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Foxe's Book of Martyrs -- 267. ROWLAND TAYLOR.



The history of Dr. Rowland Taylor, who suffered for the truth of God's word, under the tyranny of the Roman bishops, the ninth day of February, A. D. 1555.

Illustration -- Ancient Gateway, Hadleigh

            The town of Hadley was one of the first that received the word of God in all England, at the preaching of Master Thomas Bilney: by whose industry the gospel of Christ had such gracious success, and took such root there, that a great number of that parish became exceeding well learned in the Holy Scriptures, as well women as men, so that a man might have found among them many, that had often read the whole Bible through, and that could have said a great sort of St. Paul's Epistles by heart, and very well and readily have given a godly learned sentence in any matter of controversy. Their children and servants were also brought up and trained so diligently in the right knowledge of God's word, that the whole town seemed rather a university of the lcarned, than a town of cloth-making or labouring people: and (what most is to be commended) they were for the more part faithful followers of God's word in their living.

            In this town was Dr. Rowland Taylor, doctor in both the civil and canon laws, and a right perfect divine, parson; who, at his first entering into his benefice, did not, as the common sort of beneficed men do, let out his benefice to a farmer, that shall gather up the profits, and set in an ignorant, unlearned priest to serve the cure, and, so they have the fleece, little or nothing care for feeding the flock: but, contrarily, he forsook the archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer, with whom he before was in household, and made his personal abode and dwelling in Hadley, among the people committed to his charge; where he, as a good shepherd, abiding and dwelling among his sheep, gave himself wholly to the study of Holy Scriptures, most faithfully endeavouring himself to fulfil that charge which the Lord gave unto Peter, saying, Peter, lovest thou me? Feed my lambs, feed my sheep, feed my sheep. This love of Christ so wrought in him, that no Sunday nor holy-day passed, nor other time when he might get the people together, but he preached to them the word of God, the doctrine of their salvation.

            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 sinful and evil doers; so that none was so rich but he would tell him 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 rancour, 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 alms-box. 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.

            To conclude, he was a right and lively image or pattern of all those virtuous qualities described by St. Paul in a true bishop: a good salt of the earth, savourly 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 leading them through the wilderness of this wicked world, all the days of the most innocent and holy king of blessed memory, Edward the Sixth. But after it pleased God to take King Edward from this vale of misery unto his most blessed rest, the papists, who ever sembled and dissembled, both with King Henry the Eighth and King Edward his son, now seeing the time convenient for their purpose, uttered their false hypocrisy, openly refusing all good reformation made by the said two most godly kings; and, contrary to that they had all these two kings' days preached, taught, written, and sworn, they violently overthrew the true doctrine of the gospel, and persecuted with sword and fire all those that would not agree to receive again the Roman bishop as supreme head of the universal church, and allow all the errors, superstitions, and idolatries, that before by God's word were disproved and justly condemned, as though now they were good doctrine, virtuous, and true religion.

            In the beginning of this rage of antichrist, a certain petty gentleman, after the sort of a lawyer, called Foster, being a steward and keeper of courts, a man of no great skill, but a bitter persecutor in those days, with one John Clerk of Hadley, which Foster had ever been a secret favourer of all Romish idolatry, conspired with the said Clerk to bring in the pope and his maumetry again into Hadley church. For as yet Dr. Taylor, as a good shepherd, had retained and kept in his church the godly church service and reformation made by King Edward, and most faithfully and earnestly preached against the popish corruptions, which had infected the whole country round about.

            Therefore the foresaid Foster and Clerk hired one John Averth, parson of Aldham, a very money mammonist, a blind leader of the blind, a popish idolater, and an open advouterer and whoremonger, a very fit minister for their purpose, to come to Hadley, and there to give the onset to begin again the popish mass.

            To this purpose they builded up with all haste possible the altar, intending to bring in their mass again about the Palm Monday. But this their device took none effect; for in the night the altar was beaten down: wherefore they built it up again the second time, and laid diligent watch, lest any should again break it down.

            On the day following came Foster and John Clerk, bringing with them their popish sacrificer, who brought with him all his implements and garments to play his popish pageant, whom they and their men guarded with swords and bucklers, lest any man should disturb him in his missal sacrifice.

            When Dr. Taylor, who, according to his custom, sat at his book studying the word of God, heard the bells ringing, he arose and went into the church, supposing something had been there to be done, according to his pastoral office: and, coming to the church, he found the church doors shut and fast barred, saving the chancel door, which was only latched. Where he, entering in, and coming in the chancel, saw a popish sacrificer in his robes, with a broad new-shaven crown, ready to begin his popish sacrifice, beset round about with drawn swords and bucklers, lest any man should approach to disturb him.

            Then said Dr. Taylor, "Thou devil! who made thee so bold to enter into this church of Christ to profane and defile it with this abominable idolatry?" With that started up Foster, and with an ireful and furious countenance said to Dr. Taylor, "Thou traitor! what dost thou here, to let and disturb the queen's proceedings?" Dr. Taylor answered, "I am no traitor, but I am the shepherd that God my Lord Christ hath appointed to feed this his flock: wherefore I have good authority to be here; and I command thee, thou popish wolf, in the name of God to avoid hence, and not to presume here, with such popish idolatry, to poison Christ's flock."

            Then said Foster, "Wilt thou traitorously, heretic! make a commotion, and resist violently the queen's proceedings?"

            Dr. Taylor answered, "I make no commotion; but it is you papists, that make commotions and tumults. I resist only with God's word against your popish idolatries, which are against God's word, the queen's honour, and tend to the utter subversion of this realm of England. And further, thou dost against the canon law, which commandeth, that no mass be said but at a consecrated altar."

            When the parson of Aldham heard that, he began to shrink back, and would have left his saying of mass: then started up John Clerk, and said, "Master Averth, be not afraid, you have a superaltare, go forth with your business, man."

            Then Foster, with his armed men, took Dr. Taylor, and led him with strong hand out of the church; and the popish prelate proceeded in his Romish idolatry. Dr. Taylor's wife, who followed her husband into the church, when she saw her husband thus violently thrust out of his church, she kneeled down and held up her hands, and with a loud voice said, "I beseech God, the righteous Judge, to avenge this injury, that this popish idolater to this day doth to the blood of Christ." Then they thrust her out of the church also, and shut the doors; for they feared that the people would have rent their sacrificer in pieces. Notwithstanding one or two threw in great stones at the windows, and missed very little the popish masser.

            Thus you see how, without consent of the people, the popish mass was again set up with battle array, with swords and bucklers, with violence and tyranny: which practice the papists have ever yet used. As for reason, law, or Scripture, they have none on their part. Therefore they are the same that say, "The law of unrighteousness is our strength: come, let us oppress the righteous without any fear," &c.

            Within a day or two after, with all haste possible, this Foster and Clerk made a complaint of Dr. Taylor, by a letter written to Stephen Gardiner, bishop of Winchester, and lord chancellor.

            When the bishop heard this, he sent a letter missive to Dr. Taylor, commanding him within certain days to come and to appear before him upon his allegiance, to answer such complaints as were made against him.

            When Dr. Taylor's friends heard of this, they were exceeding sorry and aggrieved in mind; which when foreseeing to what end the same matter would come, seeing also all truth and justice were trodden under foot, and falsehood with cruel tyranny were set aloft and ruled all the whole rout: his friends, I say, came to him and earnestly counselled him to depart and fly, alleging and declaring unto him, that he could neither be indifferently heard to speak his conscience and mind, nor yet look for justice or favour at the said chancellor's hands, who, as it was well known, was most fierce and cruel; but must needs (if he went up to him) wait for imprisonment and cruel death at his hands.

            Then said Dr. Taylor to his friends, "Dear friends, I most heartily thank you, for that you have so tender a care over me. And although I know that there is neither justice nor truth to be looked for at my adversaries' hands, but rather imprisonment and cruel death; yet know I my cause to be so good and righteous, and the truth so strong upon my side, that I will, by God's grace, go and appear before them, and to their beards resist their false doing."

            Then said his friends, "Master Doctor, we think it not best so to do. You have sufficiently done your duty, and testified the truth, both by your godly sermons, and also in resisting the parson of Aldham, with others that came hither to bring again the popish mass. And forasmuch as our Saviour Christ willeth and biddeth us, that when they persecute us in one city, we should fly into another; we think, in flying at this time ye should do best, keeping yourself against another time, when the church shall have great need of such diligent teachers and godly pastors."

            "Oh," quoth Dr. Taylor, "what will ye have me to do? I am now old, and have already lived too long, to see these terrible and most wicked days. Fly you, and do as your conscience leadeth you; I am fully determined (with God's grace) to go to the bishop, and to his beard to tell him that he doth naught. God shall well hereafter raise up teachers of his people, which shall, with much more diligence and fruit, teach them, than I have done. For God will not forsake his church, though now for a time he trieth and correcteth us, and not without a just cause.

            "As for me, I believe before God, I shall never be able to do God so good service, as I may do now; nor I shall ever have so glorious a calling as I now have, nor so great mercy of God proffered me, as is now at this present. For what Christian man would not gladly die against the pope and his adherents? I know that the papacy is the kingdom of antichrist, altogether full of lies, altogether full of falsehood; so that all their doctrine, even from 'Christ's cross be my speed,' and St. Nicholas, unto the end of their apocalypse, is nothing but idolatry, superstition, errors, hypocrisy, and lies.

