Foxe's Book of Martyrs -- 397. ELIZABETH YOUNG.



Illustration -- The Examination of Elizabeth Young

E heard before, in the treatise of the scourging of Thomas Green, how he was troubled and beaten by Dr. Story, for a certain book called "Antichrist," which he received of a woman, because in no case he would detect her. This woman was one Elizabeth Young, who, coming from Embden to England, brought with her divers books, and dispersed them abroad in London; for the which she, being at length espied and laid fast, was brought to examination thirteen times before the catholic inquisitors of heretical pravity: of the which her examinations, nine have come to our hands; wherein how fiercely she was assaulted, how shamefully she was reviled, how miserably handled, and what answers she made unto the adversaries in her own defence; and finally, after all this, how she escaped and passed through the pikes, (being yet, as I hear say, alive,) as I thought to give the reader here to see and understand.


The first examination of Elizabeth Young, before Master Hussey.

            Master Hussey examined her of many things: first, where she was born, who was her father and mother.

            Elizabeth Young.--"Sir, all this is but vain talk, and very superfluous. It is to fill my head with phantasies, that I should not be able to answer unto such things as I came for. Ye have not (I think) put me in prison to know who is my father and mother. But I pray you go to the matter that I came hither for."

            Hussey.--"Wherefore wentest thou out of the realm?"

            Elizabeth.--"To keep my conscience clean."

            Hussey.--"When wast thou at mass?"

            Elizabeth.--"Not these three years."

            Hussey.--"Then wast thou not there three years before that?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, nor yet three years before that: for if I were, I had evil luck."

            Hussey.--"How old art thou?"

            Elizabeth.--"Forty and upwards."

            Hussey.--"Twenty of those years thou wentest to mass."

            Elizabeth.--"Yea, and twenty more I may, and yet come home as wise as I went thither first; for I understand it not."

            Hussey.--"Why wilt thou not go to the mass?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, my conscience will not suffer me; for I had rather all the world should accuse me, than mine own conscience."

            Hussey.--"What if a louse or a flea stick upon thy skin, and bite thy flesh? thou must make a conscience in taking her off: is there not a conscience in it?"

            Elizabeth.--"That is but an easy argument to displace the Scriptures, and especially in such a part as my salvation dependeth upon for it is but an easy conscience, that a man can make."

            Hussey.--"But why wilt thou not swear upon the evangelists before a judge?"

            Elizabeth.--"Because I know not what a book-oath is?"

            Then he began to teach her the book-oath.

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I do not understand it, and therefore I will not learn it."

            Then said he, "Thou wilt not understand it: "and with that he rose up and went his way.


The second examination, before Dr. Martin.

            Dr. Martin said to her, "Woman, thou art come from beyond the sea, and hast brought with thee books of heresy and treason, and thou must confess to us, who translated them, printed them, and who sent them over, (for once I knew thee to be but a messenger,) and in so doing the queen's Highness will be good to thee, (for she hath forgiven greater things than this,) and thou shalt find as much favour as is possible. But if thou be stubborn, and wilt not confess, thou wilt be wondrous evil handled; for we know the truth already: but this we do, only to see whether thou wilt be true of thy word or no."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, ye have my confession, and more than that I cannot say."

            Martin.--"Thou must say more, and shalt say more. Dost thou think that we will be fully answered by this examination that thou hast made? Thou rebel whore and traitor heretic! thou dost refuse to swear upon the evangelists before a judge, I hear say. Thou shalt be racked inch-meal, thou traitorly whore and heretic! but thou shalt swear before a judge before thou go: yea, and thou shalt be made to confess how many books thou hast sold, and to whom."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I understand not what an oath is, and therefore I will take no such thing upon me. And no man hath bought any books of me as yet, for those books that I had, your commissioners have them all."

            .Martin..--"Thou traitorly whore! we know that thou hast sold a number of books, yea, and to whom; and how many times thou hast been here, and where thou liest, and every place that thou hast been in. Dost thou think that thou hast fools in hand?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, ye be too wise for me; for I cannot tell how many places I have been in myself. But if it were in Turkey, I should have meat and drink and lodging for my money."

            Martin.--"Thou rebel whore! thou hast spoken evil words by the queen, and thou dwellest amongst a sort of traitors and rebels, that cannot give the queen a good word."

            Elizabeth.--"I am not able to accuse any man thereof, neither yet is there any man that can prove any such things by me, as ye lay unto my charge. For I know by God's word, and God's book hath taught me, what is my duty to God, and unto my queen, and therefore (as I said) I am assured that no man living upon the earth can prove any such things by me."

