And this

continued while the executioner put fire to them, and both had passed through the fire to the blessed rest and

peace among God's holy saints and martyrs, to enjoy the crown of triumph and victory prepared for the elect

soldiers and warriors of Christ Jesus in His blessed Kingdom, to whom be glory and majesty forever. Amen.

John Simpson and John Ardeley

John Simpson and John Ardeley were condemned on the same day with Mr. Carmaker and John Warne,

which was the twenty-fifth of May. They were shortly after sent down from London to Essex, where they

were burnt in one day, John Simpson at Rochford, and John Ardeley at Railey, glorifying God in His beloved

Son, and rejoicing that they were accounted worthy to suffer.

Thomas Haukes, Thomas Watts, and Anne Askew

Thomas Haukes, with six others, was condemned on the ninth of February, 1555. In education he was

erudite; in person, comely, and of good stature; in manners, a gentleman, and a sincere Christian. A little

before death, several of Mr. Hauke's friends, terrified by the sharpness of the punishment he was going to

suffer, privately desired that in the midst of the flames he should show them some token, whether the pains

of burning were so great that a man might not collectedly endure it. This he promised to do; and it was

agreed that if the rage of the pain might be suffered, then he should lift up his hands above his head towards

heaven, before he gave up the ghost.

Not long after, Mr. Haukes was led away to the place appointed for slaughter by Lord Rich, and being come

to the stake, mildly and patiently prepared himself for the fire, having a strong chain cast about his middle,

with a multitude of people on every side compassing him about, unto whom after he had spoken many

things, and poured out his soul unto God, the fire was kindled.

When he had continued long in it, and his speech was taken away by violence of the flame, his skin drawn

together, and his fingers consumed with the fire, so that it was thought that he was gone, suddenly and

contrary to all expectation, this good man being mindful of his promise, reached up his hands burning in

flames over his head to the living God, and with great rejoicings as it seemed, struck or clapped them three

times together. A great shout followed this wonderful circumstance, and then this blessed martyr of Christ,

sinking down in the fire, gave up his spirit, June 10, 1555.

Thomas Watts, of Billerica, in Essex, of the diocese of London, was a linen draper. He had daily expected to

be taken by God's adversaries, and this came to pass on the fifth of April, 1555, when he was brought before

Lord Rich, and other commissioners at Chelmsford, and accused for not coming to the church.

Being consigned over to the bloody bishop, who gave him several hearings, and, as usual, many arguments,

with much entreaty, that he would be a disciple of Antichrist, but his preaching availed not, and he resorted

to his last revenge-that of condemnation.

At the stake, after he had kissed it, he spake to Lord Rich, charging him to repent, for the Lord would

revenge his death. Thus did this good martyr offer his body to the fire, in defence of the true Gospel of the


Thomas Osmond, William Bamford, and Nicholas Chamberlain, all of the town of Coxhall, being sent up to

be examined, Bonner, after several hearings, pronounced them obstinate heretics, and delivered them to the

sheriffs, in whose custody they remained until they were delivered to the sheriff of Essex county, and by him

were executed, Chamberlain at Colchester, the fourteenth of June; Thomas Osmond at Maningtree, and

William Bamford, alias Butler, at Harwich, the fifteenth of June, 1555; all dying full of the glorious hope of


Then Wriotheseley, lord chancellor, offered Anne Askew the king's pardon if she would recant; who made

this answer, that she came not thither to deny her Lord and Master. And thus the good Anne Askew, being

compassed in with flames of fire, as a blessed sacrifice unto God, slept in the Lord, A.D. 1546, leaving

behind her a singular example of Christian constancy for all men to follow.

Rev. John Bradford, and John Leaf, an Apprentice

Rev. John Bradford was born at Manchester, in Lancashire; he was a good Latin scholar, and afterward

became a servant of Sir John Harrington, knight.

He continued several years in an honest and thriving way; but the Lord had elected him to a better function.

Hence he departed from his master, quitting the Temple, at London, for the University of Cambridge, to

learn, by God's law, how to further the building of the Lord's temple. In a few years after, the university gave

him the degree of master of arts, and he became a fellow of Pembroke Hall.

Martin Bucer first urged him to preach, and when he modestly doubted his ability, Bucer was wont to reply,

"If thou hast not fine wheat bread, yet give the poor people barley bread, or whatsoever else the Lord hath

committed unto thee." Dr. Ridley, that worthy bishop of London, and glorious martyr of Christ, first called

him to take the degree of a deacon and gave him a prebend in his cathedral Church of St. Paul.

In this preaching office Mr. Bradford diligently labored for the space of three years. Sharply he reproved sin,

sweetly he preached Christ crucified, ably he disproved heresies and errors, earnestly he persuaded to godly

life. After the death of blessed King Edward VI Mr. Bradford still continued diligent in preaching, until he

was suppressed by Queen Mary.

An act now followed of the blackest ingratitude, and at which a pagan would blush. It has been recited, that a

tumult was occasioned by Mr. Bourne's (then bishop of Bath) preaching at St. Paul's Cross; the indignation

of the people placed his life in imminent danger; indeed a dagger was thrown at him. In this situation he

entreated Mr. Bradford, who stood behind him. to speak in his place, and assuage the tumult. The people

welcomed Mr. Bradford, and the latter afterward kept close to him, that his presence might prevent the

populace from renewing their assaults.

The same Sunday in the afternoon, Mr. Bradford preached at Bow Church in Cheapside, and reproved the

people sharply for their seditious misdemeanor. Notwithstanding this conduct, within three days after, he was

sent for to the Tower of London, where the queen then was, to appear before the Council. There he was

charged with this act of saving Mr. Bourne, which was called seditious, and they also objected against him

for preaching. Thus he was committed, first to the Tower, then to other prisons, and, after his condemnation,

to the Poultry Compter, where he preached twice a day continually, unless sickness hindered him. Such as

his credit with the keeper of the king's Bench, that he permitted him in an evening to visit a poor, sick person

near the steel-yard, upon his promise to return in time, and in this he never failed.

The night before he was sent to Newgate, he was troubled in his sleep by foreboding dreams, that on Monday

after he should be burned in Smithfield. In the afternoon the keeper's wife came up and announced this

dreadful news to him, but in him it excited only thankfulness to God. At night half a dozen friends came,

with whom he spent all the evening in prayer and godly exercises.

When he was removed to Newgate, a weeping crowd accompanied him, and a rumor having been spread that

he was to suffer at four the next morning, an immense multitude attended. At nine o'clock Mr. Bradford was

brought into Smithfield. The cruelty of the sheriff deserves notice; for his brother-in-law, Roger Beswick,

having taken him by the hand as he passed, Mr. Woodroffe, with his staff, cut his head open.

Mr. Bradford, being come to the place, fell flat on the ground, and putting off his clothes unto the shirt, he

went to the stake, and there suffered with a young man of twenty years of age, whose name was John Leaf,

an apprentice to Mr. Humphrey Gaudy, tallow-chandler, of Christ-church, London. Upon Friday before Palm

Sunday, he was committed to the Compter in Bread-street, and afterward examined and condemned by the

bloody bishop.

It is reported of him, that, when the bill of his confession was read unto him, instead of pen, he took a pin,

and pricking his hand, sprinkled the blood upon the said bill, desiring the reader thereof to show the bishop

that he had sealed the same bill with his blood already.

They both ended this mortal life, July 12, 1555, like two lambs, without any alteration of their countenances,

hoping to obtain that prize they had long run for; to which may Almighty God conduct us all, through the

merits of Christ our Savior!

We shall conclude this article with mentioning that Mr.

Sheriff Woodroffe, it is said, within half a year after, was struck on the right side with a palsy, and for the

space of eight years after, (until his dying day,) he was unable to turn himself in his bed; thus he became at

last a fearful object to behold.

The day after Mr. Bradford and John Leaf suffered in Smithfield William Minge, priest, died in prison at

Maidstone. With as great constancy and boldness he yielded up his life in prison, as if it had pleased God to

have called him to suffer by fire, as other godly men had done before at the stake, and as he himself was

ready to do, had it pleased God to have called him to this trial.

Rev. John Bland, Rev. John Frankesh, Nicholas Shetterden,


Humphrey Middleton

These Christian persons were all burnt at Canterbury for the same cause. Frankesh and Bland were ministers

and preachers of the Word of God, the one being parson of Adesham, and the other vicar of Rolvenden. Mr.

Bland was cited to answer for his opposition to antichristianism, and underwent several examinations before

Dr. Harpsfield, archdeacon of Canterbury, and finally on the twenty-fifth of June, 1555, again withstanding

the power of the pope, he was condemned, and delivered to the secular arm. On the same day were

condemned John Frankesh, Nicholas Shetterden, Humphrey Middleton, Thacker, and Crocker, of whom

Thacker only recanted.

Being delivered to the secular power, Mr. Bland, with the three former, were all burnt together at

Canterbury, July 12, 1555, at two several stakes, but in one fire, when they, in the sight of God and His

angels, and before men, like true soldiers of Jesus Christ, gave a constant testimony to the truth of His holy


Dirick Carver and John Launder

The twenty-second of July, 1555, Dirick Carver, brewer, of Brighthelmstone, aged forty, was burnt at Lewes.

And the day following John Launder, husbandman, aged twenty-five, of Godstone, Surrey, was burnt at


Dirick Carver was a man whom the Lord had blessed as well with temporal riches as with his spiritual

treasures. At his coming into the town of Lewes to be burnt, the people called to him, beseeching God to

strengthen him in the faith of Jesus Christ; and, as he came to the stake, he knelt down, and prayed earnestly.

Then his Book was thrown into the barrel, and when he had stripped himself, he too, went into a barrel. As

soon as he was in, he took the Book, and threw it among the people, upon which the sheriff commanded, in

the name of the king and queen, on pain of death , to throw in the Book again. And immediately the holy

martyr began to address the people. After he had prayed a while, he said, "O Lord my God, Thou hast

written, he that will not forsake wife, children, house, and every thing that he hath, and take up Thy cross and

follow Thee, is not worthy of Thee! but Thou, Lord, knowest that I have forsaken all to come unto Thee.

Lord, have mercy upon me, for unto Thee I commend my spirit! and my soul doth rejoice in Thee!" These

were the last words of this faithful servant of Christ before enduring the fire. And when the fire came to him,

he cried, "O Lord, have mercy upon me!" and sprang up in the fire, calling upon the name of Jesus, until he

gave up the ghost.

James Abbes. This young man wandered about to escape apprehension, but was at last informed against, and

brought before the bishop of Norwich, who influenced him to recant; to secure him further in apostasy, the

bishop afterward gave him a piece of money; but the interference of Providence is here remarkable. This

bribe lay so heavily upon his conscience, that he returned, threw back the money, and repented of his

conduct. Like Peter, he was contrite, steadfast in the faith, and sealed it with his blood at Bury, August 2,

1555, praising and glorifying God.

John Denley, John Newman, and Patrick Packingham

Mr. Denley and Newman were returning one day to Maidstone, the place of their abode, when they were met

by E. Tyrrel, Esq., a bigoted justice of the peace in Essex, and a cruel persecutor of the Protestants. He

apprehended them merely on suspicion. On the fifth of July, 1555, they were condemned, and consigned to

the sheriffs, who sent Mr. Denley to Uxbridge, where he perished, August eighth, 1555. While suffering in

agony, and singing a Psalm, Dr. Story inhumanly ordered one of the tormentors to throw a fagot at him,

which cut his face severely, caused him to cease singing, and to raise his hands to his face. Just as Dr. Story

was remarking in jest that he had spoiled a good song, the pious martyr again changed, spread his hands

abroad in the flames, and through Christ Jesus resigned his soul into the hands of his Maker.

Mr. Packingham suffered at the same town on the twenty-eigth of the same month.

Mr. Newman, pewterer, was burnt at Saffron Waldon, in Essex, August 31, for the same cause, and Richard

Hook about the same time perished at Chichester.

W. Coker, W. Hooper, H. Laurence, R. Colliar, R. Wright and



These persons all of Kent, were examined at the same time with Mr. Bland and Shetterden, by Thornton,

bishop of Dover, Dr. Harpsfield, and others. These six martyrs and witnesses of the truth were consigned to

the flames in Canterbury, at the end of August, 1555.

Elizabeth Warne, widow of John Warne, upholsterer, martyr, was burnt at Stratford-le-bow, near London, at

the end of August, 1555.

George Tankerfield, of London, cook, born at York, aged twenty-seven, in the reign of Edward VI had been

a papist; but the cruelty of bloody Mary made him suspect the truth of those doctrines which were enforced

by fire and torture. Tankerfield was imprisoned in Newgate about the end of February, 1555, and on August

26, at St. Alban's, he braved the excruciating fire, and joyfully died for the glory of his Redeemer.

Rev. Robert Smith was first in the service of Sir T. Smith, provost of Eton; and was afterward removed to

Windsor, where he had a clerkship of ten pounds a year.

He was condemned, July 12, 1555, and suffered August 8, at Uxbridge. He doubted not but that God would

give the spectators some token in support of his own cause; this actually happened; for, when he was nearly

half burnt, and supposed to be dead, he suddenly rose up, moved the remaining parts of his arms and praised

God, then, hanging over the fire, he sweetly slept in the Lord Jesus.

Mr. Stephen Harwood and Mr. Thomas Fust suffered about the same time with Smith and Tankerfield, with

whom they were condemned. Mr. William Hale also, of Thorp, in Essex, was sent to Barnet, where about the

same time he joined the ever-blessed company of martyrs.

George King, Thomas Leyes, and John Wade, falling sick in Lollard's Tower, were removed to different

houses, and died. Their bodies were thrown out in the common fields as unworthy of burial, and lay until the

faithful conveyed them away at night.

Mr. William Andrew of Horseley, Essex, was imprisoned in Newgate for heresy; but God chose to call him

to himself by the severe treatment he endured in Newgate, and thus to mock the snaguinary expectations of

his Catholic persecutors. His body was thrown into the open air, but his soul was received into the

everlasting mansions of his heavenly Creator.

The Rev. Robert Samuel

This gentleman was minister ofr Bradford, Suffolk, where he industriously taught the flock committed to his

charge, while he was openly permitted to discharge his duty. He was first persecuted by Mr. Foster, of

Copdock, near Ipswich, a severe and bigoted persecutor of the followers of Christ, according to the truth in

the Gospel. Notwithstanding Mr. Samuel was ejected from his living, he continued to exhort and instruct

privately; nor would he obey the order for putting away his wife, whom he had married in King Edward's

reign; but kept her at Ipswich, where Foster, by warrant, surprised him by night with her. After being

imprisoned in Ipswich jail, he was taken before Dr. Hopton, bishop of Norwich, and Dr. Dunnings, his

chancellor, two of the most sanguinary among the bigots of those days. To intimidate the worthy pastor, he

was in prison chained to a post in such a manner that the weight of his body was supported by the points of

his toes: added to this his allowance of provision was reduced to a quantity so insufficient to sustain nature

that he was almost ready to devour his own flesh. From this dreadful extremity there was even a degree of

mercy in ordering him to the fire. Mr. Samuel suffered August 31, 1555.

Bishop Ridley and Bishop Latimer

These reverend prelates suffered October 17, 5555, at Oxford, on the same day Wolsey and Pygot perished at

Ely. Pillars of the Church and accomplished ornaments of human nature, they were the admiration of the

realm, amiably conspicuous in their lives, and glorious in their deaths.

Dr. Ridley was born in Northumberland, was first tauht grammar at Newcastle, and afterward removed to

Cambridge, where his aptitude in education raised him gradually until he came to be the head of Pembroke

College, where he received the title of Doctor of Divinity. Having returned from a trip to Paris, he was

appointed chaplain by Henry VIII and bishop of Rochester, and was afterwards translated to the see of

London in the time of Edward VI.

To his sermons the people resorted, swarming about him like bees, coveting the sweet flowers and

wholesome juice of the fruitful doctrine, which he did not only preach, but showed the same by his life, as a

glittering lanthorn to the eyes and senses of the blind, in such pure order that his very enemies could not

reprove him in any one jot.

His tender treatment of Dr. Heath, who was a prisoner with him during one year, in Edward's reign, evidently

proves that he had no Catholic cruelty in his disposition. In person he was erect and well proportioned; in

temper forgiving; in self-mortification severe. His first duty in the morning was private prayer: he remained

in his study until ten o'clock, and then attended the daily prayer used in his house. Dinner being done, he sat

about an hour, conversing pleasantly, or playing at chess. His study next engaged his attention, unless

business or visits occurred; about five o'clock prayers followed; and after he would recreate himself at chess

for about an hour, then retire to his study until eleven o'clock, and pray on his knees as in the morning. In

brief, he was a pattern of godliness and virtue, and such he endeavored to make men wherever he came.

His attentive kindness was displayed particularly to old Mrs.

Bonner, mother of Dr. Bonner, the cruel bishop of London. Dr. Ridley, when at his manor at Fulham, always

invited her to his house, placed her at the head of his table, and treated her like his own mother; he did the

same by Bonner's sister and other relatives; but when Dr. Ridley was under persecution, Bonner pursued a

conduct diametrically opposite, and would have sacrificed Dr. Ridley's sister and her husband, Mr. George

Shipside, had not Providence delivered him by the means of Dr. Heath, bishop of Worcester.

Dr. Ridley was first in part converted by reading Bertram's book on the Sacrament, and by his conferences

with archbishop Cranmer and Peter Martyr.

When Edward VI was removed from the throne, and the bloody Mary succeeded, Bishop Ridley was

immediately marked as an object of slaughter. He was first sent to the Tower, and afterward, at Oxford, was

consigned to the common prison of Bocardo, with archbishop Cranmer and Mr. Latimer. Being separated

from them, he was placed in the house of one Irish, where he remained until the day of his martyrdom, from

1554, until October 16, 1555.

It will easily be supposed that the conversations of these chiefs of the martyrs were elaborate, learned, and

instructive. Such indeed they were, and equally beneficial to all their spiritual comforts. Bishop Ridley's

letters to various Christian brethren in bonds in all parts, and his disputations with the mitred enemies of

Christ, alike proved the clearness of his head and the integrity of his heart. In a letter to Mr. Grindal,

(afterward archbishop of Canterbury,) he mentions with affection those who had preceded him in dying for

the faith, and those who were expected to suffer; he regrets that popery is re-established in its full

abomination, which he attributes to the wrath of God, made manifest in return for the lukewarmness of the

clergy and the people in justly appreciating the blessed light of the Reformation.

This old practiced soldier of Christ, Master Hugh Latimer, was the son of one Hugh Latimer, of Thurkesson

in the county of Leicester, a husbandman, of a good and wealthy estimation; where also he was born and

brought up until he was four years of age, or thereabout: at which time his parents, having him as then left

for their only son, with six daughters, seeing his ready, prompt, and sharp wit, purposed to train him up in

erudition, and knowledge of good literature; wherein he so profited in his youth at the common schools of his

own country, that at the age of fourteen years, he was sent to the University of Cambridge; where he entered

into the study of the school divinity of that day, and was from principle a zealous observer of the Romish

superstitions of the time. In his oration when he commenced bachelor of divinity, he inveighed against the

reformer Melancthon, and openly declaimed against good Mr. Stafford, divinity lecturer in Cambridge.

Mr. Thomas Bilney, moved by a brotherly pity towards Mr.

Latimer, begged to wait upon him in his study, and to explain to him the groundwork of his (Mr. Bilney's)

faith. This blessed interview effected his conversion: the persecutor of Christ became his zealous advocate,

and before Dr. Stafford died he became reconciled to him.

Once converted, he became eager for the conversion of others, and commenced to be public preacher, and

private instructor in the university. His sermons were so pointed against the absurdity of praying in the Latin

tongue, and withholding the oracles of salvation from the people who were to be saved by belief in them, that

he drew upon himself the pulpit animadversions of several of the resident friars and heads of houses, whom

he subsequently silenced by his severe criticisms and eloquent arguments. This was at Christmas, 1529. At

length Dr. West preached against Mr. Latimer at Barwell Abbey, and prohibited him from preaching again in

the churches of the university, notwithstanding which, he continued during three years to advocate openly

the cause of Christ, and even his enemies confessed the power of those talents he possessed. Mr. Bilney

remained here some time with Mr. Latimer, and thus the place where they frequently walked together

obtained the name of Heretics' Hill.

Mr. Latimer at this time traced out the innocence of a poor woman, accused by her husband of the murder of

her child. Having preached before King Henry VIII at Windsor, he obtained the unfortunate mother's pardon.

This, with many other benevolent acts, served only to excite the spleen of his adversaries. He was summoned

before Cardinal Wolsey for heresy, but being a strenuous supporter of the king's supremacy, in opposition to

the pope's, by favor of Lord Cromwell and Dr. Buts, (the king's physician,) he obtained the living of West

Kingston, in Wiltshire. For his sermons here against purgatory, the immaculacy of the Virgin, and the

worship of images, he was cited to appear before Warham, archbishop of Canterbury, and John, bishop of

London. He was required to subscribe certain articles, expressive of his conformity to the accustamed

usages; and there is reason to think, after repeated weekly examinations, that he did subscribe, as they did not

seem to involve any important article of belief.

Guided by Providence, he escaped the subtle nets of his persecutors, and at length, through the powerful

friends before mentioned, became bishop of Worcester, in which function he qualified or explained away

most of the papal ceremonies he was for form's sake under the necessity of complying with. He continued in

this active and dignified employment some years.