            "Wherefore I beseech you, and all other my friends, to pray for me; and I doubt not but God will give me strength and his Holy Spirit, that all mine adversaries shall have shame of their doings."

            When his friends saw him so constant, and fully determined to go, they, with weeping eyes, commended him unto God; and he within a day or two prepared himself to his journey, leaving his cure with a godly old priest, named Sir Richard Yeoman, who afterwards, for God's truth, was burnt at Norwich.

            There was also in Hadley one Alcock, a very godly man, well learned in the Holy Scriptures, who, after Sir Richard Yeoman was driven away, used daily to read a chapter, and to say the English litany in Hadley church. But him they fetched up to London, and cast him in prison in Newgate; where, after a year's imprisonment, he died.

            But let us return to Dr. Taylor again, who, being accompanied with a servant of his own, named John Hull, took his journey towards London. By the way this John Hull laboured to counsel and persuade him very earnestly to fly, and not come to the bishop; and proffered himself to go with him to serve him, and in all perils to venture his life for him, and with him.

            But in no wise would Dr. Taylor consent or agree thereunto; but said, "O John! shall I give place to this thy counsel and worldly persuasion, and leave my flock in this danger? Remember the good Shepherd Christ, which not alone fed his flock, but also died for his flock. Him must I follow, and, with God's grace, will do. Therefore, good John, pray for me; and if thou seest me weak at any time, comfort me; and discourage me not in this my godly enterprise and purpose."

            Thus they came up to London, and shortly after Dr. Taylor presented himself to the bishop of Winchester, Stephen Gardiner, then lord chancellor of England. For this hath been one great abuse in England these many years, that such offices as have been of most importance and weight, have commonly been committed to bishops and other spiritual men, whereby three devilish mischiefs and inconveniences have happened in this realm, to the great dishonour of God, and utter neglecting of the flock of Christ; the which three be these.

            First, they have had small leisure to attend to their pastoral cures, which thereby have been utterly neglected and left undone.

            Secondly, it hath also puffed up many bishops, and other spiritual persons, into such haughtiness and pride, that they have thought no nobleman in the realm worthy to be their equal and fellow.

            Thirdly, where they, by this means, knew the very secrets of princes, they, being in such high offices, have caused the same to be known in Rome, afore the kings could accomplish and bring their intents to pass in England. By this means hath the papacy been so maintained, and things ordered after their wills and pleasures, that much mischief hath happened in this realm and others, sometimes to the destruction of princes, and sometimes to the utter undoing of many commonwealths.


The examination of Dr. Taylor.

OW, when Gardiner saw Dr. Taylor, he, according to his common custom, all to reviled him, calling him knave, traitor, heretic, with many other villanous reproaches; all which Dr. Taylor heard patiently, and at the last said unto him "My Lord," quoth he, "I am neither traitor nor heretic, but a true subject, and a faithful Christian man; and am come, according to your commandment, to know what is the cause that your Lordship hath sent for me."

            Then said the bishop, "Art thou come, thou villain? How darest thou look me in the face for shame? Knowest thou not who I am?"

            "Yes," quoth Dr. Taylor, "I know who you are. Ye are Dr. Stephen Gardiner, bishop of Winchester, and lord chancellor; and yet but a mortal man, I trow. But if I should be afraid of your lordly looks, why fear you not God, the Lord of us all? How dare ye for shame look any Christian man in the face, seeing ye have forsaken the truth, denied our Saviour Christ and his word, and done contrary to your own oath and writing? With what countenance will ye appear before the judgment-seat of Christ, and answer to your oath made first unto that blessed King Henry the Eighth of famous memory, and afterward unto blessed King Edward the Sixth his son?"

            The bishop answered, "Tush, tush, that was Herod's oath: unlawful; and therefore worthy to be broken: I have done well in breaking it; and, I thank God, I am come home again to our mother the catholic Church of Rome; and so I would thou shouldst do."

            Dr. Taylor answered, "Should I forsake the church of Christ, which is founded upon the true foundation of the apostles and prophets, to approve those lies, errors, superstitions, and idolatries, that the popes and their company at this day so blasphemously do approve? Nay, God forbid. Let the pope and his return to our Saviour Christ and his word, and thrust out of the church such abominable idolatries as he maintaineth, and then will Christian men turn unto him. You wrote truly against him, and were sworn against him."

            "I tell thee," quoth the bishop of Winchester, "it was Herod's oath, unlawful; and therefore ought to be broken, and not kept: and our holy father the pope hath discharged me of it."

            Then said Dr. Taylor, "But you shall not so be discharged before Christ, who doubtless will require it at your hands, as a lawful oath made to our liege and sovereign lord the king, from whose obedience no man can assoil you, neither the pope nor any of his."

            "I see," quoth the bishop, "thou art an arrogant knave, and a very fool."

            "My Lord," quoth Dr. Taylor, "leave your unseemly railing at me, which is not seemly for such a one in authority as you are. For I am a Christian man, and you know, that he that saith to his brother, Raca, is in danger of a council; and he that saith, Thou fool, is in danger of hell fire."

            The bishop answered, "Ye are false, and liars all the sort of you." "Nay," quoth Dr. Taylor, "we are true men, and know that it is written, The mouth that lieth, slayeth the soul. And again, Lord God, thou shalt destroy all that speak lies. And therefore we abide by the truth of God's word, which ye, contrary to your own consciences, deny and forsake."

            "Thou art married?" quoth the bishop. "Yea," quoth Dr. Taylor, "that I thank God I am; and have had nine children, and all in lawful matrimony; and blessed be God that ordained matrimony, and commanded that every man that hath not the gift of continency, should marry a wife of his own, and not live in adultery or whoredom." Then said the bishop, "Thou hast resisted the queen's proceedings, and wouldst not suffer the parson of Aldham (a very virtuous and devout priest) to say mass in Hadley." Dr. Taylor answered, "My Lord, I am parson of Hadley; and it is against all right, conscience, and laws, that any man should come into my charge, and presume to infect the flock committed unto me, with venom of the popish idolatrous mass."

            With that the bishop waxed very angry, and said. "Thou art a blasphemous heretic indeed, that blasphemest the blessed sacrament (and put off his cap): and speakest against the holy mass, which is made a sacrifice for the quick and the dead." Dr. Taylor answered, "Nay, I blaspheme not the blessed sacrament which Christ instituted, but I reverence it as a true Christian man ought to do; and confess that Christ ordained the holy communion in the remembrance of his death and passion, which when we keep according to his ordinance, we (through faith) eat the body of Christ, and drink his blood, giving thanks for our redemption; and this is our sacrifice for the quick and the dead, to give thanks for his merciful goodness showed to us, in that he gave his Son Christ unto the death for us."

            "Thou sayest well," quoth the bishop; "it is all that thou hast said, and more too; for it is a propitiatory sacrifice for the quick and the dead." Then answered Dr. Taylor, "Christ gave himself to die for our redemption upon the cross, whose body there offered was the propitiatory sacrifice, full, perfect, and sufficient unto salvation, for all them that believe in him. And this sacrifice did our Saviour Christ offer in his own person himself once for all, neither can any priest any more offer him, nor we need any more propitiatory sacrifice: and therefore I say with Chrysostom, and all the doctors, 'Our sacrifice is only memorative, in the remembrance of Christ's death and passion: a sacrifice of thanksgiving;' and therefore the fathers called it eucharistia: and other sacrifice hath the church of God none."

            "It is true," quoth the bishop, "the sacrament is called eucharistia, a thanksgiving, because we there give thanks for our redemption; and it is also a sacrifice propitiatory for the quick and the dead, which thou shalt confess ere thou and I have done." Then called the bishop his men, and said, "Have this fellow hence, and carry him to the King's Bench, and charge the keeper he be straitly kept."

            Then kneeled Dr. Taylor down, and held up both his hands, and said, "Good Lord, I thank thee; and from the tyranny of the bishop of Rome, and all his detestable errors, idolatries, and abominations, good Lord, deliver us: and God be praised for good King Edward." So they carried him to prison to the King's Bench, where he lay prisoner almost two years.

            This is the sum of that first talk, as I saw it mentioned in a letter that Dr. Taylor wrote to a friend of his; thanking God for his grace, that he had confessed his truth, and was found worthy for truth to suffer prison and bands, beseeching his friends to pray for him, that he might persevere constant unto the end.

            Being in prison, Dr. Taylor spent all his time in prayer, reading the Holy Scriptures, and writing, and preaching, and exhorting the prisoners, and such as resorted to him, to repentance and amendment of life.

            Within a few days after, were divers other learned and godly men in sundry counties of England committed to prison for religion, so that almost all the prisons in England were become right Christian schools and churches; so that there was no greater comfort for Christian hearts, than to come to the prisons to behold their virtuous conversation, and to hear their prayers, preachings, most godly exhortations, and consolations.