            Martin.--"Thou rebel and traitorly whore, thou shalt be so racked and handled, that thou shalt be an example to all such traitorly whores and heretics; and thou shalt be made to swear by the holy evangelists, and confess to whom thou hast sold all and every one of these heretical books that thou hast sold: for we know what number thou hast sold and to whom; but thou shalt be made to confess in spite of thy blood."

            Elizabeth.--"Here is my carcass: do with it what you will. And more than that you cannot have, Master Martin; ye can have no more but my blood."

            Then fared he as though he had been stark mad, and said, "Martin! why callest thou me Martin?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I know well enough: for I have been before you ere now. Ye delivered me once at Westminster."

            Martin.--"Where didst thou dwell then?"

            Elizabeth.--"I dwelt in the Minories."

            Martin.--"I delivered thee and thy husband both; and I thought then, that thou wouldest have done otherwise than thou dost now. For if thou hadst been before any bishop in England, and said the words that thou didst before me, thou hadst fried a faggot: and though thou didst not burn then, thou art like to burn or hang now,"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I promised you then, that I would never be fed with an unknown tongue, and no more will I yet."

            Martin.--"I shall feed thee well enough. Thou shalt be fed with that (I warrant thee) which shall be smally to thine ease."

            Elizabeth.--"Do what God shall suffer you to do: for more ye shall not." And then he arose and so departed, and went to the keeper's house, and said to the wife, "Whom hast thou suffered to come to this vile traitorly whore and heretic, to speak with her?" Then said the keeper's wife, "As God receive my soul, here came neither man, woman, nor child, to ask for her."

            Martin.--"If any man, woman, or child, come to ask for her, I charge thee, in pain of death, that they be laid fast; and give her one day bread, and another day water."

            Elizabeth.--"If ye take away my meat, I trust that God will take away my hunger."

            And so he departed and said, "that was too good for her: "and then was she shnt up under two locks in the Clink where she was before.


The third examination, before Dr. Martin again.

            Then was she brought before him in his chamber, within my Lord Chancellor's house, who asked her, saying, "Elizabeth, wilt thou confess these things that thou hast been examined upon? for thou knowest that I have been thy friend; and in so doing, I will be thy friend again:" giving her many fair words, and then demanding of her how many gentlemen were beyond the seas.

            Elizabeth.--"It is too much for me to tell you how many there are on the other side."

            Martin.--"No, I mean but in Frankfort and Embden, where thou hast been."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I did never take account of them; it is a thing that I look not for."

            Martin.--"When shall I hear a true word come out of thy mouth?"

            Elizabeth.--"I have told you the truth; but because that it soundeth not to your mind, therefore ye will not credit it."

            Martin.--"Wilt thou yet confess? and if thou wilt, that that I have promised, I will do: and if thou wilt not, I promise thee thou must go even hence to the rack; and therefore confess."

            Elizabeth.--"I can say no more than I have said."

            Martin.--"Well, forasmuch as she will confess no more, have her away to the rack, and then she will be marred." Then answered a priest that sat there, and said, "Woman, take an oath; and confess. Wilt thou be hurt for other men?"

            Elizabeth.--"I can confess no more than I have. Do with my carcass what ye will."

            .Martin.--"Did ye ever hear the like of this heretic? What a stout heretic is this! We have the truth, and we know the trnth, and yet look whether she will confess. There is no remedy but she must needs to the rack, and therefore away with her: "and so commanded her out of the door, and called her keeper unto him, and said to him, "There is no remedy but this heretic must be racked;" and talked with him more, but what it was she heard not.

            Then he called her in again, and said, "Wilt thou not confess, and keep thee from the rack? I advise thee so to do: for if thou wilt not, thou knowest not the pain thereof yet, but thou shalt do."

            Elizabeth.--"I can confess no more. Do with my carcass what ye will."

            Martin.--"Keeper, away with her; thou knowest what I said: let her know the pain of the rack! "And so she departed, thinking no less, but that she should have gone to the rack, till she saw the keeper turn toward the Clink again.

            And thus did God alienate their hearts and diminish their tyrannous power, unto the time of further examinations; for she was brought before the bishop, the dean, and the chancellor, and other commissioners, first and last, thirteen times.


The fourth examination, before the bishop of London, Sir Roger Cholmley, Dr. Cooke the recorder of London, Dr. Roper of Kent, and Dr. Martin.

            First, she being presented by Dr. Martin before the bishop of London, Dr. Martin began to declare against her, saying, "The lord chancellor hath sent you here a woman, which hath brought books over from Embden, where all these books of heresy and treason are printed, and hath therewith filled all the land with treason and heresy, neither yet will she confess who translated them, nor who printed them, nor yet who sent them over: wherefore my Lord Chancellor committeth her unto my Lord of London, he to do with her as he shall think good. For she will confess nothing, but that she bought these said books in Amsterdam, and so brought them over to sell for gain."

