Foxe's Book of Martyrs -- 289. PROTESTANT BOOKS CONDEMNED BY THE COUNCIL

289. PROTESTANT BOOKS CONDEMNED BY THE COUNCIL

            About this time there came over into England a certain English book, giving warning to Englishmen of the Spaniards, and disclosing certain close practices for recovery of abbey-lands, which book was called, A Warning for England; whereof ye shall understand more, God willing, when we come to the Spanish inquisition: so that by the occasion of this book, upon the thirteenth day of this month came out a certain proclamation, set forth in the name of the king and queen, repealing and disannulling all manner of books written or printed, whatsoever should touch any thing the impairing of the pope's dignity; whereby not only much godly edification was hindered, but also great peril grew among the people. The copy of which proclamation here followeth.

            "Whereas by the statute made in the second year of King Henry the Fourth concerning the repressing of heresies, there is ordained and provided a great punishment, not only for the authors, makers, and writers of books containing wicked doctrine, and erroneous and heretical opinions, contrary to the catholic faith and determination of the holy church, and likewise for their fautors and supporters; but also for such as shall have or keep any such books or writings, and not make delivery of them to the ordinary of the diocese or his ministers, within a certain time limited in the said statute, which act or statute being by authority of parliament of late revived, was also openly proclaimed, to the intent the subjects of the realm upon such proclamation should the rather eschew the danger and penalty of the said statute; and as yet nevertheless, in most parts of the realm, the same is neglected, and little regarded: the king and queen our sovereign lord and lady, therefore, &c., straitly charge and command: that no person or persons, of what estate, degree, or condition soever he or they be, from henceforth presume to bring or convey, or cause to be brought or conveyed into this realm, any books, writings, or works hereafter mentioned; that is to say, any book or books, writings or works, made or set forth, by or in the name of Martin Luther, or any book or books, writings or works, made or set forth, by or in the name of Ścolampadius, Zuinglius, John Calvin, Pomerane, John Alasco, Bullinger, Bucer, Melancthon, Bernardine, Ochin, Erasmus, Sarcerius, Peter Martyr, Hugh Latimer, Robert Barnes, otherwise called Friar Barnes, John Bale, otherwise called Friar Bale, Justus Jonas, John Hooper, Miles Coverdale, William Tyndale, Thomas Cranmer, late archbishop of Canterbury, William Turner, Theodore Basil, otherwise called Thomas Beacon, John Frith, Roy, and the book commonly called Hall's Chronicle, or any of them in the Latin tongue, Dutch tongue, English tongue, Italian tongue, or French tongue, or any other like book, paper, writing, or work, made, printed, or set forth, by any other person or persons, containing false doctrine contrary and against the catholic faith, and the doctrine of the catholic church. And also that no person or persons presume to write, print, utter, sell, read, or keep any, or cause to be written, printed, uttered, or kept, any of the said books, papers, works, or writings, or any book or books, written or printed in the Latin or English tongue, concerning the common service and administration set forth in English to be used in the churches of this realm in the time of King Edward the Sixth, commonly called "The Communion Book, or Book of Common Service and Ordering of Ministers, otherwise called, The Book set forth by authority of Parliament, for Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments," or to be used in the mother tongue within the Church of England; but shall, within the space of fifteen days next after the publication of this proclamation, bring or deliver, or cause the said books, writings, and works, and every of them remaining in their custodies and keeping, to be brought and delivered to the ordinary of the diocese, where such books, works, or writings be or remain, or to his chancellor or commissaries, without fraud, colour, or deceit, at the said ordinary's will and disposition to be burnt, or otherwise to be used or ordered by the said ordinaries, as by the canons or spiritual laws it is in that case limited and appointed, upon pain that every offender contrary to this proclamation, shall incur the danger and penalties contained in the said statute, and as they will avoid their Majesties' high indignation and displeasure, and further answer at their uttermost perils.

            "And their Majesties, by this proclamation, give full power and authority to all bishops and ordinaries, and all justices of the peace, mayors, sheriffs, bailiffs of cities and towns corporate, and other head officers within this realm and the dominions thereof, and expressly command and will the same and every of them, that they and every of them, within their several limits and jurisdictions, shall in the default and negligence of the said subjects, after the said fifteen days expired, inquire and search out the said books, writings, and works; and for this purpose enter into the house or houses, closets, and secret places of every person, of whatsoever degree, being negligent in this behalf, and suspected to keep any such book, writing, or works, contrary to this proclamation: and that the said justices, mayors, sheriffs, bailiffs, and other head officers above specified, and, every of them within their said limits and jurisdictions, finding any of the said subjects negligent and faulty in this behalf, shall commit every such offender to ward, there to remain without bail or mainprize, till the same offender or offenders have received such punishment as the said statute doth limit and appoint in this behalf.
            "Given under our signs manual, at our honour of Hampton Court, the 13th day of June, the first and second years of our reigns."
            "Imprinted by John Cawood, anno 1555."

 

Articles to be inquired upon by the wardens of every company, touching seditious books, especially touching the book called, A Warning for England.

            "I. Whether they have seen any of the aforesaid books?

            "II. Whether they have heard of any of the said books?

            "III. Where they were, and in what place they have seen them?

            "IV. Whom they know to have lately come from beyond the sea; especially from Zurich, Strasburg, Frankfort, Wezel, Emden, and Delsburg?

            "V. Whom they know, or vehemently suspect, to be common carriers of letters, or money, thither from hence?

            "VI. That they bring to my Lord Mayor all such seditious books as they have, or shall have found hereafter."

 

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