            Now were placed in churches blind and ignorant mass-mongers, with their Latin babblings and apish ceremonies; who, like cruel wolves, spared not to murder all such, as any thing at all but once whispered against their popery. As for the godly preachers which were in King Edward's time, they were either fled the realm, or else, as the prophets did in King Ahab's days, they were privily kept in corners. As many as the papists could lay hold on, they were sent into prison; there as lambs waiting when the butchers would call them to the slaughter.

            When Dr. Taylor was come into the prison called the King's Bench, he found therein the virtuous and vigilant preacher of God's word, Master Bradford; which man, for his innocent and godly living, his devout and virtuous preaching, was worthily counted a miracle of our time; as even his adversaries must needs confess. Finding this man in prison, he began to exhort him to faith, strength, and patience, and to persevere constant unto the end. Master Bradford, hearing this, thanked God that he had provided him such a comfortable prison-fellow. And so they both together lauded God, and continued in prayer, reading, and exhorting one the other; insomuch that Dr. Taylor told his friends that came to visit him, that God had most graciously provided for him, to send him to that prison where he found such an angel of God, to be in his company to comfort him.


Dr. Taylor brought forth to be deprived.

            After that Dr. Taylor had lain in prison awhile, he was cited to appear in the Arches, at Bow-church, to answer unto such matter as there should be objected against him. At the day appointed he was led thither, his keeper waiting upon him; where, when he came, he stoutly and strongly defended his marriage, affirming, by the Scriptures of God, by the doctors of the primitive church, by both laws civil and canon, that it is lawful for priests to marry, and that such as have not the gift of continency are bound, on pain of damnation, to marry. This did he so plainly prove, that the judge could give no sentence of divorce against him; but gave sentence he should be deprived of his benefice, because he was married.

            "You do me wrong then," quoth Dr. Taylor; and alleged many laws and constitutions for himself. But all prevailed not; for he was again carried into prison, and his livings taken away, and given to other. As for Hadley benefice, it was given or sold, I wot not whether, to one Master Newcalle, whose great virtues were altogether unlike to Dr. Taylor, his predecessor, as the poor parishioners full well have proved.


Dr. Taylor brought again before Winchester and other bishops.

            After a year and three quarters, or thereabout, in the which time the papists got certain old tyrannous laws, which were put down by King Henry the Eighth and by King Edward, to be again revived by parliament; so that now they might, ex officio, cite whom they would, upon their own suspicion, and charge him with what articles they lusted; and except they in all things agreed to their purpose, burn them: when these laws were once established, they sent for Dr. Taylor, with certain other prisoners, who were again convented before the chancellor and other commissioners, about the twenty-second of January. The purport and effect of which talk between them, because it is sufficiently described by himself, in his own letter written to a friend of his, I have annexed the said letter hereunder, as followeth.

            "Whereas you would have me to write the talk between the king and queen's most honourable council and me, on Tuesday, twenty-second of January, so far as I remember: first, my Lord Chancellor said, 'You, among others, are at this present time sent for, to enjoy the king's and queen's Majesties' favour and mercy, if you will now rise again with us from the fall which we generally have received in this realm; from the which (God be praised!) we are now clearly delivered miraculously. If you will not rise with us now, and receive mercy now offered, you shall have judgment according to your demerit.' To this I answered, that so to rise, should be the greatest fall that ever I could receive: for I should so fall from my dear Saviour Christ, to antichrist. 'For I do believe, that the religion set forth in King Edward's days, was according to the vein of the Holy Scripture, which containeth fully all the rules of our Christian religion, from the which I do not intend to decline, so long as I live, by God's grace.'

            "Then Master Secretary Bourn said, 'Which of the religions mean ye of, in King Edward's days? For ye know there were divers books of religion set forth in his days. There was a religion set forth in a catechism by my Lord of Canterbury. Do you mean that you will stick to that?' I answered, My Lord of Canterbury made a catechism to be translated into English, which book was not of his own making; yet he set it forth in his own name: and truly that book for the time did much good. But there was, after that, set forth by the most innocent King Edward, (for whom God be praised everlastingly,) The Whole Church-service, with great deliberation, and the advice of the best learned men in the realm, and authorized by the whole parliament, and received and published gladly by the whole realm: which book was never reformed but once; and yet, by that one reformation it was so fully perfected, according to the rules of our Christian religion in every behalf, that no Christian conscience could be offended with any thing therein contained; I mean of that book reformed.'

            "Then my Lord Chancellor said, 'Didst thou never read the book that I set forth of the sacraments?'-- I answered, that I had read it.

            "Then he said, 'How likest thou that book?'-- With that one of the council (whose name I know not) said, 'My Lord, that is a good question: for I am sure that book stoppeth all their mouths.' Then said I, 'My Lord, I think many things be far wide from the truth of God's word in that book.'

            "Then my Lord said, 'Thou art a very varlet.' To that I answered, 'That is as ill as raca or fatue.' Then my Lord said, 'Thou art an ignorant beetle-brow.'-- To that I answered, 'I have read over and over again the Holy Scriptures, and St. Augustine's works through; St. Cyprian, Eusebius, Origen, Gregory Nazianzen, with divers other books through, once; therefore, I thank God, I am not utterly ignorant. Besides these, my Lord, I professed the civil laws, as your Lordship did; and I have read over the canon law also.'

            "Then my Lord said, 'With a corrupt judgment thou readest all things: touching my profession, it is divinity, in which I have written divers books.'-- Then said I, 'My Lord, ye did write one book, De Vera Obedientia: I would you had been constant in that: for indeed you never did declare a good conscience that I heard of, but in that one book.'

            "Then my Lord said, 'Tut, tut, tut; I wrote against Bucer in priests' marriages: but such books please not such wretches as thou art, which hast been married many years.'-- To that I answered, I am married indeed, and I have had nine children in holy matrimony, I thank God: and this I am sure of, that your proceedings now at this present in this realm against priests' marriages, is the maintenance of the doctrine of devils, against natural law, civil law, canon law, general councils, canons of the apostles, ancient doctors, and God's laws.'

            "Then spake my Lord of Durham, saying, 'You have professed the civil law, as you say. Then you know that Justinian writeth, that priests should, at their taking of orders, swear that they were never married; and he bringeth in to prove that, Canones Apostolorum.'-- To that I answered, that I did not remember any such law of Justinian. 'But I am sure, that Justinian writeth, In Titulo de indicta Viduitate, (in Cod.) that if one would bequeath to his wife in his testament a legacy, under a condition that she should never marry again, and take an oath of her for accomplishing the same, yet she may marry again if he die, notwithstanding the aforesaid conditions, and oath taken and made against marriage: and an oath is another manner of obligation made to God, than is a papistical vow made to man.-- Moreover, in the Pandects it is contained, that if a man doth manumit his handmaid, under a condition that she shall never marry; yet she may marry, and her patron shall lose jus patronatus, for his adding of the unnatural and unlawful condition against matrimony.'

            "Then my Lord Chancellor said, 'Thou sayest that priests may be married by God's law. How provest thou that?'-- I answered, 'By the plain words and sentences of St. Paul, both to Timothy and to Titus, where he speaks most evidently of the marriage of priests, deacons, and bishops. And Chrysostom, writing upon the Epistle to Timothy, saith, It is a heresy to say that a bishop may not be married.'

            "Then said my Lord Chancellor, 'Thou liest of Chrysostom. But thou dost, as all thy companions do, belie ever without shame both the Scriptures and the doctors. Didst thou not also say, that by the canon law priests may be married? which is most untrue, and the contrary is most true.'-- I answered, 'We read in the Decrees, that the four general councils -- Nicene, Constantinople, Ephesus, Chalcedon -- have the same authority that the four evangelists have. And we read in the same Decrees, (which is one of the chief books of the canon law,) that the council of Nice, by the means of one Paphnutius, did allow priests' and bishops' marriages: therefore by the best part of the canon law, priests may be married.'

            "Then my Lord Chancellor said, 'Thou falsifiest the general council; for there is express mention in the said decree, that priests should be divorced from their wives, which be married.'-- Then said I, 'If those words be there, as you say, then am I content to lose this great head of mine: let the book be fetched!'

            "Then spake my Lord of Durham: 'Though they be not there, yet they may be in Ecclesiastica Historia, which Eusebius wrote; out of which book the decree was taken.'-- To that said I, 'It is not like that the pope would leave out any such sentence, having such authority, and making so much for his purpose.'

            "Then my Lord Chancellor said, 'Gratian was but a patcher, and thou art glad to snatch up such a patch as maketh for thy purpose.'-- I answered, My Lord, I cannot but marvel that you do call one of the chief papists that ever was, but a patcher.'

            "Then my Lord Chancellor said, 'Nay, I call thee a snatcher and patcher. To make an end, wilt thou not return again with us to the catholic church?' And with that he rose.-- And I said, 'By God's grace I will never depart from Christ's church.'

            "Then I required that I might have some of my friends to come to me in prison: and my Lord Chancellor said, 'Thou shalt have judgment within this week:' and so was I delivered again unto my keeper. My Lord of Durham would, that I should believe as my father and my mother did. I alleged St. Augustine, that we ought to prefer God's word before all men."

            And thus much was contained in the aforesaid letter of Doctor Taylor for that matter.

            Besides this letter, moreover he directed another writing in like manner to another friend of his, concerning the causes wherefore he was condemned, which we thought likewise here to express as followeth.