Beginning afresh to set forth his plow he labored in the Lord's harvest most fruitfully, discharging his talent

as well in divers places of this realm, as before the king at the court. In the same place of the inward garden,

which was before applied to lascivious and courtly pastimes, there he dispensed the fruitful Word of the

glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ, preaching there before the king and his whole court, to the edification of


He remained a prisoner in the Tower until the coronation of Edward VI, when he was again called to the

Lord's harvest in Stamford, and many other places: he also preached at London in the convocation house, and

before the young king; indeed he lectured twice every Sunday, regardless of his great age (then above sixtyseven

years,) and his weakness through a bruise received from the fall of a tree. Indefatigable in his private

studies, he rose to them in winter and in summer at two o'clock in the morning.

By the strength of his own mind, or of some inward light from above, he had a prophetic view of what was to

happen to the Church in Mary's reign, asserting that he was doomed to suffer for the truth, and that

Winchester, then in the Tower, was preserved for that purpose. Soon after Queen Mary was proclaimed, a

messenger was sent to summon Mr. Latimer to town, and there is reason to believe it was wished that he

should make his escape.

Thus Master Latimer coming up to London, through Smithfield (where merrily he said that Smithfield had

long groaned for him), was brought before the Council, where he patiently bore all the mocks and taunts

given him by the scornful papists. He was cast into the Tower, where he, being assisted with the heavenly

grace of Christ, sustained imprisonment a long time, notwithstanding the cruel and unmerciful handling of

the lordly papists, which thought then their kingdom would never fall; he showed himself not only patient,

but also cheerful in and above all that which they could or would work against him. Yea, such a valiant spirit

the Lord gave him, that he was able not only to despise the terribleness of prisons and torments, but also to

laugh to scorn the doings of his enemies.

Mr. Latimer, after remaining a long time in the Tower, was transported to Oxford, with Cranmer and Ridley,

the disputations at which place have been already mentioned in a former part of this work. He remained

imprisoned until October, and the principal objects of all his prayers were three-that he might stand faithful

to the doctrine he had professed, that God would restore his Gospel to England once again, and preserve the

Lady Elizabeth to be queen; all of which happened. When he stood at the stake without the Bocardo gate,

Oxford, with Dr. Ridley, and fire was putting to the pile of fagots, he raised his eyes benignantly towards

heaven, and said, "God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able." His body

was forcibly penetrated by the fire, and the blood flowed abundantly from the heart; as if to verify his

constant desire that his heart's blood might be shed in defence of the Gospel. His polemical and friendly

letters are lasting monuments of his integrity and talents. It has been before said, that public disputation took

place in April, 1554, new examinations took place in October, 1555, previous to the degradation and

condemnation of Cranmer, Ridley, and Latimer. We now draw to the conclusion of the lives of the two last.

Dr. Ridley, the night before execution, was very facetious, had himself shaved, and called his supper a

marriage feast; he remarked upon seeing Mrs. Irish (the keeper's wife) weep, "Though my breakfast will be

somewhat sharp, my supper will be more pleasant and sweet."

The place of death was on the northside of the town, opposite Baliol College. Dr. Ridley was dressed in a

black gown furred, and Mr. Latimer had a long shroud on, hanging down to his feet. Dr. Ridley, as he passed

Bocardo, looked up to see Dr. Cranmer, but the latter was then engaged in disputation with a friar. When

they came to the stake, Mr. Ridley embraced Latimer fervently, and bid him: "Be of good heart, brother, for

God will either assuage the fury of the flame, or else strengthen us to abide it." He then knelt by the stake,

and after earnestly praying together, they had a short private conversation. Dr. Smith then preached a short

sermon against the martyrs, who would have answered him, but were prevented by Dr. Marshal, the vicechancellor.

Dr. Ridley then took off his gown and tippet, and gave them to his brother-in-law, Mr. Shipside.

He gave away also many trifles to his weeping friends, and the populace were anxious to get even a fragment

of his garments. Mr. Latimer gave nothing, and from the poverty of his garb, was soon stripped to his shroud,

and stood venerable and erect, fearless of death.

Dr. Ridley being unclothed to his shirt, the smith placed an iron chain about their waists, and Dr. Ridley bid

him fasten it securely; his brother having tied a bag of gunpowder about his neck, gave some also to Mr.


Dr. Ridley then requested of Lord Williams, of Fame, to advocate with the queen the cause of some poor

men to whom he had, when bishop, granted leases, but which the present bishop refused to confirm. A

lighted fagot was now laid at Dr. Ridley's feet, which caused Mr. Latimer to say: "Be of good cheer, Ridley;

and play the man. We shall this day, by God's grace, light up such a candle in England, as I trust, will never

be put out."

When Dr. Ridley saw the fire flaming up towards him, he cried with a wonderful loud voice, "Lord, Lord,

receive my spirit." Master Latimer, crying as vehemently on the other side, "O Father of heaven, receive my

soul!" received the flame as it were embracing of it. After that he had stroked his face with his hands, and as

it were, bathed them a little in the fire, he soon died (as it appeareth) with very little pain or none.

Well! dead they are, and the reward of this world they have already. What reward remaineth for them in

heaven, the day of the Lord's glory, when he cometh with His saints, shall declare.

In the following month died Stephen Gardiner, bishop of Winchester and lord chancellor of England. This

papistical monster was born at Bury, in Suffolk, and partly educated at Cambridge. Ambitious, cruel, and

bigoted, he served any cause; he first espoused the king's part in the affair of Anne Boleyn: upon the

establishment of the Reformation he declared the supremacy of the pope an execrable tenet; and when Queen

Mary came to the crown, he entered into all her papistical bigoted views, and became a second time bishop

of Winchester. It is conjectured it was his intention to have moved the sacrifice of Lady Elizabeth, but when

he arrived at this point, it pleased God to remove him.

It was on the afternoon of the day when those faithful soldiers of Christ, Ridley and Latimer, perished, that

Gardiner sat down with a joyful heart to dinner. Scarcely had he taken a few mouthfuls, when he was seized

with illness, and carried to his bed, where he lingered fifteen days in great torment, unable in any wise to

evacuate, and burnt with a devouring fever, that terminated in death. Execrated by all good Christians, we

pray the Father of mercies, that he may receive that mercy above he never imparted below.

Mr. John Philpot

This martyr was the son of a knight, born in Hampshire, and brought up at New College, Oxford, where for

several years he studied the civil law, and became eminent in the Hebrew tongue. He was a scholar and a

gentleman, zealous in religion, fearless in disposition, and a detester of flattery. After visiting Italy, he

returned to England, affairs in King Edward's days wearing a more promising aspect. During this reign he

continued to be archdeacon of Winchester under Dr. Poinet, who succeeded Gardiner. Upon the accession of

Mary, a convocation was summoned, in which Mr. Philpot defended the Reformation against his ordinary,

Gardiner, again made bishop of Winchester, and soon was conducted to Bonner and other commissioners for

examination, October 2, 1555, after being eighteen months' imprisoned. Upon his demanding to see the

commission, Dr. Story cruelly observed, "I will spend both my gown and my coat, but I will burn thee! Let

him be in Lollard's tower, (a wretched prison,) for I will sweep the king's Bench and all other prisons of these


Upon Mr. Philpot's second examination, it was intimated to him that Dr. Story had said that the lord

chancellor had commanded that he should be made away with. It is easy to foretell the result of this inquiry.

He was committed to Bonner's coal house, where he joined company with a zealous minister of Essex, who

had been induced to sign a bill of recantation; but afterward, stung by his conscience, he asked the bishop to

let him see the instrument again, when he tore it to pieces; which induced Bonner in a fury to strike him

repeatedly, and tear away part of his beard. Mr. Philpot had a private interview with Bonner the same night,

and was then remanded to his bed of straw like other prisoners, in the coal house. After seven examinations,

Bonner ordered him to be set in the stocks, and on the following Sunday separated him from his fellowprisoners

as a sower of heresy, and ordered him up to a room near the battlements of St. Paul's, eight feet by

thirteen, on the other side of Lollard's tower, and which could be overlooked by any one in the bishop's outer

gallery. Here Mr. Philpot was searched, but happily he was successful in secreting some letters containing

his examinations.

In the eleventh investigation before various bishops, and Mr.

Morgan, of Oxford, the latter was so driven into a corner by the close pressure of Mr. Philpot's arguments,

that he said to him, "Instead of the spirit of the Gospel which you boast to possess, I think it is the spirit of

the buttery, which your fellows have had, who were drunk before their death, and went, I believe, drunken to

it." To this unfounded and brutish remark, Mr. Philpot indignantly replied, "It appeareth by your

communication that you are better acquainted with that spirit than the Spirit of God; wherefore I tell thee,

thou painted wall and hypocrite, in the name of the living God, whose truth I have told thee, that God shall

rain fire and brimstone upon such blasphemers as thou art!" He was then remanded by Bonner, with an order

not to allow him his Bible nor candlelight.

On December 4, Mr. Philpot had his next hearing, and this was followed by two more, making in all,

fourteen conferences, previous to the final examination in which he was condemned; such were the

perseverance and anxiety of the Catholics, aided by rthe argumentative abilities of the most distinguished of

the papal bishops, to bring him into the pale of their Church. Those examinations, which were very long and

learned, were all written down by Mr. Philpot, and a stronger proof of the imbecility of the Catholic doctors,

cannot, to an unbiased mind, be exhibited.

On December 16, in the consistory of St. Paul's Bishop Bonner, after laying some trifling accusations to his

charge, such as secreting powder to make ink, writing some private letters, etc., proceeded to pass the awful

sentence upon him, after he and the other bishops had urged him by every inducement to recant. He was

afterward conducted to Newgate, where the avaricious Catholic keeper loaded him with heavy irons, which

by the humanity of Mr. Macham were ordered to be taken off. On December 17, Mr. Philpot received

intimation that he was to die next day, and the next morning about eight o'clock, he joyfully met the sheriffs,

who were to attend him to the place of execution.

Upon entering Smithfield, the ground was so muddy that two officers offered to carry him to the stake, but

he replied:

"Would you make me a pope? I am content to finish my journey on foot." Arriving at the stake, he said,

"Shall I disdain to suffer at the stake, when my Redeemer did not refuse to suffer the most vile death upon

the cross for me?" He then meekly recited the One hundred and seventh and One hundred and eighth Psalms,

and when he had finished his prayers, was bound to the post, and fire applied to the pile. On December 18,

1555, perished this illustrious martyr, reverenced by man, and glorified in heaven!

John Lomas, Agnes Snoth, Anne Wright, Joan Sole, and Joan


These five martyrs suffered together, January 31, 1556. John Lomas was a young man of Tenterden. He was

cited to appear at Catnerbury, and was examined January 17. His answers being adverse to the idolatrous

doctrine of the papacy, he was condemned on the following day, and suffered January 31.

Agnes Snoth, widow, of Smarden Parish, was several times summoned before the Catholic Pharisees, and

rejecting absolution, indulgences, transubstantiation, and auricular confession, she was adjudged worthy to

suffer death, and endured martyrdom, January 31, with Anne Wright and Joan Sole, who were placed in

similar circumstances, and perished at the same time, with equal resignation. Joan Catmer, the last of this

heavenly company, of the parish Hithe, was the wife of the martyr George Catmer.

Seldom in any country, for political controversy, have four women been led to execution, whose lives were

irreproachable, and whom the pity of savages would have spared. We cannot but remark here that, when the

Protestant power first gained the ascendency over the Catholic superstition, and some degree of force in the

laws was necessary to enforce uniformity, whence some bigoted people suffered privation in their person or

goods, we read of few burnings, savage cruelties, or poor women brought to the stake, but it is the nature of

error to resort to force instead of argument, and to silence truth by taking away existence, of which the

Redeemer himself is an instance.

The above five persons were burnt at two stakes in one fire, singing hosannahs to the glorified Savior, until

the breath of life was extinct. Sir John Norton, who was present, wept bitterly at their unmerited sufferings.

Archbishop Cranmer

Dr. Thomas Cranmer was descended from an ancient family, and was born at the village of Arselacton, in the

county of Northampton. After the usual school education he was sent to Cambridge, and was chosen fellow

Jesus College. Here he married a gentleman's daughter, by which he forfeited his fellowship, and became a

reader in Buckingham College, placing his wife at the Dolphin Inn, the landlady of which was a relation of

hers, whence arose the idle report that he was an ostler. His lady shortly after dying in childbed; to his credit

he was re-chosen a fellow of the college before mentioned. In a few years after, he was promoted to be

Divinity Lecturer, and appointed one of the examiners over those who were ripe to become Bachelors or

Doctors in Divinity. It was his principle to judge of their qualifications by the knowledge they possessed of

the Scriptures, rather than of the ancient fathers, and hence many popish priests were rejected, and others

rendered much improved.

He was strongly solicited by Dr. Capon to be one of the fellows on the foundation of Cardinal Wolsey's

college, Oxford, of which he hazarded the refusal. While he continued in Cambridge, the question of Henry

VIII's divorce with Catharine was agitated. At that time, on account of the plague, Dr. Cranmer removed to

the house of a Mr. Cressy, at Waltham Abbey, whose two sons were then educating under him. The affair of

divorce, contrary to the king's approbation, had remained undecided above two or three years, from the

intrigues of the canonists and civilians, and though the cardinals Campeius and Wolsey were commissioned

from Rome to decide the question, they purposely protracted the sentence.

It happened that Dr. Gardiner (secretary) and Dr. Fox, defenders of the king in the above suit, came to the

house of Mr. Cressy to lodge, while the king removed to Greenwich. At supper, a conversation ensued with

Dr. Cranmer, who suggested that the question whether a man may marry his brother's wife or not, could be

easily and speedily decided by the Word of God, and this as well in the English courts as in those of any

foreign nation. The king, uneasy at the delay, sent for Dr. Gardiner and Dr. Fox to consult them, regretting

that a new commission must be sent to Rome, and the suit be endlessly protracted. Upon relating to the king

the conversation which had passed on the previous evening with Dr. Cranmer, his majesty sent for him, and

opened the tenderness of conscience upon the near affinity of the queen. Dr. Cranmer advised that the matter

should be referred to the most learned divines of Cambridge and Oxford, as he was unwilling to meddle in an

affair of such weight; but the king enjoined him to deliver his sentiments in writing, and to repair for that

purpose to the earl of Wiltshire's, who would accommodate him with books,a nd everything requisite for the


This Dr. Cranmer immediately did, and in his declaration not only quoted the authority of the Scriptures, of

general councils, and the ancient writers, but maintained that the bishop of Rome had no authority whatever

to dispense with the Word of God. The king asked him if he would stand by this bold declaration, to which

replying in the affirmative, he was deputed ambassador to Rome, in conjunction with the earl of Wiltshire,

Dr. Stokesley, Dr. Carne, Dr. Bennet, and others, previous to which, the marriage was discussed in most of

the universities of Christendom and at home.

When the pope presented his toe to be kissed, as customary, the earl of Wiltshire and his party refused.

Indeed, it is affirmed that a spaniel of the earl's attracted by the littler of the pope's toe, made a snap at it,

whence his holiness drew in his sacred foot, and kicked at the offender with the other.

Upon the pope demanding the cause of their embassy, the earl presented Dr. Cranmer's book, declaring that

his learned friends had come to defend it. The pope treated the embassy honorably, and appointed a day for

the discussion, which he delayed, as if afraid of the issue of the investigation. The earl returned, and Dr.

Cranmer, by the king's desire, visited the emperor, and was successful in bringing him over to his opinion.

Upon the doctor's return to England, Dr. Warham, archbishop of Canterbury, having quitted this transitory

life, Dr. Cranmer was deservedly, and by Dr. Warham's desire, elevated to that eminent station.

In this function, it may be said that he followed closely the charge of St. Paul. Diligent in duty, he rose at

five in the morning, and continued in study and prayer until nine: between then and dinner, he devoted to

temporal affairs. After dinner, if any suitors wanted hearing, he would determine their business with such an

affability that even the defaulters were scarcely displeased. Then he would play at chess for an hour, or see

others play, and at five o'clock he heard the Common Prayer read, and from this until supper he took the

recreation of walking. At supper his conversation was lively and entertaining; again he walked or amused

himself until nine o'clock, and then entered his study.

He ranked high in favor with King Henry, and even had the purity and the interest of the English Church

deeply at heart. His mild and forgiving disposition is recorded in the following instance. An ignorant priest,

in the country, had called Cranmer an ostler, and spoken very derogatory of his learning. Lord Cromwell

receiving information of it, the man was sent to the Fleet, and his case was told to the archbishop by a Mr.

Chertsey, a grocer, and a relation of the priest's. His grace, having sent for the offender, reasoned with him,

and solicited the priest to question him on any learned subject. This the man, overcome by the bishop's good

nature, and knowing his own glaring incapacity, declined, and entreated his forgiveness, which was

immediately granted, with a charge to employ his time better when he returned to his parish. Cromwell was

much vexed at the lenity displayed, but the bishop was ever more ready to receive injury than to retaliate in

any other manner than by good advice and good offices.

At the time that Cranmer was raised to be archbishop, he was king's chaplain, and archdeacon of Taunton; he

was also constituted by the pope the penitentiary general of England. It was considered by the king that

Cranmer would be obsequious; hence the latter married the king to Anne Boleyn, performed her coronation,

stood godfather to Elizabeth, the first child, and divorced the king from Catharine. Though Cranmer received

a confirmation of his dignity from the pope, he always protested against acknowledging any other authority

than the king's, and he persisted in the same independent sentiments when before Mary's commissioners in


One of the first steps after the divorce was to prevent preaching throughout his diocese, but this narrow

measure had rather a political view than a religious one, as there were many who inveighed against the king's

conduct. In his new dignity Cranmer agitated the question of supremacy, and by his powerful and just

arguments induced the parliament to "render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's." During Cranmer's

residence in Germany, 1531, he became acquainted with Ossiander, at Nuremberg, and married his niece, but

left her with him while on his return to England. After a season he sent for her privately, and she remained

with him until the year 1539, when the Six Articles compelled him to return her to her friends for a time.

It should be remembered that Ossiander, having obtained the approbation of his friend Cranmer, published

the laborious work of the Harmony of the Gospels in 1537. In 1534 the archbishop completed the dearest

wish of his heart, the removal of every obstacle to the perfection of the Reformation, by the subscription of

the nobles and bishops to the king's sole supremacy. Only Bishop Fisher and Sir Thomas More made

objection; and their agreement not to oppose the succession Cranmer was willing to consider at sufficient,

but the monarch would have no other than an entire concession.

Not long after, Gardiner, in a privat einterview with the king, spoke inimically of Cranmer, (whom he

maliciously hated) for assumiong the title of primate of all England, as derogatory to the supremacy of the

king. This created much jealousy against Cranmer, and his translation of the Bible was strongly opposed by

Stokesley, bishop of London. It is said, upon the demise of Queen Catharine, that her successor Anne Boleyn

rejoiced-a lesson this to show how shallow is the human judgment! since her own execution took place in the

spring of the following year, and the king, on the day following the beheading of this sacrificed lady, married

the beautiful Jane Seymour, a maid of honor to the late queen. Cranmer was ever the friend of Anne Boleyn,

but it was dangerous to oppose the will of the carnal tyrannical monarch.

In 1538, the Holy Scriptures were openly exposed to sale; and the places of worship overflowed everywhere

to hear its holy doctrines expounded. Upon the king's passing into a law the famous Six Articles, which went

nearly again to establish the essential tenets of the Romish creed, Cranmer shone forth with all the luster of a

Christian patiot, in resisting the doctrines they contained, and in which he was supported by the bishops of

Sarum, Worcester, Ely, and Rochester, the two former of whom resigned their bishoprics. The king, though

now in opposition to Cranmer, still revered the sincerity that marked his conduct. The death of Lord

Cromwell in the Tower, in 1540, the good friend of Cranmer, was a severe blow to the wavering Protestant

cause, but even now Cranmer, when he saw the tide directly adverse to the truth, boldly waited on the king in

person, and by his manly and heartfelt pleading, caused the Book of Articles to be passed on his side, to the

great confusion of his enemies, who had contemplated his fall as inevitable.

Cranmer now lived in as secluded a manner as possible, until the rancor of Winchester preferred some

articles against him, relative to the dangerous opinion he taught in his family, joined to other treasonable

charges. These the king himself delivered to Cranmer, and believing firmly the fidelity and assertions of

innocence of the accused prelate, he caused the matter to be deeply investigated, and Winchester and Dr.

Lenden, with Thornton and Barber, of the bishop's household, were found by the papers to be the real

conspirators. The mild, forgiving Cranmer would have interceded for all remission of publishment, had not

Henry, pleased with the subsidy voted by parliament, let them be discharged. These nefarious men, however,

again renewing their plots against Cranmer, fell victims to Henry's resentment, and Gardiner forever lost his

confidence. Sir G. Gostwick soon after laid charges against the archbishop, which Henry quashed, and the

primate was willing to forgive.

In 1544, the archbishop's palace at Canterbury was burnt, and his brother-in-law with others perished in it.

These various afflictions may serve to reconcile us to a humble state; for of what happiness could this great

and good man boast, since his life was constantly harassed either by political, religious, or natural crosses?

Again the inveterate Gardfiner laid high charges against the meek archbishop and would have sent him to the

Tower; but the king was his friend, gave him his signet that he might defend him, and in the Council not only

declared the bishop one of the best affected men in his realm, but sharpoly rebuked his accusers for their


A peace having been made, Henry, and the French king, Henry the Great, were unanimous to have the Mass

abolished in their kingdom, and Cranmer set about this great work; but the death of the English monarch, in

1546, suspended the precedure, and King Edwarrd his successor continued Cranmer in the same functions,

upon whose coronation he delivered a charge that will ever honor his memory, for its purity, freedom, and

truth. During this reign he prosecuted the glorious Reformation with unabated zeal, even in the year 1552,

when he was seized with a severe ague, from which it pleased God to restore him that he might testify by his

death the truth of that seed he had diligently sown.

