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Foxe's Book of Martyrs -- 373. JOHN ROUGH AND MARGARET MEARING



The death and martyrdom of John Rough, minister, and Margaret Mearing, burnt at London the twenty-second of December.

            In this furious time of persecution, were also burned these two constant and faithful martyrs of Christ, John Rough, a minister, and Margaret Mearing.

            This Rough was born in Scotland, who, (as himself confesseth in his answers to Bonner's articles,) because some of his kinsfolk would have kept him from his right of inheritance which he had to certain lands, did at the age of seventeen years, in despite, (and the rather to displease his friends,) profess himself into the order of the Black Friars at Stirling, in Scotland; where he remained the space of sixteen years, until such time as the Lord Hamilton, earl of Arran, and governor of the realm of Scotland aforesaid, (casting a favour unto him,) did sue unto the archbishop of St. Andrews, to have him out of his professed order, that as a secular priest he might serve him for his chaplain. At which request the archbishop caused the provincial of that house, having thereto authority, to dispense with him for his habit and order.

            This suit being thus by the earl obtained, the said Rough remained in his service one whole year, during which time it pleased God to open his eyes, and to give him some knowledge of his truth; and thereupon was by the said governor sent to preach in the freedom of Ayr, where he continued four years; and then, after the death of the cardinal of Scotland, he was appointed to abide at St. Andrews, and there had assigned unto him a yearly pension of twenty pounds from King Henry the Eighth, king of England. Howbeit, at last, weighing with himself his own danger, and also abhorring the idolatry and superstition of his country, and hearing of the freedom of the gospel within this realm of England, he determined with himself not to tarry any longer there and therefore, soon after the battle of Musselborough, he came first unto Carlisle, and from thence unto the duke of Somerset, then Lord protector of England; and by his assignment had appointed unto him out of the king's treasury twenty pounds of yearly stipend, and was sent as a preacher, to serve at Carlisle, Berwick, and Newcastle; from whence (after he had there, according to the laws of God and also of this realm, taken a country-woman of his to wife) he was called by the archbishop of York that then was, unto a benefice nigh, in the town of Hull, where he continued until the death of that blessed and good King Edward the Sixth.

            But in the beginning of the reign of Queen Mary, (perceiving the alteration of religion, and the persecution that would thereupon arise, and feeling his own weakness,) he fled with his wife into Friesland, and dwelt there at a place called Norden, labouring truly for his living, knitting of caps, hose, and suchlike things, till about the end of the month of October last before his death. At which time, lacking yarn, and other such necessary provision for the maintenance of his occupation, he came over again into England, here to provide for the same, and the tenth day of November arrived at London; where, hearing of the secret society, and holy congregation of God's children there assembled, he joined himself unto them; and afterwards, being elected their minister and preacher, did continue most virtuously exercised in that godly fellowship, teaching and confirming them in the truth of the gospel of Christ. But in the end, (such was the providence of God, who disposeth all things to the best,) the twelfth day of December, he, with Cutbert Symson and others, through the crafty and traitorous suggestion of a false hypocrite and dissembling brother, called Roger Sergeant, a tailor, was apprehended by the vice-chamberlain of the queen's house, at the Saracen's Head in Islington; where the congregation had then purposed to assemble themselves to their godly and accustomable exercises of prayer, and hearing the word of God: which pretence, for the safeguard of all the rest, they yet, at their examinations, covered and excused by hearing of a play, that was then appointed to be at that place. The vice-chamberlain, after he had apprehended them, carried Rough and Symson unto the council, who charged them to have assembled together to celebrate the communion or supper of the Lord: and therefore, after sundry examinations and answers, they sent the said Rough unto Newgate; but his examinations they sent unto the bishop of London, with a letter signed with their hands, the copy whereof followeth.

            "After our hearty commendations to your good Lordship, we send you here enclosed, the examination of a Scottish man named John Rough, who, by the queen's Majesty's commandment, is presently sent to Newgate; being of the chief of them that upon Sunday last, under the colour of coming to see a play at the Saracen's Head in Islington, had prepared a communion to be celebrated and received there, among certain other seditious and heretical persons. And forasmuch as by the said Rough's examination, containing the story and progress of his former life, it well appeareth of what sort he is; the queen's Highness hath willed us to remit him nnto your Lordship, to the end that being called before you out of prison, as oft as your Lordship shall think good, ye may proceed, both to his further examination, and otherwise ordering of him according to the laws, as the case shall require. And thus we bid your Lordship heartily well to fare. -- From St. James, the fifteenth day of December, 1557.
            "Your Lordship's loving friends,
            Nicholas Ebor,
            Anthony Montague,
            F. Shrewsbury,
            John Bourne,
            Edward Hastings,
            Henry Jernegam."