            "It is heresy to defend any doctrine against the Holy Scripture. Therefore the lord chancellor and bishops, consenting to this sentence against me, be heretics. For they have given sentence against the marriage of priests, knowing that St. Paul to Timothy and Titus writeth plainly, that bishops, priests, and deacons, may be married; knowing also that, by St. Paul's doctrine, it is the doctrine of devils to inhibit matrimony. And St. Paul willeth every faithful minister to teach the people so, lest they be deccived by the marked merchants.

            "These bishops are not ignorant, that it is not only St. Paul's counsel, and lawful, but God's commandment also, to marry -- for such as cannot otherwise live chaste, neither avoid fornication.

            "They know that such as do marry, do not sin.

            "They know that God, before sin was, ordained matrimony, and that in Paradise, between two of his principal creatures, man and woman.

            "They know what spirit they have, which say it is evil to marry, (seeing God said, It is not good for man to be alone without a wife,) having no special gift, contrary to the general commandment and ordinance, divers times repeated in the book of Genesis, which is, to increase and multiply.

            "They know that Abraham carried into the land of Canaan his old and yet barren wife, the virtuous woman Sarah, with him; leaving father and mother, and country, the while, at God's commandment. For though father and mother and other friends are dear and ncar, yet none are so dearly and nearly joined together, as man and wife in matrimony; which must needs be holy, for that it is a figure and similitude of Christ and his church.

            "They know that St. Paul giveth a great praise to matrimony, calling it honourable; and that not only to and among many, but to and among all men without exception, whosoever have need of that God's remedy, for man's and woman's infirmity.

            "They know that if there were any sin in matrimony, it were chiefly to be thought to be in the bed-company. But St. Paul saith, that the bed-company is undefiled.

            "They know that the having of a wife was not an impediment for Abraham, Moses, Isaac, Jacob, David, &c., to talk with God; neither to the Levites', bishops', and priests' office, in the time of the Old Testament or the New.

            "They know that Christ would not be conceived or born of his blessed mother, the Virgin Mary, before she was espoused in marriage, his own ordinance.

            "They know, by St. Cyprian and St. Augustine, that a vow is not an impediment sufficient to let matrimony, or to divorce the same.

            "They know that St. Chrysostom saith, it is heresy to affirm that a bishop may not have a wife.

            "They know that Ambrose will have no commandment, but counsel only to be given, touching the observing of virginity.

            "They know that Christ, with his blessed mother and the apostles, were at a marriage, and [therefore] beautified and honoured the same with his presence, and first miracle.

            "To be short, they know that all that I have here written touching the marriage of priests, is true: and they know that the papists themselves do not observe, touching that matter, their own laws and canons, and yet they continue marked in conscience with a hot iron, as detestable heretics in this behalf. The Lord give them grace to repent, if it be his good will. Amen.

            "My second cause why I was condemned a heretic is, that I denied transubstantiation and concomitation, two juggling words of the papists, by the which they do believe, and will compel all other to believe, that Christ's natural body is made of bread, and the Godhead by and by to be joined thereunto; so that immediately after the words called 'the words of consecration,' there is no more bread and wine in the sacrament, but the substance only of the body and blood of Christ together with his Godhead: so that the same being now Christ, both God and man, ought to be worshipped with godly honour, and to be offered to God, both for the quick and the dead, as a sacrifice propitiatory and satisfactory for the same. This matter was not long debated in words: but because I denied the aforesaid papistical doctrine, (yea rather, plain, most wicked, idolatry, blasphemy, and heresy,) I was judged a heretic.

            "I did also affirm the pope to be antichrist, and popery antichristianity. And I confessed the doctrine of the Bible to be sufficient doctrine, touching all and singular matters of Christian religion, and of salvation.

            "I also alleged, that the oath against the supremacy of the bishop of Rome, was a lawful oath, and so was the oath made by us all, touching the king's or queen's pre-eminence: for Chrysostom saith, that apostles, evangelists, and all men in every realm, were ever, and ought to be ever, touching both body and goods, in subjection to the kingly authority, who hath the sword in his hand, as God's principal officer and governor in every realm. I desired the bishops to repent for bringing the realm from Christ to antichrist, from light to darkness, from verity to vanity.

            "Thus you know the sum of my last examination and condemnation. Pray for me, and I will pray for you.

            "God be praised, since my condemnation I was never afraid to die; God's will be done. If I shrink from God's truth, I am sure of another manner of death than had Judge Hales. But God be praised, even from the bottom of my heart, I am unmovably settled upon the rock, nothing doubting but that my dear God will perform and finish the work, that he hath begun in me and others. To him be all honour both now and ever, through Christ our only and whole Saviour. Amen."

            And thus much wrote Dr. Taylor, concerning this matter, to his friend.

            You heard in the former answers a little before, certain allegations touched of Dr. Taylor out of St. Cyprian, Augustine, Chrysostom, and Ambrose, touching the lawfulness of priests' marriage. Now ye shall hear the places of the said doctors cited and produced out of their own books, as here ensueth.


The places of the doctors alleged before, in Dr. Taylor's letter.

            "This question was asked of St. Cyprian, 'What should be done with those religious persons, that could not keep their chastity as they had vowed.' He answered thus: 'Thou dost ask what we do judge of virgins, which, after they had decreed to live chastely, are afterward found in bed with a man. Of the which thou sayest, that one of them was a deacon. We do with great sorrow see the great ruin of many persons, which cometh by the reason of such unlawful and perilous companying together. Wherefore, if they have dedicated themselves unto Christ in faith, to live purely and chastely, then let them so remain without any fable, and strongly and stedfastly abide the reward of virginity. But if they will not abide, or else cannot abide, then it is better to marry, than to fall into the fire of concupiscence: and let them give to the brethren and sisters none occasion of slander,' &c.

            "'Certain men do affirm, those men to be adulterers, that do marry after that they have vowed chastity. But I do affirm, that those men do grievously sin, the which do separate them,' &c.

            "'Chastity of the body ought to be desired of us: which thing I do give for a counsel, and do not command it imperiously. For virginity is a thing which ought to be only counselled, but not to be commanded: it is rather a thing of voluntary will, and not a precept.'"


A brief recapitulation out of Dr. Taylor's causes afore touched, for the reader more evidently to see how the papists do against their own knowledge, in forbidding priests' marriage.

            "The pope's clergy, forbidding ecclesiastical persons to marry, do against their conscience and knowledge, as may well be proved by these causes hereunder following.

            "First; they know that matrimony in the Old Testament, de jure institutionis, is indifferently permitted to all men without any exception.

            "Secondly; they know that in the Old Testament, de facto, both priests, Levites, prophets, patriarchs, and all olhers, had their wives.

            "Thirdly; they know that matrimony was permitted and instituted of God, for two principal ends; to wit, for procreation, and avoiding of sin.

            "Fourthly; they know that in the Old Testament God not only instituted and permitted matrimony to be free, but also induceth and appointeth men to marry and take wives, in these words: It is not good for a man to be alone, &c.

            "Fifthly; they know that in the New Testament St. Paul permitteth the state of matrimony free to all men, having not the gift of continency, and forbiddeth none.

            "Sixthly; they know that in the New Testament the said St. Paul not only permitteth, but also expressly willeth and chargeth men, having not the gift, to marry; saying, For avoiding fornication, let every man have his wife, &c.

            "Seventhly; they know that in the New Testament the said St. Paul not only permitteth and commandeth, but also commendeth and praiseth the state of matrimony, calling it 'honourable,' and the bed-company to be 'undefiled,' &c.

            "Eighthly; they know that in the New Testament Christ himself not only was not conceived nor born of the Virgin before she was espoused in matrimony; but also, that both he and his blessed mother did beautify and honour the state of matrimony with their presence: yea, in the same began his first miracle.

            "Ninthly; they know both by the Old Testament and New, that marriage is no impediment to walk in the obedience of God's commandment; for both Abraham carried into the land of Canaan his old, yea, and barren wife, the virtuous woman Sarah, with him: and also to Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, and others, their marriage was no impediment to them to talk with God; neither to other Levites, bishops, and priests, in the time of both the Old Testament and of the New. Again, neither was it a let to Peter, Philip, and others, both to have their wives with them, and also to supply the office of apostleship.

            "Tenthly; they know, both by the Old Testament and New, that sinful fornication and adultery depriveth man of God's favour and graces of the Holy Ghost, which graces especially be requisite in the men of the church.

            "Eleventhly; they know in their own secret conscience, and by experience, that neither they which enjoin this vow of chastity, nor they which take it, do observe the vow of chastity. Whereupon rise inconveniences more than can be expressed: but the Lord above knoweth all, besides the secret murders, peradventure, of many a poor infant, &c.

            "Twelfthly; they know by St. Cyprian, and St.Augustine, that a vow is no impediment sufficient to let matrimony, or to divorce the same.

            "Thirteenthly; they know that Chrysostom affirmeth it to be a heresy to say, that a bishop may not have a wife.

            "Fourteenthly; they know that St. Ambrose will have no commandment, but counsel only, to be given touching the observing of virginity.

            "Fifteenthly; they know that before the time of Pope Hildebrand, that is, during the time of one thousand years after Christ, marriage was never restrained, by any forcible necessity or vow, from men of the church.