            Dr. Cooke.--"Let her head be trussed in a small line, and make her to confess."

            Martin.--"The book is called Antichrist, and so may it be well called; for it speaketh against Jesus Christ and the queen. Besides that, she hath a certain spark of the Anabaptists, for she refuseth to swear upon the four evangelists before a judge: for I myself and Master Hussey have had her before us four times, but we cannot bring her to swear. Wherefore my Lord Chancellor would that she should abstain and fast, for she hath not fasted a great while; for she hath lien in the Clink a good while, where she had too much her liberty."

            Then said the bishop, "Why wilt thou not swear before a judge! That is the right trade of the Anabaptists."

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, I will not swear that this hand is mine."

            "No!" said the bishop, "and why?"

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, Christ saith, that whatsoever is more than yea, yea, or nay, nay, it cometh of evil. And moreover, I know not what an oath is; and therefore I will take no such thing upon me."

            Then said Cholmley, "Twenty pounds, it is a man in a woman's clothes! twenty pounds, it is a man!"

            Bonner.--"Think you so, my Lord?"

            Cholmley.--"Yea, my Lord," &c.

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, I am a woman."

            Bishop.--"Swear her upon a book, seeing it is but a question asked."

            Then said Cholmley, "I will lay twenty pounds, it is a man."

            Then Dr. Cooke brought her a book, commanding her to lay thereon her hand.

            Elizabeth.--"No, my Lord, I will not swear; for I know not what an oath is. But I say that I am a woman, and have children."

            Bishop.--"That know not we: wherefore swear."

            Cholmley.--"Thou ill-favoured whore, lay thy hand upon the book; I will lay on mine:" and so he laid his hand upon the book.

            Elizabeth.--"So will not I mine."

            Then the bishop spake a word in Latin, out of St. Paul, as concerning swearing.

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, if you speak to me of St. Paul, then speak English, for I understand you not."

            Bishop.--"I dare swear that thou dost not."

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, St. Paul saith, that five words spoken in a language that may be undersfood, are better than many in a foreign or strange tongue, which is unknown."

            Dr. Cooke.--"Swear before us, whether thou be a man or a woman."

            Elizabeth.--"If ye will not believe me, then send for women into a secret place, and I will be tried."

            Cholmley.--"Thou art an ill-favoured whore." Then said the bishop, " How believest thou in the sacrament of the altar?"

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, if it will please you that I shall declare mine own faith, I will."

            The bishop.--"Tell me, how believest thou in the sacrament of the altar?"

            Elizabeth.--"Will it please you that I shall declare my faith? And if it be not good, then teach me a better, and I will believe it."

            Dr. Cooke.--"That is well said: declare thy faith."

            Elizabeth.--"I believe in God the Father Almighty, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, three Persons and one God. I believe all the articles of my Creed. I believe all things written in the Holy Scripture, and all things agreeable with the Scripture, given by the Holy Ghost unto the church of Christ, set forth and taught by the church of Christ. I believe that Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, that immaculate Lamb, came into the world to save sinners; and that in him, by him, and through him, I am made clean from my sins; and without him I could not. I believe that in the holy sacrament of Christ's body and blood, which he did institute and ordain, and left among his disciples that night before he was betrayed, when I do receive this sacrament in faith and spirit, I do receive Christ."

            Bishop.--"No more, I warrant you, but the sacrament of Christ's body and blood, received but in spirit and faith, with these heretics."

            Cholmley.--"Ah whore! spirit and faith, whore!"

            Elizabeth.--"This sacrament never man could or did make, but only He, that did what no man could do."

            Martin.--"Then thou must allow that grass is a sacrament; for who could make grass, but he only?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, he hath suffered, and made a suffucient sacrifice once for all, and so hath he made his sacrament sufficient once for all; for there was never man that could say, Take, eat; this is my body, that is broken for you; but only Jesus Christ, who had his body broken for the sins of the world; which sacrament he hath left here amongst us for a testimonial of his death, even to the world's end."

            Martin.--"Who taught thee this doctrine? did Scory?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yea, Bishop Scory and others that I have heard."

            Bishop.--"Why, is Scory bishop now?"

            Elizabeth.--"If that do offend you, call him Dr. Scory, if ye will."

            Roper.--"I knew when he was but a poor doctor."

            Martin.--"What do ye call Scory?"

            Elizabeth.--"Our superintendent."

            Bishop.--"Lo! their superintendent."

            Martin.--"And what are ye called?"

            Elizabeth.--"Christ's congregation."

            Bishop.--"Lo! Christ's congregation, I warrant you."