            Bonner, now minding to make quick despatch, did within three days after the receipt of the letter, the eighteenth day of December,) send for this Rough out of Newgate, and in his palace at London ministered unto him twelve articles: many whereof, because they contain only questions of the profession and religion of that age, wherein both he and his parents were christened, (which in sundry places are already mentioned,) I do here for brevity omit; minding to touch such only, as pertain to matters of faith now in controversy, and then chiefly objected against the martyrs and saints of God, which in effect are these:


Articles against John Rough.

            "First, That thou, John Rough, didst directly speak against the seven sacraments, used commonly and reverently, as things of estimation and great worthiness, in the catholic church: and also didst reprove and condemn the substance of the said sacraments, but especially the sacrament of the altar, affirming that in that same is not really and truly the very body and blood of Christ: and that confession to the priest, and absolution given by him, (as the minister of Christ,) for sins, is not necessary or available in any wise.

            "2. Item, Thou hast misliked and reproved the religion and ecclesiastical service, as it is now used in this realm, and hast allowed the religion and service used in the latter years of King Edward the Sixth; and, so much as in thee hath lain, hast by word, writing, and deed, set forwards, taught, and preached the same openly; and in sundry places affirmed, that the said English service and doctrine therein contained, is agreeable in all points to God's word, and unto the truth; condemning utterly the Latin service now used in the queen's reign, and inducing others by thine example to do the like.

            "3. Item, Thou hast, in sundry places within this realm, commended and approved the opinion and doctrine of Thomas Cranmer, late archbishop of Canterbnry, Nicholas Ridley, and Hugh Latimer, concerning the sacrament of the altar; affirming that in the sacrament there remaineth, after the words of consecration, material bread and material wine, without any transubstantiation.

            "4. Item, Thou hast in sundry places of this realm, since the queen's reign, ministered and received the communion as it was used in the late days of King Edward the Sixth; and thou knowest, or credibly hast heard of divers, that yet do keep books of the said communion, and use the same in private honses out of the church, and are of opinion against the sacrament of the altar.

            "5. Item, That thou, in sundry places of this realm, hast spoken against the pope of Rome, and his apostolic see, and hast plainly contemned and despised the authority of the same, misliking and not allowing the faith and doctrine thereof, but directly speaking against it; and by thine example hast induced other the subjects of this realm, to speak and do the like.

            "6. Item, Thou dost know, and hast been conversant with all or a great part of such Englishmen, as have fled out of this realm for religion, and hast consented and agreed with them in their opinions, and hast succoured, maintained, and holpen them, and hast been a conveyer of their seditious letters and books into this realm.

            "7. Item, That thou hast said, that thou hast been at Rome, and tarried there about thirty days or more, and that thou hast seen little good or none there, but very much evil. Amongst the which thou sawest one great abomination, that is to say, a man [or the pope] that should go on the ground, to be carried upon the shoulders of four men, as though he had been God, and no man: also a cardinal to have his harlot riding openly behind him: and thirdly, a pope's bull, that gave express licence to have and use the stews, and to keep open bawdry by the pope's approbation and authority.

            "8. Item, That thou, since thy last coming into England out of the parts beyond the sea, hast perniciously allured and comforted divers of the subjects of this realm, both young men, old men, and women, to have and use the Book of Communion, set forth in this realm in the latter days of King Edward the Sixth; and hast also thyself read and set forth the same, causing others to do the like, and to leave their coming to the parish churches to hear the Latin service now used.

            "9. Item, That thou, on the third Sunday of Advent, the twelfth day of this December, 1557, wast apprehended at the Saracen's Head at Islington, in the county of Middlesex and diocese of London, by the queen's vice-chamberlain, with one Cutbert, a tailor, Hugh Foxe, a hosier, and divers others there assembled, under the colour of hearing a play, to have read the Communion Book, and to have used the accustomed fashion, as was in the latter days of King Edward the Sixth."


The answer of John Rough, to the foresaid articles.