The death of Edward, in 1553, exposed Cranmer to all the rage of his enemies. Though the archbishop was

among those who supported Mary's accession, he was attainted at the meeting of parliament, and in

November adjudged guilty of high treason at Guildhall, and degraded from his dignities. He sent a humble

letter to Mary, explaining the cause of his signing the will in favor of Edward, and in 1554 he wrote to the

Council, whom he pressed to obtain a pardon from the queen, by a letter delivered to Dr. Weston, but which

the letter opened, and on seeing its contents, basely returned.

Treason was a charge quite inapplicable to Cranmer, who supported the queen's right; while others, who had

favored Lady Jane were dismissed upon paying a small fine. A calumny was now spread against Cranmer

that he complied with some of the popish ceremonies to ingratiate himself with the queen, which he dared

publicly to disavow, and justified his articles of faith. The active part which the prelate had taken in the

divorce of Mary's mother had ever rankled deeply in the heart of the queen, and revenge formed a prominent

feature in the death of Cranmer.

We have in this work noticed the public disputations at Oxford, in which the talents of Cranmer, Ridley, and

Latimer shone so conspicuously, and tended to their condemnation. The first sentence was illegal, inasmuch

as the usurped power of the pope had not yet been re-established by law.

Being kept in prison until this was effected, a commission was despatched from Rome, appointing Dr.

Brooks to sit as the representative of his holiness, and Drs. Story and Martin as those of the queen. Cranmer

was willing to bow to the authority of Drs. Story and Martin, but against that of Dr. Brooks he protested.

Such were the remarks and replies of Cranmer, after a long examination, that Dr. Broks observed, "We come

to examine you, and methinks you examine us."

Being sent back to confinement, he received a citation to appear at Rome within eighteen days, but this was

impracticable, as he was imprisoned in England; and as he stated, even had he been at liberty, he was too

poor to employ an advocate. Absurd as it must appear, Cranmer was condemned at Rome, and on February

14, 1556, a new commission was appointed, by which, Thirlby, bishop of Ely, and Bonner, of London, were

deputed to sit in judgment at Christ-church, Oxford. By virtue of this instrument, Cranmer was gradually

degraded, by putting mere rags on him to represent the dress of an archbishop; then stripping him of his

attire, they took off his own gown, and put an old worn one upon him instead. This he bore unmoved, and his

enemies, finding that severity only rendered him more determined, tried the opposite course, and placed him

in the house of the dean of Christ-church, where he was treated with every indulgence.

This presented such a contrast to the three years' hard imprisonment he had received, that it threw him off his

guard. His open, generous nature was more easily to be seduced by a liberal conduct than by threats and

fetters. When Satan finds the Christian proof against one mode of attack, he tries another; and what form is

so seductive as smiles, rewards, and power, after a long, painful imprisonment? Thus it was with Cranmer:

his enemies promised him his former greatness if he would but recant, as well as the queen's favor, and this

at the very time they knew that his death was determined in council. To soften the path to apostasy, the first

paper brought for his signature was conceived in general terms; this once signed, five others were obtained

as explanatory of the first, until finally he put his hand to the following detestable instrument:

"I, Thomas Cranmer, late archbishop of Canterbury, do renounce, abhor, and detest all manner of heresies

and errors of Luther and Zuinglius, and all other teachings which are contrary to sound and true doctrine.

And I believe most constantly in my heart, and with my mouth I confess one holy and Catholic Church

visible, without which there is no salvation; and therefore I acknowledge the Bishop of Rome to be supreme

head on earth, whom I acknowledge to be the highest bishop and pope, and Christ's vicar, unto whom all

Christian people ought to be subject.

"And as concerning the sacraments, I believe and worship int he sacrament of the altar the body and blood of

Christ, being contained most truly under the forms of bread and wine; the bread, through the mighty power

of God being turned into the body of our Savior Jesus Christ, and the wine into his blood.

"And in the other six sacraments, also, (alike as in this) I believe and hold as the universal Church holdeth,

and the Church of Rome judgeth and determineth.

"Furthermore, I believe that there is a place of purgatory, where souls departed be punished for a time, for

whom the Church doth godily and wholesomely pray, like as it doth honor saints and make prayers to them.

"Finally, in all things I profess, that I do not otherwise believe than the Catholic Church and the Church of

Rome holdeth and teacheth. I am sorry that I ever held or thought otherwise. And I beseech Almighty God,

that of His mercy He will vouchsafe to forgive me whatsoever I have offended against God or His Church,

and also I desire and beseech all Christian people to pray for me.

"And all such as have been deceived either by mine example or doctrine, I require them by the blood of Jesus

Christ that they will return to the unity of the Church, that we may be all of one mind, without schism or


"And to conclude, as I submit myself to the Catholic Church of Christ, and to the supreme head thereof, so I

submit myself unto the most excellent majesties of Philip and Mary, king and queen of this realm of

England, etc., and to all other their laws and ordinances, being ready always as a faithful subject ever to obey

them. And God is my witness, that I have not done this for favor or fear of any person, but willingly and of

mine own conscience, as to the instruction of others."

"Let him that standeth take heed lest he fall!" said the apostle, and here was a falling off indeed! The papists

now triumphed in their turn: they had acquired all they wanted short of his life. His recantation was

immediately printed and dispersed, that it might have its due effect upon the astonished Protestants. But God

counter worked all the designs of the Catholics by the extent to which they carried the implacable

persecution of their prey. Doubtless, the love of life induced Cranmer to sign the above declaration: yet death

may be said to have been preferable to life to him who lay under the stings of a goaded conscience and the

contempt of every Gospel Christian; this principle he strongly felt in all its force and anguish.

The queen's revenge was only to be satiated by Cranmer's blood, and therefore she wrote an order to Dr.

Pole, to prepare a sermon to be preached March 21, directly before his martyrdom, at St. Mary's, Oxford. Dr.

Pole visited him the day previous, and was induced to believe that he would publicly deliver his sentiments

in confirmation of the articles to which he had subscribed. About nine in the morning of the day of sacrifice,

the queen's commissioners, attended by the magistrates, conducted the amiable unfortunate to St. Mary's

Church. His torn, dirty garb, the same in which they habited him upon his degradation, excited the

commiseration of the people. In the church he found a low mean stage, erected opposite to the pulpit, on

which being placed, he turned his face, and fervently prayed to God.

The church was crowded with persons of both persuasions, expecting to hear the justification of the late

apostasy: the Catholics rejoicing, and the Protestants deeply wounded in spirit at the deceit of the human

heart. Dr. Pole, in his sermon, represented Cranmer as having been guilty of the most atrocious crimes;

encouraged the deluded sufferer not to fear death, not to doubt the support of God in his torments, nor that

Masses would be said in all the churches of Oxford for the repose of his soul. The doctor then noticed his

conversion, and which he ascribed to the evident working of Almighty power and in order that the people

might be convinced of its reality, asked the prisoner to give them a sign. This Cranmer did, and begged the

congregation to pray for him, for he had committed many and grievous sins; but, of all, there was one which

awfully lay upon his mind, of which he would speak shortly.

During the sermon Cranmer wept bitter tears: lifting up his hands and eyes to heaven, and letting them fall,

as if unworthy to live: his grief now found vent in words: before his confession he fell upon his knees, and,

in the following words unveiled the deep contrition and agitation which harrowed up his soul.

"O Father of heaven! O Son of God, Redeemer of the world! O Holy Ghost, three persons all one God! have

mercy on me, most wretched caitiff and miserable sinner. I have offended both against heaven and earth,

more than my tongue can express. Whither then may I go, or whither may I flee? To heaven I may be

ashamed to lift up mine eyes and in earth I find no place of refuge or succor. To Thee, therefore, O Lord, do I

run; to Thee do I humble myself, saying, O Lord, my God, my sins be great, but yet have mercy upon me for

Thy great mercy. The great mystery that God became man, was not wrought for little or few offences. Thou

didst not give Thy Son, O Heavenly Father, unto death for small sins only, but for all the greatest sins of the

world, so that the sinner return to Thee with his whole heart, as I do at present. Wherefore, have mercy on

me, O God, whose property is always to have mercy, have mercy upon me, O Lord, for Thy great mercy. I

crave nothing for my own merits, but for Thy name's sake, that it may be hallowed thereby, and for Thy dear

Son, Jesus Christ's sake. And now therefore, O Father of Heaven, hallowed be Thy name," etc.

Then rising, he said he was desirous before his death to give them some pious exhortations by which God

might be glorified and themselves edified. He then descanted upon the danger of a love for the world, the

duty of obedience to their majesties, of love to one another and the necessity of the rich administering to the

wants of the poor. He quoted the three verses of the fifth chapter of James, and then proceeded, "Let them

that be rich ponder well these three sentences: for if they ever had occasion to show their charity, they have it

now at this present, the poor people being so many, and victual so dear.

"And now forasmuch as I am come to the last end of my life, whereupon hangeth all my life past, and all my

life to come, either to live with my master Christ for ever in joy, or else to be in pain for ever with the

wicked in hell, and I see before mine eyes presently, either heaven ready to receive me, or else hell ready to

swallow me up; I shall therefore declare unto you my very faith how I believe, without any color of

dissimulation: for now is no time to dissemble, whatsoever I have said or written in times past.

"First, I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, etc. And I believe every article of

the Catholic faith, every word and sentence taught by our Savior Jesus Christ, His apostles and prophets, in

the New and Old Testament.

"And now I come to the great thing which so much troubleth my conscience, more than any thing that ever I

did or said in my whole life, and that is the setting abroad of a writing contrary to the truth, which now here I

renounce and refuse, as things written with my hand contrary to the truth which I thought in my heart, and

written for fear of death, and to save my life, if it might be; and that is, all such bills or papers which I have

written or signed with my hand since my degradation, wherein I have written many things untrue. And

forasmuch as my hand hath offended, writing contrary to my heart, therefore my hand shall first be punished;

for when I come to the fire it shall first be burned.

"And as for the pope, I refuse him as Christ's enemy, and Antichrist, with all his false doctrine."

Upon the conclusion of this unexpected declaration, amazement and indignation were conspicuous in every

part of the church. The Catholics were completely foiled, their object being frustrated, Cranmer, like

Samson, having completed a greater ruin upon his enemies in the hour of death, than he did in his life.

Cranmer would have proceeded in the exposure of the popish doctrines, but the murmurs of the idolaters

drowned his voice, and the preacher gave an order to "lead the heretic away!" The savage command was

directly obeyed, and the lamb about to suffer was torn from his stand to the place of slaughter, insulted all

the way by the revilings and taunts of the pestilent monks and friars.

With thoughts intent upon a far higher object than the empty threats of man, he reached the spot dyed with

the blood of Ridley and Latimer. There he knelt for a short time in earnest devotion, and then arose, that he

might undress and prepare for the fire. Two friars who had been parties in prevailing upon him to abjure,

now endeavored to draw him off again from the truth, but he was steadfast and immovable in what he had

just professed, and publicly taught. A chain was provided to bind him to the stake, and after it had tightly

encircled him, fire was put to the fuel, and the flames began soon to ascend.

Then were the glorious sentiments of the martyr made manifest; then it was, that stretching out his right

hand, he held it unshrinkingly in the fire until it was burnt to a cinder, even before his body wa sinjured,

frequently exclaiming, "This unworthy right hand."

His body did abide the burning with such steadfastness that he seemed to have no more than the stake to

which he was bound; his eyes were lifted up to heaven, and he repeated "this unworthy right hand," as long

as his voice would suffer him; and using often the words of Stephen, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit," in the

greatness of the flame, he gave up the ghost.

The Vision of Three Ladders

When Robert Samuel was brought forth to be burned, certain there were that heard him declare what strange

things had happened unto him during the time of his imprisonment; to wit, that after he had famished or

pined with hunger two or three days together, he then fell into a sleep, as it were one half in a slumber, at

which time one clad all in white seemed to stand before him, who ministered comfort unto him by these


"Samuel, Samuel, be of good cheer, and take a good heart unto thee: for after this day shalt thou never be

either hungry or thirsty."

No less memorable it is, and worthy to be noted, concerning the three ladders which he told to divers he saw

in his sleep, set up toward heaven; of the which there was one somewhat longer than the rest, but yet at

length they became one, joining (as it were) all three together.

As this godly martyr was going to the fire, there came a certain maid to him, which took him about the neck,

and kissed him, who, being marked by them that were present, was sought for the next day after, to be had to

prison and burned, as the very party herself informed me: howbeit, as God of His goodness would have it,

she escaped their fiery hands, keeping herself secret in the town a good while after.

But as this maid, called Rose Nottingham, was marvellously preserved by the providence of God, so there

were other two honest women who did fall into the rage and fury of that time. The one was a brewer's wife,

the other was a shoemaker's wife, but both together now espoused to a new husband, Christ.

With these two was this maid aforesaid very familiar and well acquainted, who, on a time giving counsel to

the one of them, that she should convey herself away while she had time and space, had this answer at her

hand again: "I know well," saith she, "that it is lawful enough to fly away; which remedy you may use, if you

list. But my case standeth otherwise. I am tied to a husband, and have besides young children at home;

therefore I am minded, for the love of Christ and His truth, to stand to the extremity of the matter."

And so the next day after Samuel suffered, these two godly wives, the one called Anne Potten, the other

called Joan Trunchfield, the wife of Michael Trunchfield, shoemaker, of Ipswich, were apprehended, and had

both into one prison together. As they were both by sex and nature somewhat tender, so were they at first

less able to endure the straitness of the prison; and especially the brewer's wife was cast into marvellous

great agonies and troubles of mind thereby. But Christ, beholding the weak infirmity of His servant, did not

fail to help her when she was in this necessity; so at the length they both suffered after Samuel, in 1556,

February 19. And these, no dobut, were those two ladders, which, being joined with the third, Samuel saw

stretched up into heaven. This blessed Samuel, the servant of Christ, suffered the thirty-first of August, 1555.

The report goeth among some that were there present, and saw him burn, that his body in burning did shine

in the eyes of them that stood by, as bright and white as new-tried silver.

When Agnes Bongeor saw herself separated from her prison-fellows, what piteous moan that good woman

made, how bitterly she wept, what strange thoughts came into her mind, how naked and desolate she

esteemed herself, and into what plunge of despair and care her poor soul was brought, it was piteous and

wonderful to see; which all came because she went not with them to give her life in the defence of her Christ;

for of all things in the world, life was least looked for at her hands.

For that morning in which she was kept back from burning, had she put on a smock, that she had prepared

only for that purpose. And also having a child, a little young infant sucking on her, whom she kept with her

tenderly all the time that she was in prison, against that day likewise did she send away to another nurse, and

prepared herself presently to give herself for the testimony of the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ. So little

did she look for life, and so greatly did God's gifts work in her above nature, that death seemed a great deal

better welcome than life. After which, she began a little to stay herself, and gave her whole exercise to

reading and prayer, wherein she found no little comfort.

In a short time came a writ from London for the burning, which according to the effect thereof, was


Hugh Laverick and John Aprice

Here we perceive that neither the impotence of age nor the affliction of blindness, could turn aside the

murdering fangs of these Babylonish monsters. The first of these unfortunates was of the parish of Barking,

aged sixty-eight, a painter and a cripple. The other was blind, dark indeed in his visual faculties, but

intellectually illuminated with the radiance of the everlasting Gospel of truth. Inoffensive objects like these

were informed against by some of the sons of bigotry, and dragged before the prelatical shark of London,

where they underwent examination, and replied to the articles propounded to them, as other Christian

martyrs had done before. On the ninth day of May, in the consistory of St. Paul's, they were entreated to

recant, and upon refusal, were sent to Fulham, where Bonner, by way of a dessert after dinner, condemned

them to the agonies of the fire. Being consigned to the secular officers, May 15, 1556, they were taken in a

cart from Newgate to Stratford-le-Bow, where they were fastened to the stake. When Hugh Laverick was

secured by the chain, having no further occasion for his crutch, he threw it away saying to his fellow-martyr,

while consoling him, "Be of good cheer my brother; for my lord of London is our good physician; he will

heal us both shortly-thee of thy blindness, and me of my lameness." They sank down in the fire, to rise to


The day after the above martyrdoms, Catharine Hut, of Bocking, widow; Joan Horns, spinster, of Billerica;

Elizabeth Thackwel, spinster, of Great Burstead, suffered death in Smithfield.

Thomas Dowry. We have again to record an act of unpitying cruelty, exercised on this lad, whom Bishop

Hooper, had confirmed in the Lord and the knowledge of his Word.

How long this poor sufferer remained in prison is uncertain.

By the testimony of one John Paylor, register of Gloucester, we learn that when Dowry was brought before

Dr. Williams, then chancellor of Gloucester, the usual articles were presented him for subscription. From

these he dissented; and, upon the doctor's demanding of whom and where he had learned his heresies, the

youth replied, "Indeed, Mr. Chancellor, I learned from you in that very pulpit. On such a day (naming the

day) you said, in preaching upon the Sacrament, that it was to be exercised spiritually by faith, and not

carnally and really, as taught by the papists." Dr. Williams then bid him recant, as he had done; but Dowry

had not so learned his duty. "Though you," said he, "can so easily mock God, the world, and your own

conscience, yet will I not do so."

Preservation of George Crow and His Testament

This poor man, of Malden, May 26, 1556, put to sea, to lade in Lent with fuller's earth, but the boat, being

driven on land, filled with water, and everything was washed out of her; Crow, however, saved his

Testament, and coveted nothing else. With Crow was a man and a boy, whose awful situation became every

minute more alarming, as the boat was useless, and they were ten miles from land, expecting the tide should

in a few hours set in upon them. After prayer to God, they got upon the mast, and hung there for the space of

ten hours, when the poor boy, overcome by cold and exhaustion, fell off, and was drowned. The tide having

abated, Crow proposed to take down the masts, and float upon them, which they did; and at ten o'clock at

night they were borne away at the mercy of the waves. On Wednesday, in the night, Crow's companion died

through the fatigue and hunger, and he was left alone, calling upon God for succor. At length he was picked

up by a Captain Morse, bound to Antwerp, who had nearly steered away, taking him for some fisherman's

buoy floating in the sea. As soon as Crow was got on board, he put his hand in his bosom, and drew out his

Testament, which indeed was wet, but not otherwise injured. At Antwerp he was well received, and the

money he had lost was more than made good to him.

Executions at Stratford-le-Bow

At this sacrifice, which we are about to detail no less than thirteen were doomed to the fire.

Each one refusing to subscribe contrary to conscience, they were condemned, and the twenty-seventh of

June, 1556, was appointed for their execution at Stratford-le-Bow. Their constancy and faith glorified their

Redeemer, equally in life and in death.

Rev. Julius Palmer

This gentleman's life presents a singular instance of error and conversion. In the time of Edward, he was a

rigid and obstinate papist, so adverse to godly and sincere preaching, that he was even despised by his own

party; that this frame of mind should be changed, and he suffer persecution and death in Queen Mary's reign,

are among those events of omnipotence at which we wonder and admire.

Mr. Palmer was born at Coventry, where his father had been mayor. Being afterward removed to Oxford, he

became, under Mr. Harley, of Magdalen College, an elegant Latin and Greek scholar. He was fond of useful

disputation, possessed of a lively wit, and a strong memory. Indefatigable in private study, he rose at four in

the morning, and by this practice qualified himself to become reader in logic in Magralen College. The times

of Edward, however, favoring the Reformation, Mr. Palmer became frequently punished for his contempt of

prayer and orderly behavior, and was at length expelled the house.

He afterwards embraced the doctrines of the Reformation, which occasioned his arrest and final


A certain nobleman offered him his life if he would recant.

"If so," said he, "thou wilt dwell with me. And if thou wilt set thy mind to marriage, I will procure thee a

wife and a farm, and help to stuff and fit thy farm for thee. How sayst thou?"

Palmer thanked him very courteously, but very modestly and reverently concluded that as he had already in

two places renounced his living for Christ's sake, so he would with God's grace be ready to surrender and

yield up his life also for the same, when God should send time.

When Sir Richard perceived that he would by no means relent:

"Well, Palmer," saith he, "then I perceive one of us twain shall be damned: for we be of two faiths, and

certain I am there is but one faith that leadeth to life and salvation."

Palmer: "O sir, I hope that we both shall be saved."

Sir Richard: "How may that be?"

Palmer: "Right well, sir. For as it hath pleased our merciful Savior, according to the Gospel's parable, to call

me at the third hour of the day, even in my flowers, at the age of four and twenty years, even so I trust He

hath called, and will call you, at the eleventh hour of this your old age, and give you everlasting life for your


Sir Richard: "Sayest thou so? Well, Palmer, well, I would I might have thee but one month in my house: I

doubt not but I would convert thee, or thou shouldst convert me."

Then said Master Winchcomb, "Take pity on thy golden years, and pleasant flowers of lusty youth, before it

be too late."

Palmer: "Sir, I long for those springing flowers that shall never fade away."

He was tried on the fifteenth of July, 1556, together with one Thomas Askin, fellow prisoner. Askin and one

John Guin had been sentenced the day before, and Mr. Palmer, on the fifteenth, was brought up for final

judgment. Execution was ordered to follow the sentence, and at five o'clock in the same afternoon, at a place

called the Sand-pits, these three martyrs were fastened to a stake. After devoutly praying together, they sung

the Thirty-first Psalm.

