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tourney, was wounded so sore in the head with a spear by one of his own subjects, that ere it was long after he died. In the which behalf the dreadful judgments of God were no less approved in our own countrymen. For one that was a notable slaughterman of Christ's saints, rotted alive; and ere ever he §. died, such a rank savour steamed from all his body, that none of Winier his friends were able to come at him, but that they were ready to vomit. Another, being in utter despair well nigh of all health, howled out miserably. The third ran out of his wits. And divers other, that were enemies to the church, perished miserably in the end. All the which things were most certain tokens of the favour and defence of the divine majesty towards his church, and of his wrath and vengeance towards the tyrants. And forasmuch as he had made mention of the Bohemians, he said, it was a most apt example that was reported of their captain Zisca: who, when he should die, willed his body to be slain, and of his skin to make a parchment to cover the head of a drum: for it should come to pass, that when his enemies heard the sound of it, they should not be able to stand against them. The like counsel, he said, he himself now gave them as concerning Bucer; that like as the Bohemians did with the skin of Zisca, the same should they do with the arguments and doctrine of Bucer: for as soon as the papists should hear the noise of him, their gewgaws would forthwith decay. For saving that they used violence to such as withstood them, their doctrine contained nothing that might seem to any man, having but mean understanding in holy scripture, to be grounded upon any reason. As for those things that were done by them against such as could not play the madmen as well as they, some of them savoured of open force, and some of ridiculous foolishness. For what was this first of all ? was it not frivolous, that by the space of three years together mass should be sung in those places where Bucer and Phagius rested in the Lord, without any offence at all; and as soon as they took it to be an offence, straightway to be an offence if any were heard there? or that it should not be as good then as it was before?—as if that then upon the sudden it had been a heinous matter to celebrate it in that place, and that the fault that was past should be counted the grievouser, because it was done of longer time before.
sometime mayor of the town.
Moreover, this was a matter of none effect, that Bucer and Phagius only should be digged up, as who should say, that he alone had embraced the religion which they call heresy. It was well known, how one of the burgesses of the town had been minded toward the popish religion: who, when he should die, willed neither ringing of bells, diriges, nor any other such kind of trifles to be done for him in his anniversary, as they term it; but rather, that they should go with instruments of music before the mayor and council of the city, to celebrate his memorial, and also that yearly a sermon should be made to the people, bequeathing a piece of money to the preacher for his labour. Neither might he omit in that place to speak of Ward, the painter; who, albeit he were a man of no reputation, yet was he not to be despised for the religion sake which he diligently followed. Neither were divers other more to be passed over with silence, who were known of a certainty to have continued in the same sect, and to rest in other churchyards in Cambridge, and rather through the whole realm, and yet defiled not their masses at all. All the which persons, (forasmuch as they were all of one opinion,) ought all to have been taken up, or else all to have been let lie with the same religion: unless a man would grant, that it lieth in their power to make what they list lawful and unlawful at their own pleasure.
In the condemnation of Bucer and Phagius, to say the truth, they used too much cruelty and too much violence. For howsoever it went with the doctrine of Bucer, certainly they could find nothing whereof to accuse Phagius, inasmuch as he wrote nothing that came abroad, saving a few things that he had translated out of the Hebrew and Chaldee tongues into Latin: after his coming into the realm he never read, he never disputed, he never preached, he never taught; for he deceased so soon after, that he could in that time give no occasion for his adversaries to take hold on, whereby to accuse him, whom they never heard speak. In that they hated Bucer so deadly for the allowable marriage of the clergy, it was their own malice conceived against him, and a very slander raised by themselves. For he had for his defence in that matter, over and besides other helps, the testimony of the pope Pius the second, who in a certain place saith, that upon weighty considerations priests’ wives were taken from them, but for more weighty causes were to be restored again; and also the statute of the emperor, (they call it the Interim,) by the which it is enacted, that such of the clergy as were married should not be divorced from their wives.
Thus turning his style from this matter to the university, he reproved in few words their unfaithfulness towards these men. For if the Lord suffered not the bones of the king of Edom, being a wicked man, to be taken up and burnt without revengement (as saith Amos), let us assure ourselves, he will not suffer [Amos ii.1.) so notable a wrong done to his godly preachers, unrevenged. Afterward, when he came to the condemnation (which we told you in the former action was pronounced by Perne, the vicechancellor, in the name of them all), being somewhat more moved at the matter, he admonished them, how much it stood them in hand to use great circumspectness, what they decreed upon any man by their voices, in admitting or rejecting any man to the promotions and degrees of the university. For that which should take his authority from them, should be a great prejudice to all the other multitude, which (for the opinion that it had of their doctrine, judgment, allowance, and knowledge) did think nothing but well of them. For it would come to pass, that if they would bestow their promotions upon none but meet persons, and let the unmeet go as they come, both the commonwealth should receive much commodity and profit by them, and besides that they should highly please God. But if they persisted to be negligent in doing thereof, they should grievously endamage the commonweal, and worthily work their own shame and reproach. Over and besides that, they should greatly of fend the majesty of God, whose commandment, not to bear false witness, they should in so doing break and violate.