            "To the first, he said and confessed that he had spoken against the number of the said sacraments, being fully persuaded that there be but only two sacraments, to wit, baptism, and the supper of the Lord; and as for the other five, he denied them to be sacraments, and therefore hath spoken against them. And as concerning the sacrament of the altar, (which he then called the supper of the Lord,) he confessed that he had spoken and taught, that in the said sacrament there is not really and substantially the very body and blood of Christ, but that the substance of bread and wine doth remain in the said sacrament, without any transubstantiation at all. Further, as touching confession of sins to the priest, he answered that he thought it necessary, if the offence were done unto the priest; but, if the offence were done to another, then confession made to the priest is not necessary, but reconciliation only to be made to the party so offended.

            "To the second, he answered that he then did and had before misliked the order of Latin service then used; and also did allow the service used in the latter time of King Edward's reign, for that the Holy Scripture doth the same; and therefore he granted that he did teach and set forth the said English service, as in the same article is objected.

            "To the third, he granted that he had approved the doctrine of the parties articulate as agreeable to God's word; and that they were godly learned men, and such as had perfect understanding in the contents of the same article.

            "To the fourth, he answered that he did well like the communion used in King Edward's days; but he said that he had not ministered or received the same here in England since the queen's reign, neither yet knew any that had the books thereof. But, on the other side, he knew many that had those books, and that there also he had received the communion in sundry places.

            "The contents of the fifth he granted to be true.

            "To the sixth, he confessed that he had been familiar with divers English men and women, being in Friesland, and agreed with them in opinion, as Master Scory, Thomas Young, George Roe, and others, to the number of one hundred persons, which fled thither for religion, using there the order set forth in the reign of King Edward; and otherwise he denieth the contents of this article.

            "The contents of the seventh he granted in every point to be true.

            "To the eighth, he answered and confessed that since his last coming into England, (which was about the tenth day of November,) he had, in sundry places in the suburbs of London, prayed and read such prayers and service as are appointed in the Book of the Communion; and willed others to do the like, both men and women, which he did know by sight, but not by name. Howbeit he did never cause any to withdraw themselves from the Latin service; but he said, it were better to pray in a tongue that they did understand, than in an unknown tongue.

            "To the ninth, he confessed at the time and place articulate he was present to hear and see a play, and there was apprehended by the queen's Majesty's vice-chamberlain, with one Cutbert, a tailor, and one Hugh, a hosier, and divers others both men and women, whose names he knew not; and by him was brought before the council, who sent him unto Newgate; and from thence he was brought to the bishop. And otherwise he denieth the contents of this article."

            Upon these answers he was dismissed, and the next day, being the nineteenth of December, he was again brought before the said bishop and others; who, when they perceived his constantness, determined the next day after to bring him openly into the consistory, there to adjudge and condemn him as a heretic. Which purpose they accomplished, for, the twentieth day at afternoon, in the presence of the bishops of London and St. David's, with Fecknam, abbot of Westminster, and others, he was there produced; where, after much and many fair persuasions, Bonner read unto him the articles and answers before mentioned, in the which they charged him to have received the orders of the church, and therefore might not marry; and that he had refused to consent unto the Latin service then used in the church. Whereunto he then answered, and said that their orders were nothing at all, and that he, being a priest, might lawfully marry, and that his children which he had by his wife, were lawful. And as touching the service then used, he utterly detested it, saying that if he should live as long as Methuselah, yet he would never come to the church to hear the abominable mass, and other service, being as it was then. Upon which words the bishop proceeded to the actual degradation of the said Rough, exempting him from all the benefits and privileges of their church; and after condemning him as a heretic, committed his body to the secular power, who, taking him into their charge and custody, carried him unto Newgate.

            Moreover, as touching the said Master Rough, this is further to be noted, that he, being in the north country in the days of King Edward the Sixth, was the mean to save Dr. Watson's life, (who in Queen Mary's time was bishop of Lincoln,) for a sermon that he had made there. The said Watson after that, in the said days of Queen Mary, being with Bonner at the examination of the said Master Rough, to requite the good turn in saving his life, detected him there to be a pernicious heretic, who did more hurt in the north parts than a hundred besides of his opinion. Unto whom Master Rough said again, "Why, sir, is this the reward I have for saving your life, when you preached erroneous doctrine in the days of King Edward the Sixth?" This Master Rough said, he had lived thirty years, and yet had never bowed his knee to Baal. And being before Bonner, among other talk, he affirmed that he had been twice at Rome, and there had seen plainly with his eyes, which he had many times heard of before, namely, that the pope was the very antichrist; for there he saw him carried on men's shoulders, and the false-named sacrament borne before him: yet was there more reverence given to him, than to that which they counted to be their god. When Bonner heard this, rising up, and making as though he would have torn his garments, "Hast thou," said he, "been at Rome, and seen our holy father the pope, and dost thou blaspheme him after this sort?" And with that flying upon him, he plucked off a piece of his beard; and after, making speedy haste to his death, he burnt him half an hour before six of the clock in the morning, because the day, belike, should not be far spent, before he had done a mischievous deed.