            Dr. Cooke.--"What living hath Scory?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, as far as I do know, he liveth by his own, for I know no man that giveth him aught."

            Recorder.--"Yes, I warrant you, he hath enough sent him out of England."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I know no such thing."

            Cholmley.--"Hark! whore, hark! hark! how I do believe."

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, I have told you my belief."

            Cholmley.--"Hark, thou ill-favoured whore, how I do believe. When the priest hath spoken the words of consecration, I do believe that there remaineth the very body that was born of the Virgin Mary, was hanged on the cross, was dead and buried, and descended into hell, and rose again on the third day, and ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God. The same body, when the priest hath spoken the words, cometh down, and when the priest lifteth up his body on this wise," he, lifting up his hands, said, "there it is."

            Elizabeth.--"I have told you also how I do believe."

            Martin.--"Away with her."

            Cholmley.--"Ah, evil-favoured whore! nothing but spirit and faith, whore! "

            Martin.--"Away with her, we have more to talk withal."

            Then was she carried into the coal-house, and searched for books, and then put into the stock-house, and her knife, girdle, and apron taken from her.


The fifth examination, before the bishop of London's chancellor.

            Then was she brought out of the stock-house, and brought before the bishop's chancellor, who required of her, what age she was of.

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, forty years and upwards."

            The bishop's Chancellor.--"Why, thou art a woman of fair years what shouldst thou meddle with the Scriptures? It is necessary for thee to believe, and that is enough. It is more fit for thee to meddle with thy distaff, than to meddle with the Scriptures. What is thy belief? I would hear it; for it cannot be good, in that thou art brought into prison."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, if it will please you to hear, I will declare it unto you. But I pray you that you will take your pen and write it, and then examine it; and if ye find any thing therein that is not fit for a Christian woman, then teach me better, and I will learn it."

            Chancellor.--"Well said. But who shall judge between thee and me?"

            Elizabeth.--"The Scripture."

            Chancellor.--"Wilt thou stand by that?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yea, sir."

            Chancellor.--"Well, go thy way out at the door a little while, for I am busy, and I will call for thee anon again."

            Then he called me again, and said, "Now woman, the time is too long to write. Say thy mind, and I will bear it in my head."

            Then Elizabeth began, and declared her faith to him, as she had done before the bishop.

            Chancellor.--"Woman, spirit and faith I do allow; but dost not thou believe that thou dost receive the body of Christ, really, corporally, and substantially?"

            Elizabeth.--"These words, really and corporally, I understand not; as for substantially, I take it, ye mean I should believe that I should receive his human body (which is upon the right hand of God, and can occupy no more places at once); and that believe not I."

            Chancellor.--"Thou must believe this, or else thou art damned."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, can ye give me belief or faith?"

            Chancellor.--"No, God must give it thee."

            Elizabeth.--"God hath given me no such faith or belief."

            The chancellor then declared a text of St. Paul in Latin, and then in English, saying, I could make thee believe, but that thou hast a cankered heart, and wilt not believe. Who then can make thee to believe?"

            Elizabeth.--"You said even now, that faith or belief cometh of God; and so believe I, and then may not I believe an untruth to be a truth."

            Chancellor.--"Dost thou not believe that Christ's flesh is flesh in thy flesh?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, I believe not that; for my flesh shall putrefy and rot."

            Chancellor.--"Christ said, My flesh is flesh in flesh."

            Elizabeth.--"Whoso receiveth him fleshly, shall have a fleshly resurrection."

            Chancellor.--"Christ saith in the sixth of John, My flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed."

            Elizabeth.--"Christ preached to the Capernaites, saying, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye shall not have life in you: and the Capernaites murmured at it. And his disciples also murmured, saying among themselves, This is a hard saying, and who can abide it? Christ understood their meaning, and said, Are ye also offended? will ye also go away? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up to heaven, from whence he came? will that offend you? It is the Spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing. I pray you, sir, what meaneth Christ by that?"

            Chancellor.--"O, God forbid. Would ye have me to interpret the Scriptures? We must leave that for our old ancient fathers, which have studied Scriptures a long time, and have the Holy Ghost given unto them."

            Elizabeth.--"Why, sir, have you not the Holy Ghost given and revealed unto you?"

            Chancellor.--"No, God forbid that I should so believe; but I hope, I hope. But ye say, ye are of the Spirit: will you say that ye have no profit in Christ's flesh?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, we have our profit in Christ's flesh, but not as the Capernaites did understand it; for they understood, that they must eat his flesh as they did eat ox-flesh and other, and drink his blood as we drink wine or beer out of a bowl. But so we must not receive it. But our profit that we have by Christ, is to believe that his body was broken upon the cross, and his blood shed for our sins: that is the very meaning of Christ, that so we should eat his flesh, and drink his blood, when he said, My flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed."