            "Sixteenthly; they know that St. Paul calleth it the doctrine of devils, to forbid meats and marriage, which God hath left free, with thanksgiving, for necessity of man and woman."

            After that Dr. Taylor thus, with great spirit and courage, had answered for himself, and stoutly rebuked his adversaries for breaking their oath made before to King Henry and to King Edward his son, and for betraying the realm into the power of the Roman bishop; they-- perceiving that in no case he could be stirred to their wills and purpose; that is, to turn with them from Christ to antichrist -- committed him thereupon to prison again, where he endured till the last of January.


Dr. Taylor the fourth time, with Master Bradford, and Master Saunders, brought before Winchester and other bishops.

/span>ON the day and year aforesaid, Dr. Taylor, and Master Bradford, and Master Saunders, were again called to appear before the bishop of Winchester, the bishops of Norwich, London, Salisbury, and Durham; and there were charged again with heresy and schism: and therefore a determinate answer was required; whether they would submit themselves to the Roman bishop, and abjure their errors; or else they would, according to their laws, proceed to their condemnation. When Dr. Taylor and his fellows, Master Bradford and Master Saunders, heard this, they answered stoutly and boldly, that they would not depart from the truth which they had preached in King Edward's days, neither would they submit themselves to the Romish antichrist; but they thanked God for so great mercy, that he would call them to be worthy to suffer for his word and truth.

            When the bishops saw them so boldly, constantly, and unmovably fixed in the truth, they read the sentence of death upon them, which when they had heard, they most joyfully gave God thanks, and stoutly said unto the bishops, "We doubt not, but God the righteous Judge will require our blood at your hands, and the proudest of you all shall repent this receiving again of antichrist; and your tyranny that ye now show against the flock of Christ."

            So was Dr. Taylor now condemned, committed to the Clink, and the keepers charged straitly to keep him "For ye have now another manner of charge," quoth the lord chancellor, "than they had before: therefore look ye; take heed to it."

            When the keeper brought him toward the prison, the people flocked about to gaze upon him: unto whom he said, "God be praised, good people, I am come away from them undefiled, and will confirm the truth with my blood." So was he bestowed in the Clink till it was toward night; and then he was removed to the Compter by the Poultry.

            When Dr. Taylor had lain in the said Compter in the Poultry a seven-night or thereabouts prisoner, the fourth of February, A. D. 1555, Edmund Bonner, bishop of London, with others, came to the said Compter to degrade him, bringing with them such ornaments as do appertain to their massing-mummery. Now, being come, he called for the said Dr. Taylor to be brought unto him; the bishop being then in the chamber where the keeper of the Compter and his wife lay. So Dr. Taylor was brought down from the chamber above that, to the said Bonner. And at his coming, the bishop said, "Master Doctor, I would you would remember yourself, and turn to your mother, holy church; so may you do well enough, and I will sue for your pardon." Whereunto Master Taylor answered, "I would you and your fellows would turn to Christ. As for me, I will not turn to antichrist." "Well," quoth the bishop, I am come to degrade you: wherefore put on these vestures." "No," quoth Dr. Taylor, "I will not." "Wilt thou not?" said the bishop. "I shall make thee ere I go." Quoth Dr. Taylor, "You shall not, by the grace of God." Then he charged him upon his obedience to do it: but he would not do it for him; so he willed another to put them upon his back. And when he was thoronghly furnished therewith, he set hands to his side, walking up and down, and said, "How say you, my Lord? am not I a goodly fool? How say you, my masters? If I were in Cheap, should I not have boys enough to laugh at these apish toys, and toying trumpery?" So the bishop scraped his fingers, thumbs, and the crown of his head, and did the rest of such-like devilish observances.

            At the last, when he should have given Dr. Taylor a stroke on the breast with his crosier-staff, the bishop's chaplain said, "My Lord! strike him not, for he will sure strike again." "Yea, by St. Peter will I," quoth Dr. Taylor. "The cause is Christ's, and I were no good Christian, if I would not fight in my Master's quarrel." So the bishop laid his curse upon him, but struck him not. Then Dr. Taylor said, "Though you do curse me, yet God doth bless me. I have the witness of my conscience, that ye have done me wrong and violence: and yet I pray God, if it be his will, to forgive you. But from the tyranny of the bishop of Rome, and his detestable enormities, good Lord, deliver us!"[Note: This clause was originally a part of the Litany in the book of Common Prayer.] And in going up to his chamber, he still said, "God deliver me from you! God deliver me from you!" And when he came up he told Master Bradford, (for they both lay in one chamber,) that he had made the bishop of London afraid: "for," saith he laughingly, "his chaplain gave him counsel not to strike me with his crosier-staff, for that I would strike again; and, by my troth," said he, rubbing his hands, "I made him believe I would do so indeed."

            The night after that he was degraded, his wife and his son Thomas resorted unto him, and were, by the gentleness of the keepers, permitted to sup with him. For this difference was ever found between the keepers of the bishops' prisons and the keepers of the king's prisons: that the bishops' keepers were ever cruel, blasphemous, and tyrannous, like their masters; but the keepers of the king's prisons showed, for the most part, as much favour as they possibly might. So came Dr. Taylor's wife, his son, and John Hull his servant, to sup with him: and at their coming-in afore supper, they kneeled down and prayed, saying the litany. After supper walking up and down, he gave God thanks for his grace, that had so called him, and given him strength to abide by his holy word: and turning to his son Thomas, he said:

            "My dear son, Almighty God bless thee, and give thee his Holy Spirit, to be a true servant of Christ, to learn his word, and constantly to stand by his truth all thy life long. And, my son, see that thou fear God always. Flee from all sin, and wicked living: be virtuous, serve God with daily prayer, and apply thy book. In any wise see that thou be obedient to thy mother, love her and serve her: he ruled by her now in thy youth, and follow her good counsel in all things. Beware of lewd company, of young men that fear not God, but follow their lewd lusts and vain appetites. Fly from whoredom, and hate all filthy living, remembering, that I thy father do die in the defence of holy marriage. Another day, when God shall bless thee, love and cherish the poor people, and count that thy chief riches is, to be rich in alms: and when thy mother is waxed old, forsake her not; but provide for her to thy power, and see that she lack nothing: for so will God bless thee, and give thee long life upon earth, and prosperity: which I pray God to grant thee."

            Then, turning to his wife, he said thus:

            "My dear wife, continue stedfast in the fear and love of God; keep yourself undefiled from their popish idolatries and superstitions. I have been unto you a faithful yoke-fellow, and so have you been unto me; for the which I pray God to reward you; and doubt not, dear wife, but God will reward it.-- Now the time is come that I shall be taken from you, and you discharged of the wedlock bond towards me: therefore I will give you my counsel, what I think most expedient for you. You are yet a child-bearing woman, and therefore it will be most convenient for you to marry. For doubtless you shall never be at a convenient stay for yourself and our poor children, nor out of trouble, till you be married. Therefore, as soon as God will provide it, marry with some honest faithful man that feareth God. Doubt you not, God will provide an honest husband for you, and he will be a merciful Father to you and to my children; whom I pray you bring up in the fear of God, and in learning, to the uttermost of your power, and keep them from this Romish idolatry."

            When he had thus said, they with weeping tears prayed together, and kissed one the other: and he gave to his wife a book of the church-service, set out by King Edward, which he, in the time of his imprisonment, daily used. And unto his son Thomas he gave a Latin book, containing the notable sayings of the old martyrs, gathered out of Ecclesiastica Historia; and in the end of that book he wrote his testament and last vale, as hereafter followeth.

            "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 favourable, than is any father or husband. Trust ye therefore in him by the means of our dear Saviour 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. I go to the rest of my children, Susan, George, Ellen, Robert, and Zachary: I have bequeathed you to the only Omnipotent.

            "I say to my dear friends of Hadley, and to all others which have heard me preach; that I depart hence with a quiet conscience, as touching my doctrine, for the which I pray you thank God with me. For I have, after my little talent, declared to others those lessons that I gathered out of God's book, the blessed Bible. Therefore if I, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you any other gospel than that ye have received, God's great curse upon that preacher!

            "Beware, for God's sake, that ye deny not God, neither decline from the word of faith, lest God decline from you, and so do ye everlastingly perish. For God's sake beware of popery, for though it appear to have in it unity, yet the same is vanity and antichristianity, and not in Christ's faith and verity.

            "Beware of the sin against the Holy Ghost, now after such a light opened so plainly and simply, truly, thoroughly, and generally to all England.

            "The Lord grant all men his good and holy Spirit, increase of his wisdom, contemning the wicked world, hearty desire to be with God and the heavenly company; through Jesus Christ, our only Mediator, Advocate, righteousncss, life, sanctification, and hope. Amen, Amen. Pray, pray.
            Rowland Taylor departing hence in sure hope, without all doubting of eternal salvation, I thank God and my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ my certain Saviour, Amen.
            "The fifth of February, anno 1555.
            "The Lord is my light and my salvation: whom then shall I fear?
            "God is he that justifieth: who is he that can condemn?
            "In thee, O Lord, have I trusted, let me never be confounded."