            Furthermore note, that this Master Rough, being at the burning of Austoo in Smithfield, and returning homeward again, met with one Master Farrar, a merchant of Halifax, who asked him, where he had been. Unto whom he answered, "I have been," saith he, "where I would not for one of mine eyes but I had been." "Where have you been?" said Master Farrar. "Forsooth," said he, "to learn the way." And so he told him he had been at the burning of Austoo, where shortly after he was burnt himself.

            From Newgate he wrote immediately a letter unto his godly friends yet abroad and out of the danger of the unmerciful persecutors, confirming and strengthening them in the truth which he had taught them; the copy of which letter here followeth.

            "The comfort of the Holy Ghost make you able to give consolation to others in these dangerous days, when Satan is let loose, but to the trial only of the chosen, when it pleaseth our God to sift his wheat from the chaff. I have not leisure and time to write the great temptations I have been under. I speak to God's glory; my care was to have the senses of my soul open, to perceive the voice of God, saying, Whosoever denieth me before men, him will I deny before my Father and his angels. And to save the life corporal, is to lose the life eternal. And he that will not suffer with Christ, shall not reign with him. Therefore, most tender ones, I have by God's Spirit given over the flesh, with the fight of my soul, and the Spirit hath the victory. The flesh shall now, ere it be long, leave off to sin; the Spirit shall reign eternally. I have chosen the death, to confirm the truth by me taught. What can I do no more? Consider with yourselves, that I have done it for the confirmation of God's truth. Pray that I may continue unfo the end. The greatest part of the assault is past, I praise my God. I have in all my assaults felt the present aid of my God, I give him most hearty thanks there-for. Look not back, nor be ye ashamed of Christ's gospel, nor of the bonds I have suffered for the same; thereby ye may be assured it is the true word of God. The holy ones have been sealed with the same mark. It is no time, for the loss of one man in the battle, for the camp to turn back. Up with men's hearts; blow down the daubed walls of heresy. Let one take the banner, and the other the trumpet; I mean not to make corporal resistance; but pray, and ye shall have Elias's defence, and Elizeus's company to fight for you. The cause is the Lord's. Now, my brethren, I can write no more; time will not suffer, and my heart with pangs of death is assaulted: but I am at home with my God yet alive. Pray for me, and salute one another with the holy kiss. The peace of God rest with you all, Amen.-- From Newgate prison in haste, the day of my condemnation.
            "JOHN ROUGH."


Another letter of John Rough, written unto the congregation two days before he suffered.