In the mean while that he was speaking these and many other things before his audience, many of the university, to set out and defend Bucer withal, beset the walls of the church and church-porch on both sides with verses, some in Latin, some in Greek, and some in English, in the which they made a manifest declaration how they were minded both toward Bucer and Phagius. Finally, when his sermon was ended, they made common supplication and prayers. After thanks rendered to God for many other things, but in especially for restoring of the true and sincere religion, every man departed his way.
THE EARL OF LEICESTER,
in behalf of the
REFUSERS OF THE HABITS.1
(From Strype's Life of Archbishop Parker, Appendixxxv. Vol. III. p. 69. Oxford, 1821.)
Right honourable, my duty considered, and under correction:
I understand by common report, and I fear too true, that there is great offence taken with some of the ministery for not
[*In Tanner's account of Bishop Pilkington there is mention made of an “Epistola Consolatoria (contra usum vestium pontif in sacris)" as existing in the MSS. of the Bodleian. This appears to be a mistake. There are two MS. letters of Pilkington's in that collection, viz. this to “the Right Hon. Lord Rob. Dudley, Earl of Leicester,” and the Latin letter to his brother-in-law, Andrew Kingsmill, inserted in the Appendix to this volume. The “comfortable letter” is found in a printed volume in the same library, and is only another form of the present letter. The author appears to have made a double use of this letter, addressing it as a letter of comfort to the refusers of the habits, and as a letter of intercession to the earl of Leicester on their behalf: or more probably, the former use was not made of it by himself, but by some one else after his death. There is no reason to think that in either form he wrote it in Latin. There are some unimportant variations between the letter as printed by Strype from a manuscript in his possession, and that in the volume above mentioned; chiefly to change the form of the letter from that of an address to an influential individual to that of a consolatory epistle to “the refusers of the habits”; but these, as already noticed, do not appear to have been made by Bishop Pilkington himself, but at a later date.— The beginning and ending are here subjoined, as they stand in the printed book; which is that “very rare” volume entitled, A parte of a Register, printed 1593, at Edinburgh, an account of which, and the circumstances attending its suppression, is given by Herbert in his Typographical Antiquities, Vol. III. p. 1414. See also Archbishop Bancroft's Dangerous Positions, as there quoted.
“Grace and peace, with all manner spiritual feeling and living worthy of the kindness of Christ, be with all that thirst after the will of God.— To my faithful and dear brethren in Christ Jesu: Asin common dangers
using such apparel as the rest do. Therefore, as in great common dangers of fire or such like, they that be far off come to succourthose that have need; so I, being out of that jeopardy and far off, cannot but of duty wish well to those that be touched in this case. In this liberty of God's truth, which is taught plainly without offence in the greatest mysteries of our religion and salvation, I marvel much that this small controversy for apparel should be so heavily taken. But this is the malice of Satan, that where he cannot overthrow the greatest matters, he will raise great troubles in trifles. Peter and Paul agreed in the chiefest articles of our salvation; and yet they differed so about meats, that Paul withstood and rebuked him openly. Paul and Barnabas fell at such bitter contention, whether Mark should go with them or no, so that they parted companies, and went either sundry ways. God defend us from the like Paul circumcided Timothy, when there was hope to win the Jews; but when they would have it of necessity, he would not circumcide Titus. Therefore compelling would not be used in things of liberty. In this rude superstitious people, on the borders, priests go with sword, dagger, and such coarse apparel as they can get, not being curious or scrupulous what colour or fashion it be, and none is offended at them. But such grief to be taken at a cap among them that are civil and full of knowledge, is lamentable. Consider, I beseech your honour, how that all countries, which have reformed religion, have cast away the popish apparel with the pope; and yet we, that would be taken for the best, contend to keep it as a holy relic. Mark also, how many ministers there be here in all countries, that be so zealous, not only to forsake that wicked doctrine of popery, but ready to leave the ministery and their livings, rather than to be like the popish teachers of such superstitions, either in apparel or behaviour. This realm has such scarcity of teachers, that if so many worthy men should be cast out of the ministery for such small matters, many places should be destitute of preachers.
of fire or such like, well beloved, they that be far off come to succour those that have need; so I, being out of jeopardy, &c.” “God grant that we may give all honour to whom all honour is due, both inwardly and outwardly, to serve him unfeignedly all the days of our life. Farewell, dear brethren in the Lord Jesus, who ever keep us in his faith, fear, and love for ever. Amen.” Ed.]