            On the next morrow after that Dr. Taylor had supped with his wife in the Compter, as is before expressed, which was the fifth day of February, the sheriff of London with his officers came to the Compter by two o'clock in the morning, and so 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, watching all night in St. Botolph's church porch beside Aldgate, having with 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 cried his wife, "Rowland, Rowland, where art thou?"-- for it was a very dark morning, that the one could not see the other. Dr. Taylor answered, "Dear wife, I am here;" and staid. 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 staid.

            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." And then he kissed his daughter Mary, and said, "God bless thee, and make thee his servant" and kissing Elizabeth, he said, "God bless thee. I pray you all stand strong and stedfast unto Christ and his word, and keep you from idolatry." Then said his wife, "God be with thee, dear Rowland; I will, with God's grace, meet thee at Hadley."

            And so was he led forth to the Woolsack, and his wife followed him. As soon as they came to the Woolsack, he was put into a chamber, wherein he was kept with four yeomen of the guard, and the sheriff's men. Dr. Taylor, as soon as he was come into the chamber, fell down on his knees and gave himself wholly to prayer. The sheriff then, seeing Dr. Taylor's wife there, would in no case grant her to speak any more with her husband, but gently desired her to go to his house, and take it as her own, and promised her she should lack nothing, and sent two officers to conduct her thither. Notwithstanding she desired to go to her mother's, whither the officers led her, and charged her mother to keep her there till they came again.

            Thus remained Dr. Taylor in the Woolsack, kept by the sheriff and his company, till eleven o'clock; at which time the sheriff of Essex was ready to receive: and so they set him on horseback within the inn, the gates being shut.

            At the coming out of the gates, John Hull, before spoken of, stood at the rails with Thomas, Dr. Taylor's son. When Dr. Taylor saw them, he called them, saying, "Come hither, my son Thomas." And John Hull lifted the child up, and set him on the horse before his father: and Dr. Taylor put off his hat, and said to the people that stood there looking on him, "Good people, this is mine own son, begotten of my body in lawful matrimony; and God be blessed for lawful matrimony." Then lifted he up his eyes towards heaven, and prayed for his son; laid his hat upon the child's head and blessed him; and so delivered the child to John Hull, whom he took by the hand and said, "Farewell, John Hull, the faithfullest servant that ever man had." And so they rode forth, the sheriff of Essex, with four yeomen of the guard, and the sheriff's men leading him.

            When they were come almost at Brentwood, one Arthur Faysie, a man of Hadley, who beforetime had been Dr. Taylor's servant, met with them; and he, supposing him to have been at liberty, said, "Master Doctor, I am glad to see you again at liberty; "and came to him, and took him by the hand. "Soft, sir," quoth the sheriff, "he is a prisoner; what hast thou to do with him?" "I cry you mercy," said Arthur; "I knew not so much, and I thought it no offence to talk to a true man." The sheriff was very angry with this, and threatened to carry Arthur with him to prison; notwithstanding, he bade him get quickly away. And so they rode forth to Brentwood, where they caused to be made for Dr. Taylor a close hood, with two holes for his eyes to look out at, and a slit for his mouth to breathe at. This they did, that no man should know him, nor he speak to any man: which practice they used also with others. Their own consciences told them, that they led innocent lambs to the slaughter. Wherefore they feared lest, if the people should have heard them speak, or have seen them, they might have been much more strengthened by their godly exhortations, to stand stedfast in God's word, and to fly the superstitions and idolatries of the papacy.

Illustration -- Dr. Taylor brought hooded through Brentwood

            All the way Dr. Taylor was joyful and merry, as one that accounted 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 stedfast, void of all fear, joyful in heart, and glad to die. Of these yeomen of the guard, three used Dr. Taylor friendly, but the fourth (whose name was Homes) used him very homely, unkindly, and churlishly.

            At Chelmsford met them the sheriff of Suffolk, there to receive him, and to carry him forth into Suffolk. And being at supper, the sheriff of Essex very earnestly laboured him to return to the popish religion, thinking with fair words to persuade him; and said, "Good Master Doctor! we are right sorry for you, considering what the loss is of such a one as ye might be, if ye would. God hath given you great learning and wisdom; wherefore ye have been in great favour and reputation in times past with the council and highest of this realm. Besides this, ye are a man of goodly personage, in your best strength, and by nature like to live many years; and, without doubt, ye should in time to come be in as good reputation as ever ye were, or rather better. For ye are well beloved of all men, as well for your virtues as for your learning: and me thinketh it were great pity you should cast away yourself willingly, and so come to such a painful and shameful death. Ye should do much better to revoke your opinions, and return to the catholic Church of Rome, acknowledge the pope's Holiness to be the supreme head of the universal church, and reconcile yourself to him. You may do well yet, if you will. Doubt ye not but ye shall find favour at the queen's hands. I and all these your friends will be suitors for your pardon; which, no doubt, ye shall obtain. This counsel I give you, good Master Doctor, of a good heart, and good-will toward you: and thereupon I drink to you." In like manner said all the yeomen of the guard, "Upon that condition, Master Doctor, we will all drink to you."

            When they had all drank to him, and the cup was come to him, he staid a little, as one studying what answer he might give. At the last thus he answered and said, "Master Sheriff, and my masters all, I heartily thank you for your good-will; I have hearkened to your words, and marked well your counsels. And to be plain with you, I do perceive that I have been deceived myself, and am like to deceive a great many of Hadley of their expectation." With that word they all rejoiced. "Yea, good Master Doctor," quoth the sheriff, "God's blessing on your heart! hold you there still. It is the comfortablest word that we heard you speak yet. What! should ye cast away yourself in vain? Play a wise man's part, and I dare warrant it, ye shall find favour." Thus they rejoiced very much at the word, and were very merry. At the last, "Good Master Doctor," quoth the sheriff, what meant ye by this, that ye say ye think ye have been deceived yourself, and think ye shall deceive many a one in Hadley?" "Would ye know my meaning plainly?" quoth he. "Yea," quoth the sheriff, "good Master Doctor, tell it us plainly."

            Then said Doctor Taylor, "I will tell you how I have been deceived, and, as I think, I shall deceive a great many. I am, as you see, a man that hath a very great carcass, which I thought should have been buried in Hadley churchyard, if I had died in my bed, as I well hoped I should have done; but herein I see I was deceived: and there are a great number of worms in Hadley churchyard, which should have had jolly feeding upon this carrion, which they have looked for many a day. But now I know we be deceived, both I and they; for this carcass must be burnt to ashes: and so shall they lose their bait and feeding, that they looked to have had of it."

            When the sheriff and his company heard him say so, they were amazed, and looked one on another, marvelling at the man's constant mind, that thus, without all fear, made but a jest at the cruel torment and death now at hand prepared for him. Thus was their expectation clean disappointed. And in this appeareth what was his meditation in his chiefest wealth and prosperity; namely, that he should shortly die, and feed worms in his grave: which meditation if all our bishops and spiritual men had used, they had not, for a little worldly glory, forsaken the word of God and truth, which they, in King Edward's days, had preached and set forth; nor yet, to maintain the bishop of Rome's authority, have committed so many to the fire as they did.

            But let us return to Dr. Taylor, who, at Chelmsford, was delivered to the sheriff of Suffolk, and by him conducted to Hadley, where he suffered. When they were come to Lavenham, the sheriff staid there two days; and thither came to him a great number of gentlemen and justices upon great horses, which all were appointed to aid the sheriff. These gentlemen laboured Dr. Taylor very sore to reduce him to the Romish religion, promising him his pardon, "which," said they, "we have here for you." They promised him great promotions, yea, a bishopric, if he would take it: but all their labour and flattering words were in vain. For he had not built his house upon the sand, in peril of falling at every puff of wind; but upon the sure and unmovable rock, Christ. Wherefore he abode constant and unmovable unto the end.

            After two days, the sheriff and his company led Dr. Taylor towards Hadley; and, coming within two miles of Hadley, he desired, for somewhat, to light off his horse: which done, he leaped, and set a frisk or twain, as men commonly do in dancing. "Why, Master Doctor," quoth the sheriff, "how do you now?" He answered "Well, God be praised, good Master Sheriff, never better: for now I know I am almost at home. I lack not past two stiles to go over, and I am even at my Father's house.-- But, Master Sheriff," said he, "shall we not go through Hadley?" "Yes," said the sheriff, "you shall go through Hadley." Then said he, "O good Lord! I thank thee, I shall yet once ere I dic see my flock, whom thou, Lord, knowest I havemost heartily loved, and truly taught. Good Lord! bless them, and keep them stedfast in thy word and truth."

            When they were now come to Hadley, and came riding over the bridge, at the bridge-foot waited a poor man with five small children; who, when he saw Dr. Taylor, he and his children fell down upon their knees, and held up their hands, and cried with a loud voice, and said, "O dear father and good shepherd, Dr. Taylor! God help and succour thee, as thou hast many a time succoured me and my poor children." Such witness had the servant of God, of his virtuous and charitable alms given in his lifetime: for God would now the poor should testify of his good deeds, to his singular comfort, to the example of others, and confusion of his persecutors and tyrannons adversaries. For the sheriff and others that led him to death, were wonderfully astonied at this: and the sheriff sore rebuked the poor man for so crying. The streets of Hadley were beset on both sides the way with men and women of the town and country, who waited to see him; whom when they beheld so led to death, with weeping eyes and lamentable voice they cried, saying one to another, "Ah good Lord! there goeth our good shepherd from us, that so faithfully hath taught us, so fatherly hath cared for us, and so godly hath governed us. O merciful God! what shall we poor scattered lambs do? What shall come of this most wicked world? Good Lord, strengthen him, and comfort him:" with such other most lamentable and piteous voices. Wherefore the people were sore rebuked by the sheriff and the catchpoles his men, that led him. And Dr. Taylor evermore said to the people, "I have preached to you God's word and truth, and am come this day to seal it with my blood."