When the fire was kindled, and it had seized their bodies, without an appearance of enduring pain, they

continued to cry, "Lord Jesus, strengthen us! Lord Jesus receive our souls!" until animation was suspended

and human suffering was past. It is remarkable, that, when their heads had fallen together in a mass as it were

by the force of the flames, and the spectators thought Palmer as lifeless, his tongue and lips again moved,

and were heard to pronounce the name of Jesus, to whom be glory and honor forever!

Joan Waste and Others

This poor, honest woman, blind from her birth, and unmarried, aged twenty-two, was of the parish of

Allhallows, Derby. Her father was a barber, and also made ropes for a living: in which she assisted him, and

also learned to knit several articles of apparel. Refusing to communicate with those who maintained

doctrines contrary to those she had learned in the days of the pious Edward, she was called before Dr.

Draicot, the chancellor of Bishop Blaine, and Peter Finch, official of Derby.

With sophisitcal arguments and threats they endeavored to confound the poor girl; but she proffered to yield

to the bishop's doctrine, if he would answer for her at the Day of Judgment, (as pious Dr. Taylor had done in

his sermons) that his belief of the real presence of the Sacrament was true. The bishop at first answered that

he would; but Dr. Draicot reminding him that he might not in any way answer for a heretic, he withdrew his

confirmation of his own tenets; and she replied that if their consciences would not permit them to answer at

God's bar for that truth they wished her to subscribe to, she would answer no more questions. Sentence was

then adjudged, and Dr. Draicot appointed to preach her condemned sermon, which took place August 1,

1556, the day of her martyrdom. His fulminating discourse being finished, the poor, sightless object was

taken to a place called Windmill Pit, near the town, where she for a time held her brother by the hand, and

then prepared herself for the fire, calling upon the pitying multitude to pray with her, and upon Christ to have

mercy upon her, until the glorious light of the everlasting Sun of righteousness beamed upon her departed


In November, fifteen martyrs were imprisoned in Canterbury castle, of whom all were either burnt or

famished. Among the latter were J. Clark, D. Chittenden, W. Foster of Stonc, Alice Potkins, and J. Archer, of

Cranbrooke, weaver. The two first of these had not received condemnation, but the others were sentenced to

the fire. Foster, at his examination, observed upon the utility of carrying lighted candles about on

Candlemas-day, that he might as well carry a pitchfork; and that a gibbet would have as good an effect as the


We have now brought to a close the sanguinary proscriptions of the merciless Mary, in the year 1556, the

number of which amounted to above EIGHTY-FOUR!

The beginning of the year 1557, was remarkable for the visit of Cardinal Pole to the University of

Cambridge, which seemed to stand in need of much cleansing from heretical preachers and reformed

doctrines. One object was also to play the popish farce of trying Martin Bucer and Paulus Phagius, who had

been buried about three or four years; for which purpose the churches of St. Mary and St. Michael, where

they lay, were interdicted as vile and unholy places, unfit to worship God in, until they were perfumed and

washed with the pope's holy water, etc., etc. The trumpery act of citing these dead reformers to appear, not

having had the least effect upon them, on January 26, sentence of condemnation was passed, part of which

ran in this manner, and may serve as a specimen of proceedings of this nature: "We therefore pronounce the

said Martin Bucer and Paulus Phagius excommunicated and anathematized, as well by the common law, as

by letters of process; and that their memory be condemned, we also condemn their bodies and bones (which

in that wicked time of schism, and other heresies flourishing in this kingdom, were rashly buried in holy

ground) to be dug up, and cast far from the bodies and bones of the faithful, according to the holy canons,

and we command that they and their writings, if any be there found, be publicly burnt; and we interdict all

persons whatsoever of this university, town, or places adjacent, who shall read or conceal their heretical

book, as well by the common law, as by our letters of process!"

After the sentence thus read, the bishop commanded their bodies to be dug out of their graves, and being

degraded from holy orders, delivered them into the hands of the secular power; for it was not lawful for such

innocent persons as they were, abhorring all bloodshed, and detesting all desire of murder, to put any man to


February 6, the bodies, enclosed as they were in chests, were carried into the midst of the market place at

Cambrdige, accompanied by a vast concourse of people. A great post was set fast in the ground, to which the

chests were affixed with a large iron chain, and bound round their centers, in the same manner as if the dead

bodies had been alive. When the fire began to ascend, and caught the coffins, a number of condemned books

were also launched into the flames, and burnt. Justice, however, was done to the memories of these pious and

learned men in Queen Elizabeth's reign, when Mr. Ackworth, orator of the university, and Mr. J. Pilkington,

pronounced orations in honor of their memory, and in reprobation of their Catholic persecutors.

Cardinal Pole also inflicted his harmless rage upon the dead body of Peter Martyr's wife, who, by his

command, was dug out of her grave, and buried on a distant dunghill, partly because her bones lay near St.

Fridewide's relics, held once in great esteem in that college, and partly because he wished to purify Oxford of

heretical remains as well as Cambridge. In the succeeding reign, however, her remains were restored to their

former cemetery, and even intermingled with those of the Catholic saint, to the utter astonishment and

mortification of the disciples of his holiness the pope.

Cardinal Pole published a list of fifty-four articles, containing instructions to the clergy of his diocese of

Canterbury, some of which are too ludicrous and puerile to excite any other sentiment than laughter in these


Persecutions in the Diocese of Canterbury

In the month of February, the following persons were committed to prison: R. Coleman, of Waldon, laborer;

Joan Winseley, of Horsley Magna, spinster; S. Glover, of Rayley; R. Clerk, of Much Holland, mariner; W.

Munt, of Much Bentley, sawyer; Marg. Field, of Ramsey, spinster; R. Bongeor, currier; R. Jolley, mariner;

Allen Simpson, Helen Ewire, C. Pepper, widow; Alice Walley (who recanted), W. Bongeor, glazier, all of

Colchester; R. Atkin, of Halstead, weaver; R. Barcock, of Wilton, carpenter; R. George, of Westbarhonlt,

laborer; R. Debnam of Debenham, weaver; C. Warren, of Cocksall, spinster; Agnes Whitlock, of Dovercourt,


Rose Allen, spinster; and T. Feresannes, minor; both of Colchester.

These persons were brought before Bonner, who would have immediately sent them to execution, but

Cardinal Pole was for more merciful measures, and Bonner, in a letter of his to the cardinal, seems to be

sensible that he had displeased him, for he has this expression: "I thought to have them all hither to Fulham,

and to have given sentence against them; nevertheless, perceiving by my last doing that your grace was

offended, I thought it my duty, before I proceeded further, to inform your grace." This circumstance verifies

the account that the cardinal was a humane man; and though a zealous Catholic, we, as Protestants, are

willing to render him that honor which his merciful character deserves. Some of the bitter persecutors

denounced him to the pope as a favorer of heretics, and he was summoned to Rome, but Queen Mary, by

particular entreaty, procured his stay. However, before his latter end, and a little before his last journey from

Rome to England, he was strongly suspected of favoring the doctrine of Luther.

As in the last sacrifice four women did honor to the truth, so in the following auto da fe we have the like

number of females and males, who suffered June 30, 1557, at Canterbury, and were J. Fishcock, F. White, N.

Pardue, Barbary Final, widow, Bardbridge's widow, Wilson's wife, and Benden's wife.

Of this group we shall more particularly notice Alice Benden, wife of Edward Bender, of Staplehurst, Kent.

She had been taken up in October, 1556, for non-attendance, and released upon a strong injunction to mind

her conduct. Her husband was a bigoted Catholic, and publicly speaking of his wife's contumacy, she was

conveyed to Canterbury Castle, where knowing, when she should be removed to the bishop's prison, she

should be almost starved upon three farthings a day, she endeavored to prepare herself for this suffering by

living upon twopence halfpenny per day.

On January 22, 1557, her husband wrote to the bishop that if his wife's brother, Roger Hall, were to be kept

from consoling and relieving her, she might turn; on this account, she was moved to a prison called

Monday's Hole. Her brother sought diligently for her, and at the end of five weeks providentially heard her

voice in the dungeon, but could not otherwise relieve her, than by putting soe money in a loaf, and sticking it

on a long pole. Dreadful must have been the situation of this poor victim, lying on straw, between stone

walls, without a change of apparel, or the meanest requisites of cleanliness, during a period of nine weeks!

On March 25 she was summoned before the bishop, who, with rewards, offered her liberty if she would go

home and be comfortable; but Mrs. Benden had been inured to suffering, and, showing him her contracted

limbs and emaciated appearance, refused to swerve from the truth. She was however removed from this

black hole to the West Gate, whence, about the end of April, she was taken out to be condemned, and then

committed to the castle prison until the nineteenth of June, the day of her burning. At the stake, she gave her

handkerchief to one John Banks, as a memorial; and from her waist she drew a white lace, desiring him to

give it to her brother, and tell him that it was the last band that had bound her, except the chain; and to her

father she returned a shilling he had sent her.

The whole of these seven martyrs undressed themselves with alacrity, and, being prepared, knelt down, and

prayed with an earnestness and Christian spirit that even the enemies of the cross were affected. After

invocation made together, they were secured to the stake, and, being encompassed with the unsparing flames,

they yielded their souls into the hands of the living Lord.

Matthew Plaise, weaver, a sincere and shrewd Christian, of Stone, Kent, was brought before Thomas, bishop

of Dover, and other inquisitors, whom he ingeniously teased by his indirect answers, of which the following

is a specimen.

Dr. Harpsfield. Christ called the bread His body; what dost thou say it is?

Plaise. I do believe it was that which He gave them.

Dr. H. What as that?

P. That which He brake.

Dr. H. What did He brake?

P. That which He took.

Dr. H. What did He take?

P. I say, what He gave them, that did they eat indeed.

Dr. H. Well, then, thou sayest it was but bread which the disciples did eat.

P. I say, what He gave them, that did they eat indeed.

A very long disputation followed, in which Plaise was desired to humble himself to the bishop; but this he

refused. Whether this zealous person died in prison, was executed, or delivered, history does not mention.

Rev. John Hullier

Rev. John Hullier was brought up at Eton College, and in process of time became curate of Babram, three

miles from Cambridge, and went afterward to Lynn; where, opposing the superstition of the papists, he was

carried before Dr. Thirlby, bishop of Ely, and sent to Cambridge castle: here he lay for a time, and was then

sent to Tolbooth prison, where, after three months, he was brought to St. Mary's Church, and condemned by

Dr. Fuller. On Maunday Thursday he was brought to the stake: while undressing, he told the people to bear

witness that he was about to suffer in a just cause, and exhorted them to believe that there was no other rock

than Jesus Christ to build upon. A priest named Boyes, then desired the mayor to silence him. After praying,

he went meekly to the stake, and being bound with a chain, and placed in a pitch barrel, fire was applied to

the reeds and wood; but the wind drove the fire directly to his back, which caused him under the severe

agony to pray the more fervently. His friends directed the executioner to fire the pile to windward of his face,

which was immediately done.

A quantity of books were now thrown into the fire, one of which (the Communion Service) he caught,

opened it, and joyfully continued to read it, until the fire and smoke deprived him of sight; then even, in

earnest prayer, he pressed the book to his heart, thanking God for bestowing on him in his last moments this

precious gift.

The day being hot, the fire burnt fiercely; and at a time when the spectators supposed he was no more, he

suddenly exclaimed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit," and meekly resigned his life. He was burnt on Jesus

Green, not far from Jesus College. He had gunpowder given him, but he was dead before it became ignited.

This pious sufferer afforded a singular spectacle; for his flesh was so burnt from the bones, which continued

erect, that he presented the idea of a skeleton figure chained to the stake. His remains were eagerly seized by

the multitude, and venerated by all who admired his piety or detested inhuman bigotry.

Simon Miller and Elizabeth Cooper

In the following month of July, received the crown of martyrdom. Miller dwelt at Lynn, and came to

Norwich, where, planting himself at the door of one of the churches, as the people came out, he requested to

know of them where he could go to receive the Communion. For this a priest brought him before Dr.

Dunning, who committed him to ward; but he was suffered to go home, and arrange his affairs; after which

he returned to the bishop's house, and to his prison, where he remained until the thirteenth of July, the day of

his burning.

Elizabeth Coope, wife of a pewterer, of St. Andrews, Norwich, had recanted; but tortured for what she had

done by the worm which dieth not, she shortly after voluntarily entered her parish church during the time of

the popish service, and standing up, audibly proclaimed that she revoked her former recantation, and

cautioned the people to avoid her unworthy example. She was taken from her own house by Mr. Sutton the

sheriff, who very reluctantly complied with the letter of the law, as they had been servants and in friendship

together. At the stake, the poor sufferer, feeling the fire, uttered the cry of "Oh!" upon which Mr. Miller,

putting his hand behind him towards her, desired her to be of a good courage, "for (said he) good sister, we

shall have a joyful and a sweet supper." Encouraged by this example and exhortation, she stood the fiery

ordeal without flinching, and, with him, proved the power of faith over the flesh.

Executions at Colchester

It was before mentioned that twenty-two persons had been sent up from Colchester, who upon a slight

submission, were afterward released. Of these, William Munt, of Much Bentley, husbandman, with Alice, his

wife, and Rose Allin, her daughter, upon their return home, abstained from church, which induced the

bigoted priest secretly to write to Bonner. For a short time they absconded, but returniong again, March 7,

one Edmund Tyrrel, (a relation of the Tyrrel who murdered King Edward V and his brother) with the

officers, entered the house while Munt and his wife were in bed, and informed them that they must go to

Colchester Castle. Mrs. Munt at that time being very ill, requested her daughter to get her some drink; leave

being permitted, Rose took a candle and a mug; and in returning through the house was met by Tyrrel, who

cautioned her to advise her parents to become good Catholics. Rose briefly informed him that they had the

Holy Ghost for their adviser; and that she was ready to lay down her own life for the same cause. Turning to

his company, he remarked that she was willing to burn; and one of them told him to prove her, and see what

she would do by and by. The unfeeling wretch immediately executed this project; and, seizing the young

woman by the wrist, he held the lighted candle under her hand, burning it crosswise on the back, until the

tendons divided from the flesh, during which he loaded her with many opprobrious epithets. She endured his

rage unmoved, and then, when he had ceased the torture, she asked him to begin at her feet or head, for he

need not fear that his employer would one day repay him. After this she took the drink to her mother.

This cruel act of torture does not stand alone on record.

Bonner had served a poor blind harper in nearly the same manner, who had steadily maintained a hope that if

every joint of him were to be burnt, he should not fly from the faith. Bonner, upon this, privately made a

signal to his men, to bring a burning coal, which they placed in the poor man's hand, and then by force held it

closed, until it burnt into the flesh deeply.

George Eagles, tailor, was indicted for having prayed that 'God would turn Queen Mary's heart, or take her

away'; the ostensible cause of his death was his religion, for treason could hardly be imagined in praying for

the reformation of such an execrable soul as that of Mary. Being condemned for this crime, he was drawn to

the place of execution upon a sledge, with two robbers, who were executed with him. After Eagles had

mounted the ladder, and been turned off a short time, he was cut down before he was at all insensible; a

bailiff, named William Swallow, then dragged him to the sledge, and with a common blunt cleaver, hacked

off the head; in a manner equally clumsy and cruel, he opened his body and tore out the heart.

In all this suffering the poor martyr repined not, but to the last called upon his Savior. The fury of these

bigots did not end here; the intestines were burnt, and the body was quartered, the four parts being sent to

Colchester, Harwich, Chelmsford, and St. Rouse's. Chelmsford had the honor of retaining his head, which

was affixed to a long pole in the market place. In time it was blown down, and lay several days in the street,

until it was buried at night in the churchyard. God's judgment not long after fell upon Swallow, who in his

old age became a beggar, and who was affected with a leprosy that made him obnoxious even to the animal

creation; nor did Richard Potts, who troubled Eagles in his dying moments, escape the visiting hand of God.

Mrs. Joyce Lewes

This lady was the wife of Mr. T. Lewes, of Manchester. She had received the Romish religion as true, until

the burning of that pious martyr, Mr. Saunders, at Coventry. Understanding that his death arose from a

refusal to receive the Mass, she began to inquire into the ground of his refusal, and her conscience, as it

began to be enlightened, became restless and alarmed. In this inquietude, she resorted to Mr. John Glover,

who lived near, and requested that he would unfold those rich sources of Gospel knowledge he possessed,

particularly upon the subject of transubstantiation. He easily succeeded in convincing her that the mummery

of popery and the Mass were at variance with God's most holy Word, and honestly reproved her for

following too much the vanities of a wicked world. It was to her indeed a word in season, for she soon

became weary of her former sinful life and resolved to abandon the Mass and dilatrous worship. Though

compelled by her husband's violence to go to church, her contempt of the holy water and other ceremonies

was so manifest, that she was accused before the bishop for despising the sacramentals.

A citation, addressed to her, immediately followed, which was given to Mr. Lewes, who, in a fit of passion,

held a dagger to the throat of the officer, and made him eat it, after which he caused him to drink it down,

and then sent him away. But for this the bishop summoned Mr. Lewest before him as well as his wife; the

former readily submitted, but the latter resolutely affirmed, that, in refusing holy water, she neither offended

God, nor any part of his laws. She was sent home for a month, her husband being bound for her appearance,

during which time Mr. Glover impressed upon her the necessity of doing what she did, not from self-vanity,

but for the honor and glory of God.

Mr. Glover and others earnestly exhorted Lewest to forfeit the money he was bound in, rather than subject

his wife to certain death; but he was deaf to the voice of humanity, and delivered her over to the bishop, who

soon found sufficient cause to consign her to a loathsome prison, whence she was several times brought for

examination. At the last time the bishop reasoned with her upon the fitness of her coming to Mass, and

receiving as sacred the Sacrament and sacramentals of the Holy Ghost. "If these things were in the Word of

God," said Mrs. Lewes, "I would with all my heart receive, believe, and esteem them." The bishop, with the

most ignorant and impious effrontery, replied, "If thou wilt believe no more than what is warranted by

Scriptures, thou art in a state of damnation!" Astonished at such a declaration, this worthy sufferer ably

rejoined that his words were as impure as they were profane.

After condemnation, she lay a twelvemonth in prison, the sheriff not being willing to put her to death in his

time, though he had been but just chosen. When her death warrant came from London, she sent for some

friends, whom she consulted in what manner her death might be more glorious to the name of God, and

injurious to the cause of God's enemies. Smilingly, she said: "As for death, I think but lightly of. When I

know that I shall behold the amiable countenance of Christ my dear Savior, the ugly face of death does not

much trouble me." The evening before she suffered, two priests were anxious to visit her, but she refused

both their confession and absolution, when she could hold a better communication with the High Priest of

souls. About three o'clock in the morning, Satan began to shoot his fiery darts, by putting into her mind to

doubt whether she was chosen to eternal life, and Christ died for her. Her friends readily pointed out to her

those consolatory passages of Scripture which comfort the fainting heart, and treat of the Redeemer who

taketh away the sins of the world.

About eight o'clock the sheriff announced to her that she had but an hour to live; she was at first cast down,

but this soon passed away, and she thanked God that her life was about to be devoted to His service. The

sheriff granted permission for two friends to accompany her to the stake-an indulgence for which he was

afterward severely handled. Mr. Reniger and Mr. Bernher led her to the place of execution; in going to

which, from its distance, her great weakness, and the press of the people, she had nearly fainted. Three times

she prayed fervently that God would deliver the land from popery and the idolatrous Mass; and the people

for the most part, as well as the sheriff, said Amen.

When she had prayed, she took the cup, (which had been filled with water to refresh her,) and said, "I drink

to all them that unfeignedly love the Gospel of Christ, and wish for the abolition of popery." Her friends, and

a great many women of the place, drank with her, for which most of them afterward were enjoined penance.

When chained to the stake, her countenance was cheerful, and the roses of her cheeks were not abated. Her

hands were extended towards heaven until the fire rendered them powerless, when her soul was received int

o the arms of the Creator. The duration of her agony was but short, as the under-sheriff, at the request of her

friends, had prepared such excellent fuel that she was in a few minutes overwhelmed with smoke and flame.

The case of this lady drew a tear of pity from everyone who had a heart not callous to humanity.

Executions at Islington

About the seventeenth of September, suffered at Islington the following four professors of Christ: Ralph

Allerton, James Austoo, Margery Austoo, and Richard Roth.

James Austoo and his wife, of St. Allhallows, Barking, London, were sentenced for not believing in the

presence. Richard Roth rejected the seven Sacraments, and was accused of comforting the heretics by the

following letter written in his own blood, and intended to have been sent to his friends at Colchester:

"O dear Brethren and Sisters,

"How much reason have you to rejoice in God, that He hath given you such faith to overcome this

bloodthirsty tyrant thus far! And no doubt He that hath begun that good work in you, will fulfill it unto the

end. O dear hearts in Christ, what a crown of glory shall ye receive with Christ in the kingdom of God! O

that it had been the good will of God that I had been ready to have gone with you; for I lie in my lord's Littleease

by day, and in the night I lie in the Coalhouse, apart from Ralph Allerton, or any other; and we look

every day when we shall be condemned; for he said that I should be burned within ten days before Easter;

but I lie still at the pool's brink, and every man goeth in before me; but we abide patiently the Lord's leisure,

with many bonds, in fetters and stocks, by which we have received great joy of God. And now fare you well,

dear brethren and sisters, in this world, but I trust to see you in the heavens face to face.