            Chancellor.--"How doth thy body live, if Christ's flesh is not flesh in thy flesh?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I was a body before I had a soul; which body God had created, and yet it could not live, till God had breathed life into me, and by that life doth my body live. And when it shall please God to dissolve my life, my flesh will offer itself unto the place from whence it came; and through the merits of Christ, my soul will offer itself to the place from whence it came."

            Chancellor.--"Yea, but if thou do not believe that Christ's flesh is flesh in thy flesh, thou canst not be saved."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I do not believe that."

            Chancellor.--"Why, doth not Christ say, My flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed? Canst thou deny that?"

            Elizabeth.--"I deny not that; for Christ's flesh and blood is meat and drink for my soul, the food of my soul. For whosoever believeth that Jesus Christ the Son of God hath died and shed his blood for his sins, his soul feedeth thereon for ever."

            Chancellor.--"When thou receivest the sacrament of the altar, dost thou not believe that thou dost receive Christ's body?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, when I do receive the sacrament which Christ did institute and ordain the night before he was betrayed, and left among his disciples, as often (I say) as I receive it, I believe that spiritually, and by faith, I receive Christ. And of this sacrament, I know Christ himself to be the author, and none but he. And this same sacrament is an establishment to my conscience, and an augmenting to my faith."

            Chancellor.--"Why, did not Christ take bread, and give thanks, and break it, and give it to his disciples, and say, Take, eat; this is my body that is given for you? Did he give them his body, or no?"

            Elizabeth.--"He also took the cup, and gave thanks to his Father, and gave it unto his disciples, saying, Drink ye all hereof: for this is the cup of the new testament in my blood, which shall be shed for many. Now I pray you, sir, let me ask you one question: Did he give the cup the name of his blood, or else the wine that was in the cup?"

            Then was he very angry, and said, "Dost thou think that thou hast a hedge-priest in hand?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, I take you not to be a hedge-priest. I take you for a doctor."

            Chancellor.--"So methinketh. Thou wilt take upon thee to teach me."

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir; but I let you know what I know; and by argument, one shall know more. Christ said, As oft as ye do this, do it in the remembrance of me: but a remembrance is not of a thing present, but absent. Also St. Paul saith, So oft as ye shall eat of this bread, and drink of this cup, ye shall show forth the Lord's death till he come: then we may not look for him here, until his coming again at the latter day. Again, is not this article of our belief true, 'He sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge both the quick and the dead?' But if he shall not come before he come to judgment, then how is he here present in your sacrament of the altar? Wherefore I believe that the human body of Christ occupieth no more but one place at once; for when he was here, he was not there."


The sixth examination, before the bishop's chancellor.

            The bishop's chancellor said unto her, "Woman, the last time that thou wast before me, our talk was concerning the sacrament."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, true it is, and I trust that I said nothing that ye can deny by the Scriptures."

            Chancellor.--"Yes, thou wilt not believe that Christ's flesh is flesh in thy flesh."

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir; God hath given me no such belief; for it cannot be found by the Scriptures."

            Chancellor.--"Wilt thou believe nothing but what is in the Scripture? Why, how many sacraments dost thou find in the Scripture?"

            Elizabeth.--"The church of Christ doth set down twain."

            Chancellor.--"I will as well find seven by the Scripture, as thou shalt find twain."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I talk not to you thereof; but I say that the church of Christ setteth out twain, and I have been taught no more."

            Chancellor.--"What are those twain?"

            Elizabeth.--"The sacrament of Christ's body and blood, and the sacrament of baptism."

            Chancellor.--"What sayest thou by the sacrament of wedlock?"

            Elizabeth.--"I have not heard it called a sacrament, but the holy estate of matrimony, which ought to be kept of all men that take it upon them."

            Chancellor.--"How sayest thou by priests? Is it good that they should marry? is it to be kept of them?"

            Elizabeth.--"I come not hither to reason any such matters, for I am no divine; and also it is no part of my faith."

            Chancellor.--"Can ye not tell? ye shall tell or ever you go."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, then must ye keep me a good while: for I have not studied the Scriptures for it."

            Chancellor.--"No! why, ye will not be ashamed to flee unto the highest mystery, even to the sacrament, at the first dash; and ye are not afraid to argue with the best doctor in the land."

            Elizabeth.--"God's mysteries I will not meddle with; but all things that are written, are written for our edification."

            Chancellor.--"What say you by prayer for the dead? Is it not meet that if a man's friend be dead, his friend commend his soul unfo God?"

