472. QUEEN MARY'S SCOURGE OF PERSECUTION.
Considering the great and terrible scourge of persecution in the time of Queen Mary, and recounting the number of them that, under some part or other of the cross, were at that time afflicted and molested, I suppose from the highest to the lowest under the queen herself, no condition, state, degree, age, or calling of person or persons, can be reckoned, which at the same time escaped free and untouched without some print of the Lord's cross upon them. In the number and catalogue of whom, first, to begin with the most noble and renowned, the only sister of the queen herself, also the only and next heir then, now just possessor of the crown of England, Queen Elizabeth, (whose shoulders sustained then no small portion of that cross of Christ,) and so, from her Majesty, descending to all and singular states inferior; what vocation or condition here was excepted! whether he or they were archbishop, duchess, bishops, archdeacons, deans, priests, ministers, deacons, gentlemen, lawyers, merchants, artificers, soldiers, rich, poor men, women, wife, widow, virgin, old men, young men, boys, infants, blind, halt, and lame -- and what state else can be reckoned of men, which, from some touch of this scourge, was exempted -- and so, what condition, I say, of men escaped the papists' hands, in the time of Queen Mary, without affliction and danger, insomuch that, coming to the lowest of all other, one poor hermit (being but one then, as I think, in all the realm) could not pass their hands without open penance and other molestations, as, in the story here following, to the reader may appear.