"O brother Munt, with your wife and my sister Rose, how blessed are you in the Lord, that God hath found

you worthy to suffer for His sake! with all the rest of my dear brethren and sisters known and unknown. O be

joyful even unto death. Fear it not, saith Christ, for I have overcome death. O dear heart, seeing that Jesus

Christ will be our help, O tarry you the Lord's leisure. Be strong, let your hearts be of good comfort, and

wait you still for the Lord. He is at hand. Yea, the angel of the Lord pitcheth his tent round about them that

fear him, and delivereth them which way he seeth best. For our lives are in the Lord's hands; and they can

do nothing unto us before God suffer them. Therefore give all thanks to God.

"O dear hearts, you shall be clothed in long white garments upon the mount of Sion, with the multitude of

saints, and with Jesus Christ our Savior, who will never forsake us. O blessed virgins, ye have played the

wise virgins' part, in that ye have taken oil in your lamps that ye may go in with the Bridegroom, when he

cometh, into the everlasting joy with Him. But as for the foolish, they shall be shut out, because they made

not themselves ready to suffer with Christ, neither go about to take up His cross. O dear hearts, how

precious shall your death be in the sight of the Lord! for dear is the death of His saints. O fare you well, and

pray. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen, Amen. Pray, pray, pray!

"Written by me, with my own blood,


This letter, so justly denominating Bonner the "bloodthirsty tyrant," was not likely to excite his compassion.

Roth accused him of bringing them to secret examination by night, because he was afraid of the people by

day. Resisting every temptation to recant, he was condemned, and on September 17, 1557, these four martyrs

perished at Islington, for the testimony of the Lamb, who was slain that they might be of the redeemed of


John Noyes, a shoemaker, of Laxfield, Suffolk, was taken to Eye, and at midnight, September 21, 1557, he

was brought from Eye to Laxfield to be burned. On the following morning he was led to the stake, prepared

for the horrid sacrifice. Mr. Noyes, on coming to the fatal spot, knelt down, prayed, and rehearsed the

Fiftieth Psalm. When the chain enveloped him, he said, "Fear not them that kill the body, but fear him that

can kill both body and soul, and cast it into everlasting fire!" As one Cadman placed a fagot against him, he

blessed the hour in which he was born to die for the truth; and while trusting only upon the all-sufficient

merits of the Redeemer, fire was set to the pile, and the blazing fagots in a short time stifled his last words,

"Lord, have mercy on me! Christ, have mercy upon me!" The ashes of the body were buried in a pit, and

with them one of his feet, whole to the ankle, with the stocking on.

Mrs. Cicely Ormes

This young martyr, aged twenty-two, was the wife of Mr. Edmund Ormes, worsted weaver of St. Lawrence,

Norwich. At the death of Miller and Elizabeth Cooper, before mentioned, she had said that she would pledge

them of the same cup they drank of. For these words she was brought to the chanellor, who would have

discharged her upon promising to go to church, and to keep her belief to herself. As she would not consent to

this, the chancellor urged that he had shown more lenity to her than any other person, and was unwilling to

condemn her, because she was an ignorant foolish woman; to this she replied, (perhaps with more

shrewdness than he expected,) that however great his desire might be to spare her sinful flesh, it could not

equal her inclination to surrender it up in so great a quarrel. The chancellor then pronounced the fiery

sentence, and September 23, 1557, she was brought to the stake, at eight o'clock in the morning.

After declaring her faith to the people, she laid her hand on the stake, and said, "Welcome, thou cross of

Christ." Her hand was sooted in doing this, (for it was the same stake at which Miller and Cooper were

burnt,) and she at first wiped it; but directly after again welcomed and embraced it as the "sweet cross of

Christ." After the tormentors had kindled the fire, she said, "My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit

doth rejoice in God my Savior." Then crossing her hands upon her breast, and looking upwards with the

utmost serenity, she stood the fiery furnace. Her hands continued gradually to rise until the sinews were

dried, and then they fell. She uttered no sigh of pain, but yielded her life, an emblem of that celestial paradise

in which is the presence of God, blessed forever.

It might be contended that this martyr voluntarily sought her own death, as the chancellor scarcely exacted

any other penance of her than to keep her belief to herself; yet it should seem in this instance as if God had

chosen her to be a shining light, for a twelve-month before she was taken, she had recanted; but she was

wretched until the chancellor was informed, by letter, that she repented of her recantation from the bottom of

her heart. As if to compensate for her former apostasy, and to convince the Catholics that she meant to more

to compromise for her personal security, she boldly refused his friendly offer of permitting her to temporize.

Her courage in such a cause deserves commendation-the cause of Him who has said, "Whoever is ashamed

of me on earth, of such will I be ashamed in heaven."

Rev. John Rough

This pious martyr was a Scotchman. At the age of seventeen, he entered himself as one of the order of Black

Friars, at Stirling, in Scotland. He had been kept out of an inheritance by his friends, and he took this step in

revenge for their conduct to him. After being there sixteen years, Lord Hamilton, earl of Arran, taking a

liking to him, the archbishop of St. Andrew's induced the provincial of the house to dispense with his habit

and order; and he thus became the earl's chaplain. He remained in this spiritual employment a year, and in

that time God wrought in him a saving knowledge of the truth; for which reason the earl sent him to preach

in the freedom of Ayr, where he remained four years; but finding danger there from the religious complexion

of the times, and learning that there was much Gospel freedom in England, he travelled up to the duke of

Somerset, then Lord Protector of England, who gave him a yearly salary of twenty pounds, and authorized

him, to preach at Carlisle, Berwick, and Newcastle, where he married. He was afterward removed to a

benefice at Hull, in which he remained until the death of Edward VI.

In consequence of the tide of persecution then setting in, he fled with his wife to Friesland, and at Nordon

they followed the occupation of knitting hose, caps, etc., for subsistence. Impeded in his business by the

want of yarn, he came over to England to procure a quantity, and on November 10, arrived in London, where

he soon heard of a secret society of the faithful, to whom he joined himself, and was in a short time elected

their minister, in which occupation he strengthened them in every good resolution.

On December 12, through the information of one Taylor, a member of the society, Mr. Rough, with Cuthbert

Symson and others, was taken up in the Saracen's Head, Islington, where, under the pretext of coming to see

a play, their religious exercises were holden. The queen's vice-chamberlain conducted Rough and Symson

before the Council, in whose presence they were charged with meeting to celebrate the Communion. The

Council wrote to Bonner and he lost no time in this affair of blood. In three days he had him up, and on the

next (the twentieth) resolved to condemn him. The charges laid against him were, that he, being a priest, was

married, and that he had rejected the service in the Latin tongue. Rough wanted not arguments to reply to

these flimsy tenets. In short, he was degraded and condemned.

Mr. Rough, it should be noticed, when in the north, in Edward VI's reign, had saved Dr. Watson's life, who

afterward sat with Bishop Bonner on the bench. This ungrateful prelate, in return for the kind act he had

received, boldly accused Mr. Rough of being the most pernicious heretic in the country. The godly minister

reproved him for his malicious spirit; he affirmed that, during the thirty years he had lived, he had never

bowed the knee to Baal; and that twice at Rome he had seen the pope born about on men's shoulders with the

false-named Sacrament carried before him, presenting a true picture of the very Antichrist; yet was more

reverence shown to him than to the wafer, which they accounted to be their God. "Ah?" said Bonner, rising,

and making towards him, as if he would have torn his garment, "Hast thou been at Rome, and seen our holy

father the pope, and dost thou blaspheme him after this sort?" This said, he fell upon him, tore off a piece of

his beard, and that the day might begin to his own satisfaction, he ordered the object of his rage to be burnt

by half-past five the following morning.

Cuthbert Symson

Few professors of Christ possessed more activity and zeal than this excellent person. He not only labored to

preserve his friends from the contagion of popery, but he labored to guard them against the terrors of

persecution. He was deacon of the little congregation over which Mr. Rough presided as minister.

Mr. Symson has written an account of his own sufferings, which he cannot detail better than in his own


"On the thirteenth of December, 1557, I was committed by the Council to the Tower of London. On the

following Thursday, I was called into the ward-room, before the constable of the Tower, and the recorder of

London, Mr. Cholmly, who commanded me to inform them of the names of those who came to the English

service. I answered that I would declare nothing; in consequence of my refusal, I was set upon a rack of iron,

as I judge for the space of three hours!

"They then asked me if I would confess: I answered as before.

After being unbound, I was carried back to my lodging. The Sunday after I was brought to the same place

again, before the lieutenant and recorder of London, and they examined me. As I had answered before, so I

answered now. Then the lieutenant swore by God I should tell; after which my two forefingers were bound

together, and a small arrow placed between them, they drew it through so fast that the blood followed, and

the arrow brake.

"After enduring the rack twice again, I was retaken to my lodging, and ten days after the lieutenant asked me

if I would not now confess that which they had before asked of me. I answered, that I had already said as

much as I would. Three weeks after I was sent to the priest, where I was greatly assaulted, and at whose

hand I received the pope's curse, for bearing witness of the resurrection of Christ. And thus I commend you

to God, and to the Word of His grace, with all those who unfeignedly call upon the name of Jesus; desiring

God of His endless mercy, through the merits of His dear Son Jesus Christ, to bring us all to His everlasting

Kingdom, Amen. I praise God for His great mercy shown upon us. Sing Hosanna to the Highest with me,

Cuthbert Symson. God forgive my sins! I ask forgiveness of all the world, and I forgive all the world, and

thus I leave the world, in the hope of a joyful resurrection!"

If this account be duly considered, what a picture of repeated tortures does it present! But even the cruelty of

the narration is exceeded by the patient meekness with which it was endured. Here are no expressions of

malice, no invocations even of God's retributive justice, not a complaint of suffering wrongfully! On the

contrary, praise to God, forgiveness of sin, and a forgiving all the world, concludes this unaffected

interesting narrative.

Bonner's admiration was excited by the steadfast coolness of this martyr. Speaking of Mr. Symson in the

consistory, he said, "You see what a personable man he is, and then of his patience, I affirm, that, if he were

not a heretic, he is a man of the greatest patience that ever came before me. Thrice in one day has he been

racked in the Tower; in my house also he has felt sorrow, and yet never have I seen his patience broken."

The day before this pious deacon was to be condemned, while in the stocks in the bishop's coal-house, he had

the vision of a glorified form, which much encouraged him. This he certainly attested to his wife, to Mr.

Austen, and others, before his death.

With this ornament of the Christian Reformation were apprehended Mr. Hugh Foxe and John Devinish; the

three were brought before Bonner, March 19, 1558, and the papistical articles tendered. They rejected them,

and were all condemned. As they worshipped together in the same society, at Islington, so they suffered

together in Smithfield, March 28; in whose death the God of Grace was glorified, and true believers


Thomas Hudson, Thomas Carman, and William Seamen

Were condemned by a bigoted vicar of Aylesbury, named Berry.

The spot of execution was called Lollard's Pit, without Bishipsgate, at Norwich. After joining together in

humble petition to the throne of grace, they rose, went to the stake, and were encircled with their chains. To

the great surprise of the spectators, Hudson slipped from under his chains, and came forward. A great

opinion prevailed that he was about to recant; others thought that he wanted further time. In the meantime,

his companions at the stake urged every promise and exhortation to support him. The hopes of the enemies

of the cross, however, were disappointed: the good man, far from fearing the smallest personal terror at the

approaching pangs of death, was only alarmed thathis Savior's face seemed to be hidden from him. Falling

upon his knees, his spirit wrestled with God, and God verified the words of His Son, "Ask, and it shall be

given." The martyr rose in an ecstasy of joy, and exclaimed, "Now, I thank God, I am strong! and care not

what man can do to me!" With an unruffled countenance he replaced himself under the chain, joined his

fellow-sufferers, and with them suffered death, to the comfort of the godly, and the confusion of Antichrist.

Berry, unsatiated with this demoniacal act, summoned up two hundred persons in the town of Aylesham,

whom he compelled to kneel to the cross at Pentecost, and inflicted other punishments. He struck a poor man

for a trifling word, with a flail, which proved fatal to the unoffending object. He also gave a woman named

Alice Oxes, so heavy a blow with his fist, as she met him entering the hall when he was in an ill-humor, that

she died with the violence. This priest was rich, and possessed great authority; he was a reprobate, and, like

the priesthood, he abstained from marriage, to enjoy the more a debauched and licentious life. The Sunday

after the death of Queen Mary, he was revelling with one of his concubines, before vespers; he then went to

church, administered baptism, and in his return to his lascivious pastime, he was smitten by the hand of God.

Without a moment given for repentance, he fell to the ground, and a groan was the only articulation

permitted him. In him we may behold the difference between the end of a martyr and a persecutor.

The Story of Roger Holland

In a retired close near a field, in Islington, a company of decent persons had assembled, to the number of

forty. While they were religiously engaged in praying and expounding the Scripture, twenty-seven of them

were carried before Sir Roger Cholmly. Some of the women made their escape, twenty-two were committed

to Newgate, who continued in prison seven weeks. Previous to their examination, they were informed by the

keeper, Alexander, that nothing more was requisite to procure their discharge, than to hear Mass. Easy as this

condition may seem, these martyrs valued their purity of conscience more than loss of life or property;

hence, thirteen were burnt, seven in Smithfield, and six at Brentford; two died in prison, and the other seven

were providentially preserved. The names of the seven who suffered were, H. Pond, R. Estland, R. Southain,

M. Ricarby, J. Floyd, J. Holiday, and Roger Holland. They were sent to Newgate, June 16, 1558, and

executed on the twenty-seventh.

This Roger Holland, a merchant-tailor of London, was first an apprentice with one Master Kemption, at the

Black Boy in Watling Street, giving himself to dancing, fencing, gaming, banqueting, and wanton company.

He had received for his master certain money, to the sum of thirty pounds; and lost every groat at dice.

Therefore he purposed to convey himself away beyond the seas, either into France or into Flanders.

With this resolution, he called early in the morning on a discreet servant in the house, named Elizabeth, who

professed the Gospel, and lived a life that did honor to her profession. To her he revealed the loss his folly

had occasioned, regretted that he had not followed her advice, and begged her to give his master a note of

hand from him acknowledging the debt, which he would repay if ever it were in his power; he also entreated

his disgraceful conduct might be kept secret, lest it would bring the gray hairs to his father with sorrow to a

premature grave.

The maid, with a generosity and Christian principle rarely surpassed, conscious that his imprudence might be

his ruin, brought him the thirty pounds, which was part of a sum of money recently left her by legacy.

"Here," said she, "is the sum requisite: you shall take the money, and I will keep the note; but expressly on

this condition, that you abandon all lewd and vicious company; that you neither swear nor talk immodestly,

and game no more; for, should I learn that you do, I will immediately show this note to your master. I also

require, that you shall promise me to attend the daily lecture at Allhallows, and the sermon at St. Paul's every

Sunday; that you cast away all your books of popery, and in their place substitute the Testament and the

Book of Service, and that you read the Scriptures with reverence and fear, calling upon God for his grace to

direct you in his truth. Pray also fervently to God, to pardon your former offences, and not to remember the

sins of your youth, and would you obtain his favor ever dread to break his laws or offend his majesty. So

shall God have you in His keeping, and grant you your heart's desire." We must honor the memory of this

excellent domestic, whose pious endeavors were equally directed to benefit the thoughtless youth in this life

and that which is to come. God did not suffer the wish of this excellent domestic to be thrown upon a barren

soil; within half a year after the licentious Holland became a zealous professor of the Gospel, and was an

instrument of conversion to his father and others whom he visited in Lancashire, to their spiritual comfort

and reformation from popery.

His father, pleased with his change of conduct, gave him forty pounds to commence business with in


Then Roger repaired to London again, and came to the maid that lent him the money to pay his master

withal, and said unto her, "Elizabeth, here is thy money I borrowed of thee; and for the friendship, good will,

and the good counsel I have received at thy hands, to recompense thee I am not able, otherwise than to make

thee my wife." And soon after they were married, which was in the first year of Queen Mary.

After this he remained in the congregations of the faithful, until, the last year of Queen Mary, he, with the six

others aforesaid, were taken.

And after Roger Holland there was none suffered in Smithfield for the testimony of the Gospel, God be


Flagellations by Bonner

When this Catholic hyena found that neither persuasions, threats, nor imprisonment, could produce any

alteration in the mind of a youth named Thomas Hinshaw, he sent him to Fulham, and during the first night

set him in the stocks, with no other allowance than bread and water. The following morning he came to see if

this punishment had worked any change in his mind, and finding none, he sent Dr. Harpsfield, his

archdeacon, to converse with him. The doctor was soon out f humor at his replies, called him peevish boy,

and asked him if he thought he went about to damn his soul? "I am persuaded," said Thomas, "that you labor

to promote the dark kingdom of the devil, not for the love of the truth." These words the doctor conveyed to

the bishop, who, in a passion that almost prevented articulation, came to Thomas, and said, "Dost thou

answer my archdeacon thus, thou naughty boy? But I'll soon handle thee well enough for it, be assured!"

Two willow twigs were then brought him, and causing the unresisting youth to kneel against a long bench, in

an arbor in his garden, he scourged him until he was compelled to cease for want of breath and fatigue. One

of the rods was worn quite away.

Many other conflicts did Hinsaw undergo from the bishop; who, at length, to remove him effectually,

procured false witnesses to lay articles against him, all of which the young man denied, and, in short, refused

to answer any interrogatories administered to him. A fortnight after this, the young man was attacked by a

burning ague, and at the request of his master. Mr. Pugson, of St. Paul's church-yard, he was removed, the

bishop not doubting that he had given him his death in the natural way; he however remained ill above a

year, and in the mean time Queen Mary died, by which act of providence he escaped Bonner's rage.

John Willes was another faithful person, on whom the scourging hand of Bonner fell. He was the brother of

Richard Willes, before mentioned, burnt at Brentford. Hinshaw and Willes were confined in Bonner's coal

house together, and afterward removed to Fulham, where he and Hinshaw remained during eight or ten days,

in the stocks. Bonner's persecuting spirit betrayed itself in his treatment of Willes during his examinations,

often striking him on the head with a stick, seizing him by the ears, and filliping him under the chin, saying

he held down his head like a thief. This producing no signs of recantation, he took him into his orchard, and

in a small arbor there he flogged him first with a willow rod, and then with birch, until he was exhausted.

This cruel ferocity arose from the answer of the poor sufferer, who, upon being asked how long it was since

he had crept to the cross, replied, 'Not since he had come to years of discretion, nor would he, though he

should be torn to pieces by wild horses.' Bonner then bade him make the sign of the cross on his forehead,

which he refused to do, and thus was led to the orchard.

One day, when in the stocks, Bonner asked him how he liked his lodging and fare. "Well enough," said

Willes, "might I have a little straw to sit or lie upon." Just at this time came in Willes' wife, then largely

pregnant, and entreated the bishop for her husband, boldly declaring that she would be delivered in the

house, if he were not suffered to go with her. To get rid of the good wife's importunity, and the trouble of a

lying-in woman in his palace, he bade Willes make the sign of the cross, and say, In nomine Patris, et Filii, et

Spiritus Sancti, Amen. Willes omitted the sign, and repeated the words, "in the name of the Father, and of the

Son, and of the Holy Ghost, Amen." Bonner would have the words repeated in Latin, to which Willes made

no objection, knowing the meaning of the words. He was then permitted to go home with his wife, his

kinsman Robert Rouze being charged to bring him to St. Paul's the next day, whither he himself went, and

subscribing to a Latin instrument of little importance, was liberated. This is the last of the twenty-two taken

at Islington.

Rev. Richard Yeoman

This devout aged person was curate to Dr. Taylor, at Hadley, and eminently qualified for his sacred function.

Dr. Taylor left him the curacy at his departure, but no sooner had Mr. Newall gotten the benefice, than he

removed Mr. Yeoman, and substituted a Romish priest. After this he wandered from place to place,

exhorting all men to stand faithfully to God's Word, earnestly to give themselves unto prayer, with patience

to bear the cross now laid upon them for their trial, with boldness to confess the truth before their

adversaries, and with an undoubted hope to wait for the crown and reward of eternal felicity. But when he

perceived his adversaries lay wait for him, he went into Kent, and with a little packet of laces, pins, points,

etc., he travelled from village to village, selling such things, and in this manner subsisted himself, his wife,

and children.

At last Justice Moile, of Kent, took Mr. Yeoman, and set him in the stocks a day and a night; but, having no

evident matter to charge him with, he let him go again. Coming secretly again to Hadley, he tarried with his

poor wife, who kept him privately, in a chamber of the town house, commonly called the Guildhall, more

than a year. During this time the good old father abode in a chamber locked up all the day, spending his time

in devout prayer, in reading the Scriptures, and in carding the wool which his wife spun. His wife also

begged bread for herself and her children, by which precarious means they supported themselves. Thus the

saints of God sustained hunger and misery, while the prophets of Baal lived in festivity, and were costily

pampered at Jezebel's table.

Information being at length given to Newall, that Yeoman was secreted by his wife, he came, attended by the

constables, and broke into the room where the object of his search lay in bed with his wife. He reproached

the poor woman with being a whore, and would have indecently pulled the clothes off, but Yeoman resisted

both this act of violence and the attack upon his wife's character, adding that he defied the pope and popery.

He was then taken out, and set in stocks until day.

