439. WILLIAM PLANE.
In the latter days of King Henry the Eighth, about that time Anne Askew was in trouble, one Dr. Crome was travailed withal to recant, for that he had preached somewhat against things maintained of the papists in the church. And one Master Tracy, hearing thereof, brought a letter secretly to one Plane, dwelling in Budge Row, and desired him to carry it to Dr. Crome, which letter tended to the end to persuade him not to recant, but to stand in the truth. When this good man, William Plane, had it, as he was ever willing to further the truth, so he gladly delivered the same to Dr. Crome which when he had received, and read it, he laid it down upon the table. And after the said William Plane was gone, an arch-papist came thither to persuade him to recant; and, in travailing with him, he found the said letter on the board, which when he had read, he examined him from whence it came; so, what through flattery and threatening, he declared who was the messenger that brought it. Then was William Plane sent for, and cast in the Tower, where he lay miserably thirteen weeks, none admitted to come to him; in which time he was extremely racked, within half a finger breadth as far as Anne Askew: but they could never get of him of whom he had the letter, nor for all their extremity would he accuse any man; so in the end he was delivered out of the Tower, and lived about three years after, and so godly ended his life. But unto this day would that Tracy never inquire in what condition his wife and children were left, although he was his messenger in carrying the letter. But (good Lord!) the strange disease that grew upon him by that extreme racking, as it is odious to rehearse, so I will wish them to repent that were the instruments of his torments, if they be alive, and warn other papists to the same, in whom any cruelty hath been in the like cause.