            "The Spirit of all consolation be with you, aid you, and make you strong to run to the fight that is laid before you, wherewithal God in all ages hath tried his elect, and hath found them worthy of himself, by coupling to their head, Jesus Christ, in whom, whoso desireth to live godly, the same must needs suffer persecution: for it is given unto them, not only to believe, but also to suffer. And the servant or scholar cannot be greater than his Lord or Master; but by the same way the Head is entered, the members must follow. No life is in the members which are cut from the body: likewise we have no life, but in Christ; for by him we live, move, and have our being. My dear sons, now departing this life to my great advantage, I make change of mortality with immortality, of corruption to put on incorruption, to make my body like to the corn cast into the ground, which except it die first, it can bring forth no good fruit. Wherefore death is to my great advantage; for thereby the body ceaseth from sin, and, after, turneth into the first original: but after shall be changed, and made brighter than the sun or moon. What shall I write of this corporal death, seeing it is decreed of God, that all men shall once die? Happy are they that die in the Lord, which is to die in the faith of Christ, professing and confessing the same before many witnesses. I praise my God I have passed the same journey by many temptations. The devil is very busy to persuade, the world to entice, with promises and fair words; which I omit to write, lest some might think I did hunt after vain-glory, which is furthest from my heart. Lastly, the danger of some false brethren, who before the bishop of London purposed to confess an untruth to my face; yet the God that ruled Balaam, moved their hearts: where they thought to speak to my accusation, he made them speak to my purgation. What a journey (by God's power) I have made these eight days before this day, it is above flesh and blood to bear; but, as Paul saith, I may do all things in him which worketh in me, Jesns Christ. My course, brethren, have I run; I have fought a good fight; the crown of righteousness is laid up for me; my day to receive it is not long to. Pray, brethren, for the enemy doth yet assault. Stand constant unto the end; then shall you possess your souls. Walk worthily in that vocation wherein you are called. Comfort the brethren. Salute one another in my name. Be not ashamed of the gospel of the cross, by me preached, nor yet of my suffering; for with my blood I affirm the same. I go before; I suffer first the baiting of the butchers' dogs; yet I have not done what I should have done: but my weakness, I doubt not, is supplied in the strength of Jesus Christ; and your wisdoms and learning will accept that small talent, which I have distributed unto you (as I trust) as a faithful steward: and what was undone, impute that to frailty and ignorance, and with your love cover that which is and was naked in me. God knoweth ye are all tender unto me; my heart bursteth for the love of you. Ye are not without your great Pastor of your soul, who so loveth you, that if men were not to be sought out, (as, God be praised, there is no want of men,) he would cause stones to minister unto you. Cast your care on that Rock; the wind of temptation shall not prevail. Fast and pray, for the days are evil. Look up with your eyes of hope, for the redemption is not far off (but my wickedness hath deserved that I shall not see it). And also that which is behind of the blood of our brethren, which shall also be laid under the altar, shall cry for your relief. Time will not now suffer me to write longer letters. The Spirit of God guide you in and out, rising and sitting; cover yon with the shadow of his wings; defend you against the tyranny of the wicked; and bring you happily unto the port of eternal felicity, where all tears shall be wiped from your eyes, and you shall always abide with the Lamb.

            "JOHN ROUGH."

{Illustration: John Rough in Smithfield 411}


The story of Margaret Mearing, martyr.

            It is before declared that, in the company of John Rough, was burnt one Margaret Mearing, who, as the register maketh mention, was at one time and day brought with the said Rough forth to examinatfon; where the bishop having no private matters to charge her withal, did the eighteenth day accustomable of December mentioned against her those common and accustomable articles mentioned before: to which she answered as followeth.

            "First,. That there is here in earth a catholic church, and that there is the true faith of Christ observed and kept in the same church.

            2: Item, That there were only two sacraments in the church, namely, the sacrament of the body and blood of Christ, and the sacrament of baptism.

            "3. Item, That she was baptized in the faith and belief of the said church, renouncing there, by her godfathers and godmothers, the devil and all his works, &c.

            "4. Item, That when she came to the age of fourteen years, she did not know what her true belief was, because she was not then of discretion to. understand the same, neither yet was taught it.

            "5. Item, That she had not gone from the catholic faith at any time; but she said, that the mass was abominable before the sight of God, and before the sight of all true Christian people; and that it is the plain cup of fornication, and the whore of Babylon. And as concerning the sacrament of the altar, she said, she believed there was no such sacrament in the catholic church. Also she said, that she utterly abhorred the authority of the bishop of Rome, with all the religion observed in the same antichrist's church.

            "6. Item, She answered to the sixth article, as to the first, before specified.

            "7. Item, That she hath refused to come to her parish church, because the true religion of Christ was not then used in the same: and further said, that she had not come unto the church by the space of one year and three quarters then last past, neither yet did mean any more to come unto the same, in these idolatrous days.

            "8. Item, As touching the manner of her apprehension, she said that Cluney, the bishop's sumner, did fetch her to the bishop."

            These answers being then registered, they were again (with the said articles) propounded against her the twentieth day of December; and there being demanded if she would stand unto those her answers, she said, "I will stand to them unto the death; for the very angels of heaven do laugh you to scorn, to see your abomination that you use in the church." After the which words, the bishop pronounced the sentence of condemnation against her; and then delivering her unto the sheriffs, she was, with the fore-named John Rough, carried unto Newgate; from whence they were both together led unto Smithfield, the twenty-second day of the same month of December, and there most joyfully gave their lives for the profession of Christ's gospel.