            Elizabeth.--"There is no Christian man that will commend his friend or his foe unto the devil. And whether it be good for him when he is dead or no, sure I am, that it is good when he is alive."

            Chancellor.--"Then thou allowest not prayer to be good for them when they be dead, and lying in purgatory. Is it not meet that prayer be made unto God for them?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I never heard in the Scriptures of purgatory; but in the Scriptures I have heard of heaven and hell."

            Chancellor.--"Why, ye have nothing but the skimming of the Scriptures. Our ancient fathers could find out in the bottom of the Scriptures that there is a purgatory. Yea, they could find it in the New Testament, that a priest shall take the sacrament, and go to the altar, and make an oblation, and offer it up every day."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, that could never be found in the Bible, nor Testament, as far as I could hear."

            Chancellor.--"Whom dost thou hear read either the Bible or Testament, but a sort of schismatics, bawdy bishops, and hedge-priests, (which have brought into the church a stinking communion, which was never heard of in any place in the world, but here in England,) which have deceived the king, and all the nobility, and all the whole realm?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, it is a vile name that ye give them all."

            Chancellor.--"Where are all the hedge-knaves become now, that they come not to their answer?"

            Elizabeth.--"Answer, sir? why, they have answered both with the Scriptures, and also with their blood. And then where were you, that ye came not forth to answer in their times? I never knew any of you that were troubled, but twain, and that was not for God's word; it was for their disobedience."

            Chancellor.--"No, I pray you? did ye not know that we were killed, hanged, burnt, and headed?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I never knew that any of you ever were either hanged, killed, burnt, or headed."

            Chancellor.--"No! did ye never hear that the bishop of Rochester lost his head, for the supremacy of the bishops of Rome?"

            Elizabeth.--"Then he died not for God's word."

            Chancellor.--"Well, thou wilt believe nothing but that which is written in God's word. Where canst thou find the sabbath written in the Scripture, by the name of the sabbath? for the right sabbath day will I prove to be Saturday: or where canst thou find the articles of the Creed in the Scripture by the name of the articles? or where canst thou find in the Scripture, that Christ went down into hell?"

            Elizabeth.--"What place or part in the Scripture can ye find to disprove any of these things?"

            Chancellor.--"What priest hast thou lien withal, that thou hast so much Scripture? Thou art some priest's woman, I think, for thou wilt take upon thee to reason, and teach the best doctor in all the land, thou!"

            Elizabeth.--"I was never yet priest's wife, nor yet priest's woman."

            Chancellor.--"Have I touched your conscience?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, ye have not touched my conscience; but beware ye hurt not your own."

            Chancellor.--"Thou hast read a little in the Bible or Testament, and thou thinkest that thou art able to reason with a doctor that hath gone to school thirty years; and, before God, I think if I had talked thus much with a Jew, as I have done with thee, he would have turned ere this time. But I may say by you, as Christ said by Jerusalem, saying, O Jerusalem, Jerusalem! how oft would I have gathered thee together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens, but thou wouldest not. And so would we gather you together in one faith, but ye will not: and therefore your own blood be upon your own heads; for I can do no more but teach you. Thou art one of the rankest heretics that ever I heard; for thou believest nothing but what is in the Scripture: and therefore thou art damned."

            Elizabeth.--"I do believe all things written in the Scripture, and all things agreeable with the Scripture, given by the Holy Ghost unto the church of Christ, set forth and taught by the church of Christ; and shall I be damned because I believe the truth, and will not believe an untruth?"

            Then the chancellor called the keeper, saying, "Cluney, take her away! thou knowest what thou hast to do with her."

            And so she departed, and was brought again to the stock-house, and there she lay certain days, and both her hands manacled in one iron; and afterward she was removed into the Lollards' Tower, and there she remained with both her feet in the stocks and irons, till the next time of examination.


The seventh examination, before the chancellor and the bishop's scribe.

            When she was brought before the said chancellor and the scribe, the chancellor said unto her; "Woman, thou hast been twice before me, but thou and I could not agree; and here be certain articles that my Lord the bishop of London would that thou shouldest make answer unto me, which are these: First, how many sacraments thou dost allow."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, as many as Christ's church doth allow, and that is twain."

            Then said the scribe, "Thou wast taught seven, before King Edward's days."

            Chancellor.--"Which two sacraments be those that thou dost allow?"

            Elizabeth.--"The sacrament of the body and blood of Jesus Christ, and the sacrament of baptism."

            Chancellor.--"Dost thou not believe that the pope of Rome is the supreme head of the church, immediately under God in earth?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, no man can be the head of Christ's church; for Christ himself is the head, and his word is the governor of all that be of that church, wheresoever they be scattered abroad."