            Coming against the almshouses, which he well knew, he cast to the poor people money which remained of that good people had given him in time of his imprisonment. As for his living, they took it from him at his first going to prison, so that he was sustained all the time of his imprisonment by the charitable alms of good people that visited him. Therefore the money that now remained he put in a glove ready for the same purpose, and (as is said) gave it to the poor almsmen standing at their doors to see him. And, coming to the last of the almshouses, and not seeing the poor that there dwelt, ready at their doors, as the other were, he asked, "Is the blind man and blind woman, that dwelt here, alive?" It was answered, "Yea, they are there within." Then threw he glove and all in at the window, and so rode forth.

            Thus this good father and provider for the poor now took his leave of those, for whom all his life he had a singular care and study. For this was his custom, once in a fortnight at the least, to call upon Sir Anthony Doyle, and others the rich cloth-makers, to go with him to the almshouses, and there to see how the poor lived; what they lacked in meat, drink, clothing, bedding, or any other necessaries. The like did he also to other poor men that had many children, or were sick. Then would he exhort and comfort them, and, where he found cause, rebuke the unruly; and what they lacked, that gave he after his power: and what he was not able, he caused the rich and wealthy men to minister unto them. Thus showed he himself in all things an example to his flock worthy to be followed: and taught by his deed, what a great treasure alms is, to all such as cheerfully, for Christ's sake, do it.

            At the last, coming to Aldham common, the place assigned where he should suffer, and seeing a great multitude of people gathered thither, 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 are come to look upon you." Then said he, "Thanked be God, I am even at home;" and so alighted from his horse, and with both his hands rent the hood from his head.

            Now was his head knotted evil-favouredly, and clipped much like as a man would clip a fool's head; which cost the good bishop Bonner had bestowed upon him, when he degraded 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 godly wishes. Then would he have spoken to the people, but the yeomen of the guard were so busy about him, that as soon as he opened his mouth, one or other thrust a tipstaff into his mouth, and would in no wise permit him to speak.

            Then desired he licence of the sheriff to speak; but the sheriff denied it to him, and bade him remember his promise to the council. "Well," quoth Dr. Taylor, "promise must be kept."

            What this promise was, it is unknown; but the common fame was, that after he and others were condemned, the council sent for them, and threatened them they would cut their tongues out of their heads, except they would promise, that at their deaths they would keep silence, and not speak to the people. Wherefore, they, desirous to have the use of their tongues, to call upon God as long as they might live, promised silence. For the papists feared much, lest this mutation of religion, from truth to lies, from Christ's ordinances to the popish traditions, should not so quietly have been received as it was; especially this burning of the preachers: but they, measuring others' minds by their own, feared lest any tumult or uproar might have been stirred, the people having so just a cause not to be contented with their doings, or else (that they most feared) the people should more have been confirmed by their godly exhortations to stand stedfast against their vain popish doctrine and idolatry. But thanks be to God, which gave to his witnesses faith and patience, with stout and manly hearts to despise all torments: neither was there so much as any one man that once showed any sign of disobedience toward the magistrates. They shed their blood gladly in the defence of the truth, so leaving example unto all men of true and perfect obedience: which is, to obey God more than men; and, if need require it, to shed their own blood, rather than to depart from God's truth.

            Dr. Taylor, perceiving that he could not be suffered to speak, sat down, and seeing one named Soyce, he called him, and said, "Soyce, I pray thee come and pull off my boots, and take them for thy labour. Thou hast long looked for them, now take them." Then rose he up, and put off his clothes unto his shirt, and gave them away: which done, he said with a loud voice, "Good people! I have taught you nothing but God's holy word, and those lessons that I have taken out of God's blessed book, the holy Bible: and I am come hither this day to seal it with my blood." With that word, Homes, yeoman of the guard aforesaid, who had used Dr. Taylor very cruelly all the way, gave him a great stroke upon the head with a waster, and said, "Is that the keeping of thy promise, thou heretic?" Then he, seeing they would not permit him to speak, kneeled down and prayed, and a poor woman that was among the people, stepped in and prayed with him: but her they thrust away, and threatened to tread her down with horses; notwithstanding she would not remove, but abode and prayed with him. When he had prayed, he went to the stake, and kissed it, and set himself into a pitch-barrel, which they had set for him to stand in, and so stood with his back upright against the stake, with his hands folded together, and his eyes toward heaven, and so he continually prayed.

            Then they-bound him with chains, and the sheriff called one Richard Donningham, a butcher, and commanded him to set up faggots: but he refused to do it, and said, "I am lame, sir; and not able to lift a faggot." The sheriff threatened to send him to prison; notwithstanding he would not do it.

            Then appointed he one Mulleine, of Kersey, a man for his virtues fit to be a hangman, and and Warwick, who, in the commotion time in King Edward's days, lost one of his ears for his seditious talk; amongst whom also was one Robert King, a deviser of interludes, who albeit was there present, and had doing there with the gunpowder; what he meant and did therin (he himself saith he did it for the best, and for qick despatch) the Lord knoweth, which shall judge all: more of this I have not to say.

            These four were appointed to set up the faggots, and to make the fire, which they most diligently did: and this Warwick cruelly cast a faggot at him, which lit upon his head, and brake his face, that the blood ran down his visage. Then said Dr. Taylor, "O friend, I have harm enough; what needed that?"

            Furthermore, Sir John Shelton there standing by, as Dr. Taylor was speaking, and saying the psalm Miserere, in English, struck him on the lips "Ye knave," said he, "speak Latin: I will make thee." At the last they set to fire; and Dr. Taylor, holding up both his hands, called upon God, and said, "Merciful Father of heaven, for Jesus Christ my Saviours sake, receive my soul into thy hands." So stood he still without either crying or moving, with his hands folded together, till Soyce with a halbert struck him on the head that the brains fell out, and the dead corpse fell down into the fire.

Illustration -- Taylor burned at the stake

            Thus rendered the man of God his blessed soul into the hands of his merciful Father, and to his most dear and certain Saviour Jesus Christ, whom he most entirely loved, faithfully and earnestly preached, obediently followed in living, and constantly glorified in death.

            They that were present and familiarly conversant with this Dr. Taylor, reported of him, they never did see in him any fear of death; but especially, and above all the rest which besides him suffered at the same time, always showed himself merry in time of his imprisonment: as well before his condemnation, as after, he kept one countenance and like behaviour; whereunto he was the rather confirmed by the company and presence of Master John Bradford, who then was in prison and chamber with him.

            The same morning, when he was called up by the sheriff to go to his burning, (about three o'clock in the morning,) being suddenly awaked out of his sound sleep, he sat up in his bed, and putting on his shirt, said these words, speaking somewhat thick, after his accustomed manner, "Ah, whoreson thieves! ah, whoreson thieves! rob God of his honour, rob God of his honour?" Afterward being risen and tying his points, he cast his arms about a bulk which was in the chamber between Master Bradford's bed and his; and, there, hanging by the hands, said to Master Bradford, "O Master Bradford," quoth he, "what a notable sway should I give if I were hanged!" meaning for that he was a corpulent and big man -- These things I thought good here to note, to set forth and declare to those that shall read this history, what a notable and singular gift of spirit and courage God had given to this godly and blessed martyr.

            At what time Dr. Taylor was deprived of his benefice of Hadley, there was one called Sir Robert Bracher, a false pretended protestant in King Edward's days, and afterward a deadly enemy to the same religion; who was also one of them that so unmercifully thrust Dr. Taylor's wife and children out of the doors, as she herself yet can testify; and notwithstanding the same now since became a protestant again. This Sir Robert Bracher aforesaid, coming to Hadley to the burial of a certain friend of his, and God's great enemy, one Walter Clark, albeit he came somewhat too late to the market, (as he said,) yet desirous to utter such popish pelf and packware as he brought with him, he opened there his baggage of pestilent doctrine, preaching in the same town of Hadley against justification by faith, of the corporal presence, of praying for the dead, and auricular confession; whereof Dr. Taylor having understanding by letters, writeth again to them of Hadley, directing his letter to his wife, in confutation of the said popish poisoned sermon; the copy of which letter we thought not unworthy here, in the end of this story, to be annexed, as under followeth.

            "Dear wife, I pray God be ever with us, through Christ our only Mediator. Amen.