In the cage also with him was an old man, named John Dale, who had sat there three or four days, for

exhorting the people during the time service was performing by Newall and his curate. His words were, "O

miserable and blind guides, will ye ever be blind leaders of the blind? Will ye never amend? Will ye never

see the truth of God's Word? Will neither God's threats nor promises enter into your hearts? Will the blood of

the martyrs nothing mollify your stony stomachs? O obdurate, hard-hearted, perverse, and crooked

generation! to whom nothing can do good."

These words he spake in fervency of spirit agains tthe superstitious religion of Rome; wherefore Newall

caused him forthwith to be attached, and set in the stocks in a cage, where he was kept until Sir Henry Doile,

a justice, came to Hadley.

When Yeoman was taken, the parson called earnestly upon Sir Henry Doile to send them both to prison. Sir

Henry Doile as earnestly entreated the parson to consider the age of the men, and their mean condition; they

were neither persons of note nor preachers; wherefore he proposed to let them be punished a day or two and

to dismiss them, at least John Dale, who was no priest, and therefore, as he had so long sat in the cage, he

thought it punishment enough for this time. When the parson heard this, he was exceedingly mad, and in a

great rage called them pestilent heretics, unfit to live in the commonwealth of Christians.

Sir Henry, fearing to appear too merciful, Yeoman and Dale were pinioned, bound like thieves with their

legs under the horses' bellies, and carried to Bury jail, where they were laid in irons; and because they

continually rebuked popery, they were carried into the lowest dungeon, where John Dale, through the jailsickness

and evil-keeping, died soon after: his body was thrown out, and buried in the fields. He was a man

of sixty-six years of age, a weaver by occupation, well learned in the holy Scriptures, steadfast in his

confession of the true doctrines of Christ as set forth in King Edward's time; for which he joyfully suffered

prison and chains, and from this worldly dungeon he departed in Christ to eternal glory, and the blessed

paradise of everlasting felicity.

After Dale's death, Yeoman was removed to Norwich prison, where, after strait and evil keeping, he was

examined upon his faith and religion, and required to submit himself to his holy father the pope. "I defy him,

(quoth he), and all his detestable abomination: I will in no wise have to do with him." The chief articles

objected to him, were his marriage and the Mass sacrifice. Finding he continued steadfast in the truth, he was

condemned, degraded, and not only burnt, but most cruelly tormented in the fire. Thus he ended this poor

and miserable life, and entered into that blessed bosom of Abraham, enjoying with Lazarus that rest which

God has prepared for His elect.

Thomas Benbridge

Mr. Benbridge was a single gentleman, in the diocese of Winchester. He might have lived a gentleman's life,

in the wealthy possessions of this world; but he chose rather to enter through the strait gate of persecution to

the heavenly possession of life in the Lord's Kingdom, than to enjoy present pleasure with disquietude of

conscience. Manfully standing against the papists for the defence of the sincere doctrine of Christ's Gospel,

he was apprehended as an adversary to the Romish religion, and led for examination before the bishop of

Winchester, where he underwent several conflicts for the truth against the bishop and his colleague; for

which he was condemned, and some time after brought to the place of martyrdom by Sir Richard Pecksal,


When standing at the stake he began to untie his points, and to prepare himself; then he gave his gown to the

keeper, by way of fee. His jerkin was trimmed with gold lace, which he gave to Sir Richard Pecksal, the high

sheriff. His cap of velvet he took from his head, and threw away. Then, lifting his mind to the Lord, he

engaged in prayer.

When fastened to the stake, Dr. Seaton begged him to recant, and he should have his pardon; but when he

saw that nothing availed, he told the people not to pray for him unless he would recant, no more than they

would pray for a dog.

Mr. Benbridge, standing at the stake with his hands together in suchj a manner as the priest holds his hands

in his Memento, Dr. Seaton came to him again, and exhorted him to recant, to whom he said, "Away,

Babylon, away!" One that stood by said, "Sir, cut his tongue out"; another, a temporal man, railed at him

worse than Dr. Seaton had done.

When they saw he would not yield, they bade the tormentors to light the pile, before he was in any way

covered with fagots. The fire first took away a piece of his beard, at which he did not shrink. Then it came on

the other side and took his legs, and the nether stockings of his hose being leather, they made the fire pierce

the sharper, so that the intolerable heat made him exclaim, "I recant!" and suddenly he trust the fire from

him. Two or three of his friends being by, wished to save him; they stepped to the fire to help remove it, for

which kindness they were sent to jail. The sheriff also of his own authority took him from the stake, and

remitted him to prison, for which he was sent to the Fleet, and lay there sometime. Before, however, he was

taken from the stake, Dr. Seaton wrote articles for him to subscribe to. To these Mr. Benbridge made so

many objections that Dr. Seaton ordered them to set fire again to the pile. Then with much pain and grief of

heart he subscribed to them upon a man's back.

This done, his gown was given him again, and he was led to prison. While there, he wrote a letter to Dr.

Seaton, recanting those words he had spoken at the stake, and the articles which he had subscribed, for he

was grieved that he had ever signed them. The same day se'night he was again brought to the stake, where

the vile tormentors rather broiled than burnt him. The Lord give his enemies repentance!

Mrs. Prest

From the number condemned in this fanatical reign, it is almost impossible to obtain the name of every

martyr, or to embellish the history of all with anecdotes and exemplifications of Christian conduct. Thanks

be to Providence, our cruel task begins to draw towards a conclusion, with the end of the reign of papal terror

and bloodshed. Monarchs, who sit upon thrones possessed by hereditary right, should, of all others, consider

that the laws of nature are the laws of God, and hence that the first law of nature is the preservation of their

subjects. Maxims of persecutions, of torture, and of death, they should leave to those who have effected

sovereignty by fraud or by sword; but where, except among a few miscreant emperors of Rome, and the

Roman pontiffs, shall we find one whose memory is so "damned to everlasting fame" as that of Queen

Mary? Nations bewail the hour which separates them forever from a beloved governor, but, with respect to

that of Mary, it was the most blessed time of her whole reign. Heaven has ordained three great scourges for

national sins-plague, pestilence, and famine. It was the will of God in Mary's reign to bring a fourth upon this

kingdom, under the form of papistical persecution. It was sharp, but glorious; the fire which consumed the

martyrs has undermined the popedom; and the Catholic states, at present the most bigoted and unenlightened,

are those which are sunk lowest in the scale of moral dignity and political consequence. May they remain so,

until the pure light of the Gospel shall dissipate the darkness of fanaticism and superstition! But to return.

Mrs. Prest for some time lived about Cornwall, where she had a husband and children, whose bigotry

compelled her to frequent the abominations of the Church of Rome. Resolving to act as her conscience

dictated, she quitted them, and made a living by spinning. After some time, returning home, she was accused

by her neighbors, and brought to Exeter, to be examined before Dr. Troubleville, and his chancellor

Blackston. As this martyr was accounted of inferior intellect, we shall put her in competition with the bishop,

and let the reader judge which had the most of that knowledge conducive to everlasting life. The bishop

bringing the question to issue, respecting the bread and wine being flesh and blood, Mrs. Prest said, "I will

demand of you whether you can deny your creed, which says, that Christ doth perpetually sit at the right

hand of His Father, both body and soul, until He come again; or whether He be there in heaven our

Advocate, and to make prayer for us unto God His Father? If He be so, He is not here on earth in a piece of

bread. If He be not here, and if He do not dwell in temples made with hands, but in heaven, what! shall we

seek Him here? If He did not offer His body once for all, why make you a new offering? If with one offering

He made all perfect, why do you with a false offering make all imperfect? If He be to be worshipped in spirit

and in truth, why do you worship a piece of bread? If He be eaten and drunken in faith and truth, if His flesh

be not profitable to be among us, why do you say you make His flesh and blood, and say it is profitable for

body and soul? Alas! I am a poor woman, but rather than to do as you do, I would live no longer. I have said,


Bishop. I promise you, you are a jolly Protestant. I pray you in what school have you been brought up?

Mrs. Prest. I have upon the Sundays visited the sermons, and there have I learned such things as are so fixed

in my breast, that death shall not separate them.

B. O foolish woman, who will waste his breath upon thee, or such as thou art? But how chanceth it that thou

wentest away from thy husband? If thou wert an honest woman, thou wouldst not have left thy husband and

children, and run about the country like a fugitive.

Mrs. P. Sir, I labored for my livingl; and as my Master Christ counselleth me, when I was persecuted in one

city, I fled into another.

B. Who persecuted thee?

Mrs. P. My husband and my children. For when I would have them to leave idolatry, and to worship God in

heaven, he would not hear me, but he with his children rebuked me, and troubled me. I fled not for

whoredom, nor for theft, but because I would be no partaker with him and his of that foul idol the Mass; and

wheresoever I was, as oft as I could, upon Sundays and holydays. I made excuses not to go to the popish


B. Belike then you are a good housewife, to fly from your husband the Church.

Mrs. P. My housewifery is but small; but God gave me grace to go to the true Church.

B. The true Church, what dost thou mean?

Mrs. P. Not your popish Church, full of idols and abominations, but where two or three are gathered together

in the name of God, to that Church will I go as long as I live.

B. Belike then you have a church of your own. Well, let this mad woman be put down to prison until we send

for her husband.

Mrs. P. No, I have but one husband, who is here already in this city, and in prison with me, from whom I will

never depart.

Some persons present endeavoring to convince the bishop she was not in her right senses, she was permitted

to depart. The keeper of the bishop's prisons took her into his house, where she either spun worked as a

servant, or walked about the city, discoursing upon the Sacrament of the altar. Her husband was sent for to

take her home, but this she refused while the cause of religion could be served. She was too active to be idle,

and her conversation, simple as they affected to think her, excited the attention of several Catholic priests

and friars. They teased her with questions, until she answered them angrily, and this excited a laugh at her


"Nay," said she, "you have more need to weep than to laugh, and to be sorry that ever you were born, to be

the chaplains of that whore of Babylon. I defy him and all his falsehood; and get you away from me, you do

but trouble my conscience. You would have me follow your doings; I will first lose my life. I pray you


"Why, thou foolish woman," said they, "we come to thee for thy profit and soul's health." To which she

replied, "What profit ariseth by you, that teach nothing but lies for truth? how save you souls, when you

preach nothing but lies, and destroy souls?"

"How provest thou that?" said they.

"Do you not destroy your souls, when you teach the people to worship idols, stocks, and stones, the works of

men's hands? and to worship a false God of your own making of a piece of bread, and teach that the pope is

God's vicar, and hath power to forgive sins? and that there is a purgatory, when God's Son hath by His

passion purged all? and say you make God and sacrifice Him, when Christ's body was a sacrifice once for

all? Do you not teach the people to number their sins in your ears, and say they will be damned if they

confess not all; when God's Word saith, Who can number his sins? Do you not promise them trentals and

dirges and Masses for souls, and sell your prayers for money, and make them buy pardons, and trust to such

foolish inventions of your imaginations? Do you not altogether act against God? Do you not teach us to pray

upon beads, and to pray unto saints, and say they can pray for us? Do you not make holy water and holy

bread to fray devils? Do you not do a thousand more abominations? And yet you say, you come for my

profit, and to save my soul. No, no, one hath saved me. Farewell, you with your salvation."

During the liberty granted her by the bishop, before-mentioned, she went into St. Peter's Church, and there

found a skilful Dutchman, who was affixing new noses to certain fine images which had been disfigured in

King Edward's time; to whom she said, "What a madman art thou, to make them new noses, which within a

few days shall all lose their heads?" The Dutchman accused her and laid it hard to her charge. And she said

unto him, "Thou art accursed, and so are thy images." He called her a whore. "Nay," said she, "thy images

are whores, and thou art a whore-hunter; for doth not God say, 'You go a whoring after strange gods, figures

of your own making? and thou art one of them.'" After this she was ordered to be confined, and had no more


During the time of her imprisonment, many visited her, some sent by the bishop, and some of their own will,

among these was one Daniel, a great preacher of the Gospel, in the days of King Edward, about Cornwall

and Devonshire, but who, through the grievous persecution he had sustained, had fallen off. Earnestly did

she exhort him to repent with Peter, and to be more constant in his profession.

Mrs. Walter Rauley and Mr. William and John Kede, persons of great respectability, bore ample testimony

of her godly conversation, declaring, that unless God were with her, it were impossible she could have so

ably defended the cause of Christ. Indeed, to sum up the character of this poor woman, she united the serpent

and the dove, abounding in the highest wisdom joined to the greatest simplicity. She endured imprisonment,

threatenings, taunts, and the vilest epithets, but nothing could induce her to swerve; her heart was fixed; she

had cast anchor; nor could all the wounds of persecution remove her from the rock on which her hopes of

felicity were built.

Such was her memory, that, without learning, she could tell in what chapter any text of Scripture was

contained: on account of this singular property, one Gregory Basset, a rank papist, said she was deranged,

and talked as a parrot, wild without meaning. At length, having tried every manner without effect to make

her nominally a Catholic, they condemned her. After this, one exhorted her to leave her opinions, and go

home to her family, as she was poor and illiterate. "True, (said she) though I am not learned, I am content to

be a witness of Christ's death, and I pray you make no longer delay with me; for my heart is fixed, and I will

never say otherwise, nor turn to your superstitious doing."

To the disgrace of Mr. Blackston, treasurer of the church, he would often send for this poor martyr from

prison, to make sport for him and a woman whom he kept; putting religious questions to her, and turning her

answers into ridicule. This done, he sent her back to her wretched dungeon, while he battened upon the good

things of this world.

There was perhaps something simply ludicrous in the form of Mrs. Prest, as she was of a very short stature,

thick set, and about fifty-four years of age; but her countenance was cheerful and lively, as if prepared for the

day of her marriage with the Lamb. To mock at her form was an indirect accusation of her Creator, who

framed her after the fashion He liked best, and gave her a mind that far excelled the transient endowments of

perishable flesh. When she was offered money, she rejected it, "because (said she) I am going to a city where

money bears no mastery, and while I am here God has promised to feed me."

When sentence was read, condemning her to the flames, she lifted up her voice and praised God, adding,

"This day have I found that which I have long sought." When they tempted her to recant, "That will I not,

(said she) God forbid that I should lose the life eternal, for this carnal and short life. I will never turn from

my heavenly husband to my earthly husband; from the fellowship of angels to mortal children; and if my

husband and children be faithful, then am I theirs. God is my father, God is my mother, God is my sister, my

brother, my kinsman; God is my friend, most faithful."

Being delivered to the sheriff, she was led by the officer to the place of execution, without the walls of

Exeter, called Sothenhey, where again the superstitious priests assaulted her. While they were tying her to

the stake, she continued earnestly to exclaim "God be merciful to me, a sinner!" Patiently enduring the

devouring conflagration, she was consumed to ashes, and thus ended a life which in unshaken fidelity to the

cause of Christ, was not surpassed by that of any preceding martyr.

Richard Sharpe, Thomas Banion, and Thomas Hale

Mr. Sharpe, weaver, of Bristol, was brought the ninth day of March, 1556, before Dr. Dalby, chancellor of

the city of Bristol, and after examination concerning the Sacrament of the altar, was persuaded to recant; and

on the twenty-ninth, he was enjoined to make his recantation in the parish church. But, scarcely had he

publicly avowed his backsliding, before he felt in his conscience such a tormenting fiend, that he was unable

to work at his occupation; hence, shortly after, one Sunday, he came into the parish church, called Temple,

and after high Mass, stood up in the choir door, and said with a loud voice, "Neighbors, bear me record that

yonder idol (pointing to the altar) is the greatest and most abominable that ever was; and I am sorry that ever

I denied my Lord God!" Notwithstanding the constables were ordered to apprehend him, he was suffered to

go out of the church; but at night he was apprehended and carried to Newgate. Shortly after, before the

chancellor, denying the Sacrament of the altar to be the body and blood of Christ, he was condemned to be

burned by Mr. Dalby. He was burnt the seventh of May, 1558, and died godly, patiently, and constantly,

confessing the Protestant articles of faith.With him suffered Thomas Hale, shoemaker, of Bristol, who was

condemned by Chcnallor Dalby. These martyrs were bound back to back.

Thomas Banion, a weaver, was burnt on August 27, of the same year, and died for the sake of the evangelical

cause of his Savior.

J. Corneford, of Wortham; C. Browne, of Maidstone; J. Herst,

of Ashford; Alice Snoth, and Catharine Knight, an Aged


With pleasure we have to record that these five martyrs were the last who suffered in the reign of Mary for

the sake of the Protestant cause; but the malice of the papists was conspicuous in hastening their martyrdom,

which might have been delayed until the event of the queen's illness was decided. It is reported that the

archdeacon of Canterbury, judging that the sudden death of the queen would suspend the execution, travelled

post from London, to have the satisfaction of adding another page to the black list of papistical sacrifices.

The articles against them were, as usual, the Sacramental elements and the idolatry of bending to images.

They quoted St. John's words, "Beware of images!" and respecting the real presence, they urged according to

St. Paul, "the things which are seen are temporal." When sentence was about to be read against them, and

excommunication to take place in the regular form, John Corneford, illuminated by the Holy Spirit, awfully

turned the latter proceeding against themselves, and in a solemn impressive manner, recriminated their

excommunication in the following words: "In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the most mighty

God, and by the power of His Holy Spirit, and the authority of His holy Catholic and apostolic Church, we

do here give into the hands of Satan to be destroyed, the bodies of all those blasphemers and heretics that

maintain any error against His most holy Word, or do condemn His most holy truth for heresy, to the

maintenance of any false church or foreign religion, so that by this Thy just judgment, O most mighty God,

against Thy adversaries, Thy true religion may be known to Thy great glory and our comfort and to the

edifying of all our nation. Good Lord, so be it. Amen."

This sentence was openly pronounced and registered, and, as if Providence had awarded that it should not be

delivered in vain, within six days after, Queen Mary died, detested by all good men and accursed of God!

Though acquainted with these circumstances, the archdeacon's implacability exceeded that of his great

exemplary, Bonner, who, though he had several persons at that time under his fiery grasp, did not urge their

deaths hastily, by which delay he certainly afforded them an opportunity of escape. At the queen's decease,

many were in bonds: some just taken, some examined, and others condemned. The writs indeed were issued

for several burnings, but by the death of the three instigators of Protestant murder-the chancellor, the bishop,

and the queen, who fell nearly together, the condemned sheep were liberated, and lived many years to praise

God for their happy deliverance.

These five martyrs, when at the stake, earnestly prayed that their blood might be the last shed, nor did they

pray in vain. They died gloriously, and perfected the number God had selected to bear witness of the truth in

this dreadful reign, whose names are recorded in the Book of Life; though last, not least among the saints

made meet for immortality through the redeeming blood of the Lamb!

Catharine Finlay, alias Knight, was first converted by her son's expounding the Scriptures to her, which

wrought in her a perfect work that terminated in martyrdom. Alice Snoth at the stake sent for her

grandmother and godfather, and rehearsed to them the articles of her faith, and the Commandments of God,

thereby convincing the world that she knew her duty. She died calling upon the spectators to bear witness

that she was a Christian woman, and suffered joyfully for the testimony of Christ's Gospel.

Among the numberless enormities committed by the merciless and uhnfeeling Bonner, the murder of this

innocent and unoffending child may be ranged as the most horrid. His father, John Fetty, of the parish of

Clerkenwell, by trade a tailor, and only twenty-four years of age, had made blessed election; he was fixed

secure in eternal hope, and depended on Him who so builds His Church that the gates of hell shall not prevail

against it. But alas! the very wife of his bosom, whose heart was hardened against the truth, and whose mind

was influenced by the teachers of false doctrine, became his accuser. Brokenbery, a creature of the pope, and

parson of the parish, received the information of this wedded Delilah, in consequence of which the poor man

was apprehended. But here the awful judgment of an ever-righteous God, who is "of purer eyes than to

behold evil," fell upon this stone-hearted and perfidious woman; for no sooner was the injured husband

captured by her wicked contriving, than she also was suddenly seized with madness, and exhibited an awful

and awakening instance of God's power to punish the evil-doer. This dreadful circumstance had some effect

upon the hearts of the ungodly hunters who had eagerly grasped their prey; but, in a relenting moment, they

suffered him to remain with his unworthy wife, to return her good for evil, and to comfort two children, who,

on his being sent to prison, would have been left without a protector, or have become a burden to the parish.

As bad men act from little motives, we may place the indulgence shown him to the latter account.

We have noticed in the former part of our narratives of the martyrs, some whose affection would have led

them even to sacrifice their own lives, to preserve their husbands; but here, agreeable to Scripture language,

a mother proves, indeed, a monster in nature! Neither conjugal nor maternal affection could impress the heart

of this disgraceful woman.

Although our afflicted Christian had experienced so much cruelty and falsehood from the woman who was

bound to him by every tie both human and divine, yet, with a mild and forbearing spirit, he overlooked her

misdeeds, during her calamity endeavoring all he could to procure relief for her malady, and soothing her by

every possible expression of tenderness: thus she became in a few weeks nearly restored to her senses. But,

alas! she returned again to her sin, "as a dog returneth to his vomit." Malice against the saints of the Most

High was seated in her heart too firmly to be removed; and as her strength returned, her inclination to work

wickedness returned with it. Her heart was hardened by the prince of darkness; and to her may be applied

these afflicting and soul-harrowing words, "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then

may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil." Weighing this text duly with another, "I will have

mercy on whom I will have mercy," how shall we presume to refine away the sovereignty of God by

arrainging Jehovah at the bar of human reason, which, in religious matters, is too often opposed by infinite

wisdom? "Broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat. Narrow is the

way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." The ways of heaven are indeed inscrutable, and it

is our bounden duty to walk ever dependent on God, looking up to Him with humble confidence, and hope in

His goodness, and ever confess His justice; and where we "cannot unravel, there learn to trust." This

wretched woman, pursuing the horrid dictates of a heart hardened and depraved, was scarcely confirmed in

her recovery, when, stifling the dictates of honor, gratitude, and every natural affection, she again accused

her husband, who was once more apprehended, and taken before Sir John Mordant, knight, and one of Queen

Mary's commissioners.