            Chancellor.--"Dost thou not believe that the bishop of Rome can forgive thee all thy sins, heretical, detestable, and damnable, that thou hast done from thine infancy unto this day?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, the bishop of Rome is a sinner as I am, and no man can forgive me my sins, but he only that is without sin; and that is Jesus Christ, which died for my sins."

            Chancellor.--"Dost thou not know that the pope sent over his jubilees, that all that ever would fast and pray, and go to the church, should have their sins forgiven them?"

            The scribe.--"Sir, I think that she was not in the realm then."

            Chancellor.--"Hast thou not desired God to defend thee from the tyranny of the bishop of Rome, and all his detestable enormities?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yes, that I have."

            Chancellor.--"And art thou not sorry for it?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, not a whit."

            Chancellor.--"Hast thou not said, that the mass was wicked, and the sacrament of the altar most abominable?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yes, that I have."

            Chancellor.--"And art thou not sorry for it?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, not a whit."

            Chancellor.--"Art thou not content to go to the church, and hear mass?"

            Elizabeth.--"I will not go to the church, either to mass or matins, till I may hear it in a tongue that I can understand: for I will be fed no longer in a strange language." And always the scribe did write every of these articles, as they were demanded, and answered unto.

            Then the scribe asked her from whence she came.

            The chancellor said, "This is she that brought over all these books of heresy and treason."

            Then said the scribe to her, "Woman, where hadst thou all these books?"

            Elizabeth.--"I boUght them in Amsterdam, and brought them over to sell, thinking to gain thereby."

            Then said the scribe, "What is the name of the book?"

            Elizabeth.--"I cannot tell."

            The scribe.--"Why wouldst thou buy books, and know not their names?"

            Then said Cluney the keeper, "Sir, my Lord Bishop did send for her by name, that she should come to mass, but she would not."

            Chancellor.--"Yea, did my Lord send for her by name, and would she not go to mass?"

            Elizabeth.--"No, sir, I will never go to mass, till I do understand it, by the leave of God."

            Chancellor.--"Understand it! Why, who the devil can make thee to understand Latin, thou being so old?"

            Then the scribe commanded her to set her hand to all the said things.

            Elizabeth said, "Sir, then let me hear it read first."

            Then said the scribe, "Master Chancellor! shall she hear it read?"

            Chancellor.--"Yea, let the heretic hear it read." Then she heard it read, and so she set to her hand.


The eighth examination, before the bishop.

            When she was brought before the bishop, he asked the keeper, "Is this the woman that hath the three children?" And the keeper said, "Yea, my Lord."

            Bishop.--"Woman, here is a supplication put unto my hands for thee. In like case there was another supplication put up to me for thee afore this, in the which thou madest as though that I should keep thy children."

            Elizabeth.--"My Lord, I did not know of this supplication, nor yet of the other."

            Then said the bishop, "Master Dean, is this the woman you have sued so earnestly for?"

            Dean.--"Yea, my Lord."

            Dean.--"Woman, what remaineth in the sacrament of the altar, when and after that the priest hath spoken the words of consecration?"

            Elizabeth.--"A piece of bread. But the sacrament of Christ's body and blood, which he did institute and leave amongst his disciples the night before he was betrayed, ministered according to his word, that sacrament I do believe."

            Dean.--"How dost thou believe concerning the body of Christ? where is his body, and how many bodies hath he?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, in heaven, he sitteth on the right hand of God."

            Dean.--"From whence came his human body?"

            Elizabeth.--"He took it of the Virgin Mary."

            Dean.--"That is flesh, blood, and bones, as mine is. But what shape hath his spiritual body? hath it face, hands, and feet?"

            Elizabeth.--"I know no other body that he hath, but that body whereof he meant when he said, This is my body which is given for you; and this is my blood which shall be shed for you. Whereby he plainly meaneth that body, and no other, which he took of the Virgin Mary, having the perfect shape and proportion of a human body."

            Then said Story, "Ye have a wise body; for ye must go to the stake."

            Dean.--"Art thou content to believe in the faith of Christ's church? But to ask of thee what Christ's church is, or where it is, I let it pass."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, to that church I have joined my faith, and from it I purpose never to turn, by God's help."

            Dean.--"Wouldst thou not be at home with thy children with a good will?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, if it please God to give me leave."

            Dean.--"Art thou content to confess thyself to be an ignorant and foolish woman, and to believe as our holy father the pope of Rome doth, and as the lord cardinal's Grace doth, and as my Lord the bishop of London thine ordinary doth, and as the king's Grace, and the queen's Grace, and all the nobility of England do; yea, and the emperor's Grace, and all the noble princes of Christendom?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I never was wise, but in few words I shall make you a brief answer how I do believe. I do believe all things that are written in the Scriptures given by the Holy Ghost unto the church of Christ, set forth and taught by the church of Christ. Hereon I ground my faith, and on no man."