            "I thank you for my cap; I am somewhat proud of it; for it is one step from the clergy in these days. I thank God my heart is clean divided from their proceedings: for I know that no man can serve two masters, specially if they agree no better than Christ and antichrist do. I am glad that Hadley can skill of such packing-ware as was brought thither the first day of May last past. Christ's sheep can discern Christ's voice from the voice of strangers, thieves, or hirelings. The pack-bringcr was sorry that he came too late to the funeral market of his faithful friend. But here I will leave them both to God's judgment, and something touch the matter whereof the packer made mention on his opening day. At the first he called the Scripture (as I hear) full of dark sentences, but indeed it is called of David, a candle to our feet, and a light to our paths. Our Saviour Christ calleth his word, the light, which evil doers do flee from and hate, lest their deeds should be reproved thereby. St. Paul would have us to walk as children of light, and in any wise not to continue in ignorance or darkness. But all we in the world pertain to two princes; either to the Father of light and truth, or else to the prince of darkness and lies.

            "In these days preachers declare evidently of whom they are sent, and with what spirit they speak, and to what prince they belong. For they cry out against God's lights, sun, moon, stars, torches, lamps, lanterns, cressets, and candles, in God's book the Bible, provided of God's great goodness and mercy to avoid all foul darkness, clouds and mists, or dangerous doubtful ways, in this our journey to our heavenly Father's long home, mansion-houses, and dearly purchased heritage. Isaiah, God's faithful messenger, saith, Woe be unto them that call sweet sour, good evil, and light darkness! Therefore cometh my people into captivity, because they have no understanding. Our Saviour Christ pronounceth error and heresies to remain among the people, so long as ignorance of the Scriptures remaineth. And hereby it appeareth to all good consciences, what they mean, which defame or accuse God's blessed word being full of light, as though it were full of darkness. These owls would have all day-lights scraped out of books, hearts, and churches. O Lord, turn their hearts and tongues; bow them from the way of darkness, lest they go to the prince of darkness, and be cast into the pit of utter darkness, where is weeping and gnashing of teeth!

            "Now, touching the packs of wool, and the packs of cloth, I fear they were as all other wares be, transubstantiate into stocks; even his very finest packing stuff against only faith justifying, and for the corporal presence of Christ's body in the sacrament, for praying for souls departed, and for auricular confession. Abraham's justification by faith, by grace, by promise, and not by works, is plainly set forth both in the fourth chapter of the Epistle to the Romans, and in the third chapter to the Galatians; and Abraham's works of obedience, in offering up his son so long after his justification, must needs be taken as a fruit of a good tree justifying before men, and not of justification before God; for then had man to glory in; then did Christ die in vain.

            "And whereas the sixth chapter of John was alleged, to prove that Christ did give his body corporally in his supper, even as he had promised in the said chapter, it is most untrue. For only he gave his body sacramentally, spiritually, and effectually, in his supper to the faithful apostles, and corporally he gave it in a bloody sacrifice for the life of the world upon the cross once for all. There, in his own person, in his own natural body, he bare all our sins. By whose stripes we are healed, as St. Peter proveth. Indeed receiving Christ's sacrament accordingly as it was instituted, we receive Christ's body and Christ's blood, even, as I said before, the apostles did.

            "But the popish mass is another matter. The mass as it is now, is but one of antichrist's youngest daughters, in the which the devil is rather present and received, than our Saviour, the second person in Trinity, God and man. O Lord God, heavenly Father! for Christ's sake, we beseech thee to turn again England to the right way it was in, in King Edward's time, from this Babylonical, Jewish, spiritual whoredom, conspiracy, tyranny, detestable enormities, false doctrine, heresy, hardness of heart, and contempt of thy word and commandments; from this evident and open idolatry, sacrilege, simony, blasphemy, superstition, hypocrisy, transubstantiate angel of light, and day-devil, kingdom of lies, foul vain schisms, sects, sedition, apostacy, gay sweet poison, honied and sugared viperous venom, wily wolfishness, Satanical subtlety, and abomination in the sight of God, and all such as put on the true spectacles of Holy Scripture. I am the more plain now in this matter, because I fear greatly, that many will be too much ready to go from Christ to antichrist, from the Bible, God's true service and religion, to Latin lying legends, portueses, mass books, and superstition. They say their church cannot err in any point, when indeed they be not of God's church, and therefore they can do nothing but err, even as they do almost in all cases of true faith.

            "But, to come again to the packer, rather than preacher, he bringeth St. Chrysostom, writing, Ad Populum Antiochenum, where be maketh a comparison between Christ's flesh, and Elias's cloak cast down to Elizeus, when Elias was taken up in the fiery chariot: at length he said, that Christ ascending up to heaven, took his flesh with him, and also left his flesh behind him in earth.

            "The meaning of it is, he did ascend with his flesh, and left a memorial cloak of the same body and flesh, which he calleth his flesh, as he in the sacramental phrase calleth bread his body, because it representeth his body; and as, in like manner of sacramental speech, a lamb was called the passover, the circumcision, God's covenant. He took up his flesh corporally, and left his flesh in mystery and sacrament spiritually. Or it may be said, that he left his flesh upon earth; that is, his mystical body, his faithful people; whom St. Paul calleth the members of his body, of his flesh, of his bones. In Genesis xlix. there is no word of Christ's sacrament: but there is a prophecy of Christ's passion wherein his foal was bound, that is, his body. And whereas he speaketh there of grapes and wine, it is as that is spoken of Christ in another place, where he saith, I alone did tread the wine-press; meaning thereby, that Christ alone suffered painful passion for the remission of sins, and for the consolation of his faithful soldiers.

            "It is not true, that the packer said, that Christ's infinite power may make his body to be in a thousand places at once, as a loaf to be in a thousand bellies: for then may Christ divide the parts of his body, as a loaf is divided, and so consumed; and then might Scripture be false, appointing Christ's body to be but in one place. The articles of our faith tell us sufficiently where Christ's body is. It was never in two places at once, neither ever shall be, neither ever can be corporally and naturally; neither ever was, is, can, or shall be eaten so with any corporal mouths, as the Capernaites and the papists most erroneously and heretically do judge. If our Saviour Jesus Christ hath no other body natural than is made of the substance of bread, and is in a thousand places at once, as I have often said in Hadley, we are not yet redeemed, neither shall our bodies rise again, and be made like unto his glorious body. We are sure that our Saviour Christ's body is made of none other substance than of his mother the blessed Virgin Mary's substance. We are sure that he taketh not the nature of angels, much less of bread. Only he taketh on him the seed of Abraham, in all things like unto us, sin only excepted. And this is a comfortable doctrine to us Christians. believing stedfastly, as the true catholic faith is, that Christ hath but two natures, perfect God, and perfect man. Upon this rock Christ's church is builded, and the gates of hell shall never prevail against it.

            "I speak nothing now of auricular confession, and praying for souls departed: because I do not hear what authors the packer brought in for this purpose. Sure I am that he can bring no authentical and canonical warrant for such his packware. He may say what he will of Hebricians and Grecians; and of flesh under forms, and not above forms, or above the board. He may conjure and convey, pass and repass, even what he will in such clouds and mists. He reproved the Scriptures as full of darkness, and yet is full of darkness himself. He did wittily, to bring proofs out of Jewry, Turkey, and other strange places, for his round white cake; for that such his pedlary pelf-pack is contrary to the plain simplicity of Christ's supper. He glanced at priests' marriage. He might against that have brought as ancient a doctor as any be alleged out of Hebrew, for his mass and wafer-cake, that is 'Doctor Devil.'

            "I marvel that he did not confute and confound St. Paul for the sentences written above the altar, of the which he made mention in the pulpit. For he, and his fellows of Oxford, be so profound, so excellent, so glorious, and triumphant clerks, that they can easily prove a man an ass, and all writers on the Bible ignorant, simple, full of errors, full of heresies, and beggarly fools. Yet they will be called catholics, faithful and true Christian people, defenders of the holy mother the church: but truly they take part with the prince of darkness, with antichrist, with Jezebel. They will not be called papists, Pharisees, Jews, Turks, heretics, and so forth: but whatsoever they will be called, God's religion had never more evident adversaries; and that in all the chief points of it: no, not then, when our Saviour Christ whipt such merchants out of the temple, calling them a company of thieves. God give them grace to repent! God be thanked that the nobility something of late have spied and stopped their tyranny. O unhappy England! O more ungrateful people! sooner bewitched than the foolish Galatians. We have now no excuse.

            "We have undoubtedly seen the true trace of the prophetical, apostolical, primitive catholic church. We are warned to beware, lest we be led out of that way, society, and rule of religion. Now we shall show what countrymen we be, whether spiritual and heavenly, or carnal and worldly. We had as true knowledge as ever was in any country, or at any time, since the beginning of the world; God be praised there-for. If Hadley, being so many years persuaded in such truth, will now willingly and wittingly forsake the same, and defile itself with the cake-god, idolatry, and other antichristianity thereunto belonging, let it surely look for many and wonderful plagues of God shortly. Though another have the benefice, yet, as God knoweth, I cannot but be careful for my dear Hadley. And therefore as I could not but speak, after the first abominable mass begun there, I being present no more, I cannot but write now being absent, hearing of the wicked profanation of my late pulpit by such a wily wolf. God's love, mercy, goodness, and favour hath been unspeakable, in teaching us the right way of salvation and justification: let us all have some zeal; some care how to serve him according to his goodwill written.
            The God of love and peace be ever in Hadley, through Christ our only Advocate. Amen.
            ROWLAND TAYLOR."

Illustration -- Taylor's Monument


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