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Foxe's Book of Martyrs -- 377. MOTHER BENET.


            In the said time of Queen Mary, there dwelt in the town of Wetheringset by Mendlesham aforesaid, a very honest woman called Mother Benet, a widow, which was persecuted out of the same town, because she would not go to mass, and other their beggarly ceremonies; but, at the last, she returned home again secretly to her house, and there departed this life joyfully. But Sir John Tyrrel, and Master Symonds the commissary, would not let her be buried in the churchyard: so was she laid in a grave by the highway side.

            The same good old woman Mother Benet, in the time of persecution, met one of the said Mother Seaman's neighbours, and asked her how the said Mother Seaman did; and she answered, that she did very well, God be thanked. "Oh!" said she, "Mother Seaman hath stept a great step before me; for she was never covetous, that I could perceive."

            Her husband in his mirth would say unto her, "O woman! if thou wert sparing, thou mightest have saved me a hundred marks more than thou hast:" to the which she would answer again gently, and say, "O man! be content, and let us be thankful; for God hath given us enough, if we can see it. Alas, good husband!" would she say, "I tell you truth; I cannot firkin up my butter, and keep my cheese in the chamber and wait a great price, and let the poor want, and so displease God. But, husband, let us be rich in good works, and so shall we please the Lord, and have all good things given us," &c. This good woman, of that vice of covetousness, of all that knew her, was adjudged least to be spotted, of any infirmity she had. The Lord root it out of the hearts of them that be infected therewith, Amen!


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