Upon examination, his judge finding him fixed in opinions which militated against those nursed by

superstition and maintained by cruelty, he was sentenced to confinement and torture in Lollard's Tower. Here

he was put into the painful stocks, and had a dish of water set by him, with a stone put into it, to what

purpose God knoweth,e xcept it were to show that he should look for little other subsistence: which is

credible enough, if we consider their like practices upon divers before mentioned in this history; as, among

others, upon Richard Smith, who died through their cruel imprisonment touching whom, when a godly

woman came to Dr. Story to have leave she might bury him, he asked her if he had any straw or blood in his

mouth; but what he means thereby, I leave to the judgment of the wise.

On the first day of the third week of our martyr's sufferings, an object presented itself to his view, which

made him indeed feel his tortures with all their force, and to execrate, with bitterness only short of cursing,

the author of his misery. To mark and punish the proceedings of his tormentors, remained with the Most

High, who noteth even the fall of a sparrow, and in whose sacred Word it is written, "Vengeance is mine; I

will repay." This object was his own son, a child of the tender age of eight years. For fifteen days, had its

hapless father been suspended by his tormentor by the right arm and left leg, and sometimes by both, shifting

his positions for the purpose of giving him strength to bear and to lengthen the date of his sufferings. When

the unoffending innocent, desirous of seeing and speaking to its parent, applied to Bonner for permission to

do so, the poor child being asked by the bishop's chaplain the purport of his errand, he replied he wished to

see his father. "Who is thy father?" said the chaplain. "John Fetty," returned the boy, at the same time

pointing to the place where he was confined. The interrogating miscreant on this said, "Why, thy father is a

heretic!" The little champion again rejoined, with energy sufficient to raise admiration in any breast, except

that of this unprincipled and unfeeling wretch-this miscreant, eager to execute the behests of a remoseless

queen-"My father is no heretic: for you have Balaam's mark."

Irritated by reproach so aptly applied, the indignant and mortified priest concealed his resentment for a

moment, and took the undaunted boy into the house, where having him secure, he presented him to others,

whose baseness and cruelty being equal to his own, they stripped him to the skin, and applied their scourges

to so violent a degree, that, fainting beneath the stripes inflicted on his tender frame, and covered with the

blood that flowed from them, the victim of their ungodly wrath was ready to expire under his heavy and

unmerited punishment.

In this bleeding and helpless state was the suffering infant, covered only with his shirt, taken to his father by

one of the actors in the horrid tragedy, who, while he exhibited the heart-rending spectacle, made use of the

vilest taunts, and exulted in what he had done. The dutiful child, as if recovering strength at the sight of his

father, on his knees implored his blessing. "Alas! Will," said the afflicted parent, in trembling amazement,

"who hath done this to thee!" the artless innocent related the circumstances that led to the merciless

correction which had been so basely inflicted on him; but when he repeated the reproof bestowed on the

chaplain, and which was prompted by an undaunted spirit, he was torn from his weeping parent, and

conveyed again to the house, where he remained a close prisoner.

Bonner, somewhat fearful that what had been done could not be justified even among the bloodhounds of his

own voracious pack, concluded in his dark and wicked mind, to release John Fetty, for a time at least, from

the severities he was enduring in the glorious cause of everlasting truth! whose bright rewards are fixed

beyond the boundaries of time, within the confines of eternity; where the arrow of the wicked cannot wound,

even "where there shall be no more sorrowing for the blessed, who, in the mansion of eternal bliss shall

glorify the Lamb forever and ever." He was accordingly by order of Bonner, (how disgraceful to all dignity,

to say bishop!) liberated from the painful bonds, and led from Lollard's Tower, to the chamber of that

ungodly and infamous butcher, where he found the bishop bathing himself before a great fire; and at his first

entering the chamber, Fetty said, "God be here and peace!" "God be here and peace, (said Bonner,) that is

neither God speed nor good morrow!" "If ye kick against this peace, (said Fetty), then this is not the place

that I seek for."

A chaplain of the bishop, standing by, turned the poor man about, and thinking to abash him, said, in

mocking wise, "What have we here-a player!" While Fetty was thus standing in the bishop's chamber, he

espied, hanging about the bishop's bed, a pair of great black beads, whereupon he said, "My Lord, I think the

hangman is not far off: for the halter (pointing to the beads) is here already!" At which words the bishop was

in a marvellous rage. Then he immediately after espied also, standing in the bishop's chamber, in the

window, a little crucifix. Then he asked the bishop what it was, and he answered, that it was Christ. "Was He

handled as cruelly as He is here pictured!" said Fetty. "Yea, that He was," said the bishop. "And even so

cruelly will you handle such as come before you; for you are unto God's people as Caiaphas was unto

Christ!" The bishop, being in a great fury, said, "Thou art a vile heretic, and I will burn thee, or else I will

spend all I have, unto my gown." "Nay, my Lord, (said Fetty) you were better to give it to some poor body,

that he may pray for you." Bonner, notwithstanding his passion, which was raised to the utmost by the calm

and pointed remarks of this observing Christian, thought it most prudent to dismiss the father, on account of

the nearly murdered child. His coward soul trembled for the consequences which might ensue; fear is

inseparable from little minds; and this dastardly pampered priest experienced its effects so far as to induce

him to assume the appearance of that he was an utter stranger to, namely, MERCY.

The father, on being dismissed, by the tyrant Bonner, went home with a heavy heart, with his dying child,

who did not survive many days the cruelties which had been inflicted on him.

How contrary to the will of our great King and Prophet, who mildly taught His followers, was the conduct of

this sanguinary and false teacher, this vile apostate from his God to Satan! But the archfiend had taken entire

possession of his heart, and guided every action of the sinner he had hardened; who, given up to terrible

destruction, was running the race of the wicked, marking his footsteps with the blood of the saints, as if eager

to arrive at the goal of eternal death.

Deliverance of Dr. Sands

This eminent prelate, vice-chancellor of Cambridge, at the request of the duke of Northumberland, when he

came down to Cambridge in support of Lady Jane Grey's claim to the throne, undertook at a few hours'

notice, to preach before the duke and the university. The text he took was such as presented itself in opening

the Bible, and a more appropriate one he could not have chosen, namely, the three last verses of Joshua. As

God gave him the text, so He gave him also such order and utterance that it excited the most lively emotions

in his numerous auditors. The sermon was about to be sent to London to be printed, when news arrived that

the duke had returned and Queen Mary was proclaimed.

The duke was immediately arrested, and Dr. Sands was compelled by the university to give up his office. He

was arrested by the queen's order, and when Mr. Mildmay wondered that so learned a man could wilfully

incur danger, and speak against so good a princess as Mary, the doctor replied, "If I would do as Mr.

Mildmay has done, I need not fear bonds. He came down armed against Queen Mary; before a trator-now a

great friend. I cannot with one mouth blow hot and cold in this manner." A general plunder of Dr. Sands'

property ensued, and he was brought to London upon a wretched horse. Various insults he met on the way

from the bigoted Catholics, and as he passed through Bishopsgate-street, a stone struck him to the ground.

He was the first prisoner that entered the Tower, in that day, on a religious account; his man was admitted

with his Bible, but his shirts and other articles were taken from him.

On Mary's coronation day the doors of the dungeon were so laxly guarded that it was easy to escape. A Mr.

Mitchell, like a true friend, came to him, afforded him his own clothes as a disguise, and was willing to abide

the consequence of being found in his place. This was a rare friendship: but he refused the offer; saying, "I

know no cause why I should be in prison. To do thus were to make myself guilty. I will expect God's good

will, yet do I think myself much obliged to you"; and so Mr. Mitchell departed.

With Doctor Sands was imprisoned Mr. Bradford; they were kept close in prison twenty-nine weeks. John

Fowler, their keeper, was a perverse papist, yet, by often persuading him, at length he began to favor the

Gospel, and was so persuaded in the true religion, that on a Sunday, when they had Mass in the chapel, Dr.

Sands administered the Communion to Bradford and to Fowler. Thus Fowler was their son begotten in

bonds. To make room for Wyat and his accomplices, Dr. Sands and nine other preachers were sent to the


The keeper of the Marshalsea appointed to every preacher a man to lead him in the street; he caused them to

go on before, and he and Dr. Sands followed conversing together. By this time popery began to be unsavory.

After they had passed the bridge, the keeper said to Dr. Sands: "I perceive the vain people would set you

forward to the fire. You are as vain as they, if you, being a young man, will stand in your own conceit, and

prefer your own judgment before that of so many worthy prelates, ancient, learned, and grave men as be in

this realm. If you do so, you shall find me a severe keeper, and one that utterly dislikes your religion." Dr.

Sands answered, "I know my years to be young, and my learning but small; it is enough to know Christ

crucified, and he hath learned nothing who seeth not the great blasphemy that is in popery. I will yield unto

God, and not unto man; I have read in the Scriptures of many godly and couretous keepers: may God make

you one! if not, I trust He will give me strength and patience to bear your hard usage." Then said the keeper,

"Are you resolved to stand to your religion?" "Yes," quoth the doctor, "by God's grace!" "Truly," said the

keeper, "I love you the better for it; I did but tempt you: what favor I can show you, you shall be assured of;

and I shall think myself happy if I might die at the stake with you."

He was as good as his word, for he trusted the doctor to walk in the fields alone, where he met with Mr.

Bradford, who was also a prisoner in the King's Bench, and had found the same favor from his keeper. At his

request, he put Mr. Saunders in along with him, to be his bedfellow, and the Communion was administered

to a great number of communicants.

When Wyat with his army came to Southwark, he offered to liberate all the imprisoned Protestants, but Dr.

Sands and the rest of the preachers refused to accept freedom on such terms.

After Dr. Sands had been nine weeks prisoner in the Marshalsea, by the mediation of Sir Thomas Holcroft,

knight marshal, he was set at liberty. Though Mr. Holcroft had the queen's warrant, the bishop commanded

him not to set Dr. Sands at liberty, until he had taken sureties of two gentlemen with him, each one bound in

oe500, that Dr. Sands should not depart out of the realm without license. Mr. Holcroft immediately after met

with two gentlemen of the north, friends and cousins to Dr. Sands, who offered to be bound for him.

After dinner, the same day, Sir Thomas Holcroft sent for Dr.

Sands to his lodgings at Westminster, to communicate to him all he had done. Dr. Sands answered: "I give

God thanks, who hath moved your heart to mind me so well, that I think myself most bound unto you. God

shall requite you, nor shall I ever be found unthankful. But as you have dealt friendly with me, I will also

deal plainly with you. I came a freeman into prison; I will not go forth a bondman. As I cannot benefit my

friends, so will I not hurt them. And if I be set at liberty, I will not tarry six days in this realm, if I may get

out. If therefore I may not get free forth, send me to the Marshalsea again, and there you shall be sure of me."

This answer Mr. Holcroft much disapproved of; but like a true friend he replied: "Seeing you cannot be

altered, I will change my purpose, and yield unto you. Come of it what will, I will set you at liberty; and

seeing you have a mind to go over sea, get you gone as quick as you can. One thing I require of you, that,

while you are there, you write nothing to me hither, for this may undo me."

Dr. Sands having taken an affectionate farewell of him and his other friends in bonds, departed. He went by

Winchester house, and there took boat, and came to a friend's house in London, called William Banks, and

tarried there one night. The next night he went to another friend's house, and there he heard that strict search

was making for him, by Gardiner's express order.

Dr. Sands now conveyed himself by night to one Mr. Berty's house, a stranger who was in the Marshalsea

prison with him a while; he was a good Protestant and dwelt in Mark-lane. There he was six days, and then

removed to one of his acquaintances in Cornhill; he caused his man Quinton to provide two geldings for him,

resolved on the morrow to ride into Essex, to Mr. Sands, his father-in-law, where his wife was, which, after a

narrow escape, he effected. He had not been theretwo hours, before Mr. Sands was told that two of the

guards would that night apprehend Dr. Sands.

That night Dr. Sands was guided to an honest farmer's near the sea, where he tarried two days and two nights

in a chamber without company. After that he removed to one James Mower's, a shipmaster, who dwelt at

Milton-Shore, where he waited for a wind to Flanders. While he was there, James Mower brought to him

forty or fifty mariners, to whom he gave an exhortation; they liked him so well that they promised to die

rather than he should be apprehended.

The sixth of May, Sunday, the wind served. In taking leave of his hostess, who had been married eight years

without having a child, he gave her a fine handkerchief and an old royal of gold, and said, "Be of good

comfort; before that one whole year be past, God shall give you a child, a boy." This came to pass, for, that

day twelve-month, wanting one day, God gave her a son.

Scarcely had he arrived at Antwerp, when he learned that King Philip had sent to apprehend him. He next

flew to Augsburg, in Cleveland, where Dr. Sands tarried fourteen days, and then travelled towards

Strassburg, where, after he had lived one year, his wife came to him. He was sick of a flux nine months, and

had a child which died of the plague. His amiable wife at length fell into a consumption, and died in his

arms. When his wife was dead, he went to Zurich, and there was in Peter Martyr's house for the space of five


As they sat at dinner one day, word was suddenly brought that Queen Mary was dead, and Dr. Sands was

sent for by his friends at Strassburg, where he preached. Mr. Grindal and he came over to England, and

arrived in London the same day that Queen Elizabeth was crowned. This faithful servant of Christ, under

Queen Elizabeth, rose to the highest distinction in the Church, being successively bishop of Worcester,

bishop of London, and archbishop of York.

Queen Mary's Treatment of Her Sister, the Princess Elizabeth

The preservation of Princess Elizabeth may be reckoned a remarkable instance of the watchful eye which

Christ had over His Church. The bigotry of Mary regarded not the ties of consanguinity, of natural affection,

of national succession. Her mind, physically morose, was under the dominion of men who possessed not the

milk of human kindness, and whose principles werre sanctioned and enjoined by the idolatrous tenets of the

Romish pontiff. Could they have foreseen the short date of Mary's reign, they would have imbrued their

hands in the Protestant blood of Elizabeth, and, as a sine qua non of the queen's salvation, have compelled

her to bequeath the kingdom to some Catholic prince. The contest might have been attended with the horrors

incidental to a religious civil war, and calamities might have been felt in England similar to those under

Henry the Great in France, whom Queen Elizabeth assisted in opposing his priest-ridden Catholic subjects.

As if Providence had the perpetual establishment of the Protestant faith in view, the difference of the

duration of the two reigns is worthy of notice. Mary might have reigned many years in the course of nature,

but the course of grace willed it otherwise. Five years and four months was the time of persecution alloted to

this weak, disgraceful reign, while that of Elizabeth reckoned a number of years among the highest of those

who have sat on the English throne, almost nine times that of her merciless sister!

Before Mary attained the crown, she treated Elizabeth with a sisterly kindness, but from that period her

conduct was altered, and the most imperious distance substituted. Though Elizabeth had no concern in the

rebellion of Sir Thomas Wyat, yet she was apprehended, and treated as a culprit in that commotion. The

manner too of her arrest was similar to the mind that dictated it: the three cabinet members, whom she

deputed to see the arrest executed, rudely entered the chamber at ten o'clock at night, and, though she was

extremely ill, they could scarcely be induced to let her remain until the following morning. Her enfeebled

state permitted her to be moved only by short stages in a journey of such length to London; but the princess,

though afflicted in person, had a consolation in mind which her sister never could purchase: the people,

through whom she passed on her way pitied her, and put up their prayers for her preservation.

Arrived at court, she was made a close prisoner for a fortnight, without knowing who was her accuser, or

seeing anyone who could console or advise her. The charge, however, was at length unmasked by Gardiner,

who, with nineteen of the Council, accused her of abetting Wyat's conspiracy, which she religiously affirmed

to be false. Failing in this, they placed against her the transactions of Sir Peter Carew in the west, in which

they were as unsuccessful as in the former. The queen now signified that it was her pleasure she should be

committed to the Tower, a step which overwhelmed the princess with the greatest alarm and uneasiness. In

vain she hoped the queen's majesty would not commit her to such a place; but there was no lenity to be

expected; her attendants were limited, and a hundred northern soldiers appointed to guard her day and night.

On Palm Sunday she was conducted to the Tower. When she came to the palace garden, she cast her eyes

towards the windows, eagerly anxious to meet those of the queen, but she was disappointed. A strict order

was given in London that every one should go to church, and carry palms, that she might be conveyed

without clamor or commiseration to her prison.

At the time of passing under London Bridge the fall of the tide made it very dangerous, and the barge some

time stuck fast against the starlings. To mortify her the more, she was landed at Traitors' Stairs. As it rained

fast, and she was obliged to step in the water to land, she hesitated; but this excited no complaisance in the

lord in waiting. When she set her foot on the steps, she exclaimed, "Here lands as true a subject, being

prisoner, as ever landed at these stairs; and before Thee, O God, I speak it, having no friend but Thee alone!"

A large number of the wardens and servants of the Tower were arranged in order between whom the princess

had to pass. Upon inquiring the use of this parade, she was informed it was customary to do so. "If," said she,

"it is on account of me, I beseech you that they may be dismissed." On this the poor men knelt down, and

prayed that God would preserve her grace, for which they were the next day turned out of their

employments. The tragic scene must have been deeply interesting, to see an amiable and irreproachable

princess sent like a lamb to languish in expectation of cruelty and death; against whom there was no other

charge than her superiority in Christian virtues and acquired endowments. Her attendants openly wept as she

proceeded with a dignified step to the frowning battlements of her destination. "Alas!" said Elizabeth, "what

do you mean? I took you to comfort, not to dismay me; for my truth is such that no one shall have cause to

weep for me."

The next step of her enemies was to procure evidence by means which, in the present day, are accounted

detestable. Many poor prisoners were racked, to extract, if possible, any matters of accusation which might

affect her life, and thereby gratify Gardiner's sanguinary disposition. He himself came to examine her,

respecting her removal from her house at Ashbridge to Dunnington castle a long while before. The princess

had quite forgotten this trivial circumstance, and Lord Arundel, after the investigation, kneeling down,

apologized for having troubled her in such a frivolous matter. "You sift me narrowly," replied the princess,

"but of this I am assured, that God has appointed a limit to your proceedings; and so God forgive you all."

Her own gentlemen, who ought to have been her purveyors, and served her provision, were compelled to

give place to the common soldiers, at the command of the constable of the Tower, who was in every respect

a servile tool of Gardiner; her grace's friends, however, procured an order of Council which regulated this

petty tyranny more to her satisfaction.

After having been a whole month in close confinement, she sent for the lord chamberlain and Lord Chandois,

to whom she represented the ill state of her health from a want of proper air and exercise. Application being

made to the Council, Elizabeth was with some difficulty admitted to walk in the queen's lodgings, and

afterwards in the garden, at which time the prisoners on that side were attended by their keepers, and not

suffered to look down upon her. Their jealousy was excited by a child of four years, who daily brought

flowers to the princess. The child was threatened with a whipping, and the father ordered to keep him from

the princess's chambers.

On the fifth of May the constable was discharged from his office, and Sir Henry Benifield appointed in his

room, accompanied by a hundred ruffian-looking soldiers in blue. This measure created considerable alarm

in the mind of the princess, who imagined it was preparatory to her undergoing the same fate as Lady Jane

Grey, upon the same block. Assured that this project was not in agitation, she entertained an idea that the

new keeper of the Tower was commissioned to make away with her privately, as his equivocal character was

in conformity with the ferocious inclination of those by whom he was appointed.

A report now obtained that her Grace was to be taken away by the new constable and his soldiers, which in

the sequel proved to be true. An order of Council was made for her removal to the manor Woodstock, which

took place on Trinity Sunday, May 13, under the authority of Sir Henry Benifield and Lord Tame. The

ostensible cause of her removal was to make room for other prisoners. Richmond was the first place they

stopped at, and here the princess slept, not however without much alarm at first, as her own servants were

superseded by the soldiers, who were placed as guards at her chamber door. Upon representation, Lord Tame

overruled this indecent stretch of power, and granted her perfect safety while under his custody.

In passing through Windsor, she saw several of her poor dejected servants waiting to see her. "Go to them,"

said she, to one of her attendants, "and say these words from me, tanquim ovis, that is, like a sheep to the


The next night her Grace lodged at the house of a Mr. Dormer, in her way to which the people manifested

such tokens of loyal affection that Sir Henry was indignant, and bestowed on them very liberally the names

of rebels and traitors. In some villages they rang the bells for joy, imagining the princess's arrival among

them was from a very different cause; but this harmless demonstration of gladness was sufficient with the

persecuting Benifield to order his soldiers to seize and set these humble persons in the stocks.

The day following, her Grace arrived at Lord Tame's house, where she stayed all night, and was most nobly

entertained. This excited Sir Henry's indignation, and made him caution Lord Tame to look well to his

proceedings; but the humanity of Lord Tame was not to be frightened, and he returned a suitable reply. At

another time, this official prodigal, to show his consequence and disregard of good manners, went up into a

chamber, where was appointed for her Grace a chair, two cushions, and a foot carpet, wherein he

presumptuously sat and called his man to pull off his boots. As soon as it was known to the ladies and

gentlemen they laughed him to scorn. When supper was done, he called to his lordship, and directed that all

gentlemen and ladies should withdraw home, marvelling much that he would permit such a large company,

considering the great charge he had committed to him. "Sir Henry," said his lordship, "content yourself; all

shall be avoided, your men and all." "Nay, but my soldiers," replied Sir Henry, "shall watch all night." Lord

Tame answered, "There is no need." "Well," said he, "need or need not, they shall so do."