            When the latter end of this history of Master Rough and Margaret Mearing was in finishing, there came to our hands one necessary thing of the said Margaret Mearing, which we thought not good to omit. The matter is this: Master Rough being chief pastor to the congregation in the said time of Queen Mary, as before you have heard, (of which company this Margaret Mearing was one,) did not well like the said Margaret, but greatly suspected her, as many others of them did besides, because she would oftentimes bring in strangers among them, and in her talk seemed (as they thought) somewhat too busy, &c. Now, what they saw or understood further in her, we know not, but this followed the evil suspicion conceived of her. Master Rough, the Friday before he was taken, in the open face of the congregation, did excommunicate her out of the same company; and so seemed with the rest to exclude and cut her off from their fellowship and society; whereat she being moved, did not well take it, nor in good part, but thought herself not indifferently handled among them: whereupon, to one of her friends, in a heat, she threatened to remove them all. But the providence of God was otherwise; for the Sunday after, Master Rough, being taken by the information of one Roger Sergeant to the bishop of London, (as hereafter thou shalt hear,) was laid in the Gate-house at Westminster, where none of his friends could come to visit him. Then this said Margaret, hearing thereof, got her a basket, and a clean shirt in it, and went to Westminster, where she, feigning herself to be his sister, got into the prison to him, and did there to her power not a little comfort him.

            Then coming abroad again, she understanding that the congregation suspected the said Sergeant to be his promoter, went to his house, and asked whether Judas dwelt not there: unto whom answer was made, there dwelt no such. "No!" said she; "dwelleth not Judas here, that betrayed Christ? his name is Sergeant." When she saw she could not speak with him, she went her way. So the Friday after, she, standing at Mark-lane end in London, with another woman, a friend of hers, saw Cluney, Bonner's sumner, coming in the street towards her house: whom when she saw, she said to the other woman standing with her, "Whither goeth yonder fine fellow?" said she: "I think surely he goeth to my house." And in viewing him still, at the last she saw him enter in at her door. So immediately she went home, and asked him whom he sought: whereunto Cluney made answer and said, "For you; you must go with me." "Marry," quoth she, "here I am; I will go with you." And coming to the bishop, she was laid in prison, and the Wednesday after, burnt with Master Rough in Smithfield, as ye have heard.

            Whereas mention and declaration was made before, that Bonner, the sooner to delude the simple and ignorant people, in the month of May, anno 1555, did cause Dr. Chedsey to publish openly at Paul's Cross, certain letters sent from the king and queen -- minding thereby to excuse and cloak his malignant murders of the saints of God, and thereby, through that colour, to cloak himself -- did protest that he was never so cruel and blood-thirsty as he was slanderously reported and charged withal, but rather compelled thereunto, (having commandment given from the higher powers,) must and would show himself ready to do his duty therein: I thought it therefore now expedient, upon so good an occasion here serving unto the same, somewhat to debate, and further to try out, this his visored obedience falsely by him pretended. And although it may seem not greatly needful, (his other wicked acts already sufficiently uttering the same,) yet,altogether ter being so manifest, I may not altogether pass it over in silence. And therefore if Bonner, thus standing to the defence of his pretended obedience, would needs have us conceive of him, that he is not so cruel and hasty to seek thereunto of these men, but rather enforced thereunto through the commandment of the higher powers, then let him answer unto his own handy-work, and his own commission, so spitefully conceived, so cruelly given forth, of his own motion and proper authority, and, as they term it, ex suo officio; not only to inquire, but also to proceed in condemnation against all and singular such persons as should be found within his jurisdiction, not conformable unto that idolatrous and malignant church.

            What doth or can this declare, but a mind not only thirsty, but also greedy and almost insatiable, of blood? I have heard it so reported that Bonner, sitting at the board with his claret wine before him, hath said, that whereas he hath been noted to be a blood-sucker, he never sucked any other blood, but that only in the goblet. If that be so, what meaneth then this unmerciful proclamation to hunt and chase out the poor innocents, and to bring them unto the fire? The sharp commission and proclamation set forth a little before by the king and queen, might it not seem enough and sufficient unto Bonner for that purpose, but he must also add to it his? If that of theirs was not sharp and crnel enough, what more sharpness could Bonner put unto it? if it were, what then needed this commission of Bonner to stir up the coals? If he did it not without their wills and commandment, why doth it not so appear among his records? if he did give it thus abroad upon his own head and motion, how can he defend himself from cruelty and blood-thirstiness?


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