            Then said Story, "And who shall be judge?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, the Scripture."

            Story.--"And who shall read it?"

            Elizabeth.--"He unto whom God hath given the understanding."

            Bishop.--"Woman, be reformable; for I would thou Wert gone; and Master Dean here hath earnestly sued for thee."

            Dean.--"Woman, I have sued for thee indeed, and I promise thee, if thou wilt be reformable, my Lord will be good unto thee."

            Elizabeth.--"I have been before my Lord Bishop, and before Master Chancellor three times, and have declared my faith."

            Dean.--"And yet I know that Master Chancellor will say, that thou art a rank heretic."

            Story.--"Away with her."

            Bishop.--"Master Dean, ye know that I may not tarry, nor you neither: Let her keeper bring her home to your own chamber soon, at four o'clock at afternoon; and if that ye find her reasonable, then let her go, for I would that she were gone." Then said the dean, "With a good will, my Lord."

            And so she was sent unto the place from whence she came, until it was four of the clock at afternoon.


The ninth examination, before the dean, by whom it pleased God to deliver her.

            When it was four of the clock at afternoon, as the hour was appointed, and the dean was set, he asked her, "Art thou a fool now, as thou wast today?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I have learned but small wisdom since."

            Dean.--"Dost thou think that I am better learned than thou?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yes, sir, that I do."

            Dean.--"Thinkest thou that I can do thee good?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yea, sir, and if it please God that ye will."

            Dean.--"Then I will do thee good indeed. What dost thou receive, when thou receivest the sacrament which Christ left among his disciples the night before he was betrayed?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, that that his disciples did receive."

            Dean.--"What did they receive?

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, that that Christ gave them, they received."

            Dean.--"What answer is this? was Christ there present?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, he was there present; for he instituted his own sacrament."

            Dean.--"He took bread; and he brake it, and he gave it to his disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body which shall be broken for you. When thou receivest it, dost thou believe that thou receivest his body?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, when I receive, I believe that through faith I do receive Christ."

            Dean.--"Dost thou believe that Christ is there?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I believe that he is there to me, and by faith I do receive him."

            Dean.--"He also took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to his disciples, and said, Drink ye all hereof: this is the cup of the new testament in my blood, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. When thou dost receive it after the institution that Christ ordained among his disciples, the night before he was betrayed, dost thou believe that Christ is there?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, by faith I believe that he is there, and by faith I do believe that I do receive him."

            Dean.--"Now thou hast answered me. Remember that thou sayest, that when thou dost receive according to the institution of Christ, thou dost receive Christ."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I believe Christ not to be absent from his own sacrament."

            Dean.--"How long wilt thou continue in that belief?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, as long as I do live, by the help of God: for it is, and hath been, my belief."

            Dean.--"Wilt thou say this before my Lord?"

            Elizabeth.--"Yea, sir."

            Dean.--"Then I dare deliver thee. Why, thou calf! why wouldst thou not say so to-day?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, ye asked me no such question."

            Dean.--"Then ye would stand in disputation how many bodies Christ had."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, indeed that question ye did ask me."

            Dean.--"Who shall be thy sureties that thou wilt appear before my Lord of London and me upon Friday next?"

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I have no sureties, nor know I where to have any."

            Then spake the dean unto two women that stood there, who had earnestly sued for her, saying, "Women, will ye be her sureties, that she shall appear before my Lord of London and me upon Friday next."

            The women.--"Yea, sir, and it please you."

            Dean.--"Take heed that I find you no more a brabbler in the Scripture."

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, I am no brabbler in the Scripture, nor yet any man can burden me therewith."

            Dean.--"Yes, I have heard of you well enough, what ye are."

            Then said he to the two women, "What if a man should touch your conscience; do ye not smell a little of heresy also?"

            The women.--"No, sir."

            Dean.--"Yes, a little of the frying-pan, or else wherefore have ye twain so earnestly sued for her?"

            The one woman answered, "Because that her children were like to perish, and therefore God put me in mind to sue for her."

            Then said the other woman, "And I gat her child a nurse, and I am threatened to stand to the keeping of her child; and therefore it standeth me in hand to sue to have her out."

            Dean.--"Woman, give thanks unto these honest women, who have so earnestly sued for thee, and I promise thee so have I. These great heretics will receive nothing but in spirit and faith." And so he rose and departed.

            Elizabeth.--"Sir, God be praised, and I thank you for your goodness and theirs also."

            And so he went away; and upon the Friday next, because she was accused, her two sureties went thither, and were discharged.


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