The next day her Grace took her journey from thence to Woodstock, where she was enclosed, as before in

the Tower of London, the soldiers keeping guard within and without the walls, every day, to the number of

sixty; and in the night, without the walls were forty during all the time of her imprisonment.

At length she was permitted to walk in the gardens, but under the most severe restrictions, Sir Henry keeping

the keys himself, and placing her always under many bolts and locks, whence she was induced to call him

her jailer, at which he felt offended, and begged her to substitute the word officer. After much earnest

entreaty to the Council, she obtained permission to write to the queen; but the jailer who brought her pen,

ink, and paper stood by her while she wrote, and, when she left off, he carried the things away until they

were wanted again. He also insisted upon carrying it himself to the queen, but Elizabeth would not suffer

him to be the bearer, and it was presented by one of her gentlemen.

After the letter, Doctors Owen and Wendy went to the princess, as the state of her health rendered medical

assistance necessary. They stayed with her five or six days, in which time she grew much better; they then

returned to the queen, and spoke flatteringly of the princess' submission and humility, at which the queen

seemed moved; but the bishops wanted a concession that she had offended her majesty. Elizabeth spurned

this indirect mode of acknowledging herself guilty. "If I have offended," said she, "and am guilty, I crave no

mercy but the law, which I am certain I should have had ere this, if anything could have been proved against

me. I wish I were as clear from the peril of my enemies; then should I not be thus bolted and locked up

within walls and doors."

Much question arose at this time respecting the propriety of uniting the princess to some foreigner, that she

might quit the realm with a suitable portion. One of the Council had the brutality to urge the necessity of

beheading her, if the king (Philip) meant to keep the realm in peace; but the Spaniards, detesting such a base

thought, replied, "God forbid that oiur king and master should consent to such an infamous proceeding!"

Stimulated by a noble principle, the Spaniards from this time repeatedly urged to the king that it would do

him the highest honor to liberate the Lady Elizabeth, nor was the king impervious to their solicitation. He

took her out of prison, and shortly after she was sent for to Hampton court. It may be remarked in this place,

that the fallacy of human reasoning is shown in every moment. The barbarian who suggested the policy of

beheading Elizabeth little contemplated the change of condition which his speech would bring about. In her

journey from Woodstock, Benifield treated her with the same severity as before; removing her on a stormy

day, and not suffering her old servant, who had come to Colnbrook, where she slept, to speak to her.

She remained a fortnight strictly guarded and watched, before anyone dared to speak with her; at length the

vile Gardiner with three more of the Council, came with great submission. Elizabeth saluted them, remarked

that she had been for a long time kept in solitary confinement, and begged they would intercede with the

king and queen to deliver her from prison. Gardiner's visit was to draw from the princess a confession of her

guilt; but she was guarded against his subtlety, adding, that, rather than admit she had done wrong, she

would lie in prison all the rest of her life. The next day Gardiner came again, and kneeling down, declared

that the queen was astonished she would persist in affirming that she was blameless-whence it would be

inferred that the queen had unjustly imprisoned her grace. Gardiner further informed her that the queen had

declared that she must tell another tale, before she could be set at liberty. "Then," replied the high-minded

Elizabeth, "I had rather be in prison with honesty and truth, than have my liberty, and be suspected by her

majesty. What I have said, I will stand to; nor will I ever speak falsehood!" The bishop and his friends then

departed, leaving her locked up as before.

Seven days after the queen sent for Elizabeth at ten o'clock at night; two years had elapsed since they had

seen each other. It created terror in the mind of the princess, who, at setting out, desired her gentlemen and

ladies to pray for her, as her return to them again was uncertain.

Being conducted to the queen's bedchamber, upon entering it the princess knelt down, and having begged of

God to preserve her majesty, she humbly assured her that her majesty had not a more loyal subject in the

realm, whatever reports might be circulated to the contrary. With a haughty ungraciousness, the imperious

queen replied: "You will not confess your offence, but stand stoutly to your truth. I pray God it may so fall


"If it do not," said Elizabeth, "I request neither favor nor pardon at your majesty's hands." "Well," said the

queen, "you stiffly still persevere in your truth. Besides, you will not confess that you have not been

wrongfully punished."

"I must not say so, if it please your majesty, to you."

"Why, then," said the queen, "belike you will to others."

"No, if it please your majesty: I have borne the burden, and must bear it. I humbly beseech your majesty to

have a good opinion of me and to think me to be your subject, not only from the beginning hitherto, but for

ever, as long as life lasteth." They departed without any heartfelt satisfaction on either side; nor can we think

the conduct of Elizabeth displayed that independence and fortitude which accompanies perfect innocence.

Elizabeth's admitting that she would not say, neither to the queen nor to others, that she had been unjustly

punished, was in direct contradiction to what she had told Gardiner, and must have arisen from some motive

at this time inexplicable. King Philip is supposed to have been secretly concealed during the interview, and

to have been friendly to the princess.

In seven days from the time of her return to imprisonment, her severe jailer and his men were discharged,

and she was set at liberty, under the constraint of being always attended and watched by some of the queen's

Council. Four of her gentlemen were sent to the Tower without any other charge against them than being

zealous servants of their mistress. This event was soon after followed by the happy news of Gardiner's death,

for which all good and merciful men glorified God, inasmuch as it had taken the chief tiger from the den, and

rendered the life of the Protestant successor of Mary more secure.

This miscreant, while the princess was in the Tower, sent a secret writ, signed by a few of the Council, for

her private execution, and, had Mr. Bridges, lieutenant of the Tower, been as little scrupulous of dark

assassination as this pious prelate was, she must have perished. The warrant not having the queen's signature,

Mr. Bridges hastened to her majesty to give her information of it, and to know her mind. This was a plot of

Winchester's, who, to convict her of treasonable practices, caused several prisoners to be racked; particularly

Mr. Edmund Tremaine and Smithwicke were offered considerable bribes to accuse the guiltless princess.

Her life was several times in danger. While at Woodstock, fire was apparently put between the boards and

ceiling under which she lay. It was also reported strongly that one Paul Penny, the keeper of Woodstock, a

notorious ruffian, was appointed to assassinate her, but, however this might be, God counteracted in this

point the nefarious designs of the enemies of the Reformation. James Basset was another appointed to

perform the same deed: he was a peculiar favorite of Gardiner, and had come within a mile of Woodstock,

intending to speak with Benifield on the subject. The goodness of God however so ordered it that while

Basset was travelling to Woodstock, Benifield, by an order of Council, was going to London: in consequence

of which, he left a positive order with his brother, that no man should be admitted to the princess during his

absence, not even with a note from the queen; his brother met the murderer, but the latter's intention was

frustrated, as no admission could be obtained.

When Elizabeth quitted Woodstock, she left the following lines written with her diamond on the window:

Much suspected by me,

Nothing proved can be. Quoth Elizabeth, prisoner.

With the life of Winchester ceased the extreme danger of the princess, as many of her other secret enemies

soon after followed him, and, last of all, her cruel sister, who outlived Gardiner but three years.

The death of Mary was ascribed to several causes. The Council endeavored to console her in her last

moments, imagining it was the absence of her husband that lay heavy at her heart, but though his treatment

had some weight, the loss of Calais, the last fortress possessed by the English in France, was the true source

of her sorrow. "Open my heart," said Mary, "when I am dead, and you shall find Calais written there."

Religion caused her no alarm; the priests had lulled to rest every misgiving of conscience, which might have

obtruded, on account of the accusing spirits of the murdered martyrs. Not the blood she had spilled, but the

loss of a town excited her emotions in dying, and this last stroke seemed to be awarded, that her fanatical

persecution might be paralleled by her political imbecility.

We earnestly pray that the annals of no country, Catholic or pagan, may ever be stained with such a

repetition of human sacrifices to papal power, and that the detestation in which the character of Mary is

holden, may be a beacon to succeeding monarchs to avoid the rocks of fanaticism!

God's Punishment upon Some of the Persecutors of His People


Mary's Reign

After that arch-persecutor, Gardiner, was dead, others followed, of whom Dr. Morgan, bishop of St. David's,

who succeeded Bishop Farrar, is to be noticed. Not long after he was installed in his bishoipric, he was

stricken by the visitation of God; his food passed through the throat, but rose again with great violence. In

this manner, almost literally starved to death, he terminated his existence.

Bishop Thornton, suffragan of Dover, was an indefatigable persecutor of the true Church. One day after he

had exercised his cruel tyranny upon a number of pious persons at Canterbury, he came from the chapterhouse

to Borne, where as he stood on a Sunday looking at his men playing at bowls, he fell down in a fit of

the palsy, and did not long survive.

After the latter, succeeded another bishop or suffragen, ordained by Gardiner, who not long after he had been

raised to the see of Dover, fell down a pair of stairs in the cardinal's chamber at Greenwich, and broke his

neck. He had just received the cardinal's blessing-he could receive nothing worse.

John Cooper, of Watsam, Suffolk, suffered by perjury; he was from private pique persecuted by one

Fenning, who suborned two others to swear that they heard Cooper say, 'If God did not take away Queen

Mary, the devil would.' Cooper denied all such words, but Cooper was a Proestant and a heretic, and

therefore he was hung, drawn and quartered, his property confiscated, and his wife and nine children reduced

to beggary. The following harvest, however, Grimwood of Hitcham, one of the witnesses before mentioned,

was visited for his villainy: while at work, stacking up corn, his bowels suddenly burst out, and before relief

could be obtained, her died. Thus was deliberate perjury rewarded by sudden death!

In the case of the martyr Mr. Bradford, the severity of Mr.

Sheriff Woodroffe has been noticed-he rejoiced at the death of the saints, and at Mr. Rogers' execution, he

broke the carman's head, because he stopped the cart to let the martyr's children take a last farewell of him.

Scarcely had Mr. Woodroffe's sheriffalty expired a week, when he was struck with a paralytic affection, and

languished a few days in the most pitable and helpless condition, presenting a striking contrast to his former

activity in the cause of blood.

Ralph Lardyn, who betrayed the martyr George Eagles, is believed to have been afterward arraigned and

hanged in consequence of accusing himself. At the bar, he denounced himself in these words: "This has most

justly fallen upon me, for betraying the innocent blood of that just and good man George Eagles, who was

here condemned in the time of Queen Mary by my procurement, when I sold his blood for a little money."

As James Abbes was going to execution, and exhorting the pitying bystanders to adhere steadfastly to the

truth, and like him to seal the cause of Christ with their blood, a servant of the sheriff's interrupted him, and

blasphemously called his religion heresy, and the good man a lunatic. Scarcely however had the flames

reached the martyr, before the fearful stroke of God fell upn the hardened wretch, in the presence of him he

had so cruelly ridiculed. The man was suddenly seized with lunacy, cast off his clothes and shoes before the

people, (as Abbes had done just before, to distribute among some poor persons,) at the same time

exclaiming, "Thus did James Abbes, the true servant of God, who is saved by I am damned." Repeating this

often, the sheriff had him secured, and made him put his clothes on, but no sooner was he alone, than he tore

them off, and exclaimed as before. Being tied in a cart, he was conveyed to his master's house, and in about

half a year he died; just before which a priest came to attend him, with the crucifix, etc., but the wretched

man bade him take away such trumpery, and said that he and other priests had been the cause of his

damnation, but that Abbes was saved.

One Clark, an avowed enemy of the Protestants in King Edward's reign, hung himself in the Tower of


Froling, a priest of much celebrity, fell down in the street and died on the spot.

Dale, an indefatigable informer, was consumed by vermin, and died a miserable spectacle.

Alexander, the severe keeper of Newgate, died miserably, swelling to a prodigious size, and became so

inwardly putrid, that none could come near him. This cruel minister of the law would go to Bonner, Story,

and others, requesting them to rid his prison, he was so much pestered with heretics! The son of this keeper,

in three years after his father's death, dissipated his great property, and died suddenly in Newgate market.

"The sins of the father," says the decalogue, "shall be visited on the children." John Peter, son-in-law of

Alexander, a horrid blasphemer and persecutor, died wretchedly. When he affirmed anything, he would say,

"If it be not true, I pray I may rot ere I die." This awful state visited him in all its loathsomeness.

Sir Ralph Ellerker was eagerly desirous to see the heart taken out of Adam Damlip, who was wrongfully put

to death. Shortly after Sir Ralph was slain by the French, who mangled him dreadfully, cut off his limbs, and

tore his heart out.

When Gardiner heard of the miserable end of Judge Hales, he called the profession of the Gospel a doctrine

of desperation; but he forgot that the judge's despondency arose after he had consented to the papistry. But

with more reason may this be said of the Catholic tenets, if we consider the miserable end of Dr. Pendleton,

Gardiner, and most of the leading persecutors. Gardiner, upon his death bed, was reminded by a bishop of

Peter denying his master, "Ah," said Gardiner, "I have denied with Peter, but never repented with Peter."

After the accession of Elizabeth, most of the Catholic prelates were imprisoned in the Tower or the Fleet;

Bonner was put into the Marshalsea.

Of the revilers of God's Word, we detail, among many others, the following occurrence. One William

Maldon, living at Greenwich in servitude, was instructing himself profitably in reading an English primer

one winter's evening. A serving man, named John Powell, sat by, and ridiculed all that Maldon said, who

cautioned him not to make a jest of the Word of God. Powell nevertheless continued, until Maldon came to

certain English Prayers, and read aloud, "Lord, have mercy upon us, Christ have mercy upon us," etc.

Suddenly the reviler started, and exclaimed, "Lord, have mercy upon us!" He was struck with the utmost

terror of mind, said the evil spirit could not abide that Christ should have any mercy upon him, and sunk into

madness. He was remitted to Bedlam, and became an awful warning that God will not always be insulted

with impunity.

Henry Smith, a student in the law, had a pious Protesant father, of Camben, in Gloucestershire, by whom he

was virtuously educated. While studying law in the middle temple, he was induced to profess Catholicism,

and, going to Louvain, in France, he returned with pardons, crucifixes, and a great freight of popish toys. Not

content with these things, he openly reviled the Gospel religion he had been brought up in; but conscience

one night reproached him so dreadfully, that in a fit of despair he hung himself in his garters. He was buried

in a lane, without the Christian service being read over him.

Dr. Story, whose name has been so often mtnioned in the preceding pages, was reserved to be cut off by

public execution, a practice in which he had taken great delight when in power. He is supposed to have had a

hand in most of the conflagrations in Mary's time, and was even ingenious in his invention of new modes of

inflicting torture. When Elizabeth came to the throne, he was committed to prison, but unaccountably

effected his escape to the continent, to carry fire and sword there among the Protestant brethren. From the

duke of Alva, at Antwerp, he received a special commission to search all ships for contraband goods, and

particularly for English heretical books.

Dr. Story gloried in a commission that was ordered by Providence to be his ruin, and to preserve the faithful

from his sanguinary cruelty. It was contrived that one Parker, a merchant, should sail to Antwerp and

information should be given to Dr. Story that he had a quantity of heretical books on board. The latter no

sooner heard this, than he hastened to the vessel, sought everywhere above, and then went under the hatches,

which were fastened down upon him. A prosperous gale brought the ship to England, and this traitorous,

persecuting rebel was committed to prison, where he remained a considerable time, obstinately objecting to

recant his Anti-christian spirit, or admit of Queen Elizabeth's supremacy. He alleged, though by birth and

education an Englishman, that he was a sworn subject of the king of Spain, in whose service the famous duke

of Alva was. The doctor being condemned, was laid upon a hurdle, and drawn from the Tower to Tyburn,

where after being suspended about half an hour, he was cut down, stripped, and the executioner displayed the

heart of a traitor.

Thus ended the existence of this Nimrod of England.

CHAPTER XVII - Rise and Progress of the

Protestant Religion in Ireland; with an

Account of the Barbarous Massacre of 1641

The gloom of popery had overshadowed Ireland from its first establishment there until the reign of Henry

VIII when the rays of the Gospel began to dispel the darkness, and afford that light which until then had been

unknown in that island. The abject ignorance in which the people were held, with the absurd and

superstitious notions they entertained, were sufficiently evident to many; and the artifices of their priests

were so conspicuous, that several persons of distinction, who had hitherto been strenuous papists, would

willingly have endeavored to shake off the yoke, and embrace the Protestant religion; but the natural ferocity

of the people, and their strong attachment to the ridiculous doctrines which they had been taught, made the

attempt dangerous. It was, however, at length undertaken, though attended with the most horrid and

disastrous consequences.

The introduction of the Protestant religion into Ireland may be principally attributed to George Browne, an

Englishman, who was consecrated archbishop of Dublin on the nineteenth of March, 1535. He had formerly

been an Augustine friar, and was promoted to the mitre on account of his merit.

After having enjoyed his dignity about five years, he, at the time that Henry VIII was suppressing the

religious houses in England, caused all the relics and images to be removed out of the two cathedrals in

Dublin, and the other churches in his diocese; in the place of which he caused to be put up the Lord's Prayer,

the Creed, and the Ten Commandments.

A short time after this he received a letter from Thomas Cromwell, lord-privy seal, informing him that Henry

VIII having thrown off the papal supremacy in England, was determined to do the like in Ireland; and that he

thereupon had appointed him (Archbishop Browne) one of the commissioners for seeing this order put in

execution. The archbishop answered that he had employed his utmost endeavors at the hazard of his life, to

cause the Irish nobility and gentry to acknowledge Henry as their supreme head, in matters both spiritual and

temporal; but had met with a most violent opposition, especially from George, archbishop of Armagh; that

this prelate had, in a speech to his clergy, laid a curse on all those who should own his highness' supremacy:

adding, that their isle, called in the Chronicles Insula Sacra, or the Holy Island, belonged to none but the

bishop of Rome, and that the king's progenitors had received it from the pope. He observed likewise, that the

archbishop and clergy of Armagh had each despatched a courier to Rome; and that it would be necessary for

a parliament to be called in Ireland, to pass an act of supremacy, the people not regarding the king's

commission without the sanction of the legislative assembly. He concluded with observing, that the popes

had kept the people in the most profound ignorance; that the clergy were exceedingly illiterate; that the

common people were more zealous in their blindness than the saints and martyrs had been in the defence of

truth at the beginning of the Gospel; and that it was to be feared that Shan O'Neal, a chieftain of great power

in the northern part of the island, was decidedly opposed to the king's commission.

In pursuance of this advice, the following year a parliament was summoned to meet at Dublin, by order of

Leonard Grey, at that time lord-lieutenant. At this assembly Archbishop Browne made a speech, in which he

set forth that the bishops of Rome used, anciently, to acknowledge emperors, kings, and princes, to be

supreme in their own dominions; and, therefore, that he himself would vote King Henry VIII as supreme in

all matters, both ecclesiastical and temporal. He concluded with saying that whosoever should refuse to vote

for this act, was not a true subject of the king. This speech greatly startled the other bishops and lords; but at

length, after violent debates, the king's supremacy was allowed.

Two years after this, the archbishop wrote a second letter to Lord Cromwell, complaining of the clergy, and

hinting at the machinations which the pope was then carrying on against the advocates of the Gospel. This

letter is dated from Dublin, in April, 1538; and among other matters, the archbishop says, "A bird may be

taught to speak with as much sense as many of the clergy do in this cvountry. These, though not scholars, yet

are crafty to cozen the oor common people and to dissuade them from following his highness orders. The

country folk here much hate your lordship, and despitefully call you, in their Irish tongue, the Blacksmith's

Son. As a friend, I desire your lordship to look well to your noble person. Rome hath a great kindness for the

duke of Norfolk, and great favors for this nation, purposely to oppose his highness."

A short time after this, the pope sent over to Ireland (directed to the archbishop of Armagh and his clergy) a

bull of excommunication against all who had, or should own the king's supremacy within the Irish nation;

denouncing a curse on all of them, and theirs, who should not, within forty days, acknowledge to their

confessors, that they had done amiss in so doing.

Archbishop Browne gave notice of this in a letter dated, Dublin, May, 1538. Part of the form of confession,

or vow, sent over to these Irish papists, ran as follows: "I do further declare him or here, father or mother,

brother or sister, son or daughter, husband or wife, uncle or aunt, nephew or niece, kinsman or kinswoman,

master or mistress, and all others, nearest or dearest relations, friend or acquaintance whatsoever, accursed,

that either do or shall hold, for the time to come, any ecclesiastical or civil power above the authority of the

Mother Church; or that do or shall obey, for the time to come, any of her, the Mother of Churches' opposers

or enemies, or contrary to the same, of which I have here sworn unto: so God, the Blessed Virgin, St. Peter,

St. Paul, and the Holy Evangelists, help me," etc. is an exact agreement with the doctrines promulgated by

the Councils of Lateran and Constance, which expressly declare that no favor should be shown to heretics,

nor faith kept with them; that they ought to be excommunicated and condemned, and their estates

confiscated, and that princes are obliged, by a solemn oath, to root them out of their respective dominions.

How abominable a church must that be, which thus dares to trample upon all authority! How besotted the

people who regard the injunctions of such a church!

In the archbishop's last-mentioned letter, dated May, 1538, he says: "His highness' viceroy of this nation is of

little or no power with the old natives. Now both English and Irish begin to oppose your lordship's orders,

and to lay aside their national quarrels, which I fear will (i